The Number 1 Home Security Mistake

There are many home security mistakes that we all make. This includes the obvious mistakes that most of us know better than to try, such as putting a spare key under a doormat, to mistakes we know we ought to avoid but still do, such as not activating our alarm systems when we leave the house for only a short period of time or not putting lamps on timers to make it look like we’re home when we’re not. It even includes less-well-known items (that I strive to make people aware of) such as improving the quality of the windows, doors, locks and even the strike plates on our door frames, all which help tremendously to keep burglars out of our homes.

All of these mistakes should be avoided and improving any of them can go a long way toward feeling safe at home.

There’s an even bigger mistake

But, there’s still one more big mistake that people make. It’s a mistake that I think is bigger than any of the ones mentioned earlier! It’s more important than any others! This #1 biggest mistake? Assuming that it won’t happen to you.

No one is completely immune

There is no city, community or neighborhood that is completely immune from crime. There are definitely some that are safer than others, but burglaries can and do happen anywhere. Since there is some randomness as to whether you’ll ever experience a break-in, be prepared under the expectation that it can happen to you, rather than living under the false assumption that it won’t. Living in a “safe neighborhood” doesn’t mean it can’t happen to you. It only means that it may be less likely to happen to you.

This mistake arises from the assumption that it can’t (or won’t) happen to you just because your neighborhood is “safe”.

If you’ve ever put off thinking about home security because you live in a safe neighborhood, you’re not alone. But don’t put it off any longer. Your safety is too important!

Be aware of what goes on in your neighborhood

Have you ever done any checking around to find out just how safe your neighborhood really is? Thanks to easy internet access to almost anything, it’s not at all difficult to do some quick research into crime rates in your neighborhood. Crime can and does happen anywhere, so don’t let a few reports of crime shatter your view of your neighborhood. But you should be aware of what goes on around you.

Periodically check community, city or regional web sites, talk to neighbors, look at crime reports and neighborhood crime rates published by local police departments. Don’t be oblivious to what’s going on around you and as a result, not do much to protect yourself against crime.

With the economic mess we’re in, crime is up almost everywhere. Even safe neighborhoods are more vulnerable now. There are more desperate people out there.

If you live in a safe neighborhood, congratulations! Take full advantage of the comfort that can provide. But be cautious about not being lulled into a false sense of security!

Biggest Home Improvement Mistakes For A Real Estate Investor

As a real estate investor it is sometimes a good investment move to make home improvements to any real estate properties that you purchase. There are several mistakes that commonly occur involving home improvement and real estate investing, and by knowing what these mistakes are you can save a lot of money and aggravation. Let the mistakes that other real estate investors have made be your guide on what to avoid.

The first mistake that some real estate investors make is to buy a property in a bad location or for more money than the house is worth. No matter how many home improvements you make on one of these properties it is unlikely that you will recover a decent profit or even your investment back. Always consider both of these factors before deciding to invest in the property and make home improvements.

A big mistake that many real estate investors make when they are doing home improvements is not knowing or finding out about the building codes in their area. Some investors do not obtain the necessary permits that are required by the city where the real estate investment property is located. This is one of the biggest mistakes, and it can cost you plenty if you make it. The building inspector is there to make sure that the home improvements are safe and done properly. If there is a permit required and you neglect to get one, you may be required to tear down any work that was done, get the permit, and then start from scratch.

Under budgeting for the home improvement project is another common mistake made by real estate investors. The old saying was to take the costs and triple them. That is an exaggeration but not by much. Most investors do not make a full detailed budget of what is needed for the home improvement project down to the last nail and staple. By being realistic and budgeting for all possible materials you will have a more realistic budget and are a lot less likely to go over budget. You should also plan for any unexpected eventuality that could occur and plan for it in the budget as well to avoid any unexpected and costly problems.

The single biggest mistake that real estate investors make is trying to save money on home improvement by doing projects themselves when they are not qualified. There are some projects that should have a licensed contractor or repairman on them. Many home improvement projects can safely be taken on by an amateur and turn out beautiful, but some projects like a new roof or any other extensive renovations should only be done by experts. This is because there are many safety issues involved in these projects, not just for the person doing the job but also for any tenants or owners who live in the house.

By avoiding these mistakes you can save a lot of money on your real estate investment. Know the value of the property before you purchase so you do not pay too much, and make sure that the location is decent. Make sure that your budget is realistic and that it takes into account every possible piece of material and cost. Also make sure that you factor in any possible unexpected cost or problem. The biggest mistake to avoid is to know when you should call for professional help and when you can safely do the home improvement project yourself.

How to Avoid the Most Common Home Improvement Mistakes

Eventually turning your house into the dream home you have envisioned all your life can be a thrilling endeavor. With all the excitement going on, homeowners could easily and unknowingly commit home improvement mistakes that not only leaves them frustrated in the end, but even broke as well.

Though one can never guarantee a hassle-free project, you can still save your New York home from the risks by avoiding common home improvement mistakes. As they say, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. So whether you are in Long Island, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, or Staten Island; arm yourself with the right information. With this said, here are the things you can do to steer clear from pitfalls:

Set a Realistic and Flexible Budget

Probably the most common mistake when it comes to undertaking just any home improvement is busting the budget. When setting a budget, it is important that you already have an idea on what you want done and have already researched on the closest estimate you could get. Be as specific as possible when it comes to the type and quality of fixtures and materials you want to integrate into the project. Getting multiple estimates from qualified contractors would also be beneficial.

Make sure that you have a secure financial source from where the home improvement budget will be taken from. There are lots of options from withdrawing from your own savings to obtaining a loan. But however you decide to finance the project set allowances to cover unexpected expenses.

If You are Not Qualified, Leave It to the Pros

Underestimating what a home improvement project requires can be disastrous. Weigh your skills and experience carefully. Being honest to yourself would payoff big, while doing otherwise would lead to sloppy jobs that will eventually require you to hire a contractor to repair the damages that you have done.

If you really need to cutback on labor costs, there are plenty of tasks that you can have done yourself. This can be arranged with your hired contractor.

Never take Your Eyes Off of Your Goal

While the construction is ongoing, any homeowner can be taken off-track if he or she is not careful. Throughout home improvement project progress, there would always be ideas popping into your head. Changing plans while the project is at work will be costly and can lead to unsatisfactory results. Before any work begins, make sure to discuss and polish the remodeling specification plan with your contractor. If you have to change anything, this time would just be perfect. Sticking to the original plan would make the job completion faster, within budget and more efficient.

Leaving It All to Your Contractor

Even if you have availed of the services of a project manager or general contractor to foresee everything for you, this does not mean that when everything is all set you leave everything to them and get back at them by the time the project is finished. This is not how it works, especially if you decide to do the management yourself. It is crucial that you make yourself aware of the project’s progress as well as the issues arising throughout its completion. As it is your money that is being spent, ask questions and know how and why it is being spent.