How to Check Local Crime Rates

crimeMoving to a new city can be one of the most stressful events in anyone’s life.  Not only do you need to pack up all of your belongings, you also need to find and purchase a new home.  One of the most questionable aspects of the process can be the type of neighborhood you’re moving to.  Dean Graziosi recommends that anyone who is planning on moving to an area they are not familiar with, conduct some research into the crime statistics in the area.

Reviewing crime statistics for the new city you plan on moving to is a great way to get an idea of the residents and community in that city.  These statistics can also help you choose an area that will better suit you and your family.  If you are planning on opening a new business once you relocate, these statistics can also help you choose an area that will be best suited to the type of business you plan on opening.  If you notice that an area you are interested in buying in has a higher than average crime rate, you may want to entertain other options.

Viewing local crime rates can also help you discover how property values may be affected by higher levels of crime.  By accessing different online websites, you will be able to form an opinion on any neighborhood you may be interested in relocating to.  You will also be able to investigate how many, if any, registered sex offenders may be in the immediate area.  This is an especially important statistic for homebuyers who have young children.  Checking local crime rates is something that every potential homebuyer should do when relocating to a new city, states Dean Graziosi.

Prospective homebuyers who are relocating to a new city can easily access detailed crime maps online that will provide them the number and types of crimes that occurred during any given time.  You can also find out how often these types of crimes occur and which areas are more prone to experiencing certain types of crime.  When you access any of the crime maps available online, you will notice that each map will contain a color key that corresponds to each of the different crimes listed on the map.  This will explain the type and frequency of the crimes committed in that particular city.  This is by far, one of the most easily accessible and important tools that prospective buyers should access before they make a decision on any particular city.

Relocating to a new city can be extremely stressful, especially if you are not familiar with the area.  With the use of these helpful online crime statistic tools, you will be able to make an educated and informed decision on the area you are planning on moving to.

What to Consider Before Buying a Pet

petIf you are a homeowner or are thinking of becoming one soon, there are several factors to consider before buying a pet. Pets are part of the family and are very important to their owners, but they can definitely leave their mark on a home. When it comes time to sell, the prospective or future buyers may not relish the thought of purchasing a property that shows signs of pet ownership. Dean Graziosi understands the importance of pet ownership and has provided some tips below that may help when making the decision to add a furry friend to your family.

Even the smallest of pets can do some real damage. A dog, for example, who is a chewer can destroy various parts of the home. Some dogs chew carpet and flooring and may even destroy trim over time.

Pets also scratch. If you plan to have hardwood flooring in your home, you’ll want to be mindful of this. Floors and walls that are scratched will not appeal to home buyers when your home is placed on the market.

Pets often leave behind odor. Try as you might, it can be very difficult to get rid of that distinctive smell that plagues the homes of many pet owners. This is especially true if you have owned a pet or pets for many years. Some odors will permeate carpet and other areas of the home and can be very difficult to get rid of when selling.

The good news is there are ways to get rid of the odors and marks left behind by pets. As an article posted on MSN Real Estate denotes, there are steps you can take to de-pet your home.

Clean your home frequently. This is a great way to get rid of odors. Also taking care to bathe and brush your dogs on a regular basis will help them take on a friendlier smell. If you have a pet who does not have good potty habits, you may need to find a way to address this problem. The last thing you want is evidence of business frequently being left behind in one or more rooms of your home.

Attend to scratches and other damage caused by pets. Fix up flooring and walls as well as other parts of the home. This is very important because you may wind up being required to make such repairs before selling. Tackling it ahead of time will only help the process go more quickly and smoothly.

If your pet or pets will reside inside the home, know they will leave their mark behind. Even the smallest of creatures can make a very big impact on a home. If you truly want to make the home theirs as well, you’ll need to let them roam and be a part of everyday family life. This will, of course mean you will be responsible for cleaning up after them. Stay on it and you will have less to do when it comes time to sell. You can learn more about this and other real estate topics by visiting Dean Graziosi’s blog.

How To Find A Real Estate Agent You Will Enjoy Working With

agentThe longevity of the relationship between you and your real estate agent depends on your ability to get along and have some type of chemistry.  While that may sounds like the requirements for a romantic relationship, they do tend to be based on the same key principles.  Chemistry and good communication between both parties is extremely important.  Dean Graziosi has shared some help tips to ensure that you find a real estate agent you enjoy working with until your deal is closed.

In today’s technologically driven world, it has become common for many prospective buyers to begin their search online long before they ever contact an agent.  During this time, as a buyer you should ask your friends and family if they have an agent that they enjoyed working with.  It is recommended that you gain some insight into your local market before you contact an agent.  This will allow you to become familiar with what is available and what the asking prices tend to be.  Once you have determined what you want and what you can afford, you should then contact an agent and begin the formal home buying process.

The next step in ensuring that you have found an agent that you can imagine working with for possibly months is to take it slow.  Take some time to get to know them and learn about their experience and history in the real estate market.  This will provide you valuable insight into whether or not you are a good fit for each other.  The process of purchasing a home can be rather emotional for some buyers, which is why you need to trust that your agent will be supportive during the process.  You are also going to be sharing a lot of your financial and personal information with this person, this means that you need to have some level of trust that you are comfortable with.  Rushing in and simply working with the first agent you contact may be a mistake you come to regret later, take your time and choose the agent that is right for you.

Another key to building a successful relationship with your agent is the ability to communicate clearly with each other.  This is perhaps the most important element of the relationship.  You should be upfront from the beginning on what you expect from them and what they can expect from you.  Don’t hesitate to express any concerns you may have during the process.  You will be spending a lot of time together, so the better you are able to work together the more successful your relationship will be.  And when it comes time to part ways, you will be able to part on good terms.

Preparing Your Deck for Summer

deckAs we enter summer, it’s time to start making sure that your deck is in great shape and ready for all of the grilling and gathering that will take place.  No matter what type of material your deck is constructed from, you should perform regular maintenance to ensure that it continues to perform well and last for years, states Dean Graziosi.  Regular maintenance will also help prevent small problems from turning into larger ones which are more expensive to repair.  So, before you fire up the grill for the first time, you should perform some relatively simple steps to prepare your deck for summer.

The first thing that you should do is conduct a complete inspection of your deck.  During this inspection, you should look for any damaged or loose board and railings.  If you notice any areas that may have become loose, you should tighten the nuts and bolts.  If you see any boards that may have become splintered over the winter, now is the time to sand them and reseal them.  You should also take a close look at the base and foundation of the deck looking for any cracks or other noticeable problems.  It is recommended that you perform any repairs before you clean the deck.

Once you have taken care of any repairs that were needed, it is now time to thoroughly clean your deck.  To begin the process you should sweep away any debris that may be lying on the deck and in between the gaps of the boards.  You may think that using a power washer is the way to go, but if you do not understand and know how to operate one, you may actually end up causing more damage.  It is recommended that you use a stiff-bristled brush and garden sprayer.  If your deck is constructed from vinyl materials, you can simply use soap and water to clean it.  However, if your deck is made from wood, you may want to purchase a cleanser that is specifically designed for cleaning wood decks.

The final step in the preparation process is to seal your deck.  This is only necessary if your deck is made from wood.  If you have a vinyl deck, your work is done.  To provide your wood deck with an extra level of protection, you should seal it each year.  It is important that you begin the sealing process when you are sure that you are going to have a few days of nice weather and no rain.  You should thoroughly clean your deck and lightly sand it prior to applying the sealant.  Dean Graziosi states that once you have properly sealed your deck, you are ready to begin enjoying the warm summer weather.

Do You Need More Home Insurance If Your Value Recently Increased

insuranceDean Graziosi states that it has become more common for homeowners to track the value of their home.  This can partly be attributed to the recent housing crisis, in which many homeowners saw the value of their home decrease dramatically.  With this extra knowledge, many homeowners are curious as to whether they should increase their home insurance as their values increase.  If you are one of the homeowners who are wondering the same thing, I thought you would benefit from my experience.

To help you understand how real estate prices and home insurance values relate, I thought it would be a good idea to explain each one.  Real estate prices are primarily established by the demand in that particular market.  The higher the demand is for a home, the higher the price a seller can ask.  The price of the home also depends on a number of other factors, such as, location.  In the real estate market, location is probably the most important factor that goes into deciding the price of a home.  If you are selling a home in an up and coming neighborhood, this popularity can affect the price of a home in that area.  If a home is located in a great school district, this can also be a factor for buyers who have young children.  But just as with all fads, popularity and the demand for homes in a particular area can decrease.  When this happens, the value of homes in that area can decrease dramatically.

When it comes to purchasing home insurance, homeowners typically base the amount of coverage they purchase not on what was paid for the home, but by purchasing sufficient dwelling coverage.  This will allow you to rebuild your home in the case that it experiences damage from fire or other natural disasters that are covered by the policy.  Insurance agents decide on this amount by taking certain information into account.  Some of the factors that are used are known as replacement value of your home.  This includes the size of the house and what it would cost in your area to rebuild the home.

Insurance companies will also take into consideration how big of a risk is presented by the home and the homeowner.  Once again, location is an important factor in deciding the insurance coverage you should purchase on your home.  The area in which your home is located can determine the most common types of threats that your home is vulnerable to.  If your home is located near a forest or a tornado prone area, you will likely end up paying more for insurance than in other areas.

The best way to determine if you should purchase additional home insurance is whether there has been a change in the replacement value of your home.  This can be determined by finding out if there has been an increase in building costs in your area; and if you have made any recent renovations to your home, states Dean Graziosi.  If either of these factors relate to your home, you should consider purchasing additional home coverage.