Kathleen Williamson's Blog
High winds and heavy rainfall have the potential to cause serious harm to your lawn, flowers, shrubs and trees. Fortunately, strategies exist designed to minimize the damage. If a storm has been forecast for your area, here's what you need to do before it hits.
Mow Your Lawn
Mow your lawn if at all possible before the storm. This will help ensure that cleaning up any fallen debris will be easier when the storm has run its course. Besides, it will be one less thing you'll have to do after the storm has passed.
Pick Your Fruit
If you've got fruit trees in your yard, pick the fruit that's ripe or soon-to-be ripe. Otherwise, they may become projectiles in high wind conditions, posing a significant hazard that can break windows and harm people or animals, and even if this doesn't happen, it's likely that you'll lose the fruit if you don't pick it before the wind starts. As an added bonus, you'll have plenty of good things to eat while you wait out the storm.
Move or Secure Outdoor Plants in Containers
Moving potted plants into the house, garage, or a sturdy outbuilding helps ensure they don't become damaged by high winds. For planters that are too large to bring inside, try to place them on their sides. Make sure you either remove or thoroughly secure any trellises or stakes.
Stake Newly Planted Trees
Recently planted trees won't have had the time necessary to develop strong root systems, so be sure to stake them firmly to help keep them in place. Use tree stakes or two-by-fours, and be sure to keep the tie-downs loose enough to allow the trees to be able to move in the wind.
Clear Your Storm Drains
Storm drains that are full of accumulated debris can quickly fill with water during storms, resulting in flooding. Making certain yours are clean and clear will help prevent standing water situations in your yard and garden area. Standing water has the potential to severely damage or destroy the root systems of lawn grass, herbaceous plants, shrubs and trees.
It's also important to take protective measures so your yard and garden area gets through the stormy season with as little damage as possible. Healthy plants fare better under adverse conditions, and making the right planting selection also goes a long way toward keeping your yard from being ravaged by wind. When in doubt about what to include in your landscaping, choose plants that are native to the area -- unlike their non-native counterparts, they'll be acclimated to local weather conditions and therefore better able to come through storms intact.
10 Summit Pointe (Lot 14), Holliston, MA 01746
8 Smith Road, Hopkinton, MA 01748
After you accept an offer to purchase your house, a buyer and his or her real estate agent likely will want to conduct a property inspection. Although the mere thought of a home inspection may cause a property seller to stress, it is important to understand the importance of an inspection for both sellers and buyers.
Now, let's take a look at three things that every seller needs to know about home inspections.
1. A home inspection offers valuable insights for both a seller and buyer.
During a home inspection, a buyer, his or her real estate agent and a house inspector will examine a residence both inside and out. The inspection allows a buyer to take a close look at a residence and identify any underlying issues with a house before finalizing a home purchase.
Meanwhile, a seller may learn about assorted home problems following an inspection as well. And if a home has various problems, a seller may need to correct these issues to fulfill a buyer's requests.
2. A home inspection won't necessarily slow down or stop a house sale.
Typically, a home inspection is performed after a seller accepts a buyer's offer to purchase. At this point, a buyer wants to ensure a home matches or exceeds his or her expectations. With an inspection, a buyer can learn about all aspects of a residence and proceed accordingly.
If problems are discovered during a home inspection, there is no need for a seller to worry. Oftentimes, a buyer will request a seller fix any problems with a home, or he or she may ask for a price reduction. As a seller, you may be able to negotiate with a buyer to find common ground relative to the costs of myriad home repairs too.
3. A home inspection generally does not take long to complete.
In many instances, a home inspection takes just hours to complete, and a buyer will receive a house inspection report within a few days of the evaluation. After a buyer reviews the home inspection report results, he or she can choose to move forward with a home purchase. Or, a buyer can rescind his or her offer to purchase or request home repairs or a reduced purchase price.
A seller will find out how a buyer wants to proceed within days of a home inspection. If a buyer and seller can come to terms after an inspection, both parties can proceed with a home transaction. On the other hand, if a buyer and seller cannot reach an agreement following an inspection, both parties can reenter the housing market.
Lastly, when it comes to selling a home, it often helps to hire an expert real estate agent. This housing market professional can teach a seller about home inspections, as well as what to expect at each stage of the property selling journey. That way, a seller can prepare for any potential home selling hurdles and take the necessary steps to overcome such problems before they get out of hand.
Buying a condo may seem like an uphill climb, particularly for those who are browsing the real estate market for the first time. Lucky for you, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of finding the right condo.
What does it take to locate a high-quality condo at an affordable price? Here are three tips that every first-time condo buyer needs to know.
1. Explore a Wide Range of Condos
The real estate market is filled with many first-rate condos, and the sheer volume of properties that are available may feel overwhelming at times. Therefore, you should allocate the necessary time and resources to find a condo that suits you perfectly.
Don't be afraid to check out several condos over the course of a few days or weeks. By doing so, you can better understand what you'd like to find in the ideal condo.
Of course, if you fall in love with a condo, you should be ready to submit an offer. That way, you can avoid the risk of missing out on a great condo that matches or exceeds your expectations.
2. Determine How You'll Pay for a Condo
Many property buyers get pre-approved for a mortgage, and for good reason. With a mortgage in hand, you'll know exactly what you can afford as you review the real estate market.
Meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. These lenders will be able to provide you with multiple mortgage options and respond to your financing concerns and queries.
Also, keep in mind that the price of a condo may extend beyond your monthly mortgage payments.
In many instances, condo communities have homeowners' associations (HOAs) in place that will charge monthly fees. Learn about any HOA fees in advance, and you'll know exactly what you'll need to pay each month to live in a particular condo community.
3. Work with a Real Estate Agent
No one should be forced to evaluate condos on their own. Fortunately, you can hire a real estate agent to streamline the process of finding a terrific condo.
A real estate agent with condo experience understands the hurdles that may arise during a condo search. As such, he or she will do whatever it takes to ensure you can get the best results possible as you look for the perfect condo.
For instance, a real estate agent will set up condo showings and keep you up to date about open houses. This real estate professional will even negotiate with a condo seller on your behalf, which means you won't have to worry about breaking your budget to purchase a stellar condo.
Employing a real estate agent enables you to get expert advice at each stage of the condo buying process too. Thus, you can receive instant responses to your condo buying questions at any time.
Simplify the process of buying your first condo – use the aforementioned tips, and you can boost your chances of acquiring a superb condo at a budget-friendly price.