10 Predictions for Innovation in Commercial Real Estate

The government implements COVID-19 containment measures that shuttered offices and businesses and affected the demand for commercial real estate. The pandemic also blurred the industry outlook companies implemented work-from-home initiatives. A recent IMF analysis discovered that these trends could cause a disruption in the market and possibly threaten financial stability.

The Relationship to Financial Stability

The commercial real estate sector can potentially affect broader financial stability because price movements reflect the expansive macro-financial picture. Moreover, it depends heavily on debt funding. Loans comprise a considerable portion of banks’ lending portfolios, and in some cases, nonbank financial intermediaries also play a role. 

An adverse shock to commercial real estate can decrease its prices and affect the credit quality of borrowers and the balance sheets of lenders. Falling prices have their risk of price misalignments. Commercial real estate prices can deviate from economic fundamentals can magnify the dangers of future growth. For example, a drop of 50 basis points in the capitalization rate can increase the downside risks to GDP growth by 1.4% in the short term and 2.5% in the medium term.

The Damage Caused by COVID-19

Increased price misalignments are an evident effect of the pandemic, and it comes from the sharp drop in operating revenues and overall demand. However, they can diminish as the economy starts gaining momentum. The possible structural changes in the market will prove to be challenging to the sector. For instance, an increase of 5% in the vacancy rates can result in a 15% drop in fair values after five years.

The Role of Policymakers in Offsetting Financial Stability Risks

Nonfinancial firms get help in accessing credit through low rates to help in the commercial real estate recovery. However, the uncomplicated financial conditions entice risk-taking and add to the pricing misalignments. Policymakers can use their macro-prudential policy toolkit to restrict the debt service coverage and loan-to-value ratios to address the vulnerabilities.

Moreover, policymakers can broaden the reach of this policy by covering nonbanking financial institutions. Lastly, ensuring the strength of the banking sector and performing stress testing can help decision-makers setting aside adequate capital for commercial real estate exposures.

Ten Ways Innovation Will Affect the Commercial Real Estate Post-Pandemic

COVID-19 has wreaked havoc on everyone, and one of its most affected industries is commercial real estate. As businesses shut down and others work remotely, only a few stores remain open. New ventures are hard to come by, and demand for purchase or lease of commercial buildings is low. However, as many people know, these effects are only temporary.

With the world slowly returning to normal, employees return to work, and stores begin to open. Commercial real estate is abuzz, and with this development, innovation is now awash with possibilities. Here are ten ways how the industry will respond to the global pandemic effects:

1.    Heightened Demand for Multifunctional Spaces

The pandemic increased the number of people working from home. As companies become open to employees doing virtual work, developers must include aesthetic and functional pockets in interior spaces conducive to work. Privacy, advanced digital capabilities, and adaptability of rooms for recreational use during non-working hours will determine the new home office.

2.    Increased Need for Sustainable Buildings

Buildings add about 40% of global carbon dioxide emissions; therefore, real estate leaders must spend on healthier materials and energy-saving designs. As governments implement stricter regulations about sustainability, properties that do not focus on it will lose value because no one will occupy them. They become uninsurable and obsolete too.

3.    Changing Definitions for Real Estate

The merging of residential and commercial real estate will force the industry to create a more specific definition of commercial. The merging of working, playing, and living spaces, together with the ways to own and invest, will require inventive and iterative meanings to account for the changing operations of economic progress and the future of living.

4.    Focusing on Nearness to Home and Work

 Community development requires the building of more spaces for living, playing, and working. More and more people value their time and quality of life. Proximity to play and work areas are now more appealing to reduce expenses and travel time.

5.    Transforming Unused Office Spaces

Because of the considerable decrease in office space demand because of the digital economy and work-from-home initiatives, underutilized commercial spaces will become condominiums.

6.    Soaring Real Estate Automation

Artificial Intelligence (AI) will reduce operating expenses at the corporate and property levels. The commercial broker and appraiser will have a reduced rule over time because of the automation of most activities.

7.    Rising Demand for Technology Solutions

Legal tech will automate and centralize case management because of the volume of transactions. The industry can use AI to predict foreclosure timelines for more efficiency.

8.    Modernizing Housing Developments

Because of work-from-home initiatives due to COVID-19, housing design will experience the most significant innovations. Owners and developers will rethink their house layouts. Much of the time spent in the residence will be in the at-home office.

9.    Integrating Data with Relational Information

Access to real estate knowledge, data, and information will improve due to technology. Real estate professionals control the integration of this access with appropriate relationships and experience, but they must always focus on relationships.

10. Increasing Number of Portals for Commercial Real Estate

More property portals will pop up because they have to reach more clients across markets. Companies will cooperate to serve the needs of prospects and owners.

Final Thoughts

The COVID-19 pandemic has wreaked havoc on all industries, but the commercial real estate sector is one of the most heavily affected areas. This large sector can cause financial stability risks that policymakers can reduce by using their macro-prudential policy toolkit. 

Aside from the damages, the pandemic is also a way to implement many innovative ways to help the commercial real estate sector:

  • Increased demand for multifunctional areas
  • Heightened requirement for sustainable structures
  • Evolving definitions for commercial real estate
  • Concentrating on proximity to work and home
  • Revamping unused office spaces
  • Increasing real estate automation
  • Spiraling demand for technology
  • Improving housing developments
  • Merging data with relational information
  • A growing number of portals for commercial real estate

These ten predictions for innovation can help the commercial real estate sector to get up on its feet again post-pandemic. The eagerness and willingness of everyone involved can make these forecasts become a reality soon.

About the Author

Charlie Svensson is a fast-rising and charming freelance writer for writing services australia. He uses his excellent skills in blogging and content writing while actively providing proofreading services UK. Charlie loves to write about social media, SEO, self-growth, education, marketing, and motivation blogging. As an assignment help writer, he can quickly adapt his skills to engage his diverse audiences.

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How to Build a House from Scratch with Little to No Outside Help

Building your own house from scratch lets you design every part of it as per your needs. Personalization goes beyond the furniture you decide to buy for the house; you can find an experienced contractor, provide inputs throughout the building process, avoid harmful chemicals, and cut costs exactly where necessary.

It’s certainly not as easy as buying a ready house, but with the right contractor by your side, you can build your own house with little to no help at all. Here’s how.

Take time to choose your contractor

An experienced contractor who understands your vision and needs is the only help you need in your house building process. You can apply for an owner-builder permit (if your state allows it) and do it all yourself. However, it’s advised that you hire a contractor to oversee the entire building process. Through them, you can find reliable sources for different materials needed to build your house.

A contractor will provide their inputs to help you avoid any mistakes in your build and finally create a shell for you to continue with. If you work effectively with a contractor that understands your vision for the house, you’ll make the entire process a lot easier for yourself while reducing the chances of future structural damages to your house.

Plan your house investment

Buying an existing house gives you the full sum needed to buy it. Building a house yourself requires planning investments, as you will have to evaluate your expenses on house materials as well as the interior decor work once the house is built. Sit with your contractor and calculate the amount you’d need to complete the entire project.

During this calculation, look for ways to reduce your costs by opting for cheaper alternatives. Don’t try to save at the cost of your house’s structural integrity or safety. It’s better to spend on your house while building it rather than repairing it after every month or two. 

Set your foundation and house shell

Your contractor will have the biggest role to play in this. Building a secure foundation for your house along with a shell resembling your vision is a tedious but crucial task. Your entire project will be based on this phase, so it’s important to give it its due time. This process will require you a permit, but your contractor will be responsible for acquiring the permits required throughout your building process.

You should dig your ground and pour concrete with spaces left vacant for the basement (if you choose to have one). Raise vertical foundations along with the entire shell of the house and you will be ready for the next phase of the build. Once the foundation is laid down, an inspector will check the structural integrity for any flaws. Once you get the approval, you will be able to continue with framing and the rest of the build.

Framing, Electrical and Plumbing Connections

Framing will involve building the shell or exoskeleton of the house. Once the shell is made, exterior attachments such as boards, walls, doors and floors would be set in place. This will have to be interrupted in its rough stages as the next task would involve planning and implementing plumbing and electrical connections. 

Take your time to plan this thoroughly and have sufficient connections throughout your house. Your contractor will help in ensuring each section of your house is included, and the electrical and plumbing systems can function without any obstructions in the future. 

Making a thorough plan can save you a lot of hassle in the future and save money spent on repairs and maintenance. Again, inspectors will check each system and the frame structure, after which you can continue building. 

House completion and inspections

The rest of the process can be summed up as it would include finer details such as flooring, tiles, interior decor, furniture, and other house additions. If you ever feel the need for help, talk to your contractor, who can help you with whatever help you may need by connecting you to reliable workers. 

Throughout your house building process, you will have to undergo inspections to ensure the house would maintain its structure in the future. Moreover, the safety of the house would also be thoroughly checked. Apart from the inspectors, you must go around the house to see if you missed anything important. 

Finances

Managing your finances during the project will be one of the hardest challenges. Finding the right priced materials without compromising on quality takes time and a lot of searches. You could take a construction loan to help you finance the project. 

However, it’s advised that you make a budget excluding the loan amount and formulate a plan around it. This will help you stay well below your total sum (savings+loans) and make your expenses a lot more thought-out. Include your contractor’s fee in this budget as well. Contractors take a substantial amount at the end of the project and require financial planning as well.

While building your house, find ways to install equipment that saves you money in the future. This includes electrical equipment like solar panels and energy-efficient radiators, along with high-quality pipes and systems that require very little maintenance. Opting for such methods can help you regain any excess money you may have put into your house. 

Conclusion

Building a house from scratch is a long process, but it comes with the benefit of greater space for personalization. By following all the steps and tips mentioned above, you’ll be able to stay on top of your house plan and financial expenses. Keep in mind that your house will remain an asset for many years to come. By investing in good materials, you’d save yourself a lot of money that would otherwise be spent on maintenance in the future. Work alongside a trustworthy contractor, and you’ll be able to build the house you dreamt of.

Author Bio:

Leon Collier is a freelance blogger and academic writer from the UK working with essay writer service and UK dissertations. He likes to explore a subject deeply and cover areas that are usually left untouched by other writers. This quality makes him an outstanding writer. His hobbies are reading books and playing board games with his friends. Get in touch with him on Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Avel Chuklanov on Unsplash

How to Budget for Your Next Home Project

Your next home project is going to improve your home, whether it’s small or large. Maybe you plan to update only one thing, like the flooring in your kitchen, or maybe you plan to do a large-scale renovation of the entire kitchen. Unfortunately, renovating any part of your home isn’t easy or cheap. However, it can increase your home’s value if you plan to move

To effectively plan your next home project, you need a budget, and to start a budget, you need a plan of action. Here’s how you can create a smart budget and make the right decisions when it comes to home projects. 

Find Out How Much the Project Cost

Everything you do to your home costs money– from painting its exterior to doing a full renovation. All home projects will come at different price points depending on what the project is and the types of help you’ll need. For example, installing a new bathroom counter will be cheaper than renovating the entire bathroom. If you do choose more renovations, you can expect to pay thousands of dollars. 

Many factors go into the cost of a home project, including:

  • Size of the project
  • Room size
  • Type of work needed
  • Cost of materials
  • Cost of labor 

The easiest way to create a budget is to write down all of the projects you want then price them out. You can do this by getting bids for each project and rank your projects according to your priorities. Next, you’ll need to budget out the projects you choose as a top priority. 

How Much Should You Spend?

We can’t tell you how much to spend on a renovation or home project, but spending too much won’t add as much value to your home as you think because people will be paying for your home based on ones of similar size, the number of bedrooms, and the number of bathrooms in your area. If you turn your house into a multimillion-dollar house in a neighborhood where homes cost a fourth of that, you may not be able to sell your house for the asking price too easily. 

As a general rule, try not to spend half of what your home is currently worth for small renovations like one or two rooms. Instead, look at your monthly budget and decide what you can afford and how much value it can bring to your home. 

How to Create a Home Project Budget

To start your project, you can use these steps to create a budget:

  1. Prioritize

Remember that list we mentioned earlier? Get that out and begin writing down all of the projects you want to be done on your home. Make sure to list the ones that affect your living situation first. For example, if you have dangerous electrical wiring, you should make that your top priority before changing out the flooring because it can affect your safety. 

You should also take care of any home maintenance first, such as plumbing issues, or fixing things around the house so you can fully enjoy the results of your home project. There’s no use in renovating a bathroom when the toilet doesn’t work properly. 

If you don’t have any rooms with major issues but want to make some changes, write down the changes you want to make that can add value to your home. If you plan on living in your home for the rest of your life, you may choose to go with renovation projects you want instead of ones a potential homebuyer would want. 

  1. Outline Estimates

Now it’s time to do a little math. Once you’ve decided which home project will be your top priority, you’ll need to break down the cost of every little thing that goes into it. This part will take a lot of your time because you’ll need to do research. 

Unfortunately, you won’t be able to get exact costs until you talk with the contractors you’ll be working with for your home project. However, you can search online to get ballpark estimates so you know what to expect in terms of estimates and budgeting. 

When it comes to spending money on maintenance projects, you can use the same 1% rule that landlords use. According to SmartMove, “Many professional property managers use what they call the 1% rule: One percent of the total property value should be set aside to address rental maintenance expenses.” 

Therefore, if your house is worth $300,000, then you should set aside $3,000 for maintenance costs before moving onto your next home project. 

In your budget breakdown, make a chart of the name of the cost, what percentage of the budget it takes up, and what the estimate will be. Then, you can total it up and get a final number for your overall budget. 

Taking this step and doing research gives you a better idea of how much each part of the project will cost. It can also help you figure out ways to cut costs in some areas so you can spend more in others. For example, if you need a certain countertop for your kitchen, you may be able to find cheaper flooring with the right research. 

  1. Collect Bids
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Now that you have realistic prices in mind, it’s time to talk to a contractor. You can ask around or search online for these professionals. Try to find at least three contractors in your area with good reviews and request project bids and timelines. This allows you to compare pricing. 

Beware of the lowest bid because you might end up paying for a contractor that doesn’t get the project done on time or becomes unprofessional midway through the project. If you receive a bid that is thousands of dollars lower than the estimated budget you put together, then this might be a red flag. However, if your estimate is only a few hundred dollars off the bid and it’s a large project, you may have simply miscalculated. Remember, the estimate you put together is not the exact cost you can expect to pay. 

Never DIY Home Projects

Unless you’re a contractor yourself, you should never try to take on a large DIY project yourself to cut costs. While you may think you’re saving yourself tens of thousands of dollars, you could actually be costing yourself more when you realize you made a mistake and need to hire a professional to fix those errors. 

Matt Casadona

Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys San Diego life, traveling, and music. 

Why Having a Community Solar Farm Is a Great Idea

Between physical obstructions, rental agreements, and geography, up to 80% of US households might not have access to a rooftop or ground-based solar solution.

Even more disturbing, of those that do, communities are presenting a large ethnic and racial disparity in solar installation. Why this is happening comes down to a number of historical, economic, and social factors.

One solution that can benefit all is to get into a community solar farm. What are community solar farms? How do they work?

Keep reading to find out how they might be the best idea for you and your neighbors!

What Is a Community Solar Farm?

There are many kinds of ways to access solar energy savings and help the environment at the same time. If solar isn’t an option for your location but you still want to benefit, then community solar farms are the way to go.

First off, you can save a ton of money by deciding how you’re going to access solar energy — if you do have options. To find out how much, check out https://blueravensolar.com/blog/how-much-do-solar-panels-save/ for in-depth details.

A community solar farm is a field of solar panels that are taken care of by their owner. The solar farm feeds electricity into the power grid, producing solar credits for the company. They often use the best technologies available and get round-the-clock maintenance.

They’re high-tech and produce more electricity more efficiently than you would get on your roof. They also constantly upgrade their equipment to be on the leading edge of solar technology.

They’re privately owned solar farms that sell off their energy to people who otherwise can’t install their own systems. This helps to level the playing field and help all involved.

How Does a Community Solar Farm Make Money?

They often sell those credits at a discount to the price of electricity from your utility. For example, if you show them your electric bill, they may be willing to sell you credits at up to 10% off your normal kWh rate.

Those credits will be used against your utility bill, even though you are not the one producing the electricity. A community solar farm is not a utility, but they do work with utilities in a mutually beneficial arrangement for all.

Utilities can focus on power generation at times solar isn’t viable. Solar feeds the grid with clean, environmentally friendly energy during sun exposure. Regular US homeowners don’t need to invest in solar installation and design and still benefit by purchasing the solar farm’s credits.

Bridging the Socio-Economic Gaps

Let’s face it: the United States has some serious socio-economic gaps. From ethnic and racial injustices to gender debates, the nation is in a moment of extreme flux.

One of the ways to bridge those gaps is to take advantage of what a community solar farm can offer. Lower rates without home installation benefit renters and apartment owners alike, no matter the gender, race, ethnicity, or economic position.

Did this help you understand your options for going solar? Keep browsing our articles for more nuggets of solar power wisdom!

Author: Steffy Alen

How to Do Business with a Contractor without Frustration

Whether you are looking to renovate one room or working on the entire property, renovation is a large project. As experts in remodeling and building, contractors can deal with all the required inspections, permits, materials, and equipment to ensure the smooth completion of the project.

However, failure to choose the contractors wisely may result in frustrations such as project delays, quality compromise, and wastages. Doing business with a contractor requires finding a reliable, reputable and efficient one to avoid such frustrations.

Conduct background checks

Whether you have received recommendations from a relative or a friend, it is important to establish the minimum credentials of the contractor before hiring. Obtain the full name and address of the company and ensure that enough insurance coverage and a state license are available.

Obtain policy and license numbers and verify their validity. Establish whether the company has any pending legal cases or has received complaints from customers in the past. If the potential contractor does not have any pending issues that may affect their work, you will avoid problems when the project is ongoing.

Plan on how to resolve differences

Many homeowners are coming up with diverse property renovation ideas, especially with the current housing boom. With a rush to create a home office, for instance, you may be tempted to ignore conflict resolution strategies.

Hiring a contractor means that you will work with them until the project is complete. Hire someone trustworthy and easy to communicate with. If, for instance, the contractor is setting up office space and something goes wrong, you should have a strategy to resolve conflicts beforehand.

A good contractor will facilitate written agreements to safeguard the interests of both parties. Before the start of the project, enquire how differences and unexpected issues may be handled.

Investigate the work habits and history of the contractor

Contractors may be general or specialists and so you need to ensure that they can handle the project appropriately. Investigate their work habits and the projects they have completed in the past. Look out for quality materials, some similar issues to your project, client satisfaction, and workmanship.

You may also track minor indicators of lack of professionalism. Establish whether the contractor returns calls promptly, whether they keep appointment times and whether their dress code tells something about their ability to be organized. Carelessness in small matters may lead to frustrations as a result of compromising the quality of work.

Have a smart payment schedule

Reliable and reputable contractors often request some upfront payment before they start working. In some states, asking for a down payment exceeding 10% is considered illegal, especially for large projects.

Smaller property upgrades with tailor-made specifications may require between 30% and 50% deposit. You should pay the balance after the completion of the project. Ensure that the payment schedule is clearly stated in the project contract and that it is updated on need.

Find a contractor from reputable sources

Getting recommendations from family members and friends about the contractor’s experiences is a good way to find a company to do business with. However, if you are new in the industry or are uncertain about available options, use online services to find a good contractor.

Most online services review recommendations from users. Your goal should be to ensure that the reviewers have experience working with a contractor you want to hire. Getting accurate information regarding online reviews will guarantee proper project completion.

Interview several contractors before hiring

It is possible to find a reliable contractor online, but online reviews should not substitute meetings in person with the contractor. If you don’t have a specific contractor in mind, you have some options.

Interview several candidates to gather insights into the kind of person you want to hire to undertake the project. Every contractor may have a unique approach, timeline, budget, and connections with subcontractors around your area.

Gathering estimates from several contractors will help you to have a clear perspective on appropriate project costs. You may also understand the kind of work each contractor is likely to provide.

Understand the contract details

Understanding the contract details is one of the best ways to avoid frustrations when doing business with a contractor. A contract should have information regarding fees and building permits and the commencement and completion dates of the project.

It should also have the details of payment terms, products and services to be provided by your contractor and the subcontractor issues. It should define the consequences of failure to honor the terms of the agreement, such as failure to compensate subcontractors.

If anyone needs to modify the contract to adapt to something new, request to sign an addendum and be clear about the updated project estimate. Understanding the contract details will help to minimize possible disputes that may amount to frustrations.

Request for a project estimate

Signing a construction agreement should start by having a formal estimate of the cost of the project. If you have multiple contractors to evaluate, consider a bidding process to narrow down the options. Apart from the timeline and budget, talk to the prospective contractors about your preferred materials and if there is a need to engage subcontractors.

It is also important to know if the contractor has completed similar projects. They could be good in one area of construction or renovation and not good in another. The home contractor should be willing to discuss material recommendations, previous projects similar to yours, and any questions you may raise during bidding.

Getting the project estimate will ensure timeliness and cost-effectiveness of project completion. A contractor who provides project estimates understands the project’s structure and how to integrate various design options. Therefore, it may guarantee a better outcome and minimize possible frustrations.

Conclusion

Construction projects are critical no matter their size and so it is important to take initiatives when hiring a contractor to ensure a smooth flow of work. With the above tips, you should be able to do business with a contractor without frustration. It will ensure the success of a project in terms of scope, time, quality and cost.

Author Bio

Leon Collier is a blogger and one of the best academic essay writers from the UK who works with essay writing service UK. He likes to take on challenges and is always keen to prove his writing prowess with his work, which is always high-quality and unique. His hobbies are reading books and playing tabletop games with his friends. You can reach him via Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Fakurian Design on Unsplash

5 Tips for Painting Your Home’s Exterior

Are you looking to give your home a fresh coat of paint before you put it on the market? Have you noticed recently that your property’s exterior paint job is looking a little worse for the wear? If so, then you need to learn a few tricks for painting your home’s exterior to perfection.

Doing so can give your home an aesthetic with precision and a beautiful coat. Anyone that walks/drives past it will be forced to do a double-take.

See below for an in-depth guide on different tips you should follow while painting a house. You’ll be glad that you did!

1. Know the Signs

Did you know that there are telltale signs that your home needs a fresh exterior paint job? Contrary to popular belief, exterior paint serves more of a purpose than improving the looks of your home. It’s also used for benefits such as:

  • Protecting your home from the elements
  • Extending the lifespan of your home’s siding material
  • Preventing rot
  • Boost the value of your home

You must understand the reasons to repaint your home so that you can make the proper call on what paint brand to use, which exterior painting company to hire, whether or not you need to make a few repairs before you paint, and so on.

Too many homeowners ignore these signs and are forced to deal with the consequences. The value of their home ends up suffering in the long run.

2. Search for Rot

For those of you that have a wooden exterior on your home, you’ll want to take this project as an opportunity to search for signs of rot. After all, if you’re going to go to the effort of painting your home’s exterior, you want to make sure you won’t have to replace certain pieces down the line.

You’ll want to take the time to inspect for rotting on your wood siding, any wooden doors, wooden door frames, wooden window frames, and any other wooden feature on the outside of your home. 

This can be done by simply going around and tapping on the wood. Does it sound strong and dense or weak and hollow? If it’s the latter, then it’s generally a sign of rot. You’ll want to replace that piece before you start painting.

Rot can start in a wooden feature of your home’s exterior for a few reasons. It could be due to the moisture the wood was exposed to during a storm, the effect of usual wear and tear, or a sign of a termite infestation problem. 

Whatever the reasoning, make sure that all of your features are a-okay before you begin prepping for the paint job.

3. Prepare the Home Exterior for Paint

One of the biggest mistakes that you can make when painting your home’s exterior is walking right up to the siding and painting over it without any other form of preparation.

Think of it this way: if you don’t prepare the siding for a new coat of paint, you’re simply painting over all the dirt, debris, and germs that have piled upon it. Therefore, placing a new coat over it will trap the grime inside, which can cause bubbling or running paint. 

To get the results that you want, you’re going to need to get it in paint-ready condition. Be sure to rent or purchase a pressure washer to clean the outside of your home. For optimum results, you’ll want to find one that fits the siding of your house.

For example, homes with soft siding (like stucco or wood) should only use one with anywhere between 1,200 to 1,500 psi. However, a home with vinyl siding will require something a bit stronger, such as a pressure washer with anywhere between 2,500 to 3,000 psi.

After you’ve pressure washed the house, make sure to provide a covering for all the plants near the side of your house, as well as remove any statues or figures that risk getting paint on them.

4. Scrap off Lead Paint

Perhaps you were prompted to inquire about exterior painting when you noticed the paint outside your home is starting to crack and peel off. This could be a sign that your home was previously painted with lead paint. 

Regardless of what type of paint it is, that cracked paint has to be removed before you put on a fresh coat. Otherwise, it could cause the new paint to bubble or drip.

Grab as many friends, relatives, and neighbors as you can, then get them all to help you scrape off the paint from the side of your house.

5. Hire a Professional Painting Company

Is painting your home’s exterior more overwhelming than you originally thought? Perhaps you didn’t realize that repainting your home’s exterior would include things like pressure washing, scraping, and sanding.

If so, then you should hire a professional exterior painting company to do the work. That way, this project is put in the hands of experienced professionals with the manpower and equipment for the job.

The result will be a high-quality paint job that will make interested buyers salivate. It’s sure to up the curb appeal of your entire house.

Paint Your Home’s Exterior Today

Now that you have seen an in-depth guide on how to paint your home’s exterior and all the steps it requires to do it right, be sure to use this information to your advantage.

Start by browsing our website for more articles on painting the inside and outside of your home, as well as many other helpful topics that you will enjoy.

Eight Things You Should Know About Before Buying A Home In Las Vegas

Las Vegas is one of the most popular places to buy a home in. Every year, the worldwide population visits the most expensive city in the US and has a great time doing the things they love. If settling in Vegas has been your dream too, then there is a list of Henderson Las Vegas home for sale. But, before buying a home, consider reading these things that can be important for you to know.

1. You get a variety to select from

Before you decide anything, you have to settle on a budget. There are a variety of places available for you to settle down but, you should be aware that the hottest real estate place in the market has to come at a greater price. So, decide on a budget and start searching for a place that suits you the best. The type of home you are looking for also depends on your budget as they all have different prices. If you are looking for a villa, you are expected to keep your budget higher than an apartment.

2. You should go through the requirements of buying a home in Vegas

Once you are through in successfully selecting the home of your dreams, the next thing in line is looking at the requirements to buy a home in the area of your choice. You might need a pre-approved home loan before settling down at one residence. Make sure that the approval is not from anyone but a decent lender. You have to keep other things in mind, and for that, it’s best to consult someone with experience. If you can’t find a home yet, try the list of Henderson Las Vegas homes for sale. We are sure something will come up!

3. Have you heard about the green neighborhood?

If you are a planet lover and want to find a place that saves the environment, look for a green neighborhood house. Such sites are environmentally friendly but come at an expensive rate. These days more and more people are trying to look for a place here. It not only helps save the environment but makes sure you are safe too!

4. Living away from the strip is always a better idea

Looking for the best property in Las Vegas, then you should avoid the area near the strip. This is because you will have to research a lot when finding a school or amenities like a gym nearby. Going here on vacation purposes does make sense, but why take a home that is not family-friendly and involves many struggles? Shifting to a new home should always be convenient and easy.

5. It might be expensive so negotiating is a must

Negotiating on small things like a pen or a notebook might not make sense but negotiating on the house does! Wouldn’t it be good if you save some dollars while hunting for the best home in the town? Real estate being hotter in Las Vegas makes the property dealer more accountable in asking for a higher price. Helping yourself might get you a better deal, and there is nothing harmful in trying, right?

6. You have to decide early as houses are selling soon

Construction in Las Vegas is catching up speed because of which moderately priced properties are selling at a faster rate. So, acting fast is one option you have! Making a decision ASAP is an important step as you never know next day you will find the same house at the same price or not! Try to negotiate to an extent where the seller does not get tempted by someone who is paying a little more than you.

7. It won’t be that easy to buy a house in the hottest market

Just like you, there are a lot of people looking for a place to settle in L. A. It is not impossible, but it might not be easy for you to settle on a property because the demand and supply are running together. While the legal process can be easy and fast, you have to make sure that your decision-making power is one the same rate as well. You might love a few houses, and by the time you decide on one, all your choices are sold! As the market is on fire, it is not a smooth task to buy the home of your dreams.

8. Try creative offers to impress buyers

Creativity is one of the best ways to impress someone uniquely. While all the buyers are approaching in an ordinary fashion, you can make a difference and get the house with your creativity to pitch differently. Tr y taking a homebuyer education course to learn all the details. A few tips from us include, try making an offer before they speak about the price. Try to work with experienced men who know the field and will help you in the best way possible.

Buying a place in Las Vegas might not be a daunting task if you have the right people behind you. It is the hottest market globally, and things might work on a priority basis, but if you try and work it out, you can get what you are looking for without much of a problem.

The Importance of Estate Planning at Any Age

You plan for a lot of things in life, like vacations, choosing which car to buy and even buying a house. However, many people don’t consider estate planning. Estate planning decides who will inherit your assets after you pass away, and holds a lot of value. It might not be as fun to think about as your next vacation, but estate planning is necessary to ensure your belongings go to the right people or places. 

Estate planning may sound like it’s just for the wealthy, but everyone should have an estate plan. Without settling your affairs, your loved ones can be negatively impacted after you pass away. Here’s why estate planning is important at any age. 

Protects Beneficiaries 

End of life planning is necessary for all people, especially those with families. It’s not just about who gets what, but helps create a plan to decide who will be in charge of everything from typical household activities, to paying taxes. Even if you’re not leaving much behind, if you don’t decide who receives what you do have, you won’t have any control over what happens to it. 

For example, you can’t just assume that your home will be handed down to your children if you pass away. An estate plan is the only way to guarantee that everything you leave behind is left to your loved ones, and allows you to ensure their protection.

The main component of end of life planning is choosing the heirs for your assets, whether it’s your house or your favorite vase. Without this plan, the courts will decide who gets your assets, which can be a long and ugly process that can hurt your loved ones and their relationships with one another.

A will specifically names who gets your assets, so it’s important that you create one as soon as possible to make sure your family gets everything they need. 

Protects Young Children

While you don’t want to consider what will happen if you die young, you need to think about the future. If you’re the parent of an underage child, you need to prepare yourself and them for what’s to come if you pass away. To ensure that your children are cared for the way you want them to be, you will name guardians who will take over custody if both parents were to pass away before the children are over the age of 18. Without naming these individuals, the courts will determine who will raise your children. 

If you have anyone specific in mind who you think would be a good guardian to your children, talk to them about it to make sure that it’s something they are comfortable with. Many parents choose to name godparents for their children within their extended family, but this can also extend to friends or other loved ones. However, unless these individuals are specifically mentioned in your estate plan, then you cannot guarantee that these will be the people to take care of your children if you pass away. 

Prevents Heirs From Paying Hefty Taxes

Estate planning is all about ensuring the protection of your loved ones, which can mean helping them save money. When you transfer assets to heirs, there will be a tax burden on them. However, with the right planning, you can lessen the amount they’ll pay on taxes when transferring your assets. To help with your taxes, you can use an easy-to-use, professional tax software

Eliminates Family Drama

We’ve all watched the horror stories unfold on our favorite soap operas, but nobody wants to experience family drama due to a lack of an estate plan in real life. When someone with money or assets dies, family members typically start a war between one another. One sibling may believe that they are entitled to more than everyone, while another believes they should be the one in charge of the finances. 

This type of fighting can get ugly quickly and end up in court with your family members pitted against each other, forced to choose sides. 

An estate plan enables you to stop the fighting before it even begins. You are the one in control of where your finances and assets go if you become incapacitated or pass away. This can help you avoid family drama and keep your loved ones from fighting. 

Saves Time and Money

If you pass away without an estate plan, the laws where you live will determine what happens to your estate. Probate court will name a representative to make sure your assets are distributed. This job typically goes to the surviving spouse, but if you don’t have one and no family member is willing to take on the task, the court will name a public trustee.

During this period, no one will be able to touch your assets or carry out any of your directives. Everything is essentially frozen until the court figures everything out. This probate process involves paperwork and court appearances, which means your loved ones will be spending valuable time away from their jobs and families to make sure your affairs are settled.

Estate Planning Ensures Your Safety

Estate planning doesn’t just mean drafting a will for after you pass away. In fact, it can take care of you while you’re still alive. An estate plan can include a power of attorney (POA) and healthcare proxy that ensure your wishes are fulfilled if you become incapable of fulfilling them yourself. Power of attorney designates someone who is authorized to handle your legal and financial affairs when you can’t, while a healthcare proxy is someone who can make healthcare decisions for you.

Without this living will, determining who among your family members can take care of these important duties can get difficult. The court might have to appoint someone who is unfamiliar with your wishes to make decisions for you. 

Takeaway

While you may be young now, you never know what the future holds. If you have young children, you should at least have a will drafted to ensure their safety and protection. Whether you’re married or single, having an estate plan can help you and your loved ones in the future. 

Estate planning also gives you a sense of control over your property, which can be taken by the state if there’s no one to give your assets to. As someone who might be single, an estate plan gives you the power to give your assets to a friend or charity instead of the government.

Matt Casadona

Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys San Diego life, traveling, and music. 

7 Steps to Convert Your Attic into a Bedroom

Your growing family needs more space, and you may quickly consider converting your basement or garage into a bedroom. But are you aware that your attic has more potential to become a unique room?

You may think that it is a daunting task to plan an attic conversion because you need money and time to make it happen. However, with proper planning, you can have your new bedroom with minimal stress. Here are some steps to help you:

1.      Building Code and Permits

An attic conversation may require a building permit during the planning stages. A building code has several safety standards that ensure the stability and safety of your house. It includes considerations about the ceiling height, width, and total square footage of the room. Your proposed bedroom must meet the building code requirements, especially if you plan to lease or sell it later in the future.

You can check with your local government unit to know if your attic conversion needs a permit. You must bring the completed plans for a quick and accurate answer. If you are adding windows or changing the roofline, you will need to obtain a permit first. 

2.      Angled Ceilings

The steep slope ceiling can be a problem when you decide to convert your attic into a bedroom because it limits the usable space and blocks any headroom. You can solve this issue by putting a unique piece of architecture to highlight the elements, such as using ceiling treatments. You may add a design by painting it using an eye-catching color or use paneling on the angles with molding. You can prefer to create a textured wall by painting over the molding to add visual interest.

3.      Walls

Your attic bedroom will not have more wall space than your other rooms because of the steep ceiling angle. You may try using wall treatments by adding an extra interior wall. If you have a smaller space, you may try light colors to make the room look larger and more open. A more polished finish is also feasible by having faux panels with molding.

You can build shorter closets to maximize small areas and gain valuable square footage. Taller walls can match the angle and meet the ceiling, but it can be challenging to find furniture that will fit. You may prefer to have custom-made storage to correspond to the unconventional space. You can add shelving units into the walls to keep clutter off the floor.

4.      Windows

Your window design must fit your space because a standard small window may not be enough for it to reach its full potential and make the space livable. You may opt for an easily accessible larger window that meets the building code. It has to be accessible and serve as an emergency exit in case of fire.

Windows also offer natural light, which helps your room look larger and brighter. You may prefer skylights because they provide a natural fit into a roofline and provide added headroom. The Dormer window extends from a sloped roofline for small nooks. It creates a dynamic element to the exterior, and you can add a desk or bench that also serves as a storage unit.

5.      Floors

Flooring is essential in your bedroom conversion, but you must check that your floor has a structurally sound and robust surface. You can consider the amount of weight and movement that your flooring must accommodate when you transform the attic into a bedroom. Reinforcing the floor joists can make the flooring safe.

Hardwood floors may be suitable for other rooms in your house, but for the attic bedroom, a carpet can be your best bet because of its soundproofing benefits. You don’t want to create a lot of noise below that will disturb other family members. Carpets absorb sound and require an additional layer of subflooring to eliminate the noise from below.

6.      Stairs

Many attics have ladders because their original intention is for storage areas. If you convert it to a bedroom, you may need to build a staircase because ladders are not stable and unsafe for everyday use. A conventional stair is more reliable than a ladder but occupies more floor space below. You may opt for a spiral stair as it has wide steps but does not occupy a lot of space.

7.      Utilities

More often than not, your attic’s design is strictly for storage; thus, it does not have the appropriate utilities such as temperature control and electricity.

  • Temperature Control

The attic is hotter than the rest of your house during the winter and summer. You must install temperature control to ensure that you are comfortable in your planned bedroom. You may place a ceiling fan to cut down on your cooling and heating bills. However, it will not solve all your temperature control issues.

You may also invest in spray foam insulation to fill the crevices. It reduces your utility bills and helps soundproof your room. You can install insulation in your ceiling, walls, or floor to control the temperature. If your attic has an HVAC system, you may still prefer to add more temperature control because you will have someone moving in the room full time.

  • Electric

Your attic may already have electrical wiring, but you need more light fixtures and outlets if you wish to convert it into a bedroom. You can select light fixture designs that do not give off a lot of heat. You may prefer recessed lights because they provide light without heating the space. You can tuck them into the ceiling.

Your dream to convert your attic into a livable space is exciting, but you must ensure that you do it right to save on time and costs. You may consider the steps listed to add value to your home and have more bedrooms for your growing family.

About the Author

Leon Collier is the UK’s prolific academic writer and blogger with vast experience working as one of the essay writers providing college essay papers. He is someone you will love to collaborate with because he loves challenges and delivers outstanding work regularly. He is a voracious book reader and enjoys playing tabletop games when he is not busy with work. You can follow him on Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Antonio Caverzan on Unsplash

3 Ways To Power Your Tiny Home

When you build your home from scratch, you will be able to design it in a way that suits your needs perfectly. This is the case for tiny houses. When you plan your tiny home, you make sure to utilize every part of it maximally so you don’t have an inch of space left unused. However, to live in and adequately enjoy your tiny home, you need to power it sufficiently, whether you’re on the grid or off the grid. 

It may be easier to focus more on the fun activities involved in the design of your tiny home, such as picking out your furniture or choosing the exterior paint color. However, some decisions are more urgent and need to be sorted before others. One such decision is how to power your tiny home. This is essential as it can affect your construction process. So you must sort it out as soon as possible. For instance, some of the things you have to consider during your design are electrical panels, light switches placement, necessary connections for solar, etc., depending on which method or power source you go for. 

You need intended parking locations and available budget as major components while you plan the building to establish your power. There are three different options that you may consider:

1. External power generators

You may decide to live on-grid and hook your home up to an electricity provider. However, this is not an option that most tiny homeowners resort to. One of the most typical ways for tiny homeowners to power their home is by using power generators. With a power generator, you don’t have to live on-grid to power your home. You can be off-grid, so this allows you to build your tiny home anywhere you desire without fear of powering it. Getting a portable external power generator gives you the level of flexibility that you need to power your home on the go, and it doesn’t require wiring. 

While many of these generators use gasoline-style or propane fuel, there are several other options that you can settle for. Thankfully, the market is now ridden with more clean energy generators. This allows you to build your tiny home in line with environmental-friendly standards and also get a portable clean energy generator to power it. 

If your tiny home is built on wheels, then you are better off getting portable solar generators that allow you to move freely whenever you want to. However, it is more cost-effective to use this as a backup option than the primary power source because of the recharge time and limited capacity. 

You should note, though, that it may be more costly to power your home with a generator if you want to live off-grid. This is because you have to rely on fuels, and if you are always indoors, the monies add up pretty quickly. 

2. Solar power 

Using solar energy to power your house is an excellent idea for a tiny house. This enables you to be self-sufficient and gives you more off-grid flexibility. However, solar power doesn’t have a one-size-fits-all solution for tiny houses. Each one would have a unique solution based on the daily energy usage in each house. 

Thankfully, several companies offer this service, letting you leverage sunshine to provide power to your tiny home, especially in an environmentally friendly manner. However, you may need to get specialist advice to be well-informed about everything you should know about this power source. Also, you have to keep yourself informed about the most budget-friendly products that you need for installing a solar power system in your tiny home.

You don’t have to panic if you are living in a place where there isn’t much fun. Solar power allows you to generate energy under rainy or cloudy climates still. So, there’s no reason to miss out on this sustainable power source in your home, wherever you are. 

Another thing that you should know is that using solar energy is not necessarily a big commitment or a big project like covering your roof with solar panels. You don’t have to commit yourself that much. You could start small, but you need to get appliances that can run on the available solar energy.

The placement of your home is another thing that you should pay attention to if you are going to power it through solar energy. It would be more helpful if you paid more attention to your home’s exposure to the sky. If you are going to make the most of the sunlight, then it makes sense that your tiny house is built directly under the sky where your panels have clear access to the sun and can leverage on it. 

3. Wind power

Wind power is another excellent option for you if you are looking to live sustainably and away from the use of fossil fuels. You could get small turbines that can fit into the top of your tiny home. Using wind power doesn’t have the limitations of needing a large property or space. It can work well for your tiny house too. However, these small turbines may not have enough in them to generate the amount of electricity that you need to power your home entirely. So, it makes more sense to have this energy source as a backup or second option while you use additional sources such as power generators and solar panels to power your tiny house. 

If you can go for the giant wind turbine and mount it on a tower, then you will be able to use it fully to power your home. However, you must be living in a region with a windy climate. Otherwise, you won’t be able to generate enough electricity to power your house still. 

Whether you are building or buying a tiny home, if your preferred source of energy is wind power, then you must be sure that you are located in an area where there’s enough wind to generate the needed power. A microturbine mounted on a tower needs an approximate 36-foot diameter footprint before it can be installed. This makes it better suited for homesteads. 

Conclusion 

An advantage of living in a tiny home is that it allows you to stay off-grid if that’s your preference. However, you need alternative means to power your home, which have been discussed in this article. Additionally, the power source that you choose will affect your daily lifestyle.

Author Bio

Charlie Svensson is a fast, engaging, freelance writer and dissertation writer providing essay writing services reviews for a research paper service. He is skilled in content writing and blogging. The favorite topics of his posts are education, social media, marketing, SEO, motivation blogging, and self-growth. Excellent adaptability of skills to reach diverse audiences. 

Image by Milada Vigerova on Pixabay