Supervise Your Own Home Improvement Project

The first consideration when supervising your home improvement project is to research your project. You must do the necessary homework to understand all the details involved in taking on the project. Get to know what it would take for a general contractor to do the job. Ask yourself what planning is needed, what steps are involved in completing the project, what type of permitting will I need and what is involved in hiring the subcontractors to do the work.

You can get information or take classes that will train you to become your own general contractor. You can also read books on the subject and look into buying computer management software to help keep the project organized

The second important requirement is that you must be realistic about what it will take to supervise the project. Depending on how big the project is, it can be a full time job keeping up with the project. You will always be getting calls about where to put something or how do you want something to look and if you are not onsite this may become difficult. Especially if you have a full time job where you can’t just leave and run home. You don’t want to end up losing all the money you are trying to save by supervising the project yourself.

The third consideration is instead of using a contractor, you could try using a project manager. The project manager can help you coordinate and give you advice but you will still be overseeing the project. In addition they may have qualified subcontractors they use so that you don’t have to take a lot of time finding workers. You can still save about half the cost of a contractor if you hire a project manager.

Getting Started on Your Home Improvement Projects

Do you think your home has much more to offer you than it already does in its present state? There are literally over 1,000 simple home improvement projects you can do yourself and just as many that require some help or specialists. It doesn’t matter the project you choose; big or small, you have so many choices. Does the exterior of your home make you want to yawn? Outdoor spaces are easy to change and it can be something as simple as adding a flowerbed that makes all of the difference in the world. Adding a deck to your outdoor space can also be an inexpensive way to add charm to your home.

With the popularity of home improvements now, it’s easy to do a simple search on the Internet and find exactly what you’re looking for. There are many interactive sites that allow other users to contribute ideas and step by step instructions; you can easily find the project you want to tackle on your own. Many home improvement magazines and books can also help you through each step of the process. You can even get ideas just browsing through home improvement photos that are posted all over the Web. This is enough to give anyone a boost in getting their creative juices flowing. You can take a look at outdoor spaces and waterfalls that will leave you in awe page after page.

If you think your budget is too small, you’ll be surprised at the many improvements that can be made on a shoestring budget. If you plan on going the cheap route, just be prepared; cheaper means you will be investing more sweat equity than in other more expensive projects. The payoff is the important thing and if you enjoy the work, it will be more satisfying in the end.

If you are feeling overwhelmed with your home improvement project, you can easily turn to a project manager to handle all of the smaller details. Concentrate on the big stuff and pass the smaller things on to project manager. Many people feel overwhelmed but the addition of a project manager will allow you to focus your talent and ideas in other areas of your project that are more important to you. Many people get too involved sweating the small stuff that they give up on the project before it begins. This can all be handled with the simple addition of another person. Don’t let your home improvement project get lost in the details before you even start.

How to Find Great Deals on Investment Property for Sale

Most investors look in the wrong place to find investment property for sale. Take a quick look on the internet for investment properties and you may think that it’s not possible to find a good property for sale that is not over priced. The key when you are looking for investment real estate for sale is to understand that the best deals are not usually advertised. If you’ve read my latest book, “Commercial Real Estate Investing” then you probably already know that the key to finding good deals on real estate investments is in creating relationships with real estate brokers.

“Pocket Listings” of Investment Property For Sale

Some of the very best deals on investment real estate come from something known as a “Pocket Listing”. This is when a broker knows about a property for sale, but they have not yet officially announced it to the rest of the buyers who are looking for a property. With single family homes, this announcement is usually done by adding the property to the MLS or Multiple Listing Service. With a commercial property, the public announcement can be adding the property to Loopnet.com, mailing a postcard out, or by adding the property to the company’s website.

Why All Investment Property For Sale Is NOT Equal

The real estate brokers job is to get as much as possible for the investment property depending on the owner’s situation. If the owner of a property is in no hurry, and has no compelling reason to sell quickly, then the broker can price the property aggressively and wait for a retail offer to come in. On the other hand, if the seller is motivated by a divorce or business partnership that is coming undone, or perhaps the seller is dealing with an urgent medical condition, then the broker’s job is to get the investment property for sale quickly, even if it means lowering the price or offering some creative financing terms.

So ideally, you are going to work to create a situation where the property needs to be sold quickly, the seller is motivated, but the broker has not yet released the listing to the public. This is the pocket listing situation that you are looking for. The problem is that you can’t simply call up a broker that you don’t know and ask them “Do you have any pocket listings for me?” The answer is going to be no.

The reason for this is that when a broker does have a pocket listing, in most cases the broker is going to call the investors that they know and trust to offer them the opportunity to get a great deal on an investment property before they release the property for sale to the general public.

So your goal when calling or looking for commercial property for sale should be twofold.

1) Get the information about the property including all the income and expenses

2) Create a connection with and get to know the real estate broker

Your best deals probably won’t be the advertised commercial properties that you initially call about. Instead, once you create a connection and rapport with the broker, you’re in a position to get access to pocket listings which is where some of the very best investment property for sale can be found.

Useful Home Products Will Help Your House Sale Profits

Even if you’ve never been involved in the sale of house before and yours is about to go on the market, you probably know enough about the process to be able to repeat, like a litany:  clean it; paint it; fix it.  But do you find yourself asking:  How clean does the house have to be and how do I tackle the job?  Do I really have to paint?  What are the best colors to choose?   What do I need to repair?
When considering these questions, it’s good to remember that most prospective home buyers are an unimaginative lot.  Your house may be immaculate but if the rooms are cluttered, crowded, and dark, they may appear to be less clean and much smaller than they really are.   Picture this:  an old, seven-piece mahogany dining room suite plus a rocking chair and seven boxes of books packed in anticipation of your move are wedged into a dark green room with a brown rug and a window covered by heavy velvet drapes.  Why is this decorating scheme a mistake?  It’s because most people are unable to imagine how big and beautiful the room would look if painted off-white, everything removed but the dining room suite, a pastel tablecloth and a fresh flower centerpiece on the table, curtains stripped from the window, the rug removed, and everything spotlessly clean.  In the words of Captain Jean-Luc Picard, you must “make it so”; otherwise, it might take you a very long time to sell your house and the offers to buy will not only be slower, but lower.Clean, Clean, Clean

Your best friend when cleaning your house for resale will be tri-sodium phosphate (TSP) or its equivalent.  TSP is one of the home products that top the list of must-haves, and it’s not expensive.  Roll up your sleeves, put on your rubber gloves and scrub your walls and ceilings, and anything else that needs your elbow grease.  Unless you can afford professional cleaners, there’s no way out of this one.

Carpet cleaning is another must and there are home products for the do-it-yourselfer or you can hire a cleaning company to take care of this job.  If you have shabby rugs scattered throughout the house, forget cleaning them; it’s probably better to remove them altogether.
There are home products to clean things that require special care – ceramic tile, porcelain, stainless steel, wood cabinets, aluminum siding, etc., and you can find whatever you need at your neighborhood hardware store.  Ask questions and read labels.  When using commercial cleaning products, wear gloves and a mask.  It’s wise to be careful.Paint for a Pristine Finish
As thorough as your cleaning job is, it won’t have much impact on sagging, faded wallpaper, gouges in the walls, or cracked and peeling paint.  Repainting is the solution, and interior painting jobs start with stripping off old wallpaper, attacking cracks and gouges with filler, and then getting to work with your roller and brush.  This is also the time to do all the small repairs that need your attention:  hammer in nails; repair the broken step; replace the broken glass.
When selecting paint, the best colors for your walls and ceilings are white, off-white, cream, creamy off-white – you get the picture.  A light, cool, neutral color can fit into everyone’s decorating scheme.  (You want that young couple to see your home as the perfect setting for their red plush love seats.)  If you have recently painted one or more rooms in quite dramatic colors, leave them as they are.  As long as the walls and trim are clean and fresh, prospective buyers won’t mind a bit of repainting if they want to change the colors – the main thing is not to overwhelm them.
If you need to paint the outside of your house, it’s not necessary to restrict yourself to neutral colors for exterior paint; however, a bright color is not a good choice.  Something fairly subdued is better, but be creative when painting the front door; a dramatic touch might be needed to make your house memorable.  It’s easy for a buyer to repaint a door if he or she doesn’t share your love of Christmas red or purple passion.Remove the Clutter
It’s time to say goodbye to your high school chemistry notes, the clothes you outgrew five years ago, the playpen your twelve-year-old no longer needs, and everything else your family will never use again, read again, or wear again.  Be tough!  Do it!  Take it to the dump; hold a garage sale; donate it to your favorite charity.  Don’t let it take up any more of your storage space – you’re going to need it all to store the things that are currently stacked on shelves and floors and cluttering up counter tops throughout the house.
Important home products that can help you deal with this part of your preparation are closet organizers.  They come in every size and style imaginable, and you are sure to find something suitable.  When you have everything neatly stored in your closets and cupboards, walk through the house and pick up and put out of sight everything else on your counters and table tops that don’t need to be there.  “Clutter-free” means clutter-free and it won’t kill anyone in the family to have to reach under the counter for the dishwashing detergent or the toothpaste for the next few days or weeks.

You probably don’t think of furniture as “clutter,” but clutter is anything that unnecessarily crowds a room, a doorway, or a hall.  If your home has very small rooms and you can manage without some furniture items for awhile, arrange to use a friend’s garage or basement to store them.  It will “open up” the rooms and make your house appear larger and brighter, and that’s a good thing.Let There be Light

Sunlight is a friend to the house seller, and you should try and let as much of it into the house as you can.  Wash windows inside and out and wash or dryclean the window coverings:  curtains, drapes, and blinds.  Before showing the house to a prospective buyer, replace burned-out light bulbs, turn on the lights, open the windows, lift the blinds, and pull back the drapes.Final Touches

Ask a non-smoking, non-pet-owning friend to come into your house when you have finished cleaning and painting.  Are all the pet odors and smoking odors gone?  If the house passes the sniff-test, place some potpourri in open dishes to add a fresh, clean scent; otherwise, get back to work.
Finally, step outside and see what a prospective buyer’s first impression of your yard is likely to be.  Mow the lawn, trim the hedges and bushes, weed the garden, edge the flowerbeds, and sweep and clean the walkway, deck, or patio.  Your yard is another selling feature of your house, and must be clean and tidy, too.
Home products can help make your house appear big, bright, clean, and ready for a prospective buyer to move right in, which is exactly what you want.

A Better Home Business Idea For Stay at Home Moms

Many moms start a home business in order to care for their children while creating an income. The desire to care for one’s children, the incompatibility of an 8 hour work day with school hours, and the expense of childcare prompt many women to leave their job in order to be available to their children. They need a business schedule that can be integrated with their parenting duties. This article will explain why affiliate marketing, earning a commission by promoting other people’s products, is a better business idea for stay at home moms because it allows the flexibility needed to manage multiple responsibilities and is accessible to people in all income levels.

The first reason why moms can benefit from this business idea is because affiliate marketing doesn’t have the time constraints that many other home businesses require. Affiliate marketers can work as much or as little as they want. Since you are your own boss, you can set your own hours. Stay at home moms need this flexibility because one day may be busier than another or a specific time of day or night may be more convenient. This allows them to better manage their responsibilities to their children as well as build a home business. Affiliate marketing is ideal because the flexibility of being able to set your own hours allows them to easily integrate a home business into their routine. The internet also allows affiliate marketers to be making money at any time of the day or night, whether you are working or not. Moms can be assured that even though they need to focus on another responsibility, they are still making money with their affiliate marketing business.

Another reason why affiliate marketing is a better home business idea for stay at home moms is that it costs very little to start. In a one income household, money often has to be budgeted carefully. They don’t always have the extra money to pay for expensive start up costs, or invest in pricey inventory that many home business opportunities require. Affiliate marketing fits all budgets because it can be implemented using either free or paid methods, and you don’t have to invest in expensive products in order to sell them. There is a way for moms of all income levels to get started with affiliate marketing.

Therefore, affiliate marketing is a better home business idea for stay at home moms because it gives them the flexibility they need to manage multiple responsibilities, and can accommodate all income levels.

The Easy Ways to Locate Commercial Properties For Sale in Delhi

There are some easy ways to locate commercial properties for sale in Delhi. The commercial significance of Delhi is increasing day by day and the real estate market in Delhi is becoming more vibrant nowadays. Owing to multiple reasons, the importance of Delhi is going up gradually. On of the primary reasons for this growing significance of Delhi is the factor of it being the national capital of India. But there are other reasons also. If we view in a wider perspective, we can find that New Delhi is emerging as one of the major international commercial centres. This is because of the global market trends in which Asia generally and India particularly is emerging as a main world market. Thus, being the national capital and geographically well-connected to neighboring industrial locations, the commercial significance of Delhi has grown much in recent years. Alongside, the property market in Delhi has grown far beyond those in other main centres in the locality. Hence, there are a number of reliable real estate agents, consultants and realtors who could be relied upon to locate the right commercial property of your choice in Delhi.

As I have already stated, there are some easy ways to locate commercial properties for sale in Delhi. One such way is to look for some bona fide real estate consultants in Delhi whom you can easily locate in Karol Bag, Laxmi Nagar, Daula Kaun, Munirka, South Extension, Punjabi Bag, Peera Garhi, Pahar Ganj, Jwendewalan, Ajmeri Gate, Lahori Gate, Okla, Nehru Place, Kalkaji, Noida, Greater Noida, Connaught Place, Defence Colony, or any other prominent location of the city. However, before approaching any dealer you need make sure that he is a registered dealer. Also, there are real estate portals like propertydalal.com and hotgurgaon.com where you can get latest information about Delhi properties and property consultants.

Another easy way to locate commercial properties for sale in Delhi [http://www.propertydalal.com/property-for-sale/c/india/delhi/new-delhi/%20] is to look up the local directories which constantly update information about property for sale and renting out. Also, the local dailies of the city regularly publish classified columns with categorized sections for particular kinds of commercial properties for sale in Delhi. You can sign up with some property portals of the region and post your requirements and under any circumstance you will get abundant data and information about Delhi properties in a matter of a few days. Here again, you should apply your prudence, practical experience and pragmatism to get the right people as the real estate industry is plagued with the problem of black sheep.

All around your local area you will find that there are many properties available to rent or to buy. Many people decide to look for a rent property because they like the option of not having a mortgage to pay. They like the freedom of paying a service or property manager in order to keep a roof over their head. Some like the option that on the hot days of summer they do not have to get out there and mow their grass or find someone to plow the street when the snow comes. They can just stay inside their apartments or townhomes and have the property own take care of it. Naturally not every rental property is like that.

This is just one side of the rental/owner equation. Some people are out there trying to find a property to take over and begin to manage. There are many who seek the challenging and rewarding career or property management. Most people see that potential money maker that owning a property can be but they do not quite see all that is involved in managing the property. Owning the property is good enough for some people and deciding pay someone to manage the facility is what some people do who do not want to get involved in the everyday work.

There is not a particular method that people follow in order to try to manage their properties. What they will attempt to do is to find a property for sale and see what they need to do to either get the property back on track or begin the initial management process. There will be property managers who like to observe from the outside and then get with the current owner to see what condition the property is currently in. This is absolutely necessary before a person looks to purchase a property. Depending on the person and the business, they might want to look at getting a residential property or a commercial property for their managing.

With the current economy, some people are trying to ride out the wave of unemployment which in turn is hurting the purchasing power of some businesses and individuals. In the past you would see that people would buy house, fix and change some of the interior, exterior and then attempt to see it for profit. Well now they are not as sure if their residential home they are flipping will sell. If it does not sell, then they are stuck with the mortgage of the house. For many this has been a lucrative business and now with the unsafe economy some people have to find other methods of income. There are still many people who have not given up on the possibility of being a property buyer and owner again, they are just waiting for the market to even out.

On the flip side, those people who have some extra equity or extra money saved away in a safe place can really make a name for their selves in the business world. What they can do is see that there are some commercial properties for sale that are available for purchase. Businesses will access each property to see which the best one for their business venture is. Depending on the location and the city, some business could really clean up and take over some very big properties and restore them to a profitable state.

How to Find the Best Commercial Property for Sale

If you want to have a smooth experience in the real estate purchase, then it is highly essential that you look for a professional agent so that you get the finest deal. Nowadays with the growing popularity of various businesses, you will find a lot of commercial property for sale in the market. These commercial real agents will help you in buying or selling the property efficiently. They play a vital role in the success of any business.

In these tough economic times, it is necessary that you reexamine all the aspects so that you get the best deal. Purchasing a commercial property is not at all easy. You require making a sensible and careful decision. However, there are many organizations that overlook this aspect and then at the end, regret with their decision. A reputed agent will help you by providing the commercial property for sale listings. You can dedicate your time in going through the listings provided and then accordingly make an appropriate decision.

It does not really matter in what business you are involved in, you should consider commercial property for sale considerably. These listings help people to select the most suitable size and location for their business. There are commercial estate agents who are experts in their field and help you in taking the right decision. Moreover, they will make sure that you get the best deal from which you will be able to gain profits for your businesses. These professional commercial estate agents play a handy role in determining the price of the property in the open market.

The best part in hiring these commercial agents is that they are mostly aware of latest happenings in the commercial property for sale. They help you in the dealings so that you get what you desire. They will make sure that their property gains the highest profits. Commercial property for sale listings will give you an opportunity to get your dream house. However, it is highly essential that you look out for the agent who will satisfy all your needs. You can check their past work so that you get an idea about what to expect from them.

Once you get the proper agent for your commercial property of sale, the chances of getting good deals are high. However, while searching for the agent you can even think of checking their qualifications. It will help you in taking the right decision of hiring. It is always advisable to select an agent who has good knowledge about the field so that he will help you considerably. Good commercial estate agents will make sure to satisfy their clients considerably. You can even consider touring the web as there are many service providers available online. Some sites offer online forms, which you can fill online thereby saving time. It is necessary to take a careful decision before for make your choice. Simply search for a relevant website and grab the benefits.

Estimating Home Improvement Projects

More and more homeowners are turning to home improvement to transform their New York homes to ideally fit the needs of the family, realize their dreams of luxury and style, make everyday life a whole lot more convenient, boost property value, or just any other reasons. One of the most crucial factors when jumping into the bandwagon is the right budget. The more accurate the estimate, the closer you are to achieving project success. To get to this, here are essential things to know about estimating home improvement projects ideal whether you are in Manhattan, Queens, Staten Island, Brooklyn or Staten Island.

Estimating your planned home improvement project is a crucial task that should be taken carefully. Falling short on budget can cause grave issues such as an incomplete project, an inferior result, or financial instability that can lead to debts that can easily snowball into other problems.

If you haven’t done anything similar to the home improvement you have in mind, then getting an estimate would be the best way to start your project. This would get you a good idea on how much the entire project would cost thus helping you get financially prepared and preventing a busted budget. Just as no two houses are exactly the same; your specifications would vary with that of others even for the same project. There are a lot of factors that affect the overall cost and asking around for other homeowners who have had done something similar would be the roughest assessment you can get.

When estimating home improvement projects, the easiest and fastest way to get one is through using an online remodeling calculator from any renovation and home improvement or contractor website. But the closest and most accurate estimate you can get is one from a reputable professional or contractor company.

There are various factors that will affect your home improvement project estimate and these are:

Scope of the Project – this includes the size of the room or rooms that you plan on improving. What materials and supplies you want to integrate into the project. How you envision the project finish and what are the methods and steps to take to achieve the specific look, feel and functionality.

Labor Trends and Regional Pricing – fact is, remodeling costs will differ depending on the state that you are in. This proves true for both contractor fee as well as material costs.

Labor Fees – There are choices when it comes to managing home improvement projects and this includes: managing it yourself, getting a general contractor or hiring a project manager part-time or full time. Each option has its pros and cons and deciding on which depends on your experience, preference, budget and availability. Aside from the labor trends in different states, other factors that will affect contractor fee are specialization/s, experience, skills and even how well established and well-reputed the contractor or company is in the industry.

One of the greatest tips when undergoing home improvement projects is to allot a budget that is more than that of the estimated amount. By allowing flexibility in your finances, unexpected expenses that may arise throughout the project (which are not uncommon), can be accommodated efficiently before the problem balloons. If you have to save, then choose to do so in a smart way. Cut costs without sacrificing quality and you can do this by buying materials on sale and scheduling work at off-peak seasons.

How to Quickly Determine the Value of Commercial Property for Sale

The value of a commercial property for sale is determined by using some simple formulas that are based upon the amount of net operating income that the property produces each year. So when you are looking at a commercial property for sale, one of the first things that you’ll want to ask the broker for is the profit and loss statement.

Some brokers who have listed a commercial property for sale may refer to this profit and loss statement as an IPOD, or income property operating data sheet. Once you get the IPOD, or profit and loss statement, you can then compare the information provided by the broker or seller to your other sources to help determine what the real numbers are. The challenge when looking at any commercial property for sale is that the broker and/or owner will often tend to exaggerate the amount of income that the commercial property for sale produces while also trying to minimize the amount of operating expenses that are reported.

How to Determine the Value of a Property for Sale

The reason for this is simple. The value of any commercial real estate is based on the amount of net operating income the property creates each year. In fact, each additional dollar of annual income increases the value of the property by roughly ten dollars, depending on where the property is located, and how old it is. Note that this extra net income can come from either getting additional revenue in rents, or from reducing expenses by managing the property more efficiently.

Once you understand that owners of commercial real estate will tend to present unrealistic numbers in an attempt to get a higher price for their property you’ll understand better why it’s necessary when looking at any commercial property for sale to get to know the market you are investing in. When you know what the rental rates in an area tend to be or what the typical expense ratios are for a twenty-five year old apartment building then it’s much harder for the broker or owner of a commercial property for sale to attempt to pull the wool over your eyes.

Verifying the Income and Expenses

The first step in verifying the income of a commercial property for sale is to ask for the rent roll. The rent roll is a list of what each apartment, self storage unit, mobile home lot, or office space rents for. Make sure that you get the actual rent roll because the owner or broker of a commercial property for sale may try to give you a Pro-forma rent roll instead of the actual rent roll. Pro-forma means that there is an expectation, realistic or not, of getting higher rents than the property is currently getting. My response to this has always been, “If you raise the rents up to match the pro-forma, then we’ll use the higher income amounts, otherwise we’re going to base our valuation on what the property is currently producing in income.

When looking at the expenses from a commercial property for sale, remember that you’re trying to come up with the actual amount that it will cost you to operate the property rather than what the seller’s expenses have been. So while it’s helpful to know exactly what the seller’s costs have been, I’ve learned NOT to rely on the information provided by the seller when looking at a commercial property for sale because this information is almost always inaccurate.

A Simple Formula to Use for Expenses

The expenses will vary depending on the type and age of the commercial property for sale. For example, if you are looking at buying a Class C apartment building which is at least twenty-five years old, then the expenses will run between 45 to 50 percent of the collected income each month. The collected income, known as the Effective Gross Income, is what’s left after the cost of vacancies are subtracted from the total amount of rents on the rent roll from the commercial property for sale.

The final step in determining the value of a commercial property for sale is to divide the net operating income by the capitalization rate, which varies from about 6 to 12 percent depending on the type of property, the age, and the location of the commercial property for sale. The fastest way to get an idea of what capitalization rate you should be using when looking at a commercial property for sale is to ask another broker who is not involved in the transaction.

Using Escape Clauses to Limit Your Risk

Another way of protecting yourself when looking at any property for sale is to make sure that your purchase contract allows you a period of time to get out of the deal if you are not comfortable with anything that you find. Done properly, you can often tie up a property for 60 to 90 days so that you have time to accurately determine the real value. This makes it easier to look at commercial real estate, because you can get out if you have the right escape clauses.