How to Do Your Own Yearly Home Inspection

Before you buy a home, it’s always a good idea to get a professional home inspector—but that shouldn’t be the only time you give your home a thorough look. Here’s a checklist of what to look for when performing a yearly visual inspection on your own home, or one you are considering buying.

A professional home inspection should not be skipped when buying a property. But when you first visit the house, you can also do your own visual inspection so you can watch for certain trouble spots. Even after you buy the house, doing this at least once a year will catch most issues before they become major problems.

You’ll need a pair of binoculars, flashlight, gloves, screwdrive, notepad and pen, and a camera to document problems. Click here to view the inspection list

Why You Need to Learn More About Feng Shui

The ancient design philosophy of feng shui is gaining more traction in real estate as the number of Chinese home buyers are taking a bigger liking to U.S. real estate.

Eighty-six percent of Chinese Americans believe feng shui will play a role in a future home buying decision, according to a newly released survey of 500 Chinese-American home buyers, conducted by Better Homes and Gardens Real Estate, in conjunction with the Asian Real Estate Association of America. What’s more, 79 percent of respondents said they’d pay more for a home that follows feng shui principles — an average of 16 percent more to boot.

Seventy-five percent of respondents said deal breakers for them, which follow feng shui principles, would be a home being located at the end of a dead-end street, having the stairs directly facing the front door, and if the front and back doors are aligned. Continue reading at realtor.com

Avoid these 5 open house mistakes

The world of real estate is very competitive. You have a chance to make an impression and it is usually a first impression. Sellers often underestimate the importance of preparing a home for an open house, and that can lower their chances of finding a buyer. Here are five common open house mistakes you should avoid.

MUSIC: Leaving the TV on or a stereo on to dull out white noise may make sense, however, this is an opportunity to offend a potential buyer. You never know who will walk through that door and they may be turned off by certain music types. The best advice is to leave it silent so they can experience the home in their own way opening up their imagination.

CLUTTER: This may seem obvious, but clutter is a huge no-no when showing a home. Showing messy and unkept homes to potential buyers is by far the biggest mistake many sellers make when holding an open house. This is a sign that you may not have taken care of the property and it also restricts the buyer from imagining their furniture or items in the house because they are so focused on all the clutter.

KIDS & PETS: No matter how cute your children are, even the furry ones – they should not be at an open house. Ever! Logistically they make things difficult because you have to keep them separate from the viewers of the home. This means blocking off areas of the house, a real no-no in an open house. They also behave unpredictably. The last thing you want is your beloved pet leaving his mark on the floor right in front of the guests. You want the seller to focus on your house and these are distractions.

SMELLS: There is nothing more inviting than walking into a home that smells like fresh baked cookies or pressed linens. Smell is a sense many people forget when showing a home and its so easy to satisfy this part. If you are a smoker or have pets there are extra precautions that will be necessary to make sure you don’t turn buyers away.

POOR CURB APPEAL: Many home sellers pay little attention to the outside of their houses, especially during the winter. But potential buyers look at your home’s exterior with very critical eyes. The roof is one of the main places buyers will look and then the rest of the home.  Make sure your landscaping looks clean and fresh. Mow the lawn, plant some shrubs and rinse the patio doorway.

 

What happens when you put a baby girl in the hands of a futurist and have them stare into each other’s eyes?

What happens when you put a baby girl in the hands of a futurist and have them stare into each other’s eyes? A video with almost 22 million views on Facebook and almost 50,000 YouTube views.

How did this happen? Meet Jason Silva, the Emmy-nominated host of the Emmy-nominated show Brain Games on NatGeo, posted a 53-second video on his Facebook page in which he holds a baby and waxes philosophical about how human beings are created. As Silva informs this big-eyed baby that she is both like a “wetware Android” and “transcendent,” she looks at him as though she understands and is fascinated by every single word he says.

I get you Jason, I get you.