Wednesday, December 18, 2013

December Issue Of My Free Consumer Newsletter Is Now Available

#The December Issue Of My Free Consumer Newsletter Is Now Available

It's about breakthrough ideas on getting the best consumer deals, helpful tips on Healthy, Wealthy, and Happy Living, thrilling trivia, great jokes and tidbits. You will also receive important resources for getting the very most enjoyment (and value!) out of your home - from me.

The best of it all, it's free!

Subscribe at no cost to the monthly postal mail version, or the email version directly at

#Richard Bazinet -  Realty ONE Group - Phoenix Scottsdale Real Estate

The December Issue Of My Free Consumer Newsletter Is Now Available

Thursday, December 5, 2013

6 Plush Upgrades For Your Home

#6 Plush Upgrades For Your Home

Looking to buy yourself a gift or two for the holidays? Of course! You deserve it. You only live once. And so does your home, because the plush luxury updates can increase the value of your property. 

So go ahead and spoil yourself on these upgrades... a little luxury can go a long way to make your home your castle. So here are some of the favorite splurges from my real estate insider track:

1. Central Vac (aka Whole-House Vacuum) - especially the retractable high-tech ones!

What: A super-suction, built-in vacuum system that features convenient inlet ports throughout the house where you plug in 25-to-50-foot lightweight vacuum hoses. The collection bin is usually located in a basement or garage.

Why: No more dragging heavy vacuum cleaners up and down stairs and throughout the house. With central vacs all you need to schlepp is a lightweight hose fitted with a power brush. 

Central vacs have up to five times the suction power of portable vacuums, and they store dust far away from where it’s collected — great for allergy sufferers. Some high-tech systems have retractable hoses that disappear into the wall.

Tip: Make sure you have enough ports — at least one for every 500 sq. ft.

How much: $1,500-$2,500 to retrofit a house; add about $500 for retractable hose. 

2. Steam Shower 

What: A sealed shower attached to a steam generator that turns the stall into a steam room. You can build a steam shower from scratch or buy a prefab fiberglass unit. 

Why: Steam relaxes, opens sinuses, soothes muscles, and cleans pores. Installing a steam shower is a major project that includes wiring for the generator; vapor-proofing walls, floors, and ceiling; installing a tightly-fitting door; and having a bathroom fan outside the shower to suck up the extra humidity. 

Tip: A sloped ceiling in the shower room ensures that condensation runs off.

How much: Fiberglass unit: $1,000-$5,000; framed-in unit and generator: $7,000-$10,000.

3. Heated Bathroom Floors

What: Thin, thermostatically-controlled electric radiant mats that install under tile.

Why: No more cold tootsies when stepping out of the shower in the morning. Many systems come with timers so warm bathroom floors await you each morning. 

Tip: Heated floors help stem mold growth in humid places. 

How much: $15.59/sq. ft. for material and installation (not counting cost of tile or adding 20-amp GFCI dedicated circuit with 110 volts, $97-$245). 

4. Super Skylights

What: Roof windows that let sunlight in. Upscale models feature insulated glass, solar-powered shades, and rain sensors that’ll automatically close an open skylight in bad weather.

Why: Nobody likes dark, dreary rooms and hallways. Skylights let the sun shine into areas you can’t brighten with windows — hallways, interior rooms, even closets. Skylights save you money on heating, cooling, and lighting bills. 

Tip: If you plan to open and close skylights, order screens to keep out bugs and roof debris.

How much: $500-$3,500 (depending on size, glazing, and complexity) installed. 

5. Towel Warming Drawer

What: A stainless steel, heated drawer that slips into cabinetry, plugs into an outlet, and warms towels.

Why: Because there’s nothing more snuggly than wrapping a warm towel around you after a bath or shower. 

Tip: Towels take time to heat up — some people say as much as 45 minutes — so you’ll have to plan ahead to have a toasty one ready when you are.

How much: $1,700-$3,400.

6. Whole-House Electrostatic Filters

What: Also called “electrostatic precipitators,” these dust-removing wonders are incorporated into your HVAC ductwork. They charge polluted air with a high-voltage current, and then collect particles on plates with the opposite charge. Great at removing tiny particles that slip through regular fiberglass filters.  

Why: Whole-house electrostatic filters remove smoke, dust mites, pet dander, pollen, and dust, improving air quality and health. But they also create ozone as a byproduct which is a lung irritant, so the health benefits could be a wash. 

Tip: The filters last indefinitely, but you’ll have to clean the plates, some say as often as once a week; others advise every 2-3 months. 

How much: $600-$1,000 installed.

So there you go, the Richard Bazinet holiday season 2014 house splurges.

Richard Bazinet - Realty ONE Group - Phoenix Scottsdale Real Estate

#6 Plush Upgrades For Your Home

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Are Loan Rates & Home Values Going Back NOT Down?

#Are Loan Rates & Home Values Going Back NOT Down? 

Well, these are the questions this week. And the answer is... No and No. You see, many potential home buyers are waiting to see if the rates AND the prices are decreasing before buying a new home. Well, the rates are not. The prices... let just say there is a lull right now. 

But let me explain - and why waiting could could be a big mistake. The mortgage loan rates have been pretty well stable on average for the last month or so. In Arizona, we seem to be doing better than the national numbers. But I would say that the rates are not going down, and that in fact they will be going up! 

As we sit right now, 30 year fixed mortgage rates sit at levels which put them near two year highs. I anticipate the mortgage lending rates to climb in the basis of the bond market. However, on a historical basis we still have very low interest rates on home mortgages at the moment. So now is a good time to buy your home and lock your mortgage at historical low rates.

In Phoenix Scottsdale, the home values in our real estate market reads as follows - up 20% on average from last year, slightly down 3% from last month, as a result from a much higher inventory of listed homes.

So when you are ready, call me to schedule your home search and purchase. Looking for the best tool to search a home, try my handy home search tool directly on the MLS at Best Phoenix Scottsdale MLS Home Search Tool OR BETTER YET... let us do the professional search and all the work for you. Just sit back and relax and watch your email with available properties with full descriptions and picture - just click here: Let us do the search for you!

So now is a good time to buy your home and lock your mortgage at historical low rates. We have the best and largest inventory of homes of the last 2 years. It will not get any better than this!

Richard Bazinet - Realty ONE Group - Phoenix Scottsdale Real Estate

#Are Loan Rates & Home Values Going Back NOT Down?