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DJ Campbell

DJ Campbell

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Create a more energy efficient home without breaking the bank

(Published on - 3/7/2019 4:54:34 PM)

Many homeowners would love to invest in making their property more energy-efficient. Going green can save you a lot of money over time and is great for the environment, but the up-front costs can be significant. Fortunately, there are some energy-efficient changes you can make to your home without draining too much of your bank account.

Seal air leaks: As much as 20 percent of the energy used to regulate temperature in a home can be lost to air leaks. You can seal doors and windows with weather stripping and the project will usually cost less than $200.

Smart thermostats: Older thermostats are usually inefficient because they only have a few settings. A smart thermostat like Nest can be programmed to reduce heating/cooling when you’re not at home or during the hours when you’re asleep. The energy savings you will see usually equal the cost of the thermostat after a year or two.

Change your light bulbs: LED light bulbs are expensive, but require just a small percentage of the energy incandescent bulbs require. A cheap incandescent bulb uses about $15 of electricity a year (if it lasts that long). An LED bulb costs $25, but uses less than $5 worth of electricity per year and will last up to 11 years.

 


How to check your home for air leaks

(Published on - 2/4/2019 10:14:49 PM)

We’re well into the winter season and it is here to stay. Air leaks can make it difficult to keep your home properly heated and can lead to high utility bills. Here’s a quick guide to checking your home for air leaks.

Do an Air Pressure Test. You can quickly check for air leaks with a simple test using household items. Seal your home by completely closing all doors, windows, and vents and turning off exhaust fans. Then pass a burning incense stick along the edges of all doors, windows, and other openings to the outside. If the smoke is forced into or away from an opening, you’ve found a leak.

Inspect Doors and Windows. To check for leaks near your windows, attempt to rattle the frame. This will reveal whether there are gaps along the edges. Also check for cracks in the frame, loose screws in locks, or gaps anywhere in the window.

Door hinges and thresholds are common places for air leaks. Deteriorated weather stripping can also lead to leaks and the door itself can develop cracks that allow air to pass through.

Skylights are a little trickier to test and examine, but you can still do it yourself. Check for water stains near your skylights, which is a dead giveaway of a leak. If you suspect there is one, you’ll have to get on the roof for a closer inspection. Look for loose shingles, cracked roofing cement, and debris.

 


The truth about viewing homes online

(Published on - 1/15/2019 7:36:39 PM)

It’s easy to get sucked into looking at home after home online, drawn to the stunningly filtered photos of manicured lawns, sharp-looking kitchens, and giant bedrooms. Although this is a great place to begin, it’s important to keep in mind that all may not be as it seems.

Here are my top tips to avoid getting duped by listings online.

Photos don’t always capture the full picture. Real estate photographers are very good at highlighting the best features of the home and often use wide angle lenses to make spaces appear larger than they really are. But, be aware that there may be less photo-worthy features they aren’t displaying. Don’t forget to look at the property features listed to gather a better idea of what the home has to offer.

Ensure you are looking at current listings. Nothing is worse than falling in love with the perfect home, only to check out the listing date to find it was posted two years ago. Make sure you use websites that are pulling information daily from the Multiple Listing Service (MLS) and have your real estate agent verify it is available.

Use your real estate agent as a resource. If you find a great listing online, always run it by your agent to confirm you aren’t missing something important. They can also provide neighborhood details, price comparisons for similar properties just sold in the area, additional listings that match your criteria, and more. Once you a find a home you’re ready to view, make sure you bring them with you to answer questions and be an extra set of eyes.

 


5 Steps for a better home appraisal

(Published on - 1/15/2019 7:36:01 PM)

If you’re looking to refinance your home or possibly sell, you’ll need an appraisal. A bank will not refinance a home for more than it is worth, and a potential buyer will not pay more than the recognized value of the home.

Here are 5 simple steps for a better home appraisal.

Tidy your space Make sure your yard looks well-groomed and the interior of your home is clean and clutter-free. It is well worth the investment to have the home professionally cleaned and have your yard serviced.

Invest in the right types of renovations Kitchens and bathrooms are the best types of renovations. They will typically provide 80% ROI. High-efficiency appliances and upgrades that improve the overall efficiency of the home are well worth the investment.

Document your upgrades Provide the appraiser with a list and documentation of all upgrades, renovations, and improvements to the home.

Do your homework Research and provide your own comparable valuations for similar properties in the area. Note your tone; you don’t want to come off as defensive but rather helpful.

Be available but not in the way Be present to assist with the process but don’t be the appraiser’s shadow. You want to appear helpful, not nervous that he’ll find something wrong!

 


Free, no obligation home estimate!

(Published on - 7/22/2017 4:12:54 PM)

Curious what your home might be worth in today's market? Fill out the form below for a free, no obligation home estimate. Let's sit down and talk real estate! 

 

 

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