Archive for February, 2010

Tips to improve your home’s energy efficiency

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Here are some easy ways to seal your home and make your rooms more comfortable

In unfinished areas of your basement, seal where the cement meets the wood frame at the top of the basement wall.
Seal around windows and door frames. You should use good caulk that will last a long time.
Weather strip doors and windows so they close tightly.
Seal with spray foam insulation around pipes and wires that pass into your home.
Sealing can’t do the job alone

Maximize your home’s energy efficiency by improving your insulation, moisture control and allowing proper ventilation. Balancing all these aspects of your home’s airflow will create a healthier home and pay for itself quickly, even in a newer home.

Improve the air flow and insulation of your home

The air flow in your home can be the single, most important factor affecting your energy costs, comfort and health. Of course weather factors change that rate, but while your home needs to have adequate ventilation to be healthy, significant, uncontrolled air leakage is the biggest energy waster and does not promote comfortable living.To make your home energy truly efficient while allowing it to ventilate at the proper level may require hiring an energy analyst. They will use particular diagnostic tools to assess your air leakage.

If you feel comfortable doing it yourself, you first need to find out where your home isn’t – but should be insulated, the type of insulation you have, the R-value and the depth of that insulation. Good places to check first are the garage, basement, crawlspaces and attics. You can inspect the exterior walls using an electrical outlet (refer to safety procedures and more details regarding this on a Web site such as

If you have a newer home, the insulation may be found on the outside foundation or basement walls. You may have to contact the original builder to determine if this type of insulation was used.

If you decide you need to add insulation anywhere in your home, make sure you select the proper R-value and the type of insulation necessary. A further explanation of this can be found on You can even use a calculator on this site to find out your payback period for adding insulation and the potential cost.

source: HWA

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The IndyMAC Bamboozle!, or, Why can’t I get a loan mod?

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So…you’ve got an IndyMac loan do you?  Need/want to do a short sale? Here’s an amazing and utterly disgusting truth on why not only IndyMac loan mods aren’t happening, but other companies also.

Why IndyMac doesn\’t want to mod your loan!

Crazy Glue, Nails, and Multiple Offers

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Every once in a while you think you’ve “seen it all”. Well, the other day I ran across a double whammy! I remember back in the early 2000’s when there were multiple offers on just about everything. Agents would use some unscrupulous tactics like taking the keys from the lockbox so that other agents couldn’t show the home. Well, apparently some of those agents are up to their old tricks given the current multiple offer market we’re in.

The other day I met some clients to show them a home in the Santa Clara area. I had previewed it just a few days prior. Well, as luck would have it, the whole family showed up with my buyer, and low and behold, we were thwarted by one of those previously mentioned agents! I was able to get the keys out of the lockbox after 15 minutes of prying the box open with a screwdriver. Success!, or so I thought. The buyer and family waiting patiently, we finally tried the key in the lock, it wouldn’t go in! The keyhole in the front door had been filled in with crazy glue!! Ok, I thought, let’s go around to the back and try the rear door. So…. we all trudge through the side gate and to the back door, I tried the key again, and again, the key won’t go into the lock. Hmmm,. took a look at the lock and low and behold someone had driven small finishing nails into the keyhole, thwarted again!

Needless to say, the home needed a whole lot more work than my clients were willing to take on, and we ended up finding them the “perfect” home just a few days later. I hope that through some of the turmoil of the Real Estate market, we loose some of the unscrupulous agents that don’t adhere to the Code of Ethics that most of us abide by. We, as a profession, need to keep faith instilled in our clients, as well as the general public, that there are very professional agents out there. Happy home hunting!