With summer comes backyard barbecues, friend hangouts and enjoying the warm weather after a long time inside. Sure, you can hire a landscaping designer to turn your yard into an oasis, but it’s easier than you think to do it on your own with these helpful backyard oasis ideas.
Transform your backyard into a place that you go to unwind and relax after a long day at work with these 16 backyard oasis ideas.
1. Add a hammock for lounging
What’s the best part of a vacation? It’s often getting to lay down on a hammock and read your latest book or take a nap during your time off. Well, bring this to your backyard to enjoy every day.
You can tie up the hammock to trees or get a free-standing one. Make sure you place it in the shade for a cooler nap and place a mosquito candle nearby.
2. Build a sitting area around a fire pit
Summer is synonymous with backyard fires, cool evenings and, of course, s’mores. Create a nice sitting area with a few outdoor chairs and side tables. Then place a fire pit in the middle — an in-ground fire pit or a free-standing wood one. You can also build one yourself.
Since you’ll get a lot of use out of a fire pit, this backyard oasis idea will become a fixture for your outdoor experience. Just make sure you stock up on marshmallows!
3. Take a dip in a stock tank pool
Stock tank pools have become a popular choice for those without the option of having an in-ground pool. In fact, stock tanks are one of the most popular backyard oasis ideas. You can even build a small deck around them if you need a few steps to reach the top.
During your hot days of summer, you’ll be glad you have this opportunity to cool off.
4. Setup for a backyard movie night
Popcorn, lots of picnic blankets and friends — one favorite backyard oasis idea is watching a movie in the backyard. Movie nights like this are what summers are perfect for.
You can use a white sheet or inflatable screen plus a small projector to show your favorite summer flick. The best part is that you can take it down once you’re done or leave it up for a weekly movie showing with your family.
5. Fire up an outdoor kitchen
Add a grill and a pizza oven to your outdoor kitchen set up for zero clean-up inside and all of the fun outside. You can have one built or you can create a setup on your own with a few carts. A nice outdoor kitchen will encourage you to spend more time outside too and having dinner while enjoying your backyard oasis.
6. String up bistro lights to create ambiance
Sure, large motion lights could provide light on your backyard as it gets dark. But bistro lights do that plus add to the ambiance. Bistro lights are easy to set up — you can add them to a trellis, use poles across your yard to hang them or attach them to your house.
For extra savings, pick up a string of lights that’s solar-powered and goes on instantly at dusk. Or add a smart switch so you can control them from your phone.
7. Swing from your favorite tree
If you have a large oak tree providing shade in your backyard, it is the perfect fit for a backyard swing. First, confirm that the tree is healthy enough for a swing with your arborist. Then you can add a swing, hammock chair or a weaved chair to the tallest branch and spend the afternoon enjoying it. This is a backyard oasis idea you’ll relish time and time again.
8. Get a hot tub
Hot tubs have a reputation for being expensive and highly cumbersome to set up. But like everything else on the market, more options come with time. While you can still get the classic hot tub set up, you can also get a blow-up (yes, you heard it right) hot tub that looks just as fancy.
For example, there are brands that offer portable hot tubs that are easy to carry and set up. They are also more affordable if you don’t want to commit to a more significant purchase.
9. Drink up at a tiki bar
If you host a lot of get-togethers with your friends, adding a backyard bar might make things a lot more seamless. Your friends can play bartender during the party without getting things dirty inside your house.
While the most popular theme for outdoor bars is tiki, you can definitely pick whatever style you choose. Have a backyard housewarming and tell your friends to stock the bar once you finish it.
10. Create a family-friendly game area
Add games that the whole family can play instead to your list of backyard oasis ideas. Corn hole, a giant chess board or bocce are great additions to a family-friendly game area in your backyard. You can have a dedicated space for all the games or just take them out when needed.
11. Brighten up your concrete flooring
A concrete patio can quickly become a little drab. Luckily, these days there are many options to brighten up your concrete flooring. With your landlord’s permission, you can add tile to bring some color into the space. If that’s not in your budget, you can stencil the floor instead.
Creating a faux stencil pattern on the concrete brings a little more interest to the space. Depending on how complex your design is, this is an easy, weekend budget-friendly project. Here’s some inspiration.
12. Get an eye-catching fountain
With so many new meditation apps on the market, it’s hard to find an excuse to not take 10 minutes to yourself and take a moment to tune out the outside. While the app helps, creating a space for meditating outside will help you stick to this habit and enjoy it a little more.
Add an eye-catching fountain to your garden to create the oasis you are looking for. From large to small fountains, stores sell some that you can easily set up on your own. It will help you focus on your practice and create a relaxing vibe.
13. Grow a lush vegetable garden
One of the best backyard oasis ideas will help you cultivate a green thumb. Many think that a garden should only include shrubs and flowers. However, making your landscape into an edible garden can also look beautiful. Studies have shown that gardening is good for your mental health.
Add a few garden beds where the sun shines the most and surround it with a pollinator flower garden. Add a trellis or an arch for berries to climb and adorn the space. You won’t want to leave this spot as you’ll spend time tending to the garden and enjoying the fruits of your labor.
14. Bring in a gazebo or awning
Having a little shade in the middle of summer can make all the difference in how often you’re out in your backyard oasis. You can create some shade and have a special reading nook just for you. You can add a retractable awning to the side of your home for convenience during group parties.
Or place a little gazebo far into your backyard oasis with some flower landscaping to add a little magic to the space. Gazebos come in all different sizes and colors, so you can find one that fits your style.
15. Gather your friends together around at a dining table
If you have space, adding a long dining table, paired with colorful pillows and beautiful flower arrangements, can genuinely change the vibe of your backyard oasis.
Prepare a feast for your friends and invite them to lounge in your home. Exchange stories as you reach for food and add a little music via a Bluetooth speaker — all under some bistro lights.
16. Plant an herb wall for cooking
There’s nothing better than fresh herbs available for your meals at all times. An herb wall can help you add visual interest to a blank wall in your backyard and give you that freshness that your food needs. Think fresh basil, thyme, rosemary and parsley — some of the easiest herbs to grow in your backyard oasis.
All you need is a vertical planter, soil and the herbs of your choice. If you’d like to make it yourself, here’s a quick DIY for a wood one.
Create an oasis in your backyard
No matter the size of your backyard, it has the potential to create a space for relaxation and sharing with your family. You can add a few of these backyard oasis ideas on your own while staying true to your budget. Adding a little magic to your yard is easier than you think.
Muriel Vega is an Atlanta-based journalist who writes about technology and its intersection with arts and culture. She’s worked on content for startups like Mailchimp, Patreon, Punchlist, Skillshare, Rent. and others. Muriel has also contributed to The Washington Post, Eater, DWELL, Outside Magazine, Atlanta Magazine, AIGA Eye on Design, Bitter Southerner and more.
Mortgage rates have risen to their highest levels in more than 20 years, making it harder to afford a home. And yet, out of necessity or desire, hundreds of thousands of people buy homes every month.
With the 30-year fixed rate topping 7%, NerdWallet asked real estate agents and mortgage loan officers for advice on how home buyers can stretch their homebuying dollars in this time of high interest rates. Here are nine tactics that they suggested.
1. Ask the seller to reduce the mortgage rate
Temporary mortgage rate buydowns have become commonplace since rates surged in early 2022. With a temporary rate buydown, the seller pays a portion of the buyer’s interest payments upfront. This reduces the house payments for the first one, two or three years of ownership.
“This is a common strategy for new-home builders, but it can also be used in the purchase of resale homes,” said John Bianchi, executive vice president for loanDepot. (All sources in this story commented via email.) “Negotiating a temporary buydown with the seller can help soften the blow of high interest rates, reducing your monthly payment for one to three years.”
In one typical setup, the seller’s payment effectively cuts the buyer’s interest rate by 2 percentage points in the first year, and by 1 percentage point in the second year. After that, the buyer pays the full interest rate. This is known as a 2-1 buydown.
Another option is to reduce the mortgage rate permanently, using discount points. One discount point equals 1% of the loan amount; each point typically reduces the interest rate by around 0.25 percentage point.
“Home buyers have an opportunity to get a seller to pay for these methods to lower their interest rate,” said Chuck Vander Stelt, a real estate agent in Valparaiso, Indiana. “Some home buyers should seriously consider offering a more generous price to the seller in exchange for a large closing cost concession and then use those funds to buy down the interest rate as much as possible.”
2. Use part of your down payment to pay down debt
When you apply for a mortgage, the lender considers your total debt payments for the house, car, student loans and credit cards. Sometimes it makes sense to divert some of your intended down payment money to cut the higher-rate debt first, said David Kuiper, vice president and senior mortgage banker for Dart Bank in western Michigan.
“While the mortgage payment will be slightly higher, the total debt/payments is lower, making the proposed purchase more affordable,” Kuiper said.
3. Use home buyer assistance programs
State and local governments sponsor an abundance of programs to make homes affordable for home buyers, especially first-timers. Some programs offer down payment assistance and help with closing costs. Others offer favorable interest rates or tax credits.
Details differ from state to state. Some programs are targeted to certain counties, cities or neighborhoods. Others are intended for specific groups of people, such as teachers, first responders or renters who live in public housing. Some programs have income limits.
4. Ask the seller to finance the purchase
You can give the seller an IOU for part of the home’s value and make monthly payments directly to the seller at an interest rate that’s lower than you could get from a bank. This arrangement is called “seller financing” and has its roots in the early 1980s, when mortgage rates zoomed as high as 18%.
You might wonder why a seller would agree to such a deal. “They will often do this in order to get the price they want,” said Janie Coffey, who leads the Coffey Team with eXp Realty in St. Augustine, Florida. The seller gets full price while you get a break on the interest rate.
Seller financing usually has an end date: Within three, five or 10 years, the buyer must get a mortgage from a lender to pay off the amount owed to the seller. Coffey explained that the type of seller open to this arrangement often has paid off the mortgage “and is OK to wait for their big payoff.”
Seller financing is complex. Use an experienced real estate attorney to draw up the contract.
5. Don’t wait for a rate you like better
“If the right house comes along and the payment is affordable (even if you don’t like the interest rate), you should buy the house,” Kuiper said.
You often hear that you should buy now and refinance someday, after interest rates fall. That’s not Kuiper’s point. His point was this: If mortgage rates fall, more buyers will rush into the market. They’ll make competitive offers and drive home prices higher, “essentially wiping out any advantage of the lower interest rate.”
6. Don’t get distracted by things you don’t need
Some sellers want flexibility about the closing date, would prefer the buyer to make repairs, and are scared of accepting an offer from a buyer who ends up failing to qualify for the mortgage.
Vander Stelt advises staying focused on price with these hassle-avoidant sellers, while being flexible on the rest of the offer on the house. “Do this by offering the best terms you can, including buying the home as-is, a closing date and possession that works best for the seller, and illustrating how strong of a candidate you are to get your mortgage approved,” he said.
You can demonstrate that you’re a strong mortgage candidate by showing a preapproval letter and by sharing financial information, such as account balances that prove you have the cash for the down payment.
7. Buy a house that needs work
Buying a fixer-upper is an old-fashioned, time-tested way to save money. “If you can be patient, it’s worth buying a home that needs work and slowly fixing it up over time or taking a renovation loan to acquire the home and do the work upfront,” said Brian Koss, regional sales director for Movement Mortgage, in Danvers, Massachusetts.
8. Build a house or buy a brand-new one
“Building a new home can provide more certainty around how long you will have to wait to move in, it can provide more cost certainty, and it can save you money in the short and long term by avoiding costly remodels, appliance repairs and unexpected repairs of older parts of the home,” said Jeffrey Ruben, president of WSFS Mortgage in the Greater Philadelphia area.
Buying a new home in a development has some of the same advantages. And today’s buyers have good reason to shop for new construction because there’s a shortage of existing homes for resale.
9. Rent out part of the house
Coffey suggested using an old strategy with a trendy name — house hacking — “buying a property like a duplex, where you live in one unit and rent out the other,” she said.
If you buy a duplex, triplex or quadplex, and you live in one unit, you can include the expected rental income for the others when qualifying for a loan. In some cases, you can qualify for a mortgage using expected rental income from an accessory dwelling unit, such as a basement apartment or a tiny house in the backyard.
If you buy a home today, you’re stuck with high mortgage rates for the time being. But by employing some creativity, you might find a way to afford homeownership.
Your home is not just the cherished place you live. It is a valuable asset that can bring you opportunities for financial security and growth. Owning a home helps you build equity, and in turn, wealth, providing an option when you need to access funds. But there are other ways you can use your home as part of your financial strategy. Let’s explore how you can put your home to work for your financial benefit.
The Tangible Benefits of Homeownership
Owning a home can be a very rewarding experience. In addition to giving you a sense of pride and a connection to your community, homeownership provides tangible benefits that can improve your financial well-being. Two key benefits are equity and tax advantages.
Building Equity Over Time
As you make mortgage payments, you build equity in your home. Equity is the difference between the market value of your home and the amount you owe on your mortgage. Once you’ve accumulated enough home equity, you can tap into it for various needs like home renovations, debt consolidation or other expenses. You can typically obtain this cash through a second mortgage, such as a fixed-rate Home Equity Loan or a Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC).
As a homeowner, you can deduct some of the interest you pay on your mortgage from your federal income taxes. This can save you a significant amount of money each year.*
Strategies to Unlock Your Home’s Financial Potential
Understanding the different ways you can take advantage of your home can help you unlock its full financial potential and move you closer to your goals.
1. Home Equity Loans
Having home equity can be a safeguard for managing large expenses. For example, if you need access to funds for home improvements, debt consolidation, school tuition, an emergency or any other significant expense, consider a Home Equity Loan.
A home equity loan allows you to borrow against your home’s equity and receive a one-time cash payment. Since this type of loan is a second mortgage, your primary mortgage, including your interest rate, remains unaffected. This can be a great advantage if you have a very low interest rate on your first mortgage and you want to access cash from your home equity without refinancing your entire loan balance — especially if rates are running on the higher end in the current market. You’ll also have the security of a fixed interest rate and payment on this type of loan, unlike a line of credit. The amount borrowed may even be tax deductible if the funds are used to renovate your home.*
2. Consolidate Debt
Your home equity can help you take charge of your debt. If you have a lot of high-interest debt from credit cards or personal loans, consider consolidating your debt with a home equity loan or cash-out refinance. A cash-out refinance replaces an existing mortgage with a new loan with a higher balance, sometimes with more favorable terms than the current loan. The difference between these two loans is distributed to the homeowner as cash.
Credit card and personal loan interest rates are typically much higher than home loan interest rates, so a cash-out refinance or home equity loan could potentially save you a lot of money on interest payments.
Paying down debt can also boost your credit score. But don’t treat a cash-out refinance or home equity loan like an ATM. Have a plan in place to avoid further debt.
3. Home Improvements
Certain improvements to your property can substantially enhance your home’s worth. Upgrading areas like the kitchen and bathrooms or incorporating energy-efficient elements can greatly appeal to future potential buyers if you choose to put the house on the market. Even if you’re not planning on selling anytime soon, this kind of investment often yields long-term financial benefits. Any increase in market value also contributes to an increase in your home equity.
4. Exterior Improvements
Exterior improvements like landscaping, a new wood deck or a wrap-around porch not only boost curb appeal but may also boost your home’s market value. When your market value increases, so does your home equity. Plus, when you’re ready to sell, potential homebuyers may be willing to pay more, often making these types of upgrades good long-term investments.
If you have good credit, liquid reserves and other qualifications, the equity in your home could be used to purchase an investment property.
A single-family home, townhouse or multi-family unit can be a long-term asset, offering additional tenant income. A vacation home can provide a reliable getaway that appreciates over time — and you can buy one with as little as 10% down.
6. Higher Education
As the equity in your home grows, so does the amount of accessible funds you have available to pay for a child’s education or your own tuition expenses. Just be sure to compare the interest rates of a home equity option vs. taking out a student loan. And do the math to ensure your existing budget can manage the increased or additional loan payments you’ll be responsible for.
7. Renting Out Spare Rooms or Basement
If you have extra space, you may be able to generate additional income by renting out a spare bedroom, guest house, casita or basement. A bedroom, guest house or casita could be rented to a tenant, and a spacious basement or garage could be leased to someone who needs storage space. Do your due diligence before renting out a room to ensure you understand the laws involved, any HOA restrictions, insurance, permits and safety requirements and tax implications.
8. Listing Your Space for Short-Term Rentals
Earn money by listing your guest house, casita or extra room as a short-term rental on a peer-to-peer exchange service such as Airbnb. Hosting out-of-town visitors can be very profitable, especially if you live in a tourist spot, business or transportation hub or near a university. Again, you’ll need to comply with your area’s legal, zoning, insurance, tax rules and other regulations.
9. Rent Out Your Pool or Backyard
Have a pool or backyard that often goes unused? Rent it out and bring in some extra cash. Apps like Swimply and Peerspace allow you to list your pool or yard and connect with individuals looking to swim, host a party, conduct photoshoots and even film commercials. That said, before you get started on using your property for this type of business venture, be sure to check with your homeowners insurance provider on any additional protections needed.
10. Home Equity Line of Credit (HELOC)
A HELOC allows you to access your home equity by providing a line of credit, which behaves similarly to a credit card. Borrow the amount you need when you need it, up to your approved limit. Keep in mind that HELOCs use variable rates, so the interest rate will fluctuate based on certain benchmark rates and the current market.
Want to leverage your home equity? Check out our home value estimator to help give you an idea of your home equity, then explore our home equity loan options or contact a Pennymac Loan Expert today.
*Consult a tax adviser for further information regarding the deductibility of mortgage interest and charges.
Accessory dwelling units, also referred to as ADUs and “granny flats,” have been available in California only as rentals. But a new law, Assembly Bill 1033, is giving Californians the opportunity to buy and sell them as condominiums.
ADUs come in all shapes and sizes — for example, a converted garage, a small home in the backyard, or, as often seen in San Francisco, an unused portion of the main house, said Assemblyman Phil Ting (D-San Francisco), who drafted the legislation.
Under AB 1033, which was signed into law this week, property owners in participating cities will be able to construct an ADU on their land and sell it separately, following the same rules that apply to condominiums. It gives homeowners more options for building on their property, and “the hope is, it would create more homeownership,” said Ting.
Under the new law, local governments need to opt in to the ADU-as-condominium approach for it to be an option in their cities.
Here’s how the new rules will work in participating cities:
As with new condominiums, homeowners building ADUs must notify the local utilities, including water, sewer, gas and electric, of the creation and separate conveyance of the unit. Each property will also have to form a homeowners association to assess dues to cover the cost of caring for the property’s exterior and shared spaces, such as the driveway, a pool or a common roof.
Similar to condominiums on one property, the home and the ADU will have two different property taxes, Ting said.
He says he believes that many of the initial ADUs going through this process will be sold to the family members or close friends of the homeowner.
“And then as people are more comfortable with this and you see more ADUs being sold, and it’s more prevalent, then I could see this being more of a traditional real estate transaction,” he said.
Meredith Stowers, a loan officer at CrossCountry Mortgage in San Diego who specializes in ADUs, said AB 1033 benefits both homeowners and new buyers.
“The typical homeowners we see are retirees who have long since paid off their mortgage, but are maybe living on a pittance of Social Security and meager retirement funds,” she said.
Under this law, the retirees can earn supplemental income and young families can buy an affordable starter home.
Stowers said the problem that retirees are facing is that, “after so many years of loan modifications in high rates, it doesn’t make financial sense for the retiree to move out of their home.”
She argues it’s more expensive for them to downsize to a smaller house, and this new piece of legislation opens opportunities for retirees to leverage the equity they’ve built up in their homes while also creating affordable housing.
“We’re even seeing some retirees add ADUs in their backyard that they then move into and potentially selling off their home,” she said.
Selling ADUs as condominiums is having success in places such as Oregon, Texas and Seattle.
When Seattle removed regulatory barriers that discouraged property owners from constructing ADUs in 2019, the city issued nearly 1,000 ADU permits, more than four times the number permitted in 2018, according to a report released in March.
The report also found that in 2022, the city permitted 437 attached ADUs and 551 detached ADUs, which it referred to as backyard cottages. Just under half were on sites with multiple ADUs and one-third were part of a development that included a new single-family residence.
Included in the report were sample sales for neighbor residential parcels with detached ADUs, reporting that a unit of more than 1,000 square feet sold for an average of anywhere between $500,000 to $800,000.
Ah, fall. It’s the time of year that comes with many welcomed changes: new colors; cooler temperatures; and, perhaps the most exciting, festive home transformations. While some take the spooky route and adorn their abodes with macabre Halloween decorations, others opt for a more classic look that isn’t so holiday-specific. Although both approaches can be great if executed correctly, it appears Melissa Gorga falls into the latter group.
How to Watch
On Saturday, October 21, The Real Housewives of New Jersey mom lifted the curtain on her freshly decorated front porch. Melissa posted a handful of Instagram photos of her posing outside her Franklin Lakes home on a recent rainy day. One shot showed the RHONJ cast member with her arms spread out as she stood atop the entrance steps, which were covered with dozens of cascading pumpkins in various shapes, colors, and sizes.
Melissa credited the design to Nicki Wszelaki’s A Tufted Life, a New Jersey-based lifestyle brand that specializes in home decor.
Melissa Gorga embraces fall “with pumpkins On Display”
“Rainy days with pumpkins On Display. I love fall!” she captioned the carousel. “Thanks to [A Tufted Life] making it perfect! Now how long you think before I start decorating for christmas?!!”
Melissa shared the update more than two years after she and her husband, Joe Gorga, purchased the property and embarked on an ambitious house renovation. After months and months of construction and remodeling, the family finally moved into the Jersey home last November, and have continued to make it their own.
Melissa and Joe Gorga showcase their beautiful backyard
Earlier this month, Melissa shared another peek at her home’s sprawling backyard where she spotted a little deer “just chilling.” The snap highlighted her amazing swimming pool, lush landscaping, and inviting cabanas.
As Joe previously revealed, the outdoor space was finally completed at the beginning of June, just in time for the warm-weather months.
“We got this done. Let me tell you something, it looks gorgeous,” he said in an Instagram Story which focused on the pool. “Love this… Look at that — waterfalls. Look at these lights. Gorgeous!”
RHONJ ladies reveal their Halloween home decor
Melissa’s RHONJ castmates have also taken to Instagram to show off their fall home decor. Jennifer Aydin enlisted Christmas Designers of NJ to transform her foyer into an eerie yet elegant space complete with faux spider webs, torches, florals, and string lights.
Dolores Catania also embraced the spooky spirit by decorating her front lawn with purple and orange lights, as well as a towering Jack Skellington statue.
“Love my Halloween lights,” the Jersey mom captioned a Story. “Thank you to [Christmas Designers of New Jersey].”
Inside: Are you looking for ways to make money on the side? This guide has everything you need to know about the best side hustles for men. From turning your passion into profit with these gig ideas!
In this post, I collaborated with my husband. Together, we combined our ideas and expertise after work to generate ideas centered around how men specifically can make money. His input and insights were remarkably vital to this post.
Break free from the 9-to-5 grind and embark on a journey towards a fulfilling side hustle – it’s a game-changer for gentlemen looking to beef up their bank accounts.
In the ever-evolving landscape of side hustles, now is your year to supercharge your earnings. There’s a treasure trove of opportunities waiting for you to delve into, all while indulging in your passions. From tech-savvy endeavors to unleashing your creative genius and practical gigs that pay, our guide is here to unveil the ultimate side hustles that can set you on the path to financial triumph.
Ready to boost your income? Fantastic! You’re on the path to prosperity.
Here, we’ll explore the 40 best side hustles for men in 2024.
This post may contain affiliate links, which helps us to continue providing relevant content and we receive a small commission at no cost to you. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Please read the full disclosure here.
Embracing the Hustle: Why Men Should Consider Side Hustles
Side hustles are more than mere cash generators – they’re the keys to a world of freedom, flexibility, and endless growth potential.
If you’re a gentleman with a hunger for financial prosperity, a side hustle can be your golden ticket. It empowers you to call the shots and maintain your existing commitments while paving your way to success.
While women tend to lean towards side hustles for women, it’s high time for men to dive headfirst into the captivating world of side hustles!
How can a guy make extra money?
Making extra money doesn’t have to be monotonous. Whether you’re a tech whizz, an avid creator, or a hands-on worker, there’s something for you.
There are so many ways to make money. I just read this story about a college kid starting with $300 and turning his sticker side hustle into a full time business. 1
These options can yield solid income by leveraging your unique skills and interests. Want to learn more? Keep reading; we have plenty of ideas for you!
Top Side Hustles for Men
As my hubby said, extra income takes the financial strain off the normal job. With side hustles, you can choose how you want to spend your time – watching sports, playing video games, or making money.
The choice is yours!
Right now, learning to make money online for beginners is the most popular place to start.
1. Invest in Real Estate
Around here at Money Bliss, we always stress how to make your money work for you and real estate is no different.
Real estate investment is a golden opportunity that not only offers a steady income but also the potential for property value to soar. Keep in mind, that it’s a long-term game that requires a significant upfront investment.
However, there are many options like flipping properties, renting properties, or even investing through a REIT. Dive into the world of real estate to maximize your returns. Let your money do the heavy lifting for you.
2. Day Trader
Many men opt for trading stocks and options as a side hustle for several compelling reasons.
Trading offers flexibility, as your research can be done at any time, making it convenient to manage along with a nine-to-five job.
It has an immense profit potential, given the volatility and opportunities present in the global stock markets.
Many want to earn a rate of return greater than the average return of the S&P 500 – a common benchmark index for that competitor inside them.
Finally, trading presents an opportunity for continual learning and development, as successful trading requires staying updated with financial news, stock apps, market analysis, and economic trends, thereby enhancing one’s financial literacy.
Trade & Travel
Learn to trade stocks with confidence.
Whether you want to:
Retire in peace without financial anxiety
Pay your bills without taking on a side hustle
Quit your 9-5 and do what you love
Or just make more than your current income….
Making $1,000 every.single.day is NOT a pie-in-the-sky goal.
It’s been done over and over again, and the 30,000 students that Teri has helped to be financially independent and fulfill their financial dreams are my witnesses…
3. Become an Umpire or Referee
Sports fans, here’s your calling! Transform your passion into a profitable part-time gig by becoming a sports referee.
There is a HUGE shortage of umpires and referees.2 Rates per game can range from $20 to $60, and over time, you can earn even more as you referee older leagues. Plus many leagues are paying more to incentivize refs to come back to the fields.
Not only does it assure good pay, but it also lets you enjoy your favorite sport, exercise, and create exhilarating moments. Check it at your local club or league for training and to get started today.
This is something my brother-in-law did all the time and easily made 200 dollars a day.
4. Participate In Medical Studies
If adding to medical knowledge interests you while earning, consider participating in clinical trials.
Compensation depends on various factors like the study’s length and complexity. You can earn $50 to $300 a day!
It’s worth considering if you’re comfortable with potential risks and lengthy commitments. Websites like ClinicalTrials.gov or your local hospital could help you get started. It’s a unique way of contributing to medical research while making money. Do check the risks before diving in!
5. Moving and Heavy Item Delivery
Feel like adding some muscle? Moving and heavy item delivery might be your perfect hustle. If you’ve got a buddy, a solid back, and a truck (or can rent one), this is the gig.
You could easily earn about $20-$25 an hour helping people move houses or delivering large items. Opt for evening or weekend gigs to fit around your day job.
Get started by advertising your services or using apps like TaskRabbit or NextDoor. An excellent way to stay fit and earn some extra dollars at the same time!
6. Rent Out Your Extra Room
Do you have a spare room? Then, transform that neglected space into a cash cow.
Airbnb or VRBO can help you lease it out to travelers. Its user-friendly platform lets you manage rentals with aplomb. Plus, you get the chance to grow into a SuperHost.
Another option is to look at investing in a duplex where you live on one side and rent out the other.
This takes a special talent like my father-in-law had. He and his boys were known for crafting Adirondacks chairs, bedroom furniture, and patio tables.
So, if you have this woodworking knack, then this side hustle could be a golden ticket. The key to success is to perfect your craft to a few select items to be efficient with your time, so, you can better the profit. Let your handyman skills shine and earn you some extra cash!
The average earnings of a woodworking side hustle in the U.S. can range from approximately $500 to $3,000 or more per month, depending on factors such as the complexity of projects and marketing efforts.
Honey, take note! If you’re not deterred by bees and are interested in agriculture, try your hand at beekeeping. This might be a family affair – like my daughter’s soccer coach.
Honey sells for around $20 a pound, and bees virtually do all the work! Plus, you contribute to pollination and the environment.
Combined with pest control services (like removing large nests), you can amplify your earnings. However, getting comfortable with bees might take time. But, once you do, the sticky sweet liquid gold that is raw honey could put a sizeable amount of money in your pocket.
9. Detail Cars
If you have a passion for cars and cleanliness, consider detailing cars as your side hustle. There’s something gratifying about transforming a dusty vehicle into a sparkling gem.
Depending on the quality of your service, you can earn up to $500 in a single weekend! Start by experimenting with your own car and build a portfolio to attract customers.
You’ll need tools like a good shop vacuum and detailing brushes. I have seen plenty of men showcasing their work on social media with before-and-after photos. Polish those wheels and drive towards profit!
10. Landscaping Side Hustle
Armed with green fingers? Eager to perform hard physical labor? Then a side gig in landscaping can do wonders for your wallet.
From regular lawn care to fall leaf cleanup to full-on backyard redesigns, there’s something for everyone. Look to websites like Lawn Love to match you with your first clients.
Potential income for this venture depends on how many hours of your time you are willing to trade.
11. Drive for Ridesharing Apps
Like to drive? Awesome, do it for cash! Ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft got you covered.
Be your boss, and work on your terms.
You need to make sure you have a nice car, proper insurance, and learn the busiest routes to maximize your earnings. Do pay heed to your vehicle’s wear and tear, though. However, this is one of the jobs that pay weekly.
12. Snow Plowing
Living in a snowy region? Consider snow plowing. This is a quick way to make money! I can attest to my kids quickly making $200+ a day from snow shoveling.
Even better is to have business clients that need this service. As such, all you need is a reliable truck or SUV with four-wheel drive and a snowplow. Plus, you can upsell by offering extra services like salting and hand shoveling.
This lucrative side gig can result in you earning thousands each winter. It’s an opportunity to put your vehicle to good use and tackle Mother Nature for a handsome payout.
16. Knife Sharpening
If you have a knack for precision and patience, knife sharpening could be a rewarding side hustle. Businesses like restaurants butcheries, and home cooks are potential clients.
All you need is a quality knife sharpening setup and knowledge of the right techniques. Advertising your services on social media can help bring in customers. Who knew such an unusual skill could be so profitable?!
17. Plasma Donation Centers
While this one is probably more geared to side hustles for college students have you ever considered donating plasma for cash?
You help others, and it earns you up to $500 a month. It’s a generous deed with a minimal time commitment.
Search for “where to sell plasma in [your city]where to sell plasma in [your city]” to get started. Remember, most places have similar requirements to blood donation and may require a short medical screening first.
Good with numbers? Have an eye for detail? Look into bookkeeping.
Services like generating invoices, managing accounts payable, and preparing tax returns are always in demand. Overhead costs are low as you only need a computer and accounting software. Plus, payment is high at around $50 per hour!
For most bookkeepers, referrals are their bread and butter. To start out check the local Chamber of Commerce to start meeting other business people.
Turn your love for crunching numbers into a lucrative side hustle.
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19. White Label Software
Dip your toes into software reselling by using white-label software. This is great for someone who is good with technology and understands SaaS. However, no coding or IT background is necessary.
All you need to do is buy “seats” of an existing software at a wholesale rate, then resell them at retail.
Use any software name or category on Google and add “White Label” at the end to find options. Build a website, market your product, and start earning by becoming a digital intermediary! Start earning by becoming a digital middleman!
20. Work as a Translator
In the United States, nearly 20% of the population, roughly 67.8 million people, speak a language other than English at home, with Spanish, Chinese, Tagalog, Vietnamese, and Arabic being the most prevalent.3 If you’re fluent in another language, this opens doors to flexible and potentially lucrative side hustle in translation and interpretation.
Earnings in the language translation side hustle can fluctuate based on the client’s requirements and your preferences. For instance, you might find translation opportunities on platforms like Freelancer.com offering rates of up to $60 per hour, while translators on Fiverr can charge as much as $125 per project.
21. Pallet Flipping
Are you inclined towards an entrepreneurial middleman ship? Pallet flipping could be your ticket to substantial income.
This is similar to buying storage units unseen and flipping for a profit. With pallet flipping, the process involves buying and reselling pallets of customer returns, overstocked items, or unsold merchandise, often from major online platforms. Connect businesses that need pallets to ship their products with those looking to get rid of them.
Whether you start small or aim high, scalability and considerable earnings are within reach. Check out this Pallet Flipping book to get started.
22. Help Others Write Resumes
If you have a talent for crafting impressive resumes, there’s a lucrative side hustle waiting for you. Job seekers are constantly looking for professionals who can help them stand out in the competitive job market.
According to our research, professionals skilled in resume writing can start charging for their services on platforms like Fiverr, often earning anywhere from $50 to $150 per resume service including cover letters and LinkedIn profiles.
Mastering the art of creating effective resumes, including understanding industry-specific keywords, is the secret sauce to success in this field. By assisting others with their career aspirations, you can collect a decent income while making a meaningful impact on their job prospects.
This is also a popular digital product to sell on Etsy.
Earn More Writing
You can make money as a freelance writer.
Learn techniques to find those jobs and earn the kind of money you deserve!
Plus get tips to land your first freelance writing gig!
Here’s an unconventional yet profitable idea – owning a laundromat! It’s an already profitable model (as it has been around for years) and most processes are automated.
Integrating some digital marketing skills and making tweaks like improving your online presence could earn you significant profit. But be aware, that this does involve an initial investment. Scope out opportunities to buy a laundromat near you.
Also, another trend is starting a laundry business where you take care of others’ laundry needs. Who would have thought laundry could be so rewarding?
24. Start a Consulting Side Hustle
Do you have expertise in a specific area? Consider starting a consulting side hustle.
Consulting is often about solving problems and providing strategies. Whether you’re skilled in marketing, HR, tech, or any other field, your knowledge can be valuable to businesses. Use your existing network to start and gradually grow your client base.
With the right marketing and a robust network, consulting can be highly rewarding. Honestly, this is a popular job after retirement for many. So why wait? Start monetizing your wisdom today!
25. Furniture Flipping
Ever heard of furniture flipping? It’s about buying used furniture at low prices, revamping it, and selling it for a profit.
Furniture flippers can be a goldmine especially if you know what to look for. Unearth the potential in old furniture and flip it into a profit with this artistic hustle.
You can source items from yard sales, flea markets, or online. Sanding and repainting can transform items into showpieces. This gig is perfect if you love hands-on projects that require creativity and patience. Remember, a great photo makes the sale for your final piece!
26. Walk Dogs
Dog lovers, rejoice! Here’s the perfect gig for you – dog walking. If you love playing with our furry friends and love the outdoors, why not get paid for it?
Apps like Rover can connect you with dog owners in your area in need of walking services. Dog walking can fetch (pun intended!) you around $10–$18 per walk. If you’re passionate about spending time with fidos, this side hustle is a pleasure that pays!
Get paid to play with pets!
Rover makes it easy and promotes you to the nation’s largest network of pet owners.
Earn money doing something you love.
Become a Sitter
27. Find Odd Jobs in Your Area
Not afraid to roll up your sleeves? Awesome! Odd jobs can be a treasure trove of opportunities.
Think yard work or furniture assembly. Seek out these gigs on platforms like TaskRabbit, Nextdoor, Craigslist, or Fiverr, and a few hours of work can earn you a tidy sum. It’s the perfect hustle for those in search of quick cash injections!
Find local jobs that fit your skills and schedule.
With TaskRabbit, you have the freedom and support to be your own boss.
Plus set your own rates!
Are you skilled at capturing beautiful moments? Turn your passion into a lucrative side hustle by becoming a photographer.
With average rates of earning 500 dollars per day, your earnings could easily surpass those of a full-time job. You can explore areas like wedding photography, senior photos, or commercial product photography.
The best way to gain clients is through referrals or a fundraiser. Grab your professional camera and start capturing memorable moments while boosting your income. Focus your lens and let your creativity shine!
29. Unusual Rentals
Get creative! As this man demonstrated, unconventional rentals like a power washer can earn you thousands of dollars every month. 4
You can rent out spaces like your garage, or backyard to pet owners, or even invest in items like portable hot tubs or bounce houses. Platforms like Airbnb, Sniffspot, Vrbo, and Neighbor can help you get started.
Your unused space or items can transform into extraordinary sources of income. Dive into the world of rentals and unveil massive profits!
Crypto investment is a popular side hustle that can yield incredible returns (and significant losses).
However, keep in mind that the cryptocurrency market is volatile, and you should only risk what you can afford to lose.
Crypto is not for the faint-hearted, but with the potential for high returns, it could be your golden opportunity.
31. Teach Music Classes
Do you possess a hidden musical talent? Then, teach music class!
With countless adults and children seeking music lessons, you can make good money sharing your skills. Offer piano lessons, guitar instruction, drumming, or any instrument you excel in. You can use platforms like Skillshare or provide private lessons.
On average, music instructors can charge anywhere from $40 to $100 or more per hour for online lessons depending on how advanced the lessons are. Sharing your passion for music while making money sounds like music to the ears, doesn’t it?
32. Sell on eBay
Have you ever visited a garage sale? Turn those finds into a profitable hustle by selling on eBay. eBay is an excellent platform for selling a wide range of items.
Some personal successes include flipping items like electronics, old iPods and iPhones, sneakers, and furniture. Successful eBay selling boils down to recognizing profitable items and securing a bargain purchase.
Are you ready to flip and fill your wallet with extra cash? You could sell on Facebook Marketplace, too.
33. Reselling on Amazon
Reselling products on Amazon is the trend of the hour. Scout for items cheaper in your area than online, including toys, limited edition shoes, or seasonal delicacies.
Consider trying dropshipping to curate your product lineup without worrying about inventory. Armed with just an Amazon seller account and a keen eye for trends, you can dive into this lucrative venture!
34. Start A Freelance Business
Have niche skills? Time to cash them in by freelancing. This is a booming market.
Bid on projects that resonate with your skill set: graphics, writing, social media management, website design – you name it! Going freelance offers flexibility, and autonomy and can bring in some serious cash.
Be sure to create a compelling portfolio to attract clients and make sure you have solid reviews.
35. Play Games Online
Game on, fellas! Who said you can’t turn your gaming hobby into a money-making machine?
You can pocket money by playing games like Blackout Bingo and Solitaire Cube.
Just remember you can win real money, but you can suffer losses as well. Also, be sure to check if cash tournaments are available in your region.
36. Watch Videos Online
Do you enjoy watching videos? You can earn while indulging in your favorite pastime! Platforms like InboxDollars and MyPoints offer cash rewards for watching videos. Plus, you can claim a $5 sign-up bonus on InboxDollars.
While the earning potential might be relatively low, it’s a seamless background activity. You can make money while relaxing on the couch. So, why not unwind with your favorite video content and get paid for it?
Since 2000, InboxDollars has paid over $80 Million in cash rewards to members for doing everyday online activities like reading emails, taking paid surveys, or playing games.
The InboxDollars community allows members to influence future products and services.
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37. Start a Podcast
Do you have a passion for conversation? Starting a podcast is not just about speaking your mind; it’s a captivating path to potential profit.
With over 177 million podcast listeners in the U.S. alone, your words have a vast audience waiting to tune in.5
Dive into topics like BBQ techniques, current events, or life’s twists and turns, and you might be surprised to know that top podcasters earn money with sponsorships.
38. Delivery Gigs
Do you love driving, but want to limit contact with people? Consider delivery gigs.
Food delivery apps like DoorDash, Uber Eats, and Instacart can pad your wallet. You can make deliveries on your schedule while retaining control over when and where you work.
These gigs typically pay $15 to $20 per hour, plus tips. Some companies even allow bicycle deliveries for a bit of exercise. Deliver your way to financial success with this flexible side hustle.
39. Start a YouTube Channel
Do you have a passion for digital creativity? Consider starting a YouTube channel – the “king of side hustles.”
Use your unique perspective to engage viewers, whether through personal vlogs, tech reviews, or evergreen content. The potential is boundless.
YouTubers earn money from ad revenue and sponsorships. With a staggering number of users on YouTube, why not tap into this vast audience?
Established channels can rake in thousands per video. However, remember that channel success hinges on content quality, relevance, and consistency. Get behind the camera and share your creativity with the world!
40. Freelance Writing
If you have a way with words, freelance writing is an attractive side hustle. Typically, writing is the most sought-after freelance service.
You can choose from various writing niches, including copywriting, blog writing, ebook, social media content creation, or creating detailed reports. Impress clients with samples of your best work.
For many, this was the first step before they went into to the world of blogging.
Earn More Writing
You can make money as a freelance writer.
Learn techniques to find those jobs and earn the kind of money you deserve!
Plus get tips to land your first freelance writing gig!
42. Take Online Surveys
Have some free time and a reliable internet connection? Consider taking online surveys.
Websites like Swagbucks, Panel Place, or Survey Junkie are on the lookout for your opinions. It’s simple: sign up, share thoughts, and cash out! Look out for the highest-paying survey sites to maximize your profits.
Taking online surveys can typically amount to around $50 to $200 per month, depending on the frequency and length of surveys taken.
While it won’t make you a fortune, it’s an easy way to make a couple extra bucks during downtime. Start voicing your opinions for money today!
Swagbucks is a fun rewards program that gives you free gift cards and cash for the everyday things you already do online.
Earn points when you shop at your favorite retailers, watch entertaining videos, search the web, answer surveys, and more!
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43. Find a Flexible Part-Time Job
Finally, a part-time job can provide a steady cash stream.
Right now, you can find hiring signs everywhere! This is a great way to trade your time and make a little bit over minimum wage.
Apply to those vacant positions now, and sail towards extra cash!
Striking the Balance: Juggling Regular Jobs and Hustles
This is where my husband is always the most concerned because juggling your full-time job along with your side hustle can be tricky. Even more so, if you have a family.
The key is to create a feasible schedule that allows you to manage both without affecting the quality of work.
Keeping a time log can help identify how you can spare time for your hustle. Remember, side hustles should not hinder your regular job.
The goal is to make extra money, but not lose precious time with your family, so you must strike that balance for a smooth side-hustling journey. It’s all about dedication, time management, and commitment.
Now, are you ready to toss that juggling ball up in the air?
Frequently Asked Questions about Side Hustles
Personally, we feel the most profitable side hustles for men is real estate investment, followed closely by trading stocks and options.
These side hustles have a higher amount of money needed to start investing. So, we decided to consider your skills and interests to make a big impact now.
Making an extra $2000 a month is a game of adopting multiple hustles or honing in and being successful with one.
More importantly, it’s all about identifying your strengths, and interests and leveraging opportunities from there. Keep grinding, and you’ll find that fortune favoring your extra efforts!
Earning an extra $1000 a month might seem daunting, but it’s definitely achievable. Combining side hustles like driving for DoorDash, medical research studies, and flipping items can help you hit that target. Remember, the key lies in maximizing your skills, and efficiency, and choosing the right hustles. Embark on your side-hustling journey today and watch as your bank account flourishes!
Which Side Hustle for Guys Do You Like?
Now that we’ve explored these exciting side hustle opportunities, it’s time for you to take action. Which one resonates with you the most?
To truly excel in the world of side hustles, it’s crucial to approach your ventures with the right mindset. Your skills, hobbies, and interests should align with your chosen hustle, ensuring that you’re not just chasing dollars but pursuing something that genuinely excites you.
Remember that side hustles require time, commitment, and sometimes an upfront investment. The higher you’re willing to climb, the better your view (and the payouts) will be!
Don’t wait any longer. Start your side hustle journey today, and unlock the door to financial freedom and personal fulfillment.
CNBC. “21-year-old spent $300 to start his sticker side hustle—now it brings in up to $38,000 a day: I was ‘unprepared’ to go viral.” https://www.cnbc.com/2023/10/30/how-sticker-side-hustle-invalid-jp-went-tiktok-viral-became-lucrative.html. Accessed October 30, 2023.
CBS News, “Youth sports referee shortage grows amid aggression from parents, coaches.” https://www.cbsnews.com/philadelphia/news/youth-sports-referee-shortage-grows-amid-aggression-from-parents-coaches/. Accessed October 30, 2023.
Census.gov. “Nearly 68 Million People Spoke a Language Other Than English at Home in 2019.” https://www.census.gov/library/stories/2022/12/languages-we-speak-in-united-states.html. Accessed October 30, 2023.
Express. “‘Anyone can do it’ Man shares unusual way to make money without leaving home.” https://www.express.co.uk/finance/personalfinance/1623166/money-making-tips-earn-from-home-fat-llama. Accessed October 30, 2023.
Exploding Topics. “Number of Podcast Listeners.” https://explodingtopics.com/blog/podcast-listeners. Accessed October 30, 2023.
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Here’s everything you’ll need to know about how to rent a house, including how it’s different from apartment renting.
Maybe you have a growing family or elderly parents moving in. Perhaps you need a dedicated office or you’re craving outdoor space and more privacy than most apartment complexes offer.
If you can’t afford to buy your own home, you can upgrade your living arrangements by renting one. Still wondering how to accomplish this milestone, though? We’ll walk you through it step by step.
How renting a home is different than renting an apartment
While the renting process may be similar, there are large differences that any prospective tenants should be aware of, so their renting process runs smoothly. Navigating the local market is tricky enough, turn to this guide to delve into the must-knows for your home renting experience.
1. Your rent price will look drastically different
Before beginning your hunt for the perfect rental home, you’ll need to figure out what you can afford. Factoring in your income and recurring expenses including any loan payments, check out our helpful tool that will calculate average rents and the cost of living in major cities. You’ll notice upfront, that renting a house may be pricier, due to numerous reasons.
In addition to the monthly rent you’ll be forking over, there are other costs to consider that you may not have had to deal with as an apartment dweller. For example, things like heat, hot water, electricity, internet and satellite TV that are sometimes covered with an apartment rental will likely come straight out of your pocket when you rent a house.
Also, you might be responsible for lawn care, snow removal and other general maintenance, so if you don’t want to take care of those yourself, plan to budget for hiring out those tasks.
You’ll also need to know your credit score to see if you have to get a co-signer or guarantor — someone with good credit who would be liable for your rent if you can’t pay it. This will be added to your lease agreement should this be the case.
2. Your wants and needs will be more extensive
Once you’re clear on your budget, the fun part of researching houses for rent begins. It’s best to start by narrowing down your search to a few choice neighborhoods that offer the amenities you’re looking for, including proximity to work or your children’s schools. Due to the nature of a home (which lacks the built-in amenities an apartment has) your wants and needs for your ideal rental property will be longer.
It’s helpful to make a list of wants vs. needs to help you sort through your thoughts on your dream rental properties:
If you or your family are active or love nature, is the area close to parks and recreation centers?
Do you want a bustling neighborhood packed with restaurants, cafés and boutiques, or would you prefer a quiet, suburban environment?
Is a backyard important to you?
Do you need a garage or dedicated parking space?
Are you looking for a detached home to rent or are you okay with a townhouse?
Does the neighborhood have easy access to public transportation?
3. You’re sure to attend more tours and have more questions
Reading rental listings and taking a good look at the photos is typically not enough to determine whether a rental house might work for you.
While apartment complexes might post floor plans and room sizes online, you might not have advanced information like that with homes for rent. This means you’ll need to ask the landlord, property manager or rental property owner about many things that may not be explicitly listed:
Is the home pet-friendly?
Are appliances included, or would you need to purchase your own?
Is the house furnished? If it is, can you decide what stays or goes?
Are laundry hook-ups in place?
If utilities are not included in the monthly rent, how much can you expect to pay for heat, electricity and hot water?
Can you make decorative changes, such as painting the walls or changing light fixtures?
If there’s a backyard, can you plant a garden?
Is there a home owners association to which you will owe monthly fees?
4. Your neighborhood will be more important than ever
If you like the looks of a house for rent, and the landlord has answered questions to your satisfaction, make sure you also tour the area to get a sense of whether it would be a good fit for you and your family.
Try to speak to some potential neighbors, too: Ask them if it’s safe to walk the streets at night, whether it’s noisy and whether there are other children on the block.
It’s a good idea to visit the street both during the day and in the evening if possible. If the rental home does not have a garage or dedicated parking spot, check out whether street parking is readily available. It’s important to confirm that the right rent price takes into account the neighborhood and what it has to offer potential tenants.
5. There’s additional paperwork, like a home rental application
Paperwork for renting an apartment is a given, however, there tends to be a bit more when it comes to renting a home. Keep in mind, if the property is in a popular neighborhood in a hot real estate market, you won’t want to waste any before time letting the landlord know you’re ready to begin the application process.
Some property managers will charge you a fee between $25 to $100 before opening a file. Supply the following information to help the landlord determine if you are a good candidate to rent the house:
Your personal contact information
Proof of income. If you work full-time, pay stubs are sufficient. If you are self-employed, you can present bank statements or tax returns from the past three years. Retirees can provide proof of pension, 401(k) or bank statements.
Your guarantor’s name and contact information, if applicable
References who can vouch for your reliability and trustworthiness, such as a supervisor or former landlord
6. More rules you’ll have to adhere to
If your rental home has an HOA, you’ll need to check in with them to see if there are any regulations to follow on moving day, such as not leaving empty boxes at the curb when moving. There will likely also be regulations ranging from decorating to construction restrictions that the homeowner, in this case the landlord, will have to adhere to.
The similarities between renting an apartment and a house
There are some steps and parts of the renting process that don’t change even though the type of rental property does. There are similarities beyond the obvious of needing to pay rent and adhering to rental laws.
1. The background check
Landlords want tenants who have a steady income, a good loan repayment track record and a history of paying rent on time. Often, they will conduct a background check to assess whether they want to rent you their house.
During this part of the process, a property manager will likely want to confirm your employment, speak to the references you provided and check your credit report to see how you managed past payments.
2. The required fees such as a security deposit and first month’s rent
Some landlords will require a security deposit equivalent to a month’s rent, which would cover any damage to the property you might cause during the term of the lease. In some cases, you can either be refunded this fee when the lease is up or it goes to the last month’s rent.
You might also have to pay the first month’s rent once you sign a lease, even if you’re not moving in for a while. Sometimes, you’ll be charged a deposit for keys if you require more than one.
3. The moving process
While you won’t have to reserve an elevator to move into your rental home the way you did when you lived in an apartment, there are some things you need to organize before the big move.
For example, before you book a professional moving company, find out from the landlord if you can reserve a parking spot in front of the house where the truck can park, or whether it can back onto part of the property for easier unloading.
Once that’s done, you can concentrate on packing up and getting ready to move into your new home. Don’t forget to advise utility companies, internet and television providers and anyone else who needs to know you’re moving elsewhere.
Make sure to stay on top of details
Taking the time to research rental homes and neighborhoods and asking the right questions will make the transition from apartment living to a home rental go more smoothly.
Being organized with your paperwork and task list for moving day will provide peace of mind and fewer last-minute glitches so that you can celebrate once you’re settled into your new rental home.
And if you’re thinking about renting out your home for some passive income-generating opportunities, take a look at our rent estimator to see how much you could be earning.
Wesley is a Charlotte-based writer with a degree in Mass Communication from the University of South Carolina. Her background includes 6 years in non-profit communication and 4 years in editorial writing. She’s passionate about traveling, volunteering, cooking and drinking her morning iced coffee. When she’s not writing, you can find her relaxing with family or exploring Charlotte with her friends.
Fresh on the Hamptons market is this timeless luxury estate listed for a not-so-humble $7.75 million.
With classic charm, contemporary amenities, and private access to Southampton’s exclusive Cooper Beach, the lucky new homeowner will go from always dreaming to actually living out the ultimate coastal lifestyle.
Whoever snatches the lavish property in this star-studded Southampton community will not only boast a beautiful home but a lengthy roster of elite neighbors, including Beyoncé and Jay-Z, Jennifer Lopez, Gwenyth Paltrow, Ralph Lauren, and Bon Jovi.
The affluent community regularly attracts A-listers thanks to its exclusivity among lush landscaping and world-class beaches — a welcome break from the bustle of nearby New York City.
But the Hamptons house’s current owner has his own claim to fame.
The estate’s current owner, Anthony Bonomo, co-owned the 143rd Kentucky Derby’s award-winning horse, “Always Dreaming”, back in 2017 along with his longtime pal Vincent Viola.
The two grew up together in 1960s Brooklyn, ‘always dreaming’ of one day winning the highest-attended Thoroughbred stakes race in North America. The ambitious pair finally achieved their equine dreams thanks to their champion colt, who also won 1st place in the Florida Derby that same year.
Related: 17 Celebrities with Swanky Summer Homes in the Hamptons
Now, Bonomo’s Hamptons house is up for grabs for equestrian enthusiasts and beach lovers alike.
Bonomo first purchased the 23 Heady Creek Lane home back in 2014 for just $4.4 million, still high but paling in comparison to its current price tag. But one look at the stately property and you’ll quickly realize its worth.
Featuring quintessential Hamptons charm adorned with all the modern luxury updates you could ask for, it merits as much recognition as its current owner’s all-star racehorse.
Pass through a posh cobblestone driveway and you’ll be greeted by a traditional stately Southampton pad, complete with 6 bedrooms and 8 bathrooms on a sprawling half-acre of land.
Inside, an imposing great room featuring high vaulted ceilings with crown molding, an opulent chandelier, and elegant hardwood floors hint at the opulence featured throughout the rest of the house.
The living area beckons with a spacious floor plan that extends to the luxurious chef’s kitchen boasting a marble-glossed island and cutting-edge appliances.
The Southampton house’s bedrooms each have their distinct ‘personality’, some boasting charming moody decor.
Descending to the lower level, you’ll find dual entertainment spaces, a full bed and bath ideal for overnight guests, a walk-in wine cellar, and a home gym.
The home flawlessly mixes timeless style, like cozy statement fireplaces, with state-of-the-art additions like a Sonos sound system across the property.
Inviting indoor-outdoor-style glass doors seamlessly flow into the expansive backyard, which features a covered lounge area, barbecue pit, and heated pool with a waterfall spa- all perfect for throwing a memorable 4th of July bash.
A separate pool house with its own kitchen and bathroom offers added convenience and comfort while lounging outdoors.
Kieran Rodgers, Nicholas Campasano, and Ricardo Pena of The Agency RE serve as listing agents for the $7.75 million Hamptons home.
This Floating Farmhouse in the Catskills dates back to the 1820s, but you could never tell
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Whether you’re selling your home to begin a new adventure or refinancing your existing home, getting an appraisal with the value you want is an important hurdle to clear. You may feel that the appraisal process is out of your control, but there are many easy and inexpensive ways to get both yourself and your home ready.
We put together a checklist of our top tips below. But first, let’s quickly cover the basics of home appraisals.
What Is a Home Appraisal and Why Is It Important?
A home appraisal is an unbiased report on the value of your home performed by a trained and state-licensed individual. Appraisals are an essential part of the home financing process, ensuring the homebuyer, seller and mortgage lender each have an impartial, consistent and accurate assessment of the value of the property under consideration.
The lender is responsible for ensuring that your home provides adequate collateral for the mortgage. For most loans, the lender obtains a signed and completed appraisal report that accurately reflects the market value, condition and marketability of the property.
It’s the appraiser’s job to provide a factual, unbiased and detailed description of the property and the neighborhood. They must take into account all factors that influence a home’s value when developing the market value opinion in the appraisal report.
Home Appraisal Cost
While home appraisal costs can vary by state and property size, the fee can range between $300 and $1,200. Most fall somewhere around $600-$1,000, with costs based primarily on the geographical area of the home.
How Long Does a Home Appraisal Take?
From start to finish, the home appraisal process usually takes approximately 7-10 days to complete.
The required in-person visit by a home appraiser can take over an hour, depending on the size of your home. However, several other steps are involved in making an unbiased and professional assessment of your home’s value. Your appraiser will research trends, local county records and recently closed comparable homes in your area, known in the industry as “comps.”
Once your appraiser compiles and analyzes all the information and data, they will present a final report of your home’s value.
What Do Home Appraisers Look For?
A home appraiser uses several sources of information to determine a property’s value. As part of the assessment, the appraiser will visit the property in person and review recently completed sales of comparable homes. Common factors examined during home appraisals include:
Property size. In real estate appraisals, size significantly affects the final number. In general, the higher the square footage of a home, the higher its value. An appraiser will also look at the kitchen, number of bedrooms, bathrooms and closets.
Exterior condition. When assigning a value to your property, the appraiser will consider not only the exterior appearance of your home but also its condition. They will check the following:
The condition of the roof, foundation, siding, gutters, chimney and walls, looking for signs of leaks, mold and other safety hazards
Lot size, including front and backyard square footage
Pool, outdoor kitchen, deck, porch and other amenities
Interior condition. Again, this refers not only to the appearance of the interior but also to the working condition of standard household assets such as:
Electrical and HVAC systems
Doors and windows
Any kitchen appliances to be included in the sale
Attic, basement and foundation. A finished basement or attic may impact a home’s value, but these areas must meet specific requirements to be considered part of the Gross Living Area (GLA). An appraiser will also evaluate your home’s foundation and its condition.
Home improvements and renovations. Tell your appraiser about any work or upgrades you have done to spruce up your home. This can include anything from the central air system you installed 10 years ago to the kitchen flooring and countertops you just renovated (along with the new oven and fridge to match, of course).
What Hurts a Home Appraisal?
If an appraisal is in your future, it’s essential to understand the factors that could negatively impact it, such as the following:
Low-value comps and decreasing neighborhood property values
Poorly maintained interior or exterior
Age of the home
Location, such as a flood zone or busy road
Signs of mold, insect infestation, leaks or other safety concerns
Issues with the home’s systems, such as plumbing, electric or HVAC
Lack of parking
Hazardous construction materials like lead paint or asbestos tile
Outdated or faulty plumbing, electrical and heating systems
Some issues are in your control and some may not be. Whether you choose to address the correctable concerns or not, being aware of crucial appraisal criteria can help you avoid the potential unwelcome surprise of a lower-than-expected home value.
Top 7 Tips Home Appraisal Checklist
How does one best prepare for a home appraisal? We put together a checklist of common (and not-so-common) tips to help you get a high valuation from your appraiser.
1. Do Your Own Appraisal
Imagine that you are the appraiser. Walk around your home’s interior and exterior and really scrutinize it as if you were going to complete the appraisal report yourself. Take note of any obvious damage or deferred maintenance that needs your attention. Leaks, broken systems and damaged surfaces should all go on your list of things to repair.
Thoroughly inspect safety equipment like smoke alarms, carbon monoxide alarms and home security systems. Are they all functioning, or do parts or entire systems need to be replaced? Make a plan to repair these issues and clean up any cosmetic issues that may have occurred as a result.
2. Investigate Comps
Check out recent home sales in your neighborhood. What has the price range been for homes with features and updates similar to yours? The values of these comparable homes should be similar to what your home will appraise for. This information can help you know where to focus your time, efforts and funds.
If you know a neighbor (or real estate agent) who recently sold a home in your area, contact them to find out if there were any appraisal issues or insights that they can share.
If you’re working with a real estate agent, you can request that they collect some comps for you and your appraiser to review. Particularly if your home has unique or uncommon features, your agent may need to get creative while staying within the guidelines for selecting comps.
A quick way to get a rough idea of how much your home is worth is to use a home value estimator calculator. Add some basic information to gauge your home’s current value and view recent home sales in your area.
3. Get Superficial
Clean your house from top to bottom and remove extra clutter. Once you’ve scrubbed and straightened up everything possible, consider making some easy, low-cost cosmetic updates that can have a big impact, like the following:
Paint or touch up existing paint
Hang updated window treatments
Replace worn faucets, doorknobs and cabinet hardware
If you’ve been planning to update your decor after you move, consider bringing in a few of the newer pieces to make the old house look fresh and modern. Downsizing or packing for a long-distance move? Ask your real estate agent if they have staging furnishings you can borrow or recommendations for a service you can use.
4. Make Your Outdoor Areas Truly Great
Now that your home’s interior looks fantastic, it’s time to pay attention to the exterior. Make sure that your landscaping is looking its best by doing the following:
Mow your lawn, trim your trees and bushes
Remove weeds and dead vegetation
Add color with inexpensive, seasonal flowers in the spring, summer or fall, and ensure that snow removal is neat and tidy in the winter
You’ll also want to:
Remove outdoor clutter, like yard tools and stray toys, from everywhere on the property
Consider staging any outdoor living spaces with new furniture or accessories
Power wash your home’s exterior, as well as your driveway and any deck or patio surfaces
Ensure your pool is well-maintained and in safe operating condition
Most of this can be accomplished in a weekend, and the increased curb appeal will be worth it.
Check out expert tips for outdoor home renovations — you may find just the right improvement to increase your value!
5. Be Sure To Share Your Upgrades
Tell your home appraiser about the improvements you’ve made to your home. Inform them of upgrades like the following that will positively impact your appraisal value:
New features that you have added, like a security system
Updated HVAC units
Exterior improvements like siding, gutters or a new roof
High-value room remodels like kitchens and bathrooms
An easy way to make sure that your appraiser remembers all of these improvements is to create and share a short, one-page list detailing each. You should have this list ready in advance and include any applicable permit information.
6. Know Your Neighborhood
Make your appraiser aware of any recent improvements in your overall neighborhood. It’s worth mentioning things like:
New or highly rated schools
Other beneficial amenities
These kinds of changes can add significant value to your home, and if your appraiser is not a local resident, they may not be aware of them. Appraisers are often familiar with the general area, but you probably know your specific neighborhood better than they do.
7. Stay Focused
While you are working your way through the tasks and updates listed above, it’s important to remember not to go overboard and take on too many projects. Invest your time, money and effort only on issues that clearly need attention. If you’re getting an appraisal for a home you’re selling, you most likely already have a buyer who liked your home enough in its current state to make an offer on it. Making unnecessary major changes could end up being a waste of your time and resources.
Your home’s selling price is affected by much more than just the appraisal! Find out how the time of year can increase your sale price.
Although it’s not possible to change your bungalow into a country estate overnight, taking the time to tackle a few strategic projects before your appraisal can help put you in a better position to get the outcome you want. If you’re ready to move or refinance the home you love living in, get a custom mortgage rate quote from Pennymac today. Our Loan Experts can answer your questions and help guide you through the mortgage loan process.
buying a home selling a home appraisal fundamentals
Famed Cuban-American alto saxophonist, clarinetist, and composer Paquito D’Rivera is looking for a buyer for his longtime home in New Jersey.
Located on the Hudson River waterfront, the majestic North Bergen Colonial he’s been calling home since 2001 is currently on the market for $1.65 million, with Angela Cuciniello of Coldwell Banker Realty in Hoboken holding the listing.
“It is an honor to have been selected by Paquito to represent his amazing home,” said Cuciniello about working with the jazz icon.
D’Rivera, celebrated both for his artistry in Latin jazz and his achievements as a classical composer, has 5 Grammy Awards (and 9 Latin Grammys) under his belt, and an impressive total of 16 nominations.
He has also received a Lifetime Achievement Award from Carnegie Hall for his contributions to Latin music, among many other industry accolades that recognized his achievements — which spanned decades and tens of solo albums and collaborations. Paquito D’Rivera was also one of the founding members of the United Nation Orchestra, a 15-piece ensemble organized by Dizzy Gillespie to showcase the fusion of Latin and Caribbean influences with jazz.
At 75, he is still busy composing classical pieces for clarinet and performing, including collaborations with classical cellist Yo-Yo Ma.
The jazz legend bought the New Jersey house back in 2001 for $750,000, and the 4-bedroom home has served as his primary residence ever since. And as it turns out, there aren’t many like it.
“This is a rarity, one of only three Colonials of this size nestled on Boulevard East with sweeping views of the sparkling Manhattan skyline from across the Hudson,” listing agent Angela Cuciniello tells us. “It is rich in history and touched by fame.”
Originally built in 2011, the 4-bedroom, 4.5-bathroom brick home has been well maintained and updated throughout the decades, retaining its historic charm.
D’Rivera expanded the house’s original footprint, adding a two-story addition, a supersized chef’s eat-in kitchen, a junior bedroom suite on the second level, and five-zone climate control throughout more than 4,100 square-feet of space.
The home’s charming features include a formal entrance foyer, a three-story staircase, large rooms with 10-foot ceilings, detailed moldings, and an abundance of windows, including stained glass.
See also: Tony Soprano’s house is a real-life home in New Jersey — and the pool and driveway look awfully familiar
Highlights of the first floor are a living room with marbled fireplace, a den that opens to a large blue-stone terrace, and a sizeable formal dining room. On the upper two floors are four generously sized bedrooms, three full baths and a Juliette balcony that overlooks picturesque postcard views of the New York City skyline and Hudson River.
The lower level offers a spa, sauna, steam room and a billiards room.
Designed to entertain, the home features a heated Gunite swimming pool, while the backyard outdoor space is enclosed by motorized steel gates.
The location doesn’t leave much to be desired, as Paquito D’Rivera’s house is just a short stroll away from shopping and dining on the waterfront, and an approximately 20-minute commute to New York City.
Featured image credit: Jump Visual courtesy of Coldwell Banker Realty, insert Jacek Proszyk, CC BY-SA 4.0, via Wikimedia Commons
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