The Importance of Stocks & Sauces

The great French Chef Master, Auguste Escoffier wrote:

„Indeed, stock is everything in cooking, at least in French cooking. Without it, nothing can be done. If one’s stock is good, what remains of the work is easy; if, on the other hand, it is bad or merely mediocre, it is quite hopeless to expect anything approaching a satisfactory result.“

Escoffier and other French chefs revolutionized early French cooking by inventing a lighter and reduced sauce, a variation of traditionally heavy cream sauces, known as stock.

Since the 16th century, stocks have been used in soup and sauce preparation. Stocks are the extraction of flavor from ingredients with a liquid base. The ingredients often include include bones, vegetables, herbs and spices simmered in water.

There are a few French stocks and sauces that are used traditionally. ‚Glaces‘ are stock that have been reduced, while a ‚demi-glace‘ is reduced even further to form a thick brown sauce. They are used for numerous dishes to intensify the flavor, texture and color. A ‚jus‘ is the natural liquid rendered from the drippings of a roast. An ‚au jus‘ is usually prepared using stock and meat trimmings. An ‚essence‘ is the vegetable equivalent of a meat stock added for a touch more flavor in the sauce.

Why are stocks so rich in flavor? Simmering ingredients allows extraction of flavor in addition to reduction in volume – it’s this reduction that concentrates the flavor of the stock even more.

As a result, stocks and sauces are key to delicious cooking – as well as for other reasons besides taste. As our economy is still recovering, we know families everywhere are working long hours. Cooking nutritious and satisfying meals can fall by the wayside in daily tasks, but keeping a full pantry of good stocks and sauces give you the option of preparing quick dinners on the fly.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

How to Start a House Cleaning Business on a Tight Budget

„If you use Emotion and Love to drive your sales and your business, you will create Loyalty Beyond Reason. And I promise you, you will build relationships and enjoy a business that exceeds beyond your wildest expectations“

First of all, before you decide to start your cleaning business, make sure this kind of work is right for you. You will need to be in good physical condition. Cleaning is very hard strenuous work. You will need to have good customer relation skills. You will need to have basic office skills and some accounting skills.

If you are planning on leaving your full time position to start a cleaning business, make sure you have at least six months of savings. Or keep your full time job and start out part time.

Research all the aspects of the cleaning service business. From customer service to advertising, taxes, employees, insurance and bonding, what to charge and how to clean a home professionally. Cleaning your own home and cleaning professionally is totally different. Learning how to clean professionally takes a lot of time. When a client pays for your services they expect to come home and find their home spotless.

Getting those first clients takes time, persistence and patience. You will not get a hundred clients overnight.

Obtaining Those First Clients The hardest part of starting your own cleaning service is obtaining those first clients. Most clients want to know how long you have been in business and want references. The best thing to do is let clients know that, yes, you are new to the business but that you have thoroughly researched all aspects of the cleaning business and assure them that you know what you are doing and that you are quit capable of cleaning their home to their specifications. Be confident. I can’t stress this enough. Clients love to see confidence. It relieves their worries and lets them know that their home is in good hands.

References: To get a few good references when starting out, ask some friends or family members if you can clean their home for free or at a discounted rate. The sound of working for free may not be appealing but it will be worth it to get some good testimonials.

When cleaning those first homes, go for quality, not how fast you can clean the home. Cleaning efficiently takes a long time, but you will get to the point where you can do a thorough cleaning in a short time. After cleaning make sure you go back and double check all rooms to make sure you didn’t miss anything. Impress those first clients and word of mouth will spread soon.

Advertising Your company image is everything. Before you start advertising, decide what image you want to portray on your advertising material. Your image is very important. Be consistent with all your advertising. If you have a logo be sure to use it on all your advertising materials. I think it is best to have a website developed before you start advertising. When advertising, stick with the same logo and colors.

Advertise in Local Paper: Start by running a text ad in your local newspaper. Try to come up with an eye catching ad. Do not sell your services on low rates, sell your services on your quality of work and what you can do for the client that other companies don’t. There is a lot of competition in the cleaning service. You have to stand out from the rest.

Magnetic Signs or Lettering for your Vehicle: Having your business name and contact information on your vehicle is a great way to advertise. We use the vinyl lettering. The lettering looks much more professional than the magnetic signs.

Flyers: You can print nice flyers on your home computer, but I would suggest investing in some professional flyers. Hang flyers at Hair Dressers, Laundromats, Restaurants, Bakeries, Grocery Stores, etc. Put flyers on car windows at local groceries stores and businesses. You can even go door to door in neighborhoods you would like to work in. You cannot put them in mailboxes. but you can put them in the front door.

Door Hangers: Door hangers are a great way to get new clients. Pick the neighborhood you would like to work in and hang the door hangers on the doors. When people get flyers or ads in their mailbox they usually throw them away with the junk mail. But if there is a door hanger on the door they will take the time to look at it.

Business Cards: Start passing out your business cards to friends and family members. You can also ask your local businesses if you can leave some cards on their counters.

Referral Program: A great way to obtain new clients is through a referral program. Offer existing clients a discount when they refer a friend. You can give your existing clients a discount when the friend uses your services three times.

Website: These days people live very busy lives so they use the convenience of the internet to shop for the services they need. A lot of working women will shop for services while at work. Everyone that has a business should have a website. It shows clients that you are serious about your business and allows them research your business in their own time.

Cleaning Products: By using all natrual products, you can offer your clients a healthy cleaning experience and protect ourselves against harsh chemicals. Clients love the natural cleaning products with essential oils. They come home to a healthy clean home filled with the wonderful scents of aromatherapy essential oils.

Tip: Always carry hand sanitizer and wash your hands often while cleaning homes. Wear gloves when cleaning bathrooms. You will be exposed to a lot of different germs in clients homes.

Remember most customers prefer that you bring your own cleaning supplies. That way they do not have to worry about going to the store for cleaning supplies before you clean. Some customers have special cleaners for certain appliances or floors in their houses. These customers usually will have these cleaners on hand for you to use. We almost always use the customers vacuum cleaner. That way you do not have to carry a heavy vacuum from house to house.

What to Charge I mentioned earlier that you should sell your services on your quality of work and not your low rates. If your rates are too low, clients will think that your work is sub-standard and that you are not experienced. Also you want to attract the clients that can afford your services. I made the mistake of pricing my work too low when I first started out. Cleaning is hard work, charge what you are worth. As the old saying goes „You get what you pay for.“

Some companies charge by the hour, some charge by the room, some charge a flat rate per home and some charge by the square foot. I think it is better to charge by the home, not by the hour. If a client knows they have to pay one set fee, they don’t care if you take 2 hours or 5 hours. Also your clients will know what they are paying up front and won’t have to worry about added expenses.

No two houses are the same. And there is no set charge for all homes. You have to clean for awhile yourself to get some experience and to work out a system to clean efficiently. Only you know what you want and need to make. Decide what you need to make hourly to cover all expenses and still make a good profit.

A word of advise: Make sure when you start your company that you charge what you would charge if you had employees. Some people make the mistake of under charging when they start out just to get customers and then later on when they grow and need to hire help they aren’t making enough money on their houses to pay help. Don’t under price your work. Cleaning homes is very hard physical work and you didn’t get into this business to work for nothing.

New Construction Cleaning If you decide to do this type of work you will need more equipment. You will need ladders, window cleaning kits with long extensions, a shop vac, etc. These types of jobs are usually 2 to 3 person jobs. New construction cleaning requires a lot more cleaning. You may have to remove stickers and labels from windows and bathroom showers, sinks and toilets. Some require that you clean the vents to remove dust from construction work. There will be ceiling fans to clean, scrubbing floors, and cleaning woodwork to remove dust. New construction cleaning rates depend on the area you live in.

Insurance and Bonding. You need to be an honest person and somewhat personable. People will need to trust you to be in their homes. Most clients are concerned about having someone new in their house, with good reason. You should be bonded and fully insured. Liability insurance rates depend on your insurance carrier and where you are located. Each person you hire will increase your liability insurance. It’s well worth the cost. You can pay quarterly or yearly. You can purchase your bond through your local insurance company. You will need to renew the bond every year. *Note: if you hire employees and cover them under your insurance, they must be an employee on payroll and not a sub-contractor. If you employ them as a sub-contractor your insurance will not cover them. If they are a sub-contractor they are required to carry their own insurance. You

Hiring Help If you start out cleaning the homes by yourself, you will eventually get to the point where you need to expand your business. Start out with one part time employee. Train her and let her take your place one day a week. Then have her take your place 2 days a week and so on. This will give you the free time that you need to market your business and obtain more clients. After you get more clients you will be able to hire more part time help. Eventually you will be able to stop doing the cleaning yourself and just run the business end, which is the only way you will be able to grow your business. When training new employees, always, either train them yourself or have a lead person train them. Make sure there is a lead person on each and every cleaning job. Employees have a tendency to slack off when they are on their own.

Growing Your Business You will eventually get to the point where you have enough employees and lead people and you will be able to stop working in your business and start running your business. You will find that after awhile it will get to be too much trying to clean everyday and at the same time giving estimates, answering calls, scheduling, doing book work, obtaining new clients, etc.

Remember one of the most important qualifications for a cleaning service is TRUST. A client has to know they can trust you alone in their home. After you acquire a few cleaning positions ask the clients if you can use them for a reference. Most of the time they are more than willing to let you use them for a reference. This is how you build your business and acquire new clients is through referrals. Be dependable. Most clients will want to be set up on an every week or every other week schedule on the same day of the week. Try to always keep this same schedule unless the client asks you to switch to another day. If you have to cancel a cleaning date, make sure you try to reschedule at the earliest possible date to make up the cleaning.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Boarding Stable Barn Etiquette

Each barn has its own personality, its very own unique feel. Some are friendlier than others. Some are fancy, while others are more down home. Some house very serious competitors, and there are those who just want to have fun. But across the board, the basics of barn behavior, barn etiquette if you will, is universal. When riding in an arena going the same direction as another horse, let the person ahead of you know if you are going to pass to the inside or the outside, say „inside“ or „outside“ and stick to it. Don’t change your mind at the last second. The horse and rider in front of you needs to rely on you to make the right choice. It’s hard to ride when you’re looking over your shoulder.

When a horse is approaching you from the opposite direction, it’s just like driving a car. That horse should most always be on your left. Changing directions and reversing should be announced also. You don’t have to shout, just simply state the fact. Most often the other riders will oblige. Let them know if you are going to school over jumps. There is nothing more annoying, not to mention potentially dangerous, than having a horse and rider start taking jumps without advance warning. When entering and leaving the arena, say „Door“ to let others know you are entering and leaving; approach crossties with regard to the horse and rider. Horses can spook for seemingly no reason at all, don’t give them excuses.

Clean up after your horse in the grooming area and crossties. Until that bridle is on, there is no reason to not do it right then and there. If your horse is completely tacked, it’s a given you’re not going to unbridle him and put him back in a halter so you can clean up. Nor do you want to hook crossties to his bridle. Clean it up when you finish riding. Chances are if it is a busy barn, someone will go ahead and clean it up for you before grooming and tacking their horse. Thank them and remember to return the favor. A boarding stable with horse owners that look out for one another is the best barn to be in.

Thus said, this does not apply to giving treats to another person’s horse. Do not, I repeat, do not assume it is okay to pass out carrots, apples, sugar cubes, low-cal treats, or anything of the like. It is not your right. Let me say that again. It is not your right. It is wrong. If you have asked the owner’s permission and it has been granted, that’s a different thing. Aside from that, even if the horse is the best beggar in the world and does handstands and summersaults for carrots, please, please, please, walk on by. That horse could be on a special diet, he could have just been wormed, treated with medication. He could be allergic. You don’t know. His owner knows, and rightfully so. It’s not your horse.

In certain barns, it’s alright to give your horse extra hay. Not anyone else’s, just yours. The best thing to do if you are finding that your horse doesn’t have hay and you hate leaving him or her that way is to talk to the barn manager or owner. Ask them what time horses are hayed and how often, when is night check, when is water topped off? As a rule, horses are not always going to have hay in their stalls, particularly the easy keepers. They eat quickly and take a dream-filled nap in preparation for the next feeding.

If you do give your horse hay, be quiet about it. The other horses are bound to get stirred up when they see you blatantly serving up hay to your horse and not them. It is not acceptable in any barn that I know of to hay your horse and then go hay everyone else’s because you feel bad, now that you have them all riled up. It goes back to not knowing each horse’s needs. Again, check with the owner or barn manager. This applies even more so with grain.

Do not borrow another person’s tack, blankets, and turnout sheets, fly masks; fly spray, etc. without asking. Do not borrow grooming supplies such as hoof picks and scissors without asking. Do not borrow grooming brushes and combs, period. It’s not good practice. Don’t leave your horse’s halter hooked to the crosstie. Before you leave for the day, snap your horse’s halter and lead shank together and hang it in the designated area by his or her stall. In case of emergency or fire, this step-saving measure could possibly save your horse’s life. Post your contact information on the front of your horse’s stall, including blacksmith and veterinarian’s phone number. If you water your horse, rewind the hose. If you pick out your horse’s stall, empty the muck basket and put the pitchfork away. Flush the toilet when you use it. Don’t let things spoil in the refrigerator. Don’t get into barn gossip, nothing good will come of it. Turn out the lights. Close the gates and doors. Be careful. Sound like home? It is your home; it’s your second home. It’s where your horse lives and chances are you spend a lot of time there. Enjoy!

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Private Schools Near Virginia Water, Surrey

Virginia Water is located in the affluent county of Surrey. Virginia Water is one of most expensive areas in the country, with its millionaires neighbourhood at the Wentworth Estate. And as a result of large number of families with high income, there is a big supply of private schools in and around Virginia Water:

Woodcote School in Windlesham is the ultimate family-run boarding and day school. Owned by the Paterson family since 1931, they seek to provide a ‚home from home‘ for 100 boys between the ages of 7 and 13. Many aspects of life at Woodcote are unique to their school. Courtesy towards others, high standards of personal conduct and a balanced education really matter at Woodcote.

Sunningdale School is a small country preparatory boarding school which offers an outstanding all round education to 100 boys. This is a family run boys‘ prep school in Berkshire founded in 1874 it stands in 25 acres of mature gardens and grounds.

Bishopsgate School here children learn and play in a beautiful woodland setting on the edge of Windsor Great Park. The grounds provide a wonderful learning resource and there are acres of space for healthy play. A recent school inspection report gave the top grade of „Excellent“ in each of the 8 key areas.

Sir William Perkins founded by a wealthy Chertsey merchant, in 1725 to educate the town’s children. Today this girls school has around 580 pupils aged eleven to eighteen and is situated on attractive Green Belt land.

St Georges College in Weybridge is a leading independent co-educational Roman Catholic day school in Surrey for 3-18 year olds offering a values led education for all. St George’s College is proud to have a reputation for being a friendly school where all students are individually known and valued equally whatever their strengths and weaknesses.

Hurst Lodge an independent day and weekly boarding school for boys and girls aged 3-18 set in twenty acres of beautiful Berkshire parkland. Here children are offered challenging and diverse opportunities, teaching in small classes and the opportunity to develop new skills and interests.

Licensed Victuallers is co-educational, independent day and boarding school for young people aged 4 to 18, based in Ascot, Berkshire. Good Schools Guide 2012 said: „A school with timeless values that makes non-selectivity the starting point for success rather than a justification for its absence.“

St Georges in Ascot is a thriving boarding and day school for girls aged 11 to 18. Founded in 1877 boys‘ Prep School, with 41 pupils this was school the school that Winston Churchill attended at the tender age of seven. It became a girls‘ school in 1904 when Miss Pakenham-Walsh opened it as a finishing school.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

8 Ways Quality Real Estate Agents Prove Their Value!

Although, there are over 1.3 million, real estate agents, in the United States, only, a small – minority, of them, are responsible, for the vast majority of the transactions, which occur! Since, for most of us, the value of their house, represents, their single – biggest, financial asset, wouldn’t it make sense, to very carefully, choose the individual, to hire, to represent you, and your best – interests? How should quality agents, demonstrate, and prove, their value? Doing so, demands a variety of skills, assets, attitude, persistence, discipline, integrity, etc, and, there is no such thing, as one – size – fits – all! Before, hiring the right person, to serve and represent, one’s interests, it is essential to, clearly, prove, he is worthy of their respect, etc! With, that, in mind, this article will attempt to, briefly, consider, examine, review, and discuss, 8 ways, quality agents consistently, prove their worth/ value!

1. Effectively listen to prospective clients: Observe, when interviewing agents to represent you, whether, the individual, effectively, listens, to you, and your personal needs, concerns, priorities, etc. How can anyone, represent your best interests, unless/ until, he commits to doing so?

2. Thoroughly, discuss, and discover, what prospective client, seeks, and needs: While some proceed, by trying to, merely, tell someone, what he believes, they want to hear, I strongly believe, in my service – mark, I’ll always tell you what you need to know, not, just, what you want to hear! It is wise, for client and agent, to know, trust, and believe, in – each other, throughout the process!

3. Discuss/ explain suggested marketing plan: What makes one’s marketing plan, different, in a meaningful way, from others? Since, one’s house, is so financially (and, other ways) relevant, it’s essential/ important, for both sides, to work together, on the same – page!

4. Explain concept/ teamwork/ strategy: Real estate agents, owe it, to their clients, to thoroughly, explain their concept, strategy, reasoning, action plans, and, the importance of well – considered, teamwork!

5. Commitment/ discipline/ efforts: Agents can’t, and should never, go – through – the – motions, and proceed, forward, with the level of consistent, true commitment, and the discipline, to maximize their efforts, for the client’s best – interests!

6. Regular updates: Communication, and providing regular reviews, and updates, must be an obligation, for agents! An essential component of representing someone, during stressful times/ periods, is holding – their – hands, throughout the entire period/ process/ transaction! From the onset, it’s important to pre – plan, for, regular, periodic updates, to thorough discuss, all relevant components, and/ or, necessary adjustments, during the period!

7. Quality negotiating: It takes quality negotiating, and an understanding of market, and economic conditions, in terms of supply – and – demand, etc, to make a significant difference, for the better!

8. Close the best deal: Meaningful representatives listen to potential deals, and help, bring them, forward, and, then, have the skills, and self – confidence, etc, to close the deal, with the best combination of minimizing the amount of time needed, enhancing the price offered, and addressing, any, and all conditions, etc.

Hire an agent, who will strive, to clearly, demonstrate, and prove his value, consistently, by a combination of skills, efforts, and a positive, can – do, attitude. Before you, buy, or sell a house/ home, doesn’t it make sense, to hire, the right agent?

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

5 Tips for the First Time Home Buyer

Buying a home is a big step in your life and should be a very exciting time. Unfortunately, many individuals rush into buying a home with out considering the implications is has on their future. If you’re considering making the move to own it’s important you weigh all the options, and consider what if anything will affect the feasibility of you’re purchase. If this is you’re first time in the housing market consider the following before you make your big move.

  1. Get Your Finances in Order

    Have a lot of debt racked up? If thats the case, you may want to play catch up before you even think about buying a home. Bad credit is bad news for those who want a buy a new home. In most cases you will need to get a mortgage before you buy and this means your credit will be under scrutiny. Start getting acquainted with your credit score and begin fix the problems well before you apply for a mortgage.

  2. Think about the Future

    If you have a job or other obligation that may require you to move or travel for extended periods of time you want to think twice about rushing into the housing market. Buying a house is a commitment that will tie you down to a particular location for at least a few years. It’s not easy or economically feasible to pack up and sell your home at the drop of a hat.

  3. Educate Your Self

    As a first time home buyer one of the worst thing you can do is go into the market unprepared. Familiarizing your self with words and phrases that are used will allow you to better comprehend the market. A better understanding of the home buying process will enable you to make a well educated decision when it comes to you’re final purchase. Entering the market blindly can turn you’re home buying dreams into a nightmare.

  4. Be Rational

    We all want to live in the home of our dreams. Unfortunately, like most things in life, the housing market must be approached from the bottom up? Renting is the start of the home owners journey. With your dream home serving as the final destination you will most likely need to take a few stops on the way there. The logical step is to buy a house you can afford not one that lands you in economic turmoil. Consider your first home an investment that you can improve upon over time. Once the home is improved you can sell it and bring yourself one step closer to your dream home. Buying out of your league can be a huge problem so set a budget and find a home within your means.

  5. Ask For Help

    Don’t be determined to have a go at it alone. Buying a home is a complicated process and sometimes it really helps to have someone walk you through it step by step. Agents are more than willing to help you look through home listing, find what your looking for, and ultimately take you from start to finish.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Purchase A Home With Free Downpayment Assistance Grants

First-Time Home Buyers Assistance

Florida Housing is a State Financing Corporation created over 20 years ago to help Floridians obtain safe, decent housing that might otherwise be unavailable to them. Their „First-Time“ Homebuyer Program provides low interest mortgage loans and financial incentives throughout the year, for eligible homebuyers who haven’t owned a home as a primary residence within the past 3 years.

Program Highlights

The program offers low-interest 30 and 40 year fixed-rate loans, downpayment and closing costs assistance as well as access to credit counseling.

Teachers, firefighters, healthcare workers, police officers, as well as active duty and veteran military personnel could be eligible for lower interest rates.

Eligible applicants include individuals who:

 have never owned a home,

 don’t claim their mobile home as real property,

 haven’t owned a home as their primary residence within the past three years,

 have established credit worthiness,

 have an annual income that does not exceed program limits.

Downpayment Assistance

Florida Housing offers two downpayment and closing cost assistance programs in the form of second mortgage loans, and one in the form of an upfront cash assistance to help eligible homebuyers cover their downpayment and closing costs.

Downpayment Assistance

Programs: Offers Up To:

(Income limits apply)

FLORIDA ASSIST PROGRAM $10,000- Applicants with annual income at or below 80% Area Median Income

ASSISTANCE FOR MODERATE INCOME (HAMI) $5,000-Applicants with moderate income

The City of Orlando offers a Downpayment Assistance Program, available to low and moderate income first-time homebuyers for the purchase of a home within the City limits of Orlando. Depending on the gross household income, assistance may be $10,000, $20,000 or $30,000.

Teachers and public safety personnel, who are moderate income, may qualify for $20,000 of assistance. City of Orlando employees, teachers, and public safety personnel who are purchasing homes within the city limits of Orlando do not have to be first time homebuyers. Purchasers must occupy the property as a principal residence for at least ten (10) years. The downpayment assistance becomes a grant once the period of affordability has been satisfied.

Orange County provides funds to qualified first time homebuyers for down payment and closing costs associated with purchasing a home. The program provides assistance to qualified low and moderate income persons in Orange County on a first come, first ready basis. The program also requires that potential homebuyers complete a pre-purchase and post-purchase education program.

The buyer must:

 Meet the income requirements. Annual household income cannot exceed 120% of the area median income.

 Provide at least $1,000 of their own funds.

 Complete a home buyer’s education seminar.

 Secure first mortgage financing.

The property must:

 Be new or existing and located in Orange County, outside the city limits of Orlando.

 Not exceed a sales price of $219,000.

 Receive competitive fixed rate financing.

 Be fee simple ownership.

The assistance:

 Maximum ranges from $20,000 to $35,000 depending on household income.

 The County’s assistance is provided to the buyer’s closing agent at closing in the form of a soft second mortgage at 0% interest which is forgiven after fifteen (15) years if the home remains owner-occupied.

 In addition, the total first mortgage and Orange County’s second mortgage may not exceed 105% of appraised value.

Home Buyer’s Education Program

All participants requesting down payment assistance must attend a free Homeowners Education workshop. This provides education and technical services to assist eligible low and moderate income families in the process and procedure connected with the purchase of an affordable single family fee-simple housing unit. Homebuyers Education addresses such topics as choosing a realtor, qualifying for a mortgage, inspecting a house, contracts for sale, home maintenance and credit issues.

The Orange County Finance Authority is a government organization that provides mortgage financing with lower interest rates than what is available in the market. Their financing products reduce long-term mortgage costs. Plus, if eligible, you may obtain additional down payment/closing cost assistance from other sources along with this financing!

In order to qualify for home financing, certain eligibility requirements must be met:

 You have not had an ownership interest in a primary residence during the previous three years. (Unless the property is located in a federally designated „Targeted Area“.)

 Property must be owner-occupied for the term of the loan or until the property is sold.

 Have the legal right to permanently reside in the United States

 Meet credit and loan requirements

 Do not exceed the income & purchase price limit

 Veterans can waive First-Time Homebuyer Rule

City of Kissimmee Community Redevelopment Agency offers financial grants to new homeowners within the Community Redevelopment Agency district (CRA), in order to provide economic support to the downtown businesses. It is designed to attract new residents to targeted areas within the Community Redevelopment district. There will be no income limitations placed on the granting of these funds.

Funding will be granted based on establishment of owner occupancy of the subject property. The grants will be given on a first come, first served basis after certain qualifications have been met.

The agency offers financial grants to eligible employees of employers in the CRA Overlay District on a first come, first served basis to be used towards the purchase of a home. Plus, there are incentives for Teachers to be used towards the purchase of a home in the CRA Overlay District on a first come, first served basis.

Osceola County provides funds to qualified first time homebuyers for downpayment, closing costs associated with purchasing a home, and financing with lower interest rates than what is available in the market. The program provides assistance to qualified low and moderate income persons in Osceola County on a first come, first ready basis. The program also requires that potential homebuyers complete an education program.

The buyer must:

 Not have owned a home in the last three years.

 Attend a Home Buyers Orientation Session and complete a Home Buyers Education Program.

 Have a minimum of $1,000 to contribute toward the costs of buying a home.

 Have an annual income that falls within the area median income guidelines as defined by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development. Additional terms may apply.

The property must:

 Must be located in Osceola County.

 New home or existing homes must not exceed $200,000. If within the City of Kissimmee homes must not exceed $240,000.

 No mobile homes.

 Manufactured homes must have DCA insignia seal.

 Must be a single family home, condominium, town home or villa.

The assistance:

 Maximum ranges from $39,000 to $69,000 depending on household income.

 The Loan is provided to the buyer’s closing agent at closing in the form of a soft second mortgage which is forgiven after ten (10) years if the home remains owner-occupied.

Repayment of the loan becomes due if:

 Borrower defaults on the first mortgage.

 The house is sold refinanced with equity cashed out.

 The house is rented, leased, subleased or ceases to be owner-occupied prior to the end of the loan period.

 No Home Equity Line of Credit borrowed against the property.

Home Buyer’s Education Program

All participants requesting down payment assistance must attend a free Homeowners Education workshop. This provides education and technical services to assist eligible low and moderate income families in the process and procedure connected with the purchase of an affordable single family fee-simple housing unit. Homebuyers Education addresses such topics as choosing a realtor, qualifying for a mortgage, inspecting a house, contracts for sale, home maintenance and credit issues.

SHIP Program (State Housing Initiative Partnership)

The State Housing Initiatives Partnership (SHIP) Program provides funds to produce and preserve affordable housing through the creation of a partnership between the public and private sectors. The funds are derived from the collection of documentary stamp tax revenues, which are deposited into the Local Government Housing Trust Fund. Based on a population-based formula, SHIP funds are distributed to local governments each month.

These funds are available to Home Buyers through the Downpayment Assistance programs above.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

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Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Real Estate Lead Generation Services – A Breakdown Of Those Available

Online and automated real estate lead generation services are provided by companies that do the bulk of your lead generation work for you. In return for payment, they provide you with targeted leads of prospective clients who are investigating the sale of their home, thinking about buying a home or actively searching for a real estate agent.

But who are these companies, how do they work, what information can you expect to derive from their services, and what do they charge? For a breakdown of some of the industry’s most popular real estate lead generation companies, keep reading.

Realty Generator

Realty Generator syncs your local MLS listings with your website, manages search engine advertising spending, offers cell phone alerts, and includes CRM (Customer Relationship Management) software.

House Values

House Values is a website that lets homeowners type in their zip code and real estate property info in exchange for a home evaluation, provided by you. In turn, they collect the visitor’s contact info and pass it on to you for a nominal fee.

House By Mouse

Through a variety of websites and MLS listings, House by Mouse collects visitor information and passes it on to you. You get email updates, including those local prospects‘ contact info and, in turn, pay per lead generated. They charge about $12.95 per lead.

Realtor Exposure

Realtor Exposure works by providing you with a personal website that is designed to capture leads from buyers and sellers who are searching for home information in your area. Those leads are delivered to your cell phone or email. They also guarantee that your site will appear on the first page of search engine results, but this isn’t confirmed.

1to1Red

1to1Red allows you to set your monthly budget and then creates a personalized lead generation program based on that budget. They can manage advertising, online campaigns and pass on potential leads right to your inbox. Their focus is on quality leads and providing you with all the tracking information you need to stay on top of your marketing.

For an average of 5-15 quality leads per month with 1to1Red.com, you can expect to pay approximately $500.

HomeGain

HomeGain’s biggest selling feature is that you only pay a referral fee if you close a deal. They offer customized coverage areas for a low monthly subscription rate and, in turn, provide you with the contact information of web searchers looking for a home evaluation or realtor.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

Townhouse or Condo – What Is the Difference?

Between a townhouse and a condo, there is a lot of difference. Everyone dreams about owning a home some day and if you are considering either of these as your first, or maybe your last, home it is important to know what each one is and how they differ.

Townhouse

It is a type of row or terraced house that is similar in shape and size and will usually share common walls. They are considered a single-family residence with each having a separate entrance. When you buy a townhouse, you are buying a special unit from a long line of properties that are similar. In historic Ireland and UK, it was a house for aristocrats inside a capital city that they used when they had to attend parliament sessions or during social functions.

Condo

It is also referred to as a condominium and is a type of housing tenure that also means common ownership. These were a part of a certain estate that are sold or leased to a tenant. The owner of the whole estate did this. Today it is a term used as a substitute for special unit, or apartment that are leased or purchased.

Major differences

• Ownership specifications-when you own a condo you will be the legal owner of everything that is inside the interior and if the condo owner wants to use the rest of the amenities, they must pay a monthly fee to the condo association. All members who own a condo form this association.

• Property taxes-the one that owns the condo also has to pay property tax on their individual living area but the townhouse homeowner has to pay not only for their living area but also for the ground on which it is built. This can mean that the cost for a townhouse may be higher than the price of a condo.

• The townhouse owner will have to pay a sum to a homeowner’s association for the maintenance of the complex but the monthly dues that a condo owner pays takes care of the overall maintenance without paying an extra fee.

• Structure of the home-mo matter what size of a townhouse that you purchase it is located on the ground level. There are no more floors on top except for maybe a terrace or it could be built in a different style of architectural like Cape Cod. The condo is usually located in a two or three floor complex. It could also be in a luxurious high-end multistory building along with exotic views.

• Condos are safer than townhouses as they are surrounded by a close neighborhood

• Townhouses offer more privacy as you are not surrounded by a lot of neighbors.

Immobilienmakler Heidelberg

Makler Heidelberg

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