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  • 8 in 10 homeowners expect the value of their homes to go up either "a little" (55 percent) or "a lot" (26 percent) in the future.
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    October 9, 2015
    Friday Fun Video: Super Fast Organization

    She uses this method to organize her home office, but it can be applied to any small area in your home. Set a timer for 20 minutes, then focus on the things that are making you the most unhappy in a space. It could be: trash, useless/unwanted items, laundry, big/bulky items, things to put in storage. Great way to get focused and clean!

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    October 8, 2015
    Home Selling Tips For This Fall

    Fall is a popular time for homes to sell. The air is cooler, so moving isn’t as tortuous as it is in the Summer heat. Plus, Fall gives even more opportunities for staging, creating curb appeal, and incorporating seasonal décor. It’s the coziest season, so if you make your home look extra welcoming, buyers will flock to it in the coming months. Check out this article by Kyle Hiscock at Rochester Real Estate Blog for an entire guide on getting your home sold this October!

    -Clean up the exterior- rake up leaves, and pull any weeds

    -Decorate tastefully for Halloween or Thanksgiving- it helps buyers envision themselves in the home during the holidays

    -Analyze the market and price your home right- a real estate agent and home appraiser can help.

    Photo Credit: Leandro Neumann Ciuffo 

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    October 7, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Tiny Cottage

    Photo from Pinterest

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    October 6, 2015
    Home Appraisal Questions Answered

    When you’re buying a home, you have hopefully done your homework. The seller’s Realtor has looked at the MLS and they have asked what you think is a fair price for the home. It is closely priced with other similar homes in the location. However, you have to be absolutely sure that you are paying what the home is worth! That is why you have it appraised. In fact, part of the mortgage process is bringing in a licensed real estate appraiser to determine what the real value of the home is. For more information on appraisals, read this post by Lolly Spindler at the House Hunt blog:

    The appraisal is normally carried out in three steps, including a physical visit to the home (a few hours), a comparison of the home to comparable properties in the area that have recently sold, and the creation of the report (all together taking about seven days). Check out this uniform residential appraisal report from Freddie Mac for a better idea.

    Photo Credit: National Assembly For Wales 

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    October 5, 2015
    Best Tips For First Time Home Buyers

    There is so much advice floating around out there for people who want to start buying their first home. It’s difficult to know where to start. Hiring a Realtor is crucial; they will guide you through the entire process. However, it’s good to have an idea of what you want and how much you can spend before even contacting an agent. That’s why I love this article by Michelle Schroeder-Gardner at Making Sense of Cents. She uses a back-to-basics approach and has some of the best tips for first time home buyers:

    -Get pre-approved for a mortgage! This is one of the very first things you should do. Most sellers will not consider an offer from someone who is not pre-approved, and many agents will not work with you until you are.

    -Buy less than what you are approved for, and don’t show the seller how much you are pre-approved for.

    -Buy a house that is the right size for you

    -Get a Realtor.

    -Look around a lot, never settle.

    -Hire an inspector.

    Photo Credit: Karol M 

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    October 1, 2015
    Fall Decor On A Budget

    Happy October, everyone! Temperatures are dropping, leaves are changing, and the air is crisper. Fall is my favorite season, and every time it rolls around it brings the temptation to spend all my money on décor. No matter how much I love Fall and Halloween, my frugal nature always keeps me from blowing my budget on decorations, when I feel that it could be used for something more useful. However, that doesn’t mean that your house has to be boring and devoid of celebration. For tips on decorating seasonally, but doing it on a shoestring budget, check out this post by Erin at How To Nest For Less:

    -Check out dollar stores like Dollar General for seasonal items

    -Faux flowers bring the colors of Fall into a room for much less

    -Add colorful throw pillows for a big statement for little cost.

    -DIY- make a Fall wreath, decorate pumpkins, and customize your own crafts.

    Photo Credit: Le Living and Co 

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    September 30, 2015
    Wordless Wednesday: Breathtaking Deck

    Photo from One Kind Design

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    September 29, 2015
    Bathroom Staging Tips

    Bathrooms are often the last place we think of when getting our homes ready to sell. Most homeowners focus on the big rooms that they think guide the sell: entryway, living room, kitchen/dining area, and master bedroom. While these areas are what will initially draw buyers in, the details and overall quality (of all rooms!) are what close the sale. For tips on making your bathroom look brand new and gorgeous, check out this post by Ashley Kimber Slaughter at Active Rain:

    -Remove all clutter and personal items- anything on back of toilet or sides of tub, cleaning supplies, etc.

    -Deep clean the bathroom- remove stains and soap residue, scrub tiles, use toothbrushes to get in all nooks and crannies

    -Bring in new items, let in natural light, add plants and a pop of color.

    Photo Credit: Christine Warner Hawks 

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    September 28, 2015
    Things Some People Forget When Moving

    Moving into a new home can be completely overwhelming and draining. Not only are you having to deal with all the paperwork, getting a mortgage, and the home buying process (a Realtor can help with that!), but you also have to pack up all your stuff and move your entire life to a new location. So, it’s not surprising that some important parts of getting settled in a new home are overlooked. Check out this post by Doug Bonderud at AT&T Digital Life if you have recently moved:

    -Change your locks

    -Install a water leak detector

    -Pick out pests- call an exterminator if there are signs of problems

    -Inspect furnace/AC

    -Learn your new home’s routine- know when to expect deliveries, etc.

    Photo Credit: Heather Elias 

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    September 25, 2015
    Friday Fun Video: “Airhouse” Design

    Open, airy designs for the modern home. Absolutely gorgeous!

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