Category Archives: Homeowners

A Minor Problem Now Can Quickly Become A Major Repair

Winter weather can be harsh on your roof. Freezing temperatures, strong winds, and rain, snow, and ice combine to make winter the worse time of the year for extensive water damage. The cycle of water freezing and melting causes roofing to expand and contract, creating gaps that can leak. Older homes or those with poorly designed or constructed roofs are the most vulnerable, and even the smallest amount of damage can put the value of your home in jeopardy.

A buildup of snow and ice on the roof is never a good thing, and you want to prevent that as much as possible. Adding insulation to your attic is a great way to prevent roof problems. In addition to keeping the cold out, the insulation keeps the heat inside instead of melting accumulating ice, which can run down from the peak and freeze again, causing ice dams. One telltale sign of ice dams is icicles.

If you have asphalt shingles, you’re more likely to have issues with snow building up on the rough surface. Metal roofing with a PVC coating allows lets snow to slide off. Snow guards and heating cables can also be used with metal roofs and maybe a better option for areas where snow and ice are more prevalent.

You don’t have to go outside to check for leaks in the roof. The first sign is often water spots on the ceilings of upper floors or wet spots in attics. You can look for damaged shingles from the ground by using binoculars. A closer look is often required but moving about on the roof is generally something best left to an experienced inspector or roofer.

If you suspect you may have a problem, don’t hesitate to get your roof inspected by a professional. A minor problem now can quickly become a major repair. The good news is that winter is not a roofer’s busiest season, and you may find some steep discounts on repair costs. When looking for a roofer, make sure they have experience doing winter repairs.

Knowing your roof’s condition is especially important if you’re planning on selling your home in the future. Problems and damage will have to be accounted for before most will even consider making an offer on your home. The longer you wait, the more repairs will cost. So, take a little time out of your weekend to check for roof problems. When it is time to sell, you’ll be glad you did.

If you are thinking about buying or selling your home this year, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image by Couleur from Pixabay 

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Your Home, Your New Year’s Resolution

Every new year, many of us commit to better health and wellness, but what if this year we reserve not just be better ourselves but also better our homes. By contacting your local real estate agent, perhaps you can make real estate-based resolutions and maybe even stick to them this year.

Now that we have entered the winter months, your realtor will advise you to get that to-do list out of the drawer, dust it off, and start crossing off some of the items listed. And because it has been in hiding since spring, you should walk back through your home with your list, noting any small things that could turn into big problems. Be sure to check everything, from cracks in the ceiling to regular maintenance items should be attended to. Scan all of the walls, floors, ceilings, appliances, doors, and windows. Not only is aspiring to accomplish all of the items on your to-do list an excellent New Year’s resolution, but it will also remove the monkey that has been hanging on your back since spring.

Another resolution for 2021 that your real estate agent would recommend that you look into is any home renovation you have been longing to execute. If you have coveted an updated kitchen, bathroom, or something else, make it your goal to accomplish the task in the upcoming year.

Regardless of the remodel, focus on energy efficiency. 2021 will be the year of supporting the “Go Green” concept. You can achieve this by merely replacing incandescent light bulbs with more efficient fluorescent or LED’s. Or go big by replacing any home appliances with energy-efficient versions.

Even though a full remodel will not be suitable for everyone, you can perform something more financially manageable, such as tiling your kitchen backsplash or applying a fresh coat of paint to the walls. Any of these renovations will ultimately add value to your home and are resolutions that can easily be accomplished.

Lastly, your realtor may suggest that you resolve to make extra mortgage payments. Maybe you cannot afford to double the payment, but perhaps you could add a small amount of money each month for the next year. Paying extra money towards your mortgage now saves you big money later. Your real estate agent will be able to provide you with the information of how much savings your resolution investment could pay off in the long run.

So, this year, instead of purchasing an expensive diet plan, you are sure to bail on by March, commit to improving, maintaining, and paying more towards your real estate investment. Call your realtor today and make them aware that your New Year’s resolution for 2021 is going to involve your home. He or she will be your best asset in determining where to focus your attention and money.

People so often fail to uphold their New Year’s resolutions. By involving your home in making your resolution decision, you are sure to be more likely to succeed in the expectations you set for yourself. You will also be making your home a safer, more appealing, and energy-efficient environment.

If you are ready to talk about applying a strategy to your long-term real estate goals, contact me today so we can determine how to make the most of the current real estate market for you. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Brokers License #01264041

Photo by Jan Antonin Kolar on Unsplash

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Winterizing Your Home

The winter season is upon us, so now is a great time to address winter maintenance before the weather makes even the simplest of repairs significantly more difficult. Winterizing your home in advance of the changing seasons ensures that you aren’t having to make any repairs during the winter months or having to suffer without necessary conveniences.

Furnace Inspection and Routine Maintenance

Several routine maintenance tasks can be performed on your furnace by you, the homeowner. Such tasks include changing the air filter and making sure any flammable objects have been removed from around the furnace unit itself. You can also go around the house, ensuring that all of the vents are unobstructed from furniture, clutter, etc. Air needs to be able to circulate efficiently throughout your home. For the next steps in warranting your furnace is safe and in its best operating condition, you must call on a professional. A certified and licensed heating expert will assess the unit’s blower belt and motor, assuring that they do not need any repair before taking on the winter months. All are preventative measures taken to avoid fire and alleviate the opportunity for poisonous gases to enter your home. Hiring a licensed heating professional is pivotal in the assurance that your furnace is safe and sound working order before entering the winter months.

Addressing Your Windows and Doors

Begin by checking all of the weather stripping around your windows and doors for any signs of air leaks or drafts. Replace any stripping that has been pulled loose or is showing signs of wear. Even the smallest of crevices creates a passage for cold air to enter or warm air to escape. Finally, inspect the actual glass of the windows and doors for cracks or breaks. If necessary, replace the glass. Winter’s cold air drafts entering your home leads to money exiting your wallet.

Fireplace and Chimney Preparation

A cheap chimney sweep fireplace cleaning professional can be found in cities nationwide. The chimney professional will clean out your fireplace and chimney of any creosote and soot build-up. Creosote can catch fire from the sparks flying upward while burning. The mortar in the bricks surrounding the chimney will also be closely inspected for cracks or holes. If found, these cracks and holes must be repaired by a professional bricklayer, as they too can be a source of fire.

Exterior Detail

Inspect your roof for loose or missing shingles. Replace or repair as needed to prevent water leaks when the freezing rain or snow begins to melt. Clear gutters and downspouts of leaves and debris, and inspect that they are fastened securely to the house. Be sure the downspouts extend at least five feet away from the home to inhibit ponding around the foundation. Lastly, close all vents and openings around the foundation, or crawl, to keep unwanted intruders from finding refuge for the winter.

Congratulations! Your home has now been winterized. Taking preventative action in the fall is your best line of defense against winter. Instead of hastily thumbing through the phonebook on a Sunday afternoon in mid-January, you can sleep warmly in the comfort of knowing your home is safe and protected.

Anytime you need a recommendation for a home professional to assist you with something big or small around your home, give me a call. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Photo by Jessica Johnston on Unsplash

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Five Ways to Improve the Organization of Your Pantry

A pantry is a great way to store food and other kitchen items within the kitchen but out of your cabinets. Since pantries come in many sizes, that leaves an endless variety of options on how you can best organize the pantry for your household. In a disorganized pantry, it is easy to lose things in the pantry but with some basic organization, you can keep that from happening.

  1. Start by cleaning out items you don’t use or have expired. There is no reason to organize items that you will never use so start with this step. Moving forward, it’s a good idea to periodically clean out the pantry to toss items that you purchased but never got used for whatever reason. I would recommend during in January and sometime over the summer.
  2. Group items by the frequency you use them. There is no reason to have the rarely used karo syrup stored in the most accessible location.
  3. It’s also a good idea to group items by size. Storing a small container of spices next to a family size box of cereal will waste space in your pantry plus confuse everyone.
  4. Purchase bins and storage containers. There are lots of places to buy them, but dollar stores offer a lot of options in a variety of shapes and sizes. These can be great for small items like granola bars and other snacks, canned goods and baking essentials like chocolate chips and nuts. Some items just don’t stack well, and this will keep your pantry looking neat and help you find something quickly when you are looking for it.
  5. Don’t forget the door of your pantry. Some doors may not offer great options but many of them will allow you to add shelves that can provide additional storage for canned goods, spices and other items.

Even the best organization won’t last if you never take the time to put anything away. At a minimum of once a day, take a quick look at the pantry and make sure everything is in its place. With multiple hands in the pantry, things can get moved but a daily check will keep everything where you want it and save you time in the long run.

If you have any additional questions about updating or organizing your home, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image courtesy of Vivian Evans/Flickr.com.  

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Home Warranty Pros and Cons

When you are selling your home, you will want to do everything you can to help your home stand out from its competition. Before listing your home, it is important that your home be very clean, decluttered, properly staged and priced appropriately. Depending on the market, sometimes even that is not enough. Another thing you could consider when selling your home is to provide a home warranty to the new buyers of your home. This can be a nice selling point for several reasons.

A home warranty covers the components of a home, such as heating and cooling systems, appliances and water heaters but usually doesn’t include minor repairs such as plumbing leaks or anything cosmetic like painting and flooring. It can be purchased at any time though they are most often purchased during home transactions. The price can vary depending on the size of the home, age of the home and the options you select. After purchasing the warranty that normally lasts for a year though you can renew it in future years. You will pay a predetermined amount for a covered repair and the remainder of the repair will be covered by the warranty company. It is imperative that you call the warranty company before contacting someone to do the work if you want the warranty company to cover the repair.

For the buyer of your home, a home warranty can offer additional peace of mind. They will have a little extra comfort that many repairs can be made using the warranty and not deplete all of their savings. While everything at home doesn’t cost thousands of dollars, it isn’t uncommon for one repair to cost more than the cost of a warranty.

For the seller, a home warranty may bring in more buyers, especially if the person is selling an older home. First-time buyers don’t always have a lot of money to put into the property, and a warranty would reassure them they won’t have a lot of major expenses.

Think of a home warranty like an insurance policy for repairs to your home. Like insurance, the warranty doesn’t cover everything but it can cover many items and give you some extra peace of mind and for a buyer may just be the thing that helps them select your home over a similar one down the street. For additional information regarding the home buying or selling process, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home or determine the value of your existing property

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image courtesy American Advisors Group/flickr.com

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Fall Maintenance for Homeowners

As summer winds down and fall approaches, you will hopefully get some relief from the hot weather of recent weeks. As the temperatures cool, this makes a great time to take care of home maintenance tasks outside and prepare your home for the winter months. What should you do around your home in the fall to make sure you are ready for the next season? Here are five things you definitely should not skip.

  1. Lawn maintenance is common in the fall. If you choose to aerate in the fall, then you may want to fertilize your lawn after that. The summer is harsh on your grass. Giving it some attention after the weather starts to cool can help it recover before its dormant winter season. If you do fertilize your lawn, you will need to water it as well if the weather doesn’t cooperate with you. Without watering, your fertilizer will be wasted.
  2. Fall is a great time to seal and stain your deck. Depending on your deck, this may need to be done annually or every two to three years. You need to avoid the wettest season and while summer may have plenty of time that isn’t wet, it may be too hot for you to do this kind of activity depending on the size of your deck. While you may have some fall rain, you should likely have plenty of dry days too so you can complete this activity without getting into the cold months. While your area may be drier in the winter, if there is rain, it is likely to stick around longer since the temperatures are cooler. Most likely the fall will still have plenty of warm, sunny days to make deck maintenance ideal.
  3. Empty the gutters and downspouts and make any necessary repairs. When the leaves start to come off the trees in the fall, it is best to have your gutters empty, so they aren’t overloaded. Overflowing gutters can pull away from the house causing damage and allowing water to flow into your home. This damage is often hard to spot until it has progressed to a big and expensive problem.
  4. Winterize any outdoor water sources. This includes outdoor spigots, irrigation systems, sinks, fountains, and anything else. If temperatures dip below freezing with water in the lines, it could cause your pipes to burst creating an expensive and messy repair.
  5. Have your fireplace cleaned for the new season if you didn’t have it done at the end of fireplace season. If this is not something you have been doing regularly, talk to the person that comes out about the recommended schedule for this maintenance task depending on your fireplace usage habits. Fireplaces provide great heat during the winter but can be dangerous if they aren’t properly maintained.

Routine maintenance is critical to caring for your home and protecting your most important asset. Anytime you need a recommendation for a home professional to assist you with something big or small around your home, give me a call. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image by 123switch from Pixabay 

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Design Inspiration for Your New Home

When you are moving into a new home, you may want an entirely new look to go along with that. Even if you are happy with most of your current furnishings and don’t need to change everything, a move may mean more space or different space that you need to furnish. If interior design isn’t one of your hobbies, where do you find ideas that will help you turn your house into a home. Start with these five sites to find lots of great ideas.

HGTV.com
HGTV is full of great ideas for everything house related. Ideas of all kinds can be found in whatever style you are looking for. From the front porch to the backyard and everything in between, HGTV is full of stunning ideas. Browse ideas by room or style until you find just the look for you.

Havenly.com
Havenly.com is the perfect option if you are never quite sure how to pull a room together. For a small fee, they will ask about your style and make recommendations that meet your budget and style. This is a great option if you don’t want to buy a prepackaged room of furniture and just can’t decide what goes together.

Houzz
This website brings together home professionals of all kinds to share ideas and experiences that you can search and brose until you find the right one for you. Whether you are looking for a fresh look for one room or the whole house, Houzz can make it easy to find.

Modsy.com
Modsy is another option to work with a designer for a small fee. They will provide design ideas within your budget then offer you discounted prices to purchase the items through them so you don’t have to track everything down yourself. They offer unlimited changes to their design recommendations and will keep working with you to get it right.

House Beautiful
The companion website to the magazine shares design ideas from a variety of sources. From whole designs to focus pieces to make a perfect statement, this site is full of ideas that you will love.

These sites are just a starting point to help you perfect your home to your style and needs. If the DIY approach to style isn’t for you, you can always call a local interior designer to help you style your home.  For additional information or recommendations to trusted professionals, please contact me today. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image by BUMIPUTRA from Pixabay 

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Remodeling vs Moving…Which is Right for You?

After a few years or decades in your home, you may discover it no longer meets your needs. When that is the case, you have two options. You can move and find a new home that meets your needs or remodel your existing home, so it fits your needs. Both options have pros and cons so there is a lot to consider when you are making your decision. Here are four questions to ask yourself before you decide.

  1. Is your location good or bad? If the location doesn’t work for you, that can’t be changed. In this case, moving is the option that will fix this problem.
  2. What about the size of your home? Do you want significantly more or less space? If you want less space, it’s time to move. If you want more space, you could add on to your home if your lot has enough space for that, your restrictions allow it and you have the money to do so. If adding on isn’t an option, moving is again the best choice.
  3. Beyond the location and if you like the place you are, do you like the area and feel comfortable in it? Did you buy your home 20 years ago and then a road was expanded, and you are closer to the highway than you would like? This is another thing that can’t be changed without moving. On the flipside, you may adore your location. It is very easy to grow attached to neighbors and your daily routine from where you live. If you love WHERE you live but don’t love the house anymore, a remodel might can help your house better meet your needs so you will love it as much as your neighbors.
  4. Are you looking for a home that will allow you to age-in-place? You may have lived in your home for 20-30 years but still love it. However, if all the bedrooms are upstairs, it may not be the place for you to grow old. Maybe you have a rarely used dining room or study that would make a great master suite. A remodel job may give you another 15-20 years in the home you love.

It’s important to think about this decision from multiple directions. Think about the financial aspect. Will a remodel cost so much that you will never recover anywhere near what you put into it? Remodeling can also be stressful. Are you up for the stress? Do you have the savings or are you willing to take out a loan for the changes you want to make? Can you remodel everything you want to at once or will you need to do it in stages so you can still live there? There are so many things to consider. Anytime you are thinking about real estate decisions, feel free to call me to answer any questions you have. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Photo by Milivoj Kuhar on Unsplash

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The Benefits of Virtual Home Staging

Virtual home staging has greatly increased in popularity in recent years. The benefits of home staging are significant and can help homes sell faster and for more money. With traditional staging, a home staging expert or interior designer will make design updates to a home to help buyers visualize the greatest potential. Home staging can be costly in some cases depending on if furniture needs to be rented if the home is empty, how long staging is needed for and the location you live in. With virtual home staging, a photographer can add the same staging elements to a photo that a stager would add to the home, so the photos are more appealing. With virtual home staging, what are the benefits?

A picture is worth a thousand words is a very popular saying and with virtual home staging, a poor photo can become superior. When homes are empty, cluttered or have dated furniture, visual enhancements can improve that. In some cases, a home may be so full of furniture, you can’t see the home itself. Virtual staging can remove the furnishings and clutter so you actually see the home that you would purchase.

Another great use for virtual staging is to update dated furnishings so the home looks fresh and modern. Dated furnishings and those in poor condition can give buyers a negative perception of a home and that is the last thing you want. Another use for virtual staging is to change the use of a room. A homeowner may have not wanted a dining room and be using it as an office or playroom. Use virtual staging to show additional options for the space other than its current use.

Virtual home staging takes less time and resources to complete than traditional home staging so you will not spend as much money to help the home look its best. With the popularity of internet home searches at an all time high, staging photos virtually will allow many prospective buyers to see the best photos of your home so they aren’t turned off by original images that make your home look less than appealing.

Virtual staging has risen in popularity in recent years and is still climbing. With buyers visiting fewer homes in person before making an offer, virtual staging can help your home put its best foot forward and allow potential buyers to better envision themselves in your home. If you have any additional questions or concerns about selling your home, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image by p_kennedy123 from Pixabay 

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Three Mistakes to Avoid When Selling a Home

When you are ready to sell your home, there will be many things that are important for you to take care of. How do you know what’s a big deal and what isn’t so big? With emotions involved, it’s easy to lose sight of the primary goal and what matters most. Let’s start with three items that you want to be sure you make the best decision on so you don’t start the home selling process with a disadvantage.

Agent Choice
Probably, the first choice you will make is selecting the agent to work with when selling your home. Your real estate agent will help you navigate the muddy waters of paperwork, price your home accordingly for today’s market, communicate with buyers and other agents about your home and market your property online and through other methods. Choosing the right agent can make the difference between selling and not selling your home.

Price
Your price will determine if and when you sell. If you underprice your home, you will sell quickly but give up value. If you overprice your home, your home will sit on the market while you grow increasingly frustrated. The key is pricing your home just right so you attract the most interest possible that turns into showing activity and offers. This is a hard balance to achieve but an experienced agent will research your home and the current market to recommend the best price for your home.

Condition
There is nothing worse than showing up to look at a home to discover that the interior is dirty and in poor condition. Sometimes photos may not show the true picture and while you may have a few showings, if your home is in poor condition, you are unlikely to get an offer unless you have advertised the condition of the property accurately. Most people want a well-cared for home to purchase. It may need some updates but if it is filthy with chipped paint, worn carpet and other flaws, buyers will be turned off right away. From curb appeal and throughout the home, the home needs to look its best.

A little planning and consideration on your part can make selling your home go smoothly. Get the help you need when it comes time to sell by contacting me for a consultation. I will be happy to answer any questions you may have and help you determine the value of your home.

If you have any additional questions or concerns about selling your home, I will be happy to answer any questions you may have, help you to find your dream home and/or determine the value of your existing property.

 

Nancy Davidson
Mammoth Village Properties
760 937-2301 mobile
nancy@mammothcountry.com
www.MammothCountry.com
CA Broker’s License #01264041

Nancy Davidson is your ultimate real estate resource for Mammoth Lakes, CA and The Eastern Sierra. Visit my website for detailed information regarding today’s real estate markets.

Image by HobokenHome7 from Pixabay 

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