May 25, 2019

5 Ways to Fill the Space Above Your Bed

 

Even if you have a beautiful headboard, the space above your bed can seem empty if left untouched. This space can be tricky to decorate, but that doesn’t mean you should leave it blank. There are plenty of ways to spruce up that space without much work. Here are 5 ways to make the best of that negative space!

1. Add a Set of Shelves

Even if you don’t need the extra storage space, you can use shelves to add small decor that is unique to you. Your favorite books, small planters, or even picture frames are a great way to personalize the shelves.

2. Wallpaper the Wall

If you're worried about adding anything above your bed, consider creating an accent wall with floral wallpaper. Many places sell peel and stick paper so if you decide you don't love the style or you're renting and cannot make a permanent change, you can still try out wallpaper.

3. Make the Room Look Bigger With Mirrors

The best way to make a room look bigger is to strategically place mirrors across from open windows or sources of light. You can also place 2 small mirrors alongside a large central mirror if your bed isn't across from a light source. This will also make your room appear larger while filling empty space.

4. Consider a Tasteful Tapestry or Wall Hanging

Tapestries aren't just for college dorm rooms. If you aren't ready to add shelving fixtures but want something a little more than wallpaper, consider adding a pop of color with a tapestry or a statement yarn wall hanging. 

5. Create a Gallery Wall

Whether it is gridded and organized or statement and staggered, a gallery wall is the perfect way to add a little more 'you' to your bedroom. Frame your favorite family photos or the landscape photos from your favorite vacation. 

Posted in Home Design Ideas
May 23, 2019

Selling Your Home: Which Repairs to Make Before you Sell Your Home

 

Repairs to Make Before Selling Your Home

So you’re ready to put your home on the market and to you, everything looks great. Unfortunately, much of the wear and tear on your home becomes unnoticeable when it is something you see everyday. While you may not think about the one light switch that doesn’t work or the chipping paint in the guest bedroom, now is the time to take a step back and look at your home with fresh eyes. When you decide to sell your home, the first thing you should do is make any repairs you can to save yourself money in the long run. Here are a few repairs to cross off so you can get the best deal for your home!

1. Paint Your Walls

Re-painting the rooms that need a fresh face is the cheapest way to update the appearance of your home. Consider using light, neutral colors to appeal to a broader group of buyers. If the room is too dark or has chipped or dirty paint, make it look brand new with a coat of paint. 

2. Make Minor Kitchen Repairs

Even if your kitchen isn’t large and spacious, a full renovation might not make sense financially. If your agent doesn’t advise you towards a renovation, consider making minor repairs instead. Paint what needs painted and install new fixtures where necessary. If your appliances aren’t operating properly or are in awful shape, you will need to replace them.

3. Update Your Bathroom

The first priority is making sure your bathroom looks clean. If the toilet looks old, replace the seat to give it a fresh new appearance. Replace any tiles that may be missing, clean the grout, and remove old wallpaper that may still remain. This is a room you should consider painting if need be to make it appear bright and clean.

4. Fix The Exterior

The outside of your home is the first thing buyers will see, so it is important that it looks good. Touch up the yard with sod as needed, remove any junk that may be in the yard, and make sure your fencing doesn’t have any missing parts or boards. Mow your grass and consider renting a power washer to make your siding look brand new. 

5. Maximize Lighting

The goal is to maximize light so you can maximize the appearance of space. Light does a great job of making rooms look larger than they are. Update your fixtures, ensure that your windows appear clean and new, and add mirrors across from light sources to reflect even more light. 

6. Ensure Functionality

Potential buyers are going to want everything to work. Do a full walk through of your home, checking all light switches, doorknobs, and locks. Repair or replace anything that doesn't work as it should. The less issues that arise during the buyer's home inspection, the better chance of you maximizing your profit during the sale. 

 

May 21, 2019

The Home Buying Process: How to Move with Kids

How to Move with Kids

How to move with kids

As if moving isn't already hard enough, adding your children into the mix can present a whole new challenge. Kids are resilient, but major changes like big moves can be difficult to work through if children aren't prepared. Depending on their age, your children may be leaving behind a school, friends, and activities that they've grown to love. Instead of throwing them in the deep end, consider helping them get their moving feet wet with these steps. 

1. Talk to your children about your move as soon as it becomes a possibility.

Once you've decided to move, the first thing you should do is have an open discussion with your children. If you wait until it is time to pack, they may feel like they've had a bombshell dropped on them. If you give them a chance to voice their feelings and work through them, you'll deal with a little less chaos when it is time to move. Consider the best way to tell your children, taking into account how each child best receives information. Be open, honest, and available to answer their questions.

2. Find ways to involve your children in your new neighborhood.

Instead of leaving the kids at home while you are closing on a property or even just touring potential homes, bring them along. Find activities in the area that your children will enjoy, whether it be a park nearby or local libraries, pools, or playgrounds. Helping them feel familiar with their new home will take a weight off of their shoulders and reduce the fear of being the 'new kid' when they move. Once you are moved in, consider hosting a game night or play date for your neighbors with children so that your kids have an opportunity to make friends quickly.

3. Reach out and get local recommendations ahead of time.

This will help both you and your children have a little more peace of mind when it comes to making a big move. Before the move, find local parent groups (sites like Facebook are full of these) and seek out recommendations for daycares and schools that meet the criteria you are looking for. The first thing most people do when trying something new out is to check for reviews, and these groups will allow you to do just that. Create a short list of places you think will fit your lifestyle, and then conduct as much research as you need to make a decision when you arrive in your new home. This will reduce the time your children will spend in limbo when you move.

Moving can be a difficult time, but preparing your children will help make the process as smooth as possible and help to lessen the stress that comes with a big move.  They will be settled in at their new home sooner than you think!  

 

May 20, 2019

Tech to Find the Right Home

Tech to Find the Right Home

According to the National Association of Realtors's 2018 Profile of Buyers and Sellers, 52% of buyers want help to find the right home to purchase.  Physically locating the home is certainly part of what buyers want from their agent but finding the right home at the right price and terms is also crucial.

87% of buyers purchased their home through a real estate agent or broker.  Slightly more than half of buyers were referred to their real estate professional by a friend or relative or had used the agent previously to buy or sell a home.

There are tech tools that can be used together with the expertise and experience of your real estate professional to make the home buying process efficient and effective.

Listing Alert ... while this service is called by other names, such as property alerts, the buyer identifies the specifics about the home they want, and it will notify them directly when a new listing comes on the market that matches their needs.

Real estate smartphone apps ... imagine driving a neighborhood, seeing a sign and immediately being able to know the price and specifics about the home; very convenient.  There are a variety of different apps available such as Homesnap, and others, ask your agent for their recommendation before installing one.

Digital documents ... companies like DocuSign have revolutionized real estate negotiations by doing everything digitally so that you're not going back and forth between the parties signing and initialing changes.  It is safe and secure and your agent will handle this end of it for you.

ColorSnap Visualizer ... this Sherwin Williams app for iPad allows you to paint walls on a picture, match photos to find paint colors and other things before you commit to a color.

Google maps ... plug in an address on Google Maps and you see street view of the home, satellite view, surrounding businesses, traffic speed and other things.

Sex Offender Registry ... NSOPW, the National Sex Offender Public Website is a safety resource that provides the public with access to sex offender data nationwide.

Financial Calculators ... fill in the blank applications that can illustrate the benefits of renting vs. owning, Equity Accelerator, Adjustable Rate Comparison, Cost of Waiting to Buy and many other homeowner situations.

Free Public Records Directory - OnlineSearches provides access to public record sources like deeds and assessor and property tax records.  While this service is free, some state and county agencies may charge fees for accessing public records.

Virtual open house ... an alternative to physically viewing a home is to look at the multiple photos online.  If the property is interesting, you can schedule a physical showing with your agent.

Check your credit ... Order free credit reports from Equifax, Experian and TransUnion each once a year at www.AnnualCreditReport.com.

The final recommendation is your phone.  When you have a question, contact your agent.  Calling another agent may seem like an expedient way to get an answer, especially if you cannot get a hold of your agent but it could inadvertently, cause issues.

As your real estate professional I can assist you with these and other tools to help you find the right home.  If you have any questions, feel free to call me at 623-252-9350.

Feb. 11, 2019

Home Buying Process: Your Guide to Buying a Home

Your Guide to Buying a Home

How to Get Started

Congratulations!  The decision to buy your own home is an exciting one!  You are about to embark on one of the most important decisions of your lifetime.  Even if you have purchased a home in the past, it is a decision that will bring you years of comfort and joy.

Where should you get started? I have a proven 21 Step Home Buying Process that can helps you every step of the way.  Please see the diagram below:

Home Buying Process, Your Guide to Buying a Home

 

Once you've completed the first step and you know you want to buy a property, your second step should be to call me to set up a time for us to chat about your goals and what you are wanting to achieve.  I can then let you know if I can help you get a game plan together.  

Even if you are months away from buying, it's never too early to get the process started.  I am always here to answer any questions so please feel free to use me as a resource.  Contact me at 623-252-9350 today!  By hiring me, you are hiring a Realtor with advanced training, years of experience as well as systems in place to help you experience success with buying a new home.  I look forward to connecting!

 

Feb. 11, 2019

Important Things To Know About Buying a Home

Looking to purchase a home? 

Let me help you experience success! 

Inventory is low and you will most likely run into competition. My goal is to help you learn how to buy a home and beat out the other buyers.  Through the years I have helped numerous people like you buy a new home in the West Valley, from first time home buyers to people looking for a retirement home.  I can help you get ready to buy, avoid problems along the way, and enjoy the process from start to finish as I keep you informed every step of the way. My timely updates will let you know where we stand in the process and what comes next.  

Important Things To Know About Buying a Home:

  • Consult professionals to assist you--utilize their knowledge and experience to make the process easier for you.  Find an experienced Realtor that has extra training and education as well as systems and process in place to help make home buying experience easier.  This should be step 1, even if you are months out from buying a home.  

  • Ask your Realtor for a recommendation for a mortgage professional.  Realtors see the good, the bad, and the (super) ugly when it comes to financing and completing the loan process.  They can recommend mortgage professionals that they have worked with in the past that have done an outstanding job.  

  • This mortgage professional can help you understand how much you can spend and what type of home that will get you.  

  • Decide on a monthly mortgage payment that fits your lifestyle and budget.

  • Determine how much money you will need for a down payment and closing costs.

  • Did you know that you don't need 20% for a down payment if you plan on living in the house?

  • Down payment assistant programs still exist!

  • Start saving money! In addition to your down payment, and closing costs you will also have other costs such as cleaning and moving costs.

  • Find the right home for you. It's time to work with your Realtor and do some research into what is the right property for you.  

  • Consider a new construction home, but take along representation, the sales agent represents the builder, not the buyer.  Even if you are just checking out model homes, once you go in without representation the builder will not let you use a Realtor.

  • Start viewing homes.  With a handful of your Realtor's business cards in your hand, head out to open houses to get a feel for what is on the market.  Your Realtor can help you get a list of open houses together. 

  • Agents that work open houses work for the seller, not the buyer, so be careful what you say!

  • When you are ready, it's time to start your home tours with your Realtor!

 

Check out my proven home buying process:

Cinda Rose's Home Buying Process

Sept. 11, 2018

Existing-Home Sales Continue to Slowdown

According to the National Association of Realtor's (NAR) July housing report, existing-home sales slowed for the 4th consecutive month in July.  This signifies the most sluggish pace in more than two years.  NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun says that rising home prices and rising interest rates may be causing would-be home buyers to pull away from purchasing a new home.  A lot of first time home buyers have been priced out of the market.  However, this slowdown could be a great opportunity for buyers, as sellers may be willing to lower their sales price.  

Aug. 22, 2018

What does a Realtor® do? And do you need a Realtor® to purchase a new home?

Why use a Realtor® to help you buy a new home?

Buying a home is a complex process involving the largest financial transaction you may ever undertake.  A Realtor® does not just find people houses or help them with their home search, in today's world most buyers find the properties that they want to purchase online (unless it is a pocket or upcoming listing). 

A Realtor's main job is to be an advocate for buyers and help protect, as well as, guide them through the home buying process with the least amount of stress as possible.  It's important to note that there could be negative legal and financial implications involved in buying a home, so having a knowledgeable agent on your side is crucial.  It could save you thousands of dollars in the long run.

What is a buyer's rep/buyer's agent?

A buyer's rep represents you and your interests, not the seller's, in a real estate transaction.  A buyer's agent who has earned the Accredited Buyer's Representation (ABR) designation has gone the extra mile and completed specialized training in delivering the best buyer representation services to their clients.  An agent who is an ABR is a trusted advocate whose training and experience helps them excel in helping clients search for homes, write and negotiate offers, and get the buyer to the closing table.  ABR's help clients find houses that become homes.

An ABR can help you:

  • Be an educated buyer.
  • Navigate the home buying process.
  • Find properties that reflect your specific needs and wants and help you keep your goals in mind.
  • Understand how much you can afford.
  • View available properties.
  • Write offers.
  • Negotiate your offer to your best advantage.
  • Provide a list of qualified vendors (such as lenders, movers, etc.)
  • Keep your best interests in mind throughout the transaction.
  • Guide you with investigating and inspecting the property before you take possession.
  • Protect your earnest money should you decide not to buy a property.
  • Coordinate every transaction detail -- to closing and beyond -- to keep you on track.

Thinking about buying a home in the next year?  I want to help!  I am proud to be an ABR Realtor® and I am ready to help you experience success!  Contact me at 623-252-9350.   

ABR

 

Aug. 16, 2018

Litchfield Park Named Best City to Live in Arizona

Litchfield Park, AZ

The City of Litchfield Park, Arizona

The City of Litchfield Park was named the best city in Arizona in which to live by Movoto, a national online real-estate brokerage.  The Movoto Real Estate Blog, a blog that helps uncover the best places in the United States, set out to find the 10 best cities in Arizona.  Litchfield Park topped the list at #1.  Which is no surprise to its residents.  It's not uncommon to find people that have families that have lived in The Park for several generations.  They know Litchfield Park has always been a gem in the desert.  

To determine the 10 best cities in Arizona Movoto used seven criteria:  high population density, cost of living, crime rate, high school diploma attainment rate, median household income, median home value and sunny and warm temperatures.  Litchfield Park scored well in almost all of the criteria but scored really well in the categories of:

  • Low crime rate:  81% lower than the state average
  • High median income:  $73,996 which is 63% higher than the state average
  • High home values:  The average home value is $336,100, 88% higher than the state average
  • Some of the best high school diploma attainment rates in Arizona.  Litchfield Park's high school attainment rate is 96%, which is 27% greater than the state's average.

The City of Litchfield Park is located 16 miles west of downtown Phoenix and is known for its towering palm trees and orange trees lining the major streets and abundance of parks.  The I-10 freeway provides easy access to downtown from Litchfield Park.  In addition, the Loop 101 and the Loop 303 provide Litchfield Park with easy access to the entire valley.  Litchfield Park has a small town atmosphere with all of the amenities you need close by.  

Litchfield Park has been awarded other honors as well:

  • Phoenix New Times awarded Old Litchfield Road as "Best Street Time Forgot 2013"
  • Phoenix Magazine named Litchfield Park one of the top 8 cities to live in Arizona in 2009

Litchfield Park Community Events

Litchfield Park really does have a small town feel and it is a fun little community.  Residents can walk or ride their bikes up to the more than 20 special events throughout the year, some hosted in conjunction with The Wigwam.  Many of the events have received State awards:

  • Native American Arts Festival
  • Arts in the Parks Concert Series
  • Kiwanis Litchfield Park Winter Trout Fishing Derby
  • Wigwam Festival of Fine Art
  • Flavors of the West Festival
  • Spring Art & Culinary Festival
  • Kiwanis Sprint in the Park Triathlon
  • Wigwam Amateur Championship Golf Tournament
  • Memorial Day Ceremony
  • 4th of July Fireworks Celebration and Splash Bash
  • Oktoberfest,
  • Festival of Arts
  • Taste of the Park
  • Christmas in the Park
  • 10k, 5k, 1-mile Fun Run

Litchfield Park Community Amenities

Within the community of Litchfield Park you will find The Litchfield Park Recreation Center, a library, restaurants, two hair salons, a microbrewery, walking paths, six parks, a lake you can fish at, baseball fields, soccer fields and The Wigwam with three golf courses, four pools, restaurants and more.  

The Litchfield Park Recreation Center has an outdoor 15-yard heated lap pool, a therapy spa, a baby pool, a weight room, tennis courts and basketball courts.  In addition, the Litchfield Park Recreation offers numerous recreation programs for youth and adults such as swim lessons, tennis lessons, water aerobics, water polo, preschool programs, basketball, T-Ball, flag football, soccer and pickleball (for adults).  Litchfield Park also has a senior program, the Litchfield Park Senior Citizen programs meet at least once a month for various activities and events.  

Located next to the Rec Center is Florence Brinton Litchfield Memorial Library, a branch of the Maricopa Public Library.  The Florence Brinton Litchfield Memorial Library offers a variety of resources beyond books, such as computers for public use, Wi-Fi, audio books and storytelling hours for the kids.  

There are 6 parks in Litchfield offering residents multiple plays to play with the family within walking distance of their home.  These parks can be reserved for special events:

  • Staggs Park:  A 3.74-acre park with a soccer field, baseball field with backstop and dugouts, restrooms, water fountain, picnic tables, ramada and a large covered tot lot with play structure, slides, and swings.
  • Tierra Verde Lake Park:  3.15 acres of land surrounding a 4.5-acre lake across the street from Staggs Park.  A path goes around the perimeter of the lake offering a great place for walking, jogging or biking.  Fishing is allowed in the lake and there is a boat ramp and dock.  There are benches and picnic tables scattered throughout the park and it's the perfect place to enjoy a picnic lunch and feed the ducks.
  • Turtle Park:  5.05 acres with a soccer field, baseball field with backstop, large sand playground area with slide and swings.  This park also has 2 picnic tables and restrooms.
  • Camelback Park:  4.3 acres with a soccer field, sand playground area with slide, climbing feature, and swings.
  • Memorial Park:  1-acre park with a small gazebo with benches and a drinking fountain located in downtown.
  • Scout Park:

Just "outside the walls" of Old Litchfield are the closely tied areas of Litchfield Greens and the Villages at Litchfield Park.  There are 4 additional parks for residents to enjoy, Rose Park, Aleppo Park, Little Park and Kiwanis Park.  

Litchfield Park Restaurants and Businesses

Litchfield Park has a small quaint downtown area with a southwestern feel.  Enjoy breakfast, a specialty coffee or lunch at the Park Cafe.  Next door is Lazy Palm, with a large menu available for lunch or dinner.  Another popular place is Old Pueblo Cafe, a Mexican food restaurant with indoor or patio seating as well as an indoor bar area with flat screen TV's and karaoke.  Around the corner is a micro-brewery called Peoria Artisan Brewery which brews in-house several varieties of beer.  They also offer a small menu consisting of comfort food like brats, grilled cheese, cheeseburgers or you can build your own ham, turkey or roast beef sandwich.  The brewery also has a meat and cheese tray perfect for munching on while enjoying their beers.  Also located on Honeysuckle is Ribbons Tea House that offers over 40 different kinds of loose tea, specialty drinks, smoothies, ice cream and assorted desserts.  It has been a great addition to the Park.

The downtown area also has two salons, Haircutters in the Park, a full-service Aveda hair salon and Fringe Salon.  Other businesses include a law firm, a dentist, a karate studio and an Edward Jones financial planner.  

The Wigwam 

In the heart of Litchfield Park is The Wigwam.  The resort was built in 1918 by Goodyear Tire & Rubber as a retreat for the Ohio-based executives.  Due to its popularity, in 1929 The Wigwam opened as a full-service resort with accommodations for 24 people.  The Wigwam now features 331 guestrooms, including 70 luxurious suites and 2 presidential suites. 

In 2011 The Wigwam completed a $7 million rejuvenation.  The main lodge and accommodations were all updated.  Also, the resort now has four pools, the main pool has a 25-foot waterslide, separate kids and adult zones, a poolside cafe, and luxury cabanas.  The Wigwam also has a new great patio just off the main lodge and close to the pool which is perfect for relaxing and socializing.   This outdoor plaza area offers dining, an indoor/outdoor bar, lounge areas with fire pits, bocce ball courts and live entertainment.  This resort is also well equipped for meetings, events, and weddings.  The Wigwam has over 43,000 square feet of indoor and outdoor meeting and event space.  The Wigwam Ballroom is 10,800 square feet, offering a great space for large groups.   The ballrooms, as well as the beautiful lush grounds, provide the perfect place for a wedding ceremony and reception.

For dining options, The Wigwam features Litchfield's, Red's Bar & Grill, the Wigwam Bar and the Tower Pool Bar & Grill.  Litchfield's offers a farm-to-table menu from local farms.  Red's Bar & Grill offers breakfast, lunch, and dinner either indoors or on the patio overlooking the golf courses.  The Wigwam Bar offers a great indoor or outdoor gathering place to enjoy cocktails or signature Wigwam cuisine.  The Tower Pool Bar & Grill offers fun food poolside along with refreshing drinks and cocktails. 

From November to April The Wigwam hosts The Wigwam Farmer's Market on the Front Lawn of the resort.  A wide variety of locally produced food including fruits, vegetables, cheese, preserves, bread, cooking oils and bottles of vinegar, wine, tamales and much more.  There's even a booth with gluten-free food.  The Wigwam Farmer's Market is definitely a popular spot on Sundays.  

In 2018 the Wigwam opened the new Lemonds Aveda Salon and Spa.  This serene and welcoming spa features facials, massages, waxing, eyelash extensions and makeup applications.  The salon offers a full menu of hair services including haircuts, blowouts, up-dos & style and numerous color options.  In addition, the salon features manicures and pedicures.  

The Wigwam provides Litchfield Park and it's residents the beauty of three well manicured 18-hole championship golf courses.  The Gold, Patriot and Heritage courses provide a diverse golf experience for golfers of all abilities.  The Wigwam Country Club is available for hotel guests and the public, but also offers memberships.  The premier membership allows for all that the golf club as well as what the resort have to offer.  The Wigwam Country Club offers other memberships as well, such as the tennis and fitness membership which gives members the use of the fitness center, tennis courts, and the resort pool areas.  

Search for Litchfield Park Homes For Sale

 

July 26, 2018

All Your Moving Needs In One Place! Personal Moving Concierge

Buy or sell a house with me and I will provide you access to your own

Personal Moving Concierge! 

All of the things you need for moving in one convenient place.  

 

 

 

 

Contact me today for your free phone call to help you get a game plan together to achieve your real estate goals!  Even if you aren't ready to buy right away, it's important to build a relationship with a Realtor that will be your advocate throughout the process.  Call or text to 623-252-9350 or email me at cinda@wvhometeam.com, I'd love to connect to see if I can assist you when you are ready to buy a home.