Thursday, June 27, 2013

An Emily Post Etiquette Guide for Buying a Home

The following is a guest post from Coldwell Banker Vanguard Realty agent, Cara Ameer, in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida.
As in life, there is proper decorum for going about many things, and that also includes buying or selling a home.  When looking at homes as a buyer, there are several unwritten rules to follow that will help ensure a smooth and successful experience, no matter what side of the doorway you are on.
Here our tips for buyer etiquette:
  1.  PREAPPROVAL – Get preapproved PRIOR to shopping for a home.  It can be misleading to look at a home you don’t know you qualify for – even if it is just one that you called off the “for sale” sign to see.  Remember that a seller and their agent took some time to prepare for the showing and have a reasonable expectation that the prospects coming through the home are qualified to purchase it.
  2. SCHEDULING – Work with your agent to develop a REALISTIC schedule of homes to see for the day.  If you are the type that likes to take your time when going through a property, let your agent know upfront so they don’t try to cram too much in at once.  On the other hand, if you are able to move through properties quickly, let them know that too.  Trying to see ten homes in one day is realistic, twenty properties?  Maybe not so much. Be respectful of showing time frames and the process involved to look at homes.  Each home is different – you have homes that are occupied, many with pets, children, sellers that work from home, tenant occupied, etc.  Creating a showing itinerary can be a logistical accomplishment in and of itself for an agent trying to navigate through a plethora of different situations and showing instructions.  Some homes require more advance notice than others, special instructions, etc.  Appointments trigger a flurry of communications between agents and offices trying to coordinate all details. When you go looking at homes, follow the schedule that the agent has – upfront communication and confirming the properties you plan to see before appointments are made can hopefully eliminate confusion about what is or is not going to be seen and allows the agent to plan everything out.  Give the selected properties a chance.  Driving up and deciding to nix it before you go inside is not good protocol.  Remember, there is a seller that took time to prepare for the showing and their home should be given an “at bat.”  You never know until you see it and you may need options, particularly in a low inventory market.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

What To Do BEFORE Moving Into A New Home

Author: Lindsay Listanski of Blue Matter

Woo Hoo! You bought a house!

After the home buying process is officially over, many homeowners start packing up their old residence and preparing for the big move. But before loading all the furniture, clothing and furnishings into a new home, individuals may want to make subtle changes for either aesthetic or safety purposes.

Making these slight alterations before moving in may facilitate the process and help homeowners avoid these changes after they’re already settled.

Friday, June 14, 2013

Carol Hudson Joins MKT Real Estate Group with CB Triad

It is with great excitement that we announce Carol Hudson has joined the MKT Real Estate Group. As many of you know, Carol has served as the broker-in-charge of multiple Coldwell Banker Triad, Realtors offices. What you may not know is that she was a successful agent before management. See why Carol is excited about going back into selling - watch the video with Carol and Jodi Tate, COO of CB Triad.

Send Carol a note at or call her 336-906-9404. She would love to hear from you!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Top Grill Safety Tips for Summer

One of the highlights of summer is definitely gathering around the grill for some good ol’ fun and barbecue. While it's certainly not hard to have a good time with family and friends around, the art of grilling can be quite complicated. To have a great summer, free of grill fires, here are some safety tips from the Hearth, Patio & Barbecue Association that you might find interesting.

1. Watch What You Wear

While it might seem trivial, “Do not wear anything with hanging shirttails, frills, or apron strings” (HPBA) is definitely a tip you want to adhere to. I once completely caught fire when a long and flowy blouse I was wearing ignited from the high flames being projected by a stove I was too close to. So, watch what you wear next to any sort of fire and remember to also always wear flame-retardant grilling mits!

2. Be Prepared

“Use baking soda to control a grease fire and have a fire extinguisher handy.” (HPBA) We’ve all heard the motto, ‘plan for the worst but expect the best,’ and it definitely rings true for a situation like this. To be extra cautious try keeping a small box of baking soda, they usually run for about $1, next to your grill or outdoor stove. Many people’s first instinct would be to put out a fire with water but in a case involving grease or oil water can actually antagonize the fire. Baking soda, sand, or a commercial extinguisher are your safest bets.

3. Turn Everything Off

“When cooking is completed, be sure to turn off the fuel supply and then turn the burners to ‘off’.” (HPBA) It's easy, when eager to get started on enjoying that delicious barbecue, to forget that not only do you need to turn off the burners on the grill, the gas also needs to be cut off. When using a charcoal grill, make sure the charcoal is completely cooled before closing the top and walking away.

For the more details and the complete article check out the provided link.

By Ariel Williams of Coldwell Banker Blue Matter

Monday, June 3, 2013

Where's My Snipping Tool?

One thing that has bothered users of Windows 8 is the seeming disappearance of the Snipping Tool, the handy little program that lets you grab screenshots.  The good news is that the Snipping Tool is still there, it just seems like Microsoft is trying to hide it from you. It’s now buried within the Windows System32 file, but there’s a really simple way to find it.

Search in Apps for Snipping Tool.

I didn’t even have to finish typing “snip” before I found it.