How to Fold a Fitted Sheet

Fitted sheets are a wonderful thing when they are on your mattress, but getting them folded without frustration is nearly impossible, until now!  Realsimple.com teaches us how to fold a fitted sheet without the headache!  Best part it is, it’s super easy!

 

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3 Solutions for Selling Your Home Fast

By Carolyn Smith

When it comes to selling a home, the less time on the market the better. Luckily, DLP Realty offers three innovative solutions to get your home sold quickly!

Guaranteed Sale Program:   The Guaranteed Sale Program is designed to give you peace of mind from day one.  Before your property is even listed we will provide you with a comprehensive market analysis of your home and agree on a fair market value.  This market value will determine the list price of your home as well as the guaranteed sale price.  In the unlikely event that your home does not sell in 68 days, we will buy your home for the agreed upon guaranteed sale price.

Accelerated Selling Program: This is DLP’s most effective program and is guaranteed to sell your home in just 60 days.   In order to be eligible sellers must agree to list their home within 5% of DLP’s recommended listing price, AND drop the listing price of the home by 1.5% every 10 days until the home sells.  This program is for the super motivated and serious sellers!

Immediate Buyout Program:  If you’re interested in an immediate buyout, a DLP agent will visit your home and give you a cash offer within 24 hours.  With the Immediate Buyout Program, sellers can avoid the normal headaches that go along with listing your home.

For more detailed information on all the perks our sellers’ programs have to offer, check out our website or call us at 800-350-8061.  

15 Things You Should Throw Away Right Now

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The new year has begun and there is no better time to get rid of stuff that is cluttering your home.  From expired spices to dated magazines, it’s time to get rid of the junk!  So get your trashcan ready and take back your home, with Refinery29.com’s list of 15 things that must go…now!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Homebuyer’s Sanity-Saving Checklist

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Original article found on www.trulia.com
The home-buying process as individual as the people who buy it, but here’s a streamlined glimpse at the life cycle of the typical experience, from interviewing real estate agents to moving day.

The first steps

Before you start hitting open houses, you’ll need to select and sign on with an agent and begin the process of getting preapproved for a mortgage or loan. Then you’ll be ready to pound the streets with your agent — and submit your best offer when you fall in love with a home.

Negotiations, inspections, and repairs

The real fun begins when your offer is accepted! Find a home inspector you trust and consider additional inspections if your home is old or you’d like to further investigate potential issues.

You’ll want to be present during the home inspection so you can ask questions and see potential problems for yourself. Now that the home-buying process is off to a good start, be sure to call your mortgage lender to lock in your interest rate — or be prepared for potential surprises at the closing table. When the home inspections are complete, you’re ready to ask the seller for repairs. Consult your real estate agent to make sure you ask for the essentials (and skip the small stuff that could put your purchase at risk).

Final tasks, tying up loose ends

During this part of the process, your lender will request an appraisal. You’ll also need to secure homeowners insurance and make sure utilities are being transferred to your name. Meanwhile, assuming the appraisal is above or in line with your purchase price, the mortgage loan process will continue to move forward with no additional negotiations needed.

The closing process

In the days leading up to your closing date, an escrow officer or closing attorney calculates final costs and credits for buyer and seller. On the big day, you’ll sign a stack of paperwork (bring your favorite pen!), hand over a cashier’s check for the down payment and closing costs, and get the keys. Once everything is signed and processed, the loan closes and property transfer is recorded. Next step: Moving!

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The Closing Process: What Home Buyers Can Expect on the Big Day

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The hardest parts are over: You’ve found that perfect home in a haystack of listings, negotiated a deal you’re happy with, and secured a mortgage—and you’re now in the home stretch of the home-buying process. Just one more critical hurdle lies ahead: the home closing. Also known as “settlement” or “escrow,” this is a day when all involved parties meet to make this transaction official.

To make sure you’re fully prepared, here’s what to expect from the closing process, step by step.

Step No. 1: How to prepare for a closing

Review your closing disclosure form: If you’re getting a loan, one of the best ways to prepare is to thoroughly review your HUD-1 settlement statement.

“This helps ensure the buyer understands the terms of their loan,” says Ben Niernberg, executive vice president of business development and operations at Proper Title.

The HUD-1 settlement statement outlines your exact mortgage payments, a loan’s terms (such as the interest rate and term) and additional fees you’ll pay, called closing costs (which total anywhere from 2% to 7% of your home’s price). Compare your HUD-1 to the good-faith estimate your lender gave you at the outset; make sure they’re similar and ask your lender to explain any discrepancies.

Thanks to new regulations put in effect in October 2015 known as TRID (which stands for TILA-RESPA Integrated Disclosure), you will receive your HUD-1 three days before closing so that you have plenty of time to check it over. (Before TRID, home buyers received this form only 24 hours ahead of time, which resulted in a lot more last-minute surprises and holdups.)

Do a final walk-through: A buyer’s contract usually allows for a walk-through of the home 24 hours before closing. First and foremost, you’re making sure the previous owner has vacated (unless you’ve allowed a rent-back arrangement where they can stick around for a period of time before moving). Second, make sure the home is in the condition agreed upon in the contract. If you’d had a home inspection done earlier and it had revealed problems that the sellers had agreed to fix, make sure those repairs were made.

If you find an issue during your walk-through, bring it up with the sellers as soon as possible. There’s no need to panic; at worst you can simply delay the closing until you resolve it.

Step No. 2: What to bring to closing

All your paperwork: You’ll want to bring proof of homeowners insurance, a copy of your contract with the seller, your home inspection reports, anything the bank required to approve your loan, and a government-issue photo ID. (Note to newlyweds who just changed their name: That ID needs to match the name that will appear on the property’s title and mortgage.)

Your down payment: You will already know from your disclosure form exactly how much  you’ll have to cough up for a down payment and closing costs. Yet since a personal check won’t cut it, be sure to ask before closing whether you should wire transfer those funds or if you’ll need to bring a cashier’s check. Also bring your personal checkbook to closing, since that’s typically fine to pay smaller fees and may come in handy in case any unforeseen expenses crop up.

Step No. 3: What to expect at closing

A bunch of people: Exactly who will be present at a closing (and where it’s held) depends on the state you live in, but there are certain supporting characters you can usually expect to make an appearance. The cast includes the home seller, the seller’s real estate agent as well as your own, buyer and seller attorneys, a representative from a title company (more on that below), and, occasionally, a representative from the bank or lender where you got your loan.

Title clearance: Before you can own or “take title” to a home, most lenders will require a title search of public property records to make sure there aren’t any liens or issues with transferring the property into your name (which is rare, but if something does crop up, it’s better to know that upfront).

Signing your name a lot: You’ll be putting your John Hancock on a pile of legal documents (so be prepared for a mild hand cramp if you’re not used to writing in cursive).

A few curveballs: Be prepared for things to go awry at the closing, like someone gets stuck in traffic, a document is missing, or a name is misspelled. But don’t stress, simply do what’s in your power to make the day go off without a hitch. For instance, don’t schedule something two hours after the closing is supposed to start in case your closing runs over.

If all goes well (as it usually does), you will eventually leave your home closing with a stack of documents (which you should save) and the keys to your new home (finally!).

Source: www.realtor.com

Don’t Be Wowed: Look for Little Details in a Potential Home

istock_90650295_small-768x512When you walk into what turns out to be your dream home, you’re blown away. It might be the color scheme or the vaulted ceilings or the massive fireplace that does it, but you’re going to notice something right away that really wows you. Every room after that will make you more and more excited. You might even be ready to make an offer after only seeing a few rooms. But wait!

You might be so overwhelmed by the big, amazing features of the home that you forget to check out the little details. These details may seem insignificant next to the things you love about the house, but if you find several of them, they can add up to some major issues. Here’s what you’ll want to check for.

Take a look at all of the windows to make certain that the thermal seal isn’t broken, the glass isn’t cracked, and that all of the windows shut securely. However, don’t stop there. You also want to make certain that there’s at least one window in every room that will open in case of an emergency. Some older homes may have windows that were painted shut to help lower the utility bill. It’s also possible some windows haven’t been opened in years.

Many buyers simply take a quick glance around the basement, especially if it’s dark, but you need to go down there with a flashlight and really look around. Check for any signs of dampness, mold and water damage. The last thing you want is to discover that you have dangerous mold growing in your basement after you’ve bought the house.

Likewise, make sure you stick your head up into the attic and get a good look around. If you see daylight coming through in places that it shouldn’t be, the home may have some roofing issues. That’s something the inspection will note. What that report may not mention is the amount of insulation in the attic. If it appears that there’s not a good amount of insulation, the home is going to be difficult to heat and cool, especially if it has high ceilings. Take note that you may have to have additional insulation added later.

Beyond noticing the color of the carpet or the fact that the home has wood flooring throughout, many people don’t really look down. You want to carefully check the flooring in every room to make certain it’s in good condition. For carpeting, look for stains or areas where the carpet seems worn. For tiles, check for cracked tiles and for tiles that don’t seem to be secured to the floor. Any wood flooring should also be secure and shouldn’t appear to be warped. Linoleum and other stick-down flooring shouldn’t show any signs of coming up around the edges. It may be a pain to carefully examine every room’s floor like this, but it can save you money later. You don’t want to buy a house and then discover you need to replace half the flooring.

Not a part of the house exactly, but some potential buyers forget to do a little research into the neighborhood, including the schools. You may not have children at the moment, and you may not even be planning to start a family within the next five years, but life is full of surprises. You should take a look at the school just to see if you would ever want to send a child there. Also look at what’s close to the neighborhood—what’s the closest hospital, mechanic, grocery store, etc. A quick check of the area’s crime statistics is also a good idea.

Then there’s your commute. Don’t just look at the map and decide your commute to work every morning will be fine. You need to actually drive the route during the same time you’ll be going to work and getting home every day. You might find that what looks like a quick ten-minute drive is really about thirty minutes when you take into account rush hour traffic. You may want to try out a few different routes to see if you can make the commute the amount of time you want.

A lot of buyers visit the home during the day or in the early evening, but what’s it like later at night or on the weekends? Is there a neighbor who tends to have large parties? That could ruin many of your quiet weekends at home. Drive through the area at random times of the day to see if the street looks significantly busier. Also, stop the car and roll down your windows. Do you hear any dogs barking or other strange noises?

These are just a few of the little details and other things you might overlook if you’re really wowed by the home. Don’t be discouraged if you find that your dream home isn’t perfect. It may still be a great place to live. You can talk with your real estate agent about any small issues you find to determine how big of an impact they will really be.

Source: www.rismedia.com

How to Sell a Home in Autumn or Fall

Home-selling-autumn.300x230-56a493695f9b58b7d0d7a1afThe fall real estate market is almost always a hot season. Home selling in autumn or fall is the second best time of the year to sell a home. Families have returned from summer vacations. Kids have gone back to school. The holidays aren’t yet upon us, at least not yet in an annoying way. We are set to enjoy 75 to 80 days of normalcy, and that’s a great time to sell a home.

In parts of the country with four seasons, we watch leaves explode in vibrant colors as for sale signs pop up in yards.

People are happy and relaxed as the temperature begins to drop. It’s not just sweater weather that creates static electricity in autumn; it’s the scurrying of agents diligently working to pop a few more sales into the hopper before third quarter sales results are posted.

Here are 10 tips for attracting the autumn home buyer in the fall:

Clean Up the Yard

Rake dead leaves and debris in your lawn. Don’t let overgrown vegetation block the windows or path to the entrance. Cutting bushes and tree limbs will let the sun inside and showcase the exterior of your home. Cut away summer vines and cut down dead flowers. Make the most of autumn weather in the fall real estate market.

Create Autumn Curb Appeal

The most popular autumn flowers are chrysanthemums (or mums) and they bloom for a long time. I am also partial to marigolds for fall. Both mums and marigolds are available in yellow, which is my number one home selling color.

Plant them in pots. Place pots on the steps and along the sidewalk. Accent with pumpkins or other types of squash.

Dress the Windows

Rain and wind from over the summer months can make your windows dusty and streaked by autumn. You might not notice smudges, but buyers will, if only on a subconscious level.

To sell a home, your windows need to sparkle. Even though I am not selling my home, my cats routinely rub their little noses on the inside glass while walking along window ledges, so I need to wash my windows inside and out every autumn. Remove screens and spray them down.

Check the HVAC

You want the air inside your home to smell fresh. When was the last time you changed your furnace filter? You can buy 90-day furnace filters. Have the HVAC system checked before you need to turn on the heat. Besides, the buyer will ask a home inspector to look at your HVAC. If you discover problems with your furnace, it’s better to fix them before your home goes on the market.

Clean Out the Fireplace for the Fall Real Estate Market

Ah, nothing smells like autumn than smoke from a wood-burning fireplace. However, in some parts of the country, burning wood indoors or outdoors is outlawed. In Sacramento, we have certain days when we are not allowed to burn wood in the fireplace. If you have a gas fireplace, light it when buyers come through.

If the fireplace is filled with cobwebs because it hasn’t been used for months, vacuum it out and wash it down. Some home stagers arrange knickknacks in the fireplace in place of wood logs.

Prepare Autumn Edibles

Speaking of autumn scents, you might set out freshly baked pumpkin cupcakes or simmer hot apple cider on the stove. Put a tray of cinnamon sticks on the counter, dotted with whole cloves. One of my favorite autumn treats as a kid was snickerdoodle cookies. Prop open a cookbook to an autumn stew. Fill a bowl with crisp red apples.

Set the Mood for Fall Real Estate Musically

When I think of autumn music, beyond “See You in September” and “California Dreamin’,” polka music and accordions come to mind. German beer fests are always held in October. But that doesn’t seem appropriate for autumn home selling unless you’re entertaining a frat house. I suspect a home seller is better off with Enya’s “The First of Autumn” or George Winston’s new age piano album “Autumn.”

Utilize Autumn Accent Colors

You don’t need to dump a lifeless sofa when you can accessorize its dullness with bright red, orange and / or golden yellow pillows. Toss a quilt or autumn-colored throw over a chair. After you’ve cleared away the clutter and depersonalized each room, bring a little bit of autumn hues to each room by placing bold-colored accent pieces in odd groupings such as 3’s and 5’s. Create an autumn centerpiece for the dining room table by arranging pine cones and nuts around orange candles, stick in a few leaves from the yard.

Turn on the Lights Everywhere

Above all, bring in the light. When days get shorter, the sun sets lower in the horizon and casts wider shadows. Pull up the blinds, open the shutters, push back the drapes on every window. Turn on every light in the house, including appliance lights and closet lights. Brighten darker rooms with few windows by placing spotlights on the floor behind furniture, and for goodness sakes, turn off the TV.

Offer Parting Treats to Potential Buyers

I like to leave a guest book by the door for people to leave comments about the home. Gathering buyer feedback can be crucial. And buyers will feel more compelled to leave you a note if you give them something in return. Like tiny packets of candy corn or those snack-sized candy bars — oh, I love Snickers bars like no tomorrow. Or you can go all-out and leave a tray of individually wrapped caramelized apples, tied with a curling ribbon.

Source: www.thebalance.com

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