Jill Finkelstein - Compass



Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 10/13/2019

Your HVAC system keeps everything cool and comfortable, but only if it is working properly. You don't have to have any repair or DIY skills to determine if your air conditioner is struggling, just look for one or more of the signs below. Finding problems now, at the first sign of trouble, can prevent costly repairs later -- and keep you more comfortable at home, too. Be on the lookout for sounds, odors and even unusually large energy bills, and you'll be able to determine just how healthy your HVAC system is.

Unusual or loud noises: If your air conditioner suddenly sounds louder than normal or seems to be working very hard, it's time to have it seen. Loud noises, including rattling, grinding and squealing are all signs that your system is not working efficiently and that it should be seen.

Soaring energy bills: If your energy bill spikes or even has a steady, ongoing increase, it could be a sign that your air conditioner is working too hard to comfort your home. Some increase in energy use is normal during the summer months, since you'll be using the system more, but a bill that seems shocking should prompt you to investigate your HVAC system and see if it's to blame.

Mildew or musty odor: If your home smells even slightly of mildew, then your air conditioning system should be seen. Mold and mildew can circulate through your home, powered by the air conditioner; this will impact your home's scent and your indoor air quality, too. Masking the odor with scents is not enough, you should have your system inspected to make sure it is safe to use.

You're too hot: If the air conditioner is constantly running, but you are still too warm, you should have it checked out. In this case, you're paying for the electricity to power the HVAC, but not getting any benefit from it. In many cases, a simple repair is all that is needed to correct this problem, so you can get comfortable again in record time.

Your system is older than you are: Older homes have legacy heating and cooling systems that could have been installed when the home was built. They may still operate, but they are likely not as efficient as a modern system. If your system is aging, it simply won't be as comfortable as a newer model and is likely to need repairs in the future. Look for the ENERGY STAR label; if your system has it, you have a more modern, efficient air conditioner. If it doesn't, you're likely spending too much each month, and risking a costly repair.

Any of these signs should trigger an inspection for your system. In most cases, you'll find that a tuneup is an affordable way to ensure your HVAC is running well and that your home is in great shape. Keeping up with maintenance on your HVAC ensures your home stays comfortable and that you are ready to entertain guests at a moment's notice.





Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 10/6/2019

As a first-time home seller, it is important to avoid shortcuts. By doing so, this home seller may be better equipped than others to reduce the risk of accepting a "lowball" offer on his or her residence.

A lowball offer is something that every home seller would like to avoid. Yet a home seller who lacks real estate knowledge and insights may struggle to identify a lowball offer, particularly if he or she is listing a residence for the first time.

Ultimately, there is no need for a first-time home seller to settle for a lowball offer. Lucky for you, we're here to teach you how to identify a lowball offer in any real estate market, at any time.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help a first-time home seller identify and address a lowball offer on his or her residence.

1. Learn About the Housing Market

The housing market often fluctuates, and a real estate sector that favors home sellers today may morph into one that favors homebuyers tomorrow. As such, a first-time home seller should allocate the necessary time and resources to monitor real estate market patterns and trends closely.

To learn about the housing market, it is essential to analyze available houses in your city or town. Furthermore, don't forget to assess available houses that are similar to your own.

Housing market data can provide pivotal insights that a home seller can use to stir up substantial interest in his or her residence. Plus, these insights can help a home seller establish a competitive price for a home, thereby reducing the risk of receiving a lowball offer on his or her house.

2. Understand Your Home's Value

For first-time home sellers who want to avoid lowball offers, a home appraisal is ideal. In fact, a home appraisal can make it simple for a first-time home seller to understand what his or her property is worth based on its current condition.

As part of a home appraisal, a property inspector will assess a house both inside and out. After the appraisal is completed, the inspector will provide a home seller with a report that outlines his or her findings. Then, a home seller can use the report findings to review a house's strengths and weaknesses and complete home improvements as needed.

A home appraisal can help a home seller uncover ways to bolster a house's interior and exterior. In addition, the appraisal can provide insights that highlight a home's true value and help a home seller minimize the risk that he or she will accept a lowball proposal.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A first-time home seller may be uncertain about how to proceed with an offer. Fortunately, real estate agents can provide unparalleled insights into the housing market and help home sellers make informed decisions.

In most instances, a real estate agent is happy to discuss an offer with a home seller. This housing market professional can offer honest, unbiased home selling recommendations to ensure a home seller can differentiate between a lowball offer and a strong proposal as well.

Avoid the danger of accepting a lowball offer on a residence – use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time home seller will be better equipped than ever before to accept the best proposal for his or her house.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/29/2019

Everybody wants the garden the neighbors say “wow” at in amazement. But building the perfect garden doesn’t happen in one day. But by taking note of these easy steps, you can start your journey to a creating that perfect garden of your dreams.

  1. Take care of bugs as soon as they appear. You have to watch out for bugs and insects and deal with them as soon as they show up. They don’t just destroy the aesthetic value of your garden, a lot of bugs actually act as carriers for viruses and bacteria, transmitting them from one plant to the next. And a plant that is under insect attacks is less likely to be able to resist diseases.
  2. Don't tolerate weeds. Weeds are the biggest enemy of your garden. They compete with your legitimate plants for sunlight, water, and nutrients. Get rid of them early enough too. It is easier to kill off small weeds than large weeds. Spray them, pull them out or hoe them away, but whatever you have to do, do it to get rid of them.
  3. Space your plants appropriately. Overcrowding isn't good for humans, and it isn't good for plants either. Spacing plants too close together mean that they have to compete for the same amount of sunlight, soil water, and nutrients. Such conditions also make it easy for quick transmission of diseases between plants.
  4. Don’t overwater or underwater your plants. An overabundance of water will bring about rotting roots while water shortages will cause flowers to wither away. Keep on practicing until you know just the right amount of water good enough for your type of soil. When you water too, water in such a way that reduces the amount of moisture on the leaves, as disease pathogens need water to thrive just as much as the plants. The best way to water is to water the roots, holding the foliage out of the way. Those are the parts of your plants that need water. 
  5. Always apply the right amount of fertilizer. Too much ammonia can damage plant roots and reduce their water intake, making them more liable to come undone by drought or heat. If you are not sure of the right amount of fertilizer to use, contact your local agricultural extension agency and they will provide you with accurate information. 

Talk to your real estate agent about the best plants for curb appeal!




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/22/2019

You don't have to be an expert home seller to maximize your house sale earnings. In fact, there are many things that you can do to optimize the profits from your home sale, such as:

1. Craft an Effective Home Listing

An effective house listing enables you to make a great first impression on prospective homebuyers. Thus, if you dedicate time and resources to craft an effective house listing, you could boost the likelihood of enjoying a profitable home selling experience.

Ultimately, an effective house listing includes relevant information about your residence. It enables a buyer to perform an objective evaluation of your house and determine if your residence matches his or her expectations.

You may want to incorporate high-resolution photos of your residence into your home listing as well. These photos can help buyers envision what life may be like if they purchase your house. As a result, they could help you differentiate your home listing from all others and generate significant interest in your house.

2. Upgrade Your Home's Interior and Exterior

Clean each room of your house. By doing so, you can help buyers see your residence's full potential when they attend a home showing or open house event.

Enhance your house's exterior, too. By mowing the lawn, trimming the hedges and performing other home exterior upgrades, you can instantly bolster your residence's curb appeal.

Of course, if you need help with home interior and exterior upgrades, don't hesitate to reach out to professionals for assistance. With home interior and exterior professionals at your side, you can get the help you require to immediately upgrade your residence's appearance.

3. Employ a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent understands the ins and out of selling a house. He or she also possesses the talent and confidence to help you achieve your desired home selling results as quickly as possible.

Typically, a real estate agent and a home seller will work together to craft a top-notch house selling strategy. A real estate agent initially will learn about a home seller and his or her residence. Then, a real estate agent will offer tips and recommendations to help a home seller seamlessly navigate the house selling journey. And if a seller has any concerns or questions, a real estate agent can respond to them.

A real estate agent goes above and beyond the call of duty to streamline the home selling process. For example, if you are unsure about how to promote your residence to the right groups of buyers, a real estate agent will make it simple to host home showings and open house events. On the other hand, if you are uncertain about whether to accept an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent can help you make an informed decision.

Want to maximize your home sale earnings? Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble getting the best price for your residence.




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Posted by Jill Finkelstein on 9/15/2019

Purchasing a home is a life-changing decision, and as such, should not be taken lightly. Fortunately, there are lots of things you can do to prepare for the homebuying journey, such as:

1. Determine Where You Want to Live

There is no shortage of high-quality houses available across the United States. Now, you just need to determine where you want to reside, and you can hone your house search accordingly.

Think about your long-term plans as you consider where you want to live. For instance, if you enjoy life in the big city, you may want to search for houses in or near the city of your choice. On the other hand, if you want to start a family in the near future, you may want to explore residences near parks and other family-friendly attractions.

Ultimately, it helps to narrow your home search to a few cities and towns. Because if you know where you want to live, you can quickly navigate the homebuying journey.

2. Establish a Budget

A budget is a must-have for any homebuyer, at any time. If you know how much you can spend on a house, you can search for residences that fall within your price range.

Oftentimes, it helps to meet with banks and credit unions before you launch a home search. These financial institutions can teach you about different types of mortgages. Then, you can select a mortgage that suits you perfectly.

Don't forget about home inspection, closing and other property buying fees, either. If you account for these property buying costs, you can ensure you have the necessary funds available to cover them.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is a difference-maker for a homebuyer. He or she is happy to teach a homebuyer about the ins and outs of the real estate market. As a result, a real estate agent will help you become a homebuying expert.

Typically, a real estate agent offers recommendations and insights throughout the homebuying journey. He or she first will learn about you and help you establish homebuying expectations. Next, a real estate agent will help you kick off a search for homes in your preferred cities and towns. When you find your dream residence, a real estate agent will help you craft a competitive offer to purchase this home. And if your offer to purchase is approved, a real estate agent will help you navigate the final stages of the homebuying journey.

Furthermore, a real estate agent can provide assistance any time a homebuyer has concerns or questions. A real estate agent strives to help you make informed homebuying decisions. Thus, he or she will do whatever it takes to educate you about the homebuying cycle and ensure you are ready to find and buy your ideal residence.

Simplify the process of finding your dream home – use the aforementioned tips, and you can prep for the homebuying journey.




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Jill Finkelstein