FIVE MONEY-SAVING GREEN UPGRADES

Going green is great for the environment, but that’s not the only benefit. When you make green upgrades in your home, it can also lead to some major savings.

  1. Solar panels: The upfront cost is big, but the long-term savings are huge. Solar panels will cost several thousand dollars to install, but ongoing maintenance costs are very low, and a typical system could save you hundreds of dollars per year. You can even sell your surplus electricity.
  2. Wood furnace: Wood-burning furnaces are relatively inexpensive, and though the yearly savings aren’t as dramatic (about 10% on heating bills), it adds up over the long run.
  3. Insulation: There’s a good chance your insulation isn’t very efficient, especially in older homes. Look into installing floor, cavity, wall, and loft insulation to reduce your heating bills.
  4. Rain barrels: Rain barrels are extremely inexpensive, and provide gallons of free water to use when you wash your car or water your garden.
  5. Geothermal system: OK, so the price tag is scary at first. A geothermal system uses the earth’s temperature to heat and cool your home, but can cost $30,000 to install. But tax credits allow you to get a lot of that money back, and the energy savings average about $1,900 per year. If you plan to be in your home for a decade or two, it’s a great investment.

Christopher Giddings


Posted on September 6, 2017 at 3:56 am
Christopher Giddings | Posted in Uncategorized |

Priority Tasks To Help Move In Day Go Smoothly

Hi Home Hunters,

The big day has arrived and I just handed you the keys!

Moving into a new home is an exciting time, and you’re probably daydreaming about decor and paint schemes and new furniture. But before you get into the fun stuff, there are some basics you should cover first.

Change the locks

Even if you’re promised that new locks have been installed in your home, you can never be too careful. It’s worth the money to have the peace of mind that comes with knowing that no one else has the keys to your home. Changing the locks can be a DIY project, or you can call in a locksmith for a little extra money.

Steam clean the carpets

It’s good to get a fresh start with your floors before you start decorating. The previous owners may have had pets, young children, or just some plain old clumsiness. Take the time to steam clean the carpets so that your floors are free of stains and allergens. It’s pretty easy and affordable to rent a steam cleaner-your local grocery store may have them available.

Call an exterminator

Prior to move-in, you probably haven’t spent enough time in the house to get a view of any pests that may be lurking. Call an exterminator to take care of any mice, insects, and other critters that may be hiding in your home.

Clean out the kitchen

If the previous occupants wanted to skip on some of their cleaning duties when they moved out, the kitchen is where they probably cut corners. Wipe down the inside of cabinets, clean out the refrigerator, clean the oven, and clean in the nooks and crannies underneath the appliances.

 

Christopher Giddings

 


Posted on September 6, 2017 at 3:53 am
Christopher Giddings | Posted in Uncategorized |

How to Avoid Two Big Mortgage Mistakes

Hi Home Hunters!

A Cautious Home Hunter is a good one and this article will show you how to avoid two big mortgage mistakes.

We all know that searching for and viewing potential homes is the fun part of the home-buying process. The not-so-fun part? The mortgage, also known as the deed of trust. Reading on past this point may save you $’s.

If you don’t pay attention to the details, your mortgage home loan can end up dragging down the enjoyment of your new house and cause some major regrets. Here are a few mistakes to avoid  and ensure that you love your mortgage loan TERMS as much as your hew home.

Don’t find your home first:

Shopping around for the best mortgage rate should be the first step in the home buying process. You may even want to talk to a mortgage broker a full year before you plan to buy. It’ll give you time to get your affairs in order to qualify for the best rate, could save you thousands of dollars in the long run, and you won’t feel rushed to accept an unattractive loan because you’re worried you’ll miss out on your dream home.

Don’t forget your real budget:

There’s often a big difference between what a lender says you can afford and what you can actually afford. Your debt-to-income ratio doesn’t include the money you spend on hobbies, or the cost of commuting to work, or maintenance and utility costs. I suggest really sit down and examine your spending before committing to the loan amount the lender is offering. You won’t enjoy your home nearly as much if it’s eating into your favorite hobbies. I call this being House Poor.

Christopher Giddings

The Home Hunters International


Posted on September 6, 2017 at 3:46 am
Christopher Giddings | Posted in Loans, Uncategorized | Tagged

BATHROOM TRENDS FOR 2017

Here are five bathroom decor trends that are appearing in 2017.

Lets face it , Staying on top of the latest trends in home decor isn’t for everyone, but even for traditionalists, it can be fun to incorporate some new ideas.

Here are five bathroom decor trends that are appearing in 2017.

Is it time to move to the dream home or is an upgrade on the horizon?

  1. Geometric Patterns: Many homeowners are selecting bold patterns in geometric shapes, like chevrons, triangles, or hexagons. These patterns can add intrigue and continuity to your tile or shower curtain.
  2. Plants: Even the best-designed bathrooms can benefit from some small plants. If you have a windowless bathroom, there are some low-light options that can survive with little maintenance.
  3. Dark Colors: This can be tricky to achieve, but it comes with a big pay off. While traditional bathrooms are often painted with brighter whites and greys, opting for darker colors can make a bathroom seem more luxurious and relaxing. Imagine sinking into a deep bath with dim lighting—that might convey the appeal of a darker palette.
  4. Brass Hardware: Trends often come back around, and this year, brass fixtures of the ‘70s are popular once again.
  5. Minimalism: The massive master bathroom is still great, but there’s also some appeal in smaller bathroom designs. Minimalism allows for smaller spaces to feel more intimate, still airy and open.

Posted on September 6, 2017 at 3:32 am
Christopher Giddings | Posted in Uncategorized |

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