Wednesday, November 12, 2014

5 Tips to Get Organized and get Things Done

Allen’s key idea is to start with a “mind sweep” ─ get everything out of your head and down on paper (or other written form). Once your mind is cleared, your productivity goes up and you can focus on creative action. His five basic stages of mastering your personal or professional “workflow” are: 1) Collect. Capture anything and everything that is on your mind. 2) Process. Decide what each thing means. Is it something you should do? Do it now or later? Can you delegate it (and track on a “Waiting For” list)? 3) Organize. Place the items in categories, such as Projects, Calendar, Next Actions and Waiting For, and sub-categories of your choice. (To help you visualize this, he includes a diagram for navigating through the processing and organizing phases of your workflow.) 4) Review. Go over Calendar and Action lists daily and do a weekly customized review to get clean and current. 5) Do. Make choices about your actions based on what you can do, how much time and energy you have and your priorities.

Friday, November 7, 2014

Who Needs Earnest Money to Buy?

Q. I am saving money to buy a home, but I’m not totally clear on what the term “earnest money” means. What is earnest money? A. First, let me commend you on saving money for a home. Buying a house is probably the most important purchase you’ll make in your lifetime – and having cash available gives you more options with your purchase. Earnest money is an important factor when you’re making an offer on a house. When you make an offer to purchase a house, the “earnest money” is the deposit that shows the buyer you are serious about the purchase. The money opens the escrow and can be applied to the buyers’ down payment or closing costs. The earnest money amount is negotiable. It typically varies depending on the price of the house and strength of the market. Generally, it’s recommended that your earnest money deposit be about two percent of your offered price. And although earnest money is not required by law in most states, it’s standard practice in real estate transactions. When the seller accepts your offer and earnest money, the property is taken off the market. In a hot real estate market, a large deposit may impress a seller enough so they will accept your offer instead of someone else’s. However, buyer beware…it can also put you at significant financial risk if for some reason the transaction runs into trouble not covered by a contingency in your purchase agreement. The Standard Offer And Purchase Contract stipulates under what conditions your earnest money will be returned if the contract fails. If you are in the market for a home and need competent and caring representation, please call!

Monday, November 3, 2014

Don’t let a COLD or FLU get to YOU this season!

The human body has many ways to naturally fight infection, but you need to give it all the help you can. Here’s how to boost your immunity and fight off those nasty germs:  Eat healthy food. Load up on fresh fruits and veggies like leafy greens. Avoid sugar because it can interfere with the enzymes you need to boost your immune system.  Supercharge your body. Your body can naturally kill a virus. So spring into action during the first 24 hours to combat illness. Once you feel a few symptoms, start drinking filtered water, broths, and soups with lots of garlic, onions, and spices. Take supplements like echinacea, vitamin C, and elderberry.  Breathe clean air. Avoid smoking, air pollutants, indoor dust, and ash from fireplaces that can irritate the lining of your nose and throat.  Avoid sick people. It sounds obvious, right? But it’s easy to forget. Try not to be in the same room, breathing the same air as someone ill for long. Wash your hands frequently and disinfect everything they touch.  Get a flu shot. The Centers For Disease Control & Prevention recommends that everyone who is at least 6 months old get the seasonal flu vaccine. It protects against 3 flu viruses that research indicates will be most common during the upcoming season.