Jennie Herazo | East Haven Real Estate, New Haven Real Estate, Hamden Real Estate


A lot of people no longer cook with open fires in the world of today with natural gas, electricity, temperature controls, and other kitchen appliances. When you get a new oven for your kitchen with all the latest features and upgrades, there's not a lot you can't use it to do. Are you getting the best out of it though? Here are some tips to make sure that your new oven delivers the most utility to you:

Get rid of that new-oven smell.

New appliances come with that lovely smell that tells you that they are straight out of the production line. After removing all the packaging materials, wash the interior and racks to remove any substances that may remain from the factory like oils or manufacturing liquids. Open up your windows, turn up the oven to the highest temperature and let it run for about an hour. Let it cool down, clean it again. Repeat these steps once or twice more so that your food will not come out with a funny smell when you use your new oven.

Use the bottom drawer to warm food.

Most ovens come with a nice little drawer at the bottom. The drawer isn't a place to keep food while you are waiting to eat it. You should only use this drawer to warm food, not store your racks and baking pans. This warming drawer helps you to keep your food warm until it is ready for serving.

Rotate your cooking pans

After turning on your oven, the way the heat moves may be unpredictable sometimes. After preheating your oven and the heat starts to move around evenly, put your pans in for some time. Halfway through your cooking time, open the oven and turn the cooking pans around. And then swap the top pan with the bottom one if you are cooking with two pans at the same time. Rotating the pans helps to ensure that your food cooks evenly without getting overcooked on the bottom and under-cooked at the top.

Clean your oven regularly.

One way to know that your oven is due for cleaning is when you are unable to see the interior clearly through the glass. Not only does this mean that your oven is dirty, but it also prevents you from seeing how your food is cooking.

If you notice any irregular signs with your oven, contact an electrician for maintenance to get it back to optimal conditions.


When you have children, you want to ensure that they’re safe and healthy. You probably have done childproofing and try to keep as many hazards out of your kid's way as possible. There are plenty of hidden dangers around your home that you may have never thought of to protect your kids. Read on To discover more ways to keep your kids safe. 


Dishwasher


You use your dishwasher on a regular basis, and if you have kids, there are a few risks involved that you may have never even thought. The door on the dishwasher should have a secure locking feature on it. If the door isn’t properly closed, all it takes is a little tap from a child, and everything from the dishwasher can come crashing out. Even the door to the appliance itself can be heavy. You don’t want that hitting your child.  


For older children, if the dishwasher isn’t properly loaded, chores can become hazardous. Sharp knives and forks should be pointing in the right direction so when a child is unloading the dishwasher, they aren’t accidentally hurt. 


Dishwasher detergent pods can be a choking hazard as well. Keep these out of reach of children. 


The Oven Or Range


Your oven or range should be correctly installed to avoid injuries. Anti-tip brackets should be mounted on ranges so that there isn’t a risk of the appliance falling on your child. If the child leans on or climbs on the range, there is less risk this way. 


Wall ovens should have doors that lock well. Usually, wall ovens are installed a bit higher up in the kitchen, but oven doors that fly open can pose an injury risk. 


On the stovetop, make sure that pot handles are turned in to keep little hands from grabbing them. If you can, use the back burners instead of the front. This will be an added security to keep your kids from getting burned. 


Your Child’s Room


Young children will spend a lot of time in their nursery. Between napping and playing, you want to be sure that the room is safe. The crib should be sturdy with a firm mattress. Nothing should be placed in the crib besides a fitted sheet. It’s preferable to have new cribs for babies as older cribs can be worn and wobbly. Hand-me-downs could even be missing parts. Be sure that the child’s room doesn’t have a lot of electrical cords and any unused outlets have caps on them.            


Establishing a homebuying budget can be tough. But for those who want to secure a terrific home at an affordable price, entering the housing market with a budget in hand can make it easy to accelerate the homebuying cycle.

Now, let's take a look at three questions to consider about a homebuying budget.

1. How much money have I saved for a home?

Examine your finances and see how much money is readily available for a home purchase.

Remember, the more money that is at your disposal, the more likely it becomes that you'll be able to secure your dream residence in no time at all.

Although savings are important, it is essential to note that those who have little to no money saved still have plenty of time to get ready for the homebuying journey. And if you start saving a little bit each day, you can move closer to accomplishing your homeownership dreams.

2. Do I need to get a home loan?

In most instances, a homebuyer will need to obtain a home loan so he or she can purchase a residence. Luckily, many lenders are available to help you discover a home loan that matches or surpasses your expectations.

Meet with a variety of lenders in your area – you'll be glad you did. Each lender can provide insights into assorted home loan options, explain how each home loan works and respond to your home loan concerns and questions.

Also, it often helps to get pre-approved for a mortgage. If you have a mortgage available when you enter the real estate market, you'll know exactly how much you can spend on a residence, thereby reducing or eliminating the temptation to overspend on a house.

3. How will my monthly expenses change after I buy a house?

Owning a home is different from renting an apartment. As such, you'll want to account for all potential expenses as you create a homebuying budget.

For example, a homeowner will be responsible for any home cable, internet and phone bills. This property owner also will need to consider any home maintenance costs like those associated with mowing the lawn in summer or removing snow from the driveway in winter.

Crafting a homebuying budget that accounts for your personal finances can be tricky. If you need additional support along the way, lenders may be able to provide expert tips to ensure you can acquire a wonderful house without exceeding your financial limitations.

Lastly, don't forget to reach out to a real estate agent for help along the homebuying journey. A real estate agent is a housing market professional who will go above and beyond the call of duty to assist you in any way possible. From setting up home showings to negotiating with home sellers on your behalf, a real estate agent will make it easy for you to secure a superior home at a budget-friendly price.

Consider the aforementioned homebuying budget questions, and you can speed up the homebuying process.


Making an offer on a home you’re hoping to buy is a stressful endeavor. You want your offer to stand apart from others, and if you don’t feel comfortable increasing the offer, a personalized letter is a good way to explain your situation and possibly sway the seller in your favor.

Sounds good, right? But when most of us sit down to write an effective offer letter we often come up stumped. What makes your situation different than any other hopeful buyer? How do you find the right tone in your letter? How do you sign off at the end? 

There are a number of things to consider when writing an offer letter. So, in this article, we’re going to help you craft an offer letter that will give you the best chance of getting accepted by a home seller.

 Begin with them

Before you start talking about yourself and why you love the house, start by addressing the seller by name. Thank them for letting you view their home, and compliment them on the work they’ve done to take care of it.

Why you love their home

A good place to start in your offer letter is to describe exactly what sets their home apart from the others you looked at. Are there defining characteristics of the home that make it perfectly suited to your family? Does it have a large yard that your dog will love to run in or the workshop you’ve always wanted to practice your woodworking?
Make your letter personal. This is your chance to show that you aren’t just concerned with the price of the home.

Share information wisely

Some buyers get excited about all of the changes they would make if their offer was accepted on a home. And while it’s okay to plan and be excited for the future, you might not want to share that information with the seller.

Remember that they have many memories and hours of work put into their home, and they might not appreciate you talking about how you’re going to start tearing down walls.

Be concise

Once you get into the flow of writing your letter, it’s easy to get carried away. However, sellers will be more receptive to reading and understanding your letter if it is short and to the point. Try not to go over a page, single-spaced.

Once you’ve written your letter, review it to see if there’s anything that can be simplified or removed altogether.

Peer review

Before sending your letter, have a family member, friend, or real estate agent look it over. Not only will they be able to catch small grammatical errors, but they’ll also let you know if something you’ve written is confusing or would be considered over-sharing.

Presentation

You might be tempted to hit the send button as soon as you’re done with your letter. However, receiving an email can be impersonal--we all get hundreds of emails that we never even open. Rather, print your letter on nice paper, sign it by hand, and consider attaching a family photo if you have one that’s suitable.


Buying a home is a very detail-oriented process, and there's a lot of important things you can overlook if you're not organized.

Home buyers generally have the opportunity to do a last-minute inspection of the premises to make sure everything's up to standards prior to closing on the property.

A real estate buyer's agent can accompany you on the final inspection or provide you with advice on what to look for.

If you've already visited the home a couple times and had the house professionally inspected, you're probably well-acquainted with any major malfunctions, flaws, or repair issues. In many cases, home buyers may reach an agreement with the seller to fix, replace, or make allowances for mechanical or cosmetic problems. While real estate negotiations and sales agreements are as varied as the people and properties involved, there are typically dozens of things buyers need to check on before they sign the final documents and accept ownership of the property.

Final Walkthrough Tips

As you're doing the final walk-through of the house, it's necessary to remember or have notes on the condition of the home when you last looked at it. You'll also want to have a clear idea of what appliances, fixtures, and window treatments are supposed to be remain in the house after it's been vacated by the seller. Depending on how close your final walk-through is to the actual closing, that has probably already happened.

If there's anything missing that the seller agreed to include in the sale, then that's an issue you'll want to discuss with your real estate agent or attorney. Any property damage that may have resulted from moving furniture and other belongings should also be discussed before final papers are signed. The same thing would apply to landscaping changes that appear to be inconsistent with the sales agreement. Your buyer's agent and/or lawyer can serve as intermediary in getting these issues clarified and ironed out.

To make sure your final inspection is thorough, it's a good idea to have a "final walk-through checklist" to help keep you organized and focused. You'll want to take a last-minute inventory of items that are supposed to be included with the property sale, such as appliances, lighting fixtures, furnishings, window treatments, children's play structures, hot tubs, and anything else that was agreed to in the sales contract.

Other items you'll need access to may include garage door openers, manuals for appliances and mechanical systems, warranties, invoices for repairs made, and remote control devices for things like ceiling fans, alarms, and other systems.

Your checklist and final walkthrough should focus on a variety of items, including the working condition of appliances, the electrical system, plumbing fixtures, and the condition of walls, floors, ceilings, doors, windows, and landscaping features. For a complete checklist, look online or consult your real estate agent.