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Purchasing a New Home for the First Time

Purchasing a new home is a very different process than purchasing a previously owned home. When you are the first owner of the home, there are many considerations you have to make that used homebuyers don't have to make. For instance, you will need to decide what flooring you want, what color the walls should be, and even what color the outlet and light switch covers should be. These choices can seem overwhelming, so here are a few tips to help you tackle the process.

Start with Getting Financing
Before you even begin looking for a home plan, lot, or house, make sure you have your financing in place. While you do not necessarily have to have your loan in hand, pre-approval will help you know how much you can afford. Take a careful look at your budget to determine how much you can afford to pay each month for you home. Be sure to factor your homeowner's insurance and tax bill into that monthly payment amount.

Consider the Location
When it comes to real estate, location is key. You want to buy a new house in a desirable location, as this will make the resale value increase over time. Avoid living in dangerous or run down areas. Usually this is not a problem when you are shopping for a new construction, but do consider location as you shop. Also, consider the intangibles about the home's location. For instance, a home that backs up to a busy road or interstate will be harder to sell because the noise from the street detracts from the home's appeal.

Choose the Builder and Developer First
Since you are shopping for a newly built home, avoid the temptation to shop based on the home itself. You will not have to worry about ugly wall coverings or carpets. Instead, choose a builder or developer first. Find out which builders have a reputation for well-made homes that they stand behind. Avoid those developers that have a reputation for throwing up a home quickly and shoddily.

How can you find out about a builder's reputation? Talk to people you know who are in the real estate or construction fields. They will be able to tell you which builders to trust, and which to avoid.

Once you have chosen a developer, you can shop for your home among that developer's subdivisions and floor plans. You will be reassured that your home will be built well, and you will also have the assurance that the value will increase over time, because the developer's reputation will stay with the home as long as you own it.

Don't Forget the Inspection
Most used homebuyers would not buy without having the home inspected. This is important in a new construction too. You want to have an experienced inspector look at the overall construction of the home. This can be done even before the home is completely finished, as this gives the inspector the chance to see the quality of the building methods and materials.

Avoid Too Many Add Ons
As you prepare to purchase your home, you will have a lot of decisions to make. The beauty of buying a new home is that you can choose the carpet color, paint color, and even the color of your cabinetry. However, you will be offered a variety of upgrades to your home. For instance, you may be offered an upgrade to a more expensive countertop or a Jacuzzi tub in the bathroom. This is where the builder stands to make a lot of money off of your sale.

As you make the decisions about the home, make sure the essentials are covered. However, avoid things that are going to be costly upgrades. This can increase the cost of your new home substantially, and you can always make changes later after you have finished the purchase. If you do want an upgrade, do not be afraid to negotiate, and do your research to make sure the price is fair. In the end you will have a new home with fresh paint and brand new flooring no matter what you choose, so make sure you are not paying too much for extras you can add later.


Electric Massage Chair: Right One, Right Options, Right Price

The right electric massage chair can go a long way to helping us improve not only our sense of well-being, but also our circulation and health. There's just something wonderful about a muscle being massaged. And while a chair can't exactly duplicate the intensity, focus, and absolute effectiveness of an actual human massage therapist, it is a whole lot better than nothing. And in many cases, it is wonderful!

For years, I have dealt with what I have come to call chronic muscle tension in my upper back and neck area. The ill effects of this are many. But instead of looking at the ill effects, lets see how an electric massage chair can help. And they do! I recently had the opportunity to spend some quality "me" time in one and I am happy to report that it was time very well spent. This chair was designed by someone who understands the human musculature. The kneading and pressing motions were particularly helpful to me, as were the general vibrations and massaging from the rollers.

When you go to find an electric massage chair of your own, here are some things to make sure you take note of. If you don't settle for an inferior chair, it will give you all the benefits and longevity you hope for.

  1. Does the chair have a comfortable surface? Low end chairs are sometimes covered in a material that is uncomfortable to sit in. Particularly uncomfortable are the cheap ones that are covered in either a scratchy fabric, or worse, vinyl. These make spending time in the chair so unpleasant that you are better off not buying one at all. Nobody wants to be uncomfortable while they are trying to relax. Sort of defeats the general purpose.
  2. Is the motor strong enough to do the job? A good quality electric massage chair is going to have an ample motor to effectively run the rollers and kneaders. Most people find even a shallow massage somewhat pleasant, but ultimately not very therapeutic. If you have any sort of real muscle tension in your body you need a chair that has the power to exert some real pressure. Particularly desirable are the models that offer an adjustable function that allows the user to actually adjust the tension and pressure of the internal massaging devices. Like in most other areas of life, people like different things. I can never get enough pressure on my muscles, while my spouse prefers a really gentle setting.
  3. Is the electric massage chair priced right for what you really need? Let's face it, some people can afford more, some less. And we all know that there is a big difference between what we think we need, and what we want. The point here is that whether your budget is big or little, there is a chair that can be purchased that will provide some measure of relief. Depending on how much chair you feel you need, just spend accordingly. You can find a really inexpensive models for around a $100. The electric massage chair I tried the other day cost over $5000.
An electric massage chair is an investment in your own health. Just find a comfortable one with plenty of power and options to satisfy your needs and wants, and that is priced right. If you do that you will enjoy years of electric massage chair bliss.


How To Organize A Closet That You Share With Your Significant Other

When two people share a closet without any thought to their mutual satisfaction with the arrangement, it is trouble waiting to happen. Invariably, one person is more particular about the way the closet is kept. This sometimes leads to very heated arguments. It is far better to find a way to agree on your closet arrangements from the start. There are seven steps you can take to make a closet for two more harmonious.

1. Discuss with your partner your closet needs. Before you even begin to set up the closet, or to reorganize it, it is imperative that you know what your partner needs. You might be one who thinks you can figure it out for yourself. Do not be fooled. Your partner will eventually want to have some say about how he or she wants things put away.

2. Organize the closet together. You may say to your partner, "You do it; I don't care how it's done." You are putting a tremendous burden on him or her to do it in a way you can accept. Although you may say you do not care, chances are when you cannot find your best boots, you will wish you had had a say. Be willing to give your input and accept that of your partner's.

3. Make sure there is room for both people's things. Often one person will crowd the other out because that person has a large supply of clothing and accessories. Just because your partner has fewer things, it does not follow that they should not have the room required for those items. Be fair, and make sure there is room for expansion for both of you.

4. Label storage devices. It may be obvious that a shoe tree is for footwear, but for whose footwear? Make that clear by putting a label on the shoe tree. Likewise, label shelves, baskets, and hooks. You should not have to label the bars, unless you have such a large closet that it gets confusing.

5. Keep each person's items separate as much as possible. It is easier to find your clothes when you are not looking through shelves or racks of another person's clothes. You may have to put all the long hanging clothes together, but even then, you can put one person's on the left and the other person's on the right.

6. Make storage equipment easy for each person to use. This gets down to the individual needs of each person. If one of the partners if very short, it is not fair to put their clothes on high shelves when there is another solution. When one person has back problems it helps to use the double bar that is easier for them to reach, such as a high bar for a tall person.

7. Reorganize once a month. Make it a chore you do together. You can find any problems with your system while you catch any misplaced articles. If you keep the closet in order, you will not have to do a major organization as often.


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