Archive for the ‘family working together’ Category

Window Repair with #2 Son

Saturday, July 28th, 2012

Last Saturday I took my 10-year-old son along with me to repair a window in one of our rental houses. I like to take one of my boys along so they can learn a thing or two about how to repair things, as well as so they can see how I deal with tenants, and, mainly so that we spend some time together and have fun together. I always try to make it fun for them. For example, we went to ACE Hardware to get a new window cut, we looked at the stuff he likes to see, like BB guns and rockets, and, I bought him a bag of Boston Baked Beans.

It was really a big help to have #2 son along. He not only does what I ask him to do, unlike his teenage brother “Mr. Cool Guy”, but he also brings an enthusiastic spirit to the endeavor. One of the first things I have to do is to chip out the old putty from around the window. It’s my least favorite part of the job since it involves a lot of tedious work. After I explain what I am going to do, my son responds. “Can I do it?” I say “okay, go at it,” but I’m thinking, “Well, if you really insist!” What is old hat to me is new and exciting to him.

When we arrived back from ACE with the new window, I accidentally broke the window as I took it out of the back seat of my pick-up. I thought it might discourage my son to head back to ACE again to buy another window, but his response was, “I need a refill on the Boston Baked Beans anyway.” After that the broken glass incident became a running gag with comments like “is it time to break the window again?” and “let’s break the window again and get some more Boston Baked Beans.”

I must admit, it’s not nearly as entertaining when I have to do those little repair jobs all by myself.

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Fannie Mae making it easy for investors with new HomePath program

Saturday, September 4th, 2010

Fannie Mae has established it’s new HomePath progam to reduce its portfolio of tens of thousands of foreclosed homes. This present real estate investors with a great new opportunity. Fannie Mae must sell these houses to stop the bleeding of red ink, and will finance the transaction to new owners with attractive terms.

The benefits include:

•Low down payment and flexible mortgage terms (fixed-rate, adjustable-rate, or interest-only)
•You may qualify even if your credit is less than perfect
•Available to both owner occupiers and investors
•Down payment (at least 3 percent) can be funded by your own savings; a gift; a grant; or a loan from a nonprofit organization, state or local government, or employer
•No mortgage insurance
•No appraisal fees
•Also eligible for HomePath Renovation Mortgage
•HomePath Mortgage financing is available from a variety of lenders – both local and national.

Get more details, and locate properties in your area at:

Upcoming radio interviews

September 15 at 8:05 am, the Dan and Mike Show with Dan Ramey, WBEX 1490 AM, Chillicothe, Ohio.

Make fixer upper house repair a family affair

Sunday, November 11th, 2007

For the first fixer-upper house that my wife and I bought, our two boys were 4 and 7 years old. Some people might think that they couldn’t do much at that age. My experience is that children can learn lot, and sometimes help you in the process, if you adjust the work to their level and let them do what is interesting to them. At that age they like to try out as many different activities as they can.

My philosophy is let them hammer some nails, even if they bend them. Let them paint even if they spill a few drops (or gallons). Usually the paint ends up on their clothes, the ground, or sometimes the dog. One time, I took a picture of my kids painting a fence because they actually got some paint on the fence!

Let your kids cut tree branches even if the branches that they can cut are no bigger than a twig. (Of course, they’ll need close supervision for some jobs.) In other words, include them in any activity that they want to be included in. They are learning. If they make mistakes, take it lightly and laugh a lot. Keep them interested by giving them a lot of different jobs to do. Make them feel good about themselves. In the long run, that’s more important than all the fix-up houses in the world.

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