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Hidden Fees to Know About When Buying a Home

Purchasing a home is arguably one of the biggest financial decisions you will make in your lifetime. As you start your hunt, don't forget there will be other costs associated with your purchase then the price of the home. Here are 5 fees to keep in mind as you begin to budget.

·    Home inspection. This is a crucial step in the home buying process. The findings that come from the inspection can help you negotiate price and repairs. Generally, you can expect to pay between $300 to $500 depending on the home and the location.

·    Title services. Title services encompass the transfer of the title from the seller and a thorough search of the property’s records to ensure to no one will pop up with a claim to the property. Additionally, you may need to buy title insurance which will protect the lender or your investment in the home.

·    Appraisal fee. Before getting a loan, you will likely be required to get an appraisal of the home to determine its estimated value. This will be conducted by a third-party company and the cost can land anywhere between $300 and $1,000, depending on the size of the home.

·    HOA fees. Many communities have a homeowners’ association that enforces monthly fees. This money is used for general maintenance and updates to areas like pools, parks, and more. Typical HOA fees are around $200 per month.

·    Taxes. The taxes each buyer pays at the closing table differ, but it is not uncommon for it to be up to two months’ worth of county and city property taxes. Additionally, there may be taxes for the transfer of the home title.

Garden Valley Properties can help you with the purchase or sale of your home! Please give us a call if you have any question.  208-462-4620  Or get in touch right here!

Be An Early Bird!

Ever wish you could become one of those rare morning people? The ones that wake with a start, feeling refreshed and energized. The ones that get in that morning workout or wrap up some work before many of us even hit the snooze button for the first time. Here are five tips to help you achieve that early bird status!

Create a morning schedule. Physically write down the things you’d like to complete in the morning and set a time for each. Then stick with it. Once you force yourself out of bed early one or two weeks consistently, you’ll find it gets easier and easier to do.

Let the light in. Whether natural or artificial, light tells your brain its time to get up and get going. If your room lacks large windows where you can open the blinds up, consider investing in a timed lamp or alarm clock with a light.

Prep and eat breakfast. Although there are many of us who chose the skip breakfast, it is key to perking up your energy in the morning. Try prepping protein-focused meals the night before or grab a yogurt or fruit and try to consume it right after you wake.

Get your body moving. Whether it’s a short walk around your neighborhood or a rigorous 5:30 am spin class, getting your blood pumping will help wake up your body and has a ton of other benefits, like stress and anxiety reduction.

Feed your mind. Stimulate your brain and do something you enjoy first thing in the morning. Try reading a favorite book, catching up on the news, doing daily meditation, setting intentions or searching for your dream home RIGHT HERE!

Idaho! Beat the Summer Heat!

Welcome to Idaho, where there are certainly 4 distinct seasons (sometimes in the same day) ! We are knee-deep into summer, and what a summer it has been. There have been record-breaking high temperatures all over the Western US, and here in Garden Valley we are not seeing an exception to that rule. Climbing temperatures do not mean you have to swelter in your home OR pay high power bills to run your air conditioner constantly if you follow a few of these tips!

Open your windows at night.  Take advantage of those cool mountain nights by opening your windows once the sun goes down. To take even more advantage, set up a fan in one window to suck hot air out or to blow cool air in. You would be surprised at how cool your house can get overnight.

Close your blinds during the day. Even with new, energy efficient windows you might be raising the temperature of your home upwards of 30% by leaving your window blinds open. This is because of the greenhouse effect: sunlight and heat can enter through the windows, but there is nowhere for that heat and sunlight to escape. This is a huge energy saver, especially mid-day when the heat peaks.

Do chores at night. Running your washer, dryer, and dishwasher puts heat into your home. Save these chores for evening after you have opened your windows up to capture the cool air from outside. Additionally, keep your dryer vent nice and clean. This will make your clothes dry faster and prevent even more heat from coming into your home.

Skip cooking inside and grill instead. Using your stove and cooktop will heat up your house pretty quickly, so try to plan meals that you can cook outdoors. Grill some chicken, boil your corn on the side burner of the grill, and chop up a refreshing salad to go with it! If grilling does not fit into your schedule, opt for using the crock pot, which will allow you to serve up a hot meal without adding to the temperature of your home.

If you cannot get away from using your air conditioner, there are a few ways you can make sure you are using it efficiently.
Make sure your filters are clean and change them often. This one step will help keep your air conditioner running at peak performance by allowing for maximum air flow. Changing your filters every 4-6 weeks will also increase indoor air quality, which can be helpful when we have smoke or pollen in the air.

Maximize your AC usage. When you are home, set your temperature to 75-78 degrees. When you are away, allow the temperature to rise to 80 degrees. If you do not want one more thing to remember each morning and evening, consider installing a programmable thermostat that will do the work for you!

If all else fails, go cool off in the river! It is common to see folks sitting in the river in their lawn chairs when it is exceptionally hot. Just don’t forget the sunscreen!

If you have questions about the area, real estate, or what is happening around Garden Valley please give us a call at  208.462.4620 or visit out website at www.gardenvalleyproperties.com! We are always happy to help.

Help Stop Food Waste!

On June 23rd The National Association of Realtors announced a partnership with ?Food Recovery Network to combat hunger during the 2021 NAR Presidents Circle Conference, as well as, upcoming events and meetings.? ??Food Recovery Network is a non-profit that unites 4000 college students with food suppliers and businesses to recover perishable? food, that would otherwise go to waste, and donate to over 350 partners who feed people in need.? In 2020 FRN donated over 800,000? meals.?

NAR will invite the 1200 state and local Realtor associations to participate.? With over 1.4 million members nationwide, NAR’s partnership with Food Recover Network will be critical in helping FRN continue to address food hunger and food waste recovery.

All Garden Valley Properties agent are members of the National Associate of Realtors.? Giving back to our communities is what we do!


Want to know more about what you can do to help in the Garden Valley Community?? Contact Garden Valley Properties at 208-462-4620


Want to know how you are doing with food waste?? Take the Challenge! 





Did you know that in 2013 Americans threw 35 million tons of food into landfills and incinerators? Research

shows that nearly everyone wastes more than they think they do. The?Food: Too Good to Waste?Challenge

will help you figure out how much food is really going to waste in your home and what you can do to waste

less. By making small shifts in how you shop for, prepare, and store food, you can save time and money, and

keep the valuable resources used to produce and distribute food from going to waste!



You only need a few basic tools to get started, which include 1) a pen/pencil, 2) paper or printed worksheets,

3) small garbage bags, and 4) a small scale (optional).



WEEKS 1 & 2: Measure how much food your family wastes in a week and record the volume and/or weight.

WEEKS 3 through 5: Try out one or more of the smart strategies listed below while continuing to measure how

much goes to waste each week. Keep notes on what works to reduce food waste and what doesn’t.

· Smart Shopping: Buy What You Need?– Make a shopping list with the Meals-In-Mind Shopping List

template based on how many meals you expect to eat at home before your next shopping trip. By

buying no more than what you expect to use, you will be more likely to use it up and keep it fresh.

· Smart Storage: Keep Fruits and Vegetables Fresh?– Store produce so it stays fresh longer with the help

of the Fruits and Vegetable Storage Guide.


· Smart Prep: Prep Now, Eat Later?– By preparing perishable foods as soon as possible, preferably post

shopping, you’ll make it easier to serve snacks and meals later in the week, saving time, effort and



· Smart Saving: Eat What You Buy?– This involves being mindful of leftovers and old ingredients that

need using up. The “Eat First” prompt can be used to designate an area in your refrigerator for

leftovers and food that won’t keep long.


Week 6: Measure and record your final weekly food waste amount. See how much food (and money) you

saved compared to weeks one and two.



You can find all the printed materials you need to take the FTGTW Challenge available for download at



They include:

· This instruction sheet which includes the recording worksheet.

· Meals in Mind Shopping List Template

· Fruit and Vegetable Storage Guide

· Eat Me First Prompt




1. Explain the challenge to members of your household/community and ask for their participation.

2. At the start of each week, line one paper bag with a green compostable bag. Over the course of the

week, place all your PREVENTABLE food waste into the bag. Discard NON-EDIBLE food in the usual

manner. (PREVENTABLE food waste is both food you bought to eat but has since spoiled and food that

was prepared but not eaten and was then thrown away. NON-EDIBLE food waste is everything you

wouldn’t normally eat, such as banana peels, egg shells, apple cores and chicken bones.)

3. At the end of each week, measure both the weight and the volume of food waste in the bag. Record

both the volume and the weight for the week on the attached worksheet. Once you get started, it

should take no more than 15 minutes a week to measure and record your food waste.

4. If the bag fills before the end of seven days, weigh or record the volume of the full bag and record how

many days you collected food in that bag. Then begin collection in a new bag. At the end of the week,

total your weight and/or volume of food waste for the entire week.

5. After you record the weight and volume of food wasted for the week, dispose of the collection bag,

including food, appropriately and as acceptable for your collection service, by composting, through

organics collection or in the garbage.

6. Except for the new strategies you try starting in week 3, keep to your usual routine as much as possible

during the challenge. For example, unless you regularly clean out your freezer, do not clean it

throughout the challenge.

7. At the end of week 6, compare your totals for weeks 1 and 2 to weeks 3 through 6 and see how much

food you saved from going to waste! Many families have reduced their food waste by 25% or more.



· If you are concerned about leakage, then you might use a plastic bag as a second liner.

· If concerned about odor, you can clip the top of the bag shut; or you can start using a new bag midweek,

as long as you track the total volume of waste for the whole week.

· Do not collect liquid waste such as soup or food-soiled paper products.



Once you’ve completed the challenge, share your successes and lessons learned with other individuals or

organizations who may be interested in reducing wasted food.

For more information on sustainable management of food, please visit









Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________



Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________



Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________



Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________


Totals – Weeks 3 through 6 Averages – Weeks 3 through 6

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight Total Volume ÷ 4 = ______ Total Weight ÷ 4 = ______






Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________



Start Date: ____________ Day of Week: ____________ ________________________________________

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight ________________________________________

______ # of days collected ________________________________________


Totals – Weeks 1 and 2 Averages – Weeks 1 and 2

______ Bag Volume ______ Weight Total Volume ÷ 2 = ______ Total Weight ÷ 2 = ______



Overcome the Clutter with these Store Tips!

Housing trends are pointing to smaller spaces soon becoming the norm for the homes of the future. Soon gone by are the days of sprawling opulent great rooms and extra formal dining rooms, but that doesn't mean you have to enjoy less home. In fact,you may already be in a smaller home and loving that great things come in small packages. Either way we've put together some great tips to help you make the most of your storage situation in order to get more space! These tips on storage are simple to incorporate and won't break the bank!

Organize and Declutter.
Your home likely already has more room than you would think, but you may not be making the most of that space. Start simple: go through your things and decide what you really need. It may be time to file away those old documents or use organizers to get your closets in line. Look at your items and ask yourself: have I used (or even seen) this object in the last 5 years? If not, it may be time for it to go.

Bunk up!
By adding a platform to your bed rather than the normal frame you can add a ton of extra room under the space where you sleep. If you don't want to get rid of your frame you can even just make use of the storage there by getting short storage boxes for easy slide-in storing. Kids rooms? Save floor space by getting bunk beds for the kids! They'll love having all the extra room to play.

Shoe organizers.
Not just for shoes anymore! Hang them on the back of the pantry door to store tube shaped, or smaller pantry goods. They also work well in any closet for catch-all items; will definitely help you free up a little drawer space.

Ceiling to floor.
Your average store bought book shelf only goes so far - that is to say about 6 feet tall. Consider building or hiring someone to build full length wall shelving for you. Perfect for offices or living rooms, having that extra top shelf storage will give you a place to showcase items that aren't necessarily used often.

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