Green Homes for Sale

If you were looking at real estate ads and saw one that stated “green homes for sale”, you may at first wonder why anyone would a listing stating the color of their home. This is not what this type of ad means. It is just stating that the homes for sale are earth friendly and energy efficient. Green homes for sale are being built in an effort to less the carbon footprints we leave behind.

When you purchase a green home they will contains all or some of the following features that are earth friendly.

• Fiber cement siding
• Alternative power system like wind and solar
• Recycled building insulation
• No VOC stains and paints, which stands for volatile organic compound. It is any compound that is carbon-based and will vaporize at standard room temperatures. Some of the more prevalent ones are formaldehyde, acetone, and methane.
• Solar powered hot water heating

Even if you do not live in a green home, there are things that you can do to increase your energy conservation. It will even help contribute to saving our environment. Making your home a green home can help to reduce global warning and save the homeowner money. It will significantly better the environment and require little effort for the homeowner.

Making a green home

• Instead of using the standard incandescent light bulbs start to use compact fluorescent light bulbs (CFLs). When you switch to the CFL’s you can save per year over a hundred dollars. You can find these lights in the same aisle as your regular bulbs but they are little more expensive. In the United States, if every house switches the type of light bulbs they were using to CFL’s there would be a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions of one trillion pounds.
• Install a thermostat that is programmable-with this type of thermostat the homeowner can program the thermostat so that the air conditioner or heater is off when homeowners are not at home. The programmable thermostat can be programmed so that it will cool or heat your home shortly before the homeowner arrives home. This change could save the homeowner ten percent or more on cooling and heating costs
• Plug air leaks-this will help the homeowner save money and practice conservation. You can do this by installing weather stripping, keep the temperature in your home from rapidly fluctuating, and caulk windows correctly to stop air drafts.
• Energy Star® rated appliances-these reduce the amount of electricity that is needed to operate them so they have less of an impact on the environment. They will also save on your energy bill.

5 Necessities Of Superior Real Estate Representation

Whether you are a homeowner, who seeks to sell his home, or a potential buyer, looking for a house, of their dreams, an essential early step, should be interviewing, locating, and effectively using the services of a real estate agent, who focuses on your needs, goals, objectives and priorities! How one represents you, often makes a significant difference, in whether this becomes a happy, joyous, relatively stress – free experience, rather than a period, filled with lots of stress, tension and uncertainty! With this in mind, this article will briefly examine and discuss, 5 necessities of superior, real estate representation.

1. Allegiance; loyalty: One of the first things one should do, prior to hiring any individual, is to have an in – depth discussion, and decide, whether you feel comfortable with that person! Why do, or don’t, you, believe, the agent will provide you with the highest level of true allegiance, within the limits of the law? Will he maintain the honor, and ethics, not merely required by law, and/ or, the Code of Ethics, but provide genuine loyalty, and representation?

2. Fiduciary responsibilities: The system often tempts some, to prioritize earning their commission/ fees, over serving a client’s best interests! There are many fiduciary responsibilities, which includes maintaining confidentiality, and never doing anything, which might compromise, one’s commitment to his client’s best interests!

3. Responsible advice: Some are tempted to over – promise, and under – deliver, in their quest to acquire a client/ listing! It should be a primary responsibility of your selected agent, to provide responsible advice, to the best of one’s ability. Follow my trademarked slogan, I’ll always tell you what you need to know, not just what you want to hear (TM).

4. Negotiating skills: How might you know, whether a particular individual, is ready, willing and able, to use the finest level of negotiating? One of the tell – tale signs, often, comes, when you discussion, a potential agent’s requested commission, with him, because if he is unable to effectively defend his value, how can you hope, he will ever negotiate, effectively for your best interests?

5. Professionalism: This characteristic, although an essential necessity, is often the most challenging, to clearly identify and/ or recognize! One will demonstrate his professionalism, by the confidence, empathy, commitment, follow – through, expertise, wisdom, knowledge, and relevant skills, he exhibits, consistently!

It is often challenging to locate the best agent for you, and receive the high level of superior representation, you need and deserve! Pay attention to these 5 basic areas/ necessities, during your identification and selection process!

Tips for New Residential Construction

The process to entitle lots can take more than five years and is expensive. The cost of parcel maps for five lots or less is $100,000. Tract maps for more than five lots can cost more than $500,000. The number of lots and the potential size are determined by biology, health-department regulations, slope, and the zoning and general plan. Included in the cost are engineering, processing, and regulatory fees and various reports and studies.

Reports and studies include conditions of approval costs, storm-water treatment, anthropology and archeology, soils, biology, noise, and traffic. When a map is approved and recorded, there are additional fees that include, but are not limited to the following:
• Potential greenhouse gas studies
• Retention and drainage basins
• On- and off-site mitigation land
• School fees
• Parks and recreation fees
• Physical secondary access
• Fire fees
• Annual bonding fees.

Politics comes into play when obtaining the required approvals from county boards, city councils, and planning commissions. The level of public opposition or support affects hearings completion. They can be completed in as little as four months, or take years and cost over a million dollars. Property owners have three courses of action to take into consideration.

1. Entitlement and sale of the property ‘as is’ – This option brings the lowest price, but costs the least and requires the shortest time for property disposal. Under rare circumstances, the land is worth more when it is unentitled.
2. Enter into a long-term agreement – The agreement is made with a home builder who incurs the expenses of processing a tract map. This option is the most utilized. The process could take up to five years. The buyer is required to release nonrefundable deposits periodically to the seller after approving their contingencies. Escrow closing typically occurs after tentative or final map approval.
3. The owner incurs the entitlement costs – Much of the process is like option two. The difference is the owner has full control of the mapping process and bears all expenses.

The ramifications of each choice should be weighed carefully before making a decision. Owners, who have chosen not to seek advice, have made the decision to process a map and found out later the number of lots was not financially feasible. A competent engineer can determine the optimal number of lots that can be obtained and approved. Smart growth design principals call for buildings with a variety of materials, texture, and color and individuality; well-defined open space; a building and street relationship; mixed uses; and high-density development. Contractors, who specialize in residential subdivisions, can give realistic cost estimations.

The process of entitling residential property to higher densities is costly, complex, and cumbersome. Many factors must be taken into consideration. The leading concerns that communities have about increased density are the quality of life and increased costs.

There is a need for new affordable housing to reduce recent overpayment and overcrowding. There is also a need for high-density housing that supports economic recovery, accommodates new workers and their loved ones, and economizes the costs of infrastructure. It is quite a balancing act. Open spaces need to be conserved and the distance between new jobs and new homes reduced.