15 Things You Must Know Before Buying a Maine Coon Kitten

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The only way to be 100% sure of getting a verified pure breed Maine Coon cat is to buy a pedigree kitten from a breeder. The breeder should be able to present a family tree of your cat’s pedigree and provide relevant certification.

A recommended place to start a search for a reputable breeder in your local area is the „Maine Coon Breed Fanciers Association“ (www.mcbfa.org) Maine Coon kittens can be instantly recognizable by the long tufty ears and oversized paws, as seen in the classic longhaired American however there is a European strain of Maine Coon, (my own Maine Coon, King Henry comes from a German line) which has a shorter ruff around the neck, and often a fuller, squarer muzzle. The differences are not apparent until the cat is between 12 to 18 months.

In terms of identifying a „pure“ pedigree Maine Coon, you’ll be relying quite heavily on information the breeder is presenting to you. If you have difficulty finding a reputable breeder, you could try and get a recommendation by talking to individuals at a local event or an „all breeds“ Cat show. It is essential you are happy with your breeder – if you are becoming a Maine Coon owner for the first time, you may need to rely on their expert advice.

You can expect to pay anywhere between $500 and $800 for a pure breed Maine Coon. With food, litter, vet bills and cat-sitters for holidays, Maine Coons can be a relatively expensive investment. All owners will agree that they are a truly wonderful breed and will repay you many times over.

IMPORTANT TIP: This could save a lot of heartache, trouble and expense later on; When buying an expensive pet, do not go for the kitten you feel sorry for and looks like it needs help. Any kittens with signs of withdrawal, low energy or general apathy, should really be avoided. Choose an independent, lively, energetic kitten. Pick out kittens that don’t necessarily come to you but are, however, interested in their surroundings.

It’s best to pick a local breeder and visit them in their home, when you’re first making your initial enquiries to check the kitten’s living conditions, health and welfare of all cats living in the same environment.

Although it sounds like common sense, have questions prepared that will help you to establish whether the breeder can be trusted.

Questions you’ll definitely want to ask:

1. How much experience does the breeder have? If you need assurance about the breeder’s ability/expertise ask to speak to someone who has recently purchased a Maine Coon from that breeder.

2. Who are the kittens‘ parents and are they champions? Even if you don’t intend to show your cat, you’ll still want to find out about their pedigree. That’s what you are paying for. If this is just not important, you can sometimes find cheaper Maine Coons that are called „pet quality“ meaning they do not meet the required physical standards for showing. This does not mean they are not perfectly healthy.

3. Does the stud live with the breeder? If not, can the breeder guarantee that the stud has not been subjected to any illnesses e.g. cat flu. Has the breeder bred the stud before?

4. Is there any known heredity illnesses in the ancestral line such as HCM (can cause heart failure) and hip problems?

5. Have any of the other cats suffered from any illnesses for e.g. have any recent litters suffered from any strain of cat flu?

6. If relevant to your situation, ask if the kitten is comfortable around other animals and children?

7. At what point, could the kittens leave their mother (I would be concerned if the breeder allowed the kitten to leave it’s mother if it is less than 12 weeks).

8. Will a vet check the kittens before leaving the breeder’s home? How many times? If the Maine Coon becomes ill after it has left the breeder, who is responsible for paying vet’s fees or could the kitten be returned to the breeder?

9. You’ll also want to find out how often the queen is impregnated; because a queen subjected to „too regular“ pregnancies can be prone to producing weak or sickly kittens.

Other things you may want to check/do:

10. The living conditions of the stud and queens e.g. the cleanliness of the cages/rooms and the health/welfare of the cat etc.

11. Will the cats be litter trained before they move to their new homes?

12. Also, the environment where the mother and kittens are living. Are there toys, clean litter, warmth, food and water?

13. Check the eyes of the kitten to evaluate its health. Never purchase a kitten that has weeping eyes.

14. The breeder’s contract. Have a read of the written agreement before you commit yourself. Pay particular attention to areas of responsibility should the kitten become unwell soon after you’ve bought him/her.

15. You should book your new kitten in for an all round check with your own vet almost as soon as you’ve collected from the breeder. If there are any signs of problems, you’ll want to know within the first 24 hours.

On the whole, Maine Coon breeders are passionate about their cats and love what they do. There’s not a whole lot of money to be made in breeding Maine Coons, and it is very demanding work.

Unless, your gut feeling tells you otherwise, you can expect to be talking to breeders who are totally dedicated Maine Coon lovers.

Copyright 2006 Sarah Crosier

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Well Pump Repair: Common Water Pump Problems

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If you've owned a home, chances are you've experienced problems with water pressure. Whether it's a complete loss of flow pressure, or intermittent and inconsistent flow, water pressure trouble always seems to come at the most inconvenient time. Some homeowners water pressure problems may be persistent, such as constantly low water pressure, while others may experience an occasional but sudden lack of water pressure. While it's always best to have a professional water well contractor make repairs, it's good to know as much about your home's well water system as possible so that you can make the most informed decision possible when it comes to well pump repair.

Bad or No Well Water Pressure

Water wells are complicated machines, as are the pumps that pull the water from the well into your home. As with any complex mechanical system, a single problem can have more and more causes as the system increases in intricacy. (Anyone who has owned a car or a computer knows this truth well.) When it comes to low water pressure, the problem can range from problems with the pressure tank, worn pumps, clogged pipes and pumps, and even clogged filters and purification systems . The problem may be mechanical or electrical, or may be caused by the water your specific well is drawing from (for example, water with higher iron concentrations may contribute to clogged pipes which can affect water pressure). If the problems with your water pressure are a result of these or many other causes, a professional water well repair team should be able to diagnose and correct the problem, restoring your water pressure to its normal level. It should be noted that regular water well maintenance checks may catch many of these problems early, before they begin to have such noticeable and bothersome effects.

Another possible cause for diminishing or non-existent water pressure may have nothing to do with faulty or damaged equipment. Instead, it may be possible that the water reserves from which your well is drawing may in fact be running low. While this is not the most likely explanation, a professional well drilling and repair company will be able to determine if the water table is in fact running low and, if so, make adjustments to return the pressure to its normal level.

Intermittent Pump Cycling, or Short Cycling

Though some homeowners may imagine that the pump activates every time they turn on a tap – and then closes each time they shut it off – this is in fact not the case. Instead, the water well pump fills up a storage tank fitted with an air bladder. The pump fills the tank until it reaches a pre-set pressure, then shuts off. As you use water, the tank drains and the pressure decreases. Once the pressure reaches the low pre-set pressure, the pump turns on once again to refill the tank.

If everything is working as it should, a homeowner will notice the pump kicking on every so often, remaining active for a short period of time, then turning off until the next time it is needed. However, some pumps may begin to cycle intermittently, a process that is called "short cycling." Like low water pressure, short cycling can have many causes. If your water tank is leaking water, the tank may fill to its proper pressure, but because water is constantly flowing from the tank, the pressure drops rapidly and the pump turns on again a short time later. (You might also have other problems if you have a leaky water tank in your house!) Other causes may be a defective air bladder in the water tank, or damaged water pressure control switches, which measure the water pressure in the tank and tell the pump when to turn on and off.

Whatever the case may be, a professional water well repair team can diagnose the problem and come up with a plan to solve the short cycling problems.

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How To Read a Property Description

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Periodically a property owner who is just looking for information will call or write me asking a question about how to survey (or map out) their own property. A common question that comes up many times is: „How do I get my property records?“ The second question asked, usually after they have their description in hand is, „How do I read this?“

People ask these questions for many reasons. Some desire to fence or post their land, others because of pride of ownership, the desire for knowledge, or sometimes to protect themselves from the threat of encroachment. The information in this article won’t make you an overnight expert, and you will want a certified surveyor for any legal issues you may be facing, but this will help you understand your property better.

When reading your property description, you are reading about the imaginary lines that establish the „demarcation“ (boundary) between your property and your neighbors, usually referred to as the „adjoiner.“ An adjoiner may be another privately held owner or a governmental agency having a title interest such as the street in front of your property.

You will see property description in many formats. The most common are Lots, Metes, or Bounds. In some cases, the description may be a combination of the above three.

Briefly, when a larger parcel of land is divided into two or more parcels, it is called subdividing. The owner is subdividing the property into Lots. The description of each lot is usually created through a government platting procedure. This creates a process called „simultaneous conveyance“ because all parcels (lots), at the time of county recording, share equal title rights.

For example a property may be described as follows:

Lot 1, SMITH SUBDIVISION, City of Wheat Ridge, Colorado.

On the other hand, a Metes description is written „in sequence,“with the lines forming the perimeter of the property, whereas a Bounds description describes the limits of the property by calling for the „adjoiner“ description. Examples of an adjoiner would be – „Bounded on the west by County Road 119, on the east by Jones property,“ or perhaps a natural boundary such as „the Platte River.“ These two types of descriptions are considered „sequence conveyances“, in which junior and senior titles exist between adjoining lands.

In order to read your property description in the case of the Lot Description format, you would need a copy of the „Recorded„plat. If you don’t have one, you can purchase a copy at your county seat. Look for the „Clerk & Recorder’s Office„. Most subdivision plats will provide you the necessary geometry as shown next to the lines of your lot. Modern day plats require that the direction and length of the lines comprising your lot perimeter need to be on the plat map, but for some plat maps, you may not find this. If available, however, the units of measure typically are bearings and distances for each of the property lines. The bearing will signify the direction. The distance (length of the line) is generally written in units of feet, and is horizontal values. The deed for your property will identify the particular lot nomenclature, and the plat map will demonstrate the geometrical size, shape, and location along with the bearings and distances that uniquely identify your lot.

Let’s simplify the reading for you. Think of a compass. The heading of the arrow provides the direction with the numbers at the end of the arrow providing the amount of deviation from north. Bearings are purposely placed in four quadrants of the circle. The bearings on your lot will most always start with the letter N or S, signifying North or South, having numbers in between, and end with the letters E or W, signifying East or West. For example, a bearing of N 44 E means to travel along that line in the northeast quadrant of your compass on a heading of 44 degrees east of north. N 45 W means 45 degrees west of north. The beauty of a lot description is that all lines are simultaneously created.

In order to read a Metes Description, such as the example below it is important to know that the sequence cannot be read out of order. If there are bearings and distances given, then they must be read in the order as printed. Sometimes the description will start with „Beginning at.. .“ That is your starting point.

For example, you may see your description as: Beginning at a point 247 feet due east of Jacobs Fork; thence N 51 W, 210 feet; thence N 44 E, 204 feet to a Pine; thence S 48 E, 210 feet to a cement post; thence S 43 W, 204 feet to the point of beginning, containing 0.98 acres, more or less.

There may be other forms of providing the direction (bearing) of the property, such as utilizing angles departing from the previous property line. They may be recited as interior, exterior, right, left, prolongation (continuation), and many others.

In order to read a Bounds Description, the order of the lines being described is usually not of importance. If you are bounded on the north by a river, on the east by Highway 1, on the south by Jones, and on the west by Smith, the order as presented makes no difference. This type of description is usually the most costly and time consuming to define, because in order to conduct a survey properly, you, or the surveyor must research all the other adjoining properties in the bounds description.

Again, the information in this article is not to make you an expert, and before you layout the expense to put down that shed slab, or that first post hole, we highly recommend you have the property surveyed by certified professionals. However, with a little understanding, time and a decent compass, most everyone can understand the general layout of their property.

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Tips For Buying Used Furniture on Craigslist

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Are you a new homeowner who wants to outfit your home with affordable furniture? If so, you should visit Craigslist.org. Craigslist is a popular online classified website where items are bought, sold, and traded. There are many items listed for sale, including affordably priced furniture.

If you want to use the popular classified website to find and buy used furniture, perform a search. Once on the main page, select your state and the near city. To perform a search, look for the search box on the left hand side of the page. You can search for a particular piece of furniture, like a couch. To search other local areas too, download a free Craigslist search tool, to search multiple cities at once.

You now know how to find and buy used furniture on the Craigslist website, but how can you ensure you get a good deal? By asking important questions. What should you inquire about?

Ask to see pictures. Many sellers on Craigslist.org post pictures of the products they sell, but not all do. If a picture is not posted, ask to see one. In fact, you can ask to see multiple pictures from different angels. The buyer can email these pictures to you. Emailing pictures saves you both time and gas money. You do not waste a trip to view an old and dirty couch.

Ask about storage. Furniture owners sell their old furniture. It likely has not been used in months or even years. Before buying a couch or recliner, ask where it was stored. Was it stored inside or outside? You do not want furniture that has been outside and exposed to the elements, at least not without a large discount.

Ask about payment. Most furniture listings on Craigslist just say how much they want for the item. They rarely give you more information, but you need it. Does the seller want cash or a check? Will there be an immediate exchange? If paying by check, does the seller want to wait until the check clears before delivering your purchase? These are all questions you should have answers to before agreeing to buy furniture through the classified website.

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Phoenix Housing Market As of January 2013: Our Real Estate Market Update

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Summary of the Phoenix Housing Market: January 10, 2013

Price per square foot in the Phoenix Real Estate Market

The average price per square foot in the Phoenix Housing Market grows to $ 108, up $ 2 from the past month. The year over year (YOU) rise is $ 24 from last December 2011, while the complete growth in cost per square foot from the bottom of the market (March-April 2011) is $ 31.

In the Phoenix Real Estate Market the first half of December was dominated by substantive sales of high-end properties while the concluding few days witnessed a growth in more affordable residences, especially with short sales. Prices consequentially rose higher and stronger by the third week of December only to plummet sharply in the concluding days.

Active Residential property Listings in the Phoenix Real Estate Market.

The beginning of January 2013 is the 1st span in 6 months that listings in the Phoenix housing market have receded. The decline was a little over 900 listings as January began with 17,155 listings in the Phoenix MLS. The Phoenix Real Estate Market typically averaged 20,000-25,000 active home listings in the Phoenix MLS before the real estate upsurge and resulting foreclosure destruction. It will be essential to watch this number as we preceded into the spring purchasing season. The number of home listings on the Phoenix housing market goes a long way in determining if we are living in a buyers market, the seller's market or a normal market.

The Phoenix Housing Market and Foreclosures

The Phoenix Housing Market is enjoying a large increase in price per square foot thanks to the remarkable decline in foreclosure-type homes, which are typically bank owned properties and short sales. The reduction is 44% from prior December and 85% from December 2010. Property owners in the Phoenix Real Estate Market are no longer needing to contend with the unfairly low price of foreclosures.

More regarding Foreclosures in the Phoenix Real Estate Market

Passages of these next 3 paragraphs were drawn from the Cromford Report, from which I am a paid subscriber and have the right to reproduce: December was really an invalid period for people who have a preference for Phoenix foreclosures. Brand-new Notifications of Trustee Sale for Maricopa County came in at 2,112 in total which included 1,994 for residential residences. The last time we had fewer than 2,000 residential notices in the Phoenix Housing Market in a month was May 2007.

Documented Trustee Deeds totaled 1,399 of which 1,302 were residential. This is the lowest monthly amount of Trustee Deeds since November 2007 in the Phoenix Housing Market. As a sign of the times there were almost as many residential foreclosure notices cancelled (1,881) as new ones filed (1,994). There were 8,758 residential notices active (ie pending foreclosures) as of January 1.

This is 82% below the peak level of 47,606 in December 2009. Total troubled residential inventory (active notices plus REO) stands at 14,547, down 77% from the peak of 62,123 in February 2010. We are clearly almost at the end of the foreclosure wave in the Phoenix Real Estate Market.

Phoenix Housing market: The Short-Term Prediction

We recently wrote on how the ongoing price per square foot trend for residences under a purchase contract can accurately forecast the cost per square foot for homes sold 4 to 8 weeks into the future. The price for pending sales leveled out in December so we are able to anticipate the sales price per square foot to level out in January. Prices are going higher to begin January 2013 so we may forecast price per square foot in February to continue upwards.

Our complete and updated market summaries can be found on our blog under Phoenix Housing Tracker

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Why Customer Concentration Impacts a Business Sale Transaction

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Few owners recognize the major impact that customer concentration has on the sale of their business. Customer concentration represents a significant obstacle and will affect the salability, valuation, and deal structure of a business-for-sale transaction. Not only will it create problems in qualifying buyers but it will impact the ability for any prospective purchaser to obtain third party financing to complete the acquisition. Determining if customer concentration is present in an enterprise is a critical element of the succession planning process.

Customer concentration is a situation when one customer represents a significant portion of revenues or when the business has a very small customer base. Based upon the expert one consults, the exact percentage for a concentration to exist varies. In most cases it is recognized when one customer represents more than 10% of sales or when the top five customers comprise greater than 25% of a company’s revenue. In either situation, a huge risk is created from the lack of diversification and steps to mitigate it should be taken years in advance of a planned business exit.

When evaluating a business sale it is important for an owner to recognize that their client base has a significant impact on the enterprise value of the company. A broad and diverse base of customers where there are a large number of clients contributing to the business‘ revenue will achieve a higher transaction value as it reduces the risk that a sizable decrease in earnings will occur if any one customer is lost or a particular industry segment that the business serves encounters economic distress.

In addition to a lower sales price, businesses with customer concentration issues are more difficult to market for sale. For main street business transactions (those with adjusted earnings of less than $2mm) third party financing is used in the majority of cases. Businesses with high levels of customer concentration are very difficult to get financed. Lenders may provide only partial financing, offer sub-optimal terms, or decline the loan altogether. In situations where third party financing is not available, the pool of available buyers is significantly restricted and the terms of a deal could be heavily weighted on a contingent earn-out based on retaining the revenues derived by the largest customers. „Typically we want no customer concentration over a 10% level when considering financing an acquisition. Higher levels are possible with much more explanation and supporting documentation but remain a major concern“ states Steve Mariani, President of Diamond Financial Services.

Lastly, customer concentration will have a direct impact on the deal structure for the business sale transaction. Buyers will strive to bridge the customer concentration risk through a variety of delayed ‚performance based‘ financing methods. For example: Assume both parties agree on a transaction price of $900,000 based upon $300,000 of adjusted earnings (a 3x multiple). If the key account in question represents $75,000 of the $300,000 this would represent $225,000 of the transaction price. A buyer will strive to isolate the $225,000 component to ensure that revenue is maintained post sale. After a period of 12 months, if the customer and income are still in place the seller would receive the funds. If the identified client and corresponding revenue was lost during this period, a pricing adjustment would be made.

In situations where the buyer is unable to obtain transaction financing due to customer concentration issues, the seller might have to accept a „contingent earn-out“ for the revenues derived from the largest customers, or worse, they may also have to finance a major portion of the „non-contingent purchase price“ negotiated with buyers.

Contingent payouts could be structured in a variety of methods:


Earmark part of the purchase price with payments made over a period of time contingent upon the retention of specific customers or achieving specific revenue targets.


A percentage of the acquisition price will be held in an escrow account for a specified time.


The seller would be responsible for financing a major portion of the purchase price through a seller note. The seller note could be structured with contingencies for revenues derived from the largest customers.

With any of these deal structuring techniques, the seller cannot be expected to guarantee the revenue in perpetuity and if the transaction price is based upon retaining one or more key customers, the seller may require more active involvement in maintaining the client relationship during the term of the agreement. Obviously, this brings an additional complexity to the transaction.

In most cases, buyers will look to discount the amount they are willing to pay for a business (with high customer concentration) unless they receive assurances that the risk is low. While the obvious strategy to reduce customer concentration risk is to diversify and increase the business customer base, there are a number of situations where customer concentration either does not pose a significant risk or could be mitigated.

Customer Contracts:

Having a contract in place will not eliminate all of the risk of losing a key customer, but it will provide the buyer with security that the revenue and profits will continue after a change in ownership takes place. When customer contracts are involved, the ability to assign or transfer will be important to understand. In many cases, a stock sale vs. asset sale is elected to preserve these contracts.

Barriers to Entry or Exit:

Businesses could have intellectual property, product expertise, or patents that create competitive advantages barring competition. Others are located in geographically remote areas where the supply benefits discourage customers from changing the relationship. Lastly, there could be significant capital requirements for manufacturing and tooling or agency approvals (pharmaceutical or government contracting industry) that creates a barrier to entry from potential competitors.

Providing a Variety of Products and/or Services:

Having a broad relationship with a key customer where the relationship is not based solely on one product, one location, and one individual decreases the risk that a singular change will fundamentally impact the future revenue stream and continuity of the account.

Economies of Scale or Synergies:

The acquisition may be pursued by a strategic buyer where they are bringing new products/services to the enterprise, a broader geographic distribution footprint, or economies of scale in production. Any of these elements would assist in reducing the concentration of revenue risk that an identified key client would represent to the future organization.


Businesses which have high levels of customer concentration are inherently risky and it is important for the owner to appreciate this concern from the perspective of a potential acquirer. Ultimately, the buyer seeks only to retain the customers which have contributed to the success of the business and are factored in the valuation and transaction price. From the position of a buyer a few logical questions and concerns would be:

  1. How does the value of the company change if a customer representing 10% or more of revenue and/or profits is lost in the first year?
  2. How easy would it be for the client representing the customer concentration concern to leave the business?
  3. What unique situations exist within the business to preserve the customer relationship in the years ahead?
  4. What are the logical steps and corresponding costs to mitigate the customer concentration risk?
  5. How do I achieve a win-win transaction? Protecting me, the buyer, against the risk of a near term revenue loss while providing the seller with the proper remuneration for the fair market value of their business?

While the risk may not be able to be totally eliminated, there are a number of situations where customer concentration is more palatable and a proper explanation should be provided to the buyer at the earliest opportunity. Getting out in front of this potential challenge is critical to achieve a win-win deal. When good communication exists, and two fair and reasonable parties are at the table, there are a number of structuring options available, when necessary, to mitigate the risk and negotiate a fair and reasonable transaction price. Obviously, the best approach for a prospective business seller would be to develop and implement plans to reduce any customer concentration elements years in advance of a business exit. Eliminating this type of risk is just sound advice for any small business owner regardless of whether a sale is contemplated.

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What Everybody Ought to Know About Jewelry Appraisals

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For most of you, the thought of getting a Valuation or Appraisal on your Jewelry is NOT at the top of your list.

But it should be.

To often, clients assume that their Jewelry is either …

  • # Not Valuable enough to bother
  • # Covered by their Household insurance
  • # Safe on their Finger, so it will not get lost

All of these assumptions are WRONG and we cover some suggestions in our Insurance article (address given below) and the security pages under the Learning Section of the Online Appraisal Center.

If you are concerned about these matters and have not had the chance to read them yet, we suggest you take a little side trip and cover the bases, soon as possible …

… Before the ring falls off the finger or the chain gets lost while swimming or the Diamond (was it a Diamond?) …

Get the Picture ..?

That's exactly What a Jewelry Appraisal Valuation Certificate is for.

Types of Jewelry Appraisal Valuations

The main type of Valuation or Appraisal we come across is the Valuation for Insurance. This is the one you would normally receive from your local Jeweler or Gemologist.

It is basically designed to cover you (through your insurance policy) against any loss or damage you may encounter.

It is designed to provide you, wherever possible, as near a REPLACEMENT OF A SIMILAR ARTICLE as possible.

It will include any taxes or duty plus the Jewelry Trade mark up.

What Are The Other Types of Valuations?

Other forms of Valuations are …

  • # Valuation for 'Private' Sale
  • # Valuation for an 'Auction' reserve
  • # Valuation for Probate
  • # Valuation for Division of an Estate (under conditions of a Will, for example)

Each of these types are simply a percentage of the 'Master Valuation' figure or Replacement for Insurance mentioned here.

The Master Valuation Appraisal

While these are briefly briefed regarding their structure and use, you should remember that all of these valuations are just by-products of the Valuation Appraisals for Insurance, both in principle and procedures.

Therefore, with a little common sense and a child's school calculator, we can arrive at a final figure for any of the above situations.

After all – they need the SAME information to begin with.

If you had an Online Form which helped complete a Jewelry Appraisal for yourself, there would be no easier or quicker way to help in the majority of these cases, and you would not even need a child's school calculator to complete it, because it would all be built into the Computer System.

Nice thought – but is it a reality?

Thankfully – Yes it is.

Jewelry Valuations For The Rest Of Us

While our advice is – and always has – to get your Jewelry valued or appraised by your local, professional gemologist Valuer, it remains our belief that in the 'majority of cases' and taking into account the costs involved (your professional Valuer charges a reasonable fee for their skill and the work carried out) there is an alternative.

Any Self Appraisal Valuation can be equal to the task for a fraction of the specialized service, in a shorter timeframe, and costs much less – Lots Less …

So do not ask 'Why' – Ask yourself – 'Why Not ..?

Here are some interesting Facts

  • # People thought you had to be a lawyer to write your own Will -Do-it-Yourself Will Kits are now Commonplace
  • # People thought you had to be an Accountant to do your Tax -An Online Tax Pack has been set up by the Government
  • # People thought you had to be a Real Estate Agent to sell your Home -FSBO (For Sale By Owner) has changed all the rules
  • # People thought you needed a Solicitor to handle a Conveyance -This is now no longer the case

The entire game has shifted.

# You Do not Need to be a Gemologist Valuer to write your own Appraisals. It's as simple as filling in a Form. Anyone can do it.

Plus It Is Convenient …

You do this in your own time, at the pace you wish to go, without any pressure. You will have ample time to start your self evaluation, change your mind about something, go away for a couple of hours or days even, and when you return, start again from where you left off, finally arriving at the bottom line to print your Appraisal Certificate from Home or Work.

So What You Really Ought to Know About Jewelry Valuation Appraisals, is that it's possible and anyone can do it.

There is an Online Jewelry Appraisal do-it-yourself Valuation Kit which has been designed to be as simple as possible while remaining accurate, within the guidelines of the Jewelry Trade and Valuers Profession.

It's a Smart School Calculator.

WE ARE NOT SUGGESTING IT CAN TURN YOU INTO A QUALIFIED VALUER nor are we trying to replace your local Jeweler. That would be wrong of us to even try.

But you bought to understand the possibilities.

Our Goal here is to simply steer you in the right direction to answer a series of questions, which will lead you to the MOST PROBLEBLE result for any Jewelry under assessment. You have choices …

These days, it's just too easy.

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Makler Heidelberg

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Source by David Foard

How to Obtain Title For Abandoned Real Estate Through Adverse Possession in the State of California

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What is Adverse Possession? How can I obtain title to real estate?

In a nutshell adverse possession is a process where a person or an investor can obtain the ownership or title of real property from another person because the owner has abandoned the property. This is done by simply taking possession of that property in the manner prescribed by state law.

In doing so, you can, literally acquire ownership or title of the real property for just paying the back delinquent real estate taxes and the cost to file a quiet title lawsuit establishing that you obtained title to the property through adverse possession. In other words, you can take title of valuable property for a incredible discount.

The Law of Adverse Possession

The laws governing adverse possession is local state (or, in Canada, territorial law); consequently an Abandoned property investor must look into the specific laws of a specific state or Canadian territory where the real property is located. Since the laws are different dramatically from jurisdiction to jurisdiction and can often be confusing, anyone wishing to take title to real property through adverse possession should contact a knowledgeable attorney before attempting to do so.

In order for you to begin understanding the requirements of Adverse Possession let’s look at a specific example. Below is a closer look at th California Adverse Possession law. We will use this law to identify and explain some of the more common terms used in Adverse Possession.

California Adverse Possession Law

Briefly, California state law states that Real Estate investors wanting to obtain title to another person’s real property through adverse possession MUST satisfy all the following Requirements:

1.That the Abandoned property investor’s possession was held under either (1) a claim of right or (2) under color of title:

2.That the Abandoned property investor’s possession was actual, open and notorious;

3.That the Abandoned property investor’s possession was hostile, adverse an exclusive;

4.That the Abandoned property investor’s possession was continuous and uninterrupted for a period of five years;

5.That the Abandoned property investor paid th real property taxes during that five-year period.

Possession must be held under either (1) a claim of right or (2) under color of title.

The California statutes governing adverse possession and as well as the statutes of most other states make a distinction between claiming adverse possession based upon a „claim of title founded upon a written instrument or judgment or decree“ (often referred to as a claim under color title) and claiming adverse possession based upon „a claim of title exclusive of any other right, but not founded upon a written instrument, judgement, or decree“ (often referred to as a claim as either a claim of right, see California Code of civil procedures Section 322 and 323. As to such claim under claim o right, see Code of Civil Procedures Section 324 and 325.

Basically a claim of adverse possession based upon color color of title is one where the claimant(Abandoned Property Investor) took in good faith possession under a deed (or some other written instrument) or judicial decree that appeared to transfer good title, but was defective. For example, a tax sale investor might take adverse possession through color of title for real estate bought at a California county tax-defaulted sale where the sale was conducted improperly and, consequently, the deed was void.

„Claim of Right“ or „Claim of Title“

Abandoned property investors attempting to take title to real estate through the doctrine of adverse possession are generally more interested in taking such title through „claim of right“ or „claim of title“. Under this doctrine, an investor merely needs to take actual possession of the property and hold that possession as required by appropriate jurisdictional law.

As might be expected, the requirements to establish adverse possession under a claim of right are (under California law and under the law of most all other states) are more strenuous than those associated with claiming under color of title.

In order to be accurate as the specific requirements for a claim of right refer to the specific state statutes. Again, to be safe consult with a knowledgeable attorney in the county where the property is located.

Possession must be actual

As will be seen below, an abandoned property investor claiming possession under the doctrine of adverse possession does not have to personally occupy or live on the real estate to be in actual possession of the property. However, actually living on the real estate is probably the strongest and clearest evidence that possession is actual.

Possession by tenant as actual possession

Real property can be occupied, lived on, and actually possessed by a tenant under a tenancy agreement. Take, for instance, if you look at the California appellate case of Traeger v. Friedman (1947) 79 CA 2d 151. In that case, the adverse possession claimant took possession of a apartment building through tenants and, then, managed and rented for five years. She evn paid the real property taxes out of the rent. The California court held that she had met the actual possession requirement needed to perfect title under adverce possession.

Possession is deemed actual if lands is „protected by a substantial enclosure“, „usually cultivated or improved“

If the adverse possession is claimed based on a claim of right, then California Code of Civil Procedure Sections 324 and 325 apply.

A abandoned property investor’s possession is deemed to be in actual, open and notorious possession of specific real property under a claim of right when that person has either

1.“protected“ that property „by a substantial inclosure“ OR

2.That person has „usually cultivated“ OR

3.Has „improved“ tht property.

If the real property being taken through adverse possession is a lot and acreage and cannot be actually possessed (i.e., lived on) then that property must be either „protected…by a substantial inclosure“, „usually cultivated“, or „usually improved“.

If the property is protected by a substantial inclosure, then the inclosure must be „substantial“ enough to give the true owner notice of the investor’s Claim of adverse possession during the entire prescriptive period. Older Cases hold that the inclosure must be substantial enough and remain so throughout the prescriptive period of five years and protect all sides of the property claimed from intrusion by cattle or other animals. If the inclosure is so damaged as not to be able to protect all sides of the property from such intrusion, then the Abandoned property investor or claimant must promptly repair that damage inclosure or risk being found by the court to have not met this requirement.

Meeting ANY one of the three alternative, meets the actual possession requirements for adverse possession even though the Abandoned property investor or claimant does not live on the property.

Additionally, California cases have held that although „grazing“ or „pasturage“ is not mentioned in the Code of Civil Procedure Section 325 reproduced above, it is a method whereby an investor can take actual possession.

Possession Must Be Open And Notorious

Basically, an owner of real estate will not lose that real estate through the doctrine of adverse possession unless the manner in which the investor holds actual possession would provide reasonable notice of that possession if the owner inspected the property. Repairs and improvements made to houses such as painting the ouside of the house, keeping up the outside ground, etc. are examples of such actions.

However, an owner can lose title to real estate through adverse possession even through he or she is never actually aware of the possession because the owner never visited the real estate to discover the improvements made by the abandoned property investor.

Possession Was Hostile, Adverse And Exclusive.

Basically, if the abandoned property investor or claimant is in possession under color of title, then that possession is deemed to be adverse and hostile to the true owner and it is not necessary to offer any further proof.

However if the Abandoned property investor or claimant is in possession under claim of title, then the claimant must prove that the possession was hostile and adverse. The word „hostile“ does not mean that the possession was „overtly antagonistic“ to the owner; it means simply that such possession is „inconsistent“ with that of the true owner.)

It must be shown that the possession was in violation of the true owner’s property rights and that it should give rise in the owner a reason to begin an action to terminate the Abandoned property investor or claimant’s possession or use.

Possession of the property with the owner’s permission is not hostile or adverse. see California Civil Code Section 813 which provides a better legal explanation of this process.

Basically what the California Civil Code Section 813 means that the owner of the property can give permission for the use of that property by the general public or specific individuals. The statute further states that: „In the event of use by other than the general public, any such notices, to be effective, shall also be served by registered mail on the user.

The claimant’s use must also be exclusive, use of that property by the legal owner or any other person except the claimant or abandoned property investor or a tenant of the claimant or abandoned property investor holding possession on behalf of that person will probably defeat a claim of title through adverse possession.

Possession Was Continuous And Uninterrupted For Five Years.

This requirement can be found in Civil Code Section 1007 when read together with Code of Civil Procedure Sections 318, 319, 321, 322, and 325. Most specifically, Code of Civil procedure Sections 325 provides:

„provided, however, that in no case shall adverse possession be considered established under the provisions of any section or sections of this code, unless it shall be shown that the land has been occupied and claimed for the period of five years continuosly, and the party or persons, their predecessors and grantor’s, have paid all the taxes, state, county, or municipal, which have been levied and assessed upon such land.“

The requirement does not mean, however, that the investor must be physically on the land every day for five years. For instance, if actual possession of a home or other rental real estate is held by tenants on behalf of the adverse possessor or abandoned property investor, then ordinary vacancies will not disrupt the continuity of the possession.

So, if an investor were to take possession of rental property, for example, and there were normal vacancies that occur, these vacancies would not be considered a violation if the five year occupancy requirement. It also means that the investor does not have to live on the property to make this claim. That means you can claim adverse possession at multiple properties as long as the property is safe and liveable for tenants. That means a positive cash flow while waiting in the prescribed period and also without your physical stay at your property.

Claimant Paid The Real Property Taxes During That Five Year Period.

See Code of Civil Procedure Section 325 which governs this requirement

The Abandoned property investor or claimant must prove that he or she has paid all taxes that have been levied and assessed against the real property claimed during the entire five year period. A failure to pay taxes assessed for any one year will defeat a claim for adverse possession. Then the claimant must also pay any delinquent taxes outstanding for years prior to the start of the claim for adverse possession. For more details please refer to the case of Los Angeles v. Coffey (1963) 243 CA 2d 121,125.

Under the law of the state of California, if a Abandoned property investor meets all the requirements of the law of adverse possession under claim of title, then that person becomes the true legal owner of the real estate that has been abandoned. If the legal title of the real property was held by the former owner with no outstanding liens that superceeds the tax lien, then the investor will have acquired the real estate for, basically, just five or more years worth of back delinquent real property taxes or for just a small investment.

So, What Should A Abandoned Real Property Investor Look For?

The two most important principles of the law of adverse possession is that a Abandoned real property investor wants to see are the following:

1.The ability to take adverse possession under Claim of right or claim of title as opposed to color of title and

2.A relatively short prescriptive period. The period of time the Abandoned property investor must adversely possess the real property before that investor can obtain title to the real property.

You are probably asking yourself, Why?

Because in the state of California, the period or prescriptive period is five years based upon the California Code of Civil Procedure. However in some states the period can last from 10, 15 or 20 years until you get title through adverse possession.

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Makler Heidelberg

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Source by Josue Zengotita

How to Get Rich Online – Start an Online Flea Market Easily

Immobilie bewerten, Immobilie Wert, Immobilienrechner, Verkaufsrechner, Immobilienwertermittlung Tel: 06227-399170 Handy: 0176-2116-9990 eMail: info@heidelbergerwohnen.de Internet: www.heidelbergerwohnen.de

With so many opportunities on getting rich on the internet, it is easy to lose sight of the ones that have proven to be effective. Those are the ones that have a community support group that provides ongoing help to the market they serve. What I am talking about is a flea market on the internet that anyone can set up. If you ever had a garage sale or know anyone who has, why not partner with them to launch one your own. It is easier now than before.

Community Support For Online Flea Market Vendors Is The Key To Success

When was the last time you got involved with an online business opportunity only to find out that there is no support for their members? This is a big problem for a lot of online business owners especially the newbies with practically no internet marketing experience at all when it comes to learning how to get rich online. Setting up the business online by way of a website is only part of the equation. Your customers need to know that you exist. You need traffic to your flea market website. Without it, you are fishing without bait.

The great thing about launching a flea market online is that there are literally tons of vendors from many different niche markets that have gotten together to create a social networking community with its intended purpose to serve their members.

Let’s say you are in the candle business. The flea market community will actually help you get your business in their listings for more exposure. They even provide all the marketing tools that you can use to leverage the power of the internet to get traffic to your website.

What About Marketing Your Business On eBay And Craigslist?

There is nothing wrong with that approach. Let me remind you that competition is really fierce due to the fact that eBay and Craigslist encompasses an increasingly wide range of market niches in so many different categories that is difficult to keep up with. For example, jobs, real estate, businesses, housing, services, and etc. None of these pertain to selling flea market items.

Despite the fact that Craigslist and eBay gets over 4 billion page views a month, you are better off finding a tighter niche market with less competing traffic to serve your market more effectively and efficiently. By having your store listed in a community website that is focused on selling the typical stuff found in local flea markets, you have a better chance of being found because shoppers go there for one purpose only: to buy something from you that they want.

Building Long Lasting Relationships Has Always Been The Proven Formula For Online Flea Market Success

If you have gone to one in your local area, how often do you visit the same booth of the person who sold you some great stuff. That is the beauty of doing business at a flea market. Not exactly a way to get rich compared to online.

Have you ever been to festivals in your area? Street vendors make tons of money selling stuff ranging from used merchandise, products, and food. People who frequent these festivals are in the buying frame of mind. And many vendors have branded themselves successfully by being there every single year for that particular event, capitalizing on the repeat business from former customers.

Now just imagine how powerful this concept alone can be if it is applied to the online world? The strong sense of community is established very easily through forum discussions on a wide range of topics pertaining to stuff sold in flea markets. Vendors participating in these discussions always get a sizable amount of traffic to their website resulting in massive sales of products.

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Source by Billy Ying Ching

Importance of Valuation Report

Immobilie bewerten, Immobilie Wert, Immobilienrechner, Verkaufsrechner, Immobilienwertermittlung Tel: 06227-399170 Handy: 0176-2116-9990 eMail: info@heidelbergerwohnen.de Internet: www.heidelbergerwohnen.de

Valuation Report of a property is one of the most important documents while selling your property. The Valuation Report evaluates the particular property. It helps both the buyer and the seller in knowing the value of the property. This document helps in negotiating the price to be paid for the property. If you are getting a loan from a bank in order to purchase the property, you will have to submit the valuation report to the bank. This is required by the bank to ensure that even if the loan amount is left unpaid, the outstanding amount of the loan is covered.

Valuation Report is required during the purchase of the property to ensure whether the purchase price is reasonable. This is also required for the tax purpose. Property owners who own property above a certain value are required to pay their property taxes.

There are a number of factors that determine the value of the property to prepare a valuation report. Some of them are:

Location of the property:

The Value of a property mainly depends upon the locality of the project. Properties located in well developed areas and areas with well developed infrastructure has a great value. Properties located centrally in the city also gets a greater value.

Age of the Property:

The age of the property is also taken into account while preparing a Valuation Report. Generally, newer properties command a higher price when compared to the older ones.

Value of similar Properties in the locality:

When a surveyor accesses the value of a property, they will consider the range of values, past and present, achieved for similar properties in the neighborhood. This serve as an important benchmark in determining the value of a property. The government value of the property and the cost of construction of the property are also some of the important factors in determining the value of the property.

The valuation date should be specified in the Valuation Report. This is very much important because the value of the property mentioned in the valuation report is only valid for a given period of time.

All the assumptions, conditions and restrictions that were taken into account while preparing the report should also be mentioned clearly in the report. It should also specify for which reason the report was generated. This helps the users of the report make necessary adjustments and to take an informed decision. For all the above reasons, Valuation Report of a property is an important document while selling a property.

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Makler Heidelberg

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Source by Jennita Josiah