3 Hidden Costs that a Homeowner Should Be Aware Of

There’s more than meets the eye when it comes to switching over from a renter to being a homeowner. Owning your home means much more than being approved for a home loan and paying off the monthly payments as the years go by.


Simply put, there are other costs that are involved in being a homeowner, and here are 3 hidden costs associated with home ownership:

#1: Closing Costs on your Loan

Closing can literally amount to thousands of dollars on your home loan when it is finally settled, and the amount is usually negotiated while differing from state to state. Sometimes the buyer may have to come up with the cash or the seller will absorb the costs.

#2: Home Maintenance & Repairs

Almost every homeowner is aware of the fact that costs exists, and vary in amounts, depending on whether you buy a home in prime condition or which needs a bit of repair. Don’t be surprised if you have to deal with repairs almost every other year. So, it’s a good idea to keep some money aside for repairs in order to keep your house well-maintained.

#3: Property Taxes

Counties, municipalities and school districts all depend on property taxes paid by homeowners. It is usually about 1.38 percent of the value of the home at an average in the United States. Therefore, it’s a good idea to know how much your home will cost in terms of property taxes and set aside money for that very reason.

Tips to Selling Your Home with No Expert Assistance

When a home is on sale, the usual process is to hire a realtor and pay him a commission to sell your home at a good price. But what if you don’t want to pay that commission and do it all by yourself?


With the possibility of not being able to find any good buyers, there is always the likelihood that you might get frustrated and give up.

However, if you play your cards right, you can easily sell your with no need of expert assistance. So here are 3 tips that will help you do so:

#1: A Realistic Price is advisable

Don’t make a price based on what you feel your home is worth but actually come up with a number based on market fluctuations along with the prices of similar homes in your neighborhood. Also be aware of the terms of sale.

#2: Prepare the necessary documentation

Without a doubt, you have to put together several legal documents when you are selling your home. Some of them include the purchase contract, seller disclosures, loan application and property profile and so on and so forth.

#3: Conduct research on prospective Buyers

Prospective buyers are those who can afford your home, and if you know your buyer and information pertaining to his finances such as credit standing, job security, debts, liabilities and salary, you’ll also know how to negotiate to your advantage when you show them your home.

#4:  Don’t move out

No matter what you do, don’t move out of the home that you’re trying to sell. Firstly, it will tell the buyers that you need to close the sale as soon as possible. Since the house would be empty, much of it would look empty and unappealing.

3 Ways to Profit from every Meeting with a Seller

A meeting with a seller means taking time out of your busy schedule, from your real estate business, to discussing the possibilities of being able to make a sale for a client. Of course, this doesn’t happen all the time, since there are times when the property that is being discussed is a match for your business.


So how do you profit from such a meeting?

Here are 3 ways by which you can profit from every meeting with a seller:

#1: Use your Contacts

It doesn’t matter if you won’t be able to profit directly from this meeting especially if it isn’t a fit for your business. How you can indirectly profit from it is by referring the client to someone in your network who can actually help. In good time, they will return the favor with buyers if certain deals fall through.

#2: Collect Information on Local Market Conditions

Again, if you can’t seem to make a profit from the meeting, you can gain valuable information and perspective on local market conditions by asking question such as how long properties are staying on the market, the types of properties that are in demand or not, what rental and resale prices are and the seller’s opinion about the market.

#3: Spend some time thinking how you can improve meetings with clients

After every meeting with a client, make it a point to review what went well with the meeting and what didn’t. Also, come up with a plan as to what you will do differently the next time around. Not only will this build your reputation but your conversion rate should improve over time.


3 Benefits to Using WordPress For Your Real Estate Web Marketing Efforts

If there was any content management system made for real estate, this would be WordPress, given how easy it is to use, its reach and the flexibility of the system itself.

So, it should come as no surprise why a number of real estate agents are using WordPress for their web marketing efforts.

And apart from the benefits mentioned above, here are 3 other benefits that real estate marketers will find when using WordPress:

#1: Reduce Expenditure on Hosting

Some small businesses owners spend as much as $300 per month to have their site hosted when with WordPress this can really inexpensive. In fact, all it takes is about $7 per month with BlueHost or HostGator and which will work for most real estate investors.

#2: No Website Maintenance Fees

Apart from paying a hefty sum to host a website, one will also have to pay just as much if they want something edited on that website. Sometimes, this amounts to almost $100 per edit. However, with WordPress, it’s easy to make changes on your own and which is where you can save a good amount of money. For other tasks that might not be so easy, one can always google for information over the internet.

#3: Inexpensive Design

Since there are a number of inexpensive designs when it comes to WordPress templates and pertinent to real estate itself, you don’t have to pay a designer a few thousands to get that template for your website either. Since there are so many templates available, you can easily change the overall look of the WordPress site you have in just a few mouse click.

Embellishing Lawns and Patios

Written by Wicker Paradise

Sometimes small changes are effective in bringing significant changes to the overall look of a property. If you intend to place your home in the housing market and are looking to attract potential buyers, you might begin by providing a good first impression. If your lawn or garden is found at the front of your home, you might want to start with a revamping of your outdoor spaces. If you are seeking ideas to do so, you might want to consider the tips below.

New Furniture

In order to improve the first impression of your lawn, you might want to invest in some outside wicker furniture. These will instantly provide a more appealing and cozy feel to the outdoors. The advantage of this sort of staging is that you would be able to take the furniture along with you when moving out. The idea is to attract buyers by making them notice the full potential of your lawn as an outdoor lounge.

Cushion Replacement

If you already own outdoor furniture, a small change might be effective in providing a better impression. For instance going for new lawn furniture cushions might instantly make your garden look more lively. The cushions can either be chosen in vibrant colors such as yellow and orange or you might opt for timeless elegance with colors such as beige or brown. These new cushions will contribute to making your outdoors look new and modern.

Wicker Paradise is a family-owned business specializing in wicker furniture for various applications including indoor wicker chairs.

Steps to Becoming a Technical Investor

By definition, a technical investor is an investor who has the ability to understand and carry out instructions when it comes to the legal side of real estate documentation and conveyancing.

Simply put, they have the knowledge and skills to not only draft their own contracts but also carry out legal research, title searches and drafting deeds along with handling how they close a deal as well.

While this might seem intimidating, you have to take it slow, since this has to be learned in parts which involves learning key words and phrases as well as the structure of certain documents. Next, you have to learn how to use these documents as well by observing others using them. Finally, you have to ask a number of questions in order to understand them better, from the experts.

While you will start out with documents such as assignment contracts, there are others such as Options to Buy or Deeds that might be advanced. Some of these types include Bill of Sale, Assignment Contract, Deeds and Leases and Licenses.

Even though lawyers and title companies can help you with these documents, you can actually save a bit of money in create these documents on your own. Deeds, in particular, are simple to create even though they may not seem that way and yet without a doubt, can turn out to be a powerful document. Also, if legal words confuse, it’s a good idea to purchase a legal dictionary that will help simplify legalese.

Finally, it’s always best to close deals on your own especially if they’re not much when it comes to the money.

All this learning will help you become a technical investor and in turn will help you become an elite investor in the future.

New Homes in Lawton

Written by The Oaks Development Company

Owning your a home can constitute of several advantages. For instance, you would no longer need to pay monthly rents and you would be able to carry out renovation work and changes with the proper permits. Moreover, the house can be resold after several years at a higher rate than what you originally paid for. There are various homes Lawton opportunities on the market. The following considerations might be given a thought if you are interested in houses in Lawton OK.


If you are parents to younger kids, education the question of education would come first once you have decided to relocate. The city of Lawton proposes several public and elementary schools. The area also operates two prekindergarten centers, 24 elementary schools, four middle schools and three high schools. For higher studies, there is an arts and science academy which offer four-year programs. Over fifty degree programs are also offered by the Cameron University.


Lawton constitutes of three major hospitals. The Comanche County Memorial is the largest one in the region. The other hospitals are the Lawton Indian Hospital and the Southwestern Medical Center. These hospitals employs about 150 and 250 physicians each.


The area of Lawton is host to numerous annual attractions. One of them is the Prince of Peace Passion play. This is the longest running Easter play in the USA. Every year, in May, the city also hosts the Arts for All Festival which consists of various art competitions and procures some great live entertainment.

The Oaks Development Company advice and solutions for people seeking to acquire new homes Lawton.

Furniture For a New Home

Written by Wicker Paradise

After the acquisition of a new home or if you are seeking to provide a good impression of your home to potential acquirers, you could consider a total furniture makeover.


If your patio is located at the front of your house, chances are that most of your guests will enter through the patio. Changing the look of your patio will provide a good impression right from the moment that your guests arrive to your place. You could first start by buying a new set of outdoor furniture. Tropical furniture such as those made up of wicker are often preferred for a touch of elegance. These types of furniture are timeless and never get out of date. They are also made to resist outside factors such as the rain and wind. The robustness and design of wicker furniture make them a popular choice for outdoor furnishing.


You can procure a classic elegant look for your living room with indoor rattan furniture. These furniture look particularly cozy when topped with some vibrant colored cushions. For a more modern twist, the cushions can be chosen in colors such as green or purple. Square and linear design patterns are also quite trendy. Alternatively, a leather couch can also be added to the living room. If your dining room is adjacent to your living room, you could stretch your decoration to your dining room by integrating the same types of designs and colors. This would ensure uniformity in your overall decor.

Wicker Paradise specializes in wicker and rattan furniture set for indoor and outdoor use.

3 Online Marketing Aspects to Consider As a Real Estate Investor

The growing importance of using online marketing as a real estate investor cannot be understated. Just relying on local newspaper classified ads is probably the most foolish thing to do in a digital world.

Of course, most people think that if you have a website of your own, that should be enough. However, this isn’t true. Things are changing rapidly over the internet such as social media sites or even Google’s algorithms by which affects what people find when they enter certain keywords.

It can all get too much to keep up with! However, one just has to follow certain guidelines to make their online marketing a success.

That said, here are strategies for three key aspects of your online marketing efforts:

#1: Website

When launching a website, make sure that you are easy to reach if people are interested in purchasing your product or service, the website itself is easy to navigate and which also involves adding quality content and making search engine optimization a priority.

#2: Social Media

When it comes to social media, do NOT hard sell but use these platforms to build meaningful relationships. If you aggressively push your product, it will only encourage people to stay away from your business and your social media page. Just remember that social media is about your fans and not about you or your business.

#3: Classified Site to List Properties

Craigslist is the best classified site to list properties but there are a number of others as well. In particular, it’s a good idea to use local sites especially when it comes to real estate. As for listing a property, make sure you add pertinent contact information, location, price and most of all, keep the ad short and simple enough to read.

4 Tips to Help You Choose the Right Remodeling Contractor

Picking a remodeling contractor can be quite a task these days since you might not know whether the person’s credentials are what you need for the remodeling task.

Keeping this in mind, here are 4 tips that can help you choose the right remodeling contractor:

#1: Don’t rely on the Better Business Bureau

Just because the Better Business Bureau does not have any complaints against the contractor, that does mean you’ve found the right contractor. It only means that they don’t have a file on the contractor in question.

In fact, the Better Business Bureau has been known to make a mess of reporting offending contractors. So, don’t rely on them.

#2: Remodeling it yourself will not save you money

It’s fine if you need to carry out simple remodeling tasks. For this, you can spend the weekend. However, larger and more complicated projects if done by inexperienced personnel can turn out to be a money pit. This is because you will have to call a professional to redo the task after it has been messed up.

#3: Avoid High-Pressure Salesmen

Don’t pick a contractor because of pressure from salesmen. If they persist, tell them to stop doing so and if necessary, look for some other contractor. Any choice made from pressure will result in a bad remodeling job. For that matter, any qualified professional does not need to apply pressure for work.

#4: Listening to unqualified people

Taking advice from unqualified people is a big mistake which usually ends up in a total mess. Just because people have an opinion about how you go about remodeling your home that doesn’t mean you have to listen to them. It will definitely cost you.

3 Myths That Are Forcing Real Estate Investors to Reduce Commissions

Low consumer confidence and declining commissions is a trend that continues to plague real estate investors.

In trying to understand why this trend is on the rise, there are a few myths that are being perpetuated and as a result, forcing real estate investors to reduce their commissions as well.

Still, here are 3 myths why you shouldn’t reduce commissions:

#1: Large Commissions Repel Clients

This is hardly true at all. Even if real estate agents fear being seen as the most expensive agent, when you position yourself correctly, it will only attract a better list of clientele. Before you think that your charges will repel clients, price, is, in fact, a psychological trigger. In other words, costlier is better!

#2: Only strong closers make the big bucks

Unlike what you would have thought, strong closers are usually poor marketers. Overcoming objections at the end isn’t the way to sell to your prospective customers but that should be dealt with from the time you touch base with them. It should done in such a manner that buying what you have on offer should seem the logical thing to do. In this way, closing will be easy and natural instead of being forced.

#3: A Good Listing Presentation is Necessary

A listing presentation only showcases agents as a commodity. What it also tells the customer is that you’re a person of low influence and status. If you turn up to your customer’s home with a good listing presentation but trying to gain their approval. This, by itself, will reveal the above truth to the customer, giving them a bad impression right from the start.

Why the Cayman Islands Represent a Prime Investment Opportunity

The Cayman Islands offers several advantages to international and local investors.

The surge of International banking, and the tax-free income possibilities, are two major driving forces behind the growth of the Cayman Islands. What was once a humble fishing village has grown to a developed nation with one of the largest banking industries in the world.

Today, Grand Cayman offers residents and travelers all of the amenities they’ve come to expect back home. That’s got investors, especially those from overseas, considering the Cayman Islands as a major source of income. Deciding how to invest your money is something everyone goes through, but once you’ve assessed your needs there is really no reason not to move on a deal.

Rental Income

Grand Cayman, and the Cayman Islands, are hot tourist spots. They offer a lifestyle not unlike Miami’s thriving beaches, complete with every modern amenity tourists expect from a five-star experience. Many of these tourists seek out Grand Cayman Condo rentals. Homes are usually too expensive for a small group to rent, and condos offer the same beach-side real estate travelers want. Plus, it’s your personal vacation home when it’s not in use, and the income you make on that property is 100% tax free!

See For Yourself

Grand Cayman has some of the most beautiful homes in the world, occupying some of the finest land you can find. Cayman Islands residential leasing also offers a temporary stay for those who want to explore the island further, or those on the island for business. But don’t be surprised if your short stay in Grand Cayman becomes a permanent one.

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REM Services offers Cayman property listing for landlords, and specializes in property management. REM Services helps investors find and acquire investment properties for the purposes of tax-free rental income.

4 Lessons to Learn from Experienced Investors

Most people would do things differently if they were given a second chance to invest again. If known, it would save a lot of time and money spent by rookie investors.

For this, here are 4 lessons that you can learn from experienced investors:

#1: Motivation of the Seller Matters More

It’s never about the property’s condition or location. Instead, these factors are always secondary to the motivation of the seller. In the situation where the seller is not motivated to sell, it doesn’t matter where the property is located or its condition. What’s clear is that you won’t get a good sale.

#2: If You Don’t Ask, You Won’t Get

A number of real estate investors don’t make an offer for the fear that they will get rejected by prospective sellers. This can cost them thousands of dollars since they are of the opinion that a seller won’t accept an offer hands-down.

#3: Rehab properties aren’t for Everyone

Before you think of purchasing rehab properties, it’s a good idea to do your research. For that matter, most experienced investors know that this type of activity takes up too much energy to complete, too much money to invest in as well as too much time to turn when they’re sold. This poses as too much risk for investors and one that you shouldn’t think of, not unless your investing business.

#4: Change the Way You Think About Money

Sometimes, your own self-limiting thoughts about money can work against you. Some people have experienced doubt when it comes to selling property that they buy because of their own beliefs. In this case, the inability to believe that a lot of money can be made easily from so little effort.

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Southern Realty Inc.