Talking Real Estate

Is It Time to Build Your Luxury Home? |  How to Care for Jetted Tubs | Buying a Home with Bitcoin?

Is It Time to Build Your Luxury Home?

The April 2021 market report from the National Association of REALTORS had a seeming contradiction. It was the third month in a row that existing home sales declined, yet home prices hit an all-time high of $329,100.

Typically, when home sales fall, prices dip as well, signaling a developing softness in the market. But thanks to a perfect storm of circumstances, buyer demand is stronger than ever, despite rising mortgage rates and less affordability. Housing supply is down over 28% with the unsold inventory at a two-month supply, down from a 3.3-month supply from the previous year. Properties lasted 18 days on the market, from 29 days the year before, and 83% of homes sold in less than a month.

According to the National Association of Home Builders, the new home building also fell in April. Many ports closed, hampering the transportation of materials. Lumber, steel, resin (PVC) and other shortages have driven construction costs up by 12 percent year-over-year, causing many builders to pause building projects.

Yet, it’s a good time to build your luxury dream home. You may pay more to build this year, but the conditions that are hampering the market will result in higher value for your property. quotes real estate experts who say that home prices will continue to rise. Also, if you build now, you can include features that will appeal strongly to the post-pandemic buyer of the future, such as expanded outdoor areas, office spaces and smart home/touchless technology and air filtrations systems, suggests

How to Care for Jetted Tubs

If your new home came with a jetted tub in the master bath or you plan to replace the tub with one with jets, here are a few tips to making every bath you take luxurious. Jetted tubs require special care, so before you take that first relaxing dip, read the manufacturer's guidelines on cleaning frequency and whether or not you can use bath salts and oils that are guaranteed for use in jetted tubs.  

Because the bathwater is recirculated, the water pump can become damaged by bath salts, oils, and bubble baths, and even some kinds of soaps. Skin deposits, grease, oils, mold, bacteria, and algae must be cleaned out of the piping so that build-up doesn’t clog the pipes. Clean the tub with a non-abrasive cleanser designed for hydrotherapy baths and rinse thoroughly. Fill the tub with warm water, add a cup of bleach, and run the jets for 10 minutes. Drain the water and rinse the inside, then fill the tub again.  Run the jets for another few minutes to clear away any remaining bleach, then drain the tub.

To clean the jets, use a bio-cleaner for jetted tubs, or if you prefer to go “green,” use 2 cups of white distilled vinegar with 1 cup of salt, running the jets for about 15 minutes.  Drain the tub, then rinse the surface and jets.

Always wear gloves and use bath and cleaning products that are safe for jetted tubs and you.

Buying a Home with Bitcoin?

In April 2021, Bitcoin hit an all-time high in the price of its coins, virtual trader Coinbase went public with a valuation of $86 billion, and Venmo, owned by PayPal, announced it’s adding support for cryptocurrencies. All of these give access to customers who can now easily buy, sell and pay for items with cryptocurrencies for lower fees, more privacy and more security than they currently get through traditional banking. explains that cryptocurrencies are simply decentralized monies to be used over the Internet. No governments, banks, companies or other entities are in charge of it, allowing anyone who wants to participate to be able to. Transactions are safer as they don’t include personal information to merchants, lenders, payment processors, advertisers, or credit reporting agencies.  

While the coins are volatile, you can even turn your virtual coins into dollars, as one homebuyer did in Texas in 2017 using Bitpay at the seller’s request. According to, all you need is for the buyer and seller “to agree on exchanging bitcoin for the property.” Or another cryptocurrency if you prefer. All transactions are public and transparent through an open book technology called the blockchain.

If you don’t have enough bitcoin cash to buy a home, no worries. You can start saving for your down payment by using USD Coin, which is tracks 1:1 with the U.S. dollar. Customers who hold USDS coins can earn rewards, an alternative to a traditional savings account, says Coinbase, so start saving for your down payment now.