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John Ratico, Jr.

Sales Associate

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Home Inspections Part 1: What you Need to Know


Home Inspections Part I: What You Need to Know

You just sold your house. Congratulations!

Before the sale can be finalized, a pre-sale home inspection is usually required to verify the structure of the house and its systems are sound.

This two part blog series will guide you through the process and offer tips to help you prepare for your home for inspection.

What is a home inspection?

A professional home inspection is a visual examination of the interior and exterior of your home, as well as its major systems (HVAC, plumbing, electrical, etc.) to ensure they are installed and working correctly.

The information gathered from the inspection is compiled into a written report along with recommendations to address certain conditions that need attention.

A home inspection may include radon testing, termite and insect detection, pool inspections, and other tests at the buyer’s request.

How long does the inspection take to complete?

A typical home inspection can take between two to four hours.

Who pays for the home inspection?

Typically, the potential home buyer will pay for the inspection.

Will I receive a copy of the report?

The report belongs to the party paying for the inspection. Unless he or she authorizes the inspector to release the report, you will not receive a copy.

Should I be at home for the inspection?

It is better that you are NOT home during the inspection. The home inspector needs the freedom to do a thorough examination without interruption. Additionally, this is an opportunity for the buyers to get acquainted with the ins and outs of their new home, so it is imperative to the sale that they are able ask critical questions freely.

Can my home fail an inspection?

No, a home cannot fail an inspection. The inspection is performed to document the current condition of the home and note what areas may need some attention, some of which may need more immediate attention than others.

What happens after the inspection?

Following the inspection, the inspector will issue a report to their client with a summary of the inspection and note any material defects or issues that may impede the sale or bring you back to the negotiation table, such as a grading problem or a roof that’s in disrepair.

Check back with us next month for Home Inspections Part II: Prepare, Prepare, Prepare, which will include tips to get your home ready for the inspection.

15 Moving Tips that Will Make Your Move So EASY!!!


15 Moving Tips that Will Make Your Move So EASY!!!


Congratulations on your new home! After the excitement wears off, panic may start to settle in.

Moving can be a daunting task and you may find yourself overwhelmed with all there is to do. These

tips will help you stay organized, making your move as seamless as can be.


1. Don’t wait until the last minute to pack. Get organized early. Make a list of all you need to

accomplish each week and assign tasks to each person in your family.


2. Take this opportunity to purge old, unused, and broken items. The more stuff you get rid of,

the less you’ll have to pack, unpack, and store in your new home.


3. Call your cable company and other utilities to schedule disconnect times.


4. Pack an overnight bag with your sundries, PJs, and a few outfits for each person in your house.  When it’s time to get ready for bed the first night, you’ll be glad you won’t have to dig through boxes to find your clothes.


5. Make the beds first that way you can crash after a long day of unpacking.


6. Pack a clear bin with important necessities you’ll need right away including: toilet paper,

paper towels, light bulbs, and cleaning supplies.


7. Label all of your boxes with the items inside and the room it should be delivered to. Be sure

to write this information on the sides of the box, as well as the top, so you can find things

when the boxes are stacked.


8. Change your address a week before you move to ensure your packages and bills are

delivered in a timely manner.


9. Pack heavier items in small boxes. No one wants to carry a large, heavy box of books up the



10. Use wardrobe boxes. These are not only great for your hanging clothes, but comforters,

pillows and blankets.


11. Store dishes in bubble wrap and pack them vertically to avoid cracks and breaks.


12. Take a photo of the wiring on your electronics before you box them. You can use it as a

reference when you set them up at your new place.


13. Hire a sitter to watch pets and kids. You’ll have enough to worry about on moving day.


14. Defrost your refrigerator at least a day before the move.


15. To cut down on boxes, use luggage, baskets, and hampers to pack your towels, sheets, and


Moving isn’t fun, but being organized can make the process tolerable.


Why You Need a Professional Realtor When Buying a Home



Why You Need a Professional Realtor When Buying a Home


Navigating the real estate market can be a challenging endeavor. Sure, the web has made it easy to do a lot of the initial legwork, but what about after you find your dream house? How will you place your bid? Are you prepared to negotiate terms and ensure certain things are updated or replaced before you take ownership? How will you maneuver through the contracts? Working with a professional buying agent can ensure that you find a house that meets your style and needs and stays within your budget. Below are some reasons why it’s essential to work with a professional buying agent when purchasing a home.



Realtors have the experience to help you negotiate that killer deal and fill out the mountain of paperwork that accompanies buying a new home. Not to mention, realtors speak their own language full of acronyms and jargon. Need a 4B/2.5B with a 2C, FDR, OFC, a W/D, and BB? See what I mean? Ask a professional realtor to translate for you!



It’s easy to show up and speak to the seller’s realtor and hope that he or she will guide you through the purchasing process; but think about this – his or her job is to get you to pay top dollar for that house, thus upping their commission. A specialized buying agent will help you make the right offers and help you play hardball, whenever necessary.


Save Time

Every day the Internet boasts thousands of homes for sale. Some have three bedrooms, others four; some houses come equipped with finished basements, but aren’t in the right school district. There’s so much information to sort through that it can be overwhelming. A local realtor knows the area and the listings within it – let them help you sort through the listings, making the home search a little less stressful. They also have access to even more listings than Zillow or Realtor.com. and can help you find that hidden gem.


Zoning and Code Knowledge

An experienced agent will be familiar with local zoning ordinances and building codes to make sure you buy a sound house and can install a fence or build an addition, if so desired.


Avoid Closing Snags

Snags and pitfalls can hinder a sale before closing. An experienced real estate agent can usually recognize them before it’s too late. Before closing, they will make sure there are no title issues and that financing has fully come through.


With more than 10 years experience in real estate, I can help you find the perfect home for you and your family. Customer service is my top priority and I work side-by-side my clients throughout the buying process. If you’re looking to buy or sell in Chesterfield or other areas in Burlington County, contact me today at 609-610-4831.


Six Tips to Sell Your Home...Fast!


Six Tips to Sell Your Home… Fast!


Selling your home can be an exciting, yet overwhelming time. Here are some tips to help you on the path to selling your home for top dollar.


  1. Get Real about Pricing


Your home contains hundreds of thousands of memories. Perhaps it’s your first home or maybe you raised your family here. While your memories may be priceless to you, they don’t mean that you can price your house well above market value.


I will help you properly price your home right from the start. In order to attract the most buyers, it is essential that your home be priced competitively. Overpricing can hurt your chances of a fast sale and more often than not means a longer stay on the market and eventual price cuts, which will make your home undesirable.


  1. Make the House Easily Accessible to Potential Buyers


Sometimes, sellers set time constraints when potential buyers can view the house; but if you are inflexible on this point you will run into some issues. We live in a world where everyone wants things instantaneously. If a buyer can’t take a look within two to three days, they’ll forget about your house and find a new dream house.


  1. Make It Move-in Ready


Before you put your home on the market, take the necessary steps to get your home move-in ready. Put a fresh coat of paint on the walls, have the carpets cleaned, fix broken switches and leaky faucets, and make any necessary updates to your landscape. Your home must be ready to show at all times!


  1. De-Personalize the SpacePretend tomorrow is moving day! Remove all your family photos, antiques and other pieces that reflect a specific design style. It may sound counterintuitive, but potential buyers will have trouble picturing themselves living in the house if it reminds them too much of you.
  4. Prepare for Negotiations


Before the offers start to roll in, have an idea of what you’re willing to compromise in order to sell. Are you willing to pay for additional repairs or contribute to closing costs? Are you dead set on having a fast closing or will do you want to have extra time to move out? Knowing all this before you move forward can expedite the sales process.


  1. Enlist the Help of a Good Real Estate Agent

Selling a home isn’t a cut and dry procedure. An experienced realtor can steer you through the procedures, legal elements and other nuances.


Most often, sellers choose a real-estate agent who was referred to you by family or friends. Before you partner with an agent, do your research to find someone who has plenty of experience, knows and does business in the area where you live.


I have more than 10 years experience in real estate. Customer service is my top priority and I work closely with my clients throughout the sale of their home. If you’re looking to buy or sell in Chesterfield or other areas in Burlington County, contact me today at 609-610-4831.

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