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November 23, 2015 / C. King

Breaking the “Paycheck-to-Paycheck” Habit

In our “paycheck-to-paycheck” culture some people have a hard time paying their rent. This is a problem that some have when it comes to the beginning of the month; they want to rip each hair out when they don’t have the funds in their account. Whether you are experiencing a last minute emergency (e.g., broken car) or don’t have a savings account here are some tips that will help you set yourself up for success and timely rent payments; and better yet…sleep well at night if you actually implement them!

Tip #1: Monitor your accounts! Know how much money you have, how much money you will spend on bills and how much you can spend once all of your bills are paid.

Tip #2: Save, Save, Save! If you don’t have a savings start by saving a percentage of your paycheck. Start small at 5% of your paycheck and work your way up.

Tip #3: Your responsibilities come FIRST!! Know that you need somewhere to live. After you set aside what you have decided to save your FIRST thought should be to pay your rent! After all…you need shelter! A night out on the town with your friends should come second to rent. You can do it!

Tip #4: Exercise self-control…set small goals and work your way up!

In the age of the Internet there is a wealth of knowledge that can help you better your financial situation! Try by implementing these tips. These small steps will help you take care of your responsibilities as well as help you sleep a little better at night! Last but not least…it will help build your self-confidence to handle your business as an adult should! Go for it!

November 13, 2015 / C. King

Relocating to a different state??

This can be really stressful for anybody that is moving to a different state, it can be like moving to a different country…You can’t predict what will happen in the future! Whether your looking to buy or rent, these tips can make moving to a different state a little easier!.

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Tip 1: Define a moving budget and talk to people that are familiar with the area that you are  interested in.

Tip 2: Research the local economy of state, real estate market and taxes.

Tip 3: Visit all neighborhoods to which you consider moving. Drive by at night to get a feel for the  area. If you have kids, be sure to research schools!

Tip 4: Contact a local REALTOR. A local agent will be able to guide you in selecting neighborhoods     and locations to look. Whether it’s within a close proximity to your job or feeds to a certain school      district your agent will be your best bet!

Tip 5: HAVE A PLAN! Having a plan A (and maybe even a plan B) is going to help you stay organized

Looking to move to the DFW or Houston, Texas areas? Contact us. We serve both metropolitan areas    and are here to help! Happy Moving!

August 10, 2015 / C. King

How to make your pet-friendly home for sale seem pet-free

  
Pet owners, are you in the process of selling your home but are having trouble cleaning up after your furry friend? Look no further! Here are some tips and tricks to help you prevent and eliminate pet odor, messes and damage. 

Cleaning the FUR-niture: These little tricks are very simple but highly effective!

– Dampen a pair of rubber gloves and then rub over furniture.

– You could buy about a million lint rollers and pick up fur with those, but why not save money and wrap some duct tape (with the sticky side up) around a paint roller and use that instead? This fur-fighting mechanism will pick up a lot more fur and will be fun to use on any carpet or upholstery.

– Having trouble vacuuming up that deep-rooted dog fur in the rug? Simply take a window squeegee and run it through the carpet to bring those pesky pet hairs up to the surface!

 

Saving the FUR-niture: “Fido’s at it again!”

– Does your pup enjoy chewing up your furniture? If so, then try making your own bitter spray; all you have to do is douse that favorite chair of yours in a bit of bitter spray. After he tastes it, you’ll see Fido run the other way! (Here is a link to the bitter spray recipe: http://www.ehow.com/way_6581669_homemade-bitter-apple-spray.html )

– Is your kitten scratching up the couch? No worries! Just purchase a roll of double-stick tape and apply some to your cat’s favorite area to scratch. (This will annoy your pet and will discourage him from using your furniture as a scratching post!)

 

Other helpful hints

– If you’re tired of having muddy paw prints all over the floor, why not invest in some unscented baby wipes? Just keep the package of wipes near the door so you can wipe your pet’s feet before they scamper about the house.

– Sometimes pets have accidents, and some accidents may happen just before a showing! However the evidence of those accidents doesn’t have to be permanent; just sprinkle a bit of baking soda over the soiled area and voila! The odor is gone. Also, if your pet has an accident before a showing, follow the same procedures mentioned above but let the baking soda sit overnight, then vacuum it up the next morning.

 

And last but certainly not least, invite an honest friend over and let them smell your house, then have them tell you what it truly smells like. This will help you figure out what you need to do to freshen up the house before any showings are scheduled.

 

If you follow these tips, I guarantee that your house will look and smell pet-free!

July 28, 2015 / C. King

Helping Hand: Donating School Supplies

“Riiiiing!” It’s that time of year again – back-to-school! Of course the first step towards starting the new school year is to purchase school supplies, right? However there are many families that are unable to provide even the basic school supplies for their children. Fortunately there are ways to help! Sure there are many national organizations to which one can donate such as the Kids in Need Foundation or even the Office Depot Foundation’s “National Backpack Program”, but there are also tons of local organizations with great programs.

One example is the Big Brothers Big Sisters School Supply Drive; in this program, contributors can choose to solely donate supplies to the organization, hold a general school supply drive within their community or place of work, or even choose to “adopt” a group of children, to which he or she will donate supplies directly. Also, another great way to impact your community is to contact local schools to see if there is a need for school supplies for disadvantaged families – it doesn’t hurt to ask!

And these are just a few of the many ways one can help families in need! For more information on the organizations or programs mentioned, please visit the links below!

KINF_logo (1) Kids in Need Foundation: https://www.kinf.org/srs/

 The National Backpack Program: http://officedepotfoundation.org/?page_id=428

 Big Brothers Big Sisters School Supply Drive: http://www.bbbstx.org/site/c.4nIHIOOhG7IQE/b.6426909/k.DE91/img_srchttpwwwbbbsorgatfcf7B3058b77bc04c41bba6bd5698207469a37DSCHOOL20SUPPLY20DRIVE20SEB20HEADPNG.htm

July 20, 2015 / C. King

#DiscoverDFW – The Dallas Zoo

        Lions and tigers and bears, oh my! The Dallas Zoo is certainly nothing short of an adventure. With 406 species of over 2000 animals, there’s so much to discover! Also, the Dallas Zoo is fun for the whole family; from splashing around in Raccoon Springs to petting animals in the Farmyard, the Lacerte Family Children’s Zoo is enjoyable for the young and young at heart. Looking for up-close animal encounters? Hand-feed the giraffes at the Diane and Hal Brierley Giraffe Ridge or meet over 40 animals at the Wild Encounters Stage! And these are just a few of the many exciting activities and exhibits that the Dallas Zoo has to offer! Well, what are you waiting for? Go check out the Dallas Zoo today!

For more information, please visit: http://www.dallaszoo.com

July 15, 2015 / C. King

#DiscoverDFW – Trinity Groves

    Looking for a hot, new place to grab a bite with some friends? Check out Trinity Groves! With over a dozen restaurants, this “dining theme park” is sure to have something for everyone to enjoy. It’s the perfect place to go when you can’t decide what to eat; from BBQ and blues to exotic Moroccan food, the variety is endless! Located at the foot of the Margaret Hunt Hill Bridge, 15-acre Trinity Groves is definitely worth a visit!

   For more information please visit: http://www.trinitygroves.com

July 8, 2015 / C. King

Tips for Saving Water Outside

Luscious green grass, healthy bushes, and beautiful gardens – we all want them! But how can we achieve having a nice green yard without wasting so much water, especially in this crazy, summer heat? Here are some tips!

  1. Check your sprinklers: Automatic sprinklers are the best; they keep your yard fresh and green on even the most sweltering summer days. However, sprinklers can also waste a lot of water – and money – if they aren’t positioned correctly! That’s why it is so important to make sure that your sprinklers are actually watering your yard and not your driveway. It’s also a good idea to routinely check your sprinkler system for any leaks.
  1. Watch when you water: Never water your lawn in the heat of the day; this will only waste water due to the increased amount of evaporation. It’s a better idea to water your lawn during the morning or evening since these are times where the sun is not fully up yet, thus decreasing the amount of evaporation. You may also consider getting a rain gauge to help you determine the amount of water your lawn is getting – an inch per week should be sufficient.
  1. Collect rainwater: Another great idea for water conservation is to invest in a rain barrel. Water collected in a rain barrel can be used in place of water from a sprinkler system, and it’s also very economical! You could even place a rain barrel so that it collects the runoff from your rain gutters! Speaking of gutters, redirecting the runoff from your gutters towards a specific spot in your garden is another efficient, water-saving option.
  1. Plant Mulch: Planting fresh mulch around trees, bushes, and in flowerbeds will provide lots of nutrients for the plants, and it will also hold moisture longer. Therefore reducing the amount of water needed to keep plants alive and well.

And these are just a few of the many ways we can save water outside. So, follow these tips and I guarantee you will save time, money, and water!