Ron Ouellette
RE/MAX Advantage I | 508-847-7111 | rono@remax.net


Posted by Ron Ouellette on 4/19/2018

When you're a homeowner, it's tempting to save money any way you can. Oftentimes people take repairs into their own hands when they don't have the knowledge or experience to complete the job safely. What begins as a way to save money can quickly turn into a disaster--as you spend lengthy periods of time on a project and find yourself going over your initial budget. It isn't always easy to know which projects you can attempt yourself and which ones are better left to the pros. And, of course, it will depend on your comfort and skill level when it comes to various household repairs. So, if you're a plumber, disregard our plumbing advice and dive in to your DIY plumbing projects since you have the know-how. But if you're an average homeowner looking to make some renovations and repairs, read on to find out which ones you should attempt and which ones are better left to the pros.

1. Electrical work

So you've got a few faulty outlets in the new home you bought. It doesn't seem worth calling in an electrician just for those few minor issues. However, due to the dangers and complications that can arise from electric work, it's a good idea to hold off and call in the experts. Aside from shocking yourself (which can be deadly), you could also create fire hazards or damage circuitry, resulting in much higher repair costs than you initially had. Another benefit of calling in an electrician, other than having the project done correctly, is that they will be able to diagnose your home circuitry to let you know what other problems might arise in the foreseeable future.†So, when it comes to power issues, always call in the pros.

2. Hazardous materials

Many people will tell you not to worry about asbestos or lead paint unless you have children. However, these are both dangerous materials than can create several chronic health problems in adults as well. If you're concerned for the safety of yourself and your family, call in contractors who will remove the lead or asbestos. What can go wrong if you try to do it yourself? Lead chips and dust will fly through the air when attempting to remove lead paint. Breathing in these fumes is dangerous initially and down the road when the dust settles into the corners of your home. Asbestos, especially in blown-in insulation can be particularly dangerous. Aside from ensuring your safety, a contractor will also be able to assess the situation and determine whether your hazardous materials need to be removed or can just be "repaired" or covered up. Simple repair jobs on asbestos or lead-containing objects can save you some serious time and money.

3. Roofing and siding

There's a reason even building contractors bring in third party companies to install roofs and siding. These are both labor-intensive and time-intensive jobs that require specialized skills and tools that only dedicated companies can accomplish correctly. Roofing and siding are both dangerous jobs that carry the risk of falling off of roofs and ladders, as well as injuring your back lifting heavy shingles. The pros have the tools and experience to avoid these injuries. When you hire the professionals to do your roofing or siding, you can rest assured that the job is done correctly and will last much longer than if you made it a DIY project as well.





Posted by Ron Ouellette on 4/12/2018

Most new home shoppers have a list of must-have features in their new abode. Having such a list is a great way to zero in on which houses will make the cut and which are off your list. You will also be able to have a more clear idea of how much of your budget to allocate for upgrades after the final sale for any missing features. Afterall with such a large investment shouldnít your new house be your dream home?

Here four sensible upscale upgrades youíll want to add to your list ASAP.   

Radiant heat flooring throughout the home will keep your feet warm and room temperatures steady. Your energy bill will be cut significantly while also avoiding the on/off repetition of other heating systems that leave you hot and cold. The only flooring radiant heat doesnít work well with is carpeting. So if your home has any consider this your ticket to finally replacing them with some gorgeous hardwoods.   

Whole-house electrostatic precipitator is installed into the ductwork of your home's forced air heating system. The electrostatic allows these electrically charged filters to catch particles like pollen, smoke, and dander as if they were a magnet. And while installing this system is an investment upfront, unlike other filtration systems you donít need to buy replacement screens each month. Instead, you simply wash the plate every few months and pop it back in to continue doing its job.   

Plan extra outlets for better cord management. Floor outlets under a desk, entertainment center or dining room table allow for easy cord management and avoid tripping hazards from cords stretched, mid-air across a room. Place an outlet mid wall where you plan to hang your television for another clever cord management solution. While installing you should also consider picking up an in-wall cord system kit to easily DIY a hidden path for tv to console cords.

Energy efficient features come with multiple benefits and never an upgrade a homeowner would stick their nose up at. Iím sure the first that comes to mind is windows. They keep heat/AC in and outdoor temps where they belong - out. A smart thermostat can help you learn how much energy youíve used before your electric bill comes in and which temperature settings are the most efficient. Not to mention you can easily adjust the temperature from its app so you no longer need to get up just to change the thermostat.

Upscale upgrades arenít all indoor basketball courts and massive home theaters. There are many that are sensible and add to your quality of life for the better. Keep a running list of which homes on your wishlist have these features and how much budget to set aside if they donít.




Tags: luxury   upscale   upgrades  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Ron Ouellette on 4/5/2018

You may be ready to sell your home. However, before you add your residence to the real estate market, you should consider involving your neighbors in the home selling process.

There are many quick, easy ways to connect with your neighbors and ensure they can help you sell your house, including:

1. Meet Face-to-Face with Your Neighbors

Although you've enjoyed many wonderful years in your neighborhood, you may determine that now is a good time to relocate. As such, you should meet with your neighbors to share the news.

A face-to-face meeting with a neighbor usually is a good idea. At this time, you can provide details about your future plans and respond to your neighbor's concerns or questions as well.

Plus, you can ask your neighbor if he or she knows anyone who may be interested in your home. And if your neighbor answers, "Yes," encourage him or her to share the news that your house will soon be available.

2. Provide Neighbors with a Copy of Your Home Listing

Ultimately, you'll want to provide your neighbors with as much information about your home as possible. By doing so, you can make it simple for your neighbors to keep colleagues, family members and friends up to date about your residence.

If an online home listing is available, feel free to share a link to the listing via email or social media. Then, your neighbors can copy and paste the link to the listing to share it with anyone they choose.

Also, if your neighbors prefer a paper copy of your home listing, you should be able to provide them with a print-out that outlines your house's features. Be ready to provide paper copies of your home listing to your neighbors at any time, and you can boost your chances of selling your home quickly.

3. Be Available to Respond to Home Selling Concerns and Questions

After you share details about your home with neighbors, it may be only a matter of time before your residence sells. Meanwhile, neighbors may return to you with additional concerns and questions about your residence.

Be available to your neighbors via phone call, text and email. This will ensure you can provide your neighbors with the home information they request, any time they need it.

Lastly, it is important to remember that home sellers should try to do everything they can to promote their residences to the right groups of homebuyers. If you collaborate with a real estate agent, you can improve your chances of connecting with the right homebuyers, regardless of the current housing market's conditions.

A real estate agent will learn about your home selling goals and work with you to ensure you can achieve them. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will set up home showings and open houses and respond to your home selling concerns and queries to guarantee you are fully supported throughout the home selling journey.

Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you should have no trouble stirring up plenty of interest in your residence.





Posted by Ron Ouellette on 3/29/2018

When you move into a home that you worked so hard to buy, itís an exciting and overwhelming time. The biggest problem with a new place is that you donít know your surroundings very well. Even if you have just moved down the street, thereís a lot of new things to be discovered from new neighbors to new places to explore. 


One thing that many new homeowners overlook is the way in which their new home functions. Do you know where the circuit breakers are? What about that switch in the corner of the living room that doesnít seem to do anything? While the seller's disclosure and your home inspector will give you a wealth of information, you can gain a lot of knowledge just by asking questions. 


Sellers may not be eager to answer too many questions at first for fear that their answers could jeopardize the sale of their home. You can safely ask a lot of questions at the final walk-through or at closing since the seller will know that theyíre secure in the transaction.         



Whatís Strange About This House?


While you wouldnít word a question to a seller in this exact way, you do want to know if thereís anything unique or anything that you should anticipate about the home. Remember that you should be subtle, yet curious in your question asking. 


What Type Of Repairs Have Been Made?


While you expect that most repairs will be on the disclosure statement, anything that has been done in the past is noteworthy as well. Itís helpful to know whatís been done in the house in the past so you have an idea of what to keep an eye out for.


Where Are The Important Utility Boxes In The Home?


Not all home inspectors are created equal. Your inspector may not be great at educating you as to where things are in the home like the circuit box, the water switches, the pump, or the controls for the furnace. The seller can often show you the location of these items in the house. This will prevent you from a lot of confusion starting at the time you move into the home. 


Have You Enjoyed Living In This Neighborhood?


You can discover a lot about a neighborhood if you just start a conversation about the sellerís own experiences. You can learn a lot through this simple question. Are there any crazy dogs in the neighborhood? Where are the best places to eat in the area? While you may not ask these questions directly, you can gain some powerful information just by being curious and conversational.

Gaining a good rapport with your seller can get you places. Youíll know a bit more about the home and the seller will even feel more friendly towards you. The seller could even leave some cool stuff behind that they donít need like a microwave, a piece of furniture, or a patio set. All you need to do is be friendly and curious and youíll be off to a great start in your new home.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Ron Ouellette on 3/22/2018

If you intend to buy or sell a house, it frequently pays to hire a real estate agent, and for good reason.

A real estate agent can offer expert insights into the housing market. Plus, he or she can respond to any concerns or questions that you may have as you proceed along the homebuying or home selling journey.

When it comes to hiring a real estate agent, however, it is important to note that no two real estate agents are exactly alike. In fact, there are several factors that differentiate an ordinary real estate agent from an outstanding one, and these include:

1. Industry Experience

Regardless of whether you plan to buy or sell a house, you should definitely spend some time evaluating a real estate agent's industry experience. That way, you can find out how long a real estate agent has been working in the industry and choose one who knows how to overcome potential homebuying and home selling hurdles.

Ideally, you should employ a real estate agent who possesses many years of industry experience. This housing market professional likely understands the ins and outs of buying and selling houses and can help you get the best possible results.

2. Communication Skills

The right real estate agent will be a great communicator. As such, this housing market professional will be able to keep you informed at each stage of the homebuying or home selling process.

To learn about a real estate agent's communication skills, it often is a great idea to meet with a real estate agent and interview this individual. During a face-to-face interview, you can get a better idea about what a real estate agent is all about and ensure you feel comfortable working with him or her.

In addition, a real estate agent should have no trouble communicating with you in good times and bad. He or she will be prepared to provide honest, unbiased feedback, and by doing so, help you make your homebuying or home selling dreams come true.

3. Client Feedback

Reach out to a real estate agent's past clients before you hire this housing market professional. With client feedback at your disposal, you can learn what it's like to work with a real estate agent.

A real estate agent usually will be happy to provide you with client referrals. Then, you can contact an agent's past clients and learn about their homebuying or home selling experiences.

Lastly, if you're uncertain about whether a real estate agent is right for you, it sometimes is valuable to find out how this housing market professional will approach the homebuying or home selling process. Explaining your goals and learning how a real estate agent will help you accomplish these aspirations can make it easy for you to find the right agent, at the right time, every time.

Start your search for a real estate agent today, and you can move one step closer to buying or selling a home.