Daily Real Estate News

Water Damage: How to Lessen the Threat

RisMedia Consumer News - October 8, 2021 - 6:04am

Water damage is caused by storms, flooding, roof leaks, damaged pipes, leaking washing machines and more. If not addressed, water damage can eventually cause structural damage, which can mean significant costs to repair and can negatively affect a home’s value.

Prevention is the first line of defense against water damage in the home. Here are some basics on preventing water damage and its effects:

1. Water supply lines to and from washing machines and dishwashers should be regularly inspected for cracks and leaks. Both the hoses themselves and the connections should be examined. Even a small leak can cause water damage over time, so it’s best to just replace these hoses every five years or so. Steel-reinforced auto-shutoff hoses are available that sense the pressure change when a leak occurs and will stop the flow of water automatically.

2. Tank-style water heaters are prone to failure, especially as they age. Over time, the bottom of the tank can rust out and release the entire contents of the tank. Most plumbing codes require an overflow valve that will conduct leaking water to a pipe that drains either to the outside or to an appropriate interior drain. Homeowners should check with a plumber who is familiar with local codes for this type of overflow pipe.

3. Another common source of water leaks is the icemaker supply line; this should be regularly checked as well. For added peace of mind, homeowners should shut off the icemaker and the supply line if leaving home for more than a few days.

4. Be aware that pipes slowly leaking inside the walls or ceiling may be impossible to detect visually before damage has already occurred.

5. Check gutters and downspouts to ensure that water drains freely and flows away from the home’s foundation. Make any adjustments, and check the flow again using water from a garden hose.

6. Leak detectors can be installed at floor level near water heaters, washing machines and interior air conditioning units. Simple, inexpensive wireless models are widely available and will sound an alarm when water is detected on the floor near these appliances. These are a good option for homeowners who run these appliances only while they’re at home, which is highly recommended. “Smart” water alarms can also alert homeowners via an app that a problem has occurred.

Some home inspectors can use moisture detectors to check for damp conditions not visible. This tool helps detect possible trouble spots in walls, ceilings and floors.

These tips can help homeowners avoid the often expensive and intrusive damage water leaks can cause if not prevented or repaired.

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First-Time Buyers: Don’t Blow the Budget

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 8, 2021 - 1:00am

Rookie buyers need guidance on finding savings, such as loan products that require lower down payments.

Redfin Expands Program to Let Buyers Self-Tour Homes

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 8, 2021 - 1:00am

The brokerage has partnered with ADT for 24/7 security at properties that are part of its Direct Access program, which is now in 22 markets.

Mortgage Rates Unexpectedly Dip Below 3%

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 8, 2021 - 1:00am

Economic uncertainty weighs down interest rates, but NAR still predicts they’ll reach 3.5% next year.

Upcoming Dates When Home Buyers Pay Lowest Premiums

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 8, 2021 - 1:00am

The month of October offers better real estate deals. There are additional days throughout fall when your clients may want to aim for closing.

Cities With Most, Least Pet-Friendly Properties

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 8, 2021 - 1:00am

Sixty-seven percent of households own a pet. Here’s where they might have trouble finding a rental that accepts their furry friends.

Mortgage Applications Tumble as Interest Rates Spike

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 7, 2021 - 1:00am

NAR says the era of mortgage rates below 3% likely is over.

10 Canadian Innovations Targeting Global Real Estate

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 7, 2021 - 1:00am

NAR is helping the tech companies named in its REACH Canada Class of 2022 bring their solutions to real estate pros worldwide.

Builders Seek Alternative Materials for Faster Construction

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 7, 2021 - 1:00am

However, they may add to production costs for developers, who are facing a severe shortage of traditional materials like wood paneling and pipes.

$9 Purchase Threatens Buyer’s Dream of Homeownership

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 7, 2021 - 1:00am

Remind aspiring home buyers that credit card activity—no matter how small—can affect their ability to qualify for a mortgage.

Debt Limit Deal Came After NAR, White House Meeting

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 7, 2021 - 1:00am

NAR President Charlie Oppler discussed the potential housing consequences of a national default with U.S. President Joe Biden a day before lawmakers struck a short-term budget compromise.

Association Incentivizes Fair Housing Training

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

Virginia REALTORS® has launched a friendly competition around NAR’s Fairhaven simulation tool to encourage greater education.

Investors Bet Flexible Leases Are a Lasting Trend

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

Housing providers believe about 20% of the workforce will remain fully remote, keeping demand high for short-term rentals.

Association Uses Cash Prizes to Boost Fair Housing Training

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

Virginia REALTORS® has launched a friendly competition around NAR’s Fairhaven simulation tool to encourage greater education.

Google Maps Can Help You Use Less Fuel

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

Its new tool enables users to choose between the fastest or most eco-friendly routes.

Top 50 Cities for Raising Kids

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

Finding an affordable area with quality schools and a strong job market can be a challenge for people with children, a new study notes.

Bathroom Remodeling Trends Focus on Spa-Like Upgrades

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 6, 2021 - 1:00am

More than three-quarters of homeowners who are undertaking renovations have added premium features to their bathtubs and showers, recent data show.

Considering Cutting Back Homeowners Insurance Coverage to Save? Press Pause on That

RisMedia Consumer News - October 5, 2021 - 6:02am

If money is running tight and you’re looking for ways to cut back, you may be tempted to cut into your homeowners insurance coverage. This could be a mistake.

If you don’t have adequate coverage and your house gets damaged or destroyed, or someone gets seriously injured on your property, you may be on the hook for hundreds of thousands of dollars. Fortunately, there are steps you can take to lower your homeowners insurance premiums without scaling back your coverage and putting your family’s financial future in jeopardy.

Bundle Your Insurance Policies
If you currently have your homeowners insurance through one company and your auto or life insurance through a different insurer, you may be spending more than you have to. Insurance companies typically offer substantial discounts to customers who bundle their policies. If you buy two or more types of insurance from the same company, the total you spend may fall significantly, even if you keep your coverage limits exactly the same.

Find Out If You Qualify for Discounts
You may be eligible for one or more discounts on your homeowners insurance. Insurers reward customers who make upgrades that make them less likely to file a claim. For example, you may qualify for a reduction in premiums if you repair or replace your roof, update your home’s electrical system or install a monitored home security system. If you make any of those changes, notify your insurance company and ask if you’re eligible for lower rates. You may also qualify for a discount if you’ve been with your current company for several years.

Raise Your Deductible
Your homeowners insurance premiums are based, in part, on your deductible. If you experience a loss, you’ll have to pay the deductible out of your own pocket before your insurance will kick in.

Raising your deductible may lead to a significant reduction in your premiums. Call your insurance company or agent and ask. You should only raise your deductible if you’ll have access to that amount of money if you need to file an insurance claim.

Shop Around for Better Rates
Switching to a different company is another possible way to save money. You should compare rates from different homeowners insurance companies every year. If you contact other insurers and request quotes, you may be surprised to find that you can get the exact same coverage you have now at a much lower cost from a different company.

Even if the insurer you currently have offered the lowest premiums when you bought insurance, another company may quote you a lower price today. You also may be eligible for discounts that weren’t available to you when you originally purchased homeowners insurance.

Agents, want more tips like these to share with your existing and prospective clients? Check out our automated social media marketing platform, ACESocial.

The post Considering Cutting Back Homeowners Insurance Coverage to Save? Press Pause on That appeared first on RISMedia.

Why This Fall Is a Big Opportunity for Buyers

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 5, 2021 - 1:00am

The market has been fiercely competitive recently, but house hunters who experienced difficulty finding a home may have better luck.

Tech Tools Real Estate Pros Most Commonly Use

NAR Daily News Magazine - October 5, 2021 - 1:00am

Forty-one percent of real estate executives say a primary challenge over the next two years is keeping up with industry innovation, according to an NAR survey.

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