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  • Imagine The Calm Of Personal Self Storage
    By admin on February 18, 2010 | 60 Comments60 Comments  Comments

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    Close your eyes and imagine this – ok, keep your eyes open, so you can read this, but pretend you have closed your eyes and can only see the pictures of the words you’re reading.

    On a dark, cold night you carefully step around the leftover snow patches in your driveway and get to the door as quickly as you can. After a long, hard day at work, the only thing you want more than your comfy bed it to take off those high-heeled shoes that have been pinching your toes for the past 4 hours. (Suffering for fashion is just one of those things you’re willing to accept for a sexy pair of pumps.)

    It’s when you open the door to your home that you realize your fashionable feeling ended the moment you spotted the clutter and mess you’ve been meaning to organize for the past six months. You had the best of intentions when you bought the antique end tables; they only needed a little bit of refinishing and you were sure they’d be a statement piece. If only you had the time to refinish them. And the boxes of summer clothing you have hopefully been sorting through as you dreamt of long, warm sunny days has only unfurled itself across your living room and mixed in with all the boxes of photos and whatnot that you’ve been meaning to put away, somewhere.

    Open your eyes. Did you feel the sense of exhaustion as you walked to your front door, only to be smacked in the face by the disarray of clutter awaiting you. The feeling of being trampled by clutter and the frustration that comes along with the sense of chaos is no way to be welcomed when you come home.

    Maybe this scenario isn’t exactly you – perhaps you don’t wear high-heeled pumps – but you can most certainly identify with the feeling of coming home only to be faced with another mess to fix. When that mess isn’t really a mess, but rather a collection of odds and ends, more than what can really fit into your apartment or home, the feeling can quickly become overwhelming.

    When you have accumulated more than what will fit in your living space, no matter how much you clean or organize, you can be left feeling defeated. You don’t want to get rid of anything; each item hold meaning and value, other than it’s monetary worth, and has probably made memories for your and your family. Getting rid of these items is out of the question.

    There is an option that satisfies your desire to have a clean, organized, well-kept home while still holding onto all the items and treasures that have left milestones or markers in your life.

    The answer is that you should rent a personal storage unit. By storing these items in a space where they will be kept under lock and key, you will have the peace of mind knowing that your grandma’s china, childhood photo albums and high school love letters are all awaiting for the next time you come to visit. In fact, you will be able to get more enjoyment from them when they aren’t staring you in the face every time you walk in the door or open the closet.

    Do yourself a favor, and pamper yourself by storing all the items you treasure in a personal storage unit and reclaim a peaceful home.

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  • Concerns With Rentals
    By admin on September 11, 2008 | 66 Comments66 Comments  Comments

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    Living in hired accommodations is usually made out to be living in subordination to the owner of the accommodation. Well, the tenant should know that she should definitely abide by the rules set by the owner, but only as long as they are fair enough. A tenant need not stretch herself much to oblige to each and every command of the owner if she is not comfortable by doing so. There are certain issues related to rentals that are addressed out here.

    Many times the owners compel the tenants to sign some documents which may be related to the facilities that they offer. The owner might be sending a notice regarding the amount of electricity or water a tenant has used in a particular month. He might be also notifying the tenant about revised rates of monthly payments and about any new rules that he might want to implement currently.

    It should be borne in mind that the tenant of the rentals has the right to refuse signing any document if he wishes to. According to the present rules governing the owner and tenant rights, any modifications introduced by the owner should come with a minimum of a one month period of notice. Abrupt notices should not be given and if given, the tenant has the full right to not refuse consenting to the clauses laid out in the notice.

    It is rather a convention that notices are meant to be implemented as soon as they are sent to the recipient. It is not mandatory that the recipient sign the notices in order to make them functional. The owner on the other hand has the liberty to send the tenant as many notices he wants to, in as many ways he wants to, at any point of time. He can e-mail a notice, send it by post, deliver it personally to the tenant at the rentals or send it to the tenant in any other way; simultaneously.

    For leased accommodations, any modifications can be made effective only after the termination of the lease period. If implementing the changes is mandatory, it should be done with the consent of the tenant. In any case, the tenant should not be compelled to sign any document against her will. However, if a leased agreement gets converted to a monthly tenancy plan, the notice period should be of thirty days.

    There are certain norms to be followed by both the owner and the tenant of the rentals regarding the usage of utility facilities. These norms might differ from state to state. In some states, the house owners need to provide accommodations with utility features like the gas stove and electricity. But the tenant is required to pay the bills for these personally. The owner can opt to pay the bill on behalf of the tenant and ask the tenant to pay him a predetermined amount every month for the provided facilities. The clauses regarding the payment of the bills should be clearly stated in the contract signed between the owner and the tenant and should be strictly followed.

    If the owner of the rentals agrees to pay the bills for the tenant and there is no mention of the maximum limit of usage, the owner cannot charge the tenant extra money for heavily using any of the resources. For limited usage of the resources by the tenant the owner should specifically mention the relevant clause in the tenancy contract and charge the tenant more if he uses the resources beyond the mentioned limit.

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  • Look Out For Pitfalls In Homes For Sale
    By admin on August 18, 2008 | 63 Comments63 Comments  Comments

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    When looking for homes for sale there are certain things that you need to look out for. The cosmetic look is not always the complete look and often there are things that you need to do before moving into a house. It is always a better option to have a good look at a house, both interiors and exteriors, and then having a look at all the other houses in the vicinity for making a judgment about the price that you pay.

    The first thing is the first impression. It is very important that you have a very good first Impression of the place that you will be coming to live in. If you do not like the house in the first instance, do not buy it. You will never be able to come to terms with it even if you find that the other things are going in your favor. Often the outer look of homes for sale gives a picture of the things inside. One more thing that you should look is in which season are you looking at the house. The winter or spring thaw does not present a good picture of the house but it is a very good time to look for the faults of a house. A bad look of the exterior can lead to reduced prices. So do not get turned of. See in the inside and all the things that can be easily fixed. You might get a bargain if you are lucky.

    A major area of concern in any house is the roof. Even in your own house this is a problem. So while going in to buy a house make sure that you inspect the roof thoroughly. Generally a roof needs to be replaced after fifteen years and maintenance of any significance starts from around the eighth year from such replacement. Any roof which has not undergone a scheduled repair or replacement can be a cause of worry for the whole house even if it looks well maintained on the surface. The main causes of concern are the leaks. Any water seepage during the rains or thaw can seep into the main building structure and damage it. This type of damage is not generally visible but can be dangerous for the whole house. You might have to spend a good amount to change the roof and still do not get the desired result as the structure itself has already weakened. So make sure you look for those homes for sale which have gone through scheduled repairs.

    Finally, look for the foundations in the homes for sale . It hardly needs mentioning that the building whose foundation is strong is a good building. To look for the foundation go to the basement. It gives a very clear picture of the condition of the foundation. Look out for cracks and the nature of them. Not only the cracks in the cement but specifically in the wall. Make sure that you are not buying a house whose foundation has shown signs of shift or sinking.

    If you find that you are finding the judgment portion difficult, you can always hire agents. They are professionals who can do the job for you and present you with choices from among the available homes for sale . All you have to make sure that the agent has a reputation in the market and the internet is always there to help you out.

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  • Decorating Your Rental Apartment
    By admin on July 30, 2008 | 78 Comments78 Comments  Comments

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    People who live in apartments know how hard it can be to get your own sense of style and ownership while living in a place that is not truly your own. You know that you will not live in this place forever, you know that there are always limitations to what you can do when it comes to decorating, yet you want to do something to make it your place, even if it is something simple. Depending on their size and layout, it can be surprising how many possibilities you can find in the place you rent. And now that we are in the midst of summer, there are many bright and light ideas that you can put into action to completely change the look of the place you call home.

    First of all, before you begin any type of decorating or remodeling, speak with the manager of your apartments to find out what exactly can be done or not done to your place. Different apartments have different criteria for the extensiveness of changes that can be made to them. It is necessary to know all the details before you begin with any plans. You will want to have good references and, of course, get that deposit back!

    Something that you can do no matter what your apartments restrictions is to change your furniture. You do not have to go out and buy a brand new 2000 dollar living room set. If you rent and do not have tons of money to spare, but are dying to change the look of your furniture, you can buy a good quality wicker furniture set, the indoor outdoor type, for your living room. It is amazing what this can do for the look of a room. It lightens the atmosphere and style to a bright, summery style.

    Of course, everyone knows that lighter colors make spaces appear roomier and brighter. For the summertime, if your rent manager allows it, paint your walls your favorite pastel color, and get some inexpensive decorating accessories to offset it. For example, if you go with a light yellow wall, you might get some fresh green pillows to accessorize your couch and chairs, or a friendly orange rug for the kitchen.

    Another thing you do not have to check restrictions for is the windows. Exchange your heavy or dark winter curtains with lighter ones, maybe even sheer ones, which allow as much sunlight into your home as possible. This will brighten and enlarge smaller rooms, and give your entire place a summery feel.

    Candles are another great, inexpensive option for making your place friendlier and lightening the mood. With the never ending choices now days of candle scents, you should be able to come up with your favorites, or a combination of two or three of your favorites, to make your rooms smell even more summery. The cool cucumbers and the fresh linens can give you an ongoing feeling of summer even when you are indoors, and they make even the shabbiest of apartments seem that much more welcoming.

    Lastly, bring in those plants. If you have outdoor ones, bring them in and set them in windows. If you have indoor ones already, make sure they are healthy. Bringing nature inside during the summer heightens your sense of the season, not to mention it brings the pleasant and appreciated addition of making your inside air cleaner and healthier for you, your family, and your guests.

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  • Selling Your House In A Buyers Market
    By admin on July 5, 2008 | 64 Comments64 Comments  Comments

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    With economy the way it is today, and houses on the real estate market becoming more and more difficult to sell, there are plenty of things to consider when putting your house up for sale and deciding what improvements are worth it, and which ones are not.

    Some say that the real key to selling your house fastest is the pricing, and this is probably close to the truth in most cases. Of course, obviously if you price your house low enough, you will undoubtedly find someone who will buy it, and usually fairly soon. With real estate these days, you have to be careful not to get too greedy. Try to stay realistic and focused on the true value of your house and what you may reasonably get for it. Work closely with a real estate agent to decide what you should initially price your house at. Of course, ideally you will want to price your house so that you at least come out on top when you sell, and make enough money to make up for any expense you put into it when fixing it up for the market. This is why you have to be careful from the get go when you are fixing your house up to begin with. Consider first, not last, what you will get for your house if you make certain improvements, and then go from there. If it looks like you may come out badly, you might have no other choice but to chop down your improvement list and revise it into a more modest one.

    Many people make the mistake of wanting to price their home for what they believe it is worth, without taking anything else into consideration. Of course one of the major rules of real estate is location. This is not just a fun phrase that agents use, but is a harsh reality. You may have a house that is every penny worth 150,000 dollars, but if it is in a questionable neighborhood or close to a problematic or doubtful neighborhood, you may have to resign yourself to the fact that you will never get more than 99,000 out of it, no matter what grand improvements you had in mind for it.

    It helps to do your homework as well. Research other houses within your neighborhood or community that are comparable to your house. If you really want to get in depth, you might even get a little dirty and request showings of these houses, undercover of course. When you have compiled a list of comparable houses and properties within your town or community, undercut the competition. If the houses are an average of 200,000 dollars, price yours at 195,000. Just this simple rule of psychology can do wonders for the number of people who will request to see your house over one almost identical that is priced just slightly higher.

    Lastly, consider getting a home warranty. Many people selling their home balk at this, thinking it is a waste expense. After all, who wants to spend their money on a house they have sold and moved out of already? In fact, on strangers? But there are a surprising amount of legitimate, thorough and cheap home warranty programs in real estate today if you look for them. This will attract people to your house like bees to honey, because they will know that going to this measure means you have confidence in the ability of your home to please them even after you have vacated it for good.

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  • Ways To Spruce Up Your Investment Property
    By admin on June 27, 2008 | 3 Comments3 Comments  Comments

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    Love At First Fright

    On your way to work one day, you spot it. It is a For Sale sign out in front of a home that must be at least fifty years old. You have been eying this house ever since the last tenants moved out over a year ago. The home is dirty, needs obvious work and the yard is a mess. Glassy eyed, you do not see all of these as hindrances, or reasons to keep on driving. You see a possible investment property . A few weeks later, the deal is closed and you have got yourself a fixer. Now what?

    Bargain Hunting For Repairs

    Now the fun stuff begins. How do you turn an investment property from shabby to shining, from dirty to delightful? After all, the point is to make a profit, not just plug a bunch of cash into it and hope for the best. It is time for you to get down to the business of renovating your new purchase. The roof and the foundation are strong, so no worries there, but the inside is a mess. Years of wear and tear on the carpets, holes in the walls and dingy floors are common in a well lived home, but a buyer does not want them. Floors first. Look for sales on carpeting or perhaps laminate wood flooring. Get your floors looking sharp and shiny and the whole house perks up. Next, the walls need some attention. An investment property will sell much easier if it that sense of newness is there. If those holey walls could talk, they would be saying ouch. Patch up any holes, plug up all of the nail punctures and old curtain rod marks and throw up some pretty paint.

    Money Makers

    Now that the floors and walls are done, your investment property should look and smell clean and bright. Give the kitchen and bathroom both a nice make over. Buy the most cost effective, yet still the best quality appliances that you can find. Search out the bargains. In the long run, you will profit from a good, thorough search for the best prices. Replace old, stained sinks and counter tops with something more contemporary, and again, always find the best quality at the lowest prices. At closing time, that becomes money in your pocket.

    The Devils In the Details

    When the big basics are completed, it is time to begin thinking about the special touches, the little glittery specks that give a show stopping impression when a buyer walks through the door of your investment property . Ceiling fans add flair as well as usefulness to the home. New light fixtures can subtly alter the appearance of an entire house. Hardware such as towel racks, door knobs, cabinet and drawer pulls and even light switch plates are all small things that can pay big. You do not want to go crazy here, because these small things can certainly add up in price, and many times a new home buyer wants to add special touches of their own. A little sparkle goes a long way.

    Now for the outside. Curb appeal is key here. Rent a pressure washer and clean off all of those years of dirt and grime. Paint the exterior trim, cut low hanging branches off of the trees, clean up that yard and make certain that the front entryway is welcoming visitors in a way that exudes warmth and charm. Clean any old oil marks or spills out of the driveway. Dirt of any kind will turn a potential buyer off. They see it as a mess that they will have to deal with, and they simply keep looking. Give attention to the windows, and even the mail box. 

    Take Your Check To The Bank

    Put some time, a lot of bargain hunting and a good chunk of effort into your investment property and watch it pay big dividends in a short period of time. You might make enough profit to turn around and feed your renovation addiction by purchasing the house two blocks over that just went on the market.

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