Our Real Estate Blog
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When you decide to make an offer on a home, your mind may be flooded with dozens of questions and concerns -- several of which may involve money matters, while others are about the condition of the house.
However, if you've had the house professionally inspected and made sure your income is sufficient to absorb monthly expenses, than you've already taken steps to prevent or at least minimize future challenges.
Since buying a home is such a big investment and there are so many emotional factors that could influence your decision, it's essential to stay focused, adhere to a budget, and be aware of what you need in order to be satisfied with your purchase.
The Financial Side of Things: Even though a mortgage broker or loan officer may approve you for a large mortgage, only you can determine whether you'd be comfortable making those monthly payments. In addition to the cost of your mortgage, property taxes, and school taxes, there are also other expenses to consider and include in the equation. If you're moving into a larger house, for example, the cost of heating and/or cooling your home may be higher than you're used to. Poorly insulated houses can also have a negative impact on home energy costs.
Another key factor to think about when you're figuring out the affordability of a potential new home is property maintenance, the cost of HVAC service, and miscellaneous expenses, such as appliance repairs, plumbing leaks, and electrical services. Some neighborhoods, residential developments, and condos also require a monthly Homeowner Association (HOA) fee, which can potentially put a burden on your cash flow situation. A good rule of thumb, of course, is to avoid spending beyond your means. While nobody would dispute the logic of that advice, it's often a lot easier said than done -- especially on an ongoing, consistent basis.
Non-Financial Priorities: The only way to know what you truly want and need in a new home is to clarify your goals, requirements, and wishes. Making lists, discussing it with your partner, and visiting lots of homes for sale will help give you the ideas, the inspiration, and helpful points of comparison you need. Online real estate listings and home improvement websites can also provide a wealth of practical ideas.
In addition to having enough bedrooms and bathrooms to meet your family's needs, it's also important to feel comfortable with the quality of the school district, the amount of noise in the neighborhood, and the traffic level on nearby streets. Proximity to recreation, shopping, and other amenities can also make the difference between your ideal home and one which doesn't quite make the grade. Privacy (or the lack, thereof) is also a major issue which can impact your satisfaction with a real estate purchase. While it's good to approach home buying with a sense of optimism, the best time to weigh all the pros and cons is before you sign the final papers at the closing table!
You always want to be safe in your new home, but bringing home a new baby brings your safety protocol to a whole new level. In the first few months of life, the baby won’t be getting into too much trouble. By the time the baby can crawl, however, it’s a whole different story. This is why you want your home prepared before the baby even gets there. You should keep your home free of hazards. No more boxes in the way on the floor. The glass coffee table may need to be put away for a time. The nature of your home will certainly change once your little bundle of joy arrives. Below, you’ll find some of the most basic baby safety measures that you can take around your home in order to bring it from normal home to “baby proof.”
You’ll want to look at your home from the level of a child. Anything that you feel he or she could get into when you’re on the floor on your hands and knees is fair game.
Lock Drawers And Cabinets
Both drawers and cabinets should be locked in the bathroom, kitchen, even in your office. You never know what a baby can get himself into! This is especially important for drawers and cabinets that have sharp objects like knives, scissors, or tools. Any cabinets that have chemicals, heavy pans, or anything else you don’t want a child getting into should have a lock on them. Locks for cabinets are available in both the interior style or exterior style safety lock. Both types of locks can be easily installed in cabinets and drawers in order to prevent children from opening them, yet giving the adults in the house continued access to the things that they need.
These small plastic fittings come in a variety of types and styles. Some insert into the outlets themselves while others cover the entire outlet plate. Some snap onto the outlet while others open like a door. You’ll want to choose a type of outlet cover that will work best for your needs. You don’t want an inconvenience when you do use the plug and you also don’t want a lot of small plastic pieces hanging around the home to be just another hazard to your child.
Gates are one of the most valuable safety items that parents can install for their kids. Gates can be installed in doorways where the child shouldn’t have immediate access. These safety measures are also important at the bottom and top of each stairway in the home. Baby gates come in all shapes and styles, so you’ll want to decide what works best for your needs in the home. Some gates are mountable while others are detachable and portable from room to room. Some gates even have extension pieces that are available to be installed along with them to fit rooms of all sizes.
Bumpers get their name because they prevent exactly what the name states-bumping! You’ll want to put these bumpers and corner guards to cover any rough or sharp edges around your home. Consider covering the following areas of your home:
- Coffee tables
- Wood stoves
Anything with a sharp corner or edge needs to be covered to prevent your child from injury.
Baby Proofing can be a difficult task, but with the right tools, you’ll be able to protect your precious little one from harm around your other big investment- your home.
Although you've enjoyed your residence for many years, all good things must come to an end. Now, as you get ready to embark on the next stage of your life, you've decided to leave your neighbors behind and sell your house.
Ultimately, there are many reasons why you should include your neighbors in the home selling process, including:
1. Your neighbors can help you promote your residence.
It may be tough to tell your neighbors that you plan to relocate in the foreseeable future. However, doing so may help you stir up interest from many potential property buyers.
For example, a neighbor may know a family member or friend who is interested in moving into the neighborhood. And if you give this neighbor a heads-up about your intent to sell your house, you may already have at least one person who is interested in buying your house as soon as it becomes available.
Your neighbors also can share your property listing with assorted family members and friends. In addition, don't forget to encourage your neighbors to promote your house on social media.
2. Your neighbors may be able to offer home selling insights.
Your neighborhood likely is full of property owners who understand the ins and outs of buying a house. Furthermore, your neighbors may be able to provide home selling insights that you might struggle to obtain elsewhere.
It never hurts to ask a neighbor what he or she thinks of your home. By doing so, you can gain honest, unbiased feedback about your residence and may be able to identify problem areas that you previously did not consider. Then, you can allocate the time and resources to improve your home's exterior and interior and ensure your house stands out in a competitive real estate market.
3. Your neighbors can help keep your neighborhood looking great.
Your neighbors may want you to stay in the neighborhood. But if your neighbors are true friends, they will probably do whatever they can to help you achieve your desired home selling results.
Letting your neighbors know that you plan to list your house may lead them to upgrade their properties as well. This may enable all of the houses in a neighborhood to stand out to visitors and will make it simple for homebuyers to envision what life would be like if they moved into the neighborhood.
Lastly, if you need extra help as you get ready to sell your home, feel free to reach out to a real estate agent. With a housing market professional at your side, you should have no trouble navigating the home selling journey.
A real estate agent will provide expert tips throughout each stage of the home selling process. Plus, he or she will set up home showings, negotiate with property buyers on your behalf and do everything possible to simplify the home selling cycle.
Collaborate with your neighbors throughout the home selling journey, and you can boost your chances of a quick home sale.
If you’re looking to update your home with a more chic, classic style black wall paint is the untraditional but obvious choice. Stand out from the crowd and a sea of white walls with this bold move.
Of course, not just any room can be painted black and called a look. A large room with bright, natural lighting is the perfect canvas to start with. What’s great about black walls is that, as a classic color, it can work in any room.
Black walls look crisp and modern with the sharp contrast of white baseboards and even as an accent wall in an otherwise white painted room. For the bold and adventurous, a black ceiling with white walls, despite what you might think, bring height and space to a room.
Tie in your color choice with other elements. Black wallpaper with a white pattern, subway tiles with a dark grout and black and white patterned tile are great ways to do just that. In a kitchen, glossy black cabinets look seamless next to black appliances. While black beadboard and shiplap bring a welcome change to a dominating trend.
Mix textures to keep things dynamic instead of sterile. Soft white elements like a sheepskin throw, curtains paired with sleek crisp lines will have guests believing you had a professional design your home.
White pieces, whether the porcelain in your bathroom, the mantel in the living room or marble countertops in the kitchen keep your space balanced. Furniture and flooring made of wood in lighter shades look best against the dark backdrop. Take a note from the Scandinavian stylebook by adding decor made up of burlap fabric, terracotta, fur, linen, and stone.
Color to Pair
Bronze and gold hardware add glamour and, when in the form of t-bars style drawer pulls, a very chic, minimalist take on the look. Keep an eye out for utensils, decorative bowls, serving trays and sculptures in these metallic hues to add to your room. And with these colors still growing in popularity they shouldn’t be too hard to find!
Navy helps to tone down the harshness of black while carrying the deep complexity of the darker color throughout the room. Light hues in addition to white, like creams, beiges, and grays maintain balance and brighten the room.
Bright colors add an unexpected pop against the neutral hues. Olive and forest greens add a rich, deepness while pinks, reds and yellow add a playful touch. Add in a dose of color with throw pillows or artwork. Or allow a piece to grab your visitors attention such as a sofa.
Painting a wall black is not for the faint of heart. It’s certainly a bold move but not an outlandish one. Instead, the final result is decidedly chic and even feels couture.