Holiday Decorating on a Budget

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The holidays are approaching. Today, we thought we'd do something a little different and share this festive video on holiday decorating tips from HGTV. Designer Angelo Surmelis shares several great ideas to spread holiday cheer throughout the home. Here are some of our favorites.

  1. Pay attention to the mantle. If you don't have some already, buy some kind of garland to drape over the mantle. Next, use leftover ornaments and candles to add light and texture. When choosing ornaments and candles, ensure they are in the same color-palette. This helps make your mantle a great focal point!
  2. Use smaller Christmas trees. Every house has their main Christmas tree. In addition, you can also purchase smaller, inexpensive, eco-friendly trees to place throughout the home. Decorate these trees with strips of fabric from a T-shirt in holiday colors to save money for the main tree.
  3. Use what you have. Be resourceful. Adding a plate charge and place mat to your everyday dining set adds some jazz to your table. Fresh-cut flowers and candles will help finish the look. You don't need grand, expensive candles -- a little candlelight goes a long way!
As you can see, it doesn't take much to make your home feel more festive. If you have any questions, give us a call or send us an email. We would be happy to help you!

Why Aren’t Millennials Buying Homes More Frequently?

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One thing we know for certain about the real estate market is that it is never going to stay the same for long. Today we want to talk about an interesting trend we’ve noticed in real estate: millennials are waiting longer to purchase their first homes than their parents did.

The typical first-time buyer now rents for an average of 6 years before buying a home, which is up from 2.6 years in the early 1970’s, according to Zillow.

We came across this great video from CNBC. I will give you my three biggest takeaways from the article.

1. Down payments are a huge factor
Renters in today’s market are struggling to save for down payments and qualify for mortgages. Most first-time buyers still depend on personal savings for at least some of their down payments, but rising rental prices have complicated the task of socking away money for a down payment.

2. Rising rental rates are complicating things as well
 Rental rates are causing 46% of renters aged 25-34 to spend more than 40% of their income on rent, up from 30% a decade earlier. 

3. Job security is important to millennial buyers
 The Money Source, a mortgage lender, examined applications from 5,404 millennial buyers and found that these buyers averaged nearly 4.5 years in their field of work and had held their current job for slightly more than three years. Those figures point to how critical career stability is to a younger generation.

Thanks for joining me today. If you want to read the full article, click above. Otherwise, give me a call or send me an email if you have any questions. Talk to you soon!

How to Organize Your Home Before a Showing

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I recently found a good video on HGTV that I thought would be helpful to you if you're preparing to sell your home. It's essential that when you show your home to buyers, it's clean, organized, and decluttered. You'll want to empty out your closets, or at the very least, get them organized.

One thing you can do to get organized is put up shoe hangers in your doors, and store everyday items inside them such as cleaning supplies, utensils, or anything else that you can fit in them.

Another way to cut down on clutter is to use labels, or pick up storage bins to keep items like cords or wires in.

A tip for organizing your closet is to divide your clothes into four different sections: hang, sell, donate, keep, and fold. Once you have something marked out for every category, you can then organize your closet in any way you see fit. Here's an extra tip: you can use belt hangers to hang your necklaces and other jewelry.

I just thought this video would be useful for organizing your home, whether you're selling or if you just want to tidy up a bit.

If you need any assistance with staging, decluttering, or selling, please don't hesitate to contact me!