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Tips On Home Security When On Vacation

Tips On Home Security When On Vacation

Making Your Home Secure During Vacation

 Spring has officially arrived, and with it, thoughts of weekend camping trips, days at the beach and Spring Break vacations. Unfortunately, this is also the season known for the highest percentage of day-time residential break-ins.  

A report by the U.S. Department of Justice showed the highest percentage of burglaries occur during the spring and summer and in the daylight hours. The report stated that ice and snow were a significant deterrent with the lowest number of burglaries happening in February.  

Homes that do not have security camera systems are 300% more likely to be broken into. A professionally monitored home security system is a smart addition to a home’s defenses, but it isn’t necessarily step one.

Here are a few tips on making your home safe or things to keep in mind when buying a home:

 

Tips On Home Security When On Vacation...

Qualify For Self-Employed Mortgages

Qualify For Self-Employed Mortgages

Technology Allows The Self-Employed To Qualify For Mortgages

Just about one in every ten people in the United States workforce are self-employed. Being self-employed has notoriously made it hard to obtain a mortgage loan. The times are changing, lending giants Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have put in place a new system that will make this process easier for the self-employed.  

Automated Underwriting

  When a self-employed person wanted to buy a home, they had many hoops to jump through first. Unless they were going to sell a home that they owned, and planned to bankroll that money to buy a home. They had to provide years of tax documentation with physical receipts and all kinds of other documentation that would take banks weeks and months to comb through. As they say, nothing is ever easy!  

Realtors were always happy to bring these people to see new real estate listings, but they knew that it would take some time to get through the mortgage process. Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac have decided to change the process for small business owners. They have acquired new technology that will allow them to get all of the...

Decluttering Guide For Recovering Hoarders

Decluttering Guide For Recovering Hoarders

Recovering Hoarders Guide To Decluttering

  Decluttering a home before putting it on the market will make staging faster and selling it much easier and less costly. Real estate professionals all agree that the best time to sell a home is fast approaching and homeowners thinking of selling are already starting to think about spring cleaning and what they are going to do with all the stuff they’ve accumulated over the years.  

The thought of cleaning out an attic or a garage can seem so overwhelming to some that they begin to wonder if they are really ready to tackle the job. Here we’ve put together a toolbox of solutions to help get rid of unnecessary stuff that may be keeping you from putting that for sale sign in the yard.

Start Small

  Focus on a single room, closet, or even a drawer if that’s all you can handle or have time for. Even the smallest of accomplishments will offer immediate gratification when finished.  

Be Methodical

  Tackling a whole room requires a more methodical approach. Start in a corner and finish that area before moving on. Move around the room is everything is decluttered and what is left...

The Most Profitable Types Of Commercial Real Estate Investments

The Most Profitable Types Of Commercial Real Estate Investments

Investments In Commercial Real Estate

Although the idea of investing, in general, has been a popular trend among the majority of individuals lately, one specific sector has become increasingly popular for a number of reasons; commercial real estate.

Commercial properties are different from residential subdivision properties, as the term commercial refers to land for sale or buildings intended to generate a profit for an investor or owner. There are two ways in which commercial estate can generate profit, either through capital gain or rental income.

Some examples of commercial properties include hotels, shopping malls, office buildings, retail stores, medical offices, warehouses, multi-family housing buildings, garages, and even farmland. Essentially, commercial properties are exclusively for business-related purposes where they provide a workspace rather than a space to live.

As an investor or an owner of a commercial building, you are provided with numerous advantages that other sectors of the industry simply do not have.  

Longer Leasing Terms

As the investor,...

The Role Of Blockchain In The Real Estate Industry

The Role Of Blockchain In The Real Estate Industry

Blockchain Technology In The Real Estate Industry

Over the last few years, there has been talks about cryptocurrency in both mainstream media and on social platforms. You are likely to have heard of terms such as bitcoin, litecoin, dogecoin, ripple, and ethereum, among others.

You might have been wondering what they are talking about and what it has to do with real estate. Cryptocurrencies are becoming more commonly used around the world today.

What is Bitcoin?

Bitcoin is a digital currency that is used to facilitate transactions from one person to another online. One can purchase goods or services using bitcoin while the seller can accept another cryptocurrency such as litecoin for the services or products offered.

What makes this digital currency unique is that it is not controlled by fiscal policies implemented by the government and major banks in the country. However, the currency is gaining attention from regulatory bodies due to its increased popularity and lack of regulation worldwide.

Cryptocurrencies are limited in supply which makes them have skyrocketing value when compared to the common currency. Users develop a private key to authorize transactions. Bitcoins are generated through cryptocurrency mining, which is the name given for the process of validating crypto-transactions, and they adopt blockchain technology to assist in record-keeping.

Blockchain public ledger is a platform that records all the transactions in different computers and cannot be altered or manipulated.

The Relationship Between...

First-Time Home Buyers Guide: The Basics Of A Mortgage

First-Time Home Buyers Guide: The Basics Of A Mortgage

Nine Mortgage Terms Explained, From ARMs To Points

Are you considering buying a home? Will you need a loan? Do you understand the home loan process and how a mortgage works? Knowing basic home mortgage terminology, including loan types and points, can help first-time buyers learn the things they need to know so they can make their best informed decision. Let’s look at these nine basic terms that may help new buyers gain the confidence to move forward with their new home loan.

Down Payment

  Realtor says that this money is typically 20 percent of the total cost of the home. For example, a house that is for sale for $100,000 would typically require a $20,000 down payment to secure the loan.

This payment means that the buyer needs this money up-front before the sale is complete. This percentage is just an average. In areas where homes go quickly, it may take as much as 40 percent to get the home loan.

No-money-down and low-percentage down payments are available. However, these mortgages come with steep interest payments and penalties for defaulting.

Principal

  Many mortgages last for 30 years. Buyers can apply for five and fifteen-year loans as well, but the most common is three decades...

How Climate Change Is Affecting Real Estate

How Climate Change Is Affecting Real Estate

Climate Change Is Affecting The Real Estate Industry

The latest climate change report has many homeowners asking questions about the effect it will have on their home values. People want to know if real estate markets will be affected by the physical impacts of global warming. And if so, how will the insurance industry change its models and rates to adjust?

Most economists and real estate experts agree that this is an extremely important economic issue! We have experienced rising sea levels, stronger and more frequent storms that are affecting coastlines, and increased drought and forest fires threatening mountainous areas. These climate changes have already affected real estate values and insurance rates just about everywhere.

The Risks To The Real Estate Industry Are Real

Two UC Berkeley researchers did a study in 2008 that revealed the biggest economic threat associated with climate change, is California’s real estate and insurance industries. The story is the same in many states across the country.

Lower lying coastal areas, like those along the Gulf Coast, are particularly vulnerable to sea-level changes and susceptible to stronger storms. Those risks reflect heavily on rising insurance premiums. Experts have projected that factors such as weather patterns, higher sea levels, coastal erosion, massive flooding,...

Prepare Your House And Make It Sell Fast

Prepare Your House And Make It Sell Fast

Make Your Home Sell Fast

Spending $10,000 or more on a kitchen remodel is easy when you want a granite slab, new appliances or a brand-new island. Homeowners don't have to spend their entire life savings on the kitchen, however.

There are clever updates for substantially less money that can make a huge difference in the property's value, especially when it comes time to sell. Explore these ideas for your next “project day”. Trying to sell a home becomes much easier when you’re not trying to do everything at once.

Paint The Cabinets

One of the most common suggestions for a kitchen makeover is painting the cabinet faces. While this idea is still viable, you want a more quality appearance. All too often, the exteriors of cabinets are improved, while the inside wears out and begins to look unappealing.

Take care of your cabinets, not only on the outside, but on the inside too. Many homes have drab, particle board as the cabinets' interiors. Paint the interior white, and add a shelf liner for a focal point. From the moment that visitors walk into the home, they'll see a unique feature that most properties don't have.

Add Stainless Steel

Behind your stove-oven range is often a blank wall that takes the brunt of the household's cooking. Splatters of liquids over the years will take their toll on the wall paint. Add a basic sheet of stainless steel to the wall that's reminiscent...

What's A Real Estate Trust

What's A Real Estate Trust?

What Is A Real Estate Trust? Should You Have One?

Buying a home can be an incredible experience. It is both an investment and an important step. However, people are many times confused when considering the pros and cons of creating a trust agreement when purchasing a home.

Here we will go deeper, covering the most important aspects of a legal trust, and simplifying them in a way everyone can understand. Learn how a trust works, and some ideas on how it can protect your real estate investments.

What Is A Trust?

Most people who want to buy a home in Granbury Subdivisions or acquire assets ask this question. A trust is a legal agreement between three parties—the trust founder, trustee, and the beneficiaries, and often drafted by an estate planning attorney or qualified financial advisor.

In this agreement, the trust founder hands over his or her properties to the trustee so the trustee can manage the assets for the benefit of the beneficiaries. In most cases, the recipients are usually the kids of the trust founder. Some founders add other beneficiaries such as schools and communities.

Most people fear putting their properties on a real estate trust because they feel the paperwork and tax can be expensive. It can be expensive to maintain tax for two entities—the asset and the trust. However, it can also be ideal if you plan to acquire more assets in your life. They can all be managed under one roof.

Before buying a home via a trust, it would be ideal to get a financial advisor to explain...

Secret Staging Tips

Secret Staging Tips

Secret Staging Tips Buyers Will Love

Do you want all the people who come to the open house to feel like your space is the right size for his or her family? Of course, you do. Knowing the best ways to stage the most popular room for gathering and having long conversations can help you get top bids for your homes for sale.

Center your seating area in the room

Sofas and chairs do not have to sit along the wall. While open floor space is excellent for opening up a room, it is not always functional for times when your family wants to have a talk, divvy up chores, or play a board game. By putting couches, chairs, and loveseats in the middle, you can use a rug, decorations, and multi-purpose furniture to keep travel paths open.

Use symmetrical designs

Better Homes and Gardens says using pairs of items makes your room have a sense of organization. To accomplish this task, it works well when you pick a focal point.

Face furniture towards similar pieces to create a natural conversation zone. Then, use matching tables, decorations, and curtains to balance the design.

Use items with backs and seats only

Forbes says that tight spaces are easy to open up with couches and chairs with no arms. Picking furniture that is open gives larger families the room to climb over each other to get to a favorite spot, tickle younger members, or find room to stretch out during a long movie. Using these styles can make any room look and feel welcome at the showing.

Bring in the light

Opening the curtains...

6 Tips For Home Buyers

real estate buying tips

6 Home Buying Tips for This Real Estate Market

While the prospect of becoming a homeowner is exciting, navigating the current real estate market can be challenging. Even if you have purchased a home in the past, changes in the market quickly come and go. What may have worked in the past may not work in today's market. .

While the increase in home sales may seem promising for housing market investors, the news may not be quite as ideal for prospective buyers with modest means. With homes becoming harder and harder to find due to the booming sellers' market, the already difficult home-buying experience may be getting more demanding. However, that does not mean you should give up on your dream of owning a home. Stay ahead of the curve with the following tips about purchasing a new home in this real estate market.

Find a Trustworthy Real Estate agent

You do not have to go through the purchasing process on your own. An experienced real estate agent will be able to help you navigate the housing...

Has Real Estate Blogging Gone Too Far?

Has Real Estate Blogging Gone Too Far?

Real Estate Blogging

The real estate game has shifted and morphed over the years, heated and always moving. The unpredictability of the game can be largely attributed to the technological leaps and bounds achieved in the last few decades.

These days, anyone that wishes to have a voice can get their word out with a few strokes of the keyboard and a click of the mouse. In 2018, information is plentiful and readily available. Unfortunately, it would appear that the surge in quantity has allow the writing quality as a whole to languish.

Saturation in real estate blogging has become a real problem, to the point that its long term effects have been felt in the market at large.

WHY IS IT LIKE THIS?

1. IT'S A FREE FOR ALL

The saturation in the real estate blogging market is partially in part due to the fact that anyone and everyone can stick their digital foot in the door of this fine establishment. While it is great to know that accessibility is on the rise for this growing institution, it is an unfortunate fact that more and more articles written by people have little to no understanding of the intricacies of the field.

2. NOT ONLY THAT, NO ONE FACT CHECKS

As a further example of the consequences of the internet and online sphere being such a double-edged sword, there has been a disturbing lack of fact-checking and conformity to facts. This general disregard for well-researched information...

Housing Demands Biggest Drop In 2 Years

Housing Demands Biggest Drop In 2 Years

Housing Demand Sees The Biggest Drop In 2 Years

The U.S. housing market has been a puzzle these last few years. Many urban centers, particularly metropolitan areas on both the East and West Coast, have seen drastic demand increases and tight supply, leading to housing markets as overheated as the housing bubble that predated The Great Recession.

Other urban areas, particularly in the Midwest, have seen small price increases, while smaller cities and rural areas outside the huge growth zones have been flat. The unevenness of the post-recession recovery seems to indicate that location has become a more primary driver of home prices than before.

Just comparing housing costs in high-flying places like San Francisco and Boston to low flyers like Atlanta bear out this hypothesis. Jobs and desirability play a role. Cities like Boston, Seattle, and San Francisco are uber popular and offer high-paying jobs. They also have limited room to grow. Cities like Granbury's subdivisions and Atlanta's subdivisions have bigger housing supplies and room to spread. They are also not the hotspots of the Millennial generation.

Housing Prices Rise Despite Market Headwinds

Still, the massive increases in housing costs in many urban areas defies logic. In hot markets, many a real estate agent have grown accustomed to seeing 10 to 15 offers on a single property. Bidding wars...

Where Is The Housing Market Going?

Housing Demand Sees Biggest Drop in 2 Years

 

The U.S. housing market has been a puzzle these last few years. Many urban centers, particularly metropolitan areas on both the East and West Coast, have seen drastic demand increases and tight supply, leading to housing markets as overheated as the housing bubble that predated The Great Recession.

Other urban areas, particularly in the Midwest, have seen small price increases, while smaller cities and rural areas outside the huge growth zones have been flat. The unevenness of the post-recession recovery seems to indicate that location has become a more primary driver of home prices than before.  

Just comparing housing costs in high-flying places like San Francisco and Boston to low flyers like Atlanta bear out this hypothesis. Jobs and desirability play a role. Cities like Boston, Seattle, and San Francisco are uber popular and offer high-paying jobs. They also have limited room to grow. Cities like Granbury, Texas and Atlanta, Georgia have bigger housing supplies and room to spread.  

Housing Prices Rise Despite Market Headwinds

 

Still, the massive increases in housing costs in many urban areas defies logic. In hot markets, many a real estate agent have grown accustomed to seeing 10 to 15 offers on a single property. Bidding wars are common in major metropolitan cities all across the nation.

All of this mania has been set against the...

Bathroom Tile Designs of 2018

Popular Tile Designs of 2018

 

Do you have a home you’re thinking of selling? Are you an investor who buys properties and remodels them to provide better options for homebuyers? One way that you can make sure that your home is attractive to potential buyers is to add a fashionable design in the bathroom or kitchen.

Since the kitchen is more expensive to renovate, it makes more sense to upgrade the bathroom when you are planning to resell the property. We found five trending bathroom styles that you may want to consider using to boost interest and possibly spark a bidding war for your next home for sale.  

Antique Bathrooms Create Appeal For All Ages

 

To figure out the tile that will work the best in your bathroom, you may want to consider the fixtures and accessories that you will put in the design. For instance, if you plan to add a cast iron tub, then you want something that will complement the main feature.

Since the tub is a solid color, you can choose a bold tile pattern like a bright, daisy mosaic on the floor to give the room great appeal. Thin, horizontal accent tiles that line the shower are a popular retro choice. Any handmade tile is especially useful in vintage designs because each piece looks worn and old even though it is new.

Subway tile...

Maintenance Tips Before Winter Hits

Before Winter: Home Maintenance Tips

When you own a home, you know that there is a certain amount of work that you will do during the year to keep the property in shape and safe. Whether you replace a frozen water pipe, fix a leaky roof, or replace broken siding, everything you do will help you keep the current value of your property.

Staying in your house or prepping your home to sell will not affect your maintenance schedule. We talk about six of the most critical home checks and repair tips you may want to add to your home maintenance to-do list

Check and repair your sprinkler system

This should be at the top of your list for maintenance before winter arrives. Walk the yard and check any visible part of the system making sure that the valve heads are upright, free of debris, and without damage.

Then, inspect your watering mechanisms by using the manual valves to turn on the sprinkler heads one by one. Brush out any sprinkler that has a clog. Check the timers and be sure that the water is reaching the areas you want it to get.

For issues like ponding or problems with even pressure, you may need to contact your sprinkler installer to check for underground damage.  

Block out the heat to reduce energy costs

Since the summer months can get extremely expensive when you count in water charges to fill the pool, run the sprinklers, and cool the house, it is important to seal up everything...

Looking Back 100 Years

Architecture & Design Of Single Family Housing

Single family home ownership has been part of the American heritage for over 100 years. Prior to the early 1900s, it was not unusual to find multiple families living under one roof. But, as America began to flourish, the ability to buy a home, the need for comfort and individuality brought a host of new home designs for one family housing.  

46.5% of Americans owned their own homes in 1900. This number had risen to 53% by 1950. Today, it is estimated that nearly 63% of all Americans are homeowners. This percent when continue to rise as new real estate technology allows for more modern, efficient, and affordable homes with new ways of purchasing them. Here is a snapshot of how the architecture and design of homes has evolved in the past 100 years.  

1900-1920

By the beginning of the 20th century, Americans had started to create their own designs of single family housing, apart from the imported Greek, Roman and other historical styles with their rectangular shape, gabled roofs and columns. Craftsman style bungalows with large front porches, dormers and low pitched roofs that covered 1-1 1/2 stories.

Simple bungalows lacked the exterior exposed wood and were not as defined in detail, but became popular as low-cost quality housing.   There were still plenty of Victorian homes going up, mostly in southern states. Areas like Savannah, Georgia and Birmingham, Alabama were still being built, but on a much smaller scale than before. Farmhouses in rural areas often borrowed...

Blockchain: Coming Soon To Real Estate

Coming Soon to Real Estate Near You: Blockchain!

Blockchain technology is one of the hottest topics in the business world today. While many consumers are familiar with cryptocurrency, they may be less familiar with blockchain's other applications. As a distributed, secure, and open ledger, blockchain can change the way we do business in any industry. Blockchain has several features that make it a particularly strong fit for the real estate industry, especially regarding title examination and recording.

TITLE EXAMINATION

When you buy a home, your Realtor will work with a title company to ensure that you receive a clear title. The first step in this is a title examination. The title company will search the county Recorder of Deeds' records for records pertinent to the property you're purchasing. They will verify that the current owner has a clear title, and will identify any existing liens (such as mortgages, HOA dues, or property taxes) that need to be satisfied before a clear title can be transferred to the new owner, as well as identifying rights of third parties to the property (such as easements for utility lines). This is a time-consuming process, with a large potential for costly errors. The records are often incorrectly indexed, and often require use of a patchwork of various databases. Documents can go missing or copies can be destroyed. Fraud is a common problem; the FBI has referred to mortgage fraud as one of the fastest growing sectors of white collar crime. Real estate technology, particularly in the area of title examination, has certainly come a long way in the information age, but ultimately, real property records are maintained the same way today as they were in the colonial era.

BLOCKCHAIN TITLE TRANSFERS

Blockchain presents a great opportunity to revolutionize...

How Self Driving Cars Will Affect Real Estate

Real Estate And How Self Driving Cars Will Affect It

  Everyone is affected by the real estate market in one way or another. It’s something we all should understand. Everyone needs a place to live. Many people will buy a home. Others will invest in real estate as part of their fiscal portfolio. Some people may specialize in commercial real estate while others focus on the residential real estate market. In any case, most people pay close attention to the real estate market. Understanding the factors that may be influencing the housing and commercial real estate markets at any given moment, as a real estate agent can tell you, is crucial. People need to know housing values in case they need to move and need to prepare to sell their home quickly. Investors also need to know what factors may influence the housing markets as they rent properties, buy a home or make improvements to their existing portfolio of properties.

Location Has Been Highly Important

Traditionally, many factors have influenced the price and desirability of any given piece of property. In general, the most important factor of all is that of the property's location. Real estate agents tell clients that everything can be changed but the property's location. The location has been traditionally the single most important factor when it comes to setting a price. A good location is usually located in an upscale neighborhood with lots of amenities. The good location will typically include easy access to many transport networks, public parks and an area with a low crime rate. A less than desirable location is usually one that has certain kinds of drawbacks. The location may be adjacent to a busy...

Six Tips For Preparing To Sell Your Home

6 tips for preparing your home to sell

Six Simple Tips for Preparing to Sell Your Home

We've all seen the Real Estate TV shows with potential buyers walking through picture-perfect homes for sale, critiquing every corner. This isn't just scripted TV episodes -- nowadays with HGTV and Pinterest lingering in the back of their minds, buyers really do expect a home to meet their standards in every sense of the word. Preparing for your house to be sold can seem like an insurmountable task, but if you tackle each goal one by one, you'll have a show-ready home in no time flat!  

Remove Clutter

  The first step to preparing your home to put on the Real Estate market is cleaning up and decluttering. Now is the time to purge if you plan on doing so. Making boxes for donations is a great way to clear your house of unwanted items. If you don't plan to purge, consider getting an off-site storage unit to store unneeded items while you're showing your house.   If you have kids, this part can be tough since kids, especially babies and toddlers, have a lot of big toys and equipment. Make smart decisions on what to store, donate, and keep out. It may be best to do this while your children are away from the home with a sitter or at school. Be sure to keep their absolute favorites, though. Buyers are usually understanding when they realize that kids live in the home.   Don't forget to clean all countertops off in the kitchen and the bathrooms. If you have various items that you use frequently, like toothbrushes and toothpaste, make a basket to go underneath the sink that you can store neatly when your home is...