Donahue Real Estate Company



Posted by Donahue Real Estate Company on 6/19/2019

Buying a home tops your long-range goals list, but are you ready? As a first-time buyer, you have loads of questions and concerns. After all, a home loan is an obligation for years into the future. You want to make savvy decisions and be comfortable that you’ve negotiated the best deal. On top of that, learning all about credit scores, how to pre-qualify and the difference between pre-qualification and pre-approval. And what are options and closing costs?

Fannie Mae, the Federal National Mortgage Association (FNMA) government-sponsored enterprise (GSE) that serves the mortgage industry, knows what you need to know about buying a house. They’ve put together a course for new homebuyers called HomePath Ready Buyer Education Program.

Enroll now

The online course lets you attend from the comfort of your sofa. After completion, a “graduate” may qualify for assistance up to three percent of the closing cost of purchasing a qualified HomePath property. You won’t end up with an education loan either. Tuition is just $75, and Fannie Mae says it could even reimburse your tuition during closing on your new home. Now that’s a deal!

What you learn

Because the course design has new buyers in mind, you’ll learn to determine how much you can afford to buy and ways to figure out what home is best for you. Making the deal and learning about down-payment options will get you on your way. Finally, you’ll learn to avoid the pitfalls, and all the navigate the paperwork required to close the deal.

How long does it take?

The entire course is nine 30-minute sessions, so along with the quiz at the end (no final exam though), the total class takes about four to five hours. Designed to be intuitive and self-directed, you can work your way through the course over a few evenings, on your lunch hour, or even during your morning commute (provided you’re not the driver, of course!).

How you benefit

In addition to the three percent closing cost assistance and tuition reimbursement, your Certificate of Completion may qualify you up to take advantage of the First Look program. By giving first-time homeowners an exclusive "first look" at newly-listed foreclosed properties, this innovative program serves new home seekers and promotes neighborhood stabilization.

Fannie Mae relies on real estate professionals to follow through on the home-buying process. For more information, express your interest in the HomePath program to your real estate professional.





Posted by Donahue Real Estate Company on 6/12/2019

If you have ever seen where a controllable fire incidence brings down a house, then you will know the importance of fire alarms. One type of fire alarm system is the smoke detector, a standard safety device that should be in every home. Unlike the heat detector which relies on heat to reach a defined threshold before triggering the alarm, smoke detectors rely on the smoke to turn off the signal.

It is no news that many fires in the home start with smoldering smoke. This puts smoke detectors at the forefront of fire alarm systems. The traditional smoke detector relies on an acoustic alarm to raise a signal, so it defeats the purpose of smoke detectors if the homeowners are not around. It is important to note that full-fledged smart smoke detectors exist. However, they are quite expensive. Check out four inexpensive ways to make your smoke detector smart: 

Use a Wyze Cam

One way to make smoke detectors smarter is by using the Wyze Cam. This device is a trendy budget-friendly surveillance camera used in the house. This surveillance camera comes packed with a lot of features. Two useful features this camera comes with are the smoke and CO alarm monitoring. This device serves as both a surveillance camera and a safety gadget. 

The way this device works is simple. It listens to the sound produced in the room waiting for any that matches the smoke alarm pattern. When the device detects such sounds, it gets triggered and pushes a notification to your device.

Roost Smart Battery

Just like the Wyze Cam, the Roost Smart Battery also listens to sound around. If the smart battery picks any sound with a pattern like that of a smoke alarm, it gets triggered and sends a push notification to your device.

How this differs from the Wyze Cam is in the place where positioned. Unlike the Wyze Cam, this battery serves as a replacement of the smoke detector battery and lives inside the smoke detector making it more reliable. It, however, does not have other functionality and unlike the Wyze Cam where a single battery will be sufficient, you need one battery per detector. 

Install the Amazon Alexa Guard

The Amazon Alexa Guard is a device still in the making. This device, according to Alexa, listens and upon picking any suspicious sound like smoke alarm sounds and glass breaking, sends a push notification to your device.

DIY Approach

The Do-It-Yourself is for the tech-savvy readers who have experience with micro-controllers and Arduino. There are different ways to do this yourself. You can find the procedures on YouTube.

Having a full-fledged smart smoke detector in your home is important. However, if you have a little budget, you can follow the steps above to turn your smoke detectors into smart ones that send a push notification to your phone even when you are away from home.





Posted by Donahue Real Estate Company on 6/5/2019

If a seller accepts your offer to purchase his or her residence, it now may be time to schedule a house inspection. And if you have an expert home inspector at your side, you can get the information you need to determine whether to proceed with a house purchase.

Ultimately, there are several factors to consider as you evaluate a home inspector, and these include:

1. Industry Experience

It generally is a good idea to hire a home inspector who boasts plenty of industry experience. That way, you can work with an inspector who knows what it takes to analyze a house. And as a result, you may be better equipped than ever before to identify underlying house problems before you finalize a home purchase.

Ask a home inspector about his or her industry experience – you will be happy you did. If you dedicate time and resources to learn about a home inspector's industry experience, you can determine if this individual can help you assess all areas of a house.

2. Client Referrals

A home inspector should have no trouble providing client referrals upon request. With client referrals in hand, you can reach out to a home inspector's past clients and learn about their experiences working with this professional.

As you search for the right home inspector, you may want to contact several inspectors in your area as well. If you reach out to multiple inspectors and receive client referrals from them, you can boost the likelihood of making an informed hiring decision.

3. Your Homebuying Timeline

There is no guarantee that a home inspector will be available at your convenience. If you need to conduct a home inspection as soon as possible, you should search diligently for an inspector who can fulfill your request.

For those who want to quickly find a top-notch home inspector, there is no need to take shortcuts, either. Remember, a home purchase likely is one of the biggest transactions you will complete in your lifetime. If you fail to hire a highly trained inspector to evaluate a residence, you may struggle to identify potential home problems.

If you need extra help as you search for a house inspector, you may want to collaborate with a real estate agent, too. This housing market professional will guide you along the homebuying journey and ensure you can avoid costly, time-intensive mistakes.

A real estate agent can help you get in touch with the top-rated home inspectors in your area. Plus, he or she will provide plenty of guidance throughout the homebuying journey. If you ever have concerns or questions as you decide whether to purchase a house, a real estate agent can respond to them right away.

If you want to enjoy a successful homebuying experience, it helps to employ a first-rate house inspector. By considering the aforementioned factors, you can hire a superb home inspector to review all areas of a house. Then, you can obtain a home inspection report to help you make the best-possible decision about a house purchase.





Posted by Donahue Real Estate Company on 5/29/2019

One decorating principle that’s a huge help for any homeowner is that of layered lighting. This is the different aspects of lighting that you’ll use in different rooms of your home to complete your lighting needs. The layers of light create a basis for the design of the room. These three main aspects of lighting also have a practical purpose which is nice as well. Below, you’ll learn more about the three main components of lighting for any room of the house and how to best use them. 


Ambient Lighting


Ambient lighting is often the base of where people start with their lighting design in a room. This type of lighting allows you to get the overall feel for a space. The brightness level should be good enough for anyone to walk through the room without walking into things. The illumination may not be bright enough for activities that require a lot of focus like reading or chopping vegetables.


Accent Lighting 


If you think of a retail store and how the shiniest things have the brightest lights focused on them, you’ll discover that you can use this type of lighting right in your home. Think of a chandelier hanging over a massive dining table. Accent lighting is usually for decorative purposes. The lumens that are given off are typically not enough for any other purpose than to attract attention to the item the light is shining on. This type of lighting is best used for things like display cabinets, statues, and china closets. The bottom line is that the accent light will add some drama without actually adding much practical use. 


Task Lighting


This type of lighting is important because it’s what ensures that you won’t chop your hand off while you’re chopping up vegetables in the kitchen. Task lighting varies widely from room to room and can be anything from a desk lamp to a reading lamp to lights on the vanity for shaving and putting on makeup. Task lighting is all about being functional. When you’re trying to decide where to put your task lights think of everything from safety to convenience. The last thing you should worry about with task lighting is the look. While these lights are great under cabinets, for example, so the more creative you get with where to place your task lighting the better the look will be.  


Using this simple yet useful design principle can help you to light your entire home correctly. The right lighting can truly transform a space and give it the depth that it needs.            





Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Donahue Real Estate Company on 5/22/2019

In some instances, it may be beneficial to reject an offer to purchase your home. Because if a homebuying proposal fails to meet your expectations, you may want to wait for another offer to come your way.

Reviewing a homebuying proposal and determining whether to reject this offer can be tricky. But we're here to help you evaluate an offer to purchase so you can decide the best course of action and feel confident about your choice.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you assess an offer to purchase and determine whether to decline.

1. Review the Local Housing Market

The housing market in your city or town is a major factor in the property selling journey. If you're selling your residence in a buyer's market, you likely face steep competition to sell your house and maximize its value. Comparatively, if you're operating in a seller's market, there may be an abundance of buyers and a shortage of sellers in place.

Take a look at the prices of recently sold residences and how long these properties were listed before they sold. You may want to consider the prices of currently available houses in your area that are similar to your residence too. With this housing market data in hand, you can differentiate a buyer's market from a seller's one and take a data-driven approach to decide how to proceed with an offer to purchase.

2. Weigh Your Home's Strengths and Weaknesses

You believe your home is great, but you also realize that your residence is far from perfect. As such, it often helps to weigh your residence's strengths and weaknesses relative to an offer to purchase and proceed accordingly.

For example, if a homebuyer submits a competitive offer to purchase your home in spite of its exterior damage, you may want to accept this proposal. On the other hand, if a buyer submits a "lowball" offer on your recently upgraded house, you may want to decline this proposal.

3. Consult with a Real Estate Agent

If you're unsure about whether to reject an offer to purchase, there is no need to worry. You can always hire a real estate agent, and this housing market professional can provide comprehensive support throughout the property selling journey.

A real estate agent is ready to help you in any way possible. If you need help listing your residence and promoting it to prospective buyers, a real estate agent can assist you. Or, if you want to find innovative ways to enhance your residence's curb appeal, a real estate agent can provide home exterior upgrade recommendations.

Of course, a real estate agent will work with you to review any offer to purchase your house. You and your real estate agent together can discuss the pros and cons of a homebuying proposal and make a decision that corresponds to your house selling goals.

Take the guesswork out of reviewing an offer to purchase – use the aforementioned tips, and you can decide whether rejecting a homebuying proposal is the best option.