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“It is always a good idea to have your furnace cleaned and serviced,” noted Leslie Swindahl of Hawkins Poe .
If you find any of these issues, you will want to get them fixed as soon as possible. Once you have addressed health and safety issues, it’s time for a Hawkins Poe REALTOR® to come and look at your home inside and out. Our REALTORS® will always make sure you are well taken care of.
When it comes to selling your home for the first time, this is when a Hawkins Poe REALTOR® is your best choice to help you through the process. When you work with Hawkins Poe, you can expect friendly, professional service that includes in-depth knowledge of the area and the current market conditions, outstanding communication skills along with the ability to aggressively market, manage and negotiate for you!
Back in 2010, my life looked pretty great (on paper). I had a lovely, happy baby girl, I was married to a wonderful, hardworking man, and I was running a small hand-made jewelry label. We had recently moved to the mountains, were currently renovating, had just returned from a Fijian holiday, and I was pregnant with our second child.
I knew how lucky I was. And yet I was filled with a bone-aching despair. Life was pushing down on me so hard that it took my breath away, and I couldn’t figure out why. All I knew was that I was constantly striving for more. More stuff, more toys, more clothes, more busyness, more, more, more… Somewhere along the way I’d learned to equate more with success and success with happiness.
A few weeks after our second child was born, I was diagnosed with severe postpartum depression. Looking back, I’m fairly certain I’d been struggling since before our first child was born but had maybe been a little better at hiding it or convincing myself that it was what life was like as an adult, a partner, a mother.
As part of my treatment, I spent an hour a week with a psychiatrist. It was during one of our sessions that I began complaining about everything I “had” to do in life. All the things I needed to achieve, own, do, or be. All the ways in which I could never sit still, never be present, and never fully soak in the joyful details of my own very lucky life. There was always more to do, and I was tired.
She looked at me for a moment and asked, “Have you ever considered simplifying your life a little, doing less?” I admit that I was initially offended by the idea. I’d always prided myself on the fact I got a lot done in my day, on being the person people asked themselves, “How does she do it?”
Turns out that wasn’t working out very well for me.
I went home and Googled, “How do I simplify my life?” and found myself deep in the archives of Leo Babauta’s blog, Zen Habits, where I discovered a whole other world of people who were saying no to more.
From there, I began to see that there was another way. A simpler way.
The simple life was freeing people up to do more of what mattered to them. I immediately thought the best place to begin this simplified era would be our double-car garage. It was stuffed to the brim with boxes of stuff we’d moved to our new house but never actually brought inside. It was crammed with cartons of stock and materials from the jewelry label I’d built up and then shut down as my depression took hold. Surely this was the best place to start…
This was not the best place to start.
My husband and I rolled the garage doors up early one Saturday morning, determined to sift through the boxes of stuff and rid ourselves of a huge amount of clutter. We began by opening boxes and dumping the contents on the floor, sorting them into sprawling piles of “Keep,” “Donate,” “Recycle,” “Rubbish,” and “I forgot we had this thing, but now that I see it maybe we should keep it.” Gradually, as decision fatigue took over and the piles began to merge into one unholy mess, we realized we’d been defeated. So we rolled the doors down and went inside for a cup of tea.
It wasn’t until weeks later that I realized I’d been trying to run before I could walk. I didn’t need to declutter the garage in one weekend. (I actually couldn’t.) But maybe I could begin with my handbag.
So I emptied the contents of my bag onto the kitchen table and sorted through receipts, pens, lipsticks, hair clips, toys, baby wipes, random pieces of junk, and enough crumbs to make a whole new loaf of bread. I recycled, threw away, or put back in place everything that didn’t belong there, and then I hung my much lighter handbag behind the front door. It took five minutes.
It was one small step toward a simpler home, but it felt good. Much better than failing to summit Garage Mountain. So I took another small step, this time decluttering inside our car. More toys and books and drink bottles and rubbish and dried-up fruit and junk. Fifteen minutes.
Then I moved on to declutter the utensils drawer, top of the fridge, coat rack, etc. None of these tasks was difficult or emotionally taxing, and they began to add up to big changes. We began counting the items we let go of, and by the end of the year we’d decluttered more than 25,000 items from our home. (I stopped counting after that.)
We discovered more space, time, and contentment that requires less maintenance and worry. We were amazed by how much calmer and happier we felt in our home, and over the subsequent years we’ve let go of so much more.
Now, you might be wondering, did we ever manage to declutter the garage? And the answer is yes. Once we got better at the art of letting go, those boxes no longer felt like such an impossible task, and over the course of a couple of weekends we emptied the garage of everything.
After we packed up the last of the garage’s contents and sent them off to the charity shop, my husband and I found ourselves in the backyard, staring at the massive empty structure. We decided to let the garage go too, in the end. We sold it to a neighbor, tore up the concrete slab, and planted some grass and a veggie gardenthere instead. Now I watch my kids play in that space every day, often joining them on the trampoline or as we water the garden together.
I can’t think of a better example of everything we stand to gain simply by letting go.
Inspired to start tackling your home, one small section at a time? Here are some more genius decluttering tips to get you started.
In Seattle, it’s definitely a hot real estate market. With all the latest corporations hiring throughout the area, there are simply more people moving here than there are selling. Consequently, listed homes are snatched quickly, often with dozens of offers made during the negotiation process. So what’s a buyer to do?
Whether you’re in Seattle, or any other sizzling real estate market, these three tips will keep you in check while you search for your next home.
Be Strategic – Prepare yourself by finding the perfect broker and lender, and create a strategy with your broker that can help you win the home you want.
Be Resilient – Don’t get discouraged if you lose your dream home to another buyer. This may happen more than once! But keep looking; there is a reason you haven’t yet found ‘the one’.
Be Unstoppable – Don’t get overwhelmed by the intensity of a hot market. Teaming up with your broker will help you keep calm and shop on for the perfect home.
Home Life, Home Maintenance
Whether you just bought your first home (congratulations!) or you’ve been settled in your humble abode for several years, it’s important to think about how you’re protecting your property. In an ideal world, nothing would ever happen to threaten the safety of your life and loved ones in your home. But there’s no harm in being prepared!
You may be thinking… I bought homeowners insurance, doesn’t that cover everything? Probably not. Policies vary, but typically, risks posed by some natural disasters (floods, earthquakes, volcano, etc.) are not included in a standard insurance policy. If they are, coverage is limited.
Obviously, not everyone has to worry about threats like flooding or earthquakes. But for many in the Pacific Northwest, flood insurance is a necessity. Water is everywhere in the region, and it’s not uncommon for rivers to rise dramatically during the wetter fall and winter months. If your property is located in a flood-prone area, your lender may require you to have flood insurance. But even if it’s not required, you may still want to protect your home from raging waters. Your insurance agent can check your flood risk and help guide you to make the best decision.
In addition to flood insurance, there are other options you might want to consider and learn more about:
Give yourself peace of mind! Reading through the fine print isn’t always fun, but you’ll thank yourself later.
These steps can help you get the coverage you need to protect your home.
By Ryan Hanley
Ready to buy your first home? Before you dot the I’s and cross the T’s on your mortgage, it is important to understand the ins and outs of homeowners insurance.
Without homeowners insurance, a property buyer is unlikely to secure a house. Homeowners insurance protects a residence—and the items stored in a residence—against disasters. Therefore, if your home is suddenly destroyed in a hurricane, tornado or other natural disaster, homeowners insurance guarantees you are fully protected.
Homeowners insurance should be simple, but there are many factors to consider as you evaluate all of the coverage options at your disposal.
Now, let’s take a look at five common questions about homeowners insurance.
There are two reasons why homebuyers must purchase homeowners insurance:
Homeowners insurance is a must-have for homeowners, without exception. If you allocate the time and resources to find the right homeowners coverage, you should have no trouble protecting your house and personal belongings for years to come.
Generally, homeowners insurance is considered a “package” policy because it includes a combination of coverages. The package policy focuses on the following areas:
Clearly, there’s a lot to consider as you evaluate a homeowners policy. Review your coverage options closely, and you may be better equipped than other homeowners to secure your house and personal belongings effectively.
You should get homeowners insurance that covers the full replacement cost of your home—not just the market value of your residence.
The replacement cost and market value of a residence may seem identical at first. But upon closer examination, it becomes easy to understand why you’ll want to purchase a homeowners policy that offers protection for the full replacement cost of your house.
For homeowners, the replacement cost refers to the total amount it would cost to rebuild or replace your home if it was completely destroyed. This cost may vary based on your home insurance provider and usually accounts for the plans and permits, fees and taxes and labor and materials that you would need to replace your house. However, the replacement cost does not account for the value of the land associated with your home.
On the other hand, the market value reflects what your home is worth today. It fluctuates based on the current condition of your house, the real estate market and various economic factors.
The market value of your home commonly proves to be great indicator of what your house may be worth if you intend to sell it in the near future. Conversely, when it comes to homeowners insurance, it is always better to err on the side of caution. If you calculate the full replacement cost of your home, you can insure your residence appropriately.
Believe it or not, a standard homeowners policy won’t cover everything. As such, you may want to consider adding some of the following optional coverages to supplement your homeowners policy:
Of course, if you’re unsure about which coverages you need, it always helps to consult with an insurance agent. This insurance professional will be able to respond to your homeowners insurance concerns and queries and help you get the coverages you need, any time you need them.
How Much Will It Cost?
There are several factors that will affect your homeowners insurance premium, including:
Homeowners insurance premiums will vary from person to person. But those who take an informed, diligent approach to homeowners insurance can boost their chances of getting the best homeowners policy at the lowest rate.
Homeowners Insurance Tips
Let’s face it—homeowners insurance can be confusing, particularly for those who are searching for coverage for the first time. Lucky for you, we’re here to help you discover the right homeowners policy.
Here are five tips to help you secure homeowners insurance that meets or exceeds your expectations:
There is no need to settle for inferior homeowners coverage. If you use the aforementioned tips, you can purchase homeowners insurance that guarantees your home and personal belongings are fully protected both now and in the future.
Ryan Hanley is the Vice President of Marketing at TrustedChoice.com and the Managing Editor of Agency Nation. He is also a speaker, podcaster and author of the Amazon best-seller, “Content Warfare.” Ryan has over 12 years of insurance expertise and blogs frequently to help consumers understand complicated insurance topics.
The beginning of Tacoma’s architectural history is very sketchy, drawn hastily to fit a city that was born in a burst of optimism tempered by desperation. Not surprisingly, the first important formal building was the Land Office of the Northern Pacific Railroad and headquarters for the grand enterprise that had just picked Commencement Bay for its Pacific terminus and was on the verge of bankruptcy.
Between July and December of 1873, the NP raced to finish the rail laying of the Prairie Line to tidewater. They were also racing to survey and sell city lots in the new terminus city since the federal land grants made to the railroad represented its only real liquid wealth. The follow year, in the fall of 1874, the NP started building a highly stylized, Victorian headquarters that was part office building and part mansion. It stood in stark contrast to it’s surroundings when it was completed in early 1875 by the superintendent of construction Theodore Hosmer. Hosmer was also the NP’s Special Agent in charge of city planning and land sales (and the brother in law of Charles B. Wright, chairman of the railroad’s Board of Directors).
The city of Tacoma was mostly tree stumps, log cabins and plank barns when the transcontinental arrived and the new NP Land Office not only marked the physical starting point at 9th and C Street (Broadway today), it displayed the first inklings of an ambitious, formal city. The startlingly white, wood frame structure became an instant landmark and the largest building on a seasonally muddy hillside where armies of workers were grading streets, marking out building sites, delivering wagon loads of lumber and hammering away at the first pieces of a metropolis. Everything was directed from the land office and everybody knew it. When a City Hall was needed they built it next to the big white capitol, smaller and set back from the increasingly busy corner on 9th, where they were planning a big time streetcar line. The first library and newspaper sided along what was then C Street next to the big white house and the first and most important telegraph wire ran from the rail head to the NP offices. Across 9th, Theodore and Louis Hosmer built an impressive house later in 1875 that reflected some of the refined charm of the NP Land Office. Today it still stands as the oldest building in downtown Tacoma. See Way Back-History as Hidden Code
The first version of Tacoma was wood and short lived but while it lasted the fashionable Italianate NP land office sat on the upper edge of the burgeoning city, the finest piece of architecture in town. But in less than a decade brick and stone were the new standard for commercial buildings and even the Land Office was being crowded out. 1884 saw several brick buildings rise including the Wright Building at 9th and Pacific and the Ledger Building just down C street. And most imposing of all was the towering Tacoma Hotel that opened in August
1884 to future guests like Mark Twain and Rudyard Kipling. The completion of the Northern Pacific tunnel that brought travelers directly into the city triggered a major building boom and by 1887 the Northern Pacific was planning a new brick masonry, Renaissance style headquarters at the north end of Pacific Avenue overlooking Commencement Bay. Just months after the new headquarters building was occupied, the old land office was rolled off its real estate, the chimneys, balconies and porch were cropped and it was moved to the corner of 7th and St. Helens Avenue. In its place at 9th and C street, Theodore Hosmer oversaw the completion of a massive Tudor Style opera house that seated an audience of 1800 for those celebrities like Mark Twain and Rudyard Kipling.
After the move to 701 St Helens, the NP commissioned the architects Pickels & Sutton to convert the building to a boarding house and hotel called the Florence. By 1903, it was operating as the Sylvan House, still classy but showing its age some. The few survivors from the wooden city days were disappearing fast.
The centerpiece days were over, dark paint covered the once white exterior and by the First World War traveling soldiers and touring vaudevillians from the theatre district found a cheap room in the Sylvan. They probably didn’t know or care that the final chapters in the building of the transcontinental railroad had played out under that roof, that empire builders and sea captains had bargained for fortunes in those rooms and that Tacoma was just an idea when those walls were nailed together. By 1920, the building was a shabby rooming house getting by on borrowed time and a largely forgotten past. Just as the Great Depression set in the wreckers came and Tacoma’s first piece of high style architecture vanished in 1930.
Actually it almost vanished because just a couple years ago it reappeared unexpectedly when a long lost silent feature film made at Weaver Studios in Tacoma in 1926 was found in a New York Museum. In The Eyes of the Totem, the young woman protagonist and her infant daughter are befriended by a blind busker who takes her to a shady boarding house that serves as a headquarters for a hospitable, understanding colony of street wise hustlers. Thanks to some visual detective work and historical research it was discovered that the lost and then found silent film contained a hidden treasure-a last look at Tacoma’s first building. So here it is, like a window into Tacoma’s most distant past… Enjoy….
Thanks to John Carlton for making the film cut from Eyes of the Totem and John Christopher Bayman for the music.