Robin V. Wish - Real Living Suburban Lifestyle Real Estate



Posted by Robin V. Wish on 11/11/2019

Going away on your vacation should be a time of relaxation and enjoyment. For some of us, however, we spend some of that time worrying about our homes, our pets, and all of the housework we have to catch up on when we get back.

One way to alleviate some of this anxiety is to employ a house-sitter while you’re away. In this article, we’re going to talk about getting your home ready for the sitter so that they can keep things running smoothly while you’re away.

Finding a house-sitter

There are three groups of people you should consult about finding a house-sitter for your home: friends, family, and neighbors. Many young people still living with their parents will be happy to get away for a week or two and have a house to themselves for a change.

An added benefit of asking an acquaintance or relative is that you can usually be assured that they’ll take good care of your home while you’re away.


In terms of payment, leaving them money for groceries and delivery is a good way to thank them for watching your house and pets while you were away.

Getting your house ready for the sitter

You might be at a loss of where to begin when it comes to leaving a note of things to do while you’re away. A good way to make sure you don’t miss anything is to keep a list in your phone and add to it throughout the day whenever you complete a task that you want the house-sitter to do.

You’ll also want to make sure you provide contact numbers for you and whoever else is away on vacation with you, and store the house-sitter’s number in your phones as well.

Next, make sure your home is emergency-ready. That includes checking the smoke detector and flashlight batteries. If you have a security system, it’s a good idea to let them know that someone will be watching your home while you’re away and provide their name in case your house-sitter accidentally sets off the alarm.

Finally, take care of anything you need to do before leaving, such as paying utility bills, putting fresh linens in the bedroom and bathroom, and parking your unused vehicles in a safe place.

Tip: It might be a good idea to lock or hide any alcohol, tobacco, etc. that’s in the house, especially if your house-sitter is underage.

Now, let’s talk about some things to include on your list to leave for the house-sitter:

  • Recycling information (sort or no-sort)

  • Which day to take out the garbage cans and recycling

  • Information about pets: when/how much to feed, treats, walks, when they need to go outside, which vet to call in case of emergency, etc.

  • Location of keys for shed, house, etc.

  • Garage door opener

  • Reminder to take in the mail

  • Pool filter and cleaning procedure

  • Watering plants





Posted by Robin V. Wish on 11/4/2019

Want to sell your residence? As a home seller, you'll want to take a cautious approach to the real estate market. That way, you can improve your chances of getting the best price for your residence, regardless of the current housing market's conditions.

Ultimately, there are many reasons why home sellers should err on the side of caution as they prepare to add their houses to the real estate market, including:

1. The housing market constantly fluctuates.

For home sellers, it is important to differentiate between a seller's market and a buyer's market. By doing so, a home seller can assess the current housing market and proceed accordingly.

In a seller's market, there is usually a shortage of high-end houses and an abundance of interested homebuyers. This means home sellers who operate in a seller's market may be more likely to stir up plenty of interest in their houses as soon as these properties become available.

Conversely, a buyer's market typically favors homebuyers, as it features a limited number of homebuyers and a wide range of home sellers. If you're selling your home in a seller's market, you'll likely need to price it competitively to help your residence stand out from the competition.

Allocating the necessary time and resources to analyze the housing market is key. With housing market data in hand, a home seller can determine whether he or she is getting ready to list a house in a buyer's or seller's market.

2. What your home was worth yesterday is unlikely to match what it is worth today.

The price that a home seller initially paid for a residence is unlikely to match what the house is worth today. Thus, a home seller should perform a home appraisal to learn about the present value of his or her residence.

During a home appraisal, a property inspector will assess a house both inside and out. Then, the property inspector will identify any problem areas with a house that could negatively affect the residence's value.

A home appraisal is exceedingly valuable to home sellers. It enables them to understand a house's strengths and weaknesses as well as uncover ways to transform a home's weaknesses into strengths. As a result, a home seller can use a home appraisal as a learning opportunity and find innovative ways to enhance a residence before adding it to the real estate market.

3. Homebuyers are always on the lookout for bargains.

Although a home seller will do everything possible to learn about the housing market, there is always the danger that a homebuyer will submit a "lowball" offer on a house. Conversely, a home seller who errs on the side of caution will be able to differentiate between a legitimate offer and a lowball one time and time again.

Lastly, if you need extra help as you get ready to sell your house, don't hesitate to work with a local real estate agent.

Real estate agents are available in cities and towns nationwide. They can help you get your house ready for the real estate market and ensure you can reap the benefits of a quick, seamless home selling experience.

Become a cautious home seller, and you can move one step closer to maximizing the value of your house.




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Posted by Robin V. Wish on 10/28/2019

Many of today's fashionable life coaches tell us that cluttered environments mess with our sense of peace and calm, our focus, and our productivity. Plenty of gurus and television hosts urge us to declutter our desks and homes. And overall, they're right. Research does support the concept that a having a tidy living space and workplace is beneficial. But those messy spaces in your home or office might just inspire you in ways the clutter-free set has yet to notice.

Clutter Might Not Amuse, But Is It a Muse?

Some researchers tell us that clutter supports creativity.

They acknowledge the benefits of a tidy interior space: mainly, the pleasure of easily finding, storing, and keeping track of things. Cleaning out your space can also ensure that it is used more efficiently. And of course, minimalism is important when you go to sell your home.

But when a home is actually lived in, an uncluttered environment, for some folks, may be missing something.

Clutter is conducive to creativity. It stimulates a thought process that veers away from conventional reasoning. 

Clutter Has Its Place

You may find that filing away loose papers and neatly storing randomly scattered objects seems to hit an internal "refresh" button. You may suddenly feel more in control, calm...ready to take on all the tasks! Especially when you need to complete organizational work, your stress level should drop after a good tidying up. And if you're a chef, or working on projects requiring absolute precision, tidiness is paramount. But when you're doing work that requires creative thinking, the clutter cost-benefit analysis shifts.

In a tidy atmosphere, writer's block can get the best of you. Tasks that depend on originality and flair may stall.

When that happens, try going to a room with a lot of interesting, scattered things, with all sorts of hues and shapes and fragrances. See what happens. 

Synopsis: A Call for Moderated Clutter 

Decluttering might enhance productivity, but it can discourage creativity. Often, real creativity is unleashed during a person's least productive days.

Perhaps it's best to keep a balance. Clean when the situation calls for it. Tidy up when you need a break from sitting.

After all, the quest for perfect order can be a source of stress itself. Tidying in a more organic way can be relaxing, and it can help you rediscover unfinished projects merge well with whatever you're creating today. Let yourself appreciate the serendipity that some disorder creates. Meanwhile, take this as a stress reducer if you've been concerned about your clutter. Rather than trying to keep up with the decluttered Joneses, enjoy your environment—your way!




Tags: clutter   Creativity  
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Posted by Robin V. Wish on 10/21/2019

If you want to buy a terrific house at a budget-friendly price, it generally is a good idea to plan ahead as much as you can. In fact, with a homebuying strategy in place, you can boost the likelihood of a fast, seamless homebuying experience.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you craft a successful homebuying strategy.

1. Think About Your Homebuying Goals

Do you want to live in a warm-weather region? Or, would you prefer to buy a house in a city or town where you can experience all four seasons? Regardless of where you want to live, you need to think about your homebuying goals and incorporate them into your homebuying plan.

Make a list of what you want to find in your dream house – you'll be glad you did. With this list, you can narrow your home search.

Also, it often helps to review your future plans as you put together a homebuying strategy. For example, if you intend to return to school, you may want to consider houses located near top colleges and universities. On the other hand, if you plan to settle down and start a family, you may want to pursue houses near parks and other family-friendly attractions.

2. Consider Your Financing Options

Buying a house likely will be impossible without home financing. Fortunately, there is no shortage of home financing options available.

Oftentimes, it is beneficial to meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can teach you about myriad mortgage options and help you get pre-approved for a mortgage.

Once you have your home financing settled, you can incorporate a budget into your homebuying strategy. Then, you can check out available houses and avoid the risk of overspending to acquire your ideal residence.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

Developing a homebuying strategy sometimes can be tough, particularly for those who are crafting a homebuying plan for the first time. Lucky for you, real estate agents are available nationwide who can help you complete a successful homebuying journey.

A real estate agent is happy to meet with you and discuss your homebuying goals. He or she also can review your homebuying strategy and offer expert homebuying recommendations.

Let's not forget about the support that a real estate agent can deliver during the homebuying journey, either. A real estate agent will set up home showings, keep you up to date about new houses as they become available and negotiate with a seller's agent on your behalf. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will help you minimize stress throughout the homebuying journey and ensure you can purchase your dream home in no time at all.

If you want to get the most out of the homebuying journey, creating a homebuying strategy is a must. Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you can craft a successful homebuying strategy.




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Posted by Robin V. Wish on 10/14/2019

Pressure washing your home can be an excellent way to increase curb appeal on a budget. A good pressure washer can be used to clean vinyl siding, windows, driveways, decks and sidewalks.

You can buy, rent, or hire a pressure washer. And, there are a number of different types of machines available. So, in this post, I’m going to give you some tips on pressure washing your home to increase curb appeal and discuss which option might be the best for you.

Buying a pressure washer

If your next move is to a new home with vinyl siding and you plan on living there for several years. You may find that buying a pressure washer is the best option for you.

Many pressure washers pay for themselves after 3-5 uses. However, high end washers can be much more expensive.

The first thing to consider when buying a pressure washer is to determine what you’ll need it for and how often you’ll use it.

If you have a deck, sidewalk, or driveway that sit underneath pine trees, you can bet that they’re going to get dirty frequently.

If you find yourself wanting a washer more than once a year, it’s likely a safe investment.

Gas vs electric

Consumer pressure washers come in two main types: gas and electric. Gas-powered washers tend to be stronger (and therefore more dangerous). They’re also noisy and will require maintenance and tune-ups on occasion.

Electric, on the other hand, are better for less heavy duty cleaning. They tend to be cheaper, at around $100 - $250 each (vs $250 - $500 for a gas-powered washer), but you do sacrifice some power at the expense of cost and convenience.

Regardless of which option you choose, it’s important to understand that pressure washers can be dangerous machines if not used correctly. Be sure to fully follow the instructions on your washer and to never point it at yourself, including shoes, or clothing.

Renting a pressure washer

If you don’t want to deal with storage or maintenance, renting is a great option for a one-time job. Perhaps your next home will be a condo or townhouse where you don’t have to worry about exterior maintenance. In these situations, a one-time rental can be a good option.

Power washers can be rented from many hardware stores, including The Home Depot. But, a quick Google search for your area should bring up multiple places to rent nearby.

Hiring a professional pressure washer

Pressure washing your home, driveway, or deck is a lot easier than scrubbing them with a brush. But, it still takes a good deal of time to go out and pick up the rental, return home, figure out how to set up the washer and then clean your entire home.

To avoid the headache (and the potential safety risks), many homeowners hire a local pressure washing company to do the job.

Hiring a company has its advantages; namely, when you hire a professional (one with good reviews on Yelp and Google), you’re going to get the best results.




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