Pam Silverwood and David Hack

In January, Pam and David became residents at

Mildred and David Cohen

No sooner had David and Mildred Cohen listed their Holmdel, N.J., house when they had an acceptable offer. 

“It was a lot easier than we expected,” says David. 

During their first open house, the first visitor submitted an offer for just $5,000 less than their asking price, proving the real estate market is truly on the ups. 

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Houses sell at all times of the year, and serious buyers are looking all year-round. Each season, there are different ways to prepare your house to attract a prospective buyer. 

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The best time to move is when you are still in charge, on your timetable, not when you have to. One couple, while visiting Seabrook, the Erickson Living community where I work as the personal moving consultant, told me they wanted to move while they were still able to direct the move.

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I ve never met a seller who hasn t experienced sweaty palms, palpitations, and an overwhelming sense of doom. Add 30, 40, or 50-plus years in one home and the barriers to selling feel insurmountable. [caption id="attachment_14485" align="alignright" width="258" caption="Attention to details: Getting your house cleaned by a professional gives it that extra shine for buyers.

Brooksby Village
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[caption id="attachment_12150" align="alignright" width="280" caption="Roberta and Lafayette Gosselin made use of Internet shopping and classifieds websites when downsizing their home before their move to Brooksby Village. "]

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Things tend to accumulate when we become comfortable in our homes, and many of them we no longer need. Clearing them out when your house is on the market serves a dual purpose: It frees up buyers attention to focus on the house rather than your stuff, and it gives you a head-start on packing.

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A new year means a fresh start, and it s the perfect time to let go of what no longer serves us. Seize the opportunity to organize, declutter, and free yourself from things that are taking up unnecessary space in your house and your life. Here s a tip to get started: