Moving – Connestee Falls Realty http://www.connesteefallshomes.com Brevard, NC - Live Where You Play! Wed, 29 Nov 2017 16:49:52 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.8.4 SOLUTIONS TO SAVING MONEY ON YOUR NEXT MOVE http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/solutions-saving-money-next-move/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/solutions-saving-money-next-move/#respond Fri, 10 Nov 2017 15:27:19 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=6269     SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com – Excerpts “Buying a house and moving in is gonna cost you…well, actually, there are ways to make it  not quite so painful.  A willingness to negotiate and put in a little work, plus a little inside info on special deals you can take advantage of can help…

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SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com – Excerpts

“Buying a house and moving in is gonna cost you…well, actually, there are ways to make it  not quite so painful.  A willingness to negotiate and put in a little work, plus a little inside info on special deals you can take advantage of can help you cut some costs.  Here are eight ways to save money…

  1. DON’T TAKE IT ALL WITH YOU!  Furniture you no longer love?  Appliances in the garage?  These could be included in the sale….first time buyers might like to have them, and you won’t have to pay to haul it to your next home.
  2. LEAVE THAT FLAT SCREEN TV!  If it’s at least a few years old, consider leaving it behind.  The cost of taking it down and repairing the wall behind it plus the care involved in moving might not be worth it.  Flat-screen technology is always improving while costs are coming down, so it’s a good excuse to buy something bigger and better without spending a lot.
  3. NEGOTIATE EVERYTHING!  If you’ve been looking for a house or have bought one before, you are aware of closing costs…but are you aware of how much you can negotiate with your lender?  Shop around…when you receive your good faith estimate of closing costs, it will include lender’s fees, appraisal charges and title insurance premiums.  The lender charges some fees, and third parties charge others.  Find out which are loan origination fees and which are third-party fees.  Don’t guess – actually ask your lender or broker.  While some items are non-negotiable, like taxes, city and county stamps, recording fees, interest and reserves, negotiating on others that can be waived or reduced can save you money.
  4. BARTER FOR SERVICES!  Need a handyman, and have appliances or furniture you’re getting rid of?  You might be able to make a deal.  Ask about bartering during your first conversation.  You may be surprised about what you can get for what you’ve already got.
  5. MOVE SMART!  If you don’t want to move on your own, think of ways you can save by doing a “hybrid move.”  Do the packing/unpacking yourself.  Have everything on one floor (stairs can add to the cost of a move.)  Pare down – maybe you don’t need some of your stuff any more – sell it, if you can.
  6. CONSIDER MOVING AND STORAGE HYBRID OPTIONS.  A company like PODS or U-Pack might be a solution for you if you need self-storage.  The company drops off a mobile storage unit at your house and you pack it up yourself.  They then pick it up and move it for you.  You can tack on storage at the end if needed, making this a particularly good solution for those who have time between their move out and their move in.  This type of move can cost up to 35% less than traditional movers – but remember – you will be doing the labor, just not the driving.
  7. TAKE ADVANTAGE OF SPECIAL OFFERS.  Move-in offers for cable, internet and phone service can save you a lot of money, but they often come with a catch that could cost you down the line.  Be careful.  Look out for special, limited-time offers – one year or six-month specials that expire, leaving you with much higher rates after the introductory period.
  8. DON’T RUSH THE RENOVATIONS.  Chances are, after you move in, you’re going to start receiving all kinds of junk mail asking if you want to renovate, redo your lawn, and apply for thousands of credit cards.  In this endless pile of junk mail will be come special offers for new homebuyers.  Look out for coupons from handymen, companies selling flooring and windows, home furnishings, and offers from landscapers with discounts for new clients.  If you’re planning to shop, renovate, or do some work on your interior or exterior, taking advantage of a few of these offers can help shave down the cost.

SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com   IMAGE:  djbox.ie

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SIX SURPRISING BENEFITS OF BUYING OR SELLING IN THE FALL http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/six-surprising-benefits-buying-selling-fall/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/six-surprising-benefits-buying-selling-fall/#respond Wed, 04 Oct 2017 13:42:35 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=6227 SOURCE:  Excerpted from an article by Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com “Seeing fewer for-sale signs now that summer is over?  This can be great news for buyers who are looking to score a new home and sellers who want to sell their place and move on.  If you think you missed the boat on making your…

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SOURCE:  Excerpted from an article by Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com

“Seeing fewer for-sale signs now that summer is over?  This can be great news for buyers who are looking to score a new home and sellers who want to sell their place and move on.  If you think you missed the boat on making your move this year, here’s why buying and selling in the fall can work for you.

LESS COMPETITION.  There may be fewer homes on the market, but there are also fewer buyers competing for the same home you want.  That gives buyers an important edge.  Forbes says “…competition for houses drops off in the fall, a time many people consider to be off-season in real estate. But there are still homes for sale…” (And inventories in WNC are shrinking).  The benefit to sellers is that those buyers who are out there tend to be more serious, which means your real estate agent can key in on the real buyers without having to sift through the peepers.

TAX BREAKS.  If you’re a buyer who closes escrow before December 31, and you may get a nice write-off on your taxes…property tax and mortgage interest are both deductions you can take for your whole year’s worth of income, even if you closed on your home in December.  Payments made prior to the closing of the loan are tax-deductible.  This can make a serious difference in the amount you owe the government at the end of the year.  There are also potential tax breaks for home sellers…you can include all sorts of selling expenses in the cost basis of your house….increasing your adjusted cost basis decreases your capital gain because this is what’s subtracted from the sales price to determine how much of a gain – or loss – you’ve realized.  If you  have less of a gain, you’re  more likely to fall within the exclusion limit, and if you’re gain isn’t excluded, you’ll pay taxes on less.  And that’s just the beginning.  Closing costs and home improvements may also be write-offs for sellers.  Check out the full list here (http://www.thebalance.com/deducting-house-sale-expenses-3974006).

HOME FOR THE HOLIDAYS.  Buy or sell early in the fall and you could be nicely situated in your new home in time for the holidays and before winter weather hits.  Moving during a calmer time of year also means you may have better access to movers and other necessary resources than during the busier spring and summer seasons.

THE RIGHT PRICE.  …If you’ve made updates to your home to justify a higher price, you’re probably in better shape to get your (realistic) asking price in the fall.  If you’re a seller and you establish a smart pricing strategy, you could find your home standing out in the crowd and selling while others sit on the market under a blanket of snow.  Buyers also may have a better time getting a home that’s within their budget because when there is less competition for homes, there is less chance of bidding wars and over-asking-price sales.

GREAT DEALS ON STUFF TO FIX UP YOUR HOME?  (Our comment:  Probably not this year.  Why?  Because repair work on houses wrecked in the Texas and Florida hurricanes and the disaster in Puerto Rico are eating up building supplies at a rapid pace.  It may be more difficult throughout this fall and early winter to access renovation and building supplies as inventories of these supplies (like drywall) are drawn down.  Keep this in mind if planning to do or have work done on your home prior to listing it for sale.  Buy supplies early and often!)

SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com    IMAGE:  realty4hire.com

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FIVE KEY QUESTIONS FOR HOME SELLERS http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/five-key-questions-home-sellers/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/five-key-questions-home-sellers/#respond Wed, 20 Sep 2017 15:05:35 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=6222 SOURCE:  Excerpted from an article by PJ Wade for realtytimes.com “Are you having trouble deciding whether or not to sell your real estate – home, recreational property, investment property?  It’s not the length of time you’ve lived in or owned a property that determines when it’s time to sell.  There’s no magic number of ownership…

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SOURCE:  Excerpted from an article by PJ Wade for realtytimes.com

“Are you having trouble deciding whether or not to sell your real estate – home, recreational property, investment property?  It’s not the length of time you’ve lived in or owned a property that determines when it’s time to sell.  There’s no magic number of ownership years that triggers a move.

The reasons to sell are not the same for every seller nor for every property.  What is the same are the issues and decisions facing sellers as part of the decision.

The following FIVE KEY QUESTIONS FOR SELLERS summarize the issues and decisions involved.

  1. WHY NOW?  What is driving you to feel that you must sell now?  Is there one main reason you are considering a sale now….or do you feel that you “should” sell either to cash in on higher real state prices or because “at this age” that’s what is expected of you, or…?  These and other “shoulds” can be difficult  to handle alone.  The former requires expert input to arrive at an accurate market value.  The latter is an out-dated ageist viewpoint that should be ignored in favor of considering whether this real estate really suits your present and future needs.  Real estate professionals can offer practical suggestions and alternatives.  Add to this analysis an honest assessment of what you love about your current real estate and how it may limit (or not limit) your life – physically, financially, work-wise, location-wise, etc.
  2. WHAT’S NEXT?  Where will you move to?  Do you have the next step clearly set out in your mind, or are you juggling a few vague ideas?  Are you aiming for a mortgage-free lifestyle?  And who is directly involved in the move…decisions should be  made by those who will use the property and shoulder costs….”Aging in place”, or staying on your home instead of moving into assisted living or extended care, is the new trend for mature property owners.
  3. WHO WILL BE THE IDEAL BUYER?  Is this the ideal market for buyers most attracted to real estate like yours?  Identifying the best potential buyers helps place many decisions in context.  For instance, would a major renovation be a good investment or would cosmetic retouching be more cost effective?  Would staging be worth the cost, or would a simple de-cluttering be enough?  The answer lies not in what you would prefer to do, but in what ideal buyers would most favorably respond to.
  4. WHAT WOULD A “SUCCESSFUL SALE” INCLUDE?  How much do you need to net from the sale of your home?  Owners tend to have inflated views of the value of their home that are tied to pride of ownership.  If you are planning to purchase property with the proceeds of this sale, do you know how much you’ll need to sell for to buy that next property?  Will you need to sell your current property first to be sure exactly how much you have for the next step?  Or can you accept the risk of temporarily owning two properties or needing outside funding to purchase the next property before you sell the current ?  What do you need to achieve through the sale of your real estate?  Beyond financial concerns, what other factors will make this a successful sale?  Is there a particular moving date that holds value for you?  Which items do you want to take with you?  Appliances – stay, or go with  you?  Etc.
  5. WHO WILL HELP YOU ACHIEVE THIS SUCCESS?   Real estate professionals are trained to provide real market data that will put your expectations in the context of current market conditions and buyer alternatives.  The more effective you are at identifying the ideal set of real estate skills and experience necessary for your success, the more successful you will be.  And aren’t you (or both members of a couple) the greatest asset you have because you know your strengths and weaknesses better than anyone else?  You also have the most to gain and to lose, so improving your real estate savvy is well worth the effort.

SOURCE:  PJ Wade/realtytimes.com     IMAGE:  huffingtonpost.com

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BUYING A VACATION HOME: THE QUESTIONS BEFORE PURCHASE http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/buying-vacation-home-questions-purchase/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/buying-vacation-home-questions-purchase/#comments Mon, 17 Jul 2017 13:58:55 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=6165 SOURCE:  Amin Dabit for realtytimes. “Whether it’s an oceanside bungalow or a mountain cabin, many people dream of buying a vacation home.  Financial advisors call a purchase like this “lifestyle investing.”  Like any investment, buying a second home comes with both benefits and potential drawbacks, so it’s important to consider how a vacation home fits…

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SOURCE:  Amin Dabit for realtytimes.

“Whether it’s an oceanside bungalow or a mountain cabin, many people dream of buying a vacation home.  Financial advisors call a purchase like this “lifestyle investing.”  Like any investment, buying a second home comes with both benefits and potential drawbacks, so it’s important to consider how a vacation home fits into your long-term plans before taking the plunge.  Are you ready to pull a trigger on that property in your dream location?  Read on…

TAKE A CLOSE LOOK AT YOUR FINANCES.

Before even looking at listings, it’s important to assess your finances.  To determine whether you can actually afford a vacation property, consider the following:

  • How strong is your income stream?  Will it hold up during an economic downturn?
  • Will you be able to write off some, or all, of your mortgage?  The IRS caps write-offs for mortgage indebtedness at a maximum of  $1 million between your primary and qualified second home.
  • Will you need to finance the vacation property?  If so, keep in mind that banks are quite strict on limiting borrowers for a vacation property to a 42% debt-to-income ratio or less.
  • What is your current asset allocation?  It’s typically not a good idea for anyone to have more than 50% of his or her net worth in any single asset class, especially one like real estate, where leverage is usually a big factor.  You don’t want to be overexposed if the housing market turns.

Sit down with an advisor and answer these questions.  If you still think a vacation home makes sense, keep reading.

RETIREMENT RETREAT OR RENTAL INCOME?

Once you’ve determined that a vacation home is economically feasible, the next big question to think about is how you want to use your vacation property.  Are you planning to rent it out, fix it up and sell it, or retire there?

If you’re thinking about becoming a landlord, make sure the home has rental income potential. (If you’re buying into a community with a POA, check the community’s policy on rentals.) If you’re looking to eventually profit from a sale, are you prepared to own the home for five years?  You’ll likely want to keep it for at least that long in order to amortize the high transaction costs associated with buying a vacation property.  On the other hand, you may see the home as part of your retirement dream, which makes it more of a lifestyle decision than a purely financial one.

MAKING THE MOVE.

Once you know what you’ll use your home for, it’s time to figure out where to buy.  Anyone who has ever bought a house has heard the adage about the three most important factors:  “LOCATION, LOCATION, LOCATION.”  This is even more critical when buying a vacation home.

First, look closely at the local market.  As the Great Recession showed, real estate doesn’t only rise in value.  An array of factors can drive a local market up or down, including major employers coming or going, damaging weather events, etc.  By working with an agent knowledgeable about the area, you can get a good idea or market activity and pricing trends.

It’s important to analyze the pros and cons of the kind of community in which you want to live.  As you scout locations, be sure to consider the distance from your primary residence to your vacation home….the average vacation homebuyer purchases a property that is median distance of 200 miles from their primary residence.  How often will you be willing to make that drive…and have you factored in the costs associated with the journey?

THE FINAL DECISION.

Once you know where you want your vacation home to be, you may be faced with the choice of buying a pre-existing home or building a new home.  While many experts consider location to be the most important factor for buying a property with long-term appreciation potential, expanding a property gives you another way to make money, as the ultimate sale price can be significantly more than the construction cost of an expansion.

However, this approach isn’t without its downside, as expansion projects can often take longer and cost more than expected.  There are also tax implications, to consider.  Before beginning a home investment process, you should run realistic worst-case cash flow numbers to see how long you can survive before your money runs out.  Having two years in cash flow is a good guideline.

Another option is to buy an older home, then remodel or renovate.  While a renovation or remodeling likely won’t get you a huge return on investment when you sell, it can save you money by allowing you to buy a less expensive home and then proving it over time as opposed to shelling out more money up front.  Renovations can also enable you to charge more if you choose to rent out your home.

While buying a vacation home can be a dream come true, it’s important to look at it with clear eyes, just as you would with any other investment.  Make sure to do extensive research and think hard about why you’re making the purchase before signing on the dotted line.

SOURCE:  Amin Dabit/realtytimes.com  IMAGE:  Local photo of one of our famous Brevard-Area white squirrels enjoying his vacation “lounging platform.”

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MOVING DAY SURVIVAL KIT – LIFE-SAVING ITEMS & NICETIES http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/moving-day-survival-kit-life-saving-items-niceties/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/moving-day-survival-kit-life-saving-items-niceties/#respond Wed, 05 Jul 2017 15:14:06 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=6156 Excerpted from article SOURCE:  Houzz.com “Gather these must-haves in advance for a smooth move and more comfortable first days in your new home… At least a few rolls of toilet paper – a must! Aspirin and all of your medications Toilet plunger Cash Leatherman or Swiss Army Knife Trash bags Power strip and mobile phone…

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Excerpted from article SOURCE:  Houzz.com

“Gather these must-haves in advance for a smooth move and more comfortable first days in your new home…

  • At least a few rolls of toilet paper – a must!
  • Aspirin and all of your medications
  • Toilet plunger
  • Cash
  • Leatherman or Swiss Army Knife
  • Trash bags
  • Power strip and mobile phone charger(s)
  • Toothpaste & toothbrush
  • All-purpose cleaner
  • Disinfectant wipes and a roll of paper towels
  • Bottled water & granola bars
  • Local restaurant menus and phone numbers
  • Bandages/First Aid Kit
  • Note pad & pen
  • Air freshener
  • Flashlight

Also think about:

  • Unpacking certain boxes first
  • Local Plumber/Electrician phone numbers
  • Local Power Company number – and other utilities”

 

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HOMEOWNER HAPPINESS – AND HOW IT AFFECTS YOU http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/homeowner-happiness-and-how-it-affects-you/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/homeowner-happiness-and-how-it-affects-you/#respond Wed, 31 Aug 2016 15:02:01 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=5793 Excerpted from an article by Andrea Davis for realtytimes.com “Owning your own home can be one of the most wonderful experiences of your life…but are you truly happy in your current situation?  According to a recent survey by HomeAdvisor, there are a number of different factors that come into play that determine whether someone is…

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homeownerhappinessExcerpted from an article by Andrea Davis for realtytimes.com

“Owning your own home can be one of the most wonderful experiences of your life…but are you truly happy in your current situation?  According to a recent survey by HomeAdvisor, there are a number of different factors that come into play that determine whether someone is happy with their current living situation – or not.

Key factors include:

  • Accessibility – Homeowners don’t want to spend hours having to get from one location to another.  Proximity to important services, shopping, health facilities, good schools, attractions and employment opportunities is very important.
  • Community – People want a diverse place where they can live and work – and a neighborhood that is safe so they can raise their family and enjoy spending time outside.  Roughly 70% of all Americans live in a community where they feel safe.
  • Dwelling – Homeowners want a place that is not only affordable, but comfortable, convenient and enjoyable – a place where you can relax and enjoy taking in your surroundings.  About half of all homeowners have spent time renovating their homes to turn them into something they can enjoy for years to come.  And with home prices rising, you want to purchase a home you will be happy with.  When you are happy with your home, you are going to take pride in it and make sure it is taken care of.
  • Is happiness that important?  Yes – it matters more than most people realize.  It matters so much that the United Nations, Harvard and Gallup have devoted precious resources to better understand what makes homeowners happy – and homeowners should be the happiest where it matters the most, in the comfort of their own home.  Your home is where you form a lasting relationship with your loved ones, yourself and your interests.  All of these relationships contribute to your own happiness and well-being.

Find Your Happy Place!  Finding the perfect location for your new home isn’t always as simple as you might think.  Here are a few key questions you should ask yourself:

  1. Where do you get your coffee in the morning?
  2. What is you ideal mode of transportation to work or other activities?
  3. What do you do when your neighborhood is having a get-together?
  4. What will your children (or grandchildren) be doing this summer?
  5. What does your ideal home look like?
  6. Just how spoiled are your pets?  Are they accustomed to being walked on a leash, or are they used to having a yard or other area to roam free?

You’re investing a lot of time and effort in your new home, so you want to make sure it’s one that you will enjoy for years to come.  Investigate your different options and find out which ones work the best for you and your special needs.

SOURCE:  Andrea Davis/Home Advisor/realtytimes.com

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10 THINGS THAT’LL MAKE YOUR MOVE EASIER http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/10-things-thatll-make-your-move-easier/ http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/10-things-thatll-make-your-move-easier/#respond Fri, 26 Aug 2016 14:48:26 +0000 http://www.connesteefallshomes.com/?p=5787 Excerpted from an article by Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com “Moving:  one of the most stressful activities there is.  If you’re getting ready to move or are in the process of buying or selling a house, you may have been thinking about the unpacking and the packing and the change of address and turning on utilities. …

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moving2Excerpted from an article by Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com

“Moving:  one of the most stressful activities there is.  If you’re getting ready to move or are in the process of buying or selling a house, you may have been thinking about the unpacking and the packing and the change of address and turning on utilities.  But there may be a few things you haven’t thought of.  These tips may help…

1. Pack a bag of essentials – and take it with you. Bring anything you think you will need for the first few nights in your home, plus a few extras in case there’s a hold-up with the moving truck.  You will want to make sure you have all the things that will help you get through the next few days.  Things like:

**A couple of outfits for everyone for a few days (don’t forget pajamas)

**Towels and toiletries – soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, etc.

**Blankets and pillows

**Medications for every member of the family – and pets.

**A first aid kit

**Jewelry and other precious items

**Chargers

**Toilet paper & paper towels

**Paper plates and plastic cups and table ware

**Dog food and bowels, leashes and beds

**Checkbooks and credit cards.

**Important papers including taxes, passports social security cards, etc.

**A cooler filled with sandwich fixings and bottled water, snacks, etc. for the day or two before you are able to get to the market.

2.  Find pet daycare options.  Animals don’t always adjust to moves so easily.  If you need to place them somewhere to minimize the trauma during the actual move and initial unpacking, you’ll want to do all the research and make the arrangements in advance.

3. Hook up cable and internet ASAP.  Many utilities require only a phone call to switch them to a new address, but cable/satellite and Internet are a different story.  There are a lot of options, but not all of them are necessarily going to be available in you home.  Do the research ahead of time, figuring out what’s best for your home, and making any necessary installation appointments as close to your move-in day – or even before, if you can.  Don’t forget to change your address with Netflix and any other similar services to avoid any interruptions.

**A couple of outfits for everyone for a few days (don’t forget pajamas)

**Towels and toiletries – soap, shampoo, toothbrushes, etc.

**Blankets and pillows

**Medications for every member of the family – and pets.

**A first aid kit

**Jewelry and other precious items

**Chargers

**Toilet paper & paper towels

**Paper plates and plastic cups and table ware

**Dog food and bowels, leashes and beds

**Checkbooks and credit cards.

**Important papers including taxes, passports social security cards, etc.

**A cooler filled with sandwich fixings and bottled water, snacks, etc. for the day or two before you are able to get to the market.

4.  Think about the kids.  A simple deck of cards or a new coloring book an d crayons can be lifesavers if you have small kids who are getting bored with all that box carrying.

5.  Do your due diligence when it comes to movers.  Going with any old mover without checking them out first could end up being a disaster.  If you’re not loading up a truck and driving your things to your new house yourself, you’ll want to take a few precautions.  Get quotes from at least three moving companies, and make sure they do in-home assessments so your quote is as accurate as possible – says HGTV.  You can also research them online on sites like Consumer Affairs – and MovingScam.com.  Finally, don’t forget that moving expenses are tax deductible.  Obtain an IRS Change of Address form 8822 by calling (800)829-1040 or visiting the IRS website.  You will be able to download and print Form 8822 and most other IRS forms – e.g., Form 3903 to help deduct moving expenses.

6.    Sign up on Nextdoor.  Nextdoor is a great way to network in your new neighborhood for things like babysitters and handymen and garage sales and the aforementioned pet daycare. (Connestee Falls provides weekly Flyers with all kinds of information on community services and activities.  Also, all new homeowners receive a Directory which not only lists all POA members (your neighbors), but utilities, area community services, etc.  Transylvania Hospital in Brevard is a satellite full-hospital facility with Emergency Room and is affiliated with Mission Hospital in Asheville, NC.  Other quick in-and-out medical services are provided in Brevard by Sisters Of Mercy Clinic and CVS Pharmacy.)

7.  Change the locks.  You never know who out there could have a copy of your house key.

8.  Call a cleaning service.  You new home may or may not have been cleaned up to your standards  Plus, there’s just something great about moving into a freshly-cleaned place.

9.  Find a doctor and dentist.  If someone gets sick or needs medical attention in your new neighborhood, you want to make sure you know where to take them without having to Google the nearest random doctor. (In Connestee Falls, any neighbor will be glad to help.  In any emergency you can always contact Security at the Main Gate for information and assistance.)

SOURCE:  Jaymi Naciri for realtytimes.com

 

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