Tag Archives: Design

Categories Carpentry, Home Maintenance

How To Market Your Home To Out Of State Buyers

How To Market Your Home To Out Of State Buyers

There is a huge opportunity to not only market your home for sale to your local market, but also, out of state buyers. In this post, we are going to cover a complete guide on how to market your home to out-of-state buyers.

Hiring Your Agent

The first step in this guide is to hire the right agent. Your real estate agent can make the process more enjoyable than ever or, the worst experience you have ever had.

That being said, choose wisely! Here are some great questions to start asking your potential listing agents. Remember, you should also get along well with this agent since you will be working closely together for some time.

  • Check their reviews.
  • Ask them what properties they have recently sold in your area.
  • Ask them what they would recommend you do to the property before selling.
  • Ask them what their marketing strategy is.
  • Ask them how they would target out of state buyers.
  • Ask them if they have any experience targeting out of state buyers.

Ultimately, your real estate agent is going to be the one at the forefront of targeting out-of-state buyers. It is vital you have an experienced agent on your side.

Preparing Your Home

Before even listing your home, you need to prep it. This can include, cleaning, painting, organizing, decluttering, staging, and even vacating the property.

Additionally, you might want to consider a pre-listing inspection. This will allow you to fix the important items before going into contract. This will establish more trust with your buyer, help sell your home faster, and help sell your home for more money

Photos & Virtual Tours

Great property photos and a virtual tour is ESSENTIAL to targeting out-of-state buyers. Most out-of-state buyers cannot even visit the property, therefore, you need to use every resource at your disposal to highlight your home to them.

Be sure to stage properly, use great lighting, hire a professional photographer, and use a system like Matterport to create your virtual tour.

Knowing Your Buyer

Before trying to target your out-of-state buyer, you should first think about who you are trying to appeal to.

For example, is your home a luxury Florida beach home for those who need a vacation spot? Or, is your home built for a family that is wanting to move to the suburbs?

Thinking about who the perfect buyer is before marketing will help your better target your audience.

Create Your Internet Presence

Second, to last, you need to finally list your property online. Use your experienced agent, awesome photos, your virtual tour, and your target buyer at your disposal when creating your online listings. Post your property on every possible listing front you can especially the larger ones like Zillow and Realtor.com.

Craft a message about your property that targets those out-of-state buyers who fit your audience. For instance, you might say, “Looking for the perfect vacation home on Florida’s beaches?” This will directly speak to out-of-state buyers looking for that Florida beach home!

Create Your Marketing Strategy

Last but not least, you need to have a marketing strategy to reach those people out of state. You might try digital advertising on Zillow or Realtor.com. Heck, you might even try Facebook Ads!

Depending on your real estate agent, they might have strategies they personally like or have used in the past. Some agents, local to Maine frequently use Facebook Ads to reach people in the South looking to make a move to Maine.

It’s important to hire someone professional for this if it is not your real estate agent.

Final Thoughts

Trying to market your home to out-of-state buyers is becoming increasingly important. To start, you need the right agent who has experience with marketing homes across state lines. Next, you have to build the home’s profile. Take awesome pictures, declutter, stage, organize, and take a virtual tour. Lastly, list your home online, target your perfect buyer, and execute a marketing strategy to reach your perfect buyer.

Categories Plumber

What Does Asbestos Insulation Look Like In Attics

What Does Asbestos Insulation Look Like In Attics


Asbestos was mined throughout the United States and is possible in homes built before the 1990s as mines were still active. You can find it in flooring adhesives, roof shingles to pipe insulation. Additionally, it is one of the most common materials seen in attic and wall insulations. What does asbestos insulation look like in attics?  They are loose, lumpy, fluffy, granular, and pebble-like. The two types are loose fill and vermiculite.

Let’s take a look at the different types, what they look like, and if you need to figure out if you have asbestos.

What is Asbestos

Asbestos is a naturally occurring mineral from rock and soil. When building construction is made, rock and soil are needed to collect particular materials. During this time, it is collected with the materials and never separated.

Types of Insulation That Contain Asbestos

As mentioned above, the two types that contain asbestos are loose-fill insulation and vermiculite.

Loose-Fill Insulation

  1. This type is also known as blown-in insulation.
  2. This type of asbestos insulation is fluffy, loose, lumpy, or has a texture that is granular.
  3. Different from most batt and blanket insulation because it doesn’t have paper or another type of backing.
Vermiculite insulation
Vermiculite insulation


  1. A common material that contains asbestos
  2. Sold under the name Zonolite
  3. Identified by looking like pebbles, silver gold, and gray-brown in color
  4. Comes from naturally occurring minerals in the earth

Where Did Asbestos Originate

Vermiculite insulation containing asbestos came from a mine located near Libby, Montana. This mine was active from 1919 – 1990 so unfortunately, the raw insulation material that was taken from the mine contained asbestos. This insulation makes up 70 percent of the vermiculite found in homes in the United States. Additionally, the last mine in the U.S. didn’t close until 2002 so it is possible there could be asbestos in your home.

Safe Types of Insulation

Fortunately, there are safe types of insulation. These are cellulose, loose-fill, and rock wool.

Cellulose Insulation

  1. Loose fill
  2. Gray, soft and no shine
  3. Made with recycled paper and doesn’t contain any minerals
  4. Comes in batt and blanket forms
Loose-fill fiberglass insulation

Loose Fill Fiberglass

  1. White and fluffy and very little shine
  2. Glass product and soft

Rock Wool

  1. Often confused with asbestos-containing insulation
  2. Soft, cottony like gray, brownish-white, white, or off white
  3. Usually a loose insulation

Cost to Remove Attic Asbestos Insulation

The cost to remove attic asbestos insulation can be rather high. There is a range that might not seem so daunting. However, the size of the attic space and the amount of asbestos insulation will dictate the amount that it could cost you for removal. The national average range that asbestos insulation removal could cost you is $800 to $15,000. That is a huge disparity, so make sure you are using the right asbestos insulation removal company.

Other Recommended Maintenance

While you are up in the attic and determining the amount of insulation needed to replace or add to the attic space, consider doing a thorough inspection of what needs cleaning. Oftentimes we neglect the attic crawl space and it becomes dirty and full of mold or mildew. Cleaning the attic crawl space is an important part of home maintenance.

While you are carefully looking around your attic, make sure that you don’t see any cloth-covered wires. Cloth-covered wires are a fire hazard and it is very difficult to secure homeowners insurance if these are present in the home.

Lastly, if you notice that your electric bill has gone up, it is possible that air is escaping in the home. It is important to air seal the attic and keep the cool air in the summer and the warm air in the winter.

When Do I Call A Professional

Calling on an insulation professional is vital to the health and safety of your home. Using a professional contractor allows you to have the attic inspected in full detail so they can identify asbestos insulation and it is removed safely and properly.

Typically, adding or replacing insulation is a key component for maintaining the integrity of heat loss or cool air loss. Also, you don’t want to move into a home that has asbestos insulation. This project completion is most important.

Categories Uncategorized

How To Prepare For An Appraisal (Sellers)

How To Prepare For An Appraisal

Preparing For an Appraiser

Prepare a list of upgrades/improvements:

You should create a bulleted list of any and all improvements that have occurred in the last 3 years or during your ownership.

Here are some examples:

  • new baseboards
  • backsplash
  • water filtrations
  • new exterior paint
  • anything and everything you can think of

A Realtor can help you organize this list better so you can give this to an appraiser.

Treat it like a showing: 

Also, you should prepare the house like you would for a showing.

Here are some tips to showing your property:

  • Turn all the lights on
  • Open blinds in an open position to allow light in
  • Make all the beds
  • De-clutter and make sure the house is clean
  • Remove pets
  • Turn down the A/C so it is nice a cool in the home

Be prepared for pictures:

Appraisers are required to take pictures for the appraisal report. So, they will be going into each room and taking pictures.

This is just another reason why you should treat it just like a showing.

Provide a survey: 

If you have a property survey leave one for the appraiser on the kitchen counter.

Summing It Up

If you have further questions, you can comment down below!

You should always speak with your listing agent to see what else you can do to prepare for an appraisal.

Categories Plumber

How To Stop Water Hammer When Toilet Fill Valve Closes

How To Stop Water Hammer When Toilet Fill Valve Closes

fter flushing the toilet, you expect that the water goes down and the fill valve closes quietly. However, you notice that after the fill valve shuts off, there is a loud bang in your pipes. What is that? That is called a water hammer. How to stop water hammer when toilet fill valve closes? It is a process that starts with opening up the cold water faucets and letting them drain. Let’s take a look at the process.

What is Water Hammer

Water hammer is water that is moving along and slams into a valve that closes. Then the water goes from the water to the pipe and into the frame of the home. Also, if the pipes are loose or not attached properly, then they will move. This sound is loud and echoes through all the plumbing in the home. This happens during the filling process of a flush.

Water hammer is found usually with washing machines, dishwashers, toilet valves, and faucets and can happen because of faucet washers that are worn or damaged. Also, when there is build-up on minerals and rust that are inside shut-off valves. These are in the walls of the home.

Let’s look at how to stop this from happening.

Turn off main water supply to start the process of getting rid of water hammer when the toilet fill valve closes.

How to Stop Water Hammer

  1. Shut off the main water supply to the house
  2. Starting with the highest floor in your home and working your way to the bottom level, open the cold water faucets.
  3. Now, flush all the toilets that are in your home.
  4. Water will drain from the open faucets. Wait for about 20-30 minutes.
  5. Turn the main water supply back on.
  6. Then, wait 5-10 minutes so the faucets can create a strong flow of water.
  7. Starting on the lowest level of your home and working your way up to the top level, close the cold water faucets and the toilets will refill.
  8. When you have all faucets closed and the toilets have filled, flush the toilets. This will allow you to listen for water hammer.

To control water hammer, you will need to have permanent air chambers or water hammer arrestors or both of them installed.

Permanent Air Chamber

This is a vertical section of copper pipe. On the end of it is a cap and it attaches to the supply line with a T- fitting. This supply line is near a shutoff valve or appliance. Installed on hot and cold water lines, it is filled with air and absorbs the force of the water.

This is usually installed during construction of the home in the walIs, however, you may still experience water hammer. This is because the air in the chambers is absorbed by the water over time. Sometimes there are difficulties with these because of the space they take up so it is necessary to use a water hammer arrestor.

Water Hammer Arrestor

This is an alternative to the air chamber and can be installed in a home during new construction or when an air chamber isn’t working out in your home. An arrestor has an air bladder and spring and can absorb the force of moving water. However, it may not give the protection needed if there are pumps and shutoff valves on the same line. They are used in commercial and residential settings and never have to be recharged.

If this isn’t working, focus next on the toilet.

  1. Shutoff valve must be open all the way by turning the handle counter clockwise.
  2. Flush the toilet and see if the noise has stopped.
  3. If you still hear the noise, turn it clockwise to close the valve.
  4. Open the valve and flush it again. If there is debris stuck inside the valve, this will help get it out.

If this doesn’t work, it could be the washer inside the valve is damaged, or you may need to replace the shutoff valve. The fill valve in the toilet tank may need replacing as well. Replacing these may fix your problem.

The shut off valve plays a part in getting rid of water hammer when the toilet fill valve closes.

How Much Does It Cost

Washer – about $8-10 for a package of 100

Shutoff Valve – about $25

Fill valve – about $12

Water hammer arrestor – $15 and up

You may be able to take care of these on your own by purchasing them at the local hardware store or online. However, you will need to know what you are doing. If you want to hire a professional to do this for you, keep in mind the labor charges can be $75 and higher per hour.

Other Recommended Maintenance

While you are looking into how to stop a water hammer, consider also reading up on why my toilet makes a whistling sound. You might be able to solve both the water hammer and whistling sound with the same repair.

Water pressure issues can happen in the home as well so keep an eye out for them.

Also, if you notice that the water is not flowing freely in the sink, you may need to increase the water pressure. This can be done by checking the aerator or looking for a blockage in the faucet or in the pipes.

Lastly, if you notice that there is a sewage smell in your bathroom, it may be from the Jacuzzi tub, shower drain, sink, or toilet. It is important to find out what is causing the smell and fix it quickly.

When Should I Call A Professional

Issues with plumbing and toilets, in general, is never fun. Unless you know what you are doing, it is worth spending the money for a professional. Calling a professionally licensed plumbing contractor allows you to save time and money on your plumbing projects. They will get the job done quickly, figure out what is causing the issue and correct it. Consider calling on your local home inspection team to get a thorough home inspection, which can include your plumbing.

Categories Industrial

What To Do About Water Heater Leaking

What To Do About Water Heater Leaking

Water heater life expectancy is about 8-12 years. However, your water heater can start leaking before then. In this post, we are going to cover the complete guide on what to do if you have a water heater leaking.

Why Does My Water Heater Leak?

The most common reasons for water heater leaking are age and high water pressure.

Overtime, the natural minerals in water can create deposits and calcium build up inside the water heater. Then, the tank can rust and corrode. This is a natural process.

On the other hand, if your water pressure is too high, this can cause too much strain on the TPR valve, drain valve, or other components.

Sometimes, other components can just become faulty which may lead to a leak at the supply pipes or elsewhere.

Here’s what to do about your water heater leaking.

Step 1: Shut Off Water Supply, Power, & Gas

The first step in any water leak situation is to shut off the water supply. This will lessen any water damage as you find the source and make repairs.

Your water supply can be stopped in many places depending on your home. The easiest place is the pipe that leads water into your water heater. However, you can also shut-off your water at your main valve or water meter if you cannot find the valve just before your water heater.

Take a look at the images below to find these valves. Keep in mind, cold water goes into the water heater and then hot water leaves so your water shutoff should be on the cold side (inlet) which is typically on the right. Use your hand to feel the temperature of the pipe and ensure it is the inlet.

After you have shutoff the water, head to your electrical panel and turn off the water heater breaker.

electrical panel

Finally, if you have a gas water heater, you should shut off the gas to your home. After the water, gas, and power are shut off to the water heater, you can begin finding the water heater leak and repair it.

Step 2: Draining the Water Heater

If your leak is bad enough, you may want to consider draining the water heater to prevent further water damage.

To do this, simply connect a hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the water heater. Then, lead the hose outside the home. Be sure that gravity will naturally allow the water heater to drain.

Next, use a flat head screwdriver to loosen the drain valve and empty the water heater.

Allow the water to fully drain.

This maintenance should be completed at least once per year to remove any sediment build up.

Step 3: Finding The Water Heater Leak & Repairs

By this point, you should see your water heater leaking and know if it is a lot or a small drip. In most cases, water heater leaking is at the bottom, however, it could also be other places. Before moving forward, take a look at this diagram to understand where your water heater leak may be.

water heater diagram and labelled

Water Heater Leaking At The Bottom

As mentioned, most water heater leaks are at the bottom of the water heater in the drain pan.

Your water heater may not have a drain pan, and that’s okay! Just know for your next water heater, you should have a drain pan to catch the water leak. In addition you should have a PVC drain pipe connecting the water heater drain pan to the exterior of the home. You can see in the image above, the drain pan has a PVC pipe that drains to the lowest part of the garage floor.

water heater leaking from bottom

If your water heater is leaking from the bottom like the image above, most likely your water heater is older and rusted. Therefore, you would need a new water heater since the rust cannot be repaired. We recommend contacting a plumber to replace your water heater for you. However, replacing a water heater can be done on your own if you are handy.

Water Heater Leaking At TPR Valve

If your water heater is leaking from the TPR Discharge Tube, as seen in the image below, this is typically an easy fix by replacing your TPR Valve.

TPR discharge tube leaking

Water Heater Leaking From The Top Pipes

If your water heater is leaking from the top pipes/connections where your inlets/outlets are, most likely you will just have to redo those connections. If this is something you are comfortable with, you can do this on your own. Use this video below for guidance.

Water Heater Leaking From Drain Valve

If your water heater is leaking from your drain valve, this is usually an easy fix by tightening the drain valve with a wrench. If that does not work, you may need to replace the drain valve.

Here’s how to do that!

Water Heater Maintenance & Preventing Another Leak

After fixing this leak, you will want to complete some steps to prevent another water heater from leaking.

Drain Your Water Heater Yearly

The first thing you should remember to do is to drain your water heater yearly. To do this, simply connect a hose to the drain valve at the bottom of the water heater. Then, lead the hose outside the home. Be sure that gravity will naturally allow the water heater to drain. Next, use a flat head screwdriver to loosen the drain valve and empty the water heater.

Check Your TPR Valve & Discharge Tube For Leaks

The end of your discharge tube should easily be visible. You should monitor this area for leaks every so often and repair as needed. If your TPR valve leaks, it is a sign that something is wrong.

You can also watch this video for more information

Drain Pan & Pipe

Ensure you have a proper drain pan and pipe that leads outside the home. In the case your water heater leaks again, you can count on your drain pan and pipe to carry the water out of your home and preventing water damage.