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


Posted by Alyx Akers on 5/19/2019

There are two main ways to treat those annoying bedbugs you have in your home – Chemical and non-chemical.

Non-chemical Bed Bug Treatments

  • Wash and dry all of your bedding and clothing at high temperatures. However, just washing bedding or clothing is generally not enough to kill the bugs. Drying at high temperatures is the key.
  • Heat the infested items to at least 118 °F for 1 hour. The higher the temperature, the less time is required to kill the bugs.
  • Cold treatments below 0°F for at least five days (or 120 hours) can eliminate some infestations. The colder the temperature, the less time required to kill the bedbug infestation. However, your home freezer is generally not cold enough to effectively kill them.

Chemical Treatments

There are dozens of chemical products on the market that are registered with the EPA to kill or repel the bugs. Unfortunately, many of the over-the-counter products simply do not work. Therefore, many homeowners unknowingly waste time and money trying to treat their homes without professional assistance. DIY homeowners also either over-apply or misapply the chemicals they purchase. 

Contact the manufacturer of each product directly because most local pest control professionals will not be able to consult you on which DIY chemical they'd recommend for your situation. 

How to Keep Bedbugs Out of Your Home

A key reason for the success of bedbugs at spreading from location to location is their ability to survive extended periods time without feeding. Some bugs can survive up to12 months without eating.

Preventive tips

There are a few basic precautions that can help keep your home safe from an infestation:

  • Use protective covers to encase mattresses, box springs, and furniture to eliminate hiding spots.
  • Remove clutter from your home that might be prone to hiding places• Avoid bringing used furniture into your home without a comprehensive inspection.
  • Perform a thorough search of your hotel room for signs of bugs
  • Use luggage racks for suitcases and reduce the contact between your Clothing and the bed or carpet
  • Perform a thorough inspection of your luggage and clothing when you return home and limit the contact between travel clothing and mattresses, box springs and furniture

Bed bugs aren't fun, but if you are knowledgeable about what to look for and consult with a pest solutions technician to find the best solution, you can beat bed bugs.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 5/12/2019

When you read the newspaper or listen to the news, it is likely that you come across economic indicators of your local real estate market even when you don’t know that they are. Most people do not pay attention to these indicators because they do not affect them directly. However, it is essential that you have a clear understanding of these indicators before investing in real estate or any other business. 

These economic indicators will help you understand the housing market better. The real gauges to keep an eye on are the level of sales, home prices, the number of ongoing construction, mortgage rates among others. To understand the future of the housing market, you need to understand the key economic indicators. 

Home construction

There is an increase in the rate of home constructions this year. With the fall of mortgage rates, experts expect that the prices will drop further this year. This price change is good news if you are looking to buy a home this year. 

Mortgage rates

After about ten years of unstable mortgage rates, the decision of the Federal Reserve to adjust its policy has given room for mortgage rates to drop. A better understanding of the nuances of mortgage rates will help you to know when to invest. You can also speak to your bank to ask what their projections are for mortgage rates.

Home sales volume 

There is a reduction in home sales when the price rises. That is, the sales volume tends to reduce whenever the prices of homes go up. Based on the report from Zillow, when the housing market is doing great, the economy of the country soars significantly. On the other hand, when the market goes down, the economy will decline with it. 

The inventory on the market

The number of homes available for in sale in spring of last year was fewer than now. Presently, there is better inventory that is preferable to what happened at the beginning of last year.

The economic indicators mentioned above will keep you informed on the recent trends in the housing market. However, you need to be aware of some other critical factors to be fully aware of what is happening in the real estate market in the country. These factors include buyers and sellers' preferences, student debt, employment rates, household-formation among others.

Understanding market indicators will help you choose the best time for you to invest in real estate. Consult a real estate agent for the latest reports in your area.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 5/5/2019

Buying a home should be an unforgettable experience. However, problems sometimes may arise that prevent a homebuyer from enjoying the property buying journey.

Whether it's tough negotiations with a stubborn home seller or a property inspection that reveals many problems with a house, problems may occur that can make the homebuying journey memorable for all the wrong reasons.

Lucky for you, we're here to help you streamline the homebuying process and ensure you can acquire your dream home quickly.

Now, let's take a look at three tips that homebuyers can use to transform an ordinary property buying experience into an unforgettable journey.

1. Perform Plenty of Real Estate Market Research

Navigating the real estate market can be tricky, particularly for first-time homebuyers. Conversely, homebuyers who evaluate the real estate market closely should have no trouble discovering a wide range of terrific residences.

Examine the prices of recently sold homes in your area. That way, you can establish a price range for homes that match your needs.

Also, analyze the amount of time that recently sold properties were available. This will help you differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's one and ensure you can map out your homebuying journey accordingly.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Buying a home likely will require you to get approved for a mortgage. If you receive pre-approval for a mortgage, you can narrow your home search based on your budget.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you should meet with several banks and credit unions. These lenders can explain how a mortgage works and help you find one that suits you perfectly.

In addition, don't hesitate to ask plenty of questions when you meet with lenders. These mortgage professionals can provide expert insights into the different types of mortgages, including fixed- and adjustable-rate options. By doing so, they can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage so you can kick off your search for the perfect home.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to buying a home, working with a real estate agent is paramount. This real estate professional will do what it takes to eliminate guesswork and streamline the homebuying journey.

A real estate agent understands the challenges that are commonly associated with buying a home and can help you overcome any potential hurdles along the way. He or she also is happy to respond to your homebuying concerns and queries and provide you with the support you deserve at any time.

Furthermore, a real estate agent will keep you up to date about new homes as they become available, set up home showings and negotiate with home sellers on your behalf. This housing market professional will even provide honest, unbiased recommendations to help you make informed decisions throughout the homebuying cycle.

Ready to get the best results from the homebuying journey? Use these tips, and you enjoy an outstanding homebuying experience.




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 4/28/2019

One of the most difficult decisions to make when refinishing a room is how much of a current trend to inspire your choices. Jumping in with two feet can be fun and certainly create a wow factor. However, trends can also quickly become outdated and if you’ve invested a lot of time and money into a particular one you will also have to spend a lot of time and money to change it.

Luckily, this isn’t an all or nothing situation. So whether your current obsession is mid-century modern or shabby chic you can satisfy your style preference without making a top to bottom change in a few months or years.

To start, keep bigger items like the wall color, flooring, and furniture neutral in both style and color. What I mean by this is to choose furniture that is inspired by or similar, but simpler, to a more trendy piece. And neutral doesn’t have to mean beige. Blacks, grays, blues, browns, whites, and creams with just a hint of the desired hue are perfect multitaskers that transcend both trends and time.

For example, if you want pink for a blush-toned creme or for green a sage infused blue. If you’re craving color black and white create the perfect canvas for colorful accessories to really pop and make a statement. Navy and charcoal are neutral but underutilized colors that allow you to give a little push style boundaries.

Bring in those pops of color with accents. Wall art, decor, throw pillows, curtains and bedding are perfect ways to do just that. Incorporate your favorite new colors and patterns throughout the room for a consistent look and not as if you haphazardly placed pieces as an afterthought.

The best part of using these details to infuse your trend of choice is that they enable you to go as bold or subtle as you like. Curtains or a comforter in a bright color or a bold print capture the eye immediately. Throw pillows and wall art, on the other hand, make for a room filled with personality.

It’s always fun to incorporate trends when we are decorating. It gives the room your unique brand of personality and brings the space to life. Cleverly choosing your larger items to remain understated to allow your trendy pieces take the spotlight is the perfect way to join in while also staying flexible if you tire of it or want to change things up down the road.

You’ll also be making a more budget-friendly project by choosing neutral tones for your investment pieces. They will be able to carry over decades to come while transcending, for the most part, the many trends it is sure to outlive.     




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Posted by Alyx Akers on 4/21/2019

Real estate market data is readily available to home sellers across the United States. With this information at your disposal, you should have no trouble maximizing the profits from your home sale.

Now, let's take a look at three real estate market data that every home seller needs to check out before listing a residence.

1. Prices of Comparable Houses

Let's face it – determining a competitive price for your house may prove to be difficult, regardless of your home's age or condition. Fortunately, if you analyze the prices of comparable residences in your city or town, you can better understand how your house stacks up against the competition and price it appropriately.

Furthermore, it may be beneficial to conduct a home appraisal prior to listing your house. This appraisal enables a home expert to assess your house both inside and out. Then, you'll receive an appraisal report that contains a property valuation, which may help you determine a competitive price for your house.

2. Prices of Recently Sold Houses

Are you preparing to enter a buyer's or seller's market? Review the prices of recently sold houses in your area, and you can find out whether the current housing market favors buyers or sellers.

If home sellers are receiving offers at or above their initial home asking prices, now may be an ideal time to list your residence. Thus, you may want to add your house to the real estate market sooner rather than later to capitalize on a housing sector that likely favors sellers.

Conversely, if home sellers are receiving offers below their initial home asking prices, you may want to allocate significant time and resources to find ways to improve your house. Because if you enhance your house's exterior and interior, you may be able to help your house stand out from the competition and increase the likelihood of a profitable home sale.

3. Average Amount of Time That a House Is Listed

Check out how long houses stay on the real estate market before they are sold – you'll be glad you did. With this housing market data in hand, you can assess the pulse of the real estate market and map out your home selling journey accordingly.

If you need help collecting or analyzing real estate market data, there is no need to worry. Hire a real estate agent today, and you can gain the insights that you need to make informed decisions throughout the home selling journey.

A real estate agent is a housing market expert who is happy to help you in any way possible. He or she will provide recommendations about how to price your house and improve your home's interior and exterior. Plus, a real estate agent is available to respond to any of your home selling concerns or questions, at any time.

Ready to list your home? Review the aforementioned housing market data, and you can obtain deep insights into the real estate sector prior to selling your house.







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