Bonnee Proo's Blog
The summer real estate season provides a valuable opportunity for homebuyers across the United States. And with the right homebuying strategy, you should have no trouble securing your dream home at a price that fits your budget.
What does it take to discover a wonderful home in summer? Here are three tips to help you purchase a great home during the warmest months of the year:
1. Know What You Want from Your Dream Home
Although you may allocate substantial time and resources to browse the real estate market, your best efforts may not be enough to find your dream residence. As such, you'll want to go above and beyond the call of duty to transform your homeownership dream into a reality.
Make a checklist of must-haves for your dream residence before you browse homes that are available in summer. By doing so, you'll be able to better understand what you want from your dream house and plan accordingly.
In addition, getting pre-approved for a mortgage usually is an excellent idea. With pre-approval, you'll know exactly how much you can spend to acquire your dream house.
2. Take Advantage of Vacations and Long Weekends
For many people, summertime offers extended breaks from the hustle and bustle of day-to-day life. Meanwhile, homebuyers who take advantage of extra time may be able to commit additional resources to complete their search for the perfect house.
Summer vacations and long weekends can be a time to relax. However, if you have time to spare, feel free to browse the real estate market. By doing so, you can check out a broad array of houses and even set up home showings at your convenience.
When it comes to checking out homes in summer, don't forget to enjoy the beautiful weather, either. For example, if you spend an afternoon viewing homes, you may want to reward yourself with a trip to the amusement park in the evening. Or, if you're checking out a home that is located near a beach, feel free to plan a beach trip after the home showing is finished.
3. Hire an Experienced Real Estate Agent
Navigating the real estate market may seem impossible at times, particularly during summer. Fortunately, hiring an experienced real estate agent ensures that you can streamline the process of securing your dream residence.
An experienced real estate agent understands the ins and outs of the housing market and will do whatever he or she can to help you find a terrific home. This real estate professional can offer information about home listings in your area and set up times to view houses. Plus, your real estate agent will be able to respond to your homebuying concerns or questions at any time.
Employ an experienced real estate agent to take the guesswork out of acquiring a home in summer – you'll be happy you did. With support from an experienced real estate agent, you can explore a vast array of houses and find one that suits you perfectly.
When you’re buying a home, there’s a lot of excitement that surrounds the search and purchase of the property. In the process of buying a home, however, there are many things that buyers forget to take into account during their search and budgeting. Below, you’ll find some information to help you be prepared as a buyer to consider your home purchase from all angles without missing a beat.
The Expense Of Closing Costs
Remember that closing costs will be somewhere in the 3-5 percent range of the purchase price of a home. Amidst all of your savings, you’ll need to consider this a part of your expenses. Closing costs need to be paid upfront in most cases. You can roll your closing costs into the financing, but it depends on the circumstances. There are no guarantees that the lender will agree to it. Your realtor can also sometimes negotiate for the sellers to pay the closing costs, but in a seller’s market this is quite rare. Be prepared with your closing costs and understand how much you’ll need to spend so that you have an appropriate amount for the downpayment and the other expenses that you’ll incur during the process of buying a home.
The Cost Of Maintaining A House
Many buyers forget about all of the costs that they will need to pay for after they finish buying the house. In addition to a monthly mortgage payment, you’ll need to pay for things like utilities, routine home maintenance, furnishings, and more. If you completely deplete your savings for the purchase of the home, there’s not a whole lot of wiggle room for you to pay for additional needs in the house.
The Cost Of Furnishing And Decorating A Home
You may move into a home with a few pieces that you have previously owned. You could also need a lot of things from a bed to a sofa. All of these items can add up. You may even have to worry about little things like window shades, curtains, lamps, light bulbs, and more.
Home Repairs Can Cost A Pretty Penny
If something needs to be done in your home, the repairs can cost you quite a bit. If you’re not paying attention during the home inspection, you’ll be in for some surprises. That’s why you need a good realtor to help you through the process. A new roof can cost thousands of dollars. New appliances are an expense you should plan for. Other major work that needs to be done around the house can also dip into your savings significantly. As a buyer, you need to be prepared for any of these expected or completely unexpected costs.
Your home represents a one-of-a-kind property, and as such, you'll want to do everything you can to promote it to your friends, family members and, of course, your neighbors.
Ultimately, your neighbors can play a significant role in generating interest in your home. And if you incorporate your neighbors into the home selling process, you may be able to boost your chances of a quick sale and maximize your chances of optimizing the value of your house.
So what does it take to work with your neighbors throughout the home selling process? Here are three tips to help you do just that.
1. Transform an Open House into a Block Party.
If you host an open house, invite your neighbors – you'll be glad you did! By doing so, homebuyers can learn about your house as well as experience what it's like to live in your neighborhood.
Your neighbors may be able to provide insights into your neighborhood that homebuyers might struggle to find elsewhere. And if you invite your neighbors to an open house, you should have no trouble generating plenty of interest in your house in no time at all.
2. Share Your Home Listing with Your Neighbors.
As soon as your home listing becomes available, be sure to share it with your neighbors. This will enable you to extend your home listing's reach and boost your chances of connecting with a broad array of interested homebuyers.
Also, encourage your neighbors to provide feedback about your home listing. A neighbor's feedback could make or break your home listing, and any insights that a neighbor can provide may help you put your home listing over the top in the eyes of homebuyers.
3. Collaborate with an Experienced Real Estate Agent.
Employing a friendly, experienced real estate agent is paramount, regardless of whether you're selling your residence in a buyers' or sellers' market. With a top-notch real estate agent at your disposal, you'll be able to bolster your chances of connecting with your neighbors and highlighting your residence to the right homebuyers at the right time consistently.
Your real estate agent takes pride in his or her work, and as a result, will be happy to provide tips to help you incorporate your neighbors into the home selling process. In fact, your real estate agent may be able to introduce you to neighbors and help you foster positive relationships with them that may allow you to accelerate the home selling process.
Perhaps best of all, your real estate agent is ready to respond to any concerns or queries during each stage of the home selling process. That way, if you ever have questions about your home listing or homebuyers' offers for your house, your real estate agent will be able to offer expert guidance to help you make the best possible decisions.
Spend some time getting to know your neighbors and your real estate agent. This may enable you to improve your chances of selling your home in any real estate market, at any time.
For some people, caring for the lawn is a tedious, but necessary chore. For others, it’s a quiet way to enjoy the outdoors on the weekends.
Regardless of your feelings on lawn care, it’s important if you want your grass to look green throughout the warm months.
There’s a lot more to lawn care, however, than simply mowing and pulling weeds. In this article, we’re going to focus on one factor in particular: soil quality.
How can you ensure your grass remains well-fed and watered during those hot summer months? The answer is underground, in your yard’s topsoil.
Read on for tips on caring for your soil.
Salvaging your soil
Most people don’t have the time or money to remove their entire lawn and start from scratch with seeding or turf. So, how can you begin to help your soil now?
There are several ways to improve soil quality to encourage grass growth. Let’s start with the consistency.
Regardless of whether your soil is more sand, silt, or clay-based it can become compacted throughout the years. Compacted soil makes it difficult for roots to take hold and to reach vital nutrients.
Furthermore, when soil compacts it often builds a layer of debris on the top called thatch. A small amount of thatch isn’t a bad thing. It can help build your grass’s resiliency to impact, namely the feet of your pets or children when they’re playing in the yard. However, if you have too much thatch, it can create barriers to new growth.
There are two ways to manage thatch effectively: remove and prevention. To prevent the buildup of thatch, avoid mixing too much fertilizer and clippings into your lawn. While clippings and fertilizer are both useful ways to improve the quality of your soil and protect your grass, too much can be suffocating to the lawn.
Removing thatch is more difficult than prevention, but you can achieve it will a vertical mower, as well as by raking and collecting trimmings when necessary.
Why acidity matters
In the same way that we need proper nutrients to maintain or health, grass needs the right fertilizer and pH level to grow. Acidity levels range from 0 to 14, with 0 being the most acidic (things like battery acid, lemon juice, and vinegar are all acidic), and 14 being the most alkaline (things like lye and ammonia).
A good pH for grass varies depending on the type of grass you have in your lawn, but a base level would be 6.5 or slightly acidic.
To test your soil pH, you can purchase a kit online or you can send a sample to a lab and they will report back to you. Once you know the pH of your soil, you can find the right type of fertilizer.
Choosing a fertilizer can seem difficult, but there are a few main things you’re looking for. Nitrogen, phosphorous, and potassium are the three main nutrients required by most plant life, and they are the top three ingredients in most fertilizer. There are, however several “micronutrients” that grasses need as well. These include copper, iron, boron, and zinc.
Follow the instructions on the formula you choose. Over-fertilizing your soil can cause harm. You might notice that the tips of the soil like “burnt” or that the blades turn yellowish. This is a good sign that you’re applying too much fertilizer.
For many individuals, the homebuying journey often begins with getting pre-approved for a mortgage. Because if a buyer has a mortgage, he or she can enter the real estate market with a budget in hand.
Ultimately, there are many signs that now may be the perfect time to apply for a mortgage, and these include:
1. You're ready to upgrade from an apartment to a home.
If you're tired of paying monthly rent for an apartment, purchasing a house offers a viable alternative. And if you get pre-approved for a mortgage, you can move one step closer to moving from an apartment to a house.
In most instances, a home offers a significant upgrade over an apartment. Many residences are available in cities and towns nationwide that offer more space than apartments. Plus, as a homeowner, you won't have to worry about dealing with a landlord.
2. You feel good about your credit score.
If you have a strong credit score, you likely are a great candidate for a mortgage. In fact, you may be better equipped than others to get a favorable interest rate on the mortgage of your choice.
Understanding your credit score is a key part of the homebuying journey. You can request a free copy of your credit report annually from each of the three credit reporting bureaus (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion). Then, once you find out your credit score, you can determine whether you are in good shape to pursue a mortgage.
3. A buyer's market is in place.
In a buyer's market, there usually is an abundance of top-notch houses and a shortage of buyers. This means a homebuyer may be able to get a wonderful deal on a house, especially if he or she performs a comprehensive house search.
To find out whether a buyer's market is in place, you should check out the prices of recently sold houses in your area. Also, you may want to find out how long recently sold houses were listed before they sold. By reviewing this housing market data, you can differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's market and decide whether now is the right time to apply for a mortgage.
If you're interested in getting a mortgage and starting a house search, you may want to hire a real estate agent too. Because if you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive extensive support at each stage of the property buying journey.
A real estate agent will teach you everything you need to know about pursuing a house. He or she will offer insights into the local housing market and ensure that you can conduct a successful house search. And if you ever have concerns or questions along the way, a real estate agent is ready to respond to them.
Want to launch a home search? Get pre-approved for a mortgage, and you can take the first step to acquire your ideal residence.