How to Recognize Mold Problems

14 Sep 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

How to Recognize Mold Problems

When buying a new Loft, one of the problems you should be on the lookout for is mold. Even the cleanest Lofts have some mold, but if the problem has gotten out of control it could cause serious health issues. Common reactions to mold include difficulty breathing, coughing, sneezing, and sinus congestion. If you’re shopping for a Loft, here’s what you need to know in order to recognize a possible mold problem.

Look for visual signs of mold growth

There are literally thousands of mold species, and they don’t all look the same. The most common types of mold you may find in a Loft often look like dirt or soot. If you find something that resembles dirt in an area that may have experienced moisture, such as a bathroom, there’s a good bet that it’s mold. Molds can grow on paper, dust, lint, and fiberboard, so be sure to check these surfaces in areas that have dampness or have recently flooded.

Notice any musty smells

Mold has a familiar smell that can be described as musty or damp. It’s similar to the smell you’d encounter in a store full of old books. While this scent may not always indicate a mold problem, it should alert you to be aware of other signs of mold in the Loft.

Check for water problems

Another indication that there could be a potential mold problem is the presence of water damage. If a Loft has sustained any prolonged exposure to water, such as a flood, that’s good reason to believe there may be mold growing in those areas that were affected. Also look for water stains on walls, ceilings, and floors as well as bubbling or cracking paint or wallpaper. Warped wood also indicates previous water damage that could lead to a mold problem. If there are any water leaks from pipes or faucets, be aware that mold could be hidden behind the wall or on another surface where the water seeped.

What to do if you find mold

Mold is so prevalent it’s impossible to remove it entirely from any Loft. But visible mold growth should certainly be removed. First, fix any leaks that are causing water damage. Mold needs moisture to survive, so the most important repair is to cut off the water supply that’s causing the mold to grow. If the mold growth is small, you can likely tackle this challenge on your own. Thoroughly clean the affected area with commercially available products such as soap and water or a bleach solution.

When to call an expert

If your mold problem is on a larger scale, it may be necessary to call in a professional mold remediation company. An expert can properly clean and dry the area so that the mold does not cause allergic reactions.

Don’t write off the Loft

A mold problem does not have to kill the Loft sale. If you know you’re sensitive to mold, it may mean finding another Loft. But if mold doesn’t generally bother you, you can safely proceed with the sale as long as the problem is addressed before you move in.


Selling Your Loft After Labor Day

7 Sep 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Selling Your Home After Labor DayLabor Day weekend is the unofficial end of the summer season. If you’ve been thinking about selling your Loft, you may be wondering if you’ve missed the boat. Spring and summer are often thought of as the best seasons for selling your Loft. But don’t be discouraged! Fall can also be a great time to put your Loft on the market. Here are our best tips for making the most of your post-Labor Day sale.

Maximize your marketing

While spring and summer tend to have the biggest uptick in buyers, that doesn’t mean there aren’t people shopping for a Loft in the fall. Families with school-aged children may conduct their Loft searches while school is out of session, but there are plenty of potential buyers for whom the school calendar is a non-issue. Understand that the buyers you’ll see in the fall may be empty nesters, young millennials, or even people looking for vacation Lofts. If you tailor your marketing to those potential buyers, you’ll see better results.

Focus on the season

There are many people who love the fall season, so don’t be afraid to add some autumnal touches to your Loft. When sprucing up the exterior, display decorative accents like potted mums, pumpkins, or a wreath with fall colors. Inside, add tasteful decorations in warm shades, such as throw pillows or a cozy blanket for the living room couch. Simmer stovetop potpourri with fall scents like cinnamon and clove, or bake pumpkin spice cookies to make your Loft smell amazing. On chilly days, keep the thermostat at a comfortable temperature and serve up hot apple cider.

Price it right

One of the most important things to keep in mind when selling in the fall is to price your Loft accordingly. Take a look at comps in the area and discuss the best pricing strategy with your real estate agent. While some people believe that you have to price lower in the fall, that isn’t necessarily true. Your Loft needs to be priced according to market conditions, and a knowledgeable agent will help you determine what the best listing price should be.

Get the Loft ready

No matter the season, it’s essential that you spend time getting your Loft ready to sell. This includes de-cluttering, de-personalizing, and thoroughly cleaning the entire Loft. Make any needed repairs including fixing leaky faucets, repairing faulty light fixtures, and replacing all burnt out light bulbs. Your agent may also make other suggestions for upgrades to boost your Loft’s appeal. This could include making cosmetic renovations to a bathroom, replacing the flooring, or making energy-efficient upgrades. Paint rooms in neutral shades and remove any bulky furniture. Remember – you want potential buyers to be able to imagine themselves living in your Loft. Make it easier for them by giving them a comfortable, clean, and neutral environment.

If you’re ready to put your Loft on the market, autumn can be the perfect time. Follow the tips above and you could be sitting at the closing table before the end of the year.

Why Was Your Offer Rejected?

31 Aug 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Why Was Your Offer Rejected?

You’ve been searching for a new Loft for weeks, and you finally found “the one.” You submit an offer and start to daydream about life in your new Loft. Unfortunately, you get a reply back from your agent saying your offer has been rejected. Though this is a common occurrence, it doesn’t remove the sting. If you’re wondering why your offer was rejected, here are seven common reasons.

Your offer was too low

It’s not unusual for a seller to reject an offer if they feel it was too low. This is especially true if the Loft just came on the market and you didn’t offer the full listing price. The seller still has plenty of time to see if other, better offers come in that are closer to the price they’re willing to accept. Conversely, even if the Loft has been on the market for some time, your low-ball offer may not be accepted simply because the seller is insulted. It happens.

You’re not pre-approved for a mortgage

One of the most important things you need to do before you begin searching for a Loft in earnest is to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Getting pre-approved signals to the seller that you’re a serious buyer. It demonstrates that you’ve been vetted by a lender and will be able to secure financing. In a competitive market, it’s essential that you get pre-approved.

You asked for contingencies

It’s typical for offers to contain contingencies. For example, the sale could be contingent on the Loft inspection, adequate financing, or sale of your current Loft. If your offer contains several contingencies for the sale, this could be of great concern to the seller. They may question whether or not you’ll ever make it to the closing table. Even if you offer more money that any other buyers, your offer could be rejected if there are too many contingencies.

Your earnest money deposit was too low

When you make an offer on a Loft, you will often put down an earnest money deposit once the offer is accepted. This is usually two or three percent of the purchase price, and shows the seller that you are serious about buying the Loft. This money is held in escrow until closing. If your earnest money deposit offer is lower than what is considered normal, this could cause the seller to reject it.

You requested concessions

Concessions can be anything from asking the seller to pay some of the closing costs to requesting that all the appliances be included in the sale. Concessions can really chip away at what the seller will make on the sale, so it’s not unusual to have your offer rejected because it contains too many concessions.

The seller has unreasonable expectations

We don’t live in a perfect world, and sellers are human just like everyone else. Even if you know that the offer you made was on par with comps in the area, it could still be rejected because the seller has unreasonable expectations about what their Loft is worth.

Someone made a better offer

Finally, your offer may have been rejected because another buyer put in a better offer. In this case, it’s best to accept that this Loft wasn’t meant to be yours and continue your search.

Loft Selling Superstitions

24 Aug 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Home Selling Superstitions

Selling your Loft can be a big undertaking. Which is why it’s no surprise that some Loftowners have turned to less-than-traditional methods to increase their odds of a quick and profitable sale or for good luck in a new Loft. From enlisting the help of a saint to applying ancient Chinese design principles, these are some of the more imaginative and mystical methods some Loft sellers choose to try.

Burying a statue of St. Joseph

This is probably an old superstition that you’ve heard of, and it continues to be popular amongst Loft sellers today. If you want to sell your Loft quickly, bury a statue a St. Joseph upside down near the sale sign. Then pray to him for a speedy and favorable sale. Once your Loft is sold, dig up the statue and give it a place of honor in your new Loft. One caveat – don’t bury the statue too close to your neighbor’s yard, or their Loft may sell before yours. Does this work? According to online testimonials, it does.

Burning dried sage

Burning bundles of dried sage, also known as “smudging,” is another common technique that some Loft sellers use to bring good luck. Dried sage has been used in rituals for thousands of years, so it’s not too much of a leap to think it might bring some positive energy to your Loft selling experience. The idea is that the burning sage clears away negative energy and helps a potential buyer feel positive in your space. To smudge your Loft, open the windows and light the sage until it starts burning. Then blow out the flame to leave the bundle smoking. Starting on the bottom floor, walk through your Loft and wave the stick into all the corners, thinking positive thoughts and imagining a happy sale.

Applying rules of feng shui

Feng shui is the ancient Chinese practice of arranging items in your Loft to maximize the flow of energy. While there are many rules that can be confusing and complicated, you can use some basic techniques to create a good vibe in your Loft. Red is a very lucky color in feng shui. Clear out clutter to help the energy flow, keep your stovetop clean, and make sure your Loft is light and bright. Regardless of whether or not these are feng shui tips, they are also just common sense ideas that will make your Loft more appealing to buyers.

Ditching that old broom

Finally, did you know there’s a superstition about old brooms and new Lofts? It’s said that you shouldn’t bring an old broom into your next Loft. Apparently, the broom will bring with it all your old bad luck. While we might be a little skeptical of this one, we don’t think it’ll set you back too much to buy a new broom – just to be on the safe side. If nothing else, you’ll be limiting how much old dust you bring with you.

Adding Privacy to your Loft

17 Aug 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Adding Privacy to Open Concept Houses

Lofts remain popular amongst homebuyers today, and it’s easy to see why. These layouts make them seem even more spacious and allow families to spend time together without being cramped into one room. And while open concepts are great for entertaining or to keep an eye on the kids while you’re cooking dinner, they don’t always give you much privacy when you need it. Here are some simple solutions to help you add privacy to your loft.

Sliding barn doors

Sliding barn doors have become a popular design trend in the last few years, and they work well in lofts. They can be used in the kitchen to help separate the space while you’re cooking, but easily opened when you want it to feel more expansive. Take it a step further and use doors made of a translucent material. You’ll still be able to let in the light without sacrificing any privacy.

Add a level to a kitchen island

You can create additional privacy in the kitchen by adding a second tier or raised bar to your island. While it doesn’t wall you off completely, it does give you a bit of separation from guests and can help to hide things like dirty dishes. It’s a great way to keep the kitchen looking clean and tidy without all the effort.

Room dividers

You can create more privacy at will by using room dividers. This can be something as simple as hanging curtains from the ceiling that can be closed, or you can go for a more permanent solution by strategically placing bookcases to section off the part of the room where you’d like more privacy. There are so many choices when it comes to creative room dividers; your imagination is your only limit.

Create intimate seating areas

You can easily create the illusion of more intimate spaces in your loft just by arranging the furniture. Instead of splurging on a massive sectional sofa for your living room, you can make smaller spaces that have a more intimate feel. Position a couple of accent chairs facing each other, along with a small table and a rug, and you’ll suddenly have a nook that’s perfect for quiet conversations.

Use light

Another way to create a sense of privacy in a loft is to use lighting. Ditch the overhead light and opt for a layered lighting approach, with a combination of floor lamps, table lamps, and accent lighting. When you want to create a more intimate space, only light the area you’re using and leave the rest of the space dark. Not only will it feel more private, it’ll be cozier, too.

Add plants

Finally, much like light, plants can be an easy way to create privacy while also making your loft more beautiful. Large plants can be used like room dividers to help delineate and add privacy to a space. You can also add plants to half walls in order to extend them and help block the view.


Loft Buyer Turnoffs

27 Jul 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Homebuyer TurnoffsWhile every buyer is looking for something different in a loft, there are a few key things that are universal turnoffs. If you’re selling your loft, you’ll disregard these issues at your own peril. Even in a competitive market, here are the things that potential buyers will have a hard time ignoring.

Bad smells

Is there a mysterious odor coming from somewhere in your loft? You better find it, and fast. Buyers are often turned off by bad smells, including cigarette smoke, pet odors, mildew, or garbage. Identify the offending fragrance, and take steps to eliminate it.

Aggressive pets

Sure, you know your 100-pound dog is just being friendly. But to someone unfamiliar with your best friend, it can look like aggression. The same goes for territorial cats and loud birds. In fact, it’s highly unlikely that your pet won’t interfere in your loft showing in some way, even if they are relaxed and sweet. When potential buyers are coming to your loft, make arrangements to have your pets off the property.


Even if a potential buyer is an avid insect collector, he still won’t want to see pests inside your loft. If you see any evidence of an infestation, hire an exterminator and take care of the problem before you begin showing your loft.

Wrong price

It doesn’t matter how much a buyer loves your loft – if it’s priced too high, it’s going to be a big turnoff. Remember, if the loft doesn’t appraise for the selling price, the buyer may have trouble with their financing. Work with a professional real estate agent who will use their expert knowledge of your local market to help you determine the best listing price.

Dirty bathrooms

You know the feeling you get when everything around you feels dirty? Imagine a potential buyer having that feeling when they walk into your bathroom. Dirty bathrooms are one of the biggest turnoffs to buyers. Make sure you scrub your bathroom until it shines, remove all clutter, and invest in some brand new towels.

Dark rooms

Have you ever noticed that many loft listings describe a loft as being bright or filled with natural light? That’s because most buyers want to live in lofts that feel open and airy. When potential buyers are visiting your loft, make sure all the lights are on. Open curtains to let in as much natural light as possible. If any rooms are painted dark colors, repaint them in a lighter shade. If tree limbs are blocking sunlight from outside, trim the branches until more light shines through.

Organize Your Storage Unit

20 Jul 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Are you planning to move your personal belongings into storage while your home is for sale? Will you be moving into a rental while house hunting, and you need a short-term place to keep the items you won’t need right away? No matter what the scenario, you’ll likely want to rent a storage unit. Here’s what you need to know to keep it organized and hassle free.

How to pack

As you’re packing up your belongings for storage, there are some guidelines you should follow to keep everything in good condition:

  • Use sturdy boxes that are the same size, to make stacking easier.
  • Pack items by category, and clearly label the outside of each box.
  • Use appropriate packing materials, especially when packing breakable items.
  • Fill boxes completely, as half-full boxes are more likely to collapse.
  • Cover furniture with packing blankets, remove detachable parts and place them in plastic bags that you keep with the furniture.
  • Clean appliances and make sure they are dry.
  • Pack books flat so the spines don’t break.
  • Place heavy items in the bottom of the box and lighter items on top.
  • Use wardrobe boxes for clothing.
  • Use packing tape to seal boxes from dust or moisture.
  • Keep an inventory list for insurance purposes.

Choose the right unit

While it’s tempting to choose the smallest unit possible, it will be easier if you have a little extra room. This is especially important if you will need to access items while they are in storage. Extra space will allow you to have aisles and will provide room for shelves.

Also consider how safe and secure the storage facility is. How easy is it to get in and out? Are there limited hours? Is the facility protected with surveillance cameras? You want to make sure your belongings will be safe while they are being stored.

Make a plan

Come up with a strategy for how you will organize your boxes, furniture and appliances in the unit. Draw up a floor plan and designate where your items will go.

  • Keep items that you will need to access in the front where they will be easy to reach.
  • Large items like furniture and appliances can be stored near the back and along the walls.
  • Store heavy boxes on the bottom and lighter boxes on top.
  • Use any shelves that are available to keep boxes neat and organized.
  • Maximize space by filling empty space, such as inside wardrobes and drawers.
  • Keep a path clear through the middle of the unit for easy access.
  • Don’t place items directly against the walls. Give them a couple of inches of space to allow for air circulation.

Be systematic

Once you’ve made your plan, stick to it. Create a master map of where all the items are located within the unit and keep it at the front. This way, when you need to retrieve an item at a later date and you don’t remember where you put it, you have the map to refer to.

Beat the Loft Selling Blues

13 Jul 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Beat the Home Selling BluesSelling a Loft brings with it a sizable dose of uncertainty as well as a heaping helping of stress. It’s no wonder that Loft sellers can feel anxious or depressed during the process. Although it’s common to feel a little overwhelmed, it doesn’t have to overtake your life. Here are several tried-and-true ways to beat the Loft selling blues.


You know the saying “an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”? It applies to the Loft selling process as well. By preparing as much as you can before you list your Loft, you’ll alleviate many of the headaches you may otherwise encounter. Make any needed repairs and declutter your Loft before listing. Do some research about your local market so you know what price range Lofts like yours are selling for. Read up on the steps of the Loft selling process so you know what to expect. You can’t prepare for everything, but you can familiarize yourself with what’s ahead.

Keep things in perspective

We totally understand that now is a stressful time. But always keep in mind that this process won’t drag on forever. Yes, you may have some stressful days ahead. But soon you’ll reach closing day and this process will become a memory. Remember that you can’t always control every aspect of a situation. Try not to worry too much, as it will only make you unhappy and the worry is unlikely to affect the outcome.

Take time outs

While selling your Loft will take a good chunk of your time, you don’t have to spend every waking moment thinking about it. That will only add to your stress. Instead, take some time outs now and again. Go for a walk. Get a massage. Take the family to dinner and a movie. Spend time with family and friends. You’ll need your energy during this process, so taking time out to care for your emotional well being is paramount.

Remember why you’re selling

Selling your Loft is an emotional process. After all, it’s the center of your life and it’s the place where many of your fondest memories have been made. Perhaps you raised your family here. Not only are you making a financial transaction, but you’re also letting go of something that has been important to your life. Allow yourself time to detach emotionally from the Loft, and remember the positive reasons why you are selling. Maybe you’re upgrading to a bigger Loft or moving closer to your grown children. Perhaps you’ve gotten an exciting new job in a new city. Acknowledge that you’re feeling a sense of loss, but that the future also holds possibility for new and exciting experiences.

Work with a professional

Finally, the best way to get through the process with the least amount of stress is to work with a professional real estate agent. Seasoned agents know what to expect and can give you solid advice and guidance throughout the entire process. Partnering with a professional will ease the burden on you and help you get to the finish line with your sanity intact.

What To Do With Your Moving Boxes

6 Jul 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

What To Do With Your Moving Boxes

When you’re moving, it seems like unpacking boxes is a chore that never ends. But there will come a day when every last box is empty. The question then becomes – what do you do with all those empty boxes? Check out these great ideas for giving new life to all those old boxes that would otherwise end up in the trash.

Offer them on CraigsList

If you weren’t already aware, CraigsList is one of the best places online to buy and sell just about everything, including moving boxes. When you’re finished with your boxes, post them on CraigsList for sale or for free. You’ll be surprised at how quickly they’ll get snatched up, and how grateful the recipient will be.

Post them on Nextdoor

Do you know about Nextdoor? It’s the latest social network that allows you to connect with all the people in your neighborhood. When you move in, set up an account for your new address. Once you’ve been verified, list your boxes for free. It’s a great way to get rid of those boxes and meet a new neighbor!

Recycle them

If your city has curbside recycling, check to make sure they accept cardboard boxes. Many times, you’ll be asked to break them down before the city will collect them. It’s a small price to pay to make sure they get recycled instead of ending up in a landfill. If your city doesn’t accept boxes, check to see if there is a recycling center nearby where you can drop them off.

Use BoxCycle

More and more people are becoming aware of how important it is to reuse or recycle materials. Recycling cardboard is better than simply tossing it out, but it’s much better for the environment to reuse those boxes while they still have life in them. For that reason, BoxCycle was created. It is a marketplace specifically for used cardboard boxes. The website helps to connect you with people who are in the market for used boxes. Not only do you get the boxes off your hands, you make a little money while doing it.

Post on U-Haul Box Exchange

Even the big moving companies are getting in on the action. U-Haul operates a message board called Box Exchange that lets customers buy, sell, or give away boxes and other moving supplies. Post on their message boards and see if there are any interested takers in your area.

Use them in your garden

There are so many ways to use cardboard in your garden. It works great as a weed barrier in flowerbeds and vegetable gardens or along walking paths. Remove all staples and packing tape from the boxes before using them in the garden. The cardboard will break down over time and help to nourish the soil. Boxes can also be used as temporary compost bins. Of course, many a good fort has been created out of used cardboard boxes, giving kids hours of fun. All it takes is a little imagination!

How to Attract Abundance at Home

29 Jun 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

How to Attract Abundance at Home

If you’re feeling a little stagnant or wishing for some good fortune to come your way, then it may be time to make some adjustments to your living space. Did you know that there are several ways you can attract abundance at Loft, with very little effort? Take at a look at these secrets for filling your Loft with magnetic energy and attracting prosperity into your life.

Clear out the clutter

The very first place to start is with a good deep clean. Abundance can’t set up shop in your Loft if there’s no place for it to go. Take a weekend to clean the floors, wash the windows and sanitize the kitchen and bathroom. Get ride of any belongings that are broken or no longer used.

Create more open space

After you’ve cleaned and de-cluttered, it’s time to re-think floor plans. Take a look at each room in your Loft. Does it feel cramped? Is the traffic pattern blocked by a big piece of furniture? Do you feel claustrophobic? One thing that almost all luxury Lofts posses is an abundance of open space. This doesn’t mean that you’re out of luck if your Loft has smaller rooms. It just means it may be time to rearrange the furniture to create a greater feeling of spaciousness.

Make the front door inviting

By applying some principles of feng shui, you can invite abundance right through your front door.  Energy flows into your Loft through your main entryway, so be sure there isn’t anything that can impede it. Try not to place too many obstacles within six feet of the door, such as shoe racks or benches. Keep the area well lit and the space just outside the door clear. You may also consider flanking the outside of the front door with plants, which brings balance to your Loft.

Add plants

Plants are a natural symbol of abundance, and are perfect for attracting that energy into your Loft. As a bonus, they also help to detoxify the area and filter out pollutants. Try adding a money tree or lucky bamboo plant. Rubber plants are excellent air filters, while snake plants are great for those who don’t have green thumbs.

Hang abundant images

Another way to invite prosperity into your Loft is to hang art that symbolizes abundance. Images to consider include plants, moving water and traditional symbols of wealth in feng shui, like a laughing Buddha or dragon turtle.

Gold accessories

If you really want to attract abundance and wealth, then the best color to add is gold. You don’t need to overdo it – a little goes a long way. But by adding touches of gold throughout your Loft, you’re giving your Loft a stronger feeling of abundance. Consider décor items like trays, side tables, mirrors, lamps, bowls and vases.

Welcome guests

The final touch is welcoming guests into your abundant Loft. Now that you have created a space that invites prosperity, it’s time to share it with others. Carve out an area that is dedicated to entertaining guests. Nothing brings in more abundant energy than friends and loved ones!

Sneaky Ways to Save Money for a Down Payment

22 Jun 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

 Sneaky Ways to Save Money for a Down PaymentDo you dream of owning your own Loft, but feel like you’ll never have the money for a down payment? While saving for a down payment can seem like a daunting task, it isn’t impossible. In fact, there are ways to begin saving right now that won’t put a crimp in your lifestyle. Here are the best sneaky ways we’ve found to save money for that down payment.

Use cash

We’ve gotten so accustomed to paying with credit and debit cards, having cash on hand can seem like a real hassle. But it’s so easy to spend more than you think you are when you’re swiping that card. Instead, opt to pay with cash. You’ll have a better sense of how much money you’re actually spending, and will spend less on impulse purchases.

Limit food waste

How much food do you end up throwing away in a typical week? If it’s more than you’d like to admit, perhaps it’s time to curtail those food expenses. In fact, according to the National Resources Defense Council, the typical American wastes a whopping 40 percent of the food they buy. Think of how much money you can save by only buying what you can actually eat.

Adjust your thermostat

As the temperatures rise over the summer, you may be tempted to crank that AC. But think about how much extra money you’re spending just to lower the temperature by a degree or two. If you have a programmable thermostat, set it so that the Loft is warmer while you’re away. Keep curtains closed on sunny days. According to the Department of Energy, you could save up to three percent on your energy bill for every one degree you change your thermostat.

Set up automatic savings

Help yourself get into the savings mindset. Instead of only saving what you have left over from your paycheck each month, decide how much to save in advance. Then set up an automatic transfer from your checking to your savings account, and watch the dollars add up.

Don’t chase trends

Is it really necessary to have the latest phone or wear the newest clothing trends? See if you can resist the urge to go shopping for new things. Instead, make do with what you already have or shop second hand. You’ll begin to see that not only will you save money, but you’ll also be happier as a result. It’s exciting to see your savings grow as you edge closer and closer to your goal.

Compete with your spouse

If you’re buying a Loft with your partner, why not introduce a little friendly competition? This is a great idea, especially if one of you is very competitive. Have weekly challenges to see who can save the most money or the largest percentage of their paycheck. The loser each week then makes dinner for the winner.

Cancel unused subscriptions or memberships

Did you get that gym membership hoping it would inspire you to exercise more often? If it’s just sitting there unused, then cancel it. The same goes for magazines you don’t read and any other recurring payments for goods or services that aren’t meaningful to you. While those celebrity tabloids can be fun to read, by giving them up you’ll realize your dream of Loft ownership a little faster.

Don’t Fall For These Real Estate Scams

15 Jun 2018 · by Virtual Results PubSub

Don’t Fall For These Real Estate Scams

As if buying or selling a Loft weren’t complicated enough, you also need to be vigilant about scams. There are scams everywhere, and some are sophisticated enough to look real. With so much information available on the Internet, it’s getting easier for scammers to con innocent people. Here’s what you need to be on the lookout for so that you don’t become a victim.

Down payment scam

In the down payment scam, a scammer hacks into a real estate agent’s email account. After reading through their correspondence, they target buyers who are about to close. Then, posing as the agent, they send you instructions on where to wire the money for your closing. Once you’ve wired the payment, it’s never seen again. The best way to avoid this scam is to either use encrypted email or get all wiring requests and instructions from your agent over the phone. Then confirm with the bank you are wiring to over the phone as well.

The inspection scam

If you’re looking for a fixer-upper, beware of the inspection scam. In this scenario, a seller agrees to a lower price on the condition that you forgo an inspection. If this happens to you, it can be a red flag. The seller may be aware of a serious problem with the property that they are trying to cover up. This could include expensive problems like issues with the foundation or pest infestations. Never agree to give away your right to a professional inspection.

The mortgage rate scam

If the rate you’ve been approved for on your mortgage seems too good to be true, it probably is. In this particular scam, a shady lender agrees to a very low rate on your loan. Then, once it becomes too late to back out, they jack up the rate. While you have the right to cancel the deal, it could cause a serious loss of time. These lenders may also charge upfront fees in order to lock in the low rate, which is money you could lose if you cancel. Don’t agree to pay fees upfront and be cautious about rates that are much lower than other lenders have quoted to you.

The real estate agent scam

In this scam, an agent takes the money that is to be deposited into an escrow account, and deposits it into his own account instead. The easiest way to avoid this costly mistake is to work with a licensed agent and research any complaints that may have been lodged against them in the past.

Moving scams

Finally, even if you’ve made it through the real estate process unscathed, you need to be aware of moving scams. One scam that is common is when moving companies offer you a great price on a move, only to significantly increase that amount once the truck is packed. They may also hold your possessions hostage until you agree to pay them more money. And unfortunately, there are some scammers out there who will pack up your truck and drive away, never to be seen or heard from again. Always be sure to thoroughly vet a company before signing a contract.