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Fantastic information from the Public Information Officer of the Virginia Beach Fire Department:

(Be sure to share this with your family, friends and co-workers...!)

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The Virginia Beach Fire Department wants you to be safe while grilling.

General safety tips:

Read the instructions and safety warnings before using the grill.

Grilling is an outdoor activity.

Never bring your grill in the house or in the garage.

Both charcoal and gas grills can pose a serious carbon monoxide risk indoors.

Keep your grill a safe distance from your home or deck railings.

Keep children and pets at least three feet away from the grill.

Never leave the grill unattended.

Make sure to clean the grill surface before you begin cooking.

Have

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Sometimes the awesome reviews we receive from our clients skirt the line of letting out our secret recipe of HOW WE GET STUFF DONE. Should we be concerned? Nah. In all truth, what we do as The Perfect House Team is often imitated, but never actually duplicated? Why? Because we work hard to sell you home, by putting tons of work up front before a sign ever goes in your yard. Some of our competition may think they have what it takes to follow through with this game plan--- and if they did, we wouldn't even be mad! Our goal is to educate our clients AND other agents in the area on the RIGHT WAY to sell a house.

So if you're a seller--- this is what you would WANT your selling agent to do.

If you're an agent--- take notes. We would LOVE for you to take

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For homeowners interested in selling in the Hampton Roads area, 2018 is starting off as a seller’s market. January’s number of active listings and the months supply of inventory continued to decline year-over-year, even as sales rose.

Overall, the region’s residential active listings were down 6.87% year-over-year for the month of January, with 8,773 available homes. The area’s active inventory has declined year-over-year for 30 consecutive months. Each of the region’s seven major cities (Norfolk, Virginia Beach, Portsmouth, Chesapeake, Suffolk, Hampton and Newport News) experienced decreased inventory except for Virginia Beach, which was up a modest 1.37%. Norfolk had the most significant drop in inventory for January, down 16.25% year-over-year.

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As always, thank you so much to Military News for another great post in regards to our veterans.

This one is a pretty good read, like usual... And this app looks great!

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National Veterans Legal Services Program (NVLSP) today launched the first of its kind app for use by military veterans and their advocates, available for download through the Apple Store, Google Play Store or NVLSP’s website. Named the NVLSP VA Benefit Identifier, the application helps veterans, with or without the assistance of a veteran’s service officer, determine specific VA benefits to which they are likely entitled.

The app directs users to a logic based questionnaire that assists in verifying whether a veteran should file a claim for service-connected

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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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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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That's a hopeful title up there, isn't it?! Read on for some helpful statistics..... ----------------------

Saving for a down payment is often the biggest hurdle for a first-time homebuyer. Depending on where you live, median income, median rents, and home prices all vary. So, we set out to find out how long it would take to save for a down payment in each state.

Using data from the United States Census Bureau and Zillow, we determined how long it would take, nationwide, for a first-time buyer to save enough money for a down payment on their dream home. There is a long-standing ‘rule’ that a household should not pay more than 28% of their income on their monthly housing expense.

By determining the percentage of income spent

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According to the NCOA (National Council On Aging):
  • Millions of older Americans are at risk for hunger. In 2014, 10.2 million older Americans faced the threat of hunger, representing 15.8% of adults aged 60+ in the U.S.
  • Food insecurity is growing among older adults. The food insecurity rate for all senior households was 7.8% in 2016, down slightly from the year before but up from 5.5% in 2001. At the same time, the percentage of seniors facing the threat of hunger has more than doubled.
The Buffalow Family & Friends Community Days have focused their efforts on senior citizens in Hampton Roads, to help with the issue of food insecurity through the following event:   Senior Community Meal Bags: Packing & Distribution
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Most people will gloss past this headline- there's nothing exciting about mortgage rates, right?

Well, actually....

Read this first, then let us know what you think!

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Where Are Mortgage Interest Rates Headed In 2018?

The interest rate you pay on your home mortgage has a direct impact on your monthly payment. The higher the rate the greater the payment will be. That is why it is important to know where rates are headed when deciding to start your home search.

Below is a chart created using Freddie Mac’s U.S. Economic & Housing Marketing Outlook. As you can see, interest rates are projected to increase steadily over the course of the next 12 months.

Where Are Interest Rates Headed? | Keeping Current Matters

How Will This Impact Your Mortgage Payment?

Depending on the amount of

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The VA Loan is a FANTASTIC benefit to having served in the military. Our agents have extensive experience helping our clients navigate the home buying process that include the VA Loan.  Also, the VA Loan is not just of interest to those buying, but also to those selling, as the VA Appraiser (mentioned below) will be a part of the sales transaction. So this is great information for anyone on either side of the transaction.

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For many borrowers, applying for any kind of mortgage may seem daunting. But, when broken down, this rundown of 6 steps to getting a VA loan is easy to understand.

1. Select a VA-approved Lender

On the surface, it might appear that any lender will do. However, if you dig a little deeper, you may discover that

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