BirdDogBot automatically runs searches, analyzes properties, monitors classified ads, and sends you an email notification summary without requiring you to login or run any special software. Just set it and forget it!
Know everything about the history of a property listing to get an unfair advantage when negotiating deals.
Detailed Property Listing Monitoring
Monitor and track listings over time – if the asking price, market value, rental income, or any other information BirdDogBot tracks ever changes, BirdDogBot let’s you know exactly what changed and by exactly how much.Property Proformas Created Instantly
All property facts, including market value estimates, photos, listing details, and more are all displayed on a single easy-to-read and easy-to-follow page customized for each property.
Each property has a one-click link to Google, Bing, and Yahoo maps so you can use “street view” to virtually visit your properties.
Analyze Properties Using Your Custom “Deal Criteria”
BirdDogBot only returns properties you want and ignores properties you don’t need to waste your time sifting through or looking at.
Pre-Configured & Customizable Analysis Settings
BirdDogBot comes pre-loaded with default analysis settings so you can get started right away. As you tweak it to analyze deals the way you want, it remembers your settings so you can save time by not having to repeatedly entering the same information over and over again.
Add Your Own Deals
Add your own properties and let BirdDogBot fetch market values, estimate rental income, and analyze each deal. It does all the math so you don’t have to.
All information on this website or any e-book or software purchased from this website is for educational purposes only and is not intended to provide financial advise. Any statements about profits or income, expressed or implied, does not represent a guarantee. Your actual results may will vary as no system is guaranteed. The tools and products are completely for you to use at your own will. You accept full responsibilities for your actions, trades, profit or loss, and agree to hold Elizabethssite of this information harmless in any and all ways.
Preparing for Tough Times: 7 Steps to Build Your Financial Resilience
Here we go again; the signs of a recession are all present.
As a seasoned person, I know economic recessions can have significant impacts on our financial stability and wellbeing. I’ve been through a few recessions myself. I would even argue that this could possibly be the beginning of a depression. I’ve personally lost everything during the recession of 2008/2009. I recommend taking several steps to prepare for a recession to ensure that you can weather any potential financial storms. It’s always easier to prepare for bad times and not need it than to be scrambling to figure things out in a panic as your life rapidly implodes. These things are good to do even if you are not preparing for a recession. They can become immensely helpful in the event of a medical crisis, a death in the family, or any other random sudden hardship.
Build an emergency fund: Start saving money now to create an emergency fund that can cover your living expenses for at least 3 to 6 months. This fund should be easily accessible and separate from your regular savings or investments. In case of a job loss or financial hardship, having an emergency fund can help you stay afloat until you’re able to get back on your feet. Start on payday by paying yourself first, put that money into the bank and continue to grow that account until you have six months of savings. Do this for as long as it takes to build yourself a nest egg. You will be so relieved if something should happen that you have done this.
Reduce your debt: In a recession, high-interest debt can become difficult to manage. Prioritize paying off your debts and avoid taking on new ones. If you have multiple debts, consider using a debt snowball or avalanche method to pay them off more efficiently. Pay off the debts with the highest interest rate first. After you have paid off the highest rate debt, then put what you were putting on that debt towards the second-highest. Keep increasing the amount you are paying off as you build the snowball of payments to your principal on your debts. By reducing your debt, you’ll be able to better manage your finances and avoid the stress of mounting interest payments. In times of recession or depression, banks will begin to reduce the amounts people can borrow. Put yourself in a position where you do not need to be borrowing money every month at all.
Cut unnecessary expenses: It’s crucial to reduce your expenses during a recession, as income may be reduced or uncertain. You can start by creating a budget and cutting out non-essential items such as subscriptions, dining out, or luxury purchases. Go over your budget every month to see if further cuts can be made. Also, consider ways to save on utilities and other bills, such as turning off lights when not in use or shopping around for a better insurance deal. Try buying in bulk so you can get more savings. Only purchase pantry items you can and will eat during a crisis. Learn to entertain yourself and your family with free things, go to parks, beaches, hiking. Do things that do not require you to spend any money. Pack picnic lunches and stick to your budget. Be sure to discuss all the changes with your family so that everyone is on the same page and also helping to cut expenses.
Diversify your income: During a recession, having multiple income streams can provide a buffer in case of job loss or financial hardship. You can explore part-time jobs, freelancing, or other side hustles that align with your skills and interests. Good places to pick up extra work are Fiverr or Upwork. You could also consider monetizing a hobby or renting out unused space in your home. Even taking in a roommate can drastically help with your expenses. This may be a good time to start a second job or side hustle.
Invest in yourself: Developing new skills or certifications can make you more marketable in your field or in other industries. Consider investing in courses or workshops that can expand your skillset or enhance your resume. You can also attend networking events to connect with like-minded professionals and explore new opportunities. Consider taking on a trade skill. Look into federally funded trade schools and programs. Ask your current employer if they would help cover continuing education for you. Some companies will pay for your tuition or advanced classes to help you grow and be more valuable for your employer.
Build a support network: Staying connected with friends and family can help you maintain a positive mindset and find support during challenging times. Consider joining a support group or seeking out counseling services if needed. Also, having a financial advisor or mentor can provide valuable guidance and insight into managing your finances during a recession. If you have a place of worship or a community that you are part of, be sure to stay in touch with them. Communicate your needs and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Avoid isolating yourself.
Stay informed: Keeping up-to-date on economic trends and news can help you make informed decisions about your finances. You can follow financial blogs, read relevant news articles, or listen to podcasts that cover topics related to personal finance and investing. Having a solid understanding of the current economic landscape can help you plan ahead and make strategic decisions about your finances. Be sure to check multiple sources for the information that guides you in your decisions. Be sure to check what experience and knowledge the people who are guiding you have.
Overall, preparing for a recession is a long-term process that requires patience, discipline, and a willingness to adapt. By taking proactive steps to build your financial stability and resilience, you can be better prepared to weather any economic downturns that may occur in the future. I can’t stress enough how important it is to prepare for hard times. If you prepare for hard times and they don’t come, be happy you were prepared and are able to withstand a recession/depression.
I had always loved the outdoors, and I was excited to take my family on camping trips in our new Winnebago Chalet. In the Winnebago, we had been to beautiful places such as Big Sur, the California Redwoods, and Baja Mexico. We were seasoned campers. It wasn’t until my husband went on disability due to a freak accident that we learned what it was like to camp for more than six months nonstop.
It was in 2009 that we packed up the Winnebago, gave the keys to the house we were renting back to the property manager, and downsized our life aggressively to fit into the Winnebago. Not wanting to face eviction, we had given our 30 days’ notice. We had officially fallen on hard times and were homeless, but I convinced my kids that they were just going on an extended camping trip. We had chosen to camp in the city areas around the San Jose Bay area, where they could still have access to basic amenities and services.
My husband needed physical therapy every other day to recover from his injury. His arm would spontaneously come out of the socket as a laptop strap slid off his shoulder. We didn’t know this at the time, but he has Ehlers Danlos, a hereditary connective tissue disease.
I explained to my kids the difference between city camping and camping in the woods. We needed to be respectful of our surroundings in the city and maintain an extremely low profile. It was like a game, one I did not want to play. We searched for spots to park in, out of the way parking lots near laundromats and coffee shops. The best places were the ones with free WIFI and little foot traffic. We were all used to the Winnebago, and the pros were that we had access to clean water and a restroom in the RV. Showers were much trickier. When in a campground, we could use the facilities like showers and bathrooms. In the city, there was no access to enough water for showers. We also had to be mindful of our black tanks. Going to dump them usually meant a drive out to a station equipped for that.
One night, we parked next to our old bank on El Camino Real in Santa Clara. Ironically, the bank had closed, and its workers had been laid off, and the mall was essentially a ghost mall. We needed water, and getting water in the city was harder than we expected. Well, we got a good laugh because the bank hadn’t turned off the water spigot outside yet. So we went all the time to fill our water tanks at the bank. It was a funny thought that we were getting an essential survival supply from the bank, almost as if we were robbing it.
All that considered, it was a “Dry Camping” experience. Another positive was that we could also easily get food and supplies from nearby stores, keeping our meager budget in mind. On the other hand, camping in the woods offered a more natural setting, where we could fully immerse ourselves in the wilderness and disconnect from the city’s hustle and bustle. City camping was very stressful.
On our trip, there was no escape from the hustle and bustle and dangers that lurked in the night. Animals far more dangerous than bears and wildlife. Humans were out there, people who could ask questions, questions that could lead to troublesome answers, and we did not want to have to answer to a potential CPS (Child Protective Services) inquiry. Caring for our children was the priority. They were homeschooled, and we maintained their schooling at the library and coffee shops long before online meetings and zooms were a thing. They logged into school and went about their daily learning tasks, all while we were camping in the city.
On our first night in the Winnebago, the kids were excited to sleep in the bunk bed and table bed set up. My husband and I had a bed in the rear part of the chalet. We slept with one eye open and raised at the first light, so we moved on before the city dwellers took notice. The next morning, we set out to explore the nearby parks, shopping centers, colleges, and suburbs. We enjoyed a picnic lunch by the lake at Vasona Park and fed the ducks some stale bread crumbs. It was actually a picture-perfect place to be homeless and spend a day. Almost so surreal that one could think it was a vacation.
However, as the days went on, we all started to notice some of the cons of city camping. The noise and pollution from the nearby highways were constant, and we couldn’t fully escape the sounds of the city. We also felt very uneasy at night, knowing that we were parked in a public area, and anyone could approach our RV. Having our small dog was like having a little live alarm as he would rustle then huff and puff warnings if anyone approached our vehicle. We appreciated that more then ever.
Despite the challenges, our family tried to make the best of our situation. We spent our days exploring the city and enjoying each other’s company. We took walks in parks at every neighborhood between Gilroy and San Francisco. We soon found a rhythm and pattern to our favorite spots. The kids were happy to be on an adventure, and I felt grateful for the chance to spend quality time with my family. Almost too much time.
As the days turned into weeks and months, I began to worry about the future. I knew we couldn’t continue living like this forever, but I also didn’t know how to get out of the situation. How long would it take for Jaime, my husband, to recover? When would companies begin to hire again? It was a large recession. Many companies had laid off people en masse. In fact, it was the second year of the hard times. In the new year, Jaime started looking for new job opportunities. The disability payments stopped and unemployment had kicked in. None of it enough to support our family in the San Francisco Bay Area. We had tapped out all resources the year prior when laid off in 2008. So the double whammy of 2008/2009 crushed us. We decided in April of 2010 to surrender the RV. It was the last thing I was trying to hold onto – a semblance of dignity, something of our own. But it wasn’t ours; it belonged to the bank. I had started the bankruptcy process, and I knew the repo man would soon be looking for the RV. So I arranged a surrender and moved the family into a rented trailer. I was determined that the experience was not going to be memorable in a negative way for the kids. With the handing over of the keys, our city camping trip smoothly ended. We moved our few possessions into the rented campsite and adjusted to a new routine.
In the end, our family learned a valuable lesson about resilience and adaptability. We made the best of a difficult situation and found joy in the simple things. I hoped that one day my kids and family would be able to look back on this experience as a reminder of their strength and perseverance. Our journey to recovery was just over the horizon.
Once we were back in a brick and mortar home my daughter wrote this song about the experience.
“What gives you a sense of direction in life”. This question gave me pause. I had to stop the moment I was living in and reflect on what had passed. I’m a person who lives their life in the moment every day. I never worried too much about the future or dwelt on the past. Instead, I focused on enjoying the present and making the most of every moment. Even the crappy moments had some humor, irony, or a lesson in them.
This way of life is normal to me. I can sit in the moment and hear the birds singing, see my dog grooming herself. In the distance, I hear my husband working in his office, and the washing machine running. I am keenly aware of the fold in my sock and the breeze coming in from the window. I am in the moment, however short the moments are for me.
In a moment, I can see that a plant needs watering, or suddenly, I want to talk to my mother. I put down my coffee to go do something, and the coffee moment has passed. Never to return the same way again. This can be a downside to living in the moment. Some call it ADHD. For me, it’s my day-to-day life. Some would say it causes me to miss moments of life, and in some contexts, they are correct. I may have missed a moment of someone else’s life while living my own. As a child, I was labeled lackadaisical. This description is, in reality, far from the truth. I am passionate and enthusiastic. It’s just not seen by others the same way, or perhaps others just can’t be in the moment I am in. It’s my paradise, my zen, my now. I suppose the other label of marching to the beat of my own drum fits well too.
Despite my carefree attitude and appearance, I still have a sense of direction in life. If you had asked the young me who, what, where I would be in 50 years, my answers would have been nothing like the life I actually lived. I had no grand plans when I was in my mid-life. That time was also lived in the moment. A rough plan of where I was going was made, and action to make it happen was implemented, often with only rough planning. Little concern about if it would work out or not. This led to many adventures. Some pleasant, some not. I didn’t have a grand plan or a specific goal I was working towards when I was younger. I just knew I was living my life, raising my family, getting what needed to be done, completed. I did always have a guiding principle that helped me navigate the world, to live in the moment, and love the people around me. My husband and I made that pact long ago, that if our lives took us to the depths of dark times, we would still love each other and be happy in the moment because we have each other and the kids. To us, that is paramount. We did live through some very unpleasant things, like being homeless and bankrupt. Moments that we lived that passed more slowly, unlike the joyful ones. We still looked at each other and our children, regretting nothing. We forged ahead on new moments and new paths. When a moment wasn’t so joyful, it gave me motivation to change the scenery, or the path or the plan, if I even had one.
For me, my guiding principle is to always follow my passions and do what brings joy. This can sometimes run amuck easily. Whenever I was faced with a decision or a crossroads, I paused and asked, “What would bring me and my family the most joy in that moment?” This has especially become clear as I age and realize our moments are limited. We don’t know when it will be our last. Milestones, such as buying homes or changing jobs, can be tricky when living in the moment. I always joked that I should have just been a nomad because I always enjoy moving on.
Sometimes, this has led me and my family down unexpected paths. For instance, when we decided to quit our jobs, sell the family home, and pursue dreams of owning a bumper boat arcade in Mexico. That was a grand adventure. We simply took a year to plan out the location, and we had amazing trips and fun while researching it. It was all so romantic and magical in the moments that we lived it. Other times, it simply meant choosing to spend a lazy afternoon watching a movie with my kids or a trip to the beach instead of running errands or taking care of chores. Then there were the dark moments when we had to face adversity resulting from decisions made or life events and world events. Adverse events like being robbed or having our dreams smashed in a truck upon delivery. Moments that were filled with what seemed like endless sadness. I learned that joy isn’t a moment that is constant. You have to have the sadness and pain to feel and understand the joyful moments and appreciate them.
Many of my friends and family often marveled and watched with concern at my ability to live so freely and in the moment while still feeling fulfilled and purposeful. They see the joy and passion I bring to things I’ve done, from cooking a meal to exploring a new country to live in, and it inspires them to try to incorporate more of that spirit into their own lives.
As the years have passed, my guiding principle continues to serve me well. I’ve had my share of ups and downs, but I’ve always found my way back to what brings me joy and keeps me grounded in the present. Being flexible and open-minded to change has been a key factor in living in the moment. I still do not know where I will be in five years. My answer is always “It depends.” Life changes, and so will I.
And so, my life is a testament to the power of living in the moment and following your passions. It shows that even without a grand plan or a set destination, you can still find direction in life by simply focusing on what brings you joy and fulfillment in each moment.
The video above is a song that Sabrina Signs wrote about her experience being homeless with us. It was completed when we got back on our feet.
Once upon a time, I was one of those people who always said, “That will never happen to me,” or “My kids will never do that.” Growing up in a stable household with hardworking parents, I was convinced that I could control my life and ensure that nothing ever we nt wrong. I was arrogant and so confident that things would always go my way.
As I got older, I got married and had children of my own, I still held on to the belief that bad things would never happen to me. I continued to make these bold declarations, but I was about to learn a harsh lesson.
My husband lost his job in 2008 and again in 2009. In August of 2009 his arm detached from the socket in what we considered a freak accident. That accident was that his laptop that was on a shoulder strap slid off his shoulder and took his arm with it. At the time we did not know he actually has Ehlers Danlos a connective tissue disease that is genetic. Well when that happened our family began to struggle financially as he was the sole breadwinner. We struggled in ways I still find difficult to express. We had to leave our home and move into an our RV, and I had to figure out how in the heck to get back on track financially. It was a difficult adjustment for the kids, but I still thought I had everything under control.
When, things took a turn for the worse. We were unable to pay our bills. The recession of 2008/2009 was devastating. It effected so many people we knew we were not alone or unique in our struggle. We moved into our RV and left with nowhere to go. We drove within the Silicon Valley limits trying to keep a low profile. We had to stay within a days drive of my husbands doctors and physical therapist. We searched for discrete parking lots and ideally ones who had a business that left their free wifi open 24/7. We never stayed more then 2 nights in any one spot.
For the first time in my life, I found myself homeless and bankrupt. I decided at that time to actually file for bankruptcy. We were on Disability, we also had some severance pay from the layoff that happened while my husband was on long term disability. Having used up savings and all other resources I was forced to rely on the kindness of others for help. This was such a foreign concept for me. Ironically because I wanted to keep my daughter out of depression I let her perform for a gathering at a dance studio for a drive for food cans to help the homeless, but we never mentioned to the people that we were indeed ourselves homeless at that time. That was a surreal moment for me, and my daughter. One upside of that day was that we got to snack on the goodies after the show. Later, when the studio knew that we were also homeless they let her take a dance class and perform with the dance studio. The owner also took my daughter out for a nice hair cut and spent a day being sweet to her. People have no idea how much kind acts help out when you are down in the weeds of being homeless. I always tell myself people won’t remember what you do in life, but they will remember how you made them feel. There were people who made us feel better and we won’t ever forget them. One person, a hotel clerk also was super kind to us. He gave us a super discounted rate, because while we were homeless my husband also needed a surgery to break up his kidney stones. We needed a clean restful space for about a week for him to recover and all of us enjoyed the shower and having solid ground for a few days. He would also bring us any hotel leftover breakfast items for the kids. Everything helped. Months later we were in another city at a diner celebrating our Christmas Dinner. He saw our RV and us celebrating Christmas for the kids and we had no idea he was there and he paid for our meal. I will never forget him and his kindness to us! He left before we could thank him. I think of him every Christmas and send positive thoughts his way.
Being homeless was a humbling experience that shattered my belief that I was invincible. As I worked to rebuild my life, I began to reflect on my previous mindset. I realized that my arrogance had blinded me to the realities of life. I had been so convinced that bad things could never happen to me that I failed to prepare for the worst. In my head I heard my Mom’s word of caution, and my Dad’s warnings that recessions and bad times usually occur every 10 years or so. I had never wished I had listened to my parents wise words more than at that time.
Being so darn depressed and angry with myself and my decisions. I decided to change my mindset. I began to work on trying to have a positive mindset with a twist on educating myself on financial planning and budgeting, teaching my children the value of hard work, savings, planning and preparing them for the challenges of life. I became more empathetic and understanding of others who are going through tough times. It was a real transformation for me.
Over time, my hard work paid off. My husband was able to find a new job, we started to rebuild our credit in a specific way. We rented for two years while I worked as hard as I could to get our credit good enough to purchase a home in 2013. We also saved enough money to move into a new home. It was a journey and a process. I strongly believe that because we took certain steps and we remained focused on the goals we were able to turn it all around. Our children thrived and grew into responsible, empathetic adults. I feel like the “Homeless” experience taught us all a lifetime of lessons.
Some of these lessons I will share with you throughout my blog. Things like going bankrupt, rebuilding credit, planning to purchase a home, building a successful business and more. I will also share information about cost cutting, budgeting, and ways to creatively make money so you can reach your financial goals sooner. In my blogs I will also share other passion projects of mine such as cooking, music, gardening and more
Looking back on my journey, I realized that my experience of going homeless and bankrupt was a wake-up call. It forced me to reevaluate my beliefs and change my mindset. I learned that bad things can happen to anyone, no matter how well-prepared or confident you may be. But with hard work and a willingness to learn, it is possible to overcome even the toughest of challenges. If I did it, you can too!
In the video above watch me build my cats a new cat tree with a hiding space.
Indoor cats are becoming increasingly common as more and more cat owners recognize the benefits of keeping their pets inside. However, it’s important to remember that indoor cats require enrichment and stimulation just as much as their outdoor counterparts. One of the best ways to provide this enrichment is by investing in a cat tree. In this post, we’ll explore the many benefits of cat trees for indoor cats, why cats need enrichment, and how to choose and use a cat tree effectively.
The Benefits of Cat Trees Cat trees are essentially artificial trees designed for cats to climb, scratch, perch, and play on. They come in a wide variety of sizes and designs, but all offer several benefits for indoor cats. First and foremost, cat trees provide a space for cats to climb, which is a natural behavior that can help them feel more secure and confident. Many indoor cats are unable to indulge their natural climbing instincts, which can lead to boredom and frustration. Cat trees provide a safe and stimulating outlet for this behavior.
In addition to climbing, cat trees offer a place for cats to scratch and stretch, which can help maintain their physical health and mental well-being. Cats have a natural instinct to scratch, which helps them shed the outer layer of their claws and mark their territory. Cat trees provide a dedicated scratching surface that is safe and appropriate for cats to use, helping to prevent destructive behavior like scratching furniture or chewing on cords.
Cat trees also give cats a perch from which to observe their surroundings, which can satisfy their natural curiosity and desire to survey their territory. Many cat trees come with built-in hideaways or hammocks that allow cats to curl up and rest while still keeping an eye on their environment. Finally, cat trees provide opportunities for play and exercise, which can prevent boredom and promote a healthy weight. Many cat trees come with built-in toys or hanging ropes that cats can bat around, providing hours of entertainment.
Indoor Cats Need Enrichment
Indoor cats require enrichment for several reasons. First and foremost, they don’t have access to the same natural stimuli that outdoor cats do, such as fresh air, sunlight, and the sights and sounds of nature. This can lead to boredom and frustration, which can manifest as destructive behavior (like scratching and chewing) or behavioral issues like aggression or anxiety.
Enrichment is important for indoor cats to maintain their physical health as well. Many indoor cats don’t get enough exercise, which can lead to obesity and related health problems like diabetes and heart disease. Enrichment activities like climbing and playing can help keep cats physically active and mentally engaged.
How to Choose and Use a Cat Tree
When choosing a cat tree, there are several factors to consider. First, you’ll want to consider your cat’s size and preferences. Some cats prefer tall trees, while others prefer smaller ones. You’ll also want to choose a sturdy and stable design that won’t tip over or wobble when your cat jumps on it. Finally, make sure to choose materials that are safe and non-toxic for your cat to interact with.
Introducing your cat to a new cat tree can be a fun and rewarding experience. Start by placing the tree in a prominent and accessible location, like near a window or in a central living area. Encourage your cat to explore the tree by placing treats or toys on the different levels. Reinforce positive behavior with praise and rewards.
Make sure to clean and maintain your cat tree regularly, especially if it’s made of carpet or other fabric materials that can collect dirt and bacteria. Vacuum the tree regularly and consider using a pet-safe cleaner to wipe down any surfaces that your cat comes into contact with.
In conclusion, cat trees are an excellent way to provide enrichment and stimulation for indoor cats. By giving cats a space to climb, scratch, perch, and play, cat trees can help prevent destructive behavior, promote physical activity and mental stimulation, and create a sense of security and territory for indoor cats. Remember that cat trees are just one of many ways to provide enrichment for indoor cats, but they are an important one that can make a big difference in your cat’s well-being.
If you’re considering investing in a cat tree for your feline friend, make sure to choose a sturdy and safe design that meets your cat’s needs and preferences. Introduce your cat to the tree gradually and reinforce positive behavior with praise and rewards. With a little bit of effort, you can provide your indoor cat with a stimulating and enriching environment that will keep them happy and healthy for years to come.
This cat tree is so much fun. My cats play in it and sleep on all parts of it.
After a bankruptcy there are some things that can help you fix your credit after a bankruptcy:
I went bankrupt in 2010. It was a humbling experience and I hope to never have to repeat it again. I wrote this to help if you happen to have to go through it too. Remember it’s not always your fault. When back luck and bad economy cross, even the most conservative of people can fall victim of financial ruin. You too can recover from it. I did.
Bankruptcy is a legal process that allows individuals or businesses to discharge their debts when they are unable to pay them back. There are two common types of bankruptcy for individuals: Chapter 7 and Chapter 13. In Chapter 7 bankruptcy, most unsecured debts are discharged, while in Chapter 13, the debtor repays some or all of their debts over a period of three to five years.
Bankruptcy can have a significant impact on your credit score. When you file for bankruptcy, it is reported to credit bureaus and will remain on your credit report for up to 10 years. This can make it difficult to obtain credit, such as loans or credit cards, and can result in higher interest rates or fees when credit is granted. Ten years can feel like a lifetime, but you can recover from it.
In addition, bankruptcy typically results in a significant drop in your credit score. According to FICO, a Chapter 7 bankruptcy can lower your credit score by 200 to 240 points, while a Chapter 13 bankruptcy can lower it by 130 to 150 points. The impact on your credit score will depend on your credit history and the specifics of your bankruptcy.
However, it is important to note that while bankruptcy can have a negative impact on your credit score, it is not necessarily the end of your financial future. With time and effort, it is possible to rebuild your credit score and regain your financial footing. I had to file for bankruptcy, it was a humbling experience.
To review your credit report, you can follow these steps:
Visit AnnualCreditReport.com: This is the only authorized website to obtain free credit reports from the three major credit bureaus – Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion.
Request your credit report: You can request a free credit report from each of the three credit bureaus once a year. You will need to provide your name, address, Social Security number, and date of birth.
Verify your identity: Each credit bureau may ask for additional information to verify your identity. This could include questions about your credit history or personal information.
Review your credit report: Once you have verified your identity, you will be able to access your credit report. Check each section carefully for errors, such as incorrect account information, fraudulent accounts, or inaccurate personal information.
Dispute errors: If you find errors on your credit report, you can dispute them with the credit bureau. Each bureau has a process for submitting disputes online, by mail, or by phone.
By reviewing your credit report regularly, you can ensure that your credit history is accurate and up to date, which can help you maintain a good credit score. It is recommended that you review your credit report from each credit bureau at least once a year to monitor your credit history and catch any errors or fraudulent activity. People should be reviewing their credit reports regularly even when not in financial trouble. It’s important to know what your credit report looks like at all times in your life.
To identify errors or inaccuracies that should be disputed, follow these steps:
Check your personal information: Start by checking your personal information, such as your name, address, and Social Security number. Make sure all the information is accurate and up to date.
Review your credit accounts: Check all the accounts listed on your credit report, including credit cards, loans, and mortgages. Verify that the balances and payment history are accurate, and that all the accounts belong to you.
Look for errors or inaccuracies: Pay attention to any errors or inaccuracies, such as accounts that you don’t recognize or that have incorrect balances or payment history. Also, look for signs of fraud, such as accounts that were opened in your name without your authorization.
Check your credit inquiries: Review the section of your credit report that lists credit inquiries, which are requests for your credit report made by lenders or creditors. Make sure you recognize all the inquiries and that there are no unauthorized inquiries.
Dispute errors or inaccuracies: If you find errors or inaccuracies on your credit report, you can dispute them with the credit bureau that issued the report. Each credit bureau has a process for submitting disputes online, by mail, or by phone.
By identifying and disputing errors or inaccuracies on your credit report, you can ensure that your credit history is accurate and up to date, which can help you maintain a good credit score. It is important to monitor your credit report regularly and take action to correct any errors or inaccuracies as soon as possible.
To correct errors on your credit report, you should follow these steps:
Notify the credit bureau: If you find an error on your credit report, you should notify the credit bureau that issued the report. You can do this by sending a dispute letter or by submitting a dispute online through the credit bureau’s website.
Provide documentation: When disputing an error on your credit report, it is important to provide documentation to support your claim. This could include bank statements, payment receipts, or any other relevant documents.
Wait for investigation: The credit bureau will investigate your dispute and will typically respond within 30 days. If the error is found to be legitimate, the credit bureau will correct your credit report and send you a new copy.
Notify the creditor: If the error on your credit report was caused by a creditor, such as a lender or credit card company, you should also notify them of the error. You can do this by sending a dispute letter or by contacting the creditor directly.
Follow up: It is important to follow up with the credit bureau and the creditor to ensure that the error has been corrected. You should also monitor your credit report regularly to make sure that the error does not reappear.
By correcting errors on your credit report, you can ensure that your credit history is accurate and up to date, which can help you maintain a good credit score. It is important to take action to correct any errors as soon as possible and to follow up to make sure that the error has been corrected.
Now you need to work towards building back up your credit. To do this work on these things:
Create a budget: Create a budget to help you prioritize your bills and expenses. This will help you ensure that you have enough money to pay all your bills on time.
Set up automatic payments: Consider setting up automatic payments for your bills. This can help ensure that your bills are paid on time and can help you avoid late fees and penalties.
Use reminders: If you prefer to make manual payments, set up reminders to help you remember when bills are due. You can use a calendar or a reminder app to keep track of due dates.
Make payments early: Consider making payments a few days before they are due to ensure that they are received on time. This can also help you avoid any processing delays that could result in a late payment.
Communicate with creditors: If you are having difficulty making payments, communicate with your creditors as soon as possible. They may be willing to work with you to create a payment plan or adjust your due dates to help you avoid late payments.By making timely payments, you can help maintain a good credit score and avoid the negative consequences of late payments.
Consider a secured credit card: Explain how a secured credit card can help rebuild credit after bankruptcy. Provide guidance on how to find a reputable lender and use the card responsibly.A secured credit card is a type of credit card that requires the cardholder to make a deposit as collateral. The deposit typically serves as the credit limit for the card, and the cardholder can use the card just like any other credit card to make purchases and payments. Here’s how a secured credit card can help rebuild credit after bankruptcy and how to use one responsibly:
How a secured credit card can help rebuild credit after bankruptcy:
After a bankruptcy, your credit score will likely be low, and it may be difficult to obtain credit. However, a secured credit card can help you rebuild your credit by allowing you to demonstrate responsible credit behavior. By making on-time payments and keeping your balance low, you can start to rebuild your credit score over time.
How to find a reputable lender:
When looking for a secured credit card, it’s important to find a reputable lender. Here are some tips to help you find a good secured credit card:
Research: Do some research to find reputable lenders that offer secured credit cards. Look for lenders that report to the major credit bureaus, as this will help ensure that your credit history is being reported.
Compare offers: Compare offers from different lenders to find the best secured credit card for your needs. Look for cards with low fees and a reasonable interest rate.
Read reviews: Read reviews from other customers to get an idea of the lender’s reputation and customer service.
To use a secured credit card responsibly, it’s important to follow these tips:
Make on-time payments: Make sure to make at least the minimum payment on time each month. Late payments can damage your credit score and result in fees and penalties.
Keep your balance low: Keep your balance low and try to pay off the balance in full each month. This can help you avoid interest charges and keep your credit utilization rate low.
Monitor your credit report: Monitor your credit report regularly to ensure that your payments are being reported accurately and that there are no errors or inaccuracies.
Avoid overspending: Avoid overspending with your secured credit card. Just because you have a credit limit doesn’t mean you should spend up to that limit.
You can use a secured credit card to rebuild your credit after bankruptcy and improve your overall creditworthiness.
Pay bills on time:Paying bills on time is one of the most important factors in maintaining a good credit score. Late payments can stay on your credit report for up to seven years and can have a significant negative impact on your credit score. Therefore, it is important to develop good habits when it comes to paying bills on time.
By implementing some of these tips, you can develop good habits and stay organized when it comes to paying your bills on time.
Seeking professional help from a reputable credit counselor or financial advisor can be an important step in rebuilding your credit after bankruptcy. Here’s why it’s important and how to find a reputable professional:
Why seeking professional help is important:
A reputable credit counselor or financial advisor can provide valuable guidance and support as you work to rebuild your credit after bankruptcy. They can help you develop a budget, create a debt repayment plan, and offer advice on how to improve your credit score. They can also help you avoid scams and make informed financial decisions.
How to find a reputable professional:
When seeking a credit counselor or financial advisor, it’s important to find someone who is reputable and trustworthy. Here are some tips for finding a good professional:
Research: Do some research to find reputable professionals in your area. Look for professionals who are certified by reputable organizations, such as the National Foundation for Credit Counseling (NFCC) or the Financial Planning Association (FPA).
Check credentials: Verify the professional’s credentials and experience. Make sure they are licensed, certified, and have experience working with clients in similar situations.
Read reviews: Read reviews from other clients to get an idea of the professional’s reputation and quality of service.
Avoid scams: Be wary of scams and avoid professionals who charge high fees or make unrealistic promises.
To use the services of a credit counselor or financial advisor effectively, it’s important to:
Be open and honest: Be open and honest with the professional about your financial situation, goals, and concerns. This will help them provide the best advice and guidance.
Follow their advice: Follow the advice and guidance of the professional. Implement their recommendations and work with them to create a plan for rebuilding your credit.
Communicate regularly: Communicate regularly with the professional and provide updates on your progress. This will help them monitor your progress and make adjustments as needed.
By seeking professional help from a reputable credit counselor or financial advisor, you can get the guidance and support you need to rebuild your credit after bankruptcy. By following these tips, you can find a good professional and use their services effectively to achieve your financial goals.
When it comes to rebuilding credit after bankruptcy, it’s important to remember that it takes time and patience. Here’s how to stay persistent and not give up:
Set realistic expectations:
Rebuilding credit after bankruptcy is a process that takes time, and it’s important to set realistic expectations. It may take several years to rebuild your credit. Progress may be slow at first.
The importance of consistency:
To rebuild credit after bankruptcy, it’s important to consistently make on-time payments, keep credit utilization low, and avoid taking on any new debt. I can’t emphasize enough the importance of consistency. Stay on track even if progress is slow.
Provide motivation and support:
Rebuilding your credit after bankruptcy can be challenging, so it’s important to have motivation and support. You should celebrate small victories along the way, such as paying off a credit card or seeing your credit score improve.
Rebuilding credit after bankruptcy can be overwhelming, so it’s important to remind readers that they don’t have to do it alone. Encourage them to seek help from a reputable credit counselor or financial advisor who can provide guidance and support.
Do not to give up:
Finally, remember do not to give up. Rebuilding credit after bankruptcy can be a long and challenging process, but with time and effort, it is possible to achieve a good credit score and regain financial stability. Stay persistent and remember that small steps can lead to big changes over time.
Remember that rebuilding credit after bankruptcy takes time and patience. Stay persistent and do not give up. Stay motivated and on track as you work to achieve your financial goals.
In conclusion, filing for bankruptcy can have a significant impact on your credit score, but it doesn’t have to be the end of your financial future. By reviewing your credit report regularly, disputing errors or inaccuracies, creating a budget, making on-time payments, and seeking professional help from a reputable credit counselor or financial advisor, you can start rebuilding your credit after bankruptcy. Additionally, using a secured credit card can also help rebuild credit, as long as it is used responsibly. It’s important to remember that rebuilding credit after bankruptcy takes time and patience, but with persistence and small steps, it is possible to achieve a good credit score and regain financial stability.
Struggling to Make Mortgage Payments? Here’s What You Can Do!
Assess Your Financial Situation
Review Your Income, Expenses, and Debts Take a close look at your monthly income and expenses to determine how much money you have left over after your bills are paid. Look for areas where you can reduce your spending to free up funds for your mortgage payments. Consider cutting back on unnecessary expenses such as eating out, entertainment, or subscription services.
Create a budget: Make a list of your monthly expenses and compare it to your income. Then, look for areas where you can reduce spending. Creating a budget can help you stay on track and avoid overspending.
Cut back on unnecessary expenses: Evaluate your spending habits and cut back on non-essential expenses, such as eating out, entertainment, or subscription services.
Use coupons and discounts: Look for coupons and discounts when shopping for groceries, clothing, or household items. You can also take advantage of online deals and promotions.
Shop around for better deals: Before making a purchase, compare prices from different retailers to find the best deal. This applies to everything from groceries to electronics to insurance.
Buy used items: Consider buying used items instead of new ones, especially for big-ticket purchases like cars or furniture. You can often find high-quality used items at a fraction of the cost.
Cook at home: Eating out can be expensive, so consider cooking meals at home instead. Not only is it cheaper, but it’s also healthier and allows you to control the ingredients.
Reduce energy consumption: Lower your energy bills by turning off lights and electronics when not in use, using energy-efficient appliances, and adjusting your thermostat.
Use public transportation: If possible, use public transportation instead of owning a car. This can save you money on gas, insurance, and maintenance.
Negotiate bills: Call your service providers, such as cable or internet companies, and negotiate for better rates or packages.
Save for emergencies: Set aside money each month for unexpected expenses, such as car repairs or medical bills. This can help you avoid going into debt and save money in the long run.
Sell unused items: Take inventory of your belongings and sell items that you no longer need or use. You can sell items online through platforms such as eBay or Craigslist, or have a garage sale.
Freelance work: Consider doing freelance work in your field of expertise or a side hustle that you’re good at. Freelance work can include writing, graphic design, consulting, or social media management.
Rent out a room or space: If you have a spare room or a vacation home, consider renting it out on a platform like Airbnb or Vrbo. This can provide a steady stream of income.
Work a part-time job: Consider taking on a part-time job to supplement your income. Part-time jobs can include retail, food service, or customer service positions.
Pet-sitting or dog-walking: If you love pets, consider offering pet-sitting or dog-walking services to your neighbors or community.
Tutoring or teaching: If you have expertise in a particular subject, consider offering tutoring or teaching services to students in your area.
Gig economy: Consider working for a ride-sharing service like Uber or Lyft, delivering food with services like DoorDash or Grubhub, or doing odd jobs on TaskRabbit.
Online surveys or focus groups: Some companies pay individuals to participate in online surveys or focus groups. While this won’t provide a significant amount of income, it can be a good way to earn some extra cash in your spare time.
Affiliate marketing: If you have a strong online presence or a popular blog, consider affiliate marketing. This involves promoting products or services on your website or social media accounts and earning a commission on any sales made through your referral links.
Create a Budget Once you have a clear picture of your finances, create a budget that includes your monthly mortgage payment. This will help you stay on track with your payments and ensure that you don’t fall behind.
Seek the Advice of a Financial Counselor Consider reaching out to a financial counselor or housing counselor to help you develop a plan to manage your finances. They can provide advice on how to reduce your expenses and negotiate with your lender to get more favorable loan terms.
Contact Your Lender Early If you’re having trouble making your mortgage payments, contact your lender as soon as possible. The earlier you reach out, the more options you’ll have to avoid foreclosure.
When you’re struggling to make your mortgage payments, your mortgage provider may offer you several options to help you avoid foreclosure. These options may include:
Loan modification: Your lender may be willing to modify the terms of your loan, such as lowering your interest rate or extending the loan term, to make your payments more affordable.
Forbearance: Forbearance is a temporary pause or reduction of your mortgage payments. Your lender may be willing to provide forbearance if you’re experiencing a short-term financial hardship, such as job loss or a medical emergency.
Repayment plan: A repayment plan allows you to catch up on missed payments by adding a portion of your past-due payments to your regular mortgage payments.
Refinance: Refinancing your mortgage means taking out a new loan to replace your existing mortgage. Refinancing may allow you to lower your interest rate, reduce your monthly payments, or change the length of your loan term.
Short sale: A short sale is when you sell your home for less than what you owe on your mortgage. Your lender may allow you to do a short sale to avoid foreclosure and recover some of the money owed.
Deed in lieu of foreclosure: With a deed in lieu of foreclosure, you give your home back to the lender instead of going through the foreclosure process. This option may be available if you’re unable to sell your home or make your mortgage payments.
It’s important to note that not all mortgage providers offer the same options, and the eligibility criteria for each option may vary. It’s important to contact your mortgage provider as soon as possible to discuss your options and determine the best course of action.
Explain Your Situation When you contact your lender, be honest about your financial situation. Explain why you’re having trouble making payments and provide any relevant financial documents that support your case.
Explore Possible Solutions Your lender may offer a variety of solutions to help you avoid foreclosure, such as loan modification, forbearance, or repayment plans. These options may temporarily reduce or pause your mortgage payments, allowing you to catch up on missed payments and avoid foreclosure.
Explore Alternatives to Foreclosure
Consider Selling Your Home If you can’t afford to keep your home, consider selling it before foreclosure. You may be able to sell your home for more than what you owe on your mortgage, which can help you avoid foreclosure and potentially earn some money in the process.
Look into Government Programs The government offers several programs to help struggling homeowners avoid foreclosure, such as the Home Affordable Modification Program (HAMP) or the Making Home Affordable program. These programs can help you refinance your mortgage, modify your loan terms, or provide financial assistance to help you catch up on missed payments.
Talk to a Real Estate Attorney or Housing Counselor Consider speaking with a real estate attorney or housing counselor who can provide advice on your options and help you navigate the foreclosure process. They may be able to negotiate with your lender on your behalf and help you find a solution that works for you.
The timeline for foreclosure proceedings can vary depending on the state laws and your mortgage agreement. Generally, you can expect the foreclosure process to begin after you’ve missed three to four mortgage payments. However, some lenders may initiate the foreclosure process after just one missed payment.
Once you miss a mortgage payment, your lender may send you a notice of delinquency or demand letter, which typically gives you a 30-day grace period to bring your account current. If you don’t make the payment by the end of the grace period, your account will be considered in default, and the lender can begin the foreclosure process.
After the default, the lender will typically send you a notice of acceleration, which demands that you pay the entire outstanding balance of the loan. If you fail to pay this amount or come to a repayment agreement with the lender, they will begin the foreclosure process, which can take several months to complete.
It’s important to note that foreclosure can have serious consequences, including damage to your credit score and the loss of your home. If you’re having trouble making your mortgage payments, it’s important to contact your lender as soon as possible to discuss your options and avoid foreclosure.
Foreclosure can have a significant negative impact on your credit score. When you miss mortgage payments, your credit score begins to decline, and this decline can continue throughout the foreclosure process.
When your lender initiates foreclosure proceedings, it will typically report the foreclosure to the credit bureaus, which will then lower your credit score. The extent of the damage to your credit score will depend on several factors, including the number of missed payments, the length of time you’ve been in default, and the final outcome of the foreclosure process.
In general, foreclosure can stay on your credit report for up to seven years, and it can lower your credit score by as much as 200 to 300 points. This can make it difficult to obtain credit in the future and may result in higher interest rates on loans and credit cards.
While foreclosure does not automatically force you to file for bankruptcy, it can increase your likelihood of doing so. Foreclosure can leave you with a deficiency balance, which is the difference between the outstanding balance on your mortgage and the amount the lender was able to recover from selling the home. If you’re unable to pay this deficiency balance, the lender may pursue a deficiency judgment against you, which can lead to wage garnishment or other collection actions.
If you’re facing foreclosure, it’s important to take action as soon as possible to avoid the negative consequences on your credit score and financial stability. Contact your lender to discuss your options and work with a housing counselor or attorney to explore all available options.
Implement Your Plan Once you have a plan in place, take action to implement it. This may include making timely payments, working with your lender to modify your loan, or selling your home.
Stay in Touch with Your Lender If you’re on a repayment plan or forbearance, make sure you stay in touch with your lender and keep them updated on your progress. This will help ensure that your plan is successful and that you avoid foreclosure.
Work with a Real Estate Agent or Attorney If you’re considering selling your home, work with a real estate agent or attorney who can help you navigate the process and ensure that you get the best possible outcome.
By following these steps, you can avoid foreclosure and keep your home. It’s important to act quickly and be proactive in finding a solution that works for you. Remember, there are many options available to help you avoid foreclosure, so don’t give up hope.
Getting a roommate can be a great way to save money on rent, but it’s important to find someone who is a good fit for you and your living style. In this blog post, we’ll discuss some important things to consider when looking for a roommate, where to advertise to find one, and what documents you may need and so much more! Sometimes a roommate may be a better option then getting a side gig.
Compatibility: Before starting your search, take some time to think about what kind of person you would like to live with. Do you want someone who is quiet and tidy, or someone who is more outgoing and social? Think about your lifestyle and what kind of person would be a good match. Consider their work or school schedule, daily habits and hobbies, and even their personality traits. Make sure to communicate with potential roommates about these things to ensure compatibility.
Budget: Another crucial consideration is the budget. The rent and utilities should be divided equally among all the occupants. Make sure to discuss financial matters with potential roommates, including rent, utilities, and any other expenses.
Advertise: There are several ways to advertise for a roommate, including online listings, social media, and word of mouth. Websites like Craigslist, Roomster, Furnished Finder and Roommates.com can be helpful in finding potential roommates. Be sure to write a detailed listing that includes the rent, location, move-in date, and any requirements you may have.
Interview: Once you have a few potential roommates, it’s essential to conduct interviews to ensure compatibility. You can meet up with them in a public place and ask them about their lifestyle, work/school schedule, and other important factors. Be sure to communicate your expectations and deal-breakers. I find this to be the most important part of getting a new room mate.
Documents: When it comes to documents, it’s essential to have a written agreement between you and your roommate. This agreement should include the rent amount, utilities, move-in date, and other important details. Make sure both parties sign the document and keep a copy for yourself. You need to look up the rent laws in your city and state. You should familiarize yourself to both sides of the laws in your area. You can also look for lease templates for your state on line (be sure they are a reputable source.) Another good person to ask who may have some help with guiding you can be a local real estate agent. Some are full service and not only buy and sell homes but manage them too.
Yes, house hacking is a popular strategy used by many people to offset the cost of their mortgage and living expenses. House hacking involves renting out part of your home or apartment to offset your housing costs. This can be a great way to save money and build wealth over time. Remember to save up the rent rather then living large.
Here are some ways you can house hack your place:
Rent out a spare bedroom: If you have an extra bedroom in your home, you can rent it out to a roommate. This can help offset your mortgage payments, utilities, and other expenses. Make sure to screen potential tenants carefully and set clear boundaries to ensure a positive living situation.
Rent out a portion of your home: If you have a multi-unit property or a basement apartment, you can rent out a portion of your home to generate income. This can be a great way to offset your mortgage payments and other expenses.
Rent out your home or room on Airbnb: If you have an extra room or a separate unit, you can rent it out on Airbnb to generate income. This can be a great way to make money while traveling or when you’re away from home.
Convert your garage into a rental unit: If you have a garage, you can convert it into a rental unit and rent it out to generate income. This can be a great way to maximize the space in your home and generate income at the same time. Obviously you can’t do this one if you are a renter yourself.
House hacking can be an excellent way to reduce your living expenses and build wealth over time. By renting out a portion of your home, you can generate income and offset your housing costs. This can help you save money, build equity in your home, and achieve financial independence. However, it’s essential to make sure that you’re in compliance with local laws and regulations regarding renting out your home. It’s also important to screen potential tenants carefully and set clear boundaries to ensure a positive living situation. Read more about house hacking on my other blog called Real Estate Investing for Beginners: How to House Hack Your Way to Financial Freedom
When looking for a roommate, it’s important to conduct a background check to ensure that you are living with someone who is trustworthy, reliable and not an ax murderer. Here are some steps you can take to conduct a background check on a potential roommate:
Ask for references: Ask the potential roommate for references from previous landlords or roommates. Contact these references to verify their character and reliability.
Check their social media: Take a look at the potential roommate’s social media profiles to get a better sense of their lifestyle, interests, and behavior. This can give you an idea of whether they are a good fit for your living situation.
Use a tenant screening service: There are several tenant screening services available online that can help you conduct a background check on a potential roommate. These services can check criminal records, credit history, and rental history. Some popular tenant screening services include MySmartMove, RentPrep, and TransUnion SmartMove.
Conduct an online search: Use search engines like Google to conduct an online search on the potential roommate’s name. This can help you uncover any red flags or concerns that you may have about their background.
When conducting a background check, it’s important to be mindful of any potential biases you may have. Make sure to focus on relevant information that is directly related to their ability to be a good roommate, such as their rental history, employment history, and criminal record. Avoid making judgments based on irrelevant factors like race, gender, or sexual orientation.
In addition, it’s important to follow all local and federal laws regarding background checks. Some states or cities may have specific regulations on what information can be considered in a background check and how it can be used. Do your homework for your state. Check to see if you line in an apartment or HOA that does not allow leasing to others.
Conducting a background check on a potential roommate is an important step in finding a compatible living situation. Use a variety of methods, including references, social media, tenant screening services, and online searches to gather as much information as possible. Make sure to focus on relevant information and follow all local laws and regulations regarding background checks.
Keep records of who you interviewed and also of past and present roomies. This will come in handy to evaluate how much you earned or are saving and when it was. If you see that its not making sense for you, you may need to re-evaluate you rent amount, maybe consider if your utilities should be split etc.
Living with a roommate can be a great way to save money, but it can also come with its own set of challenges, such as conflicts that arise due to different living habits or expectations. Here are some tips on how to handle conflicts with your roommate:
Communicate effectively: One of the most important things you can do is communicate effectively with your roommate. Be honest and clear about your expectations, boundaries, and any issues that may arise. Listen to their perspective and try to find a compromise that works for both of you.
Set boundaries: It’s important to set boundaries with your roommate to avoid conflicts. This could include rules around cleaning, noise levels, guests, and sharing common areas. Make sure to communicate these boundaries clearly and respectfully.
Be respectful: When conflicts arise, it’s essential to handle them in a calm and respectful manner. Avoid making personal attacks or getting defensive. Instead, focus on finding a solution that works for both of you.
Compromise: When dealing with conflicts, it’s important to find a compromise that works for both parties. This may involve making concessions or finding creative solutions to the problem.
Involve a neutral party: If you’re unable to resolve the conflict on your own, consider involving a neutral party, such as a mediator or a trusted friend. This can help you find a solution that works for both parties and avoid further escalation of the conflict.
Know when to seek help: If the conflict becomes unmanageable or threatens your safety, it may be necessary to seek outside help. This could include involving the landlord or seeking legal advice.
Remember that conflicts are a natural part of living with a roommate, but they can be resolved with effective communication, respect, and compromise. By setting boundaries, communicating openly, and seeking outside help when necessary, you can successfully navigate any conflicts that may arise with your roommate.
Setting up rules and expectations upfront is crucial to avoiding misunderstandings or disagreements later on with your roommate. Here are some tips on how to set up rules and expectations:
Have a roommate meeting: Before your roommate moves in, schedule a meeting to discuss rules and expectations. This can be a good opportunity to get to know each other and establish a foundation for a successful living situation.
Create a written agreement: Put together a written agreement that outlines the rules and expectations for living together. This could include rules around cleaning, noise levels, guests, and sharing common areas. Make sure both parties sign the agreement and keep a copy for themselves.
Be clear and specific: When establishing rules and expectations, be clear and specific about what is expected of each roommate. For example, instead of saying “keep the place clean,” specify which tasks are expected to be completed and how often.
Be flexible: While it’s important to set up rules and expectations, it’s also important to be flexible and willing to compromise. Be open to discussing changes or modifications to the rules as needed.
Review and revise: Periodically review and revise the rules and expectations to ensure that they are still working for both parties. This can help avoid any misunderstandings or disagreements later on.
Remember that setting up rules and expectations upfront can help avoid misunderstandings or disagreements later on. By creating a written agreement, being clear and specific, and being flexible, you can establish a foundation for a successful living situation with your roommate.
Finding a roommate requires a bit of effort and planning, but it can be a great way to save money on rent. Make sure to consider compatibility, budget, and advertise in the right places. Conduct interviews and have a written agreement in place to ensure a successful living situation. Good luck with your search!
The final walkthrough is an important step before closing escrow, as it allows you to ensure that everything is in order before you take possession of the property. Here are some tips on how to prepare for the walkthrough:
Schedule the walkthrough with your real estate agent: It’s important to schedule the walkthrough a few days before the closing date so that any issues that are discovered during the walkthrough can be addressed before the closing. Your real estate agent can help you schedule the walkthrough with the seller or their agent.
Bring a checklist: A checklist can help ensure that you don’t miss anything important during the walkthrough. Your checklist should include items like checking the functionality of all appliances, ensuring all fixtures are installed correctly, checking for leaks or other issues with plumbing or electrical systems, and verifying that any repairs or agreed-upon changes have been made.
Bring a camera or smartphone: Taking pictures or videos during the walkthrough can be helpful to document any issues or areas of concern. This can be especially useful if there are any disputes or discrepancies that need to be addressed later on.
Bring a measuring tape: Measuring the rooms can help you verify that the sizes listed in the contract are accurate. This can be important if you are planning to purchase furniture or other items that require specific room dimensions.
Check the outside of the house: Walking around the exterior of the house can help you identify any damage or issues with the roof, siding, or foundation. This can be especially important if you live in an area that is prone to severe weather events.
Test everything: Turn on all the lights, faucets, and appliances to ensure that they are working properly. This can help you identify any issues that need to be addressed before closing. Open and close windows, test hot and cold water, test door hinges and that doors shut properly and lock, pull push on doors, make sure door do not open or close themselves. Check to see if doors are trimmed for carpet or tile. Check the paint and finish work on all painted surfaces, take note that the joints are properly filled and painted. You should not see where floor boards end and begin. Paint on the walls should be thick enough that no drywall or plaster is visible. You may need another coat if the plaster or drywall isn’t painted properly. Check all grouted or calked surfaced are completed and not having any gaps. Check all cabinets and drawers to be sure they close and open perfectly. Check that your stove surface is level (it irks me that mine isn’t level and I missed that on my walk through and warranty period). Check that cabinets are properly finished, trimmed and level. If you have a pantry it is especially important to be sure the pantry shelves are level. Check window pains for scratches. Check for the window screens. Flush the toilets and listen for any water seeping. Make sure the air filters are clean on delivery because they may already be full of construction debris. make sure all fans and light switches work. Also check all 3 way switches. If you have a refrigerator with an ice maker be sure it’s properly installed and making ice.Get a search Engine for Real Estate Investors & Wholesalers
Check for cleanliness: Make sure that the house has been cleaned before you move in. This can include checking that the floors, walls, and surfaces have been wiped down, and that there is no debris or garbage left behind.
Check for any missing items: Verify that all fixtures, appliances, and other items that were listed in the contract are present in the house. This can include things like towel racks, light fixtures, window treatments, and appliances like refrigerators and stoves.
Take notes: Make notes of any issues that need to be addressed before closing. This can help you keep track of what needs to be fixed or changed and can be useful for reference later on.
Here are some tools that would be handy to have for your walk through.
Flashlight: A flashlight can be useful for inspecting dark areas of the house, such as basements, crawl spaces, and closets. It can also help you identify any damage or issues with the roof, siding, or other exterior features of the house.
Screwdriver: A screwdriver can be helpful for checking the stability of fixtures like doorknobs, light switches, and outlets. You can also use a screwdriver to remove covers from electrical panels or other fixtures to inspect them more closely.
Level: A level can be useful for checking the levelness of floors, walls, and other surfaces. This can be especially important if you plan to install shelving, artwork, or other items that require a level surface.
Circuit tester: A circuit tester can help you identify any issues with electrical outlets or wiring. You can use the tester to ensure that all outlets are functioning properly and that there are no electrical issues that need to be addressed.
Binoculars: Binoculars can be useful for inspecting the roof and other high-up features of the house from the ground. This can be helpful if you are unable to access the roof or if you are inspecting a multi-story home.
While these tools are not essential for the walkthrough, they can be helpful in identifying any issues that need to be addressed before closing.
At the walkthrough, you should expect to receive several pieces of paperwork related to the sale of the property. Here are a few examples of the types of documents you may receive:
Closing Disclosure: This document outlines the final terms of your mortgage loan, including the interest rate, fees, and closing costs.
Title Report: This report provides information on the property’s ownership history, liens, and other legal issues that may affect the sale.
Homeowners’ Association (HOA) Documents: If the property is part of an HOA, you may receive documents related to the HOA’s rules, regulations, and financials.
Inspection Reports: If you had a home inspection done, you may receive a copy of the inspection report detailing any issues that were found.
Repair Requests: If you and the seller agreed to any repairs or changes during the negotiation process, you should receive documentation of these requests and confirmation that they were completed. Remember you can use your phone to snap a picture of the list so nothing is lost or forgotten.
To organize these documents, you may want to create a binder or folder with tabs for each category of paperwork. You can also create a checklist of the documents you expect to receive and check them off as you receive them. This can help you keep track of what you have received and what you still need to obtain before closing. Make sure to keep these documents in a safe and secure place, as you may need to refer to them in the future.
If there are any warranties related to the property or any appliances or systems in the home, you should also expect to receive documentation related to those warranties at the walkthrough. Here are a few examples of the types of warranties you may receive:
Home Warranty: Some sellers may offer a home warranty as part of the sale. This warranty typically covers certain appliances and systems in the home for a specific period of time, and may include coverage for things like heating and cooling systems, plumbing, and electrical systems.
Manufacturer’s Warranties: If any appliances or systems in the home are still under warranty, you should receive documentation related to those warranties. This can include warranties for things like the refrigerator, dishwasher, or HVAC system.
Builder’s Warranty: If the home is new construction or was recently renovated, you may receive a builder’s warranty that covers certain aspects of the home’s construction or renovation.
When organizing your paperwork, you should create a separate tab or section for warranties and keep all warranty documentation together. This will make it easy to refer to the warranties if you need to file a claim or request repairs. Make sure to read and understand the terms of any warranties you receive, including what is covered and for how long, so that you can take full advantage of the coverage if needed.
When you purchase a new home, it’s not uncommon to have some issues or items that need to be addressed after you move in. Here are a few examples of the types of services that the builder may need to return to do on a new home:
Touch-ups and Repairs: Even with the most careful construction, there may be small cosmetic issues that need to be addressed, such as paint touch-ups or repairs to drywall or trim.
Plumbing and Electrical: If there are any issues with plumbing or electrical systems, the builder may need to return to make repairs or adjustments. This can include things like fixing leaks, replacing faulty fixtures, or troubleshooting issues with electrical outlets or switches.
HVAC: If there are any issues with the heating, ventilation, or air conditioning systems in the home, the builder may need to return to make repairs or adjustments.
Landscaping and Drainage: If there are any issues with landscaping or drainage on the property, the builder may need to return to address these issues. This can include things like re-grading the soil to improve drainage, or planting new trees or shrubs.
Warranty Work: If there are any issues with the home that are covered by the builder’s warranty, the builder will be responsible for returning to make repairs or replacements.
If you have any concerns about the condition of your new home, make sure to document these concerns during the walkthrough and discuss them with your builder or their representative. This will help ensure that any necessary repairs or adjustments are made in a timely manner. Also be sure to ask how long each item has a warranty for. One example is that many new lenders only warranty fences and landscaping for 30 days. So be sure to mark the things you need addressed right away.
By following these steps, you can help ensure that the walkthrough is successful and that you are fully prepared to take possession of your new home.