Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley - CENTURY 21 Cobb Real Estate



Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 6/9/2019

The process of buying a house may prove to be long and complicated. Fortunately, there are several steps that you can take before you pursue a home to streamline the homebuying cycle, and these include:

1. Create a Homebuying Checklist

It helps to start the homebuying process with a homebuying checklist in hand. This checklist will enable you to differentiate between home must-haves and wants, resulting in a fast, efficient homebuying journey.

Think about what you require from a home. For example, if you need a house that is located close to your office in the city, you should include this information in your checklist.

Also, if you want a house that features a built-in swimming pool, you can include this information in your homebuying checklist. But keep in mind that a swimming pool likely is a non-essential item. And if you find a home that is virtually perfect but lacks a swimming pool, it may still be a good idea to pursue this house.

2. Establish a Budget

How much can you afford to spend on a house? This question frequently plagues buyers as they proceed along the homebuying journey. Luckily, you can determine how much money is at your disposal if you develop a budget.

To budget effectively, it helps to meet with local lenders. Banks and credit unions generally offer a wide range of mortgage options and can help you make an informed mortgage decision.

In addition, it often helps to get pre-approved for a mortgage prior to entering the real estate market. Because if you have a mortgage, you can pursue houses that fall within a specific price range and reduce the risk of overspending to acquire your dream house.

3. Hire a Real Estate Agent

If you want to enjoy a quick, seamless homebuying experience, it is beneficial to have a homebuying expert at your side. Thankfully, real estate agents are available nationwide, and these housing market professionals will do what it takes to help you discover a great house at an affordable price.

A real estate agent understands housing market patterns and trends and can help you plan ahead for a buyer's or seller's market. He or she will teach you about the real estate market and respond to your homebuying queries as well.

Furthermore, a real estate agent acts as a guide throughout the homebuying journey. This housing market professional will set up home showings, negotiate with a seller's agent on your behalf and help you finalize a home purchase. By doing so, a real estate agent will take the guesswork out of buying a house, regardless of the current housing market's conditions.

When it comes to purchasing a house, it helps to prepare. If you employ a real estate agent today, you can get the support you need to plan ahead for the best- and worst-case homebuying scenarios. That way, you'll be able to identify and address potential homebuying hurdles before they escalate.

Ready to buy a house? Follow the aforementioned steps, and you can move closer to pursuing your dream residence.




Categories: Buying a Home   buying tips  


Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 6/2/2019

The American population over age 65 is set to double by the year 2060. That’s almost 100 million seniors needing housing in facilities that currently are in short supply. And really, do you want to live in a senior housing facility when you’re older? Most don’t. In fact, 80 percent of seniors would prefer to stay in their current home if they could. 

The challenge, however, is that most home designs simply never factored in the needs of growing older. Today, however, is a new day. With technology at our fingertips, homes built now can feature assistance for you to stay in place in your home over the long run. This technology, a part of the ambient assisted living emerging industry, brings improved safety, medical care, and mobility right into your home.

Check out these smart home options and think about how to include them in your build or remodel.

  • Security: Systems designed to warn you of fire and gas leaks are old news. But, newer systems that also can tell you who is at your front door, or that let you lock the front door from anywhere inside or outside the home via an app on your phone take it a step closer to giving autonomy to less mobile seniors. It also can let family know if you've fallen, or if there is an emergency, so it provides the family with the security of that their loved one is secure. Check out the options from Abode Iota, Nest Secure, or Ring Video Doorbells and Alarms.
  • Peace of mind: The newest version of Apple Watch, Series 4, has fall detection software that can detect when a hard fall occurs if you’re wearing the watch. In that event, it’s internal vibration system “taps” your wrist, displays an alert message, and sounds an alarm. At that moment, you can dismiss the alarm or call emergency. If it detects movement, the watch waits for you to respond, but if you've been immobile for over a minute, your watch will automatically call emergency, and also send a message to your designated emergency number letting them know your location and that it dialed emergency services for you.
  • Hazards: Getting around in the kitchen creates complications for anyone with limited mobility. Sense, a home energy monitor, can attach to the home’s electric panel. It can detect if an appliance runs too long and notify the homeowner. It also notifies a caregiver of changes to typical usage patterns, so if mom always makes coffee at 8:00 AM, and today that didn’t happen, Sense lets the caregiver know that something could be amiss. Protect yourself from bathroom hazards with Walabot Home’s two-way fall-detection system.
  • Autonomy: June, a countertop oven, automatically detects and recognizes the food placed in it, cooks it and then turns itself off. Connect your June to Alexa, and it tells you when your food has cooked. The AmazonBasics microwave works with Alexa or Echo Dot voice commands to set temperatures, cook, and inform you when your meal is ready. This feature particularly assists vision impaired cooks. In the living room, let Siri, Google Home Hub, or another device turn on your television, music, movies and more.
  • Health: New on the scene are telehealth (remote healthcare) options that reduce the need for doctor visits. Since transportation typically is a challenge for seniors, advancements in this area with wireless devices and monitoring look to a future of improved livability.

Early adoption of these systems prepares you for a time when you need to rely on them. In some new developments, builders install smart home technology from the ground up. If you'd like to see smart homes in your area, talk to a local real estate professional to view available homes.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 5/26/2019

Going zero waste doesn’t have to seem like a daunting task. There are several ways you can bring down your waste production at home. Try out these few tips and see how much progress you make.

  • Stop Using Plastic Straws. Many homes churn out a lot of plastic straws that quickly end up in the ocean and destroy marine life. Try investing in a metal straw as a stylish alternative. Paper straws will work just as well in your next party. However, feel free to skip this tip if anyone in your home has a disability that requires a straw.
  • Abandon Plastic Bags. Statistics show that we use the average plastic container for only 12 minutes, but it takes up to 5 centuries to break down in a landfill. Now you have a good enough reason to ditch your plastic bags and bring your reusable bags to the store. Get yourself a tote bag from your favorite brand or bookstore, or attempt making one at home.
  • Try Out Composting. Composting has many benefits for your garden asides been a great way to cut down on food waste. Composting enhances better soil, healthier plants and, more importantly, a healthier planet is one surefire way to cut down waste.
  • Build a Plastic-Free Pantry. Reducing waste can look super pretty in your kitchen. Stocking up on glass jars and containers to organize your pantry is something you should try. You will probably never lose anything in your fridge again, and you can bring the jars and containers straight to the grocery store to stock up on bulk goods.
  • Get rid of Plastic Take-Out Containers. Consider exchanging take-out for fast dinner ideas that you can stir up under 30 minutes or less. Go for eating at the restaurant if you're not in the mood for cooking, to skip the plastic utensils and containers.
  • Recycle. While cutting down on items that you can only use once is a better way to reduce waste, recycling is equally as good. It doesn't matter what its composition; there's probably a way to recycle it properly. Learning how to reclaim the items you have in your home will have you barely making use of your trash bin. Wherever possible, always look for recyclable options for whatever you want to get.

Living waste free is possible, all it takes is a little hard work and some commitment.




Categories: Recycling   waste   green living  


Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 5/19/2019

After you accept an offer on a home, you likely will only have a few weeks to pack up your belongings and vacate the premises. As such, there are many questions that home sellers need to consider at this point, including:

1. Where am I going to live?

If you haven't figured out where you're going to live after your home closing, there is no need to panic. Consider all of your potential living options now, and you can plan accordingly.

Oftentimes, friends and family members may be willing to provide you with a temporary place to live. These loved ones may enable you to stay in their houses until you buy a new residence. Or, in some instances, you may be able to permanently move in with friends and family members.

On the other hand, if you enjoy being a homeowner, you may want to kick off a home search right away. This will enable you to find a new place to live in the city or town of your choice. Also, if you work quickly, you may be able to finalize your home purchase around the same time that you sell your current house.

2. What is the homebuyer's next step?

In most cases, a homebuyer will have a set amount of time to schedule a home inspection after you accept his or her offer. Once the home inspection is complete, the buyer will receive a report that provides insights into the condition of your house.

For home sellers, a home inspection can be stressful. If a property inspector discovers problems with a residence, a buyer may choose to walk away from a home purchase or ask a seller to complete various home renovations.

When it comes to selling a house, it pays to be honest. If you provide honest responses to a homebuyer's questions about your residence, you can help the buyer make an informed purchase decision. Plus, with this approach, you can minimize the risk that a home inspection may lead a buyer to rescind his or her offer.

3. What will I need to do to finalize the home sale?

The time between accepting a home offer and reaching the closing date may seem endless. However, a patient home seller will be able to stay calm, cool and collected, even if challenges arise along the way.

As a home seller, you should try to do everything you can to reach the finish line of a property sale. If you maintain consistent communication with a real estate agent, you can seamlessly navigate all stages of the home selling cycle.

A real estate agent works on a home seller's behalf and will do everything possible to minimize potential pitfalls. Thus, this housing market professional is happy to respond to a home seller's questions to ensure this individual is fully supported in the weeks and days leading up to a home closing.

Collaborate with a real estate agent, and you can receive plenty of support throughout the home selling journey.





Posted by Kriss Stevens & Scott Manley on 5/12/2019

To give your kitchen an updated and decorative look, try adding a bar stool. It can help save space as well as make your kitchen look more trendy than usual. To help you choose which bar stool to pick, review the following tips. 

Measure the area

The most fundamental step in choosing for a bar stool is measuring the area in the kitchen in which you would place the new stools. Bar stools come in different widths and heights, and the right measurements are needed to check whether if it is too high or too low for those who would sit in it. Also, measure with respect to the height of the table or counter and maintain an appropriate distance of about at least 10 inches away from the base of the table or bar to allow guests to assume a comfortable sitting position. 

Decide on the quantity

Choose how many stools you want to add to your kitchen. If you cater to a lot of guests in your house, you can have as many as a dozen stools. Consider the spacing and positioning of each stool, allow at least 30 inches distance from each seat. The proper placement provides room for the guests to move freely while sitting. This measurement though is dependent on the size of the stools; bulk stools take much more space so that an additional distance might be needed. Have the gap in each seat uniform as much as possible. 

Choose the design

Select the style of the stool you desire. You can ask help from decorating experts on the trendy designs that you wish to have for your kitchen. There are many styles and designs for stools available, so you would not have much of a problem choosing the ones that you would prefer. You can have seats with varied colors, or you can have them in patterns with the color theme of your kitchen. Some tips that can help you select are choosing whether to have a stool with arms, stools that can swivel, what material it is, and which theme you would like to apply.

Check for the quality

The more durable the material of the stools, the less maintenance you would need. Always go for quality over price. Check if the bar stools are safe and well-secured for the guests. Also, consider if it is easy to clean and does not get stained easily. 

Visit a furniture store today to look at some kitchen stool options and even try them to see what you like.




Tags: how to   kitchen   Decor  
Categories: Decorating   kitchen   how to