Automate Your Household Bills to Save Time

In this day and age, there’s no reason to have to worry about forgetting to pay your bills on time. There’s also no reason to have to write a check or even log into a website each month to pay your bills.

Using a combination of digital tools, it’s possible to fully automate your bill-paying process so that you can spend less of your free time trying to remember your passwords and entering debit card numbers and more time doing the things that make you happy.

Benefits of auto-pay

There are plenty of reasons to automate your household bills. More free time and less time stressing about money are two of them. But, did you know that automation can also be a great way to help you boost your credit score?

Late payments on mortgages, student loans, utilities, internet, and cable bills can all negatively affect your credit score. By setting up auto-pay, you can make sure you make your payments on-time, helping to build your credit.

Another huge benefit of bill automation is that you can actually earn money and other rewards by making on-time payments.

For example, setting up your bills and utilities to charge to a credit card with cash back rewards can help you earn money by paying your bills. The one caveat is that you need to make sure you pay off your credit card balance in full each month. How do you do that? With auto-pay!

Where to automate

As I mentioned before, many monthly bills can be charged to a credit card which you can use to earn rewards. However, you won’t be able to use a credit card for all of your bills. Mortgage payments, student loans, auto loans, and oftentimes utility companies will require a checking or savings account with a routing number.

In these cases, it’s still possible to set up auto-pay through either the company’s website, or through your bank’s bill-pay feature.

Need help with a list of things you could be automating? Consider setting up auto-pay or bill-pay for these services:

  • Cable

  • Internet

  • Cell phone

  • Electricity

  • Entertainment (Netflix, Amazon Prime, Hulu, Spotify, etc.)

  • Rent

  • Mortgage

  • Student Loans

  • Insurance

Automation of the future

So, we’ve covered some of the most common ways to automate your home expenses. However, recent technologies are making it even easier to run your home and keep up with the bills.

One new innovation is Amazon’s Dash button. This service enables you to just tap a button on your smartphone or tablet whenever you need to order new pantry items for the home. Alternatively, you can subscribe for common household goods like cleaning productions, paper towels, and dish soap so that you never run out. And, with Amazon Prime, you don’t have to worry about shipping costs.

Between home automation and auto-pay, you should be able to make your home significantly easier to manage and reduce the amount of stress related to paying the bills.

Staging Tips for Home Sellers on a Budget

If plans for selling your home are in the near future, you’re going to want to start strategizing the most cost- and time-effective ways to make your home irresistible to potential buyers. One of the most proven ways of giving your home the edge it needs to stand out from the competition is good photography and attractive staging.

In today’s post, I’m going to share my tips on home staging that can be achieved on a budget and in a short period of time. That way you can focus more time on finding a new home and stop worrying about selling your current one.

Tip 1: Start packing

Before you start worrying about arranging furniture, it’s important to make sure you have a clean slate to work with. Start by packing personal effects into boxes and labeling them accordingly.

Staged homes are homes that look appealing to the widest audience as possible. Having personal reminders, like family photos, trophies, etc., makes it harder for viewers to picture themselves living in the home.

Most of us keep our homes arranged in a way that is convenient to our lives. And. let’s face it–life can be messy. But, when it comes to staging, less is usually more.

Not only will this cleaning process help you reduce clutter and make the home look better for staging, but it will also make your moving process easier since many of your boxes will already be organized and sealed.

Tip 2: Color scheming

Expertly staged homes tend to have one thing in common–a cohesive color scheme. Think of choosing your color scheme like creating an artist’s palette. You want a few colors that compliment one another and that will work together to brighten up your home.

If you have any furniture that appears worn, dated, or that clashes with the scheme of the room, it’s a good idea to place them in storage while you prepare for photographs and visitors.

Tip 3: Decorate sparingly

Now that you’ve packed away your family photos, you might be wondering what to put on the walls in their place. The best answer is often nothing. However, that doesn’t mean the walls need to be completely bare.

For smaller rooms, you can make them appear more spacious with the use of hanging mirrors (just make sure you can’t see yourself in any of those mirrors when you take your photos!).

Tip 4: Don’t forget the outside of your home

The value of curb appeal can’t be overemphasized. The exterior of our homes, along with our yard and driveway, are essentially what we show the world about our lives. Since most home buyers want their house to look nice, fit in with the neighborhood, but have its own unique flair all at the same time. They want to know that your house has that potential.

Furthermore, the driveway and yard are two of the first things people see when they visit. You’ll want to take advantage of this moment by making a good impression.

Speed Up the Home Selling Process

For home sellers, there is no need to let your house linger on the real estate market for weeks, months or years. Instead, you can set yourself up to accelerate the home selling process today.

What does it take to speed up the home selling process? Here are three tips to help home sellers do just that.

1. Offer a Competitive Price.

Evaluate the prices of homes currently available in your area that are similar to your own. Also, assess the sold prices of comparable residences in your city or town that were purchased recently. With this housing market data in hand, you’ll be able to determine a fair price for your house.

Although you should try to price your house competitively, it is important to remember not to sell yourself short as well. Fortunately, if you perform sufficient housing market research, you can better understand how you should price your house to streamline the home selling process and optimize the value of your home.

2. Clean Up Your House.

Homebuyers will be attracted to residences that feature pristine front lawns and dazzling interiors, along with houses that will not require any major repairs in the near future. Comparatively, homebuyers likely will shy away from houses that look messy and cluttered.

Devote time and resources to clean up your house’s interior and exterior – you’ll be happy you did. If your home looks great inside and out, you can boost your property’s chances of making a positive first impression on homebuyers. As a result, your home may prove to be more attractive than other residences on the real estate market, ensuring you should have no trouble generating significant interest in your house.

You may want to consider staging your house too. With staging, you will need to remove your personal belongings from your home and declutter your residence. And ultimately, staging your house may help you further accelerate your journey through the home selling cycle.

3. Hire a Real Estate Agent.

A real estate agent has one goal in mind: to help you sell your house as quickly as possible. Thus, your real estate agent will do everything possible to guarantee that he or she can promote your house to the right homebuyers, at the right time.

With an experienced real estate agent at your disposal, you can improve your chances of generating substantial interest in your home in a short period of time. Your real estate agent will use many platforms to promote your residence, and by doing so, ensure you can speed through the home selling cycle.

Perhaps best of all, your real estate agent will keep your best interests in mind throughout the home selling process. Therefore, if you want to get rid of your home quickly, your real estate agent possesses the skills and know-how to help set up a fast sale without sacrificing the value of your residence.

Take advantage of the aforementioned tips, and you accelerate the home selling process in a buyer’s or seller’s market.

AI Tech That Will Take Your Kitchen To A New Level

You know artificial intelligence, aka aI, equipped everything is in. And while AI thermostats, home security, and doorbells are nice… they aren’t particularly exciting. I hear you. And that’s why today I”m sharing my favorite AI equipped kitchen gadgets.

Let’s start with a popular device you’ve probably overlooked – the smart speaker. You know Alexa, Google Assistant, and Siri. Pick your preferred flavor of brand loyalty (see what I did there?) because they can all help you out in the kitchen.

For example, have you ever been mid-recipe and realized you’re missing a critical ingredient and need a substitute? Or how many tablespoons are in a ⅓ cup? Whether to serve red or white wine with your zoodles?

With a smart speaker, you can use voice-activated inquiries to get answers to any of your kitchen Q’s. And you won’t have to make a complete mess of your tablet trying to find it.   

Keep your trash can lid clean too by investing in a garbage bin with a motion sensor opening capability. There are so many options at all different price points, this is one techy upgrade anyone can make.

One thing you won’t have to worry about is how long to cook something for or at what temperature if you have the June intelligent oven. This convection oven is full capacity yet still can sit on your countertop. You can also spring for the “pro” version to build it into your existing cabinetry.

Or maybe you want to cook two things at the same time but need them to be at different temperatures? Samsung double oven has a removable divider allowing you to use the full capacity or split it into two. And of course, it has wi-fi connectivity to monitor cooking progress from anywhere.

If you’re the type who can’t just throw two things in the oven at a “good enough” temperature you value quality. The right cooking process can’t be rushed. Chances are you also feel this way about tea.

Not every variety and blend should be steeped at the same temperature water or for the same time. Each has its own best conditions for the perfect cup. But creating those conditions takes time and effort. The Mr.Coffee Tea Maker and Kettle that can be set to the right temp and brew time for every type. It’s literally as simple as pushing a button as the buttons are even clearly labeled for each type.