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April 25, 2017

What are the Safest States in America?

Safety plays a major role when deciding where you want to reside. Not only does it affect you and your family’s quality of life, it also affects those who visit you. With a national violent crime rate of 373 per 100,000 residents and a property crime rate of 2487, a high crime rate within a particular state can impact the buying decision of potential homebuyers. According to US News, these are the top 10 safest states in America with low rates in violence and property crimes:

**Rates are per 100,000 residents.

1. Vermont

Violent Crime Rate: 118 Property Crime Rate: 1407

Vermont is mostly known for its cold temperatures and pure maple syrup, but as of [...]

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April 25, 2017

Buying a Home in an Earthquake Zone

Once considered rare or unusual occurrences, earthquakes are now daily events, in part because of better monitoring, and communication of the quakes. The United States Geological Survey (USGS) now estimates that several million earthquakes occur in the world each year, although many go undetected because they occur in remote areas or have very small magnitudes.

In the U.S., the USGS now locates about 50 earthquakes each day, or about 20,000 a year. Oklahoma, for instance, had 623 earthquakes of 3+ in 2016; 903 in 2015; 579 in 2014; and 109 in 2013. According to E&E News (a news organization focused on energy and the environment), it’s the most seismically active [...]

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April 21, 2017

Picking the Best Floor for Your Home

The old favorites, wood, stone, tile, and linoleum, are still among the top favorites with homeowners when it comes to flooring choices. But thanks to technology there are now dozens of other options, including some creative alternatives as well. It can make it hard to pick the perfect flooring.

Try to remember all floors have their pros and cons and there is no “perfect” flooring, only the flooring that works best for you and your application.

So think about what you’ll be using the floor for the most. Will it be in a high traffic area? A bathroom? Will it be subject to water, mud, and dirt – like in an entryway? Will there be lots of furniture in the [...]

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April 21, 2017

How To Bird-Proof Your Windows

If the eyes are the window to the soul, your windows are surely the soul of your home. Whether you’ve got wide bay windows with a stunning backyard view, casement windows that make it easy to flood your home with a fresh breeze, or a protruding garden window perfect for up-close wildlife interaction, your home’s windows are your link to the magnificent outdoors just on the other side of the glass. Unfortunately, the bird population doesn’t feel quite as charmed about your windows. In fact, an estimated one billion birds die each year in the US alone from window collisions. To birds in flight, a window is an optical illusion. They don’t see the panes of glass [...]

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April 20, 2017

Spring Housing Forecast

Overall, it seems that 2016 was a pretty good year for housing. National average prices continued to rise, mortgage rates remained historically low, and there were clear indications that millennials, a generation which some feared would never buy homes, were beginning to enter the housing market.

In many ways 2016 was an extraordinary and, for some, agonizing 12 months. The housing market was certainly not exempt from the year’s highs and lows. Early in the year, experts anticipated an uptick in building activity. Instead, builders were still not producing enough homes to match demand. Meanwhile, home prices appreciated well above expectations and mortgage rates flirted [...]

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April 18, 2017

Ask Anna: Best Tips For Keeping Your Living Room Clean

I can’t believe it’s April and spring is fully upon us! It’s time to continue our spring cleaning, and today I’m sharing all of my best tips for how to keep your living room clean and fresh. As a family, we spend a lot of time in our family room, but it’s often times a place that gets overlooked when you think about cleaning. So let’s gather some tools and get to work!

Here’s What You’ll Need: Hydrogen peroxide wipes EnviroCloth Wool duster (preferably one that extends) Parmesan cheese shaker (you can get them at the Dollar Store) Baking soda Your favorite essential oils 1. Fans and Light Fixtures

I don’t know about you, [...]

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April 18, 2017

5 Hardscaping Projects That Can Improve Your Home’s Value

If you’re thinking about improvements to your home, some home improvements raise potential resale value more than others. The key consideration, of course, is that you and your family will get use out of and enjoy the improvement, but it never hurts to think strategically. A home project you enjoy every day that will hike your home’s resale value is a terrific two-fer. But what projects improve resale value the most? Projects that add curb appeal can raise a home’s value by as much as 20 percent.

“Curb appeal” refers to what potential buyers see when they drive up and park. Landscaping, hardscaping and home exteriors all count. Hardscaping, by the [...]

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April 17, 2017

Top 5 Cities for Techies

If you work in the tech industry, you already know about the hottest spots for tech workers – San Francisco and New York City. These cities are regularly featured as top destinations for techies, but if you want to avoid a high cost of living and the big city lifestyle, there are still options galore. Indeed, over the past two decades, cities and metro areas across the country have branded themselves as “Silicon X” (or in the case of Philadelphia – Philicon Valley).

Whether you’re a recent grad or just tired of spending most of your salary on rent each month, check out these awesome destinations for tech workers.

Las Vegas, Nevada

No longer just a hub [...]

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