Atlanta Homes Guru Blog

Many people fantasize about financing a good chunk of their retirement by selling their current home, buying a smaller place, and investing the difference for income. In reality, however, they often reap far less profit than they might have hoped.

Done right, downsizing can still be a good idea. You might not just walk away with more money but also simplify your life and reduce your home-maintenance and utility costs for years to come. To reach that happy outcome, you need to steer around the unexpected pitfalls that make downsizing so dicey. Here are four traps that await downsizers, with ways to avoid each.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

  • Downsizing to a smaller home in retirement must be done wisely.
  • You need to
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When you walk into a room, it's usually easy to see what needs to be cleaned up. There's a pile of dirty laundry just waiting to be done; or the kitchen sink is piled with dirty dishes, pots, and pans. 

But once the obvious things are cleaned away, do you forget about the rest of the room? Take a look at seven places you're forgetting to clean during your cleaning routine.

1. Undersides of Furniture - When you look under a bed or sofa there are usually a few dust bunnies rolling around that can be quickly captured with a vacuum or dust mop. But did you take the time to look at the actual bottom of the furniture piece? You may be shocked at what you find clinging to bed frames, chair seats and table braces.

Use your vacuum or

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For homeowners and renters lucky enough to have backyards, these outdoor spaces have become more important than ever in recent months. And since summer is officially here, it should come as no surprise that many residents are sprucing up their patios, decks, and backyards to make them comfortable oases for relaxing and spending quality time with loved ones.

But with so many choices in terms of furniture, accessories, and other outdoor elements, it can be overwhelming to decide what exactly to splurge on — especially if you’re working with a blank slate or a tight budget.

1. A dining set

Eating al fresco is one of life’s simple pleasures, so you’ll never regret investing in a sturdy dining set for your

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Parents/Guardians of Students in Gwinnett County Public Schools,

GCPS is preparing to start the 2020-21 school year as planned on August 5. As part of the planning process, we gathered feedback from families about their preferred way to return to school. A survey completed in mid-June showed that 43% of parents prefer a return to in-person instruction; 34% prefer 100% digital learning; and 23% prefer an option that combines in-person instruction with digital learning.

GCPS considered this feedback and other relevant information available at the time. We thoroughly studied combining in-person and digital learning. The many challenges related to this option make it one the school system cannot effectively manage with existing resources. Therefore,

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Keep your neighbors on your good side by avoiding these bad habits.

 

Never Taking Down Seasonal Decorations

It's July, but your mailbox still has a Santa hat on it and your holiday lights are still dangling from your roof. Your excuse? You'll have to put them up again soon anyway! No matter the holiday, when it's over, it's over. No one wants to see the Easter Bunny or rotting pumpkins from Halloween on your lawn months after the fact. 

Abandoning Old Furnishings In Your Yard

You may think that tossing your old couch in the woods behind your house is an easy way to avoid hauling it to the dump, but if your neighbors see it, it becomes an eyesore and your neighbors will think you're lazy! 

Letting Paint Get Ratty

An old, historic

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Smart shoppers know that comparing prices to find the best deal can pay off. However, buying the cheapest option doesn’t always mean you’re actually getting the best deal. In fact, it can make financial sense to spend more on some products and services to save money over the years.

“Sometimes, we might think we’re saving money on cheaper items, when in reality, splurging a little on the more expensive competitor would have saved us more over the long run,” said Matt Dworetsky, president of Dworetsky Financial in Wall Township, New Jersey. Keep reading to find out when splurging on the pricier option can help save you money over time.

Energy-Efficient Appliances

Spending more on energy-efficient appliances can help you save money in the long

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Newsweek Amplify - Real Estate for Beginners

Real estate is an imperishable asset, ever-increasing in value with time. Even at a very small scale, real estate remains to be a proven method for building cash flow and wealth. With well-chosen assets, real estate investors can enjoy excellent returns, value appreciation, leverage, and diversification of their investment portfolio. For those who are worried about the current recession, there are stricter regulations to protect the housing market now, unlike the crashes experienced before. Due to the low correlation that real estate has with other asset classes, adding real estate to your investment portfolio can lower its volatility and provide a higher return per unit risk. One of the disadvantages of real estate investments, however, is the

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Sheltering in place and staying closer to home as restrictions start to ease can be an opportunity to put down deeper roots in the community where you live. From small actions like introducing yourself to neighbors to larger ones like lending a hand or organizing a (socially distanced) block party can all add up to help create a vibrant and resilient community. If you’re looking for somewhere to start or want to keep the momentum going, take a look at the following ideas and see if any resonate with you and would work in your neighborhood.

1. Hang Out on Your Porch or in Your Front Yard

Just being outside can signal to neighbors…
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If things go wrong and you need to back out of a home purchase, you may wonder if you can get out of the deal without penalty.  

You have house hunted so extensively that you believe you should have your own HGTV series. You find the home of your dreams, sign a purchase agreement, pay an earnest deposit, snag a great mortgage, and cannot believe your good fortune. And then, something goes wrong, and you wonder if you should pull out of the deal. 

Can you back out of a home purchase agreement? 

Yes, but the wording included in the purchase agreement makes all the difference. Purchase agreements usually include contingencies, which are situations in which you can back out of the contract without penalty.

If the reason you pull out of buying

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This week during our HRG team meeting, we were discussing what the real estate market looks like right now for our current buyers. After a slower spring market due to the pandemic, we saw an increase in the number of buyers who were ready to take advantage of the close to 3% mortgage rates to purchase a home.

However, while many sellers decided that now was the right time to sell, others have continued to wait - essentially creating a seller's market, making it more difficult for buyers to take their time to find their next home.

What does a seller's market look like?

What we're seeing is less homes on the market creating a 'sense of urgency' with our buyers. Gone are the days of having time to 'sleep on it' ... buyers are now being forced to

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