Helping Troops for the Holidays

With Veterans Day right around the corner, some in New Hampshire might be wondering what they can do to provide help or assistance for those serving our country. One easy way to help is to attend various packing events coordinated each year by Operation Care for Troops, or make donations to fund packages and shipping associated with the events. The organization, based in Nashua, is a non-profit geared toward helping soldiers.

Currently the organization reports they have enough volunteers this year for their November packing event, but are still looking for people interested in participating in their February event, as well as subsequent events occurring throughout 2017. A calendar describing the dates and activities associated with the next event may be found on their website by clicking on this link.

Operation Care for Troops offers other ways to help troops besides the packing events, such as asking volunteers to write letters of support and encouragement to soldiers and units. The organization maintains a goal of including 4 to 6 letters inside each individual package and this so they are always in need of more people to write letters. Additionally, people may donate money toward the costs associated with items included in the packages and for shipping. Those wanting to help on a longer term basis may even adopt a soldier or unit.

A little time or money goes a long way toward helping others and so if you are looking for opportunities that are reasonable in terms of time and cost, this one is a good fit. For more on this non-profit organization’s mission, opportunities, contact information, and needs please visit their website at www.octnh.com.

 

What to do when…

Sometimes real estate agents find themselves in troubling situations that fall outside of the proverbial training box. While realtors are typically schooled on activities like completing a purchase and sales agreement, and writing contingency clauses that read as if lawyers wrote them, training does not always cover real world challenges that include, but are not limited to: prying open a rusty lock box, figuring out before entering a home if the seller is still inside, quickly determining which key out of ten opens the first of four units in a multi-family house in sub-zero temperatures, or handling arguments that erupt between buyers. In these situations an agent has to think on their feet, and essentially just wing it.

argument

Uncomfortable home disclosure questions

In New Hampshire, sellers typically fill out a standard disclosure form. For the most part the items covered are predictable, such as the age of a home’s roof or the estimated annual heating costs. However, there are a few somewhat unexpected questions on the disclosure form that catch sellers off guard. For instance, one asks simply, “Do you have knowledge of methamphetamine production ever occurring on the property?” The seller has the option of checking either “yes” or “no”, and if “yes” they are prompted to explain. While I have never yet seen a disclosure form with the box checked “yes”, it has obviously been an issue before since it made its way onto one of many pages that make up the property/seller disclosure form.

meth-lab

Here, not here

Technology makes it difficult for people to remain fully present in any given moment, giving all of their attention to those in their immediate presence. Still, in the world of real estate buyers try to select an agent that not only knows what they are doing (or seem to at least), but also one that gives them their full attention while showing them properties, writing up offers, or otherwise conversing with them.

pokemon_done

Closing time

Many first time home buyers do not know what to expect when they get to the date they are supposed to close on their house. Sometimes, if the buyers have faced stressful challenges associated with their financing, they feel a little shell shocked by that time.

In New Hampshire, the closing process works like this: the buyer signs a lot of paperwork and seller usually signs a smaller amount of paperwork. Then the closing concludes and the buyer gets the keys to the house.

But did I mention there is a lot of paperwork?

closing paperwork

 

Creative landscaping

In real estate, much emphasis is placed on a property’s curb appeal. Taking time to improve the exterior of a home prior to putting it on the market can be an effective means of motivating buyers to make an appointment to see the inside of the house. Many buyers drive by homes they think have potential to get a better feel for the property and the neighborhood. Sadly, many homes are crossed off a buyer’s list before an appointment is even scheduled due to an unsatisfactory drive by.

While improving curb appeal typically calls for maintenance and landscaping work there are times when sellers do not think they need to put in any extra time on the exterior since they regularly maintain what they already have. However, in some cases sellers must consider whether their current approach to landscaping is one that will appeal to prospective buyers. Sometimes bizarre landscaping themes can detract from other positive aspects of the property.

children of the sunflowers