Monday, March 30, 2015

Spring Cleaning is okay, but Spring Savings will Benefit You All Year Long! 8 Tips for Making Your Home More Energy Efficient This spring

You could be letting money go right out the window (literally) if your home isn’t energy efficient. Here are our tips for making your home more energy efficient this spring and beyond:

*Energy Audit – Are you spending more on your utility bills and feeling less comfort in your home? You may need to have an energy audit to determine what’s causing the increased bills. Whether you do it yourself or have a licensed contractor assess your home, it’s important to understand how your home is working and get it on the path to energy efficiency. Here is where to start;

 *Sizing and Sealing Ducts – Do have rooms in your home that are cooler than others in the summer? Your home may have duct leaks. As much as 20% of the air circulating through your home can be lost to improperly sized or installed ductwork. Find an SRP or APS approved contractor to have the ducts sized and repaired; then submit the rebate. Not only will you save money, you will be feeling cool in all the rooms of your home! To find rebates and tax credits check out these sites;  or

 *Regular Maintenance of A/C Unit – Consider purchasing an annual maintenance plan from a trusted licensed HVAC company. They should offer a complete inspection of the unit and the duct system of the home at least once a year. This will help take care of problems before they become big costs like replacing the unit…but when it’s time to replace there’s good news. New energy efficiency (SEER) regulations in Arizona, require the installation of an energy efficient system. If your unit is more than ten years old and/or you’re spending a lot of money on maintenance, consider replacing it with a high efficiency unit. One Company I recommend is Fresh Breeze heating and AC;  

 *Window in general and Shades – A simple solution to the Arizona sun heating your home and increasing utility bills is to have window shades installed. They will block the sun and help keep your home at a stable temperature. Optimal Services can help you decide on the right ones;

 *Energy Star Appliances – Rated energy efficient by the US government, these appliances cost more up front than their non-green counterparts. Over time, the Energy Star will pay off. It is estimated that an Energy Star dishwasher can save as much as $25 per year and a clothes washer as much as $100 per year.  Here is the site to see for this great way to save money; 

 *Time of (energy) Use – In addition to having Energy Star appliances (see #4 above), in Arizona most electric company’s offer a discount if you agree to reduce your energy usages during peak times…leave your AC off, don’t run major appliances during a 3 to 4 hour span. Check with your utility company to find the best plan for you.  To see how you can save money; SPR plan- or APS plan

 *Laundry – Wash in cold or warm, avoid hot water. And let’s face it, in Arizona warm water is hot water during the summer!

Here to a happy and energy efficient spring and beyond!

Contact Elaine Beery at 480-570-1912 for any questions concerning this article.  or Check out my website to start to find a home that is right for you in Arizona. 

Friday, March 20, 2015

6 Questions to Ask Before Hiring a Real Estate Agent

Buying or selling a home is an investment in your financial future. Making sure you have the right real estate agent to meet your needs will help your transaction run smoothly and get you the outcome you desire whether it’s selling your home at a certain price point or buying your dream home.

Here are six great questions to ask before hiring a real estate agent:
      1. Are you a full-time agent? You might like Aunt Sally’s friend’s daughter but if she does real estate part-time, you might not get the level of customer service you desire and deserve. I recommend working with a full-time agent who can dedicate more time and effort to your transaction. (Yes, I am a full-time real estate agent. If I am not buying or selling homes, I am not making money)
      2. Are you a member of the National Association of Realtors? REALTORS® must abide by the NAR Code of Ethics and state regulations. They must also complete continuing education. (Yes, I am a member of NAR and a REALTOR®.)
       3. What hours do you prefer to work? Finding the right real estate agent means finding someone who is working on your behalf and who can provide customer service to you when you are available. For example, I typically work 8am-7pm and prefer to take Sundays off. But,  I will do what it takes to make your transaction go smooth from start to finish and understand that may mean working on Sunday. You can count on me!
      4. What is the marketing plan for my home? My marketing plans include listing your home on 115-130 websites including the most common real estate sites, Canadian and local websites. I also do Open Houses and invite local realtors to tour your home. That is just the beginning of the tools I have to help you sell your home. I would love to discuss all the facets with you!
      5.What is your experience in helping buyers? If you’re looking for a specific type of home – a new build or for sale by owner, for example – you want to be sure your agent has experience in negotiating that type of contract. I have experience in new built homes and FSBO(for sale by owner) transactions along with traditional purchases, Bank Owned Properties, Short sales and HUD properties…I have even helped purchase auction properties.  
      6.How long have you been a real estate agent in the Phoenix area? We’ve all been new at our jobs. My vision and goal for my clients is for you to be confident you’re working with someone who understands the local market and the real estate transaction process. I have more than eight years of experience in the southeast valley- I have seen the worst of our market and can help you navigate you way through to make sure your path is the right path and will get you to where you want to be, as smoothly as possible. 

Whether you’re selling or buying a home, it’s important to ask questions before hiring a real estate agent. They’re working for you to help you have a successful transaction, but they also must make about your goal, not their pocket book. It is really important for you to be able to work together. For more information about our real estate services, contact the team at Berry Realty today!

Welcome Home 55+ communityin Mesa, Arizona 2 bed+Arizona Room 2 bath 2 car garage with a workshop!

You will find, this home has been lovingly taken care of, with 2 bedrooms+ Arizona room for an office or craft room, 1.75 bath, a large living and dining room and a very efficient kitchen floor plan make this house feel like a home. There is storage galore-- with a very large linen closet, coat closet, nice pantry, above cabinets for the washer and dryer inside the home, and each bedroom has 2 closets. But that is not all…the 2 car garage has natural light and a work shop area to tinker in. You will be able to enjoy the wonderful Arizona sunsets on your extended, private patio, and 2 orange trees in the back yard will keep the sun off the home and a smile on your face. Call now to see this home, it will not last!,12,1 - See more at: Home tour