Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/29/2018

As you go on the house hunt, you’re likely to attend many different open houses. After awhile you can get confused as to what you have seen and where you saw it. Each open house or home showing is only a short window of time. As a buyer, you’re trying to get the feel for a house. Being an observant home shopper can help you to avoid a lot of problems down the road. Check out some of the biggest red flags that you need to look out for when you attend an open house.


The Candles Are Burning Bright


You walk into an open house and see a lovely candle lit on the kitchen table. While it may make you feel all warm and fuzzy, it’s not always a good sign. Candles are a great way to mask odors. There could possibly be a musty odor coming from the sink, the basement, or another part of the house. This spells hidden damage and possible danger for you as a homebuyer. While the home inspection should pick up on things like this, you don’t necessarily want to get that far in the process. The art of masking odors could be a sign that the sellers are trying to hide something.


Be Your Own Inspector


As you walk through the home do you notice squeaky floor boards, cracks in the walls, cracks in the ceilings, or a drippy faucet? Maybe you see some patches on the walls or mirrors and paintings that seem out of place? These are all issues that could be signs of a greater problem. Keep in mind that no house is perfect, but you should do a little investigating on your own while walking through the house at showings.


The Home Doesn’t Appear Cared For


Curb appeal is one thing, but a home that looks unkept is a sign of a larger problem for you. Has the lawn been mowed? Is the fence in disrepair? How does the home appear from the outside at first glance? There are plenty of ways that you can fix up a home to make it your own once you buy it, but the question is just how much of a challenge are you up for? There is always a chance that you’ll have large maintenance costs when a home hasn’t been properly maintained by the previous owners.


Searching for homes and going to open houses can be fun. It can also be an educational experience to help you narrow down what you’re looking for and what you can handle as a homeowner.            





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Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/22/2018

When pests come into your home, there’s no creepier feeling that you may have as a homeowner. You may turn to your house insurance for assistance if the problem gets really bad. Let’s say that termites have taken over your home and gotten into your walls or foundation. Maybe mice have gotten into the walls of your home, or a squirrel has caused some major issues in the attic. Whatever the problem is, you want to remedy it quickly. It might be an expensive fix no matter what, but it has to be remedied for you to continue to live comfortably in your home. 


The Truth About Homeowners Insurance


Unfortunately, homeowners insurance doesn't cover pest infestations. It doesn’t matter if the termites have literally eaten you out of house and home, the insurance companies consider pests to be an avoidable problem. Even though you may wonder how bugs can be considered “avoidable,” it’s simple. The insurance company believes that regular maintenance and checking of your property can help to prevent bug infestations. This is why it’s so important to take care of your property and not neglect it. 


Collateral Damage


There are a few exceptions to the rule. If your ceiling caves in and it was caused by some of the pest damage, your insurance may cover the cost of the repairs to the ceiling. They may not cover the materials that are needed to repair the ceiling itself. Insurance claims can be tricky, so you’ll need to ask a lot of questions if these problems do occur for you.


What Homeowners Insurance Covers


There’s nothing more frustrating than paying an insurance premium to find out that it doesn’t actually cover anything that you need at a certain point and time. As a general rule, homeowners insurance policies cover things that are considered accidental. This would include natural disasters like hurricanes, hailstorms, or high winds. If a tree falls on your home due to a windstorm, there was really no way of preventing that from happening. Your insurance would cover this. Damage that happens over an extended period, like that of a pest infestation or an aging home generally is not covered by house insurance. 


Separate Policies


Some insurance companies do offer separate policies to cover damage from certain types of pests like termites. There are several varieties of insects that cause damage to wood structures, so these policies may be more general stating that they provide “wood destroying insect” coverage. If you live in an area that’s prone to termites, there’s a few options available to you including something called “termite bonds.”


Your best course of action as a homeowner is prevention. Keep up with regular maintenance around your home and inspect your home regularly for any problems that you may find.




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Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/15/2018

If you recently bought or sold a house and plan to move out of state, now is the time to start planning for moving day. By doing so, you can ensure that you're fully prepared to take all of your belongings to your new address.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prep for an out-of-state move.

1. Create a Moving Calendar and Budget

Determine how much time is available before moving day. Then, you can put together a list of items that you will need to pack, along with various pre-moving day tasks that must be completed. With this plan in place, you'll be better equipped than ever before to seamlessly navigate the moving process.

Also, don't forget to budget for your out-of-state move. If you craft a budget today, you can avoid the risk of overspending on moving boxes and other moving supplies.

2. Don't Wait to Start Packing

Moving day will be here soon enough, and as such, there is no reason to wait to start packing your belongings.

Enlist friends and family members to help you pack – you'll be glad you did. With loved ones at your side, you can get plenty of assistance as you prep your belongings for your out-of-state move.

In addition, you may want to contact a moving company that specializes in out-of-state moves. If you hire a moving company, you can receive comprehensive support throughout the moving cycle.

3. Cancel Various Services

Reach out to your current utilities providers, along with cable, internet and phone services providers. This will allow you to find out exactly what you'll need to do to cancel various services prior to moving day.

Remember to connect with services providers in your new city or town too. If you contact these services providers today, you can guarantee that all of your essential services can be set up as soon as you reach your new address.

Lastly, if you need help getting ready for an out-of-state move, you may want to reach out to a real estate agent. By collaborating with a housing market professional, you may be able to simplify the moving cycle.

A real estate agent is happy to help you buy or sell a house, as well as connect you with the best moving companies in your area. That way, you can receive plenty of assistance as you count down the days to your out-of-state move.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is happy to provide expert insights into the housing market. If you need to find a new house out of state, this housing market professional can help you discover a great residence at a budget-friendly price. Or, if you need to sell your current residence, a real estate agent will help you find the best ways to optimize the value of your house.

When it comes to moving out of state, why should you be forced to leave anything to chance? Instead, use the aforementioned tips, and you can streamline the out-of-state moving process.




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Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/8/2018

The home selling journey is an exciting time, and for good reason. Ultimately, the home selling journey represents a period of endless possibilities. And for those who start planning ahead for the home selling journey today, they may be able to enjoy immense profits down the line.

What does it take to reap the benefits of a profitable home selling journey? Here are three tips to help you do just that.

1. Understand the Real Estate Market

The housing market may seem like a moving target at times. However, home sellers who analyze the real estate sector closely can identify patterns and trends and plan accordingly.

Home sellers can look at the prices of recently sold houses in their cities and towns to better understand the current state of the housing market. Then, these home sellers may be able to differentiate between a seller's market and a buyer's market.

Also, home sellers can assess the prices of available homes that appear similar to their own. This housing market data enables a home seller to understand how his or her residence stacks up against the competition.

2. Assess Your Home Both Inside and Out

It never hurts to upgrade your residence, especially if you want to optimize your house's value. Fortunately, a home appraisal makes it simple to assess your house's interior and exterior so you can determine a competitive price for your residence.

A home appraisal requires a property inspector to look at a house's interior and exterior. Following the appraisal, a property inspector will provide a home seller with a report that details the condition of a house.

For home sellers, it is important to review all of a property inspector's findings. This will enable home sellers to identify opportunities to enhance their residences and prioritize various home improvement projects.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to enjoying a profitable home selling journey, it pays to go above and beyond the call of duty. With a real estate agent at your side, you can take the guesswork out of selling your home and move closer to getting the best price for your residence.

A real estate agent is committed to client satisfaction, and as such, will go the extra mile to promote your residence to the right groups of homebuyers. That way, you can boost your chances of receiving multiple offers on your home as soon as it hits the market.

Plus, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses and negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf. He or she will even provide expert home selling recommendations at each stage of the home selling journey. As a result, a real estate agent will help you streamline the process of selling your house and maximizing your residence's value.

Don't miss out on an opportunity to enjoy a profitable home selling journey. Instead, use these tips, and you can improve your chances of selling your home at a price that matches or exceeds your expectations.




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Posted by Peggy Farber on 8/1/2018

Purchasing a home represents a life-changing decision, and as such, should not be taken lightly. Instead, a homebuyer will want to consider the pros and cons of buying a particular residence, along with the benefits of purchasing a house in the first place.

Ultimately, there are many benefits of buying a house, including:

1. Predictable Housing Costs

For many renters, it can be difficult to determine how much housing costs may vary year to year. Plus, renters may be forced to move from one location to the next as soon as a lease expires – something that could prove to be both time-consuming and costly.

Homebuyers can reap the benefits of predictability, and for good reason. Typically, a homebuyer will be able to pay predictable mortgage costs for the life of a home loan. This individual also won't have to worry about committing substantial time and resources to move regularly. On the other hand, a homebuyer will be able to relocate to a house that he or she owns and enjoy this property for years to come.

2. Home Appreciation

A home offers a terrific asset, one that may increase in value over an extended period of time.

Typically, a well-maintained home will become more valuable over the years, particularly for homeowners who keep their residences looking great. This means if you ever decide to sell your home down the line, you may be able to receive offers that exceed what you initially paid for it.

3. Exceptional Privacy

Finding a place to call your own can be tough. However, homeowners can enjoy unprecedented privacy, as their residences enable them to take a break from the hustle and bustle of the outside world any time they choose.

A home offers a wonderful place where you can relax with family members and friends or on your own. And remember, you can always modify your home to further increase your privacy as well.

4. Unparalleled Security

If you rent a property and break your lease, your landlord can kick you out of your home. Comparatively, if you purchase a house, you own the property. This means you will always have a roof over your head and can rest comfortably in your very own place.

Buying a home can instill a sense of pride in an individual. Furthermore, a homeowner can take solace in the fact that his or her residence is a safe place and enjoy it day after day.

Ready to purchase a house? Not so fast. You'll first want to contact a real estate agent who can guide you through each stage of the homebuying process. That way, you can receive support from a friendly, expert real estate agent and ensure that you can secure your dream home quickly and effortlessly.

Reach out to a real estate agent today – you'll be happy you did. With a real estate agent at your side, you can navigate the homebuying process and find your ideal house.




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