By Lisa Harrison Rivas
For most people, buying a house is the biggest investment they’ll ever make. People often spend months searching for their dream home, and when they finally find what appears to be it, they can’t wait to buy it. But we all know looks can be deceiving, so before the packing starts, it’s a good idea to get a home inspection.
Here’s what you can expect from a home inspection.
An inspection is usually done after a house is under contract, meaning a signed offer has been accepted. If you are working with a real estate agent, he or she can provide a list of licensed inspectors for you to choose from. The house will be inspected for structural defects and pests (crawling critters, not annoying family members).
All lenders require a Wood Destroying Insect Report on pre-existing homes before funds will be advanced for the sale. The report will state if the home has an infestation or damage from a previous infestation and if the house has been previously treated for termites.
Sheds are a haven for termites, so they also should be inspected. One client I was working with had an old shed on a property torn down at the buyer’s request. Sure enough, the shed was full of termites and the house was also infested. The shed was removed, and the seller paid for the termite treatment, which was not cheap.
Keep in mind the Wood Destroying Insect Report must be done within 30 days of closing, so it’s a good idea to have this inspection done last in case there’s a delay in closing.
After the structure of the house is examined, the inspector will issue a report on the roof, foundation, heating and cooling system, electrical system, plumbing and other visible defects. Common issues inspectors find include damage from moisture, aging roofs, heating/cooling defects, termite damage, and improperly installed insulation.
Cracked or shifting foundations also are common in South Texas. I had another client who had found what she thought was the perfect home in the perfect neighborhood. The home looked flawless at the showing. An offer was made and accepted, and she was anxious to move forward with the deal. At last, she would be getting the home she had been waiting for. But then, the inspection report came back and it revealed that the beautiful house in the perfect neighborhood had a cracked foundation. This is a perfect example of looks being deceiving and the precise reason a good licensed inspector is crucial.
In older homes, especially in rural areas, the wiring can be a problem. It’s not uncommon for inspectors to find it to be outdated. In general, they will check to see if the house has sufficient electrical capacity needed to power today’s appliances safely.
Once the inspector finishes the report, you and your agent will receive a copy. Decisions will be made about which items need to be addressed before moving forward with the deal. The buyer’s agent will send repair requests to the seller’s agent, and both parties should sign off on which items will be repaired. If you are the seller, make sure you keep all your repair receipts. If you are the buyer, make sure you ask to see them during the final walk-through.
The long summers in South Texas means air conditioning systems are running most of the year, so potential buyers often request that sellers pay for routine maintenance on the heating and cooling system before closing on the house.
And while it might be tempting to save some cash and have your uncle with a tool belt look at the system, I’d recommend that, unless he’s licensed, you politely decline the offer and hire a licensed professional, in which the state requires. Inspectors say a lot of the problems they see are caused by unlicensed Mr. Fix-its.
The buyer, unless he or she is financing with a VA loan, usually pays for both the general structural inspection and the Wood Destroying Insect Report, but like anything else, this is negotiable. The cost varies depending on the size of the house, but expect to spend from $300 to $500 for the structural report. A Wood Destroying Insect Report will cost around $160. Depending on the inspector, these costs can be paid upfront or at closing.
So now you know what to expect from a home inspection.
Lisa Harrison Rivas is a Realtor with Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Don Johnson, Realtors. Contact Lisa at 210-380-9006 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Black Women & Stress
Stress, Depression & Anxiety: An Escalating Epidemic For Professional Black Woman
Nationwide — Half of black American women report that they experience severe stress, while only a quarter of Caucasian women in the US report extreme stress. Research indicates that black women are also more likely to experience major depression and anxiety disorders, and Black women’s symptoms are more severe than those of their white counterparts.
In addition, African American woman are disproportionally affected by stress-related diseases like hypertension, obesity and Type 2 Diabetes. Dr. Adwoa Akhu, an expert in stress management, shows women of color how to stop running on empty so they can think, feel, and live better, with increased joy and decreased stress.
“The first step toward alleviating the heavy weight carried by the ‘strong black woman’, as well as addressing the resulting mental and physical damage, is the practice of self-care,” explains Dr. Akhu, a Licensed Clinical Psychologist and founder of the Redefining the Strong Black Woman movement.
Dr. Akhu says that black woman can reduce their stress levels and increase joy by incorporating the following three tools into their hectic lives:
* Focusing on gratitude
* Learning to meditate
* Engaging in daily self-care
Dr. Akhu’s new book, Cultivating Inner Peace: A Sustainable System for Professional Black Women, documents her simple to follow, time tested, powerful system. Cultivating Inner Peacemakes it easy to draw in the positive, clear out the negative, and use even small windows of time to foster mindfulness, clarity, and joy in our daily lives, which will lead to better relationships with ourselves and others.
Cultivating Inner Peace is:
* A practical system: it provides maximum insight in minimum time from brief, specially formatted chapters that make it easy for busy people to consume in just a few minutes at a time.
* Spiritually based and supported by science: powerful spiritual wisdom that is validated by psychological research.
* Easy to relate to: Dr. Akhu includes examples from her personal experience as well as stories from people she has helped to illustrate real-world applications of the program.
Dr. Akhu is an author, speaker, and former president of the NY Association of Black Psychologists who regularly teaches NYPD Hostage Negotiators about mental health and mental illness. She is a master workshop facilitator, offering topics such as: Redefining What it Means to be a “Strong Black Woman,” Working on Empty: The Antidote for Secondhand Stress, and Rewiring the Brain to Combat Stressful Involuntary Bias. Dr. Akhu is also a wife and mother of two girls.
Learn more at http://www.drakhu.com
NFL – Roc Nation Partnership
New York, NY – Roc Nation announced it has entered into a long-term partnership with the National Football League as the league’s official Live Music Entertainment Strategists. The partnership will begin as the NFL’s 100th season kicks off and will serve as a commitment from Roc Nation and the NFL to nurture and strengthen community through music and the NFL’s Inspire Change initiative.
Roc Nation will spearhead and advise on the selection of artists for NFL tentpole performances, including the Super Bowl, and will assist in the production and promotion of new music as well as culture- and cause-focused initiatives.
A core component of the partnership will be to amplify the Inspire Change platform priority areas identified by NFL Players, including Education and Economic Advancement, Improving Police-Community Relations, and Criminal Justice Reform.
“With its global reach, the National Football League has the platform and opportunity to inspire change across the country,” said Shawn “JAY-Z” Carter. “Roc Nation has shown that entertainment and enacting change are not mutually exclusive ideas – instead, we unify them. This partnership is an opportunity to strengthen the fabric of communities across America.”
Roc Nation and the NFL will work together to create and distribute music content across multiple music streaming services for a variety of initiatives. Roc Nation will work alongside the league with artists to curate the richness of football culture nationwide. Content initiatives may include a Live Visual Album, “Songs of the Season” original music, archived and current content from live NFL music events and artist podcasts.
“Roc Nation is one of the most globally influential and impactful organizations in entertainment,” said NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell. “The NFL and Roc Nation share a vision of inspiring meaningful social change across our country. We are thrilled to partner with Roc Nation and look forward to making a difference in our communities together.”
Roc Nation will also consult and collaborate on various aspects of production, promotion, marketing, and communications for live music events and related activations, which include new endeavors such as Songs of the Season and a Pro Bowl Community Concert.
We Buy Black Convention
Black Consumers and Sellers Gear Up For Historic We Buy Black Convention
The second annual event plans to honor the enslaved Africans who arrived in 1619, and reclaim the power of Black commerce.
This August marks 400 years since the first Africans reached the shores of Jamestown, Virginia where they were auctioned for sale as slaves. In remembrance of this historic event, one millennial entrepreneur is planning a different kind of sale – one that he hopes will impact the next 400 years of African-American history.
On Aug. 23-25, 2019, over 120 Black-owned vendors and consumers will gather at the second-annual We Buy Black Convention in Atlanta at the Georgia International Convention Center. There will be Black-owned companies selling everything from soaps and shea butter to laundry detergent, bed linens, and toothbrushes. While the items themselves may represent the routines of everyday life, event organizer and founder of e-commerce site WeBuyBlack.com, Shareef Abdul-Malik says that the impact of this singular commercial event has significance beyond its surface.
“This year’s convention is deeper on a lot of levels because our people were brought to this country to be bought and sold,” said Abdul-Malik. “So, not only are we honoring our ancestors and how their struggle for freedom and justice got us where we are today, but we’re also reclaiming the effects of capitalism that enslaved us in the first place.”
At just 27, Abdul-Malik is already a veteran when it comes to connecting Black consumers with Black-owned businesses, but he hopes this convention will help get the Black community excited about the wide variety of high-quality products Black businesses have to offer and inspire others to become business owners themselves.
“Our mission is for the average Black family to be able to easily and efficiently buy everything they want and need from a Black vendor,” Abdul-Malik said. “We’ve been able to help business owners sell and market their goods, but now we need more Black manufacturers.”
With the theme “Setting the Precedent for the Next 400 Years”, the convention will begin with the Inaugural The Next 400 Gala, honoring Yusuf Salaam of the Central Park 5, Mo’Nique the comedian and entertainer, Mahmoud Abdul-Rauf who preceded Kaepernick by 20 years and lost his NBA career due to his political stance, and lastly Dr. Key Hallmon of the Village Market ATL. This Gala will be hosted by Derrick Boazman of WAOK 1380 Radio, and Cleveland Councilman Bashir Jones will be the Keynote Speaker. There are only 400 tickets available to attend this Gala that Friday evening.
The weekend includes workshops on business ownership and manufacturing, alongside the vast array of Black-owned products that will be sold. There will also be B2B Speed Consulting Sessions and a “Shark Tank” style pitch competition called Pitch Black.
The event also boasts live performances from national and local recording artists, a Popcorn Competition, and a Children’s Village, where youth participants can engage with Black-owned brands and performers on their own level.
On Sunday, August 25th, The We Buy Black Convention will be the United States satellite location to observe the international moment of silence in commemoration for the 400 years. This weekend will be full of notable moments in our history and it’s definitely something that deserves our participation.
“Even if you just come to replenish your supply of toothbrushes or get your child a new backpack for school, you’ve contributed to something that will help generations of Black people,” he said. “I think our ancestors would be proud of what we’re trying to do.”
We Buy Black Convention
Aug. 23-25, 2019
Georgia International Convention Center
2000 Convention Center Concourse – Atlanta, GA 30337
Tickets and more information can be found at www.webuyblackconvention.com.
WeBuyBlack.com is the largest online marketplace for Black-owned businesses and individual sellers. By giving Black businesses and sellers access to a diverse, open, and international market, WeBuyBlack stimulates the circulation of wealth among the Black Diaspora and assists Black businesses in providing for families and communities at large.
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