Home Safety: Signs Your Home is Vulnerable to Robbery (And What to Do about It)

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“My people will live in peaceful dwelling places, in secure homes, in undisturbed places of rest.”-Isaiah 32:18

 

Our homes are the highest form of sanctuaries insomuch that it is about the only dwelling on earth most humans will consequently feel secure and safe.

Unfortunately, being safe and secure in our homes do not come perfunctorily simply with the purchase and ownership of one. Today, if you wished your families and children to stay safe and your belongings secure, you need to go the extra mile just to attain it. Gone are the days wherein we can simply leave our doors unlocked and windows open to let in the breeze. It is a dangerous world indeed and if you are not being extra careful and vigilant, your home might be a thief or burglar’s next target. However, burglars and thieves do not just randomly rob the house they see upon sight. Arbitrarily targeting homes is detrimental to their plans of mitigating the possibility of getting caught, so expect these unsavory characters to be a little tactical in their insidious misdeeds. But just what is it that makes a home a prime target for burglary?

Well, for one the vulnerable security might cause would-be robbers to easily compromise it. However, even then some homes would still be preyed upon by robbers. So, what could it be? What is it about these homes that make them prime targets to robbers? And what vulnerabilities do they hold that expose them to robbery and have their securities breached? Well, here are some of the things that make you and your homes a premier target for burglars regardless of whether you are living in a unit in Avida Towers Cebu    or a posh and swanky flat elsewhere:

 

Your social status

It has always been said that you should make friends with your neighbors not only to build a cordial and neighborly relationship with them, but to make them as stewards in protecting your home from potential burglaries as well. Although you can rely on your home security installment all you want, know that the every watchful eye of a nosy neighbor can be just as effective. In this regard, your passing acquaintance might just be your best ally in protecting your homes. While we are at that, it is important to keep your travel plans to yourself. Do not go around town telling everyone when you are headed out of town. This is especially true about posting photos on social media. However, tell a trusty neighbor when you are going to be out of town and let them keep an eye on your property for people they do not recognize.

 

Vacation photos

It is easy to get carried away in posting photographs of your epic vacation on social media. Unfortunately, doing so would leave your home’s security vulnerable. Thieves and burglars are digitally-savvy nowadays and are always on the lookout for properties whose owners are out of town. Keep in mind that although your photo might garner a lot of likes, it would also signify friends and acquaintances that you are not at home thereby making your property a prime target for anyone with ill intentions. If you insist on posting photos then at the very least, adjust the settings of your posts so that they are not public. Or you can wait to post your holiday photographs once you get home.

 

The Front Door

We are under the misconception that burglars would not use the front door. After all, they prefer to be not as obvious and by using the front door, they would not exactly be inconspicuous. Unfortunately, most burglaries happen with robbers entering the front door. This is because some homeowners would inadvertently leave their front doors open. Keep in mind that robberies do not just occur at night. They can occur anytime so keep your doors perpetually locked. After all, you will never know if someone posing as a salesman or a delivery person would just be checking if your door locks and trying to see if your home can be their next target.

 

Your Trash Can

They say that one man’s trash is another man’s treasure. In this case, what you throw may not exactly be treasure to thieves—but it could potentially lead them up to it. What you throw out gives robbers and thieves several clues as to what might be inside your home. In this regard, leaving cartons of the brand new television you just bought or the gaming set inside the trash outside would be akin to setting yourself up for robbery. It is like you are basically advertising what the robbers could potentially steal from your home. These boxes and cartons might be refuse items to you but it makes you a very attractive target to them. So, keep your boxes out of sight and break them down into smaller pieces in such a way that their labels cannot be seen.

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Bath and Beyond: Four Definitive Signs It is Time to Remodel Your Bathroom

 

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” There must be quite a few things that a hot bath will not cure, but I do not know many of them.” -Sylvia Plath

To many of us, the bathroom is a place of ultimate comfort. It is that one place in our homes wherein we can relax after a long day and just let go of our stress and worries. In our bathrooms, we are afforded a unique kind of privacy that is not found anywhere else in the home, and with that, we indulge ourselves in the form of a hot soothing shower or pander our penchant for hot bubble baths. For this reason, it was assigned its most apt moniker yet, the comfort room. Today, comfort rooms are no longer regarded as simple and straightforward rooms intended for bathing and cleaning ourselves; rather they have transformed into places paramount to our relaxation. In this regard, our bathrooms should have the semblance of a sanctuary–an optimal environment not only for getting ready to face the day but for a soothing soak as well.

Inevitably, part of your day is going to be spent in the bathroom so you might as well create an ambiance that is not only satisfactorily comforting but one that actually encourages you to spend time in it insomuch that it could become a favorite time of yours in your daily routine. So, if you find yourself dreading morning showers or evening baths, you might want to attribute that to the poor condition or subpar layout of your bathroom. If any of these signs are present in your unit in Avida Towers Cebu or elsewhere, it might be time for a bathroom upgrade or total bath overhaul:

1.) The layout does not make any sense

Do you wonder why the door gets soaked every single time you take a shower? Is the sink placed way too close to the toilet? Are there features that made you wonder why they are set the way that they are? If any of these pertain to your comfort room, it might be that the plan was substandard from the get-go insomuch that you have a resulting illogical layout. While you can choose to bear the burden of a speciously designed bathroom, at some point in your life, it is going to be inconvenient. After a while, taking a shower will feel like a chore if you have to wipe the door routinely and soon enough, what was once a minor inconvenience would now be considered a major annoyance in your daily routine. If you cannot live with a badly planned bathroom, it is time to renovate it.

2.) Storage space is inadequate

Of course, having enough storage is always a pivotal aspect when it comes to choosing a place to live in. Unfortunately, most homeowners are of the erroneous belief that the same sentiment should be applied in creating their bathrooms. Sure, it might not be the first on your list when it comes to having enough storage space in, but if you are dealing with a bathroom that has virtually no storage of any kind then finding a place for your toiletries is going to be a nightmare. You cannot reasonably expect to keep all of your bathroom essentials on the floor at all times and at some point, stacking your towels on the back of the toilet would no longer cut it. Sure, you can hoard as many bathroom caddies you wish in order to store everything you need, but eventually, they would crowd your bathroom and make it feel cluttered and stifled. In lieu of purchasing innumerable caddies, take this chance to upgrade the storage space in your bathroom.

3.) The space no longer feels enough

Over time, your family will grow and what was once considered a charming little bath would now become a cramped area with all of your families’ bathroom essentials. Incidentally, this once cozy place would now feel like a warzone wherein everyone would constantly be fighting for their turn just to use it. Sharing your bathroom with just one other person can already feel like someone is impinging on your private space. Now, imagine sharing one bathroom with your entire family–it does not exactly paint a pretty picture, does it? Apart from affording everyone their own private space, having an extra bathroom would significantly reduce the time needed to get everyone ready and out of the door. Plus, it mitigates the likelihood of any of your family members falling behind their morning schedules.

4.) You are thinking of selling your property in the future

A bathroom remodel is one of the prized features most prospective homeowners would look for. Apart from guaranteeing a boost in your asking price, having an upgraded bathroom can also contribute to a faster sale. So, if selling your home is in your plans, you might want to consider renovating and improving that bathroom today.

 

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The Top Four Mistakes First-Time Homebuyers Make

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“You cannot have everything you want, but you can have the things that really matter to you.” –Marissa Mayer

 

Buying a first home in today’s real estate market should be relatively easy. However, for those who are going into the venture sans the experience, it can be rather confusing and a tad bit frustrating at times. As of recent times, the housing market is showing no signs of declining and slowing down—in this regard, many prospective homeowners would feel incredibly confident about the timeliness of their purchase should they choose to buy a house now. However, if one travels through the unchartered  (in the case of first-time homebuyers at least) paths of buying and acquiring homes, mistakes and oversights are easily made. If you are a budget or have saved up for this monumental milestone (as is the case with most first-time homebuyers), you cannot really afford to make any error that would inevitably lead to a financial blunder.

Regardless of how small a financial mistake might be, making the wrong move in a saturated market would often lead to pecuniary remorse and inevitably, home buying misery. Unfortunately, first-time homebuyers are predisposed to committing these errors if they are left to their own devices and are armed with insufficient information. In any case, you can mitigate the chances of committing these lapses if you are equipped with prior knowledge prior to making your first purchase. Whether you are eyeing your first home to be in Avida Towers Cebu or elsewhere, here are some common first-time homebuyer mistakes you ought to avoid:

 

Buying a home that is too expensive

What is expensive and cheap is relative to how much the homebuyer actually earns. However, regardless of what kind of home you are looking to purchase, you should always remember to stay within your budget. How much you can afford largely varies but it depends on your debt to income ratio. Remember, you are not only going to be spending for the home alone, you would also have to take into account your monthly utility bills, groceries, insurance, etc.

Not hiring a realtor

As this is your initial venture into buying a home, it would bode you well if you worked with a professional whose expertise is in how real estate works. More often than not, homebuyers would rather forego the assistance of a real estate agent thinking that this is just another expense. Sure, it might be another aspect to pay for but think of it as a worthy investment. After all, you would stand to spend more should you purchase a home without the aid of an agent.

Not leaving room in the budget for other expenses

Unlike renting, owning a home would mean that if something breaks, you have to fix it. However, most first-time homebuyers do not seem to realize this. As a result, they would often not leave any room in the budget for any other expense. Your budget should not only comprise of what you pay for the initial down payment of your first home. In fact, it should cover a myriad of things. In this regard, you should also ensure that you leave enough to have extra money each month should you ever have the need for it.

Putting too much or too little down

Coming up with the down payment is already a major challenge when it comes to buying your first home, so defraying most of your home’s total price should be a good thing, right? Not necessarily. Putting up too much money for the down payment would cause a severe imbalance on your money savings and as a result, you may end up bungling your monthly budget. In this regard, you should not be overeager about paying up majority of your first home’s total price. Instead, pay just enough that you would still have a little legroom in your monthly budget to ensure you can cover any other expenses should you need it. Remember, you cannot always plan for every contingency, so should an emergency happen, you want to be adequately prepared financially.

 

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Home Buying 101: Five Questions You Need to Ask Before Buying a Home

“Twenty years from now on, you will be more disappointed by the things you did not do than the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.” –Mark Twain

 

Buying a home, regardless of where it might be, is a keystone of wealth. As it is considered a universally fundamental need by all of us, it is understandable that a lot of meticulous thought goes into buying one—particularly if it is your first flat. Furthermore, as your home would probably be one of your life’s most significant and expensive investments, it would only make sense to ensure you get the very best for what you can afford. In any case, whether you are planning on buying a condo in Avida Towers Cebu or elsewhere, here are some questions you should be asking:

Do you offer discounts

As most developers are looking to close the deal with prospective clients and homeowners, many of them are more than willing to shell out discounts. However, you do need to have a flair for negotiation. Do not hesitate to ask for this or you might just miss out. Alternatively, while there is no discount, there might be other offers and incentives such as pre-selling promotions. In some cases, your unit might come with free furnishings depending on where it is.

Is the reservation fee refundable

If you do not wish to incur penalties or other incidentals, ask your developer whether the reservation fee is refundable. After all, you would not want to waste money should you decide not to push through with the sale. Elect to have it in writing so that you have a written proof. Incidentally, knowing whether a reservation fee is refundable or not will tend to affect your final decision in choosing a home as well.

What are the standard finishes included?

While your developer is going to inevitably show you model houses and units, you cannot reasonably expect that your finished home would look precisely like them. They are just a preview of what your homes might look like once it is finished. To ensure that you and your developer are on the same page, it is best to know what is included in the property you are buying. This means taking note of the finishes you might often overlook such as the kitchen accessories, window types, type of floor tiling, door design and the like.

Can I customize my unit?

Everyone wants to give their homes a bit of character and personality, but this is not exactly possible all the time. Ask your developer if it is possible to incorporate some changes into the design of your unit and if you can change some of the layout. If you have bought the property during the pre-selling stage, there is a likely chance that it would be accommodated during the construction, but it usually comes at an additional cost.

When will the building be fully completed?

While the date of completion is not a certain date, you should have an idea of when your developer expects to complete his project. In this regard, you would be able to adequately plan your move-in and expedite the process as well. Furthermore, if you move in without the entire building being finished just yet, there is a likely chance that you would be dealing with the noise and distraction of the construction work going on outside. Apart from knowing when your unit would be finished, it is also a good idea to ask when your developer reasonably expects to finish the building as well.

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