Summer Home Maintenance: A Guide

We know it can be difficult to know when to do all of those home maintenance tasks. With summer at our heels her in Utah, here is a guide to the top home maintenance tasks to complete in summer.

  • Inspect Air Conditioners – You know how hot it can get here in Utah. Perks of living in the desert, huh? Clean air conditioning filters in window units, dust off those ceiling fans, and consider a tuneup if you have central A/C.
  • Check Detectors – Every few months, check smoke and carbon monoxide detectors to make sure they are working properly and have batteries.
  • Clean your Vents – Spring brings in allergy season, which can be rough. It can bring all of that pollen into your vents, along with the usual buildup of dust and grime. Get in there to make sure you’re getting fresh air. Don’t forget the dryer vent and exhaust duct. the lint trapped in there can be a fire hazard if not properly maintained.
  • Clean the Gutters – It may not be glamorous, but it needs done. If you didn’t do this one on your spring checklist, it’s time to do it now. Clean out any leaf buildup and standing water. In the short term, these attract mosquitos and other pests. In the long term, they can damage your gutters and pull the whole system away from your house.
  • Prep Water Systems – However you plan to water, figure it out and get your systems set up.
    • Check Hose and Faucets – A good starting point is to check hoses and exterior faucets for any leaks. Pinhole leaks in hoses can be repaired with electrical tape.
    • Plan Your Watering Schedule – Train your garden and lawn to endure dry days by watering deeply a few times per week to promote the growth of deep, strong roots.
    • Test Sprinkler Systems – If you have a sprinkler system, check to make sure all of the heads are in good shape and test before you plan to water to make sure there are no leaks in the underground system.
  • Check Your Deck – Examine your deck for signs of rotting and fix any nails that are pulling up, and check if you need to re-seal your deck by sprinkling water on the boards. If the water beads up, you’re fine. If it soaks right in, it’s time for a seal.
  • Analyze your Roof – Utah’s ever-changing weather can be hard on your home’s head. Get up on your roof (or have someone do it for you) to check for missing and loose shingles, mold, and anything else that looks unusual. It’s better to do small repairs every summer than have to replace the whole roof.
  • Spruce up the Siding – Peeling paint and chipped siding can allow all of those summertime bugs to get into your house. Walk around your house and look for any problem areas. If you clean up, paint and repair issues now, you can avoid bigger projects in the future.
  • Porch Polishing – Sweep porch floors and mop floorboards with all purpose cleaner.
  • Wash Windows – If you didn’t do it with your spring checklist, it’s time to do it now. Get your Windex ready.
  • Landscaping – Add a layer of mulch to keep weeds down and help the ground retain it’s moisture and deadhead your annuals and perennials.
  • Clean Your Grills – Everyone loves a good backyard BBQ. Make sure you’re ready by cleaning your grill before you need to use it.
    • Gas Grills – Turn your heat up to high and let the grill cook with the lid closed for 30 min. Allow the grill to cool, then brush off with a grill brush.  Don’t forget to clean out the drip pans.
    • Charcoal Grills – Empty the grill completely and wipe off any residue. Clean inside and out with hot water and liquid dish soap and leave to air-dry completely.
  • Keep the Dirt Away – Make sure to put out a doormat at all doors to make sure all that muck stays outside where it belongs.

 

Do you have any cleaning or maintenance tips that are prefect for summer? Share them with us in the comments below!

 

At Windermere Utah, we are proud to keep you up-to-date on the latest news, events, and listings. Be sure to keep checking back in here at the blog, and don’t forget to follow us on social media. 

 


Posted on May 5, 2020 at 4:30 pm
Andrew Phillips | Posted in Living | Tagged , , , ,

The Gardner Report – Utah – 2020 First Quarter

The following analysis of select counties of the Utah real estate market is provided by Windermere Real Estate Chief Economist Matthew Gardner. We hope that this information may assist you with making better-informed real estate decisions. For further information about the housing market in your area, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

 

A MESSAGE FROM MATTHEW GARDNER

Needless to say, any discussion about the U.S. economy, state economy, or housing markets in the first quarter of this year is almost meaningless given events surrounding the COVID-19 virus.

Although you will see below data regarding housing activity in the region, many markets came close to halting transactions in March and many remain in some level of paralysis. As such, drawing conclusions from the data is almost a futile effort. I would say, though, it is my belief that the national and state housing markets were in good shape before the virus hit and will be in good shape again, once we come out on the other side. In a similar fashion, I anticipate the national and regional economies will start to thaw, and that many of the jobs lost will return with relative speed. Of course, all of these statements are wholly dependent on the country seeing a peak in new infections in the relatively near future. I stand by my contention that the housing market will survive the current economic crisis and it is likely we will resume a more normalized pattern of home sales in the second half of the year.

 

HOME SALES
  • In the first quarter of 2020, 6,996 homes sold, which was a solid 5.1% increase compared to the same period in 2019. Sales were down 20.2% compared to the fourth quarter of 2019.
  • Total sales activity rose in all counties covered by this report. Year-over-year sales rose by double digits in three counties, with impressive increases in the relatively small Wasatch County.
  • The number of homes for sale in the first quarter was down by 24.2% compared to the same period a year ago and was 27.2% lower than the fourth quarter of 2019. Clearly COVID-19 has had an impact on prospective home sellers.
  • Pending sales in the first quarter were up 2.6% compared to the fourth quarter of 2019, suggesting that buyers are still in the market even though listing inventories are very tight.

 

 

 

HOME PRICES
  • The average home price in the region continued to rise in the first quarter, with a year-over-year increase of 10.4% to an average of $404,316. Prices were a modest 0.3% higher than in the fourth quarter of 2019.
  • All counties contained in this report saw price increases compared to the same period a year ago.
  • Appreciation was strongest in Wasatch County where prices were up 37.9%. However, this is a small area and can be subject to significant swings in sale prices.
  • The takeaway here is that home prices continued to appreciate at considerable rates during the quarter. The big question will be whether this continues as we move through the economic slowdown created by COVID-19.

 

 

DAYS ON MARKET
  • The average number of days it took to sell a home in the counties covered by this report dropped five days compared to the first quarter of 2019.
  • During the first quarter of the year, it took an average of 59 days to sell a home in the region, up by 2 days when compared to the fourth quarter of 2019.
  • Homes sold fastest in Davis and Salt Lake counties, and slowest in Summit and Wasatch counties. That said, it took 23 fewer days to sell a home in Summit County than it did a year ago.
  • Market demand appeared to remain quite robust during the first quarter of this year.

 

 

 

CONCLUSIONS

This speedometer reflects the state of the region’s real estate market using housing inventory, price gains, home sales, interest rates, and larger economic factors.

Given the current economic environment, I have decided to freeze the needle in place until we see
a restart in the economy. Once we have resumed “normal” economic activity, there will be a period of adjustment with regard to housing. Therefore, it is appropriate to wait until later in the year to offer my opinions about any quantitative impact the pandemic will have on the housing market.

 

 

ABOUT MATTHEW GARDNER

As Chief Economist for Windermere Real Estate, Matthew Gardner is responsible for analyzing and interpreting economic data and its impact on the real estate market on both a local and national level. Matthew has over 30 years of professional experience both in the U.S. and U.K.

In addition to his day-to-day responsibilities, Matthew sits on the Washington State Governors Council of Economic Advisors; chairs the Board of Trustees at the Washington Center for Real Estate Research at the University of Washington; and is an Advisory Board Member at the Runstad Center for Real Estate Studies at the University of Washington where he also lectures in real estate economics.


Posted on May 1, 2020 at 6:30 pm
Andrew Phillips | Posted in Market Trends | Tagged , , , , ,

Layton Local Restaurants to Support

Just because we’re now eating from home, that doesn’t mean you have to get food from there. Everyone has those days when they have no desire to cook, even when we’re facing Stay-At-Home orders across the state. Luckily many of our favorite restaurants are remaining open for carry-out or delivery service. Ordering delivery and carry-out service is safe, as long as you follow proper precautions. There is no evidence that suggests food or food packaging being associated with COVID-19. To take extra precautions, you can wipe down food packaging, put the food on your own plate, and wash your hands thoroughly before eating to minimize risk. Supporting these restaurants will also help these locally run and owned businesses remain open long after the COVID-19 pandemic has passed. Take a look at some of these local favorites:

Thai Rod Dee

Thai Rod Dee offers Asian comfort foods with a focus on Thai cuisine. Thai Rod Dee is open for takeout. Find more information about their options on their Facebook page or by giving them a call at 801-546-3735.

Holy Smoke BBQ & Grill

Holy Smoke serves up classic barbecue plates, as well as some classic Americana dishes. They are open for take out. Check out their menu on their website, then give them a call at 801-614-5011 to order.

Sill’s Cafe

Sill’s Cafe is a much loved mom-and-pop spot serving classic American breakfast and lunch plates. Sill’s is open for takeout orders. Take a look at their menu and keep up with the latest news on their Facebook page.

Weller’s Bistro

Wellers Bistro serves German-American brunch options to delight. They are open for curbside takeout. Find their menu and the most up-to-date information on their Facebook page.

Big Sai’s Hawaiian BBQ

Big Sai’s is a Hawaiian eatery serving some traditional Hawaiian classic barbecue. Check out their menu online, and give them a call to order.

Taste of India

Taste of India provides a genuine experience of authentic Indian cuisine. Check out their website for takeout and delivery options.

Cafe Sabor

Cafe Sabor is a regional franchise serving traditional Tex-Mex. They are open for curbside takeout and delivery options. You can find out more about their menu and ordering options on their website.

Roosters Brewing Co.

Roosters Brewing Co. serves traditional pub fare, with the addition of tacos, pizza, and pasta. They offer curbside takeout and delivery options. Check out their adjusted menu and order online on their website.

Osaka Sushi

Osaka is the go-to for izakaya and sushi in Layton. (and Toole, where their second location is). Osaka is open for takeout and delivery Take a look at their menu, then give them a call to place your order.

Burger Stop

Burger Stop is an old-fashioned 50’s style diner, serving American classics for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Burger Stop is available for takeout orders. Take a look at their menu online, then give them a call at 801-544-8090.   This is just a small taste of the locally owned and operated restaurants in the Layton area who are still open for business. Let’s all work together to be all in for our communities during these trying times. – At Windermere Utah, we are proud to keep you up-to-date on the latest news, events, and listings. Be sure to keep checking back in here at the blog, and don’t forget to follow us on social media.


Posted on April 8, 2020 at 10:45 pm
Andrew Phillips | Posted in Community, Layton | Tagged , , , ,

5 Small Things You Can Do to Improve Your Home Office

Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic, many of us now find ourselves working from home. While it’s hard to complain about the commute, working from home can be an adjustment. For example, you may find yourself doing tasks around the house and suddenly you’ve missed several important emails. If you feel like you need some help being more productive while working from home, here are five tips to improve your workflow.
Add Light
The best kind of light is natural light. Try setting up your workspace by a window. If that’s not possible, add a desk lamp or floor lamp to brighten your space. Not only will it help with visibility; it brightens your mood, which helps you to be more productive.
Declutter
Remove distracting clutter. Take everything off your desk that you don’t need. Store it elsewhere or use shelves on your wall to display it.
If you find yourself cleaning throughout the day, set aside time specifically for these tasks. If you’re still waking up at the same time you did when working at the office—which studies show is a great strategy when working from home—using your would-be commute time to tidy up helps avoid those periodic distractions.
Bring the Outdoors In
Bringing plants into your home is beneficial for productivity and health alike. Greenery is a natural mood booster and gives life to a room. Plants naturally purify the air, helping you breathe easy as you make your way through the workday. Try arranging both hanging and potted plants to improve the mood around your workspace.
Change Your Chair 
A chair that’s too tall, too short, or not comfortable is a fast track to back and shoulder problems that inhibit your workday and linger afterwards. Being in a stationary position for hours at a time requires the right kind of support to stay productive. Features to look for in a quality office chair include proper lumbar support, sturdy wheels, and an adjustable base that allows your shoulders to relax and your feet to rest flat on the floor.
Add Decor
It’s important to keep your home office professional and dedicated to your work. However, adding personal touches to the space will help you feel at ease. Position your work computer and phone front and center with any related work tools close by and handy. Adding pictures of loved ones, artwork, and inspirational quotes will help inspire you to generate ideas while working productively.
At Windermere Utah, we are proud to keep you up-to-date on the latest news, events, and listings. Be sure to keep checking back in here at the blog, and don’t forget to follow us on social media.
Originally Posted in Living by Sandy Dodge

Posted on April 8, 2020 at 5:17 pm
Andrew Phillips | Posted in Living |