Selling a Property? It’s All About the Details!

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TOP TIPS FOR SELLING A HOME
(Published in «Business Partners» magazine of the Hellenic – American Chamber of Commerce, issue May-June 2019)
Author: Charikleia Stouka (Accredited realtor – founder of ALMA REAL ESTATE GREECE).
(Photos: Villa for sale in Ippokrateios Politeia, a northern suburb of the Greek capital at the foot of mount Parnitha. Info: charikleia@almarealestate.gr)
Today’s real estate market is tough for sellers, and if you’re hoping to get the best price for your property and sell fast, it’s crucial to get your presentation right and outshine the competition. Here are some essential tips to make sure your property is at its best before you go to market.
«PRESENTATION, PRESENTATION, PRESENTATION»!
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While Location, location, location! might be the property motto, when it comes to showing and selling your property, it’s all about delivering on presentation and staging that appeals to the senses and ticks all the boxes.
Most buyers form their first impressions within seconds of walking through the front door, and you can come out in front by making sure they’re already feeling positive before the cross the threshold by appealing to your buyers’ sense of smell.
The most important thing here is to get rid of any pre-existing smells. Clean thoroughly, making sure not to overlook upholstered furniture and soft furnishings. Use baking soda where needed, and don’t hesitate to bring in a dehumidifier where necessary to remove any traces of damp or mustiness from the rooms. A clean, fresh smell reinforces the impression of a well-maintained property.
Needless to say, that cleaning should be thorough: Clean every surface, including windows and mirrors, scrub down kitchen appliances inside and out until they shine, and make sure not to overlook the nooks and crannies. Window rails, skirtboards, and radiator grooves can harbor dust build up that can easily ruin your buyers’ impression of the property. And of course, don’t forget to clean the inside cabinets of and wardrobes, as buyers are prone to opening them.
Making sure that everything is in good working order is an easy way to boost the value of your property, so fixing minor issues throughout is a must.
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Go around the house and check that everything is working as it should: Tighten loose screws, oil hinges, fix squeaky floorboards and dripping faucets, and make sure all the lightbulbs work— including for any lighting in outside areas such as gardens or balconies.
A fresh coat of paint is another easy way to make your property look fresh and attractive, increasing its value. Neutral colors are the best options as they allow buyers to imagine the space as their own, and a good, professional paint job is essential, as it lets buyers know that the property is well looked after. A handy tip is to mix vanilla powder into your paint—about one vial per kilogram of paint—to neutralize the smell of fresh paint.
In fact, the best time to start preparing your house for the market is well before you list, and there are things you can do while still occupying the property yourself that will make living there better for you and help increase its value when you’re ready to sell.
That new kitchen and bathroom you’ve been thinking about might be just the thing that sways a potential buyer—but make sure that renovations are tasteful and professionally done to a high standard. Another home improvement that can add value to your property is flooring. Good quality laminate hardwood gives the feeling of real wood and gives the home a touch of warmth and class without breaking the bank. Durable, scratch resistant and more affordable than real hardwood, it’s also much more attractive to potential buyers than wall-to-wall carpeting or tiles.
Really, good taste and hard-wearing furnishings are also key to making the property suitable for short term lets, such as Airbnb, and it’s always good to keep that option open.
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Finally, when you are ready to sell and have put your property on the market, don’t forget to stage. Get rid of clutter, rearrange the furniture to showcase the potential of the rooms, and add little details and finishing touches throughout.
Last, but not least, always remember the flowers! A thoughtfully placed vase of fresh flowers, adds a splash of color and a lovely scent to the property and makes a good impression on buyers. Because when it comes to selling fast and selling high, the good God’s in the details!
ALMA Real Estate 117 Agias Paraskevis Street, Halandri, Athens T: +30 210 6829 901 T: +30 6977 414 581 E: charikleia@almarealestate.gr
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AREXPO – 1st Real Estate Exhibition in Athens!

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ALMA REAL ESTATE participated in the first real estate exhibition in Athens, 7-9 of June 2019, held on HELEXPO Exhibition Center, Marousi, Athens.

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Visitors of the AREXPO exhibition had the opportunity to be informed about the emerging trends in the Greek real estate, get in touch with real estate professionals, investors, constructors, and got informed about:

Golden Visa Residency

New professional spaces or new homes

Advice on real estate management

Real estate investment opportunities

Future trends of of the real estate market

Home technology solutions and interior designs

On Friday 7 th June, a speech was held with the topic «Present and future of real estate in Greece».

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ATHENS REAL ESTATE EXPO 2019 (AREXPO) σχεδιάστηκε για να ικανοποιήσει τις ανάγκες ενημέρωσης για τα σημαντικότερα ζητήματα του Real Estate στη χώρα μας.

Οι επισκέπτες της έκθεσης, ήρθαν σε επαφή με επαγγελματίες μεσίτες,  από τους οποίους πήραν συμβουλές για τα ακίνητά τους, εκπροσώπους του τραπεζικού κλάδου που τους ενημέρωσαν για τους τρέχοντες όρους των στεγαστικών ή επαγγελματικών δανείων, για νέα επενδυτικά προγράμματα και δυνατότητες αποπληρωμής.

Επί προσθέτως, προσφέρθηκε η δυνατότητα να έρθει το κοινό  σε επαφή με αρχιτεκτονικά γραφεία, κατασκευαστές επίπλων και εταιρείες λιανικής ηλεκτρικών και ηλεκτρονικών ειδών που παρουσίασαν έξυπνες λύσεις για κάθε ανάγκη των κατοικιών.

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Προφίλ επισκεπτών

Η AREXPO απευθύνθηκε σε όσους ενδιαφέρονται για:

  • Απόκτηση Golden Visa
  • Εύρεση επόμενης κατοικίας
  • Εύρεση επαγγελματικού χώρου
  • Συμβουλές στην πώληση ακινήτων
  • Συμβουλές για διαχείριση ακίνητης περιουσίας
  • Ευκαιρίες επενδύσεων σε ακίνητα
  • Εξειδικευμένους επαγγελματίες στο χώρο του Real Estate
  • Ενημέρωση για τις μελλοντικές τάσεις στην αγορά ακινήτων
  • Έξυπνες λύσεις εργονομίας για επαγγελματικούς και οικιστικούς χώρους

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Οι επισκέπτες ήρθαν σε επαφή με εξειδικευμένους εππαγγελματίες από τους κλάδους των ακινήτων και των επενδύσεων, των κατασκευών και της τεχνολογίας.

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Ταυτόχρονα με την έκθεση, παράλληλες δράσεις, ομιλίες και θεματικές γνωριμίας έδωσαν την ευκαιρία σε όλους τους συμμετέχοντες να ενημερωθούν για τις τάσεις και τα trends της αγοράς και να ανοίξουν τον κύκλο γνωριμιών τους και τις συνεργασίες τους.

 

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«FORTUNE FAVORS THE BOLD»

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«The Interview» Business Partners Magazine of the American Chamber of Commerce – «BUSINESS PARTNERS»- JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2019

Charikleia Stouka, realtor® and founder of Alma Real Estate, talks to Business Partners about the secrets to her success, the fulfillment that comes from making a difference in people’s lives, and the rewards of perseverance. (page 24)

Tell us a little bit about yourself and your background. How did you get started in real estate? Was this something you always you wanted to do?

You could call it fate or a happy accident. I stumbled into the real estate sector while seeking a job, many years ago. In the beginning, I didn’t even know this profession really existed to the extent that it does. At the time my family had increased financial needs, and as a single mother, I was looking for a career in which success is rewarded with more than just a flat salary. Of course, this also carries a risk, but I was ready to give it my all and hope for the best. I had previously studied construction engineering and had some experience managing small family property, so I figured this was a natural next step. I took a job with a local real estate agency to gain insight into the sector and learn from more experienced colleagues. As the saying goes, Rome wasn’t built in a day. But I was learning fast, and soon enough I was in a position I felt comfortable going at it alone. That’s when I decided to start Alma Real Estate, initially from a desk in my parent’s living room, which they were kind and understanding enough to provide. Necessity really is the strongest motivation. Alma was born out of necessity, but I found that I loved constantly challenging myself to the best I can in my field. Having something of your own to work for, made everything seem worthwhile. We have grown a lot since that first desk in 2001, and we keep taking on new challenges. Every day is an opportunity to grow.

What makes you so passionate about real estate?

To this day, my passion for the real estate business grows from the satisfaction I receive from successfully matching a property and a client. Knowing I have found the best home for a family or the best office space for a business to flourish is a reward I value highly. This is what keeps me passionate and motivates me to continue. I receive great satisfaction when I run into former clients and I get that confirmation that the choices we made together for their property were the right ones. Hearing, “This property is exactly what we were looking for,” or, “We are happy because of you,” makes all the difference between a job and a passion.

Why did you choose the name ALMA for your real estate business?

Alma is the Greek word for “leap.” At the time, deciding to start this company was a great leap of faith. Of course, my family had faith in me, but I also needed to have faith in myself, stick to my decisions and follow through with my plan. Later on, I found out that the word «alma» exists in many languages, with its various meanings, funnily enough, all relevant to our ethos. In Italian and Spanish, for example, «alma» means “soul” and in Latin, it means “kind” and “nourishing.”

Where is Alma Real Estate active today?

Our day-to-day activities are focused around the northern suburbs of Athens as well as the city center, but we follow our clients wherever they can benefit from our services and guidance. We are mainly active in the residential and retail/office markets, but having been in the market for so long, we have grown our network to include businesses, specialty buildings, industrial buildings, luxury villas and summer houses, as well as plots of land for development and even islands.

What is your company’s mission?

Our mission is to empower our clients, through our combined experience and resources, to make the best informed real estate decisions. Our clients are at the center of everything we do, and our work focuses on what’s best for them. Every client has different needs and aspirations and is a unique project for us. We stand by them throughout the entire process and provide services that extend way beyond the date of the contract.

What is the real estate business like? What are some of the challenges you face?

The competition in this field is fierce, so it’s important to distinguish yourself from your competitors. It’s also crucial to efficiently manage cash flows between active periods and less active periods. Cyclical and seasonal demand in some markets, holidays, changes in legislation, changes in banking, changes in government and, of course, the ever-volatile Greek economy keep you on your toes, and you have to continuously adapt. It’s a marathon, not a sprint. Running a business is not so much about your resources but about your resourcefulness. There are ups and downs. There have been periods when business was great and periods when it was a challenge to keep the lights on. To win you must stay in the game—and that sometimes means putting aside your ego, taking an objective perspective, and doing what is best for the business.

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«IT’S A MARATHON, NOT A SPRINT, RUNNING A BUSINESS IS NOT SO MUCH ABOUT YOUR RESOURCES BUT ABOUT YOUR RESOURCEFULNESS» – “ JANUARY-FEBRUARY 2019 – «BUSINESS PARTNERS»

Based on your experience in the field, what do you think it takes to succeed?

One of the most important qualities for any entrepreneur is to be able to remain objective and flexible and do what is necessary for the client and for the business to thrive. Another important quality, especially in our line of work, is efficiency, and that comes with experience. I’m now much faster at determining which clients are serious prospects and how to best allocate resources to find the most appropriate match between them and the right properties. That said, success is an ever moving goalpost. In my case, would say that what has propelled Alma Real Estate and my own career is recognizing that every client is unique and finding what works best for them, and always being ready to seize opportunities! The most important ingredient, of course, is sweat equity: putting in the hard work day in and day out, come rain or shine.

Alma Real Estate has now been active for the best part of two decades. What is your opinion on the way the industry is developing in Greece? What do you think the future holds for the real estate market in our country?

Many aspects of the industry have changed and are continuing to change at a rapid pace, but the industry at its core is the same it has always been over the past couple of decades. The scale of projects remains the same—although there are some larger scale projects planned for Athens in the near future if the economy continues to recover! The clients are also the same, but demand changes through the years based on the economy, legislation and the lending power of banks. We are slowly also seeing an increase in foreign investment which will hopefully continue as the legal framework improves. One part of our work that has changed a great deal is advertising. Social media now claims an ever-increasing market share in the promotion of real estate. The future cannot be predicted, but we are seeing some increased activity lately, in demand as well as supply, with developers slowly getting back into the game. We hope this continues.

So what is your advice for aspiring realtors?

Education is key. Learn, learn, learn—and learn! If you are not experienced in the sector, either join a course or take a job with an established agency and work with experienced realtors. When first starting out, you must plan your budget. Do not expect to be profitable from day one. Don’t forget to factor in your personal expenses, and make sure you are aware of all expenses involved, especially advertising and fuel charges. Success is like rent, it is due monthly. Do not make cash flow projections based on your best months. Plan for long term growth. Last but not least, make sure to walk in your client’s shoes, every single time.

What about homeowners? Are there any tips or pointers you want to share with them for choosing a realtor?

It is best to get referrals from friends who have used a realtor in the past and are satisfied with the service. Research the realtor’s background and their office beforehand, and make sure you are aware of your legal rights and obligations before starting your professional relationship. The most important factor in a successful cooperation is communicating your needs and wants with honesty. You have to be honest with your doctor, lawyer and realtor!

What advice would you give to young people thinking of becoming entrepreneurs?

Entrepreneurship is a very hip word these days. The media idolizes entrepreneurs—but they only show the successful side of things. Business is a journey, and as is the case with all journeys, you must be well prepared for the ride and ready to stick it out no matter the weather. Be prepared to fail and be prepared to learn as fast as possible. Remember that “fortune favors the bold» and when you make it through, it will be the trip of a lifetime.

 

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Investing in Short Term Rentals

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The greatest  risk when investing in real estate is a reduction in the value of an asset over time, and decrease in rents in the future. In addition, running costs, booking commissions, cleaning and maintenance expenses can all reduce your income from the property, particularly during slow periods with high vacancies.

Yet research has shown that the average holiday rental property returns more than double the gross rental income of a bought property for long-term rent.

So how can you choose the correct property and enjoy the financial benefits of this new trend in real estate?

Here are some helpful tips to make a good vacation property investment for a considerable passive income:

  1. Find a good real estate agent. Brokers will know about listings that aren’t yet on the market and can let you know about key properties before the listing go public. The best brokers should immediately be able to show you at least 3 suitable properties available in the area, also, should have at least one property recently sold at the same place.
  2. Make sure you check local regulations. You need to research local, municipal and regional laws, regulations,  license requirements and taxation are for short-term renting in the area. You should check the governing rules, also, find out  what the building rental rules are (e.g. daily, weekly, monthly quarterly, three times a year, every six months, annual). When buying a house, people are also buying a lifestyle; they don’t expect to have strangers around all the time and get new «neighbors», every day, week, month or year. Breaking the rules, could make your life -and the lives of your guests- a nightmare.
  3.  Set your budget. Taking into account the expenses related to the new home, such as taxes and utility bills. Remember you always have to pay, whether your house is rent or not.
  4. Location, location, location! The rule is paramount. The property you invest in as a short-term rental should be within walking distance of local shops, business centers, public transportation nodes, and should also be close to major local tourist attractions, archaeological sites or the beach.

5.Have realistic expectations. Do not let trivial things-such as unimportant things, such as, dirty wallpaper, the colors of the rooms, or old-fashioned cabinets and closets put you off. These are things that can be easily changed.

You need to see what the State Laws rules, license requirements and taxation are for short-term renting in the place.

6. Offer privacy. A good way to set your short-term rental property apart in this competitive market is to offer your tenants privacy. A separate private entrance can be a key selling point for the property.

Once you’ve checked the all applicable laws and regulations, found the right property, and brought it up to your standard, the next step is securing occupancy. Aim for steady demand and longer stays to gain the most return from your investment.

source: BUSINESS PARTNERS | SEPTEMBER-OCTOBER 2018

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Who is Who Women Leaders

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«The four pillars of this world are: bread, wine, fire, woman». Nikos Kazantzakis

I have the honor to have been chosen to participate in the «Who is Who Greek Women Leaders», anniversary historic edition which is taking worldwide dimensions.

«There are already 250.000 businesses in Greece managed by women, most of them Greek. Greek women leaders have a competitive advantage based on their upbringing and their prominent position in the ancient Greek society. Women, as far as we know, is an extremely powerful being, because they give birth, offering this way to the whole life cycle».

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The above says the editor of the issue, Vicky Papageorgopoulou who is leading the edition with «a vision of a society of egalitarianism and equality and not competition between the two genders».

«Greek women leaders have a competitive advantage based on their upbringing and their prominent position in the ancient Greek society. Women, especially of the western world have achieved a lot»,  the editor says, «in order to accomplish more, we should stop being in comparison with men. We should love men as our allies. Who is Who Women Leaders is proud to present the distinguished Greek Businesswomen».

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The edition has been under the auspices of «EAWC» – Euro – American’s Women Council (European Office), whose Founder and President is the known worldwide Loula Loi Alafogianni, who has been focusing on the improvement of the quality level of women’s life internationally.

Source: www.womenleaders.gr, www.inewsgr.com

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Eindhoven, Netherlands, to build «world’s first» 3D-printed habitable houses!

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Eindhoven University of Technology, Netherlands, has announced plans to 3D print a series of concrete houses that will be made available to rent. The houses which will meet all modern comfort requirements, will be ready over the next five years and will all become rental properties.

«The project is the world’s first commercial housing project based on 3D-concrete printing,» said the university. «The houses will all be occupied, they will meet all modern comfort requirements, and they will be purchased and let out by a real estate company.»

Developers hope that he world’s first habitable 3D-printed homes which are going to be built in the Dutch city of Eindhoven, will help transform the construction industry.

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Eindhoven is a city in the province of North Brabant in the south Netherlands, most industrially developed, a city that over the past decade has become the capital of Dutch design.

The five concrete houses will be created later this year as part of Project Milestone, a collaboration between Eindhoven University of Technology and various partners who will ensure the houses meet living standards and be occupied.

Local studio Houben & Van Mierlo Architecten is leading the design for the project, known as Project Milestone. It will be delivered in partnership with the city municipality, contractor Van Wijnen, real-estate firm Vesteda, materials manufacturer Saint Gobain-Weber Beamix and engineering company Witteveen+Bos.

It is not the first time a house has been 3D-printed, although all previous attempts have been prototypes or part of research projects.

 The first house built through Project Milestone will be single story but the team eventually hope to build houses up to three stories tall using the construction technique.
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Initially, parts will be printed at the university but the intention is to shift the entire operation to the construction site.

The group behind the latest construction project previously printed the world’s first 3D-printed concrete bridge, which is currently used by cyclists in the Dutch village of Gemert.

The team said that the precise nature of 3D-printing means less building materials are wasted during the construction process, while also making it easier to customise houses to meet individual wishes.

«3D printing of concrete is a potential game changer in the building industry,» a spokesperson for Eindhoven University of Technology said.

«Besides the ability to construct almost any shape, it also enables architects to design very fine concrete structures. Another new possibility is to print all kinds, qualities and colors of concrete, all in a single product

Το πρότζεκτ «Ορόσημο» («Milestone»), αποτελεί παγκόσμια πρωτοτυπία στον χώρο της κατασκευής κατοικιών και πρόκειται να πραγματοποιηθεί στο Αϊντχόφεν της Ολλανδίας, η οποία θα είναι η πρώτη πόλη του κόσμου που θα εντάξει στο πολεοδομικό της σχέδιο κατοικίες από τρισδιάστατο εκτυπωτή!

Τα σπίτια από τσιμέντο θα ανεγερθούν μέσα στην επόμενη πενταετία στην περιοχή Μεερχόβεν.

 Tο ακανόνιστο σχήμα των κατοικιών εκμεταλλεύεται στο έπακρο τις δυνατότητες του τρισδιάστατου εκτυπωτή να «τυπώσει» σχεδόν οποιοδήποτε σχήμα.

Στην κατασκευή των 3D κατοικιών συμμετέχουν ο δήμος της Αϊντχόβεν, το University of Technology of Eindhoven, η εργοληπτική εταιρεία Van Wijnen, το μεσιτικό γραφείο Vesteda, η εταιρεία κατασκευαστικών υλικών Saint Gobain-Weber Beamix και η εταιρεία μηχανικών Witteveen+Bos.

Η πρώτη κατοικία θα είναι ενός ορόφου και θα είναι διαθέσιμη να κατοικηθεί στα μέσα του επόμενου χρόνου. Οι άλλες τέσσερις -όλες πολυώροφες- θα ολοκληρωθούν αργότερα. Τα σπίτια θα υπόκεινται σε όλους τους προβλεπόμενους οικοδομικούς κανονισμούς και σχεδιάζονται ώστε να απαντούν σε όλες τις ανάγκες ενός σύγχρονου κατοίκου.

Sources: http://www.mononews.gr, www.independent.co.uk

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Architecture In Architecture – A New Skin For Buildings

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Interested in Architecture?

How the outside of a building could help the environment?

Researchers are developing a covering for buildings that could collect water and help generate energy.

Better materials, advanced construction methods, creation of buildings that give us a state-of-the-art way of living, Architecture looking to the future…!

«I’ve been interested in the impact of new technologies on architecture since the early 1990s,’ explains Professor Spiller. ‘That was the start of cyberspace and virtual reality generally, and people started to talk about biotechnology.»

Professor Neil Spiller, an architect and head of the University of Greenwich’s School of Architecture & Construction, has a long history in futuristic architecture, and is currently working with researchers to develop a new covering for buildings. The research, conducted by teams from Greenwich, the University of Southern Denmark, University of Glasgow and University College London, could be extremely beneficial in hot climates, collecting water and using sunlight to collect biofuels.

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Sustainability

‘We are at the stage where we are working on ideas on developing a special covering,’ says Professor Spiller. ‘We are trying to get some covering that uses new technology that will allow a building façade to respond in real time to changes in its micro-climate around it.’ Up until now the experiments have been done in the lab and they need to make it bigger to the building façade scale, however big that is. ‘There is a variety of things that we may use, such as bioluminescent bacteria. We’ll use the actual protocells in one experiment. With protocells there is no DNA, no genetics, they are really just bubbles in water, so there is no ethical problem there.’ The material has potentially significant economic and ecological benefits. ‘We have a technology that is not limited by the normal economics of the building industry that we have in the First World,’ says Spiller. ‘The big expansion in the construction industry in the next growth period is going to be about sustainability and ecological planning.’

Source: British Council

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Zaha Hadid’s Architects New Port House in Belgium

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The new Port House in Antwerp, by Zaha Hadid’s architects, repurposes, renovates and extends a derelict fire station into a new headquarters for the port, bringing together the port’s 500 staff, that previously worked in separate buildings around the city.

The building in Antwerp, of 20.800 sq.m., includes, 12.800 sq.m. above ground (6.600 sq.m. in the refurbished fire station, 6.200 sq.m. in the new extension), 8.000 sq.m. underground parking station.

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photo: Thomas Mayer

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Ολοκληρωμένο το 2016, to έργο αυτό της Ζάχα Χαντίντ και του γραφείου της, για τις διοικητικές υπηρεσίες του λιμένος της Αμβέρσας, στο Βέλγιο, αναθεώρησε τη χρήση του προϋπάρχοντος κτιρίου, που στέγαζε την Πυροσβεστική Υπηρεσία, με την προσθήκη μιας νέας κατασκευής, σχεδόν… καρφωμένης στην παλαιότερη, που ως σύνολο θα φιλοξενεί τις μέχρι πρότινος διάσπαρτες λιμενικές αρχές.

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Zaha Hadid Architects, the new Port House during twilight in Antwerp, Belgium

Η κατασκευαστική προσθήκη μοιάζει να αιωρείται, δίνοντας την εντύπωση πως αποτελεί και η ίδια πλοίο. Κάτι που, επίσης, συμβαίνει και με τον σιδηροδρομικό σταθμό της Νάπολης, στην Ιταλία, που θυμίζει βαγόνι, με τους διαδρόμους και τα κουπέ, τις άνετες θέσεις και τα παράθυρά του, όπως το σχεδίασε και υλοποίησε το γραφείο της Ζάχα Χαντίντ και πάλι, παραδίδοντάς το πέρυσι

 Sources: www.zaha-hadid.com, www.kathimerini.gr

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How to Spot a Good Real Estate Agent

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A good real estate agent should be communicative and proactive, a good listener and experienced professional with a list of satisfied clients!

Finding a good real estate agent isn’t always the easiest thing, and knowing what to look for can make a world of difference.

So what characteristics should you have in mind in order to spot a real estate agent that’s right for you?

1 As the adage goes, a picture is worth a thousand words, so it is essential to actually visit a real estate agent’s office. Emails and calls are great, but don’t assign your property to an agent before you’ve met them in person and visited their office. That first impression—the presentation of the agent and the office—should leave you feeling confident that you’re dealing with professional who respect themselves, their place of work, and their clients appropriately.

2 Communication is the most crucial factor in any transaction. Make sure from the get-go that your real estate agent is able to communicate well with you, that they are both pleasant and effective. You want to be sure that they’ll be able to communicate well with you throughout the process and that they’ll also be able to communicate well with potential buyers or owners of properties for sale as well. After all, when the time comes, they’ll also have to communicate effectively with any lawyers, engineers and notaries involved in completing the transaction. Make sure that they can communicate ideas clearly and in simple terms and that they’re able to provide answers and suggest solutions without fuss.

3 A good real estate agent should be proactive about staying in touch and keeping you updated at every step of the way— and they should do the same with potential buyers and sellers. Even the smallest detail could prove to be a decisive factor for a successful transaction, so be wary of agents that don’t seem too motivated to maintain good contact.

4 Make sure that the real estate agent actively listens to you and understands your needs. They should have enough to the-point questions to make sure they’re on the same page as you, and they should be able to give their professional opinion without pushing you in any direction.

5 Experience is another key factor that can make or break a transaction. What seems trivial to a new real estate agent could be just the detail that makes all the difference to an experienced agent.

6 Look for an agent who is well informed and up-to-date with trends and developments in the market you’re in. You want to work with someone who’s actively keeping an ear to the ground and always on the lookout for new leads and clients.

7 Ask for references. A good real estate agent should be able to immediately provide you with at least ten clients—from the previous 3 to 6 months—willing to provide positive references. Satisfied clients are the best indication that you’re dealing with a competent professional. To sum up, a good real estate agent should be communicative and proactive, a good listener and experienced professional with a list of satisfied clients.

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How Can You Spot a Bad Real Estate Agent?

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How Can You Spot a bad Real Estate Agent? (Business Partners Magazine, issue: March-April 2018)

TOP TIPS: Lack of confidence, poor communication and pushiness, are all, signs that you should look for a new agent!

IF AN AGENT ISN’T USING EVERY TOOL AT THEIR DISPOSAL TO PROMOTE YOUR PROPERTY, THEY’RE NOT DOING THEIR JOB.

How long has your house been on the market?

How many prospective buyers have come to see your property lately?

It might not be the best time for selling, but it pays to make sure your real estate agent is doing their job. Read on for how to spot a bad real estate agent.

When selling a house: 

• Be wary of a lack of confidence. Is your real estate agent just nodding along to all your expectations or has he/she provided solid advice on correct pricing for your property in current market conditions? If an agent doesn’t seem to be on top of his/ her game, look for a new one. • Look out for poor communication. Your agent should get in touch regularly, even when there is no new interest in your property. • Make sure your agent is using all available resources. Especially if nobody has come to see your house, find out where and how your property has been listed. From websites to newspapers, check to find out where and how your home is advertised to potential buyers. If an agent isn’t using every tool at their disposal to promote your property, they’re not doing their job. • Check that your agent is working on good presentation. First impressions are everything. A good real estate agent will make sure to take good, clear photos, using correct angles and a good camera. • Professionals aren’t pushy. It’s good to have a real estate agent who is confident and capable, but he/she should never ignore your needs or push you into making decisions.

When buying a house:

• The property should speak, not your real estate agent. Bad real estate agents will try to talk away what you’re actually seeing, especially when the properties don’t match your requirements. • If you feel you’re being pressured in any particular direction, whether it’s a different kind of property or a price tag beyond your budget, that’s a red flag that you should look for a new real estate agent. • The relationship with your real estate agent doesn’t end when the contract is signed. On the contrary, that’s just the beginning. Bad real estate agents will just take their commission and walk away when the transaction is officially completed, but after sales service is crucial. A good real estate agent will follow up to make sure you are satisfied and will assist in arranging technicians and other professionals you may need. This above-and-beyond level of service shows commitment to customer service and sets great agents apart, giving you the confidence to recommend them to others and ensuring you will want to use their services again in the future.

 

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