Heating costs can make up 45% of your Winter energy bill. Hefty energy bills don’t have to dampen your holiday season however! Here are some great tips to help you save on staying warm during the cold months.
First, do an energy audit. You can do this yourself by taking a look at your energy bill and thinking of ways that you can cut back on non-heat related costs. This may be as simple as unplugging electronics that aren’t in use, or turning off lights in rooms that you’re not going to be using.
Set the thermostat at 68 when you are home; even lower if you are not going to be home. Don’t let it slip below 58 degrees if you live in a really cold area. By just setting the temperature a little lower for a few hours a day you can save over 10% on your bill in most cases.
Set the temperature on your water heater to 120 degrees to cut back on heat lost to the environment. Heating water can account up to 18% of your energy bill so it’s good to insulate your water heater and also any pipes that carry hot water as well.
Seal up air leaks. Use a candle to test windows for drafts. If you find a draft you can seal the edges of windows with caulking or spray foam depending on the size of the leak. Also consider under door sweeps for exterior doors.
Window glass can be a big reason your home loses heat. Clear windows on the South side of your home to let as much natural light and heat in as possible. If you don’t have double paned windows, you can also keep drapes closed or use a window insulation kit to help keep cold air from coming in from the outside.
Don’t hesitate to contact a local handyman or home service provider to ask them for advice on improving your home efficiency, in some cases they will have tips that can help, or you can even hire them to come and fix the issues for you.
Saving pennies can make sense in the long run! Don’t get all heated up over high energy bills this Winter! Still looking for that perfect home? We can help! RE/MAX Elite Properties specializes in the best homes in the Treasure Valley including Boise, Nampa, Eagle, and more!
Considering we sell real estate as part of our jobs it may seem sort of strange that we even propose this question. Shouldn’t we be encouraging people to buy buy buy while the Boise real estate market is hot hot hot? Well…that might be how others go about it, but it’s not us. We want you to be happy where you are. If possible, yes we’d love for that to be in a home we sold you, but if not we want you to know there are alternatives to packing it all up and finding a new place. Even if you just make these improvements to temporarily better your living environment while you search for homes, we’re confident that they will enrich your home and mood.
It’s a fairly common thing, you’ve lived in your home for some years and either your lifestyle has changed, the kids have moved out or grown up, or maybe you’re just tired of the same old thing. You look around and simply need more space, or realize there’s just no way to reconfigure the floor plan without major changes. Whatever the case your long term plan didn’t include any of these things when you first set out; now it’s time to decide what to do in order to get it the way you want.
If you’re not sold on moving yet, consider revamping some of your living spaces. While not all home improvements are equal there are some that will add value to your home over others. A good place you can almost always regain value is by upping your curb appeal.
Small remodel projects can make your home like a new place. Especially if you are getting that new big tub in the master bath or some other luxury you’ve always wanted as part of the deal. Small remodels are a great way to sate the need for change without the cost of a new home.
Color Your World
Repainting can really change the entire mood of your home. Consider a fresh coat in rooms that need a re-do; think about moving the furniture – or even getting new furniture – to turn those rooms around.
It’s not a sin to up the ante and do a serious full remodel of your home. If you love the area, don’t want to move, and have the budget a remodel may provide you with the best of both worlds.
Maybe there is nothing to be done. Maybe it simply won’t work – you need more room, or less room – and have to make the move.
If that time has come we’re here to help! The real estate market in Idaho is really moving; we’re seeing homes moving quickly – and even multiple offers! Given the limited number of homes for sale that might suit your needs it’s always a good idea to work with a qualified Idaho REALTOR® when the time comes.
It’s easy to find great homes in Boise and the surrounding Treasure Valley. The best place to start is right on our website! Find homes for sale anywhere in Southwest Idaho with just a few clicks!
There’s always a lot of chatter about the real estate industry; as it influences such a large part of our economy that’s really no surprise. Currently there are many saying the housing recovery movement is in full swing; likewise many warn with words of caution that we’re headed for another bubble burst. Yet others remain inclimate by saying a housing slow down is imminent and not to get too all fired up either way. While there are a number of factors yet to weigh in, the year is after all still barely started, there are some myths making their rounds that simply must be dispelled.
Real Estate is Only for the long term.
Realistically house prices today are still roughly where they’ve been since the 1950’s, aside from a few booms here and there, according to the Case-Shiller Home Price Index. If that is true – and on average home values only appreciate on average 3% per year – then that’s pretty slow growth; you won’t make as much money over the long term. For those looking to make quick gains buying, improving, and reselling are fast turn around markets. So in truth real estate for your average long term buyer is a sound investment because of it’s stability, but there is also room there for the fast and furious flipper as well.
The Suburbs are out.
Many census statistics from last year would have us thinking that for the first time in decades that cities were the place to be. Population will naturally be more dense in urban cores; this is what the higher growth rates can be attributed to. More recent and accurate studies have since been done, taking that factor into consideration, to find that growth in the suburban communities to be nearly 1% higher than in urban cores. What’s more the suburbs are changing, becoming little mini-cores of commerce and culture all their own, making them very attractive for those who prefer a little less hustle and bustle.
It’s a Renters Market.
No way no how. A recent survey found that 96% of American consumers consider home ownership important. 77% of people between the ages of 25 and 44 are also saying that owning a home is “very important” to them too. Trulia data shows 93% of Millennials who currently rent plant to buy a home in the near future – some as soon as in the next two years.
Buying is Always Better.
It’s true that buying a home has become more affordable than renting in most major cities, under certain circumstances. And if you’re looking to lay down roots in the community by staying put for more than five years, then buying is without a doubt the way you want to go. But fact is, if you’re not sure about the future, if it may likely involve big plans to move it may not be the best time for you to buy. It all depends on your personal plans and what your situation may be – the best place to start is to talk to a qualified REALTOR®.
Hopefully this information has helped you understand a bit more about the real estate market, and has dispelled some of the myths going around the industry today. Want to stay up on all the latest Boise real estate news and local info? Visit our Facebook Fan Page!
Even with the amazing amounts of information online today regarding real estate, buying and selling homes, and market conditions real estate is still a complex industry; it is imperative to make sure you are not attempting to go it alone.
It is crucial to find an honest, competent, agent who will represent your best interests throughout the entire process.
We could easily just say here are our extremely qualified Idaho REALTORS® of course – and you’d be hard pressed to find a more dedicate group of real estate professionals! – but here are some good things to keep in mind no matter which brokerage you choose:
Despite huge amounts of on-going education, like many industries, agents in real estate simply will not know how to deal with unusual situations without some experience. Therefore having an agent that has been out working in the market for a little while is only to your advantage. All real estate transactions are complex so having one that has been through the process itself numerous times is a real asset – be sure to ask your prospective agent how many transactions they’ve closed in the last year; ask about their general amount of time in the industry.
Real estate agents often have to handle multiple clients and offer scenarios at once. It is important that while you want an experienced agent that you don’t pick one that simply may have “too much going on” to help you with your needs. Especially if you are a first time buyer or seller it is important your chosen agent be able to spend a little extra time with you, educating you about the transaction process.
Not just knowledge about the type of house you want to buy, but also the info on the kinds of amenities in the area, schools, and what things are important to the way of life you are looking to lead. An agent knowledge should extend well beyond just the correct procedures in negotiating and shuffling papers. Make sure you work with an agent that knows the area!
So do some homework before you settle on an agent. Remember, chances are your home will be the biggest financial decision you make in your entire life. Having a qualified professional to help you navigate through the transaction will be absolutely necessary for success. Beyond that, trust your gut. Make sure the agent you select is someone you can trust and who you feel will be great at providing you with just the right service!
Completely renovated home! New roof! New windows! Features 5 bedrooms, one that be perfect for a home office.
Family room, living rm and separate bonus room that would be perfect for a theater rm. Two fireplaces. Kitchen with full granite counter tops and tile back-splash. New appliances. New landscape. This newly remodeled home is a must see to appreciated all the upgrades. Including tile, carpets and cabinetry. RV Parking. Excellent location, with easy access to schools, shopping, dining and hospitals.
Are you looking for homes in Idaho? Maybe you need to sell your current home first? Either way, our elite real estate agents can help you! Visit our site and contact us to get started today!!
Don’t let the title worry you, there’s no diving going on! The crisis is over (for now) and the deal has been hammered out to side-step the looming fiscal cliff recently and even though the dust has barely settled the changes have made many winners and losers. For now however most experts agree that the real estate industry is most definitely on the winning side and should continue recovering in 2013.
In part this is due to the mortgage interest deduction and the one year tax break on mortgage debt forgiveness being protected in the new deal; this should allow homeowners who are refinancing or struggling to get a little relief. These changes are hoped to also help continue clearing out much of the foreclosure real estate “shadow inventory” as well.
“An extension of the tax break is positive for home values by reducing the number of foreclosures and helping more troubled borrowers stay in their homes,” wrote Jaret Seiberg of Guggenheim Partners. “That means less supply on the market.”
Consider also how the real estate market was bolstered by the surge in short sales during the last quarter – more than 90,000 short sales were completed – thanks to streamlined procedures and a more aggressive stand by big banks.
All of these contribute to positive signs ahead for real estate in Idaho for 2013, as we have already been fortunate to inch past many of the difficulties other areas of the nation could not escape. The new year is an exciting place to be; we’re excited at the prospect of being able to help people find the right homes for them this year as well as helping home sellers in Idaho benefit from the return of the market.
Home prices in Idaho are going up, while mortgage rates remain steady at historic lows – but who is buying real estate? More than ever before, two-income married couples are behind the drive in the home buying market. With Boise being the focus of a number of great Top Ten placements in news articles across the country this year, it’s no wonder so many people are interested in relocating to the Gem State.
Here are a few more interesting facts about the real estate market in 2012:
39 percent of recent home buyers were first-time buyers, a slight rise from 2011, but closer to the historical norm of 40 percent.
65 percent of recent home buyers were married couples—the highest share since 2001. Conversely there was the lowest share of single buyers since 2001.
For 52 percent of home buyers, the first step in the home-buying process was taken online.
The typical home buyer searched for 12 weeks and viewed 10 homes—a decline from 12 homes in prior year, which speaks to the tightened inventory in many areas.
89 percent of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker, similar to last year’s report—a share that steadily increased from 69 percent in 2001.
88 percent of sellers were assisted by a real estate agent when selling their home.
Only 9 percent of recent sellers sold via FSBO sale. Among FSBO sellers who did not know the buyer prior to the sale—20 percent sold via FSBO because the buyer directly contacted them.
Approximately two-thirds of home sellers only contacted one agent before selecting the one to assist with their home sale.
Are you looking to buy or sell a home in Idaho? RE/MAX Elite Properties can help you find the perfect place for you! Whether you want a cozy Northend home in Boise or are looking for a sprawling ranch in Canyon County, our team of experienced Idaho REALTORS® are at your beck and call to make it happen!
Routine maintenance is just part of protecting the investment that is your home. It can be hard to know exactly what to do and when – often leaving things to go unfixed until they are broken.These tips can help you not only prevent costly repairs before they become a problem but can also help you run your home more efficiently; save you money on your monthly bills.
Inspect the exterior of your home annually:
Check the foundation for signs of cracks.
Check the weather stripping around doors and windows.
Check for holes in the siding.
Check for water in the crawlspace and attic.
Check paint for peeling,fading, or blistering.
Drain and shut off outside faucets.
Blow out sprinkler lines.
Clean gutters and downspouts.
Clean leaves and mulch from under eaves – also especially from around foundation walls.
Have your chimney cleaned.
Other good ideas:
Drain a galloon from your hot water heater twice a year to extend it’s life.
Check faucets for drips as well as other plumbing at least once a month.
Check your dryer vent and stove hood monthly and clean as needed.
Inspect and repair any tile grout every six month.
Change the batteries in your smoke alarms twice a year.
We’re about more than just finding homes! We want to help make you comfortable and happy in your home long after the sale has closed. Be sure to visit our Facebook Fan Page for more tips like these as well as great local Boise information and news!
Home buyers can be quick to judge, and your first impression may very well be your only impression – so curb appeal is a very important factor in getting your home sold. It’s pretty standard policy for real estate agents to suggest homeowners keep up on the yard work, trimming the trees, and making the home look as presentable as possible, there are still some smaller details that might not make the list.
We’ve talked with some home staging experts to get their take on what makes for an appealing home and have put these tips together to help you get your home looking it’s best for buyers.
Start at the Front door
Your front door is often the focal point of drive-by buyers. Replacing an old out of style door with a new one can be fairly cost effective; has been rated among the biggest bangs for your buck when it comes to quick fixes for home appeal. Sometimes your existing door just needs a fresh coat of paint, but don’t go crazy – a wild color choice could sabotage the whole effect. Look into possibly just changing the fixtures also as updated hardware can really turn a door from blab to fab.
Yes You SHOULD Do Windows
Washing the windows of your home inside and out is a good start. Seeing your home every day can kind of make these small detail blend into the background but as the eyes are windows to the soul, so windows themselves are to the spirit of your home. New shutters or window planters might also be a nice option depending on your style of home.
Kick the Dogs Off the Front Porch
Don’t be quick to discount this part of your home as just the place between the curb and the door. With new home trends available outdoor living spaces are all the rage; it’s important to make these spaces as inviting as the rest of your home because they can be real extra selling points.
Rock the Garage
Often this will be the biggest part of the front of your house, so make sure it looks it’s best. Replace or repair a door that is damaged in any way, or give it a fresh coat of paint. This is another place that value outweighs cost when it comes to improving your home. Have any oil stains or other damage to the garage floor also repaired. If your walls are unfinished sheet rock go ahead and give them a paint as well.
Don’t be afraid of the dark
Curb appeal isn’t just for daytime. As a lot of home buyers work regular day jobs it’s frequent that you will get interested parties doing a quick drive past in the evening time. Adding path lighting or exterior lights to showcase the front of your home can be fairly inexpensive and really make a big difference at night. Leave more interior lights on than you normally might, especially towards the front of the home as it will give a nice warm glow from the exterior.
Do you need to sell your home in Idaho or do looking to buy a home? we can help! Our team of experience real estate professionals know the market here in Idaho; can help you regardless of what your needs may be. Visit our real estate website to start searching now and feel free to LIKE our fan page on Facebook to stay up on the latest Idaho real estate news and more!
There are a number of great homes for sale in the Treasure Valley these days! A lot of agents and news sources will tell you that the inventory is going down – which it is, there are fewer homes on the market right now – and that prices are going up (also true!), but that doesn’t mean that there aren’t still some really amazing deals on the market!
Home mortgage rates are at historic lows; that makes this an exceptional time to buy real estate in Idaho! We’re just getting our new blog rolled out but in the meantime you can view some of the newest homes on the market at our main website: