Helpful Tips to Keep Your Pool Looking Good!

Helpful Tips to Keep Your Pool Looking Good!

Pool season is among us in North Texas!

Here are some helpful tips to keep your pool looking good by our friend Trey Bandy with Aloha Pools located in Frisco, TX.

•First and most important is to adjust your pump run time to make sure your pool is circulating the water in the pool enough. General rule is 1 hour for every 10 degrees of air temperature. You can do 8 hours minimum but 9 to 10 preferable.

•Equally as important is to clean or have cleaned the pool filter. It is the most important piece of equipment on your pool. If dirty, pool will not circulate or filter with maximum efficiency.

•Test your water weekly at a minimum. Test strips are just fine but a monthly trip to Leslies with a water sample is a good thing to do for a more accurate check.

•Keep chemicals in the pool and properly balanced. Water quality, pool finish, and comfort depend on this. Don’t just rely on tabs, give it a good weekly or bi-weekly shock if being used frequently. A good phosphate remover is a great idea to add during spring. Phosphates are what algae feed on.

•Keep clean! Brush weekly and net frequently. If a high level of dirt and or debris is present on the bottom you need to vacuum out.

If you just want to relax and enjoy your pool without the hassle of doing all the work yourself it may be beneficial to call a pool management service to manage the pool so you don’t have to!

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Buying a Home in 2017? The Earlier the Better!

Buying a Home in 2017?  The Earlier the Better!

Did you make any New Year’s Resolutions this year? Perhaps to exercise more, eat better, etc.? Or, did you decide this is the year you purchase that home you always wanted? If this is the case, you may not want to put it off but take the plunge sooner rather than later. If you are looking to downsize, upsize, relocate or you are a first time home buyer, the current economic outlook of 2017 may push you over the fence.

So we ended 2016 in better economic shape than in previous years. Little impact was felt even with the rise in mortgage rates. This produces optimism around the housing market especially here in North Texas and areas such as Frisco, Plano, Prosper, Celina and McKinney. What creates this confidence is the low unemployment rates which is at its lowest since August of 2007 and an increase in consumer confidence. Many major markets around the country have stabilized or recovered and stock market is reaching all-time highs. In North Texas, we have seen our home values increase and many companies such as Toyota relocating their headquarters here. Look at this as a recipe for the perfect time to buy and/or sell a home.

Buy sooner rather than later! It is suggested to get an early start. January and February have generally been slower months for sales as the weather is cold and holidays are ending. As a buyer you may find less competition with other buyers during this time. In North Texas, we have been seeing the “Spring Market” getting earlier and earlier- time is of the essence! Need another reason? Mortgage rates are likely to move up as the year progresses so it is important to lock down your rate!

Want more information regarding your home search? Contact the Stacey Feltman Group today at
214-356-8368. We can also connect you with a lender so you can get pre-approved and lock in your rate today!

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Make Your Offer Stand Out!

make your offer stand out

The spring market is just around the corner in North Texas! This year many people are anxious about buying a new home especially before current rates increase and as rent prices creep even higher. This is predicted to lead to even more competition for homes. You need to make sure that your contract will stand out and get accepted.
One thing to keep in mind when in a multiple offer situation is to consider what is important to the seller and accommodate them as much as possible. This will give them fewer objections. If you ask for too many concessions they will likely go with another offer. Price is a huge key but not the only thing to consider.

Here are some things you can keep in mind when submitting an offer:

1.Closing date- consider what the seller’s time frame is. Do they have to move out quickly and need a faster closing or are they waiting on a new home to be build and need more time to vacate? If the sellers need more time, a Seller’s Temporary Leaseback will be negotiated.

2.Closing Costs- Don’t get too greedy especially in a multiple offer situation. If you are low on cash, it is okay to ask but be prepared to pay asking price or over asking price in order to get help with these funds.

3.Inclusions- If certain items have been excluded from the sale, it is best not to ask for them. For instance, if the media room equipment is excluded don’t rock the boat by asking for them.

4.Write a personal letter- the letter should let the sellers know how much you want their home and what it would mean to raise a family there. Pull at their heart strings and make sure there is not anything negative written.

5.Earnest Money- this deposit shows how serious you are about buying the home. Bigger is always better and it shows you have the funds to move forward.

6.Financing- Get Pre-Approved by an actual loan underwriter by submitting paystubs and bank statements. This verification can make your offer much stronger.

7.Inspections- No home is perfect, inspections are always going to have some things listed in their reports even if minor. Have the mindset going into an inspection that you are only wanting to find out if there are any major systems in the home that needs attention. Do not use it to get a laundry list of things you want the seller to fix. Sellers want to get out as quickly and cheaply as possible. If there are any repairs, many sellers would rather give money at settlement to cover it so you can have it done to your own standards.

When buying a home it is important that you have an expert negotiator on your side! Contact the Stacey Feltman Group, we can help make your Realty dreams a Reality!

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Paying Too Much for Property Tax?

property taxes

PROPERTY TAXES—Do you agree or do you want to appeal?

Property taxes are based on how much the appraisal district determines your home is worth. Taxes are calculated using the local tax rate, the assessed value of the home and possible exemptions for property owners (homestead, disabled vets or seniors who are 65 or older).

If you believe the value of your property has been appraised too high, an appeal may be filed with the taxing authority by May 31, or by the 30th day after the notice of the appraised value is delivered.

For more information on the value of your home, property taxes, or the appeal process, contact Stacey Feltman Group, Ebby Halliday Realtors at 214-356-8368 or visit us at www.staceyfeltmangroup.com.

The one time you might prefer your home to be worth less is when it’s time to pay property taxes.

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Is Your Home Prepared for Holiday Guests?

family small holiday

If you are having family and/or friends staying with you over the holidays here are some helpful tips to prepare your home.

Don’t start cleaning out junk drawers and closets the day before guest arrive, that can wait until after! Do de-clutter the guest rooms and public areas. Remove anything unnecessary from countertops, coffee tables, and ottomans; if it’s out of sight, keep it out of mind for now.
If you are running short on time, bag up the clutter and store it in trunks, out of the way closets then you can sort and arrange after the Holidays.

If your guests have small children, ask them to bring hardware to keep their small ones safe such as baby gates and cabinet locks. You will need to be sure to store toxic cleaners and medicines to higher cabinets.

Make sure all your fire alarms are working and have fresh batteries. Also, purchase a fire extinguisher if you don’t already have one.

Light your entranceway to ensure guests don’t trip on their way to the door. You may want to put motion activated lights in hallways and bathrooms to ensure safe passage.

Make sure your kitchen is free from clutter and inviting for guest so sit and talk. The kitchen is always command central during the Holidays!

If you have a guest room, make sure it is free from clutter and has plenty of room for luggage.

Restock your bathrooms with toilet paper and towels. Place toiletries on open shelves so guests can locate them easily. If you don’t have shelves, open baskets will work just fine. Don’t forget to place a plunger next to each toilet to avoid any embarrassments.

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Get Your Finances in Shape in the New Year!

Saving money for a house

Are you shopping for a new house this holiday season? Then a good credit score is the best gift you can receive!

One of the things you will need to have before you start looking for your new dream home is the mortgage pre-approval. You may want to know what your credit score is before you do. You can check those free websites to get your credit score and start from there. It is a good idea to check regularly to spot any potential problems.

Another way to spruce up your credit is to make early payments to any credit cards or loans to cut down the interest on your debt. It will also reduce the chances that you will overspend on holiday gifts.

While an 850 credit score is extremely rare, you still need to understand the five factors that determine a credit sore and the way it is measured to help your financial future. The five factors include: Payment History (35%) length of credit history (15%), new accounts and inquiries (10%), and diversification (10%).

Do you have a six month emergency fund? Before considering buying a new home you may want to have six months of income to shelter you from events such as unemployment, increased cost of living, medical emergencies, home or auto damage, etc.

Some other things that can help you save money include selling items you no longer use, need or want on Ebay, Craigslist, etc. for extra cash. You can use the extra cash for your emergency fund, pay off a debt or for upcoming moving expenses. Coupons can be helpful as well, they are like free money! Those nickels and dimes you save by using them can add up fast!

Debt calculators can be helpful to calculate how much time and money it will take to pay off your debt and help keep you on track. You can find free ones on the web.

Sign up for free credit monitoring with websites such as CreditKarma.com or with any paid services to monitor any suspicious activity or changes in your credit report.

If you are looking to buy a house, you should gather all your pre-approval information and figures to speed up the process. You will need information such as your driver’s license, SSN, proof of assets and the exact down payment amount you can afford.

Looking for a lender for an upcoming home purchase? Contact the Stacey Feltman Group for great referrals!

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Frisco, TX Loves Dogs!

Frisco Pets

The City of Frisco is as dog friendly as they come! There are many places that cater to your furry friends from pet sitters, groomers, doggie daycare to dog parks!

Ruff Range Dog Park in Frisco
This park is located at the SW corner of B.F Phillips Community Park on 3335 4th Army Memorial Rd. it provides 2.5 acres of open space including hills, terrain, trees, pavilions and benches for dogs and their owners. There is also an area for smaller dogs weighing 25lbs or less. Ruff Range is a collaborative partnership with Frisco’s Park and Recreation board and the Frisco Community Development Corporation and Frisco Dog Park, Inc., a local organization.
Click here for website

Are you traveling to Frisco,TX with your pet?
There are several hotels in Frisco that accommodate your furry friends!

The Aloft Frisco
Welcomes 3 pets under 40lbs for no additional fee and all rooms are pet friendly!
Visit their website

The Sheraton Stonebriar Hotel
Welcomes 2 dogs under 40lbs for no additional fee.
Visit their website

Westin Stonebriar
Welcomes one dog under 40lbs for no additional fee.
Visit their website

Embassy Suites Frisco Convention Center & Spa
Welcomes three pets under 75 lbs for an additional fee of $75 per stay and all rooms are pet friendly.
Visit their website

Looking for special treats for your dog?

Check out Three Dog Bakery in Little Elm/Frisco! Located in the Village at Eldorado on the SE corner of Eldorado Pkwy and FM 423. According to YELP, this place offers great customer service, free samples for the doggies and a wide variety of treats and gifts for dogs and dog lovers. This time of year there are lots of special holiday treats!
Visit their website

For more information on dog friendly places and services in the Frisco area visit
http://www.dogster.com/local/TX/Frisco or visit Yelp to see reviews of the many dog/pet related businesses in the area.

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Don’t Sell Your Home By Owner! You are Risk!

Legal risk fsbo

Choosing to sell with a professional rather than on your own makes sense for a variety of reasons:
A Realtor has access to market data about recent sales and other homes on the market that can be used to price your home appropriately. Studies show that homes priced right when they’re first listed sell more quickly and for a higher price than those that linger on the market.

A Realtor can show your home when you aren’t available, can respond to inquiries from potential buyers and their agents, and can get valuable feedback from visitors – all things that save you time.
A Realtor can look at your home objectively and suggest ways to improve its appearance – by staging and minor repairs – so it appeals to more buyers.

Buyers typically prefer to look at a home without the seller present so they can feel more comfortable exploring the rooms and visualizing themselves in the property. At an FSBO sale, the seller must be present.

A Realtor can screen visitors to your home, which provides a measure of safety that FSBO sellers don’t have. In addition, by checking to see if the buyers are legitimate and can afford to purchase your home, a Realtor can help you avoid wasting time showing your home to unrealistic buyers.

Realtors have professional marketing expertise, contacts with other Realtors who work with buyers, and the support of a brokerage that can market your home more widely than you can as an individual.

A Realtor can help you negotiate a contract that not only garners you an appropriate price for your home, but that meets your needs for a settlement date and perhaps includes a period when you rent back your home from your buyer. In addition, a Realtor can make sure your contract is in compliance with all local regulations.

FSBO Dangers
Most buyers today work with a buyers’ agent to represent their interests. If you choose to sell your home on your own, you’ll be negotiating with a professional and relying on your own skill to finalize a contract. Not only could you end up selling your home for less money, you could leave yourself open to potential legal problems unless you have the contract vetted by an experienced real estate attorney. FSBO transactions can be successful, of course, but 90 percent of homeowners prefer to work with a professional rather than risk an unsatisfactory home selling experience.

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Phase 3 in Newman Village in Frisco, Texas is Now Selling!

Newman village

About Newman Village
This 263 acre master-planned community features a very unique blend of homes, beautiful landscaping, mature trees, walking paths and much more! If you are looking for a family oriented community this is it! Located just off the Dallas North Tollway you have easy access to DFW airport, malls and lots of entertainment. This community also boasts unique works of art in the public spaces throughout.

New Phase
There are 77 homes available in this final phase. The lots range in size and start in the high $500s. They are expected to go fast! Darling homes will offer several different floor plans. Other builders will include Belclaire Homes, Ron Davis Custom Homes and Reynolds Signature Homes. Many of the homes in this new phase will provide homeowners with privacy and lots of beautiful outdoor space. These lots are selling fast! Please contact the Stacey Feltman Group so we may help you build your dream home today!

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Millennials and Buying a House

Millennials

Studies have shown that many Millennials are not looking to purchase a home simply because many believe they will not qualify for a mortgage due to their credit scores. Therefore they don’t even try. They believe they need a very good credit score of over 780.

Actually, the FICO score on closed loans is much lower and has been dropping over the last several months. As recently as October the credit score requirements has dropped to 722.

Bottom line, if you are a Millennial and considering purchasing a home get advice from a reputable real estate agent and mortgage professional.

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