Champaign IL Information and Resources
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Are you sitting on the fence about buying a home? Right now, is a great time to buy if you are financially secure and have all your ducks in a row; i.e. downpayment saved, credit rating in good repair. Some top reasons experts are saying now is the time to buy:
1. Rates are lower now than they have been in years! It's a great time to take advantage of the rates now in order to keep your monthly payment at a reasonable amount.
2. Inventory is rather high at the moment and homeowners are eager to sell. Now is a great time to find your dream home!
3. Because of the quantity of homes on the market, prices are lower than they have been in years. Not great for the market overall, but for buyers who are prepared to purchase, lower prices mean getting a great home and more than likely a great price!
4. Another benefit of higher inventory levels is the opportunity to negotiate with buyers. If the window treatments are just your style or kitchen is outfitted with appliances that are perfect for you, don't hesitate to negotiate those items into the price of the home. If nothing else you have one more item to negotiate with in order to get the perfect price for your needs.
5. The Bottom Line. Buying a home is always a fantastic long-term investment. So if you're in the position to buy, go ahead. You'll more than likely get a great price for the home of your dreams!
Visit: www.cainandcompany.com for more information on purchasing your next home!
Summer is a great time to get caught up on some of those home improvements we've all been telling ourselves we are going to do. Whether your home improvement project is a fresh coat of paint, removing old wallpaper, or adding an addition you're sure to find some of these tips helpful.
1. Plan, Plan, Plan! Always plan before starting a project. It makes things flow much more smoothly if the project is planned from start to finish! Decide on a plan, buy materials and track progress according to the time frame you're hoping to complete your project. Deciding on a plan and sticking to it can drastically reduce stress when taking on a home improvement project.
2. Budgeting! The budget can be the biggest headache, especially if you complete your project and realize you've gone over your budget. Who wants that stress? Before you start your project calculate the cost of all expenses, from demolition to supplies to finishing touches. After you've gotten a solid budget in place add around 10%-20% for those unexpected surprises that always show up with home improvement projects.
3. Materials! Know what you need and have it before you get started. It can be a pain to be right in the middle of your project and realize you've forgotten a key component!
4. To use contractors or not to use contractors! If you decide that the do-it-yourself approach is not right for you. Plan early to interview several contractors. Take bids for the work you want done and call references! Know as much as you can about the contractor you choose. Remember, this person will be in your home so he/she needs to be upstanding reputable in their field.
5. Schedule! Decide early in the process what time frame you would like to complete the project in. Whether you have hired a contractor or are completing the project on your own, sticking to a time frame is a good idea. If you've chosen to go with a contractor, make sure they stick to your schedule and don't slack off.
6. Change management plan! This is incredibly important if you've chosen to go with a contractor. Make sure a plan is set in place for any changes that might need to be made--before you start the project. Your contractor needs to know what your expectations are early on and a lackidaisical approach to changes can drive the budget through the roof.
7. Get a lien waver signed by contractor. A lien waver states that your payment responsibilities have been completed. This is necessary step to ensure your protection and make sure you come out of your project feeling on top of the world!
One the most important tips to heed when attempting a home improvement project is that tings come up. Don't stress over the little things and your project is sure to come out looking like perfection!
For more information on real estate and helpful information for home improvement visit:
Each week I monitor the market, always checking out; current rates, trends and any other information I can get my hands on. Going forward, I'm going to post information weekly with an overview of what I find. This week, I received an article from a local mortgage person with his thoughts on the current market that I thought I would share.
Good Morning, hope you are having a great week. Late last week on Thursday, I sent an email when the market had changed talking about how we could be in another round of weak economic data, meaning interest rates could be moving down.
We are firmly at the 4.625% range, down from 4.875% just a couple of weeks ago. From what I am seeing, good economic data is hard to find, so the logic would be that we could be in this range for a while. Most people already refinanced last year when we were in this range, so I don’t expect a rush to refinance. However, if one of your clients was unaware last fall of the interest rates and did not take advantage, it might be a good time to look at their numbers.
On the home front, we continue to see an excess of local home inventory, and weak demand for housing. Again, logic would say that home prices should stay steady or even some pressure to go lower, just by the simple high inventory and weak demand. I know, not what anyone wants to hear….
So where is the silver lining? On the home front, if you are in a position to buy, it is a very good time. For the economic data and weak economy, might be a good time to make yourself invaluable to your employer and your clients. We should be fine, just need to be vigilant and excellent at what we do.
For more information on available Homes for Sale in the Champaign area visit: http://search.cainandcompany.com/idx/5025/basicSearch.php
For questions visit: http://www.cainandcompany.com/Buyer-Resources/Questions
For all your Real Estate Needs visit: http://www.cainandcompany.com/
There are alot of options out there for windows. Some are more affordable than others, but finding the right windows for your home can make a world of difference in the efficiency of your home which can drastically affect the cost of heating and cooling. Listed below are some links to more information on finding the right fit for your home and your budget!
Check these out:
Cain and Company Real Estate
For more tips on home improvement and preparing your home to sell click here: http://www.cainandcompany.com/blog
Find us on facebook: https://www.facebook.com/#!/CainandCompany1989?sk=wall
Home Life Perks
|Wood Flooring: Not Such a Hard Choice
Give the rooms in your home a new beginning by installing rich, stylish and polished hardwood floors. Popular, durable, and cost effective, hardwood flooring is a compelling choice for a number of reasons:
|Three important factors to consider when purchasing hardwood floors is their durability, cost and color:
If durability is an important part of your decision, consider staying away from woods like white pine, fir, and chestnut for your flooring. These softer woods can easily dent and not support large amounts of force. Varieties like walnut, cherry, and teak ranked the highest on hardness and durability tests conducted within the industry. (Janka hardness test)
When considering price, it is important to remember that plank size, color, and finish all play a role in how expensive your hardwood flooring will be. Typically, exotic woods like Brazilian cherry or Australian cypress can run upwards of $13.00 a square foot, while more common and readily available woods like Maple, Pine, or Bamboo will generally cost between $4-6 a square foot. It is also important to remember to add on at least $2-4 a square foot for labor and installation.
Variety is also a large part of what makes hardwoods so appealing. The wood grains, board widths, and different types of wood all factor into the color of hardwood floors. Below is a small chart to help you break down what woods would fall under the categorization of light, medium, or dark.
The investment that you make will increase the value of your home, lend comfort and warmth, and instantly add character and polish to your floors.
Estimate your Square Footage
In order to estimate how much hardwood flooring installation will cost you, apply this formula:
Home Life Perks
Thinking Outside the Box
If you're paying a ton of money for cable and other services, but not getting the desired level of satisfaction, consider altering your home entertainment setup.
New services such as Netflix and Pandora make great additions to basic cable or digital TV at a fraction of the cost. Benefits include:
A quick cable company feature contrast:
Basic cable or digital television is a home entertainment staple many need. Most cable companies' basic package will do, however, each cable company stands out or excels in one area more than the next.
Internet trends ready for prime-time:
New technologies and companies on the scene like Blockbuster/Netflix, Youtube, Hulu, Last.fm and Pandora offer a variety of videos and music for a fraction of the price. A bit about each:
If you are moving and aren't sure where to begin, take a look at some of these tips for successful packing.
Use strong containers that are in good condition and can be secured tightly with twine or strapping tape. these can usually be purchased from your moving company. Purchase special boxes for dishes, wardrobe, and other special items.
Label each box with its contents, which room it should go in, whether it is fragile, and whether it should be loaded last so as to be unloaded first.
Don't load more than 50 pounds into any one box, and make sure that the weight is evenly distributed.
Cushion contents with newspaper or other packing material to prevent breakage. Use newsprint paper or tissue paper for items that might be soiled by newpaper. Towels and cloth napkins are great for wrapping fragile items.
Pack books tightly in small boxes. Alternate bindings and wrap valuable books separately. Have your rugs and draperies cleaned before moving and leave them in their wrappings for easier handling.
Remove all breakables and liquids from drawers and pack them separately. Seal medicines and other containers to prevent leaking and pack them in a leak-proof bag or container.
Pack linens and clothing in drawers, but don't overload them.
Carry all valuables with you. Do not pack jewelry, documents, coin or stamp collections, or anything that will be difficult to replace. The contents of a safety deposit box can be moved for you by your bank.
If you think moving is hard on adults, imagine what it's like for children. They're starting over and trying to meet new friends while getting used to a new home, neighborhood, and school. Think about your children's specific needs before, during, and after the transition and you'll make a big difference in how your children feel about the move and how they adjust afterwards.
Before the Move: Preparing
Give your children a chance to express their feelings, and be honest about your own feelings. Children who have a chance to express themselves work through their doubts more easily.
Help children compile a list of phone numbers and addresses of friends, relatives, and other important people. Knowing they can stay in touch with these people will be reassuring.
Take your children to your new home before you move and explore the new neighborhood and town or city together.
Try to line up some activities in which your child can participate after the move: a sports team, music lessons, or a scouting troupe. Not only will activities like these keep your children involved but they will help the kids feel like part of a group.
During the Move: Remembering What's Important
Stay as upbeat and calm as you can. Your own mood will impact your children's moods.
Involve your children in the packing. Older children can put their own belongings in boxes, and children of all ages will enjoy decorating the boxes containing their things.
Stick to your routines. Have meals at the same times you normally do.
Don't pack things that your children treasure. Take special blankets, favorite books, and other prized items in the car or on the plane with you.
Help your children say goodbye to the imporatn people in their lives. For their friends, a party is a fun way to celebrate the friendship.
For many families, moving day means a long car trip or cross-country flight. Prevent backseat blues and airline angst by adding travel fun and games to your plans.
Allow you child to bring an album with pictures of their old home and friends. This will allow them to express their feelings and provide you with a chance to reassure your child that it is natural to feel loss and initial discomfort with such a big change.
After the Move: Getting Settled
To make your new home seem more like home, hang your child's or family portrait in a prominent location or create a tabletop display of family photographs.
Take pictures of the new home, neighborhood playmates, family members, and school. Start a new family album to show there is fun and family togetherness available at the new home.
Don't spend too much time unpacking--at least not right away! In the first few days, take time to enjoy your new home with your family. Take walks and check out local restaurants.
Above all, listen. Be there when your children get home after the first day at their new schools, even if it means having to leave work early. Ask often how things are going, and take time to listen when they talk.
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