15 Things Homeowners Should Do During The Pandemic Shutdown

April 6, 2020 // Tammy // No Comments //

Most likely, you’re under a “stay at home” order. By now, you’re probably bored with binge watching television and there are only so many jigsaw puzzles you can do. This list can help you find things to do during the shutdown (even if you don’t do all of them).

If you’re thinking of selling your home when life is ready to return to normal, there are some things you SHOULD do during the shutdown in order to get ready. None of these things requires spending any money (not now, at least) and can be done without leaving your home.

Even if you’re not planning on selling – keeping your home in good shape is important, and this list is a great “spring maintenance” start.

  1. Start a list

    identify the things you can do yourself and those which you’ll need to get help. Also start a “shopping list” for items you’ll need to get when you’re able to get to a store (or order online from Home Depot, Lowes or Amazon).

  2. Check your windows and doors

    Check all your windows and doors to look for cracked or missing caulk that needs to be replaced. Ensure that all windows open/close easily (lubricate or repair those that don’t). Identify screens that need to be repaired or replaced.

  3. Declutter

    Go room by room and start removing as many personal items as possible. Remove all family photos, awards, etc. from the walls.

  4. Determine if the walls, doors, baseboards and trim need to be painted

    Fresh paint is one of the cheapest things you can do to make your home more appealing to buyers. If you have blue tape (or something similar) – mark the areas on the walls that need to be repaired before painting.

  5. Check the bathroom caulk and grout

    Is caulk or grout missing in places? Cracked? Stained? Replace and clean as needed – or plan to get it done professionally.

  6. Put your kids to work

    Your kids need things to do during the shutdown, too, so why not get them involved in the process? Identify the toys your kids are playing with during this extended period of time at home. More importantly – make note of what they aren’t playing with? It’s easy to look at their toys and remember the joy when they first got it – remembering the hours and hours they played with it – but we often don’t realize that those are memories from a year ago (or more). Now’s a good time to determine what has lost favor. Start a pile for donating, giving away to friends, or trashing (especially toys that are broken or missing pieces). Consider selling them on ebay or FB marketplace if they’re still in good shape.

  7. Go through those closets!

    Go through all your closets (including linen closets and storage closets) – what hasn’t been worn or used in the past year? How likely are you to want it after you move?

  8. Start “deep cleaning”

    Now’s a great time to do the “deep cleaning” that often gets overlooked.
    – windows (vinegar and water), including window tracks
    – door frames
    – baseboards
    – on top of appliances and kitchen cabinets (dust traps odors)
    – light bulbs
    – carpets: spot treat stains; thoroughly clean the edges along the baseboard; determine if it should be replaced instead
    – wipe down kitchen cabinets to remove any splatter and stains
    – check cabinets to make sure all the doors and drawers work properly (determine if you should install new hardware)

  9. Organize the garage and basement

    Garages and basements become “catch-all” areas. Get rid of things you no longer need and get things organized so the area looks spacious and useful to a buyer.

  10. Start your spring yard work

    Clean out flower beds and shrub beds to prepare for planting new ones and for adding new mulch. Don’t make an unnecessary trip to a home improvement store at this time – just get the beds ready.

    Trim shrubs and trees (determine if you’ll need to hire someone).

  11. Create your plan

    Make a plan to tackle all the things on the list that you can’t do right now (along with a specific timeline). One of the best things to do during the shut down is to look ahead to “what’s next?” A list without an action plan will just become another thing that’s hanging over your head making you feel guilty. By planning out the activities, you’ll be much more likely to get it done.

  12. List your improvements

    As you go around the house, make a separate list of all the improvements you’ve made to the home since you purchased it.

  13. Create your buyer book

    Find any paperwork related to the appliances, heating/air conditioning system, water heater, etc. Buyers are also going to want to know the age of these items.

  14. Look at your roof

    Determine when the roof was last replaced. If it’s more than 15 years old, consider replacing it as buyers don’t want to get hit with large maintenance and repair items shortly after buying a home. Most likely, they’re already paying out all of their available cash on the down payment and taking out the highest loan they can afford, so large expenditures in the first couple of years of ownership are a huge turnoff.

  15. Call your real estate agent

    Call your real estate agent to let them know you’re planning to sell. They’ll be able to help you determine the ideal time and can start preparing a Market Analysis (pricing model).

This shutdown is affecting everyone in one way or another and it’s going to continue to have an effect for a long time to come as we get into the recovery phase. By taking some time now to prepare your home, you’ll be able to act quickly to get your home on the market when you’re ready.

We hope you’ve found this list of things to do during the shutdown helpful. If you have any questions – or if we can help in any way – be sure to give us a call. After all, we’re at home and looking for things to do right now, too.

Why Now May Be The Best Time To Sell Your Home

February 12, 2020 // Tammy // No Comments //

We live in paradise…so there’s probably no truly “bad” time to sell a home Well, maybe when a hurricane is coming isn’t the best timing…other than that, people move here throughout the year.

So, why do I say that “now” may be a better time?

There are three main reasons…

(1) First, because the economy is extremely strong right now. More people are working (fewer unemployed) – companies are hiring, 401(k)s are up considerably over just a couple years ago.

Why is this important? Because it means there’s a bigger buyer “pool” than usual. In other words – because more people are doing well financially, there are more people who are able (and willing) to buy homes. Some are looking for primary residences – others are looking for investment homes or vacation homes.

As we get closer to the 2020 election, the stock market is likely to slow down (markets don’t like uncertainty), so we’re likely to see a downward trend in home sales if the economy is perceived as slowing.

(2) The second reason this is a good time is because mortgage interest rates are at record lows. As of this writing (February 12, 2020), people can get a mortgage for about 3.5% interest. Before the market crashed, the interest rate was hovering around 6%.

That means, the monthly payment on a $500,000 loan today costs the same as a $375,000 loan would have cost in 2007! Buyers who are waiting and aren’t cashing in on this right now are making a HUGE mistake!

If you’re thinking of selling and buying another home – whether it’s to “down-size” or you’re thinking of moving up to a bigger home – you won’t want to miss this opportunity either.

(3) The third (and maybe biggest) reason to consider selling now is because the entire Pinellas County area is currently experiencing a strong SELLER’S MARKET. This is especially true of the beach communities, where homes are not only selling for top dollar – they’re selling quickly if they’re priced and staged correctly.

We simply don’t have enough inventory for the number of buyers who are looking to buy in the area – so that drives the prices up!

If you’re thinking of selling – be sure to download your free book –

How to sell your Gulf Beach area home for the highest price in the shortest time

If you’re ready to buy or sell a home – give us a call today!



December 18, 2019 // Tammy // No Comments //

We provide 8-Day, 7-Night Resort Getaway certificates to everyone who meets with us to discuss buying or selling a home (regardless of whether you ultimately decide to work with us or not).

To address questions we were getting about this offer – we recently used one of the certificates to document the process. Watch the video to see how it went.

Bottom line – we spent a week in a very nice resort in Aruba – on the water – for $100 per day (includes all fees and taxes). We didn’t encounter any “surprises” such as a requirement to sit through a timeshare presentation or hidden costs that weren’t expected.

We had such a good experience, we plan to try other destinations. Next trip – we’ll probably take another couple and book a 2-bedroom unit. There are dozens of locations in the U.S. to choose from…but I’m thinking maybe St. Maarten.


Current Destinations Offered
Our Aruba resort

Hurricane Preparation Tips You May Not Know About

August 30, 2019 // Tammy // No Comments //

Everyone, please take all precautions to stay safe!

And…when you’re thinking about buying or selling a home, please keep our team in mind. 🙂

Johns Pass Bridge View

May 27, 2019 // Tammy // No Comments //

See the scenic view from the Johns Pass Bridge – overlooking Johns Pass Village (Madeira Beach), the sandbar and Gators Cafe (Treasure Island).

You’ll also learn how Johns Pass was created – and where it got its name – along with a brief overview of the real estate market along the barrier islands and south Pinellas county.

How Lenders Determine Your Loan Amount (Video)

May 5, 2019 // Tammy // No Comments //

5845 87th Ave N

April 6, 2019 // Tammy // No Comments //

OPEN SUNDAY, APRIL 7 – Noon-4:00 p.m.


4 Bedroom/2 Bath, 1,632 sq ft home for sale in Pinellas Park, FL

You have to see this BEAUTIFULLY REMODELED 2-story home featuring a private in-ground SWIMMING POOL.

This home is situated on a huge corner lot and is located near Park Blvd and 66th St N in Pinellas Park – centrally located and convenient to St Petersburg, Clearwater, and Tampa with only a short 20-minute drive to the beautiful area Gulf beaches.

OPEN KITCHEN boasts lots of storage with all NEW CABINETS and GRANITE. STAINLESS STEEL APPLIANCES and recessed lighting.

The interior has been totally remodeled with new paint, new flooring, new 6-panel doors, and all new lighting throughout.


Separate large inside LAUNDRY ROOM. Laundry Room has washer/dryer hookups, new water heater and laundry closet to store your pool towels and floats.

FIRST FLOOR MASTER BEDROOM is separate from the others and boasts a huge wall-length closet.

All bedrooms have new ceiling fans and lighting with wall remotes.

From the family room, walk out the patio door to a LARGE SCREENED-IN PATIO (16’x20’) with direct access to the pool area.

LARGE STORAGE SHED is perfect for a workshop and/or craft area or just tons of storage.


This beautifully remodeled home is truly move-in ready.

Call or text to see this home:

Michael Flake – 727.888.3886

Tammy Slater-Kendrick – 727.888.3882


Getting Rid of Home Odors

November 25, 2018 // Tammy // No Comments //

Why is it important to get rid of home odors while selling your home? Home buyers don’t just look at homes…other senses also come into play when deciding which home to choose.

For example, they listen for noises from busy streets, airplanes and railroad tracks.

But, of all the senses, smell can be the most powerful – and is (thankfully) the easiest to fix.

As a home seller, your job is to ensure that your home is as enticing to potential buyers as possible – and that includes ensuring that the home’s scent doesn’t give buyers a reason to look elsewhere. Unfortunately, when living with the odors every day, we can become “nose blind” to them (meaning that we no longer notice the odor). Your real estate agent should tell you if he/she smells an odor when entering your home, but there are steps you can do to remove odors even if you’re not aware of them.

  1. First – look for the source of potential odors and remove or remedy them.
    • If you’ve ever had a roof leak, be sure there’s no mildew in the attic and ensure that the insulation is dry.
    • Make sure doors and windows are sealed so water can’t enter the home.
    • Remove or replace old pet beds.
    • If you have a smoker in the home – wipe down the walls (consider a fresh coat of paint).
  2. Be sure to remove the trash daily. Clean the trash can at least once a week.
  3. Avoid making strong-smelling food (such as fish, onions, garlic).
  4. Have carpets professionally cleaned (or replaced if they are stained or worn).

The Easiest Way To Get Rid Of Home Odors

Real estate agents have long used the trick of baking cookies the day of an Open House to fill the home with the inviting aroma. But, what about the day-to-day scent?

To remove odors naturally – without using strong-smelling sprays, candles or plug-ins – consider using this simple solution:

  1. Pour at least 2 cups of water into a crock-pot (slow cooker)
  2. Add 3 tablespoons of baking soda and mix to dissolve
  3.  Set the slow cooker to LOW and leave it for several hours without the lid

The baking soda will actually pull the offensive odors from the air.

You can also add a few drops of any of the following to add pleasant scents to the room:

  • a teaspoon of lemon juice (or a few slices of fresh lemon)
  • a few drops of vanilla extract
  • a sprinkle of ground cinnamon (you can also add cloves)
  • essential oils such as lavender

If you don’t have a slow cooker, you can use a small pot on the stove for kitchen odors. For other rooms, consider using a candle warmer.

12 Home Staging Fails So Bad, You Have to See Them To Believe Them

October 24, 2018 // Tammy // No Comments //

When done right, staging is an art that not only shows off a home’s best features but also inspires buyers to make a solid offer. Additionally, it can result in a quicker sale. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors’ 2017 Profile of Home Staging, 39 percent of sellers’ agents noted that staging significantly reduced the amount of time a home remained on the market.

But when staging efforts go awry, the results range from comical to cringe-worthy.

Take a look at some of biggest home-staging fails out there. Enjoy a laugh while learning what not to do when preparing to present a home to prospective buyers.

1. Heads up


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We’re guessing the home tour came to an abrupt end after bumping into this big guy. Taxidermy isn’t everyone’s cup of tea to begin with, but leaving this buck’s head in the middle of the room feels wrong on so many levels.

2. Combo gym and masterbath

While most exercise enthusiasts can’t wait to hit the shower after a workout, keeping the equipment beside the tub is a bit much. Yes, this bathroom is spacious, but is it roomy enough to double as a home gym? Not quite.

3. Dinner for one


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When a home is unoccupied, there’s always the temptation to add a little something that helps buyers envision themselves in the space. But one lonely lawn chair isn’t going to cut it. In fact, this sad visual conjures up images of solo TV dinners and is enough to make most would-be buyers bolt.

4. Dangerous playroom


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Having a downstairs area where kids can play is definitely a plus. Unfortunately, that’s not what we have here — no matter how well intentioned this little set-up might be. Seeing the room arranged this way may actually make buyers think, “Hmm, too bad this basement isn’t finished.” And there goes your sale.

5. Lady in red


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Looks like someone forgot to put away this beauty! Even if you’re selling your home during the Halloween season, most buyers find creepy dolls a little off-putting. Without this mannequin giving you the cold shoulder, this room would’ve been just fine.

6. Birds of a feather


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A jacuzzi paired with champagne could be enough to tempt a buyer. But seeing a stuffed flock of birds surrounding the hot tub might make some people want to fly the coop. While homeowners are often proud of their collections, removing personal items that may not match everyone’s taste is always a good idea.

7. Whole lotta litter


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When it comes to staging an unfinished basement, the “less is more” rule definitely applies, especially if the default decor involves feline excrement. Enough said.

8. A safari crime scene


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An aerial view of this zebra is enough to break any animal lover’s heart. If a family with young children pays a visit, however, this may be the cautionary tale they need to convince kids not to fool around on the stairs. Grown-ups too may think twice before leaning over those railings.

9. Sadder than a bowl of plastic fruit


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Pasta is typically a crowd-pleaser but not when it’s presented this way. It may be preferable to leave the countertops bare rather than resort to a strainer full of dried spaghetti. It’s just not that appetizing.

10. Mirror, mirror on the wall


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Sometimes you’re in such a rush to get a home in tip-top shape, you forget to remove the items you’ve purchased to spruce the place up from their original packaging. In this case, the cardboard looks like a frame, so they almost got away with it.

11. Barren backyard


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That sad little table and plastic chairs don’t exactly make you think about hosting lavish barbecues in your new backyard. This is another instance where placing the wrong items in a space could be worse than leaving it empty. Trust in the power of the buyers’ imaginations.

12. Going a little too green


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Adding plants to a home brings the outdoors in and offers a nice pop of color. But putting them on the floor in the middle of the room seems like a good way to trip an unsuspecting prospect. Also, overloading a space with greenery can distract from some of the room’s nicest features — like that built-in bookcase.

If you’re preparing a home for a showing, keep these silly mistakes in mind and avoid your own staging fail.