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Six Home Buying Tips That Every Buyer Needs to Know

Six Home Buying Tips That Every Buyer Needs to Know

Buying a home can be scary. There is a lot of money at stake and you are staking your reputation on your ability to make payments on that home. A simple mistake or bad choice can costs thousands of dollars in the long, or even the short run. After many mistakes that I have made, here is a list of the six tips that I think are most important to a new homebuyer

1. Know what you are looking for

Too often people start looking for a home without a really good idea of exactly what they want. They start to discover what they are looking for as they search for a home, but often end up purchasing a home that they didn’t necessarily want under the guise that “it is pretty nice”.

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A few things to think about are the number of bathrooms, a family room, the size of the kitchen, the size of the yard, and really the size of every single room. You can find what you are looking for by looking online at what is available. There are many for sale by owner sites that you can go on to look at homes for free in this stage.

2. Know your landscaping

A lot of people purchase a home because they are sold by the beautiful landscaping that has been done. They don’t realize that in order for the home to be landscaped that beautifully, it likely has had a lot of work put into it. After owning the home for a year or so, the landscaping starts to deteriorate. The grass dies, flowers don’t get planted, and weeds takeover.

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If the home has good landscaping, take time to figure out how much would need to be done to maintain that landscape.

3. Don’t settle

This home is where you will spend a majority of your time for the next few years at least. Many homebuyers get frustrated while looking and assume that they just need to settle for something less. While this is true for some people with high expectations, oftentimes you can get nearly exactly what you want if you wait. There are thousands of homes going on the market every single day and they all are a little different. Take your time and you will likely find one that excites you.

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4. Look in the outskirts

The outskirts of most cities are much cheaper than the main city. Many people buy an old, small home in the city but don’t ever realize that 15 minutes outside of the city there is a nicer, newer home. If you are willing to drive a little further for work, school, etc. then a home just outside of the city may be the best option for you.

5. Don’t feel bad making offers

Making offers on homes is the name of the game. If you think a home may have potential, make an offer and test it out. You are not locking yourself in if you make an offer, and you usually have a couple of weeks at least to back out. If you think the home has potential and could see yourself living in it, make the offer. If something better comes along, it is easy to cancel.

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6. Look at utility costs

Many people do not realize that utility costs vary from city to city. Just because your total utility bill was $200 in one city, does not mean you will pay similar expenses in the next city. Oftentimes newer cities have more expensive utilities because they are trying to pay off debts that they took on to build the necessary infrastructure. Your home may also be bigger, meaning utilities will cost more.

While this list is not everything a new homebuyer needs to know, the advice here would have saved me a lot of heartache in many of my home purchases. Good luck!

Featured photo credit: publicdomainpictures.net via publicdomainpictures.net

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Last Updated on December 2, 2019

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

10 Powerful Ways to Stop Worrying and Start Living Today

Plato knew that the body and mind are intimately linked. And in the late 1800s, the Mayo brothers, famous physicians, estimated that over half of all hospital beds are filled with people suffering from frustration, anxiety, worry and despair. Causes of worry are everywhere, in our relationships and our jobs, so it’s key we find ways to take charge of the stress.

In his classic book How to Stop Worrying and Start Living, Dale Carnegie offers tools to ditch excessive worrying that help you make a worry-free environment for your private and professional life.

These are the top 10 tips to grab worry by the horns and wrestle it to the ground:

1. Make Your Decision and Never Look Back

Have you ever made a decision in life only to second-guess it afterwards? Of course you have! It’s hard not to wonder whether you’ve done the right thing and whether there might still be time to take another path.

But keep this in mind: you’ve already made your decision, so act decisively on it and dismiss all your anxiety about it.

Don’t stop to hesitate, to reconsider, or to retrace your steps. Once you’ve chosen a course of action, stick to it and never waver.

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2. Live for Today, Package Things up in “Day-Tight Compartments”

You know that feeling: tossing, turning and worrying over something that happened or something that might, well into the wee hours. To avoid this pointless worrying, you need “day-tight compartments”. Much as a ship has different watertight compartments, your own “day-tight” ones are a way to limit your attention to the present day.

The rule is simple: whatever happened in the past or might happen in the future must not intrude upon today. Everything else has to wait its turn for tomorrow’s box or stay stuck in the past.

3. Embrace the Worst-Case Scenario and Strategize to Offset It

If you’re worried about something, ask yourself: “What’s the worst thing that could happen?” Could you lose your job? Be jailed? Get killed?

Whatever the “worst” might be, it’s probably not so world-ending. You could probably even bounce back from it!

If, for example, you lose your job, you could always find another. Once you accept the worst-case scenario and get thinking about contingency plans, you’ll feel calmer.

4. Put a Lid on Your Worrying

Sometimes we stress endlessly about negative experiences when just walking away from them would serve us far better.

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To make squashing that worry easier, try this strategy, straight from stock traders: it’s called the “stop-loss” order, where shares are bought at a certain price, and then their price development is observed. If things go badly and the share price hits a certain point, they are sold off immediately. This stops the loss from increasing further.

In the same manner, you can put a stop-loss order on things that cause you stress and grief.

5. Fake It ‘Til You Make It – Happiness, That Is

We can’t directly influence how we feel, but we can nudge ourselves to change through how we think and act.

If you’re feeling sad or low, slap a big grin on your face and whistle a chipper tune. You’ll find it impossible to be blue when acting cheerful. But you don’t necessarily need to act outwardly happy; you can simply think happier thoughts instead.

Marcus Aurelius summed it up aptly:

“Our life is what our thoughts make it.”

6. Give for the Joy of Giving

When we perform acts of kindness, we often do so with the expectation of gratitude. But harboring such expectations will probably leave you disappointed.

One person well aware of this fact was the lawyer Samuel Leibowitz. Over the course of his career, Leibowitz saved 78 people from going to the electric chair. Guess how many thanked him? None.

So stop expecting gratitude when you’re kind to someone. Instead, take joy from the act yourself.

7. Dump Envy – Enjoy Being Uniquely You

Your genes are completely unique. Even if someone had the same parents as you, the likelihood of someone identical to you being born is just one in 300,000 billion.

Despite this amazing fact, many of us long to be someone else, thinking the grass is greener on the other side of the fence. But living your life this way is pointless. Embrace your uniqueness and get comfortable with who you really are: How to Be True to Yourself and Live the Life You Want

8. Haters Will Hate — It Just Means You’re Doing It Right

When you’re criticized, it often means you’re accomplishing something noteworthy. In fact, let’s take it a step further and consider this: the more you’re criticized, the more influential and important a person you likely are.

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So the next time somebody talks you down, don’t let it get to you. Take it as a compliment!

9. Chill Out! Learn to Rest Before You Get Tired

Scientists agree that emotions are the most common cause of fatigue. And it works the other way around, too: fatigue produces more worries and negative emotions.

It should be clear, therefore, that you’ve got to relax regularly before you feel tired. Otherwise, worries and fatigue will accumulate on top of each other.

It’s impossible to worry when you are relaxed, and regular rest helps you maintain your ability to work effectively.

10. Get Organized and Enjoy Your Work

There are few greater sources of misery in life than having to work, day in, day out, in a job you despise. It would make sense then that you shouldn’t pick a job you hate, or even just dislike doing.

But say you already have a job. How can you make it more enjoyable and worry-free? One way is to stay organized: a desk full of unanswered mails and memos is sure to breed worries.

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Better yet, rethink about the job you’re doing: What to Do When You Hate Your Job but Want a Successful Career

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Featured photo credit: Tyler Nix via unsplash.com

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