Cheryl Fleming, GRI, ABR's Blog
When it comes to buying a home, there is no reason to let negotiations get the best of you. Fortunately, we're here to help you become an expert negotiator, i.e. someone who understands the ins and outs of obtaining a high-quality residence at a budget-friendly price.
What does it take to become an expert homebuying negotiator? Here are three negotiating tips that every homebuyer needs to know:
1. Act Quickly on a Home That You Like
If you fall in love with a home and are ready to make an offer on it, don't hesitate to put your best foot forward. Submit a competitive offer, and you may be able to avoid stressful negotiations with a home seller.
Understanding the true value of a residence is paramount for homebuyers. Conduct plenty of housing market research before you submit an offer, and you can better understand the prices of comparable houses in your area.
Also, if a home seller counters your initial offer, don't be afraid to negotiate. Be flexible, and you can boost your chances of securing your dream residence.
2. Do the Math
How much can you afford for a new home? You'll want to establish a homebuying budget before you enter negotiations with a home seller. Otherwise, you risk spending too much to acquire a residence.
Getting pre-approved for a mortgage may make it easy for you to avoid the temptation to overspend. With a mortgage in hand, you can search for houses that fit your price range.
In addition, be sure to account for closing costs and other fees that you may encounter down the line. If you fail to do so, you may wind up overspending on a residence.
3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent
Homebuying negotiations can be time-consuming and expensive if you're not careful. Thankfully, real estate agents are available who can negotiate with a home seller on your behalf.
Hiring an experienced real estate agent usually is a good idea, particularly for first-time homebuyers. Stress and anxiety can be problematic during homebuying negotiations, but a real estate agent will ensure that you won't have to deal with these issues.
Your real estate agent has a simple goal: to ensure that you can purchase the best house at the best price. He or she will go above and beyond the call of duty to accomplish this goal. As such, employing a real estate agent to handle homebuying negotiations can make a world of difference for homebuyers nationwide.
Furthermore, your real estate agent will keep you informed throughout negotiations. This real estate professional will offer expert tips and recommendations and will never make a move without consulting with you. Perhaps best of all, your real estate agent will be happy to answer any of your homebuying concerns and queries, guaranteeing that you can make informed decisions throughout the homebuying process.
Work with a real estate agent as you prepare to enter negotiations to purchase a residence. By doing so, you can simplify the process of going from homebuyer to homeowner.
The kitchen is the center of the home. It’s where families ultimately end up gathering throughout the day. Whether for breakfast, dinner, to chat over tea or wine it’s a place for connection with those we care about.
And as a room that we spend so much of our time in why shouldn’t it be the best room in the house? Here are five kitchen features to look for while house hunting for your dream home.
Custom cabinetry promises quality, natural wood that has been hand designed by a craftsman. No out of the box carbon copies here. Since time and resources were allocated towards adding custom cabinetry you can also be sure careful planning was as well. The cabinetry should enhance and fit artfully within the kitchen and around architecture capitalizing on space.
A large kitchen island is quickly becoming a necessity for homeowners upgrading their spaces. Providing more than just extra prep space it allows for the family to gather while cooking, working on homework or socializing over cocktails. Look for options that can comfortably seat six to eight people especially if you love hosting others often.
Depending on your preferences you may find your countertops more important than counter space. Quartz and marble countertops are quickly replacing granite. And rightly so, they make for a stunning centerpiece of the room. They are slightly more high maintenance but well worth the effort. If you are so lucky to have these countertops in your new home be sure to pick up some trivets with padded feet and Bar Keepers Friend to preserve their natural beauty.
Natural stone tiling is forever a classic. If you’re seeking a home that is timelessly elegant natural stone is a must-have. Marble is the most coveted. And if radiant heat flooring is on your wishlist for those early Sunday mornings cooking pancakes natural stone makes for a perfect duo.
A walk-in pantry for the home chef is akin to a shoe closet for the fashion forward. Allowing plenty of storage space, a walk-in pantry begs to be filled with cookbooks, specialty ingredients and you’re most prized appliances to be put neatly on display. Consider the proximity of each pantry to your cooking space. You’ll want one that feels like a natural extension to the kitchen and not like you’re going out of your way each time you need to gather necessary ingredients and supplies.
If you have your heart set on any of these features but find an almost perfect home without them leave room in your budget to upgrade after the sale. This way you will not only have upscale features but ones that are completely customized to your exact preferences. You’ll have plenty of time to make these decisions without the rush of balancing out the pros and cons before placing a bid.
Have you ever visited a butterfly garden and marveled at how beautiful it was to see so many butterflies happily fluttering along flower to flower? Did you wish that you could have that same experience more often?
How about every day?
By turning your flower garden into a strategically designed one that attracts butterflies this could be your reality every day! Here’s how to get started:
First, you should know that butterflies eat from different plants than caterpillars. And while you might be tempted to leave out the plants that sustain caterpillars if you want a consistent butterfly presence caterpillars are a critical piece to that puzzle.
No caterpillars mean no butterflies.
But choosing which plants to add to your garden for caterpillars is going to depend on your region. This list tells you what to plant based on butterfly species https://www.nwf.org/en/Garden-for-Wildlife/Wildlife/Attracting-Butterflies
Some plants that provide caterpillar are dill, fennel, milkweed, white clover, and parsley.
Nectar plants, from which butterflies eat from, include the butterfly bush, cosmos, purple coneflower, and zinnia. Alyssum. These are also fairly easy flowers to grow, which is great news if you don’t naturally have a green thumb.
Some butterflies also like fruit! Attract them by placing overripe fruit such as oranges, pears, and melons in a dish in your butterfly garden.
You’ll want to create variety in plants that you add to your garden. Aim for a layout much like the one you would find in a more “natural” setting. Look to add shrubs and trees in addition to perennials. Varying the heights of plants also helps to create a natural atmosphere.
Attract the eye of butterflies by clumping flower types together. It’s easier for them to see a larger expanse of bright colorful flowers than a couple ones spotted here and there. When they see a large swath of similar buds they know it’s a good place to snack!!
Shrubs and trees are critical to your butterfly garden. They provide safety for caterpillars, shield your garden from wind which in turn encourages butterflies the ability to explore and also provides butterflies shelter to rest safely at night
Plan your garden to have plenty of time in the sunlight. Butterflies are cold-blooded and need to spend their mornings warming up in the sun before setting off for the day! Having a rock or two in these sunny areas will encourage butterflies to stay awhile and warm their wings. Ideally, these sunny spots will get around 6 hours of sun.
Another lesser known feature to include in your butterfly garden are what is known as puddling stations. A puddling station is essentially a shallow container filled with sand and water for butterflies to stop and perch on to drink. Have a few of these stations throughout your butterfly garden!
It’s never too early or too late to start encouraging your children to explore new things and learn new skills. Children will spend most of their time at home, playing with various toys, and learning from their families.
One way we can encourage kids to learn is to create a positive learning environment within our homes.
Doing so doesn’t have to be an expensive or time-consuming project. There are many ways you can integrate fun learning experiences into your child’s daily life at home.
In this article, we’re going to cover some of the cheap and simple ways to create a positive learning environment right at home so that you can build upon what they have learned (or what they will be learning soon) at school.
It may come as no surprise that kids who read frequently are statistically more likely to excel at school. However, that doesn’t mean you just need to sit them down with a copy of Hamlet and wait for their Ivy League acceptance letter.
Reading can be an important way to learn and bond together with their child. The best way to encourage them to read is to read together the books that you’ll both enjoy.
Slowly building a home library or bookshelf is a fun way to visualize your hard work and all of the books you’ve read together. The best part is that you kind find countless used children's books for less than a dollar at your local thrift store.
Let your child take the lead
Creativity is something that is fostered and taught. Children are lucky to have active imaginations that let them make up games and stories on their own. However, you can help steer that creativity into fun projects at home that will produce something they can be proud of.
A good way to do this is to let your children direct you in the direction of their interests. If they ask you, “Can I try?” while you’re mixing cake batter, you’d often be surprised at how capable they are. Getting them involved doesn’t have to mean spending hundreds on a chemistry set that will be used just once--find ways they can help with projects that exist already around your house.
Be a mentor
Parenting is full-time work. It can be hard to find time to spend learning with children after a full day of work and cooking dinner, and it’s tempting to spend the rest of the night binge-watching Netflix shows. However, it’s possible to relax while still setting a good example for your child.
Watching science shows or nature documentaries together can help you both learn something new. Making trips to museums or growing a garden together on the weekends are other ways you can learn new things and skills and have fun with your children at the same time.
When it comes to food, eating healthy, home-cooked meals and nutritious snacks can be a way for both of you to improve your health and learn the benefits of nutrition.