Catherine Williams Stewart | Milford Real Estate, Orange Real Estate, Ansonia Real Estate


When you hire a house cleaner or maid service, you expect that your house will be neater and cleaner. There are certain rules that you should follow to keep your house maid happy. Your maid is not there to clean up after you for absolutely everything you do in your home. You need to give your cleaning person the tools to do his or her job well. 


Here’s What You Should Do Before Your Cleaning Service Arrives


Pre-cleaning before you are paying someone to clean your house may seem counter intuitive. They are there to clean for you, right? The problem is that the more your cleaning service has to clean, the longer that it will take. This means that the messier your house is, the more expensive that it will be for you to have your home cleaned. Here’s what you should do before the maid service gets to the home:          


Clean Up Your Dirty Dishes


You should take the time to load your dishwasher and clean up your sink a bit. It can take a lot of time for your house keeper to take care of these small things that should be a part of your daily tasks. 


Do Your Own Laundry


It is advisable for you to take care of your own laundry if you have the time to do it yourself. Doing laundry could take your house keeper hours of time. They could use that time to do other things like dust, scrub, and deep clean your home. 


Put Away Your Own Things


Do you have leftovers in the kitchen that need to be put away? Are there clothes on the floor of your bedroom? Do the kids‘ toys need to be put away? Some of these tasks can be done simply by you in a matter of minutes instead of by your house keeper.


The bottom line is that you don’t want your house keeper to see you as a slob. While they are more than happy to clean your home, they aren’t your personal servant. Also, your house cleaner probably isn’t showing up to your home daily. You want to keep up your clean home in between professional cleanings. 


What You Should Let The Housecleaner Do


Your house cleaner is there to help you complete certain tasks around your home. In fact they really want to do certain things in your home to help you get a deep clean that you wouldn’t otherwise have. Your housekeeper wants to help you with:

 

  • Vacuuming
  • Scrubbing
  • Deep cleaning your bathroom sink
  • Cleaning your toilet
  • Deep cleaning your kitchen
  • Mopping the floors  

How To Assist Your House Keeper


There are a few things that you should do to help your housekeeper do their job well. These tasks include:


  • Keep pets out of the way
  • Tell your housekeeper exactly what you need
  • Make the maid aware of any special tasks you need to be completed 


If you cooperate with the housekeeper, hiring a cleaning service can be one of the best time-saving decisions for you for a cleaner home.  


Believe it or not, upgrading your residence's curb appeal won't necessarily force you to break your budget. Now, let's take a look at three cost-effective ways to improve your house's curb appeal.

1. Mow the Lawn

Tall grass and weeds are unlikely to do you any favors, particularly if you want to reap the benefits of a fast, profitable home sale. Fortunately, if you spend some time mowing the lawn and trimming the hedges, you may be able to boost your house's curb appeal.

It generally won't take long to perform lawn maintenance tasks. Then, once you complete these tasks for the first time, you can set up a schedule to complete them every week or every other week until your residence sells. That way, your lawn will continue to look great in the eyes of potential buyers.

2. Clear the Walkways

Dirt, dust and debris may make your home's exterior walkways look messy. Perhaps worst of all, these problems may drive prospective buyers away from your house.

On the other hand, neat, tidy walkways could help your residence stand out to potential buyers. If you devote time and resources to sweep and clean your house's exterior walkways, you can increase the likelihood that your residence will make a positive first impression on buyers.

3. Remove Decorations

Although plastic flamingoes, lawn gnomes and other home exterior decorations have helped you distinguish your house from others in your neighborhood, now may be a good time to put these decorations into storage. Because if you keep decorations on your lawn, it may be difficult for a buyer to envision what life may be like as the owner of your house.

Remember, your goal as a home seller is to make your residence as appealing as possible to prospective buyers. By removing home exterior decorations, you can show off your residence's full potential. As such, you can make it easy for buyers to fall in love with your residence as soon as they see it for the first time.

As you search for ways to upgrade your house's curb appeal without breaking your budget, you may want to consult with a real estate agent too. This housing market professional is happy to provide home selling recommendations and can help you transform your home's exterior from drab to fab.

Typically, a real estate agent will provide expert guidance at each stage of the house selling journey. He or she first will help you craft a home selling strategy and promote your residence to dozens of prospective buyers. Plus, once you receive an offer to purchase your home, a real estate agent can help you analyze this proposal. And if you accept an offer to purchase your house, a real estate agent will do whatever it takes to help you quickly finalize your home sale.

Ready to list your residence? Upgrade your house's curb appeal today, and you can move one step closer to achieving the best-possible results during the property selling journey.


A confident home seller is a unique individual, and perhaps it is easy to understand why. In fact, this individual likely possesses many traits that are sure to help him or her enjoy a successful home selling experience.

Now, let's take a look at three key attributes of a confident home seller to better understand this individual's approach to the housing market.

1. Proactive

A confident home seller may be more likely than others to go above and beyond the call of duty to ensure the best-possible results. As such, he or she will do what it takes to list a home and promote it to the right groups of buyers, which may result in a fast, seamless home selling journey.

With a proactive approach, any home seller can boost his or her confidence. Taking a proactive approach may even help a home seller maximize his or her home sale earnings too.

Typically, a proactive home seller will allocate time and resources to improve his or her house's interior and exterior. Because if a home stands out from the competition, the probability of a quick and profitable home sale will increase.

A proactive home seller also won't settle for subpar results. Instead, this seller will constantly search for ways to improve his or her home, as well as explore new opportunities to promote his or her house to buyers.

2. Knowledgeable

A confident home seller is willing to learn new things. Thus, he or she may be willing to learn about the housing market to discover innovative ways to speed up the home selling process.

To learn about the housing market, it generally helps to meet with a real estate agent. This housing market expert can teach a home seller about different aspects of the real estate market. And if a home seller has housing market questions, a real estate agent can respond to them immediately.

Furthermore, a real estate agent is happy to help a home seller build his or her confidence. This housing market professional can offer tips and recommendations throughout the home selling journey, ensuring a home seller can make informed decisions as this journey progresses.

3. Patient

A confident home seller understands that no home selling experience is perfect, and various home selling hurdles may arise along the way. Fortunately, this seller also knows how to stay calm, cool and collected under pressure.

As a confident home seller, an individual will stay patient, even when the worst-case home selling scenarios occur. This individual will be able to look at the big picture throughout the home selling journey. Perhaps most important, a confident home seller won't let small problems escalate; conversely, he or she will try to quickly resolve problems and take the necessary steps to prevent them from happening once again.

Becoming a confident home seller is no small feat. But if you understand the key attributes of a confident home seller, you can build your real estate expertise and work toward achieving the optimal results during the home selling journey.


Finding your new home is an exciting new prospect, and you want to ensure you get the home you really want. Before you start your home-search take some time to thoroughly consider what you want and need out of a home, what you want it to look like and what features you desire in your neighborhood and the surrounding area. To get you started, here are some pointers for creating your ideal home checklist.

Home Features

  • Basic Requirements. What do you need in a house? Take inventory of your household needs and belongings to determine your basic desires, outside of the obvious roof over your head, running water and electricity. If you have multiple children, do you want them to have their own rooms? Do they need a bathroom they can share? Does your elderly parent live with you and need a ground floor room with easy access to the kitchen and living spaces? Maybe you’re a single professional or young couple focused on starting a new business, so space for a home office or workshop is at the top of the list. Number of rooms, bathrooms, size of the yard, features and layout of the kitchen, storage space and number, size or openness of living areas are all things to consider when developing your needs list.
  • Desires. What do you want in a house? Separating needs and wants can be difficult when dreaming of your new home. Start with the big and more obvious ones, like a pool or built-in barbecue, crown molding or a chef’s kitchen. You can add many features that you want after the fact. You can install a pool, replace the sliding door with French doors and even add your own crown molding. Setting aside some wants initially can open up your budget to purchasing a home that you can then invest more funds in and install most of the features you want. If you’re not interested in putting additional work into the house once you move in it is helpful to see what features bring up the cost of your new home so you can start thinking about what you can live without when it comes down to crunching numbers and staying within your means.
  • Take it or leave it. You have your list now consider what items you entirely can’t live without (from the want or need category) and what you can be more flexible on. Unless you’re building a home from scratch with the perfect budget to boot, you will have to be flexible when searching for your home. Not every house will have every single feature on your list. Is it the master bath with his and her sinks that you need? Is it a big yard with a tree perfect for your kid’s treehouse, or is it a multi-story home with den and living room that are your most sought-after features? Finally, determine which features to keep on the list to help with future resale value, even if they aren’t on your initial needs or wants lists.
  • Resale Potential. The things you aren’t thinking of. Where does potential resale value fit into your overall home buying plan? You might love a home with vintage French windows, but a house with dual-pane windows might add more value to the home when you try to sell it later. Maybe you don’t care about hardwood floors, or you aren’t thinking about ample built-in storage space, but your future buyers are, and you have the opportunity to invest now in added value later. When you review your ideal home checklist with your real estate agent ask for advice on how your needs and preferences align with a future resale. 

Before you start your home search or dive too deep into online listings work with your real estate agent to hammer out your ideal home checklist. Once you know what you desire in a home start working with your agent to find the best area for you to live in, read on to part two of this article to create your ideal neighborhood checklist.


Submitting a "fair" offer on your dream home may seem difficult, particularly for a first-time homebuyer. Lucky for you, we're here to help you determine what it takes to submit a fair offer on a home that increases the likelihood that a home seller will accept your proposal without delay.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to ensure that a first-time homebuyer can submit a fair offer on a house.

1. Study the Housing Market Closely

Are you preparing to submit an offer in a buyer's market or a seller's market? Ultimately, the current state of the housing market may help you define a fair proposal based on the sector's conditions.

For example, a buyer's market frequently includes an abundance of top-notch residences and a shortage of homebuyers. In this market, you may be able to submit an offer at or below a home seller's initial asking price and receive an instant "Yes."

On the other hand, a seller's market usually features a shortage of high-quality houses and an abundances of homebuyer. As such, you may need to submit an offer at or above a home seller's initial asking price if you want to secure your dream residence.

For first-time homebuyers who analyze the housing market closely, they should be able to differentiate between a buyer's market and a seller's market. That way, a first-time homebuyer can determine fair market value for a residence and submit an offer that corresponds to it.

2. Evaluate Your Homebuying Budget

There is no need to overspend for a house, regardless of the current housing market's conditions. But with a homebuying budget in hand, a first-time homebuyer can resist the urge to pay too much to acquire an outstanding residence.

Getting pre-approved for a mortgage often provides a great option for those who are uncertain about how much they can spend on a home. This budget will enable a homebuyer to narrow his or her home search based on the finances at his or her disposal.

Meet with a variety of banks and credit unions to learn about all of your mortgage options. Then, you can select a mortgage that matches your budget and move one step closer to acquiring a terrific residence.

3. Work with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent is a must-have for a first-time homebuyer, and for good reason. This housing market professional can teach you about the intricacies of buying a house and help you submit a fair offer on a residence any time you choose.

Furthermore, a real estate agent will guide you along each stage of the homebuying journey and help you overcome any potential pitfalls along the way. And if you ever have homebuying concerns or questions, a real estate agent is happy to respond to them at your convenience.

Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and by doing so, a first-time homebuyer should have no trouble submitting a fair offer on a residence.




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