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September 25th, 2014 at 10:00 am

Everyone likes to save money, especially if the savings can be deducted directly from your utility bill. When you move into a new home (or if you haven’t done so in your current home), address the home’s energy efficiency. A few small repairs or fixes could save you hundreds of dollars per year. Try some of the tips below and watch your utility bill shrink.

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  • Check your home for leaks. Check the attic, basement, crawlspace, windows and doors. Use caulk to seal any cracks and gaps.
  • Inspect your heating and cooling systems. Older systems can be a black hole sucking the money right out of your pockets. Upgrade your heating and cooling system and you could save hundreds of dollars.
  • Lower your water heater temperature to 120 degrees for best results. If your heater is set too high, it can eat up as much as 25 percent of your energy costs.
  • Replace incandescent light bulbs with compact fluorescent lights, which use 75 percent less energy and last longer.
  • Install dimmer switches on indoor lights and timers on motion sensors.
  • Upgrade your appliances with energy-efficient models.
  • Unplug electronic devices you’re not using.
  • Install a programmable thermostat to manage your heating and cooling system.
  • Skip the heated dry on your dishwasher cycle or air-dry your dishes.
  • Wash only full loads of laundry.
  • Switch your ceiling fan to turn in a counterclockwise direction in the summer; in the winter, run it at low speed, but clockwise.
  • Change and clean your furnace/AC’s air filters at least once a month.
  • Block the sun with drapes and shades during the day.
  • Plant trees around the sunny side of your home to provide shade.

 

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September 24th, 2014 at 10:00 am

Sunset

While there are many opinions about the state of the housing industry, one thing we know is that prices are on the rise in Southern California. According to DataQuick, spring 2014 saw housing in California jump to its highest level since 2008. Just a year ago, buyers looking to purchase in Southern California could get a good deal. Those levels are starting to even out, but if the trend continues and housing costs rise, buyers thinking about moving toCalifornia should look to make their move soon.
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September 23rd, 2014 at 9:01 am

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Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties is marking the first anniversary of its brand name launch with milestones in annual sales volume and completed transactions.

“With more than $12 billion in annual sales and over 14,000 transactions last year, we are now one of the top five brokerages in the nation,” David M. Cabot, CEO of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties, said in an anniversary message to 3,000 sales associates in more than 60 offices.

“It has been an amazing year, full of challenges, successes and changes. We are creating a completely new history and forging a unique and brand-new future. We are fortunate to have some of the most caring and talented people in this industry as part of our company.”

The Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties name was officially launched on Sept. 23, 2013. The Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices real estate network has more than 47,000 sales professionals in 1,400 offices throughout the country. The brand, among the few organizations entrusted to use the world-renowned Berkshire Hathaway name, brings to the real estate market a definitive mark of stability, strength, quality and innovation.

 

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September 22nd, 2014 at 12:00 pm

Expired-Listing

If your listing expired recently, you might be disappointed in the service you received from the listing agent. You might even be bombarded by other real estate agents contacting you to re-list your home. To figure out what your best move is, start by reviewing your listing agreement. Make sure the relationship with your agent is terminated and you are not contractually involved with the agent or his/her company.

Next, consider your options and ask yourself these questions:
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September 15th, 2014 at 5:12 pm

HomeServices of America, a Berkshire Hathaway affiliate, today announced the appointment of Steven John as president and CEO HomeServices Relocation, effective September 16, 2014. Mary Lee Blaylock, current president and CEO of HomeServices Relocation has been named senior vice president and general manager of Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices California Properties, effective October 1st.

John brings extensive executive management and relocation experience to HomeServices Relocation. Most recently, John served as senior vice president, client services for RELO Direct where he was responsible for all relationship management, service and accounting operations, vendor management and technology. Prior to joining RELO Direct, John was executive vice president of client services for Prudential Relocation and has worked for several Fortune 500 companies in various executive management roles involving finance, budgeting, operations and strategic planning.

As HomeServices Relocation’s president and CEO, John will be responsible for expanding the size, scope and footprint of HomeServices Relocation, providing operational and financial oversight and serving as chief liaison for new and existing clients.

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