Karen Lawley's Blog
If it’s time for a deep clean of your home, you may want to grab the duster and just go at it. Dusting is a task that should be done on a regular basis, but it’s not always the case. There’s a right way and a wrong way to dust. Read on for a few simple tips to make your dusting tasks a breeze.
Should You Vacuum First?
When you dust, all of the dirt and particles will fall on the floor. It only makes sense to dust first, then vacuum. You may want to get right to vacuuming, remember that dusting first is always the best approach.
Where To Start
When you're trying to tackle cleaning the entire house, it can be difficult to decide where to start. The best strategy is to start at the doorway of any room and work your way inward. You should also start at the ceiling and work your way down to the floor. It can be easy to forget ceiling lights, fans, and other fixtures that are high up but it’s important to get at these areas because dust often collects thickly there. Some other places to be sure you dust are:
The deeper of a clean that you’re looking to achieve the more areas you’ll need to focus. For routine dusting, you can do more of a once-over approach. This way, you won’t need to spend hours on dusting each time you go to clean your home if you keep up with it.
Frequent Dusting Will Keep Your Home In Better Condition
The more often you dust, the better condition the things in your home will be. Dust can place undue wear and tear on furniture and break down electronic items. Dusting will prevent scratches and blemishes because dirt won’t be on the issues to scratch them. Your furniture will look like new after a deep clean. You’ll appreciate the shine!
Other Areas To Focus On
Don’t forget to dust these other key areas in your home when you’re doing a deep clean:
Corners of rooms
There are even a few ways that you can prevent dust from collecting in your home. Try using area rugs and pull up wall-to-wall carpeting. Use doormats at each entrance to your home to help keep the dust from collecting there. Keeping the windows in your home closed is also a great way to prevent dust and pollen from collecting in your house.
If your house is currently on the market or you're preparing to put it up for sale, the secret of success lies in the lyrics of an old popular song called "Accentuate The Positive." Although it was originally published in 1944, the song has been resurfacing for years on television, in movies, and music recordings.
"Accentuating the positive and eliminating the negative" may seem like basic, old-fashioned advice, but when homeowners follow it, they increase their chances of selling their home faster and for the highest possible price.
Although your real estate agent will provide a ton of helpful advice on how to present your house in its best light, there are dozens of things you can start doing now to improve its marketability, curb appeal, and the positive response you get from real estate agents and buyers.
- Avoid or minimize any aspect of your home and property that gives the impression of neglect. That could include anything from peeling paint and cracked windows to overgrown bushes and weedy yards. Weeds growing out of cracks in walkways, driveways, and concrete flooring often looks the worst -- but weeds, in general, always detract from the appearance of a home for sale.
- Reduce or eliminate anything that might create a feeling of "unpleasantness" in the minds of prospects. In other words, if there's anything about your home that might cause buyers to cringe, frown, gasp, crinkle their nose (in displeasure) or shake their heads, then you probably need to take corrective action -- and fast! A prime example would be pet odors, stains, and loose fur, which can be major turnoffs for many people -- especially if they have allergies!
- If little or no interior painting has been done over the past five or ten years, there's a strong chance that your walls are faded, marred, and looking worse for the wear. A couple coats of neutral-colored paint can often infuse a more vibrant, updated appearance to those tired-looking rooms. Subtle, light colors -- although, not necessarily stark white -- are often advisable. The objective is to appeal to as many people as possible, without taking any decorating risks that might alienate anyone.
- Speaking of "harsh versus eye-pleasing," your home's lighting is another important thing to scrutinize when looking for cost-effective ways to increase the attractiveness, appeal, and marketability of your home.
A homebuying plan is a must-have, particularly for those who want to enjoy a successful property buying experience. Lucky for you, there are many things you can do to execute a homebuying plan to perfection.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you put your homebuying plan into action and achieve the best-possible results during the property buying journey.
1. Establish Realistic Homebuying Goals
As you craft your homebuying plan, it generally is a good idea to establish milestones. That way, you can take a step-by-step approach to go from homebuyer to homeowner.
Of course, it is paramount to set realistic homebuying goals. Think about why you are pursuing a home in the first place, and you can map out your homebuying plan accordingly.
It may be beneficial to hone your home search as well. If you narrow your house search to a select group of cities and towns, you may be better equipped than ever before to streamline the homebuying journey.
2. Maintain Flexibility
Although you may devote many hours to craft an effective homebuying strategy, it is important to remember that problems may arise as you search for your dream residence. Fortunately, if you maintain flexibility, you will be ready to adjust your homebuying plan as needed.
If you have to modify your homebuying strategy, there is no need to worry. Instead, adjust your plan and continue your pursuit of your ideal residence. Because if you are flexible as you search for your dream home, you can minimize stress and boost the likelihood of discovering a residence that may serve you well for an extended period of time.
3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent
When it comes to developing and executing a homebuying plan, you do not have to work alone. In fact, you can hire a real estate agent who is happy to help you find and purchase a terrific residence at an affordable price.
By consulting with a real estate agent, you can receive expert homebuying support. A real estate agent knows what it takes to acquire a first-rate home at a budget-friendly price, and as such, will work with you to ensure your homeownership dream can come true.
If you are unsure about where to search for homes, for example, a real estate agent can help you determine where to pursue residences. He or she also can help you get in touch with banks and credit unions so you can obtain home financing. Plus, a real estate agent is ready to help you submit an offer to purchase your dream residence. And if you have concerns or questions during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent is prepared to respond to them too.
For those who want to seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey, you may want to craft a property buying plan. Thanks to the aforementioned tips, you can get the most out of a homebuying strategy and ensure you can quickly find your dream residence.
Anyone who has ever gone out on a job interview or a date knows how important a good first impression is. First impressions can color the entire way we approach a person and environment. When it comes to your home, you want to create a positive setting that draws people in on first sighting.
But did you know that there are several common home staging mistakes that sellers do that actually have an opposite, polarizing effect; turning away potential buyers? The following is a look at those common faux pas to ensure you avoid them and instead sell your home fast:
3 Common Home Staging Mistakes to Avoid
Not professionally cleaning before the stage. Regular house cleaning, even if it's the best house cleaning efforts you've ever done, may not be enough to really appeal during home staging. This is one of those situations in which you want a deep clean done by the professionals. Professional house cleaning services will ensure everything is pristine from floorboard to ceiling corner, helping both get out stains and lingering odors. This is important both because a deep clean best shows off a property and it sends a subliminal message that the house has been well-cared for and maintained.
Forgetting about storage areas (including the garage). Storage areas can be make or break spaces for your future buyers. So it's important to not neglect these areas when prepping for photographs or open houses. If necessary, consider renting a storage facility to store all of your excess clothes, blankets, Tupperware, etc. Thus, whether it's a closet or garage, make sure it's included in your list of places to prep!
Not putting away personal items. This can be a very, very hard thing for home sellers to avoid but it is important. Remember, the goal of a home staging, both in pictures and when setting up an open house, is to get potential home buyers to imagine what the home could be like if it were theirs. You want to create a neutral canvas that allows your audience to paint in the details. As such, having too many personal items and personalized decor touches can turn off potential home buyers. So pack them up and send them off to the storage unit before the cameras come out and the buyers start a'knocking.
When it comes to home buying a home, there’s a ton of different information available out there. A lot of what has been presented as “fact” actually is quite false. These misconceptions could keep you away from achieving the very real dream of home ownership. Below, you’ll find some of the most common myths that you’ll find about home buying.
If Your Credit Score Isn’t Up To Par, You Can’t Buy
To get good mortgage rates, having a good credit score doesn’t hurt. You can still buy a home if you don’t have amazing credit. A low credit score means that your mortgage rates will be higher than the average. There are loans like FHA loans, that allow for you to get a loan with a credit score as low as 580. Don’t let a lower credit score discourage you from buying a home. If your credit score is low, there are plenty of things that you can do to help you fix the score in a short period of time.
You Need 20 Percent Down To Buy A Home
This is a long-standing myth about home buying. While putting down 20 percent on a home purchase saves you the extra expense of Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI), you can still be in the running to buy a home if your down payment is less than 20 percent. There are even some home loan programs that allow buyers to put as little as 0-3 percent down for the purchase of their home.
You Have To Make A Lot Of Money To Buy A Home
Your monthly income is one of many aspects of your financial life that’s considered when you’re buying a home. Home loans can be denied to those who make a large income just as easily as to those who have lower incomes. What matters is the debt-to-income ratio, which tells lenders how much debt a buyer has compared to the amount of income the buyer makes each and every month. Keep your debt down, and you’ll be in good shape to buy a home.
You Don’t Need To Be Pre-Approved To Get A House
Being pre-approved gives you an upper hand in the home buying process. Being pre-approved allows your lender and you to go through the entire process of getting a mortgage. When you find a home that you love, you’re able to breeze through the process of making an offer if you’re pre-approved. The pre-approval process is one of the most important aspects of buying a home.
If you’re prepared with knowledge, buying a home isn’t such a daunting process after all. Find a realtor you trust, understand your finances, and the rest will fall into place!