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Mid-Tenn Homes

--May 23, 2018 - June 12, 2018

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Factors to consider when choosing a neighborhood

W

hen shopping for a

home, it’s easy for

buyers to fall in love

with a property. A well-main-

tained home with updated fea-

tures can be hard to resist, but

buyers must consider more than

just a home’s appearance before

submitting an offer.

One variable prospective

home buyers tend to value more

highly than others is the neigh-

borhood where they will ulti-

mately choose to live. Many buy-

ers even value neighborhoods

more than homes, feeling they

can always x a home but cannot

necessarily x an undesirable

neighborhood. When consider-

ing which neighborhood to begin

a home search, buyers should re-

search a host of factors.

Crime

Crime statistics are public

domain, meaning buyers can

examine crime gures for any

neighborhood where they are

considering buying a home.

Some real estate websites list

neighborhood crime ratings

among the information they of-

fer about a given property. In

addition, buyers interested in

learning about crime in a given

neighborhood can visit a site

such as CrimeReports.com to ac-

cess data on crimes committed

near a particular address.

Home values

Home values are another fac-

tor to consider when choosing a

neighborhood in which to buy a

home. Buyers can work with a

local realtor to nd a neighbor-

hood or area where real estate

prices are trending upwards.

While buyers might be able to

nd a great deal on a home in a

neighborhood where home pric-

es are dropping, it’s important

to remember those home prices

are dropping for a reason. Work

with your realtor to nd a neigh-

borhood where you can afford a

home and where property values

are not in decline. Realtors will

have access to recent sales gures

so you can get an idea of whether

a neighborhood is trending up-

ward or in decline.

Amenities

The proximity of amenities

such as shopping, restaurants

and parks is attractive to many

buyers, and that’s something all

buyers should consider before

buying a home. Even if you pre-

fer a home in a remote location,

that could limit your market of

buyers when you want to sell the

home down the road. While your

own comfort and preferences

should ultimately prevail over

potential resale value, it’s impor-

tant that you at least consider ac-

cess to amenities before making

a decision. You might be able to

nd a compromise in a home that

is a short drive away from a town

center, but still remote enough

that you are not in the middle of

the hustle and bustle.

Commute

Quality of life is heavily inu-

enced by commute time. Many

men and women feel their qual-

ity of life improves dramatically

the shorter their daily commute

is. When considering a particular

neighborhood, do a test run be-

fore making an offer on a home.

Wake up early and drive to the

area where you are thinking of

buying, and then commute from

there during rush hour. Also, do

the reverse commute come quit-

ting time. You might be able to

get an estimated commute time

online, but a test run can give

you a more accurate idea of what

your daily trips to and from the

ofce will be like.

Choosing a neighborhood

where you will enjoy living re-

quires some forethought and re-

search.

The basics of reducing and reusing

S

hopping at antique shops

and consignment stores is

one way consumers can re-

duce and reuse.

As more and more people,

businesses and governments

have embraced eco-friendly life-

styles and practices, it’s never

been easier for men and women

to make a positive impact on the

planet.

One of the simplest yet most

effective ways to make such an

impact is to look for ways to re-

duce waste, which often involves

reusing materials and products

that otherwise might be dis-

carded. According to the United

States Environmental Protection

Agency, producing new items

requires substantial amounts of

materials and energy. Such prod-

ucts may require the extraction

of raw materials from the earth

before they can be fabricated and

transported to places where they

will ultimately be sold. By resolv-

ing to reuse products, consum-

ers can greatly reduce the im-

pact their purchases have on the

planet.

Why reduce and reuse?

A reduce and reuse lifestyle

preserves natural resources and

reduces waste, but there are ad-

ditional benets to such a life-

style as well.

•Reduces pollution: Harvest-

ing new raw materials often-

times contributes to pollution of

our airways and waterways. By

reusing items, consumers can

decrease demand for new prod-

ucts, thereby reducing the pollu-

tion created when harvesting the

resources necessary to produce

those items.

•Emissions: Once harvested,

raw materials are then turned

into products. The process of

transforming these materials

into products can produce green-

house gas emissions. Accord-

ing to Livescience.com, green-

house gases like carbon dioxide

trap heat and warm the globe,

producing a host of potentially

harmful consequences for the

planet and its inhabitants.

•Finances: Reducing and re-

using has nancial perks, namely

the low prices of recycled items

compared to brand new items.

In addition, reusing everyday

items, such as coffee mugs, in-

stead of buying new items each

day can add up to sizable savings

over time. Repurposing clothing,

such as using once fashionable T-

shirts as workout gear, also can

be a great way to save money.

How to reduce and reuse

Just like there are myriad

benets to reducing and reusing,

there many different ways for

consumers to reduce waste and

reuse items.

•Shop for previously used

items. Whether consumers are

shopping for items for their

homes or for new wardrobes,

their options abound in regard

to previously used items. Home-

owners can work with contrac-

tors who have experience in

working with reclaimed materi-

als, while also visiting antique

shops or used furniture stores

when furnishing their homes.

When clothes shopping, con-

sumers can visit consignment

shops that sell like-new items at

reduced prices.

•Pay attention to packaging.

One of the biggest contributors

to unnecessary consumer waste

is packaging. Packaging is of-

ten made of raw materials, and

heavily packaged items therefore

require the use of more raw ma-

terials than items with less pack-

aging. Packaging typically nd

its way into landlls, so consum-

ers looking to reduce can favor

items with less packaging when

making their purchases and/or

look for items packaged with re-

used or recycled materials.

•Maintain existing products.

Reusing items does not always

require repurposing them. By

taking care of their existing

products and possessions, con-

sumers can get more mileage

out of them, reusing them for

far longer than they could if the

products were not better main-

tained.

Reducing waste and reusing

items go hand in hand. Embrac-

ing a lifestyle that emphasizes

reducing and reusing can have

a signicant, long-lasting and

positive impact on the planet.

Tips for buying a home in a seller’s market

T

he real estate market can be diffi-

cult to navigate for both buyers and

sellers. First-time buyers can easily

become overwhelmed as they search for

homes, while sellers hoping to get the best

price for their homes might be frustrated

if offers are slow to come in or fall short of

their asking prices.

If met with an underwhelming market,

many sellers can pull their homes off the

market and wait until it becomes more

advantageous to sell. But buyers, particu-

larly those shopping in a seller’s market,

may not have that flexibility. Buying in

a seller’s market can be competitive and

frustrating, but buyers can employ vari-

ous strategies to survive such markets

and land the homes of their dreams.

•Get mortgage preapproval. Sellers’

markets typically feature low inventory,

which can make the buying process very

competitive. Prospective buyers who do

not have a mortgage preapproval letter in

hand when making offers may find them-

selves losing out on their dream homes

to fellow buyers who have gotten preap-

proval from a lending institution. Sellers

may be impatient with buyers who have

not yet been preapproved for a mortgage,

even accepting a lesser offer from buyers

who are ready to begin transactions im-

mediately. The preapproval process is rel-

atively quick and simple, so buyers should

not hesitate to apply.

•Stick to your budget. Lenders will in-

dicate to prospective buyers how much

they’re willing to lend them, and that gure

is typically considerably more than buyers

are willing to borrow. In a seller’s market,

bidding wars can quickly drive up prices,

but buyers should stick to their budgets so

they are not house poor after buying. Stick-

ing to a budget can be difcult in a seller’s

market, but such patience will likely pay off

in the long run.

•Be ready to compromise. Unless they

have unlimited budgets, buyers often must

compromise when purchasing a home.

That’s especially true in a seller’s market

with limited inventory. Buyers who need

to buy a home must identify their needs

versus their wants and recognize the likeli-

hood that they will have to compromise.

•Work with real estate agents. Some buy-

ers may be tempted to go it alone, search-

ing for and ultimately buying homes with-

out the help of real estate agents. That can

be a foolish move in a seller’s market where

competition is high and inventory quickly

disappears from the market. Veteran real

estate agents have worked in buyers’ and

sellers’ markets, and buyers can use that

experience to their advantage. In addition,

real estate agents likely have access to in-

ventory before homes appear on popular

real estate websites, giving buyers working

with them a leg up in competitive markets.

Buying a home in a seller’s market can

be fast-moving and very competitive. But

various strategies can ensure buyers still

nd great homes at great prices in such

markets.