Alferes Realty, Inc - Alferes Realty, Inc



Posted by Alferes Realty, Inc on 1/15/2019

You know that your credit score is incredibly important when you want to buy a home. There’s certain things that you could be doing in your everyday life that are hurting your credit score. Here’s what you need to avoid in order to keep your credit score up:


Don’t Allow For Too Many Credit Inquiries


When you’re at the checkout lane at the store, and the clerk informs you that you can save a lot of money if you just open this instant credit card on the spot, that can pose a problem. The issue with this is that the store will be instantly checking your credit score as well. These inquiries hang on your credit report for a certain amount of time. Certain inquiries can also make your score dip. Too many credit inquiries can make lenders suspicious of your ability to be a dependable borrower.



Unpaid Bills Can Add Up


If you forget to pay small credit card bills here and there, it could add up. Think of things like library books, medical bills, and credit card payments. That unreturned library fee that you never paid could come back to haunt you. A medical bill that was sent to collections can become a problem on your credit report. Most of the time, all you need to do is pay these fees up for your score to bounce back. 


Credit Report Errors


Your credit report could have incorrect information about your financial situation and records. Your credit score could be dragged down just because of some errors on the report. If you do find an error on your report, you’ll be able to submit a claim to rectify the error. 


Using Too Much Of Your Available Credit


Just because a credit limit is at $5,000, doesn’t mean that you need to max it out. Even if you pay your bills each month, using too much of your available credit can really harm your score. For your credit score to be calculated and to see how loan worthy you are, your total available credit and how much of that total credit is being used will be put into a formula. Beware of how much of your credit you use in order to keep that score up.


Not Touching Your Credit


You actually need to use your credit in order to build your score. You need credit history in order to have something for loan officers to work with. Accounts that become inactive over time will be closed by default and actually negatively impact your score. 


By using your credit responsibly, you’ll keep your credit score up and be in good shape to buy a house.





Posted by Alferes Realty, Inc on 1/8/2019

There is no shortage of smart home devices available to property owners nationwide. From light bulbs to thermostats, there are lots of devices that you can pick up to transform an ordinary residence into a smart house.

Ultimately, there are plenty of reasons to invest in smart home devices. These reasons include:

1. Smart home devices offer unmatched convenience.

A smart home device is designed to simplify a myriad of tasks. Plus, a smart home gadget is easy to use, regardless of your technical background or expertise.

When it comes to automating chores around the house, there may be no better option than a smart home device. For instance, a smart vacuum now enables homeowners to control a vacuum from any location, at any time. This means you can use a smart vacuum to keep your house neat and tidy – even when you are not at home.

2. Smart home devices are proven to perform.

Smart home gadgets are equipped with state-of-the-art technology. Additionally, they are constructed from heavy-duty materials to ensure they can serve you well both now and in the future.

And let's not forget about the savings that smart home devices can provide. For example, a smart thermostat may be used to activate your home's heating or cooling system at different times during the day. As a result, this thermostat may help you save hundreds of dollars on your heating and cooling expenses over the course of a year.

3. Smart home devices won't break your budget.

Many smart home devices are available, and they are sold across a wide range of price points. In fact, some smart home devices may require a minimal upfront investment, and the savings that they provide may quickly exceed this investment.

Of course, smart home devices may help you boost the value of your residence as well. With smart gadgets installed throughout your home, your residence may prove to be an attractive option to buyers if you ever decide to sell it. Or, if you decide to remain in your current residence, you can continue to enjoy your smart home gadgets for years to come.

4. Smart home devices can help protect your residence.

Smart security cameras are available that make it simple to monitor your residence on your smartphone or tablet. Meanwhile, these cameras allow you to track activity outside of your home and limit the risk of theft or property damage.

Some smart security cameras also may allow you to lower your home insurance costs. Insurers may provide discounts based on home security investments, and as such, smart security cameras may allow you to reduce your home insurance expenses in the foreseeable future.

Clearly, there are many reasons why homeowners choose smart house devices. By reviewing the smart home devices at your disposal, you are sure to find some that will serve you well.





Posted by Alferes Realty, Inc on 1/1/2019

If you live a busy work and home life, finding time to cook nutritious and filling meals can be difficult. As a result, many people find themselves ordering out for lunch during the work week and settling for low-effort dinners during the week.

One economical and time-saving solution to this problem is meal prep. You pick one day during the week, usually Sunday, and devote an hour or two to preparing meals for the week.

Not only does it take away the concern of not knowing what to cook for dinner each night, but it also helps you save a ton of money while eating healthy.

In this article, we’re going to give you some tips for preparing your meals in bulk, and a few examples of meals that are easily prepared at home in advance.

Expert advice on meal prepping

One of the first issues people face when they start prepping meals is storage. Our best advice is to look for rugged, microwavable and freezable containers.

It’s good to have a variety of sizes, but if you have stray pieces to sets of Tupperware it can make it difficult to find the right sizes. So, we suggest starting from scratch and buying a set of three-compartment and a set one-compartment containers.

Find out the volume of the containers you buy. Doing so will help you keep track of the portions of your meals and make it easier to prepare the right amount to avoid waste.

Planning meals

Many poor eating decisions happen when you’re in a pinch and need to come up with something quickly. It can seem like the cheapest option at the moment is to stop at a fast food restaurant, but you can likely prepare 3 or 4 meals for the price of one trip to the drive-through.

The key is proper planning. Sit down and make your menu for the week. An easy way to start is to think about your favorite lunch items and figure out how you can make them in bulk.

Make sure your shopping list reflects the portions you need to buy, and you’re good to head to the store.

Once you’re home and have started cooking, remember that you needn’t freeze all of your meals. Refrigerate items that you’ll eat over the next 2-3 days and freeze the rest. If you’re worried about losing your meals in your crowded freezer and finding them months from now, use some masking tape to label and date them.

Easy meals to prepare in advance

You can usually find a way to prepare most meals in advance. However, some are easier than others. A good place to start is with rice and grain bowls and stir fries. These tend to be cheap (around $1.50 per serving) and simple to prepare. To add protein, you can include boiled eggs, beans, chicken or beef.

Along the same line, make some brown rice and stir fry black beans, peppers, and onions. Add your favorite southwest seasonings, and buy a large bag of tortilla chips. You can scoop the rice and beans onto your chips for a nutritious and cheap lunch.

For dinner items, you can make your favorites like shepherd’s pie or lasagna in advance and slice and freeze them in portions.




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Posted by Alferes Realty, Inc on 12/25/2018

For frequent hosts owning your own home is an exciting upgrade to your hospitality skill set. A home large enough to include a guest room for friends and family to stay the night allows you to provide a homey overnight stay that trumps a hotel experience every time.

To create the perfect home away from home guest room for visitors just follow this guide.

First things first, keep it tidy over time. Don’t fall to temptation and use it as a catch-all storage room. This will just lead to more clean up before guests arrive and detract from the home away from home experience if they feel like they are staying in a glorified storage closet.

Before guests arrive freshen up the room by dusting, cracking a window for fresh air, spritz linens with a spray, and vacuum the floors.

Stock your guest bathroom well with toilet paper, tissues, q-tips and cotton balls. Keep two full matching sets of towels folded up nicely and in the open for guests to easily grab. Take a page from the hotel room playbook and have decorative shelving for this very purpose. Either mount shelving to the wall or find a standalone unit that matches your decor.

Have toiletries on hand in case guests have forgotten any while packing. Include new, individually packaged toothbrushes, a tube of toothpaste and travel size deodorants for example. It is always thoughtful to stock the medicine cabinet with the basics.

Stock up on luxurious soaps, lotions, and shampoos to keep on hand in your guest bathroom. It’s best to also keep these out in the open so it is obvious to guests it is for their use. Tiered cake stands, catch-all bowls and clear jars are a great way to put these stylishly on display.

Offer the perfect sleeping experience by including a light bedding option and a warmer one - no matter the season. An ottoman at the foot of the bed with extra blankets and pillows will help guests feel at home to set up the bed their way.

Lay down on the bed to get a feel for how it would be for your guests. In fact, interacting in the room as if you are your guest is a great way to discover what your room is missing. Offer plenty of lighting. Bedside lamps in addition to the ceiling light allow guests to create ambiance or stay up reading while their partner snoozes.  

Decorate the room to keep it cohesive with and as homey as the rest of the house. Hang pictures of friends and family. Frame a decorative image that has your wifi network and password readily available for guests to log in. Include fresh cut flowers and seasonal decor.




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Posted by Alferes Realty, Inc on 12/18/2018

Buying a home is an extensive process that comes with a bit of a learning curve. For first time buyers, this process involves making mistakes and learning from them.

While we can never be 100% sure of our home buying decisions, there is a way to increase your chances of making the best choices when it comes to buying and maintaining your first home.

In today’s post, we’re going to do just that. We’ll take a look at some of the biggest things that homeowners wish they knew before buying their first house.

1. Forgetting to research the neighborhood

It’s easy to become so enamored with your dream home that you barely look beyond its fence. However, the neighborhood your home is in can have a huge effect on your daily life. Having local parks, safe sidewalks to walk on, and road infrastructure that doesn’t drive you crazy on your daily commute are all important aspects of choosing the right home.

2. Getting pressured into making a decision

Many times, a seller will want to portray their home as being highly sought after to encourage higher and more frequent offers. Similarly, you may find that your own family has time constraints and want to make a quick decision to buy a home.

It’s when we’re under pressure that we can make choices that we aren’t happy with in the long run. So, in these situations, make sure you don’t make any snap judgments on a home. If it seems like you’re being pressured into making a decision without enough time to consider all of the possibilities, there’s a good chance you should pass on this opportunity.

3. Forgetting that you might someday have to sell this home

Sometimes homes can be difficult to sell due to things like their location and surroundings. For instance, a home that is remote or one that is located in low-scoring school districts may not matter to you if you don’t plan on having children. But, they likely will be important to a lot of your potential buyers when it comes time to sell the home.

This lesson also holds true for what you do with your home once you buy it. Making renovations or design choices that won’t appeal to the average buyer can make your home more difficult to sell and harder to get top dollar for.

4. Didn’t consider all financing options

There are several steps and several options when it comes to financing a home. Not only are the several mortgage lenders to choose from, but there are also many different types of loans available.

While there may not be one “right” decision when it comes to financing your home, it’s a good idea to do your homework and browse carefully all of the lenders and mortgage types.

Consider ways to increase your credit score or save for a higher down payment before buying if possible, so that you can secure the lowest interest rate possible.




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