I have a summer obsession, well to be honest a few summer obsessions. The great thing about these obsessions is that they really help to forge new relationships, especially since we are relatively new to the area. As you can see, my biggest summer obsession is probably creating a beautiful garden. Wherever we have lived, we spent years toiling in the yard cultivating beautiful gardens. Not only do we love them, we get visitors coming to check them out. In one of our previous neighborhoods’, we had people walk up the driveway to sniff and admire the flowers. In our new neighborhood, we have people visiting the backyard to admire the gardens. Cultivating a garden helps to cultivate relationships. We give tours, talk about each others garden joys and woes, and share perennials.
Of course once you establish a garden, you attract other visitors. Now that several of us have gardens, we have also bonded over attracting the Baltimore Orioles, hummingbirds, finches, and butterflies, and unfortunately the occasional rabbit. One obsession leads to another. I love working in my sunroom so I can enjoy the beauty of my garden and catch a glimpse of the birds and butterflies.
My third obsession that helps me to meet new neighbors is walking my furry friend. Who doesn’t want to stop and pet this adorable cavachon. We have children ask to pet him, adults stop to talk about how cute he is, and our “adopted granchildren” ask to run with him. Of course we meet other dogs and get to know their owners.
Moving to a new city and neighborhood can be very difficult. It is even harder when you don’t have young children that help pave the way to new introductions. You need to find a way to meet and get to know your neighbors. Fortunately, my summer obsessions help do just that.
As a Realtor, I help my Buyers find ways to get to know their new area and neighbors. Let me know if I can help you.
Hope you also take pleasure in some of our pictures.
More and more millennials and the up and coming Gen Z’s dream of home ownership. Unfortunately, many of the young people today carry large student debt. Home ownership is achievable by following these three simple steps.
Learn to live on a budget. Know exactly where and how you are spending your money. It is so easy to budget with all of the free apps available today. Prioritize your spending, downsize what isn’t necessary, and know what sacrifices, such as stopping at the coffee shop and going out to eat, you are willing to make in order to pay off your debts and save money.
Build your credit history. Stay on top of your student loan, car loan, and credit cards. Make sure to pay them off each month on time. If you don’t have any loans or a credit history, open a credit card, use it, and pay it off each month.
Automate a down payment savings. Have a designated amount of money automatically deducted from your paycheck each month and deposited into a house fund account. Keep the account separate and don’t touch it until you are ready to purchase a home.
Although, there are loans available for no money down, it will be necessary to have available funds for closing costs and miscellaneous expenses such as inspections. A sizable down payment with a good credit score can reduce the interest rate on the loan for your home purchase.
All good things in life, require a few sacrifices and work. Home ownership is achievable, you just need to take the proper steps to get there.
It may sound crazy but many of us buy a house for our best friend, the family dog. Given that 99% of pet owners feel that the dog is part of the family it isn’t really all the crazy. Many Buyers undertake projects to improve the house they fall in love with if it isn’t pet friendly.
Although we personally never require a fenced in yard, doggy door, or dog wash, we always look for ease of letting the dog out on a chain and having a place to dry the dog’s feet off. 52% of dog owners surveyed under take projects to benefit their dogs. If the yard isn’t fenced, 23% build one. Dog owners also change the flooring in their homes to make maintenance easier. They prefer not to have carpeting where the dogs enter from the yard and 10% install laminate or luxury vinyl tile instead of wood. Wood floors scratch easily, especially if you have a larger dog. Although, I notice scratches on my floor and I have a 24 lb. cavachon. We installed luxury vinyl tile where we let the dog goes in and out and the clean up is easy.
Buyers should ask if fences or outdoor kennels are allowed in the neighborhood before purchasing a home. Many neighborhoods have covenants that forbid fences; especially chain link ones, kennels, and dog houses. Know your options before you buy. Is a laundry room sink important for bathing your dog when they come in from the mud? Or do you need a faucet in the garage? Today, we find clients who are building a home request a dog was either in the garage or the laundry area.
As a Buyer, do you look for a pet friendly home? What is the most important feature for you?