Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger - RE/MAX Executive Realty



Posted by Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger on 9/9/2020

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What better way to unwind after all the stress of moving and settling into a new house than to have a housewarming party? It doesn’t matter if it’s going to be a large shindig or small party, a fancy dinner or a casual barbecue. Whatever the plan, a housewarming party is a fantastic way to show off your new home.

After the cost of moving, you might not want to spend too much on your party. The good news is you can have a housewarming party on a budget. There are no rules or guidelines as to what a housewarming should look like, so work with your space, time, and budget — just ensure you and your guests have fun. Use the tips below as a guide for throwing a housewarming party in your new home without putting a dent in your pocket.

Make a Budget

The first thing to do is to figure out how much you want to spend. You do not have to go overboard financially to throw a great party; work with whatever amount you have available.

Set a Reasonable Date

Choose a date and time that’s comfortable for you — financially and mentally. After the stress of moving and settling in, give yourself enough time to recover before hosting friends and family.

Cap Your Guest List

When there is a budget constraint, limit the number of guests you invite. Restricting guests to your closest friends, your immediate family, and your new neighbors will help you keep costs down especially when it comes to providing food and beverages for a crowd.

Utilize Free Invitations

There are multiple free invite options available for you to use, but a simple Facebook or WhatsApp message will do. Request RSVPs from your guest so you can prepare for the number of people attending.

Skip the Decorations

The purpose of your housewarming party is to show off your new home. You do not necessarily have to use other forms of decorations. If you intend to decorate anyway, buy decorations that serve you after the housewarming such as a string of festive fairy lights or tiki lamps for your patio.

Throwing a housewarming party on a budget means inviting people over to your place to have fun with what you have available. Ensure you have fun while at it. Your agent is an excellent resource for local specialty shops to find unique party décor or local foods to try.




Tags: budgeting   housewarming   party  
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Posted by Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger on 9/12/2018

Let's face it – the homebuying journey may prove to be an expensive experience. If you're not careful, you risk overspending to acquire your dream house. On the other hand, if you purchase a home without identifying underlying structural problems, you risk costly home repairs down the line.

Ultimately, it helps to establish a budget for the homebuying journey. If you have a budget in place, you can increase the likelihood of having the necessary funds on hand to overcome many potential homebuying hurdles.

You should have no trouble creating a homebuying budget, either. In fact, here are three tips to help you put together a budget for the homebuying journey.

1. Assess Your Financial Situation

If you intend to purchase a house in the foreseeable future, you'll want to take a close look at your finances. By doing so, you may be able to reduce your monthly spending and use your savings to accelerate the homebuying journey.

It often helps to assess your daily, weekly and monthly expenses. Then, you may discover bills that you can cut from your everyday budget.

For example, you may enjoy dining out regularly, but cooking at home may prove to be more cost-effective. And as you reduce your dining expenses, you can save money that you can use toward the down payment on a new house.

2. Obtain Your Credit Score

Believe it or not, your credit score can make a world of difference in your quest to acquire a house. If you check your credit score, you may be able to find ways to improve your credit score prior to kicking off a house search.

You are eligible to receive a free copy of your credit report from each of the three reporting bureaus (Experian, Equifax and TransUnion). Take advantage of this perk, and you can learn your credit score in no time at all.

Remember, your credit score may have a major impact on your ability to land a favorable mortgage. And if you find that you have a below-average credit score, you then can pay off outstanding debt to improve it before you start your search for a new home.

3. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Pre-approval for a mortgage is ideal. With a mortgage in hand, you can enter the real estate market with a budget for buying a house.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you should meet with banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can offer insights into a variety of mortgage options and help you make an informed mortgage selection.

Lastly, as you prepare a homebuying budget, you may want to collaborate with a real estate agent. This housing market professional can help you hone your home search to residences that fall within your price range. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will make it simple for you to avoid spending too much to acquire your dream house.

Get ready to buy a house – use the aforementioned tips, and you can establish a successful homebuying budget.




Tags: buying a home   budgeting  
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Posted by Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger on 7/20/2016

Have you found the home of your dreams but are overwhelmed by the price tag? This is a no-win situation that challenges even the most patient, resourceful homebuyer, and perhaps for good reason. Finding the perfect home may take days, weeks, months or years. And if you discover a residence that meets all of your needs but falls outside your budget, you're likely to be tempted to overspend to acquire this residence. However, you'll want to take a step back and think carefully about your decision, and those who weigh the short- and long-term ramifications of their decision ultimately will be able to make the right choice. Furthermore, you should consider the following factors as you try to resist the urge to overspend on a house: 1. Your monthly mortgage payments Although you may be able to handle a higher monthly mortgage payment in the short-term, you'll want to think about your long-term plans before you finalize your purchase. For example, do you plan to raise children? Or do you anticipate a career change over the next few years? You'll want to consider any plans that could impact your budget and determine whether you're ready to handle your monthly mortgage payments both now and in the future. 2. The quality of the home Although your dream home likely is of the highest quality, you'll want to ensure this residence won't require any immediate improvements. The quality of the home will dictate whether this residence will require substantial short- and long-term maintenance and repairs. And if you find there are many home improvement projects that may need to be completed soon, you may be better off considering other homes on the real estate market. 3. Your wants and needs Ideally, you'll want to find a home that fulfills all of your wants and needs instantly. But in today's highly competitive real estate market, only a fraction of houses may come close to meeting all of your demands. Differentiating between your wants and needs, however, is critical, as this will allow you to distinguish what you need to enjoy your home versus what you'd like your home to include in a dream scenario. For instance, your home needs electricity, running water and other everyday essentials. On the other hand, you may want a home with a pool, a spacious back yard and other distinct features, but you should not rule out homes due to the fact that they lack some of these non-essential amenities. Take a close look at your priorities and your budget, and you'll be able to make the right compromises to find a home that won't require you to break your budget altogether. Remember, your home is what you make it, and overspending to acquire a house may leave you satisfied in the short-term but struggling to pay your bills over an extended period of time. Make the right compromises as you explore the real estate market and set realistic expectations for the houses you check out. By doing so, you can improve your chances of finding a high-quality residence that meets your personal and budgetary needs.




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Posted by Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger on 3/2/2016

In today's economic climate protecting your financial health is more important than ever. From health insurance to your plans for retirement, there’s a lot to consider. Here are some tips from Family Wealth Management Group, LLC to help protect your assets and financial future. It is never too early to plan In order to plan, you need to know what you have. Review your pension plan, 401 (k), IRAs, Social Security benefits and other savings plans to assess whether they meet your long-term retirement goals and will generate an income stream to meet your projected expenses. Curb spending Time to take an inventory on how much you spend. Keep a log on trips to the market, afternoon lattes, dry cleaning and all of your miscellaneous spending. Try to eliminate a portion of these expenses. Once you track them you will realize you are spending more than you thought. Re-define your financial goals Ask yourself where you see yourself in five, 10 or 15 years. See if it is possible to redefine your goals. You may be able to retire earlier or pay for college. Set goals to achieve the things you want. Get help Professional advice about investment losses, financial products, insurance coverage and other important issues will help you make the right choices for your current financial situation.




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Posted by Sandi Boucini & Michelle Granger on 2/24/2016

The temperature is dropping and the heating bills are going up. Some quick and easy tips will have you saving money this winter on home heating bills. 1. Set your thermostat back. For every degree you set your thermostat back over eight hours, you’ll save about 1 percent on your heating bill each year. 2. Use a space heater. If you spend most of your time in one area of your home it is less expensive to use a space heater than turn up the heat in your entire home. 3. Open blinds during the day to let sun in. At dusk, close them to trap heat. 4. Inspect weather stripping around exterior doors. Replace old, cracked, or missing stripping. 5. If heat is escaping at your doors, attach a sweep to the bottom of the doors. Sweeps are flexible plastic strips that are easily screwed to door bottoms, and keep cold air out from below. 6. Fill gaps around windows with interior and exterior caulking. If cold air is coming in around the sashes, install appropriate weather stripping.




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