Jeanne Moellendick | Jacksonville Real Estate, Orange Park Real Estate, Fleming Island Real Estate


A first-time homebuyer often proceeds cautiously as he or she navigates the real estate market. However, if this homebuyer discovers the "perfect" home, the risk to overspend to acquire this residence may prove to be too much to resist.

It is important for a first-time homebuyer to understand what it takes to purchase a house at a price that matches or exceeds his or her expectations. That way, a homebuyer can avoid the temptation to overspend on a house and reduce the likelihood of breaking his or her homebuying budget.

Now, let's take a look at three tips that a first-time homebuyer can use to minimize the risk of overspending on a house.

1. Assess the Housing Market Closely

The housing market frequently fluctuates, and a first-time homebuyer who identifies real estate patterns and trends may be better equipped than others to pay the right price for a residence.

Having the ability to differentiate between a buyer's market and a seller's market is key. If a homebuyer understands the differences between these markets, he or she should have no trouble submitting a reasonable offer on a house based on the current housing market's conditions.

In a buyer's market, there is an abundance of available houses and a shortage of property buyers. This market favors homebuyers, and as a result, a property buyer may be better equipped than ever before to acquire a great house at an affordable price at this time.

Conversely, a seller's market favors home sellers and includes a shortage of high-quality houses and an abundance of homebuyers. In a seller's market, a homebuyer may need to submit a competitive offer on a house, or he or she likely risks losing a residence to potential rivals.

2. Get Pre-Approved for a Mortgage

Want to stick to a homebuying budget? With a mortgage in hand, a first-time homebuyer will know exactly what he or she can spend on a house and narrow a home search accordingly.

To get pre-approved for a mortgage, a homebuyer should meet with several banks and credit unions. This will allow a homebuyer to learn about all of the mortgage options that are available and choose a mortgage that corresponds to his or her finances.

Also, be sure to ask potential lenders plenty of questions about various mortgage options. By doing so, a homebuyer can boost his or her chances of making an informed mortgage decision.

3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

A real estate agent can help a first-time homebuyer explore houses that fall within a specific price range, thereby reducing the risk that a property buyer will overspend on a house.

In addition, a real estate agent is happy to provide honest, unbiased homebuying recommendations. This housing market professional understands the ins and outs of purchasing a house, and as such, will do everything possible to guarantee a property buyer can acquire a terrific residence at a budget-friendly price.

Avoid the temptation to pay too much to buy your dream house – use these tips, and a first-time homebuyer can seamlessly navigate the property buying journey.


Vinyl siding can be a an area of intense debate in construction circles. There are many advantages and disadvantages to buying a home with vinyl siding or in deciding to install it on your home. Here, we’ll break down the pros and cons of the popular siding material and how to decide if it’s right for your home. Over the years, advancement in the makeup of vinyl and advances in the technology itself has made it a more popular choice among home owners and builders. Vinyl was introduced in the 1950’s as a replacement for aluminum siding. Originally, vinyl was notorious for fading, cracking and buckling. Now, the material has been perfected to a new, higher standard. Advantages To Vinyl Siding:
  • Cedar is 2 1/2 times more expensive than than vinyl
  • Vinyl siding never needs to be painted
  • Easy to install
  • The material is versatile
  • The color will outlast paint
  • Water resistant
  • Helps to prevent damage from rain and snow
The biggest advantage of vinyl siding is the fact that it simply needs to be power washed from time to time and painting is not necessary. While power washing is an expense, it’s still less expensive than painting the entire house every five years. In the right conditions, the siding also usually holds its color for a long, long period of time. However, there are always exceptions to these rules. Cons Of Vinyl Siding:
  • There’s no time frame of how long vinyl siding will last
  • The durability of vinyl siding depends upon how the material itself
  • Vinyl siding is often installed over old siding, so existing problems could still remain
  • It’s flammable, so grills and other items could pose a hazard
  • It may be hard to find a replacement piece in a matching color when you need it
  • The siding could increase your home’s chances of developing mold on the outside
  • Susceptible to cracks
  • Seasonal maintenance is required
The cons listed above are mere warnings of the problems that could arise when vinyl siding is installed. There are pretty strict construction codes surrounding the installation of siding to help prevent these problems, yet, you should keep them in mind. The problems that could arise with siding also depend upon the type of material that’s used to make the siding. It’s good to do some investigating before you fully decide on the best material for your home’s exterior So, while vinyl siding isn’t a foolproof choice for a damage-free home, it does have some significant advantages over wood siding and paint. Depending upon the climate you live in and the type of look that you’re going for on your home, the decision is ultimately up to you.

“The silent killer.” It’s a perplexing name for a common household hazard. We’ve all heard of the dangers of carbon monoxide, but few of us are taught exactly what causes CO poisoning.

Understanding the causes of CO poisoning are essential in reducing the risk that you or your family could be harmed by this poisonous gas. So, in this article we’ll break down what exactly it is that carbon monoxide does to the body, where it can occur in the home, and how to protect yourself against it.

What is carbon monoxide?

Carbon monoxide is a tasteless, odorless, colorless, and poisonous gas. Because it is so dangerous to humans, fuels that emit carbon monoxide are usually mixed with other gases that do have an odor. This way, humans can typically smell gas and therefore be alerted that they are in danger.

What does CO do to the body?

When inhaled, carbon monoxide inhibits your body’s ability to use oxygen. So, even though you are breathing in air, your body is still suffocating. As a result, the lack of oxygen caused by carbon monoxide poisoning can lead to death the same way that drowning does.

High levels of CO in the air can cause you to succumb within minutes. Your chest will tighten, you’ll feel dizzy or drowsy and could suffocate if you don’t get away from the area.

However, lower levels of CO exposure can also be dangerous. People often notice headaches, slight dizziness and muscle fatigue and mistake the symptoms for the flu.

People who are asleep can die from carbon monoxide poisoning without ever experiencing symptoms.

Where is CO found within the home?

Since carbon monoxide occurs from unburned fuels leaking in the air, there are a number of sources within and outside the home that emit carbon monoxide.

According to the American Lung Association, some common sources of carbon monoxide include:

  • Gas appliances (furnaces, ranges, ovens, water heaters, clothes dryers, etc.)

  • Fireplaces, wood stoves

  • Coal or oil furnaces

  • Space heaters or oil or kerosene heaters

  • Charcoal grills, camp stoves

  • Gas-powered lawn mowers and power tools

  • Automobile exhaust fumes

How to protect yourself from carbon monoxide poisoning

Luckily there are several ways to protect yourself from carbon monoxide poisoning. Knowing what causes it is the first and most important way. Preventing gas leaks in appliances and maintaining proper upkeep of those appliances is one important way.

Another tip to keep in mind is to make sure your home is well ventilated. If cooking for a long period of time, don’t leave gas ranges unattended. If the knobs on your range are easily turned, make sure children and pets aren’t left alone near the oven.

Never use items like kerosene lanterns, portable camping stoves, burning charcoal, or running engines inside your home or garage. Lack of ventilation can easily cause CO levels to rise to a dangerous level within minutes.

Common mistakes involving carbon monoxide include running lawnmowers or other gas-powered items inside a garage, or leaving a car running in a garage.

Finally, install a carbon monoxide detector in your house and garage. Change the batteries regularly and test the alarm often. If you smell gas in your home and can’t identify the source immediately, open the windows and leave the house.



This listing recently sold for $150,000.

4910 Ortega Hills Dr, JACKSONVILLE, FL 32244  

$155,000
Price
$150,000
Sale Price
3
Bedrooms
2
Baths
Buyers couldn't qualify for financing-Property had an FHA appraisal at $158,000! Close to NAS JAX! Charming ranch with fresh paint, newer roof & HVAC, huge yard, loads of parking area, workshop/man cave, & many upgrades. Check out this great home w/two family room options (one includes a large TV); gigantic inside laundry which is conveniently located next to the Family Room w/the washer & dryer area noise far away from conversations & the TV; large owner's bathroom; 3 bedrooms & 2 baths including beautifully updated hall bath; kitchen has greenhouse window for your herbs or flowers; spacious kitchen which is open to the dining room with potential to become that second family room; & so much more! Backyard backs to a small tributary to the Ortega River. Come see this home today!



This listing recently sold for $725,000.

2517 Holly Point Rd E, ORANGE PARK, FL 32073  

$900,000
Price
$725,000
Sale Price
4
Bedrooms
3/1
Full/Half Baths
Fantastic riverfront one-owner property-priced under appraised value! Looking for that dream location with a fabulous house just waiting for you to put your stamp on it? Over 180 feet on the river w/bulkhead, 1.96 acres, 6-car garage, dock permit, & a 5,674 sf, brick house-what more could you ask? With gorgeous antique glass front door & several stained glass windows, this is a distinctive Property w/so much space to design to meet your personal needs. Unique owner's suite offers his & hers baths & closets. The second floor has 2 bedrooms w/glass-enclosed patios, a library, bonus room, loft area, small sewing room, & a rare, amazing, huge workshop w/a river view. Camellias, azaleas, & other flora & fauna abound from the front to the back of this lot-truly a one-of-a-kind opportunity.




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