Alyx Akers
Five College REALTORS ® | 413-320-6405 | AlyxAkersRealtor@gmail.com


Posted by Alyx Akers on 8/11/2019

Outside exercise like running a certain distance can be a great way to workout, be physically fit, and even reduce weight. You don't need any gear or pay an excessive fee just to be a member of a gym.

Running is the perfect outdoor exercise. Running not only makes you physically fit but also gives you a chance to have an expanded view of your new city. Running new routes allows you to be more familiar with your new town.The only tricky problem attached to running in a new town is finding safe, secure, less crowded, and enjoyable running paths.

Below are tips that will help you in mapping out a safe 5k run in a new town:

  1. Have a chat with a local: Make friends with the people who have been living in that town for a while. Ask them about the safe routes in the city suitable for a 5k run. The locals already know their town inside out. Make sure you ask them if there's a popular running path that is totally safe and not too crowded.
  2. Use a mobile app: With the technology advancements, you gain access to almost any information needed. There are lots of mobile applications to help you map safe 5k routes. For example, check out All trails, Realbuzz, Strava's global heat map, iSmoothRun, Endomondo, MapMyRun, Runkeeper, Runstatic, or Couch to 5K.
  3. Check online for recommendations: You can research online for a specific trail you want to map out for a safe 5k run. People's reviews and testimonies go a long way in helping you. Try using Yelp to searching for “running trails.” Local runners use the site to post their recommendations.
  4. Find a running friend or a running group: You can run with a friend or a group to be able to check the environment personally to know if it is indeed safe or less crowded. Local athletic shoe stores often know of running trails and groups to join. Check at work, the local library, or Meetup to see if they keep a list.
  5. Do adequate research on the route: If the path you’ve chosen leads through public parks, neighborhoods, or trails, take time to locate any posted rules. Certain courses may have hour restrictions, and some locales may have regulations about running on school property during school hours. Introduce yourself to the school office or stop by the city’s parks and recreation department. You’ll meet new friends while finding the information you need.




Tags: how to   new city   fitness  
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Posted by Alyx Akers on 8/4/2019

Home valuation is one of the tricky areas of real estate. In general, you want a high appraisal and a low assessment. But shouldn't they be the same? Well, in a perfect world your assessment and your appraisal would be the same, but you don't want the world to be perfect in this regard. Here's why:

Appraisal

An appraised value comes from the report completed by a licensed professional appraiser to determine property value at a specific point, typically for a buyer to obtain a mortgage. It is a tool used by underwriters for lenders to determine if the home has enough collateral for the loan needed to purchase or refinance it.

Appraisers compare the home to similar properties in their evaluation. They look for both similarities to find a base value and difference to increase or decrease the value such as the roof's age, livable square footage, exterior materials, upgrades, and other finished. Using these numbers and other valuation formulae such as the cost to rebuild the home (similar to your homeowner insurance values), and potential income from rental or other uses, the appraiser determines a possible value.

The market value is not the same as the appraised value, however. While it starts with the appraised value, other determiners such as the desirability of the area, or circumstances such as a tornado, hurricane, or eminent domain issues may adjust the market value above or below the appraised value.

Assessment

A home's assessed value typically comes from the taxing authority for the municipality. It is the method of determining the tax basis (or valuation) of the property. The tax assessment is a percentage of that value that the homeowner pays annually to provide the municipality money for water and fire services, schools, capital improvements to roads, bridge, and public parks and additional essential services.

The amount of the percentage and its designations differ for every taxing authority, so a home in one neighborhood might have a different assessed value from an identical house in another block nearby if the boundary lines for the taxing authority (school district, for example) differs.Some counties and cities reassess homes only when they sell, while others have periodic assessments. And the percentage rates of the assessments change when voters approve various tax levies for a variety of purposes.

An appraisal affects your ability to obtain a mortgage for your home while an assessment relates to the ongoing yearly tax expenses. Since a third factor determines the home's selling price, the market value, your professional realtor should guide your understanding of how these factors affect your home purchase or sale.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 7/28/2019

There are some secrets that you should know to reap several benefits associated with credit cards. Knowing these secrets will put you in a better position to enjoy the benefits of highly competitive lenders. These three ideas will teach you how to make effective use of your bank cards: 

1. Get cards with beneficial reward possibilities. Some individuals might consider this obvious, but there are a lot of people who have a bank card with rewards which do not apply to their lifestyle. To reap the benefits of your card, it is essential you ask for the right card with rewards that fit and enhance your lifestyle. To fully enjoy the benefits this provides, you should try to repay your acquisition as soon as possible. This way, the bank does not reap more benefits than you. 

2. Put all purchases that are enterprise-related on credit card. This next bank card secret requires some high-level bank-related data. For example, if you wish to purchase repairs on your house, you should know that it will be quite challenging to get a mortgage at the post-2008 housing market. Now, what do you do? It is advisable to put the repairs on the credit card. You should not hesitate to do so even if your card has a 12 percent APR because if for instance, you borrow up to $50,000 and maintain the amount for some months, all you owe is about 20% on the whole quantity provided you continue to pay it off. 

3. Manage your debt balance appropriately. If you are the type that acquires many credit cards, you should take advantage of the competition that exists between bankers using this credit card secret. 

First off, you need to inquire with your financial institution about stability switch possibilities. If there is a possibility of stability switch, you should ensure it's a zero-percent stability switch. For example, you will be able to apply to move the balance on your Bank of America card once you have acquired stability on your Capital One card. 

It is advisable only to transfer the debt if it is smart. Then, you one step closer to clearing the debt efficiently within the subsequent six to nine months period allotted. Understanding your credit card doesn’t need to be challenging, so stop by your nearest branch and speak to a finance officer on how one of the tips above could work for you.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 7/21/2019

A diligent homebuyer understands what it takes to shop for a residence. As such, this individual may be better equipped than others to discover a house that matches or exceeds his or her expectations.

Ultimately, there are many reasons to become a diligent homebuyer, including:

1. You can boost your chances of acquiring a top-notch residence.

Buying a home can be a long, complex process, particularly for those who lack housing market insights. Fortunately, it is easy for any homebuyer to become a diligent homebuyer, thanks in large part to the wealth of housing market data that is available.

A diligent homebuyer can analyze the prices of recently sold houses, along with the prices of homes that are currently for sale. By doing so, a diligent homebuyer can understand whether he or she is shopping in a buyer's or seller's market. This homebuyer also may be able to narrow his or her home search.

For those who want to acquire a first-rate residence, diligence is paramount. And as a diligent homebuyer, you may be able to identify many opportunities to purchase a deluxe residence.

2. You could save money on a home purchase.

When it comes to shopping for a home, there is no need to overspend, regardless of whether you're searching for a residence in a buyer's or seller's market.

Meanwhile, a diligent homebuyer is a thrifty home shopper who understands how to save money on a house.

A diligent homebuyer, for example, may be more likely than others to get pre-approved for a mortgage. This homebuyer will meet with a variety of lenders and learn about all of his or her mortgage options. That way, a diligent homebuyer can enter the housing market with a budget in hand and avoid the temptation to overspend.

Furthermore, a diligent homebuyer knows how to stay calm, cool and collected in stressful price negotiations with a property seller. This homebuyer will possess the housing market insights to make an informed purchase decision. In addition, he or she will have the confidence to walk away from a potential home sale if price negotiations get out of hand.

3. You can accelerate the homebuying process.

Although a diligent homebuyer analyzes real estate market patterns and trends closely, he or she usually realizes that navigating the housing sector alone can be tough. Thus, a diligent homebuyer may reach out to a real estate agent for extra help.

A real estate agent can provide even a diligent homebuyer with the necessary assistance to speed up the homebuying cycle. This housing market professional can help a homebuyer understand and overcome assorted property buying hurdles. Plus, he or she can offer expert insights into the housing market that a homebuyer may struggle to obtain elsewhere.

If you plan to purchase a house in the near future, it definitely pays to become a diligent homebuyer. This property buyer will be able to browse a broad array of high-quality houses, assess these residences effectively and seamlessly move through the process of acquiring the perfect home at the lowest price.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 7/14/2019

Have you tried getting a mortgage from your bank and instead been given an endless series of hurdles with no approval in sight? Then perhaps it’s time you moved your search for home finance online. Here you will find a host of companies willing to fund your home ownership dreams, even if you have a bad credit score. 

Some will give you the funds themselves while others are brokers who will lead you to the lenders. In the long run, what a homebuyer truly wants is a reasonable interest rate, quick approval, transparent communication, and top-notch customer service. Here are a few companies that fit those criteria.

Quicken Loans

Quicken Loans started as a brick-and-mortar shop in 1985 before going online at the turn of the millennium. It holds the position of one of the country's most popular lenders, and with good reason. First-time homebuyers are drawn to this mortgage company because of the wealth of guidance they get. Quicken Loans’ range of products includes Freddie Mac and Fannie Mac loans that ask for a down payment of as little as 3% of the property purchase price.

Lenda 

Besides offering applicants quick and stress-free pre-qualifications, Lenda has made a name for its concierge service that guides you through the application process. Their platform makes it easy for you to keep track of the documents you need to submit each step of the way. It even sends alerts to remind you which documents you still have pending. 

Rocket Mortgage

Within a few minutes, you will know how much you qualify to borrow from Rocket Mortgage. This company takes its service a step higher by offering you support from a mortgage expert online. Their digital platform works effortlessly on mobile devices allowing you to monitor your application on the go. 

Guaranteed Rate

This company makes life easier for would-be homeowners by allowing them to complete the entire application process online on a user-friendly platform. Documents can be uploaded there so that human interaction can be avoided through the whole process. First-time homebuyers are attracted to Guaranteed Rate because of the relatively low down payment required. 

Sun Trust

Households that fall in the middle-to-low income bracket will appreciate the affordability of Sun Trust home loans. With them, you can get fixed and adjustable rate loans backed by the Federal Housing Association or the Veterans’ Association. 

Visit an online resource you know for more detailed reviews of various top-rated lenders. Or talk to your real estate professional for local lenders they recommend.




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