For a long time, pesticides have been the preferred option among homeowners who want to keep their lawns and gardens pest-free. However, now that it's clear that these pesticides are actually more harmful to your lawn, the environment, the wildlife who call your area home and even you it's important to consider green pest control options for your home. The good news is that you can keep pests out of your home and yard without harming the environment. These are a few eco-friendly alternatives to consider:
Add a Bird Feeder to Your Garden
Bird feeders can be a decorative element that makes your yard more appealing and allows you to keep an eye out for the unique feathered friends who stop by for a treat. However, your bird feeder can also be the best thing that you do for your garden. When you add a bird feeder close to your garden, you will attract birds that will eat the pesky insects that may invade your garden space. In addition to bird feeders you also may want to buy a few nesting boxes so that birds can make their homes right near your garden.
Incorporate Plants that Attract Beneficial Bugs
While there are some bugs - like slugs and caterpillars - that you want to stay far away from your garden, there are other insects that will help your plants grow and thrive. When you add insectary plants to your garden you will attract pollinators like honey bees to the area. Every gardener wants to see a few bees buzzing around-- to increase the number of bees in your garden you may want to consider planting mint or rosemary along the edges.
Plant Herbs that Detract Insects
In addition to adding plants that will attract beneficial insects to your garden, you can use herbs and other plants to keep unwanted pests at bay. Some of the herbs that are best known for pest control include basil and lavender. These herbs are sometimes referred to as companion plants because they are planted alongside other pants for the purpose of detracting potential invaders from the garden. In the event that you would prefer not to have companion plants you may find that flowers such as petunias, clover and marigold will help with pest control while simultaneously adding an element of natural beauty to your garden.
Use Spices to Keep Bugs Out of Your Home
In addition to keeping pesky bugs out of your garden, you probably also want them out of your home. Rather than spraying the perimeter of your home with harmful chemicals, you can use many of the spices that you likely have in your pantry for pest control. Cinnamon, cayenne pepper and black pepper can be sprinkled along your window sills, and you will find that you have far fewer bugs in your home than you did before. It's an easy and cost-effective way to reduce pests while protecting the environment.
By opting for all-natural pest control options, you will find that your lawn and garden thrive while your home becomes a happier, healthier place for everyone.
If you want to sell a house in a buyer's market, it pays to allocate the necessary time and resources to differentiate your home listing from others. Because if you create an informative and engaging home listing, you should have no trouble stirring up interest in your residence, even in a buyer's market.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you differentiate your home listing in a buyer's market.
1. Consider the Buyer's Perspective
In a buyer's market, a homebuyer has no shortage of high-quality residences at his or her disposal. As such, you'll want to consider how a buyer may approach your residence and tailor your house listing accordingly.
Think about what led you to purchase your residence in the first place. Then, you can create a home listing that highlights your house's distinct features.
For example, if your home boasts a large, luxurious in-ground swimming pool, you may want to include details about it in your home listing. Or, if your house is located just minutes from many popular attractions, you may want to incorporate this information into your house listing.
2. Be Honest with Buyers
Your goal as a home seller is to craft a house listing that showcases your residence's features. At the same time, you'll want to be honest with buyers to help them make an informed decision about whether to pursue your home.
A detailed home listing that includes accurate information about your house is paramount. Because if your listing is misleading or inaccurate, it may cause problems down the line.
Remember, any problems with a house likely will be identified during a home inspection, a key step in the homebuying process. And if you try to hide these issues, it may slow down or stop a home sale from happening. Conversely, if you are honest with buyers from the beginning, you can make it easy for them to determine whether your residence is the right choice.
3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent
A buyer's market can be tough to navigate, regardless of where you live. Luckily, real estate agents are available to assist sellers in any buyer's market, at any time.
With a real estate agent at your side, you can craft a home listing that hits the mark with the right groups of homebuyers. In fact, a real estate agent will guide you along the home selling journey and help you identify and address any hurdles along the way.
Typically, a real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals. This housing market professional then can help you put together an in-depth home listing that highlights the key features of your house. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will share this home listing with dozens of buyers, thereby increasing the likelihood of a quick, profitable home sale.
Ready to list your house in a buyer's market? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can create a top-notch home listing that helps your residence stand out from the competition.
First-time homebuyers have more choices than ever before when it comes to picking a home. While for many, a home translates to “house” there are other home ownership options to consider. Condominiums, or condos, are an excellent choice for first-time buyers for several reasons. Depending on where you live, they might be more widely available than detached homes. Here we’ll go over 5 reasons condos are great for first-time homebuyers.
Spend Less Up Front
In most places, a condo has a lower purchase price than a house. You might think that this is simply because of less square footage and decreased privacy, but depending on the development you can have it all for a much lower price. A lower cost will also mean a lower minimum down payment required for a mortgage. This will save you money you can spend on other things like appliances or furniture.
Let the HOA Handle It
Condo properties all have a property management body typically known as a Homeowners’ Association. These organizations have rules for living in the community and also charge an additional fee. For that fee, the HOA of your condo building will handle upkeep of all public spaces and building exteriors. This can include parking structures, fencing, gates, landscaping, outdoor lighting and even more depending on the particular complex.
Even though you don’t own the entire property, you own your own condo unit. This means you have the freedom to customize the interior as you see fit. Paint, paneling, hardwood floors—it’s all up to you. Unlike with many rentals, you can drill as many holes and hang whatever you’d like on the walls. Some condos will even allow you to replace built-in appliances like stoves with those of your choice, giving you even more options for customization.
Use Community Amenities
Some condo communities offer excellent amenities to their residents. Spas, swimming pools, tennis and basketball courts, fitness centers and even small general stores are all things you can find included in some complexes. There might also be communal space available for hosting parties and other large groups as well as organized community events. Each condo community has different offerings and different ways of paying for them, so research carefully. You may need to pay a monthly, quarterly or annual fee to the HOA in order to access the amenities.
Invest in the Future
If you eventually decide to move out of your condo, you can keep it as an investment property. With the increasing popularity of private home vacation rentals, you can generate excellent side income by renting the space to others. Just make sure that you’re following all the community rules for vacation renting. It’s also a good idea to consult an accountant to help you take the best advantage of the investment opportunity without getting in tax trouble.
The availability of condo property depends highly on area. However, in some parts of the United States, condominium real estate is even more active and popular than it is for detached single-family homes. This means there are plenty of qualified real estate agents and brokers who specialize in finding you the perfect condo for your budget and lifestyle needs.
For first-time homebuyers, going from property buyer to property owner may seem virtually impossible. Lucky for you, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of buying a home.
Now, let's take a look at three questions that every first-time homebuyer needs to consider:
1. What is my "dream" residence?
One first-time homebuyer's definition of a "dream" residence may differ from another's. As such, you should consider what you'd like to find in a dream house before you begin your real estate search.
Creating a checklist of "must-haves" and "wants" in your house often serves as a great starting point for first-time homebuyers. This checklist will enable homebuyers to consider what they'd like to find in a dream home and plan accordingly.
Also, it is important to establish realistic expectations before you kick off a home search.
Many terrific houses are available in cities and towns nationwide, but no home is likely to have every feature that you desire in a dream residence.
Therefore, if you establish realistic expectations for your home search, you can avoid potential let-downs as you explore a broad array of high-quality houses.
2. How will I pay for a home?
Getting pre-approved for a mortgage is vital for a first-time homebuyer, and for good reason. With pre-approval for a mortgage, you'll know what you can afford to spend on a home before you enter the real estate market.
Many banks and credit unions are happy to meet with you to discuss your mortgage options. These lenders can outline the differences between adjustable- and fixed-rate mortgages, help you assess your credit score and ensure you can make an informed mortgage decision.
Furthermore, lenders can answer any mortgage questions that you may have. They can help you evaluate your current financial situation and enable you to obtain a mortgage that won't force you to revamp your day-to-day budget.
3. How do I begin searching for a house?
Beginning a home search is easy, particularly for first-time homebuyers who work with expert real estate agents.
An expert real estate agent understands what it takes to find a wonderful house at a budget-friendly price. In fact, he or she will do everything possible to help you navigate the housing market quickly and effortlessly.
Typically, an expert real estate agent will keep you up to date about new homes as they become available, set up home showings and submit home offers on your behalf. This housing market professional also will offer honest, unbiased recommendations throughout the homebuying journey to help you select a house that matches or exceeds your expectations.
When it comes to exploring the housing market, there is no need to work alone. Fortunately, you can hire an expert real estate agent who can help you get the best results possible during the homebuying journey.
Want to acquire your first home? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can move one step closer to owning a top-notch house.