Real Estate Information Archive


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Free Home Staging Tips

by The Schuman Team




Your home is like a product on a shelf in a store.  Buyers will compare all the products that meet their criteria in the same price range and pick the nicest one.  As real estate agents who also specialize in home staging, it is our job to  make sure that our clients' homes are not only priced right, but show the best.  This can often be done with a very small budget. 

Here are five of the many Staging tips in our arsenal that increase the value of your home by making it show better. Best of all, they won't cost you any money!

1.  CLEAN, CLEAN, CLEAN!  Inside and out - and don't forget the windows.  Bathrooms should shine!  It's hard for a buyer to imagine themselves using a bathroom with someone else's grime in there. 

2. Clear off refrigerator.  So simple, but it makes a big difference.  In general, your "stuff" distracts buyers from the house itself and makes rooms feel cluttered.

3.  Clean and organize closets - Overstuffed and messy closets make buyers think there isn't enough closet space.  Pack away out of season clothes and they will be ready to go when you move. 

4.  Remove scatter rugs and bath mats for showings.  They only make rooms look smaller by visually breaking up the space.  Remember, more perceived space = more money! 

5.  Have a showings plan.  It is difficult to keep a home "show ready" at all times.  Create a plan to get the home ready to show in 10 minutes.  Example -  For the bathroom, buy 2 baskets- one for the shower and one for the countertop products you use regularly.  When you have a showing, just pop the baskets under the sink or in a linen closet for a quick and easy clean-up!

If you are looking to sell your home, we offer full staging services at no additional cost to our clients. 

How Long Should Home Components Last?

by The Schuman Team

Knowing the age of home components can help you with budgeting for future updates and repairs. It may also be a determining factor in choosing one home over another.

The following is a list of life expectancies of certain home components. Keep in mind that these figures are merely averages.



how long do home components last?


Appliances -  Gas Range - 15 years

                    Dryers / Refrigerators 13                                                     

                    Dishwashers and Microwaves - 9

                    Compactors - 6


Countertops  -    Natural Stone - lifetime

                         Cultured Marble - 20


Decks -              15-20 , depending on climate


Doors -              Exterior fiberglass, steel and wood - will last as long as house stands

                          Vinyl doors - 20 years

                          Screen Doors - 40

                          French Doors - 30-50


Faucets and Fixtures -   Kitchen sinks - 50 years

                                    Faucets - 15

                                    Shower Doors - 20

                                    Showerheads/toilets - lifetime


Flooring -       Wood, marble, slate and granite - 100

                       Vinyl Flooring -50                         

                       Linoleum - 25

                       Carpet - 8-10


Garage Doors -             10-15 years


Home Technology -       Security Systems- 5-10 years

                                    Heat and Smoke detectors- 5-10 years


Heating, Venting, and AC- HVAC Systems- 15-20 years

                                       Tankless water heaters - 20

                                       Electric or gas water heaters - 10


Roofing  -                      Slate, Copper and clay/concrete - 50 years

                                      Asphalt-shingle - 20 years                     

                                      Fiber-cement shingles- 25 years

                                      Wood shakes- 30 years


Siding and Accessories-     Brick, wood, stone, and fiber cement- last as long as the home

                                        Exterior Wood shutters - 20 years

                                        Copper Gutters- 50

                                        Aluminum Gutters- 20

                                        Copper downspouts- 100

                                        Aluminum downspouts- 30


Windows-                         Aluminum - 15-20 years

                                        Wooden- up to 30 years 


Source= Study by National Association of Home Builders. Life expectancies listed above are general guidelines only. They should not be interpreted as a representation, warranty or guarantee regarding the life expectancy or performance of any individual product or product line.

Why Moving Up In A Down Market Makes Sense

by The Schuman Team


Many current homeowners have recently seen their housing needs change. Perhaps they have a child getting ready to start school in the fall, or maybe they simply need more space. Whatever the reason, if your goal is to move into a more expensive home, don't let the market scare you from moving forward.

With local real estate here in Cleveland on a slight downward trend, and with interest rates near historic lows, move-up buyers are facing a great opportunity. However, for a lot of move-up buyers, the thought of selling their current home during a declining market makes them uneasy and keeps them from moving forward with their goals. 

Hopefully, the follow graph will help illustrate why moving up can make a lot of sense.

Buying Up in a down market


In this example, the owners of Home "A" have experienced a 10% decline in the value of their home. On face value, this seems like a negative and can be very concerning. Had the owners of Home "A" sold at the peak of the market, like in 2003 or 2004, they would have also purchased Home "B" at the peak of the market. The difference would have been $200,000.

When the market declines, the price of all homes decline.  Thus, Home "B" experienced the same percentage decline as Home "A", yet went down a greater dollar amount.  The difference is now only $180,000. Although the sellers feel a "loss" in the sale of their Home "A", they actually realize a net gain of $20,000 in the overall transaction.

We realize this is a somewhat difficult concept for some people to grasp but we hope you really take some time to study the numbers. If you would like to buy a larger home, now really is a great time to do it.

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Contact Information

The Schuman Team
3550 Lander Road
Pepper Pike OH 44122
Dan: 216-346-3235
Amy: 216-403-9189
Fax: 216-456-2333