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Want to create wealth through homeownership? BUILD EQUITY.

Home equity is the percentage of your home’s value that you own, and it’s key to building wealth through homeownership. Let’s take a closer look at how to build home equity without blowing your budget — and how to access it when you need it.

How Much Equity Do You Have?

Equity is easy to calculate when you first buy a home because it’s basically your down payment. For example, if you put $11,250 down on a $225,000 home, your down payment is 5% and so is your equity.

How to Build Your Equity

Here are five ways your home can create wealth for you. Some require time, money — or both.

  1. Let your home appreciate

Building equity through appreciation can take little time or a

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There is more to fall than just getting the rakes out, it is darker earlier, we have broken out our winter coats and even though it may not officially be here, winter is certainly around the corner!

Here are five helpful home maintenance tips to ensure your home is in tip-top shape for the cold that is sure to come in the next few months.

Schedule your HVAC checkup. Nothing is worse than discovering your furnace is out of order on that first chilly night. Turn it on now to ensure it is working properly and consider having it professionally maintenanced / cleaned. You’ll also want to change any air filters in your home and prepare your humidifier for winters dry air.

Prepare your pipes. Exposed pipes can be a nightmare come winter time.

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1)  CABINETS
Over time, build-up can collect on your kitchen cabinets — especially if you don't run the exhaust hood over your range while you cook to keep grease from settling. To remove build-up use a "cabinet cream" to cut through the dirt and leave wood moisturized.

2)  WINDOWS
Instead of just wiping down the inside make sure you take to the outdoors during spring cleaning season to remove spots and smudges you don't usually have time to tackle. Pro tip? Wash 'em on a cloudy day to ensure that the sun won't dry the cleanser before you're done wiping.

3)  DISHWASHER
To ensure this heavy-duty cleaning appliance gets all the tomato sauce stains off of your dinner plates, you have to clean it too. First, remove any bits of food on the bottom.

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Clean and Reverse Fans- Your ceiling fans have been hard at work all summer so they may have gathered more dust than you realize. Turn your fans off, and clean the sides, tops and bottoms of the blades. Reverse your fans so the blades send air upward to disrupt the warm air that collects near the ceiling and disperse it downward. This is particularly effective in rooms with high or vaulted ceilings and rooms with stoves or fireplaces.


Clean Window Treatments- Use a cordless hand-held vacuum to remove dust from hanging window treatments. If you have hanging curtains, take them down for a gentle launder.

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Staying in the Light

 Take advantage of the direction of the sun, when it’s brightest and best for your property. While the sun may not always be in your control, you can increase light levels on your own too, with a bit of tried-and-trusted elbow grease. Scrub the windows inside and out, select lightweight material for curtains, and head outside to prune trees or bushes that may be obstructing light. Head back indoors and tour the rooms to see which ones need an extra lamp, or perhaps simply increased bulb wattage to brighten things up. These tricks will allow you to make a sparkling impression, even without floor-to-ceiling windows. Remember,

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Student loan debt, lack of a down payment and even remembering the “financial carnage” of the last economic downturn, are all reasons millennials do not consider buying a home and turn to renting. Even though it’s been cheaper to buy a home than to rent since about 2012 or 2013. “It’s not that they don’t want to buy a home. They just believe they can’t afford to,” said Dan Green, CEO of Growella, a financial site that “pairs simple explanations with actionable steps so readers can make better, stronger choices with their money.” Green is also a former mortgage lender who believes with the right preparation and armed with the right knowledge, most people can afford a home. 

                                                 

(1) The best way to shop

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Thinking of selling your home on your own? Online listing sites may lure you into thinking that the process is simple. Take a few photos, buy a "For Sale" sign and wait for buyers, right? But the process is much more complicated than that. If you're considering selling your home on your own, here are a few sure signs you should call a professional real estate agent.

1. You're not sure what your home is worth

Calculating the right price for your home is an art and a science. Price your home too high, and it can grow stale, sitting on the market. Price it too low, and you could leave money on the table. Agents have the most current information about how much comparable homes in your neighborhood sold for and how long they were on the market.

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A fresh coat of paint in the right color may help sell a home for more money. Homes with rooms painted in shades of light blue or pale blue/gray can sell for as much as $5,400 more than expected, according to a new Zillow report. Zillow’s 2017 Paint Color Analysis looked at more than 32,000 photos from sold homes around the country to see how certain paint colors impacted their sale price on average, when compared to similar homes with white walls.

Curious what colors may help you sell your home for more? See below for the full results of the 2017 Paint Color Analysis.

Blue kitchens

  • Homes with blue kitchens, often found in soft gray-blue, sold for a $1,809 premium.

Light blue bathrooms

  • Homes with light pale blue to soft
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