Judy Kuhtreiber's Blog
We’ve all had those times when we can’t seem to get a good night’s sleep. If you recently moved to a new home or if you’re on vacation, the new environment or mattress can make it difficult to fall asleep.
It’s even more frustrating when you’re in the comfort of your own home but are still having trouble sleeping.
In this article, we’re going to give you some tips and habits you can build to help better your sleep. We’ll talk about ways to get to sleep on time, how to improve your sleeping habits, and how to sleep through the night.
Getting to bed on time
Most of us live busy lives that make it hard to unwind at the end of the day. Others simply have a hard time calling it quits on the show or movie they’re watching when they should be getting some sleep. Either way, it’s essential to build a good bedtime routine to make sure you’re falling asleep at an appropriate time each night.
To start, you’ll want to make sure you assign yourself a bed time. Though bed times seem like a rule for children, it can help adults vastly improve their sleep. Going to bed and waking up at the same time each morning reinforces your body’s natural sleep cycle.
To ensure you go to bed on time, you can set a reminder or alarm on your phone for a half-hour before you need to be in bed. This will give you time to finish what you’re doing and get ready for bed.
There are also apps that will help you do this, which we’ll talk about in the next section.
Monitor your sleep
Sleep is deeply important to how we function throughout our day. A poor night’s sleep is a short-term hindrance, putting us in a bad mood or making it difficult to focus. But, in the long run, lacking sleep is a health risk that has been linked to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and other serious illnesses.
The takeaway? We should all take sleep seriously. To do so, a good way is to monitor your sleep. One easy way is to download an app that does just that. For iPhone users, the pre-installed Bedtime feature (part of the Clock app) is a simple way to set reminders and gain insight into your sleeping habit.
A more thorough way to monitor your sleep is to keep a sleep journal or to buy a smartwatch that tracks your sleep for you. Regardless of your method, keeping tabs on your sleep quality will help you prioritize your health and wellness.
Quick tips for improving your sleep
Go to bed at the same time each time
Avoid bright screens (phone, TV, laptop) for an hour before bed
Read, knit, or do some other relaxing hobby before bed
Don’t eat for two hours before bed
If you can’t sleep, try listening to calming music or a guided meditation
If you’re a light sleeper, try wearing comfortable earplugs and an eye mask to bed
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If you purchase a new home, you will need to purchase homeowner’s insurance. If you’ve never owned a home before, you may not realize all the factors that go into the cost of insurance. When looking for a home, it’s easy to get caught up in the house’s structural design, the marble countertops, curb appeal, appliances, etc., and forget about features that affect your home’s insurance cost.
Build and age: When a homeowner is considering buying a home, the first and most important feature to look out for is the structure and build of the home. Some people prefer homes constructed with wood over homes built with bricks. Your insurance company may charge you a higher premium for a house built solely with wood because it’s more flammable than a house built with bricks. Another factor is the age of the house; the older the home, the more money required to maintain and repair, which might, in turn, increase the cost of your insurance premium.
Location: Your location affects how much you pay for insurance. The riskier your home’s location, the higher the premium you pay. People who live in areas prone to natural disasters like hurricanes, tornados, earthquakes, landslides, or floods should expect to pay a higher premium when compared to those who live in an area less prone to such disasters. If you decide to buy a home in the coastal region, the cost of protecting your property is something you should factor in when making your decision.
Home safety: How safe is the location of your home? If you live in an environment that has a high crime rate, you should expect to pay a higher insurance premium for your home. Most homes located in neighborhoods not considered safe usually come at a lower price, but your insurance premium might take a considerable amount of what you saved. You can reduce your insurance costs by installing other security measures in your home. New locks, especially smart locks, surveillance cameras, and other security features are all safety measures that can reduce your insurance premium. If your home is in a controlled-access community with secure gates or entry guards, you may see a reduction in your insurance premium.
Condition of the roof: The shape of your home’s roof is an essential determinant of how much you will pay for your insurance cost. A house that has a damaged or faulty roof takes a considerable amount of money to repair. Additionally, while the look of cedar-shake roofs is beautiful, in some areas they pose a fire hazard. When looking to buy a home, do not neglect to note the age and condition of the roof. Aside from the build of the house, it is the next most vital factor.
These features and others affect how much you pay for insurance. Be sure to factor the cost of protecting your home into your budget when you go house hunting. Your realtor can also help you get a good deal for your home insurance, so be sure to ask!
Applying for a mortgage may seem like a long, stressful process at first. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of submitting a mortgage application.
Now, let's take a look at three tips to help you streamline the mortgage application process.
1. Ask Questions
A bank or credit union likely will ask you to provide a wide range of information as part of the mortgage application cycle. And as you complete a mortgage application, you may have questions along the way too.
Remember, a lender is happy to help you in any way possible. If you ever have concerns or questions as you complete a mortgage application, you should reach out to a lender for expert support. That way, you can reduce the risk of potential problems down the line that otherwise could slow down the mortgage application process.
Even a single mistake on a mortgage application may prevent you from getting a mortgage. Perhaps even worse, a delayed mortgage application may force you to miss out on an opportunity to acquire your dream house. But if you reach out to a lender as you complete your mortgage application, you can gain the insights you need to quickly and effortlessly finalize the necessary documentation to obtain a mortgage.
2. Be Thorough
A mortgage application may require you to look back at your financial and employment histories and provide information that a lender will use to determine whether to approve or deny your submission. Meanwhile, you should be ready to provide a lender with any requested information to ensure a seamless application process.
As a homebuyer, it is your responsibility to include accurate information on your mortgage application. In fact, failure to do so may cause a lender to reject your mortgage application. If you allocate the necessary time and resources to dot every I and cross every T on your mortgage application, you can boost the likelihood of a fast approval.
3. Shop Around
For homebuyers, it is crucial to check out all of the mortgage options that are available. If you meet with a variety of banks and credit unions, you can review myriad mortgage options and select a mortgage that complements your finances.
Banks and credit unions generally provide a broad array of fixed- and adjustable-rate mortgages. If you learn about all of the mortgage options at your disposal, you can find one that enables you to purchase your dream house without breaking your budget.
Of course, once you are approved for a mortgage and are ready to launch your house search, you may want to hire a real estate agent as well. A real estate agent will offer plenty of guidance at each stage of the homebuying journey. In addition, a real estate agent can make it easy for you to find a top-notch residence at a budget-friendly price in any housing market, at any time.
Start the mortgage application process today, and you can move one step closer to acquiring your dream residence.
As home technology becomes more advanced and affordable, the extreme features of yesterday's luxury homes are becoming more and more standard. Here's an assembled a top-five features in today's luxury homes that will still take your breath away. Some are tech-based, others are designed more with ultimate homeowner comfort in mind. Regardless, you're not going to believe what's lurking behind the gates, doors and windows of many of today's luxury homes.
Luxury Home Feature #1 -- Private Airstrip
When that morning commute is just too far to drive comfortably, you can always hop in your private plane and take off right from the airstrip that came with your luxury home. These homes in Oregon feature just that opportunity. Some even come complete with the airplane.
Luxury Home Feature #2 -- Recording Studio
These luxury homes take all the thrill out of your teen's wicked attempts to start a rock band in the family garage. Instead, you can invite the neighborhood kids over to jam in your own private recording studio, complete with pub-style bar for parents who want to stick around and listen.
Luxury Home Feature #3 -- Mango Tree
If there's no mango tree growing through your living space, how can you truly live in luxury? This home in Rio de Janiero, designed by Allessandro Sartore, features one mature mango tree growing up through the living space and another in the garage.
Luxury Home Feature #4 -- Conference Room
Hold family meetings in style when you purchase a luxury home that features its own conference room. Bonus points if it comes with an accompanying elevator and reception area, like this condo in Chicago.
Luxury Home Feature #5 -- Underwater View
These luxury homes, built by US Submarine Strurecortures, LLC, exist underwater. Built at surface pressure, there's no need to dive or decompress to return home in the evening. If you own the land, they'll build the submersed home. Prices start around $4 million for these homes that give new meaning to the term ocean view.
When it comes to luxury home real estate, today's options offer few limitations. All you need are large and stable finances to invest in the home of your dreams to make even the most idealistic vision a reality. Aside from this, odds are good that there's someone out there somewhere capable of building it.