Talking Real Estate
Featured Articles: Choosing a Housemate | Selling Your Home Using All Five Senses | What’s the Difference Between Modern and Contemporary?
Choosing a Housemate
To make your mortgage more affordable, consider temporarily renting out an extra bedroom or garage apartment to a tenant. Having a housemate can be a wonderful experience or a frustrating one, depending on how well you vet candidates, communicate your expectations and protect yourself with a written legal leasing agreement.
Begin your search for a housemate by asking friends, family, coworkers, and church or professional organization members for referrals or visiting online roommate-seeking sites. Set the terms of the lease and screen potential tenants by credit-worthiness, personal references, pets, smoking and other criteria, but you must follow Fair Housing laws to avoid illegal discrimination and to protect the tenant’s rights. As you interview potential tenants, discuss key issues such as schedules, habits, and other living preferences.
According to Lawyers.com, you can minimize disputes with a detailed rental agreement that covers rent, deposits, responsibilities, house rules, and which items can be shared, such as food and living spaces. You should also include a dispute resolution method agreeable to both you and the tenant.
Should you need to evict your tenant for not paying the rent, damaging your home, making too much noise or other violations of their lease, you’ll have to take the tenant to court where an eviction can be approved by a judge. Hopefully, it won’t come to that if you diligently check your tenant’s credit report and references and confirm their employment in advance. In the best case, you’ll make a new friend instead.
Sell Your Home Using All Five Senses
One of the best ways to get your home ready to sell is to remember to use the appeal of all five senses in your marketing. You want your home to look great and you want homebuyers to feel welcomed by attractive aromas, soothing music and other hospitable ideas so they appreciate the home’s environment on every level.
Sight – Focus on the first things homebuyers will see from the curbside to the living space inside. Make sure the yard is trimmed, flowers are planted, paint is refreshed, and the walk is freshly swept. Polish the front door hardware and sweep cobwebs from the entry lights. Provide plenty of light by opening curtains and blinds and turning on light fixtures. Neutral paint and décor help homebuyers visualize themselves in the home and removes the focus from the homeowner’s preferences.
Sound – Put on some relaxing music to invite homebuyers to take their time and see the property thoroughly. Check built-ins, doors and floors for squeaks and creaks and get noisy fixtures repaired or oiled. Remove and kennel raucous pets during showings.
Touch – Homebuyers will open and close doors, open taps, and run their hands across countertops. Make sure doors, drawers and windows open smoothly and that all surfaces are sparkling clean.
Smell and Taste –Treat homebuyers to fresh-baked seasonal cookies and herbal teas in paper cups. Place a stack of flyers touting the home’s features beside the snacks. Carpets, curtains and fabric furniture should be steam-cleaned and all linens freshly laundered.
What’s the Difference Between Modern and Contemporary?
Two words widely used in interior design are modern and contemporary, which sound like interchangeable synonyms, but really have different meanings. What’s confusing is that they have some traits in common along with others that set them apart.
Thespruce.com defines modern design as representing an era that’s passed, while contemporary design is all about the present and the future. Both styles share common characteristics – clean lines, simple uncluttered spaces and artistic flair. But they differ in the following ways:
Modern design began in the early to mid-1900s, when society was excited by inventions such as the skyscraper, jet aircraft, the space program, the cross-country highway system and major scientific advances, such as antibiotics and polio vaccine. The most popular modern concept is mid-century modern, when post-World War II housing was revolutionized by the low-slung ranch-style suburban home. Modernism departed from traditional comfy elements like ruffled curtains and overstuffed chintz chairs and embraced space age simplicity, sleek furniture with exposed legs, geometric lines, and wood accents. Colorful abstract art was juxtaposed against warm earth-bound colors. It’s a great motif for anyone who wants a recognizable design scheme.
Contemporary design began in the 1970s as postmodernism rose in popularity. It is not tied to a specific era but borrows from past movements such as art deco and modernism as well as adopts new ideas, building materials, and technology, resulting in an eclectic living space. It’s an ideal choice for the homeowner who enjoys change and likes to stay ahead of new trends.