5 Factors that Affect Your Homeowners Insurance Premiums

home-2095258_640House hunting can be quite the process but finally closing on the house you’ve always wanted makes the tedious process worth the while. Now that you have a home you should probably insure your investment. The following factors can affect the price of your homeowner’s insurance premium:

Home Features and Characteristics
The age of your home along with the type of structure, roof, wiring, garage and more can all affect the insurance premium. For example, older homes usually cost more to insure.

Location
We’ve heard it before, but it’s all about location, location, location. Your insurance premium and rate can be affected if you live close to a fire station, are often exposed to extreme weather conditions such as hurricanes and tornadoes or you live in a neighborhood that is more prone to crime and theft.

Protective Devices
While other items on this list tend to increase your premiums, the following can help lower them. Alarm systems, smoke and carbon dioxide detectors, fire extinguishers, sprinkler systems and deadbolt locks can lower your insurance costs.

Personal Factors
Such as smoking and credit score can affect your homeowner’s insurance costs as well. Usually smokers tend to pay more while a good credit history can lower the amount you pay for insurance.

Claim History
Just like car insurance, a history of claims means that you could pay a higher premium for your homeowner’s insurance coverage.

 

Here’s what to expect when looking at a typical homeowners insurance policy:

Your policy may differ in structure, but most policies contain the following sections:

  • Declaration Page

Typically, the first page within the policy contains summary information like the name and address of the insured, the dollar amount of coverage, description of insured property, cost of the insurance, name of the insurance company and their contact information.

  • Definitions

The definition page lists and explains the meanings of the various terms used within the policy.

  • Coverage

The coverage section explains and details the protection in your homeowners insurance policy for property such as house, structure and contents along with liability including bodily injury and/or property damage to others.

  • Exclusions

This section provides information and explanation of what is not covered under property and liability by your insurance policy.

  • Conditions

This section usually outlines each party’s responsibilities under the policy terms. The procedures to settle any losses, claims or disputes are detailed within this section.

  • Endorsements

Any and all amendments or attachments that alter the standard coverage provided by your policy can be found in this section. Some additional endorsements include flood and earthquake protection and require an additional premium.

Best Public Schools in Northern Utah

school-2276269_640Constant worrying presents one of the tropes of parenting. You worry about what and how much your kids are eating, about their development, spending quality time, making memories and so much more. Worry less about their education with this comprehensive list of the best rated schools in Davis County. The ratings are derived from statewide test scores in math, science and language arts.   

Elementary

H.C. Burton: A+ rating – Preschool through 6th

  • Math: A
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A+

Endeavor Elementary School: A+ rating – kindergarten through 6th

  • Math: A+
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A+

Snow Horse Elementary School: A+ rating – kindergarten through 6th

  • Math: A
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A+

Junior High

Millcreek Junior High School: A+ rating – Grades 7 through 9

  • Math: A+
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A+  

Centerville Junior High School: A rating – Grades 7 through 9

  • Math: A
  • Science: A
  • Language Arts: A+

Farmington Junior High School: A+ rating – Grades 7 through 9

  • Math: A+
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A

High School

Northern Utah Academy for Math Engineering and Science (NUAMES) School: A+ rating – Grades 10 through 12

  • Math: A+
  • Science: A+
  • Language Arts: A+

Viewpoint High School: A rating – Grades 10 through 12

  • Math: A
  • Science: A
  • Language Arts: A+

Davis High: A- rating – Grades 10 through 12

  • Math: B+
  • Science: A-
  • Language Arts: A+

Other

Syracuse Arts Academy School: A rating – kindergarten through 9th

  • Math: A
  • Science: A
  • Language Arts: A+

Legacy Preparatory Academy School: A rating – kindergarten through 11th

  • Math: A
  • Science: A
  • Language Arts: B+

North Davis Preparatory Academy School: A- rating – kindergarten through 9th  

  • Math: A-
  • Science: B+
  • Language Arts: A-

5 Reasons to Reconsider For Sale By Owner

home-2406416_640Every year homeowners contemplate hiring an agent or listing their property for sale by owner (FSBO). However, FSBO might not be the best option for the majority of sellers. Here are a few considerations to mull over before you decide if you have the chops to take on a complex real estate transaction.

You probably don’t have the time

Think about it, do you really want to be answering calls and knocks at the door from complete strangers who may or may not actually be potential buyers? Safety and privacy are big considerations when deciding to sell without an agent.

After sale issues

Although employing an agent doesn’t protect you from liability or guarantee that there won’t be any after-sale consequences, they help by taking precautionary steps. An example of an after sale issue includes a leaky roof and the buyer now wanting you to pay for a new roof. However, if you disclosed the leaky roof before the sale your bases should be covered. The key to avoiding after sale issues lies with prevention.

You may not be saving money after all

One of the most common reasons for someone to try and sell their house on their own is to save money. Although a very valid reason, the average FSBO home sold for $210,00 in 2014 compared to $249,000 for a home sold by a real estate agent according to the National Association of Realtors.

You could get scammed

Or taken advantage of. Buyers often feel that they can get a better price or deal for themselves because owners lack the skills and knowledge to negotiate. By employing an agent, you will have an expert negotiator in your corner ensuring you get top dollar for your property.

It’s all about the details

Underestimating the complexity involved during the entire real estate purchasing process can be detrimental. The list of potential mistakes is huge unless you are aware of your state’s laws and regulations regarding real estate transactions. Knowing how to read closing documents, fill out purchase agreements and calculate the true value of the property are extremely beneficial skills in protecting you from future litigation.

6 Home staging tips to follow

bed-1575491_640Are you planning to put your home on the market? Well, if yes, you need to know the staging home tips. With the help of these tips, you will be able in selling the home at your desired price. There are some important points that are specifically focused on the buyers. If these points are properly handled, no one can stop you from selling the home at a good price. Here are some important staging home tips:

1.    Say no to clutter:

Clutter, an enemy to a great impression of your house. Before selling your house, you need to get rid of this enemy. De-clutter your house to the extent to which this is possible. You can also make rules to avoid cluttering in your house like if someone buys a new thing, an old thing must be discarded. Moreover, the cluttering can also be caused due to a lot of furniture, you need to free space to free your mind.

2.    Style up the dining of your house:

Well, although the upper point is emphasizing on the de-cluttering of your house, but you need to make sure that essential things that play a role in creating a balance in your house must remain in it. The dining room can be a blind spot. It may result as something uninviting between the dinners which are why you need to style it up a bit.

3.    Rearranging furniture:

As a staging home tips, it is a must. Rearranging your furniture can provide a new look to your house plus it will also add up to the pleasantness. However, you need to make sure that you arrange your furniture in a balanced way.

4.    Change the lightning of your home:

Lightning plays a great role in creating a feel for a house. Lightning may welcome and sooth the person living in it or it can also create an uncomfortable environment. Most of the houses face the issue of improper lightning. You need to identify the ways in which the lightning will be distributed in your house. For example, too much sunlight in the bedroom is uncomfortable for some people.

5.    Experimentations with colors:

It is always great to play with color. Different colors have a different effect in different situations. That is the beauty of which you can benefit yourself. Do not hesitate to use dark colors on the walls of your house or on the floor. They can add up to the dramatic look of your house. You can also create an interesting and dramatic fireplace by going for darker shades.

6.    Take a look at your floors:

Like all other parts of your house, the floors also needs your attention. Make sure you are renovating them if it is required. Otherwise, rugs are another great idea that can be used to provide a new look to the floors. Plus, they can be used for long-term purposes also.

 

These are the home staging tips that can be followed to create an appealing look of your house.

 

 

 

Reference links:

  1. http://www.hgtv.com/shows/designed-to-sell/15-secrets-of-home-staging-pictures
  2. https://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/2661221/list/sell-your-home-fast-21-staging-tips
  3. https://www.realsimple.com/home-organizing/home-improvement/home-staging-tips

Get Ready for June Gardening:

vegetables-790022_1280The shining sun and warm weather mean that summer and gardening season are just around the corner. Most of Utah falls under zone 5 of the USDA Plant Hardiness Zones. This map helps gardeners and growers identify which plants will thrive in certain locations and best of all, when to plant and harvest them. So put on your hat, find your gloves and get going on this gardening to-do list for June.  

Flowers & Plants:

  • Divide and transplant spring-flowering perennials that have finished blooming.
  • Sow or plant seeds of perennials directly into the ground.
  • Fertilize roses now.
    • Trick: To supply potassium, blend banana peels in a blender, then add the mixture beneath the mulch around your roses.
  • Pinch newest shoots on geranium plants to encourage fuller plants.
  • Feed roses as the first flower buds appear and apply fungicide to prevent powdery mildew or blackspot disease from appearing
    • Tip: Organic fungicides that work on blackspot disease include copper, lime sulfur, neem oil, potassium or ammonium bicarbonate and sulfur.
  • Mulch flower gardens to conserve water and keep costs down during heat waves.

Fruits & Vegetables:

  • Weed strawberry and asparagus beds.
  • Feed young corn plants with high-nitrogen fish emulsion fertilizer.
  • Dust potato plants to prevent infestations of potato beetle.
    • Did you know? The potato beetle is one of the most difficult garden pests to get rid of due to its developed resistance to many insecticides.
  • Mulch vegetable gardens to conserve water during heat waves.
  • Spray tomato plants with compost tea to prevent diseases.
    • Trick: Make your own compost teat by steeping an old pillowcase filled with compost in a bucket of water.
  • Harvest salad crops and replant every 2 weeks for a constant supply of tasty leaves.
  • Great time to start planting sweet potatoes and regular (russet) potatoes.
  • You can also start planting carrots, peppers, cucumbers, winter and summer squash.
  • Toward the end of the month start planting corn and beans.
  • Don’t forget to harvest spinach, broccoli, beets and peas this month.

Lawn & Trees:

  • Train your lawn to grow deep roots by mowing often, at a high setting.
  • Did you know: Deep roots are the key to a healthy lawn and improving drought tolerance.
  • Make sure your lawn gets one inch of water per week. If you irrigate, water deeply to encourage deeper roots.
  • Control existing weeds with a post-emergent herbicide, or by pulling or digging.
    • Tip: Removing weeds before they bloom and disperse their seeds helps reduce next year’s crop.
  • Plant balled-and-burlapped and container shrubs and trees.
  • Thin out small green fruits on apple, peach and plum trees to one every 6-inches on the branch

Summer Cleaning and Maintenance Checklist:

birdhouse-2427217_1280With the temperatures rapidly rising into the 90-degree range and summer holidays just around the corner, get your home up to snuff, comfortable and ready for that big family barbeque. Here is a quick cleaning and maintenance list to get your home looking, feeling and smelling great for all season long. After all, a clean home is a happy home!

For your home:

  • Make sure to get an air conditioning tune-up and replace any dusty filters.
  • Check the batteries and functionality of all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors.
  • Inspect your roof for damaged or missing shingles and leaks. Detecting a small problem now prevents a larger, leakier problem in the future.
  • Wash your windows if you haven’t already. Nothing can freshen up the outside of your home and provide great curb appeal like sparkling windows.
  • Clean out those gutters to help with the appearance and curb appeal of your home.
  • Pressure washing the exterior of your home annually is another way to show that you take pride in your home and the way it looks.
  • If you have a deck and/or porch now is a great time to inspect them for possible repairs such as replacing rotten boards and pinning down nails that stick out. They may also need polishing or a new coat of stain.
  • Don’t forget to clean and shine up the grill!

 

Don’t forget the yard:

  • Add an additional layer of mulch to aid in weed control. Extra mulch also helps your garden retain moisture in the heat and gives your plants a chance to grow.
  • Patch any cracks and holes in the driveway. A good pressure wash also freshens up that aging driveway.  
  • Primp and prune your plants especially those around the AC unit. Clear away all foliage within 18-inches of the sides of the unit and at least three feet above. The better the air circulation the more efficient your unit can provide comfortable living and savings.
  • Look for leaks from hoses, faucets and the sprinkler system. Even small leaks can add up to big costs.
  • Plan your watering schedule. An ideal watering schedule trains your plants to endure dryer days by promoting the growth of deep and strong roots. To achieve this, you can water deeply a few times a week versus lightly every day.
  • Leave the dirt outside and get two doormats for the main entry and one doormat for all other entries. Sweep out the garage consistently to avoid tracking dirt back in.

Utah’s job growth

canstockphoto3789644As per the countries of the whole world are concerned, there are a lot of countries that are struggling day and night for their job growth. Utah, on the other hand, has to provide its residents with the different job opportunities. As per the studies conducted in 2016 showed, Utah has created around 4000 jobs. According to this figure, the job growth in Utah was 2.8 percent which is nearly the double amount of national average. Likewise in 2017, the job growth rate of Utah continue of growing and it was named as the number one in terms of growth rates.

According to the employment report that is issued by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Utah is on number one rank. It has a total job growth of 3.2 percent in the US. Moreover, it is also placed on number one for the private sector jobs. However, as far as the unemployment rate of Utah is concerned, it is on the eighth position with 3.1 percent.

As the authorities are suggesting, the Utah is moving towards the right goal and currently going on the right path. The rankings will eventually increase which will then lead to the positive outcomes. The only thing that the major people of Utah has to do is to provide opportunities to the people so that they can play their part in the economic success of Utah. With the increase of job growth rate, the living Utah conditions are also improving.  It is predicted that are people of the Utah who are currently enrolled in different educational programs will be able to get the best jobs once their education is completed. Moreover, the chief economist in the Utah Department of Workforce Services, Carrie Mayne, has suggested that the students who will graduate in the near future must start looking for the employment opportunities.

The growth in the travel and the tourism activity of Utah has played a great role in this development. The Utah’s ski resorts and the national parks have attracted a lot of visitors in the past year which is why the job growth rate is positively affected. Moreover, Utah has shown an economic growth rate of 6.1 percent in the state’s leisure and hospitality sector.

Everyone can see the fact that good things are occurring in Utah, a great development is taking place which is why the future is quite bright. Moreover, Utah is also considered as the soundest state of the nation. The reason behind this dramatic change according to Gov. Herbert is the productive and the prepared skilled labor force. Multiple factors are playing their part in the development of Utah. The monthly labor market of the Utah is indicating that the economy is operating at near or full employment.

 

Reference link:

  1. http://utahpolicy.com/index.php/features/today-at-utah-policy/13011-utah-s-job-growth-ranks-no-1-in-the-nation
  2. http://www.good4utah.com/news/local-news/utah-shows-highest-job-growth-rate-in-the-nation-again/256207520
  3. http://www.boydbrown.com/2017/04/03/utah-job-growth-ranks-1-in-nation/

3 Signs Are You Ready to Buy a Home

Blog-Post---Signs-You-are-Ready-to-Buy-a-Home---DaneneIf you are renting an apartment or a home, you may feel like you are throwing money away month after month.  But how do you know if you are ready to buy a home?  There are many factors that go into what will be one of the biggest decisions of your life, and here are 3 signs that you may be ready to start looking for your first home.

  1. Are you ready to commit? Buying a home encompasses many different types of commitment. While people don’t usually spend the rest of their lives in the same home, they typically spend 5+ years in a house.  If you have been in your current location for several years you may be ready to choose a long-term location.  Also, realize you are committing to the care and upkeep of your home.  If you find yourself completing small repairs and improvements around your current space, you are definitely ready to care for your own home.
  2. Are your rent costs close to or larger than a mortgage payment would be? If you are spending close to what a house payment for your area, (taking credit, available loan programs, and other factors in to consideration) perhaps you are ready to purchase a home. When you purchase a home, you are building equity that will benefit you in the future.  When you are paying rents, you retain no benefit and build no value.  Talk with a qualified Loan Officer to see what your mortgage payment would be.  If your rent is equal to or greater than a payment on a similar sized home, you may be ready to buy.
  3. Do you have money in the bank? I am not talking about a few dollars left over at the end of the month. If you have been saving and have amassed more than just an emergency fund you may be ready to buy a home.  While most home purchases do require some type of down payment that you would need money for, the larger factor is that you are in the habit of living within your means and saving money.  Buying a home is a large investment that you will be paying on over time and strong money management skills are a great sign you are ready to take the next step.

If you answered yes to one or more of these signs the next step will be speaking with a qualified Loan Officer and looking at all your options.

 

Update Your Front Entry with These 5 Steps

Blog-Post---Front-Entry-Tips---DaneneFrom the moment, you move into your new house you being making it your home.  One way to make it feel more homey for you and your guests right off the bat is by creating a welcoming entryway, that conveys your personality.  Here are 5 easy steps to creating an entry way you are proud of.

  1. Color your door with a bold color. This will boost curb appeal and also provides protection from the elements.  Start by buffing down the door with 220-grit sandpaper, then apply a coat of primer and allow to dry.  Keep in mind when choosing your paint to select one with a smooth or glossy finish that will assist in keeping moisture out, and prevents mildew.
  2. Turn it up with unique lights. Whether you have the option for a hanging light or even simpler sconces, choose unique ones that add to your overall look.  Look at different materials such as unfinished copper or brass and also different textures of glass.
  3. Get real, with plants. Strategically place low-maintenance plants like succulents or any other plants that will thrive in your area.  Just check with your local nursery for plants that are fitted to your climate, amount of sun, and commitment level.
  4. Make a statement with your house numbers. Placing easy to read and stylish numbers can make it easier for your friends and family to find your home and round out your entry way.  Depending on the theme of your home you can place purchased number tiles, simple vinyl numbers, or hand painted numbers to help your address stand out.
  5. Add special touches with accessories. Adding trendy door knocker or vintage mailbox can be just like adding a dazzling necklace or bracelet to your favorite outfit.  Seasonal wreaths are also a great way to keep your look updated all year long.  Add just one or two extra touches, or you could be overdoing it.

Creating a welcoming entry to your home can make both you and your visitors feel comfortable from the first moment.  Remember first impressions last forever, so make it a good one.