Archive for March, 2014

The Last Week Before Closing. Stressful? Yep.

Thursday, March 20th, 2014

Sean Hessby Sean Hess (, Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty ( Join us on Facebook.

Stress in The Final Week Before Closing.

Are you week away from closing? It’s the last week before closing for me and I am a stressball.

I am a Broker and I do this all the time, so it shouldn’t be stressful. But here I am on pins and needles.

The money was the most recent thing I was worried about.

I was worried about wiring it to my bank for the down payment. I always think when I initiate a wire transfer it will end up in Mali.

I didn’t end up in Mali, it ended up where it should of. So, whew!

And I’m still not packed.

I am partially packed. My new home is close to where I’m living now so I don’t really have to pack a lot of things…I can just pull them in place and drive them over. But for the things that need to be packed (like dishes), I’m not even sure where to start…

I have a 1992 Dodge Daytona in the garage that needs a fuel pump. It won’t run if I don’t install it. The pump has been sitting on my work bench for a year, waiting. I have to do it this weekend I guess…because I’m not towing the car over.

And then there’s the work bench. It’s big. How am I going to get that over?

As a matter of fact how am I going to get any of the big furniture over?

Once I clear the furniture out there’s some work to be done to the old house. Since I don’t know what day I’m going to have everything out I’m not sure how soon I can schedule the work.

There’s a bit of landscaping work to do on the old house as well…

So here’s what I’m going to do:

Just show up at closing with the money. Closing dates are always a bit tentative, so no worries if it’s a day or two late.

When everything is closed transfer any utilities like cable and phone.

Focus on any painting or work on the new house first.

After the painting is done, move everything over . Don’t worry about getting things boxed. Just do what I can when I can. For the really big stuff, worst case, rent a box truck for a day and call in some favors :-)

Make the calls now to start scheduling work, it’s still two weeks out anyway.

Don’t worry about the garage, the work bench, or the Daytona and its fuel pump. The garage is the last loose end in both houses so I still have time.

Just the closing itself is a big enough deal. It’s taking a lot of thought. When the closing is out of the way then that stress will be off my plate and it will be much easier to function on the other things.

Home Inspection for New Construction

As a broker I advise people buying anything to get a home inspection.

I’ve watched this house being built, filmed it and taken a lot of pictures so I have a good idea what is behind the walls.  I still think it’s a good idea to have an inspection because it’s a bit like getting an owner’s manual to a house. It tells you how things work. But if I schedule an inspection it will take away 3-4 hours I desperately need to get ready moving.

So here’s a thought. Get the inspection after I move in.


Well, there are going to be a few things missing…these are called “punch list” items. Punch list items don’t delay closings unless they are major, and I don’t see any major items. So when developing a punch list for things going forward, it might be a good idea to schedule the inspection for after I take possession.

I can develop a more complete punch list this way.

The Stress I’m Not Dealing With

If I had to pack the house and have it ready for moving there would be things that I’m used to having that I won’t have access to. Maybe I can still use the kitchen in my old house but I don’t have the plates, for example. So lots of eating out.

Since closing dates can move 24-48 hours (mostly due to last-minute bank underwriting) there are people who have a fully packed moving truck and no place to put the contents.I won’t have that problem.

I you anticipate having that fully packed truck, I’d advise you to give yourself  a week’s buffer and enough cash to hold the move items and live in a hotel if necessary. Delays are generally only a day or two, but if you have a week’s buffer on where you are going to go, there will be a lot less mental stress if things don’t happen on closing day proper. Especially if it happens on a Friday and stretches through to a Monday.

And if you are moving from one part of the country to another, see if you can get a bank account set up ahead of time so that you have access to local cash if you need it.

Otherwise, can’t we just close already?

Like Tom Petty once sang, “The waiting is the hardest part.”

New Pool Home Listing! 473 Linda Court, St. Augustine, FL 32086

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

by Sean Hess (, Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty ( Join us on Facebook.

I just listed a fantastic new pool home at 473 Linda Court in St. Augustine. It even sits on the golf course … but away from the flight of flying golf balls (which is nice). Here’s a bit more about it:

Pool home! Screened with large patio. 4-bedroom home has popular open floor plan with open spaces and lots of windows. Open kitchen with tile floors, breakfast bar and island. Stainless appliances, solid surface counters. Extra office area with desk off kitchen. Master bedroom opens to pool and patio area. Master bath includes jacuzzi tub. Uverse ready. Nice deep lot has golf course as a privacy buffer, nearly a half acre to enjoy. Quiet street with little outside traffic.

Click here to find out more about 473 Linda Court. If you’d like to see it, please schedule ahead, as I may need time to set up showing. Oh, and make sure you check out the video below:

Want to know more about 473 Linda Court in St. Augustine? You can contact me at the address above, and you can also email my partner Kate Stevens.

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Are Foreclosures Still Available in St. Augustine?

Thursday, March 6th, 2014

by Sean Hess (, Broker and Manager for St. Augustine Team Realty ( Join us on Facebook.

Are foreclosures still available? I’ve been getting that question a lot lately.

The answer is “Yes,” but foreclosures are priced at market price based on condition. In other words, there is no discount just because the home has been labeled with a “foreclosure” tag. If it’s in good condition and the same comparable home in good condition would list at $170,000, the foreclosure in good condition will list for the same.

You also need to have a plan B, because foreclosures may not move in the most timely manner.

My partner Kate and I cover it all in this somewhat long (8 minute) video below. Thanks for watching and contact me at the address above with any questions.

Want to know more about foreclosures in St. Augustine? You can also email Kate.

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