Natural Ways to Keep Bugs Away

Mel Foster Co. blogDon’t let pesky bugs invade your outdoor living space and put a damper on your gathering at home.  Try starting with a few natural methods to keep the bugs at bay.

  1. Natural mint mouthwash spray

Insects do not like the smell of mint in any form. Transfer your favorite natural mint mouthwash into a spray container and spray it on yourself and the area around you while outdoors.

  1. Fill your garden with garlic, mint, and rosemary

Naturally ward away bugs by planting these three herbs on your windowsill or in your outdoor garden. They’ll keep the bugs away, plus you can use the spices in your cooking.

  1. Use a ceiling or oscillating fan

Install a ceiling fan on your patio or covered outdoor area and turn it on during the evening when bugs are most likely to strike. The wind from the fan will make it difficult for bugs to fly in and pester you and your guests. Plug-in an oscillating fan near non-covered outdoor areas for the same effect.

  1. Don’t wear heavy perfumes or scents

Stay away from wearing heavily-scented shampoos, body sprays, perfumes, or deodorants while outdoors. The fragrances can attract bugs and the stings and bites that follow.

  1. Stay hydrated

Bugs are attracted to sweaty, hot skin. Stay cool and hydrated by drinking plenty of water and fluids. Be sure to keep water handy and take sips as you start to perspire to keep the bugs away.

Does your home lack the outdoor space you’ve always wanted? Contact a Mel Foster Co. agent today to begin your search.

 

Read This Before Remodeling your Kitchen

Thinking of kitchen remodel?

Small details can make or break your kitchen renovation. Avoid stress by going through this list before you start making purchases.

  1. Measure Everything

This extra step will save time, money and headaches in the long run. The last thing you want is the refrigerator or dishwasher not opening all the way because the island ended up being too close.

  1. Choose a Timeless Backsplash

It may be tempting to choose a trendy tile layout, but you may quickly become bored with your decision. You’ll also have difficulty selling later on if your kitchen looks outdated due to a very specific design choice. Stick to classic white coloring. White is always on trend.

  1. Decide if a Splurge is Worth it

Sometimes spending a little more now will save you in the long run. If an energy efficient appliance is a little more expensive, it might be worth it to upgrade so you have lower energy bills every month. It’s important to prioritize needs over wants, but sometimes a want is worth the happiness or convenience it will provide.

  1. Consider Open Shelving

A few rows of open shelving can help break up the “boxy” feel of some kitchens. Even an addition of a few shelves can help the kitchen feel more open and also offer you the opportunity to show off some photos or nice dining ware.

Not sure how much upgrading to make to your home before you become the most expensive house in the neighborhood? Ask a Mel Foster Co. agent for comparables in your neighborhood.

Three Ways to Make your Home Appeal to Millennials

What we look for in a home.

It can be difficult to appeal to millennial homebuyers’ tastes, but recent polling has provided some insight into what they’re searching for in their first home.

  1. Leave Room for Improvement

Many millennials are looking for a fixer-upper for their first home due to their limited budgets. HGTV has made remodeling more accessible than ever, and millennials want to renovate their houses into their own dream homes. In 2017 first-time homebuyers spent an average of $33,800 on home renovations.

  1. Have a Separate Laundry Room

Millennials are willing to sacrifice comfort for extra square footage dedicated to a laundry room. Every year surveys taken on millennials’ buying choices point toward this trend. It’s a small change that can make your home significantly more attractive to this group of buyers.

  1. Be Environmentally Friendly

Offer a house that includes green features. Millennials look for LED lighting, double paned windows or even solar panels. You don’t have to make a major investment, but even updated, energy-efficient appliances will attract buyers. It’s not only trendy and good for the planet, but will also save money in the long run.

Want more expert advice on how to market your home to the most buyers? Ask a Mel Foster Co. agent.

 

Finding Your Perfect First Home

First Home

It can seem daunting when searching for a new home, especially as a first time buyer. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for finding your new home.

  1. Determine a Budget

Creating a budget before looking should be your top priority. Focus on both the down payment you have saved and earmarked to buy your home and the monthly mortgage and insurance payment first. It’s best to estimate on the higher end and then try to keep expenses as low as possible.

  1. Determine Needs and Wants

When buying a starter home, carefully choose the features you need and not just those you’d like to have. Do you want more space or to be closer to work? Create a list and try to check off as many as you can when viewing a home. But don’t confuse wants with needs.

  1. Consider All Properties

View as many homes as possible. You’ll learn what you like, what you don’t like and may even come away with a few interesting ideas for your final choice. Be sure to keep a journal or list so you’re able to reference the data later. It can get very overwhelming to keep home attributes straight after a few weeks of searching.

  1. Work with a Professional

Avoid the hassle of tracking new listings and scheduling showings and consider working with a Mel Foster Co. agent instead. There is no cost for the buyer, and you’ll have someone in your corner with industry knowledge and experience. Contact an agent today.

Mel Foster REALTORS® Receive Honors

Mel Foster Co. agents were honored by the Quad Cities Area REALTOR® Association during their Annual Holiday Party and Installation of Officers held on December 5th. Congratulation to Dave Maubach of the Bettendorf office, Scott Kelling of the Davenport  I-74 office, and Herb Thompson of the Moline office.

Dave Maubach, REALTOR®

Dave Maubach was named REALTOR® of the Year Award for his exceptional real estate services.  Dave started his career in real estate with Mel Foster Co. almost 20 years ago in 1995.  He is licensed in Iowa & Illinois.  He is a Member of the Quad City Area REALTOR® Association, Iowa Association of REALTORS®, Illinois Association of REALTORS®, the National Association of REALTORS® and the Quad Cities Builders & Remodelers Association.  Dave is a current board member of the Quad City Area REALTOR® Association.   He is a past board member of the Neighborhood Housing Services, mentor at Big Brothers Big Sisters and volunteered his time for Davenport Youth Baseball for many years.

Scott Kelling
Scott Kelling, REALTOR®

Scott Kelling received the prominent REALTOR® Emeritus Status by the National Association of REALTORS®. The REALTOR® Emeritus Status is for a REALTOR® with a cumulative period of 40 years in one or more local Association of REALTORS®.

Scott is licensed in Iowa with 40 years of real estate experience and all of those with Mel Foster Co.  He received Mel Foster Co.’s Iowa REALTOR® of the Year in 2010. He is a Member of the Quad City REALTOR® Association, the Iowa Association of REALTORS®, the National Association of REALTORS®, Quad City Chamber of Commerce and American Political Science Association.

He earned his master Degree from Vanderbilt University and served on the City of Davenport Plan and Zoning Commission, was past Director of the Davenport Chamber of Commerce, past President of the Great Davenport Board of REALTORS®, and a veteran of the United States Army.

Herb Thompson
Herb Thompson, REALTOR®

Herb Thompson received the prominent REALTOR® Emeritus Status by the National Association of REALTORS®. The REALTOR® Emeritus Status is for a REALTOR® with a cumulative period of 40 years in one or more local Association of REALTORS®.

Herb has over 40 years of real estate experience, 26 years at Mel Foster Co., and is licensed in Illinois and Iowa.  He is a Member of the Quad City REALTOR® Association, Illinois Association of REALTORS®, and the National Association of REALTORS®.  Herb served as President of the Rock Island County Board of REALTORS® in 1986 and received REALTOR® of the Year award in 1987.

Since 1980, Herb has been a member of the Moline Rotary.  He is a past Board member and past president of the YMCA, Salvation Army Board Member, High School Teacher and Coach for 22 years, and a Veteran of United States Air Force.

Relocating To The Quad Cities.

Moving to our area?
Moving to our area?

You landed that new job in the Quad Cities, but now what do you do to find a home? Mel Foster Co. offers free relocation services that can help you explore neighborhoods, schools and cities that are a match for your criteria.

Your agent can help you pinpoint options that are near your new job or the amenities you most desire. Do you want riverfront? A large wooded property a few minutes from town? A renovated loft style condo without any yard work? The Quad Cities is such a diverse area, it’s easy to find a match, no matter how specific your needs seem.

Many of the area’s largest employers count on Mel Foster Co. relocation specialists to welcome new hires or transferees to the Quad Cities. Deere and Company, ALCOA and Thomson Prison employees have all used the free relocation services to get acquainted with their new town.

Getting started is easy. Click here for an overview of free relocation services or call 800-367-1134.

Why You Can’t Afford NOT To Use A REALTOR®

Why us a REALTOR®?
When a REALTOR® to important.

Have you ever wondered, “is hiring a Realtor really necessary?” The answer to this important question is absolutely YES! In today’s strictly regulated market, there are several ways an experienced Realtor can be invaluable to you during the home buying or selling process.

Market Conditions

There is so much information out there when it comes to housing and market conditions can change quickly. A Realtor can help you weed out what is truth and fiction, and help you understand current market conditions including data on inventory and comparable sales prices.

Negotiations

Negotiating the purchase of a property can be stressful. A licensed Realtor will act as your middleman, managing expectations of the parties on either side of the deal, ensuring a smoother transaction for you.

Pricing

A Realtor understands the value of real estate in different markets, conditions, and types. The improper pricing of your property can leave your listing dead in the water, costing you much more in the long run.

Paperwork

There is a mountain of paperwork for real estate transactions. Missing a disclosure or piece of necessary paperwork could spell disaster if you are navigating a buy or sale without a Realtor. A Realtor is experienced and aware of all of the various regulations you may face, and can ensure nothing is overlooked when it comes time to close the sale.


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