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Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Keep Cool This Summer & Save on Energy Costs

Don’t sweat out the summer—there are nine simple things you can do to stay cool and save money on energy costs.

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Some of the same routines we use in the winter to keep warm can actually keep you cool during the summer and save you money on your energy bills. There are nine simple things you can do:

1. Plug any holes around your windows using some kind of foam substance. If it’s in your budget, consider replacing your windows with double-paned vinyl windows, which makes a huge difference.

2. Lower your shades. Drawing the shades cuts the solar heat in your home and helps keep cold air in your house.

3. Keep your filters clean if you have an A/C unit.

4. Use a programmable thermostat. Adjust the thermostat so that if you’re not in the house, your air conditioning will stop for awhile. You can schedule the thermostat to turn the AC back on about a half an hour before you return.

Skip the oven and cook dinner outside on the grill.

5. Unplug your computer and other electronics. There are things we leave plugged in all the time that can have a huge drain on your power. If you can, consider unplugging your computer and turning it off when you’re not using it, which can also protect you from hackers.

6. Use your oven less often. Don’t heat up your house on a hot summer night—use your grill and cook outdoors instead.

7. Turn down the temperature on your water heater. You can do this in the winter to save money as well. The water heater is usually set at 130°, but you can set it at 115° and save at least $50 a year.

8. Get your air conditioner serviced. You should get your furnace and your air conditioner serviced once a year.

9. Change your lightbulbs to energy efficient bulbs. If you can, switch over to LED bulbs, which will make a huge difference in your power savings for the year.

These are great, simple ways to help you save money and stay cool this summer. If you have any other questions or need to be put in touch with someone to help you with any of these tasks, just give me a call or send me an email. I would be happy to help you!

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Is It Worth It to Stage Your Eugene Home This Summer?

If you're thinking of selling your home this summer, I highly encourage you to try some form of staging. It can create an invaluable connection between buyers and your home.

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Summer is officially here and I know many of you are thinking about taking advantage of this hot Eugene market by selling your home.

Should you stage your home to sell it? Is it really worth it?

You may have heard from the pros that using a stager is advantageous to your sale, and they're absolutely right. It's even documented that staging your home can help you sell for about 5% higher.

Staging allows your home to make an emotional connection with buyers.

I believe that staging is really important because it allows you to truly make your home look like one that a buyer would want to move into. So what's the best way to do it? You have a couple good options.

First, you can hire a professional stager, who will undoubtedly do a great job making your home look its best. You can also hop online and find tons of great information on staging and do it yourself. There are many low-cost ways to improve your home's looks. 

Remember, staging adds an emotional effect to your home. When buyers come through, emotion is the first thing they'll base their decisions on. Logical decisions almost always come after. 

We want to grab buyers' attention as quickly as we can with our emotional senses when selling. That's why I think staging is such a high priority. If you'd like, I'd be happy to send you our booklet with staging tips and tricks. 

If you'd like a copy or you have any questions about the Eugene market, don't hesitate to give me a call or send me an email. I'd be honored to serve you.

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

The Top 5 Upgrades That Don't Add Value to Your Home

When updating your home, avoid these five renovations that won't bring you much value.

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Whether you want to get your home ready for the market or just to enjoy it a little bit more, there are five upgrades that won't add any value.

Spend your renovation money in the kitchen and bathrooms for the best return.

  1. Extensive landscaping: It simply won't give you a good return on your dollar.
  2. A new roof: The bottom line is that people who buy a new home typically expect a roof that works already. 
  3. Swimming pools and hot tubs: Chances are good that new buyers won't want a hot tub, and in some cases, it can even bring down the value of your home. 
  4. New paint: This will help the house look better, but like the roof, buyers expect houses to be painted already. Adding a fresh coat won't really add value unless you do the labor aspect yourself. 
  5. Solar panels: This is a big one up here in the Northwest. Even though they might cut down on your electricity costs and a small number of buyers really love solar panels, most buyers don't really think much of it or attribute any value to it.

If you have any questions about upgrades that will add value to your specific home, just give me a call or send me an email. I'd be happy to advise on some updates or renovations that will bring you a good return on your money.