Thursday, 25 June 2020
Can You Tell It’s Summer By Your Electric Bill???
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It’s officially summer, the season of long hot days, fun in the sun and of course, LOTS of air conditioning! Many of you have received your first large electric bill of the season reflecting the temperature change and although you are enjoying the beautiful hot days after being cooped up for months, you aren’t enjoying the high energy bills.

Once you get past the utility’s reminder that you live in the hot and humid South, you may want to perform a quick energy audit around your home to ensure you are doing all you can to minimize cooling costs.  One of the best places to start is with your HVAC unit.  If it has been a while, you might want to schedule a seasonal checkup with a reputable company to be sure your unit is in good working order.  Sometimes they can uncover small issues that can be resolved before the unit works overtime and freezes up in the middle of July with no warning!  Whether or not you call for a service, you should continue to change the filters on a regular basis to keep the clean air flowing!  You should also keep debris away from the unit and check for and seal gaps in the ductwork where air could be escaping.  This is also a good time to check the caulking and weather stripping around doors and windows.  Not only will sealing leaks help save energy and money now, but you will get a head start on the heating season.

If you haven’t installed a programmable thermostat yet, now may be a good time to take the plunge.  There is a wide variety of units available from those that don’t require an internet connection to those that can be controlled using a smart phone or tablet and monitored while you are away from home.  Many “smart” thermostats also have “learning” modes that identify your usage patterns for better efficiency.

Some other easy low-tech options for energy savings include changing the direction of your ceiling fan to counterclockwise for summer use and keeping blinds, drapes or shutters closed in areas where your home receives abundant sunlight.

Following just a few of these low cost tips can help you save some money on your energy bills while you keep your home and family comfortable soaking up the sun!

...."You've Got A Friend in Real Estate"

 

Jarod Tanksley 615.403.8265

www.BrentwoodandBeyond.com 

Brentview Realty 615.373.2814

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Posted on 06/25/2020 9:59 AM by jarod tanksley
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Monday, 8 June 2020
What can equity do for you?
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Since you have been spending so much time around the house doing all sorts of projects and organizing various aspects of your life, you may have decided you would like to do a larger home improvement project for your family’s enjoyment or perhaps in preparation to sell.  There are a variety of options you could use to pay for your project ranging from cash, “same as cash” credit offers from vendors or a HELOC. 

Since mortgage interest rates are at all-time lows, exploring a HELOC might be a good option if you have lived in your home for a while.  A HELOC (Home Equity Line Of Credit) resembles a second mortgage leveraging the equity in your home as an open line of credit extended to you from a lender that acts like a credit card to pay for expenses of your choice.  Generally people use a HELOC for home improvements but that is not a requirement and the money could be used for any purpose.

Getting a HELOC is much like applying for a home mortgage.  You need to choose a lender and complete paperwork regarding income, expenses, assets, employment history and your home’s current value.  In order to see how much you qualify to borrow against your property, you will be required to undergo a credit check and have your home appraised in order for the lender to determine you and your home’s credit worthines.

Once approved, you can use the money a bit at a time when needed or as a lump sum.  Repayment terms can differ so be sure to check with your lender on specifics that can be tailored to your individual needs before signing on the dotted line!  If you opt for a HELOC, keep in mind that if you default on your loan agreement your home is at risk because it is the collateral for the loan.  However, it can be a beneficial way to borrow money for a designated project at a lower rate than some other types of loans.  If you have some projects you would like to get done while life is happening at a slower pace, check with your lender to see if it is an option for you and your family to get started!

Three things you will need to remember...

  1. A HELOC requires a disciplined plan for repayment since it is likely to be an interest-only required payment.  A minimum monthly payment will not reduce your balance, so map out a strategy prior to closing.
  2. Many banks offer limited closing fees and no prepayment penalty on HELOCs.  Be sure that the closing fees are limited prior to proceeding.
  3. ...."You've Got A Friend in Real Estate"....    

 

Jarod Tanksley 615.403.8265

www.BrentwoodandBeyond.com

Brentview Realty  615.373.2814

 

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Posted on 06/08/2020 7:02 AM by jarod tanksley
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