Perfect House Real Estate Blog

We're not going to lie.... the headline caught us. Who knew it wasn't private! Eeeeek!

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Many Internet users are rightfully questioning how secure their private data really is.

But it takes an explosive scandal like Facebook's acknowledgement that 87 million users may have had their information improperly shared with political ad targeting firm Cambridge Analytica to shine a bright spotlight on the issue.

Many of us think we’re taking the right precautions, when in fact we’re putting our info at risk.

The following are five such misconceptions, the truth behind them, and what to do about it.

Myth No. 1: Using a private browser keeps my information private

Truth:

Whatever your browser calls it – Private Browsing, Incognito

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That headline caught our eye.... Then reading on, we knew we had to share this one, as it's chock full of great information and graphics!

Thanks to Vince Golle at Bloomberg for this great piece!

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The U.S. housing market’s storyline for the last several years has been one of steady demand and limited supply, pushing prices ever higher. Now, a new chapter has opened up for the industry and its customers: soaring costs for building materials.

   

Reports on Tuesday underscored both resilient purchase activity and accelerating home prices. The S&P CoreLogic Case-Shiller index showed property values in 20 major U.S. cities climbed 6.8 percent in February, the biggest year-over-year gain since June 2014. Government data revealed a

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Spring cleaning shouldn't be the only thing you've got on your list--- now is the time to check out all the nooks and crannies of your home and see what has settled, aged, leaked or change otherwise at all in the last year.

And while we like to think of these as things we do in the home we own, be sure to look over your property as best you can when you are a landlord as well, to try and circumvent surprises popping up later!

Before you get lost in the weeds on how overwhelming that may seem, check out this great list you can check off as you go along:

 Too many homeowners believe spring maintenance is all about the cleaning. Sure, spring cleaning comprises a big chunk of any spring home maintenance schedule, but maintenance aimed at various

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Over the next five years, home prices are expected to appreciate, on average, by 3.6% per year and to grow by 18.2% cumulatively, according to Pulsenomics’ most recent Home Price Expectation Survey.

So, what does this mean for homeowners and their equity position?

As an example, let’s assume a young couple purchased and closed on a $250,000 home this January. If we only look at the projected increase in the price of that home, how much equity will they earn over the next 5 years?

Rising Prices Help You Build Your Family’s Wealth | Keeping Current Matters

Since the experts predict that home prices will increase by 5.0% in 2018, the young homeowners will have gained $12,500 in equity in just one year.

Over a five-year period, their equity will increase by over $48,000! This figure does not even take into account

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When it comes to buying a home, whether it is your first time or your fifth, it is always important to know all the facts. With the large number of mortgage programs available that allow buyers to purchase homes with down payments below 20%, you can never have too much information about Private Mortgage Insurance (PMI).

What is PMI?

Freddie Mac defines PMI as:

“An insurance policy that protects the lender if you are unable to pay your mortgage. It’s a monthly fee, rolled into your mortgage payment, that is required for all conforming, conventional loans that have down payments less than 20%.

Once you’ve built equity of 20% in your home, you can cancel your PMI and remove that expense from your mortgage payment.”

As the borrower, you

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We really hadn't thought about this! Thanks so much to VECTOR for putting this piece together!

We live in a world of convenience controlled primarily through our smartphones. When we need a ride, we log into an app and voilà—a car appears outside. This post highlights some considerations when ridesharing.

There are always car safety issues associated with driving, but there are also potential home security risks when you share your address with a stranger. Although ride-hailing companies, like Uber, have implemented updates for added safety measures, it’s still important to take necessary safety precautions. Here are ways to keep your home safe when ridesharing.

Security Equipment

If you use a ridesharing service to leave your residence, your

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Home security systems are designed to protect you, your family and even your pets. But sometimes, your furry friends (or even scaly ones) can trigger your home security system. Here’s how you can prevent false alarms:

Sensor Placement

Sensors are one of the biggest challenges when it comes to designing a pet-friendly home security system. Pets can easily trigger both motion and image sensors, which are usually activated by heat or movement. For example, if your pet decides to go to its food bowl while these sensors are armed, a false alarm could be sent to homeowners and responders. This can affect how authorities respond to the alarm because they won’t know if it’s a real threat. Configure your system by:

  • Positioning sensors higher than
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Everyone seems to have an interest in something.

This often leads to collecting, a past time of what seems like generations past, but is actually still prevalent!

But is what you are keeping a collection, or just keeping some clutter?

Marie Kondo, a #1 New York Times best-selling author of both Spark Joy and The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up , approaches whether or not items give you joy, in deciding whether to keep them or send them on to another place in their life. 

Some items in your home may truly bring you joy; others, you may have forgotten the reason of why you have them in your home.

Some may have been gifts you accepted on a memorable holiday, others may be something that was passed down by someone else who had a hard time

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It is highly likely that the home you currently own (or will buy some day) won't be your forever-home. Families change, from size to dynamics, jobs change from pay to location. Needs change from large yards to extra bedrooms. Thus it is a wise thing to consider... What is important to the NEXT person who buys that home (from you!) may be different from what was important to you (and your family). 

Are you buying a FOREVER home... or a FOR NOW home? Most of us buy a FOR NOW home... which means you DEFINITELY need to put on a seller's cap at some point- why not try it on, now?

Here's a few just to get the thought process started:

1.) You: Schools really aren't that important to us (we don't have kids/aren't planning on having kids/ we plan on home

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Mica is part of the Burkart family, her human-Dad is our very own Barrett Burkart! You've likely seen her in a handful of our posts in the last few years or in person at our Client Appreciation Events. She's quite the show-stopper, thus we figured it was time to tell at least some of her story:

Mica is a boxer, but that's about all they knew about her before she was adopted into the Burkart family. They estimate she was a little over a year old when she was originally brought in to a veterinary clinic in New Orleans by animal control about 8 years ago with a broken femur. That was surely a sad and scary day for Mica, full of anxiety, pain and fear. On his way to a Saint's game, Barrett stopped in to that clinic to pick up his wife, Anemone. His wife

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