TIPS FOR STORING WINE AT HOME

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Love Wine?

Learn some tips on storing wine!

If you are a big wine connoisseur or just saving a few bottles to crack open on special occasions, it’s important to understand how best to store them safely until you’re ready to partake. Follow the guidelines below!

 

Temperature

To ensure each wine bottle maintains the proper flavor and aroma, storing it at the correct temperature is essential. Regardless if it is red, white, or sparkling, storing your bottles at 53°F to 57°F is most ideal. Keeping your bottles in a room where the temperature is much warmer than that may cause the flavor to become flat. Keep your wine in the dark and away from direct UV rays as much as you can to protect the wine’s flavor.

Moisture

Controlling the humidity in the room is important if you plan to store bottles for more than a couple of years. The ideal humidity for storage is between 50 to 75 percent and anything below that could cause the corks to dry out, letting air seep into the bottle.

Positioning

Generally, it is advised to store wine bottles on their sides. This allows the wine to stay up against the cork which should aid in keeping it from drying out. However, if you don’t plan to store the wine for long or if the bottle has a screw top or plastic cork, this is not required for safe storage.

Timing

Not all wine is designed to have a long shelf life or be aged. Make sure you know what the winemaker’s intention was for that particular bottle. It is always better to open it a little early and enjoy it!

Great Lakes Home Team is here to help you with your real estate questions or needs. We have helped so many families sell their home or find their dream home. Do you want to know how much is your home worth is worth, Click here?
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5 Painting Mistakes to Avoid

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Painting Tips

5 Painting Mistakes to Avoid

DIY interior painting can be a money-saver if you know what you’re doing. While saving a few dollars is definitely worth trying out painting yourself, it is important to avoid mistakes often made in the process. Here is how to avoid them!

Mistake #1: Not Using The Correct Applicator

If you are willing to pay for premium paint, you should be willing to invest in a good applicator. Invest in good brushes or rollers up front to avoid hair on the wall or lumps of roller lint under the paint.

Mistake #2: Not Preparing Correctly

You always want to do repair work first so that your walls are smooth, clean, dry and free of loose debris before you begin painting. A repair will be much less obvious if it is done before a new coat of paint!

Mistake #3: Overextending Your Brush Dips

One of the most frequently made mistakes by DIYers is that they often continue applying a dip of paint until the brush or roller is dry. When you overextend each dip, the paint can dry in the brush bristles, and the fabric on rollers can mat down. You want to maintain a smooth line of paint. Once you can see the paint starting to break up, it’s time to re-dip.

Mistake #4: Not Taking A Break

It is ok to take a step back and review your work. Get a glass of water, have some lunch and take a break. When you allow yourself to get fatigued, your work can become sloppy.

Mistake #5: Allowing Paint To Dry Out

Touch-ups are not ideal if your paint has dried out. To extend the life of water-based paint, place a piece of clear plastic wrap directly on the surface of the paint, then reseal the container. For oil-based paint, add about a half-inch of water on the surface before resealing.

Bottomline, do some research or ask some questions at your local store before you get started.

Great Lakes Home Team is here to help you with your real estate questions or needs. We have helped so many families sell their home or find their dream home. Do you want to know how much is your home worth is worth, Click here?
Get your FREE Booklet – 10 Things Every Homebuyer Needs to Know. Get started on the correct path to finding your Dream Home!

 

Design Trends for 2021

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2021 Design Trends

What are the design trends for 2021?

It is hard to believe that 2020 is almost over. Many of us are thinking “Thank Goodness!” With a new year approaching quickly, now is the time to start thinking about how you want to update your space in 2021. If you’re wondering how the design trends are looking for the new year, here is a great place to start!

Less Is More

Take the time to check each space in your home and ensure your decor is intentional. Make sure all of your belongings have a place and that they all serve a purpose.

Scandinavian and Japanese style

Both cultures celebrate minimalism while also encouraging functionality. With white shades dominating spaces in this style, you will also find natural woods and materials in large spaces that are open and bright.

Personalization

One of the most marked trends in interior design is focused on the personalization of your space. Take into account what you already love when creating spaces in your home without worrying about what others consider stylish or up-to-date. Let your creativity shine through your space.

A Touch of Color

Neutrals are great in most settings, but a pop of color allows you to add personality to your space. Yellow shades add warmth while blue shades give a sharpness and can be used to enhance certain elements of a room. If you want to introduce a little color, use colors inspired by nature.

It is also a great opportunity to clean out areas as you go. Donate, give away, sell or possibly refurbish. Have fun and enjoy your space!

Great Lakes Home Team is here to help you with your real estate questions or needs. We have helped so many families sell their home or find their dream home. Do you want to know how much is your home worth is worth, Click here?
Get your FREE Booklet – 10 Things Every Homebuyer Needs to Know. Get started on the correct path to finding your Dream Home!

 

Why Did My Credit Score Drop?

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Credit Score - Good to Know

Why Did My Credit Score Drop?

If you’ve seen a change in your credit score recently, you may be wondering why. There are a number of factors that contribute to a dropping credit score and it is important to know what may be causing that! When buying a home, it is important to maintain your credit and not make any major purchases that could impact your score. Here are the top 5 reasons for a drop in credit:

YOU MADE A LATE PAYMENT

Accounting for about 30% of your total rating, your payment history has a big impact on your credit score. If you make a loan or credit card payment more than a month after the due date, it could cause your credit score to drop. A payment 60-90+ days late will have an even greater impact on your score.

YOU MADE A LARGE PURCHASE

Your credit utilization ratio can largely impact your credit score. Your ratio is how much of your credit you use in relation to your total available credit. The goal is to have a lower ratio so if you’ve been using more of your available credit lately, you may see a drop in your score. If for any reason your credit limit is lowered, it can impact your credit utilization ratio and impact your score.

AN ACCOUNT GOES TO COLLECTION

Timely payments on all accounts is an important part of your credit journey. Late payments on credit cards, loans, to medical facilities, student loans and utilities can be sent to a collection agency, which could in turn show up in your credit report.

YOU OPENED A NEW LINE OF CREDIT

When you apply for new credit, you are giving lenders the permission to access a copy of your credit report, which is known as a hard inquiry on your credit. If your credit report indicates that you’ve applied for multiple new credit lines in a short period of time, your credit score may be impacted.

YOU CLOSED A CREDIT LINE

Closing a card means losing available credit, which could increase your credit utilization ratio. As a result, your credit score may drop. If closing a card helps you stop spending, it may be a good idea. Otherwise, it is usually wise to keep lines of credit open. The length of time you’ve had accounts open shows that you have a solid payment history, so that could be another reason to keep that card you’ve had awhile open if you are using it wisely!

Great Lakes Home Team is here to help you with your real estate questions or needs. We have helped so many families sell their home or find their dream home. Do you want to know how much is your home worth is worth, Click here?
Get your FREE Booklet – 10 Things Every Homebuyer Needs to Know. Get started on the correct path to finding your Dream Home!

 

Lake County History – Average Sale Price Last 5 years by month.

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Avg Sale PriceClick on the link below to pull up a PDF – Lake County History of Average Sale Price per month.  If you are into statistics or even if you are not, you will likely find the information very interesting. Sale prices in Lake County have continued to increase month after month beginning 2016. The shortage of inventory and multiple offers has certainly been a factor in increasing prices.  If you have any questions or would like to know a particular area, please let me know. I am happy to help.

 

Lake County Ohio Sale Price Average

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Active Listings In Geauga County Ohio by Month – Last 5 years

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Active ListingsThe chart shows the number of active listings on the market in Geauga County by month over the last 5 years.  Click on the link below to see the entire chart.  While the market is moving quickly, it is still a great time to buy. Interest rates are still very good!  The process of selling your home or buying a new one can be made easier with the experience of agent. Let me help guide you or someone you know through the process.  Here is a little snippet for month of December over the last 5 years.

Month of December:

2013 – 1016 number of active homes on the market

2014 – 921 number of active homes on the market

2015 – 873 number of active homes on the market

2016 – 724 number of active homes on the market

2017 – 673 number of active homes on the market

Number of Active Listings in Geauga County

I will be sharing Lake and Cuyahoga county as well. Or if you would like some statistics by a particular northeast Ohio city, please let me know?

Looking to find out what your home is worth, let me provide you a free market analysis for your northeast Ohio home.

Great information for buyers – check it out my e-book 10 Things buyers need to know before they buy.

Search for homes on the market. Most accurate information available to buyers.

Jody Finucan 440 221-6383 jodyfinucan@gmail.com

Key Professionals in a Real Estate Transaction

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When you are buying or selling a home there are a number of individuals you will come in contact with.  Here are some of them:

  1. REALTOR® – A REALTOR® is a licensed real estate agent and a member of the National Association of REALTORS®.  They also belong to their state and local Associations of REALTORS®.
  2. Listing Agent – A listing agent or broker forms a legal relationship with the homeowner to sell the property.  The listing agent’s responsibility and fiduciary duties are to the seller.
  3. Buyer’s Agent – A buyer’s agent or broker works with the buyer to locate a suitable property and negotiate a successful home purchase.  The buyer’s agent’s responsibility and fiduciary duties are to the buyer.
  4. Home Inspector – A home inspector can be hired by the seller before they put their home on the market or by the buyer when an offer has been accepted.  The inspector provides a comprehensive analysis of a home’s major systems and components.
  5. Loan Officer – A loan officer is a representative of a bank or financial institution.  They help customers identify their borrowing options and help them understand the terms of the loan.  A seller should also meet with a lender before putting their home on the market so they know the “big picture” of their financial situation.
  6. Appraiser – An appraiser works on behalf of the lender and provides a market analysis of the subject property. An appraiser’s finding is subjective and combined with market data of sold properties within the surrounding neighborhood.
  7. Insurance Agent – An insurance agent helps a home buyer determine the coverage needed and finds the right insurance policy for the home.
  8. Real Estate Attorney – In some states, real estate closings can only be conducted by an attorney.  They can give advice on all legal aspects of a real estate transaction. Such as drafting and reviewing contracts, help with how to take title and assist with the closing process.
  9. Escrow/Closing Officer – An escrow or closing officer is a non-biased third party who works with all participants to facilitate a successful closing of a real estate transaction. At the closing, the closing officer will collect the purchase money funds from the buyer and settlement costs from each party.  The will prepare and record all necessary documents to transfer ownership of the property.
  10. Title Company – The title company will search the title and provide title insurance policies to produce clear property titles and enable the efficient transfer of real estate.

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Common Closing Costs for Buying a Home

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mortgage

Carefully Assess Each Fee
Buying a home and obtaining a mortgage can be overwhelming. There are forms to sign and a multitude of fees involved. While closing costs vary by state, some of the costs may be disputable or negotiable.
Some nebulous charges or fees that are commonly associated with mortgage loans are often referred to as junk fees or garbage fees. For example, a lender may present you with a low percentage rate offer that has an extraordinary amount of junk fees. If you don’t understand what fees are and mean, then you may be taking a loan that isn’t the best option for you.
It’s of the utmost importance that you work with a reputable loan officer. You may want to ask for previous client recommendations and check the Internet for any negative information associated with the lender.
Within three days of applying for the loan, your lender should give you a good faith estimate. From the good faith estimate, you will know what your APR (annual percentage rate) will be. You will want to find out what costs have been included in the APR, especially if it seems abnormally high. A good faith estimate is essentially a listing of the closing costs that will be needed to secure the loan. You should carefully assess each item for validity, while also attempting to negotiate better terms on other items.
Here are 13 of the most common fees in a good faith estimate:
1. Loan Origination Fee – Most mortgage brokers and lenders have some sort of loan origination fee. It may be included in the APR or a separate title. The amount often varies based on how much work the lender/broker did to secure your financing. For example, those with exemplary credit may have a lower origination fee because the lender didn’t have to do as much work to secure their loan. On the other hand, a broker/lender trying to secure financing for someone with questionable or low credit will usually work much harder to secure a loan.
2. Application Fee – A usually upfront fee that covers the cost of appraisal and pulling your credit report. Some lenders will refund this fee in the event your application is denied. This fee will vary per lender, but it shouldn’t seem unreasonable.
3. Attorney Fees – Your attorney will usually represent you during the mortgage process, notarize the documents involved in the closing, record necessary information with the county, and possibly facilitate the actual closing. The attorney fees pay for those services and any amount due to other parties involved.
4. Document Preparation Fees – The charge for document preparation may be separate or included under the application fee or attorney fee. Just check to make sure the fee isn’t imposed under more than one title.
5. Processing Fee – This is often a camouflaged way of charging another loan origination fee to cover the incurred overhead costs of the lender.
6. Discount Points – You will pay for points (a fee equal to one percent of the loan amount) upfront. You’re actually prepaying interest on the loan, thereby getting a lower interest rate in return. One point on a $200,000 mortgage would cost you $2,000 dollars. Points may be a prudent route if the mortgage will be paid over a long period of time. This is another fee commonly found under the APR.
7. Mortgage Insurance – Lenders may require anyone not putting at least 20 percent down to purchase mortgage insurance. The fee will usually be paid in full at closing or annually from an escrow account. It too may be one of those fees included in the APR.
8. Escrow Account – Think of this fee as a forced savings account of sorts. The account serves as a middleman between you and the county for property taxes, you and the homeowner’s insurance company for premiums, and so forth. The money, which is a portion of your total mortgage payment, is held by the lender in the escrow account until the payment is due. This is a way that the bank can ensure that bills related to the mortgage are paid.
9. Pre-Paid Interest – It’s usually best to schedule the closing date for the end of any given month. Gaps between the date of closing and when the mortgage loan payment is due at the first of the month may leave you paying the amount of interest incurred during the gap. It too may be one of those fees included in the APR.
10. Title Insurance – This is a necessary evil. It must be bought to cover you and the lender. It makes sure that the property title is free and clear of any claims or liens so that someone can’t come along and make a legal claim of ownership on the property after you’ve taken a mortgage out on it. Occasionally, title insurance is covered by the seller, but more often than not the purchaser is responsible for it. However, the policy rate may be less if the previous owner only owned the property a short time and the insurer is willing to reissue the policy to you.
11. Flood Certification Fee – A certification stating if your potential home is in a federally designated flood zone.
12. Pest / Termite Inspection – Aside from termites, it will cover water damage and wood rot.
13. Surveyor Certificate – A certificate that defines the parameters of your potential property. This will be necessary if the existing survey is outdated or if the property has never had one done.

Information courtesy of David Bender…Mb Financial Bank…Branch Sale Manager…614-893-4868

Looking to buy a home, I can help.  Call Jody today 440.221.6383.  Would you like to search for a home like an agent utilizing the most up to date accurate information available?  I can help, click here.      You can also visit RE/MAX Website