Sharon Lanen Coskren - Leading Edge Real Estate



Posted by Sharon Lanen Coskren on 6/28/2019

You’ve closed on your new house, moved all your boxes, and started planning how to arrange your furniture. Your family can’t wait to settle in and regain a sense of normalcy after the chaos of moving. But before you get back to your normal routine be sure to add these tasks for new homeowners to your to do list. Each takes just an hour of your time and will help you to stay on top of maintenance as well as familiarize yourself with your new domain.

Start by finding out where your main water shutoff valve is located. This is not something you want to have to find when you are in an emergency. In colder climates, it’s most likely to be found in your basement and if you are in a warmer climate you should find it outside. If you keep a binder for home updates add a note of the location within.

Make sure your attic insulation is the correct depth. You want at least 6 inches and even more in northern states. Ensuring that your insulation is the correct depth will help you to save money throughout the year on heating and cooling costs. If you’re attic doesn’t have the correct depth or is damaged be sure to have it replaced as soon as possible. Oftentimes you can get incentives for improving your insulation and thus creating a more energy efficient home.

Check the temperature of your hot water heater and be sure it is set at 120 degrees tops. If you have an older model add a hot water heater blanket to help retain heat. If you find that your heater leaks you want to replace it immediately. A small leak can quickly lead to a major one, flood your home and cause serious damage. Again, be sure to keep note of the month and year you replaced your heater or which year your current model is.

Replace air filters right away so that you will know when they’ve last been replaced. Add monthly reminders to your calendar to stay on top of this quick maintenance task. You can make this task even easier by buying them in bulk. If you love to be organized label them for each month so you know exactly when you’ll next need to replace them.

Change all of the locks on your home. This is simple enough to do on your own and is an easy proactive safety measure for your family. While one hopes there are no lingering keys out in the world of your home, you can’t be sure of who may have a spare key.  

Take note of any cracks in your basement. If you find any mark their length with a piece of masking tape and mark with the current date. Watch closely to see if the crack spreads beyond the mark. If you find that the cracks are lengthening be sure to get them taken care of by a professional. This is a serious repair you don’t want to wait on.

Buying a new home is an exciting time. Especially after you’ve closed on the house, can begin to move in and start settling into your routine. Before you get too comfortable be sure to add a few tasks to your to do list. Familiarizing yourself with your new home right away will help you stay on top of maintenance and have peace of mind.




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Posted by Sharon Lanen Coskren on 2/8/2019

If you recently sold your house, there may be only a few weeks before you need to relocate to a new address. As such, you'll likely face a time crunch to pack up your belongings and get rid of excess items, including various home appliances.

Although your refrigerator, washer, dryer and other home appliances have served you well for many years, there is no time like the present to sell these items. That way, you can earn extra cash and avoid the hassle of moving these big, heavy items from your current address to your new one.

For home sellers who have only a short amount of time to sell their appliances, there's no need to worry. In fact, there are many quick, easy ways to sell your appliances and maximize their value.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you sell your appliances before moving day.

1. List Your Appliances Online

Create an online listing for each of your home appliances, and you should have no trouble stirring up plenty of interest in these items.

When you craft an online listing, it is important to include as much information as possible. Therefore, you should provide details about a home appliance's age and condition, along with photos. This will make it easy for a home appliance shopper to determine whether a particular appliance is the right choice.

Also, share your online listing with family members and friends. And if you post your online listing on social networks, you may be able to generate significant interest in an appliance in no time at all.

2. Host a Yard Sale

A yard sale offers a great opportunity to sell home appliances and other items before you move.

Host a yard sale on a Saturday or Sunday and start your yard sale in the morning. By doing so, you can improve your chances of attracting a wide range of yard sale shoppers.

In addition, be open to negotiating with yard sale shoppers. If you maintain flexibility on the price of a home appliance, you can boost your chances of a quick sale.

3. Post Flyers in Your Community

Craft flyers that include information about your appliances and post them in your community. This will allow you to generate interest from local buyers.

Flyers should be clear, concise and informative. They can include information about an appliance, along with contact information that enables buyers to reach you via phone or email.

Lastly, if you need to sell appliances prior to moving day, it often pays to consult with a real estate agent.

In many instances, a real estate agent can offer recommendations and suggestions to help you streamline the moving process. As a result, this housing market professional can make it easy for you to sell home appliances and other items before you move.

Ready to sell your home appliances? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can promote your appliances to the right groups of buyers.




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Posted by Sharon Lanen Coskren on 2/1/2019

Moving to a new home can be either a fun experience or a very stressful time for you. It all depends on the way you manage the move. Being prepared for the entire process is one definite way of making sure that the whole moving experience is a fun one for you. Follow these simple ideas for a smooth moving operation.

  • Find a moving company. Except you want to do the moving yourself, you might be better off with a professional moving company. Ask for good recommendations and decide on one mover that is well within your budget. Schedule a date for the moving with the company when you finally pick one. You can begin this about two months before you have to leave, to give you enough time to wrap up the process.
  • Sort and purge. Decide what you want to move to your new home. Some items will probably be too old or useless where you are going too, so you should sell, give to your neighbors or donate to charity. During this period, you should also work on exhausting things that you won’t move, such as perishable food items or cleaning supplies. Ideally, you should start doing this about six weeks before your moving date.
  • Start Packing. At about a month to your moving date, you should start packing your non-essential items into boxes. Things that you don't use frequently should be the first to go in your boxes. Make sure you mark individual boxes with a label that identifies what is in the box and what room it’s going to in your new home. As your move date draws nearer, everything you no longer need until you settle in at your new home you should pack at once.
  • Clear out your home. If you have storage facilities outside your current home, like a garage or shed, you should start clearing them out for the move. You want to avoid forgetting something that might turn out to be very important. Wash, dry and pack up all your clothing too. Also, don’t forget to return all items you may have borrowed from neighbors in the past.
  • Final arrangements. In the last days before you leave, go round your house a few times to be sure you are not leaving anything behind. Pack a night bag that you can live out of, pending when you finally settle in at your new home. If you are using professional movers, be sure to ask them for wardrobe boxes to make it easier to have your clothes when you arrive. If you need recommendations on moving companies, ask around at the next neighborhood meeting.

Moving doesn't need to be stressful for you if handled well. Sometimes all you need is a plan of action.




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Posted by Sharon Lanen Coskren on 1/25/2019

There was a time when moving across the country was a trip into the unknown. For some, that prospect may be an exciting one. For a homeowner with bills to pay or children to raise, the more you know about a place the better.

Fortunately, today’s technology equips us with tools to learn everything (or almost everything) we need to know about a place without ever visiting. With the use of statistics, maps, and first-hand accounts, would-be homeowners can put in their researcher hats and get a feel for a place without ever even visiting.

In today’s post, I’m going to introduce you to some of those tools. So, if you’re thinking of making a long distance move sometime in the near future, read on for a list of the most useful resources that will help you along your search.

Cost of living

Most of us would love to move to Hawaii or San Francisco, but let’s face it--cost of living differences can make a huge impact on our ability to move wherever we want. Fortunately, there is reliable data on the specific cost of living for different parts of the United States.

Nerdwallet’s cost of living calculator lets you enter your current city and income and then compare what you would need to earn (on average) to move to a city of your choice. Moving to Boston, MA from Denver, CO, for example, would mean a 34% increase in costs like housing, groceries, transportation, etc.

Do you freelance or work from home and have the ability to travel wherever you want? If so, check out the Nomad List. It lets you compare housing costs, safety, weather, and--perhaps most important for freelancers--internet speeds in cities around the country and around the world.

How’s the weather?

Another important consideration for long distance moves is the climate. Not only will it determine your wardrobe and comfort level, but it also could mean more expensive heating in the winter or air conditioning in the winter.

To check out the average monthly temperatures and precipitation levels, check out U.S. Climate Data.

School scores

It’s hard to judge schools based on a few numbers, and it’s best to see what kind of programs and classes they’ll offer for your children as well. However, to get a glimpse of the nearby schools, you can check out City Data or NeighborhoodScout.

Safety

Safety is always a concern when visiting or moving to a new place. Fortunately, there are several good sources of information for neighborhood safety.

When we think of safety, most of us think of things like crime rates. NeighborhoodScout provides all the data you’ll need on crime. However, there are other safety concerns that should be addressed.

The CDC provides health data for 500 U.S. Cities. And, if you’re worried about lead exposure, this interactive map from Reuters has you covered.




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Posted by Sharon Lanen Coskren on 10/19/2018

Packing your entire house is a daunting task to say the least. We are always left wondering how did we end up with so much stuff?

A quick Google search will bring up “ultimate lists” of all of the “packing hacks” you could ever humanly think of. Making the process feel even more daunting.

Here’s your guide to packing tips you’ll actually be glad to know - and none of what you won’t.

Start by decluttering as much as possible.

Get rid of what you no longer need or use. The more you get rid of now the less you have to pack up, carry or even pay to have moved to the new house. Depending on your timeline try to give yourself at least one week where you go through each room one day at a time. However, if you have even more time available you can tackle this project by sections of each room. That smaller you can break down any task the easier and more manageable it becomes.

Schedule your move date.

Schedule your move day with movers at least a month ahead of time to guarantee your perfect time slot. Planning ahead in this way also leaves plenty of room to negotiate with your moving company to find the cheapest time of the month to move. If you have a flexible schedule or able to put in for the time off ahead of time you’ll open up even more possibility for snagging a great deal.

In fact, schedule everything.

Make a schedule and to do list for the moving process. Add it to your calendar, whether that be physical, digital or both! Know your disconnect times will be and when you need to bring back items like cable boxes. Call in for help at least a few weeks out so friends and family are able to make room in their own schedules to help you out.

Pack savvily.

Pack a little bit each day starting with the least essential items you can easily live without. Save money on boxes by asking your local stores, like the grocery or liquor store, for free boxes. Keep thick blankets out to wrap fragile items like your television in if your moving company doesn’t offer them or you’re moving on your own. Buy different colored packing tape to color code boxes by room. Assign one room to each color and label each box well by including its contents to make unpacking a snap.

Be prepared on moving day.

Find the fastest and shortest route from your old house to the new one. While researching be on the lookout for potential tie-ups like construction or a large town event. Have extra packing tape, light bulbs, and extension cords on hand for moving day. Before unplugging all of your electronics take pictures of your cord setup to take the guesswork out of setup at the new house. Defrost and clean out your fridge at least the day before move day. You’ll avoid messy leaks and can look forward to a like-new fridge on move-in day. Keep a cleaning kit on hand and at the ready, you never know what accidents might pop up during the moving process.




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Sharon Lanen Coskren