Karen Adelson's Blog
If you want to take advantage of the market and to get a good deal on a foreclosure, apart from having sufficient cash, there are some few things you need to know before you complete the transaction. Before you get started, you should understand what foreclosure means. Succinctly, a foreclosure is a bank-owned property, often known as real estate owned (REO). For whatever reason, the actual owner stopped the payment of them, so the lender (e.g., Wells Fargo, Bank of America, etc.) legally took ownership of the property. When a Foreclosure is a good deal When you intend to buy a foreclosure, here is how you know you are in for a great deal:
1. “I love it” - This is what you will say after you have viewed the property, driven around the neighborhood and carefully checked the property fundamentals. You love the home because it is almost what you were aspiring for in becoming a rental property owner or new home.
2. “ I plan to own it for a long time” - This will be your reply when asked. Regardless of how good a deal you think you are getting, the primary point when it comes to ownership is a minimum of five years. If you don’t intend to own the property for that long, it is best you remain a renter. Remember, the three most vital words in real estate are “Long-term ownership."
3. “It is in good shape” - This is what you will say when your family members and friends ask you about the physical state of the property. A vast majority of buyers do not know how much a property renovation will cost. Here is the reality, repair is expensive and could take a very long time beyond your imagination, so make sure the contractors purchase the fixer-uppers.
4. “ The price is similar to recent sales in the neighborhood” - This is what you will notice when you conduct a comparable market analysis of properties nearby.
Confirm Your Suspicions
To further help you confirm that you are about to make good foreclosure deal, you need to compare mortgage rates, get contractor estimates, and check at least eight other properties so you will be sure what the market has to offer. Following these steps will reduce any risk and ensure the foreclosure you bought was indeed a “great deal.”
To get the best deals and avoid buyers remorse, talk to your real estate agent about the local area and any insider information.
We have all heard about it. Maybe even wondered if it something that we can do. With so many people looking for ways to save, be it time or money (or sanity), cutting the cable has become a popular consideration lately. If you have been wondering if it is for you here are some reasons to think about it.
How much time do you spend in front of the tube?
If you spend most of your off time watching the TV, you may be wondering if it is worth it for you. On the other hand, it might buy back some of your free time to spend on other things that you would instead focus on but find yourself sucked away from with the bright lights of a new show or movie. Either way, it is worth checking out for yourself.
Would you replace your cable?
If you get rid of cable would you choose to replace it with a streaming service, antenna box or another such tool? If so what would the cost be of said services? Now is the time to compare and make sure that you would not wind up spending more to replace than the cable that you are cutting. If, for instance, you choose two streaming services and need better internet service to support them price those together and find out how it compares to your current rate and options. Sometimes you may find that alternatives could be the winner in this battle of choice depending on what your focus is (sports, travel, cooking, news, etc.)
If you do not want to spend time with this electronic interloper what will you do with your time?
It is a good idea to find ways to cut out some of the electronics in your life, but determine what you will do with the time you put back into your life. If you find yourself bored it will probably be no time at all before you are hooked back up to cable. What is a passion that you have wanted to try but haven't? Maybe you enjoy cooking (or eating) new recipes, want to try your hand at photography, have a favorite cause close to your heart that you would like to volunteer for or have a list of books that you haven't gotten to yet. These all become options once you have identified the opportunity and made it available by cutting the cord to your couch.
Whatever your decision- enjoy it!
Once you have weighed out your options and made your decision enjoy doing what you want with your time. If you make a new choice to fill your time give it a chance. It will surely feel odd at first, but as with anything new, if you stick to it long enough, you will enjoy the perks of a decision well made.
When homes go ignored, issues start to develop and once easy to solve problems will become huge, expensive hassles. Every house will develop some item that you'll need to attend to, and there are steps you can take today to minimize or even avoid these problems. Heed the following do-it-yourself tips, and you will keep your house looking great and save money in the long run.
- Periodically Inspect Your Roof - Take note of areas where roofing shingles are damaged, loose or missing as well as shingles that are flapping in the blowing wind. These indicators tell you that your roof is in need of immediate repair so your home can maintain its protection from the elements.
- Choose roofing tiles that are fire-resistant and tough enough to hold up under the impact of hail. Polymer, slate and shake shingles are your best choices.
- Pressure Wash Your House Siding Annually - With time, algae and dirt build up on your house siding, making it appear old, cruddy looking and uncared-for. Wash any dirty areas of your siding with detergents and a pressure washer, taking care to thoroughly clean the areas where a lot of accumulation is present. Avoid using a pressure washer to clean your windows and trim, since the high pressure can easily damage these areas. While you are cleaning the siding, check for any warping, insect damage, buckling or paint cracking that may have developed over the past year. Quickly repair any damage you find.
- Check Your Gutters Often - Gutters are designed to direct rainfall away from your house, so keep them clean. Inspect your gutters regularly for any blockage (especially from leaves), cracks or even holes that may be hindering proper drainage. Your gutters should be appropriately sloped and firmly attached to your home as well. To prevent damage, ensure that the water that drains from your rain gutters directs away from your home and any landscaping you have around your house.
As any homeowner knows, when a home goes neglected for long, things will go awry. Don't wait until it's too late to deal with any small problems that develop in and around your home. Again, minor issues that are easy and cheap to fix will likely develop into big problems - ones that are difficult and expensive to fix - so give your home and your pocketbook a break and repair the small issues as soon as you find them.
The bathroom is so frequently brushed aside when it comes to decorating a new home. So often left to become the most outdated room in the house, it becomes a frustration to modernize. However, the bathroom is often a room used for relaxation whether to relax in a hot tub or to gain a moment’s silence from the children. If you’re ready to ditch the shell shaped sink, infamous bathroom blue tub, and god help you, matching blue toilet here are some ways to create a clean modern room you’ll love.
If you’re willing to put in time and effort you can remove tub surround yourself by removing the hardware than scoring along where the surround meets the wall. You’ll then want to pull the surround from the wall very carefully as to not damage the wall behind it, cutting the adhesive away as you go. Once torn down you’ll want to prep the walls with plastic sheeting and HardieBacker for tiling.
While a lot of work, this opens up more options for you to modernize your bathroom with elements like imitation marble or subway tiling and even install a sleek new tub. With so many options on the market now, you can have anything from a freestanding tub such as an acrylic clawfoot tub or drop in that leaves lots of deckspace for bath product and mood-setting candles.
Tiling the wall behind or surrounding your tub is a great way to create a chic statement wall without breaking the bank imitating floor to ceiling tiling. Use the same tiling for both floors and wall or add some depth by matching smaller floor tiles with a matching larger size for the wall. Painting the remaining walls a light color brightens up the room while maintaining an overall clean feel.
A large mirror over the sink reflects light and makes the room feel more expansive. If your bathroom already has a builder grade mirror you can give it a quick upgrade by framing it with molding or even some simple boards for a sleek look. If you have a medicine cabinet you don’t want to replace a coat of fresh paint and chic knob pull like a T-bar will bring the piece a whole new feel.
Updating the sink with new hardware is always a surefire way to update a room though be sure to match the finish it to the existing hardware for a cohesive look. A pedestal sink adds more visual space to a small bathroom while replacing the cabinet brings an entirely new look to the room. Undermount sinks add a crisp modern look while maintaining the extra storage availability that comes with a vanity.
Don’t let an outdated bathroom continue to plague your otherwise well-designed home. The effort it takes to rip out old amenities is well worth the enjoyment you’ll get out of their modern replacements. Get the most out of your renovation efforts by opting for styles that are least likely to fall out of fashion and instead remain a classic staple.