Pierre C. Rumpf | Manchester-by-the-Sea Real Estate, Effex Real Estate, Beverly Real Estate


Don't let your neighbors get in the way of a fast, easy and profitable home sale. Instead, home sellers can take advantage of the following tips to prevent neighbors from sabotaging a property sale:

1. Talk to Your Neighbors Before You List Your House

Communication can play a key role in the home selling process. As such, maintaining open communication with your neighbors can make a world of difference, particularly for those who want to reap the benefits of a quick, simple home sale.

Reach out to your neighbors before you add your residence to the real estate market. This will allow you to outline your home selling plans to your neighbors.

Also, don't be afraid to ask your neighbors for support.

In most cases, neighbors will be happy to help you achieve your home selling goals. And if your neighbors keep their houses looking great, they may be able to create an attractive neighborhood that helps your property stand out in a competitive real estate market.

2. Respond to Neighbors' Concerns and Questions

Neighbors may have many concerns and questions about your decision to sell your home. With an open approach, you can respond to neighbors' concerns and questions with ease.

If you've lived in your neighborhood for many years, you've likely become close to your neighbors and may consider them to be friends. Therefore, it may be difficult to share the news that you intend to sell your house.

However, try to stay calm, cool and collected as you discuss your home selling plans with neighbors. And remember, even though you plan to live elsewhere in the near future, you can still keep in touch with your friends at any time.

You can always lean on neighbors for home selling advice too. If neighbors have sold houses in the past, they may be able to offer expert insights into the home selling cycle that you might struggle to obtain elsewhere.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

When it comes to selling your house, meeting with your neighbors can help you get the best results possible. Of course, if you work with a real estate agent, you should have no trouble navigating the property selling process as well.

A real estate agent understands what it takes to list a residence and stir up interest from homebuyers. This housing market professional can teach you about the ins and outs of the real estate sector. Plus, he or she will set up open houses and home showings, keep you up to date about offers on your house and negotiate with homebuyers on your behalf.

Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent is happy to respond to any of your home selling queries. Thus, if you're unsure about how to discuss your home selling plans with neighbors, your real estate agent can provide you with plenty of help.

Ready to add your house to the real estate market? Use these tips, and you can include your neighbors in the home selling journey.


Obtaining a home loan is a must for most homebuyers. However, assessing a wide range of home loan options and making the best-possible decision can be difficult, particularly for a buyer who is evaluating these options for the first time.

Lucky for you, we're here to help you perform a deep analysis of home loan options and make an informed decision.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you evaluate different home loan options.

1. Find Out How a Home Loan Works

The home loans that one lender offers may differ from the options provided by another lender. As such, you'll want to learn the ins and outs of each available home loan to guide your decision-making process.

Understanding how a home loan works may make it easy for you to discover your dream house too.

For example, if you get pre-approved for a home loan, you can enter the real estate market with a budget in hand. You then can use this amount to narrow your house search, which may lead to a fast, seamless homebuying experience.

2. Understand All of the Costs

The total amount that you pay each month under the terms of a home loan agreement may vary based on a variety of factors. Fortunately, if you understand all of the costs associated with a home loan, you may be able to find a loan that matches your finances.

Review all of the paperwork associated with a home loan as well. That way, you can find out the length of a home loan agreement and other relevant home loan information and proceed accordingly.

3. Get Expert Home Loan Insights

There is no such thing as "bad" questions about home loans. And if you're uncertain about how to proceed with a home loan, you can always receive expert guidance from a lender.

Oftentimes, lenders employ friendly, knowledgeable home loan specialists who can respond to your concerns and questions. If you meet with these specialists, you can get comprehensive home loan insights that you may struggle to obtain elsewhere.

As you get ready to pursue a home loan, you also may want to consult with a real estate agent. This housing market professional can help you get in touch with the best lenders in your area and secure a home loan in no time at all.

Of course, let's not forget about the assistance that a real estate agent can provide throughout the homebuying journey, either.

A real estate agent will serve as your guide to buying a house. He or she will help you hone your home search, explore top-notch residences in your city or town and find a residence that matches your expectations. Plus, a real estate agent will even negotiate with a seller's agent on your behalf to help you get the best price on your dream house.

Ready to make your homeownership dream come true? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can secure a home loan and take the next step toward purchasing your ideal residence.


Essential oils are catching on as a natural way to spruce up your home. However, many people are unaware of the full array of uses for essential oils in the household.

In this article, we’ll cover some of those uses that you may not have heard of, and give you some tips on which essential oils are the best to use.

What are essential oils?

Essential oils are the result of distilling large amounts of herbs, spices, or other plant-based materials. There are dozens of essential oils commercially available and they all emit strong aromas that can be used in multiple ways.

When buying oils, it’s important to check the labels to make sure you are buying 100% pure essential oils. Many companies dilute their oils in a carrier oil such as olive oil, coconut oil, or almond oil. While this isn’t inherently bad, it does probably mean you’re getting less for your dollar due to being diluted.

Aside from smelling nice, essential oils are often used for aromatherapy and other medicinal uses. However, be aware that they are not intended as a treatment for any medical condition.

Similarly, some oils might cause an allergic reaction in some individuals. So, be careful when spraying them in the air or using them on your skin if you think you might be allergic to a certain oil.

Which oils are best for use around the home?

There are dozens or even hundreds of essential oils that have various scents and uses. However, some are more pleasant and suitable for the home than others.

The main essentials that serve a number of uses around the home are:

  • Lavender

  • Lemon

  • Tea Tree

  • Peppermint

  • Pine

  • Lemongrass

  • Patchouli

  • Bergamot

  • Eucalyptus

  • Tangerine

There are various kits available online that include some or all of the oils listed above, or you can buy them individually from retailers.

Household uses for essential oils

There are many uses for essential oils around the home. They include:

  • Used as an air freshener with an oil diffuser. These diffusers humidify the air while diffusing the oil into the room, resulting in a pleasant aroma.

  • Mixed with water or alcohol to make a fabric spray. You can find several formulas for creating a fabric spray. However, the easiest way to quickly freshen up the sofa or carpet is to mix 10% oil to 90% water or ethanol and put the mixture into a spray bottle.

  • As a natural cleaning product. Lemon, lime, lavender, and peppermint all make great additions to a homemade cleaning solution. Diluted with water and vinegar, many essential oils can be used to freshen up a countertop or scrub a sink.

  • Spruce up your clean laundry/linen. You can put a couple of drops of lavender onto a damp washcloth and put this in your dryer with your clothes to give them a nice fragrance. This works particularly well if you use unscented laundry detergent. However, be sure not to go overboard--essential oils are strong and some can cause skin irritation.

  • Refrigerator deodorant. The best way to get rid of the smell of a refrigerator is to give it a thorough cleaning. But afterward, help keep it smelling clean longer by putting several drops of lemongrass into a small bowl with baking soda. Stir the baking soda on occasion to release the lemongrass fragrance.


Image by Andrey Popov from Shutterstock

The term "fair market value" is the price at which an interested but not desperate buyer is willing to buy and a motivated but not distressed seller is willing to sell on the open market in your location. The set value depends on recently sold similar-sized homes with like amenities, upgrades, and location. These are known as "comparables" or "comps" in real estate jargon.

Your best resource for learning the market value of your home is your trusted real estate professional. They have access to lists of homes like yours that sold on the open market in recent weeks and months. Of course, no one can know if your home will sell since other factors might be at work too. Changes in local industry and the job market might cause prices to move either down or up. Weather can factor in also.

What if prices drop?

Should you enter the market just as prices begin trending down, you might choose to set your price just below the fair market value. That way, you won’t be forced to lower your opening price if they keep trending downward. To stay competitive, increase the value, not the price. Professionals know ways to market your home’s exceptions such as recent upgrades, repairs, a new roof, walkability, proximity to social life and other seemingly intangible items that keep your home at the top of people’s list.

What if prices go up?

Neither you nor your agent can accurately anticipate the market. But if prices seem to be going up, set yours near the top of the “fair” values. Try not to overprice your home since doing so can have unintended consequences. Lenders and underwriters operate slightly behind the market adjustments, so when you set a too high price, your buyers may not qualify for financing.

Setting the price

Your agent can help you set the right price the first time. Trust their knowledge and expertise in the marketplace. If you’re not sure about the price, test the waters by asking your agent to keep your home as a pocket listing. That is, a listing they can tell agents and clients about that doesn’t appear on the multiple listing services (MLS). That way, you can see if your pricing strategy gains any traction.


Ready to transform an ordinary kitchen into a stellar one? With a kitchen cleaning checklist, any home seller can revamp a kitchen's look and feel.

Ultimately, there are several things to include in a kitchen cleaning checklist, such as:

1. Countertops

If you cook regularly, your kitchen countertops may become messy. Plus, if you store a wide range of items on your kitchen countertops, these items may collect dust over time.

Fortunately, it usually doesn't take long for a home seller to clean kitchen countertops and improve their overall appearance.

It may prove to be worthwhile to clean the kitchen countertops daily. Wiping down the countertops regularly ensures that dust and debris can be eliminated before they cause long-lasting damage.

Furthermore, don't forget to eliminate as much clutter as possible from your kitchen countertops. This will enable you to show off the true beauty of your kitchen countertops, thereby increasing the likelihood that potential homebuyers will be impressed by your home's kitchen.

2. Floors

If food particles fall onto the floor while you're cooking – and you fail to clean them up in a timely fashion – serious problems may arise in your kitchen. However, a diligent home seller will know how to keep the kitchen floors looking great at all times.

Cleaning the kitchen floors typically is a weekly task that may require just a few minutes to complete.

If you have tile floors in your kitchen, warm water can be used to wipe down the floors as needed. Also, sweeping or vacuuming tile floors will enable you to get rid of loose soil and grit.

Comparatively, if you have hardwood floors in your kitchen, boiling water may prove to be essential. Wash your kitchen's hardwood floors thoroughly, and you can enhance their appearance in no time at all.

3. Sink

Believe it or not, the kitchen sink can make a world of difference in the eyes of potential homebuyers. If you dedicate the necessary time and resources to clean the kitchen sink, you should have no trouble impressing homebuyers any time they check out your house's kitchen.

Using a general-purpose cleaner is all it takes to clean a kitchen sink. After you apply the cleaner, wipe the sink dry, and you're good to go.

Daily kitchen sink cleaning is paramount. If you spend even a few minutes each day cleaning the kitchen sink, you can maintain the sink's appearance both now and in the future.

If you need additional help with kitchen cleaning, don't hesitate to reach out to a home cleaning company for assistance. This business hires professionals who understand the ins and outs of cleaning a kitchen – as well as other areas of a home – and will help you revamp a house's appearance.

Lastly, feel free to contact a real estate agent for support throughout the home selling process. With an expert real estate agent at your side, you can boost your chances of getting the best price for your residence.




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