The Most Sensible Luxury Upgrades You’ll Want To Make

Most new home shoppers have a list of must-have features in their new abode. Having such a list is a great way to zero in on which houses will make the cut and which are off your list. You will also be able to have a more clear idea of how much of your budget to allocate for upgrades after the final sale for any missing features. Afterall with such a large investment shouldn’t your new house be your dream home?

Here four sensible upscale upgrades you’ll want to add to your list ASAP.   

Radiant heat flooring throughout the home will keep your feet warm and room temperatures steady. Your energy bill will be cut significantly while also avoiding the on/off repetition of other heating systems that leave you hot and cold. The only flooring radiant heat doesn’t work well with is carpeting. So if your home has any consider this your ticket to finally replacing them with some gorgeous hardwoods.   

Whole-house electrostatic precipitator is installed into the ductwork of your home’s forced air heating system. The electrostatic allows these electrically charged filters to catch particles like pollen, smoke, and dander as if they were a magnet. And while installing this system is an investment upfront, unlike other filtration systems you don’t need to buy replacement screens each month. Instead, you simply wash the plate every few months and pop it back in to continue doing its job.   

Plan extra outlets for better cord management. Floor outlets under a desk, entertainment center or dining room table allow for easy cord management and avoid tripping hazards from cords stretched, mid-air across a room. Place an outlet mid wall where you plan to hang your television for another clever cord management solution. While installing you should also consider picking up an in-wall cord system kit to easily DIY a hidden path for tv to console cords.

Energy efficient features come with multiple benefits and never an upgrade a homeowner would stick their nose up at. I’m sure the first that comes to mind is windows. They keep heat/AC in and outdoor temps where they belong – out. A smart thermostat can help you learn how much energy you’ve used before your electric bill comes in and which temperature settings are the most efficient. Not to mention you can easily adjust the temperature from its app so you no longer need to get up just to change the thermostat.

Upscale upgrades aren’t all indoor basketball courts and massive home theaters. There are many that are sensible and add to your quality of life for the better. Keep a running list of which homes on your wishlist have these features and how much budget to set aside if they don’t.

Guide To Know If You Are Ready To Buy A House

Buying a new home is a big decision and one that many wonder if they are truly ready for.

Use this guide to determine if you are ready to start house hunting:

  1. Thirty percent of your income can cover a mortgage payment for your ideal home

The ability to afford month to month payments is incredibly important. Staying within the recommended percentages when it comes to budgeting helps you failsafe your finances from potential future hardship. At the very least you want your mortgage payment to be as close as possible to the thirty percent marker of your income.

  1. You’re in a secure job.

In addition to having an income that can sufficiently support the month to month payments you also want to ensure that that income is a reliable source. Signs of a reliable income are that you have been with your current company for longer than two years with several months at the same pay rate.

  1. You have a great credit score

This one shouldn’t come as any surprise to you. A great credit score will not just increase your eligibility for financing but also for a great interest rate. If your score falls in the “good” region you can take steps to bring up your score fairly quickly, as far as scores go,  before applying.

  1. You have a down payment saved up

A down payment is a big savings goal to tackle. So if you’ve already done the math and saved up a sizeable sum for the downpayment on your dream house you are most certainly ready! Ideally, this amount should be around twenty percent of the sale price.

  1. You’ve prepared a prospective budget

If you already have a down payment saved you at the very least have part of this step taken care of! Knowing your future homeowners budget doesn’t just include your typical expenses plus a mortgage payment. You also want to factor in homeowners insurance, potential HOA (Homeowner Association) fees, and maintenance costs.

  1. You’re ready to build equity – or it’s your next financial goal

For those scratching their heads, equity is the amount of your home that you actually own. This is the ratio between your homes value, the amount you have paid and the amount you owe. As you continue to make payments on your home your equity grows. Equity can also increase if the value of your property increases.

  1. You’re ready for stability

If you’re ready to settle down in one place for at least the next five years you’re looking for stability. Perhaps you’re ready to put down some roots and start a family or become a part of a local community. Owning your own home provides you a steady living expense, builds equity and gives you (almost) complete control of your lifestyle.

Advantages of a Dedicated Home Office Space

Although it may seem like the Internet and email have always been an integral part of our daily lives, those modes of modern communication have only been around for the past two decades or so.

With technology like video teleconferencing, online document sharing, and other collaborative tools becoming commonplace in the business arena, more and more companies are allowing (and even encouraging) their employees to work from home — at least a couple days a week. For better or worse, many employees, managers, and executives are putting in lots of overtime from their home offices.

Whether you’re telecommuting for a job or running your own home-based business, having a dedicated work space can make all the difference in your ability to stay focused and productive. Not only can you control distractions by closing the door, but having a separate work space at home makes it easier to stay organized and maintain a professional image. Depending on the layout of your house, the cooperation of your family, and neighborhood zoning regulations, it may even be possible to meet with clients at your home office.

While some people don’t have a problem setting up their laptop and working at the kitchen table, in their bedroom, or the living room, problems can arise when your spouse or other members of the family want to use your temporary work space for something else!

Other potential complications are possible, too: When people in your household have easy access to your computer, work files, and research materials, there’s also the possibility of accidentally losing unsaved documents, unfinished emails being prematurely sent or closed, and having to deal with spills, sticky surfaces, misplaced work materials, and other miscellaneous mishaps! On the other hand, setting aside a dedicated work space at home for tackling office projects, preparing reports, or creating client proposals can help you avoid losing valuable work, missing deadlines, and looking unprofessional.

Home Offices Are a Selling Point

In addition to making your own life more organized and less chaotic, there’s also the advantage of increasing your home’s marketability. If you happen to be considering putting your house on the market now or in the near future, having a dedicated office space will help make your home look more appealing to potential buyers.

Today, more than ever, the idea of having a home office is on many people’s minds and priority lists — or at least, their “wish list”. When prospective buyers can envision ways in which your home can meet their lifestyle goals, business objectives, and career requirements, they’ll be a lot more likely to seriously consider making an offer on your house.

As more and more people pursue work-at-home options, freelancing opportunities, advanced degrees, and home-based businesses, a dedicated office space will continue to be a highly desirable feature for both current and future home owners.

How To Buy A Home And Build Equity

Buying a home will be the biggest purchase of your entire life. It’s not a decision that anyone should or will take lightly. You want to buy a house that you can live in. Sometimes, it’s even best to think of your home purchase from the perspective of others. Ask yourself, “Would other people want to live here?”

When it comes to your home, the financial buzzword is “equity.” As the buyer, you want to be able to build some equity into your home so that if you should choose to sell it, you’ll make a profit.

Whether your home is only meant to live in for a few years until your family outgrows it, or you think it’s going to be a forever home, life happens and you don’t want to be stuck with a home that you must take a loss on. Keep these aspects of the home in mind when you are ready to buy:

Size

Most people search for 3 to 4 bedroom homes. Whether they are married and want to have children or just need extra space for another baby that is on the way, families typically look for places where they have room to grow. The number of bathrooms in a home is also key. Families don’t want to share one bathroom among 4-5 people. These factors are even more important than the actual space available in the home by square footage.

On the flip side, you don’t want your home to be too big either. Larger homes aren’t as energy efficient and can cost more to maintain. Know that there is a “sweet spot” for your square footage. Usually this is somewhere between 1,000 and 2,000 square feet of living space.

Room To Expand

Look at the home to see if there is room to expand. Perhaps you need another bathroom, but there’s some space to construct an additional half bath. This factor of expansion is key when it comes to a home or property.

Look Past The Appearance

Things like paint colors, floors, carpets and other aesthetics aren’t as important as the big things when it comes to buying a home. You can easily change these without much cost or effort on your part. While everyone loves a move-in-ready home, don’t let a little paint separate you from a home that you love!

Curb Appeal Helps

While it’s easy to fix some things like the color of a home or the shrubs, find your vision to give the home you’re about to purchase some curb appeal. If you can see past the imperfections and make your home your own from the outside in, your home will be attractive. There’s plenty of things you can add and fix from doors to landscaping to paint to a new mailbox. All of these can give your home some serious curb appeal.

Sound Structure

If the structure of the home is not in good condition, you’ll face many problems down the road. You want to avoid costly repairs by ensuring that you buy a home without serious structural damage or wear. The most important part of a home’s structure is that of the foundation. If a home has a cracked foundation, it’s going to cause some problems. Be sure that you hire a reputable inspector and attend the inspection so you know exactly what’s going on with the home you are about to purchase. You can prepare yourself for any problems or issues this way, and make a decision from there. A home that has a good structure to start will undoubtedly continue to help you build equity in your purchase.