May 2021 Newsletter

Personalize Your Home

Adding personal touches to your home can increase your own satisfaction and enjoyment as well as draw the interest of future buyers. Try some of these simple ways to add character to your interior design.

Style the entryway. Create a welcoming impression the moment the front door is opened. Consider adding an attractive bench and hanging wall sconces on either side of a framed mirror or favorite piece of large artwork.

Frame your windows. Make your windows a focal point by installing wood trim around plain windows or framing them with curtains. Installing curtain panels on a rod placed 6-12 inches above the top of the window will make the room feel taller.

Install beadboard wall panels. Give a room a touch of character by adding beadboard panels to the lower half of the walls. Relatively inexpensive and easy to install, the panels can either be painted white or another shade that complements the wall color.

Find unique hardware. Replace plain cabinet and door hardware with interesting and unusual pieces. Antique shops can be a great source to find beautiful, vintage doorknobs and drawer pulls.


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Also in this issue…
3 Keys to Low-Maintenance Landscaping
Do You Need a 20% Down Payment?
Is It Time To Upsize Your Home?
Houses in Metro “Spillover Markets” Are Selling Fast

3 Keys to Low-Maintenance Landscaping

An inviting yard or outdoor living space at home gives you the daily opportunity to reap the benefits of fresh air and sunshine. However, sometimes your lawn and landscaping can seem more like an overwhelming chore than something to be enjoyed.

“Looking at your garden should not make you think of your to-do list,” says Julie Farris, a landscape designer based in New York.

With some foresight and initial work, you can cut down on the time it takes to maintain your landscaping, freeing you up to simply enjoy the outdoors more often. Follow these three guidelines to get started.

Embrace your climate. Research the weather and soil conditions of your area, and build a design around those foundational elements. Include as many native plants as possible, as they will naturally establish themselves more quickly and require less special treatment in order to thrive. In drier climates, consider replacing some of your grass with an attractive rock garden accented with a low-maintenance groundcover.

Think year-round beauty. With a little bit of strategic planning, you can make your landscaping look attractive all year long – and for many years to come. When choosing your plants, opt for long-lasting perennials, hardy evergreens or groundcovers that can slowly take the place of grass. Consult a local nursery for specific recommendations.

Incorporate hardscape. One of the easiest ways to cut back on yard maintenance is to decrease the size of your lawn. Stepping stones or concrete pavers spread out among the grass can add visual interest and character to your yard. Although it requires an upfront investment, installing a brick patio or a composite-wood deck can minimize upkeep while creating a relaxing space to entertain.


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Do You Need a 20% Down Payment?

Here’s what you need to know about the benefits of making a 20% down payment.

  • Lower interest rates – A larger down payment indicates the buyers’ financial stability to lenders, so you’re more likely to receive the lowest possible interest rate.
  • Greater leverage in a competitive market – When sellers receive multiple bids, offers that are secured with higher down payments tend to be more appealing.
  • Avoiding Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI) – This protects the lender should the buyers default on the loan. PMI can be avoided with larger down payments.

However, the median down payment for home buyers is well below 20%, according to In 2020, the median down payment was 12% for all home buyers and just 7% for first-time buyers. Options such as VA, FHA and USDA loans require low or no down payments for qualified applicants.


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Is It Time To Upsize Your Home?

Increased square footage can make life more comfortable, especially if you have a growing family. The following signs could indicate that you are financially ready to upsize your home.

  • You have adequate savings. You’ll need cash to cover closing costs and moving expenses.
  • You have equity in your current home. You may be pleasantly surprised by how much equity you’ve built up in your current residence, which can be used as a down payment on a larger house.
  • You’ve adjusted your budget. A great way to quickly see what the financial impact of upsizing would be is to update your monthly budget with a larger home’s mortgage payment plus average utility costs.


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Houses in Metro “Spillover Markets” Are Selling Fast

As a result of remote work options and virtual learning over the past year, many buyers are eager to purchase properties just outside of large cities. These “spillover” housing markets tend to offer more square footage for a lower selling price than what’s available in urban areas.

Some larger metropolitan areas, such as San Francisco, actually have several spillover markets, according to REALTOR® Magazine. Listings in Stockton, Lodi, Vallejo, and Sacramento are all experiencing record-low numbers for days on market. Buyers who are looking for more space at home but also want the cultural experiences offered by big cities may want to consider one of these popular spillover areas.

Top 5 “Spillover Markets”:

  1. Stockton, CA
  2. Rapid City, SD
  3. Burlington, NC
  4. Vallejo, CA
  5. Fort Wayne, IN


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©2021 The Personal Marketing Company. All rights reserved. Reproductions in any form, in part or in whole, are prohibited without written permission. If your property is currently listed for sale or lease, this is not intended as a solicitation of that listing. The material in this publication is for your information only and not intended to be used in lieu of seeking additional consumer or professional advice. All trademarked names or quotations are registered trademarks of their respective owners.

The Personal Marketing Company
11511 W. 83rd Terrace
Lenexa, KS 66214


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