Buying a home is a complex decision with many factors to consider.
2005 Valparaiso St
Valparaiso, IN 46383
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Bread and Butter Pudding
• 10 thick slices of bread
• 3 eggs
• 3 cups full-cream milk
• ½ cup extra-fine granulated sugar
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
Preheat oven to 320°F and grease an ovenproof baking dish. Spread
both sides of your bread with butter and arrange them in the baking
In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, milk, sugar and vanilla
extract until well combined and a little frothy. Pour this over the
bread in the baking dish and allow it to stand for three minutes.
Place the baking dish in a deep baking tray, and sprinkle the dish
generously with sugar. Pour hot water into the tray so it comes up
to about halfway up the sides of the baking dish, and bake for 1
hour and 5 minutes. The pudding is done when the top is golden brown
and crispy, but it gives a little wobble when you shake the dish.
Let it stand for 5 minutes, and then serve warm with vanilla
Recipe by Lynn Enchante
Ask the Agent
I think my house needs a fresh coat of paint before I put it up for
sale. Where should I apply the brush to make my home look attractive
Repair blemishes: If you've got cracked or peeling paint,
you'll certainly want to repaint before you put your house on the
market. Tired paint makes buyers think the house hasn't been well
Tone down your color scheme: While the colors in your home
might appeal to you personally, it's important if you are selling
your home that they appeal to the widest market possible. So that
means avoiding bright, unusual colors and changing colors that were
fashionable a few years ago but now look dated.
Types of paint: If you have imperfections in your walls,
choose a paint with a flat finish, as this will conceal them. Make
sure you use washable paints in bathrooms and kitchens - an interior
flat enamel is good for this.
Is Condo Life for You?
Condo living often
elicits images of carefree weekends sitting beside the pool, but
there are some pros and cons to consider before making a purchase.
1. The Lifestyle Itself: One of the biggest advantages of
condo living can also become a disadvantage. The sense of community,
amenities and other features that originally attracted you to a
community may change as your needs and desires change. Make sure you
select a condo that truly reflects a lifestyle you will love.
2. Shared Responsibility: A condo association establishes
many rules and regulations - typically by majority vote. Likewise,
maintenance and repair costs are also shared by members. Things can
get dicey when individual members are at odds with the majority.
Examine your willingness to abide by rules, regulations and
associated expenses to be adopted by the community.
3. Privacy and Autonomy: In some instances, condo living can
resemble apartment living with less space and individual autonomy.
To make the most of condo living it's essential for residents to
remain involved in the decisions and activities of the community.
Those with a need for privacy and autonomy may feel more comfortable
with single-family homes or other housing alternatives.
4. Still a Need for Repairs: Many major repairs and
maintenance items are taken care of by condo associations, but not
all, so condo owners aren't completely off the hook. Condo owners
should set aside a little time to take care of routine repairs and
interior maintenance on their units.
Simple Steps for Spring Cleaning Without the Stress
is the perfect time to clean up your home and lighten the load of
everyday maintenance. But with so much to do, the task can seem
overwhelming. Try these simple tips to spruce up your home and
brighten your outlook:
Clear the Clutter
Put a box or two in
the center of every room and then clear the clutter from closets,
cabinets, the garage, garden shed and other storage areas both
inside and outside the home.
Wash the Doors and
Doors and windows
take a lot of abuse, so it's no surprise they tend to build up dirt,
grime and unsightly stains. Begin by removing curtains and blinds
for a deep clean, and then tackle tracks, screens and sills with a
gentle solution. Tough stains around doorknobs may require a quick
touch-up of paint, but the results are worth it.
Floors and More
commercial-quality carpet-cleaning machine or consider having a
professional do the job for you. Either way, it's important to clean
the carpets and upholstery in preparation for spring. Research shows
that humans lose an average of seven pounds of dead skin each year,
and most of it ends up in carpets, the couch or other fabrics.
For the ultimate
spring clean, be sure to include the air vents, ceiling fans and
central air filters. According to the Environmental Protection
Agency, homes that have been sealed tight over a long winter are
prone to air quality problems that can make asthma, headaches and
allergies even worse.
The Story of Daylight Saving Time
Spring ahead and fall back. It’s a little ditty that’s been used for nearly 100 years to remind people which way to turn their clocks twice a year. But daylight saving time (DST) is often misunderstood.
Benjamin Franklin is usually given credit for creating DST, but the idea was actually presented by William Willet, a house builder in London, England. The concept never gained acceptance during his lifetime, but it was finally implemented during the First World War to save coal. The United States and other nations soon followed suit but only on an optional schedule, which led to some confusion.
In 1966, Congress ended the confusion by requiring that DST be implemented uniformly, although Arizona, Hawaii and Indiana still opted for their own systems.
Today, more than 70 nations recognize DST, including most industrialized nations except for Japan. In most states, DST begins this year on Sunday, March 14.
Critics argue the additional hour of daylight results only in confusion, people being late for work and missed appointments, while advocates cite the positives to be derived from energy savings, as well as health benefits from increased exposure to sunlight.
Seniors: The Latest on Reverse Mortgages
Seniors who are at least 62 years of age and want to buy a new home
can obtain a reverse mortgage and purchase a residence at the same
However, because of
depressed home prices, since Oct. 1, 2009, borrowers who obtain
reverse mortgages get 10% less than they would have before that
compensated for an estimated $800 million deficit in home prices.
And now there are rumbles of even more reductions.
enable people 62 or older to use the equity in their homes and
receive lump-sum payments, periodic checks, a line of credit or a
combination of the three.
Lenders are repaid
from the sale of the home when the borrower dies or moves. The
maximum reverse mortgages backed by the Federal Housing
Administration has been raised to $625,000 from $417,000.
Origination fees are capped at $6,000.
The lender can
never force senior homeowners out of their residences as long as the
property taxes and the homeowners insurance are kept current and the
property is maintained.
Recorded like any
first mortgage, reverse mortgages mean that the residence cannot
secure any other financing.
But if there is a
small mortgage balance, such as less than 25% of the home's market
value, the borrower can still probably qualify by using a
reverse-mortgage lump sum to pay off the old mortgage.
Because most senior
citizens own their residences free and clear or with a small
mortgage balance, this is usually not a problem. However, a mortgage
balance over 40% of the home's appraised value usually makes a
reverse mortgage unavailable.
heirs often discourage reverse mortgages because they feel their
inheritance is being spent. Others encourage their senior citizen
parents to obtain a reverse mortgage to enjoy their "golden years"
in financial comfort.