Susan Baghdasarian's Blog
Some of the best real estate investments are raw land purchases. The idea is to buy raw land in an up-and-coming neighborhood, sit on it, and then sell it to a developer who will do anything to get their hands on it. But while this sounds great, there are a few caveats that are specific to raw land you should know.
You May Need to Wait
There are plenty of ways to make serious money off of raw land, but you may need to wait a bit before the right offer comes along. You need to look at who's moving into the neighborhood, who's moving out and why the land is priced the way it is. This can give you a better indication of when you'll be able to sell it for the price you want. Some people can't afford to have their assets tied up for too long in raw land, but those who are patient can typically see a significant return on their investment.
Check the Topography
From soil erosion to sinkholes, it's not always obvious what makes land good to build on. Overenthusiastic tree roots can easily interfere with a foundation, so much so developers may avoid the project altogether. If the land is surrounded by hills, builders may hesitate to build because the structure will get too much shade.
Zoning Laws Matter
Buyers are highly encouraged to research the current zoning laws that will affect their land. Doing so will give you a sense of how difficult it is to build and why. It should also give you an indication of what's to come down the line. For example, if your land is located in an area that environmental groups want to protect, the zoning laws may change between when you purchase the land and when you sell.
Even if you're not doing anything with the land, you'll still need to factor in the property taxes. Again, if you're waiting for a while to sell, this can eat into profits fairly quickly. Many landowners can sell quickly at a healthy turnaround, but it's important to plan ahead if it takes more time than you imagined.
Watching the Land
Unless you're hiring security guards to watch your land, it can quickly become a dumping ground. A certified inspector can give you more information as to the state of the land, so you know of any contamination long before you sell.
There are so many ways to make money off of raw land, but it helps to understand more about how certain factors can interfere with your sale price. As long as you're planning ahead, you shouldn't have any surprises.
Sometimes you look at many homes and can’t find the perfect luxury home. When that happens, you might have to get a home that meets every requirement except the one – and then add that feature yourself. Many luxury homes have plenty of room to add additional buildings and water features. When purchasing a luxury home that doesn’t have everything, make sure you have plenty of land to add what you need or that the house is situated on the property so that you can add onto it.
The Perfect Floor Plan
You found a house with the perfect floor plan in the perfect location and with plenty of property – but the house doesn’t have a spa area or a pool. Since the market is hot, it’s a good idea to put an offer on the house, but what if you don’t want it if you can’t fit a pool where you want it? When you submit the offer, make it contingent upon an engineer approving the pool and spa location and zoning allowing the pool. If the engineer approves of the location and zoning allows you to build a pool, you can continue with the purchase. If not, you’ll be able to withdraw your offer without any ramifications.
Pool and Spa Landscaping
Before you add the pool, decide on whether you want a hot tub, and if the hot tub will be contained within the same decking as the pool. If so, the pool builder will be able to add the hot tub in before the company builds the decking. This is especially important if you have an in-ground pool with concrete decking around the pool.
If you want to add a steam room that is outside of the house, make sure there is room for it – don’t think of it as an afterthought, especially if the backyard is on the small side. Planning the location of all three pool and spa features is key to an area you’ll enjoy for many years to come.
If you want everything in a heated room, you could add on to the house or you could build a separate building that holds the pool, steam room and hot tub. Benefit of having a separate building including keeping it locked without having a fence and keeping the humidity from the steam and water out of your house.
Fencing and Privacy
Most cities and counties require you to fence the pool in for safety reasons. Make sure you know what zoning in your area requires for a safety fence. Hot tubs, unless covered and locked, usually have to have a fence around them to prevent children from getting in and drowning.
If you don’t like the idea of a high fence, put the lowest fence allowed by zoning around the area, then plant shrubs and trees along the fence for more privacy. Taller shrubs and trees still block your view, but will make you feel like you are in the middle of the woods if you choose the right plants. Put the plants inside the fence so that children cannot climb them from the outside.
281 School St, Northbridge, MA 01534
Have you ever walked into someone's home or office space and instantly felt that it was positive, welcoming and peaceful? It means more harmonious work with customers and clients and a more peaceful attitude at home. Imagine walking through your front door and the stresses of the day melting away.
A good design, including color, layout and lighting can help create that environment for you or your business. Read on to learn more!
To create a relaxing and serene impression, consider using pale blues, which many people find calming. Aqua and periwinkle are also soothing colors. Want something warmer? Peaches are a fresh choice to create a feeling that's more energized, yet welcoming and relaxed.
For an interesting twist, consider creating a gradated impression with mountains or swaths of gently shifting color either with paint or using wallpaper. Gradual shifts in color are very soothing to the eye and also make decorating far easier, as it's possible to match with any of the colors present.
For bedrooms, do consider darker colors such as midnight blue on one wall, especially if the bedroom does not include an office space and is used mostly for sleeping.
One of the decorating maxims is quality over clutter: "buy it once, and buy it right". If your budget is tight, gather the bare essentials first, and allow yourself a full year to reach the finished, polished look you're going for. Remember that if it's a home you've purchased, you're going to be living there for years to come: there's no deadline to acquire the perfect look.
Finally, don't purchase furniture that is oversized in order to 'fit' a larger space. There are two options for larger spaces that seem empty: include more furniture around the central hub of a room (such as a couch, loveseat and two chairs instead of just a couch); or create two hubs of interest in the room.
There is little more important to the peace and serenity of a room than natural light! Be sure that whatever window treatment you use isn't so complex that it takes a great deal of effort rearrange to bring in more light or block it out. Be careful of overhead lights: they can be overwhelming if too intense. Finally, concentrate standing lamps in quiet corners that may be used for reading or play.
One of the best things you can do for a room that seems hemmed-in and dark is to knock out the existing windows and add new, larger ones in their place. This isn't an inexpensive renovation, but it can change the look and feel of a room entirely.
Candles, fireplaces, and string lights are the ultimate in soft, social lighting! Use these to create an intimate atmosphere.
Every room needs a living thing in it, whether that's a standing plant or a fish tank. Living things bring a touch of the serenity of nature to your space. Here are a few great ideas for indoor plants.
Remember the Other Senses
Keep in mind that the environment where you live and work is not just about looks! Part of what makes a room feel inviting is texture, scent and sound.
To create an inviting look, have a variety of soft things to touch in your room, going for quality in whatever rests closest to the body: use high-quality couch pillows and throws, but skimp on curtains, for example.
Be aware that when it comes to the senses, there's a lot of individual variation regarding what's considered comfortable. When questioning what scents to use in your home, err on the side of caution: it's better your guests not smell your fresh vanilla plugin than that you give a friend a migraine! Ask yourself if you notice the scent when you first walk in after a few hours away. If it's a strong smell when you walk in, you should probably back off.
Unpleasant noise can make a space feel very unwelcoming. Playing classical or soft acoustic can disrupt irritating noise. If the outdoor noise is intense, consider getting a white noise machine or asking your home device to play the sound of waves; this blocks out repetitive or unpredictable noise nearby.
Using these tips and tricks, you can create a warm, welcoming space that comforts you, your family and your guests without words.
Although your home gym has helped you stay in shape for many years, packing your dumbbells, an elliptical and other exercise equipment prior to moving day may prove to be exhausting. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of packing your exercise equipment.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you prepare your exercise equipment for moving day.
1. Handle Your Weights with Care
Weights come in many shapes and sizes, and you should allocate plenty of time and resources to ensure your weights won't move while in transit.
For small weight plates and dumbbells, you can wrap these weights in packing paper and place them in a small box. However, you should try to avoid putting too many weights in a single box.
If you have heavy weights and barbells, you should wrap these weights in packing paper and place them directly on the floor of your moving day vehicle. Secure the weights with rope or straps, and you can keep the weights in place.
2. Take Photographs of Your Exercise Equipment
Let's face it – disassembling an elliptical, treadmill or other exercise equipment can be challenging. Perhaps even worse, putting your exercise equipment back together at your new home may be virtually impossible, particularly for those who struggle to stay organized.
Before you disassemble any exercise equipment, take a photograph of the equipment itself. Capture images of your exercise equipment from all angles, and you'll be better equipped than ever before to properly put this equipment back together once you reach your new address.
Also, keep all screws, bolts and other small exercise equipment parts in a plastic bag. You can attach this bag to the equipment itself to avoid the danger of losing these parts during your move.
Don't forget to keep track of the steps that you follow to disassemble exercise equipment too. That way, you'll know exactly what you'll need to do to quickly reassemble your exercise equipment.
3. Get Help from Family Members and Friends
Exercise equipment can be large, heavy and difficult to move on your own. Thus, you should not hesitate to reach out to family members and friends to help you safely pack and move your exercise equipment from Point A to Point B.
Furthermore, professional moving companies are available to help you transport exercise equipment to your new house. A moving company employs friendly, professionally trained staff members who are happy to help you simplify the process of moving your exercise equipment to any location, at any time.
If you need extra assistance prior to moving day, you may want to contact a real estate agent as well. In addition to helping you buy or sell a residence, a real estate agent can offer expert moving tips, put you in touch with top-rated moving companies in your area and much more.
Get your exercise equipment ready for your upcoming move – use the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble packing and moving your exercise equipment to your new house.