Posted tagged ‘real estate agent dfw’

Check List for a Better Spring

April 3, 2014
Time to take care of the yard.

Time to take care of the yard.

Now that we’ve finally reach Spring, it’s time to start preparing the house for both indoor and outdoor activities.  Laura Gaskill recommends things like cleaning off the lawn furniture, fix and patch the house. Check out her entire list:

1. Set up outdoor furniture. If you haven’t yet gotten the outdoor furniture out of storage, now is the time. Give everything a good cleaning, and go shopping for new pieces as needed. Wish you had an outdoor dining area or place to sit with a good book? Jump on the project now so that you have all season to enjoy using it.

2. Tune up lawn mower and gas grill. Make sure all of your outdoor equipment is in working order. Stock up on the types of fuel you will need to run your lawn mower and gas grill. If you have a reel lawn mower (i.e., a push mower), take it in to have the blades sharpened.

Lawn Care

Lawn Care

3. Clean siding. Wash the exterior of your house to remove road salt and grime that has accumulated over the winter. Use a pressure washer or a regular hose with a cleaning attachment, depending on the type of siding.

4. Check fences, driveway and paths for damage. Particularly for regions that experience freezing and thawing conditions, driveways and paths can become cracked over the winter. Take a walk around your home, looking out for signs of damage on the driveway and walkway, as well as the foundation, fences and gates. Schedule repairs as needed.

5. Refresh your mantel. Take everything off your mantel, and wipe down the surface. Bring in something fresh and green — potted ferns, blooming bulbs or cut branches will last longer than cut flowers. If you have a mirror hanging above the mantel, clean it as well. Add a few scented or plain beeswax candles as a finishing touch.

6. Celebrate Earth Day by going greener at home. Commit to making lasting changes to go greener this year by adopting a few easy new habits:
• Trade paper towels for a stack of washable dish cloths
• Use real napkins instead of paper
• Swap out your cleaning products for natural methods
• Check out a local farmer’s market for fresh produce
• Shut off lights when you leave the room

7. Clean windows. Boost natural light throughout your home by cleaning the windows, inside and out. If you have second-story windows, either hire a service to clean the outside or use a hose attachment to clean them yourself (while standing safely on the ground!).

8. Have air conditioning serviced. If you use air conditioning and haven’t had it serviced yet this spring, now is the time. If you use window air conditioning units, change the filters before installing them.

9. Bag up some giveaways. Simplify your life this spring by getting excess stuff out of your home (and out of your way). Grab some boxes or sturdy bags, and aim to fill at least one per room with items to give away, sell, recycle or toss. Your home will feel so much lighter, it’s worth the effort!

10. Rotate artwork. If you love collecting art prints and paintings, you know how easy it is to run out of wall space long before you’ve hung all of your artwork. A simple solution is to rotate your artwork each season, keeping some pieces carefully stored in a closet.

11. Swap towels and bedding. Rotating linens with the seasons is an easy way to perk up your home, and it extends the life of your textiles. You can’t go wrong with classic white towels and sheets, but if you are looking for something a little different this spring, why not pick a bold color instead?

Take care of these things and your Spring and Summer will be so much more enjoyable and healthy.

Do you know everything you should about home inspections and warranties?

February 13, 2014

Home Inspection

If you have spent any time on HGTV or are familiar with Mike Holmes, Canadian’s “Make it Right” guy, you know how important it is to get a home inspection before you sign on the dotted line.

Trying to rush things because you are hopeful things will just work out, or trying to beat out other offers by not having any buyer stipulations just isn’t wise. Moving into a home without a previous inspection can leave you saddled with emergency roof repairs, plumbing issues, hazardous wiring, insulation and asbestos issues, and so much more. Don’t leave it up to chance – invest in a home inspection.

In order to find a home inspector, Dian Hymer, author of “Buying and Selling a Home A Complete Guide,” Chronicle Books, San Francisco; 1994, advises looking for someone with demonstrable qualifications. “Ideally, the general inspector you select should be either an engineer, an architect, or a contractor. When possible, hire an inspector who belongs to one of the home inspection trade organizations.”

So where do home warranties come in? For home ownership, you can expect at minimum 1% of the home’s value each year in maintenance costs. This could come in big chunks like replacing your AC, fixing your roof after a hail storm, or fixing damaged pipes after a freeze. This type of protection simply saves you money in the long run, and could really help you in the event of large home repair expenses.

There are a lot of home warranty plan options out there, so again, due diligence is wise. Sites like http://www.homewarrantyreviews.com/reviews can be helpful in determining which plan is right for you.

For more tips on buying or selling your home, visit our Resource Page for Home Buyers

Can your home save you money on your Taxes?

February 6, 2014

Tax time - your home - deductibles1
It’s tax time, and homes all across the Dallas / Fort Worth area are being overtaken by receipts, spreadsheets, last years tax return, and the furrowed brows of home owners everywhere.

To deduct, or not to deduct, that is the question. For help on these issues, you can educate yourself by visiting the publications page on the IRS website, and looking up these specific forms:

  • 521 “Moving Expenses”
  • 523 “Selling Your Home”
  • 527 “Residential Rental Property”
  • 534 “Depreciation”
  • 541 “Tax Information on Partnerships”
  • 551 “Basis of Assets”
  • 555 “Federal Tax Information on Community Property”
  • 561 “Determining the Value of Donated Property”
  • 590 “Individual Retirement Arrangements”
  • 908 “Bankruptcy and Other Debt Cancellation”
  • 936 “Home Mortgage Interest Deduction”

Something else to consider is a Mortgage Credit Certificate. For rules on how that might apply to you, and tips on how to use your home to save on taxes, visit our Ideal Real Estate Group Resource Page for Home Buyers and take a look at the article Buying Your Home – Tax Considerations

A knowledgeable real estate agent can help first time home buyers recognize the tax benefits of home ownership, and when the best time might be to make that first home purchase. If you have questions or want to explore your options in buying or selling your home, we are here to help. Please contact Sandy Luedke and Ideal Real Estate Group at any time and let us help you find your way home.

Starting to work with your Agent

October 10, 2009

The first thing that your real estate agent will do for you is to have a relaxed, but thorough, conversation about what kind of home you are looking for. He or she will listen carefully at what you want in your new house and clarify the main details so that he/she will have a very clear picture of it. Another main consideration to be discussed is of course, your price range.
Having the right information about what you are looking for will help the agent in focusing their search, and will avoid wasting the time of both parties. Once the agent is clear on everything, including how much you are willing to spend, the search for the most fitting home will speed up.

Working with the right real estate agent

October 8, 2009

If you’re looking to buy a new home sometime in the future, the first and most important

thing you should do is to look for the right real estate agent for you. Only the right agent

can help you find that ideal home that matches all your needs and wants.

Though some would prefer an agent they do not know in order to maintain a strictly business

-only approach, others would also assert that using someone you know makes them treat you as

their top client, which lets you find your ideal home faster. Ultimately, there are four

important factors to consider:

* Professionalism. A professional agent will always keep their priorities straight and will

always have your wishes in mind.

* Knowledge. You want someone who understands exactly everything you want in your new home

and knows the real estate market well enough to find a home that matches.

* Experience. An agent with a long, successful career in real estate will always serve you

better than one without.

* Compatibility. You have to be comfortable working with your agent, so that you’ll be

confident you’re getting the best deal for you.

DFW real estate agent

DFW real estate agent

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