Donna Coakley McGowan's Blog
For many homeowners, the purpose of creating an eco-friendly house is to reduce their impact on the environment while simultaneously lowering their utility costs. However, there are additional perks that you may enjoy if you decide to transform your house into a sustainable living space.
These are just a few of the benefits that you may realize if you live in an eco-friendly home:
You May Breathe More Easily in Your Own Home
As you work to upgrade your home's heating and cooling system in order to create an eco-friendly living space, you will find that your indoor air quality quickly improves. Small changes like changing your air filters can have an almost immediate impact on the amount of dust and pollen circulating in your home. Larger changes like switching to an energy-efficient heating and cooling system will improve your indoor air quality over time. Adding other unique touches, such as houseplants, can make the air inside your home cleaner and more refreshing.
You Might Reduce the Amount of Maintenance Required to Keep Up Your Home
Many people who are interested in living in an eco-friendly home prioritize the materials that are used during their home improvement projects. Sustainable materials created from recycled products or harvested from sustainable forests are known for being more durable over time. These materials often require less maintenance in the long-term, which can prevent you from having to take time to complete costly and inconvenient repairs in the future. While environmentally-friendly building materials may have a higher price tag initially, it's important to remember that these same materials can provide you with significant cost savings in the years ahead due to the reduced need for maintenance and upkeep.
You Might See a Boost in Your Property Value
While it's easy to see the benefits that you will enjoy while living inside your green home, it's important to recognize that others may desire those same features as well. Sustainable homes are in high-demand among conscious home buyers who see that eco-friendly features will improve their quality of life while also lowering their operating costs. In all likelihood, if you make important upgrades now to transform your home into an eco-friendly house, you will be able to sell it for a higher price than those around you who have not made those same improvements.
You May Feel Happier and Less Stressed Inside Your Home
In a green home, there is often more natural light and a better indoor air quality which can have a direct impact on your quality of life inside those walls. Increased access to sunlight will give your body a natural boost of happiness on a daily basis. The extra plants that you add to your decor will help you feel more at ease. Knowing that you are doing the right thing for yourself and the community at large will bring you the peace of mind that you have been searching for.
Whether you decide to design an eco-friendly home from the ground up, or you are hoping to upgrade your existing home into a more sustainable property, you will be able to enjoy these benefits along with others.
Ready to buy a new home? Ultimately, there is no shortage of high-quality residences at your disposal.
For homebuyers, you'll likely need to conduct plenty of research to find your dream house. And as you begin your search for the ideal residence, you should consider a house's interior closely. By doing so, you'll be able to determine whether costly, time-intensive home interior repairs will be needed in the foreseeable future.
What does it take to assess a home's interior properly? Here are three questions that every homebuyer should ask when he or she evaluates a house's interior:
1. Does a home's interior match my personal style?
Do you prefer bold, vibrant home interior colors? Or, do you enjoy a subtle mix of light and dark colors? Consider your personal style as you study a house's interior, and you'll be able to decide whether a home's interior complements your individual preferences.
Remember, a home's interior might fail to meet your expectations. But keep in mind that there are plenty of fish in the sea. As such, you can explore a broad array of houses and should be able to find a residence with an interior that will make you smile.
2. Were recent home interior renovations completed?
Learn about any recent home interior renovations that were completed. That way, you can understand how much time a home seller has committed to improving a home's interior.
Also, if a home seller has performed myriad home interior improvements, try to find out when these renovations were finished.
As a homebuyer, information is key. With details about assorted home interior renovations, you may be better equipped than ever before as you decide whether a residence is right for you.
3. Am I comfortable with a home's interior?
A homebuyer should feel comfortable with a home's interior before he or she purchases a residence.
If you fall in love with a house's interior during a home showing, you may want to consider moving forward by submitting an offer on a house. On the other hand, if you find a home requires many home interior improvements, you may want to consider exploring other houses that are available.
For homebuyers who are on the fence about a home, a real estate may be able to help. This housing market professional can offer expert insights into a house that you may struggle to obtain elsewhere, ensuring you can make an informed decision about a residence.
Furthermore, a real estate agent can take the guesswork out of the homebuying journey. This real estate expert will keep you up to date about new homes as they become available, set up home showings for you and even negotiate with home sellers on your behalf. As a result, a real estate agent will make it easy to find a house that will serve you sell for years to come.
Work with a real estate agent, and you can move closer to finding a home that looks beautiful both inside and out.
Moving day; you’ve waited months for this day to arrive, working hard to make sure you, your family, pets, and belongings are ready for the big move.
With all of the preparations and various people involved, it’s easy for moving day to become dangerous.
To ensure that you and your family have a safe and smooth moving day, I’ve provided some tips that every mover should keep in mind.
Make plans for pets and young children
The last thing you want on the first day in your new home is to be wandering around the neighborhood looking for your dog who slipped away during the move. If possible, make arrangements for pets to stay with friends or family for moving day to make things easier.
If you need to bring your pets along, it’s a good idea to put them in a “playroom” with their toys, water bowl, etc. while you have the door to the house open. Not only will it stop them from running out, but it will also prevent you from tripping over them while you carry the couch.
Don’t be a hero
It’s our tendency to want to do a job ourselves if we want it done right. But, when it comes to moving, that philosophy can lead to a thrown out back and a damper on your plans.
When it comes to getting large and heavy objects in and out of the house, make sure you have at least one other person ready to lift with you.
Stack from heaviest to lightest
It may seem obvious, but in the confusion of a move, it can be easy to pack your truck or van in a less-than-ideal way. Rather than playing Tetris with your boxes, try to focus on weight instead. You don’t want heavy boxes near the roof in case they fall on you or on your other belongings.
Place the largest and heavier items in the van first. This will allow you to plan the rest of the load around them, rather than having to move them around to make room.
Take a breather
As tempting as it may be, you don’t have to finish everything in one day. As long as your truck is locked and secure, it’s okay if you don’t bring in every single box. Resting throughout the day and staying hydrated, especially when moving in the summer, will help you stay sharp and ready to keep working.
Have an emergency plan
If you take precautions, you most likely won’t have to worry about emergencies. However, accidents do happen and it’s best to be prepared for them when they do. If you or a family member requires medication, make sure it’s handy and that everyone knows where it is.
Similarly, label your first aid kit and keep it with your necessities during the move.
If you follow these tips, your moving day should be a simple and safe process and you’ll be enjoying your new home in no time.
Buying land can be a tricky matter for many people, especially when they're first getting started. No matter how valuable a property may seem at the time, it may not take very long to realize there were more strings attached than you thought. But while there are a few red flags to keep in mind, you don't have to let your nerves get the better of you. Before signing a contract, here are a few facts to keep in mind.
Chances are, you've likely already confirmed that the land has been zoned for building, but what you may not have considered is the extent of the zoning laws. Building in certain neighborhoods may be difficult to do, depending on the size and configuration of the property. You also may want to consider how future laws will affect your building. For example, if the neighborhood is likely to pass new laws to protect the environment, you need to keep in mind the expense and effort of compliance. Zoning hiccups may not prevent you from buying the property, it can just help you prepare for what's ahead.
The State of the Land
If you're buying property, you need to do more than just look at the site. You need to know if the soil has been contaminated while the land sat vacant, how fast the tree roots are growing, and whether the ground can support certain infrastructure. If the roots are moving close to the property site, you'll need to factor in the cost of removal. Buyers should also consider how the sunlight (or lack thereof) will affect the eventual inhabitants. If there are sun-blocking hills near the area, it could significantly reduce the demand of the property.
If you're looking for a bargain, it's likely going to come in the form of a fairly undesirable neighborhood. Building in an area like this may pay off in spades, or it may end up being a major mistake. Some people will jump on neighborhoods that are "up-and-coming" only to find that the wind changes direction soon after buying. Or they find that it takes too long for the neighborhood to become valuable. You need to think about what you'll do if you can't sell for the price you want (e.g., rent, etc.). Not every developer can wait a decade or more before the market shifts.
Buying land can be a great way to both meet the housing demand in an area while generating profit for you. The key is to consider the most common scenarios (and problems) that may occur before moving forward.
Want to relocate to a condo? Buying a condo can be an uphill climb, particularly for homebuyers who are browsing the real estate market for the first time. Fortunately, real estate agents are available who will allocate the necessary time and resources to ensure you can find a top-notch condo in no time at all.
Ultimately, hiring the right real estate agent to assist you during your condo search can be easy. Here are three questions that you should ask a real estate agent before you hire him or her to guide you during your condo search:
1. How have you helped condo buyers in the past?
Ask a real estate agent about his or her past experience with condo buyers – you'll be glad you did. With this information at your disposal, you can find out how a real estate professional collaborates with condo buyers to help them achieve their goals.
A real estate agent should be a good communicator, i.e. someone who keeps condo buyers informed at each stage of the condo buying journey. That way, this real estate professional will keep you up to date about new condos as they become available and ensure you can find a great condo at a budget-friendly price.
When in doubt, be sure to ask for client referrals too. By doing so, you can reach out to a real estate agent's past clients to learn about their condo buying experiences.
2. How do you approach difficult situations?
Unfortunately, the condo buying journey sometimes can be filled with roadblocks along the way. For real estate agents, it is important to remain calm, cool and collected in these situations and do everything possible to limit their impact.
Ask a real estate agent to share details about past condo buying experiences that did not necessarily go according to plan. This will provide you with insights into how a real estate agent approaches unforeseen circumstances and whether he or she can thrive under pressure.
A real estate professional with condo buying experience should do whatever it takes to help his or her client get the best results possible. With this real estate agent at your side, you should have no trouble securing your dream condo, regardless of the challenges that you encounter along the way.
3. Why should I hire you?
There is no right or wrong answer as to why you should hire a real estate agent to help you find a condo. For many condo buyers, it is a gut feeling. Meanwhile, other property buyers will choose a real estate professional based solely on his or her education and past successes.
As a condo buyer, it is important to employ a real estate agent who you will feel comfortable working with at all times. This real estate professional should be happy to help you in any way possible and respond to your condo buying concerns and queries. In addition, he or she will go the extra mile to ensure you can buy a terrific condo that matches or exceeds your expectations.