Linda D. Dempsey - KELLER WILLIAMS REALTY


Before you launch a home search, you should put together a property buying plan. That way, you will know exactly what you want to accomplish during the homebuying journey and can tailor your house search accordingly.

There are many things you can do to ensure your homebuying plan will work perfectly, and these include:

1. Create Homebuying Goals

You know you want to acquire a house. Now, you just need to establish homebuying goals so you can make your property buying vision a reality.

To create homebuying goals, you should consider where you want to reside and what you want to find in your ideal residence. Remember, you can always modify your goals as you navigate the homebuying journey as well.

Don't forget to be realistic as you establish homebuying goals. For example, if you want to acquire a mansion but don't have the finances to do so, you should lower the bar for your home search.

2. Get Your Finances in Order

A mortgage generally is a must-have to purchase a house. If you get pre-approved for a mortgage, you will know precisely how much you can spend on a residence. And as a result, you can narrow your house search based on the finances at your disposal.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, you should meet with a variety of banks and credit unions. These financial institutions can teach you about the ins and outs of home financing. Plus, they can help you make an informed mortgage selection.

In addition, don't hesitate to ask questions as you review your mortgage options. Banks and credit unions employ courteous, knowledgeable mortgage specialists. If you work with these specialists, you can gain the insights you need to select a mortgage that matches your finances.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

For those who want to receive comprehensive support as they craft a homebuying plan, hiring a real estate agent is paramount. A real estate agent boasts extensive housing market expertise, and as such, will help you create an effective property buying strategy.

A real estate agent devotes time and resources to learn about you and your homebuying goals. Next, he or she will work with you to create a custom homebuying strategy. And when you are ready, you can put this strategy into action.

Furthermore, a real estate agent offers in-depth guidance throughout the homebuying journey. He or she will keep you up to date about new houses that become available in your preferred cities and towns and set up home showings. Also, a real estate agent will help you submit an offer to purchase your dream home. Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent will make it simple for you to avoid overpaying to acquire your ideal house.

Take the guesswork out of developing and executing a homebuying plan – use the aforementioned tips, and you can simplify the process of finding and acquiring your dream residence.


As inconvenient as it may be for our personal lives, most of our careers will be impacted by where we live geographically. Some industries thrive in bustling cities, where others require the resources of deeply rural areas.

Geography isn’t the only factor that determines where the jobs are. However, it can give you a leg up in finding a job or changing jobs if you look for a home in a region that has a thriving job market in your industry.

In this article, we’re going to cover some of the main industries in the United States--industries in which many of us work--and talk about which parts of the country have a lot of jobs in those industries.

So, whether you’re just starting off in your career or looking for a change of scenery, read on for the best places to live for your industry.

Health care

Health care is needed universally. And if you’re in the industry, whether as an administrator, a nurse, or one of the other hundreds of health-related careers, the good news is that it is typically the fastest growing industry in the country.

That being said, some parts of the country favor the health science careers disproportionately. The states of Massachusetts, California, Florida, and Illinois are the four leading places in the country for jobs in healthcare.

STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics)

The STEM fields make up some of the highest paid and most in-demand careers in the country. They tend to be located around urban hubs. However, it isn’t just Silicon Valley that needs great workers in STEM.

First, we’ll state the obvious. San Jose, Santa Clara, and San Francisco are all bursting with high-paying jobs in the technology industries. With companies like Google, Apple, Adobe, and HP, it’s obvious why this region is known are the heart of the technological world.

However, cost of living in this area is quite high, and there are other regions with a flourishing workforce in STEM. Huntsville, Alabama has low rent prices and is home to several large tech companies like IBM and Lockheed Martin. Boulder, Colorado is another area with a quickly growing tech industry, low unemployment (2.7%), and high salary ($91,000).

Manufacturing

Manufacturing jobs have been at the forefront of conversation for years. In spite of many blue collar careers being outsourced overseas, there still remains a thriving manufacturing workforce in the following areas.

North Carolina is ranked number one in manufacturing in the United States. With plants for IBM, Goodyear, and Lenovo, there is a variety of industries that look to North Carolina for manufacturing their products.

Texas has been attracting young workers for their growing number of tech giants and reasonable cost of living. Companies like Lockheed Martin Aeronautics and  ExxonMobil make it a good place for machinists and manufacturers to live.  

Michigan and the Great Lakes cities are often thought of as being where all the manufacturing jobs fled from. However, there are still a number of large companies who are flourishing in the region. In Michigan alone resides General Motors, Ford, Chrysler, and the Dow Chemical Company.


So, if you work in one of these key industries and are on the lookout for a new place to start or continue your career, keep these cities and states in mind.



Ready to transform your home's interior from bland to fabulous? Ultimately, how a seller approaches home interior improvement projects is important. If a seller does everything possible to upgrade a house's interior, this individual could reap the benefits of a successful property selling experience.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you give your residence an interior makeover.

1. Analyze the Current Condition of Your Home

Although a home inspection generally is requested by a buyer after a seller accepts an offer to purchase a house, it may be helpful for a seller to complete an inspection before listing a residence. In fact, an inspection may enable a seller to analyze the current condition of his or her residence and prioritize home interior upgrades accordingly.

Many home inspectors are available in cities and towns across the United States. If you hire a top-notch home inspector, you can receive unprecedented insights into the condition of your house and map out your home interior improvement projects.

2. Remove Clutter

Let's face it – you've accumulated a vast array of personal items over the years. These items may have served you well, but they likely take up lots of space in your home. And if you're not careful, your personal items may make it difficult for you to show off the true size of your house to potential buyers.

If you have an abundance of clutter, there is no need to stress. You can always sell excess items online or at a yard sale, or you can donate these items to a local charity. Furthermore, if you have personal items you want to keep, you can rent a storage unit to hold these belongings until your residence sells.

3. Clean Each Room of Your Home

Maintaining a neat, tidy home is essential, particularly for an individual who wants to sell his or her residence as quickly as possible. If you perform regular cleaning tasks, you can keep your house looking great for the duration of the property selling journey.

Oftentimes, it helps to make a list of daily, weekly and monthly cleaning tasks. If you stick to a regular cleaning schedule, you can ensure each room of your home will dazzle at all times.

As you look for ways to upgrade your home's interior, you may want to hire a real estate agent too. This housing market professional is happy to provide home interior improvement recommendations and suggestions. Plus, he or she can put you in touch with the best local home interior improvement professionals.

In addition, a real estate agent provides extensive guidance throughout the house selling journey. He or she will help you list your home, promote it to the right groups of potential buyers and much more. And if you have home selling concerns, a real estate agent can address them right away.

Improve your home's interior – use the aforementioned tips, and you can bolster your house's interior before you add your residence to the real estate market.


Let's face it – the mere thought of informing family members about your decision to pursue a new home may cause your blood pressure to rise. However, there are many reasons why it often is beneficial to notify family members about your decision to kick off a search for a new residence. These reasons include:

1. You can identify and address potential homebuying hurdles.

Your family typically has your best interests in mind. As such, family members can help you plan ahead for the homebuying journey and resolve any potential conflicts.

For example, family members can help you analyze prospective home financing options. They may even be able to put you in touch with local banks and credit unions that can help you get pre-approved for a mortgage. Then, once you have home financing in hand, you can enter the real estate market with a homebuying budget at your disposal.

2. You can gain homebuying insights that you may struggle to obtain elsewhere.

Family members who previously bought homes may be able to provide you with property buying insights that you probably won't receive elsewhere. With these insights, you'll be better equipped than ever before to understand the housing market and make the best-possible homebuying decision based on your individual needs.

Of course, family members may be able to keep you informed about new houses that become available in your preferred cities and towns too. Because if family members know where you want to find a home, they can help you accelerate your property search.

3. You can receive plenty of support throughout the homebuying journey.

Your family is there for you during good times and bad. If you inform family members about your decision to pursue a new home, they can provide you with comprehensive support throughout the property buying journey. As a result, family members can work with you to help you achieve your desired homebuying results in no time at all.

When it comes to getting help in your quest to discover your dream house, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. If you have a real estate agent at your side, you can receive expert assistance as you proceed along the homebuying journey.

A real estate agent is committed to helping you find a great home at a budget-friendly price. First, he or she will meet with you and learn about your homebuying criteria. A real estate agent next will craft a personalized homebuying strategy and notify you about new homes that become available that match your property buying criteria. And once you discover your dream residence, a real estate agent will help you put together a competitive offer to purchase this house. Lastly, if your homebuying proposal is accepted, a real estate agent will help you finalize your home purchase so you close on this residence and move into your new house.

Take the guesswork out of buying a house – hire a real estate agent today, and you can seamlessly navigate the homebuying journey.


Moving to a new home can definitely be labor intensive, but there are plenty of ways to make it easier and less stressful. Creating a priority list of things to do before the moving truck arrives can help ensure that you won't forget important details.

If you've chosen a service-oriented moving company, they should provide you with information -- possibly even a checklist -- on how to efficiently work with them and prepare.

Having the movers do the actual packing for you is often an option, but not everyone feels comfortable turning over that task to people they don't know. If you decide that it's worth it to pay the extra fee, you can always prepack and take with you any personal, fragile, or valuable items you don't want to entrust to others.

Moving companies are in a competitive business and are usually willing to negotiate the price of their services. By getting cost estimates from three different movers, you can often save hundreds of dollars and choose the company that provides the best value and customer service. Reading online reviews, checking Better Business Bureau ratings, asking a lot of questions, and taking notes are a few of the methods you can use to make an informed decision. Once you've done your research and picked a reputable moving company to transport your belongings, you've cleared one of the biggest hurdles. Packing, of course, can also be a rather immense part of the process. Here are a few tips to help make it a bit easier.

Downsizing helps: Depending on your age, the size of your family, and how long you've lived in your current home, you may want to "lighten your load" as much as possible! Transporting things you no longer use or need can make moving more tiring, complicated, and expensive. Taking the time to have a garage sale, contact the Salvation Army for a truck pickup, or even find a cost-effective junk removal service to haul away your unwanted stuff can simplify your moving experience.

Boxes and packing materials: Although there's a good possibility of being able to negotiate some wardrobe boxes and other supplies into your service contract, more boxes, heavy-duty tape, and packing material will be needed! Inquiring at your local supermarket about any surplus boxes is one way to save money on supplies. However, if the boxes they give you are flimsy or damaged, the monetary savings may not be worth the hassle of having them split open in transit. Overpacking boxes with heavy objects can also result in that same problem -- not to mention the probability of muscle strains and back injuries! Clearly labeling boxes and avoiding using nondescript categories, such as "miscellaneous," is yet another way to reduce the potential stress and frustration of moving all your belongings to a new home.