Saturday, November 22, 2014

5 Ways to Pay It Forward

7 Photography Tricks You Didn't Know Your Smartphone Can Do

Just when you thought you needed to purchase external devices such as fisheye lens or tripods, now, there’s an alternative solution! In this video, the guys at COOPH demonstrate some creative smartphone photography tips and tricks that you can do with your iPhone 5S.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

REALTORS®: Six-Month Single Family Home Outlook “Moderate”

REALTORS’® confidence about the outlook for the next six months for single-family homes is still generally “moderate” in many states, according to the September  REALTORS® Confidence Index Survey: 

The graphs below show a measure of REALTORS’® confidence for the single family residential market on a state-by-state basis.[1]  An index above 50 indicates that there are more respondents who viewed their markets as “strong” or “moderate” compared to those who view them as “weak.” The higher the index, the more respondents there are with “moderate” or “strong” outlook. 

Many states had an index greater than 50, the highest in North Dakota and the District of Columbia, states with strong economic and job growth. 

REALTORS® Confidence Index: Outlook in Next Six Months for Single-Family Homes Based on July 2014-September 2014 RCI Surveys
Posted in Economist Commentaries, by Scholastica (Gay) Cororaton, Research Economist on October 28, 2014

Should You Buy or Sell This Year?

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Understanding the Market with Top Realtor Nina Bhanot

Listen to me on the radio with Andy Tuttle at 660AM The Answer. I discussed what is happening in the market this month, the most competitive price ranges and the types of Buyers looking in the 4th quarter of the year. I also highlighted the Real Estate Deal of the Week, get all the details on this great home!

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Late Summer Checklist for Homeowners

Make sure all your doors and windows are in good working order and that none of the locks, caulking or weather stripping has to be replaced. Check the glass and screens for cracks or tears and repair or replace them as needed. Don’t forget to clean the window tracks and oil all door hinges.

Check the Gutters
Break out the ladder and check the gutters around your house for clogs, leaks or loose connections. If you don’t have gutter guards to help keep out leaves and debris, it’s best to install them now before fall arrives—they can save you some serious time and effort down the road.

Look For Leaks
Check your basement for cracks, leaks or any other signs of moisture. If you spot any major problems, have them repaired and waterproofed professionally. For smaller jobs, you can probably do it yourself and save the cost of a contractor.

Test Your Smoke Detectors
Check that all smoke and carbon monoxide detectors in your home are functioning properly by pressing the “Test” button. If your detectors run on regular batteries and you haven’t changed them already this year, put a fresh one in each—it could save your life. Depending on the manufacturer, you should replace the units every five to ten years.

Change Your HVAC Filters
Your AC unit can get quite a workout during the dog days of summer, so make sure you check your HVAC filter. A dirty HVAC filter can make your home’s system work harder than it should and be less effective. You can save on HVAC filters now with special offers from American Home Shield®.

Prepare Your Garden
If you’ve got a vegetable garden, you’ve probably still got tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers to harvest. While it’s too early to plant, you can start making room for fall vegetables like beans, peas and broccoli. As for the lawn, you’ve still got some watering and mowing left to do before it’s time to fertilize in the fall.

Clear Out the Clutter
Late summer is a good time to get rid of stuff that’s been collecting dust in the attic, basement or garage. Have a yard sale and turn your old books, clothes and furnishings into some cold, hard cash. Your place will look better, and you’ll have plenty of room for new fall goodies.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Camouflage scratches on your wood and hardwood floors

You can hide a damaged finish on antique furniture or any fine woodwork by applying a coat of pigmented wax, such as Briwax, or a pigmented polishing fluid, also known as scratch cover, which will make fine scratches all but disappear.

Click here to read the full article

Thursday, July 17, 2014

The Most Popular Features to Improve the Performance of Your Home...

RISMEDIA, Monday, June 16, 2014— According to a new National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) Remodelers survey, high-performing, Low-emissive (Low-E) windows are the most common green building products used by residential remodelers. To kick off National Home Remodeling Month in May, NAHB released the survey results, which highlight the most common building features that home owners are using to improve the energy efficiency of their homes.

“The improved availability and affordability of high-performing building products means energy-efficient features are being incorporated into more home improvement projects,” says NAHB Remodelers Chair Paul Sullivan, CAPS, CGR, CGP, of Waterville Valley, N.H. “Remodeling can not only improve the overall layout and features of a home, but depending on the upgrades you choose, you can also save money on utilities, improve indoor air quality and strengthen the long-term value of your home.”

The most popular green building features in the survey of residential remodelers in the first quarter of 2014 are:

• High performance windows including Low-E and Argon gas windows
• High efficiency HVAC systems
• Programmable thermostats
• ENERGY STAR appliances

Other popular features include ceiling fans, moisture control products such as bathroom fans, water conserving fixtures and high performance insulation.

The usage of technology to improve a home’s performance has increased dramatically during recent years. Seventy percent of remodelers says they used programmable thermostats, an increase from 42 percent in 2011. Sixty-two percent of remodelers used ceiling fans in their remodels, compared to 37 percent in 2011.

Over the next five years, the percentage of remodelers who expect to be doing more than 60 percent of their projects green will double, according to the McGraw Hill Construction green building study in conjunction with NAHB.

“The lower operating and maintenance costs of energy-efficient homes are a compelling reason for more home owners to incorporate green features in their remodeling designs,” says Sullivan. “A professional remodeler can help maximize the benefits of including these features in a remodel. The survey results provide useful examples of ways to increase a home’s efficiency, decrease costs and take advantage of the other benefits that high performance green homes offer.”

For more information, visit

Keep Your Stainless Spotless!

Do the fingerprints all over the appliances make your kitchen look like a crime scene? Take the advice of Dan Smith, showroom manager at Valcucine Chicago, an upscale kitchen outfitter. "The secret to cleaning stainless-steel surfaces is never to use stainless-steel cleaner," he says. Most of those products contain naphtha, which leaves an oily film that attracts dust and smears every time you touch it. Instead, Smith recommends using a glass cleaner that contains no ammonia or alcohol, such as the ones made by Restore or Method.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

If You Were Selling Today, Would You Have the Home That Buyers Want?

Knowing what appeals to today’s home buyers, and considering those trends when you remodel, can pay off years from now when you sell your home.

Two new surveys about what homebuyers want help us gain insight into if our own homes make the cut. Privacy from neighbors remains at the top of the most-wanted list (important to 86% of buyers), according to the NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS’® "2013 Community Preference Survey." It may not be practical to move your neighbors farther away (although I’m sure many people wish they had that superpower), but you can increase your home’s privacy (and therefore its resale value) by planting a living privacy screen of trees and shrubs or by physically screening off your patio.

3 More Takeaways for the Next Time You Remodel 

1.  More and more generations are living together. Another NAR survey, the "2013 Profile of Home Buyers and Sellers," found 14% of buyers purchased a home suited to a multigenerational household due to children over the age of 18 moving back into the house, cost savings, and the health and caretaking of aging parents. This trends seems to span across many cultural groups as well as age groups. Even if you’d rather live in a cardboard box than with your mother, you might want to consider the multigenerational living trend when you’re remodeling. For instance, opting for a full bath when renovating could offer more convenience for you now and boost your home’s resale value by making it more appealing to a multigenerational family.

2.  On average, homeowners live in their home for five to seven years. That’s up from six years in 2007. Since you’ll be in your home for a long time, it makes sense to remodel to suit your taste but also with long-lasting marketability in mind. After all, you don’t want to have to redo stuff. For instance, you can go for trend-defying kitchen features, like white overtones and Shaker-style cabinets, which work with a variety of styles. I feel compelled to caution against going so far out of the norm for your neighborhood that it’ll turn off potential buyers even nine years from now. I am always available to come and give you my opinion on your  remodeling plans and what will increase your home's future marketability.

3.  Homebuyers love energy efficiency. Heating and cooling costs were "somewhat" or "very important" to a whopping 85% of buyers. If your home could use an energy-efficiency upgrade, go with projects that have a solid return on investment, like sealing your air leaks and adding attic insulation. You’ll save money on your utility bills now and when you’re ready to sell, your home will appeal to buyers looking for efficiency.

By the way, to take back your energy bills, you need to do at least four things. One to two fixes won’t cut it, thanks to rising energy costs. About two-thirds of survey respondents also thought energy-efficient appliances and energy-efficient lighting were important. Tuck away your manuals and energy-efficiency information when you buy new appliances and lighting. When you’re ready to sell you can pull those out and display them where buyers will see them.

Source: By: Dona DeZube from Houselogic

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

If You Missed Me On The Radio, Listen Now!

In our hot housing market, listen to how you can increase your chances of getting the house you want! I  discussed strategies and tactics that you can use to help increase the likelihood of getting your offer accepted. You don't want to miss these top secret tips!

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Turn Your Radios Up!

Tune into 660AM on Sunday May 4th 2014 at 4PM

Need some advice on getting the house you want? Tune into Tuttle Talk on The Answer 660AM on Sunday May 4th at 4pm to hear me speak about our hot housing market and how you can increase your chances of getting the house you want! I will be discussing strategies and tactics that you can use to help increase the likelihood of getting your offer accepted. You don't want to miss these top secret tips! Hope you tune in!

If you can't get to a radio, be sure to download the The Answer 660AM App and tune in on Sunday May 4th at 4PM.

If you can't tune in during the time of the broadcast, be sure to check out The Answer 660AM website for a recording of the show.

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

3 Questions to Ask Before Your Next Kitchen Remodel

Home Safety Tips

First, I would like to thank everyone who came out to the Safety Talk I hosted at the Plano Police Department. Officer Mark Dawson informed us that a majority of people use reactive items such as alarms to protect their homes against break-ins and should be using pro-active measures. Once an alarm goes off it takes an average of 7-10 minutes for the police to arrive, however an intruder only needs 3-5 minutes in your home to take your valuables and get out. 

Take a moment to read these valuable tips on how to better protect your home and family.

1. Do Not have a Garage Door Opener in Your Car – leaving a garage door opener in your car is like leaving a key to your home, especially if you do not lock the door that goes from your garage into your home. Your address can easily be found off your insurance card and the garage door remote allows them to gain access your home. Instead use a garage opener FOB that is attached to your keychain. That way when you lock your car, and take your keys you also take your garage door opener with you. Don’t forget to deprogram the garage door opener button in your car as well.

2. Don’t Use Keypads Outside Garage Doors – Over time the numbers you use in your code will become dirty and it will quickly become apparent to a burglar which 4 numbers are in your code. The burglar will then continue to try codes until they hit the combination that works. Some tips, change your code every couple of months so the same buttons are not getting dirty. Only use 3 numbers so it throws off the burglar as to which number is being used twice, and try not to use your birthday year because 1 and 9 are the most common numbers used.

3. Change Your Door Security Plate – A normal door security plate has two small screws which can be easily he kicked or pried off to open the door. The security plate in the picture below is the type of plate that should be used and by the size of the screws you can see why!

4. Don’t Pretend You are Not Home – All burglars have one thing in common, they knock. If you pretend you are not at home, they will use force and try to enter your home. When face to face with an intruder, the best thing to do is yell hang on or pretend you are calling out to your husband or wife and ask who it is.

5. Cover Glass on Front Doors – Glass on front doors are not a good idea, they allow the burglar to see into the home. The safest door has no glass windows and just a peep hole that allows you to view outside. If you want to have glass, try frosted glass or use a window covering.  

6. Check That Your Windows/Doors are Locked – Be sure to ALWAYS check all your windows and doors are locked before you leave the house. Especially before you leave on vacation, anyone such as a repairman can unlock a window or door when they are working in your home, leaving it open to window burglaries which are very common.

7. Doggie Doors are a No No– A 17 year old kid can usually weigh 80 to 100 lbs and can get access to the house through a doggie door. You may look at it and think no one will fit through that doggie door however a motivated individual who needs money is very motivated and can make it work.

8. Get a Door Stopper – This Door Stopper is mounted about 5 ft from the ground and is two times stronger than a deadbolt. Most burglars will try and kick where the lock is to break open a door, if you put the door stopper in a higher location, burglars will not be able to locate where the door stopper is.

9. Peep Holes on Garage Door – If someone does break into your garage and you are inside and hear a sound you are most likely to open the door to see what the sound is. In that moment you have now come face to face with the burglar and gave them access into your home. A peep hole allows you to view the intruder while you are hidden. Make sure you mount it at the woman or teenagers height. 

10. Cover the Alarm Light – Look through your windows and doors, can you see your alarm pad? If you can, cover the lights so burglars can’t see if the alarm is on. Many burglars check through a window or door to see if the alarm is on, if not they know it is safe to break into the house.

11. Get a Night Lock – Deadbolts, chain locks, flimsy wood frames are not successful at keeping intruders out. The Nightlock uses the strength of the floor and can withstand 1950 lbs and can be used on single and double doors.

12. Don’t Stop the Mail – If you go on vacation don’t stop the mail. You don’t know who has access to that information, it’s best to have a neighbor you trust collect your mail and newspapers.

13. Mount Security Cameras at Face Level – Most security cameras are mounted high up and only catch the top of the hat that a burglar may be wearing. Mount security cameras at eye level so you have a clear picture of what the intruder looks like. Don’t forget to keep the lights on so you don’t have a black and white image.

14. Use a Sign – Get a sign that says no solicitors to keep people from coming up to your door for no reason. The best thing is to have a sign that says “Do Not Right Bell, Day Sleeper.”  This sends the message that someone is home deterring an intruder as they realize it is not an easy home to target to break in.

15. Airport Car Lots, Haven for Burglars – Airport’s are a haven for burglars, cars are stolen and driven to the owner’s home while they are out on business or vacation trips. By using the garage door opener in your car, burglar gain access to the inside of your home, effortlessly. 

Friday, February 21, 2014

City of Frisco: Planning & Zoning Commission Meeting

Preliminary Site Plan: Frisco Multi-Use Event Center (PSP13-0042)
Owner(s): City of Frisco/Frisco Community Development Corporation

An office, hotel, retail, restaurant and multi-use event center development on seven lots
on 91.6± acres on the northwest corner of Warren Parkway and Dallas Parkway. Zoned
Planned Development-29-Business Center. Neighborhood #31. MW