5 Stress-Free Tips for Moving with Kids

The time has finally come! You found a new home to move into with your family and you’re about to start the moving process. While you may be excited to get settled into your new home, there may be an obstacle standing in your way before you pack up: the kids! Moving with children is a VERY different experience than moving by yourself because you have to still parent and get everything packed. How will you manage? Before panic mode sets in, check out these five stress-free tips to make the move easier when children are involved!

1. Tell Your Children

Moving can be an emotional journey for anyone and that’s especially true with children. Prepare your kids by telling them about the move well in advance so you can help them cope with the news if they take it too hard. This will give them plenty of time to mentally prepare and it’ll reduce the chances of them throwing a temper tantrum when moving day arrives (fingers crossed).

2. Spread Out The Move

It goes without saying that moving in one day can be exhausting…and you can imagine how grueling it could be when grumpy toddlers are added into the mix. Instead of moving everything in one big swoop, try to spread out the move over a few days because you’ll definitely save yourself from stress. Your little ones will need your care which means you have to make time for meals, naps, playtime, bathing and more. With a few buffer days, the kids will be content and you’ll be able to balance parenting with packing.

3. Give Them A Job

Depending on the age of your children, try to get them involved with the packing process. Give them a sense of responsibility with something as simple as putting some toys in a box. While you may have to re-arrange and re-pack the box later, it’ll keep them occupied as you focus on everything else.

4. Pack While They Sleep

Whether you are putting them down for bed or a nap, take this opportunity to de-clutter some of their unneeded belongings. All those old blankets and toys they no longer use with can be donated or trashed but if they see you hauling it away, you can bet they will be upset. Instead, collect these items when they catch some Z’s to avoid little meltdowns.

5. Emergency Box

Grab an empty box and write ‘emergency’ on it because it’ll be your saving grace! Fill this box with juice boxes, snacks, their favorite blanky and some toys. This lifesaver will come in handy when the kids need a quick fix and be sure it makes it into your car and not the moving truck. When the time comes for the Roseville movers to fill the truck, tell them the special box cannot be stowed away for added assurance. Another safeguard for the emergency box is to wrap the box with colored duct tape to make it easier to identify.

What other tips do you have for finding the right storage space? Call or contact us today at Mother Lode Van & Storage to discuss your needs!

Top Tips for a Speedy House Sale

If you want to sell your house quickly, there are a few steps you can take to maximize your chances of securing a buyer. Our top tips will help you get focused so you find a buyer quickly and easily.

1.Choose an agent:
The first step in your journey to a quick house sale is to choose the right agent. There will be lots of agents to choose from, both online and with local offices, so it’s important to think carefully about what you want and how much you’re prepared to pay for it. Online agents are generally cheaper, but are unlikely to have the same level of regional market knowledge a local agent will have. Have a look at some popular property websites to research which agent has sold properties similar to yours, as those agents are likely to understand your target buyers best.

2.Research a realistic asking price:
When it comes to pricing your property, it can be easy to get carried away by national headlines about rising property prices. It’s also not unusual for agents to intentionally overvalue your property initially in order to win the business, and then drop the price after a few weeks when the property hasn’t received much interest. Asking three different agents to value your property will give you a better idea of its true value, but remember, your property is only worth what someone is actually willing to pay for it, so just because an agent values it at a certain figure does not mean that’s what you will end up receiving for the property.

3.Get your property looking its best:
You may think this point is obvious, but a surprising number of homeowners are willing to put their property on the market without spending time refreshing it and making sure it is well presented. Of course it’s not wise to spend a large amount of money on a property you’re planning to move out of, but there are simple, inexpensive steps you can take to ensure your property is attractive and inviting without breaking the budget. A fresh coat of paint, a tidy up of any outdoor space and a thorough de-clutter will help your property to look enticing to potential buyers.

4.Research potential buyers before accepting or rejecting any offers:
Again, this may sound obvious, but your agent should be thoroughly researching any potential buyers and finding out as much detail as possible about their circumstances. How good an offer is does not just come down to the price being offered, but also how quickly the buyer is able to proceed and how complicated their personal situation is in terms of property chain and any other constraints. Consider all the information before making your decision and take your agent’s advice on how far to push negotiations. Most buyers expect their first offer to be a ‘starting point’ for negotiations, but they also expect you to be willing to compromise and meet them somewhere in the middle.

Roof Care Tips That You Should Take To Heart

Expensive roof damage is almost always preventable with a bit of TLC from the homeowner. Remember that without proper care and maintenance, you’ll put your roof at risk of incurring holes or growing a pool of water which can sooner or later lead to leaks. And you’ll know what will happen next. Water will get in your ceiling. Your ceiling will rot then leak and your possessions will get damaged. I’m pretty sure that you would never want that to happen.

So before you panic and go up the roof to check for holes at this moment, remember that it really doesn’t need to cost a fortune to maintain it. With just a bit of effort and diligence, you can sustain the longevity of your roof without breaking the bank. By just consistently doing a few maintenance tasks, you can guarantee that you’ll enjoy your beautiful roof for years to come and won’t worry at all about your prized possessions. Let’s have a closer look at your options:

* You should make sure that you have your roof inspected at least twice a year. You can do this either yourself or by calling out a professional to help you.

* Look for any damage or disintegration on your roof and make sure to have it repaired immediately before it can get any worse.

* Your roof is designed to keep the elements out of your home but it isn’t designed to store water. So if there is any water pooling on your roof, you need to be concerned. This will speed up the erosion of your roofing system; add unnecessary weight to the roof or the roofing frames and also increase the stress on the structure itself.

* Any area of the roof that starts to feel a bit spongy is usually an indication that the roof insulation is deteriorated and wet. Make sure that this is replaced or repaired before it does any more damage to your roofing system by calling in a professional to assess and fix the damage.

* Poor roofing system adhesive can cause bubbles or air pockets to form on the roof deck. These bubbles can trap moisture which will cause further damage to your roof. With that said, make sure that its installation is done professionally.

By simply paying attention to whatever is going on with your roof, you should be able to get many years out of it. As they say, sometimes a bit of effort goes a long way.

10 Home-Buying Tricks for a Crazy Market

Can buyers do well for themselves in a sellers market?

Currently, a number of big metro areas like Austin and Houston are experiencing a sellers market. The higher prices, low inventory, and heavy competition between buyers can understandably make buyers reluctant to try to purchase a home now.

But just because it’s a sellers market, doesn’t mean that there aren’t strategies you can use to find a beautiful house within your budget. The following are 10 home-buying tricks for a crazy market:

1) Mail homeowners a letter, even if their home isn’t on the market. If you see a home you really like, you may want to take the chance of mailing a letter to the homeowners, introducing yourself politely and expressing appreciation of their home and your willingness to purchase it. Be sure you’re coming across as professional, courteous and trustworthy. Some homeowners will ignore such a letter, but there’s a chance that others will get back to you if they’ve been thinking about selling their home.

2) Develop a knowledge of the area. If you already live in the vicinity, you may have an easier time familiarizing yourself with the neighborhood you want to live in. For example, you can find out if there are any empty-nesters or senior citizens who are thinking of selling, and you can hear other information through word-of-mouth. If you live too far away, it’s especially important to have an agent on your side who knows the area inside-out.

3) Look into pre-market listings. One example is Zillow’s Make Me Move list. There’s of course no guarantee that you’ll find a home by doing this; just because a home appears on this kind of list, doesn’t mean that it will available for sale soon (and owners may always change their mind about selling). But maybe you will spot an opportunity.

4) Look into For Sale By Owner (FSBO) listings. FSBO listings involve homeowners who are trying to sell their home without an agent. If you go this route, you may find some homes at relatively lower prices, though this isn’t a guarantee. Also, you’ll need to make sure the seller is on the up-and-up with all disclosures that need to be made.

5) Look into expired listings or listings that have been withdrawn. There are a number of reasons for why the listing for a home expires. Checking out these listings might be a good way to find out about homes that owners would still like to sell.

6) Don’t overlook estate sales. You might find out about estate sales in the area and attempt to reach out to the parties involved before they list the property.

7) As much as possible, get everything prepared. Check that your credit is good and that you have the money you need. Try to get pre-approval for a mortgage. Define your limits, including the maximum you’d be willing to hand over for a down payment and what you’d be willing to negotiate on. In a sellers market, homes can get sold extremely quickly. If you find a home you like, you want to be ready to pounce.

 

8) Go to a showing as soon as possible. If you hear about a home that’s for sale, immediately reach out to the homeowner or their agent. Make plans to see it ASAP. Don’t put it off, even for a few days.

9) Find out what the seller wants aside from money. Maybe, after selling their home, they don’t want to move out immediately. Or maybe they need to move out by a certain date. If you can make things easier or more convenient for them, this may give you an advantage over other buyers you’re competing with.

10) Team up with an experienced real estate agent. Chances are, you can’t do this all alone. Given the competitiveness among buyers and the speed with which homes are sold, you need a good agent on your side to scout out new opportunities, move quickly on your behalf, successfully negotiate for you, and make sure that no one is taking advantage of you.

Don’t hesitate to contact us for further advice and assistance. Even in a sellers market, you can find a home you’ll love, within a budget that works for you.

Winter Patio Decorating Ideas and Tips

When you think of the outdoors during the winter months, “gray,” “dreary” and “boring” are words that probably come to mind. But your winter patio doesn’t have to be any of that! Here are some helpful winter patio decorating tips and ideas that will brighten any outdoor space:

Poinsettias are in season and their vibrant red, white or pink hues, combined with their green leaves, are enough to add color to any gray and dismal outdoor area. Go to your local supermarket or nursery and stock up on a few of these plants. You can keep them in containers or plant beds outside, but bring them back inside or cover them up if the outdoor temperatures get extremely cold or if a freeze is expected. Be sure to keep them away from pets though. Poinsettias are only mildly toxic to animals, but it’s better safe than sorry!

You can also run to the store and buy holiday decorations, like wreaths and outdoor holiday lights. LED lights are always a good choice because they are so energy-efficient. You don’t have to get too Christmas-y for them to look good either. A few strands of simple white lights are enough to make any outdoor living space look elegant. There’s a fine line between nice and overdone. Be sure to be reasonable about the amount of lights you use.

A less expensive way to dress up your outdoor patio for the winter months is with grapevine. You can buy it at your local florist or art supply store. Maintenance-free, grapevine can be threaded through any lattice work you might have outside or you can use white LED lights and intertwine them with the grapevines. Add sprigs of holly, juniper or boxwood to make your patio even more festive!

One of the more expensive things you can do is add a small outdoor fireplace to your patio. Do some comparison-shopping to see what you can get for what price: outdoor fireplaces can be huge or they can be small and portable. Adding a fireplace to your patio will encourage family and guests to hang out outside a little bit longer. Picture it now: the air outside is cold, but you and your family and friends are all bundled up and roasting marshmallows by the fireside. Yum! What a fun way to spend a cold winter’s night!

However you decide to dress up your patio this holiday season, be sure to let your personality shine through. A little bit of flair can be appropriate all year long. If you still don’t have a patio to spruce up, contact your local patio builder now.

How real estate is like marriage

At the risk of stating the blindingly obvious, if you’re buying or selling a house in Orange County today, you’re likely working with a Realtor. What might not be so obvious is that working with a Realtor is more like a marriage than you might think.

If you have any doubt at all, take a look at these five stages of the buyer/seller-Realtor relationship and the similarities to courting behavior leading to a committed relationship.

1. Courting: What usually begins a relationship is a combination of attraction, the time and effort to get to know one another, and the sacrifice of time away from other people and distractions to spend time together.

When it comes to how you begin a relationship with a Realtor, it’s no different. It starts with you toying with the idea of buying or selling. Then, you scour the Internet – isn’t Realtor.com the equivalent to Match.com? It may begin with an attraction to a photo of a house and a deliriously compelling description, combined with the figures – the number of bedrooms, bathrooms and square footage. You like the look of the person next to the photo of the house, so you send an email or make a phone call. No commitments from either side. No contracts. Just testing the waters. How fast did she call back? Did she answer my text?

2. Dating exclusively: This is the next step in a relationship that is going well. You make a choice to be exclusive. No more going back to the pond to pick another partner. You funnel all of your attention on that one person. When you see a sign on a house, you don’t call the number on the sign, you call your Realtor to get the scoop. When you’re at an open house, you let the Realtor know you are already in a relationship with another Realtor. An open house is so much like a singles bar. But that’s another story.

3. Engaged to be married: Much like dating exclusively, except now there’s an intent to tie the knot. Now you go into the open house with a stack of your Realtor’s cards – an outward and visible sign of your intent to be loyal to her and her alone. A shield as big as a 3-carat solitaire that you’ve made a choice and you’re sticking with it. You disconnect your automatic email updates from the four other Realtors you were hanging out with before. And you put all of your effort into planning for the big event: buying a house, selling your house, or both concurrently.

4. Marriage: This is the legal consummation of your intent to be loyal to one another, through good times and bad, in sickness and in health, for richer or for poorer, ’til death do you part. You’ve signed a listing contract, you’ve signed a purchase contract, and you’re loyal to one another. You consult your Realtor exclusively – you’re officially on the same team and working side by side.

5. Cheating: With the national divorce rate in the 50 percent range, do you have any doubt that there’s some hanky panky that goes on in real estate relationships, too? You slip up and call another Realtor whose name and photo you saw on Zillow. You fall under the spell of the luscious pocket listing the Realtor at the open house dangles in front of your eyes in a hypnotic motion. The temptation was too much for you to resist, and you’re suddenly in someone else’s car.

Consider being loyal to your Realtor once you’ve made the initial commitment. Your relationship only has to last as long as it takes to complete the purchase or sale. Then you’re free to start dating again.for more details please click this link Whittier Real Estate

Home Interior Tips

Interior

Daring to use colour instead of bland white walls will increase your profit potential. A room that is painted white appeared larger to only a few people, compared to an identical room painted with a colour. The perceived difference to buyers is only minor. Because most people look better surrounded by colour, a coloured wall also makes them feel happier, and buyers will choose to buy the house that makes them feel happiest.

COLOURS help you sell your home to your target market. One mistake most people make is to paint everything white. White may look clean, but it will do little to make a buyer feel as if they “just can’t live without the home.” White walls do not create cheerful feelings, and even worse, white walls don’t make most people look good. Buyers will ultimately buy the home that makes them feel happy while making them look great at the same time.

Art of Display

Turn a tired shelf, coffee table or mantel into still-life masterpiece with styling techniques. Transform this area into the main feature of a room by choosing one of three basic treatments, each equally effective.

Symmetry Technique

  • Aside from the centrepiece, include two of everything and create the same set-up at either end.
  • Display the mirror/art work in the centre of a mantel or leave the middle of the surface free of decoration.
  • Keep the look simple with a couple of potted plants or lamps or dress it up with more ornate pairs of various heights.

Offset Technique

  • Use the offset technique when an artwork or sculpture has centre stage.
  • Group a selection of smaller, similarly themed objects to one side.
  • Avoid cluttering.
  • Select pieces beautiful enough to stand alone.
  • Choose odd numbers of objects.
  • In a layered display, start with a neutral base then add colour.
  • Be more daring with colour if the display has only a few items.

Pyramid Technique

  • Use an odd number of at least five – seven items.
  • Keep the textures and tones harmonious. Soften hard lines with branches or flowers.
  • Make the centre of the display the focus by clustering objects in the middle.
  • Add a twist by creating a theme. For example colour or shape.

Tip – this techniques is fail-safe when the objects have a solid background and are arranged on a shelf or surface in front or a wall.

5 Reasons to Consider Additional Sleeping Options For Your Home

Lots of folks set out to consider additional sleeping options for your home at some point or another. What kept you back from trying it yourself? Lots of people have seriously considered it; few got beyond just thinking. Not very many take concrete action to get additional information and try to get started. Most get distracted by something more important, make excuses and go off in a very different direction. There are excuses like, I don’t know where to start… And so they ultimately get distracted elsewhere and don’t get around to it.

Were those merely excuses or were they legitimate reasons? Had they gotten deep enough inside the subject to really comprehend what was involved? Did they really really know what they might be missing?

Let’s take a closer look. Listed here are 5 explanations why you may want to consider additional sleeping options for your home. Let’s go over them so as to ensure that we haven’t missed anything:

First, At some point you will have company coming. Sure, I am aware of your objection that they are not always welcome. And I agree that’s a valid observation, however, consider it in this way, get them in, get them out and you probably wont have to deal with them again for another 6 months at least.. Again, consider that They are probably family and love you very much.

Second, You don’t want to give up your bed. The actual cause of that may be Your bed is comfy.. Together with Why should you have to sleep on the couch for their comfort?

Third, The couch isn’t very comfy. Together with That’s where the dog sleeps!

Fourth, Grandma can’t sleep on the floor like she did when she was younger. What with the hip replacement surgery and all. You don’t want to pay for the other hip do you?

And Fifth, it isn’t in your budget to build a guest house this year and you have been eying the kids rooms for your new home office.

When you consider and evaluate all those reasons, the cumulative weight from all the arguments in favour of considering additional sleeping options for your home is really quite impressive, don’t you think?

It certainly is not for everybody, of course But, have a look at it while in the light of the above 5 points. You should seriously consider Looking into some rollaway beds if enough of the benefits apply to you.

4 Tips to Cut Down your Electricity Bill

Need to cut down on your home wasted expenses and economize more money? As an online LED lighting store in Australia, we will give you some tips to start saving on electricity. Many small details can be fixed to minimize your electricity bill, all you have to do is to change some of your habits. The following tips don’t only let you save money, but also protect the environment:

Replace incandescent and halogen light bulbs with energy saving LED light bulbs: For the time being, the most common type of lights used to save energy is the fluorescent light bulb. Lately, LED light bulbs have started to pick up too; they are up to ten times more effective than fluorescent lights, and way more energy efficient than the conventional lights. Whereas, conventional lighting – like incandescent and halogen lights- contains mercury and other toxic substances, LED lights are made of non-toxic materials which make them 100% recyclable and harmless for the environment. So, go to the nearest LED lighting store or order them online to replace all your ceiling lights and bathroom lights with LED lighting products to save energy.

Prevent power loss by switching off power points when electronics are not being used: plugged electronics, even when turned off, keep on consuming energy without your knowledge. For example, up to 30% of power used by TV is consumed when it is turned off. Therefore, to prevent losing energy and money, better to unplug it from the electricity outlet when not in use. Even when using LED lighting, which is the most efficient lighting solution, make sure the lights are off during the day and every time you exit a room at night.

Turn non-essential electricity off when on holidays or away: This tip is close to the previous one, but on a larger scale. When you are on holidays or out of town for business or on any other occasion, many electronic devices are not essential to keep turned on, so unplug them. The only thing you can actually leave plugged is the refrigerator, but only if it’s full of stocked food.

Make the most out of only one LED light bulb per room: on many occasions, we can see a room with many light bulbs to optimize the lighting experience. However, each room needs only one LED light bulb to fully illuminate it, depending on the light output of each bulb. The latter notion is called lumens/watt, which tells you how efficient the LED light bulb is. On the other hand, several bulbs in one room mean a bigger consumption of energy. Here’s a trick on how to maximize your lighting using only one LED globe or LED spotlight: paint your walls with white colors – this color reflects the light from the LED light fixtures more than any other color causing a better brightness.

Those were some of the many other things each and every one of us could and should apply at home to save on electrical energy and contribute in protecting the environment. Replacing the conventional lights with saving energy LED light bulbs and switching off non-used electronics can make you save on your electricity bill. So act fast, save energy, save your money and protect the environment.

Air-Conditioning Tips To Save Your Electricity Bills

During summer, the average households will need to pay about 45% of their electricity bills for their air-con alone. The reason is that due to the extreme weather, Air-Conditioning has become an essential electrical appliances in their home. They can’t live without Air-Conditioning alone, else they will get sick in the hot and stuffy weather. However, do not fret, basic tips can help you to keep your room cool and at the same time, keep your electricity bills low throughout the hot summer.

Portable Air-Con:
In the event that you only are the only one at home and you only want to cool down one particular room, don’t switch on the central Air-con system. Instead, spend a little money on portable Air-Con as these units have uses lower energy consumption and with high cooling efficiency. Thus, it will be sufficient to cool down your room adequately and at the same time, save your electricity bills!

Blinds or Window Shades:
Due to the summer, sunlight can transfer the heat to the room easily from the windows of your house. This result in higher temperature in your house and make it more difficult for the Air-Conditioning to cool down your room. Hence window shades or blinds should be installed at all the windows in your house. Those blinds can effectively reduce the high temperature from the daylight by approximately 45%. Additionally, you can likewise hang bamboo shades outside your house windows. This can potentially block up to 80% of the sunlight’s high temperature from overcoming your windows.

Windows:
Since during the day, the heat is intolerable, try to keep all windows shut throughout the day as the heat outside can easily increase your house temperature. During the evening you can open the windows for ventilation to increase the air circulation in your room and rather than switching on an air-con, you can switch on a fan.

Outdoor Condenser:
The condenser outside your house is also an important factor that will affect your electricity bills. Make sure that the condenser outside your house is decently shaded, not directly expose to the hot sunlight. If the condenser is not shaded, the Air-Conditioning system will require additional energy to produce the same cooling effect, thus increase the power consumption. Also, make sure that the condenser outside is regularly cleaned to increase the cooling efficiency of the system.

Air-Conditioning filter:
It is advised to clean your system filer in any event once a month. Due to the usage of the units, dust can accumulate and can seriously lessen the air stream from the Air-Conditioner.

Size of Air-Conditioner:
The size of the Air-Con system when you purchase is an important factor too. At the point when you are purchasing an Air-Conditioner unit, verify that the units are the appropriate size for your room. If you bought a unit that is excessively small, it will not cool down your room adequately and an Air-Con that is excessively big will lead to considerably higher energy consumption than should be expected. Therefore, when purchasing a unit, you should only buy the right Air-Con size for your room.

Old Air-Conditioning units:
On the off chance that your Air-con is old, think about changing it with a higher productivity unit. Due to the technological advancement, new Air-Conditioning units have higher energy efficiency, thus lower energy consumption than the older units. Hence you may consider a new unit such as the inverter Air-Conditioning system with high energy efficiency.

Heat Generated in Your House:
Household chores such as cooking, drying of shirts, can create a significant amount of heat. Hence, attempt to do these chores until the night when the environment is cooler.

Most individuals simply switch their air-conditioning system anytime they like. It will certainly cool down your room, yet it will cost you higher electrical bills. Other than that, high usage of electricity is not green and will harm our planet. Therefore, by following our straightforward guidance, not only you can reduce your electricity bills but also give a helping hand to save the Earth.