Tips on selling your East Bay California home

As we have seen home prices move back up in the past year, more people are putting their homes on the market again, creating more inventory for others to buy!  If you’ve been thinking about selling or buying in the California East Bay , make sure you are ready with the following tips!

One of The Bianchi Team's latest listings

One of The Bianchi Team’s latest listings

Plan ahead!  It always takes longer than you think it will to get your home ready to sell.    Get your home inspected early, to prepare for any unexpected repairs or issues that might arise.   Declutter, clean closets and shelves, store stuff you don’t need or just take the opportunity to purge.  If you take the process slowly, then it won’t be as overwhelming when you go to list your home.

Attend Open Homes in your area.  This is a great way to get ideas on how other people are staging their homes, and how they are presenting themselves to appeal to buyers.  When you go to stage your home, you’ll want to remove any personal articles such as family photos from the general living areas.  This helps buyers potentially see themselves in your home (rather than seeing pictures of other people).

Find a Realtor you connect with and trust.  Maybe people try and DIY to sell their home, especially when the economy is booming.  The economy has certainly been making its way back, but you are still going to safe a lot of time, hassle, and inconvenience if you can find a Realtor who knows the market, the area, and how to best present your home.  A Realtor who is familiar with your specific home town –Danville, Walnut Creek, Pleasant Hill, Martinez, Alamo — is better than one who doesn’t spend a lot of time in the area, and isn’t familiar with the buying patterns and pricing strategies.  A Realtor can also help you to negotiate the best deal for your home, AND a good Realtor should handle all of the details involved in getting your home ready to sell — managing any repairs, upgrades, inspections, and staging for you.  The Bianchi Real Estate Team, for example, has all of these experts at our fingertips — painters, roofers, gardeners, etc.  — these people we work with all the time that we trust.  As a seller, this is something you should expect from your Realtor.

Make sure you get a qualified Real Estate Agent that you feel comfortable with to represent you as you sell your home.

Make sure you get a qualified Real Estate Agent that you feel comfortable with to represent you as you sell your home.

To Renovate or Not?  Discuss the merits of major renovation of your home with your Real Estate Agent.  Often, rather than spending $15,000 on a new kitchen it might be better to negotiate a credit to buyers for less than a new kitchen would have cost.  This way you both win — the buyer gets a credit and can change the kitchen the way they like it, and you avoid the hassle of a major remodel before you are about to leave your home anyway.  Each situation is unique, and it’s important to have an agent who is on your side and can give you experienced advice.    An agent can also help with decisions around current trends in remodeling — hard wood floors vs. carpet, for example.

Expect a Realistic price for your home.  When you are interviewing agents to find the right one for you, beware of those agents that are giving you a ‘to good to be true’ price for your home.  Some agents are just trying to “buy” your listing by making unrealistic promises.  Serafino Bianchi knows the fluctuating market, and the fair price for your home.  He has been doing this for many years — find an agent with experience and negotiation savvy, don’t just jump at the first one who promises to sell your home for an unreasonable price.  That will just end up wasting your time, as your home sits on the market, unsold and eventually you have to drop your asking price.


View all of Serafino’s latest listings here! 

Serafino Bianchi and the Bianchi Real Estate Team : Feeding Families and Saving the Planet one bag at a time.

Did you know that nearly 400 billion pounds of plastic bags are used and thrown away every year? Less than 2% of that gets recycled, and the rest ends up swirling around in our oceans, damaging the eco-system and marine life. Alameda County has taken action by banning plastic shopping bags, and many individual stores have begun to charge for bags as well, to encourage their patrons to bring their own and recycle.

In light of all this, Serafino Bianchi of the Bianchi Real Estate Team had an idea. What if he provided eco-friendly grocery totes for his clients? He could provide a nice service, help save the planet, and remind his clients to think of him the next time they wanted to buy or sell their home – all at the same time.

He ordered the bags, and started putting them into the hands of his clients. They were a huge hit! Both fashionable and functional, these beautiful reusable bags are making a scene at the local grocery markets in Pleasanton, Alamo, and Danville.

Plastic Bags end up in the ocean.

Plastic Bags end up in the ocean.

Serafino grew up in Italy and developed a taste for healthy, wholesome food at a young age. As a young boy, loved to pick blueberries, mushrooms, and chestnuts from the wild countryside. He loves to tell stories about how the chestnuts were dried and prepared in a huge two-story stove in his tiny hometown, and how his mother would make chestnut soup and bread from the dried nuts

Since Serafino’s bags are being used to carry food, he thought about how he could help those in need who didn’t have access to a healthy meal, and decided to team up with the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano County. The Food Bank has been serving the community for over 35 years, and serves approximately 149,000 hungry people in need every month.

Serafino and the Bianchi team will donate to the Food Bank every time someone buys or sells a home in 2014. This feeds a family of four for an entire month with the sale or purchase of just one home.

Bianchi Grocery Tote

You can donate to the Food Bank of Contra Costa and Solano too! If you’d like one of Serafino’s Eco-Friendly grocery totes, drop us an email at

Bianchi Real Estate