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Questions To Answer Before Buying A House

April 22nd, 2018 Comments off

You saw a picture pretty home being sold online and you definitely want it. Should you buy it outright? Definitely you won’t. You’ll have to take a good and long hard look into it before you sign the dotted line and live in that house forever. That’s right. People are getting smarter when buying homes after the mortgage and real estate industry tripped.

If you are buying a home for the first time you should take the time to learn something about real estate. Make sure you understand the terms of real estate contracts and mortgages. Don’t buy a home that costs more than you can afford to spend. Make sure the house doesn’t need expensive repairs.

Consider the neighborhood. Are the other homes well kept? Look into crime statics for the area. Keep in mind that homes in upscale neighborhoods come with upscale price tags. Make sure the house is in good repair, or that the seller will do necessary repairs before the sale. Make sure you lender will provide a mortgage.

Needed home repairs can give a buyer a bargaining position on the price of the home. Check with your mortgage lender on their requirements. They may be unwilling to grant a mortgage on a home that needs repairs or they may require you to put the money for repairs in escrow. Make sure to check the basement and attic for evidence of flooding, leaks or other potential problems. Mold can be expensive to remove and unhealthy to live with.

In the kitchen, check how many appliances are there to estimate if your appliances can fit in without additional outlets; check the floor, is it level or does it shake? Inspect the floor for stain — can these be removed with the usual cleaning mop and cleansers? If the sink top is marble, examine if it needs to be re-polished. Inspect the plumbing. Are there leaks? How about the tap water? Does it run well or drips?

The bathroom is another expensive remodeling job. Are the tub/shower, the sink and the toilet in good condition? Is there any evidence of leaks? Any cracks? Are the cabinets in good shape? Do you see any sign of mold or mildew? Mold and mildew can be indicators of more serious problems. Are the floors buckled? That can indicate a plumbing problem.

Examine the attic carefully. Make sure it is well insulated so that you won’t lose heat from your home. Look for any signs of leaks. Sometimes even roofs that appear to be in good shape have leaks that can be expensive to fix. What sort of ventilation does that attic have? Look at the exterior and check the maintenance. Count the windows and doors.

If you are seriously considering a house, walk around the neighborhood in the evening when people are home. Is this a neighborhood of young families or retirees? Will you be comfortable living among these neighbors? Try to see the house in the rain. Problems that weren’t apparent before may show up when it rains. If everything checks out and the house is within your budget, now is the time to make your offer.

If you are looking for more advice about Lansing mortgage, you should check out this site which has great info about mortgage lenders Lansing.

Home Improvements Really Can Add Value To Your Home

March 21st, 2018 Comments off

It’s plain to see that many homeowners do not understand exactly how to add value to your home with home improvement. Somehow, many go overboard to the point where it stops adding value and results in a loss to them. Don’t be quick to make decisions when it comes to renovations.

In order to understand this further, an example would be in order. For instance, an upscale home in an upscale area requires high end materials and perfect results. The norm would be to have expensive high grade custom wood cabinets and cupboards in the kitchen. Nothing else would suffice. But, such renovations would exceed the norm in an average middle class home and neighborhood. Although this would bring the latter some value, there is a limit to how much and that would result in a loss on your investment.

And, vice-versa! An upscale home would depreciate in value if the materials used were low end. The important thing to remember in home renovations is that the improvement must be in tune with the property and any future potential buyers. Not only should it please you, the homeowner, it should keep the type and actual value of the home.

This is being a responsible and knowledgeable consumer. When it comes to renovations, know your limits in order to reap the rewards at a later date. Some inexpensive yet beautiful home improvement tips will get you more value. Getting the look of something very expensive, but with an inexpensive method is the best solution. It is senseless to expect to make money on a renovation that does not suit the home.

With that said, the most return on investment comes from the two most popular rooms in the house, the kitchen and bathroom. In the kitchen, replacing an old backsplash can make all the difference as would new cabinet door handles. Of course, with either of these, there are numerous choices to suit any style and decor.

Another kitchen renovation that adds value and beauty to the room is installing a new countertop. Again, there is a multitude of materials to choose from, including glass, laminate, wood, stainless steel and stone. You can get the look of stone with some laminate, but also with granite without breaking the bank. For example, instead of going the expensive route with granite countertops, buy granite tiles and lay them on the counter. This way, you get the look of stone at a fraction of the cost. This is a great alternative, especially for medium priced houses.

Keep in mind that maintenance should always be considered when choosing the material. If you plan to sell your home, consider material that are easy to maintain and clean in order to entice buyers.

April Kerr writes for Basement Finishing Ideas which has details of inexpensive basement decoration ideas and basement ceiling ideas.

Your Choice of a Home Care Agency Over a Nursing Home

February 13th, 2018 Comments off

Nowadays, more and more people who are going through the last chapters of their lives desire to not be placed in the usual nursing home for those who are aging and sick. This issue has not been just a problem for the patients themselves, but also more for the families or relatives who will make the final decision as to where they will be placed. Most of these family members are confused between giving way to their old dad’s choice or old forgetful mom’s personal preference or just sticking to their plans of putting them in any nursing home as long as they will be well taken care of. There are some good agencies that hold the key to unlocking the right answers to these issues.

There are several good choices out there for a senior home care agency that would provide the services you want your loved one to have. Many of these companies will actually provide their services right in the comfort of the patients own home.

They are available 24 hours a day and their primary goal is to help senior citizens to lead a complete and full life until it’s their time to go.

The teams of caregivers are professional and offer piece of mind to not only the senior patients but also their families. They also are able to adjust their services to fit within your budget. The caregivers care for the patients and families as if they were part of the family.

Most of the patients in the care of such agencies are suffering from Alzheimer’s disease. These are the senior patients who gradually lose their memory bit by bit until they reach the stage of even forgetting how it is to function properly and well.

Caregivers from various home care agencies spend time going through specific activities designed for such afflicted elders. These include talking to the patients often and letting them remember their past memories or reminding them of their former profession, hobby, or any of their faves. These patients are also kept in good humor as these will aid them in reconnecting through the constant experience of positive emotional reactions.

One of the reasons patients will choose a home care agency over a nursing home is the level of comfort and attention. Having this option will not only help the patient look forward to this point of their lives, but it will also provide options for family member who have limited budgets.

A home care agency is the perfect alternative for those who are on a tight budget.

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Inspecting The Foundation Of A Home

November 3rd, 2017 Comments off

When you hire a home inspector to inspect a home you are buying one of the things he will be inspecting is the homes foundation. Here is an overview of what the inspector will be looking for.

Initially, the inspector will need to find out what type of foundation the home has. There are three different types of foundations – basement, crawl space, and concrete slab. The foundations are different and each are inspected differently.

When inspecting the basement, the inspector is limited in what can be inspected depending on if the basement has been finished. One of the main things the inspector is looking for is moisture intrusion from the ground. Evidence of moisture would be visible in the form of staining on the concrete or carpet and cupping or curling of the hardwood flooring.

There are other items the inspector will examine while in the basement. These items include any exposed wood framing, electrical components, plumbing pipes and fixtures, and any systems like the water heater or the heating and cooling system if present.

If there is at least 18 inches of headroom, the inspector will evaluate the crawl space. If for some reason, such as height restrictions, the inspector can not access all or part of the crawl space it will be noted in the inspection report.

The home inspector will be looking at several things while under the house. The main thing the inspector is trying to determine is if there is moisture present and is there any damage to the support system and floor structure. Some of the items the inspector will look at include: the piers, floor joists, outside sill plate, foundation wall, and any other items present like the plumbing, ductwork, and insulation.

If the home has a concrete slab the inspector will be limited in what can be inspected if the flooring has been installed. But there are still some signs that problems may exist. Much like the basement is staining visible on the concrete or carpeting or is the hardwood cupping or curling at the seams. On the outside, the inspector will look to see if the slab is cracked and is the ground graded away from the foundation.

In Closing

Homes are built based on the grade of the land. It is not uncommon for homes to have two and sometimes all 3 foundation types as part of the construction. When you hire your inspector, give them as much information as possible about the foundation.

Hubert Miles is the founder of Waterfront Houses USA, an online marketing service that provides Lake Real Estate in the US and Canada.

Ten Items You Should Repair Before Selling

October 19th, 2017 Comments off

Thinking of selling your home but don’t know if you should make repairs first? Of course so! Any repairs you make will only impress the buyer and will help you get most, if not all, of your asking price no matter what the market is doing. Here are a list of ten items every homeowner should repair.

1. Paint – A fresh coat of paint on the inside and out will do wonders for your home. Make sure that before you paint you make any repairs to the drywall or exterior wood. Take the opportunity the repair any damage before painting the home.

2. Floors – Clean the carpet or replace it if needed. Repair any problems with loose floor boards or replace any tiles that may be damaged. Polish or repair any scratches to the hardwood flooring.

3. Windows – Make sure all the windows are operational and have screens. If there is any broken glass have a local glass company replace it. If the windows will not open, the home inspector will write it up as a safety hazard.

4. Make sure all the appliances are clean and in working order. Make sure the dryer vent pipe extends to the exterior of the home and does not discharge into the crawl space.

5. Clean and remove clutter from the garage and basement. Throw out any unneeded magazines, old newspapers or sales papers, and move any boxes of seasonal decorations to a storage facility or shed.

6. Check the attic to make sure the vent stacks, roof vents, chimneys and flashing are not leaking. These areas are the most likely places that roof leaks happen. Repair the areas if any leaks are present.

7. Make sure the kitchen and bathroom fans are vented to the outside of the home. Exhaust fans should vent to the exterior and typically do so through the roof or the exterior wall.

8. Run the water and verify the sinks, pipes, and faucets are not leaking. Check to make sure are counter tops are secure and caulked at the wall.

9. Make sure none of the light bulbs are blown and that the rooms have plenty of light in them. Before buyers arrive, go around and open all the curtains and blinds to allow daylight into the room.

10. Be sure the fireplace is clean and the flue works properly. If you have a gas fireplace, have it on when the buyers are there to show them it is in working order.

Hubert Miles is the founder of Waterfront Houses USA, an online marketing service that provides Beach House in the US and Canada. Find Massachusetts Beach House.