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Date Archives: April 2018

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April
25

 

Spring Cleaning Tips for Cleaning Hardwood Floors

Spring is here, which means it is time to dust off those feather dusters and get the buckets out for some deep cleaning. Most people are not sure how to give their hardwood floors the cleaning it deserves, especially if there are children and pets in the home. Try some of the following to help you get started on that spring cleaning.

Cleaning Up

Ceramic-tile floors can be cleaned easily with warm water, but it is never as easy to clean hardwood. The truth is some cleaning products can harm those beautiful hardwood floors, and take the shine right out of them. To get the most out of your spring cleaning extravaganza, it helps to try the following:

Choose the best products

Knowing what to use on those floors is very important. It will help keep the shine and finish looking like new while keeping it clean. Floors that have been surface sealed compared with unfinished floors differ in how to keep them clean. Most newly-installed floors are surface sealed to provide easy maintenance. All you need to do is sweep, then damp-mop for easy cleaning solution. For non surface-sealed floors, they may be sensitive to water penetration. Sweeping and vacuuming are helpful, but also stripping the old wax then putting a fresh coat should buff it up nicely.

Don't do this…

If your budget is stretched, look for basic soap and water for surface-sealed floors. For engineered hardwood, the best option is a floor cleaner recommended by suppliers of the floor. For non-surface sealed floors, you can find wax strippers and liquid or paste waxes from manufacturers for price comparison. Never ever use vinegar cleaners with ammonia, bleaches, oil-based soaps, or anything that claims to be a one-step wood cleaning product. They may scratch the floor and leave it with residue.

The enemy is water…

Whether the floor is surface-sealed or not, water is not a friend to hardwood. If a floor is not sealed with urethane, polyurethane or poly-acrylic sealant, don't mop it. Use a felt or cloth mop, wring it out and use it just barely damp.

The overall dirt can be cut down in the home using doormats and rugs in high-traffic areas. Rubber backed mats can easily trap water underneath so be careful about using them on the floor. Sometimes it helps to hire a professional if you're not quite sure how to get the job done right.

 

 

Choice Properties provides the best in service with high demand properties. We provide a place where you can look at the home of your dreams and guide us in helping you purchase it with ease. Our goal is to ensure your satisfaction. Call us if you are ready to find your dream property.

April
18

A Deeper Look at the Home Foreclosure Process

Foreclosure is a legal proceeding by which a lender can sell or repossess a home when the owner has stopped making payments. The steps which make up a foreclosure process can feel daunting. It helps to understand your personal rights through it all, along with the responsibilities as homeowner.

Stage One: Missed Payments

A homeowner must fall 90 days behind on a mortgage, in most states, before the mortgage lender can legally initiate the foreclosure process. This stage has to happen prior to the foreclosure starting and this is the phase which provides homeowners the most options. At the missed payment stage, the best time to rework your finances is right now. Call your lender to work out a compromise, put your home on the market and try to avoid immediate foreclosure.

Stage Two: Pre-Foreclosure

Once payments have not been made for at least 90 days, the lender records a public notice that the owner defaulted. This is followed by a mailed notice to the homeowner. In some states, this notice is called a Notice of Default (NOD). In others, it is a Lis Pendens. The lender may be required to post it to your front door. This 'grace period' provides a homeowner three calendar months to fix the default, which includes: making an arrangement with lender, selling, or coming up with cash to pay back the owed money.

Stage Three: Auction

If the default is not fixed within three months of the Notice of Default, the lender or a foreclosure trustee may set a date for the home to be sold at a sale ("Trustee Sale"). This includes:

  • Notice record at County Recorder's Office
  • Notice delivered to homeowner
  • Notice posted on door of property
  • Published notice in a local paper

Following these steps, a homeowner has the 'right to redemption," whereby he can come up with outstanding cash to stop the process or watch the home go to auction where it is sold to highest bidder.

Stage Four: Post-Foreclosure

If a third party has not purchased the property at auction, the lender takes ownership of it. This is now bank-owned property, known as REO (Real Estate Owned) by lender.

Up until the time of a home being scheduled for auction, most lenders would rather work out an agreement than let it go into foreclosure. There may still be time to save your home if you speak with your lender should difficulties making payments arise.

 

 

Choice Properties offers you a chance to find the home of your dreams. We work with your budget and ideas in mind to support your ultimate vision. Call us if you are ready to check out the available inventory or to speak with a reputable agent who can assist you with your home buying needs.

April
11

Use Your Tax Return to Fund the Down Payment on Your Dream Home

Behold the beloved tax season; the reason for people rejoicing all over the United States leading up to April 15. Many people look forward to tax season because it means they are getting a return. Some people really dislike tax season because it means they pay into the system, with no return in site. For those who enjoy a sizeable tax return, it can be a great time to consider making a down payment on your dream home as an investment in your future.

Get Started

A large tax refund can be enough to cover the entire down payment on a home purchase. If a tax refund does not cover the entire down payment, you will still be able to feel the difference in your pocketbook now, and in the future. If you put the refund into savings, you have a sizeable amount to build off of to get that nest egg built up for a future dream home. There are loans which do not require a down payment, but it is still a wise idea to save your tax refund for other costs, including:

  • Closing costs
  • Debts
  • Reserves in the bank for increased chance of approval
  • Paying down credit card balance to raise credit score
  • Save money for emergency fund

When filling out an application, you are able to assume the amount you will receive if you have already filed and are just waiting for the check. The funds will need to appear prior to final underwriting.

Existing Property

If you already own a home, this is a great time to take the extra money to make a few payments off the mortgage. This can help pay down interest so you can start paying off principle on the mortgage. This goes a long way towards full ownership of your home, free and clear.

For most people, looking for a home is in the cards even more now than ever with a tax refund in hand. There are many ways to spend that extra cash, but putting it towards a dream home is one of the best ways to invest in your long-term future.

 

 

Choice Properties provides the best in service when it comes to finding your dream home. Our excellent team of realtors will support you in finding the right home at the right place, right now. Call us if you're ready to invest in your future.

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