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Selling or Staying: Best Trends of 2019 to Give Your Old House a Fresh Look

(TNS)—Your house is outdated, but where do you begin making changes? It might still have its original cabinets from 1978 or it’s been years since you changed the cosmetic details. Whatever end of the decor spectrum you’re on, a few modern tweaks can take your space from past to present.

How Revamping Your Space Can Sell It
For sellers, making a few small tweaks can help set your house apart from the competition, says Jason Saft, a real estate agent at Compass in New York. Some sellers choose to hire professional stagers to increase the look and appeal of their home. According to a recent survey by the National Association of REALTORS®, or NAR, staging can have an impact on selling a house:

  • 40 percent of buyers’ agents reported that home staging had an effect on how most buyers viewed the home.
  • 83 percent of buyers’ agents said staging a home helped buyers picture the house as their future home.
  • 25 percent of buyers’ agents said that staging increased the dollar value offered between 1 percent and 5 percent, compared to similar homes without staging.

Like staging, investing in the right updates can increase your return on investment. Experts agree that in a competitive market, the right changes can make all the difference, so keep reading.

Homeowners Can Enjoy a ‘New’ Home Without Moving
The onward and upward attitude toward housing has shifted amid rising home prices and squeezed inventory. And as more people age in place and make their starter homes their forever homes, the remodeling industry has exploded.

Now a $400 billion business, the residential remodeling market has seen a surge in activity, growing over 50 percent since 2010. In 2017, 29 percent of homeowners completed at least one remodeling project, according to the latest “Improving America’s Housing” report published by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University.

Some reasons for the uptick in home improvement projects are lagging construction and aging homes; some 40 percent of American homes are at least 50 years old, according to the report.

Americans are now more likely to stay in the same home than they were 35 years ago, according to NAR.

Many folks are skipping starter homes and going straight to affordable single-family homes in the suburbs, says Jessica Lautz, vice president of Demographics and Behavioral Insights at NAR. This has led to record levels of equity, as home values continue to climb.

Top Home Trends of 2019
From smart-home systems to outdoor living rooms, experts weigh in on the year’s most popular design features that will help give your house a fresh look that both sellers and homeowners can benefit from.

Smart-Home Systems
For the uninitiated, integrated smart-home systems are basically a variety of devices that are linked to a single hub, which coordinates everything. They range from six-figure customized systems to out-of-the-box gizmos you can install yourself for a couple hundred dollars.

Smart-home technology can be grouped into two basic categories: convenience and security. Convenience tech includes things like automated thermostats and Bluetooth audio (yes, you can have your very own theme song play when you enter your home). The security category includes cameras and alarm systems.

“Buyers want cameras and app-based home automation systems,” says Smitha R. Ramchandani, a broker associate at Sotheby’s International Realty in Summit, N.J. “They want to remotely control their lighting systems and blinds. If they’re away, they want to be able to turn off the thermostat.” 

Outdoor Living Rooms
Think of your outdoor space as another room, Saft says. Younger buyers often want to see social trends reflected in their living space and, as rooftop bars and other outdoor gathering areas gain popularity, this is appealing in a home, too.

“Outdoor living rooms are much more popular. Buyers are not looking at just a backyard; it’s another room,” Saft says.

Creating a backyard living room might be as easy as rearranging patio furniture and adding some lights and Bluetooth speakers. Homeowners starting from scratch should begin with an even foundation, which might mean putting in a concrete slab or wooden deck. Use pillows and blankets to add texture and warmth. Lighting plays an important part in creating an inviting ambiance. An easy way to add lights is to use simple string lighting, lanterns and LED candles.

Farmhouse Modern Look
From home makeover shows to big-box retailers, the trend best known as “farmhouse modern” is a favorite across the country, Saft says.

This is a look that’s easy to replicate in almost any style of home. The modern farmhouse look takes natural elements (reclaimed wood, rattan, wicker) and gives them a sleek, architectural look. Nowadays, these trends are accessible to anyone thanks to stores like Target partnering with high-end brands such as Hearth & Hand with Magnolia, owned by former HGTV stars Chip and Joanna Gaines, Saft says.

“People are really getting into an eco-conscious lifestyle,” Ramchandani says. “Things that appeal to today’s homeowners are natural finishes and fabrics, like cotton, that have a more organic appeal. They want a rustic, homey feel.” 

Bold Accents
Playful and expressive might be two words to describe home trends in 2019. Buyers are responding to wow-factor elements in homes, whether it’s a unique, colorful kitchen back splash or a single statement wall in the living room.

Colorful kitchen cabinets are replacing the all-white look, too, Saft says, so homeowners who want to update their kitchen without dumping a ton of money into it can simply repaint their cabinets. Cobalt blue and greens are popular color choices. Pair colorful cabinets with mixed metals, like pewter and brass, and your kitchen has suddenly entered 2019.

“I’m noticing and people are really gravitating toward bold designs—people want boldness in color. Like a tertiary color scheme, the white-on-white kitchens and the white-on-white walls are fading away,” Ramchandani says.

Peel-and-stick wallpaper is an inexpensive, easy-to-install product for creating a dramatic wall, without the time and labor that traditional wallpaper requires. From wild prints to simple patterns, there’s a wide variety of paper to choose from.

Next Steps for Homeowners
For sellers, talk to your real estate agent about which updates are worth making for your particular property and buying demographic. Saft points out that what a Manhattan buyer might expect is different than what someone in the suburbs is looking for. Your real estate agent should know your market well and be able to give you strategic advice.

For homeowners who don’t want to move but want to use the equity in their homes for renovations, they might consider looking at home equity loans (HELs) or home equity lines of credit (HELOCs). In both cases, the lender uses your home as collateral, so if you can’t make the monthly payments, you could end up losing your home.

The advantage of home equity loans for some buyers is that they’re tax-deductible if you use them for home renovations. They also have fairly low interest rates, which are usually less than what personal loans and credit cards offer.

Another option for homeowners who want to lock in a lower interest rate while tapping their equity is a cash-out refinance. This will replace your current mortgage with a new home loan for a larger amount than your existing loan balance, and you’ll be able to withdraw the difference between the two mortgages in cash if you have enough equity. Refinancing typically makes the most sense when you can lower your interest rate and/or monthly payment—and stay in your home long enough to recoup the costs of refinancing (known as the break-even point).

Also, if you do a cash-out refinance, using the equity on things that won’t have a return later might end up costing you. Home renovation projects might be worth it if it’s going to increase your quality of life while also adding value to your property. A kitchen remodel or new roof, for example, might be good investments, whereas a Jacuzzi or high-end fixtures generally won’t offer enough ROI to make the expenditure worthwhile.

Before you use your home equity to finance a home remodel, be sure to talk with your financial adviser to make sure it’s in line with your goals and budget.

 

Written By Natalie Campisi

Source: https://rismedia.com/2019/09/12/selling-staying-trends-2019-house/

September 16, 2019   No Comments

How Property Taxes Can Impact Your Mortgage Payment

How Property Taxes Can Impact Your Mortgage Payment

When buying a home, taxes are one of the expenses that can make a significant difference in your monthly payment. Do you know how much you might pay for property taxes in your state or local area?

When applying for a mortgage, you’ll see one of two acronyms in your paperwork – P&I or PITI – depending on how you’re including your taxes in your mortgage payment.

P&I stands for Principal and Interest, and both are parts of your monthly mortgage payment that go toward paying off the loan you borrow. PITI stands for Principal, Interest, Taxes, and Insurance, and they’re all important factors to calculate when you want to determine exactly what the cost of your new home will be.

TaxRates.org defines property taxes as,

“A municipal tax levied by counties, cities, or special tax districts on most types of real estate – including homes, businesses, and parcels of land. The amount of property tax owed depends on the appraised fair market value of the property, as determined by the property tax assessor.”

This organization also provides a map showing annual property taxes by state (including the District of Columbia), from lowest to highest, as a percentage of median home value.How Property Taxes Can Impact Your Mortgage Payment | Keeping Current MattersThe top 5 states with the highest median property taxes are New Jersey, New Hampshire, Texas, Nebraska, and Wisconsin. The states with the lowest median property taxes are Louisiana, Hawaii, Alabama, and Delaware, followed by the District of Columbia.

Bottom Line

Depending on where you live, property taxes can have a big impact on your monthly payment. To make sure your estimated taxes will fall within your desired budget, contact a local real estate professional today to find out how the neighborhood or area you choose can make a difference in your overall costs when buying a home.

Written By KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/09/04/how-property-taxes-can-impact-your-mortgage-payment/

September 16, 2019   No Comments

Things to Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage

Things to Avoid After Applying for a Mortgage

Congratulations! You’ve found a home to buy and have applied for a mortgage! You’re undoubtedly excited about the opportunity to decorate your new home, but before you make any large purchases, move your money around, or make any big-time life changes, consult your loan officer – someone who will be able to tell you how your decisions will impact your home loan.

Below is a list of Things You Shouldn’t Do After Applying for a Mortgage. Some may seem obvious, but some may not.

1. Don’t Change Jobs or the Way You Are Paid at Your Job. Your loan officer must be able to track the source and amount of your annual income. If possible, you’ll want to avoid changing from salary to commission or becoming self-employed during this time as well.

2. Don’t Deposit Cash into Your Bank Accounts. Lenders need to source your money, and cash is not really traceable. Before you deposit any amount of cash into your accounts, discuss the proper way to document your transactions with your loan officer.

3. Don’t Make Any Large Purchases Like a New Car or Furniture for Your New Home. New debt comes with it, including new monthly obligations. New obligations create new qualifications. People with new debt have higher debt to income ratios…higher ratios make for riskier loans…and sometimes qualified borrowers no longer qualify.

4. Don’t Co-Sign Other Loans for Anyone. When you co-sign, you are obligated. As we mentioned, with that obligation comes higher ratios as well. Even if you swear you will not be the one making the payments, your lender will have to count the payments against you.

5. Don’t Change Bank Accounts. Remember, lenders need to source and track assets. That task is significantly easier when there is consistency among your accounts. Before you even transfer any money, talk to your loan officer.

6. Don’t Apply for New Credit. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a new credit card or a new car. When you have your credit report run by organizations in multiple financial channels (mortgage, credit card, auto, etc.), your FICO® score will be affected. Lower credit scores can determine your interest rate and maybe even your eligibility for approval.

7. Don’t Close Any Credit Accounts. Many clients erroneously believe that having less available credit makes them less risky and more likely to be approved. Wrong. A major component of your score is your length and depth of credit history (as opposed to just your payment history) and your total usage of credit as a percentage of available credit. Closing accounts has a negative impact on both of those determinants in your score.

Bottom Line

Any blip in income, assets, or credit should be reviewed and executed in a way that ensures your home loan can still be approved. The best advice is to fully disclose and discuss your plans with your loan officer before you do anything financial in nature. They are there to guide you through the process.

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/09/16/things-to-avoid-after-applying-for-a-mortgage/

September 16, 2019   No Comments

Appreciation Is Strong: It Might Be Time to Sell

Appreciation Is Strong: It Might Be Time to Sell

There’s no doubt that today’s housing market is changing, and everything we see right now indicates it is time to sell. Here’s a look at why selling now is likely to drive the greatest return on your largest investment.

Home values have been appreciating for several years now, growing at a strong, steady, and impressive pace. In fact, the average annual appreciation rate since 2012 has nearly doubled the average rate from the more normal market of the 1990s (think: pre-bubble).Appreciation Is Strong: It Might Be Time to Sell | Keeping Current MattersAppreciation, however, is projected to shift back toward normal, meaning home prices will likely keep climbing over the next few years, but they are not projected to continue to increase at such a high rate.

Here’s What That Means for Homeowners:

As noted in the latest Home Price Expectation Survey (HPES) powered by Pulsenomics, experts forecast an average annual appreciation rate closer to 3.2% over the next five years, which is more in line with a historically normal market (3.6%). The good news is, there’s still time to take advantage of the current strength of home prices by selling your house now.Appreciation Is Strong: It Might Be Time to Sell | Keeping Current MattersLooking at the projections as they stand today, 2019 is slated to drive the strongest appreciation as compared to the upcoming few years. With average home prices still on the rise, the pace at which they are predicted to continue increasing will likely soften by 2020.

Bottom Line

If you’re thinking about selling your house, now is a great time to make your move. Don’t get stuck waiting until projected home price appreciation rates potentially re-accelerate again in 2023. You’ll likely earn the greatest return on your investment by selling now before the prices start to normalize next year.

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/08/07/appreciation-is-strong-it-might-be-time-to-sell/

August 13, 2019   No Comments

How Much Do You Know About Down Payments?

How Much Do You Know About Down Payments?

Whether you’ve owned a home before, or you’re ready to jump into homeownership for the first time, there are always a lot of questions swirling around about what is truly required for a down payment, and how to best source down payment assistance. Let’s tackle these two today.

1. How much do you really need for a down payment?

There is a long-standing misconception about down payment requirements. A survey from Fannie Mae shows only 17% of consumers know the minimum options are actually between 1 – 5% of the purchase price and 40% don’t know how much they need at all.How Much Do You Know About Down Payments? | Keeping Current MattersThere are many mortgage loans available that require as little as 3% down for first-time buyers, and some ask for only 3.5% down from repeat buyers. There are even loans available for Veterans that provide 0% down payment options too.

We’ve mentioned recently that you don’t need to come up with a 20% down payment to buy, and we’ve also shared how quickly you can save for a 3% or 10% down payment, depending on where you live. If you’re planning to put down just 3%, the research shows it may be possible in most states to have enough saved for a down payment in less than a year. That puts homeownership in a much closer reach for many potential buyers, maybe even you!

2. How can I get help with my down payment?

Regardless of the loans available, many buyers still need assistance with a down payment. The great news is, there are a lot of ways to tap into down payment assistance options. Here are just a couple of them:

Assistance from Family Members

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) said, “a third of recent first-time buyers received down payment assistance from family members.” They also mentioned, “the average net worth of those aged 75 and over stands at $264,800…They just might offer the boost the next generation needs to become homeowners.

That means one of the ways to find help with a down payment is to accept a gift from a family member. If this is an option for you, make sure you talk to your loan officer before you accept the money, to ensure you document the process the way it is required by your loan. This way, it will be received properly and you can still potentially qualify.

Down Payment Assistance Programs

The reality is, not everyone has a loved one or a family member who can provide help with a down payment. There are, however, more than 2,500 down payment assistance programs available (by local areas like city, county, or neighborhood), and some of them are even specifically for first-time buyers.

The gap, as mentioned in the same survey, is “only 23% of consumers are familiar with low down payment programs.”

That’s why it is so important to get familiar with these options by doing your homework before you plan to buy a home. Determine what is available in the area where you ultimately want to live, so you have all the details you need to take advantage of the down payment assistance option that is best for your family.

Bottom Line

If buying a home is one of your long-term goals, you may be able to get there sooner than you think by tapping into one of the many down payment assistance programs available.

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source: https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/08/06/how-much-do-you-know-about-down-payments/

August 13, 2019   No Comments

Find Ease, Restfulness With PPG Brand’s 2020 Color of the Year: Chinese Porcelain

Blend of cobalt, moody ink blue offers escapism in today’s data-driven society

CRANBERRY TOWNSHIP, Pa., June 10, 2019 – In a world where sleep is viewed as a luxury and the anxiety of a fast-paced life is all too real, it is only fitting that PPG paint brand’s 2020 Color of the Year, Chinese Porcelain (PPG1160-6), offers escapism in today’s technologically driven society. Hand-selected by PPG’s global color experts, the shade is a blend of cobalt and moody ink blue that imparts calmness and restful sleep while also offering the spirit of hopefulness – a commodity in a restless world.

 

PPG Chinese Porcelain Tag PPG Chinese Porcelain Color Dollop

“The faster technology moves and the more convenience it offers, the more we seek activities, experiences and lifestyles that impart slowness and realness into our lives,” said Dee Schlotter, senior color manager, PPG paint brand. “The need for simplicity and escapism from technology is, in part, the reason that consumers are craving blues like Chinese Porcelain that bring us closer to natural elements such as the sea and sky – creating serenity in any space.”

The increasing need for connection in an unmoored world was a reoccurring theme at the recent PPG Global Color Workshop. This annual event brings together more than 20 PPG global color stylists from the automotive, consumer electronics, aerospace and home paint and stain industries. Over the course of several days, the stylists analyze the runway, lifestyles, demographics, geographies, and global and cross-cultural societal inspirations to determine what colors will resonate and represent the PPG global color forecast, including the PPG Color of the Year.

“As we look to 2020, we know that color is the trend,” said Schlotter. “Consumers are tiring of stark grays and are looking to infuse colors that delight the senses. Blue is the easiest possible entry point from the world of neutrals to the world of color, and PPG’s Chinese Porcelain delivers the energy and brightness of cobalt blue – a trending hue taking the automotive, consumer electronics and fashion industry by storm. It also incorporates a deep, muted navy tone that is popular in residential and hospitality design.”

According to recent data released by Paintzen, a PPG-owned technology platform that allows customers to pick colors and schedule painting services, blue is the most explored color family by its users, with 34 percent higher engagement than neutrals – the next most popular color family on the site. Of the blue hues, Chinese Porcelain was the most engaged color on the platform over the past six months.

Chinese Porcelain is a rich and traditional hue that provides the perfect, agreeable backdrop for vivacious colors to pop. It also can act as a feature color in a bedroom with crisp white bedding and crown molding to provide a sharp contrast. In the living room space, the hue can be layered with additional blues in tufted and velvet furniture or paired with trending metallic finishes like Hushed Copper (MTL141) from the PPG METALLIC TONESTM collection.

Schlotter recommends pairing Chinese Porcelain with décor such as lush drapes or velvet pillows in warm saffron and turmeric tones. The hue also pairs well with leather accents and dusty sand tones for an attention-grabbing look.

While Chinese Porcelain is recognized as the PPG 2020 Color of the Year, it is also the focal point for the broader PPG 2020 Global Color Trends Forecast. This forecast provides direction and inspiration to architects, designers and homeowners across the hotel, retail and residential markets. PPG’s customers in all business sectors rely on the forecast for new products and color specifications in the architectural, aerospace, automotive and consumer electronic industries.

The colors are brought to life through the following three trend stories, each nestled within the overarching theme of Flow.

On the Move: This upbeat and playful color palette addresses consumers who are looking to remake, reuse and merge cultural influences from different eras, creating a fresh aesthetic that feels simultaneously retro and contemporary. Mismatched hues like PPG paint brand’s Brilliant Blue, Turner’s Yellow and Bleeding Heart deliver joyful color combinations that encourage self- expression from the bold and confident consumer.

At the Core: Taking cues from Mother Nature, this color collection is earthy, botanical and sustainable, resonating with consumers who are looking for a state of balance between long- lasting and purposeful living. These colors evoke comfort and nostalgia, particularly the muted mid-tones. Bright hues such as PPG paint brand’s Crushed Pineapple and Carrot Cake feel rich when contrasted with Comfort, Life Lesson, Cool Concrete and Kangaroo Paw, which double as tinted neutrals.

In the Know: With an emphasis on knowledge, reflection and innovation, this theme represents consumers who are eager to change society while contributing to a future that is better than the past. The palette acknowledges the convergence of technology and earthliness by featuring raw, natural hues like PPG paint brand’s Cinnamon Spice and Brown Clay, as well as organic, oxidized blue-greens like Celestial Blue and Summer Breeze.

PPG brand paints are available at PPG PAINTSTM stores, independent retailers and THE HOME DEPOT® locations across the U.S. To find Chinese Porcelain at the store nearest you, visit www.ppgpaints.com. Customers can also choose Chinese Porcelain when booking their next paint job at www.paintzen.com.

For images and more information on the PPG brand’s 2020 color trends, visit: https://news.ppg.com/2020colortrends.

PPG’s architectural coatings business in the U.S. and Canada is an industry leader in residential and commercial coatings, delivering the latest technologies and operational advancements through its strong portfolio of brands. It manufactures and sells interior and exterior paints, stains, caulks, repair products, adhesives and sealants for homeowners and professionals. Its distribution network includes more than 15,000 touchpoints through company-owned stores, independent dealer locations and major home improvement centers across the U.S. and Canada. For more information, visit www.ppgpaints.com.

PPG: WE PROTECT AND BEAUTIFY THE WORLD™

Find ease, restfulness with PPG brand’s 2020 Color of the Year: Chinese Porcelain – 3

At PPG (NYSE:PPG), we work every day to develop and deliver the paints, coatings and materials that our customers have trusted for more than 135 years. Through dedication and creativity, we solve our customers’ biggest challenges, collaborating closely to find the right path forward. With headquarters in Pittsburgh, we operate and innovate in more than 70 countries and reported net sales of $15.4 billion in 2018. We serve customers in construction, consumer products, industrial and transportation markets and aftermarkets. To learn more, visit www.ppg.com.

 

Written By PPG

Source: https://realtytimes.com/real-industry-news-articles/item/1028638-find-ease-restfulness-with-ppg-brands-2020-color-of-the-year-chinese-procelain?rtmpage=

June 10, 2019   No Comments

5 Minor Home Upgrades for a Limited Budget

minor home upgrades

If only your budget were as expansive as your imagination. We’ve all spent time daydreaming about how we would improve our homes if we had the time and money for a complete renovation. Grand kitchens, laundry rooms, in-ground swimming pools and walk-in closets top the dream home wish list for many.

If you don’t have the budget, time, or energy to remodel your home, there are many small projects you can take on that will improve the look and function of your home without breaking the bank. If and when it comes time to sell, these minor upgrades can also add value to your property, potentially maximizing your return:

New Cabinet Hardware

You might not be ready to tackle an entire kitchen remodel, but swapping out the hardware on your cabinets and drawers is an inexpensive cosmetic change that will update the look of your space immediately. Old, outdated hardware can make the home’s age more obvious. Look for a sleek and modern alternative that suits your taste and will be appealing even after the latest trend has passed.

If you’re looking for something unique, hardware these days comes in a variety of materials, including leather pulls, acrylic and metal combinations, stone, and more. As long as you keep it tasteful, new cabinet hardware is a cheap investment with a high return.

Updated Faucets

Faucets are one of the fixtures that quickly show their age, yet we tend to forget that they’re fairly easy to replace. Over time, faucets become dull and tarnished from constant use. Brighten up your bathroom or kitchen with an attractive, modern upgrade.

Figure out the configuration and mounting type of your current faucet to ensure you choose the right option. The existing holes in your sink, the material and thickness of your countertop, and your budget will all play a role in selecting new fixtures. Take a trip to your local hardware store and find a model that will work for you while still playing nicely with the style of your kitchen or bathroom. If you’re replacing multiple fixtures throughout the home, look into ordering them in bulk online. There are instructions on how to complete the installation yourself if you don’t want to hire help.

Modern Light Fixtures

One of the easiest ways to update the feel of a room is by replacing the light fixtures. This quick fix can add color and intrigue to any space and can update the lighting of the entire room depending on which fixture and light bulb you choose.

You can replace many ceiling-mount light fixtures without the need for rewiring, which means you’ll be done with this project in less than an hour. Browse online or in your local home decor store for modern fixtures that agree with the look and feel of your home. Once you have your supplies, unscrew the old fixtures and replace them.

A Fresh Coat of Paint

A simple coat of paint can upgrade countless areas throughout your home—walls, cabinets, doors, trim, etc. Even if you aren’t changing the color of the paint, a fresh coat can brighten things up and erase any wear and tear that may have occurred over time. Painting projects can be adjusted to fit any budget, as you can tackle them yourself or hire professionals.

Of course, there are a few tricks to ensuring a good paint job. You don’t want your DIY project to leave you in a worse position than when you started. For whichever surface you’re painting, be sure to research best practices in order to make it look professional.

Low-Cost Flooring

Flooring has one of the widest pricing ranges in home improvement projects due to the variety of options. Maybe you don’t have the budget to redo the flooring throughout your entire house, but even minimal updates can have a dramatic impact on your home and its resale value.

Consider replacing particularly damaged or worn areas such as the kitchen, bathroom, mudroom or laundry room with laminate flooring options. There are many options in terms of style, from tile to hardwood. This material is durable to most wear and tear and relatively simple to install.

No matter the size of the project you decide to undertake, make sure to educate yourself completely on each step of the process, take your time and plan ahead. The old adage “measure twice, cut once” is a good rule of thumb. Maybe tackle a smaller project first and then move onto a larger task. You’ll feel a sense of accomplishment every time you walk into your home.

 

Written By Brentnie Daggett

Source: http://blog.rismedia.com/2019/minor-home-upgrades-limited-budget/?utm_source=newsletter&utm_medium=email#close

June 6, 2019   No Comments

4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

4 Reasons to Buy A Home This Summer

Here are four reasons to consider buying today instead of waiting.

1. Prices Will Continue to Rise

CoreLogic’s latest U.S. Home Price Insights reports that home prices have appreciated by 3.7% over the last 12 months. The same report predicts that prices will continue to increase at a rate of 4.8% over the next year.

Home values will continue to appreciate. Waiting may no longer makes sense.

2. Mortgage Interest Rates Are Projected to Increase

Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey shows that interest rates for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage have started to level off around 4.3%. Most experts predict that rates will rise over the next 12 months. The Mortgage Bankers Association, Fannie Mae, Freddie Mac, and the National Association of Realtors are in unison, projecting rates will increase by this time next year.

An increase in rates will impact YOUR monthly mortgage payment. A year from now, your housing expense will increase if a mortgage is necessary to buy your next home.

3. Either Way, You Are Paying a Mortgage

Some renters have not yet purchased a home because they are uncomfortable taking on the obligation of a mortgage. Everyone should realize that unless you are living with your parents rent-free, you are paying a mortgage – either yours or your landlord’s.

As an owner, your mortgage payment is a form of ‘forced savings’ which allows you to have equity in your home that you can tap into later in life. As a renter, you guarantee your landlord is the person with that equity.

Are you ready to put your housing cost to work for you?

4. It’s Time to Move On with Your Life

The ‘cost’ of a home is determined by two major components: the price of the home and the current mortgage rate. It appears that both are on the rise.

But what if they weren’t? Would you wait?

Examine the actual reason you are buying and decide if it is worth waiting. Whether you want to have a great place for your children to grow up, greater safety for your family, or you just want to have control over renovations, now could be the time to buy.

Bottom Line

If the right thing for you and your family is to purchase a home this year, buying sooner rather than later could lead to substantial savings.

 

Written By KCM Crew

Source:https://www.keepingcurrentmatters.com/2019/06/03/4-reasons-to-buy-a-home-this-summer/

June 4, 2019   No Comments

To-Dos: Your June Home Checklist

Summer officially begins June 21 this year, but why wait until then to get into the summer spirit? Get a jump-start by prepping your home and garden for warm weather, setting up the perfect drip-dry spot for beach towels, reorganizing the kitchen (hello, smoothie bar) and more. These 21 to-dos cover all the bases, so you can enjoy the season to the fullest.

19. Clean gutters and downspouts. If you did not get your gutters cleaned in spring, be sure to get this essential task checked off your list as soon as possible. Leaf- and debris-clogged gutters can lead to leaks and siding damage with summer storms.

Learn how to clean your gutters

20. Schedule major outdoor projects. Whether you are dreaming of a new patio or need to replace a deck, don’t delay booking a landscape architect or contractor for your projects. Their schedules tend to fill up quickly in the summer.

21. Catch up on projects and maintenance. No one is perfect, and chances are there are a few home-maintenance projects you’ve been meaning tackle. Why not make June the month to get caught up?

Written By Laura Gaskill
Source: https://www.houzz.com/magazine/to-dos-your-june-home-checklist-stsetivw-vs~64799711

June 3, 2019   No Comments

Garage Organization: A Chore No More In 5 Easy Steps

When Spring rolls around, you may find what was once a home for your cars has now become a landfill for everything you own but don’t use. It’s important to define different spaces of your house, and the garage is no exception: it’s just as functional as any other part of the home. However, it’s meant to store your car and tools, not your Christmas tree. Therefore, it’s best to solve the problem once and for all with a little garage organization that’ll help keep things nice and tidy for the future. Follow our 5 easy steps to get the job done quickly and painlessly and enjoy your garage once again.

1. Plan of Attack

Don’t enter alone. And use the buddy system—if for no other reason than you may get overwhelmed and lost in your own sea of debris. Friends, family, and the kids can all lend a hand to get the job done quicker and to help keep you on track: it’s easy to get distracted rooting through the objects of your past.

The first goal of any garage organization is to create more floor space, so that’s where you should begin as well. Get all the knick-knacks, the holiday decorations, and any other indoor-related storage out of there and into the attic. This area is for outdoor items only. Always keep this objective in mind: it’ll help you decide what stays and what goes.

2. Divide and Conquer

Give each helper a section to cover. This should help the garage organization run smoother. And don’t be clingy. If you haven’t used something in over a year, or if you forgot it even existed, it’s time to say goodbye. Give your stuff to charities, thrift stores, or maybe even make a trip to the dump. Or, better yet, make a separate pile for a future garage sale, allowing you to reap all the awards of your excavation. (However, don’t procrastinate on this chore either. It’s easy to say you’ll have a garage sale and not follow through so as to keep putting off the inevitable.) Then, divide up the remaining possessions into categories—sports items, seasonal décor, gardening tools, car maintenance, etc.—to help with the next step.

3. Get Vertical

Once everything is cleaned and categorized, now it’s time to rearrange. The best way to store your things is to make use of your vertical space.

  • Get a pegboard for your tools.
  • Put up some shelves for boxes.
  • Heavy-duty hooks are great for shovels and rakes.
  • Buy a magnetic strip for stray metal items, such as steel rulers or chisels.

If you have bikes, skis, or ladders, put them overhead in the rafters (or if you have a drywall ceiling, once again, heavy-duty hooks are great for hanging these heavy-duty items).

Remember that a garage is mainly used to store or work on your car or other vehicles so make sure you clear enough space to make this possible. Garage car lifts provide a great way for you to store a vehicle whilst still giving you floor space to move around in. You can get 2 post lifts which make it easy to work on your car and 4 post lifts which allow you to store 2 vehicles in one space.

4. Compartmentalize

Once you have as much as you can off the floor, it’s now time to find additional storage. The easiest answer to this dilemma is a garage organizer.

  • A multiple tier shelving unit is great for storing paint or varnishes.
  • A cabinetry system for miscellaneous items is always handy.
  • Maybe buy several Rubbermaid baskets to hang on the wall to help separate the recycling.
  • Buy a crank to roll up that hose.
  • Use garbage ties or bungee cords to keep your extension cords in line.

Whatever the need, investing in some form of garage organizer helps to maintain the floor space you’ve just created.

5. Items Big and Small Don’t forget the little things.

If you save glass baby-food jars, clear film canisters, or milk cartons (to be cut in half), you’ll now be able to store smaller items, such as nails, screws, or tacks. If these small containers aren’t see through, they can also be easily labeled with masking tape. Another alternative garage organizer is an inexpensive tackle box to help contain the confusion. But what if it’s your bigger items that are getting in the way? What if it’s the necessary tools, such as snow blowers, lawn mowers, or edgers creating the clutter? Then consider building an extra shed in the backyard or a lean-to against the outside of the garage in order to produce additional square footage.

Don’t Let It Happen Again

The main thing to keep in mind is never let it get to this point again. If you take these steps, you should be able to keep up with your garage organization in the future. This is not to say that you won’t have some occasional maintenance—some sweeping, scrubbing, or washing. But by simply taking the time to arrange the space, at least you’ll no longer dread entering into it.

 

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Source: https://realtytimes.com/consumeradvice/homeownersadvice/item/1019636-garage-organization-a-chore-no-more-in-5-easy-steps?rtmpage=

May 16, 2019   No Comments