Monthly Archives: January 2020

2020 real estate predictions

A new year has arrived, which means many people are planning to buy or sell a home in the coming months. The spring real estate market, which begins as early as January, is the busiest real estate season in many parts of the country. If you’re planning to buy or sell in 2020, here are some helpful predictions from the National Association of REALTORS’ 2020 Housing Forecast.

Forecast for Key Housing Indicators

  • Average Mortgage Rates: 3.85% throughout the year
  • Existing Home Median Sales Price Appreciation: up 0.8%
  • Single-Family Home Housing Starts: up 6%                   
  • Existing Home Sales: down 1.8%

2020 predictions for buyers

As new homes come on the market and home prices moderate, many homebuyers will benefit. Homebuilders in 2019 were most focused on the high-end market, meaning buyers in that segment are likely to find the most options. However, builders are beginning to shift toward the mid-price market. Mortgage rates are expected to stay low, which will benefit homebuyers across all price ranges.

2020 predictions for sellers

As home prices flatting in 2020, home sellers will need to show patience and develop a thoughtful strategy when selling their homes. The entry-level market should be the most competitive, meaning these home sellers should see their properties move the fastest. Thankfully, with mortgage rates expected to stay low, sellers shouldn’t have to worry about buyers finding attractive financing for their purchases.

If you’re planning to buy a home in 2020, contact us to get preapproved for your home financing and learn how much home you can buy.

How to care for your clothes dryer

Caring for your clothes dryer involves more than just cleaning its lint trap. In order to keep your appliance running safely and efficiently, there are several regular steps you’ll need to perform.

These are some telltale signs that your dryer needs extra attention:

  • The machine runs longer than necessary
  • Clothes are still wet or damp after one cycle
  • The machine moves or shakes while it operates

Here are some helpful tips to keep your dryer running well:

  • Clean the lint screen before or after every load.
  • Keep the lint trap clear by removing the lint screen and cleaning its housing cavity with the crevice attachment on your vacuum or a dryer lint brush.
  • Wipe down the dryer’s interior monthly by unplugging the appliance and cleaning the drum with a cloth dipped in warm, soapy water.
  • Vacuum behind and underneath the dryer every three months to help avoid moisture, dirt and lint build up.
  • Make sure your dryer is balanced. If your dryer moves or shakes when in use, it is not level which can cause the rotating components to wear out sooner. Simply adjust the feet at the bottom of the unit to fix this.
  • Ensure that your dryer vent is short and straight vs. long and full of bends.
  • Check that there is adequate clearance space between your dryer and wall. If your dryer is too close to the wall, there is a chance you are crushing the venting material which can restrict airflow.
  • Inspect and clean the vent system. This can be a DIY job, or you can hire a professional. If you have pets or a large family, it may be necessary to clean the vent system as often as twice a year.

Follow these steps, and you can help maximize your dryer’s lifespan and keep it running great. 

Tips to create a workspace in your home

Our surroundings influence our work, whether it’s office work or homework. Mood, focus, creativity, productivity, comfort and health can all be enhanced or hindered by our environment. We don’t always get to outfit our school or office space as we please, but our homes are a different story. Here’s how to create a home workspace where you can do your best work.

Location

Choosing a location for your workspace is the first step. A central, visible place helps with collaboration and accountability, while a more removed area offers greater privacy and fewer distractions. Locating the space near a window can bolster mood and minimize eye strain so long as glare is avoided.

Amenities

Above all, the workspace should be comfortable and functional. Ensure that work surfaces and chairs are ergonomic for their intended user during reading, writing and computer use. Lighting should be sufficient for reading printed text. Chalk, white, cork or magnet boards can offer a helpful place to organize notes. Built-in storage in the form of drawers, shelves and cabinets helps keep supplies close at hand. Larger spaces can be outfitted to accommodate two or more users (with optional privacy dividers) as appropriate.

Décor

The workspace’s decor should be inviting and inspiring but neither distracting nor austere. A bright white desk with matching chair, a basic light fixture and an inspiring element is the simplest approach. Greenery in the form of potted plants is a great way to add a touch of life. Design websites like Pinterest abound with ideas for customizing workspaces to a family member’s age and personality.

Tackling homework, office duties and home bookkeeping aren’t always fun, but with the right workspace, you and the members of your household will be ready to take on the job.

Awards & Recognition:

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