How to Perform an Interior BPO

The most difficult task of the interior BPO can be gaining access into the home. The property may either be vacant or occupied by tenant or homeowner. If vacant, the home generally has a lock box or supra key. If occupied, an appointment must be set to enter. In order to gain access for either case you must contact the real estate agent overseeing the property. Your local MLS will have their contact information, or the valuation company should provide it. That agent will provide codes to lock boxes or offer to set up an appointment with either themselves, the homeowner, or in some instances both. Most valuation firms will pay real estate agents $ 65- $ 75 per interior BPO for the extra work involved.

Tips & Tricks For Photographing an Interior BPO

1. Don't delay

Valuation companies usually allow up to 72 hours to perform an interior BPO and you will get paid one and a half times as much as an exterior. The problem lays in the fact that gaining access to the property is sometimes out of your control when a third party is involved. Avoid procrastination and set the appointment well ahead of the due date. If the realtor has to cancel then you still have time to reschedule and complete the interior BPO on time.

2. Be firm and in control

Always remember you are working for the valuation company, not the realtor. When contacting the realtor in charge of the property, be assertive in scheduling appointments. If you have to meet with the realtor or homeowner, inform them when you will be in the area to perform the interior BPO rather than asking what time they are available. This method will work the majority of the time. You can keep your sanity by controlling multiple appointments throughout the day. Most agents are willing to bend to your schedule because they cannot receive a commission without you completing the interior BPO.

3. Politely ignore the realtor

If you are meeting with the realtor, chances are they have prepared a 10 page summary of data and documentation on why the property should be valued at the low end of the market. You will most likely receive a CMA and exaggerated repair estimates for the home. They will talk your ear off during the whole inspection to try to manipulate the interior BPO value. Inspect the house yourself and only note what you observe personally. Don't just take their word for it. They are only pushing you to value the interior BPO low so the bank approves their short sale and they walk away with a commission.

4. Take note of visible damages

An interior BPO will need to address both interior and exterior repairs. It's very important to photograph and document all damages. The lender will want to see the report reflect what is visible in the pictures. Repairs will ultimately affect the as-is value of the interior BPO. Make note of any repairs in …

Tips On Avoiding Weeds In Your Mobile Home Garden

Your mobile home is an investment and as such you want to make sure it is kept in the best condition possible. That doesn't just mean the inside … your exterior matters, too. Many people don't even consider their yard when they first buy their mobile home. But chances are you have started to consider what to do with that space now, or you already started and are running into the usual problems people have when they plant a garden.

Weeds are an infuriating and frustrating part of managing a garden. They seem to pop up out of nowhere and where there is one, there are a dozen set to follow. You could go from having a single stubborn little weed to suddenly having your garden overcome with the buggers, sucking up nutrients your plants need to grow and creating an eyesore in the process.

How do you tackle this green menace? Here are some tips on avoiding weeds in the garden and taking care of them when they do manage to creep into your mobile home's garden.

Removing Weeds From Your Mobile Home's Garden

The first step to managing a weed problem is taking care of the one that is already there. Pulling them is the most effective way of getting them out because it yanks out the root that, if left, would allow them to grow back. Weed wackers can pull some of them, but others will only get cut at the soil level. The problem will only keep recurring.

Wait until you have either watered your garden, or there has been a significant rain and the soil is damp and soft. If the soil is too hard you will break them off without the root when you pull them off. If you have harder soil that isn't softening, use a hand shovel or other gardening tool to break through around the root of the weed. Be sure to wear thick gardening gloves, as many weed types can be hard on the skin and even cause rashes or cuts when you pull them.

What do you do with the weeds when they are pulled out? You can just toss them, sure, but then what good have they ever done? You can actually make weeds work for you by adding them to compost. They will break down and nourish your garden just like any other plant matter.

One other (high maintenance) option is to use livestock to eat the weeds. Many many will buy chickens or goats in order to have them eat the weeds in their gardens. However, this means also caring for the animals correctly, feeding them, etc. There are benefits like fresh eggs or goats milk, not to mention the aspect of having them as pets. But make sure you are ready for the responsibility before you go this route.

You also need more space. Mobile homes come in all different shapes and sizes and are placed on all different sizes of land. So if you …

Make Your Bathroom Lovely and Functional

Everyone sees your bathroom, including household members and guests. It is the room used most often but it tends to get left behind when it comes to changes and upgrades. You don't need to completely remodel your bathroom to make it look lovely for all who see it. At the same time, you want it to be fully functional.

One of the biggest complaints in homes is the messy bathroom. Yet there often isn't enough room for all the items needed in there. With one of the great bathroom sink units though, you can change all of that. With drawers for commonly used items, they are within reach but they are also out of sight. There are plenty of styles, sizes, colors, and layouts to pick from.

What do you Need?

Before you start shopping, think about what you really need. Do you need six drawers or would you be happy with four deeper ones? What types of items do you need that storage for? If you need a place for towels, an under the sink cabinet may be ideal for them. Once you identify what you need, it makes shopping for bathroom sink units easier. You can narrow it down!

You also need to think about how much you would like to spend. The budget can help you to stay focused on a great product. You need something that looks great and functions well, but also long lasting. Make sure the bathroom sink units you consider are made from quality materials. You don't want there to be signs of damage or other problems soon after you buy it.

Measurements

Identify how much space you realistically have for the item in your bathroom. You will find bathroom sink units in plenty of sizes so there is no trouble getting what you need. It all depends on your home layout and the space you would like to allocate. Do you want one that cover the entire length of one wall? Do you want it shorter so you can put a trash can on the side of it?

Armed with such information, you can identify the bathroom sink units that fit your budget as well as your needs. Take your time to shop around, to make comparisons, and to ask questions. You need to know it is going to fit correctly and look wonderful in there. When you take the time to get it right, you will love how it looks. You will also appreciate the functionality day after day.

Color

Just about any color you can imagine is offered with bathroom sink units. It isn't going to be hard to find the right one for your décor in there. Are you redoing the entire bathroom or just that one part of it? Find something that blends well so you enjoy the look of it each time you see it. Some of them are trendy and others are basic but classic so they will never go out of style.

You can even …

The Dramatic Downside of Home Decor Ideas in Movies

Movie sets make all kinds of fantastic home décor ideas seem possible, but many of these ideas would have major downsides in real life.

Willy Wonka's Chocolate Factory
The chocolate factory is a big inspiration to kids everywhere. The pre-teen audience salivates at the sight of the chocolate river, teacup flowers, and trees with balloon-like candy fruit. Who wouldn't want a gigantic room where everything is edible? A reasonable adult with foresight-that's who wouldn't want the biohazard of such a playspace. First, there's the impossible task of fending off insects and replacing expired candy trees. Secondly, inviting any guests to enjoy would be as biologically risky as sharing a lollipop with a group of friends. The only adult who would be interested in a room or house of candy is the witch in Hansel and Gretel.

Texas Chainsaw Massacre
The murderous family in the original Texas Chainsaw Massacre movie is not portrayed in a very favorable light. "Stand your ground" laws and "castle" doctrines give homeowners in many states the legal authority to kill intruders, and it's arguably a social prejudice that favors guns over chainsaws for home defense. That said, resorting to cannibalism and using bones to make furniture perhaps takes things a bit too far. The 1974 film featured a love seat and other furniture decorated with bones, which isn't a terrible idea in itself. So many decades before Etsy, it's understandable that crafty types would struggle through some trial and error with new ideas for home décor. Antlers and horns are now quite popular for chairs and other furniture, but human bones are legally problematic to collect and decoratively repurpose.

Every Bond Villain Lair Ever
Throughout the 007 film franchise, it has become a cliché that Bond villains talk too much, choose execution methods that are far too complex, and invest far too much money in home décor. Still, the spectacle of hideouts on private islands and the moon can be impressive. In The Spy Who Loved Me, the villain's submersible lair is unforgettable. Paintings rise and reveal windows to an underwater world with sharks and giant fish. Since underwater construction can be prohibitively expensive (and complicated in respect to zoning laws), many homeowners may be tempted to recreate the effect with large aquariums. Sure, a giant aquarium isn't as expensive as a moon colony, but it can certainly come close. Don't forget to calculate maintenance costs, cleaning, and occasional fish replacements. Even if you have the maturity to resist getting a shark, it's a fish eat fish world underwater.

House of Wax
A few different film adaptations have been made of this concept, but (spoiler alert) the climax involves the entire house melting. This twist may be more surprising for inattentive moviegoers because the building is also a wax museum. Nevertheless, this film is a helpful reminder to choose residential construction materials carefully. Whenever it's time for constructing a new addition or adding home décor accents, it's good to look into any risks associated with new …

Mom and Pop Home Improvement Verses Big Box Stores

Ever since the first English settlements in Jamestown in 1607, entrepreneurs were using their home improvement skills to help build a better life. These specialized skills will always be needed, no matter how they are utilized and / or distributed. From plumbing to window installation, these trade services are practiced within all areas of civilized life.

Up until the end of the late 19th century, most home improvement services were worked by individuals or smaller mom and pop type businesses. Not until stores like Lowe's started popping up in the early 20th century did we start seeing larger entities become highly competitive against the smaller mom and pop type home improvement businesses. The fact of the matter is, these large businesses could provide services for cheaper, but not necessarily better.

So, why do big box chains like Home Depot and Lowe's provide home improvement services? Why don't they just sell improvement goods? Isn't the whole idea behind these large hardware stores to provide goods to do-it-yourselfers? Well, the problem is … more and more consumer do-it-yourselfers are buying their goods online. It saves time and allows the consumer to be more flexible when it comes to getting their job done. These big hardware stores are trying to send a message to these consumers. They want these people to not only buy their products, but also allow them to install it for them at minimal costs. By doing this, it could draw in consumers that need a job done, but can't necessarily afford a mom and pop business. Not realizing, that these stores often do a poor job, because they use, in most cases, inexperienced staff.

The fact of the matter is … mom and pop home improvement businesses are usually family owned and operated. They pass down their many years of experience in their trade to their workers. They often use the best quality products and provide top notch warranties. We're not saying that the big box stores can't provide quality, we're just saying that your chances are better with smaller service providers.

As these larger, big box home improvement companies grow … will they expand and improve their services or will they return to their roots and only sell goods? Chances are, these big businesses will look to improve quality of service and offer a broader range of these services. The three largest stores, Home Depot, Lowe's Companies, and Lumber Liquidators are not going away any time soon. Small mom and pops know that. They also know that they do it better and a majority of the public knows it.

So, before you choose who is going to install your replacement windows, replace your kitchen counter or repair that leaking pipe, do your research. Compare experience, quality of products used, warranties and most important of all … customer service. Who are you going to want inside your home? Someone who has been doing the job their whole life or someone from a big box store with no credentials. The …

How to Sell Your House to a We Buy Houses Real Estate Investor – Can They Really Solve My Problems?

So you need to sell your house but you are on short time constraints. By you being stuck in a bad economy and Realtors selling houses slower than ever how in the world are you going to be able to sell an unwanted house? Well welcome to the New Year ladies and gentleman. In the new decade you have several options selling your house. Now you can sell your house to your local We Buy Houses Real Estate Investor that will put cash in your pocket within 30 days.

Selling your house to a We Buy Houses Investor is a fast, hassle free, straight forward, no strings attached a way to sell your house in any market. Selling to a We Buy Houses Real Estate Investor can be the answer to all of your real estate problems. It does not matter if you live in Baltimore, Virginia, Prince Georges County, Washington DC, Florida, California or surrounding areas. We Buy Houses Real Estate Investors can buy your house in any area / any condition. You will literally get a offer within 24 hours.

When you sell your house to a We Buy Houses Real Estate Investor you will benefit because …

1. You can sell your house usually within 30 days

2. You sign a short, no hassle, straight to the point contract and as soon as you sign that contract you will find yourself at the closing table collecting your check in no time.

3. You can sell your house in its as-is condition. We Buy Houses Investors love to do the dirty work. They deal with houses filled with trash, cracked windows, damaged roofs, fire damaged, inherited houses, any situation, they know what its like to be in a messy situation! A + Neighborhood Homebuyers is a full service real estate investment company based in Baltimore, MD that buys five to ten houses a month. They have helped homeowners in Washington DC, PG County, Baltimore County, Baltimore City, Woodlawn, Randallstown, Owings Mills, Fort Washington, District Heights, Northern Virginia, Toledo, Ohio, and Harrisburg, PA.

4. You can sometimes avoid unwanted fees. Liens, property taxes and code violations are no problem for We Buy Houses Real Estate Investors. They successfully buy houses and usually pay all the unwanted fees at settlement to put more money in your pocket at settlement. We Buy Houses Investors mission is to help you put your problems behind you they will do anything in their power to make the process easier for you. It does not matter if you live in Maryland, Virginia or Washington DC, in most situations they will pay off any unwanted or hidden fees that were placed on your house.

We Buy Houses Investors are the right people to call if you just want to get rid of your Maryland, DC or Virginia House. If they agree on a price you will be at the closing table collecting your check before you can even blink your eyes. This is a straight to …

Small Kitchen Remodel Ideas

Your kitchen is one the most used rooms in your house and there are many reasons to do a kitchen remodel. It could be to update appliances or to purchase smaller ones, or expand the kitchen, especially if it is a smaller kitchen. When doing a small kitchen remodel make sure that you make it a pleasant place to spend time, is functional, and user friendly. Make a list of what you want to do after setting a budget.

When doing a small kitchen remodel the first thing that you need to do is set a budget because this is a project that can become expensive. You want to make sure that you do not run out of money part way through the project. If your budget allows it you can do a complete kitchen remodel that includes replacing the countertops, cabinets, floors, and buy new appliances. This can also involve hiring a remodeling contractor because with complete renovations you will want to make sure that everything is done according to the local building codes. Many people cannot afford this large of an expense so they do small things. One important thing to do when doing a small kitchen remodel is to maximize the space. Use items that are functional and decorative.

One example would be a pot rack that can be mounted on the ceiling. By installing this it can free up cabinet space and counter space. It can also add visual interest to the area. The same purpose can be accomplished by mounting hooks under the cabinets for holding coffee mugs. Utilizing the space under the cabinets can be a great place to hang items so you can free up counter space. To increase usable space you could trade in a large kitchen table for a smaller table, remove a large center island, or add built-in shelves. Use brightly colored curtains when choosing ones to decorate your windows. Do not overload your walls with a lot of decorative items as this will make the room look smaller.

Two simple ways to begin your small kitchen remodel is to change the cabinet hardware or repainting the kitchen. You can also paint or stain your kitchen cabinets. When painting the walls keep to light colors to give the illusion of more space. Also allow as much natural light as you can into the room. If you decide to retile the floor use larger tiles to also give a larger space illusion. You can also replace some of the appliances in the kitchen such as you could trade in your large refrigerator if you no longer need a large one with a smaller one. To gain more counter space when replacing your counter top replace your larger sink for a smaller one.

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Eco-Friendly Interior Design – A Guide to Creating a Sustainable and Ecological Interior

It is not often realized that the materials used for interior design could be threatening the environment or even your health. It is always a wise option to look out for an eco-friendly interior designer who could bring your ideas to your life at an affordable cost while ensuring the materials used don't endanger the environment or put you at the risk of respiratory problems and other conditions.

Paint

A host of eco-friendly solutions are in the market if you only look for them. Eco-friendly paint is one, conventional paints and finishes are quite dangerous if scientific reports and investigations by interior designers are to be believed. They are said to release low level toxic emissions long after they have dried on your walls. Paints with Low-Volatile Organic Compounds (Low-VOC and No-VOC) are the solution. You can feel the difference they are free from odor, thanks to the lack of harmful chemicals. Some of these eco-friendly paints are however expensive and may turn those on a budget off. But it is important to remember that it is almost impossible to create 100% non-toxic and non-allergenic paint even though manufacturers claim so. What can be done is to use paints that have a lesser concentration of the harmful elements which is effectively what the Low-VOC and No-VOC paints are.

Wallpaper

For those who would like a bit of vibrancy added to their walls, eco-friendly wallpapers are around. The problem with the regular wallpapers lies in the inks that are used while manufacturing. Eco-friendly wallpapers feature water-based inks; These inks are printed on chlorine-free paper obtained from forests specifically managed for the purpose. Low-VOC adhesive can be used for lightweight and medium weight paper-based wall decorations.

Carpets

Once you are done with the walls it is time to turn your interior design cravings to the floor. The pollution hazard with generally used carpets and flooring is that their installation can fill the indoor air with plenty of VOCs or volatile organic compounds. Included in these VOCs are carcinogens such as formaldehyde and benzene. You certainly would not want yourself or your loved ones to be inhaling these toxic substances. You ca not escape from it as these compounds could take years to dissipate, long after your flooring has been completed. What's more, the treatment employed to keep the carpets free from moths, soil and moisture involves toxic chemicals. The carpets themselves could attract toxic substances and VOCs from outside the house. The good news is that eco-friendly interior designs can be employed here as well. There is a wide variety of eco-friendly flooring options that include bamboo, cork, recycled metal and glass tiles, linoleum, stones and sustainable and reclaimed woods.

Carpet Tiles

Check out modular carpet tile squares that can use in place of the traditional carpet, these tiles are held to the ground by adhesive dots. They resemble the conventional carpet when all the tiles fall in place together, but are made from totally recycled materials and can be recycled again …

Japanese Garden of Monaco

Have you ever seen an authentic Japanese garden? Well, I had the chance of seeing the one in Monaco and was really impressed too. Wanna taste a little Japanese culture? Stepping on this ground is escaping from the real world into a fantasy land. You suddenly find yourself in a typical Japanese natural setting like the ones you see in marvelous paintings. The only thing that's missing is the fog. Instead, the Mediterranean sun reveals all minute details in a warm light.

With Japanese gardens, what you see is not all; the surface of things is the mere reflection of the psyche of an ancient culture. One really needs to be literally "cultured" in this direction to best appreciate the value of this art. (which I myself was not at the time of my visit! And it was a pity as I did not know what to look for and what to analyze better!) One can speak of a philosophy of gardening coming from the ancient Japan. Japanese gardening is an art fetched beyond the arrangements of vegetation, water and stone but is full of symbols:

* Koko – the veneration of timeless age;

* Shizen – the avoidance of the artificial;

* Yugen, or darkness – imply the mysterious or subtle;

* Miegakure – the avoidance of full expression

The perception of nature is different in the Japanese culture from that of the European one. Instead of viewing nature only as something to be subjugated and transformed according to man-made ideal of beauty, Japanese developed a close connection to nature, considering it sacred, an ally in putting food on the table and an ideal of beauty in itself. That is why the Japanese gardens are the synthesis of nature in miniature instead of correction of nature as with European gardens.

Actually, the design of Japanese gardens come from the Chinese model. The history goes back in time, around year 100BC when the emperor of China, Wu Di of the Han Dynasty established a garden that contained three small islands, mimicking the Isles of the Immortals, who were the main Taoist deities. An envoy of Japan saw it and took the idea to Japan, improving the existing Japanese practices.

The Japanese Garden of Monaco was designed at the request of Prince Rainier who thus fulfilled a desire Princess Grace had expressed during her life-time. The garden was designed by the landscape-architect Yasuo Beppu, has 7,000 square meters, its construction took 3 years and it was inaugurated in 1994.

Specific elements

* The wall (Heï) with an intermediary bamboo fencing (Takégaki) that stands for fragility and simplicity.

* The main gate (Shô-mon)

* The stone lanterns (Tôrô) – each having special different characteristics;

* The lake (Iké) with large swishing gold fish.

* The stone fountain (Fusen-Ishi)

* The covered terrace (Kyukeïjo)

* The islands (Shima) – represent two long-living animals – the tortoise and the crane, symbols of complementarity expressed

* The Tea house (Chatshitsu) – named the Garden of …

Modernize Your Bathroom With A Professional Remodel

The bathroom is one of the main rooms of the home that significantly influences the quality and value of your property. Outdated bathrooms can be an eyesore and make it difficult to feel comfortable in the space. If you are ready to update your bathrooms then it's time to find a qualified contractor for the new construction in your home.

Following are some ideas to consider while remodeling the interior or outdoor bathroom in your home.

Use Metallic Tile Accents

Accents of metallic tile in brushed stainless steel and copper can brighten up the space by allowing it to look chic with a unique look. Use the tiles on a decorative backsplash that can draw more attention to the sink. These tiles can be used to enhance the design of your shower or floors. Subway tiles have a timeless look and will continue to look classy in the space for the neutral shape.

Create a Doorless Shower

Doorless showers look sleek and provide easy access for children and elderly. Make sure to check out the new trend of multiple showerheads and adopt it by building an open shower that displays this feature. Doorless showers are especially functional for an exterior bathroom remodeling project near a pool.

Add Dramatic Lighting

When you're beginning your new bathroom remodeling project, consider updating the lighting fixtures to make the room appear modern. Install sconces on each side of the mirror above the sink or hang a dramatic chandelier that works as the centerpiece of the bathroom. Bronze or copper light fixtures will also look decorative and can transform the room.

Use Marble or Quartz Countertops

Marble is a popular material to use on the countertops, which will allow the setting to appear luxe and regal with its clean design. The white countertops make the room look spacious while creating a light and airy environment. If you're on a budget, consider adding quartz countertops, which has a similar design and is just as beautiful. The high level of durability will allow the material to last for many years without chipping or cracking with frequent use.

Install a Pedestal Tub

Installing a pedestal tub during a new home construction project will transform the room and will work as the focal point of the space. The claw foot pedestal tub can be placed under a window or underneath a light fixture to create proper balance. The feature can also be painted with a shade of color that can be the accent in the room.

While all of the ideas may not appeal to your taste, feel free to pick and choose the once that speak to you. Use them as whole or accents for the new look for the bathroom in your home.

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