Blog - Author: Andrea Robinson

Author: Andrea Robinson

2020 Holiday Decor Trends

By Andrea Robinson
November 17, 2020 Category: General

It seems that the holiday season is beginning early this year. According to recent trends, consumers plan to shop earlier this year to avoid inventory issues and shipping delays. With many of us spending more time at home this year, holiday home decorating will happen earlier than before. Are you ready to discover popular holiday trends for 2020 and how you can create these looks in your own home? 1.) Navy This color had a significant influence on the home dcor industry, as you see it in furniture, accessories, paint, and even holiday dcor! Navy pairs with so many colors, including silver, gold, platinum, and red. If you have navy accents in your home, definitely consider bringing navy into your holiday dcor! 2.) Platinum Platinum is the new neutral of choice! This tone falls between silver and gold and tends to be a little softer. Platinum is the perfect companion shade that will make your dcor festive and unique. 3.) Metal This fun element is excellent to bring holiday cheer.

What is Underwriting and Why Does It Matter?

By Andrea Robinson
October 27, 2020 Category: General

Underwriting is the mortgage lenders process of determining the risk of lending money to you. The bank, credit union, or mortgage lender has to decide whether or not you can pay back the home loan before deciding whether to approve your application. A home loan is a detailed process involving applying for the mortgage, receiving a loan estimate from the lender, processing the loan, waiting for approval, and finally closing on your home. The role of an underwriter is incremental in the entire process. Here are the responsibilities of an underwriter when helping process your home loan. Review your credit history. Underwriters look at your credit score. They look at your overall credit score and search for things like late payments, bankruptcies, overuse of credit, and more. Request an appraisal. Your underwriter will request an appraisal to ensure that the lenders amount for the home matches up with the homes actual value. Verify your income and employment. Your underwriter will

Cleveland Trick-Or-Treat Times

By Andrea Robinson
October 19, 2020 Category: General

Wondering what time trick-or-treat begins this year? Here is a guide to local community trick-or-treat times throughout Fairview Park and other surrounding cities! Avon: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 7:30 p.m. Avon Lake: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 7:30 p.m. Bay Village: Saturday, Oct 31 from 6 8 p.m. Fairview Park: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6-8 p.m. Lakewood: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 8 p.m. North Olmsted: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 8 p.m. North Ridgeville: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 7:30 p.m. Olmsted Falls: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6 8 p.m. Rocky River: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6-8 p.m. Westlake: Saturday, Oct 31, from 6-8 p.m. Here are some tips for a safe Halloween during Covid-19, from the Health Department. For parents: Have children wash their hands before eating treats. Bring hand sanitizer and a flashlight. Eat only factory-wrapped treats. Avoid homemade treats made by strangers. For trick-or-treaters: Design and wear a cloth face covering. Trick-or-treat with

Fall Fun: What's Going on Around Cleveland This Season?

By Andrea Robinson
October 13, 2020 Category: General

Northeast Ohio is a great place to celebrate the fall season. Whether its Halloween-themed things you want to do, fall colors you want to see, or fall flavors that you want to try, Cleveland and its surrounding cities have you covered. Here are a few of the great events that you can take advantage of this season. Enjoy the Changing Colors of the Season atRocky River Reservation.Rocky River Reservation is located in Berea, Brook Park, Cleveland, Fairview Park, Lakewood, North Olmsted, Olmsted Township, and Rocky River. The reservation includes a nature center, marina, stables, and three golf courses. Make a stop at Berea Falls Scenic Overlook, and climb the Fort Hill steps for excellent views. Northeast Ohio has no shortage of breweries, and theyre all producing their fall flavors, which is an ideal time to sip some seasonal brews. The variety of options include Oktoberfests, pumpkin ales, and all the fall flavors in-between. This is a prime season for craft beer lovers. Pick

Is Title Insurance Worth It?

By Andrea Robinson
September 30, 2020 Category: General

An owners title insurance is a policy on the deed of your home. It protects you from someone challenging your property ownership because of a circumstance involving a previous owner. With title insurance, youre buying coverage for potential title problems in the past even if you dont know what they may be at present. The two types of title insurance are the lenders title insurance policy and the owners insurance policy. Lenders title insurance protects the lender against problems with the title to your propertyfor example, if someone sues to say that they have a claim against the home. Whereas the owners title insurance protects an owner from: Any disagreement about the property lines Disputes about whether the seller had a right to sell the property to you Discover undisclosed liens or lawsuits against the property A lenders title insurance policy is required, and now youre considering an owners insurance policy. To purchase both types of insurance, you can expect to pay somewhere

Selling Your Home This Fall: Why Sellers Have an Advantage

By Andrea Robinson
September 23, 2020 Category: General

Are you contemplating whether or not to sell your home this fall? There are advantages for sellers who, despite initial doubt, are successfully selling their homes and making a profit this season! Its is not a big secret that this year has brought many unexpected challenges that have affected the economy and the housing market. Regardless, the housing market is bouncing back in a big way. One of the advantages of selling your home now is that there is probably more equity in your home since most homes sell above the asking price due to the low inventory level. Generally, when deciding to sell your home, many things need to be accomplished before putting the for sale sign in the front yard. With the current market trends, aside from simple staging and sprucing up, sellers dont have to make as many improvements when selling and can often sell the home as-is. Since the housing market status is ideal for sellers, it is recommended to list your home on a Friday morning to grab more interested

Fun Things You Can Do Now to Get in the Fall Spirit

By Andrea Robinson
September 08, 2020 Category: General

When the weather finally starts to cool down, and the leaves start to change colors, that means youve made it to the best season of the year! What makes autumn so memorable is the endless amount of fall activities that you can do together with your family and remain cost-effective. Theres nothing better than biting into a freshly made cinnamon sugar baked pumpkin donut. Instead of buying donuts from your local grocery, try preparing a homemade batch. Adding hot apple cider to complement this delightful treat will create longtime fans in your household. As an added touch to celebrate the season, bring out your fall decorations, including wreaths, pillows, and cozy blankets. The change in atmosphere will put you and your family in the fall spirit. Consider creating a few fun crafts with your children. They will love seeing something they made used to dress up the house. If you are looking for an outside activity to enjoy, here are a few suggestions. Make a fire pit for a bonfire to enjoy

Get Your Home Ready for Fall

By Andrea Robinson
August 24, 2020 Category: General

Can you believe it? Fall is less than thirty days away.!Have you started to prepare your house for the season? These tips will help you get your home ready for autumn weather AND save you some money! Inspect the roof - Take a close look at the roof and see if there are any damaged tiles, cracks, or leaves or debris. While you are taking a look at the roof, check out your gutters, and repair what needs to be fixed. Finally, get winter tools ready such as your snow blower, and make sure that everything is ready to go. Fertilize the lawn - Applying fall lawn fertilizer will help prevent winter damage and spring weeds. If you plant bulbs for spring, nows the time to get them in the ground. Put away any seasonal furniture you have and store it in a dry place. Inspect furnace and air conditioning unit Take a thorough look at the furnace, check heating efficiency, and change the filter. Winterize air conditioning. If your home has central air conditioning, cover the outside

Title Insurance: Is it Worth It?

By Andrea Robinson
August 14, 2020 Category: General

Title insurance protects the insured from a financial loss related to the ownership of a property. Two policies are recommended at a home loan closing: the lenders policy, which is required, and an optional owners policy. A monthly premium will not be added to your mortgage payment. Title insurance is a one-time upfront cost. According to a spokesman for theAmerican Land Title Association,one of every three title searches reveals a problem affecting the title to a property. Expenses can add up quickly when every dollar counts. It can be tempting to decline an optional owners title insurance. When you do the math, an owners policy of title insurance is quite reasonable. Your home is the single most substantial investment, and an essential part of title insurance is its emphasis on risk elimination before insuring. This gives you, the policyholder, the best chance of avoiding title claim and loss. Budgeting for that coverage may require some discipline when budgeting in the short term,

Heading Back to School in Northeast Ohio: What You Need to Know

By Andrea Robinson
July 27, 2020 Category: General

To secure the future of the next generation, schools have to be reopened safely. While children are less likely than adults to develop severe illness from COVID-19, it is not clear what role they play in transmitting the virus to other children, teachers, school staff, and family members. This research is required to fill in the blanks and contribute to our understanding of this virus. In light of COVID-19 the school season will begin shortly. Here are the reopening plans for some of the local school districts throughout Northeast Ohio. Bay Village City School District:Students canchoose between full-time in-person learning and full-time online learning options. The district is starting a slow launch return on Aug. 18. Fairview Park City School District:Finalized planswill be announcedAug. 1, but students will have the option for online learning this fall. Lakewood City School District:The district is offering four learning models to students and parents. This will depend on which

Closing Costs: What You Need to Budget for When Closing on Your Home

By Andrea Robinson
July 21, 2020 Category: General

You have been saving for a house for a long time and finally, have enough saved. After searching, you found the one your dream home! When moving forward, the topic of closing costs comes up, and then you begin to wonder, Do I have enough saved to buy a home right now? Here is everything that you need to know about closing costs so that you wont be caught off guard when purchasing your dream home. Closing costs are fees charged by lenders that include the loan-application fee, credit report, and loan origination fee. The average closing costs are typically between 2%-5% of the loan amount. It is recommended to get 2-3 loan quotes from mortgage lenders to make sure youre paying an appropriate amount. Loan Origination Fee - fee to compensate the lender for processing the loan Discount Points - pre-paid interest that will reduce your interest rate Appraisal Fee - fee paid to home appraisal before closing Credit Report - fee for pulling your credit report Tax Service - title delivery

Should You Buy or Sell a Home Right Now in Northeast Ohio?

By Andrea Robinson
July 13, 2020 Category: General

It is a sellers market in Northeast Ohio. More buyers are looking to purchase homes with a limited amount of inventory to choose from. With higher rental rates and mortgage rates down, many renters are looking to purchase their first home.The National Association of Realtors shows thatnearly half of recently sold properties were on the market for less than a month. Before deciding to sell your home, take into consideration the following items. You have home equity Recently, home prices have been increasing in turn, building equity. To determine an estimated amount of equity in your home, use this simple formula: take the market value of your home and subtract the mortgage balance. The answer is the amount of equity in your home. You have savings and a small amount of debt, if any Examine your financial wellness. Is most of your non-related mortgage debt paid off? Do you have six months or more of living expenses in savings? If the answer is yes to both of these questions, you

Northeast Ohio's Top Summer Events

By Andrea Robinson
July 01, 2020 Category: General

Warmer weather is here to stay in Northeast Ohio. Although, this isnt a traditional outdoor season where there are plenty of things to do. That doesnt mean that you have to miss out on all of the fun. Here are some exciting events happening this year that you dont want to miss! Asian Lantern Festival The Asian Lantern Festival presented by Cleveland Clinic Childrens is returning with over seventy all-new larger than life, colorful lantern displays, and live performances. The festival opens on July 8th and runs through August 23rd. The hours of operation are Wednesday through Sunday, from 6:30 p.m. to 10: 30 p.m. The Cleveland Metroparks Enjoy the outdoor life at one of Clevelands Metroparks. Explore more than 23,700 acres in 18 reservations located throughout Cuyahoga County and Hinckley Township. Have fun hiking with your family, or have a picnic. Hanging out at one of the Metroparks for the day is an excellent alternative to being indoors. Northeast Ohio Family Fun Play Dates Northeast

Summer Landscaping Trends

By Andrea Robinson
June 22, 2020 Category: General

Are you looking for some ideas to make your homes landscape more appealing? Here are some creative ideas that will make your outdoor space attractive and will have your neighbors green with envy! When planning your landscaping strategy, include mostly perennial plants that will come back each year and group them based on their watering needsincorporating plants with flowers that complement the color if your home will make a lasting impression. Add a few scented plants for some aromatherapy that will bring a sense of tranquility to your outdoor space that can be enjoyed individually or with guests. Do your research when selecting hardscaping materials. Choose quality stones that wont require repair after a short amount of time. Investing in outdoor furniture that you want to sit in is crucial, especially if you plan on spending more time outdoors. Include lighting to make your outdoor space easy to access when it gets dark out. To get the most out of your landscape, in various weather

Title Insurance 101: Everything You Need to Know

By Andrea Robinson
June 12, 2020 Category: General

Title insurance is a type of insurance that protects both the homebuyer and the mortgage lender against potential financial losses attached to a new home and property. When a buyer and seller enter into a contract of sale for a property, a title agent is selected to initiate a search in the local jurisdictions land records for any encumbrances, liens, claims, or conflicts that need to be resolved before the transfer of the property from one party to the other. If those hindrances have not been settled through the title search process before closing, the financial liability of fixing those issues could fall on the new homeowner. If a claim had to be made, a title insurance policy would pay for damages and costs associated with repairing the problems. Lets take a look at the various type of title insurance that is available. Lenders Title Insurance - This policy covers liens (including contractor and mechanic liens), easements not on record, access rights, and defects on the title.

Eight Lazy Housekeeping Hacks for Homeowners in Northeast Ohio

By Andrea Robinson
May 29, 2020 Category: General

Its a known fact heat makes you feel lazy. Hotter days are on the horizon in Northeast Ohio as May comes to a close and the Summer Solstice is just a few weeks away. But dont worry. We have eight housekeeping hacks for happy, lazy homeowners to keep their spaces neat, clean and organized without really trying. Washing Machine Tablets Keep your clothes washing clean by keeping the washing machine clean. No elbow grease required just drop a tablet in your machine and hit start. Pro tip: cleaning packets from Tide work in any washer including High Efficiency. The TubShroom Never ever, ever, ever snake your drain again. TubShroom stops hair from getting clogged in your drain is literally the best thing to ever happen to bathtubs since wine and candles. Quick Stain Removers The most famous? The Tide to-go stick. If you dont have a spot stain remover in one of your kitchen drawers well were judging you. Steaming Microwave Cleaner Ever go to pop a bag of popcorn and change

First Time Home Buying Tips for Veterans in Northeast Ohio

By Andrea Robinson
May 22, 2020 Category: General

Buying a home is a big milestone for anyone, and thats especially true for veterans who are looking for a place to settle down and call their own. The U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs offers a range of programs in Northeast Ohio that can help first-time military home buyers get the best value from this process. If you or someone you know is a veteran and first-time home buyer, here are three essential tips to take full advantage of all the benefits available! Study Up on VA Loans A VA home loan is a mortgage available to military individuals and families from a private lender that is backed by the department of veteran affairs. This is one of the best ways to purchase a home in the United States and should be explored. One of the best features of this benefit is that nearly any credit situation is eligible for the benefit, and the loan terms include $0 down payments without having to invest in Private Mortgage Insurance a fee most private loan shoppers would pay for a $0 loan. New

Four Small Bathroom Projects You Can Do Right Now

By Andrea Robinson
May 15, 2020 Category: General

Do you have some extra time on your hands? Most of us do, and there are only so many coloring book pages you can fill out before its time to be productive. But where to get started? Well, why not start by giving a little extra love to a room in your home you visit frequently but rarely think about the bathroom. You dont have to take on a big project like gutting the tub to refresh the porcelain throne room, though. These four projects are some easy, quick and affordable improvements to make a visual impact and bring a little fresh air to your next pitstop. Toss Out or Recycle Old Linen Plenty of people have a favorite comfy old blanket or hoodie, but theres nothing cozy about tattered old towels! Are your bathroom linens starting to show their age? Do you have half a dozen different colored washcloths in your closet? This is a good time to weed out threaded linens and order some matching, fresh bath towels, washcloths and hand towels. Even a set of new, inexpensive linens

Four Early Spring Landscaping Tips for New Homeowners in Northeast Ohio

By Andrea Robinson
April 29, 2020 Category: , General

So, you just got your first house with a yard, congrats! Now comes the fun part Spring is here in Northeast Ohio, and its time to start taking care of your front and back lawn or garden. Maybe you grew up mowing the grass or helped a parent with weeding, but theres a lot more to think about when it comes to landscaping as an adult than just doing your chores. If youre new to planning your own landscaping, weve answered a few common questions for first time homeowners. Whens the Right Time to Mulch? Its quite simple May is for Mulching. The weather in the greater Cleveland area can be a bit finicky, so its important to wait until after theres no more snow but well before Summertime. May is usually when we start seeing temperatures consistently above 60 degrees. Whats the Best Kind of Fertilizer? From weed killers to Miracle Grow, there are many types of fertilizer to consider as you walk through your garden center. But, for early spring, you should apply two kinds of fertilizer. First,

These Four Quick Fixes Could Be Stopping Your Home from Selling

By Andrea Robinson
April 23, 2020 Category: General

Every home has its quirks maybe a floorboard that creaks too much or a discolored brick under the patio. Quirks can be a charming feature of your house or maybe just a little imperfection that went unnoticed as youve lived there. However, some things that could be charming or gone unnoticed to you may be preventing your home from selling. Dont panic, though. Many of your homes quirks are still quite loveable, but there are a few things that you should always consider fixing before the next time you have a showing or virtual home tour. Sticking Front Door Talk about bad first impressions! You may be used to putting in a little extra push whenever you need to get inside, but to a home shopper, that sticky door will make the home feel uninviting and maybe even unsafe. This is a quick and inexpensive fix for a local carpenter, and it can make a huge difference for selling your home. Mixed-Up Waterspouts Ever encounter a sink or bathtub and wonder which knob turns on the hot water?