Playing it Smart in a Volatile Market

Last month we talked about inflation and its impact on the housing market. That trend continues and Russia’s war with Ukraine is directly affecting the world economy. Gas prices around the globe have surged, and even though they’re coming down a bit, an average of $4.24 per gallon is still much higher than anyone wants to pay.

Food costs continue to rise as well, in addition to new car sales and other big-ticket items. So where’s the good news?

COVID-19 rates are inching upward with the latest strains, but severe illness is at a pandemic low, thanks to vaccinations and a steadily weakening virus.

Mortgage rates are up, too. Your best course of action here is to control what you can. With an uncertain future it makes sense to lock in a fixed rate to avoid any spikes that could cost you thousands of dollars with a variable rate mortgage. Protecting your largest asset is a priority in a volatile market. Refinancing is always an option if you’re concerned about future rate hikes.

Even if you’re only exploring possibilities related to your mortgage and finances, contact me for some helpful advice to figure out your next steps.

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If you’d like to chat about mortgage options, please call me at 617-965-1236. If you’re planning to buy this year, let’s talk soon. I look forward to speaking with you.

Ready to buy a new home or refinance the one you own? Please get in touch and I’ll be happy to answer your questions and help guide you through the process. I look forward to speaking with you.

April Fools’ Day

Everyone knows that on April 1, it’s become customary to play funny but harmless practical jokes on our friends, family and colleagues. But did you know that April Fools’ Day dates back centuries?

We don’t know exactly when and why this “holiday” came to exist, but we have discovered a few theories.

Theory 1: In 1582, France switched from the Julian calendar to the Gregorian calendar, moving the first day of the new year from April 1 to January 1. News didn’t travel that quickly in those days, so those who were still celebrating the new year at the spring equinox were thought to be April fools.

Theory 2: In Scotland, during the 1700s, the tradition became a two-day event, starting with “Hunting the Gowk,” in which people were sent on phony errands (“Gowk” is another word for “Cuckoo”) and it was followed by Tailie Day. Pranks played on people’s behinds, such as pinning fake tails or “kick me” signs on them became a regular tradition.

Home Improver: 3 Uses for Fabric Softener Sheets

Those dryer sheets you’ve been using to remove static and soften your clothes and towels have alternative uses. Here are three of our favorites.

  1. Freshen Up Your Gym Bag. A good workout can lead to unwanted odors that get trapped inside your gym bag, only to burst forth the next time you open it. Even the cleanest bag can get a little funky, so drop a few dryer sheets in it to neutralize odors. Pro tip: stick them in your sneakers to minimize foot odor.
  2. Soap Scum. A few drops of water applied to your favorite fabric softener sheet will remove soapy buildup from your shower tiles. It’s like magic! Give it a try!
  3. Remove Pet Hair. A dryer sheet can combat pet hair on your furniture. Wipe down shelves, tables, counters, and furniture with a dryer sheet and you’ll forget you have pets in the house. Works great on clothing too, so check your sweaters before leaving the house. You’ll want to remove dog or cat hair that may have latched onto your sleeve. Grab a sheet and wipe it right off!