66 Ways to Save Money: Housing - Fox29 WFLX TV, West Palm Beach, Florida-

66 Ways to Save Money: Housing

Home Purchase

  1. You can often negotiate a lower sale price by employing a buyer broker who works for you not the seller. If the buyer broker or the broker's firm also lists properties, there may be a conflict of interest, so ask them to tell you if they are showing you a property that they have listed.
  2. Do not purchase any house until it has been examined by a home inspector that you selected.

Renting a Place to Live

  1. Do not limit your rental housing search to classified ads or referrals from friends and acquaintances. Select buildings where you would like to live and contact their building manager or owner to see if anything is available.
  2. Remember that signing a lease probably obligates you to make all monthly payments for the term of the agreement.

Home Improvement

  1. Home repairs often cost thousands of dollars and are the subject of frequent complaints. Select from among several well established, licensed contractors who have submitted written, fixed-price bids for the work.
  2. Do not sign any contract that requires full payment before satisfactory completion of the work.

Major Appliances

  1. Consult Consumer Reports, available in most public libraries, for information about specific brands and how to evaluate them, including energy use. There are often great price and quality differences among brands.
  2. Once you've selected a brand, check the phone book to learn what stores carry this brand, then call at least four of these stores for the prices of specific models. After each store has given you a quote, ask if that's the lowest price they can offer you. This comparison shopping can save you as much as $100 or more.

(Information provided by Consumer Literacy Consortium)

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