Tag: first time homeowner

Is Your Home Your Sanctuary?

Your home is where you should feel most comfortable and secure. It’s a place where you can relax and unwind, away from the hustle and bustle of the outside world. However, achieving this sanctuary-like feeling is not always easy.

Continue reading

Prepping Your Lawn for Winter

Winter is approaching and your lawn is ready for the changing of the seasons. Your water bill is going down for a few months, but your grass will thank you for taking extra good care of it before the cold blows in.

When it comes to winterizing your lawn, there are several projects you can tackle while the sun is still gracing us with its presence (and before the wind gets uncomfortable).

Continue reading

Are You Ready to Be a Homeowner?

If you’ve been following the ups and downs of the house market in the last five years, you may be hesitant or uncertain about whether now is the time to purchase your first home. If you are wondering whether or not you are ready to be a homeowner right now, you are not alone. This is a large investment and not a decision to be taken lightly. However, homeownership is definitely worth the hassle and risk if you do happen to be ready. 

Continue reading

Are You Making Any of These Closet Mistakes?

If you’re like us, you’ve probably been binge-watching shows and reading books on organization from luminaries such as Marie Kondo. While these organizational gurus make it look easy to bring order to a chaotic environment, it’s actually a little harder than it appears.

Probably one of the worst organizational areas for many people is the bedroom closet. After all, you can toss things in there willy-nilly and not have to look at it again. But there are habits you may be doing that are making your closet a disorganized mess.

Here are a few tips to keep your closet organized:

  1. You’ve got too much stuff — The biggest mistake for most people is keeping too many items in your closet. If you’ve been watching Netflix’s Get Organized with The Home Edit, you know the first step to any organizing process is to edit. It’s another way of saying, start your process by decluttering. Take all of your clothes and accessories off the racks and shelves and put them in your bedroom. Then sort it into three piles: keep, donate/sell, trash. Once you go through, you’re going to find some real fashion emergencies that you should have never bought in the first place, much less held onto. Get rid of them and see how much room you have left.


  1. Place like items together — The best organizational system is to place all of your like items together. Put pants together with pants, dress shirts together with dress shirts, summer blouses together with summer blouses…you get the picture. This creates a neat organizational system and makes it easier to find things.


  1. Use the rows appropriately — If your closet has two rows of hanging rods, then chances are you aren’t using them right. Most people put the shirts on the top and the pants on the bottom. (After all, that’s how it goes on our bodies.) Instead, place the shirts on the bottom and the pants on the top. Generally speaking, pants folded on a hanger take up less space than shirts. If you keep the shirts on top, you will be covering up part of your bottom row and making it harder to see and access.


  1. Don’t bury things — Make sure that you set aside a specific area for your shoes so they don’t get buried. If you cover these up with luggage and other items, you will (at best) not be able to find them and (at worst) damage them irreparably.


  1. Don’t have boxes inside of boxes — One of the biggest mistakes is that you buy boxes to organize your closet and then put more boxes inside of them. Instead, we recommend using clear plastic containers that are labeled with “shoes” or “purses.” This way, you can actually see what you are looking at before you start digging through the boxes.


If you follow these steps, your morning sojourn into the closet to find your clothes will go a lot smoother. And you will have the peace of mind that comes from having an organized closet instead of an untidy disaster area.



Whether you’re buying, selling, refinancing, or building your dream home, I’m here to help you explore the many financing options available. Ensuring that you make the right choice for you and your family is my ultimate goal. I am committed to providing my customers with mortgage services that exceed their expectations. Find out more by visiting my website.

A Spring Cleaning Checklist that Doesn’t Overwhelm

It’s confession time: Every year when it comes to spring cleaning, I go into a bit of brain lock. I see all the items that are stretched out in front of me that need to be done, and I just want to curl up inside the house with a cup of coffee and a Netflix marathon.

Sometimes, that cleaning checklist is just too overwhelming, and I don’t even know where to start. Here’s a solution to that.

This spring cleaning checklist breaks down the essentials so that you don’t run cowering into your house from fear of having too much to do:

  1. Organize Your Supplies — Each room has a different set of supplies based on your needs. (For instance, the bathroom has different needs than your bedroom.) I suggest creating a cleaning tote for each room. Keep all your tub and toilet cleaners in a small box for use in the bathroom and carpet freshener and a duster for the den and bedroom. By getting your supplies organized upfront, you will know what you need to buy before you start. (And trust me, there’s nothing worse than getting into a cleaning groove and finding out you are missing something essential.)


  1. Go Room by Room — Too often, we try to do everything all at once. The reality, then, is that we spread ourselves too thin and don’t get most of what we want completed. Instead of doing this, create a separate checklist of things to do for each room. Start with just one room and do everything on the checklist. Don’t move on until it’s all done, even if this takes more than one day. It took you all year to get the house where it is since the last spring cleaning. Don’t try to fix it all in one day.


  1. Create Piles — As you are going through your rooms, take everything out of drawers, off shelves, etc. and use this opportunity to clean and dust these areas. As you empty things out, move them into three separate piles. The first will be your “keep” pile. As soon as you are finished sorting and dusting, put these back where you got them—they are the clothes and other items you are keeping. The next pile should be for donations. These are the products in a good state of repair that you can donate to charity (or possibly sell at a yard sale). The last will be your trash pile for anything broken, chipped, torn, or just so outdated or worn that no one would want it. Throw these out immediately. Now is the time to be ruthless. If you haven’t used it in a year, then chances are you don’t need to keep it.


  1. Set Up Regular Checklists — Don’t wait until spring rolls around to get your big cleaning done. If you create checklists for each month (or at least each quarter), then you can spread out the work over all twelve months and not just a couple of weekends when you don’t feel like cleaning.


By following these easy steps, you can break down your big cleaning jobs into smaller chunks which are always helpful. So, pop in your earbuds, fire up some music or a good audiobook, and get to cleaning.


Whether you’re buying, selling, refinancing, or building your dream home, I’m here to help you explore the many financing options available. Ensuring that you make the right choice for you and your family is my ultimate goal. I am committed to providing my customers with mortgage services that exceed their expectations. Find out more by visiting my website.

Spring Cleaning: Best Tricks for Deep Cleaning Your Home

Spring is in the air and, even though many of us are ready to dig out of the snows of this winter, that still leaves one dreaded task looming on the horizon—Spring Cleaning!

This is the time when you go beyond that little cursory cleaning you do each week and really get down into the nooks and crannies of your home. But it doesn’t have to be that scary.

Here are handy tips and tricks we’ve compiled that can help you do a really deep cleaning on your home this spring:

  1. Be Meticulous and Merciless — The first thing we suggest is that you be very meticulous and go room-by-room through the house. In each room, create three separate stacks—one to keep, one to donate or sell at a yard sale, and one to toss. Be merciless. If you haven’t seen an item or used it in a year, do you really need to keep it? Toss whatever you don’t need. A decluttered house is much easier to clean.


  1. Bathrooms — This is a good place to start with the actual deep cleaning. Spray the surfaces of your tub, toilet, shower, and sink with multi-purpose cleaners that may need to sit awhile to break up the accumulated soap scum. (You can also use diluted white vinegar for an all-natural clean.) Make sure that you scrub these surfaces thoroughly. If you have a glass shower door, you can use a damp dryer sheet to clean it off. If you have a shower curtain, toss it and start fresh with a new curtain and a new look for your room.


  1. Kitchen — Now let’s get this one under control. With a spring cleaning, you want to get all of the yearly things taken care of. One of these is cleaning the oven. If you don’t have a self-cleaning oven, put together a mixture of baking soda and vinegar with a couple of drops of dish soap. Let this sit on the tough spots and then scrub it clean. If you have a gas stovetop, you can also coat the stovetop itself with car wax. This way, your regular clean-ups of spills will be much easier. The microwave should also be cleaned, but this one is really easy. Get a cup of water and add a tablespoon of white vinegar. Place this in the microwave and turn it on for five minutes. The steam from this will clean out your microwave so you can just wipe it out.


  1. Dusting — Dusting may not be a room unto itself, but it is certainly one of the chores that feels like it. It usually winds up on the top three list of most hated household chores. To help this spring, use these ideas. First, on surfaces that aren’t easily seen, such as the tops of cabinets or tall bookshelves, place a square piece of newspaper down after you dust. This will cover the surface and catch any other accumulations so you just have to change out the sheet of paper every few months and save yourself the dusting for those spots. We also recommend investing in a telescoping arm duster so you don’t have to strain your back.

Finally, when it comes to dusting the ceiling fans, we suggest using a pillowcase. Take the case and put it around the blades of the fan and then simply wipe across. The dust will be trapped inside of the case and you don’t have to worry about raining dust down on your room. And, you can just toss the pillowcase in the washer to clean it off.

Spring cleaning doesn’t have to be the pain that everyone thinks it is. If you follow a few basic tips, you can save yourself some sweat and tears and make this year’s cleaning go smoother.



Whether you’re buying, selling, refinancing, or building your dream home, I’m here to help you explore the many financing options available. Ensuring that you make the right choice for you and your family is my ultimate goal. I am committed to providing my customers with mortgage services that exceed their expectations. Find out more by visiting my website.