It used to be that exterior Scottsdale home maintenance involved painting some form of wood siding, or installing vinyl siding over your wood (if you didn't have brick or stone siding.) That meant supposedly never having to paint again, but you sacrifice the architectural beauty of wood.
New Products Save on Scottsdale Home Maintenance
Now, a new breed of manufactured products looks realistic enough to preserve or even boost your home's appearance. Many of these new products are pricier than the natural versions, but in the long run, will save you money and effort.
One of the most dramatic new products to hit the market that will help cut the cost of your Scottsdale home maintenance is Fiber-Cement Siding.
These clapboards and shingles are cut from sheets of special, slightly flexible cement mixed with wood fibers. This siding won't rot, warp, or cup. The pieces are typically factory painted, then nailed one by one onto your house, just like the real thing. That creates an authentic, handcrafted look.
Factory paint will last 15 years. Then repaint every seven to 10 years, compared with five to seven years for wood.
Scottsdale Home Maintenance Includes Trim
Now there is a new, Cellular PVC trim. This natural-looking trim is made from the plastic used for plumbing drains, with air added while the material is molten for woodlike density. Your contractor can cut, shape, and install the boards just like lumber.
PVC doesn't need painting, though a couple of coats will add realism. If you do, repaint every 25 years, vs. five to seven years for wood. Hiring a pro to paint only your trim might cost $1,500 or more. Figure that in, times at least 4, for painting wood trim versus PVC that won't need it all, or at most, ever 25 years.
Figure about $75 to trim a window (including installation), or $3,500 for an entire house, both about 10% more than pine, but you'll save that in the cost of not painting your pine trim every few years.
Scottsdale Home Maintenance – Don't Forget The Doors
And finally, for your exterior Scottsdale home maintenance, consider fiberglass entry doors.
Fiberglass doors are made of thin, waterproof fiberglass skins embossed to look as if they have traditional panels, moldings, and even woodgrain. Inside is an insulating foam that's three times as energy-efficient as wood.
As with wood, you'll need to touch up the paint or apply a fresh coat of varnish every five years or so (about $100, assuming you already have a painter or handyman coming to tackle other projects). Yet these doors will never warp, crack, or split.
Most fiberglass doors come with a lifetime warranty, whereas most wood door warranties are generally only five years.
So as you can see, Scottsdale home maintenance doesn't have to be an ongoing thing if you consider moving up to some of the more modern manufactured products that have come on the market in recent years.
To get more tips on Scottsdale home maintenance and ways to save money by doing-it-yourself, check out our other articles by clicking on the Scottsdale Home Improvements link to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.
The biggest growing trend Scottsdale homebuyers are looking for in new homes appears to be more space.
According to data presented by the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) at the International Builders' Show in Las Vegas, the size of new homes is up 13.4 percent in the last four years alone, with a massive rise in 4+ bedroom homes being sold.
Regardless of size, the NAHB says that features builders are most likely to include in a typical single-family home this year are a walk-in closet in the master bedroom, low-e windows, a laundry room and a great room.
Energy-efficiency is also a key theme among Scottsdale homebuyers, as Energy-Star rated appliances, programmable thermostats and Energy-Star rated windows also rank high on the wish list.
Scottsdale Homebuyers Still Want Kitchen Islands
According to builders, Scottsdale homebuyers are still wanting granite countertops, a double-sink and a central island in the kitchen as well as a linen closet and a private toilet in the bathroom.
Paneled appliances that blend into the cabinetry are gaining favor. And appliances are being moved around the kitchen. Two ovens are becoming more popular. They could be in different locations rather than above one another.
Other features that builders are likely to include are first-floor ceilings at least nine-feet high, a front porch, exterior lighting and a patio.
Based on feedback from Scottsdale homebuyers, the most unlikely features wanted in 2014 homes are laminate kitchen countertops, an outdoor kitchen, an outdoor fireplace, a sun-room, a two-story family room, a media room, a two-story foyer and a whirlpool in the master bathroom.
For more on what Scottsdale homebuyers want in their homes, as well as improvements, visit our Scottsdale Home Improvement section of articles under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories to your right.
If you're thinking about putting your home on the market in time for the Scottsdale real estate sales season, you better move now! Not next month, not next week. Do it right now!
Spring is coming, and that is certainly driving a lot of the interest in Scottsdale real estate currently listed for sale. But there are other factors at play.
Incentives for Scottsdale Real Estate Buyers
Mortgage rates have declined over the past month and are currently trending back toward 4% for traditionally structured, well qualified loans. This is a significant development for buyers, as interest rates are a huge driver of home affordability.
For example, a traditional 30-year, $250,000 mortgage at 4.5% would have a monthly payment of $1267. If rates declined to 4.25%, the payment would change to $1230.
For Scottsdale real estate borrowers on the edge of qualifying for a mortgage, that $37 per month savings could make the difference between getting a loan approval or not. Over the life of the loan, that 0.25% difference saves the borrower $13,320!
The Urgency for Scottsdale Real Estate Buyers
For buyers, the time to buy low is quickly ending, creating a sense of urgency to buy now before prices rise too high or interest rates return to more historically normal levels.
According to CoreLogic and reported by Realtor.org, home prices in 2013 saw the largest percentage increase across the board since 2005, north of 11% as of December.
The spring selling season will be in full swing sooner than you think. Rates are low, there is urgency to buy now, and buyers are already coming out of their winter slumber. If you're planning to sell your Scottsdale real estate in 2014, you need to jump on the bandwagon right now. Don't miss out on the perfect, well qualified buyer because you waited a week or two too long.
For more Scottsdale real estate home selling tips, visit the Scottsdale Home Selling Tips section of our website to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.
There have been all kinds of bad Scottsdale housing news reports in recent weeks, from slower home price increases, to rising mortgage rates and harder rules to qualify for a loan.
On top of that, national new reports on real estate have been chilly, mainly due to a cold winter and low consumer confidence. But there are a few things to be optimistic about when it comes to Scottsdale housing this year…CNN's Christine Romans reports…
Check out our other articles and tips pertaining to Scottsdale housing news by clicking on the Scottsdale Real Estate News link to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.
If you bought a home or refinanced your home in 2013, mortgage points you paid on the new loan are tax deductible. But depending on whether you purchased a home last year, or simply refinanced the one you already had, when you can deduct the mortgage points varies, as explained in this brief video…
Check out our other articles and tips pertaining to Mortgage points and mortgages in general by clicking on the Scottsdale Mortgage Info link to your right under Scottsdale Real Estate Categories.