3 Ways to Protect Your Escrow Deposit

You’ve handed over a chunk of money to show your interest in a home purchase. Make sure you don’t lose it. You’ve made an offer on a property, the seller has accepted, and maybe you’re about to sign a contract. Now it’s time to put some money down to show that you’re serious about moving forward. The amount of money a buyer puts down (and when it’s put down) varies by state and local market. For many, it’s a few thousand dollars, up to three percent of the purchase price. In some parts of the country, it can be up to …

10 Ways to Improve Your New Home Before You Unpack

Wait! Don’t open the boxes just yet — tackle these 10 tasks before moving in. You’ll be glad you did! If you thought home buying was stressful, just wait until the moving chaos sets in! The key to maintaining your sanity throughout the process is approaching it with patience, clear priorities and realistic expectations. Feathering your nest takes a lot of hard work, but it’ll be much easier if you tackle these 10 tasks before settling in. Remove popcorn ceiling Removing popcorn ceiling is fairly invasive — you have to cover the walls, spray the ceiling with warm water and …

How to Avoid 3 Mistakes First-Time Home Buyers Make

Look out for these pitfalls before you take the leap into purchasing a home. Everton Allen, now 28, graduated from college and was living with his parents while working as a graphic designer for the Miami Dolphins when he decided he wanted to start his own company and buy his own home. “I’d saved for a down payment over several years,” he says. “But I was worried it wouldn’t be enough, and that not having a traditional salary would affect my ability to qualify.” Such misgivings are common — prevalent, even. Fannie Mae’s Economic and Strategic Research Group conducted a survey to gauge consumers’ …

Entertaining With Pets: How to Keep Them Safe (and Sane) at Your Next Soiree

Mind your party petiquette — don’t leave your furry friends hanging. Whether you throw a housewarming party or a backyard barbecue, it’s important to understand that your pets may not share your enthusiasm for entertaining. Despite the term “party animals,” many dogs and cats don’t like raucous gatherings with strangers invading their space. Some pets get really spooked by unusual activity in the home — even moving furniture around can upset them. Try these tips for keeping your pets calm, cool and collected come party time. Prevent great escapes Party guests often leave front doors and outside gates open and unsupervised, which means …

Factors to Consider When Pricing Your Home to Sell

Do your research, choose your listing price, and watch the buyers line up. Unlike the cost of a gallon of milk or a flat-screen television, a home’s price can be hard to pin down. It’s complicated because each home is unique, and has its own story to tell. When it comes to setting the price of a house, the only thing to do is to look at the recent sales and active listings of similar homes in your area. Combine this research with the inside market knowledge of a local real estate agent, and you can confidently choose your list price. Here are some …

How to Get a Mortgage and Change Jobs at the Same Time

Relocating for a new job can be a challenge to navigate, especially when juggling a mortgage. Review the details that matter to your lender. It’s true that changing jobs can affect your loan approval, but, like most mortgage-related questions, the devil is in the details. So long as you are moving from one position to one with equal or higher income, and you are able to provide documentation of your work and income history, any changes to your loan approval chances should be minimal. The most important thing for lenders and their underwriters is ensuring you can repay the loan, …

Resources for Indian River Locals

The Sand & Land Real Estate Team list of top local resources.   City of Vero Beach   http://www.covb.org/ Area maps, calendar of events, road construction updates, and many of the current activities in and around Vero Beach. Also to start, stop, or change electric service.   Comcast Cable       http://www.comcast.com/customer-home/ Starting, stopping, changing cable service, reporting trouble, service questions.   Disaster Preparedness for Indian River County   http://www.irces.com/ This site provides information for hurricane and other emergency preparedness provided by Indian River County.   Florida Power and Light  https://www.fpl.com/ Starting, stopping, changing service, billing questions, reporting outages.   Indian River Chamber of Commerce   http://www.indianriverchamber.com/ This site provides …

10 Things You Need to Do When Buying A Home

A home is often the biggest financial investment you’ll make in your lifetime. In fact, a recent Zillow analysis reports that the typical American homeowner has 40 percent of their wealth tied up in their home. 1. Buy for the long run A home is a significant investment, not to mention a linchpin of stability. According to the Zillow Group Consumer Housing Trends Report 2017, the majority of Americans who sold their homes last year had lived in their home for at least a decade before selling. Some are even staying for the long haul. Almost half (46 percent) of all homeowners are …

When Selling a Home, the Neighbors Matter

Getting on the neighbors’ good side can be an essential part of your sales strategy. Few sellers consider their neighbor’s home when preparing to sell their own. Why would they? Their biggest concern is getting the soon-to-be-listed home painted, cleaned and landscaped for great curb appeal. But all that effort could be for nothing, if just one of your neighbors doesn’t care much for appearances. If you find the neighbor’s home unappealing, imagine your potential buyer’s first impression. The fact is, your neighbor’s unsightly property can diminish your own home’s curb appeal, no matter how much you’ve done to improve it. The …

7 Qualities of a Good Neighbor

Win and woo your next-door friends with a little neighborly know-how. If you want good neighbors, you’ll first have to become one yourself. Master these seven techniques, and even you (yes, you!) can win the approval of your entire neighborhood. 1. Good neighbors bring cookies Whether you’re new in town or haven’t kept in touch, a delivery of freshly baked goods is a perfect way to break the ice and let neighbors know that you’re thinking of them. If cookies can keep Santa returning year after year with a bag full of loot, then surely they can train your neighbors …