4 Effective Steps to Keep your Home Safe from Fire

According to the National Fire Protection Association (NFPA), three out of five home fire deaths result from fires in properties without working smoke alarms — often due to missing alarm batteries or expired alarms.

Fortunately, a new generation of home safety technology — combined with tried-and-true safety practices — can help keep homes and families safer from the threat of home fires. First Alert offers the following tips and products to keep your family safe and healthy: Be safe, replace: If you can’t think of the last time you installed a smoke alarm, chances are, it’s time to replace your old ones. All smoke alarms — including battery and hard-wired models — are tested to function for 10 years. Installing new alarms ensures you are protected with the most advanced smoke-sensing technologies and latest safety features available. Conversely, by neglecting to replace alarms, you could be putting yourself, your family or tenants at serious risk.

Go for a 10: One of the greatest advancements in smoke alarm technology in recent years has been the development of new 10-year sealed battery smoke alarms, such as First Alert’s 10-Year Atom Smoke & Fire Alarm, which consumers have used to add fire protection to their homes. The Atom features an advanced smoke entry system designed to reduce the chances of false alarms, along with a loud, penetrating siren. In addition, 10-year alarms provide hassle-free protection so homeowners, property owners and renters no longer need to remember to replace costly batteries for the life of their alarms. They also eliminate the risk of ever having an alarm deactivated due to battery removal.

In many areas of the country, upgrading to 10-year sealed battery smoke alarms is also the law. Several states, including California, Florida, Georgia, Maryland, Louisiana, New York and Oregon, as well as the cities of Phoenix, Philadelphia, Indianapolis, Milwaukee and New York City, have passed laws requiring 10-year battery smoke alarms in residential buildings. Numerous other states and municipalities are considering similar legislation.

Double-up on safety: There are two main types of smoke alarms — photoelectric and ionization — which utilize different technologies to sense smoke and fire. Ionization smoke alarms are generally more responsive to fast-flaming fires, while photoelectric smoke alarms are generally more responsive to fires that begin with a long period of smoldering (called “smoldering fires”). Rather than relying solely on one, install both — or a dual-sensor alarm — to maximize your protection. The NFPA and other safety advocates recommend having dual-sensor alarms because they provide the best potential for early detection of all types of common household fires.

Featuring Smart Sensing Technology to better detect slow smoldering and fast-flaming fires, the First Alert 10-Year Alarm Life Dual Sensor Smoke & Fire Alarm provides the peace of mind of a dual-sensor alarm with the convenience of a 10-year sealed lithium battery. The alarm better detects real threats and helps to combat false or “nuisance” alarms that may lead to device deactivation — all while providing a decade of protection without the need for battery replacement. It also signals an end-of-life warning, notifying consumers when it needs replacement.

Cover your bases: Even if you have smoke alarms in your home, you and your family may not be sufficiently protected if you don’t have enough devices. To ensure the highest level of protection from smoke and carbon monoxide, the NFPA recommends installing smoke alarms at the top of each staircase and one in every bedroom or sleeping area. To put this into perspective, the average-sized home in America — a two-story, three-bedroom house — needs a minimum of five smoke alarms.

To learn more about 10-year alarms and alarm laws in your state, or tips for protecting your family from smoke, fire and carbon monoxide, visit the First Alert website at http://www.firstalert.com.

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Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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Fact or fiction? 5 Myths About Metal Roofing

Asphalt shingles may be the most popular roofing in the U.S. by volume, but metal roofing is gaining in popularity for its durability, longevity and low-maintenance benefits. Still, many people unfamiliar with the product have misconceptions about this quality roofing option.

Myth #1: Metal roofs are loud

One of the biggest misconceptions of metal roofs is that they are loud during a rainstorm and unbearable during severe weather, making sounds like repeatedly dropping objects on tin. In reality, residential metal roofs are fastened to the roof deck, not open rafters. Metal roofs can be applied over multiple layers of old asphalt shingles, so the sound insulation between the metal shingles and your ears could reduce the noise to potentially less than more traditional forms of roofing.

Myth #2: Metal roofs attract lightning

The Metal Construction Association has released several technical bulletins outlining research that shows metal roofs are no more likely to be struck by lightning than other types of roofing. The factors that do affect lightning strikes include topography of the surrounding area, the height and size of the building and the frequency and severity of storms in the area.

“Research shows that the material used in roof construction does not influence the risk of a lightning strike,” says Karl Hielscher, MCA’s executive director, in a press release. “In fact, the presence of a metal roof really shouldn’t statistically increase or decrease the chances of a lightning strike. There are many other factors that influence the actual chance of a lightning strike.”

Myth #3: Metal roofs are ugly

Metal roofs have traditionally been associated with industrial buildings or outbuildings like sheds and barns. But as metal roofing’s popularity has grown, so has the technology to make it an excellent choice for residential structures. Manufacturers have gone from standing seam metal roofs to creating metal shingles in a variety of colors that would make an attractive covering for any home. Some metal shingles are stamped and shaped to look like other types of roofing, like wood shake, stone slate and clay tile, such as the MetalWorks steel shingle produced by major roofing manufacturer TAMKO Building Products.

Myth #4: Metal roofs can’t handle hail

Metal roofs are actually among the most resilient roofing options when it comes to hail. Many metal shingles are rated Class 4 for Impact Resistance by the UL testing group. The Metal Roofing Alliance (MRA) reported that studies conducted by the Insurance Institute for Business & Home Safety (IBHS) acknowledged that all roof types can sustain some cosmetic damage depending on hailstorm severity, but “metal roofing performed best and was much less likely to puncture as compared to asphalt, withstanding even golf ball-sized hail stones without compromising performance.”

Metal roofs also stand up well to other types of extreme weather. Metal shingles are often rated to withstand winds of over 100 miles per hour, and are rated for fire resistance.

Myth #5: Metal roofs aren’t energy efficient

Because metal in other uses is a good conductor of heat and cold, some homeowners are concerned a metal roof will cause their homes to be colder during winter and hotter in the summer. Besides the comfort factor, the increased utility costs associated with that misconception cause major concern. The reality is, according to the MRA, metal roofing boasts some of the best energy efficiency among roofing options. State Farm Insurance Company reported that metal roofs reflect solar radiant heat, which can reduce cooling costs by 10-15 percent.

“Unlike asphalt shingles, the secret to metal roofing’s energy efficiency is its highly-reflective surface, regardless of color,” said Rick Taylor, a longtime roofing contractor now working as TAMKO’s field sales training manager. “This means, in our case, all of the MetalWorks colors are ENERGY STAR-certified and are rated by the Cool Roof Rating Council — even the darkest color options.”

The Metal Roofing Alliance reports that metal roofs also provide excellent insulation in the winter, and estimates that choosing metal could save up to 40% in energy costs for a home during the year. The Metal Construction Association also said metal roofs are considered a product of choice for snowy areas because of their superior response and tolerance to that environment.

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Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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Affordable Home Improvement – Useful Tips

Home improvement tips

The holy grail of home improvement is a project that makes a big difference to the appearance or value of the home without breaking the bank. The key is to focus on low-cost, quality items that will give the most bang for your buck. Here are five to consider:

New bathroom countertop

Bathroom remodels still provide some of the best return on investment for home improvement projects, but can also be some of the most expensive. If you can’t afford a full bathroom overhaul, opt for one high-impact update. Replace that outdated laminate vanity countertop with a stone version to bring an immediate touch of class to the bathroom. This update can be completed quickly and, for homeowners with a little plumbing knowledge, could even be a DIY project.

Refinish kitchen cabinets

According to Home Advisor, replacing kitchen cabinets in a typical 10-by-10 kitchen costs an average $4,000-$13,000. For homeowners not able to make that type of investment, refinishing existing cabinets can provide a dramatic upgrade at a fraction of the cost. Homeowners can start by removing all cabinet doors and hardware, keeping all hardware together in a bag in case it’s needed later. Cabinets with a glossy finish should be sanded, either with blocks or a chemical product, then either stained (consider an espresso finish for a modern look) or painted. Adding new, brushed metal fixtures completes the look.

Affordable roof update

For the biggest ROI on an improvement, look outside. Remodeling Magazine’s 2019 Cost vs. Value Report revealed nine of the top 10 high-return remodeling projects were exterior replacement projects. Replacing a roof can sound overwhelming, but with some smart shopping can provide a major curb appeal boost on a budget.

A common misconception is that expensive products equal better products. While that can certainly be true, there are lots of examples where the most expensive option is not the best choice for every consumer. This is certainly true in large home improvement projects, where the costs can run high and the consequences for purchasing subpar materials can be serious. But, homeowners can save money while protecting their investments by finding the low-cost leader in the product category: a product that provides the best quality for the price point.

“In many product segments there is a low-cost leader — a product or brand comparable in quality to more expensive brands, but offered at a lower cost to provide the best value per dollar,” says Rick Taylor, a longtime roofing contractor now working as a trainer for TAMKO Building Products, manufacturer of the low-cost leader Heritage shingle. “Home improvement isn’t the place to cut corners, but, if you buy smart, you can save money even on big exterior projects.”

Home Improvement Tips

New door and porch decor

A new entryway can add major curb appeal to any home, but can also come with a big price tag, especially if the front porch area is aesthetically weak and would require construction to build it out. To achieve a similar result at a fraction of the cost, replace the front door with a new, energy-efficient option with a strong design element. You may even consider painting it a bold color. Next, add a ready-made pergola around the entryway, or large concrete or sandstone pillars on either side of the door, available at most garden stores. Adding large, decorative plants to the top of the pillars, or around the doorway, can help define a dramatic entryway without ever pulling out a hammer.

Paint

Adding a fresh coat of paint is one of the most affordable ways to update many portions of the home. While time-consuming, the transformative properties of paint on a staircase, exterior shutters, interior walls or even a floor are legendary. Paint is another great opportunity to utilize the consumer trick of looking for the low-cost leader in the product category. Stay away from the cheapest paint as it may chip or require many coats to cover, and in the end, cost you even more money to fix. But, also avoid the highest-end paints, as you may be paying more for the brand name than the actual product. Look for the best quality option at the most affordable price point. (BPT)

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Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

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Amazing Ideas to Improve your Outdoor Living Space

If you are looking for amazing ideas to improve your outdoor living space and create an inviting oasis for everyone in the family to get outside and have fun together?

Here are some projects to consider, and the prep work involved for a modern and relaxing outdoor living space.

1) Check your deck

Does your current deck need repair? Check for loose balusters or railing or other issues needing attention. If you want to resurface your deck or build a new deck, measure the area and research how much decking you’ll need. Fortunately, there are free online deck plans and design tools available, for example, on your favorite home improvement center’s website or at treatedwood.com. Many include cost calculators to help determine your expenses. Check with your local municipality for building codes and a building permit before beginning construction.

When choosing materials to create the deck of your dreams, not just any wood will do. Wood is now available that is treated with more environmentally advanced preservatives, with stabilizers that can weather the elements while still retaining the beauty of real wood. Ecolife pressure-treated wood is ideal for decking, deck framing, railing, joists, and beams. Its advanced wood stabilizing preservative system makes wood look better longer and repels water for up to two years.

For projects that contact or are within 6 inches of the ground, such as support posts, stair stringers, and ledger boards, a higher retention level of preservatives is required to fight fungal decay and termite attack at ground level. Ecolife and ground contact wood are treated to levels needed to protect against fungal decay and termite attack.

2) Enhance your garden

To increase your yard’s beauty while encouraging plant and flower growth, make simple wooden structures for your garden that can be completed in a weekend. The easiest project is a trellis, which can be any size latticework designed for climbing plants. Similarly, an arbor combines two trellises with an overhead arch to create a passage or gateway. An arbor beautifully embellishes any path or walkway with flowering plants growing up and over it.

A pergola takes that idea one step further, creating a scaffolding of overhead wooden beams for your yard, patio or deck that can be used for installing a ceiling fan, hanging plants or flowers, or a sun shade.

The gazebo resembles a mini “house,” usually raised from the ground, that can be screened in if desired. Gazebos are lovely little retreats to enjoy the outdoors while still feeling the comfort of seating and other furniture, along with a roof for keeping out the elements.

3) Raised gardens

For the green thumb in the family, raised planter beds to decrease the back-breaking work of planting and weeding, while keeping neighborhood critters out. Attach chicken wire or other screening to discourage smaller animals from munching on your garden.

4) Outdoor furnishings

Love to grill and eat outdoors? Why not build your own benches or picnic table? They provide a wonderfully rustic look as well as being sturdy. You can add removable cushions for comfort.

5) Playtime

Nothing could be more fun for kids than watching or helping to build a playset, sandbox, or treehouse. If kids help, educate them about safety rules that you follow, such as wearing gloves, goggles, and a mask while working with wood.

6) Add privacy and beauty

A well-designed stained or painted fence can enhance the look of your outdoor living space while adding privacy and keeping neighborhood animals out. A variety of fence styles are available to serve many purposes. From containing pets to providing safety for your children, fences can help block wind and noise, enclose HVAC and trash bin areas and add curb appeal. All you need are posts, pickets, and backer rails or fence panels to complete your project.

If you’re new to building, start with smaller projects like a trellis or sandbox. Once you’re more confident or have the experience, consider the larger, more complex projects you’re dreaming about. Engage the family in brainstorming ideas to make your yard and garden a great place to hang out together. For more information, visit treatedwood.com. – (BPT)

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Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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3 Small Things Plus Bonus Tip That You Can Do to Add Value to Your Home

When it comes to your home, you want updates that make your property more comfortable, beautiful and of course, add value to your home. Whether you have a big budget or more elbow grease than cash to invest, there are numerous things you can do to improve your home’s worth immediately.

Here are three small things you can do to boost your home’s value, plus one big one that will really make an impact.

Small change #1 – Fresh paint

Paint is one of the most affordable ways to bring dramatic change to a room. Adding a fresh hue will instantly update the entire feeling of a space while also making it look more stylish and clean. Neutrals — like tan, gray or greige (gray and beige) — are always a good choice but don’t fear a bolder color. Not sure? Consider painting neutrals on three walls and using the fourth as a focal wall that features a bolder color choice.

For walls, start by patching and sanding any holes so you get a smooth finish. Use painter’s tape to protect molding and ceilings and help you get a clean line when finished. Drop cloths will protect flooring and furniture. Taking time to properly prep helps ensure you get professional-level results that look great and last a long time.

Small change #2 – Bathroom updates

You don’t need to invest in a complete remodel to get an updated bathroom. A few simple enhancements can make a big difference without breaking the bank. Start by looking at the walls. Remove old wallpaper and repair any damage before adding paint. Then, look at the light fixtures and consider new options. A few quick swaps can add a modern aesthetic and optimum light for bathroom tasks.

The style in a bathroom is often defined by the accessories, so turning attention in that direction can help rejuvenate the space as well. Replace hardware on vanities and other extras like towel bars. Popular materials include chrome and brushed metals, but choose whatever fits with the rest of the room. Finish the look with a new shower curtain and towels to elevate the space.

Small change #3 – Entryway enhancements

Is the place where you welcome guests looking a little dingy? Your entryway is where your home makes a first impression, including buyers when it comes time to sell. Fortunately, it’s easy to update an entryway so it stands out positively and enhances your home’s value.

Focus on the door by giving it a new coat of paint. Then replace the hardware with a handsome, high-quality option. You can add a door-knocker or wreath to give it style if you’d like. Then move to the surrounding spaces. Get rid of clutter to open up space, and then add in a few key pieces of decor. For example, a plant or welcoming sign makes a house feel like a home.

One BIG change – Add a deck

3 small things that you can do to add value to your home

When you want to make a big investment in your home to improve its appeal and value, adding a high-quality deck may carry a bigger price tag, but it also offers some of the best return on investment for homeowners. Remodeling Magazine’s 2019 Cost vs. Value Report listed a composite deck addition as one of the highest performing projects when it comes to the rate of year-over-year ROI.

“With the outdoor living trend thriving, people want deck spaces that are true extensions of the home,” said Shara Gamble, director of sales and marketing for high-end composite deck manufacturer Envision Building Products. “Luxury composite decking is growing in popularity due to its exceptionally beautiful appearance and low-maintenance benefits.”

Gamble added that Envision boards have attracted additional attention due to the brand’s exclusive compression molding technology, which is unlike other boards on the market and uses tremendous heat and pressure to form the boards with deep wood-like grain that never repeats on a single board. Learn more at envisiondecking.com.


orlando home inspection acf home inspection logoYour Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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Your Life Will Be Better When Your Environment Is Better

Obviously, the way you feel about your home greatly affects the way you feel whenever you are in it. Predominantly your life is spent either at work or at home. You can make your life more pleasurable by putting your attention to creating a space that is reflective of your approach to life. Read on for some proven advice for transforming your house into a haven.

Spot any noticeable eyesores

First of all, you will want to look around your home and spot any noticeable eyesores, such as water stains in the ceiling or a cracked window. If you repair the things that are wrong, this can make your at-home experience even better. If you pick out furniture that is comfortable and make navigating your home easier it will change your perception of your home.

When you feel like you have no more room to move around in your home, rearranging your belongings may not solve the problem. If you are suffering from a lack of space, the cure is a home expansion. Just moving a wall by a few small inches can add up to the extra space you need. You get psychological benefits from not being surrounded by stuff on all sides.

Add recreational areas to your home.

Your home’s atmosphere can be enhanced by a pool or spa, but small additions such as an indoor gym or basketball hoop can be lots of fun too. In addition, you also improve your home’s value!

Many people do not know how important lighting is. If a room has good lighting, it will illuminate things that you did not notice before. You will also be able to wind down more easily in the space. Regardless of whether or not you have been involved in many home improvement projects, putting in new fixtures should not cause you any trouble. Upgrading the lighting in your home is a simple cosmetic fix, which can make a big impact.

Experiment with growing things by converting your outdoor space into a beautiful and colorful garden retreat. A professional landscaper can help you if gardening is not your cup of tea. No matter what, you will enjoy your garden. Plants provide numerous benefits, such as improving air quality and imparting fragrance. Some of them are even edible.

Do not forget to take into account the outside areas of your home. You can add value and beauty to your house by brightening up the appearance with fresh paint, new windows, or updating the roof. Small improvements will not only increase the value of your home but will make it seem more inviting and welcoming to you and your guests.

It is important to love your home, especially since you spend the majority of your time there. Home improvements not only increase the value of your home, but they also do wonders for your mood.

orlando home inspection acf home inspection logoYour Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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The Homeowner’s Guide to Reading Your Roof – What’s Normal and What’s Not?

How to tell when your roof needs repair?

Vintage shingles in Weathered Wood - homeowner's guide to reading your roof

Four out of five homes in the U.S. have asphalt shingles on their roof. And it’s easy to see why. The wide variety of available colors and styles, combined with durability and affordability, has made asphalt shingles the leading choice for residential roofing in the country.

But, like all exterior building products, asphalt shingles start to age as soon as they are exposed to nature. Buildings experience aging factors differently, so it’s difficult to predict how long shingles will last. With storm chasers and insurance adjusters claiming roof damage or defective shingles after major weather events, it’s important for homeowners to arm themselves with information about what type of roof aging is normal, and most importantly, what type is not.

What is normal?

It’s natural for a roof to age, and the process begins as soon as shingles are exposed to nature. The sun can raise rooftop temperatures as high as 50-70 degrees above the ambient air temperature. Ultraviolet radiation from the sun and heat have been shown to accelerate roof aging, as have pollution, hail, snow, ice, falling tree limbs and people walking on a roof.

Here are a few common signs of aging shingles:

Curling is a common phenomenon in some shingles and is not considered a defect. It is natural for asphalt to age and shrink with time, which may result in a slight curling of the shingle edge.

Minor cracks may also appear on the shingles as they age, but industry experts say it is a normal weathering characteristic and not cause for alarm, as long as the cracks do not penetrate through the shingle and the roof is still performing the intended purpose of shedding water.

“Minor cracks may not be noticeable from the ground, but people often spot them while hanging their Christmas lights,” said roofing industry expert Rick “the Roofer” Taylor, a longtime roofing contractor now working as a traveling trainer for shingle manufacturer TAMKO Building Products. “The intense heat from the sun can deplete some of the protective asphalt oils, and that can cause minor cracks.”

Dark brown or black streaks down the roof are common in particularly moist or humid areas of the country, and are the result of algae growth on the shingles. While not particularly attractive, these stains should not affect the shingles’ ability to shed water.

Some granule loss on the shingles is to be expected, especially if a roof has been recently repaired or replaced, since extra granules are a part of the shingle manufacturing process. Loose granules are usually noticed collecting in roof gutters after the shingles are installed. This type of granule shedding is common and not a cause for concern.

What is cause for concern?

While minor curling, surface cracking, closed blisters, algae stains and some granule loss can all be signs of normal roof aging, some more serious roof wear and aging could be indicative of a potential problem, and should be examined and monitored.

These roof issues may need attention:

Blisters, or small circular raised areas, are often the direct result of under-ventilated attics or excessive use of plastic cement — both of which are installation errors. If the blisters are closed and are not affecting the shingles’ performance, they are not a cause for concern. But if the blisters are open, exposing the asphalt, the roof is vulnerable to water penetration and requires immediate attention.

Buckling, a distortion of the shingles, can be a possible sign of inadequate roof ventilation, issues with the roof deck or other installation errors and may require attention.

Deep cracks that penetrate through the fiberglass mat should be investigated, as they may compromise the roof’s ability to shed water and make it susceptible to leaks.

Excessive granule loss that exposes the shingles’ asphalt layer is a reason for concern and requires immediate attention.

Armed with this basic information, homeowners should be able to distinguish between natural processes that are no cause for alarm and issues that do require attention and repair. Visit www.tamko.com for more information about roofing repair and replacement. – (BPT)

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A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

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How to Improve Your Credit Score Before Applying for a Mortgage

How to improve your credit score before applying for a mortgage

In today’s world, lenders use many different types of credit scoring models. There are virtually hundreds of different models out there for lenders to choose from.

Many lenders continue to use conventional models that don’t provide a score for millions of consumers. That often puts younger borrowers such as millennials at a disadvantage.

Millennials are less likely to have long credit histories, and they may only have one or two credit accounts. Because young adults today carry more student loan debt, they are understandably reluctant to assume more debt. While that’s a prudent approach on the part of millennials, it can cause their score to be lower than those with deeper credit histories.

Many lenders are adopting new tools that address this problem. One example is VantageScore 4.0, which scores approximately 40 million more consumers than other conventional models.

Unfortunately, mortgage lenders are not able to use this model and rely on more conventional credit scoring models.

Regardless of the model, there are some common things you as a consumer can do to make it easier to get your next loan.

1. Assess your report

Get a copy of your report from the three major credit reporting companies (Equifax, Experian, and TransUnion) at www.annualcreditreport.com and make sure the information is accurate. Evaluate your issues. Do you have a short credit history? You may need time to build it up. Is your file “thin” (fewer than four credit accounts)? Thicken it up (See No. 2). Are you using too much of your available credit? Pay down what you can on existing accounts to keep your credit utilization at 30 percent or less. Have you missed payments? Use calendar reminders or other tech solutions to help you stay on time. Getting in the habit of pulling your credit report one every 12 months is a good credit management habit.

2. Keep and use longstanding accounts

Don’t cancel an older account in an attempt to stop yourself from overspending, as the length of your credit history matters in traditional scoring methods. Use your accounts with care, and don’t charge more than you can afford. If you haven’t used an account in a long time, make a small purchase or two to keep the account active.

3. Use technology to your advantage

Many companies allow you to set up automatic payments of minimum amounts to help you avoid late fees, or will send email or text reminders when a bill is coming due. As long as you have the income to support automatic payments (and/or ready reserve at your bank or credit union just in case), go ahead and sign up. Just make sure to keep a record of the dates and amounts of future payments to avoid unpleasant surprises.

4. Test your credit score know-how

Visit www.CreditScoreQuiz.org, created by VantageScore Solutions along with its partner, Consumer Federation of America, to see what you know and learn ways to improve your credit score.

No matter your situation, you can improve your own credit outlook by taking stock and following these tips to boost your score.

Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

We Want To Help Give You Confidence In Moving Forward On Your Home Buying Decisions!

Moving Made Simple: 5 Tips and Tricks to Save Time and Stress

Moving-Made-Simple-5-Tips-and-Tricks-to-Save-Time-and-Stress

Moving is an exciting time as you look forward to settling into your new home sweet home. However, it’s also a stressful time as you try to move your belongings from one place to another, as well as set up all the services you need, such as mail, cable, and internet.

Before you get stressed, take a deep breath and know that in a few simple steps, you can save time while making your move easier. Here are some top tips and tricks to take the stress out of moving so you can look forward to settling into your new home:

Sort and label boxes wisely:

Not only will being organized help you pack faster, but it will also streamline the unpacking process at your new place. Label boxes by item type and room. For example, one box might be labeled “kitchen: pots and pans” while another might be labeled “master bedroom: shoes.” You might also consider using colored markers for each room type or adding a shape, such as a star or a triangle, for easy visual sorting. Don’t forget a box for donations to a charity with items you no longer use.

Move cable and internet within minutes:

If you have Xfinity, you can transfer your services digitally in about a minute through Xfinity.com. Simply log in, add the move date and new address, and schedule an installation. Having your xFi WiFi service up and running quickly means the whole family can get back online in your new home and you can shop for all those last-minute things (like new doormats) that you forgot about. If you already have X1 video service, simply say “Move with Xfinity” into your voice remote to get started.

Keep clothes hanging:

It’s a pain to have to unhang clothes, fold and then rehang on hangers when you unpack. Instead, when clothes are still in your closet, group by four or five and use a garbage bag to protect and hold them together. Open the plastic bag and insert clothes from the bottom up, then tie the top around the hangers. Voila! Grouped, protected and ready to move.

Use technology to your advantage:

Your smartphone is a great tool for keeping up with move to-do’s since you always have it with you. Utilize text reminders from services related to your move. For example, Xfinity sends updates on your move right to your phone through SMS, so you know what the next steps are and you don’t have to stop what you are doing and call. Also, if you want to keep your children entertained while you’re unpacking, download the Xfinity Stream app to your smartphone or tablet until the family’s TV room is up and running.

Keep important documents with you:

Whether you’re moving by yourself or hiring movers, there are plenty of boxes that need to make it from point A to point B. A few things should never be in those boxes, mostly because they aren’t worth the risk of getting lost or damaged. These include personal documents such as birth certificates, bank records, and wills. These should be kept with you in a safe spot at all times.

Moving can be hectic, but these five tips will help limit the chaos and simmer the stress so you can worry less and be excited more. Remember, enjoy the journey as much as the destination.

Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

We Want To Help Give You Confidence In Moving Forward On Your Home Buying Decisions!

Apopka FL Home Inspector Property Inspections Real Estate Services Launched

Orlando, Florida home inspections company ACF Home Inspections announced that its services are now available for home buyers, sellers and real estate agents in Orange, Seminole, Osceola, Lake, Polk, Sumter, Volusia and Brevard Counties.

orlando home inspection acf home inspection logo

Orlando, United States – May 17, 2019 /PressCable/ —

ACF Home Inspections, a company based in Orlando, Florida, announced that its professional home inspection services are now available for clients in Apopka, Maitland, Winter Park, Kissimmee and the rest of Orange, Seminole, Osceola, Lake, Polk, Sumter, Volusia and Brevard Counties. The company helps property buyers, sellers, and real estate agent by offering a thorough professional assessment of any property.

More information can be found at https://www.acfhomeinspections.com.

Investing in a professional home inspection is essential for both buyers and sellers. Those considering buying a property can promptly identify potentially major structural and safety issues, thus avoiding significant financial expenses, while sellers can identify and repair any potential problems to increase the market value of their property During its more than 14 years in business, ACF Home Inspections has helped more than 6,700 home buyers make the right decision by offering expert property assessment services and helping them avoid unexpected post-closure expenses.

The company has also worked with property sellers and real estate agents, offering comprehensive inspections including a thorough assessment of structural, electric, plumbing, AC and other systems, as well as mold and lead testing.

The company’s safety-first approach means that its inspectors pay particular attention to any potentially immediate dangers, thus protecting its clients from buying a “money pit.”

A spokesperson for the agency said: “As a family-owned business, we pride ourselves on supporting homeowners and families who need an honest, competent and dependable property inspector. We understand the importance of safety when it comes to children and family. Therefore, we give special attention to deficiencies in systems and components of the home that represent an immediate danger. And we are independent and impartial; we work for you – our client – and not for an agent or other interests.”

A typical inspection usually takes between three to four hours, to allow the inspector to assess all vital areas of a property thoroughly. Saturday and Sunday appointments are also available.

Interested parties can find more information by visiting the above mentioned website or at https://goo.gl/maps/ek4qUKi5PgXYqJZs8

Contact Info:
Name: Luis and Wanda Fuigeroa
Organization: A.C.F. Home Inspections Inc.
Address: 509 S Chickasaw Trail #118, Orlando, FL 32825, Orlando, Florida 32825, United States
Phone: +1-407-218-6522
Website: https://www.acfhomeinspections.com

Source: PressCable

Release ID: 508537

Your Premier Orlando Home Inspection Company | Let this experienced home inspector help keep you from buying The Money Pit. We’ll alert you to any and all health or safety issues and maintenance needs of the home you’re looking to buy.

A.C.F. Home Inspections will be your home buying or selling advocate! We are committed to providing you with outstanding service. We’re highly experienced and extremely thorough. If you’re looking to buy or sell in the Orlando area, we can help!

Owned and operated by home inspector and mold inspection specialist, Luis Figueroa. Luis prides himself in being committed to following high standards and providing professional service to all of our customers.

Call (407) 218-6522 Today or Click To Schedule Online 24/7 Right From Our Website.

We Want To Help Give You Confidence In Moving Forward On Your Home Buying Decisions!