Marion Cheney's Blog
Any pet owner will tell you that their pets are a part of the family. They bring joy to new families getting their first dog, and companionship to people who would otherwise live alone. However, they also bring the pet odors associated with having them around the house.
Since we spend so much time in our own homes, we oftentimes don’t even notice pet odors. So, even if you think your home is free of odors, it’s a good idea to get an unbiased opinion of the various odors of your home so that you can address them if necessary.
In this article, we’re going to teach you how to identify and neutralize those pet odors before the open house or first home showing. That way you can make the best impression on potential sellers and leave them feeling like your home has been well-maintained.
Identifying pet odors in your home
Whether you’ve got a dog, cat, rabbit, or hamster, odds are your little friend puts off some amount of odor. To discover where, if any, odors can be found, invite a friend over to your home who isn’t familiar with the smells and ask them their honest opinions about the various rooms in your home. This will give you a good idea of where you need to focus your efforts.
Important areas to clean
First thing’s first: the fabrics, surfaces, furniture, and carpet in your home in your home hold onto odor the most. Renting or buying a carpet cleaner, mopping the hard surfaces, and washing or refreshing curtains is a great place to start.
Many steam cleaners can be used on various surfaces, making them a good solution to get the most value out of your cleaning budget.
Don’t forget the carpet pad
If your pets have ever had “accidents” on your carpets, it’s vital to remember that their mess likely soaked through the carpet onto the carpet pad. While it may seem like a lot of effort to pull up the carpet just to clean the pad, it may be your only option in severe cases of pet odors.
Repainting is a guaranteed way to remove any lingering odors in your home. Try to time your painting so that the room has the chance to air out and the smell of fresh paint isn’t overpowering.
Repainting is also the perfect opportunity to brighten up the rooms of your home, making them feel more spacious. Sticking to neutral, proven colors will give you the most bang for your buck.
Let some fresh air in
Before showing your home, open up the doors and windows and doors to closets and basements and let a draft run through the house. This can eliminate any musty smells that have accumulated in the lesser used parts of your home, as well as help mitigate the effect of pet odor.
Last minute additions
The day of showing your home, use a high-quality scented candle or two in places that your pets frequent. You don’t want it to be obvious that you’re trying to mask any bad odors, so don’t use anything overpowering. Rather, opt for a pleasant-to-neutral fragrance that isn’t too noticeable.
Real estate terminology can be confusing for both new and experienced homeowners alike. Especially when it comes to the various types of loans. If the different types of loans have your head spinning, don’t worry. I hear you!
Here’s what you need to know:
Mortgage prequalification is an estimate a lender will give as to what you will qualify for when a more in-depth analysis is made. It doesn't guarantee anything and is to be thought of as a rough ballpark estimate.
Mortgage pre-approval is when a more in-depth review is made. The lender will take your income, debt and other factors into consideration to give you a more conclusive number. This number is the max they will lend out to you. It does not mean you have to take out the full amount.
Adjustable rate mortgage or ARM is a mortgage in which the interest rate changes over time. These changes are dependent on an index based on the credit markets. The change in interest rate should reflect a fairness of risk to both the lender and borrower. These changes are regulated by the government and there is a limit to the charges. The initial lower rate the first few years is a draw for many borrowers.
A fixed-rate mortgage or FRM is, as you might have guessed, one where the interest rate does not change throughout the lifespan of the loan. These loans are seen as risky in that the interest rate doesn’t reflect the flux of credit market values. What this means is that sometimes the risk for the lender increases if the market value of the home increases. And the risk increases for the buyer when the market value of the home decreases.
Conventional loans have fixed terms and rates and are not “government-backed”. This simply means they are not guaranteed by the government or insured by a government agency. Examples of these agencies are the Federal Housing Administration (FHA), the Farmers Home Administration(FmHA), and the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs (VA).
Private mortgage insurance or PMI is a type of insurance for a conventional loan. This loan protects the lender if, for whatever reason, you were to stop making payments. It’s usually a monthly premium tacked onto your mortgage payment. It can also be an upfront cost you only need to pay once. This is a decision that is up to and may be mandatory, by your lender.
Federal housing administration loan or FHA loan can only be obtained from qualifying lenders. These loans are insured by the FHA. This mortgage is designed to assist home buyers who have a low to moderate income and can’t afford to put down a large down payment. The down payment can be as low as 3.5% of the home's value for borrowers who qualify.
If you want to accomplish your desired results during the home selling journey, you should strive to host lots of showings. Fortunately, we're here to help you prepare for home showings and ensure you are ready to host showings at any time.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prepare for a home showing.
1. Keep Your Home Neat and Tidy
Let's face it – maintaining a pristine home can be difficult. But if you allocate time and energy to perform various home maintenance tasks daily, you can keep your home show-ready.
Cleaning up after yourself can make a world of difference. For instance, wiping down kitchen countertops after cooking a meal enables you to avoid a long, arduous kitchen clean-up at a later time.
You also may want to create a home cleaning schedule. By planning daily or weekly chores like vacuuming the rugs or cleaning the bathroom, you can ensure your house will look great at all times.
2. Be Flexible
If a homebuyer submits a last-minute request for a home showing, it generally is a good idea to try to accommodate the buyer's request. By doing so, you can show your home to many prospective buyers and increase the likelihood of receiving an offer to purchase.
A flexible home seller usually is a successful home seller. Therefore, if a buyer wants to view your home, it is important to remember that each showing brings you one step closer to selling your residence.
Ultimately, if you maintain flexibility, you can make it easy for dozens of potential buyers to view your residence. And as a result, you may be able to accelerate the home selling process.
3. Eliminate Clutter
Clutter is something that all home sellers can live without. Because if a home is filled with clutter, it may be tough for prospective buyers to appreciate the full size and beauty of a residence.
For home sellers, it is important to remove clutter immediately. A home seller can rent a storage unit to hold excess items until his or her residence sells. Or, it may be beneficial to host a yard sale or list excess items online to cut down on clutter.
As you prepare to sell your home, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. In fact, a real estate agent will do everything possible to help you achieve the optimal results during any home showing.
Typically, a real estate agent will offer recommendations and tips to help you prepare your residence for the housing market. If you receive a request to view your home, a real estate agent will notify you accordingly. And after a home showing is complete, a real estate agent will provide you with unbiased feedback to ensure you can update your property selling strategy as needed.
Ready to host a home showing? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can get ready to showcase your residence to potential buyers and bolster your chances of enjoying a fast, profitable house selling experience.
Minimalism is everywhere lately, and it’s no wonder why. With each of us cramming our days full of more and more tasks, buying larger houses, and being bombarded with advertisements for all of the things we need to fill those homes up with, it becomes apparent why many are turning to a simpler way of living. Or, at the very least, trying to cut down on the amount of stuff we own and have to keep track of.
Since our homes are where we keep all that stuff and where we spend the majority of our time, you can see how it becomes easy for homes to get cluttered and messy.
In this article, we’re going to talk about some of the reasons you might want to incorporate minimalist ideas into your home and give you some tips on how to go about simplifying your life at home.
Less clutter, less cleaning, more time
The obvious benefit of minimalism is that the fewer things you own, the fewer things you have to spend time taking care of. This goes for cleaning, maintaining, and storing. It might be tempting to buy the latest single-cup coffee maker, but do you really need another thing to take care of and find counter space for?
When it comes to cleaning, a minimal house is much easier to take care of. Fewer things to dust and wash means you can spend more time doing things you enjoy.
To illustrate how much easier it is to clean a minimal room than a cluttered one, just image how long it takes to mop the floors of an empty room compared to having to move or clean around furniture.
The same reasoning applies to mowing a lawn--it’s easier to mow in a straight line that it is to have to carefully avoid objects strewn across your yard.
Easier to live in
By nature, we are an animal that loves to be organized. We get frustrated when things aren’t where we left them or when we forget where we put something we need. A minimal home takes away some of that frustration by allowing fewer opportunities to lose our keys or whatever else gets lost in the piles of clutter.
More welcoming to guests and more relaxing for us
Each of us has our own preferences when it comes to decorating. However, one thing that can be said about humans is that we tend to feel more relaxed when we’re not crowded by things or other people.
Similarly, it’s easier for us to focus in environments that have fewer distractions. A minimal home office would ideally contain mostly just the necessities for whatever work you need to accomplish.
How to get started
Now that you know the benefits, here are some ways you can get started making your home more minimal.
To avoid taking on too large of a task at once, approach your home one room at a time. Take note of what is in that room and think back to the last time you used it. Does it serve a purpose? If the object is just for decoration, is it a decoration that you feel adds to the room or does it clutter it up too much?
By asking yourself these questions, you can begin to make your home a more relaxing, more welcoming environment for you and your guests.