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When it comes to moving, how do you pack up food and ensure it will safely make it from Point A to Point B? There are many challenges associated with packing and storing food while you move. Fortunately, we're here to help you take the guesswork out of packing up food so that you can enjoy it once you reach your new home.

Now, let's take a look at three tips to ensure you can quickly and effortlessly pack your food and transport it to a new address.

1. Get Rid of Any Expired Food Items

Go through your pantry and remove any expired or soon-to-expire food items. That way, you won't have to worry about transporting these items to your new address on moving day.

In addition, you should try to eliminate food waste. For soon-to-expire foods, consume them before it's too late. Or, you can always offer these items to friends or family members.

2. Pack Fragile Food Items Carefully

Flour, sugar and other fragile food items likely require extra attention when you pack. If you dedicate the necessary time and resources to pack fragile food items carefully, you can eliminate the risk that these items could leak or spill while you're moving.

Heavy-duty, sealable containers are ideal for storing fragile food items. These containers usually are easy to find at supermarkets and retail outlets and will ensure your food items will remain safe and secure at all times.

Furthermore, don't forget to cover salt and pepper shakers. Place a piece of masking tape over the top of these shakers, and you can prevent the shakers from spilling out.

3. Use Appropriate Moving Boxes

Moving boxes come in many sizes, and when you're packing food items, you'll want to use the right-sized boxes. By doing so, you may be able to store various food items in the same box – something that may help you unpack quickly once you reach your final destination.

In most instances, small and medium-sized moving boxes are perfect for food items. These boxes offer plenty of space. Plus, with the right-sized moving boxes in hand, you may be able to avoid the temptation to stuff too many heavy food items into a single box.

If you need additional support with packing food items or other belongings, you may want to discuss your options with a professional moving company. This business employs friendly, knowledgeable staff members who can help you prepare for moving day.

Lastly, it never hurts to collaborate with a real estate agent, either. In addition to helping you buy or sell a house, a real estate agent can offer recommendations about moving companies in your area. Therefore, a real estate agent can provide extra help as you search for ways to streamline the moving process.

Simplify the process of moving your food items from one location to the next – use the aforementioned tips, and you can ensure all of your food items will arrive intact at your new address.


Once you have gone through the pre-approval process and have narrowed down your home search, there’s a good chance you’ll soon find a place that you want to make an offer on. This can seem like a huge step for any first time homebuyer. Even seasoned home buyers feel butterflies when the time comes to make an offer on a home they love. Before you even start your home search, you should become educated on how to make a good offer in order to land the property that you really want. There’s so many factors that effect your offer including the surrounding properties and the current state of the market. Here are a few very important pieces of advice that you should heed in order to have a successful time securing a home and closing the deal. 

Craft A Persuasive Offer

In many areas there’s a low inventory of homes and a high number of those seeking to buy. This means that you’re not guaranteed to get a property that you have made an offer on. Lowball offers might not be at all competitive and even insulting to sellers in certain markets. Often, you may need to make an offer of more than the asking price if you’re in love with a home. By working with your real estate agent and doing the right research, you can craft an offer on a home that will be compelling for sellers.    

Decide On Your Contingencies 

Once an offer has been accepted, it’s time to get to work on those contingencies. Be especially mindful of financing contingencies. If something falls through in the process, you’ll want to be sure you can get the deposit you made back. Also keep in mind that sellers love reliable buyers who have already been preapproved.  

Home inspection contingencies are another area of importance. After you sign the purchase agreement and the inspection is complete, you’re allowed to ask the seller to make repairs or provide you with a counter offer. While this can be one of the more nerve-wracking aspects of home buying, it has many positives. Home inspections protect buyers from purchasing a home that they can’t live with in cases of extreme mold, termites and other environmental and structural issues. 

The appraisal contingency is also important. In order for you to qualify for a loan, the property must be appraised. The property must be valued at or above the purchase price. A loan will only be approved by a lender up to the appraised value. If your home loan is $400,000 but your home of choice is appraised at $390,000, you’ll have a problem.       

Your Finances Matter Until You Get To The Closing Table

Don’t go crazy with all kinds of purchases before you reach the closing table. Opening a new credit account at your favorite furniture store, for example, could lead to a disastrous surprise on closing day. Hold off on big purchases until after you secure your home. Also avoid making large transfers or deposits from your bank account. don’t do anything to negatively affect your credit score

  

Know What To Bring To The Closing

Don’t show up to the closing for your home purchase unprepared. You’ll need to have the following items: 


  • Photo ID
  • Checkbook
  • Cosigners 



Think Ahead


Be sure that you think of the future when you’re purchasing your home. You’ll need to have enough cash flow to pay for things like property taxes, home insurance, utility bills and even new furniture for your home. Plan your future mortgage payments accordingly. Some companies have payments that are monthly or bimonthly. 


While buying a home is a huge undertaking, with the right plans in place, the process will be as seamless as possible. With the right plans, the moving truck will be pulling into the driveway before you know it.      


Everyone knows that their credit score will affect the mortgage they qualify for and the interest rate they receive. The details of how exactly those numbers are arrived at, however, are a bit hazy for the average prospective homeowner.

This confusion is due to a number of reasons. Chief among them is the fact that your average person isn’t well-versed in credit terminology or the variables that go into determining their credit scores.

In this article, I’m going to break down credit scores and credit bureaus, then discuss how each of them affects the mortgage rate you could receive. Then, we’ll talk about some ways you can boost your score to qualify for a better rate.

Anatomy of a credit score

Credit scores are determined by five main variables. In order of importance, they are:

  • 35%: your payment history on loans, bills, credit cards, etc.

  • 30%: your total debt amount for all of your accounts

  • 15%: length of your credit history (how long you’ve had open accounts for loans, credit cards, etc.)

  • 10%: types of credit you have used (auto loan, student loan, credit card… diversity of loans matters)

  • 10%: recent credit inquiries (such as taking out new loans or opening new credit cards)

To have a “good” (over 700) or “excellent” (over 750) credit score, you’ll need to focus on each of these factors. For most people, paying their bills on time over a long enough timeline is enough to get them into the excellent range.

But things happen in life. People forget to pay an important bill, they have financial emergencies, or they have to take out a loan for an unforeseeable expense.

The credit bureaus

So, who are the people that determine your credit score?

There are three main credit bureaus: Experian, TransUnion, and Equifax. Lenders will look at reports from all three bureaus to determine your rate. Due to the Fair and Accurate Credit Transactions Act of 2003, consumers are able to receive a free copy of their credit report from each bureau once per year.

Since then, companies like Credit Karma have made credit reports even more accessible. Users are able to check in on their credit as often as they want free of charge.

Since much of your credit score is out of your hands, at least in the short-term, what can you do to help boost your score over the next few months to increase your chances of getting a good interest rate on your loan? Two things.

Credit and mortgages

So, just how much of an impact does your credit score have on your mortgage rate? Having an excellent score can give you a full percentage point lower on your monthly interest rate.

One percent doesn’t seem like much, but over the period of a 30-year loan that can amount to tens of thousands of dollars that you could have saved if you had a better credit score. As you can imagine, having an extra $2,000 per year can be quite helpful to a new homeowner.

So, what can you do to boost your score?

Make corrections

Since you have access to free credit reports be sure to go through your detailed report a few months before you plan to apply for a mortgage. Report any harmful errors to help you increase your score.

Don’t apply for new credit

The period from now until you apply for a mortgage is an important one. If you make new credit inquiries (i.e., open up new credit cards, take out new loans, etc.), your score will temporarily decrease. Wait until after you sign on your mortgage to take out other loans.


Getting ready to buy a new home? You'll want to hire a real estate agent to guide you along the homebuying journey, as this professional will possess the skills and know-how needed to ensure you can find your dream home quickly. There are many great reasons for homebuyers to work with a real estate agent, including: 1. You Can Check Out a Wide Range of Homes That Fit Your Needs. Whether you're looking for a three-bedroom, two-bathroom home in the city or a small residence on the outskirts of town, a real estate agent can arrange home showings to ensure you can check out a variety of houses that fit your needs. Remember, a real estate agent works for you and will do everything he or she can to help you find your ideal residence. This professional will conduct research into homes that meet your criteria and even work with a home seller's real estate agent to make sure you can view a house at your convenience. 2. You Can Receive Expert Support During the Negotiation Stage. No homebuyer wants to enter the negotiation stage alone. Fortunately, a real estate agent will help you manage negotiations. Negotiations with a home seller can become contentious if you're not careful, but your real estate agent will go above and beyond the call of duty to help you get your dream house at the right price, regardless of the circumstances. 3. You Can Get Extra Help with a Home Inspection. Completing a home inspection is paramount before you finalize a purchase agreement with a home seller. And with a trusted real estate agent at your side, you should have no trouble finding a reliable home inspector who will be able to identify potential issues with a house before you buy it. Your real estate agent also can help you minimize stress if a home inspector encounters problems with a house. For example, your real estate agent will speak with a home seller to ensure any home repairs are completed before you finalize your purchase agreement. Thus, you'll be able to buy a home that you can enjoy for years to come thanks in part to the support provided by your real estate agent. 4. You Can Enjoy a Simple Closing Process. The closing process often represents the final step before you can move into your new home. Therefore, it is crucial to understand the paperwork that is included as part of this process and ensure you are comfortable with each form you sign. Your real estate agent, meanwhile, will be with you during the closing process and can explain the importance of each form. Furthermore, your real estate agent will be happy to respond to any concerns or queries and help you feel comfortable throughout the closing process. Ultimately, your real estate agent may play a key role in your ability to find the perfect house. As a result, be sure to spend some time interviewing prospective real estate agents in your area to find a real estate professional that you can collaborate with during each stage of the homebuying journey.


This listing recently sold for $215,000.

3712 GRIFFIN VIEW DR, LADY LAKE, FL 32159  

Residential
$215,000
Price
$215,000
Sale Price
3
Bedrooms
2
Baths
LOVINGLY MAINTAINED, FIRST TIME ON THE MARKET! This spacious 3/2 was built to the highest standards of the day which are evident by it's great bones, solid construction, and attention to custom details. The open floor plan includes a bonus 9x19 den/office/flex room, side-entry 2 car garage, brick wood-burning fireplace in the Great Room, an 8x12 walk-in pantry, whole-house vacuum, and a 10x25 screened-in back porch. The Master Bathroom has an exterior door for your convenience, making it the perfect "pool bath" location. The 2nd bathroom has double sinks and a shower/tub combo. This well-constructed home sits high atop 2.74 dry acres and the water is supplied by the upgraded 4" well. 5 ton Lennox 14 seer A/C is brand new. 2005 Roof. Old water heater recently replaced. Enjoy this home as it is or update the floors, kitchen, and bathrooms to suit your style and color preferences! NO HOA This ideal location is just outside the city limits so you will enjoy country living and county-only taxes while having the benefits of being less than 5 miles from the shopping conveniences and entertainment to be found in The Villages. Note: Some will consider this lovingly maintained home a "Fixer Upper" simply because they might wish to update the kitchen, bathrooms, and flooring with the latest colors, textures, and appliances, however the home is in no need of repairs!