How to Throw A Great Housewarming Party

You’ve finalized the paperwork moved the last box and may have even kicked up your feet to relax. It’s time to celebrate owning your very own home. Homeownership is a major milestone after all and you deserve to bask in the pride of this accomplishment by throwing a housewarming party. Share your new home and kickoff memories to come with your favorite people.

Start planning by tallying the number of guests on your list that will comfortably, and safely, fit into the amount of space your home has. You also want to keep your budget in mind as you finalize the number of guests for your party.

The best time to throw a housewarming party is two to three weeks after you’ve moved and have begun to settle in. Most of your boxes are probably unpacked by this point and you have an idea of how you’d like everything to be set up.

Send out invites two weeks ahead of time to give everyone enough time to arrange their schedules plan for your party. This is also a good time to begin planning food and drinks. You’ll want to create a cohesive spread of food or if your party is at a mealtime plan a full dinner. Make calls to get pricing for any catering you may want to have done or start gathering recipes.

You’ll want to have every room of your home ready for showing the day of the party as guests will want to see the full house. Do your best to make each room presentable and try to have everything unpacked and put away. Have a playlist of music to play for the party and buy some fresh cut flowers to put a finishing touch to each room.

Have your home ready for the influx of guests by stocking your bathroom with plenty of toilet paper, several fresh hand towels and a full bottle of hand soap. Have a place ready for guests to leave coats, bags, and shoes.

On the day of the party, try to greet every guest as they arrive. Offer them a drink, show them where refreshments are available and give directions to the bathroom. Offer tours of your home throughout the day/night in small groups so everyone has a chance to get the full viewing.

Signify the party is wrapping up by offering dessert and coffee. Thank all of your guests for coming as they depart. It is always a nice touch to send thank you notes to guests, especially to those who brought housewarming gifts.

Owning a home is a major accomplishment and one that should be celebrated! Housewarmings are a fun way to gather friends and family together and enjoy the fruits of your labor.

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Decorate Your House from Scratch

Whether you are just setting up your new house or want a renovation, a great home decorating plan is a must. And getting the right one that fits your style perfectly could be a hurdle too high to jump over. However, it doesn’t really have to be that difficult.

You will be surprised that you can decorate your house yourself easily; all you need are the right steps and the materials that fit your style. Find below steps to follow to decorate your home on your own.

  • Figure out your decorating style. Learning your style is the first and the hardest part of home decorating. Once you get it, you are close to being done with the decorating. So, take your time to find out what you like in your home setting. You can set your house to be transitional, which is a blend of both the old and new way of home decorating, or go with a uniquely modern setting. You also can decide to choose from a contemporary or a farmhouse design. Whatever you want, the choice is yours.
  • Break down the plan. Once you determine the style you want to go with, the next step is to break your plan into smaller ones. And the first break will be taking one room at a time. Starting from a bedroom is advisable, but then you get to choose—since it is your house.
  • Start with the most significant piece in the room. After you choose a room, you must immediately figure out where to place the most significant item in the room. The largest is most likely the most expensive. In a bedroom, the biggest is the bed. So, once you figure out where and how to place the most prominent item, other things will find their way.
  • Leverage the experts. You can always seek the advice of experts. Their knowledge will save you a lot of trouble and most likely money. So, don’t hesitate to ask them questions whenever you have the opportunity. Some retailers offer professional advice to their customers, so use that.
  • Paint. The next step is painting the walls. Figure out what shades you want to use and stick with it. Colors that will appreciate the collections of items you have will go well. So, endeavor to put your pieces like the color of your chairs in the living room or the color of the rug before deciding on the color to paint.
  • Layer each room over time. You will discover that you can’t finish the decorating once. In fact, there is a saying that house decoration is not a sprint but a marathon, so as you live in your house, new ideas will come to your mind, and you can always try them out.

Why Should a Buyer Purchase Your House?

As a home seller, it is important to make your house a must-have for buyers. Otherwise, your home may linger on the real estate market for an extended period of time. Worst of all, you may struggle to optimize your house sale earnings.

Ultimately, there are lots of things you can do to make your house an attractive option to dozens of prospective buyers, including:

1. Upgrade Your Home’s Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is crucial, particularly for a seller who wants to stir up significant interest in his or her residence. If you allocate time and resources to upgrade your house’s curb appeal, you could help your residence stand out from other available homes.

It generally won’t take long to improve a house’s curb appeal. In some instances, a seller can mow the lawn, trim the hedges and perform minor lawn care tasks to transform a house’s exterior. Also, it may be beneficial to repair or replace any damaged home siding.

2. Eliminate Clutter

If your home is loaded with personal belongings, you may want to remove these items. That way, you can show off the full size of your home to buyers during showings and open house events.

To cut down on clutter, you can rent a storage unit and use it to hold various personal belongings until your residence sells. In addition, you can always donate any unwanted items to charity, give them to family members or friends or sell them as part of a yard sale.

3. Enhance Your Home’s Interior

A neat, tidy home interior can make a world of difference in buyers’ eyes. Thus, if you clean your residence from top to bottom, your house could impress buyers as soon as they walk through the front door.

Of course, if you need help with upgrading your house’s interior, you can employ a home cleaning company. By shopping around for home cleaning companies in your city or town, you are sure to find a professional cleaning firm that offers the right combination of affordability and convenience.

As you get set to navigate the home selling journey, don’t forget to hire a real estate agent, either. If you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive plenty of support as you try to generate buyers’ interest in your house.

A real estate agent understands what it takes to promote a house to the right groups of prospective buyers. As such, he or she will craft a custom home selling strategy designed to help you showcase your residence to potential buyers. Plus, a real estate agent will host house showings and keep you up to date with buyer feedback. And if you receive an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent will help you weigh the pros and cons of accepting this proposal.

Ready to sell your house? Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you can seamlessly navigate the home selling journey.

Home Loans That Require No Down Payment

Perhaps one of the most challenging things about buying a home is saving for the downpayment. Collecting such a large sum of money can be difficult. The truth is that most buyers actually think that they need more than they actually do to buy a home. The downpayment doesn’t need to be a barrier to your path to homeownership. There are so many programs that offer low and even no down payment home loans. Read on to learn more about down payments and programs that can help you. 

First, let’s look at what a down payment is and how it can help you. If you put 10% down on a $200,000 home that’s $20,000. The downpayment minus the purchase price of the home is $180,000, and that’s how much your home loan will be. The more money you can put down on the house, the lower your home loan will be and the lower your monthly mortgage payments will be. A large down payment can indeed save you in the long term. If you’re looking to move into a home sooner rather than later, saving a considerable sum isn’t always possible.  

Low Downpayment Mortgages

You need to decide what type of home loan you need by the amount of downpayment you’re willing and able to put down. Some benefits go along with making a down payment, but there are some negatives. 

By making a substantial down payment you may despite your savings, leaving little money for emergencies. Your mortgage rate may not be affected by a large downpayment either. It can be hard to decide what type of loan to get and just how much you really can afford.  

FHA Loans

FHA loans are among the most popular type of home loans. The downpayment that’s required is just 3.5%. The requirements are simple, and you don’t have to be a first-time homebuyer to qualify. 

The drawback to an FHA loan is that you cannot cancel the monthly mortgage insurance that comes along with it unless you refinance the home. Traditional mortgage insurance is canceled when you have built up 20% equity in the house, but this isn’t the case with FHA loans. 

Another positive about FHA loans is that your credit score doesn’t have to be stellar in order for you to qualify. Some lenders approve FHA loans with credit scores as low as 580. 

VA Home Loans

Buyers who have current or former military service status can qualify for this zero down mortgage. These loans are benefits to veterans and current members of the Armed Forces. While no downpayment is required, buyers may put down any amount they wish. The only requirements are that buyers be members of the military either currently serving for 90 days or two years of active duty service if not an active member.   

The above options are great for those who can’t afford or don’t wish to put down large down payments but still hope to be homeowners. 

Enjoy a Rewarding Homebuying Experience

The ultimate goal of a home search is to find a residence that matches or exceeds your expectations. To enjoy a rewarding homebuying experience, you need to prepare accordingly.

Now, let’s take a look at three tips to help you reap the benefits of a successful homebuying experience.

1. Narrow Your House Search

Think about where you want to live. By doing so, you can refine your home search and look for houses in your preferred cities and towns.

Also, creating a list of homebuying criteria usually is a good idea. This list can include home must-haves and wants, and ultimately, will help you further narrow your house search.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Purchasing a house can be simple, particularly for those who get pre-approved for a mortgage. With a mortgage in hand, you can enter the real estate market with a budget. Then, you can pursue houses that fall within your price range and speed up your search for your dream home.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, it is important to review all of the mortgage options at your disposal. Meet with banks and credit unions and discuss various mortgage options. This will allow you to learn about the differences between adjustable- and fixed-rate mortgages and find a mortgage that corresponds to your finances.

In addition, don’t hesitate to ask mortgage questions when you meet with banks and credit unions. Lenders employ friendly, knowledgeable mortgage specialists, and these professionals will do everything possible to help you make an informed mortgage decision.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

A rewarding homebuying experience may be tough to achieve if you decide to pursue a house on your own. Thankfully, real estate agents are available who can provide plenty of guidance along the homebuying journey and ensure you can accomplish your desired results.

If you work with a real estate agent, you can take the guesswork out of purchasing a house. First, a real estate agent will meet with you and learn about you and your homebuying goals. This housing market professional then will craft a homebuying strategy to help you achieve the best-possible results as quickly as possible.

In addition, a real estate agent will keep you up to date about open house events, set up home showings and help you analyze the housing market. If you discover your dream house, a real estate agent will help you put together a competitive offer to purchase this home. Plus, if you have concerns or questions at any point during the homebuying journey, a real estate agent can respond to them.

When it comes to simplifying the homebuying experience, hiring a real estate agent is essential. Because if you have a top-notch real estate agent at your side, you can get the help you need to seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey.

Ready to find your dream house? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can enjoy a rewarding homebuying experience.

Simple Ways to Keep Your Home in Great Condition

In many ways, the quality of your life is determined by the condition of your home. If it feels like your home is in disrepair, messy, or cluttered, you’re not going to feel comfortable or satisfied with your living situation. While perfection is an unattainable standard, there are a lot of simple things you can do to keep your home in good condition and prevent problems.

Train Your dog. Although many people own dogs and consider them to be a cherished part of the family, not everyone takes the time to properly housebreak, exercise, and train their pets. Dogs are very eager to please, but they need clear guidelines to understand what you expect of them. Some dogs also tend to express frustration or restlessness in destructive ways if they’re not given enough attention, exercise, or toys/treats to chew on. It’s not uncommon for dogs to chew on furniture, shoes, or other valued possessions if their needs are not met. Ideally, people should research dog breeds before actually purchasing a household pet. That way you can know more about temperament, exercise requirements, and training potential before you bring a puppy into the family. In addition to helpful online videos on raising obedient dogs, pet supply stores periodically offer low-cost training classes for dogs and their owners. Effectively housebreaking your pet in the first few days and weeks of adopting them is a key aspect of a harmonious pet/owner relationship. Otherwise, your furniture, hardwood floors, and carpeting could be subject to irreparable damage!

Use Furniture Sliders: Hardwood floors can be a mixed blessing. On one hand, they’re a high-quality, nice-looking material that enhances the look and feel of your home. On the other hand, it can be difficult to prevent scratching, scuffing, and even gouging of those beautiful surfaces. One solution, which is easy on both your floors and your pocketbook, is to put felt or plastic furniture sliders under the legs of your tables, chairs, and ottomans. Not only can you prevent or reduce hardwood floor scratching that inevitably happens when furniture is dragged across a floor, but it also makes it easier to rearrange furniture.

Maintain Your Rain Gutters: Properly working rain gutters serve the useful purpose of channeling water away from your roof, eaves, and foundation. By making sure your gutters are not clogged up with leaves, branches, and other debris, you can help protect your home from water damage. If the downspout of your rain gutter empties water too close to your house, you can often correct that by purchasing and attaching an inexpensive extension. Routing water away from your foundation can help prevent basement leaks, cracking, and crumbling. It can also be part of a multi-faceted approach to preventing basement mold.

Control Clutter: Household clutter not only degrades the appearance of your home (for both you and your guests), but it’s a known source of psychological stress. Taking the first step to reduce clutter is usually the most difficult part of the process, but once it’s a habit, maintaining a clutter-free home becomes infinitely easier!

How to Eat Healthy When Eating Out

When you are one of those very busy types with travel, projects, and meetings, it’s often difficult for you to cook breakfast, lunch, or dinner for yourself. The only option is to eat out in the office cafeteria or restaurants. Eating out can be fun and enjoyable when you know how to order a healthful meal. If you are worried about not eating a balanced diet, below are tips on how to eat a healthy dinner outside the comfort of home.

Tips on how to eat healthfully when eating out:

Order your meal how you like it: You can order your food the way you want it by changing the menu to your taste. Ask your server about healthful exchanges such as extra vegetables instead of the starch. You can also eat healthily at a restaurant by telling them the way you want your food prepared.

For example, if the menu says the side is French fries, you can request a salad, and instead of fried or breaded entrees, let the chef know you want your meat grilled or baked. 

Always take water before, during and after eating: Drink water throughout the entire meal. It slows you down, helps you enjoy the food more, and lets the message get to your brain that you’re full—before your plate is empty. Taking water at intervals makes your system work better especially during eating. When you take water while eating, it helps you taste your meal and enjoy it more. Taking water also satisfies your hunger sooner than food alone.

Be careful of the drink you take: You can merely take water, tea, or a fruit juice to complement your food after eating. If you want an alcoholic beverage, request wine or a clear liquor and avoid cocktails that have extra calories.

Select a plate of mixed fruit as your dessert: With fruit, you are sure of eating healthy food. Fruit aid in digestion and add beneficial nutrients.

Before eating check for the calories and the fat: Many states now require calorie-counts and nutritional values on the menu. You can ask the server about how they prepare meals: is it fried with butter or a partially-hydrogenated oil? Breaded? When you do this, you will be able to decide what is best for your health.

If you’re concerned about the healthfulness of a local restaurant, ask about restaurant ratings in your area.