April 1, 2020

Homeowner Tips

Feng Shui Interior Design

Feng Shui is an ancient Chinese art and science that was developed some 3000 years ago to help people balance the energies in the places they lived. It's pronounced Fung Shway and it translates to "Wind Water."

When is it Time to Refinance?

You've probably begun to receive the calls during the dinner hour - mortgage companies' telemarketers are out in force trying to convince you that now is the time to refinance, as interest rates continue to drop. But should you take the advice of a minimum-wage phone solicitor on how to handle the financing of your largest, most important asset - your house?

Spring Cleaning Checklist

It's time for spring cleaning. This is the time of year for deep cleaning that you don't have time for on a regular basis. If the task seems too large, why not break it up into several weekends so you don't become overwhelmed?

Easy Living Homes

If you have family members or friends with physical limitations, you may have areas of your home that they're unable to visit. This is especially problematic if you yourself become disabled or have a disabled person move in with you. How do you accommodate these needs? By building an EasyLiving Home, of course.

Posted in Homeowner Tips
April 1, 2020

Health & Wellness

Alleviate Stress

1. List the things that cause you stress. Change the way you think about these stressors by putting a positive spin on them. 2. Practice being optimistic. 3. Reframe things in the context of a larger positive plan. 4. Recognize that troubles are temporary. 5. Don't blame yourself needlessly. 6.

Boost Your Immune System

News flash: the biggest drains on our immune system are stress, aging, poor nutrition, lack of proper rest and lack of exercise. The first two we can't do anything about, but the last three are another story. So the issue becomes how do we build our immune systems to adequately deal with the inevitable?

Exercising with Your Dog

The days of hunting, chasing and being chased are over. Your dog doesn't have to find his own dinner anymore, or run and hide from larger predators. Result: Big, fat, unhealthy dog who sits in the front of the TV as much as you do. Should you enroll Fido in a doggy aerobics class?

Posted in Health & Wellness
April 1, 2020

Home Buyers

Top 4 Deal Killers for Homebuyers

Falling in love is exhilarating. It can also be a bit scary, especially when a home has captured your heart. What if something goes wrong and you end up not spending the rest of your life with this stack of brick and mortar you're lusting after?

Home Warranties

One of the scary things about making the leap from property renter to property owner is the idea of maintenance and upkeep. You're no mechanic or repairman. You don't know a socket wrench from a sheep ranch. And calling repairmen-how do you know you're not going to get ripped off because of your lack of knowledge?

Home Insurance

While you may have shopped long and hard before settling on insurance policies for health and car, you should compare prices just as carefully when insuring your home. New buyers often accept the insurer recommended by the builder, and current homeowners rarely consider shopping for a new carrier.

Moving With Kids

Summertime is moving time for a lot of American families, and while moving may be exciting for adults, it can be downright traumatic for the kids. In the midst of preparations, packing, looking for a new house, often parents forget that special care must be taken with their children to ease the transition.

Write Off Your Moving Expenses

You may be able to take your moving expenses as a tax deduction. While government regulations are stiffer than they used to be, it is still possible to catch a break if you meet the following criteria: Your new job or job transfer is at least 50 miles farther from your home than the old house was.

Get To Know Your New Neighborhood

So you're moving. You've got a lot to think about: packing up, arranging for movers, turning on utilities. But one thing you may not have thought about is getting to know your new neighborhood. This is especially important if you have children.

Posted in Home Buyers
April 1, 2020

Eco Friendly tips

Eco - Friendly Tips

An Eco-Friendly Home

Are you ready to go green? All kinds of people are trying to be more eco-friendly, and what better place to start than in your own home? Here are some tips for creating a greener home: l Recycling should be made as easy as possible so that it becomes second nature.

Pros and Cons of Solar Energy

With all the current uproar about energy resources and energy costs, you may be looking into every available alternative to lower your own energy bill. One alternative you may want to research is solar power. It's the one power source we all have pretty equal access to (unless you happen to live near the north or south poles, or Seattle).

Home Water Conservation

With many parts of the country suffering from near-drought conditions, it's time to think about how you as a homeowner can help conserve water (and save money in the bargain). What follows are a list of tips that show how. l Check your toilets for leaks - place a drop of food coloring in the tank.

An Energy Efficient Home Is a Happy One

You're probably aware that making energy-efficient home improvements will reduce the amount you owe the power company. But did you know that making your home energy efficient increases its value? According to a return-on-investment study, making some no cost/low cost changes can boost the value of your home by $18,000.

Posted in Eco Friendly Tips
April 1, 2020

Home Sellers

Real Estate Trends

The last two years have been the strangest on record for the housing industry. An unprecedented housing boom increased throughout the 1990s and continued into the new millennium, thanks to relaxed credit standards, sinking interest rates, low unemployment and an insufficient housing supply. But signs now point to the impending end of the boom.

Get Your Home Ready To Sell

A common mistake people make is to spend a lot of money - renovations, new roof, remodeling. While buyers will be impressed with these things, spending $5000 on remodeling will not add $5000 to your sale. Spend as little money as possible, and spend it on cosmetic, readily seen features like interior painting.

Home Inspections

Atop the long list of items to do when buying or selling a house is the home inspection. But what is involved? How much does it cost? Why is it done in the first place? It's important to understand what a home inspection entails and how it affects the sale of your home or the purchase of a new one.

How to Increase Your Home's Value

Project (average cost recouped, national) according to Realtor Magazine: Minor kitchen remodel (88%) Bathroom remodel (85%) Major kitchen remodel (81%) Family room addition (80%) Deck addition (77%) Master suite (75%) Attic bedroom (74%) Siding replacement (73%) Window replacement (69%) Home office (55%) Projects that may increase your home's value include: Jacuzzi (4 jets or more); permanent hot tub; in-ground pool; security system; sprinkler system; substantial out buildings; and vaulted ceilings.

Posted in Home Sellers
April 1, 2020

Home and Garden

Composting for Beginners

Composting: a word that strikes apathy into the heart of many a suburban gardener. Isn't it too much work, and can't I just go to the garden store and pick up a bag of chemical fertilizer? Doesn't it work just as well as the tree-hugger approach? And come on - what about the smell?

Shop Smart at Farmers' Markets

There are more than 3,000 farmers' markets operating in the United States currently, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, generating in excess of $1 billion annually. Is there any difference between buying from a chain supermarket and your local farmers' market?

Posted in Home & Garden
July 1, 2018

American Lifestyle January 2020