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Rental Property Series: How Much Did It Cost?

If you have been following this series, you know that we have been working like fiends to get our first rental property liveable for renters by October 1. If you’re new you might start by reading the previous posts. Rental Property Series: Buying our First Rental Property Rental Property Series: Renovating Our Rental Property Rental Property Series: Overcoming Setbacks Rental Property Series: Finding Hidden Treasures If you don’t want to read all of those, you’re really missing out, but to summarize We purchased this property on August 24, 2012 for $63,000, with 25% down. We plan on spending $3000-$5000 on renovations. We hope to be done and have a renter by October 1. We are using a property management company and are asking $750/mo for rent Well, October 1st has come and gone, and we are done. With a last gargantuan push this past week, we put the hardware back on the cabinets, cleaned up the construction mess, hung towel racks and a shower curtain, put in the counter tops and kitchen sink and faucet, got the stove and dishwasher hooked up, and painted the front porch. We also decided to put gravel in the front yard because the grass just would not grow. It shows poorly ...

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What You Need and Don’t Need For New Baby

If you are planning on having a child, it can be confusing with all the gadgets that are available for newborns. When I was pregnant, we took a trip to Babies R Us, and I literally had to leave the store because it was so overwhelming with all the furniture, clothes, and items the store says you can’t live without. Actually, we found that babies really don’t need that much stuff. Obviously, you need diapers, food,  a carseat, and clothes. In a primitive sense you could get by just fine with those things only, but there are some baby items that make life easier. Here is my top five list of  new baby items you  might need and ones you surely don’t. Things We Couldn’t Live Without Pack ‘N’ Play. We used this  every day. These are especially useful after your baby starts moving around. If you need somewhere safe to put them down for a few minutes, the playpen is perfect. These also make great travel beds and changing tables. Boppy. This is a u-shaped pillow that you can lay a newborn on for feeding or naps. It supports their head. When they take forever to eat and it’s two in the morning, your arm ...

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Can’t Take My Eyes Off These Blogs #7

It’s the end of the week again and time for another roundup. While the weather is beautiful right now, we had a taste of winter earlier this week. I work a few times a month at a satellite office in Telluride and have to drive over Lizard Head Pass to get there. Lizard Head is well over 10,000 feet, so when it rains at lower elevations, I often have to drive through snow. It was a bit slushy on my way home this week, and I noticed a truck off the road. Luckily everyone was OK, but the truck that went over the bank was not going anywhere. Turns out the stranded drivers lived less than a mile from me, and I was able to give them a ride home. Strange way to make new friends! Giveaways you should check out: Michelle at Making Sense of Sense  is on WordPress now and, to celebrate, is giving away $100 in Paypal cash! Veronica at Pelican on Money got a new writer and is giving away 2 $25 PayPal cash prizes! Crystal at Budgeting in the Fun Stuff is giving away a Fincon Swag Bag and tomorrow is the last day to ...

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Why You Should Visit a National Park

Arches National Park

  One of my life goals is to visit every single national park in the United States. Whether it is the hoodoos of Bryce Canyon, the gentle giant trees in Redwood NP, or the stalactites and stalagmites of Mammoth Cave, natural wonders abound. I admit that I am not well traveled. I got a late start. My husband’s and my parents rarely left town. As a result, there are lots of places we hope to see, and we are trying to give our daughter great life experiences. National parks offer something special.  With the right planning, they can make a very affordable vacation or weekend trip as well. National Park Costs National park entrance fees vary, but are usually around $10. Admission is usually good for seven days and is per car load, not per person.  The most expensive entrance fee I’ve seen is for the Grand Canyon at $25. I imagine the more popular parks like Yellowstone and Yosemite are similar. The National Parks Service offers several free admission days throughout the year. For 2012, the remaining days are this Saturday, September 29th and Veterans Day weekend, November 10-12.  In some parks, there is a volunteer program where you can earn ...

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Rental Property Series: Finding Hidden Treasures

We are getting very close to being finished with our rental property, at least for the time being. This week we found some hidden treasure. If you are new, you might want to start by reading the previous posts in this series. Rental Property Series: Buying Our First Rental Property Rental Property Series: Renovating Our Rental Property Rental Property Series: Overcoming Setbacks If you don’t feel like reading my amazing real estate posts, as a brief recap: We purchased this property on August 24, 2012 for $63,000, with 25% down. We plan on spending $3000-$5000 on renovations. We hope to be done and have a renter by October 1. We are using a property management company and are asking $750/mo for rent. This property has a pretty large fenced yard. There are two sheds in the yard that have been locked. We didn’t have the keys to open them when we originally viewed the property, but the realtor said they had been full of afgans (the knitted ones, not people from Afganistan). Apparently, theprevious owner enjoyed knitting in addition to her other hobbies like cooking bacon, smoking, and collecting dryer lint. The sheds were supposed to have been cleaned out, so we ...

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