Clayton & Clayton Realtors Real Estate Blog

When is a 203k Loan a Good IdeaThere are a lot of different types of loan plans available in the market. Knowing the right one for your situation as well as your goals can be confusing and frustrating for people who are new to the market. With so many plans available to choose from, it can be hard to know where to start. One loan plan worth considering is the FHA 203k home loan. This is a loan plan that is slightly different than what many people are used to in the market. Unlike a USDA loan, this home loan program does not have location limitations, so it can be used in many more communities, such as Highland. The key difference is that buyers are able to roll both the cost of the home as well as any repairs into one loan for the home.

When Should You Consider a 203k Home

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USDA Home Loan Program: Helping Buyers Afford Rural HomesThe USDA home loan program is one of the best-kept home financing secrets around. The program, also known as the Rural Development Loan or Rural Housing Loan, provides loan guarantees on mortgages for homes that meet the geographic eligibility requirements. The program functions much like other government housing programs: approved banks and lending institutions make the actual loans while the government provides insurance against default. This insurance makes lenders more willing to lend to buyers whom they may view as potentially risky investments.

USDA Home Loans: Eligibility Requirements

The United States Department of Agriculture began this program to promote home ownership in the rural areas of the country but do not let that fool you.

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Five Energy Efficient Upgrades for the Modern HomeownerWith a more widespread focus on environmental consciousness, energy efficient homes are in high demand. Eco-friendly homes are often priced at a premium, offering potential buyers lower utility expenses and reduced maintenance costs. Additionally, a green home also promises an improved quality of life for homeowners in the way of in-home comforts and many health benefits. With a few simple and effective energy efficient changes to the average American home, it's easy to enjoy maximum performance and comfort while looking forward to the future, when it's time to sell.

Green Homes On the Market

Implementing a few simple energy efficient upgrades to the home can add plenty of value with little effort. In fact, recent studies show that green label

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Homes offer more than simple “roof over your head,” these days. By taking hints from smart phone technology, these new items in home technology will turn your home into a smart home.



Audiophiles have already discovered that Sonos makes great looking and great sounding speakers for filling your home with music. They also make the sleek Playbase for a fully immersive big screen TV theater experience. The Playbase securely supports TVs up to 77lbs and routes sound over wi-fi, not Bluetooth, so there’s no interruptions during an incoming phone call. Plus, it streams music too.


August Smart Lock

This is way better than those clunky and institutional keypad door knobs you see at the typical Airbnb. No need to swap out your

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6 Tips For Selling Any HomeSelling a home can be tough, but there are a lot of strategies real estate agents use every day to help move them off the market as quickly as possible. Here are six can’t-miss tips to help any home give the best first impression it can so it can go from “for sale” to “sold.”

Start With the Right Price

A home’s price is always important, but what many people don’t know is just how important it is to pick the right price from the beginning. Starting out too high and lowering it later on can set off red flags with buyers because it can make them think there was something wrong with the home that forced the owners to lower it later. And of course, pricing too low will make buyers think it’s too good to be true, so there must be something wrong

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Why Veterans Should Be Using a VA LoanVeterans and spouses of military personnel may find VA loans an attractive option to use to purchase their first home. Some benefits are that those with a less than excellent credit history or who may not be able to come up with 10 to 20 percent for closing costs can still buy a home with this special home loan mortgage product without being burdened with additional fees.

Learn more about the VA loan and get answers to some preliminary questions in regards to VA eligibility requirements, down payment expectations and more.

Who Can Apply for a VA Loan?

Those who have not had a dishonorable discharge and have served their country for at least 181 consecutive days during peacetime or a minimum of 90 days in wartime may apply. This includes

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With the first official day of fall behind us, it’s never too early in the season to start preparing for holiday entertaining. Here are some tips to make sure your soirée goes off without a hitch.

 Light It Up

The right lighting can instantly create an ambiance worthy of a party not soon forgotten. There are few things in life that can exude luxury so effortlessly as gold. So trade out the simple shades for something with a little more shine.

Set the Scene

There’s something about velvet that feels warm and welcoming, while still being luxurious. This perfect combination of sentiments makes it the fabric for the season. Make a dramatic entrance with a new piece of furniture, or take a more subtle approach with velvet pillows

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Getting Ready to Buy a HomeBuying a home is a multi-step process that can take time, coordination and a variety of smart decisions on the part of the home buyer. Knowing what steps to take in the months before buying a home can help you find a home successfully, and for a price you can afford.

Go To Showings

Attending showings is a good way to determine what kind of homes are on the market, where you would like to buy a property—be it in Eagle Ridge or elsewhere—and what kind of features you'd like to have when you do buy. Going to showings can also generate excitement for buying a property, which can help make the process more rewarding. To get the full benefit of home showings, go to as many as you can in the months before you decide to make an offer on a property.

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How to Landscape a Home to Sell on a BudgetWhen trying to sell a home, real estate agents will stress the importance of having curb appeal. After all, it’s the first part of the home buyers are going to see, so it should make a good first impression and make them excited to go inside. Professional landscaping can be expensive, but it isn’t the only option to boost curb appeal. Here are six cost-effective landscaping projects to boost curb appeal without emptying any bank accounts.

Paint the Front Door

Giving the front door a new coat of paint can give it a fresh new look and make it eye-catching to passersby. The front door is where buyers are going to enter the home, and that makes it the most important door. If the paint is old and chipping or is covered in scuffs, it isn’t going to

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Home Staging Timeline For Busy PeopleStaging your home can be a long and involved process. Many homeowners start the process too late to accomplish everything they want to accomplish because they fail to realize how much can go into home staging. For many people, there's only so much time in the day that can be spent preparing the home to sell, so starting this project a year in advance can help.

1 Year Before Listing: Purge Clutter

Clutter can make a home look small and dark on the inside, and getting rid of clutter can help make a property more appealing to buyers. Many home sellers should start this process as early as possible, because it can be very time consuming.

When decluttering, simply stashing items into closets won't help, because buyers like to see wide open

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