Ready to Eat — er, Move Into — Homes

Call it “The Trader Joe’s” Housing Market (or more accurately, the “middle-aisle-at-Trader Joe’s” housing market).

That’s where the ready-to-eat, frozen meals are stocked.

Not only are they attractively packaged, the right number of servings (4-6), and good quality — but they’re great values, too.

Similarly, homes that are selling well in today’s challenging market are . . . attractively packaged (staged), the right size (for families, anywhere from 2,000 to 3,500 square feet), well-built and maintained — and offer a good value.

In Demand: Move-in Condition

Perhaps most importantly, they’re in move-in condition.

That attribute seems especially important now.

Judging from my own clients, it certainly seems that few people have the time or inclination to do significant remodeling these days.

In the majority of family households today, both parents work full-time.

That leaves little time for cooking meals (cue Trader Joe’s) and kiddie supervision, let alone meeting with interior decorators or picking out new tile for the bathroom.

Of course, unlike the home purchase itself, which can be financed with a mortgage, remodeling costs are typically paid for out-of-pocket — a tall order in a recession.

About the author

Ross Kaplan has 19+ years experience selling real estate all over the Twin Cities. He is also a 12-time consecutive "Super Real Estate Agent," as determined by Mpls. - St. Paul Magazine and Twin Cities Business Magazine. Prior to becoming a Realtor, Ross was an attorney (corporate law), CPA, and entrepreneur. He holds an economics degree from Stanford.

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