Ask the Expert: How Can Homeowners Ensure Preparedness?

Today’s Ask the Expert column features Buddy Stark, director of Operations for HomeTeam Inspection Service.

Q: What can homeowners do to ensure their home is well prepared and more energy-efficient throughout the coming months?

A: Fall officially begins this month and HomeTeam Inspection Service—the only national home inspection company to utilize a team of inspectors onsite—offers the following home maintenance tips.

Roof
Inspect the roof covering and flashing from the ground for indicators of wear, like missing, loose or cracked shingles or tiles. Water can seep into these areas and cause damage if left unattended. Contact a professional roofer for repair or a replacement evaluation if water intrusion is occurring or suspected.

Gutters and Downspouts
Gutters and downspouts are critical in protecting your home from water damage. Fall is one of the most important times to check your gutters and downspouts to ensure they’re not rusted, rotted, disconnected or full of debris.

Fireplace
Have a certified chimney sweep inspect and clean your chimney, fireplace and vents at least once per year, as recommended by the National Fire Protection Association. A do-it-yourself inspection for creosote buildup can be performed by wearing goggles and a basic disposable dust mask. Take a flashlight and your fireplace poker and scratch the black surface above the damper (smoke chamber). If the groove you scratch is paper thin, no cleaning is needed. If it’s 1/8 inch thick, schedule a cleaning. If you have 1/4 inch of creosote, don’t use the fireplace until it’s cleaned—a chimney fire could occur at any time.

HVAC
Get your furnace cleaned and serviced by a professional before the heating season begins. Also, clean or replace your furnace filters as recommended throughout the year. Dirty filters restrict airflow and reduce efficiency.

Ensure that all supply and return vents aren’t blocked or closed, as this causes the return duct to pull in cold air from cracks in windows and doors. In addition, the warm air that’s still trying to push up through closed vents will either start to leak out ducts that aren’t sealed properly, or be forced back down into your basement or floor cavities.

Trees and Bushes
Trimming trees and bushes provides many advantages to your home’s exterior. Trim so that all leaves and limbs are at least three feet away from your house. This prevents them from hitting the sides of your house when it’s windy, decreasing the amount of leaves and debris that will end up in your gutters.

Windows and Doors
Cracks in the seals around windows and doors allow heated or cooled air to escape, which can cost you money. Caulking and weatherstripping can wear over time, so check the seals around your windows and doors. One of the easiest ways to diagnose this issue is to close the door or window and hold a lighted candle near the frame. If the flame flickers at any spot, you likely have an air leak. Replace or add caulk or weatherstripping where needed.

For more information, please visit www.hometeam.com.

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$170,000 :: 30732 NEWPORT DR, Warren MI, 48088

4 beds, 3 baths
Home size: 1,516 sq ft
Lot Size: 7,405 sq ft
Added: 09/28/17, Last Updated: 09/28/17
Property Type: Single Family
MLS Number: 21373784
Community: Warren (50023)
Tract: OTTAWA HEIGHTS
Status: Active

Welcome home to this beautiful 4 bedroom 1.2 bath Colonial in Warren. Pride of ownership is evident throughout this home. Enjoy the large backyard and well maintained brick on the exterior with manicured landscaping. This home is move in ready and with over 1,500 sqft with a finished basement has lots of space for entertaining. Home is also near freeways and shopping. There is a fireplace in the family room that has been covered up by the previous owners. Don?t hesitate to schedule a showing today. *BATVAI*

Listed with In House Realty LLC


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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$170,000 :: 32320 WARNER CRT, Warren MI, 48092

3 beds, 2 baths
Home size: 1,223 sq ft
Lot Size: 7,840 sq ft
Added: 09/27/17, Last Updated: 09/27/17
Property Type: Single Family
MLS Number: 21373413
Community: Warren (50023)
Tract: OAK RUN
Status: Active

Listed with Real Estate One-Clinton Twp


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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Your Fall Produce Guide

Do you like to eat locally? While the summer has an abundance of fresh produce for you to grab at your local farmer’s market, as fall hits, many wonder what local produce is still available. Below are the top five things to eat this autumn, available in most regions in the country.

Apples! All hail fall, the season of apples! From apple pie to applesauce, apple slaw and more, there are hundreds of ways to enjoy this crispy sweet (or tart!) treat. Look for local apples in your grocery store or drive up to a nearby farm to pick yourself.

Broccoli. Although it does grow in the warmer months, broccoli lingers into the fall. Roast up some spears with garlic and olive oil, or pull out your wok for a quick stir-fry.

Blackberries. Most of us think of summer as the season for berries, but blackberries are available in some regions well into the early fall. Great for pies, smoothies, muffins and fruit salads, these juicy berries are packed with antioxidants—great for fighting colds as the “sick” season approaches.

Cabbage. Stuffed cabbage, baked cabbage, stewed cabbage, coleslaw! This cruciferous veggie is very versatile, and extremely inexpensive. Grab a head or four and get to munching.

Cauliflower. Many mistake cauliflower as being void of nutrients due to its pale coloring, but this couldn’t be further from the truth. Packed with vitamins, this veggie is great raw, steamed or baked. Some are even getting creative by making cauliflower “rice” and pizza crusts. Hit up Google for some innovative cauliflower recipes.

Zoe Eisenberg is RISMedia’s senior content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at zoe@rismedia.com.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

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$46,000 :: 1967 WOODRUFF Avenue, Warren MI, 48091

Property Photo

3 beds, 1 bath
Home size: 1,058 sq ft
Lot Size: 5,227 sq ft
Added: 07/02/17, Last Updated: 09/25/17
Property Type: Single Family
MLS Number: 217056991
Community: Warren
Tract: WARREN PARK
The price of this listing was last reduced on 7/2/2017 by 5%
Status: Sold

3 BED 1 FULL BATH,EXTRA LARGE KITCHEN WITH DINNING. CLOSE TO SCHOOL, SHOPPING AND FREE WAY.

Listed with Greenland Realty


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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Get in Early on Emerging Neighborhoods

Buying in a hot housing market while prices are reasonable is a sure ticket to wealth. Analysts at GOBankingRates recently spotlighted 20 up-and-comers. The top 10 are:

1. Jungle Terrace – St. Petersburg, Fla.
Median List Price (as of July 2017): $239,900
Price Change Year-Over-Year: +44.5 percent

2. Beacon Hill – Seattle, Wash.
Median List Price: $569,995
Price Change Y-O-Y: +31.2 percent

3. Point Breeze – Philadelphia, Pa.
Median List Price: $295,000
Price Change Y-O-Y: +40.5 percent

4. Heather Gardens – Denver, Colo.
Median List Price: $278,750
Price Change Y-O-Y: +27.3 percent

5. Pinehurst – Seattle, Wash.
Median List Price: $350,000
Price Change Y-O-Y: +24.8 percent

6. Hazelwood – Portland, Ore.
Median List Price: $324,450
Price Change Y-O-Y: +22.4 percent

7. Twin Lakes – Las Vegas, Nev.
Median List Price: $182,450
Price Change Y-O-Y: +41 percent

8. Fairgrounds – Indianapolis, Ind.
Median List Price: $179,900
Price Change Y-O-Y: +29 percent

9. Bayside West – Tampa, Fla.
Median List Price: $229,900
Price Change Y-O-Y: +32 percent

10. Highland Hills – San Antonio, Texas
Median List Price: $135,000
Price Change Y-O-Y: +35.3 percent

Source: GOBankingRates

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$100,000 :: 28000 UNIVERSAL DR, Warren MI, 48092

Property Photo

3 beds, 2 baths
Home size: 1,424 sq ft
Lot Size: 0 sq ft
Added: 08/06/17, Last Updated: 09/23/17
Property Type: Condo/Townhouse/Co-Op
MLS Number: 21351775
Community: Warren (50023)
Tract: UNIVERSAL CITY ESTATES
Status: Sold

***ASSOCIATION FEE INCLUDES GAS/HEAT,WATER,FREE ACCESS TO IN-GROUND SWIMMING POOL,CLUBHOUSE, SNOW REMOVAL***No heating bill means MAJOR SAVINGS for you during Winter!This RECENTLY REMODELED TOWNHOUSE condo w/ 3 bedrooms,1.1 bath,FULL PRIVATE BASEMENT along with a 2-CAR ATTACHED GARAGE is a RARE FIND in the HEART OF WARREN!BRAND NEW LAMINATE FLOORING,UPDATED KITCHEN W/ BRAND NEW CABINETS & COUNTERTOP,UPDATED BATHROOMS W/ BRAND NEW VANITIES & LIGHT FIXTURES!HUGE MASTER BEDROOM boasts a WALK-IN-CLOSET and a PRIVATE BALCONY with nice view.Entertain your guests with BBQ parties in your PRIVATE FENCED BACKYARD or host a family gathering in the CLUBHOUSE.ENJOY the SWIMMING POOL for FREE!Appliances include DISPOSAL, REFRIGERATOR,STOVE,WASHING MACHINE & DRYER!If we add the LOCATION of this condo to all these updates & amenities,it truly is a place YOU CAN’T MISS OUT!!!Close to all major expressways,hospital,shopping malls,stores & groceries. ***TRULY A LUXURIOUS CONDO AT AN AFFORDABLE PRICE***

Listed with Amin Realty


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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$70,300 :: 23162 HILL AVE, Warren MI, 48091

Property Photo

3 beds, 2 baths
Home size: 1,639 sq ft
Lot Size: 12,632 sq ft
Added: 03/26/17, Last Updated: 09/22/17
Property Type: Single Family
MLS Number: 21275825
Community: Warren (50023)
Tract: S/P SIMONDS GARDENS HOMESITES
The price of this listing was last reduced on 4/13/2017 by 19%
Status: Sold

POSSIBLE SEWER LINE AND WATER INFILTRATION PROBLEMS. 3 BEDROOMS, 1.5 BATHS. RANCH. HUD HOME.

Listed with Keller Williams Realty-Great Lakes


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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$205,000 :: 32144 HEAVENLY CRT, Warren MI, 48092

Property Photo

3 beds, 4 baths
Home size: 1,600 sq ft
Lot Size: 0 sq ft
Added: 09/21/17, Last Updated: 09/21/17
Property Type: Condo/Townhouse/Co-Op
MLS Number: 21371063
Community: Warren (50023)
Tract: RYAN RD ESTATES NO. 2 CONDO #9
Status: Active

This 3 bedroom/4 full bath condominium home is perfection inside and out! When you drive up to this pristine condo home, notice the details of the brick paver lined driveway and immaculate landscaping. As you walk in, you will enjoy a large open flow to the living space which boasts stunning bamboo floors throughout the first floor. The vaulted ceilings and neutral fresh paint invite you to make this home your own. The designer kitchen checks all the boxes with stainless steel appliances, stylish back-splash and granite countertops. Master bedroom with en-suite bath on the entry level along with an additional bedroom and full bath. Upstairs is a third bedroom and full bath. Truly unique is the fully finished basement with a 2nd full modern kitchen, recreation room, additional room that can be used as an office and an amazing 4th luxury bathroom with jetted tub, separate spa shower and full surround custom tile. BATVAI

Listed with In House Realty LLC


Brought to you by Janet Hull and Thomas Bush, Real Estate One, Inc.. Call me today at 1-855-Janet-Tom, or visit my website at www.JanetandThomas.com!


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Revealed: 100 Best Places to Live in America

Editor’s Note: This was originally published on RISMedia’s blog, Housecall. See what else is cookin’ now at blog.rismedia.com:

Ever wondered who is living the good life, and where? A new study done by MONEY with the help of realtor.com® runs down the top 100 best places to live in the U.S.

But how does one quantify “best,” a term that feels quite subjective? The study’s methodology focuses on towns with a population of 10,000 to 100,000, to avoid the big cities and spotlight smaller suburbs and towns that often get overlooked as folks gush about Portland, Ore. and Austin, Texas.

The variables MONEY focused on with these smaller places included job availability, school systems, crime rates, convenience, home values and community/cultural outlets. Realtor.com stepped in to assist with the real estate aspect, and together the two sources unveiled 100 great places to live across the country, from North Dakota to New Jersey and back again.

So what are the top 10 spots? Some may surprise you:

  1. Fishers, Ind.
  2. Allen, Texas
  3. Monterey Park, Calif.
  4. Franklin, Tenn.
  5. Olive Branch, Miss.
  6. Dickinson, N.D.
  7. Lone Tree, Colo.
  8. North Arlington, N.J.
  9. Schaumburg, Ill.
  10. Bozeman, Mont.

For more details, check out MONEY’s post here, and to see how realtor.com broke down what is occurring in the “Best Places” housing markets, click here.

Zoe Eisenberg is RISMedia’s senior content editor. Email her your real estate news ideas at zoe@rismedia.com.

For the latest real estate news and trends, bookmark RISMedia.com.

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