A quick way to modernize your kitchen:
Pendant lighting is a fun, and relatively affordable, way to bring your kitchen into the 21st century. Styles include ultra modern, retro ’60s or ‘70s, or antique and historical. Usually glass or metal, these lights also add excellent task lighting to your bar or island counters. They tend to be sleek and minimally stylish, and add a lot of ambiance without adding too much bulk or weight. One tip for tall ceilings: Make sure your lights hang low enough to provide sufficient lighting and to look aesthetically pleasing. You don’t want them to be too high and shine in your eyes while prepping meals. Please ask a lighting expert for the proper height to hang them above the countertops. Pendant lights also mix well as accents if the rest of your kitchen is lit by recessed fixtures.
Pets and selling your home
When preparing your home to sell, it might be a good idea to examine it from a pet’s perspective. My advice is to remove as many excess pet items as possible, in particular toys and food. Make sure you have cleaned up well after your pet, in particular where they are fed, outside dog runs and the location in which you store the litter box. Look for stray fur-balls floating around the floors, and use a lint brush if necessary on your upholstered furnishings and draperies. It might also be wise to repair any damage done by your loveable but perhaps destructive puppies or kittens: Touch up scratched paint or polyurethane, fill in any holes dug by dogs outside in your yard, remove any torn furnishings or carpets, and remove all pet stains. Also, disinfect or deodorize if there are pet smells in the home — a sure turn-off for a prospective buyer, especially one that does not like pets. Hire a professional carpet cleaning company to sanitize and thoroughly clean your carpets before your first showing. Once this is done, you may want to limit the areas in which you allow your pets.
If you are thinking of updating or remodeling, you may want to consider adding Universal Design elements to your plan. Universal design focuses on buildings, products and environments that are accessible to all people, with or without disabilities. Curb cuts or sidewalk ramps, essential for people in wheelchairs but also used by all, are a common example. You might consider cabinets with pull-out or pull-down shelves, kitchen counters and bathroom sinks at several heights to accommodate different tasks and postures, curb-less shower stalls, easy-access bathtubs or drop-down seats in hallways. As our population ages, these modifications may prove essential in coming years.
The temperature here in Maine is steadily on the rise. Every day there is a noticeable snow-melt and in some areas we are already experiencing Maine’s most famous and notorious SEASON, Mud Season. All this being said, Spring is just around the corner which means Daylight Saving Time begins at 2:00 a.m. on March 13, 2011. Don’t forget to change your clocks this Sunday! Daylight Saving Time starts the second Sunday in March and reverts to standard time on the first Sunday in November. In the U.S., each time zone switches at a different time.Want to know more about DST and where it is not observed? I found this site informative, visit http://www.webexhibits.org/daylightsaving/b2.html Want to know more about Mud Season? It happens every year when the frost starts to come out of the ground and affects everyone using dirt drives and pathways. Just pay us a visit and you’ll experience it first hand!
As economy improves, mortgage rates go up
After record lows, mortgage rates have continued to rise in the last few weeks. They are technically still considered “low,” in comparison to years past, but with each increase, a home is that much less affordable. As the interest rate rises, so do monthly payments.
As of mid-February, the average rate for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage was 5.05% in the week that ended today, according to Freddie Mac, up from 4.81% the week before.
In a separate report, the online lender LendingTree.com reported the average 30-year rate was even higher, rising to 5.31% in the last week.
Frank Nothaft, vice president and chief economist at Freddie Mac, explained that long-term bond yields jumped because of recent reports of positive economic data. Lower unemployment rates have also been good news, but tend to have an opposite effect, translating into higher borrowing costs.
If you need help finding a lender, Meservier & Associates of Keller Williams Realty Mid Maine maybe able to help. Send an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or call us at 207-784-2525.
Here’s an interesting question for you: If one saves $200 a month with a 5% annual yield, after 30 years how much in savings will one accumulate?
Answer: Over $170,000!! Most of this amount will represent interest earned and compounded.
Give your savings a boost during “America Saves Week” (Feb. 20 through Feb. 27)
America Saves is a nationwide campaign to bring awareness to the importance of building up your savings. The program was created in 2001 by the Consumer Federation of America.
America Saves Week encourages individuals to evaluate their savings progress and take action to save more. As a real estate professional, I know how important this is when someone is hoping to buy a new home, or for homeowners that may face an emergency, such as medical, home repairs, or car repair.
Visit americasavesweek.org. Learn how to either start saving or increase your savings, no matter how old you are or how much you earn. Even the smallest amount tucked away regularly will accumulate into a nice savings cushion This site will give you an extra dose of motivation.
Moving can be stressful for everyone in the family, but don’t forget to talk about it in advance with your children. Make sure to answer all their questions as honestly as possible. One way to help them in advance is to show them their new room, and help them decide where their furniture and belongings will go. For young children, read books such as “The Berenstain Bears: Moving Day” or “Who Will be My Friends?” by Syd Hoff. Help them sort, pack and label their belongings, and celebrate afterwards with a fun meal. Put together a Moving Day Kit, with essential items they might need. If you are moving to a new town or school district, make sure to help them say goodbye to their friends, and help them stay in touch if possible.
Design tips at your fingertips! Offering the “best of” from the HGTV network, this app allows you to look up real estate videos, photos, tips and review their advice. Watch clips from popular shows, “Curb Appeal” and “Designed to Sell.” Getting ready for an open house? Look up design tips, and tutorials for staging and designing your home for more buyer appeal. Also fun, you can see before and after photo slide shows of their room transformations. Especially great if you you’re like me and don’t have time to watch much TV!Looking for more Real Estate app choices? Visit http://www.topappcharts.com/search.php?show=search&string=real+estate&start=0&price=free to review or download the top 16 free iphone / ipad apps for real estate. Choose from top names like Realtor.com, Zillow, Loopnet, Trulia, Redfin, Homes.com and more. View Photos of…
…read the whole story via Free App For Your iPhone: HGTV – Plus More Real Estate Apps! | Maine Waterfront Real Estate.
Boothbay Maine Region – A Taste of Spring: Coastal Maine Botanical Gardens ~ Open year round! | Maine Waterfront Real Estate
Do you need a quick reminder of spring, which is — hard to believe —right around the corner? Maybe it’s time to update your landscaping projects?
Check out the 250-acre botanical garden in Boothbay. Free admission from now through March. They offer some great workshops about all things gardening, can suggest some wonderful-sounding “garden getaway” travel packages, and offer a yummy-sounding Kitchen Garden Series Dinners, prepared by visiting guest chefs from Maine. To check out their class schedule and to make reservations for the dinners, call 207-633-4333 or go to www.mainegardens.org.
Have you ever wondered what the difference is between a home loan pre-qualification and pre-approval?
For a pre-qualification, a mortgage broker usually sits down with a potential buyer and helps figure out how much they can afford and what type of loans may be available to them. This process may save you both time and money. Although you may receive a pre-qualification letter, it is not the same as loan pre-approval.
Loan pre-approval must be issued through the mortgage lender, and means the lender has made a firm commitment to the buyer to lend them money. Because it is a stronger commitment from your lender, it can become an extremely useful tool for me when it comes time to negotiate with sellers on your behalf.
Maine Energy Efficiency – A Home’s Heating And Cooling Costs Were Important To A Buyer’s Decision | Poland Maine Homes For Sale
I recently read some statistics about what is important to new home buyers. Here in the Northeast, energy efficiency rates very high on the list. According to the 2010 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers by the National Association of Realtors, almost nine out of ten . How does this affect you? If you are thinking of selling in the next year or two, upgrading your heating system could pay off. A more efficient, modern system could put make your house more appealing than many others in the area. This is because energy efficiency translates into cost savings for buyers in all income brackets. And a second bonus? You yourself will spend less on monthly expenses between now and when you sell!
When it’s time to list your house on the market, I would like to offer you an alternative to hiring an appraiser to ascertain the value of your home. As a professional Keller Williams real estate agent, I will research recent home sales in your neighborhood and analyze other comparative information for you. I will write up a market analysis of your property. I provide this service at no charge. After you review my report, if you are still unsure of the value of your home, you may opt for the assistance of an appraisal. Start by giving me a call, It’s FREE!
Office number is 207-784-2525 or email Sue at email@example.com
More valuable Information from the recent Remodeling Cost vs. Value Report | Lewiston Maine Homes For Sale
Some of the top interior projects for resale value noted in the report by the National Association of Realtors included an attic bedroom and a basement remodel. Both increase your living space without expanding the foundation of your home. An attic bedroom addition could recoup an estimated 72.2% nationally upon resale. A basement remodel is estimated to recoup 70% nationally. Improvement projects expected to return the least at resale are a mid-range home office remodel, a backup power generator, and a sunroom addition, recouping an estimated 45.8 to 48.6%of costs. If you wonder if a home improvement project could pay off when it comes to selling your home in Maine, give me a call to talk about it.
I know there are a lot of homes on the market, and it could be a bit overwhelming for you as you shop. As your real estate agent, I can help you narrow down your search and eliminate some stress. First off, we will look at financing options so we know what you can afford. I will not show you homes that are out of your budget. To refine your search and save you time, I will help you formulate a list of your most important features. To narrow it down even further, we will do a preliminary search using the Multiple Listing Service (MLS). I will know if “there is a better deal out there” and if so, will it meet your criteria? As your agent, I will try to keep you focused!
Are you new to the Maine home buying process? Visit our sister website at HowtoBuyAHomeInMaine.com to learn all about it! Have questions? Give us a call at 207-784-2525 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.