Best Ways to Sell Your House During COVID-19

With the COVID-19 pandemic slowing down the real estate market, selling a house has become a herculean task for many homeowners. Not to mention, in today’s economy, some homes are remaining on the market for months. However, even though selling your home during COVID-19 can be tricky, it isn’t impossible. With a little know-how, you will be able to sell your home quickly.

Furthermore, selling a house during COVID-19 may sound tough initially, but it is not that difficult to do. Listed below are four tips to sell your home during COVID-19.

1. Advertise properly- While technology and the Internet have made it easy to list real estate for sale online, you need to pack a greater punch to get buyers to take notice of your property if you want to sell your home during COVID-19. From putting up a for sale sign and advertising your home on as many of the major property websites as possible to advertising your home for sale on social media, make sure you leave no stones unturned in terms of advertising your home for sale. Furthermore, you should also distribute flyers and even put an advertisement in the local newspaper. This will allow you to reach out to more people and so, there will be chances of more offers.

2. Virtual tours- Virtual tours are very effective when it comes to marketing and selling your home during COVID-19. Furthermore, a good virtual tour will grab a home buyer by hand and lead them from room to room, whether it is 360 or a video.

3. Be an aggressive home seller- Let’s face it, waiting for the home buyer to come by will not get you anywhere. You need to go all out to spread the word. From putting up a for sale sign to repainting and remodeling your home, do everything within your power to sell your home fast during COVID-19.

4. Declutter and keep your home clean- Nothing can turn off home buyers faster than a home in disarray. Furthermore, whether or not you are currently living there, make sure you take the time to declutter, deep-clean and spruce up. In addition, when cleaning your home, make sure you also remove photographs and other personal information that may be visible, as you want to make buyers feel comfortable when viewing your home.

While selling a home during COVID-19 can be tricky, if you spend some time and effort in creating that perfect atmosphere for your house and keep in mind the above-mentioned tips and tricks, you will be able to sell your home in no time.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Tushar Deep Singh

Selling Homes Fast – Great Tips On How To Sell Your Home Faster

If you looked at the new lately you know that trying to sell your home fast in today’s real estate market is difficult if not impossible. Home sales have dropped and things don’t look good for the near future. As a real estate investor I have learned a few tricks on how to sell my homes fast. Most of these tips are common sense but unfortunately many real estate agents and home sellers don’t practice them.

Price your home appropriately for the market. Most people will overprice their home simply because it is their home. The fact is that your home is worth what someone is willing to pay you. So to find out what your home is worth make sure you look at comparable home sales in your neighborhood. After you find your true home value discount the price by at least three percent. No other factor determines how fast a home sells than price.

Advertise your home in as many low cost sources as possible. If you have listed your home then your home is most likely on the MLS system. The MLS system is your best source of advertising but there are many other forms of low cost advertisement. There are many websites that allow you to list your home and a picture of your home for free. Some of the sites charge a few dollars. Make sure you make plenty of flyers and signs and put them everywhere. Make sure you obey local laws concerning where you can place signs and flyers.

Visit your local real estate investor club or call them. Many investors are willing to buy your home for a fair price if you are flexible. It never hurts to get an offer. If the offer is to low then don’t accept it.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Jordan S Ashton

Top Ten Tips For the Best Road Trip Ever

There is nothing more fun than an old-fashioned road trip. I love taking to the open road and exploring our country. Now, I’ve been a „road tripper“ for some time and though I love air travel, I love the road trip because that’s how you can really experience the country. So it’s time to get your favorite tunes and munchies ready and plan your open road trip adventure with these ten easy road trip travel tips.

1. Plan your trip. First, you need to determine where you’re going to go and then plan your trip. Planning doesn’t have to take a long a time, but you do need to know the route you’re going to drive and points of interest along the way that you’re going to want to stop and explore. Half the fun of a road trip is seeing the sites along the way. I like to MapQuest my trip and have that as my main plan of attack for my road trip. GPS is very popular these days and I recommend them, but you can’t always rely on them when you hit construction zones or accidents on your journey. That’s why it’s essential that you have a real map with you for the areas you’ll be traveling to and to plan alternate routes if necessary.

2. Make your hotel reservations BEFORE you go. Part of the fun when traveling on the road is stopping wherever your heart desires, but there’s nothing worse than a „no room at the inn“ experience on a road trip. You may not realize that there is a „Comic Book Trade Show,“ „Strawberry Festival“ or convention in town while you’re visiting and there are no rooms to be had. If you do not book your reservations in advance, not only are you running the risk of having to sleep in your car but also you can’t manage your road trip budget effectively. If you’re traveling with your family or a group of friends, consider staying at an all-suite hotel or even renting a time share, a great option for families taking a road trip. Did you know that 90 percent of people who own a timeshare don’t utilize it on a regular basis? Many great offers can be found at some of the bigger hotel chains that offer timeshares and many of them even have a washer and dryer. For my road trip to Scottsdale, I booked a fantastic one-bedroom suite with a kitchenette at a time share property directly through the hotel for just $100/night including tax at the Sheraton Desert Oasis Villas.

3. Give your car a full tune up before you go or consider renting a car. One week before you go on your road trip, take your car in for a tune up and ask your mechanic to ensure the car fluids are topped, air pressure in your tires is at its best for highway driving, and any other necessary concerns regarding your vehicle are addressed. Should you need to get something fixed, it is best to do it at a place you can trust before your road trip. Plus, it can be more expensive when it is a have-to situation. Also, make sure you pack a roadside safety kit just in case of an emergency. For me that kit includes my American Automobile Association membership card (Premier Membership). If you have a car that is no longer under warranty or has automatic roadside assistance, then a American Automobile Association membership is a necessity as it will save you a fortune in the unfortunate event you have a break down and have to have your car towed. If you’re at all concerned that your current vehicle is not „road trip worthy,“ then you may want to consider renting a vehicle for your road trip. I did this for my trip to Arizona as I found a great deal on a rental car and had the peace of mind for my road trip.

4. Pack your own food and plan a picnic. I used to be addicted to stopping at fast food joints on a road trip. There was something that felt fun about that on a trip but I’ve since learned that I prefer to pack my own food for my journey. It doesn’t just keep me eating healthier, but it also saves money, too, especially if you’re traveling with your family. Also, if you plan ahead, you may find that there is a great stop for a scenic picnic in your travels and packing a picnic is so much better than flying through the Drive-through. If you do make a stop, either for a picnic or to explore a cool sight along the way.

5. Bring great music or audible books with you! Music is truly the soundtrack of our lives and every road trip needs a soundtrack. I think of my trip to Seattle every time I hear a Phil Collins song from „No Jacket Required“ because that was the primary music I was listening to on that trip. I think of the Bahamas Harbor Island and the amazing walks on the Pink Sands Beach every time I hear Wilson Phillips music. It’s sort of like having a theme song for every vacation but hearing the music even today will evoke fun memories of wonderful trips. I also love catching up on books I’d like to read but somehow find it easier to listen to. That’s where audio books come in and you can download them to your mp3 player, iPhone, or other PDA device. !

6. Don’t forget to pack a boredom buster bag for the kids. One thing I’ve learned from producing for TV’s „The Travel Mom“ Emily Kaufman, is that if you’re traveling with kids, you need to make sure you have plenty to entertain them during your road trip. She calls this the boredom buster bag. Don’t forget to pack some kid music your children like along with fun travel games that include magnetic board games. DVD players are an option for really long trips and as long as your child isn’t prone to car sickness. Of course, electronic games will keep your kids occupied but I would encourage you to limit the time on these toys especially if you’re traveling through some great scenic areas. It’s an excellent chance to bond as a family and your child’s memory of the trip will be lost if they’re lost in a Game Boy.

7. Remember, a road trip is as much about the journey as it is about the destination. One of my all time favorite road trips was the day my niece, Jessica, and I drove 52 enchanting miles on the „Road to Hana“ on the island of Maui in Hawaii. I’ll never forget that the guide book said, „Remember, Hana is not a destination, it’s a journey.“ Hana is located about 52 miles from Kahului, however a typical trip to Hana takes at least three hours, as the road is very winding with approximately 620 curves over 59 bridges, 46 of which have only one-lane. This delightful road trip is a memorable journey that winds through a lush, tropical rain forest that is laced with tumbling waterfalls, black sand beaches, scenic lava cliffs, fresh fruit stands, and tropical hillsides. Jessica and I stopped at least ten times including one stop to picnic on that black sand beach. We took photos by waterfalls, delicious fruit stands and beautiful tropical flower gardens. You should treat your road trip vacation the same way we did our Road to Hana: Enjoy your road trip as a journey, not a destination.

8. Make good use of every stop. I like to plan my stops for fuel, food, and restrooms so that I utilize my time efficiently and don’t waste time making three stops instead of one. Probably the most important thing is that every time you do stop, make sure everyone in the car uses the restroom (even if they think they don’t have to right then). This will cut down on the stops you’ll make only for that purpose. Also, if you’re traveling with kids, and you just need to stop for the restroom, I recommend stopping at a Starbucks. Parents can get a coffee or an ice tea, the restrooms are clean, and there are not a lot of distractions for kids (like toys to buy) that a truck stop or gas station may have. Use the Starbucks store locator at their website to help you plan your stops before you go. Do be a „good egg“ and make a purchase at Starbucks while you’re there.

9. Avoid Trouble. When you’re on a road trip, you need to be street wise. Don’t be a target for crime by leaving your valuables on the seat in your car (DVD players, Game Boys, etc.) and don’t advertise you’re on a road trip with pillows and blankets every where. When you park your car, hide your valuables and road trip creature comforts. If you are proactive at keeping your „I’m on a road trip clues“ clearly hidden, any thief or troublemaker should just walk right by your car. Other street wise considerations is to always park where there is good light and foot traffic and make sure your windows are rolled up and the doors are locked whenever you leave your car. You may also want to purchase items like „the Club“ if you like that extra insurance for safety. Finally, when you’re driving, watch your speed. Speeding gives you the chance to get a ticket and more importantly, it decreases your time to react if the need should arise. If you are the driver, you are responsible for your passengers. When you see signs that say, „Speed limits are photo enforced,“ believe them. Other good driving tips include avoiding rush hour, especially in bigger cities, and whenever possible take turns driving with other people in the car. You’ll also want to avoid driving at night if you are not familiar with your surroundings.

10. Get a Go City Card and save up to 55% on attractions and theme parks at your vacation destination. Last year, I flew my 8-year-old niece, Alexis, and 10-year-old nephew, Tyler, out to Los Angeles for their spring break (using Southwest Airlines Reward Miles, of course) and we took a road trip down to San Diego. That’s when I discovered the money saving Go City Card for San Diego. With this card, I saved hundreds of dollars in admissions to Legoland, the Wild Animal Park, the San Diego Zoo and other attractions including a Whale Watch on the Pacific Ocean just by purchasing a Go San Diego Card.

Instead of paying individually for each local attraction, you pay one price for up to 40 attractions (depending on the city your visiting) and you get to create your own experience, tailoring your activities based on what you like to do, while also enjoying tremendous savings. For example, with the Go Los Angeles Card, you can choose one, two, three, five, or seven day cards at a low, pre-paid price to gain access to 40 included attractions. This saves up to 55% compared to buying tickets directly at Universal Studios Hollywood, LEGOLAND California, Knott’s Berry Farm, Paramount Studios, the Queen Mary, and many more attractions. Go City Cards are available in many cities and vacation destinations in the U.S. including Los Angeles, Chicago, Boston, Las Vegas, New York City, San Diego, San Francisco, Honolulu, Orlando, Miami, Seattle, Blue Ridge and even Toronto.

Final Tips: Don’t forget your cell phone and make sure you’re „hands free“ when you do use it while driving. In many states, it’s the law, but it’s also down right dangerous. Always use your cell phone „hands free“ when you drive. Don’t forget to update your software on your mobile before you leave because you don’t want to be charged higher rates for roaming charges. Finally, it’s a real good idea to email a copy of your itinerary to other family members or friends in case of an emergency – this is especially a good idea for women traveling together. Now, drive safe and have fun!

You can get more details at my website at Best-Travel-Deals-Tips.com.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Marianne Schwab

Most Expensive Neighborhoods in Mississauga, Ontario

Have you ever wondered what are the most expensive neighborhoods in Mississauga, Ontario? Well here they are in all their glory. Mississauga has grown from a sleepy collection of small towns to a vibrant community of over 700,000 people – a large city in itself and yet also Toronto’s western suburb. Even though Mississauga is usually viewed as a middle class or upper middle class area, there are also many pockets of extreme luxury sprinkled throughout the city. Some of these highly sought after areas of Mississauga feature amazing luxury homes of up to 10,000 square feet and more, situated in park-like settings with enormous lots featuring swimming pools and tennis courts…here is a short summary of some of these areas…

LORNE PARK:

One of Mississauga’s largest, oldest and most prominent luxury areas, Lorne Park is bounded by Lake Ontario to the south, the QEW highway to the north, Southdown Road to the west, and Mississauga Road to the east. Lorne Park has many luxury homes nestled in tree-lined streets, with dozens of homes sold over the million dollar mark in 2009. Lorne Park is easily identified by the large, tall trees which abound in the area, and by its proximity to the lake. There are several sub-areas within Lorne Park, including Rattray Park Estates, which is situated south of Lakeshore next to the Rattray Marsh Conservation Area, and the Lorne Park Estates, which is a small, Muskoka-like area serviced by private roads, directly on Lake Ontario. Lorne Park High School is an excellent secondary school which services the area, and there is plenty of high end shopping available nearby. Lorne Park has plenty of multi-million dollar homes, and you can expect to pay from $2 million to $3 million for a nice property as you get closer to Lake Ontario.

MINEOLA WEST:

Definitely one of Mississauga’s top areas, Mineola West is a small pocket at the extreme western end of the Port Credit neighborhood, running west off of Hurontario, south of the QEW, bounded by the Credit River on its western edge. This area features some unbelievable luxury homes on large lots, in a park-like setting with large tree canopy overhead, extremely quiet and private, and yet close to the GO Train and amenities of Port Credit.

MISSISSAUGA ROAD including DOULTON DRIVE:

Mississauga Road runs north from Lakeshore Road, up to the QEW highway and further north to Dundas Street, the University of Toronto Mississauga Campus, and even further to Streetsville and beyond. Along the way, you will find some of Canada’s finest luxury homes, and extremely exclusive schools, parks, and shopping, plus close proximity to both the Mississauga Golf and Country Club, as well as the Credit Valley Golf and Country Club. All along Mississuaga Road are exclusive streets with pockets of fine and expensive luxury homes. One of the streets running off of Mississauga Road is Doulton Drive, which may be the City of Mississauga’s most exclusive address. Doulton Drive has the Credit River and one of the golf courses as its neighbor, and features multi-million dollar estate homes up to 10,000 square feet. Highest priced sale on Doulton Drive during 2009? $7.25 million…Luxury indeed!

GORDON WOODS:

Gordon Woods is a small, exclusive pocket of luxury homes, located near the Trillium Hospital in south-central Mississauga. Many people are unaware of this fine collection of expensive homes in a Muskoka-like setting. Gordon Woods were originally built for the doctors practising at Trillium Hospital. Gordon Woods is not easily found – tucked away with Hurontario at its eastern boundary, Stavebank Road to the west, the Queensway to the north, and the QEW highway to the south. Gordon Woods has an extremely high tree canopy, and is densely forested. Lots are large, and houses range from classic 1960’s type bungalows, to extremely large modern mansions with circular driveways. Within the tranquility of Gordon Woods, it is hard to believe that you are actually in the centre of Mississauga.

CREDIT MILLS:

Credit Mills is an area of large homes located off of Mississauga Road, north of Eglinton Avenue, bounded by Erin Mills Parkway on the west, and the Streetsville old town limit on the north. This neighborhood is a bit different from the others in the survey, in that it was built in the fairly recent past, during the 1990’s. Credit Mills features large, modern, luxury homes of 3000, 4000, and even 5000 square feet, on lots which are slightly smaller than some of the other neighborhoods in this survey – easier to maintain! Many of these fine homes are on court locations, have double and even triple car garages, and are filled with the best and most expensive upgrades. The area of Credit Mills is very close to the shops of Streetsville, Erin Mills Town Centre, and the Streetsville GO Station. The primary road running through Credit Mills is Erin Centre Boulevard.

HONORABLE MENTION – CREDIT POINTE:

Credit Pointe is another of Mississauga’s luxury neighborhoods, and is a circular-shaped pocket of homes running off of Eglinton Avenue, with the Credit River on its western edge. Credit Pointe features some regular homes within its boundaries, but as you go towards its southern tip, there are several streets with very expensive, luxury properties. Credit Pointe is centrally located in Mississauga, and has great access to both the GO Train and Highway 403.

AREA TO WATCH – MEADOWVALE VILLAGE:

Old Meadowvale Village, located near Old Derry Road and Second Line West, is an up-and-coming area with plenty of new luxury construction, including many homes over the $1 million dollar mark. Definitely an area to watch!

There are many other fine neighborhoods in Mississauga that feature exclusive luxury homes; the Sherwood Forrest area of Erin Mills, for example has several streets of very expensive homes. and there are some great areas in east Mississauga as well, near the Etobicoke border, which are very upscale. For sheer concentration of wealth, though, the above list showcases the most expensive neighborhoods in Mississauga.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Randy Selzer

Heidelberg Germany

In the country of Germany you will find many interesting cities and towns like Heidelberg to visit. This charming city can be found in the Baden-Wurttemberg region. The city is located in the Rhein-Neckar-Kreis rural district. Heidelberg is situated close to the River Neckar where the river leaves its home steep valley in the Odenwald to join with the Rhine River. You will find this wonderful city is part of the region which is called the Rhine-Neckar Metropolitan Region.

For the interested visitor you will find a visit to Heidelberg to be most pleasurable. This city has a number of interesting places for you to visit as well as many modern amenities to enjoy. You will find there are a number of hotels, inns and other accommodations which will fit the budgets of many visitors. The shopping and fine dining that you will be able to enjoy alongside with that of sightseeing is sure to enhance your pleasure of this city. As there are many interesting places for you to visit while you are in Heidelberg you may wish to take some time planning the sights that you wish to visit well in advance so that you can enjoy all of the pleasures that Heidelberg has to offer you.

Of the many places that you can visit while you are in Heidelberg you may wish to see the Philosophers‘ Walk. This walkway which in German is called Philosophenweg is located in Heidelberg itself. You will find this walkway near the ruins of the Celtic fortress located there. The name for this place comes from the fact that the university professors and philosophers of the city used to walk and talk here. As you visit this spot you will be able to see some excellent views of Heidelberg castle and the Old town.

Another great place that you may wish to visit while you are in Heidelberg is that of the Heiligenberg Mountain. From the summit of the mountain you will be able to see a spectacular view over the old town of Heidelberg itself. Nature lovers will enjoy coming here to see the beauty of the surrounding countryside as well. Not too far from here you will be able to see the remnants of an ancient wall which was built by the Celts to keep Germanic tribes out of the area.

Besides taking a look at these ruins you will also be able to look at the Heidenloch which is a deep well. The origins of this well are unknown however it is an interesting place to see as it indicates the city of Heidelberg has a history that is older than may be known. Also while you are in the vicinity of the Heiligenberg you should take the time to visit the ruins of a 10th century Heidelberg cloister.

These are you see are just a few of the interesting places that you can visit while you are in the city of Heidelberg. The next time you are planning a visit to Germany you may wish to spend some time exploring this charming city and see what you can uncover for yourself.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Hannah Rollmaker

Heidelberg Castle – Recalling the History With Beautiful Views

The Heidelberg Castle is a well-known ruin that is located in Germany and is considered as the landmark of Heidelberg. The Heidelberg Castle is one of the most significant Renaissance structures found at the north of the Alps. The Castle has been demolished during the 17th and 18th century, but then only few parts have been rebuilt. The Heidelberg Castle lies at a distance of 80 meters up the northern part of the Konigstuhl hillside, and from there it dominates the outlook of the old downtown.

You can reach to this site through the Heidelberger Bergbahn funicular railway. The railway operates its services from the Kornmarkt to the summit of the Konigstuhl in Heidelberg. The original structure of the castle was built before 1214 AD and later has been enlarged into two different castles circa 1294. Unfortunately, in the year 1537, a lightening bolt has destroyed the upper castle.

The present structures were built with an expansion project in the year 1650, before the destruction through the wars and fires. All depends on the fate that some of the rebuilt sections were again destroyed by one more lightening bolt. Until the beginning of the 19th century, the Heidelberg Castle was not considered as the tourist destination. After building up the railway network in the year 1840, tourism has received a big boost in this area. At the beginning of the 21st century, over 3 million people visits this place a year, and nearly 1,000,000 people enjoyed overnight stays.

To get some wonderful views of Heidelberg, head to the Neckar River and the Neckar valley that is located far into the Rhine plain. If you are lucky enough to experience something beautiful with a clear day then the Mannheim is a better option that could be visible on the horizon.

Some of the other attractions at the site that will lure you entirely are:

The Gardens:

The castle gardens were built between the years 1616 and 1619 by Salomon De Caus who was the garden architect. Prince Elector Friedrich V commissioned him for his beloved wife Elizabeth. During that time, the gardens were considered as the masterpiece. The gardens are built upon many terraces with many flowers beds, mazes and arbors. With various sculptures, a heated greenhouse along with the orange trees, waterfalls, huge fish ponds, and a man-made grotto for the musical water arts.

Heidelberg Tun:

The Heidelberg Tun is also called as the World’s Largest Wine Barrel that was built by Prince Elector Karl Theodor in the year 1751. The structure stands at a height of seven meters and its breadth is of eight and a half meters. The Heidelberg Tun holds some 220,000 liters of wine and also boasts a dance floor that was built on the top of it.

Apothecary Museum:

Below the Oto Heinrich Building, you will get the unique Apothecary Museum. Visitors get an opportunity to learn the history of pharmacy and dispensaries. There is a huge compilation of such things.

Castle lighting:

You can see the renowned fireworks display that lights three times during every summer. The three times occur on the months of June and September – first Saturday, and the second Saturday in the month of July. The lighting is done to remember the past event and history of the castle.

So if you love to explore the historic places then head to the Heidelberg Castle and spend a memorable time in your life.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Gia Loren

How To Remove a Heidelberg GTO 52 Swingarm

The swing arm in a Heidelberg GTO offset printing machine may need to be taken out for adjustments or replacement of parts from time to time. Removing it need not be as dreaded as sometimes happens. In my years of experience with Heidelberg GTO machines, I have come across many experts who get uncomfortable whenever such a task is to be performed for adjustments or replacement of parts. This is because the process is very sensitive and affects colour registration. This activity should take less than 1 hour.

I will assume that the degree wheel and zero gauge, though necessary, are not available for this exercise. Crank the machine to the position where the swing arm is about midway between the feed board and the impression cylinder. Mark the position of the arm on the shaft clearly using a center punch or any other means that cannot easily come off. Make sure the marks are clearly visible both on the shaft and on the surface of the swing arm. It will be returned and clamped to this exact position when being fitted back to maintain the timing of paper transfer between the feed table and the impression cylinder. The three 10MM screws securing the arm to the shaft can then be loosened. It is important and safe to switch off the machine at this point.

Remove the machine guards on both operator and drive sides. On the operator side, the swing arm shaft bearing is secured by a set of three 5MM screws on the machine side frame and a chain mechanism attached to an end piece. The end piece holds the torsion rod that gives the swing arm tension to swing during its operation. Carefully and clearly mark the position of the clamping piece on the shaft. To release the tension, loosen the 5mm screw on the clamping piece. The tension will be released and the arm will be completely free. Remove the three 5MM screws securing the shaft bearing and slide off the end piece. The torsion rod is attached to this end piece and should come out of the shaft together with the end piece.

On the operator side, the swing shaft is attached to a lever and locked with three 5MM screws on to the machine side frame. Carefully remove the 3 screws and detach the lower end of the lever by removing the clip locking it after removing the oil tube. The shaft should now swing freely on its bearings on the side frame together with the lever. With the shaft now free on both operator and drive sides, it can be pulled off the machine on the drive side. Ensure that there is enough space between the machine and the nearest obstacle on the drive side. You may need to turn the machine manually if the cam on the drive side is has blocked the lever attached to the swing arm shaft. Pull the shaft and the lever all the way out of the machine, leaving the swing arm in position. The swing arm can then be easily removed from the machine from the front. For the shaft to slide off and come out easily, it has to be very clean and well lubricated. The swing arm can then be easily worked on out of the machine.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by James L Oloo

How to Start a House Cleaning Business on a Tight Budget

„If you use Emotion and Love to drive your sales and your business, you will create Loyalty Beyond Reason. And I promise you, you will build relationships and enjoy a business that exceeds beyond your wildest expectations“

First of all, before you decide to start your cleaning business, make sure this kind of work is right for you. You will need to be in good physical condition. Cleaning is very hard strenuous work. You will need to have good customer relation skills. You will need to have basic office skills and some accounting skills.

If you are planning on leaving your full time position to start a cleaning business, make sure you have at least six months of savings. Or keep your full time job and start out part time.

Research all the aspects of the cleaning service business. From customer service to advertising, taxes, employees, insurance and bonding, what to charge and how to clean a home professionally. Cleaning your own home and cleaning professionally is totally different. Learning how to clean professionally takes a lot of time. When a client pays for your services they expect to come home and find their home spotless.

Getting those first clients takes time, persistence and patience. You will not get a hundred clients overnight.

Obtaining Those First Clients The hardest part of starting your own cleaning service is obtaining those first clients. Most clients want to know how long you have been in business and want references. The best thing to do is let clients know that, yes, you are new to the business but that you have thoroughly researched all aspects of the cleaning business and assure them that you know what you are doing and that you are quit capable of cleaning their home to their specifications. Be confident. I can’t stress this enough. Clients love to see confidence. It relieves their worries and lets them know that their home is in good hands.

References: To get a few good references when starting out, ask some friends or family members if you can clean their home for free or at a discounted rate. The sound of working for free may not be appealing but it will be worth it to get some good testimonials.

When cleaning those first homes, go for quality, not how fast you can clean the home. Cleaning efficiently takes a long time, but you will get to the point where you can do a thorough cleaning in a short time. After cleaning make sure you go back and double check all rooms to make sure you didn’t miss anything. Impress those first clients and word of mouth will spread soon.

Advertising Your company image is everything. Before you start advertising, decide what image you want to portray on your advertising material. Your image is very important. Be consistent with all your advertising. If you have a logo be sure to use it on all your advertising materials. I think it is best to have a website developed before you start advertising. When advertising, stick with the same logo and colors.

Advertise in Local Paper: Start by running a text ad in your local newspaper. Try to come up with an eye catching ad. Do not sell your services on low rates, sell your services on your quality of work and what you can do for the client that other companies don’t. There is a lot of competition in the cleaning service. You have to stand out from the rest.

Magnetic Signs or Lettering for your Vehicle: Having your business name and contact information on your vehicle is a great way to advertise. We use the vinyl lettering. The lettering looks much more professional than the magnetic signs.

Flyers: You can print nice flyers on your home computer, but I would suggest investing in some professional flyers. Hang flyers at Hair Dressers, Laundromats, Restaurants, Bakeries, Grocery Stores, etc. Put flyers on car windows at local groceries stores and businesses. You can even go door to door in neighborhoods you would like to work in. You cannot put them in mailboxes. but you can put them in the front door.

Door Hangers: Door hangers are a great way to get new clients. Pick the neighborhood you would like to work in and hang the door hangers on the doors. When people get flyers or ads in their mailbox they usually throw them away with the junk mail. But if there is a door hanger on the door they will take the time to look at it.

Business Cards: Start passing out your business cards to friends and family members. You can also ask your local businesses if you can leave some cards on their counters.

Referral Program: A great way to obtain new clients is through a referral program. Offer existing clients a discount when they refer a friend. You can give your existing clients a discount when the friend uses your services three times.

Website: These days people live very busy lives so they use the convenience of the internet to shop for the services they need. A lot of working women will shop for services while at work. Everyone that has a business should have a website. It shows clients that you are serious about your business and allows them research your business in their own time.

Cleaning Products: By using all natrual products, you can offer your clients a healthy cleaning experience and protect ourselves against harsh chemicals. Clients love the natural cleaning products with essential oils. They come home to a healthy clean home filled with the wonderful scents of aromatherapy essential oils.

Tip: Always carry hand sanitizer and wash your hands often while cleaning homes. Wear gloves when cleaning bathrooms. You will be exposed to a lot of different germs in clients homes.

Remember most customers prefer that you bring your own cleaning supplies. That way they do not have to worry about going to the store for cleaning supplies before you clean. Some customers have special cleaners for certain appliances or floors in their houses. These customers usually will have these cleaners on hand for you to use. We almost always use the customers vacuum cleaner. That way you do not have to carry a heavy vacuum from house to house.

What to Charge I mentioned earlier that you should sell your services on your quality of work and not your low rates. If your rates are too low, clients will think that your work is sub-standard and that you are not experienced. Also you want to attract the clients that can afford your services. I made the mistake of pricing my work too low when I first started out. Cleaning is hard work, charge what you are worth. As the old saying goes „You get what you pay for.“

Some companies charge by the hour, some charge by the room, some charge a flat rate per home and some charge by the square foot. I think it is better to charge by the home, not by the hour. If a client knows they have to pay one set fee, they don’t care if you take 2 hours or 5 hours. Also your clients will know what they are paying up front and won’t have to worry about added expenses.

No two houses are the same. And there is no set charge for all homes. You have to clean for awhile yourself to get some experience and to work out a system to clean efficiently. Only you know what you want and need to make. Decide what you need to make hourly to cover all expenses and still make a good profit.

A word of advise: Make sure when you start your company that you charge what you would charge if you had employees. Some people make the mistake of under charging when they start out just to get customers and then later on when they grow and need to hire help they aren’t making enough money on their houses to pay help. Don’t under price your work. Cleaning homes is very hard physical work and you didn’t get into this business to work for nothing.

New Construction Cleaning If you decide to do this type of work you will need more equipment. You will need ladders, window cleaning kits with long extensions, a shop vac, etc. These types of jobs are usually 2 to 3 person jobs. New construction cleaning requires a lot more cleaning. You may have to remove stickers and labels from windows and bathroom showers, sinks and toilets. Some require that you clean the vents to remove dust from construction work. There will be ceiling fans to clean, scrubbing floors, and cleaning woodwork to remove dust. New construction cleaning rates depend on the area you live in.

Insurance and Bonding. You need to be an honest person and somewhat personable. People will need to trust you to be in their homes. Most clients are concerned about having someone new in their house, with good reason. You should be bonded and fully insured. Liability insurance rates depend on your insurance carrier and where you are located. Each person you hire will increase your liability insurance. It’s well worth the cost. You can pay quarterly or yearly. You can purchase your bond through your local insurance company. You will need to renew the bond every year. *Note: if you hire employees and cover them under your insurance, they must be an employee on payroll and not a sub-contractor. If you employ them as a sub-contractor your insurance will not cover them. If they are a sub-contractor they are required to carry their own insurance. You

Hiring Help If you start out cleaning the homes by yourself, you will eventually get to the point where you need to expand your business. Start out with one part time employee. Train her and let her take your place one day a week. Then have her take your place 2 days a week and so on. This will give you the free time that you need to market your business and obtain more clients. After you get more clients you will be able to hire more part time help. Eventually you will be able to stop doing the cleaning yourself and just run the business end, which is the only way you will be able to grow your business. When training new employees, always, either train them yourself or have a lead person train them. Make sure there is a lead person on each and every cleaning job. Employees have a tendency to slack off when they are on their own.

Growing Your Business You will eventually get to the point where you have enough employees and lead people and you will be able to stop working in your business and start running your business. You will find that after awhile it will get to be too much trying to clean everyday and at the same time giving estimates, answering calls, scheduling, doing book work, obtaining new clients, etc.

Remember one of the most important qualifications for a cleaning service is TRUST. A client has to know they can trust you alone in their home. After you acquire a few cleaning positions ask the clients if you can use them for a reference. Most of the time they are more than willing to let you use them for a reference. This is how you build your business and acquire new clients is through referrals. Be dependable. Most clients will want to be set up on an every week or every other week schedule on the same day of the week. Try to always keep this same schedule unless the client asks you to switch to another day. If you have to cancel a cleaning date, make sure you try to reschedule at the earliest possible date to make up the cleaning.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Patti Page

Private Schools Around Wentworth Estate in Surrey

The Wentworth Estate village (in Virginia Water, Surrey) is one of the most exclusive residential areas in the world. It is the home of millionaires as well as one of the world renowed golf courses that shares its name: the Wentworth Golf Club.

With such exclusive residents of the Wentworth Estate or the remaining areas of Virginia Water, there is no shortage of private schools around the area. Here are some of the good private schools nearby:

Papplewick is as a prep school for 200 boys aged 6 to 13. By setting the bar high, Papplewick boys gain entry to the top UK senior schools including Eton, Harrow, Winchester, Wellington, Charterhouse, and Stowe.

St Mary’s Schools is a leading Roman Catholic boarding school for girls aged between 11 and 18 years set in 55 acres of beautiful grounds in the heart of Berkshire. They are a friendly, stable and caring community, proud of our academic and extra-curricular achievements and dedicated to bringing out the full potential of each of our 380 pupils.

Gordons School is listed as one of Britain’s outstanding schools by Her Majesty’s Chief Inspector, Gordon’s is a unique non-selective state boarding school that recognises that a good education is not just about outstanding examination results but a thorough preparation for life. Gordons is one of Britain’s most academically successful state schools.

Heathfield is a leading, all-boarding school for girls aged 11 to 18 years old. The school is set in 36 acres of magnificent grounds, and conveniently situated in Ascot. The school is fully equipped with all the teaching, sporting and leisure facilities required to make education a challenging and positive experience.

The Marist The establishment of a boarding and day school in the Berkshire village of Sunninghill by the Marist Sisters was a direct result of the German air offensive against London in the early 1940s. Today the Marist Schools are independent Catholic day schools for girls aged 2½ to 11 and 11 to 18 years. Both schools are situated within 55 acres of woodland on one site.

Hall Grove The school occupies a unique site, with lots of open space, parkland and woodland. The school started with just 6 pupils. The property was in near derelict condition and had been empty for over two years. Today, it is a vibrant, happy community of over 400 boys and girls with an outstanding reputation for academic, musical and sporting success.

Coworth Flexlands is a preparatory day school and nursery set in 13 acres of countryside on the Surrey and Berkshire borders near Chobham. They provide places for 160 girls with boys being accepted into the nursery between the ages of 3 and 5 years.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Fatin Gunes

Realtor Lockboxes Explained: A Summary of Lockbox Options and Alternatives for Real Estate Agents

Real estate professionals today have a plethora of high tech options out there to enhance their business, but rarely do we fully consider the value of the lockbox – the sole piece of equipment responsible for allowing agents to show the homes that we sell everyday. The lockbox itself has evolved over time, and today agents find themselves comparing the value from a standard combination lockbox to that of a more high-tech electronic lockbox. Real estate agents today are pressed from all sides for fees, dues, and expenditures that are unavoidable costs of doing business, so when it comes to making a decision between a combination lockbox that’s just a few bucks versus a high-tech electronic lockbox that is substantially more expensive, does the increase in cost justify the value? Also, what are all the options out there for electronic lockboxes? This article highlights the findings of current industry options available.

Having the ability to show a home without the sellers there to watch your every move was a move in the right direction for the real estate industry. Agents know very well the situation where a seller will remain in a home during a showing and „pretend“ like they are minding their own business while the buyers tip-toe through the home trying not to impose while attempting to get a sense of what the home was like.

This is a wild departure from the typical showing when the sellers aren’t there; clients love to snoop around in order to get a good sense of the home. With the sellers not there, the buyers get a good opportunity to get a true sense of how that particular home would feel and if they can see themselves living there. Put simply, it allows for a better, more convenient showing experience.

From this dilemma the lockbox was invented. A device securing the key for entry by licensed real estate agents to show their prospective buyers, and it allowed sellers (or their agents) the opportunity to have the home shown without the need of their presence. It saved time, and allowed for a better showing experience. Truly, it was a win-win.

However, early lockboxes were simply a combination lockbox. They are certainly inexpensive, but an obvious downside was the lack of security for the home in question once the lockbox code was known. Sellers would rely on the professional ethics of real estate agents to keep the code confidential, but sometimes the code would slip into hands of non-agents. Less frequently, the code would be found by people with malicious intent.

With the obvious shortfall of relying on the honor system to keep lockbox codes confidential, it offered the opportunity for a better solution that would allow for accountability along with the ability to show a home without the seller being present. As a result, it did not take long for „smart“ lockboxes using electronic technology to come into existence, thus revolutionizing the process of showing a home. Before a seller and their agent wouldn’t really know who was showing the property other than the confirmed appointments that were made. Flash forward to today, and you have the ability to know exactly who and exactly when someone shows a property through the use of an electronic lockbox. With these smart electronic lockboxes, only an agent or other authorized party can access the lockbox itself, further emboldening the assurance to a seller that only licensed agents and properly authorized individuals are showing or entering their home.

Today there are 2 main companies that provide these smart electronic lockboxes to real estate agency associations. They are Supra key and Sentrilock. Together they comprise the majority of the lockbox industry market; nobody else comes close.

Supra (or SupraKey) is owned by general electric and provides lockbox solutions to all sorts of niche industries, real estate lockboxes being one of them. Bill Love, national account manager for Supra, says that out of a given state or region in the country, Supra, on average, maintains an 80% market share. Supra has sold several million lockboxes throughout the years to real estate agents, and currently Love estimates that there are 1.5 million+ Supra lockboxes currently in use by about 750,000 real estate agents throughout the country.

The supra key itself features a cylindrical design up to the „shackle“ (the loop part of the lockbox that will noose around something and keep it in its place securely) where the shackle fits in seamlessly. Its simplistic design is pleasing to the eye, and to activate the lockbox, an agent has a „digital key“ that’s about the size of a small flip phone and has a number pad and screen on it. The agent sets the key to open a box and points it in the direction of an infrared sensor on the box itself. When the lockbox recognizes that it being accessed by the remote digital key, it will release to allow access and the bottom of the lockbox will fall out when it’s pushed by the agent, and voilà, the key to the home is available for the agent to take and open the door for the showing.

Love says that Supra has plans for upgrades to the current model lockbox that will include the ability for wireless Bluetooth access and syncing. Also, rather than having the digital key, if the agent has a smartphone, Supra offers an app for access with the phone instead, which makes it easier and more convenient, for a monthly fee. Love claims that the key difference with a Supra Lockbox is that „it keeps intelligence in the hands of the user.“ Rather than having to rely on extra equipment or other trades people, the user has the control. Supra has had the current model for several years now with incremental software updates along the way. If an agent wants to buy a new Supra lockbox, it costs around $90, but the actual price that an agent will pay is determined by the association that they belong to.

Sentrilock is the other major player in the real estate lockbox industry. Sentrilock, which is based out of Indiana and is partially owned by the National Association of Realtors has been around for less than a decade and currently services about 250 of the 1000+ Realtor associations throughout the country and Canada as well. These associations comprise about 250,000 agents and approximately 500,000 lockboxes in current use. Sentrilock has 2 main models that are currently used; one is a silver lockbox that resembles a cell phone from the late 1980’s, bulky and heavy and somewhat longer in size than the supra lockbox. It has a key pad directly on the front of the lockbox itself, and holds the key within a drop-down door that pops open when accessed.

The other lockbox they offer is a smaller, more compact blue lockbox that is more cube-ish in shape but with the similar functionality features. The main difference between the silver and blue lockbox is that the blue lockbox allows for more space within the lockbox itself (which is important for people trying to sell a condo and who need to include an „access fob“ in addition to the key to the front door of the unit itself – there just isn’t enough room for multiple keys or when including the access fob with Sentrilocks‘ silver lockbox). Sentrilock sells their lockboxes for about $125 a piece, but this also depends on where you are getting it from, as the actual retail price is determined by the local real estate association that sells the boxes.

Both lockbox companies offer substantial warranties on the product themselves. They also have a support team that is almost always available in the event there is difficulty in accessing a lockbox, or for troubleshooting purposes. Both companies offer a comprehensive online tool that can provide the analytics from the showings and use of a specific lockbox which agents can use to share with their clients.

Some of the main differences between these two are how the lockbox itself is accessed. Sentrilock doesn’t need an extra piece of equipment to open a box. Rather, they utilize a „Smart-Card“ which is essentially a credit-card that fits into the lockbox and has a chip inside it that shares your information with the lockbox you are accessing. This card is all you need to access the lockbox, whereas Supra requires the digital key, although they have addressed this by means of offering the smart-phone app so an agent can use their phone in place of the digital key. Both systems require updating; in other words, the smart card for the sentrilock system requires you to stick your card in a „card reader“ that you get when you buy your smart-card that hooks into your computer. Every few days (the exact amount of days is determined by your local Realtor association) you must update the card through the card reader, which will allow you to show property, and at the same time uploads the information of the places you have shown to the Sentrilock system, which in turn is then able to be seen by the agents who owned the lockboxes of the places that you accessed. In a pinch you can update your card over the phone, but you can only do this once or twice.

On the other hand, supra keys update wirelessly. They didn’t always do this, where you were required to keep your „digital key“ docked on a charging station that was hooked up to a phone line. You had to do this every day and that’s how the system would both update your card as well as share your showing information to the system. The wireless updating feature has been in place for a year or two now, and takes the headache out of the equation of having you update your key each and every day.

The back end system for Sentrilock allows an agent to create specific access codes for one-time access of a specific lockbox. This makes it really convenient for a contractor, appraiser, termite inspector, etc. to be able to access a property with a code, but only one time because that code will expire after the day the code was intended to be used. This is a great feature that Supra doesn’t have an answer to.

Although there are benefits to both systems, any agent can’t simply choose which lockbox system they want to use – this is decided, agreed to and contractually obligated between either Sentrilock or Supra and an agent’s local real estate association. These associations, once they have agreed on a system to use can then „tweak“ the system to their discretion and preference. Things like the cost of a lockbox, whether the lockbox is leased or sold to agents, the amount of times an agent can renew their key by phone, the amount of days that can elapse before an update of an access key is required, these and more options can be tweaked and most real estate professionals are unaware that other options or preferences exist.

When comparing the benefits over your standard combination lockbox, an agent must be able to justify the added cost of a smart-electronic lockbox by the value it provides. It’s easy to do so, especially when taking the seller’s best interests at heart, as the smart lockbox will ensure accountability and a better safety and security measure for the showing process and for the home itself. Its analytics information and the ability to control who can actually gain access to the home are tantamount to successfully being able to gauge the interest in a home by means of how many people are interested in seeing it as well as being able to rest assure the seller that a home is being shown but in the most secure manner possible.

During this most recent downturn in the economy, most real estate markets throughout the country were inundated (and some still are) with foreclosure property. Certain real estate brokerages that specialized in this type of distressed property had the best years of production on record for the 2008 and 2009 years. All of these properties that needed to be shown and sold needed lockboxes, but the value provided by a smart lockbox through Sentrilock or Supra didn’t justify the cost to acquire, as distressed-property brokerages had inventories of 50, 100, 200 or 300 properties at a given time. The smart lockboxes were too expensive, especially when taking into account that the home in question was owned by the bank, it was vacant and the analytics of showings didn’t matter when a given foreclosure property is selling in no time at all with multiple offers. If an agent is carrying even 50 listings with a smart lockbox, it entails $5000 worth of lockboxes needed on all the properties he/she has for sale. At this point, a less expensive combination lockbox from Lowes for $7 looks way better and the total outlay for the lockboxes is substantially less. It’s a combination of utility value and overall price paid from the standpoint of the real estate professional, so it begs the question, why are the smart lockboxes so expensive?

Put simply, the market will bear the current price point of both the Supra and Sentrilock lockboxes because the value they provide are well worth the cost. That being said, certain companies have come into existence that are poised to take advantage of the amount of agents that want to sell their used lockboxes as well as the agents out there who don’t want to pay retail for the lockbox(es) they need for their business. Blake Nolan, co-owner of San Diego based LockboxSwap has created a website where a secondary market has been created and regulated for both the Sentrilock and Supra lockbox systems. Nolan says his company can help agents buy or sell their lockboxes and in the process save time and money. „Right now there is no real place online that offers what we offer“ Nolan Says. He continues that „if you call into (any association) and ask about used lockboxes, or where to sell your own lockboxes, they say to go try craigslist or Ebay. We created LockboxSwap to address this vast and untapped market opportunity.“

Nolan’s‘ LockboxSwap company plans to unveil the business this summer, and preliminary beta-test users have offered rave reviews.

In the world of Realtor lockboxes, smart-lockboxes are preferred because the overall value inherent in being able to secure a home, controlling the use of entry and having analytical accountability far outweighs the alternative of your standard combination lockbox (or no lockbox at all) Although the 2 main players in the Realtor lockbox arena have 2 excellent products, both fall short of being 100% perfect. They both do some things quite well and have the capabilities that the other does not. It would be great to be able to merge both products and concepts together, but since that is not possible, it’s up to each individual Realtor association to interview and determine which company is a better „fit“ for them. At the end of the day, the 2 companies and respective products, although imperfect, represent competition between one another which keeps productivity and innovation high while keeping prices in check. Companies like that of LockboxSwap help to do this further by inventing and establishing the precedent for an industry that hereto has yet to exist, but has the ability to offer a cost-efficient alternative to Realtor professionals when it comes to their lockbox needs.

No matter what, it’s obvious the industry is moving in the right direction; we are witnessing technological advancements that help to serve Realtor professionals do their job better and more efficiently, and it is interesting to see what will be the norm in the near future as well as the long term. For now, Realtor professionals should be confident in knowing that while it’s great where we stand today, the future is only getting brighter.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg



Source by Michael Justin Wolf

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