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Choosing Interior House Paint Colors

When painting the interior of your home it is important to stick with a cohesive color scheme throughout the entire home (remember to keep the exterior in mind as well). Before selecting paint colors it is also important that you consider what the individual rooms will be used for since color has been proven to have an effect on our mood. Certain colors can also affect the appearance of a room in terms of how large or how small it looks and feels.

Today we share a few tips to help you select the right paint colors for the interior of your home.

  • If you want the room to feel energized or comfortable use warm colors such as red, yellow or orange. Warm colors tend to work well when used in rooms that host a lot of activity, such as family rooms or living rooms. Muted shades of these colors would be best as the main color as brighter paint colors can make a room feel overwhelming when they are used too much and too often. Instead, use these brighter tints of warm colors as an accent.
  • Cool colors such as blue, green, and purple are ideally used to give a room a relaxing feel by creating a calming sensation. Cool colors are great options for bedrooms as well as sitting rooms but using darker shades such as deep green or navy blue can help the room feel more grounded giving the space a cozy feeling.
  • To give a room an open feel or to make it feel larger than it actually is, consider using lighter tints such as pale yellows, blues or even white. Because light colors have minimal visual weight our eyes are not drawn toward them as they would with more vibrant and darker shades. When painting a room keep the ceiling in mind. Using light colors for the ceiling can create the illusion that the room is taller than it is.
  • Since darker colors draw our eyes towards the walls they make rooms feel smaller and more intimate. If you have a home library or a study you might want to use dark colors to create a quiet, intimate atmosphere.
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Signs you Need to Move House

You’re Daydreaming about the Perfect Home—Finding yourself constantly daydreaming about features you wish your current house possessed? Is it an open-plan kitchen, triple garaging, swimming pool or master bathroom? You would be more comfortable if you upgraded to a more modern house packed with more features. You want a house that has it all. This is a sign that you are ready to move to a home with larger bathrooms, larger closets (maybe a walk-in), a home office, etc.

 

Your Family is Growing—Planning on growing your family or trying to cram your children into a shared bedroom? Then you are ready to move into a new home. Having the right amount of space is an important part of a happy household, especially as your children get older. Living with 1 bathroom might be manageable when your kids are toddlers, but just imagine 3 teenagers sharing one tiny bathroom. Mornings will get stressful really fast!

 

You Hate Your Commute—This sign that you’re ready to move into a new home sometimes has little to do with how much you love your home. It’s about your job and the amount of time it takes for you to travel from home to work. Long commutes can be mentally and   physically exhausting, not to mention financially draining with the current price of gas.  Spending more time in the car than you spend in your home is a sure sign that you need to move.

 

Your Voice Echoes in Your Home—Once your home was filled with the harmonious, melodic hum of a busy family. Now you ask your spouse where the keys to the car are and you hear your voice bounce off the walls like you’re in some sort of sanatorium. The kids are gone, and their noisy friends with them. When did that happen? Hard to say, but it happened and now your way too big house is just a haunting reminder of your kids’ absence. Time to ownsize. The space will feel more practical, and the limited square footage will discourage adult children from moving back in with you.

 

You Dread Caring for Your Yard—You might be ready to move if you are constantly frustrated with the upkeep of a huge     backyard or expensive landscaping. Consider moving to a home that has a smaller, more manageable yard.

 

Your Neighbourhood Has Changed —When you first moved into your neighbourhood, it may have been a quiet leafy street of single storey homes. However, neighbourhoods can change over time. If increased development caused by a growing population isn’t to your liking, it may be time to find somewhere away from the urban life.

 

When you come to the decision to move, be smart and seek advice from a trusted agent to get you up to speed with the market in the area in which you are looking to move.

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Say I do in the Nature Isle

I’m thinking of things we can do in Dominica and the first thing that came to my mind is GET MARRIED!  I’m already married but I can always consider renewing my vows in one of those lovely locations here.  Although Dominica is often referred to as untouched, this is an advantage because we can enjoy almost entirely free of charge, the Hot Water Springs, Waterfalls, Lakes, Rivers, Beaches, Forests, Flora and Funa, as well as the God Fearing and Loving People.

 

What comes to mind when you think of romance? PRIVACY, SECLUSION, QUIETNESS, JOY, COMFORT.  Picture yourself in a cottage surrounded by nature; birds chirping, the sound of a water fall or river flowing nearby, the smell of the forest, the cozy wooden structure, ohh the list can go on and on… and all of that with a loved one.

 

In addition to the beauty and comfort offered here in Dominica, getting married is pretty simple.

 

It basically involves obtaining and submitting to Ministry of Social Services, Community Development and Gender Affairs a completed marriage application form, a valid passport(s), original birth certificates and EC$7.5 postage stamps. A Non-marriage Certificate or Statutory Declaration attesting to the marriage status of applicants is also required; in cases where one or both of the applicants are divorced a Decree Absolute is needed, if one spouse died a Death Certificate is needed and in cases where an applicant changed their name a Deed Poll in required.  In cases where relevant documents are not in English, an authentic translation is needed. 

 

Once the documents are reviewed the applicant can pay relevant fees at the Accounts section.  These fees are:

  • Licence Application Fee – EC$300.00
  • Additional fee for licence granted under Section 39 (2) where applicants do not meet the two (2) day residency requirements – EC$200.00
  • Weekend or public holiday processing fee – EC$204.00

 

Additional information, details and assistance can be obtained from Ministry of Social Services, Community Development and Gender Affairs.

 

Ok, we’ve dealt with the serious stuff let’s ponder on the experience of honeymooning in the nature isle.

 

Some say that Dominica is one of the most exotic and romantic places in the Caribbean and although I haven’t visited sooo many places I must agree from what I’ve seen so far.  There are many locations to choose from, from Calibishie Lodges and Secret Bay in the North to Jungle Bay in the East.  If you are a town person then there is the Fort Young Hotel, Garraway Hotel and Flamboyant Hotel.  Even in the midst of our forests are cottages and eco-lodges such as cocoa cottages offering that natural, calm, snug, pleasant and romantic environment.

 

Getting married? Take advantage of nature or better yet, the Nature Isle.  Not yet ready to say I DO? A romantic weekend with the significant other is also a reason to enjoy the nature isle.

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Useful Tips for Moving Into Your Newly Purchased Home!

You have done it! The documents have been signed, the sale has been finalized and the keys are now in your hands. Congratulations!!! Now that your real estate dreams have been realized and you are finally the owner of your dream home, what’s next? Now you are ready to move in.

Today we share a few simple but useful tips for homeowners who are moving into their newly purchased home.

1) First thing you do is change the locks of the new home! Do I need to say why? I did not think so! Apart from the previous owners, real estate agents, cleaners, maintenance workers you really have no idea how many strangers could have access to the keys of your newly purchased home.

2) Remember to have your mails forwarded to your new address! You may also need to have your address updated at important institutions. Otherwise your mail will keep being sent to your listed old address.

3) Do not give junk a free ride! Before you move, sort through your belongings and get rid of as much things as possible: sell, donate or throw away.

4) Make sure to pack socks in pairs! Just kidding, that was a bonus. This fourth tip is to place screws, bolts or plugs for all furniture in clear bags and tape them to the respective piece of furniture.

5) Label all boxes or bags with numbers and create a master list separated by rooms and place the relevant numbers with the room it belongs to.

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Ross University’s Leaves Dominica

Ross University School of Medicine (RUSM) is a private international medical school located in Bridgetown, Barbados as of August 2018. The main campus is now located in Barbados, and separate administrative bases are located in Iselin, New Jersey and Miramar, Florida in the United States.

 

RUSM was originally named The University of Dominica School of Medicine and was founded in Portsmouth, Dominica in 1978 by entrepreneur Robert Ross. In 1982, the University Of Dominica School Of Medicine formally changed its name to Ross University School of Medicine at the request of the government of Dominica.

 

The school was impacted by Hurricane Maria in 2017, when the Category 5 Hurricane struck the island of Dominica. Students and faculty were located through a university-initiated roll call, and then were evacuated from the campus to the U.S. mainland.

 

Ross University School of Medicine has announced that the main campus will be permanently relocated from Dominica to Barbados for the beginning of the 2019 Spring semester due to extensive damage done to the prior campus in Dominica.

 

Prime Minister Roosevelt Skerrit issued an address informing the nation has that Ross University has taken a decision to leave Dominica. Below is a video of the entire address by the Prime Minister:

 

The Ross University School of Medicine pre-clinical campus will be located at the Lloyd Erskine Sandiford Centre at Two Mile Hill in Barbados. The campus is expected to feature a medical and anatomical imaging laboratory, a simulation center, and classrooms equipped with several plasma screens and projection equipment, similar to the previous campus in Dominica.

 

For more information, visit medical.rossu.edu/

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3 Important Questions to Ask Prospective Tenants

The best way to help ensure that you chose the right tenant is through a screening process that you will be able to use for every prospective tenant that expresses interest in your property. You can either create a rental application form or have an open discussion with the prospects, whatever works best for you. The goal of both methods is to gather necessary information about the prospect that will help you to make a decision. There are a lot of questions that can be asked during the screening process, but these should never be forgotten:

  • Why Are You Moving?

This very simple question can provide a lot of information about a prospective tenant. You want to look for reasonable explanations such as wanting a shorter commute to work or needing a larger space. Be cautious when dealing with prospects who have been evicted or who are moving due to issues with their current landlord or neighbors. While exercising caution still keep in mind that the fault may not lie entirely on the prospect so remember to give them the benefit of the doubt.

  • What Is Your Monthly Income?

The question of income can help you determine whether or not the prospective tenant can afford to pay the rent for the property. Ideally you will want to accept a tenant whose monthly income is significantly higher than the monthly rent. Especially if they are leasing the property on their own. In a co-applicant situation where more than two or more individuals are leasing the property together the collective income of the applicants should be able to cover the rent and any additional utility cost that may not be included.

  • Can You Provide References?

References are very important. The prospective tenant should be able to be able to provide names and contact information of suitable individuals who are willing to speak to their character. If the prospective tenant does not feel the need to provide references you should not consider giving them a second thought. Apart from personal references, references from an employer and landlord is recommended. The employer will help verify income and stable employment while the landlord will provide you with information on what you can expect from the prospect as a tenant.

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Take Charge of Your Mortgage

You’ve taken the leap and decided to buy a home. After signing a mountain of paperwork, you are now the proud owner of your own residence. When the first mortgage payment comes due, you are hit by the reality of what you have done. You have taken on 30 years’ worth of massive payments, in an economy that makes no promises about long-term job stability.

An aggressive plan for mortgage prepayment can help reduce this long-term commitment and save you money.

Plan Before You Buy
Look before you leap and do the math in advance, to determine how much house you can afford to buy, then buy less house than you can afford. This strategy will ensure that you have adequate cash flow to make extra mortgage payments and will provide some cushion, should you have to take a lower-paying job at some point in the future. Also, make sure that your mortgage does not impose a penalty for prepayment. This clause can put a damper on your efforts to get out of debt.

Next, you need to pay attention to the financing terms. While adjustable-rate mortgages offer lower initial payments, they are used all too often to enable buyers to get into homes they cannot actually afford. If your plan is to get out of debt as quickly as possible, a fixed-rate mortgage provides the predictability of a steady interest rate, and it can always be refinanced if rates fall.

How to Pay Off a Mortgage 
Once you have a mortgage, the key to paying it off is simple: send money to the bank. Set aside some cash and make at least one extra payment on your mortgage per year or each month add a set amount that you can comfortably afford (say $15 or $25) to your payment. Another idea, apply the next tax refund towards your mortgage principal.

If your career advances over the years, put those raises and bonuses to work by sending them to the mortgage company. You were doing just fine without that money, and you won’t miss it if you don’t get used to having it in your budget.

Keep an eye on interest rates and, if they fall, consider refinancing. If you can reduce your interest rate, shorten the term of your loan or both, refinancing can be an excellent strategy. Just don’t make the mistake of keeping your term the same and taking money out.

The Bottom Line
There’s no time like the present to begin your quest to pay off that mortgage. Start by reading your amortization schedule; once you see exactly how much of your monthly payment goes to interest, and what a tiny portion goes toward paying off the principal, you will realize that every extra dollar you send, reduces the portion of your payment that services your interest expense. That can be a powerful motivator, for financially savvy individuals.

If you focus your efforts on the task at hand, you may be surprised at how quickly you can retire a mortgage. With your mission accomplished, you will find that the comforts of home are even more pleasurable when it is you, not the bank, who owns the home.

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A Property Manager May Be What You Need

Property management is the supervision of residential or commercial real estate and involves the managing of property that is owned by someone else.

 

The property manager acts on behalf of the client to act as a care taker of the property while generating income. Companies who handle property management communicate with both the clients and tenants, saving time from collecting rent, handling maintenance and repairs and responding to complaints.

 

There are numerous reasons why an individual would need the assistance of a property manager; here are a few of those reasons.

 

1) If you currently own multiple properties, rental units or an apartment building, providing the same level of care towards each individually can be difficult. The more properties or apartments you own, the more you’re likely to benefit from a management company.

 

2) If you do not live near your property, whether you live in a different community or in another country, hiring a company to manage your property can assist with many issues that you will be unable to handle while being away.

 

3) If you have limited time on your hands between taking care of your family, having a social life, and having a full time job, managing a rental building added in the midst can create additional burdens that can be avoided.

 

4) If you have the time to manage your own property but do not have the skills required, or you are not interested in hands on management, you should consider hiring a property manager or management company.

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Simple steps to speed up your home loan process

Are you searching for real estate? Do you have the money you need?  As a potential home owner or just land or commercial building owner, you’re constantly looking for a property that matches your requirements.  You also most likely need to obtain the funds to purchase the property from a local financial institution.  Potential homebuyers often hear that mortgage lending process is tedious and difficult to qualify for.

 

One common hurdle homebuyers face is not knowing the size of the mortgage which they qualify for, the requirements for securing a mortgage and how long it takes to complete the borrowing process.  In this article you’ll find out 6 ways to speed up the mortgage loan process.

 

  1. Examine the different financial institutions to determine which is most reasonable for you. You will need to compare interest rates, criteria, fees and charges and very importantly, the deposit required.

 

  1. Gather all relevant documents you may need. It is almost impossible for an individual to obtain a mortgage or any other loan without providing certain documents.  Find out from the loan officer even before your first meeting what sort of documents they need from you.  Some of the usual documents requested by the financial institutions are a letter of intent to sell, employment verification document, income statement or salary slip, average monthly expenditure, proof of asset(s) for down payment or security, etc.

 

  1. There are some documents that you may not be able to provide at the moment and can only be obtained after you have found the home e.g a property valuation but it will be good to obtain the contact for a reputable valuer and get an idea of the fees that may be charged. Documents or information requested from the financial institution should be obtained as quickly as possible. Keeping the loan officer waiting on vital information from you means the loan application process is being held up.

 

  1. Get pre-approved. This will allow you to have a clear idea of what size loan the bank will grant you.  What the bank is comfortable loaning you may be a lot less than what you think you qualify for or a lot more than you are comfortable spending.  At that point you and the loan officer could discuss what your best option is.  Getting pre-approved also puts you in front of the race, meaning that a smart seller will go with the person who has been pre-approved for a mortgage.

 

  1. Don’t be a stranger to your loan officer or your real estate agent. Keep in contact with them so that everyone is familiar with your case.  You may be one of the first to receive information on any important changes.

 

  1. Hold up on large purchases and avoid overspending before securing the house loan. Also, try to clear up outstanding debts.  Clearing up smaller debts will reflect less commitment on your salary. Ensure that you are servicing all debts to the satisfaction of the creditor so you can provide a positive credit report, if required by your lender.

 

Mortgage financing has become an important tool in the economy and has made it possible for millions of persons to become proud owners of their property.  If you decide to take advantage of it, do not let the process be staggered, if you can help.

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Get your credit rating up, to get that mortgage!

A good credit rating/score is an essential part of getting a mortgage loan.  The only way to establish good credit is to actually start buying on credit. This is the only way to establish a credit history which reveals your ability to pay for things that you buy or use.  If you have never taken a loan before or have not taken anything on credit before, now may be the time to do so if you intend to get a mortgage loan sometime in the future.

 

Stay put to help your credit rating and make it easier to get a mortgage.

 

Changing jobs often will make you seem unstable and risky. Employment continuity is paramount. Ideally, lenders are looking for someone who has had the same job for a number of years.  Having had two employers in 3 years need not be that detrimental. If the job change is to get more pay, it will usually not cause any problems, though you really want to have been in your new job for a few months before applying for new credit.  Remember, lenders often ask to see the last couple of months pay slips when applying for a loan.

 

Being a consistent saver helps your credit rating and makes it easier to get a mortgage.

 

Lenders see bank accounts as signs of financial stability and consistent savings behavior. You shouldn’t, however, just open accounts left and right, as this makes you look bad rather than good. Just have more than one and make sure that there’s money in each of them.

 

Handling a credit card responsibly helps your credit rating and makes it easier to get a mortgage.

 

Choose a card that offers the lowest interest rate and if possible one that offers a cash back percentage on purchases you make. Paying your credit card automatically helps your credit rating and makes it easier to get a mortgage.  Set up automatic payments with your credit card company and/or bank. Most credit cards will allow you to set up automatic withdrawals from your checking account every month to pay for your credit card. This way, you won’t risk forgetting about your payments and registering as a late payer, dropping your credit score.