Modernizing Your Home Security

Technology can will wake you up in the morning to your own personalized display screen, adjust your room temperature, turn on your lights and operate other household functions. What next?

As technology evolves and becomes more affordable, homeowners should consider replacing their older equipment with a completely new security system, rather than patching together outdated units that provide specific functions in isolation.

A modern system will wake you up in the morning to your own personalized display screen, adjust your room temperature, turn on your lights and operate other household functions. When you leave the house, wireless technology will allow you to watch your property, both inside and out, from any number of computing devices. This means you can also program household functions from afar.

These newer residential security systems can coordinate a wide range of functions by remote control, from locking windows and closing the garage door, to adjusting the thermostat, drapery and lighting. They can even notify you if a room has been entered or a cabinet has been opened. Commercial-type closed-circuit television cameras (CCTV) with live video feed are also being introduced to residential systems in many average-sized homes. In addition, these modern systems coordinate driveway and doorway cameras (connected to your home computer or TV), monitor for break-ins, provide smoke and CO2 detection, and include water sensors for the detection of a burst pipe, leaking water tank or an overflowing tub.

In the near future, residential video surveillance will distinguish pets from people, and even burglars from letter carriers. The latest CCTV cameras can identify intruders using motion or heat sensors or even activity pattern recognition (e.g. climbing a fence or jimmying a lock).

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Worried You Won’t Find the Home You Want?

If you’re thinking of selling your home, you may be concerned that you won’t be able to find the kind of property you’re looking to buy. After all, getting into a more desirable home is the main reason many people move in the first place.

Should you be concerned?

First, think about the last time you purchased a car. You probably had a price range in mind and a general idea of the kind of vehicle you wanted. After visiting a few dealerships – or shopping online – you probably discovered seven or eight models that fit your criteria.

Even with that limited selection, you were likely able to pick one that was right for you.

Well, that’s good news. In the real estate market, there are probably dozens of properties available that meet many or all of your criteria. So, the odds are in your favor that you’ll find a property you love.

Secondly, new properties come on the market all the time. As your real estate sales associate, I will keep an eye out on your behalf and quickly alert you to new listings that match your needs and wishes.

Is it possible that you still won’t find a home that’s absolutely perfect for you in every way? Of course it is. However, there is an excellent chance you’ll get into a property that has everything you need and most, if not all, of what you want.

That’s not just encouraging. It’s exciting!

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A Bird’s Eye View of Selling Your Home

If you haven’t sold a home before, the process can seem complex and even intimidating. Here’s a bird’s-eye view of the steps to expect:

If you haven’t sold a home before, the process can seem complex and even intimidating. It really isn’t. In fact, the steps to selling your property – quickly and for the best price – are straightforward, although not necessarily easy.

Here’s a bird’s-eye view of the steps to expect:

  • Determine what your property will likely sell for on today’s market. This is referred to as the Current Market Value.
  • Decide on a list price. Doing this properly is crucial. If you set the price too high, you’ll discourage buyers from seeing your home. On the other hand, if the price is too low, you may be leaving thousands of dollars on the table.
  • Prepare your home for sale. This involves cleaning, de-cluttering, fixing and staging so that your property wows potential buyers.
  • Market and promote the property to the marketplace. This needs to be done effectively to maximize the number of qualified buyers who find out about and become interested in your listing.
  • Show your property to buyers interested in seeing it.
  • Negotiate offers effectively so that you sell your property for the best price and conditions.
  • Make a deal and begin the transaction paperwork!

Of course, you don’t have to do it all alone! As your real estate sales associate, I will do most of the heavy-lifting for you. I’ll be by your side throughout the process, helping ensure your home sale is trouble-free and successful.

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Low-Cost Storage Hacks for Creating More Space

Comedian George Carlin’s most memorable routine was, “A place for my stuff.” Here are low-cost hacks for creating storage space for your stuff.

Comedian George Carlin’s most memorable routine was, “A place for my stuff.” In it, he talked about dealing with the increasing quantity of items we accumulate throughout life.

George was funny. The problem is not. Here are some low-cost ideas for quickly creating storage space for your stuff.

  • Attach a cloth pouch or thin plastic basket to the inside of cupboard doors. This is a great way to store Tupperware lids, cosmetics, etc.
  • Install hooks inside the foyer closet for loose items such as hats and scarfs.
  • Use egg cartons to make effective storage inserts in drawers.
  • Fashion stores often put purchases in stiff, high-quality boxes. Placed on their sides, these make effective storage compartments. (Shoe boxes are especially effective.)
  • Consider using suitcases for out-of-season clothing. In addition to storage, they also provide protection.
  • Never throw out an old wine rack. There are numerous ways these can be used for storage. (For example: tools)

By thinking creatively, you can probably come up with many other simple ideas for creating more storage. The reward is a home that looks neater and more spacious.

Photo by Iñaki del Olmo on Unsplash

Making “Neighborhood Targeting” Work for You

Imagine if you dreamed of owning a special limited-edition vehicle. What would you do to ensure that your dream vehicle would someday be parked in your driveway – with your name on the ownership papers?

You would probably start by doing some research. You’d find out how much that vehicle would cost, what features are available, and so forth. You would likely visit a local dealership and take a test drive if a model is available on site. You would keep an eye on the market for any that come up and let the dealer know you’re looking for just that car. If you did, then, someday, you’d probably be the proud owner of the limited-edition car of your dreams.

What does this have to do with real estate?

Well, you can take the same approach when there’s a neighborhood you’d love to live in someday. You can target it, learn what homes typically cost in that area, and keep your eye on that market in case a property becomes available that meets your criteria.

By focusing on a specific neighborhood, you increase your chances of someday living there, simply because you’re focusing on it.

Of course, neighborhood targeting isn’t as simple as aiming to own a specific car someday. That’s why you need someone like me who can keep an eye on that neighborhood on your behalf, and alert you to opportunities that become available.

Then, if a listing that’s a good fit comes on the market, you can decide whether or not to make a move.

Is there a dream neighborhood you’d like to live in some day? Call today to start making it happen.

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Should You Move or Renovate?

Determining whether you should buy a new home or fix up your current one isn’t easy. In fact, the decision can be steeped in so much drama, they make reality TV shows about it! So, if you’re wondering whether to move or improve, call today to get the facts you need to make the best choice.

Determining whether you should buy a new home or fix up your current one isn’t easy. In fact, the decision can be steeped in so much drama, they make reality TV shows about it! So, if you’re wondering whether to move or improve, here are three things to consider:

Will a renovation truly fix what you don’t like about your property?

If you’re tired of a small kitchen, for example, given the layout of your house, it might not be possible to make it any bigger. On the other hand, if you’re craving a spacious rec room with a cosy fireplace, then a renovation could make that happen.

How much will a renovation cost? How does that compare to the cost of moving to a new home?

Of course, there are some things you may want that aren’t specific to your house, such as an easier commute or nearby park. Those are features you may only be able to get by moving.

It’s important to get accurate estimates of both the cost to renovate, and the cost of a new home, so you can make an informed decision.

Renovations often have a habit of costing more than you originally anticipate. Remember, the final result should be a home you want to stay in for quite some time

Beware of compromising versus settling.

Whichever decision you make – to renovate or to sell – you can expect to have to make at least some compromises. That’s normal.

For example, consider the impact of adding an extension to your house. It would be a major renovation. Is it the ideal way to get the extra room you want? Do the benefits of renovating outweigh the benefits of finding a new larger home that already includes the space you need?

It can be a tough decision. If you’re in the midst of making it, call today to get the facts you need to make the best choice.