Refresh Your Home Post-Pandemic

Pandemic
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3 Rooms To Refresh in Your Home as the Pandemic Ends

If you’ve been social distancing for the majority of the past year and are now slowly adjusting to the new normal, you’ve likely spent a lot of time staring at the walls of your residence. As the events of the past year and a half slowly phase out, choosing to spruce up your décor and alter the look of your home may change your mindset as well. Below are recommendations from NextHome Rocky Mountain Realty & Rentals on the three rooms that may need a refresh as we move out of the pandemic.

  1. Your Home Office

According to Pew Research Center, 71% of employed Americans worked remotely during the pandemic. If you fall into this category, you may have begun working with a laptop on the kitchen table at the beginning of the pandemic and slowly transitioned into the spare bedroom, claimed the corner of your kids’ playroom, or even cleared out an unused closet to make room for a tiny workstation. Regardless of the size of your home office, it could probably use a change in lighting and decoration if you plan to keep working remotely.

If you haven’t already installed full-spectrum lighting that mimics the color temperature of sunlight, now is the time to do so—or better yet, move your desk so that you work near a window. Research shows that being exposed to natural light can help people focus and stay awake during the daylight hours. Invest in ergonomic upgrades such as a high-quality chair with back support, a good desk, and a headset for virtual meetings.

  1. Your Living Room

We’ve replaced going to the movies with renting new releases on streaming services, and many of us have grown to enjoy staying in, ordering in, and spending a good deal of time in our living rooms. Perhaps you moved into a new house during the pandemic to make room for your family’s new work-from-home, attend-school-from-home life, or maybe you just started looking for a new residence. Consider updating the main living space to reflect your current tastes.

You may want to wallpaper the entire room, but you don’t have the budget to hire a professional. Choosing peel-and-stick wallpaper that you can apply by yourself may be the solution. It’s affordable, simple to apply, and it features adhesive backing that can be easily removed so that you don’t have to worry about making costly mistakes. Measure the dimensions of your room ahead of time and order your paper to be printed on-demand to ensure that you have exactly the right amount.

  1. Your Kitchen

The pandemic has led to an uptick in cooking at home due to social distancing. If you spend more time in your kitchen making food for your family than you did before, think about giving it a much-needed upgrade. You don’t have to splurge on granite countertops and tile floors to make a lasting change. Consider painting your cabinets an on-trend color or using backsplash tiles (or even adhesives!) for a fun, affordable change.

As we move into a year filled with hope for the future, it can be fun and spiritually rewarding to decorate your home to reflect the change. Consider attractive and budget-friendly options that reflect your personal taste to create a space that you and your family can enjoy every day.

A HUGE Thank You to Tina Martin for guest writing this blog post! Visit her website Ideaspired for more great articles!

Your Next Home

Home
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A Quick Guide to Buying Your First Home

The home-buying process is complicated; there’s no doubt about that. But it does not have to be stressful. From establishing a budget to what to do for closing, the following guide can get you started. So sit back, relax, and check out these tips.

Start with research.

It is never too early to begin thinking about what you want in a home. Make a list of features that appeal to you. This can help you formulate a budget and will serve as a starting point for your real estate agent. Spend some time looking online at houses that you think meet your needs. This is a great time to research school zones, crime, and property tax rates.

Crunch the numbers.

Money is usually the biggest factor when it comes to what kind of house you can reasonably expect to buy. Take a look at your budget to determine how much you can afford. If you know how much you can spend each month, you can work backward to determine what price range you’ll need to stick with. 

Keep in mind that you will have to put money down—usually anywhere from 3 percent to 20 percent, plus closing costs. You also have the option to pay points on your mortgage, which lowers your interest rate and thereby your monthly payment. Tally some numbers to determine whether or not this is a good option for you, since it depends on things like the type of loan you choose and your personal financial situation.

Start shopping.

Your real estate agent can help you narrow down properties that fit your needs and budget. Then, you can pay a visit to the ones that appeal to you the most. Don’t worry if you do not find a house right off the bat; some buyers look at dozens of homes before making an offer. Do be open-minded, and know that you might have to make some sacrifices to get a home in your price range, even if it doesn’t check all your boxes.

While a certain level of compromise is usually inevitable, Forbes notes you should never cave in when it comes to things like your budget, the location, and the home’s condition.

Check for safety.

When you do find a home that resonates with you, don’t jump to make an offer. Your real estate agent will be happy to take you back for a second or third viewing, where you can think objectively. Look for signs of issues, such as rotting wood, foundation damage and signs of rust or corrosion on pipes. Take a glance around the house so that you know where the electrical system and all points of egress are. 

If something doesn’t feel right, you might need to look elsewhere. Either way, it’s in your best interest to hire a home inspector before you sign on the dotted line.

Make an offer and negotiate.

When you buy a home, you can expect some back and forth. The asking price is a good starting point, but, depending on the market and how long that particular home has been listed, there may be some wiggle room. Talk to your agent about making a reasonable offer. 

What to do before closing day.

Now that you’ve chosen a house, made an offer, and had it accepted, it might be a month or more before closing day. During this time, there’ll be lots of moving parts, including a title search, the home inspection, and appraisal. There are often some negotiations involved, which Realty Biz News notes your inspection can provide leverage. If everything goes well, you’ll be moving in no time. If not, there may be some delays, but try not to stress and remember that your real estate agent has experience.

Purchasing a home is an involved process. Lean on your real estate agent for guidance and information, and don’t be afraid to ask lots of questions. These professionals know that you may only buy a handful of houses in your lifetime, and they travel this path every day.

Are you ready to take the plunge into homeownership? Let NextHome Rocky Mountain Realty & Rentals help! Whether you’re looking for a savvy foreclosure or a prime piece of land to build upon, their expertise can guide you towards the best decisions, every step of the way. Get in touch by calling (970) 507-8655 today!

A special thank you to Tina Martin for writing this week’s blog post! Be sure to check her blog out for more great articles!

 

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How to Buy a Home for Your Personal and Professional Success

By Tina Martin

You have a killer idea for a home business and the funds to get things started, but you have realized that your current living space just won’t work for your business. Maybe it’s too small or your neighborhood isn’t zoned for commercial use. Whatever the issue, you need to find a new space that can accommodate your family and your business. Read these tips from NextHome to learn more.

Locate a Home You Can Customize

If you’re lucky or very patient, you may be able to find a ready-to-move-in home that is perfect for your family and your business needs. However, working with a skilled realtor from NextHome can help you find a home that can be affordably modified to match exactly what you need out of your living and working space.

Consider Buying “As Is”

Most of the time, when a seller puts a home on the market, the seller is responsible for making any repairs that would cause the home to fail an inspection. When a seller sells “as is,” the buyer is responsible for making repairs. The upside for the buyer is the potential significant savings on the purchase price. If you are already planning to make renovations to accommodate your home business, buying “as-is” is one way to boost your renovation budget by spending less on the purchase price.

Just be aware of the potential shortcomings involved with such a transaction, as well as how to go about completing the purchase in a manner that protects your interests. Not all problems are easy to spot. An “as-is” home might have pest infestations, hidden leaks, structural issues and more. You should always have a home inspection done before a purchase, but it’s particularly important to schedule a professional inspection for an “as-is” property and carefully review the seller’s disclosures.

Budget for Your Home Office Renovation

Fixr reports the average cost of a home office remodeling project is $66 per square foot, while a full addition will run around $300 per square foot. If you’re trying to set up an office on a budget, start by making a list of the things you have to have to conduct your business. Focus on those items and then consider any nice-to-haves if you have any wiggle room left in your budget.

As you weigh your considerations, think about things like special upgrades for your functionality, like ventilation, wiring, soundproofing, and so forth. Also think about whether you’ll meet clients at your home and if they will need a waiting area, restroom or parking. Storage might also be a concern, and whether or not delivery vehicles will come and go.

Protect Your Investment

You are going to pour a lot of time, money and energy into purchasing and renovating a space to accommodate your family and your business. Make sure you safeguard your investment by setting up your business as an LLC.

If your business becomes unable to pay its debts, as a sole proprietor, creditors can come after your personal assets. However, as an LLC, there are limited circumstances where creditors can pursue your personal assets. Additionally, LLCs come with some tax benefits and are easier to set up and more flexible than other business structures. The laws that govern LLCs vary by state, so consider using the cheapest formation service to ensure you get all of the paperwork right, without incurring the high fees an attorney might charge.

Additionally, check with your insurance professional to make sure you have the types and amounts of insurance you need to cover your home business and your renovation project. Standard homeowners insurance may not cover the unique risks associated with operating a home business or remodeling your home.

If your current living situation cannot accommodate your home business needs, the best solution may be to find a new home that can be renovated to custom fit your needs while staying within your budget. Connect with a skilled real estate professional from NextHome who can help you track down the right property at the right price. Give us a call today at (970) 507-8655.

A special Thank You to Tina Martin, author of “Ideaspired” for writing this week’s blog post!