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Phil:  I am Phil Gerdes with Phil & Victoria Gerdes of Christie's International and these are 7 home improvements that will surely increase your home's value.

Number 1:  Landscaping!  We've done a video about this.  Landscaping, landscaping, landscaping.  Guys!  Do you know that there is a 100% return on the landscaping?  So, do the fixes, spruce it up, cut down the trees that need to go down, whatever you do make the front of your house feel amazing.  

Number 2:  The kitchen!  Your kitchen is important, we all know kitchens.  Listen!  You put your money in your kitchen, you make it something that everybody loves, not your favorite pattern tile but make it something everyone loves and I promise you, you'll see a great return.

Number 3:  You knew it was coming.  Bathrooms!  Just like kitchens, the money in the bathroom surely pays off.  Guys!  Update the bathroom, make sure it's clean, smooth, comfortable.  Make sure your bathroom look sharp, people should walk in and ‘’Oooh!  And Ahhh!!  ’’ fall in love.

Number 4:  Open it up!  Guess what?  Guys!  Small choppy rooms, no one likes that anymore.  Open up the walls, don't be scared.  Here's the deal, you don't want to knock down every single wall but people want to come in and they want to have sight lines, they want a nice -- they want to feel open, they want to really feel good.  So, open it up, open up those walls.  

Number 5:  KISS!  ‘Keep It Simple Silly’.  Look, don't go overboard; pinks and greens and all sorts of strange colors and all sorts of crazy designs, keep it simple.  Do not go crazy with your updates because; whatever you do understand this, as much as a great update can help your house, a bad update will surely decrease value.

Number 6:  ‘’Energy is the Future’’ That's right!  Energy is the future.  Guys!  You gotta make sure you do the updates that stick with what's coming, not just what is.  So, the updated Thermostat, the lights and the plugs, and the wall outlets, all those neat things that everybody likes right now, make sure you do it.  Because; Energy is the future and oh!  Don't forget, all the appliances you put in, they've got to be energy efficient.  You know the deal, just make sure you're building your home for tomorrow not for what was.

Number 7:  Yellows out, grays in.  Pink and black have never been.  Listen!  Paint your walls but don't go crazy; black molding, pink rooms, favorite pictures of unicorns all over the place because; you simply can't do it.  You've got to make sure, you've got very neutral, fantastic colors in your home because; buyers again need to walk in and feel like everything is fresh, clean and move in ready.  

And that's it, 7 home improvements that will surely increase your home's value.  I am Phil Gerdes with Phil & Victoria Gerdes of Long and Foster Real Estate, Christie's International inviting you to come back and see the next video.  And remember if this helped you and even if it didn't, make sure you share it, you like, you love, spread it.  Let the world know!  

We're all through, thanks a lot.  See you next time!


Did You Know | What Does 98.99% Mean To You

98.99%! I’m Phil Gerdes with Phil & Victoria Gerdes of Long and Foster Real Estate, Christie's International and folks, I'm here to talk to you about the list to sell percentage. Your list to sell percentage is essentially the number you put your house on the market for, in comparison to what it sells. 

Well, I'm happy to say that with all that with us, that number is 98.99%. So, what that really means is; for every $100,000 your house is worth, we're going to get you, $98,990!  That's a big number! 

Now anybody can give you national or even local stats but the fact is; our numbers are better. Listen, the average agent sells a home right now at about 97% of the list price.  Like I said, we're at 98.99. So, we track everything, we know what every sale goes for and we get our clients top dollar.  I am Phil. Look, my number, 443-889-3095, that’s my personal cell. 

Give me a call and let's talk about how much your home is worth and more importantly, how much we can get you for your home.  Don't forget; Like this video, love this video and most importantly, share this video!  We appreciate it.  Bye!


Did You Know | Are You Considering Selling Your Home On Your Own?

Hey guys, I'm Phil Gerdes with Phil and Victoria Gerdes of Long and Foster Real Estate, Christie's International, and I've got a question for you. Are you considering selling your home by yourself? Here's how to get it done. 

Clean, organize, landscape, paint. But here's what it really means. Yell at your kids, all three of them. Your son, your daughter and your husband, tell them to clean up over and over again, and don't forget every time one room gets cleaned, someone's going to go in there and make it a mess again. That's the truth about what it takes when you try and to sell on your own. 

You guessed it, professional photos and video. You know what? Pictures, they're so easy, they're so simple, right? Anybody can do it. Yeah, so break out your iPhone because; that's what it really means. Most people, they break out their iPhone, they take a couple of selfies, ‘’hey!’’, and then right from there, they think that they just sold their house because; they've got the most amazing pics ever. That's the truth! 

You guessed it, a sign. A little different than this one, but a sign nonetheless, you got to get a sign in your yard, so everyone that drives by can know that you're selling your home. So here's what it really means. You know that guy you see at the intersection and he’s flipping signs up in the air. That's now you. Congratulations. You got a new job. Except the problem is guys, no one's driving through the intersection. You put one sign out and thought the whole world was going to know and when you realize that you text your friends, you call them and say, “Hey, can you share my houses for sale on Facebook?” Hmm, not a good look guys. 

Next up, you know what it is. We got to get this house online. So where do we go? We go where 82% of people start their online search. You've got to get your house on Zillow so everybody can see it, right?

Zillow! Yeah, why don't you have views? How come? Yes, I'm on a sign. The question is why didn't anybody look at Your House on Zillow? Because; marketing matters folks, you can't just throw it on Zillow and hope it's going to sell, you need someone to help you with it. 

After you've got the house all prepped, ready stage, clean landscaping is done, guess what time it is, it's time for showings. We've got to get people inside so they see your house.

Stranger danger! Yeah, that's right. That's what happens when you let a bunch of people you don't know walk through your house. You might want to think twice before you allow showings, when you haven't vetted your clients. One showing, one showing, one showing, no, we've got to get a bunch of people on the house at the same exact time. So, schedule on open house. That's the next step. Get a big open house scheduled and get them in there. 

More stranger danger! Do I really have to say anymore? Do you want 15, 20, 30 people walk into your house all at the same time? Picking up your special little things? I don't think so. Showings have been going on, open house was awesome, huge tons of people.

What's next? Best case scenario. You just got an offer. Best case, you just got an offer, right? Except did you know that when you sell your house on your own without a real estate agent, most offers come in about 20% less than if you would've used an agent to sell your house in the first place.

All right, you just got an offer, you reviewed it, you like it, what are you going to do next? Accept. Accept the offer. That's the next step, accept your offer. 

Escrow, title, contracts, inspections, renegotiations, updates, guess what all that means? Loss, loss, loss. Yeah, you just got a contract, but did you know that once you go into escrow, there so much more? 

Alright, you made it to closing and guess what? You look like me. You lost all your hair because that was crazy. All the headaches, all the stress, you didn't have to experience it, so what do you do? How do you sell your home and not have to deal with all the stress and little tips to make more money? I'll tell you how now. 

So, how do you actually make more money selling your house? The answer is simple – us. You allow us to sell the house for you. We’ll come by, we'll share our marketing plan with you, we’ll sign a listing with you, and then you sit back and relax because; we're going to vet all the people that actually come see your house. We're going to accept offers for you, we're going to bring them to you, you can pick one, your favorite one, and then you just collect the check. Guess what guys? When we do that, chances are according to stats, you're going to make about 20% more than if you would've done it yourself. 

And here's the thing that you want to remember. Yes, there is about a 6% cost when doing that, but that's a 14% increase off of the potential headache that you had to deal with. So it's simple. Come to us, Phil and Victoria Gerdes of Long and Foster Real Estate, Christie's International, and let us get the job done right for you. 

Hey guys, I hope you liked this video. Hope you enjoyed it. Don't forget, like it, love it, and most importantly, share it with all your friends, all over social media. We're done. See you next time. Bye!

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Welcome Home | Maryland Seafood Festival | Annapolis

Phil: Hey guys, Phil Gerdes from Phil & Victoria Gerdes of Long & Foster Real Estate, Christie’s international and we are here with our first official episode of "Welcome Home." We are super excited, we're starting out with what Maryland is known for and that's seafood. So, this is ‘’Welcome Home Annapolis’’. Folks I am here with Garrett Kuge, who helped put together this entire event. We are at the Maryland Seafood Festival. So Garrett, hello!

Garrett: Hi! Thanks for coming out today in all this it's crazy.

Phil: Yes, the weather is beautiful people are strolling by - alright so the weather is going to be different today. But we didn't want to stop because the event is definitely big. Can you give us a little bit of a background on the event. Tell us maybe how long the events been happening. Anything you think is important for people to know?

Garrett: This is our 51st year doing the seafood festival. It started out in downtown Annapolis, it's the Oyster festival – nope, it’s the clam festival. It started out in Annapolis as the clam festival. It outgrew that space, so we came out here to Sandy Point and it just grown and grown, and we were really trying to focus and showcase Maryland seafood. So, people know everything we've got out here.

Phil: Absolutely, that's awesome. And guys, and this place was full yesterday. Yes, we are contesting with the weather but you’ve got to understand, everywhere you can see behind us, on the other side where you can't see, full of vendors so this is a big event we're super excited about it and it happens once per year. So next, it won't be raining I promise you and you're going to come out and see it.

Here's the plan today, we are going to walk around, we are going to check out some vendors with Garrett. She's going to introduce us to some people and I am going to eat some see food.

Garrett: We are so excited.

Phil: Yes, I don't like to seafood so this is going to be fun. Hopefully today, things are going to be definitely… . So stick around, stay tuned and let's get through this. 

Hey guys, so we are here with Bob from Cup O’ Dough, I am going to let him tell you about what he does here and what the whole dough game is about. But this is his first time at the Seafood Festival, so that's really exciting.

Tell us a little bit about your time here even though it's a little rainy and tell most importantly about Cup O’ Dough.

Bob: I think it's been great, except the rain of course. I look forward to it next year. Cup O’ Dough is a we do edible cookie dough we serve it like ice cream. Perfectly safe to eat, there is no egg in it, we treat the flour so it’s completely safe.

Phil: Where can people get it when they're not here?

Bob: My other business, Oh My Chocolate in Kent Island, we have Cup O’ Dough there.

Phil: Awesome, do you have Instagram, Facebook, anything that they can find you on?

Bob: I just started this like two months ago, so it's like I got Facebook, Cup O’ Dough and Oh My Chocolate also on Facebook.

Phil: Awesome, so guys, let's really help Dave to about Cup O’ Dough, it sounds delicious, I am going to have some in a little while, but make sure you check him out on Facebook and on YouTube of course.

Awesome, Snicker Doodle Cup O’ Dough I am going in, I am not even going in small guys, we are going for all the marbles, stay tuned, we will be back. This is awesome, really awesome.

[Laughter]

So Garrett, obviously we're going to spend a lot of time talking about the food but what else happened at the Seafood Festival outside of the food...

Garrett: We’ve got so much stuff, people that like the seafood, people that don't like the sea food and people who don't want to eat it at all.

One of the main stage that bands to play all day long, weather permitting obviously, firework show at stage, we have chef demonstrations. Chef comes in restaurants all throughout Maryland and the tour everywhere to showcase what they can do. There's a big kids area, with bounce castle, with climbing wall and all that good stuff. Beer and oyster tastings, craft beer tastings, there is Maryland wine tasting, Maryland Cigars...

We're out here with the Baltimore Kings, which one of our professional soccer player teams in the area and they were doing a clinic and they were supposed to have a great match between the professional teams today, but couldn't do it today in this weather.

Phil: Yes, that's awesome. There's so much more happening today than just food. The last thing you want is for people to think that when you come out to the Seafood Festival, it's just about eating. You're going to eat, you are going to eat some really good food especially if you like seafood but there's so much more happening. So bring kids, bring family, bring friends make it a day or better yet, make it a weekend, right?

Garrett: Right, yes!

Phil: Really, yes. Two solid days of fun. Awesome thank you.

Garrett: Yes!

Phil: All so Garrett, there's a lot of Seafood, there's a lot of different types of food and a lot of things to do but what is your favorite sea food?

Garrett; Oh my gosh man, I grew up eating oysters. I love oysters. So I am so excited, you are going to have your first one, you are going to love it, it's going to be great.

Phil: I will find out.

Garrett: [laughs]

Phil: Alright thanks, let's do some oysters guys.

All right guys, we are here at Mad House. Guys, we've got oysters and we are about to go in. We got Garrett, Scott and Scotty. We got to super loud because of the party right now. Guys tell us really quickly about Mad House?

Scotty: Mad House is a farm raised oyster from Hooper’s Island Maryland. We’ve been doing business for 5 years now. We ship out all over the country to Colorado, Florida, all over the place.

Phil: All right, are you ready? I don't know if I am but let's do it. All right guys we are going in, we are not hesitating. Just give me one, it's not going to be pretty. Do we toast? I’m going to do some lemon, I’m going to lemon mine. I am ready. Here we go.

Garrett: Here we go.

Phil: Oh God.

[Laughter]

Phil: I did it. I am not saying thank you.

[Laughter]

Phil: I don't eat seafood. I don't want to have anymore. But it was great. On a serious note, don't take it by me, I don't eat anything out of water. These guys are awesome, check them out at Mad House. Where could they find you online?

Scotty: MadHouseOysters.com

Phil: MadHouseOysters.com so check them out at ‘’MadHouseOysters.com’’ big one guys.

Scotty:: Thank you man.

Phil: All right guys, let welcome home. Thanks for joining us for our first ever episode we're excited to highlight all things Annapolis, Baltimore, the Shore and everything in between. Today, you got with spend an evening with us and afternoon with us with Garrett at the Maryland Seafood Festival. I ate an oyster for the first time thanks to Garrett and there's a lot more to come.

So thank you, stay tuned. Thanks for having for having us, we really appreciate it.

Garrett: Yes, thanks for coming out today.

Phil: We'll see you at the next one. Don't forget, Like us on Facebook at facebook.com/GerdesRealEstate. Make sure you share and love this post, thanks a lot. See you later.