Kitchen Appliances for New Homes

Just because you are moving into a new house doesn’t mean you should also get new appliances. Yes, there is great benefit in just keeping your old appliances when you make your move into your new home but sometimes it is also wise to get new appliances or at least upgrade the last ones.  Though this does not necessarily ring true for appliances like TV or home theatre systems, it is with your kitchen appliances that you should make appropriate upgrades or replacements when you pack up and live in your new home. Here are a couple of kitchen appliances that you can replace and/or upgrade when you move into your new house and more importantly, your new kitchen.

  • Refrigerator- The very first thing that you should consider leaving behind is your fridge. Most often than not, it is the fridge that takes up the most area and is usually the biggest appliance in your kitchen. There are times when just the mere transportation of a refrigerator would prove to be more than just a hassle. You should also consider the probability that your new kitchen does not have the same dimensions and area with your previous kitchen and that your fridge might not even fit in through the door and in the kitchen as a whole. It would just make more sense to sell it and buy something that would fir better.
  • Oven- The oven is most likely the heart of the kitchen, which is why it only makes sense to have a new one when going into a new house. When moving into a house take the opportunity to upgrade and get a better oven that would suit your cooking and baking needs not to mention your kitchen’s style. As the heart of the kitchen, your oven determines its life. Choose only the best.
  • Dish washer- You could also take the time to upgrade your dish washer when you move into a newer house. Yes, sometimes the dishwasher can be as large as a small refrigerator, so you might not want to have the hassle of having to transport your old one. You could find some newer and even cleaner dish washers that would be worthy to replace your old one that you can really trust your precious plates with.
  • Microwave- What is a kitchen without the quicker and smaller version of the oven? Yes, the microwave is like one of the most necessary appliances in the modern man’s lifestyle these days. You can most definitely take this time to upgrade your microwave to ensure more fast and efficient ways to enjoy food on the go.
  • Other little appliances- You should also look into upgrading and trading in a lot of your other, smaller kitchen appliances and even buy new ones that would suit you better in your new house. You could replace your coffee maker with something more compact and preferably of new model. You could also acquire new appliances that you did not really have back at your previous place. You can start by upgrading things with appliances such as getting a mixer instead of the manual beater you have or trading in your best knife sharpener with an electric one that would actually do a lot more efficient work. These are all up to you but would really do your new kitchen much good.

The Season You Show a House Matters

Selling a house is one of the most important parts of real estate investing and even if you aren’t an investor there is a high chance you will still need to sell a house.

But what is the best time of year to sell? What season is better to show off your lovely home to potential buyers? This is where things can become a little confusing.

Some experts say selling in the winter is best because there is less competition. Others will advise you spring is better when the weather will entice buyers outside and the flowers are in bloom.

In truth, there are perks for showing your house in different times of the year, and really it comes down to your personal situation and market trends. The following are a couple of factors to consider.

Location, location, location

Where your property is situated is going to have an impact on the best time to show your home. Is your property in a beachside town or an urban location? A beachside property may be more appealing to the buyer who views it during the summer. For example, you have a lovely house whose back-lawn overlooks the beach. The sun is out, you have your quality smoker out, and you walk the potential buyer out to these views, allowing them to be enticed by the luxury way-of-life feelings they get from the viewing.

However, many buyers will actually look for their ideal home at other points of the year too. So this traditional advice may not always work. Chatting with your estate agent to discuss when buyers are most likely to view your property is a good idea. Open houses during peak times of year can become an extremely important factor in selling and could generate serious interest in buyers who were only casually thinking about purchasing a beachfront property. Which leads to the next point:

Selling season

Traditionally, spring has been considered the best season for selling properties. This is the time of year when homes and gardens look their best, and people are outside enjoying the weather. Often, families prefer to buy a new home before the height of summer arrives so as to tie in with the new school year. But because of this, there is naturally more competition.

This is why autumn is a time when some of the biggest volume of sales happen. This is in part due to its timing right after the holidays, when focus on buying starts to pick up again. You should also consider the practicalities of selling during this season: potential buyers being shown around your home inside and out are less likely to be hit with the unpleasant smell of smoke from your neighbors smoker.

Patios and Decks can Add Value to A Home

In the warmer weather, there is nothing better than to be able to enjoy being outside at your home on a patio or deck. The word patio is derived from the Spanish language where they often referred to the roofless inner courtyard that used to be commonly found in Spanish-style dwellings.

What is a Patio or Deck?

In modern homes we tend to think of as a patio or deck as being an outdoor space that adjoins your residence – typically the area is paved so that it is perfect for outdoor dining or recreation. Patios or decks can be created by using paving stones or other durable surfaces such as bricks, concrete, pebbles, or wood. If you are looking to add value to your home, then creating a patio or deck is a simple and cost effective solution. By adding a paved area that adjoins your house, you are creating a whole new living space that you and your family can enjoy. Whether it is where you set up the table tennis table, or if you have some sun lounges, or it could be the perfect place for some outdoor dining so that you can all enjoy the smoky goodness barbecue ambiance that some flame grilled cooking can give you. The possibilities are endless. If you live in an area that experiences colder weather for parts of the year, a patio or deck to create some outdoor living space is still worth considering. There are a range of outdoor heaters available that mean that this living space can still be utilized, even beyond the summer months.

Safe Outdoor Space for Kids

These days when people are looking to buy a home, especially when they have young children or a growing family to consider houses that have outdoor spaces such as a patio or deck are particularly attractive. To have a safe playing area for the children, a space that you can easily monitor from the kitchen or a nearby room, is definitely something that a lot of families will rate highly and will pay a premium for.

Great Place for Plants

The use of plants on your patio or deck is a really simple way to integrate the space with your garden and create some shade while you are outside enjoying the warmer weather. Take your inspiration from Spanish courtyards and use large terra-cotta pots with hardy plants that don’t require too much attention.Think about palms, olive trees, or lemon trees – these are relatively slow growing plants but your local garden center will be able to supply you with mature plants so that you can instantly create a spectacular garden feature on your patio.

Other Patio Extras

Another way of giving your patio or deck a real wow factor is to install a water feature. This doesn’t have to be an enormous fountain, it could just be a small trickling stream or a pot of water that cascades gently over the stones. There is something incredibly soothing about the gentle sound of water in the background while you are relaxing in the sun. You could even create a small fish pond using a large earthenware pot and some shady plants. Your children will love caring for the fish and watching them swim about in the cool pools of water on your patio or deck. The more flexible that you can make your space, the more use that you will get from it. If you do set up a table tennis table, make sure that it is one that you can easily fold up and put into storage when you want to entertain friends or set up the sun lounges. So whether you have created your patio or deck using paving stones, wooden planks, recycled bricks, or combination of all of these materials. Your patio will give you an opportunity to not only embrace the joy of outdoor living but will also create value for your home.

Investing in a Vacation Rental Property

On the surface, the state of Utah doesn’t appear to be an obvious vacation destination, nor is it a place for real estate investors to look for rental properties.  After all, it’s not a coastal state, nor does it have a warm climate all year long.  Utah also lacks the reputation for being a haven of excitement and entertainment that places like Las Vegas or New Orleans have.  But while it lacks a flashy nickname like “Vacationland” or “The Sunshine State,” Utah is a viable vacation destination, and investing in property to rent out to vacationers can be a smart move that ultimately works out for savvy real estate investors.

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What Utah lacks is one marquee vacation destination that attracts a surplus of tourists every year.  However, the Beehive State makes up for it by having a wide variety of niche vacation spots scattered throughout the entire state, giving potential investors a nearly endless list of places where they could buy property for the purpose of renting it out to vacationers.

The northern part of the state is home to Utah’s major cities like Salt Lake City, Provo, and Park City, where there are religious and cultural attractions that regularly bring tourists to Utah, as well as ski resorts that will consistently attract visitors to Utah during the winter months.  Meanwhile, in the southern part of Utah, there are beautiful geographic features such as Bryce Canyon National Park, Canyonlands National Park, and Lake Powell, which bring tourists seeking thrills and excitement to Utah, usually during the summer months.  This gives Utah a plentiful number of locations for investors to find property to rent out to vacationers throughout the calendar year.

Typically, the northern part of the state around Utah’s biggest cities is going to be a better investment opportunity than in the southern part of the state near several of Utah’s national parks.  Property values near the city are going to be higher, allowing owners to charge more, and the cultural destinations of Salt Lake City and Park City will generally attract a more affluent vacationer that’s willing and able to pay more for a rental property than in the south.  Of course, southern Utah offers a great niche vacation market, where vacationers will be bound and determined to go, regardless of cost.  In either case, Utah is able to draw such a steady stream of vacationers to both parts of the state, and so a quality property that’s reasonably priced should have no problem finding renters on a regular basis.

Of course, having a rental property and filling it on a regular basis does not guarantee a massive or life-changing profit.  The cost of property taxes, the usual upkeep of a property, and other expenses will generally even out with the income that comes in from renting out the property.  However, with an attractive property that’s kept in good condition and marketed properly, there’s a chance to make some profit from the property, especially considering the demand for rentals throughout Utah is high.

With Utah attracting a high volume of vacationers, a quality property should have no trouble being filled on a regular basis, which means the property will produce a steady stream of income, and owners will rarely have to worry about losing money because they can’t find renters for the property.  Between that and the likelihood that property values in Utah will continue to bounce back from last decade’s housing crisis, investing in rental properties in Utah is a sound and safe investment, even if the monetary returns aren’t massive.

Boost Your Rental Rate With A Premium Kitchen

When looking to purchase a rental property, there is a seemingly endless list of features to consider while trying to determine the value of the property, trying to upgrade the quality of the property, and setting a fair rental price for it. But one aspect of rental properties that is often overlooked is the quality of the kitchen appliances, despite the fact that adding the right kitchen appliances can be a simple way to make the property look more appealing, making it easier to rent, possibly at a higher price.

 

Okitchenbviously, the location of the property, as well as the amenities in the area around it are going to be the biggest factor in the cost of the property, but once the location has been decided, a lot can be done inside to increase the appeal and value of the property. In that respect, the kitchen is arguably the most important room in the house, and the appliances within the kitchen can be a key part of successfully renting out the property at a favorable price.

The kitchen is almost always going to be the first room prospective renters see when looking at a rental property, which means that the kitchen is critical to making a good first impression. If prospective renters don’t leave the kitchen feeling pleased and impressed with what they saw, their attitude about the property as a whole is unlikely to change. However, showing off an inviting kitchen at the start of a visit can set a positive tone, and make the prospective renter more likely to look favorably at the rest of the property. Obviously, little can be done about the size and shape of the kitchen, but filling the kitchen with high-quality and aesthetically pleasing appliances is something that’s under control of the renter, and can be a way tho influences the prospective renter. To be more specific, the refrigerator is the most important kitchen appliance, and is one of the most important aspects to the inside of the property. It’s impossible to predict the taste of prospective renters in terms of the color and model of refrigerator they would prefer, but having a large fridge that includes amenities that aren’t standard on all refrigerators is a great way to make the kitchen and the property seem more appealing. The same can be said for the stove, which is the kitchen’s other major appliance. Nearly all prospective renters will plan on cooking on a daily basis, and anything that can make cooking easier for them will increase the appeal of the property and make them want to rent it, regardless of cost.

Of course, it’s not all about expensive and flashy appliances; the devil is in the details.

Putting together a package of small yet useful kitchen appliances, but doing so in a way that doesn’t create a cluttered look is another simple and easy way to make the kitchen more appealing. It’s a fine line to walk, but empty shelves don’t give off a welcoming vibe, which will turn prospective renters off to the property, while an excess number of items on countertops will make the kitchen appear messy and make the prospective renter think they’d be paying for things they won’t use. However, several useful appliances of high quality will make the kitchen, and the property as a whole, more appealing.

When it comes to rental properties, location is important, but it’s not everything. Outside of location, there are several variables under the renter’s control that can entice prospective renters into paying a higher price for it. Having quality kitchen appliances is a simple addition to a property that can make a big difference in increasing the value and appeal of a rental property.

Investing in A Mountain Home: What You Need to Know

When the market in real estate flourished in the early 2000‘s, mountain vacation homes were bought by those with a large salary or a lot of cash. The market nowadays have set another view for mountain vacation homes and secondary homes with reasonable pricing and rock bottom interest rates. Even though vacation homes before couldn’t pay off on their own, there’s a good chance that today’s vacation homes can.

When mountain vacation homes were deemed luxurious, the idea of having them rented out for several weeks to years to fight off property expenses usually leave homeowners cashing in short. Nevertheless, the market nowadays is full of vacation homes and log cabins that are for sale. Mountain vacation properties present now have a likelihood of garnering increased monetary flow if the new owner is diligent enough to make it happen.

A reasonably priced mountain vacation home bought within or below the standard value would require renting for a minimum of 3 months to begin earning on its own. Mountain vacation homes are ideal as properties for rent during summer months, but can function evenly for cabins situated in getaway or ski locations which can prolong their rental period in over a few months of summer. Getting your mountain vacation home rented will require to book early. Offer a rental price discount for property booking for the following year to inspire renters to come back.

A big cash saver and necessary step to getting your mountain home to earn on its own is to get rid of any middleman involved. Today’s management agencies run you dry by sucking in as much as 40% of your rent earnings. Dealing with rent and maintenance isn’t as challenging. It’s important to choose a qualified property manager as opposed to a management agency. Run background checks since a manager with a bad management history can significantly strain your investment. Foster a friendly relationship with nearby services close to your rental home and have a calendar for convenient rental scheduling.

Choosing a suitable area for your vacation home will play a crucial part in its ability to earn on its own. You’ll want to choose a home in a location that tourists would desire to rent. This means living close to a local attraction including a wonderful mountain setting. Once you’ve picked a place for your mountain vacation home, you’ll need to ensure the place doesn’t charge hidden costs for owners or expensive rent permits for an under-a-month rental.

Another thing to take note is consider hiring a realtor to assist you. Realtors can guide you through the tedious process in a simplified manner. Regardless if it’s mortgage or financing, a realtor will help you arrive at an agreeable transaction.

If you’ve made a decision to purchase a mountain vacation home and getting it to pay for itself, make sure you’re readily invested in terms of finances, time, and maintenance. If you feel that you are, then it’s worth taking the plunge for a long term mountain vacation home investment. There are risks and competition at some point, but when you deal with them efficiently, you can see yourself earning over time without regrets.

Utilize A Premium Patio To Boost Rental Rates

When it comes to making a property appealing so that it can be rented out and turned into a source of income, so many properties in a particular area tend to become too similar and feature many of the same amenities.  Nearly every property that prospective renters look at will have a kitchen, living room, and entertainment center with many of the same perks.  The key is to find something that makes the property stand out, and that can distinguish it from similar properties in the same area.  One way to do that is to highlight the patio amenities of a property, as a patio is not something that all properties will feature, and by showcasing the patio as a place of fun and enjoyment, it will help the property as a whole stand out above similar properties in the area.

With patio amenities, it all starts with furniture.  The key to patio furniture is finding pieces that are both comfortable and practical.  Patios are considered a place of relaxation, so finding furniture that is comfortable to sit in for extended periods of time is a must.  But at the same time, the furniture must be something that can be used for activities on the patio such as afternoon cocktails, card and board games, and even full meals.  Finding furniture that is both comfortable and practical will help make the patio an asset to the property’s appeal.  Of course, the furniture must also be durable so that it can stand up to both frequent use and weather.  Otherwise, the patio furniture will have to be replaced frequently, ultimately making it more trouble than it’s worth.

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Lighting is also a key part of the patio area, as it enables patio use after dark, which is essential to creating a desirable rental property in warm climates.  Much like the furniture on the patio, lighting must be functional in order to enhance the use of the patio.  However, the lights must also be creatively placed so they don’t take up excessive amounts of space or interfere with any of the other features of the patio.

In addition to quality furniture and adequate lighting, the patio area of a rental property must be aesthetically pleasing to prospective renters, or else it could become more of an eye sore than an asset.  Often times, adding plant life to the patio can be the best way to do this, as many types plants can add color and beauty to a patio, while also breathing new life into the area as a whole.  Even if it’s not possible to plant a small garden on the edge of the patio area, a set of plant containers can be used to bring shrubbery and flowers to the patio.  Depending on the size of the plants, they can provide shade or privacy to the patio, in addition to making the area more visually appealing.

There are also a wide variety of decorative pieces that can be added to a patio to further enhance its aesthetic appeal and make it stand out.  For instance, small ponds, fountains, or statues are simple additions to a patio that can leave a lasting impression on prospective renters.  Any kind of yard art that complements the furniture without taking up a lot of space would be a welcome addition to any patio set up.  Of course, these decorative pieces are just the icing on the cake when setting up a patio on a rental property, because when done properly with the right furniture and lighting, a patio can be an attractive and memorable part of any property, enhancing its value in the eyes of prospective renters.

Is Utah Cheaper? Property values in Utah Compared to the Rest of the USA

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When compared to other states around the country, the property values in Utah are on their way up at a higher rate, which is good news for property owners, especially those that are selling or renting out their properties to others, as well as the Utah economy as a whole.  Obviously, there was a steep decline in property values beginning with the financial crisis in 2007 that few states were immune from, but for nearly the past two years the housing market in Utah has shown improvement at a significantly higher rate than the national average, making property values in Utah above average compared to the rest of the country.

As of August of 2013, housing prices in Utah had risen 9.4 percent from the low point they hit during last decade’s financial crisis, according to information published by the Federal Government.  Government numbers also indicate that since the low point of the housing crisis, building permits in Utah rose 73 percent, a sign that the construction of new homes in Utah is also bouncing back.  Foreclosures in the state of Utah are also on their way down, which is a luxury not all states are privy to, while homes in Utah with negative equity are down 41 percent since the peak of the crisis, both of which are signs that property values are once again on the rise in Utah.

In terms of the average listing price for homes currently on the market, only 11 states and the District of Columbia rank higher than Utah.  This puts Utah in the top 25 percent of states with regard to property value.  There are two main reasons for this.  The first is that the northern part of the state has well above-average values that raise the level for the entire state.  The three northern Utah cities of Provo, Sandy, and Salt Lake City have median property values north of $200,000, while Summit County, just east of those three cities has a median value close to $700,000, according to Trulia Real Estate.

The second reason for the high average in property values is that there are few weak spots in the state of Utah with regard to property value.  There is only a small pocket in the northeast corner of the state where median property values are under $100,000, which helps keep the statewide average high.  There are a limited number of states, mostly on the West coast and in the northeast corridor, where there are no weak spots in the housing market dragging down the average property value for the entire state, and Utah is one of them.  Most states in the Midwest, Great Plains, and Southeast have a large number of counties in which the median property value is less than $100,000, which is why Utah compares favorably with a majority of states across the country.

The broad trends that give Utah such high property values compared to the rest of the country are a high demand, low supply, and a minimal amount of distressed properties.  Utah has several cities, most notably the capital of Salt Lake City, that are desirable places to live and enticing for outsiders to move to.  The state has much to offer both current and potential residents, which keeps demand high and the supply low, driving up prices.  A low number of distressed properties prevents the small pockets of low property values from impacting the areas around them or the state as a whole.  This is why Utah retains higher than average property values when compared to the rest of the country.