Lauren Davis
REALTY EXECUTIVES Boston West | 508-254-0449 | [email protected]


Posted by Lauren Davis on 3/25/2020


 


Every winter, your home faces harsh weather, and it may benefit you to examine your home during the warmer months for any areas that may need maintenance to avoid excessive and costly repairs to your home during or after the winter. Here are few things to check before the snow starts to fall.

1. The Roof: Excess snowfall on the roof during winter adds weight to the structure, which is why it's imperative to check its integrity often. Thoroughly examine it for leaks and erosion. Check the soffits and eaves for damage. Look on the ground for loose shingles. If you see any, have the roof inspected by a qualified roofer and schedule repairs as soon as possible. Correcting potential issues early could prevent any catastrophic emergencies later on.

2. The Garden: It is a known fact that the winter is unfavorable for most flowering plants. Check your garden for any plants that may need to be pruned or given any special attention before the cold months hit. Remove dead trees; add hardy hybrids and be sure to give your garden enough attention to watch it flourish even through the winter months.

3. The Garage: Even though your garage is well-secured and covered, you'll still want to maintain its upkeep during the winter. Your cars may bring in snow, mud, deicer, sand and debris. Be sure to keep the floors cleaned and check the walls and corners for any place that may house rodents or other pests.

4. The Pipes: Your water pipes are another essential thing to check after winter. During winter, pipes are prone to freezing and can split, crack, or burst, which becomes a hard problem to fix. Ensure they are in good condition before winter and recheck them after the season to fix any issues as soon as possible.

5. Chimney: Take a cursory look at your chimney after winter. There's a good chance it may have been damaged during the season. Ice can be very destructive, especially to your chimney's mortar and flashing where the chimney joins the roof, and may cause problems in the long run. Check your fireplace to ensure proper ventilation and cleanliness to avoid fire and smoke damage. Make sure to clean the creosote from the fireplace after seasonal use to promote your fireplace's longevity and maintain safety standards.

6. Garden Shed: For people that have a separate building for their garden tools, it is vital that you check this place after winter. Ensure that the ice and excessive wind haven't caused damage, and just as you did for your primary home, check the roof, eaves and flashing for damage.


Check all these places after each winter season and before the summer heat drives it from the forefront of your mind. You may want to dedicate at least one day to checking your home for early signs of damage or for areas that may need to be updated and reinforced. Your Realtorģ may have a few other suggestions for maintaining your home or preparing for any regional hardships that may arise during the winter.




Tags: Maintenance   cleaning   Home Care  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lauren Davis on 3/18/2020

If you want to accomplish your desired results during the home selling journey, you should strive to host lots of showings. Fortunately, we're here to help you prepare for home showings and ensure you are ready to host showings at any time.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prepare for a home showing.

1. Keep Your Home Neat and Tidy

Let's face it Ė maintaining a pristine home can be difficult. But if you allocate time and energy to perform various home maintenance tasks daily, you can keep your home show-ready.

Cleaning up after yourself can make a world of difference. For instance, wiping down kitchen countertops after cooking a meal enables you to avoid a long, arduous kitchen clean-up at a later time.

You also may want to create a home cleaning schedule. By planning daily or weekly chores like vacuuming the rugs or cleaning the bathroom, you can ensure your house will look great at all times.

2. Be Flexible

If a homebuyer submits a last-minute request for a home showing, it generally is a good idea to try to accommodate the buyer's request. By doing so, you can show your home to many prospective buyers and increase the likelihood of receiving an offer to purchase.

A flexible home seller usually is a successful home seller. Therefore, if a buyer wants to view your home, it is important to remember that each showing brings you one step closer to selling your residence.

Ultimately, if you maintain flexibility, you can make it easy for dozens of potential buyers to view your residence. And as a result, you may be able to accelerate the home selling process.

3. Eliminate Clutter

Clutter is something that all home sellers can live without. Because if a home is filled with clutter, it may be tough for prospective buyers to appreciate the full size and beauty of a residence.

For home sellers, it is important to remove clutter immediately. A home seller can rent a storage unit to hold excess items until his or her residence sells. Or, it may be beneficial to host a yard sale or list excess items online to cut down on clutter.

As you prepare to sell your home, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. In fact, a real estate agent will do everything possible to help you achieve the optimal results during any home showing.

Typically, a real estate agent will offer recommendations and tips to help you prepare your residence for the housing market. If you receive a request to view your home, a real estate agent will notify you accordingly. And after a home showing is complete, a real estate agent will provide you with unbiased feedback to ensure you can update your property selling strategy as needed.

Ready to host a home showing? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can get ready to showcase your residence to potential buyers and bolster your chances of enjoying a fast, profitable house selling experience.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lauren Davis on 3/11/2020

Aside from your realtor, your lender will be one of the people that you work the most closely with when youíre buying a home. Before you even sign on with a lender, thereís a few questions that you should ask. Donít feel pressure from a certain lender before you understand what their areas of expertise are. You donít want to end up with homebuyerís remorse because you didnít do the right research before you signed the deal on a home.   


Can You Tell Me About Programs For First Time Homebuyers? 


There are so many great programs for first-time homebuyers. If the lender you choose canít help you with these programs, maybe this isnít the right lender for you. If your lender lacks knowledge in the areas that you need, you probably want to shop around.


How Can You Help Me Qualify For The Loan I Need?


Many times, loans have very specific qualifications that you need to meet. Even if you think you might not meet those requirements due to things like a low amount of down payment or a job change, your lender can often help you to find the details in your situation to help you qualify for a loan. For example, you may have recently changed jobs, but if you have stayed in the same field, your lender can help you to explain these circumstances so that you can still qualify for the loan. 


Are There Downpayment Assistance Programs Available?


There are also many programs and loan types available to help buyers get a home with less than a 20% downpayment. Some loans offer good interest rates with less than a 20% downpayment. There are also many grants and downpayment assistance plans available. Itís important to ask questions to know the right information for your loan circumstances.


What Fees Do You Charge?


Some lenders do charge an array of fees. You donít want to sign on with a lender and then close on the loan, only to find out that youíre knee-deep in fees in addition to all of the closing costs that you have to pay along with the home purchase. 


How Will You Communicate With Me


Just like your Realtor, itís important that your lender communicates with you in a timely manner. Buying a home requires that documents and offers are in on time to secure your home. Donít let anything fall through the cracks by hiring people on your home search that may lapse in their communication with important information.




Tags: mortgage lenders   loans  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lauren Davis on 3/4/2020

Applying for a mortgage is one of the biggest decision that an individual can make in his or her lifetime. As such, it is important for a first-time homebuyer to dedicate the necessary time and resources to employ the best mortgage lender Ė without exception.

So what does it take to hire the ideal mortgage lender? Here are three tips to help a first-time homebuyer quickly and effortlessly choose the right mortgage lender.

1. Consider a Variety of Lenders

There is no shortage of top-notch lenders in cities and towns across the United States. Thus, a first-time homebuyer can meet with a variety of credit unions and banks to explore all of the mortgage options at his or her disposal.

Spend some time learning about lenders in your area. Look at each lender's experience and reputation, and you may be better equipped than other homebuyers to select the ideal lender based on your individual needs.

Furthermore, conduct face-to-face meetings with lenders. These meetings will allow you to learn about a wide range of mortgage options and will make it easy for you to make an informed decision.

2. Ask Plenty of Questions

When it comes to getting a mortgage for the first time, there is no need to leave anything to chance. Instead, ask plenty of questions as you consult with assorted lenders, and you can gain the insights you need to pick a lender that matches or exceeds your expectations.

Remember, there is no such thing as a "bad" question, particularly when it comes to mortgages. If you meet with various lenders, you can get all of your mortgage concerns and queries addressed without delay.

A first-time homebuyer who asks lots of questions may be able to avoid potential financial pitfalls down the line too. In fact, this homebuyer should have no trouble selecting a great lender who can fulfill his or her mortgage needs for years to come.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

Let's face it Ė selecting a lender may prove to be exceedingly difficult. Fortunately, a real estate agent is happy to provide honest, unbiased advice to help you find the right lender in no time at all.

A real estate agent understands the challenges of obtaining a terrific mortgage, and as a result, will do everything possible to help a homebuyer discover a lender that can provide outstanding support day after day. Plus, a real estate agent can even help a homebuyer alleviate stress as he or she searches for the right lender.

Let's not forget about the support that a real estate agent can provide throughout the entire homebuying journey, either. Typically, a real estate agent can keep a homebuyer informed about new residences as they become available, set up home showings, negotiate with a home seller on buyer's behalf and much more.

Get the right mortgage any time you choose Ė use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time homebuyer can streamline the process of selecting the ideal lender.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Lauren Davis on 2/26/2020

Photo by PublicDomainPictures via Pixabay

Are you overpaying for water? 

You could be, if your home is not running as efficiently as it could, or if you have undiagnosed leaks or damage. Cutting your water consumption can help you save money every month, and in many cases, you won't have to change your habits at all. Try one or more of the following ideas for an immediate reduction in your water bill every month:

Seek out Leaks

A running toilet, a slow drip from a faucet or even a leaky fridge can cost you money every month, but provides no benefit at all. in some cases, that leak will get even more expensive over time, as standing water can damage your floors and allow mold and mildew to develop. Take a walk through your home and check these areas for leaks -- any problem you find and repair will reduce the water your home wastes each month and will prevent mold growth or damage, too:

  • Listen for leaks: Turn off anything that makes noise and visit the kitchen, bathroom and any room with a faucet. What do you hear? Ideally, you won't hear anything -- if you hear drips or running water, your home is wasting water. A single running toilet can boost your water bill by hundreds of dollars each year, so pay special attention to bathrooms.
  • Look for water damage: Appliances that have water or stains underneath could be leaking. The most common culprit is a fridge that has an icemaker and water dispenser. If you see or feel water, double check the lines to ensure there are no leaks. Check under sinks for moisture and note any problems. 
  • Head outside: Your outside faucets should be tightly closed and the ground below them should be totally dry. if there are drips or moisture, you are paying for a steady stream of water you are not using. You should also walk by your sprinkler heads and make sure the ground is not soggy; this could mean you have a costly leak in your sprinkler system,

Go Low Flow

Using less water when you flush, shower or wash dishes can help you save money every day. Simply switching your shower heads takes just moments, and can cut your water consumption without making a difference in your shower. Converting your toilets to low flow models or even adding some weight to the tanks can help reduce the amount of water used by each flush, according to Nerd Wallet.

Change your Habits

Your laundry and dish washing schedules will have a huge impact on your water bill. Reducing the amount of laundry you do (by decluttering and only keeping essentials you love) can help lower your energy costs and your water consumption. Hand washing small loads of dishes or rinsing and waiting for the dishwasher to be full before running allows you to use this power and water consuming appliance fewer times each week. 

Monitoring your home for leaks and running water, converting some areas to more conservative models and changing your own habits can have a significant impact on your water bill. Do all three and you'll save hundreds of dollars each year -- and run a more eco-friendly home, too.