SOLD – 1500 Roseburg Ave. Modesto 3bd/2bth 1524sf Inground Pool

This move-in ready home has been updated throughout! Updates include a beautiful new kitchen and bathrooms, new paint inside and out, refinished original hardwood floors, new roof, new attic insulation, new ductwork, and much more! This home also features a large master suite and spacious backyard with new sod and a giant pool! Lots of room for the whole family! This home is in a well-established neighborhood with mature trees.

Interior Features


  • Inside Laundry Area, off Master Bath


  • Granite Counter
  • Dishwasher
  • Disposal
  • Built-in Microwave
  • Freestanding Gas Range
  • Free-standing Refrigerator

Misc. Rooms

  • Dining Room
  • Living Room

Floor Coverings

  • Carpet
  • Tile Floor
  • Wood Floors

Dining Room

  • Living/Dining Combo


  • Master Bath: Double Sinks
  • Shower Stall
  • Sitting Area
  • Tile in shower, marble counter tops
  • Window
  • Other Bath: Tub w/Shower Over
  • Window
  • Tile surround above tub, marble counter tops


  • Master Bedroom: 2 Closets
  • Outside Access

Eterior Features


  • Traditional

Pool Type

  • Pool On Lot
  • Built in Pool
  • Gunite Construction

# of Stories

  • 1


  • Raised Foundation


  • Facing Front

Lot Description

  • Level
  • Corner

Lot Size

  • 7,349 Sq. Ft.


  • Stucco

Roof Type

  • Composition Shingle


  • Landscaped Back
  • Fenced Back
  • Landscaped Front
  • Auto Sprinkler Front
  • Front Porch
  • Uncovered Patio



  • Central
  • Natural Gas


  • In & Connected


  • Central


  • Public Water District


Elementary School

  • Modesto City

H.S. District


Middle School

  • Modesto City

High School

  • Modesto City

Additional Information


  • Stanislaus


  • Cable TV available
  • Cable TV Installed
  • Gas Water Heater
  • Window Furnishings
  • All Public
  • Natural Gas

Cross Street

  • Kearney



Contingency Removal Date: What You Need To Know

The contingency removal date is the date defined in the offer when the buyer will remove contingencies and commit to a firm intent to close escrow. Standard real estate contingencies typically include the right to review title, inspect the property and review the seller’s disclosure packet.

The importance of the contingency removal date

When a buyer and seller agree on an offer, the buyer effectively has an option to purchase the property, subject to their satisfaction of various contingencies. Once the buyer removes contingencies through the delivery of a contingency removal form in California, or passing a contingency date in Florida, the option turns into a binding commitment.

Contract attorneys often point out that an offer to purchase real estate isn’t literally an option. Though they are right, in practice, an offer very much resembles an option. For this reason, the shorter the contingency period, the better for the seller because the sale has the opportunity to move forward more quickly. Conversely, the longer the contingency period, the better for the buyer because they have more time to make sure the house they’re pursuing is a good fit for them.

For this reason, the shorter the contingency period, the better for the seller because the sale has the opportunity to move forward more quickly. Conversely, the longer the contingency period, the better for the buyer because they have more time to make sure the house they’re pursuing is a good fit for them.

Differences per state

With the exception of California (see below), in all other states that Home Bay is in thus far (Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Illinois and Texas) the passage of the date itself removes the contingency.


Terminology also varies in each state. For instance in Texas they do not use the term “Inspection Contingency” rather they use term “Option Period” referring to the buyer’s right to terminate during the option period. A buyer typically pays the seller a non-refundable fee for the option period as well. The fee is typically around $100 but can vary.

In Florida they refer to the contingency as a “Inspection Period”.

In Georgia, they refer to the contingency as a “Inspection and Due Diligence Period”. There is an Option Payment for the Due Diligence Period that defaults in the contact to $10.

Details on contingency removal in California

In California, the contingency removal date is typically 17 days from acceptance. Acceptance occurs on the date that the buyer and seller agree on offer terms, contingencies included. As mentioned at the beginning of this post, there are a number of different contingencies that are present in most real estate offers. One of the most common is called a loan contingency. This is the clause that states your buyer’s offer is contingent on being able to secure financing for your house. It’s quite common for a loan contingency to extend beyond than 17 days and for it to have a separate removal date.

If certain criteria are met, it’s also possible to have a contingency period that’s less than 17 days.

You can have a shorter contingency period if:

  • The seller completes all disclosures prior to listing
  • The seller has a general home inspection prior to listing
  • The seller shares a completed disclosure packet and an inspection report with the buyer before the buyer submits an offer

California’s contingency removal form

In California, the contingency removal date itself is not what actually removes contingencies. Rather, it’s a buyer’s submission of the contingency removal form. If the contingency removal date is March 1, 2015 and no form has been submitted, that day can come and go and contingencies will still exist. Contingencies will only be removed when the buyer submits the removal form; and that can happen before, on or after the removal date. Once the removal form is submitted, the sale can move forward.

Essentially, in California, the removal date can be thought of as the deadline for buyer to submit the removal form. If the buyer fails to submit the form by the date outlined in the contract, then the seller can take steps related to a buyer breach. This can include serving a notice to perform or seeking to cancel escrow.

Source: ~ Image:

Getting Ready for Spring

Winter seems endless, but spring is only a couple of weeks away and it won’t be long before you’re back in your garden.  Spring is the time for cleaning up and planting seeds, but if you want your garden to look beautiful come mid-summer then you need to prepare now.  Here are some spring cleanup tips that need to be done before you plant.  Getting ready for spring is your first chance to get your hands in the dirt and start making your garden beautiful again.

Cleaning Up the Garden

First things first, you need to clean out the garden.  If you have debris left in there from the winter it is time to clean it up and throw it out.  Don’t forget that it isn’t just your garden but your lawn too.  If you have leaves and twigs then you can use it for compost.  You can dig into the soil in the flower beds to make sure it doesn’t get hard.  If you aren’t able to do that yourself you might want to bring in a landscape company to do it for you.

Clean Out the Greenhouse

If you are fortunate enough to have a greenhouse that will also need to be cleaned up too.  Clean out the containers of plant matter and get them ready to be used again.  The floors will need to be swept out, this helps to make sure you don’t have any unwanted pests taking up residence.  You want your greenhouse to be perfect when the time comes to plant.

Start Shopping for Seeds and Bulbs

If wait until the last minute to head to the local garden center to grab your seeds and bulbs you may find them all gone, so start early.  You could end up missing out on all the beautiful colors in your garden come summer.  Double check the bulbs to make sure that they are in good condition so that when you plant they will take.  Don’t wait too long or you could end up missing your opportunity.

Fix Your Gates and Fences

If you like the plants in your garden divided up then you need to make sure that your fencing is in good condition.  You should do it for aesthetic reasons as well.  If the fencing is made of wood make sure that it has been treated and it is not being eaten by termites.  For the main fence around your yard make sure all the latches are working and repaint where you need it.

Check Your Tools

If your gardening tools sat outside or in the shed all winter it is time to get them out and make sure they are ready to be uses.  Clean and sharpen where it is needed and replace those that need replacing.  Have all the right tools before you start planting.

Get the Compost Ready

Compost and manure are essential to every beautiful garden and you’re going to need lots of it.  If you can avoid using chemical fertilizers or pesticides that can do harm to your plants or your family.

Source: ~ By: Rodney ~ Image:

Tips for Preparing for an Open House

Opinions about whether to hold an open house vary greatly across the country. You’ll hear real estate agents flatly refuse to hold open listings because they view them as a wasted marketing effort, or they’ll say open houses are just a tool to find the agent new clients. There is some truth to that reasoning, but open houses are a great strategy to sell houses. Consider also that many listing agents don’t want to give up their Sunday afternoons to sit an open house and talk to strangers.

Although not all homes are candidates for an open house due to location, condition, or competition in the marketplace, you won’t know how much buyer traffic you will draw until you try. Exposure to potential buyers and to individuals who will talk about your home to others is almost always worthwhile.

Best Time for an Open House

  • In many communities, Sunday afternoon is best.
  • Two hours is typically the minimum, but some are held open four hours, for example, from 1:00 to 5:00 p.m.
  • Some agents do “blitzes,” and trade off shifts, holding homes open from early morning until late evening.
  • Schedule your open house to avoid conflicts with holidays, community celebrations, or special events such as the Super Bowl.
  • Check the weather forecast, too, because cold or rainy days tend to make people stay home.

At Least 7 Days Before Your First Open House

Before my sellers finish signing the listing agreement, invariably they will ask if I’m going to hold their home open that weekend. After the decision to sell is made, most sellers are eager to get started. However, the home needs to be in prime condition first. Here are few things to do before holding your first open house:

  • Host a broker preview. Even if your home is not listed with a brokerage, if you are willing to pay a selling agent a commission, you can invite agents and brokers to preview your home. Agents can give you valuable feedback about how your home shows and whether your home pricing will meet buyer expectations.
  • Move some furniture into storage. Sometimes sellers don’t want to cooperate with home staging. Excuses I have heard are “my furniture is too valuable to move twice,” or, “I think the rooms look lovely arranged this way.” But smart sellers prepare a home for sale and move at least one piece of furniture out of every room. It makes the space look larger and more inviting to buyers—the people whose opinion matters.
  • Remove items not included in the sale. Telling a buyer she cannot have your dishwasher because it’s too expensive to leave behind or that the ceiling fan does not stay with the house because your father gave it to you serves only to make the buyer demand it. If buyers don’t see it, they won’t want it.
  • Make arrangements for your pets to leave the house. Selling a home where petslive is difficult enough without advertising the fact that pets live there. Call a family member or friend and ask if they could take care of your pets for a few hours. Pets are also a distraction during an open house, and you want buyers to admire your home, not your cockatoo.
  • Part of your home marketing should include printing four-color flyers or brochures promoting your home. Make sure to include photographs, specs, and pertinent information such as the price because it’s easy for buyers to forget particulars.

48 to 72 Hours Before Your First Open House

Clean and scour the house top-to-bottom. Vacuum cobwebs from corners, wipe windowsills, and wash the windows, inside and out. Forget preconceived notions about cleanliness—pay attention to small details and concentrate on making the home appear sterile.

  • Buff surfaces, appliances, and floors to a gleaming shine.
  • Launder and fluff bedding, towels, and rugs.
  • Touch up spots on the walls.
  • Sweep out the garage.
  • Prune bushes, deadhead flowers, clean the sidewalks, and mow the lawn.

24 Hours Before Your First Open House

Most of your work should be completed by now, and any anxiety that is sometimes caused by last-minute chores should dissipate. At this point, your home sparkles and glitters. You may be thinking to yourself that the house looks too nice to sell! Consider if you are truly committed to selling, because if you’re going to experience seller’s remorse, you may as well work through that process before your first open.

  • Open all the windows to air out the house.
  • Bake or pick-up treats for your open house guests.
  • Give every room the “once over,” by standing in the doorways and scrutinizing the view.
  • Set out cards that house hunters can fill out to give you buyer feedback.
  • Arrange flowers in attractive vases and place in appropriate places throughout your home to add color and floral fragrance.

When you’re finished, go out to dinner and reward yourself. Dining out has an added benefit too; at least you won’t be tempted to mess up the house!

Source: ~ By:   ~ Image: 21online Asset Library

How Much House Can I Afford?

Debt to Income Ratio: Follow the 36% rule

Most financial advisers agree that people should spend no more than 36 percent of their gross income when determining how much house you can afford. The 36% rule is the tried-and-true home mortgage affordability tip that you should take into account when establishing a baseline for what you can afford to pay every month.

Depending on where you live, your annual income could be more than enough to cover a mortgage or it could fall short. Knowing what you can afford can help you take financially sound next steps. The last thing you want to do is jump into a 30-year home loan that’s too expensive for your budget, even if you can find a lender willing to write the mortgage.

Set a budget

The most basic research on homebuying will inevitably lead you to this general fact: houses are one of, if not the most, expensive purchases you’ll make in your lifetime. There aren’t many other opportunities to drop hundreds of thousands of dollars in one sitting… or over 30 years.

This is why setting a house budget is crucial in the homebuying process. Even more modest purchases, like a new car, require examining the bank account, debt and income situation. With a home purchase, this kind of serious financial evaluation is everything if you are to have any hope of success.

Calculate the Cost

NOTE: Go to to use the Calculator.

If your monthly income is $5,000 per month then your mortgage payment shouldn’t exceed $1,400 per month. The calculator… allows you to plug in all the essential data to produce a budget estimate for how much house you can afford based on your income, down payment, and other expenses.

How much of my income should I spend on my house?

Financial experts generally advise that no more than 28 percent of your gross income should go to a mortgage payment. This means if, after expenses and debt, your monthly income is $5,000 per month then your mortgage payment should not be more than $1,400 per month. That said, everyone has different financial goals and lifestyle needs. Some folks choose to underspend on their house and use the extra money for investments or travel, while others might need more space due to family size. Be sure to factor in your long-term goals so you don’t get stuck with more house (and mortgage) than you need.

How much income do I need to qualify for a mortgage?

Many factors go into a lender’s decision to give you a mortgage. Among them are your credit scoredebt-to-income ratio, employment history and income. Qualifying income is not just employment salary but other sources such as alimony, royalties, Social Security and trust income. Lenders will tally total income, subtract your debt and use the remainder to determine how much you can afford. Lenders generally use the 28/36 rule for underwriting. This rule states that a household should spend 28 percent or less of their gross income on total housing expenses, including things like HOA fees, home insurance and property taxes. Likewise, total household debt — which includes everything from your mortgage to credit card bills and student loans, shouldn’t exceed 36 percent.

Source: ~ By:  ~ Image: 21online Asset Library

Report: Homeowners 8% Richer Over the Past Year

Home equity continued to increase in the fourth quarter of 2018, with more homeowners profiting over rising home prices. U.S. homeowners with a mortgage saw their equity rise by 8.1 percent year over year in the fourth quarter of 2018, according to CoreLogic’s Home Equity Report, released Thursday.

The average homeowner has gained $9,700 in home equity between the fourth quarter of 2017 and the fourth quarter of 2018, the report showed. Western states saw some of the most significant annual gains. Nevada homeowners, for example, saw an increase of $29,400 in home equity over the past year, and Hawaii homeowners saw gains of about $26,900.

“As home prices rise, significantly more people are choosing to remodel, repair or upgrade their existing homes,” said Frank Martell, president and CEO of CoreLogic. “The increase in home equity over the past several years provides homeowners with the means to finance home remodels and repairs. With rates still ultra-low by historical standards, home-equity loans provide a low-cost method to finance home-improvement spending. These expenditures are expected to rise 5 percent in 2019.”

The number of homes with a mortgage in negative equity—where the homeowner’s loan balance is higher than the home’s current worth—was at 2.2 million, or 4.2 percent of all mortgaged properties in the fourth quarter.

However, with predictions of a 4.5 percent increase in home prices over the next year, about 350,000 homeowners could be lifted from being underwater and restored to positive equity, says Frank Nothaft, CoreLogic’s chief economist.

Source: ~ Image: CoreLogic

30 Day Spring Cleaning Checklist

Don’t know where to begin with spring cleaning? You’re not alone. Most people never begin to spring clean their home because they truly don’t know where to start. But spring cleaning is actually pretty simple. The process of decluttering and then cleaning each space in your home is easy. Each task is quick. The tough part? Knowing where to begin.

That’s where this 30-day checklist comes in. This spring cleaning plan outlines a set of tasks to help you declutter and clean every nook and cranny in your home.

This checklist will keep you moving around your home from room-to-room. This goes against traditional advice to work on one room until it’s done and move on. But with a big project like spring cleaning your entire home, the impulse to give up when you get overwhelmed, bored, or complacent is too strong. Tackling a few quick projects each day ensures you will stay motivated. And you can check each task off once you’ve completed it.

And by the way, most of these projects work in any other season too. So you can follow this plan each season or as many times a year as you need.

What You Need

Before you get started, it’s important to be prepared with some boxes. Here’s what you need:

Box 1: Donate/Consign. Anything you want to donate or consign goes into these boxes. If the items will not fit in a box (say, a couch) then keep a running list.

Box 2: Repair. While you’re decluttering and cleaning, you will come across items that need to be mended, fixed and repaired. Place those items in this box until you’re ready to work on getting them fixed. Don’t let repairs sidetrack you until you’re done cleaning.

Box 3: Put Away Box. Say you’re cleaning out a drawer in your kitchen and you find a pair of earrings in it. “What….how did those get in there?” you say. Do not stop decluttering that drawer to go put your earrings away. Resist the urge! Continue working on the drawer and put the earrings in your Put Away Box. Once you’re done with the drawer, take that box and return everything in it to it’s rightful storage place.

Also recommended: either a hardcopy notebook or a file on your computer to keep a running list of big projects that you want to get to eventually. They could be things like finally organizing your basement or attic or storing all of your old photos. As you work around your house these projects will pop up. Don’t let them distract you from the task at hand. Keep a list and once spring cleaning is over, make a plan to tackle them.

Day 1: Dust

Take a broom to the corners of the ceiling to catch any cobwebs in your kitchen, living room, bedrooms and bathrooms. Then dust, then sweep or vacuum the floors.

Launder the drapes in your living room, dining room and bedrooms. They may have been collecting dust for years. If you can’t wash them on site, bring them to the dry cleaners.

Dust your books, and the knick-knacks on your bookshelves.

Day 2: Put Away Seasonal Items

If the weather has changed, switch out your clothing for the season.

Clean every mirror in your home including bathrooms, bedrooms and entryways.

Sort out your under-bed storage boxes. Is there anything in them to donate? If so, add them to your donation box.

Day 3: Clean Out Your Medicine Cabinet

Declutter your linen closet. Pull out the old towels and sheet sets you no longer use and put them into your donation box.

Throw away expired cosmetics and medicines. Toss any liquid makeup over three months old and any powdered makeup over a year old. Note: Toss medicine into the trash. Do not flush it or dump it into your sink.

Day 4: Clean Out Your Shoes

Sort through all your shoes, and if any need repairing, get them ready to take to the cobbler.

Organize your emergency supplies–make sure you’re stocked with first aid necessities in the bathroom, and safety pins, stain remover and the like in your laundry room.

Switch scented candles, hand soaps, etc. from winter scents to fresh spring ones.

Day 5: Clean Appliances

Clean your appliances, including their plugs, tops, bottoms, sides and any accessories that came with them.

Remove odd socks from your sock drawer, and either toss them or use them as cleaning rags.

Go through a bureau or dresser (yours, your child’s) and pull out items of clothing you haven’t worn in a year and have no plans to wear again. Put them in your donation box.

Day 6: Clean Your Car

Clean your car. The easiest way to do this is to bring it to a car wash. Use their ShopVac or other high powered vacuum to vacuum inside of the car. Declutter while you go. Then wipe down the interior with Formula 409 and a rag. Finally, let them hand wash or machine wash the outside of your car. Depending on your time and budget, you could also just pay the service to detail the interior and exterior of your car for you.

if you don’t have a car, clean your coffee table, kitchen sink and bathroom sink.

Day 7: Deep Clean Your Fridge and Cabinets

Deep clean your fridge and freezer by removing all shelves, racks and storage items and washing them in your bathtub. Toss any old or unused food items. Soak your icecube trays. Wipe down the sides of the fridge and freezer. Then put everything back in. If you’re afraid of food spoiling, use a cooler ot keep your frozen items frozen while you work.

Check the backs of kitchen cabinets for any old food that can be thrown out.  

Day 8: Toss Clutter in the Bathroom

Toss small throw rugs and bathroom mats in the wash.

Clean and declutter your bathroom shelves and drawers. You need to take everything out to do this. Then declutter, clean and put everything back.

Toss grubby pet toys. (Your pet won’t miss them.)

Day 9: Clean Winter Clothing

Wash your couch covers, pillowcases and other linens used around the house.

Wash your winter gloves, hats, and scarves, and pack them up for next year.

Shred unimportant but sensitive documents, and/or scan important papers and shred the originals if they don’t need to be saved.

Take your winter coats to the dry cleaner.

Day 10: Clean Your Electronics

Clean your remote controls.

Clean your phones, both mobile and landlines, Kindles, tablets and computers.

Clean the undersides of every chair and table in your home, then vacuum and mop the floors around them.

Polish silver jewelry, silverware and any other items that have become tarnished.

Day 11: Clean Out Junk

Wash your garbage cans and recycling bins. Either do this outside or in your bathroom. Then scrub your bathtub.

Wash reusable water bottles and water filtering pitchers. Then change the filters.

Organize your junk drawer—no, it shouldn’t really be full of junk.

Tend to your plants—remove dead leaves, toss old flowers in vases, etc.

Day 12: Clean Your Oven

Clean your oven including cook top, underside of hood and front of hood. At the same time, clean your microwave and your toaster oven.

Wash your ironing board cover and throw in your tea towels and kitchen towels.

Wash your gardening gloves, and rinse and wipe off the shoes you wear to do yard work.

Day 13: Clean Your Windows

Wash your windows (or hire a professional to do them). Remove the screens and vacuum them using the handheld attachment on your vacuum cleaner, then soak them in soapy water before rinsing.  

Use dish soap diluted in water and a microfiber cloth to wipe down your windows. Then spray vinegar diluted in water and wipe the windows with a clean towel to dry them.

Dust your windowsills and the frame and touch up any chipped paint around the sill.

Day 14: Toss Old Papers, Magazines, & Newspapers

Recycle old magazines, newspapers and packing material. If you haven’t read a magazine after a month, you are not going to read it. If you haven’t read a newspaper after a week, recycle it!

Clean out the cabinets under your sinks (kitchen and bathroom). Take everything out, clean the backs, sides and bottom of the cabinet. Dispose of any unused cleaning products, and place everything back under the sink.  

Organize old paper or plastic shopping bags that are lying around in one location so you can reuse them.

Day 15: Declutter Your Basement

Wash your makeup brushes and hair brushes.

Clean the floors of your closets. Declutter shoes and boots, toss any unused storage solutions.

Declutter your basement shelves or storage areas. Resist the urge to decide to “organize the whole basement.” You don’t have enough time to do that andspring clean the rest of your home. Just stick to cleaning out the shelves and storage areas by tossing items you don’t use or need.

Day 16: Clean Out Your Plumbing

Clean every drain in your home (bathroom and kitchen) using this method: Pour boiling hot water down your drain, add in baking soda, followed by vinegar. Then cover the drain with a plug. Follow with another pour of boiling water.

Throw out expired or questionable food in your pantry, cabinets and drawers. Do NOT try to donate expired food.

Day 17: Switch Out Seasonal Decor

Remove any winter decorations still hanging around, including throw pillows, candle holders, throw blankets and vases.  

Sort through your old CDs and VHS tapes. Do you really need to hang on to them?

Day 18: Vacuum Under Furniture

Move the couch and any heavy chairs, and clean and vacuum underneath them. Then use the handheld attachment to vacuum the couch and chairs themselves.

Wash your heavy sweaters, and store them until next winter.

Wash bathrobes and slippers.

Day 19: Clean Your Fireplace and Garage

If you have (and use) a fireplace, clean it out.

Declutter your garage and throw out any items you haven’t touched since last spring.

Open the windows and air out the house in the rooms you don’t use often.

Day 20: Clean Out Coin Jars

Go through your drawers and toss broken items like dead pens – and other useless items you can throw out right now. Throw out aging nail files, matches and other small items that no longer function well.

Take that stash of coins to a coin machine or the bank.

Day 21: Sort Your Mugs and Glasses

Declutter your cups, mugs, and glasses. Donate the ones you’ve decide to get rid of, and wash and put away the rest.

Clean out your front or hall closet.

Replace old kitchen sponges and rubber gloves.

Replace your old toothbrushes.

Day 22: Organize Bags

Organize your bags, including backpacks, briefcases and suitcases. Declutter the insides, then clean them and store them.

Dust the screens of televisions and computers – and while you’re at it, clean your keyboard.

Day 23: Repair Broken or Damaged Clothing

Take any clothing items that need to be repaired to the tailor. If you don’t know where to go for a good tailor, ask your dry cleaner. They will either know a good tailor or have one on staff.

Take any shoes or boots that need repair work done to your local cobbler.

Replace your old shower curtain liner with a new one

Day 24: Organize Hobby and Craft Supplies

Organize your hobby supplies. This can include crafting supplies, board games, books or sporting equipment.

Sweep your porch, patio or front steps.

Day 25: Get the Kids Involved in the Cleaning

If you have young children, teach them how to clean something in their room, and make that their chore from now on.

Go through your books (including kids’ books). Are there any you want to donate to the library?

Day 26: Dust and Vacuum Some More

Dust your blinds, then vacuum or collect dust with your dust mop.

Dust around your stairs and bannister, then vacuum.

Wipe down your baseboards and other molding where dust tends to collect. Then vacuum.

Day 27: Wash the Walls

Wash any interior walls that look stained, then touch up chipped or discolored paint. Make a list of anything you can’t do yourself and will need to call in a professional for.

Tackle that one spot (e.g. bedroom chair, hall closet, bottom drawer) where you throw all the stuff you don’t want to deal with. You have three choices with items left here: store them, recycle them, repair them or toss them.

Day 28: Wash Your Linens

Wash your bed linens, including any mattress covers, duvet covers, pillow liners, throw blankets and throw pillows.

If you have a guest room and the bed hasn’t been used in a while, strip the bed down to the mattress and wash everything including mattress pad and duvet cover.

Day 29: Sell or Donate Unwanted Items

Did you keep a list of things to sell and consign? Now is the day to either take your items to the consignment store or photograph your items to sell them on eBay, Craigslist or any of the places you can sell clothing online.

Day 30: Throw It Away!

  • Take a trip to the dump. Gather up any larger broken items you’ve been holding onto, and either throw them away or take them to be repaired. Decide, don’t slide. If they’ve been broken for awhile, you’re not going to fix them. Dump them.

Source: ~ By: ~ Image:

How much do solar panels save in 2019?

Variance in energy usage and energy cost around our great country, and even from home to home, mean that:

  • statistics on how much solar energy will save the average house are almost meaningless to a homeowner (although for those looking for solar savings stats see table below); and
  • calculating how much solar panels will save for your home requires knowledge of your power usage, your local electricity rates, local solar production and any federal, state and local solar incentives (such as the 30% federal solar tax credit) that affects the upfront cost of a solar system where you live.
Below we have included a link to a solar savings calculator that calculates how many solar panels you need to power your house, how much they will cost, your solar payback period and both monthly and lifetime solar savings. It was originally developed with funding from the Department of Energy.
We have included it below because it is the only available online solar savings calculator that uses the specific electric rates of your utility to properly calculate savings. Most others just assume a national electricity cost and so produce very inaccurate results.

How much do solar panels save the average home?

However, for folks that like statistics:

The average annual electricity consumption for a U.S. residential utility customer is 10,766 kilowatt hours (kWh) per annum, an average of 897 kWh per month. Multiply that by the national average electricity rate as of November 2017 ($0.1301 per kWh) and you’ll find that the typical American family is spending over $1,401 a year on electricity. This means that if each home was to install enough solar panels to cover their electricity bill then on average the savings from installing a residential solar system in America in 2018 would run to $1,401 per year.

However what we all really want to know is how much are the solar savings per month after the solar repayments, and how much do these savings add up to over 25 years. The solar savings for a typical home in each state are listed in the table below.

Are solar power savings real and what is avoided cost?

When we talk solar savings we are talking avoided cost. That is, the amount you would have spent on utility electricity had you not installed a solar power system on your home to provide the same power. And yes….these savings are very real. In fact, the extremely high likelihood that you will continue to need to consume electricity at your house means that solar savings are considered a very bankable investment return.

However, the first step to working out solar savings is to first understand how much electricity you use now, how much that costs you and how much electricity you are likely to use in the future.

Here is a list of the average saving that are likely to be achieved by an average US homeowner in each of the top 50 solar cities in America if they installed a 6kW solar power system on their home (a typical size of residential solar energy system in 2018.

Average monthly and lifetime solar savings by state and city in 2018

City State Average cost of Utility power $/kWh Annual Production of a 6 kW system Savings Month 1 25 year profit (savings less cost) Top rated solar companies in your city
New York New York 0.13 6882 $73.41 $23,670.01 View companies
Los Angeles California 0.17 9066 $128.44 $41,413.16 View companies
Chicago Illinois 0.12 6474 $64.74 $20,875.06 View companies
Houston Texas 0.10 7770 $64.75 $20,878.28 View companies
Phoenix Arizona 0.13 9366 $101.47 $32,716.83 View companies
Philadelphia Pennsylvania 0.13 7140 $77.35 $24,941.08 View companies
San Antonio Texas 0.10 8094 $67.45 $21,748.88 View companies
San Diego California 0.17 9024 $127.84 $41,221.30 View companies
Dallas Texas 0.10 8220 $68.50 $22,087.45 View companies
San Jose California 0.17 8694 $123.17 $39,713.88 View companies
Austin Texas 0.10 8154 $67.95 $21,910.10 View companies
Jacksonville Florida 0.11 7416 $67.98 $21,919.78 View companies
San Francisco California 0.17 8922 $126.40 $40,755.37 View companies
Columbus Ohio 0.11 6750 $61.88 $19,951.25 View companies
Indianapolis Indiana 0.12 7068 $70.68 $22,790.38 View companies
Fort Worth Texas 0.10 8544 $71.20 $22,958.05 View companies
Charlotte North Carolina 0.11 7962 $72.99 $23,533.61 View companies
Seattle Washington 0.10 5664 $47.20 $15,219.38 View companies
Denver Colorado 0.10 8682 $74.30 $23,958.74 View companies
El Paso Texas 0.10 9660 $80.50 $25,956.78 View companies
Washington District of Columbia 0.12 7620 $76.20 $24,570.27 View companies
Boston Massachusetts 0.17 6768 $95.88 $30,915.98 View companies
Detroit Michigan 0.15 7020 $87.75 $28,294.50 View companies
Nashville Tennessee 0.11 7686 $70.46 $22,717.83 View companies
Memphis Tennessee 0.11 7716 $70.73 $22,806.50 View companies
Portland Oregon 0.11 6078 $55.72 $17,964.99 View companies
Oklahoma City Oklahoma 0.10 8430 $70.25 $22,651.73 View companies
Las Vegas Nevada 0.13 9672 $104.78 $33,785.73 View companies
Louisville Kentucky 0.09 7386 $55.40 $17,861.81 View companies
Baltimore Maryland 0.14 7632 $89.04 $28,710.46 View companies
Milwaukee Wisconsin 0.15 6576 $82.20 $26,504.94 View companies
Albuquerque New Mexico 0.13 9528 $103.22 $33,282.72 View companies
Tucson Arizona 0.13 9498 $102.90 $33,177.93 View companies
Fresno California 0.17 8694 $123.17 $39,713.88 View companies
Sacramento California 0.17 8538 $120.96 $39,001.27 View companies
Mesa Arizona 0.13 9540 $103.35 $33,324.64 View companies
Kansas City Missouri 0.08 8004 $53.36 $17,205.64 View companies
Atlanta Georgia 0.12 7770 $77.70 $25,053.94 View companies
Long Beach California 0.17 9012 $127.67 $41,166.49 View companies
Colorado Springs Colorado 0.10 9270 $79.34 $25,581.38 View companies
Raleigh North Carolina 0.11 8130 $74.53 $24,030.18 View companies
Miami Florida 0.11 8040 $73.70 $23,764.16 View companies
Virginia Beach Virginia 0.10 8052 $67.10 $21,636.03 View companies
Omaha Nebraska 0.11 8172 $74.91 $24,154.32 View companies
Oakland California 0.17 8646 $122.49 $39,494.61 View companies
Minneapolis Minnesota 0.13 7788 $84.37 $27,204.64 View companies
Tulsa Oklahoma 0.10 8172 $68.10 $21,958.47 View companies
Arlington Texas 0.10 8136 $67.80 $21,861.74 View companies
New Orleans Louisiana 0.09 7278 $54.59 $17,600.63 View companies
Wichita Kansas 0.12 8388 $83.88 $27,046.64 View companies


  • Cost of utility power is an average of existing rate plans taken from the most commonly chosen utility provider in that state.
  • Forecast solar production of a 6kWp system assumes installation at an optimal tilt and azimuth, with typical insolation conditions based on the TMY2 data set and no external shading.
  • 25-year savings forecast includes an expected inflation in cost of utility power of 3% per annum.
  • The solar system is purchased for cash and owned, so the full value of avoided utility payments is held by the homeowner.

How reliable are solar savings estimates?

Solar is a long term investment and so calculating the long-term savings that you can expect from installing solar panels for your home is crucial when determining whether or not to go solar.

Forecasting residential solar savings can be more difficult that it first appears and forecasts are inherently uncertain. We here at SolarReviews are passionate about solar and renewable energies and hope that you all decide to make the investment for your home and for our planet.

However, we are also committed to consumer education and giving people valid information on which to make choices. We believe it is important that you are aware of the limitations of estimates of future solar savings when deciding to purchase solar.

What makes forecasting solar savings more difficult than other estimates?

Solar is a very long lasting product with minimum system life of at least 25 years. It is difficult to predict anything with certainty going out 25 years.

What makes this more difficult is that when calculating dollar savings we need to be accurate both as to the solar production in kilowatt hours (kwh) and also what the economic value of that production will be going out 10, 20 and 25 years (at least).

The solar energy production side of solar savings forecasts are relatively predictable and solar panels production in each climatic area is relatively well known and understood. A lot of great work has been done by the National Renewable Energy Laboratories and their PVWatts solar production calculator is considered highly accurate.

What is more difficult is forecasting the economic value of solar out as far as 25 years. The need to get this figure right to provide potential consumers with accurate figures about their savings, investment return and payback period for solar is paramount as slight variances in this inflation rate have large effects on these numbers. The assumed rate of utility inflation is a crucial ingredient in generating accurate solar savings forecasts.

What is a reasonable assumption for utility electricity price escalation and its effect on solar profitability over the next 25 years?


The average price of residential electricity in America


Image source: Institute For Energy Research

The Institute of Energy Research published research showing that the average price of residential electricity in America from 2005 until 2015 actually rose by 34%. So in annualized terms, this equates to a simple rise of 3.4% per year or a compound rise of 2.7% per year.

But is this a realistic assumption we can use to justify the assertion that utility prices will continue to rise at these rates. I think it is.. and here is why. During the same period as covered by the image above the Institute of Energy Research also reported that gas prices, the fuel used to create a lot of our electricity, actually fell 60%. If gas prices had stayed flat over this period then utility power price inflation would have run at more like 5%. For this reason, I am quite comfortable about solar companies using an assumed electricity price inflation rate of 3.5 % for the coming 25 years, although I acknowledge it is an educated guess at best.

There is certainly also a case to be made for the proposition that utility rate inflation may actually be higher than this as governments increasingly become aware of the urgency of tackling climate change and put in place more and more policies to subsidize renewable energy. The latest climate reporting from the four most respected meteorological agencies in the world, including NASA and the Japanese Environment Ministry show that the globe has already warmed by around 1.8 degrees Fahrenheit since 1980, or about .7%. It is thought a global warming of 4% will lead to an extinction of human life on earth. There seems to be a bit of a media disinterest in climate change at the moment but the urgency of the issue will come back more and more into the public consciousness as we start to see more and more physical manifestations of climate change.

Source: ~ By: Andrew Sendy ~ Image:

2019 Real Estate Forecast: What Home Buyers, Sellers And Investors Can Expect

There’s no doubt about it: the 2018 housing market has seen its ups and downs.

The year started with sky-high home prices, historically low mortgage rates and a definitive upper hand for sellers. In recent months though, home price growth has faltered, rates have risen to their highest point in nearly eight years, and favor has started to shift from seller to buyer.

Will these trends continue? Will housing experience the same wild ride in the new year? Here’s what experts predict will happen in 2019 real estate market:

Mortgage rates will continue rising.

“Despite steady climbing for the past two years, mortgage rates remain lower than they were during most of the recession and below average for the type of strong economic growth we’ve been experiencing. That will change in 2019, as the 30-year, fixed rate mortgage reaches 5.8% — territory not seen since the dark days of 2008 when rates were racing downward in response to the housing crisis.” — Aaron Terrazas, director of economic research for Zillow

Millennials will keep buying homes — despite those rising rates.

“The housing market in 2019 will be characterized by continued rising mortgage rates and surging millennial demand. Rising rates, by making housing less affordable, will likely deter certain potential homebuyers from the market. On the other hand, the largest cohort of millennials will be turning 29 next year, entering peak household formation and home-buying age, and contributing to the increase in first-time buyer demand.” — Odeta Kushi, senior economist for First American

“Millennials will continue to make up the largest segment of buyers next year, accounting for 45% of mortgages, compared to 17% of Boomers, and 37% of Gen Xers. While first-time buyers will struggle next year, older Millennial move-up buyers will have more options in the mid-to upper-tier price point and will make up the majority of Millennials who close in 2019. Looking forward, 2020 is expected to be the peak Millennial home buying year with the largest cohort of millennials turning 30 years old. Millennials are also likely to make up the largest share of home buyers for the next decade as their housing needs adjust over time.” — Danielle Hale, chief 

Source: ~ By: Aly J. Yale ~ Image:

Fun Activities for Families to Enjoy in February

Kids are often restless in the heart of winter. Besides the onset of cabin fever due to inclement weather, many months are left in the school year. Count down the minutes until the spring thaw arrives and try these fun things for families to do together in February.

Enjoy Winter Activities Together

Depending on where you live, you may have lots of opportunities to enjoy outdoor winter activities such as sledding, snowshoeing, ice skating, skiing, snowboarding, or simply building snow forts and snow sculptures. If snow and ice are rare in your you’ll want to capitalize on every chance or plan a short getaway to where you can play in the cold.

Play Indoors

Staying in the house doesn’t mean the kids have to park it in front of the TV or video game screen. There are plenty of indoor activities for kids that involve active games, pretend play, and creativity exercises. You can also take the kids on a family fun outing to indoor sports such as bowling, indoor roller rinks, and indoor skating rinks.

Plan a Trip

Nothing will warm your family up quicker than planning for a special getaway together. Spring break is just a few weeks away, so now’s the perfect time to spend some time brainstorming with your family about where they would like to go when the weather gets warmer. Make vacation planning a family activity, look at all of the fun attractions you can visit online, and take advantage of early bird deals by booking now.

Valentine’s Day Fun

Celebrate Valentine’s Day with your children all month long. Create Valentine’s crafts, such as the I Love You photo collage or the I Ruff You foam dog. Plan a Valentine’s Day party, make party supplies with your printer, and play Valentine’s Day-themed party games.

Presidents’ Day

Slip in a history lesson on this holiday. Teach kids about Presidents’ Day, the first federal holiday established in honor of an American citizen, with fun activities that teach your children all about this important day.

American History Month

Speaking of history, February is also American History Month. Find out what happened on this date in history to teach your kids something new today.

Black History Month

Learn about Harriet Tubman, Martin Luther King, Jr., Rosa Parks and other key people who made a difference. Even younger children can embark on this learning journey through age-appropriate printables and activities.

American Heart Month

Keep your family fit during American Heart Month. Teach kids how the heart works, learn about the heart’s anatomy, and gauge your family’s target heart rates. Plan family workout activities to get the recommended amount of physical activity for heart health.

National Children’s Dental Health Month

Take care of those teeth. Children’s Dental Health Month is the perfect time to re-examine your child’s dental habits. Whether you’re preparing for your child’s first visit to the dentist or you’re teaching older kids to brush and floss properly, there are plenty of children’s dental printables and activities to make your job easier.

National Snack Food Month

Use February’s National Snack Food Month to teach your kids about healthy eating habits. Start by preparing healthy snacks kids will love or shake things up with some healthy smoothie recipes kids will love.

International Friendship Month

Celebrate International Friendship Month by helping kids show their appreciation for their friends. Kids can write thank you cards to their pals or you can help them make new friends.

National Cherry Month

Step into the kitchen and cook with your kids. Prepare some cherry recipes together for a bushel of fun. You won’t have any seasonally ripe cherries in the house (those will come in the summer). The month was established due to the legend about George Washington and the cherry tree, and serves to show that cherry products are available year-round. You can get creative with a cherry blossom craft as well.

National Embroidery Month

Take up a new hobby with your kids. Learn embroidery together for some quality one-on-one time.

National Grapefruit Month

The fruit that is packed with vitamin C gets its own time in the spotlight during the month of February. Cut open a grapefruit and share it with your children as a snack or as part of your family’s breakfast.

National Wild Bird Feeding Month

Here’s a fun hobby to enjoy with your children. Get started birding during National Wild Bird Feeding Month. Follow a few simple bird watching tips for beginners to get the most out of your family’s new hobby.

Responsible Pet Owners’ Month

Teach kids how to be responsible pet owners, whether you’re a pet parent to a dog, cat or a gerbil. Choosing the right family pet is the first step. Whether you’re showing your kids how to take care of dogs properly, teaching them how to bond with cats or helping them learn about exotic pets, being a responsible pet owner is a lifelong commitment.

Source: ~ By: Apryl Duncan ~Image: pixabay