Condos have been gaining in popularity for a number of years for people across many segments of the population. From couples who are just starting out together to retirees, and everyone in between, condos are a smart choice that offer many advantages. In order to determine if they are the right choice for you, read on below. Ownership of Your Home Unlike renting a home, or apartment, a condo is a true investment in your future. You will have the deed to your own home so you know that all the money you pay into it will result in you actually having something to show for it. You Can Sell, or Rent, Later In spite of your condo being attached to others in the complex, it is still yours to sell if you want to. This means that you still have the freedom to move wherever and whenever you want. Conversely, you can rent out your condo if you need to move and it suits your needs better. Really, since the condo is yours, the choice is yours as well. Your Responsibilities End at Your Front Door One of the most attractive things about owning a condo is the fact that your responsibilities end literally at your front door. While you are responsible for repairs to your appliances, and the like, that you have in your home, your condo association is responsible for the lawn maintenance, snow removal and other routine outdoor tasks. This allows you to fully concentrate on your own home. Of course, this is not a free service, though. Your monthly condo association fees pay for this service. The condo association decides which service provider to use by a vote of the board. Being on the board gives you the opportunity to make a real difference in how your community is run. Close Knit Community Having a condo in a planned community that caters to a specific portion of the population such as retirees or young families allows you to have neighbors that are in the same life stage as yourself. This gives you plenty of opportunities to make lifelong friendships as well as building a support network. This type of support is something that many people often miss due to their life circumstances, so it is a particularly positive aspect of condo ownership. A condo can offer you an array of benefits that could be suited to your circumstances. As always, take the time to research your options thoroughly before making a decision.
The country’s long history of racism and racial discrimination effected many aspects of life in the U.S. and the world of real estate was no exception to this. In the past, real estate agents would practice things such as “steering” and “blockbusting.” In both cases real estate agents played a part in segregating different communities by race. Whether by steering, suggesting clients look in certain neighborhoods based on their race, or blockbusting, convincing homeowners to sell their homes quickly and at low prices by instilling the fear that minorities would soon be taking over the area, their practices did not have their clients’, or the general populations, best interests at heart. In fact, ‘steering’ and ‘blockbusting’ allowed agents to reap many fiscal rewards of racism. Modern day real estate agents have a very high standard of ethics and laws in place in regard to discrimination for these very reasons. These standards make the content an agent can provide his or her clients with limited at times. There is certain information your agent can not and should not provide. An agent cannot and should not attest to the specifics of a certain neighborhood. The agent shouldn’t tell a client the area is perfect for single persons or on the other hand describe a neighborhood as family-friendly. Your agent can suggest you speak with some of the homeowners in the neighborhood in order to get a better grasp on the neighborhood’s atmosphere. Similarly, If you want to know if the area you’re looking in has a good school system, an agent can point you in the direction of where this information and data is readily available, perhaps online, and allow you to do your own research and make your own assumptions. An agent, generally, cannot provide you with his or her personal experience or opinion on these sensitive topics. This is not detrimental to you as a buyer or a seller. As a seller you are ensured your agent is showing any and all interested buyers, and as a buyer you know your agent is showing you the optimal number of homes and neighborhoods based on your desires not your race. As your real estate agent I’d be happy to point you in the right direction of any information you may be seeking while abiding by all of the highest moral standards of my profession. It is my job to have your best interests in mind.
Window treatments do more than offer your home curb appeal, inviting light in or casting shade across your floors. Window treatments narrow or broaden your vision of your neighborhood. You have dozens of window treatment types to choose from. Yet, not every type will highlight the best features in your home. Drapes and curtains are traditional window treatments and are available in a rainbow of colors and designs. Solid colors, particularly solid neutral colors like brown, beige, sky blue and white, are good because they complement many furniture styles and accessories like floral arrangements, candle centerpieces, tall greenery and weaved baskets. Blinds – Wood, faux wood, fabric, vinyl and metal are materials that blinds are made with. Additionally, blinds come in horizontal and vertical designs. Mini blinds are more lightweight than traditional blinds. They work well with small windows. Because these blinds are thinner, they are easier to bend or damage. Therefore, it’s recommended that they be installed in rooms that young children and pets don’t frequent. Shutters – Heavier than blinds and shades, shutters, are available in horizontal and vertical designs. It’s possible to install shutters in windows that cover a room corner. You may need to install three horizontal shutters to cover all of the windows. Hang a decorative ceiling light above the center window for an elegant look and feel. Shades – Shades come in Roman, bamboo and roller styles. Different lift or raise options are available with shades. Unlike blinds, shades can expose your entire window when they are lifted, allowing more light inside your home. For example, you can install shades that leave the top foot of your windows exposed. Solar shades can help protect your furniture from over exposure to sun rays, keeping fabric colors vibrant. Cord or cordless – Blinds, shades and shutters come with cords. Should you choose the cord route, make sure that you lock or tie up cords, so that children do not play with them and so that people don’t trip on the cords. You can also select cordless window treatments. Cordless window treatments may be a perfect option for children’s rooms, especially over windows that are near baby cribs. Custom styles – Organic window treatments are environmentally safe. Other custom styles include window treatments that are cut, sewn and designed specifically for one or more rooms of your home. Insulated window treatments – Window treatments with added insulation help to lower utility bills. Examples of these window treatments are double or triple layered shutters. Liners can also be added to drapes and curtains for added insulation. Black window treatments help to keep light out. They can also help to reduce the amount of outside noise that penetrates a room at your house. This option works well if you’re a photographer or an artist who needs to focus and work in a quieter space. Additionally, darker colored drapes and curtains help to keep a house warmer during winter, while lighter drapes can help a house stay cooler when it’s hot outside. Measure your windows before purchasing any window treatments. Use a tape measure or slide ruler to measure the width and height of your windows. Get measurements for the top, base and middle of each of your windows. Measurements will determine the size rods, drapes, curtains or other window treatment types that you need.