August 2013

Found 8 blog entries for August 2013.

Summer seems to be slipping away quickly. And, while you’ve hosted many barbecues on your back deck, you might not of had time to properly take care of it. August is the perfect month to conduct a deck inspection and make any repairs before it comes time to prepare it for winter. Below are tips on what issues to keep an eye out for and how to fix them.

Inspect The Deck

It’s important to do a thorough inspection of your deck every summer. You don’t want to step through a rotted board or have a railing break away from under you. Be sure to pay extra attention to places close to the ground or near water sources, such as under planters and next to the water spigot.

Check For Rot

Take a screwdriver and poke areas of the deck that look like they could be

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Summer always brings with it a hard choice: Do you turn down the thermostat to stay cool and resign yourself to high power bills? Or, do you sweat it out to save some dough? If you’ve been struggling with this dilemma, don’t fret. With a programmable thermostat, you can beat the heat and save money, too! 

Programmable thermostats are easy to install and can save you over $100 a year. The key is that they have different temperature settings for certain times of the day. And, the latest models can be self-installed, are easy to program and can be controlled over the Internet. 

Save Energy

This is obviously the biggest perk. Not only are you helping the environment, you’re also helping your monthly budget. You can preset the thermostat to adjust the

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If you are looking to renovate your Santa Cruz home before selling, what are some of the luxurious home features you can add that will really make the home special? These features will not only make your home more impressive, they will also improve your quality of life as you spend time in the home. Another advantage of having these special features in your home is that they will make the property more attractive to buyers when you eventually resell. 

Walk In Closet

A walk in closet is a dream-come-true for any fashionista, with enough space for clothing, accessories and dozens of pairs of shoes. This luxurious home feature can give you much more space to organize your belongings and make your home feel much more spacious. When you are selling the

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Here’s a tricky question that has been on the mind of many Santa Cruz home owners – should you use any spare cash that you have to pay off the mortgage on your home as quickly as possible or would it be a better plan to invest your money? This is one of the most hotly debated questions in the world of personal finance and either option has been defended with plenty of reasons from experts. 

The truth is that there are a lot of considerations to take in mind when you are thinking of whether you should invest or pay off your mortgage. On the one hand, paying off your home as soon as possible will mean that you save thousands of dollars on interest over the length of the loan and that you will have the satisfaction and security of finally fully owning

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August means it’s time to get your children ready for school once more. Picking out backpacks, going clothes shopping and finding all the right school supplies can be hectic enough. However, when you’ve moved and your children have to start all over in a new district, there’s even more to worry about!

Summer fun can make the sunny months fly by. It’s easy to forget that with the beginning of school comes excitement and anxiety for your little ones -- especially if they’re starting out somewhere new. So help them get adjusted with the back-to-a-new-school strategies below.

Explain why you’ll be moving.
Whether you’re moving states or just school districts, it’s best to give your children as much notice as possible and explain to them the reason for the

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Is it the right time for you? Maybe you have been thinking of buying a Santa Cruz property, but you are not sure if you are ready yet to make the commitment. Buying your first home is a major life decision and it will require a lot of thought before you proceed.

How do you know when you are ready to make your home purchase? Here are a few things to keep in mind that will help you determine whether it’s time to buy your first home.

Do You Have Control Over Your Finances?

You keep a budget and you responsibly spend less than you earn. You pay off your credit card in full every month. You know where your money is coming from and where it goes. If you feel like you have a handle on your financial life and you have strong money management skills, you

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When you buy a Santa Cruz home, it is your space to live in and enjoy and you can renovate and redecorate in order to improve your surroundings in any way that you choose. One of the ways that you can enhance your enjoyment of the property as well as add to the value of the home is to create an outdoor dining space. On a beautiful summer day, what could be nicer than having a place where friends and family can gather and enjoy a few drinks, barbecue up some tasty food and breathe the fresh air?

Here are some tips to keep in mind when you are adding an outdoor dining space to your home:

Choose the right location. You want your backyard dining area to be peaceful, quiet and private, so find the best spot on your yard that will be screened from view

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When you first bought your home, it had just enough room for you, your spouse and perhaps a couple of children. However, one thing has lead to another and you have ended up having three little ones (although some days it feels like three dozen). Also, you have been considering moving your ailing mother in with you so that she doesn’t have to live in a home. You are quickly running out of space for everyone and the house is starting to feel a bit cramped. Should you build a house extension, or sell the home and move to a larger Santa Cruz property?

There are a number of advantages to each option, so here are a few things to consider when deciding whether to expand the house you have or move to a new one.

Is Extending the House Possible?

Of course,

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