Tips & More

Make the Moving Process Easy for Your Pet With This Guide

Moving with a pet can be challenging for several reasons, as many animals are anxious when it comes to life changes. Going through the process of selling your house, buying a new one, and physically making the move while ensuring that your pet is safe and comfortable might be stressful, but there are several ways you can make the process easier. From buying the right products for your pet’s comfort to finding services that will help along the way, you can cut the stress out of the move for both you and your animal.

Consider Your Pet’s Needs While House or Apartment Hunting

Finding the perfect home can take some time, so the Villa Groups recommends that you make a list of attributes you’re looking for. Dog owners typically want a nice backyard, while pet owners of all kinds appreciate easy-to-clean floors over carpeting. Take the neighborhood into consideration, as well. Is it near a park or other pet-friendly spot? Do the neighbors have pets, and if so, would they get along with your animal? How far away is the home from your vet? Keep in mind that it’s not a good idea to bring your pet along while looking at homes since homeowners may be allergic or have an aversion to animals.

If you simply can’t find the perfect pet-friendly home, but you need to get out of where you are currently, consider renting while you work with your real estate agent to find the perfect place to buy. Sometimes, renting can help you save money while you set aside for a down payment. For example, you can find a pet-friendly apartment in LA for under $2,000 per month. So look into all of your options before compromising on your – and your pet’s – new home.

Plan Out Your Moving Day

Once you’ve found the perfect home, you can start the process of packing and preparing for the big day. Planning well will help to reduce stress for your animal, so give yourself plenty of time to get things done during this part of the process. When packing, leave your pet’s belongings for last, and keep things as organized as possible. Finish packing in one room before moving on to the next.

It’s also a good idea to arrange for someone you trust to take care of your pet on moving day. This arrangement will help them to stay calm and keep from being underfoot, which will ensure his safety. You can hire a transportation service to get him to the new place, which will take some of the burden off your shoulders.

Find the Right Products for Your Pet’s Comfort

Making a move requires that you bring along your pet’s favorite toys and bedding to prevent anxiety, but you can also buy a few new items to ensure his comfort. Maybe you need a large crate to keep him contained while you’re away during the day or a quality set of clippers for at-home hair touchups. Another good idea is to try a calming product like CBD oil, or maybe a Thunder Shirt. Having these items already on hand will keep stress at bay for you and your furry companion throughout the transition.

Tools for Home and Business Ease

Even with careful planning on your part, a move can still bring a lot of work and stress for both you and your pet. Thankfully, tech can help. Consider utilizing a pet camera so you can keep an eye on Fido or Fifi during the day when you go back to work. Lean into outsourcing and apps where you can, too. For instance, homebuyers can use esignature apps like DocuSign or PandaDoc, and business owners can pass the task of setting up their California LLC with an online service. Look into tools and services that make life easier for your specific needs.

Keep in mind that your stress can affect your animal when you get home, so it’s important to look for ways to stay calm and focus on your well-being at work, such as by doing stretches at your desk or going for a walk on your lunch break. Adding more playtime for your pet when you’re together is another great way to help them reduce stress.

Put a Plan in Place for a Low Stress Move

Moving with a pet doesn’t have to be a stressful or overwhelming task. With some careful planning and the right products, you can keep stress at bay for both you and your pet and make the moving process a smooth one. Look into getting a crate or travel carrier for your pet, and make sure that you find the right house or apartment to meet your – and your pet’s – needs. Moving is a big deal, but it doesn’t have to be stressful with the right plan in place.

Photo Credit: Pexels

Guest article by: Nick Burton –

Real Estate, Tips & More

5 Tips to Stay Yourself Cool At Home During a Heat Wave

We are expecting a heat wave this weekend and you might not want to spend it at the beach or at the shopping center. Wondering how you can save energy while keeping yourself cool at home?  Here are 5 tips to keep yourself cool at home during a heat wave:

  • Unplug heat producing electronics such as appliances or computer equipment.
  • Use stand or ceiling fans to circulate the air while you are in the room. Make sure to turn them off when you leave the room.
  • Keep your windows shut and curtains closed. Don’t turn on lights, especially fluorescent lights.
  • Don’t use the stove. Eat cold or microwaveable foods instead.
  • Close doors to rooms to keep the air inside and if you live in a two-story home.

These are just a few ways you can enjoy the comfort of your home during a heat wave while saving energy.  Additionally, stay hydrated by drinking water and staying away from alcohol.  Also, don’t forget to take care of the elderly, children, and pets.  

Content Photo by Made Of Lovely on Unsplash

Featured Photo by Alejandro Tocornal on Unsplash

Real Estate, Tips & More

How to Save to Buy a House

Depending on the type of loan you are applying for, you may need from 3% to 20% of the purchase price for a down payment. In addition to your down payment, you will also need around 2%-5% of the purchase price for closing costs. Once you know how much you can afford, you will be able to determine the amount you will need and how long it will take to achieve your goal. Here are some things you can do to achieve this goal:

1. Open a bank account that is specifically for saving money for your home purchase. This can be a savings or investment account. Set it so the transfer is done automatically every month and, no matter what, do not withdraw any money from that account.

2. You may also deposit any tax refund, extra money, or gifted money into the new account.

3. Reduce any current debt. Start by paying off any high-interest credit cards.

4. Do not get into any new debt whether it is a new credit card, a loan or a new car.

5. Cut down unnecessary expenses such as entertainment, eating out, and non-essentials.

In addition to this, you may also start a new side job and save this income. However, keep in mind it is recommended that before you start saving for your new home, you have an emergency fund already in place with at least three months of your monthly expenses. This will allow you to have a separate account in case of an emergency so you do not need to tap into your home purchase savings.

Featured image by Jeremy Bishop /

Content image by Eskay Lim /

Tips & More

Every Homeowner Should Know About These Four Forms

As a homeowner, you should know about these four forms regarding protection of your primary residence and possible reduction of property taxes.


1. Home Protection for Seniors, Severely Disabled, Families and Victim’s and of Wildfires or Natural Disasters Act – lf you are 55 or older, you have sold your primary residence, and are occupying your replacement primary residence, you may file form BOE-60-AH, Claim of Person(s) at Least 55 Years of Age for Transfer of Base Year Value to Replacement Dwelling, it gets filed with the County Clerk’s Recorder’s Office where the replacement property is located. More information may be found in the California State Board of Equalization information page.

2. Homestead Declaration – This form serves as a protection on your primary residence in the event certain creditors want to force a sale to satisfy a court judgment. There is a designated amount that protects the property equity. You should seek legal advice to ensure the form is completed properly. The notarized Declaration of Homestead form is filed with the County Clerk Recorder’s Office where the property is located.


3. Property Tax Exemption – The State of California allows an exemption of up to $7,000 on the value to assess the tax of your primary residence. The claim form, BOE-266, Claim for Homeowners’ Property Tax Exemption can be provided by the County Assessor’s Office and you file it with the County Clerk Recorder’s Office where the property is located. More information may be found in the California State Board of Equalization Property Tax Exemption page

4. Notice of Supplemental Assessment – The County Assessor of the county where the property is located will assess the property value to determine the tax on the property value. You do not need to file anything for this but if you had new construction or if you just bought a property, you should expect this notice. Depending on whether the value went up or down, you will get a bill or a refund. More information may be found in the California State Board of Equalization Q&A page.

These forms are publicly available at your local County Assessor’s Office. They may be able to answer general questions but it is important that you seek legal advice if you have questions about how these forms may or may not benefit you.

Photos from Unsplash by:

Kostiantyn Li

Tingey Injury Law Firm

Samia Liamani

Marissa Grootes

Blake Wheeler