Maureen Harmonay - Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage



Posted by Maureen Harmonay on 2/6/2018

If you want to acquire the best house at the lowest price, it pays to conduct an in-depth home search. In fact, there are many reasons why you should perform a comprehensive house search, and these include:

1. You can define your dream house.

For those who enter the housing market without a clear-cut definition of a "dream home," there is no need to worry. If you perform an extensive house search, you'll be better equipped than ever before to differentiate home must-haves from wants.

Ultimately, the definition of a dream home varies from buyer to buyer. As you map out your homebuying journey, it helps to put together a list of house must-haves and wants so you can tailor your home search accordingly.

Once you determine what you want to find in your dream house, you can assess the housing market and search for your ideal home. Then, when you locate your ideal residence, you should have no trouble submitting a competitive offer and moving one step closer to buying your dream house.

2. You can avoid the dangers associated with paying too much for a home.

Oftentimes, it is easy to attend a home showing and submit an offer on a home. But if you do so without performing housing market research, you risk overspending to purchase your ideal residence.

When it comes to determining the best price for a house, it helps to look closely at real estate market data. This information can help you differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's market, analyze the prices of houses in your city and town and much more. Perhaps most important, reviewing housing market data may enable you to avoid the temptation to spend too much to acquire your dream home.

3. You can reduce the risk of purchasing a home that fails to meet your expectations.

An in-depth home search reduces the risk that you'll be forced to "settle" for a home that fails to meet your expectations. Instead, you can allocate plenty of time and resources to search far and wide for your ideal residence. And if you find your dream home, you can rest assured that you'll be able to purchase this residence and enjoy it for years to come.

Clearly, there is a lot to think about if you intend to buy a house in the foreseeable future. But if you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can receive expert support at each stage of the homebuying journey.

A real estate agent will learn about you and your homebuying goals. Next, this housing market professional will keep you informed about available houses in your preferred cities and towns and set up home showings. A real estate agent will even help you submit offers on houses and ensure you can get the best price on any residence, at any time.

Take the guesswork out of buying a house Ė consult with a real estate agent today, and you can get the help you need to make your homeownership dream come true.





Posted by Maureen Harmonay on 1/30/2018

Selling a house should be a fast, simple process. Unfortunately, potential pitfalls may arise that make it tough to achieve the best-possible home selling results.

Lucky for you, we're here to help you prepare for the home selling journey.

Now, let's look at three steps that every home seller should take before listing a house.

1. Evaluate the Real Estate Market

The housing market fluctuates week to week. Thus, a real estate market that favors sellers one week may favor buyers the following week, or vice-versa.

A home seller should examine real estate market data closely. By doing so, this seller can analyze housing market patterns and trends and plan accordingly.

Take a look at the prices of recently sold houses in your city or town. This housing market information will allow you to see how long homes were listed before they sold and help you set realistic expectations for the home selling journey.

Also, examine the prices of local residences that are comparable to your own. With this housing market data, you may be better equipped than ever before to establish a competitive price for your house.

2. Conduct a Home Inspection and Appraisal

Don't wait to conduct a home inspection and appraisal. If you perform these assessments before you list your house, you can gain valuable home insights that you might struggle to obtain elsewhere.

During a home inspection, a property expert will assess your house both inside and out. Then, this property expert will provide an inspection report that you can use to prioritize assorted home repairs and upgrades.

Meanwhile, a home appraisal can help you determine the present value of your house. The appraisal will be conducted by a property expert who will examine your house, as well as review myriad data about homes in your neighborhood and the local real estate market. Next, this property expert will provide a property valuation that can help you determine how to price your residence.

3. Hire a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands the challenges commonly associated with selling a house. Fortunately, this housing market professional also knows how to identify and address these challenges early in the home selling process, increasing the likelihood of a quick, profitable home sale.

Typically, a real estate agent will meet with you and learn about your home selling goals. He or she then will help you put together a strategy to sell your home quickly and maximize your earnings.

When it comes to promoting a residence to potential buyers, a real estate agent knows exactly what to do too. He or she will help you craft an engaging and informative home listing that hits the mark with the right buyers. Plus, a real estate agent will host open house events and home showings to provide buyers with plenty of opportunities to view your house.

Want to list your house? Follow the aforementioned steps, and you can boost your chances of a terrific home selling experience.




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Posted by Maureen Harmonay on 1/23/2018

As a society we are realizing how increasingly important it is to practice becoming more eco-conscious in our day to day lives. You probably already practice some eco-friendly habits whether itís reusable bags at the grocery store, signing up for a recycling bin or carrying a water bottle around with your throughout the day. There are lots of small steps we can take. Below are some you may not have thought of, or have been meaning to start carrying out and just need that extra push! When Cleaning: Choose non-toxic cleaning products and microfiber clothes over traditional cleaners. Microfiber clothes are a fantastic multitasker to keep in your cleaning arsenal. Used damp they are great for cleaning and scrubbing while when dry they can be used for dusting. Since microfiber clothes seemingly have cleaning super powers you will find yourself needing less cleaning product. When you do need a product to get the job done opt for a more natural or even homemade one. Vinegar and baking soda are two kitchen ingredients that are also efficient cleaners as well! Smart purchases: Buy items made of recycled materials and reusable options over one-use products. Look for natural cleaners and products for not only around the home but for personal use too. What you put on your body matters, after all, your skin is your largest organ! When buying detergent look for a concentrated variety instead of the traditional watered-down options. And avoid dry cleaning! Itís electric: Look for solar powered outdoor lights to save on your electric bill and, if possible, install solar panels as an energy source for your home. There are many companies today whose goal is to make solar panels more affordable for the average household. When upgrading old appliances purchase low energy varieties that are Energy Star qualified. Bonus points: you can usually get tax credits for doing so! Need a free way to save electricity? Turn off the lights when you leave a room and unplug any electronics not in use. Electronics can use power when plugged in even if they are not turned on! Try using power strips with an on-off switch to easily control electricity flow. CFL (compact fluorescent) and LED bulbs use less energy to heat than traditional ones and while pricier they pay for themselves over time. Water wisely: Bathrooms are, naturally, the place where the most water is used. There a few upgrades you can make, for example, look for low-flow toilets and showerheads with the WaterSense label. Installing a recirculating water pump saves on water by allowing water to be hot when you turn on the faucet so you donít have to let the†water run while waiting for the temperature to change. Some free ways to save on water? Turn off the faucet while brushing your teeth and flush the toilet less often throughout the day. Heating & cooling: Thermal drapes are great in the winter to keep out the cold and in the summer to keep out the heat of the sun. Keep drapes open during the day and closed at night during winter and closed during the day and open at night during the summer. Opt for ceiling fans over air conditioning to save on energy in the summer months. In the winter, opt for more layers instead of increasing the room temperature. Draft stoppers and carpeting on hardwood floors are another way to keep your home warmer when itís cold out. There are so many ways to make your home a more eco-friendly one. Whether you have money to invest in smart upgrades or opt for the more frugal habits each eco-conscious step you take will have a positive impact in the long run on not only the environment†but your wallet as well.




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Posted by Maureen Harmonay on 1/16/2018

As a senior citizen, selling a home and moving to a new location may prove to be difficult. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of packing up your belongings and getting settled into a new address.

Now, let's take a look at three essential moving tips for senior citizens.

1. Plan Ahead

Moving day can be long and stressful, particularly for seniors who don't plan ahead. If you start planning for your move today, you can increase the likelihood of a seamless transition from one address to another.

Think about your belongings and what you'd like to bring to your new address. If you have a wide assortment of items that you won't need at your new home, you can sell, donate or dispose of these items prior to moving day.

Also, if you need to hire a moving company, don't wait until the last minute to do so. Because the longer that you wait to hire a moving company, the less likely it becomes that this company will be available on the date of your move.

2. Secure Your Treasured Belongings

Although you've collected a large assortment of items over the years, you may be unable to bring all of these items to your new address. However, if you sort through your belongings, you can determine which items to keep.

Treasured belongings like antiques, artwork and jewelry generally are keepers. Pack and store these items properly to ensure they won't deteriorate before moving day.

Let's not forget about treasured belongings that have sentimental value, either. Photographs and other treasured possessions should be packed in a safe place and labeled correctly. That way, you'll have no trouble unpacking these precious belongings once you arrive at your new address.

3. Ask Friends and Family Members for Help

When it comes to getting ready for moving day, there is no need to work alone. Senior citizens who reach out to friends and family members for help can streamline the process of preparing for a move and enjoy a one-of-a-kind moving experience.

Friends and family members are loved ones who strive to help you in any way they can. Thus, if you contact friends and family members before moving day, you can work with loved ones to boost the chances of a fast, easy move.

Lastly, if you need extra assistance before you relocate, it never hurts to contact a real estate agent. This housing market professional understands the challenges associated with moving and is happy to help any senior citizen enjoy a stress-free move.

A real estate agent can put you in touch with local moving professionals. Plus, if you need help selling a house, a real estate agent can make it easy to list your residence, host home showings and much more.

Keep things simple as you get ready to move Ė use the aforementioned moving tips, and any senior can quickly and effortlessly prep for moving day.





Posted by Maureen Harmonay on 1/9/2018

Many parts of the country suffer droughts from time to time. When there are water restrictions and less of a water supply available to you, how can you keep a green lawn and happy plants? You may have to make some sacrifices, but thereís some tricks to wait out the tough conditions. While you wait for the rain, thereís steps that you can take to help your plants and trees survive a drought. Hereís some tips for surviving a drought: Cut Back On Fertilizing When itís dry, the salt in fertilizers actually dehydrates the roots of plants. Also, since fertilizers stimulate growth, your plants will require more water. Itís recommended that you stop fertilizing when thereís a drought or dry spell. Adjust Your Lawn Mower Keep your grass at an optimal height. This is usually between 2 and 4 inches, depending upon the kind of turf grass that you have. This will help the grass to preserve moisture. Water when youíre able to early in the day. Water From Overhead When you water your plants, water them from overhead rather than under the leaves into the soil. This way, water will continue dripping off of the leaves for some time throughout the day. Water Early In The Day You want to be sure that when you do water your plants or grass that you water early in the day. When temperatures are lower, the plants will take more time to dry, helping them to preserve water for a longer period of time. Itís better for the plants if the foliage dries before nightfall. Try Drip Irrigation Drip irrigation tubing hoses water much more efficiently than overhead sprinklers when it comes to gardens that are planted in rows or blocks. These irrigation hoses water slowly and evenly. This method is incredibly economical. It eliminates the waste of water. Donít Use Cold Water Just like humans, plants donít like cold showers either. If you have seedlings, they could actually die from ďshock,Ē especially if there isnít enough soil to absorb the water. Never water plants with ice cold water. Stick to tepid water when you irrigate your plants. Check Items That You Have Transplanted Youíll need to check your transplanted items daily, especially during a dry spell. If itís hot and thereís a wind, it will be even more important to check your plants. These conditions cause the water that you do use with your plants to absorb more quickly. Be sure you water the plants that you have moved evenly and consistently so that they can survive a drought. Itís important to conserve water as much as you can. During drought conditions, remember that water is precious. These tips should help you to keep your lawn and garden as fresh as possible without wasting water.




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