I love watching the Home and Garden Network. My family and I are often found glued to the channel all weekend long. There is something mesmerizing about reality tv, isn’t there? Thankfully we are mesmerized by the “normal stuff” and not the wild and crazy reality tv. Well– I am the odd man out when it comes to GhostHunters— my husband and daughters love that show.
But I digress-
Our favorite HGTV shows are Property Virgins and My First Place. Property Virgins takes viewers inside the world of house hunting through the eyes of first-time buyers. The series focuses on the roller-coaster journey of property virgins’ first foray into real estate, offering tell-it-like-it-is entertainment and practical take-home advice. The show, My First Place also follows a set of first-time buyers and their realtor along the stress-filled, yet exciting, search for the perfect home.*
This past summer we decided to do our own personal version of Property Virgins and start shopping around for our first home. To prepare, I checked out Nolo’s Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home.(643.12 BRA) This book was absolutely phenomenal in addressing everything we needed to know about purchasing our first abode. The book is filled with advice from lawyers, real estate agents and mortgage experts.It has fifteen chapters stuffed full of information and guidance tools as well as a cd with downloadable checklists as you embark on a very stressful but exciting adventure.
Off we went, armed with the wonderful Nolo guide, our preconceived conceptions from HGTV and a local real estate guru. As with all things in life– the television show was not “really” reality but it offered some comical thoughts in my head while we were shopping: not all houses come equiped with granite counter tops, new hard wood floors and a pool?? And they really do not haggle over the prices too much. And yes, you really can live with one bathroom or live without a master suite . Moral of the story: you can be entertained by television but you better arm yourself with the facts.
As we settle in, as “virgin” home buyers, we have required a few purchases of appliances and tools. My husband has been bitten by the home improvement bug . Hence, the recently acquired combo pack of re-chargeable super duper power tools. We were able to research at length our expenditures with OWL’s new online tool, Consumer Reports. One purchase it really helped us with was our new energy efficient washing machine. If your contract reads “appliances included”, it may be that they do not work when you go to use them even when they worked at the inspection(and the final walk thru).
Consumer Reports is also available in print form at the OWL.
Browse the OWL home improvement sections. You will find great books such as:
Plumbing and Heating by Popular Mechanics (696.1 JAC) This handy book covers household emergencies and regular home improvements. Avoid costly plumber bills with this book to guide you along with your plumbing needs.
This book caught my eye as I was browsing as it has easy to read diagrams and how to visual guides: How Things Work in Your Home(and what to do when they don’t) (643.7 TIM)
The House Always Wins by Marni Jameson(747 JAM) Jameson guides the reader through the endless maze of choices and decisions every home owner faces with home improvements and design changes.
Get your list ready for the spring!
Please also take a look at the OWL’s great selection of Nolo Legal Guides for help. Nolo helps to make the legal system accessible to everyone. They help individuals, businesses and nonprofits navigate through their various legal needs .
Nolo Quicken WillMakerPlus(346.73 WIL) Create a will and protect your property and assets.
For guidance with Family Law :
Look at Nolo Building a Parenting Agreement That Works(346.73 LYS) and Nolo Divorce without Court(346.73 STO)
and of course, For Real Estate look at the guides such as Nolo Foreclosure Survival Guide (346.73 ELI) and the Nolo’s Essential Guide to Buying Your First Home.(643.12 BRA)
This post is authored by Audra, who is very happy to spending her first Christmas in her new home 🙂
* excerpt from www.hgtv.com