Free Newsletter: Fall
Let Corefact help you become the best agent in town. Below is a free newsletter just for you! All you need to do is copy and paste, then send to your database. Our goal is to help you remain at the forefront of your neighborhood’s minds for any and all real estate needs.
It’s Not So Ruff
Owning a home is part of the “American Dream.” And for many, so too is owning a furry companion or two. Before bringing your new friend home, tackle these logistics to make the transition easier.
A few essentials you will need before your new pet arrives include food bowls, treats, toys, and any other items they may need. It’s also a great idea to put a bed in every room so they will learn to stay off your furniture.
Check with the shelter or breeder you are getting your new family member from to see what kind of food they have been eating to have an easier transition. You can always switch around their diet later on.
House-training a dog can take a minute and we definitely don’t want you to lose your treasured Persian rug in the process. Roll up and store decorative rugs until you’re totally sure Fido is not going to leave a stain.
Vertical blinds and long cords can be hazardous to your animal, so make sure they are under wraps. Taping down electrical wires and putting chemicals on high shelves or away in cabinets is a good way to keep your little bud safe.
Did you know quite a few plants are actually poisonous if eaten by animals? Do a little research and then compost any that might be dangerous for your new housemate. Crates and fences are great ways to train your animals to stay out of trouble when they are home alone. While you might not mind your new pet going anywhere in your home, crates are still a great idea for transport purposes.
Now that you got things under wraps, welcome your new family member into your home!
Want to green your laundry routine but don’t have the budget to switch out your old dinosaur top-loader for a new high-efficiency purring machine? Fear not, you can still save water, conserve energy, and make your clothes last longer with these eco-friendly laundry techniques that will save you a bit of green!
The easiest thing to do to make your laundry routine more eco-friendly is wash cold. About 90% of the energy used in a conventional top-loading washing machine is used to heat up the water. By turning the dial and choosing to wash your clothes in cold water, you can save a nice chunk of change each month. Using a cold water detergent will ensure that your clothes will still get clean. Also, your threads will stay in better shape longer, as hot water washes have been shown to shrink, wear, and fade clothes over time.
Be Honest About Load Size
Try to wash full loads as opposed to several partially full loads. If you have to do smaller loads, be sure to adjust the water levels to match the load size. If you’re lucky enough to have a smart machine, try using the auto level option. Your machine will automatically select the most efficient level of water to use.
Don’t Be Afraid to Soak
If you’ve got a particularly gnarly load of dirty stuff, you can still wash it cold. Just pre-soak it first with a washing soda or a light bicarbonate based mixture. This will help lift the stains and dirt a bit before you put it in a regular wash cycle.
Watch the Lint
Everyone knows this, but we’re going to say it anyway. Just as it’s kind of gross to let the lint accumulate in your belly button, so it is to let it accumulate in your lint trap. Empty that bad boy out before you do a load. Along these lines, be sure to check your dryer vent periodically to avoid any blockages. A bit of regular maintenance can save you lots in repair fees down the line.
Separate, Separate, Separate
Dry lightweight fabrics separately from heavier weight items. Towels with towels, clothes with clothes, bedsheets and linens with other bedsheets and linens. If you’re going to use the dryer, this will help maximize each load.
Try Drying Old World Style
Unless you’re out of skivvies and can’t go to work until the load is done, chances are you’re not exactly waiting with baited breath for the next load to dry. So why not try drying your clothes by air instead, old world style. Hang them outside or on a rack in your laundry room. Crack a window and let Mother Nature do the rest of the work. Try this and watch your bill to see how much energy you save each month. Stiff towels will suddenly feel much softer.
Seller’s Side: Setting Yourself Up For a Quick Sale
Setting the right price and making an excellent first impression are both essential to attracting buyers and increasing your chances of getting multiple offers rolling in. The first 30 days of your home being on the market will be the most active. This makes pricing your home correctly from the get-go critical. Sellers often want to start high then lower the price if it doesn’t sell. A better strategy is to price it correctly from day one—or even slightly below market—then watch all the activity and multiple offers it creates.
Buyers form opinions about a home within 8 seconds of stepping out of their car. Next time you pull up to your home, count 8 seconds and see how far you get. What is the number one thing the buyer will see in that time? Potential buyers’ perspective of what they see pulling up to your home and walking to the front door sets their expectations for the inside. Curb appeal may be one of the single most important aspects of a home.
Whether it means simply a thorough clean up or adding new sod, planting flowers, fresh paint on the door and new hardware, etc, that first impression should be one of a well-cared for and inviting home.
Inside, do a good deep cleaning, decluttering, and depersonalizing. It will make your home look bigger, and also help buyers envision themselves living in the home.
Stage home, whether professionally or using your own things, to show each room’s obvious role. If for example, you have a room that you’re using as a combination family room, kid’s playroom, and an office, pick the most obvious use and stage it as only that. With the correct approach and a little work, you can sell your home in record time.
Buyer’s Back: Waiving Home Inspections
If you’re a home buyer in a competitive market, frustration over having lost out on offers may tempt you to resort to desperate measures. In addition to offering more than the asking price or a quick closing, some buyers agree to waive inspections. This is never a good idea. The home may look okay to the naked eye, but it’s what’s beyond the surface, or items that you can’t identify as problematic, that can cause issues down the road.
For example, will you be able to spot asbestos, or will you see evidence of termite infestation or a leak inside the HVAC system? For most buyers, the answer is likely not. No matter how badly you want the property or how emotionally attached you are to it, you don’t want to buy a home without having it thoroughly inspected. Just imagine six months down the road, when you’ve closed on the sale and moved into your new home. You will kick yourself when you go to turn the heat on and realize it doesn’t work—and the fix is $20,000.
When you’re in the thick of a bidding war or in your seventh month of searching for homes, you might not be able to see or think clearly. Don’t get caught up in the hoopla. Waiving an inspection can cost you a fortune.
The good news? There are alternative solutions to satisfy your need to inspect, while remaining competitive.
If you love the home, have a pre-sale inspection done before you make an offer or sign a contract. Worst case scenario, you spend a few hundred dollars delving deeply into a home you don’t purchase. Better to be safe than sorry.
If you do inspect the home and it passes muster, then you can waive your inspection contingency because you’ve inspected already.
Or often, the seller will have the property inspected before listing. They do this so that they can either iron out any issues in advance of listing, or so buyers know upfront exactly what they’re getting. It protects the sellers from future negotiations, and allows them to price the property correctly from the start.
The only issue is that the inspector is liable only to the person who paid for and ordered the inspection. That is the seller. If that inspector missed something, you don’t have any recourse.
You’re purchasing the biggest asset of your life. Markets change, and you don’t want to find yourself in a home you can’t afford or, much worse, can’t sell because of structural or engineering issues you missed by waiving inspections.
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