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10 Tips for a better New Year

by Southern Californias Top Producing Mother & Son Te

It's the time of year when we're thinking about making things better - ourselves, our famililes, our homes, and our budgets.  As you're making your resolutions, consider these 10 tips:

1.  Before you buy, ask yourself these questions: Do I need this? Do I need something new right now? Does is have too much packaging?  What will I do with this when I no longer need it?

2.  Stop making "wish lists."  Whether you make them online, write them on a scrap of paper, or keep them in your head, wish lists keep you thinking about what you want but don't have. 

3.  Start your excercise, weight loss, or other self-imporvement program on borrowed or shared equipment.  If you stick with the program or hobby, you can purchase your own supplies and equipment later, if you need them. 

4.  Precycle.  You do this by shopping for groceries and other products with recycling in mind.  Know what you can recylce and choose products packaged in those materials.  Better yet, try to buy items with no packageing whenever possible.  For example, if you need a bunch of bannas or two apples, you don't need a plastic produce bag. 

5.  Commit to recycle-content products.  Succesful recycling programsdepend on having manufacturers us your recyclables.  If you need a new fleece vest or jacket, look for fleece made from recycled soft-drink bottles.  Did the dog ruin your carpet?  Select recycled-content carpet.

6.  Take an inventory at home. Do you have supplies for a hobby that you never started?  Now would be a good time to begin.  Do you have books on your shelf that you never read?  Don't buy a new book; read one you already own.  The same goes for movies; have you watched all the DVD's you have at home?  if not, start now . 

7.  Find your library card.  The library is a great resource for no-cost entertainment.  Look for books, magazines, CD's, movies, and more period.

8.  Scan your pantry shelves for food that your family won't eat.  We all have canned and boxed goods that we purchased but never get around to eating.  Check the "use by," or,"Best by" dates and donate unexpired items to a local food pantry or other non profit organization. 

9.  Give more of your time and talent.  If you're feeling that you can't afford to donate as much of your money to your favorite causes, commit more of your time and energy. 

10.  Start thinking now about planting a garden this year.  A garden can be a relaxing hobby and also a good source of food for your family.  Even if you just have a small patio, consider planting tomatoes or peppers, which can grow in a pot.


Beautification Competition Under Way

by Southern Californias Top Producing Mother & Son Te

A well maintained home or buesiness is a positive value which should be encouraged.  Keep Downey Beautiful has a yearly Beautification Awards Program for the purpose of "recognizing and enoutaging beautification efforts."  The awards program is divided into four categories which are:  Home, Business, Multi Family, and Home Improvement. 

The following criteria apply to all categories

-Pride exhibited in the property
-Excellence in exterior property upkeep and maintenance
- Creativeness in the exterior of the property, in relation to the surrounding neighborhood
- Positive neighborhood impact

Nominations will be accepted between Jan 1 and April 1.  For additional information, please call Keep Downey Beautiful at 562-904-7159.

Why You Need to Work with a CDPE - Certified Distressed Property Expert

by Southern Californias Top Producing Mother & Son Te

In this real estate market you need someone working for you that knows how to negotiate with your bank in your best interest.  A Short Sale can be a very long, stressful and complex process.  Maria and her team have a special designation, recognized by banks across the nation of being Certified Distressed Property Experts.  Maria has been helping people negotiate settlements on their homes, saving them from foreclosure and saving their credit ever since this real estate market took a turn for the worse for home owners

Experts say that this market is going to stay the way it is for at least another 2 years and buyers will be seeing more and more short sales when they search for homes on-line.  Currently almost every house on the market is a short sale and many home owners are having to make very tough decisions with their homes.  They have to decide on whether or not they want to keep making payments on a home that they paid twice the value than it is worth in today's market, or face the consequences of giving their home up. 

If you are contemplating on doing a short sale on your home or if you have any questions on how the process works, please speak to us before you make a decision.  It is extremely important that you work with someone that knows how to negotiate with your bank on your behalf.  Don't make the mistake of hiring a part time agent, or a family member that does real estate on the side just because you may already know them.  We have come across many sellers that regretted making a decision to work with a friend or family member that doesn't really know how to handle this real estate market.  They were upset mostly about all the time that was waisted, by nothing being done properly to effectively sell their home.  

Hire a professional that knows the "In's and outs" of this business.  We understand that many people are hurting out there and it is our desire to help people stuck in these difficult circumstances, to get out as smoothly and as easy as possible. 

Please feel free to contact Maria anytime with any questions. (877) 883-1003

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Contact Information

Photo of The Mother & Son Team - Maria Palacios & Chris Gon Real Estate
The Mother & Son Team - Maria Palacios & Chris Gon
Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices, California Properties
16911 Bellflower Blvd
Bellflower CA 90706
(877) 883-1003
Fax: 562-381-9113