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Articles Tagged "Home Maintenance"

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May
15

Why Home Buyers Should Have a Home Inspection

For those experienced in the home buying process, you may understand the importance of having a home inspection. Buying a home is one of the largest investments we make in life, making it crucial that you are not hit with costly surprises. Making assumptions that the home is has no issues can make you pay for it later on. There are many reasons why home buyers should have a home inspection.

Receive a Professional Report on the Home's Condition

Taking time to hire a professional home inspector will ensure you receive a professional report on the structural condition of the home. The home inspector will have a checklist of items to inspect, and a standardized format to provide you with the results. You can expect a full written report with details and photos of the home.

Home Inspectors Help Avoid Future Issues

The main duty of a home inspector is to make sure the home is structurally sound. Unfortunately, structural issues are not always easily recognized by the average person and can take longer and cost more to repair. A skilled inspector knows exactly what to look for and inspects the craftsmanship and safety of the home. A caring home inspector will work with buyers to avoid a major issue in the future if the home is not up-to-code. If the home inspection report comes back with red flags, now is the perfect time to negotiate the price if still interested.

Help Plan for Future Projects

One of the benefits about hiring a home inspector is to gain an idea on future projects the home may need. This includes information on roofing conditions, gutters, windows, and siding. Knowing if and when the home will need a new roof could greatly influence your negotiation price. An inspector will also check the garage, steps, and porches for safety concerns. It's important to get an educated opinion on the lifespan of the roof or siding, as these are big investments that should be considered.

Hiring a professional home inspector offers a list of benefits, putting your mind at ease when purchasing a home. Although a home may look brand new and secure, there is a still a risk of issues occurring.




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
3

Tips on Boosting Curb Appeal This Spring

Whether you just purchased your new home or you are interested in listing to sell, curb appeal can greatly influence the exterior of a home. Curb appeal refers to the level of attractiveness one may have on a property when viewing it from the outside. There are many ways to add pops of color and a fresh look to the exterior without having to keep up with maintenance. Consider these tips on boosting curb appeal this spring, greatly enhancing the aesthetic of the home.

Power Wash the Exterior

Winter is sure to leave a layer of dirt and debris on outside windows and siding. A bucket of hot, soapy water and a long soft-bristled brush will easily remove dirt from wood, vinyl, metal, stucco, and brick. Perhaps consider renting a power washer to scrub harsh dirt from your driveway, revealing the true cleanliness. Take this time to wash outside windows as well, while clearing gutters of fallen leaves and sticks.

Freshen Up the Paint

Although you may not want to completely repaint the outside of your house, there are still small steps you can take to give the fresh, new look. Giving the front door a new coat of paint will do wonders for your front porch. Go bold this spring with a deep violet or bright yellow paint color!

Tackle the Lawn

A well-manicured lawn includes fresh mulch, pruned shrubs, and cut grass. Replacing overgrown bushes with leafy greens and colorful annuals is great to add a pop of color to curb appeal. Surround any trees with dark or reddish-brown mulch for an easy, yet classy look. Pulling weeds and planting seasonal flowers in your garden beds makes your home feel welcoming and well-groomed.

Keep Up With Maintenance

There are certainly steps you can take each spring to make your home feel new, but keeping up with yearly outdoor maintenance is key to maintaining curb appeal. Tending to hanging gutters or peeling paint as it is occuring will save you time, trouble, and money.




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.

September
18

Questions to Ask When Buying an Indian Lake House

Waterfront homes hold a beauty unlike any other naturally appealing to most buyers. Although waterfront homes easily grab the eye, not many people consider the responsibilities that come with purchasing a lake house. At Choice Properties, we want you to enjoy the fun experience Indian Lake has to offer which is why we firmly believe buyers should research more on waterfront properties. We have listed questions to ask when buying an Indian Lake home, allowing you to be fully prepared throughout this exciting process!

Can You Get a Loan?

The first question to ask is the probability of getting a mortgage loan for a waterfront home. Since it's a vacation home, mortgage loans are usually higher and may take longer than residential homes, so it's important to tackle this step early on. Discussing credit score and credit history with a loan provider allows you to set a budget for your Indian Lake Home. Once you obtain your loan, our expert agents will work beside you to show you the best homes in your price range.

What Do You Want in a Lake House?

Consider making a list of must-have items you crave in a lake house, as well as those you can live without will help narrow down your search. For example, how close to the water you want to be? Do you prefer a small, quaint cabin or a large house with a dock? Taking time to discuss the amount of space and bedrooms you will need helps weed out unrealistic homes. It's important to keep an open mind when touring potential homes as it may be challenging to find a complete list of must-haves in one space.

Have You Factored in Other Expenses?

The fun and memories made are definitely worth the cost, but don't forget to factor in other expenses as well. Waterfront properties often have a higher maintenance checklist than residential homes, including dock upkeep, rusting items and wearing out do to the proximity of water. These expenses can easily be avoided by taking care of possessions and tackling any issues at the first sign.

What Insurance Have You Researched?

Have you been researching insurance plans? Because waterfront homes are more susceptible to damage from natural disasters, such as flooding, insurance rates are typically more expensive. Keep insurance rates in mind as you calculate overall budget and expenses.

Does the Property Fulfill Your Lifestyle?

Perhaps the most important question to ask yourself is if the property fulfills your lifestyle needs. In the excitement that comes with buying a waterfront home, it can be easy to lose sight of why you want to live near the water in the first place. For example, a home on a lake beach may require you to travel to a nearby dock to store and use your boat. If you don't mind traveling a few miles to get to your boat, then a dock can be ruled out! Your happiness is the final factor in determining the lake house you desire.



Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

August
15

Home Inspection Tips for Lakefront Property in Ohio

In every home purchase, whether you're family is settling into a residential home or buying a summer lake house, it is always recommended to get a house inspection. Having a full understanding of the home and the potential repairs will save you time and effort, allowing you to fully enjoy your new space! The experts at Choice Properties understand the fun that comes with purchasing a lake house, but we also understand the importance of safety by getting a home inspection. Stay tuned to learn these home inspection tips for lakefront property in Ohio!

Radon

Radon is regularly inspected for residential homes, but it is especially important to check for in your lakefront property. Radon is more commonly found around homes near Ohio Lakes, and is known to cause certain health issues. This invisible and odorless gas rises from the soil, making it an important note to have your home inspector perform a standard reading.

Seawalls

Seawalls are unique to buying an Ohio lake house, but without inspection can be costly and challenging to repair. Seawalls are vital when owning a lake house, as it prevents erosion of your shoreline. Seawalls can be made out various materials such as wood, concrete, or stone with each product holding a different life expectancy.

Boat Lifts

Boat lifts are a great perk that come with owning a waterfront home in Ohio. Similar to seawalls, boat lifts boat lifts will have different costs or challenges due to the variety of lifts. With most boat lifts come electrical wires near the water, meaning it is crucial your inspector checks the functionality of the lift as well as electric by the dock.

Decking

Many lake houses come with beautiful decking, some ranging from one relaxing deck to several stories. Ensuring these decks were built with safety measures in place allows you to peacefully enjoy the view without worry. Often times, lakefront property in Ohio will have decks built with composite boards or aluminum rather han lumber. Having your home inspector study the structure of the deck will give you an idea of life expectancy and maintenance, along with confirmed safety.

Well and Septic

Most residential homes are on city water and sewer systems, but most lakes in Ohio are too far from the beaten path to be hooked up to city water. This means Ohio lake homes will have a private well and septic. If not maintained properly, both of these items can be very expensive to fix. The septic should especially be inspected with precision due to the proximity of the lake.

Making the decision to purchase a lakefront property in Ohio is exciting, and should come with a stress-free experience! Don't let the eagerness keep you from ensuring safety in your new space, giving you years worth of memories to look forward to.





Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

June
20

What You Can Do if you Get Bad Home Inspection Results

Home inspections come with a nervous feeling of "what if," with the results potentially scaring away an interested buyer. Although home inspections are required, they should not be a step in the process you stress over. Remind yourself to stay relaxed and calm during the inspection, knowing you are equipped to tackle any results. At Choice Properties, we know the anxious feeling associated with the process, so we created a list of what you can do if you get bad home inspection results.

Be Prepared

Although you should not always expect the worse, being prepared for shocking news allows you to mentally process in a healthy way. Going into the inspection knowing you have physically and mentally prepared will let you welcome the results in a breeze. It can be hard to stay patient during this process as you are one step closer to selling to a potential buyer, but repairing any damages or concerns without rushing will ensure a promising reward.

Repair As Needed

When receiving a bad report, your mind is probably running circles wondering where to start. Take each project with a grain of salt, and remember to discuss with your trusted realtor and interested home buyer to develop a plan of action. If you agree to help the buyer with repairs, it is common to have them waive liability for later problems in exchange.

Even if you are surprised by the inspection findings, it's best to keep quiet until the buyer has presented you with a request of repairs or price reduction. The potential home buyers may not interpret the report as negativity as you do, saving you the stress and effort. If the buyer is interested in resolving the issues, schedule a chat with your realtor to review and discuss standard negotiating.

Selling your home the easiest way possible comes with learning to accept what you cannot control. Don't get ahead of any repairs before speaking to your realtor and determining a logical solution.




Choice Properties understands your needs and desires when it comes to the home search. We are here to help you define what you want, seek the best property and move forward feeling educated and able to make good decisions throughout the process. You can trust us to help you navigate it with the best real estate agents working for you. Call us to get started on your dream home search today.

March
28

Tips for Opening Those Indian Lake Ohio Rentals After The Long Winter

Tips For Opening Those Indian Lake Ohio Rentals After The Long Winter

Opening your rental property after a long winter is the most exciting part of the year. It can also be the most stressful part. To get the season off to a great start, follow our planning tips for your opening weekend in your Indian Lake Ohio Rentals.

Opening Checklist

It's important that you start by making a detailed checklist of all the things you need to do when you get to your lakefront rental, including everything you need to take care of before you leave home. It may take a bit of time and effort, but it pays to be organized.

  • Call the electricity company, phone company and trash collection to turn your services back on.
  • Check that all insurance documents are up to date on the home, boat, trailer, etc.
  • Organize your keys, tools, cleaning supplies, clothing, batteries, and food.

Systems And Safety

Once you get to your Indian Lake Ohio rental, you'll need to make sure that the home is safe to inhabit again, before turning on the water and other systems. A checklist for the outside of the property should include checking the following:

  • Power lines
  • Phone Lines
  • Trees
  • Roof
  • Chimney Stack
  • Deck
  • Dock
  • Siding
  • Windows
  • Screens

After you have made sure the outside is all clear, there's a different checklist for indoors, including:

  • Checking the furnace filters.
  • Checking pipes for rust or damage before you turn on your plumbing and water heater.
  • Be on the lookout for signs of critters. Check screens and windows for holes and gaps and electrical cords for fraying or bite marks.
  • Inspect your deck and eaves for signs of rotting.
  • Test the batteries in your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.

Food And Necessities

Finally, check the basic necessities. You'll want to make sure the house is stocked with food and other everyday things you'll need, like sunscreen and bug spray. Look through the bathrooms and take inventory of your toiletries and what needs replacing and replenishing. Change the sheets if needed, and air out the place.

All this seems like a lot of work, and it is. However, it is worth it when you've gone through your checklists and there is no element of surprise later. And keep in mind, that closing your Indian Lake Ohio rentals is equally important. The spring opening experience can be a pleasant one when you take the time to close the house properly in the fall, and follow your checklists the next year. Prevention and good planning are the key to opening your rental home quickly and enjoying it for the summer.


Choice Properties is always here to answer any questions, regarding searching for your dream lake house or selling your current house. Give us a call!

April
5

Going Green: 6 Tips for Planting Your Spring Garden

Spring fever has come with the arrival of some warmer days and longer hours of daylight. This is the time people start to dream about rejuvenating the outdoor garden and picturing beautiful landscapes. Mulch, weeds and other things can get in the way of the dream garden. Learn more about how to choose the right plants to boost the appeal of a home garden that everyone can enjoy.

Plant a Spring Garden in Indian Lake

Dirt Matters

A soil test is the best way to see what is going on underneath the dirt in the yard. The local agricultural extension office can provide helpful information such as what will grow and how to improve the soil quality. Some of the follow are tips to help get started:

  • Add organic matter to the soil
  • Start a compost pile or add bags of composted manure
  • If soil is drained, plants that tolerate wetness are recommended or a dry creek bed can be installed to prevent standing water

 

Tree Challenges

The trees planted in a person's yard can make a huge difference to the health of a garden. Some trees drop seeds all over and others can dwarf a person's house over time. It is important to select a shrub or tree for the garden with the following considerations in mind:

  • Size
  • Form
  • Habit
  • Avoid planting trees with weak limbs or susceptible to pests

 

Know the Garden

There is more to a garden than 'full sun' and 'partial shade.' Too much sunlight can burn foliage and compromise plant health. Too little sun can make plants weak. Selecting plants that thrive for a person's specific conditions is key to making the whole thing work properly.

  • Eight or more hours of direct sun is a perfect spot for vegetables, fruit trees and most flowers
  • Partial to full shade is most ideal for growing perennials, ferns and small trees typically found in the understory of a forest

 

Have Confidence

Look for healthy plants. Inspect foliage at the place of purchase and check the plant for firmness along with healthy roots. The best place to buy is a local garden center or online from reputable nurseries.

 

Four Seasons

Choose a variety of plants to start that offer interest at different times of the year. Summer-blooming plants like canna, coneflowers and guara keep showing until fall while others can take over as fall foliage. Winter plants like trees can add architectural beauty through the colder months.

 

Divide and Conquer

Some of the best plants are perennials or ornamental grasses that can be divided up to grow across a garden over the years. Digging up and dividing plants help keep them actively growing. A healthy amount of water helps keep the plants establish in the ground and grow healthy. This is best done every two years to support a cohesive look to a person's garden.

 

Spring gardening has endless possibilities. Be sure to try the above tips to find the best ways to help grow a sustainable, interesting garden for years to come.


November
2

Central Ohio Homes face all the onslaughts of winter and the cold.  Snowbirds who head south for winter can help protect a vacant home with some easy steps. Theft, water damage, heating and electrical system malfunctions are possible threats while a person is away for long periods of time. Learn how to winterize a home to avoid some of the pitfalls that occur with a home left unoccupied for the cooler months.

 

winterizing your home in logan county ohio

Appearances Matter

A home which appears occupied is going to be a less likely target for theft. The following steps can help:

  • Forward mail, stop newspaper delivery or ask a friend to collect items

  • Arrange for snow removal after storms

  • Use motion-sensitive exterior and interior lights on timers and set for varying times to discourage prowlers

 

Protection from Thieves

Thieves may notice when a family has left a home unoccupied and try to gain access to the property and items left in the home. Start with the following steps to protect a home from thieves:

  • Secure external doors and windows with deadbolt locks and install locks on sliding glass or French doors

  • Do not post vacation or travel plans on social media where potential thieves can find the information easily

  • Store valuables left behind in a safe deposit box or secure offsite location

 

Protect Pipes

Water damage can be a huge expense and headache for homeowners who are away for the winter. Follow these tips to avoid water damage:

  • Completely turn off water supply if nobody is living in the home for a long period of time. Consult with a heating professional about options for heating systems

  • Drain pipes of water by opening faucets, flushing the toilet and pouring antifreeze into the toilet tanks and bowls to prevent remaining water from freezing and cracking

 

Keep Home Plumbing Warm

When a family vacates a property for a period of time, the water supply may stay on. If this is the case, here is what to do for protection against the elements:

  • Keep furnace running to help ensure home stays warm and pipes do not freeze if not draining water pipes

  • Set temperature at 55 degrees or higher to help keep interior of the floor and wall cavities above freezing (where water pipes are located).

  • Shut off water to washing machines and dishwashers to avoid leaks

  • Turn off heat source and water supply to hot water heaters

  • Consider shutting off and draining outdoor water faucets

 

Routine Maintenance

Routine maintenance checks are important for a home. Have the heating system inspected and serviced before winter. The fuel tanks must be filled and someone should check fuel levels while the family is away. Be sure to maintain electrical power if the heating system will be running. Remove dead trees or limbs to avoid property damage and unplug all unnecessary appliances prior to leaving.

 
 
Choice Properties wants you to have the best information for protecting and maintaining your Indian Lake Home so if feel free to contact us with any questions and we'll make sure you're at home here in Logan County.
 

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