Different Ways To Do a DIY Move

Moving to a new home can be an exciting but challenging experience. While hiring professional movers is a popular option, it may not always be feasible due to timing, location, or personal preferences. Fortunately, a do-it-yourself (DIY) move can be a practical and cost-effective alternative in lieu of a government move. In this blog post, we will explore different ways to successfully execute a DIY move, ensuring a smooth transition to your new abode.

  • Plan Ahead: A DIY move requires meticulous planning to avoid last-minute chaos. Start by creating a comprehensive moving checklist that includes tasks such as packing, organizing supplies, renting a moving truck, and enlisting help from friends or family. A well-structured plan will help you stay organized and alleviate unnecessary stress during the moving process.
  • Purge and Declutter: Before packing, take the opportunity to declutter your belongings. Sort your items into categories such as keep, donate, or discard. Getting rid of unnecessary possessions will not only make your move easier but also save time and money on packing supplies and transportation costs. Consider hosting a garage sale or donating items to local charities to give your belongings a new life. You can even check out your local “Buy Nothing” page on Facebook. This makes the DIY move more manageable. 
  • Gather Packing Supplies: Collecting the necessary packing supplies is crucial for a DIY move. Stock up on sturdy boxes, bubble wrap, packing paper, tape, markers, and furniture covers. These supplies will help protect your belongings during transit. Don’t forget to label each box with its contents and the room it belongs to for easy unpacking later.
  • Enlist Friends and Family: Moving alone can be overwhelming, so reach out to friends and family for assistance. Invite them to lend a helping hand on the moving day or even before for packing and organizing. With more hands on deck, the process will be faster and more efficient. Show your appreciation by providing refreshments and snacks for everyone involved. Friends not available, you can check out local movers and request they only pack the truck/unpack the truck. This is a cost effective way to save your achy muscles. 
  • Rent a Moving Truck or Trailer: For transporting your belongings, renting a moving truck or trailer is often necessary. Research local truck rental companies and compare prices and sizes to find the most suitable option for your move. Make sure to reserve the vehicle well in advance, especially during peak moving seasons when availability may be limited.
  • Utilize Portable Storage Containers: Another convenient option for a DIY move is renting portable storage containers. These containers can be delivered to your doorstep, allowing you to pack at your own pace. Once you’re ready, the company will pick up the container and transport it to your new location. This method offers flexibility and eliminates the need for driving a large truck.

  • Take Advantage of Technology: In this digital age, technology can significantly simplify your DIY move. Take advantage of apps and online resources that can help with various aspects of the process, such as inventory management, packing tips, and even finding the most efficient route to your new home. Additionally, use virtual communication tools to stay connected with your support network during the move.

Embarking on a DIY move can be a rewarding experience, both financially and personally. By planning ahead, gathering the necessary supplies, enlisting help, and utilizing available resources, you can successfully navigate the challenges of moving to a new home on your own. Remember to stay organized, take breaks when needed, and celebrate your accomplishment once you’re settled in your new space. Good luck with your DIY move!

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5 Ground Rules for Home Buying Success

Ground Rules for Success - Kelsey and Jorge Realtors

There are few purchases in life that carry the financial and psychological weight of buying a home.  Whether you are buying your first home, moving up to your dream home, or downsizing your home and your life after the kids have gone, it is important to understand the ground rules for success in the world of buying a home.

 Making the wrong decision in buying a home can have devastating and long-lasting effects, while making a wise decision in home buying can greatly enhance the overall value of the investment.  It is necessary to learn all you can about the world of home buying and mortgages before setting out to purchase the home of your dreams.

While there are plenty of web sites designed to help first time homeowners learn all they can, most financial experts say that there is no substitute for the good old one-on-one learning. Fortunately, most mortgage lenders, home inspectors and real estate agents will be able to provide this kind of one-on-one learning.

When buying a home, it is often best to use a systematic approach as this is often the best way to be sure that all decisions are based on information and reason, not on impulse or emotion.  Buying a home can be an emotional process, nevertheless it is imperative to keep your emotions under control and not let them cloud your judgment.

 There are five basic ground rules when it comes to buying a home and shopping smart, and they are: 

1) Get Your Financing Before You Get Your Home

There are few things in life as disappointing as losing out on the home of your dreams due to not being able to secure funding.  While the desire to get out there are search for that great home is understandable, it is vital to line up the financing you will need before you start shopping for a home.

 Getting the financing ahead of time has a number of important advantages, including knowing how much you can buy and gaining more respect from the listing agents.  By knowing how much home you can afford before you shop you will avoid wasting your time looking at unaffordable properties, and the listing agent will be more than willing to show you the homes in your price range.

 It is also important to take a good look at the various types of mortgage on the market before getting started in the home buying process.  These days, mortgages come in far more choices than the typical 15 or 30 year. For that reason, potential home buyers need to understand how each type of mortgage works, and to gauge which mortgage is the best choice for their needs.

2) Look at the Community, Not Just the Home

It is a good idea to look at the entire community, instead of focusing on a single home. This can be a particularly important thing to consider for those moving to a new metropolitan area, as these buyers will be unfamiliar with the local climate and lifestyle.  It is crucial to determine the areas of town that are most desirable, and to consider things like distance from work and local shopping opportunities.

We have all heard that location is the key consideration when it comes to real estate, and that is certainly the case.  Buying a house in the wrong area can be a big mistake, and it is important to choose the location as well as the home.  Potential buyers can learn a great deal about the nature of the various neighborhoods simply by driving around town, as well as by talking to other residents.

Community - Kelsey and Jorge Realtors

3) Be Fair with Your First Offer

Trying to lowball a seller on the first offer can backfire, as can paying too much. It is important to carefully evaluate the local market, and to compare the asking price of the home with what similar houses in the neighborhood have sold for.

Comparing the sales of comparable homes, what are known as “comps” in the industry, is one of the best ways to determine what is fair, and to make sure that you neither overpay or underbid on the property.

4) Always Rely on a Home Inspection

Always investigate the home for any possible defects before making an offer.  Compared to the cost of the average home, the price of a quality home inspection is virtually negligible. Hence, get a good home inspection done before you buy.

 To find the best home inspector, it is a good idea to seek out word of mouth referrals as many of the best home inspectors rely on word of mouth advertising.

5) Do Not Alienate the Sellers of the Home

Many real estate deals have fallen apart due to the personal animosity of the buyer and the seller.  It is important to avoid alienating the seller of the home during the process, and to avoid nitpicking every little detail during the sale.

Keeping the good will of the seller will help the transaction go smoothly, and it will provide the best environment for seller and buyer alike.

Inspections - Kelsey and Jorge Realtors
Julie Herrmann - Highlands Mortgage

About the Author

Julie Herrmann is the Branch Manager at Highland’s Mortgage in Kingston, WA.

Your Mortgage Gal for Life
Cell (360) 900-7092
Fax (425) 749-5503
11253 NE State Hwy. 104
Kingston, WA 98346
Highlands Residential Mortgage, Ltd. | WA Branch License: CL-2075463

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Making Successful Moves with Pets

Helpful Tips for Moving with Pets

I volunteer at an animal shelter and a frequent reason for owners surrendering their animals is they are moving, and they feel it is too difficult to take their pets. 

We always took our pets with us when we moved, so I needed help understanding the problem. So, I asked a group of military wives to assist me to determine if a “How To” article would help or if moving is an excuse to not have a pet. Most thought it was an excuse, but there were some valid points made for not taking pets on a move.  Below I provide I tips on how to move with an animal. 

I would like to extend a thank you to the Kings Bay Military Wives Group on Facebook for helping me with this article.

 We have made many moves with pets, so I thought I would share how we did it. I added some tips and links as well.

Moving with Pets

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

Welcoming Pooky Home

My husband Michael and I got married when he was stationed at Pearl Harbor Navy Base.  It was my introduction to military life.  We had to wait until we moved to base housing, as our first apartment didn’t allow pets.

We went to the Humane Society in Honolulu and looked for our new dog.  We found this little guy who had just come in.  He came to the gate, but, wasn’t barking, he just wagged his tail shyly while cowering in the corner, terrified.  We went to the desk and they told us he had to stay on stray hold for a few more days, and we should call on the last day to see if he was still there.  We did, and he was. 

We named him Pooky after Garfield’s Teddy Bear.  Pooky was a love, he chewed on our stuff, he ran off from time to time, and had his own crazy character. But, mostly, he gave us so much love.

Tips for a successful move with pets

Our Move with Pooky

When it was time to move we arranged his travel with the airline and bought him a travel cage.  Did I mention that we had a baby eight months after we got him and is now a little over a year old?  Yes, we had a toddler, a dog and all our belongings.  We were going from Hawaii to Washington State, in November.

We made sure our hotel was pet friendly ,and we had gotten a referral to some old Navy housing that did accept pets. 

We got our household goods and unpacked, but it was the holidays and as typical military families do, we went to visit family for Thanksgiving.  The four of us, my husband, our son, Pooky and me were back on a plane for the visit.  That was our first move with a pet.

The next one came when we went from Washington to Georgia.  By this time, we had a toddler and a baby.  Given the personality of the boys and the length of the trip, we thought taking the dog in the car with us would be tough. We called the airlines, and for a small fee they would ship Pooky solo, if we had someone pick him up. Our family held onto him until we could get there.  

We enjoyed our Christmas with the family, but we then had to find a pet friendly place at our new base.  It was a brand-new base and there wasn’t much housing on or off base, and it was harder to rent with a pet, so we bought our first house.  That was Pooky’s last move with us, but he did take some trips.  When Pooky crossed the Rainbow Bridge we got our next shelter animal.  

We went to the base and found a sweet little girl named Snowy.  Snowy was a lively two-year-old Beagle mix. She was also a known runner and who could blame her, she was two and had already been passed between four families due to, you guessed it; moving. The poor girl had never known stability with a family. That effects animals as much as it would affect a child passed between foster homes.

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Our Journey with Snowy

A few years after we got Snowy it was time to move back to the West Coast.  This time my husband went ahead of us.  He found a temporary apartment that was pet friendly while we waited for our Navy housing to be ready.  Once in, we put up a fence for Snowy to have her own free space and took her on many trips in the car to see the mountains of Washington and the great Northwest. 

Our next move was when my husband retired from the Navy and we had to find civilian housing that was pet friendly.  It was more challenging, but we did it. 

When you get a pet, they are a part of your home and household and just as with any family member, you find a way to make the relationship work no matter what happens.  Advanced planning is essential.

We still travel a lot with our pets.  it is work but they are worth it.  To us, they are part of our family, a gilded member, and dogs as well as cats are social animals, they become part of a “pack”, whether human or of their own kind, and are loyal to that, and will protect it’s other members and they are affected as much by loss of that pack or any member of it, as much as you or I would be affected by the loss of a spouse or child, they feel that. 

Why do you think they are so happy when one returns from work, or a trip and they have been home alone, even if only for a few minutes?

Moving Tips with Pets

Below find some tips and links to help with making your trip or move with your pet less stressful:

Research your new location as soon as you know you will be moving.  You need to find out how the new home works for all the members of your family.  Schools and Doctors for the kids, employment for the adults, breed restrictions and veterinarians for the pets. 

If you find you are moving to an area where there are breed restrictions, you need to be aware of this before you go. (The ridiculousness of these rules is a whole other article.) Make sure where you live accepts the pet you have or will get, make sure your pet will fit into your living situation. A cat or a small dog will probably work better in a two-bedroom apartment with no yard rather than a Lab or Great Dane.  

These are simple steps that will help avoid heartache and headache.

At this point you may have to make some tough choices.  There are some circumstances under which it may be in the pet’s best interest to live with someone else rather than making the move. You may want to check out Pets for Patriots as a possible place for your pet.

I am not suggesting anyone shirk their responsibilities but putting a sixteen-year-old dog or cat into a long quarantine may not be in the pet’s best interest. We did rehome two animals for what we thought would be in their best interests. 

In both cases. we made sure they went to trustworthy families. The second one only lasted six months, and we got him back. Pooky was part Husky. They are runners, and when he kept running off we thought he would be happier at my parent’s house in the country.  My folks realized he missed us and brought him back, that was the last time we tried “re-homing.”

 It would be very hard on me, now, to find a new home for my pets, and I think I would prefer not to move if I couldn’t take my pets, they are our family and you don’t just abandon your family.  But the US military doesn’t always have that as an option, and when the orders have you going overseas you need to know and obey that county’s rules.  

Pets and PCS

The Trip Itself

For the trip itself this depends on whether you are driving or flying.  If you are flying, you will need to pick an airline that will allow your pets to fly with you. Find out the requirements and procedures and talk to your vet before the trip, they often prescribe a mild sedative you can give your pet before their flight to ease their anxiety.

You can imagine it’s very traumatic for them to be separated from people they know, trust, and love. Then they are trapped in a cage on a noisy, scary plane ride. Most people are nervous about flying, and we understand what is going on. Image what it’s like for the pet who has no idea what is going on!

I know we have had some horror stories in the news about airlines and lost pets.  Let’s remember, something only makes the news if it is unusual.  I believe most airlines get it right more than they do wrong. Here are a few airlines that take pets; these allow pets in the cabin.

If you are going by train, check the rules just as you would for the airline.  If you are traveling in the car with a pet, remember, they need a break just as you do. 

Plan to stop at places where they can safely stretch their legs and play, just like you would for the kids.  Rest areas have a place for pets and many hotels welcome your pet

Bring their familiar items like their crate or bed, some toys and treats.  These will make Max or Fluffy feel more at home. 

If you have a more unusual pet like a pig or a snake you will have to do a little more checking to see what hotels and rest areas allow. 

Owning pets is a privilege and a responsibility. You have a living friend that is close by and greets you at the door with enthusiasm, no matter what mood you are in or what you are dressed like. It is a relationship like no other.

They are here for a short time and trust me, when that friend leaves you miss them.  Make the effort to keep them for as long as you can, but if you must, also make sure they find a loving, safe new home.


About the Author

Lisa lives with her retired US Navy Submariner husband in South Georgia. She is a former homeschool mom of two active boys who are now adults. She volunteers at an animal shelter.  She writes children’s educational books as well as articles for adults.

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Top 4 Doorbell Home Security Systems With Cameras

Doorbell Security

When it comes to home security, it is difficult to know who’s knocking your door before you open it. There is nothing better than a doorbell, security system. After all, your peepholes can be physically blocked, wet, or even smudged which makes it difficult to know who is on the other side of your door.

Doorbell home security systems will help you know if the person at your door is your relative, the delivery guy, your neighbor or a stranger. Video doorbell security systems will help you eliminate these possibilities, providing you with the much-needed security in your home. Regardless of your location from home, you will be in the position to know the security status of your house.

Also, home security systems such as video doorbells provide you with an opportunity to talk and hear from the person at your door. Here are the different types of doorbell home security systems available on the market.

Doorbell security

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

The Ring Video Security Doorbell System

A Ring Video doorbell is the biggest name when it comes to home security, but this does not make them the best systems for every budget. Your doorbell security system options will depend on the budget and your installation preferences since the company offers both hard-wired Elite and Pro versions of their popular doorbells.

These security systems feature more sophisticated sensors and higher camera resolution. Also, the systems do not depend on batteries or the spotty wireless connections. If you are looking for sleek and recognizable doorbells that come with a worldwide connection of users and easy to use interface, this system might be the best doorbell for your needs.

Also, Ring provides you with both wireless and wired home security systems that can work on every home. These systems come with night vision, two-way talk, activity alerts, on-demand video and many more.

RCA Doorbell Home Security System

Most of these doorbell home security systems will provide you with a free trial on the cloud service while charging you a fee on a monthly basis. The RCA skips the recurring expenses in favor of the microSD storage.

These systems come with 16GB microSD cards and cameras to help you get started. The system’s memory slot can accommodate up to 128GB, which makes it a pretty versatile storage option. Other features are also pretty top-notch with a 3M sensor onboard to provide you with ultra-HD video recording and processing with excellent clarity.

The RCA security system allow you to utilize two-way talk features even when you are about to communicate with anyone at your door. Also, the motion-sensing capability of the system sends you notifications to your mobile device. The security system does not have similar brand recognition as the Ring or Nest, but its approach to video storage makes it a perfectly viable option for your home.

Doorbell Security

VTech Video Doorbell Security System

The VTech video security system is among the best wireless home doorbell systems, you can have in your home comparing its price and quality. It comes with two-in-one cordless systems and a color LCD which means you can connect it to your mobile device as well as digital cameras.

Another excellent feature of the VTech doorbell home security system is the snapshots that provide you with a click. It allows its users to snap several photos automatically. Also, it’s an opportunity to listen to audio live streams. The system’s cordless handsets let you see the person on the other side of your door without having to change your position. VTech doorbell home security systems work independently and permit mobility within your home.

Also, the system comes with an automatic night vision mode. You can adjust the videos to the contrast you desire and optimize the quality that will suit your unique needs and preferences. The system has a volume adjustment option that helps you control the quality of the sound and volume.

Homeowners can adjust the cameras to any angle they want which can be done using a joystick available in the interior of the security system. It has the best video camera, excellent sound system and everything you need in a doorbell.

Put Me In The Story - Bestselling Personalized Books for Kids
Doorbell security

Nest Hello Doorbell Security System

If you currently have a Nest thermostat in your home or any other product from Google, you will probably be a fan of the Hello doorbell system. The Nest’s Hello doorbell home security system comes with facial recognition features, making it stand out from other options that only distinguish between non-human and human movement as well as detecting movement.

It also features integrated mobile technology and other essential features for managing your home security which includes scheduling and geofencing options to block notifications during certain hours of the day or about specific individuals.

Doorbell home security systems have become more popular over the past few years and are currently considered more of a necessity than a luxury. They are your home’s first line of defense, and you can remotely access them, monitor and control through your mobile devices.

Jessica Kane

About the Author

Jessica Kane is a writer for Nick’s Building Supply, Inc., the best place for custom made or replacement front doors online. 

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Unraveling the Mystery of Home Insurance

Home Insurance

Today, most real estate owners in Seattle choose to maintain homeowners insurance coverage. This important type of protection helps supply a safety net against many types of unexpected events causing damage to a residence, or harm to people on the property. It usually pays to shop carefully for this type of insurance.

Homeowners Insurance Protections Vary by State

The specific items covered by a homeowners insurance policy will differ sometimes based upon the company offering the policy, the location, and the level of coverage selected. Since states vary widely in the items lawmakers may require builders to install in residential properties, policy holders in some locations obtain more comprehensive protections.(1) In general, most homeowners insurance policies cover at least four basic categories(2) of damage:

  • Residential interiors;
  • Residential exteriors;
  • Liability protection for accidents occurring on the property;
  • Coverage for theft or vandalism-related property damage.
Home Insurance

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

Interior and Exterior Property Damage

Homeowners insurance differs from mortgage insurance, although many homeowners pay both types of insurance along with monthly, quarterly, or annual mortgage payments. Mortgage insurance essentially protects a lender against a purchaser’s default.

By contrast, homeowners insurance helps compensate homeowners when unexpected calamities damage their property interests in the residence itself. For instance, if lightning strikes the home, homeowners insurance may help the homeowner pay for the cost of repairing roof damage.

It also covers repairing or replacing flooring impacted by leaking water. Most homeowners insurance policies maintain a claim limit of $100,000 per incident. (In some states, some companies do permit customers to purchase higher levels of insurance coverage.)

Liability And Theft Protections

One important item typically covered by homeowners insurance relates to a homeowner’s interest in protecting people who sustain injuries while visiting the property.

For example, if a tile slips from the roof and strikes a person delivering pizza to the residence, the property owner may face liability for the accident. A homeowners insurance policy usually offers some level of liability coverage protection in this type of situation.

Similarly, if a thief breaks into the home by battering down a door, a homeowners insurance policy will usually help the homeowner pay for replacing the damaged door and door lock.

Some policies will even cover intentional third party damage to the homeowner’s automobiles parked on the property.

Many homeowners insurance companies allow customers to purchase additional policy coverage riders to insure valued items of personal property on the premises against accidental damage or intentional thefts.

Home Insurance

Read Your Homeowners Insurance Policy Carefully

In general, homeowners benefit by consulting about the provisions of their homeowners insurance policy with their insurance agent. The terms of individual policies sometimes vary significantly.

One policy might offer low premiums but include a hefty deductible. Another might cover one particular type of loss, such as damage to a roof caused by a toppling tree, but might exclude other types of casualties, such as wind damage to trees on the property during storms.

Homeowners sometimes discover they obtain more comprehensive protections by purchasing additional specified types of insurance coverage.

Additionally, consider that most homeowners insurance policies do exclude two broad categories of damage: Acts of War and Acts of God.(3)

The classification of a calamity within either of these designations may prevent an insured from obtaining coverage protection when disaster strikes.

For instance, if an invading army burns down the house (an Act of War) or an earthquake topples the garage (an Act of God), homeowners may not succeed in receiving compensation from their insurance company for their loss.

Put Me In The Story - Bestselling Personalized Books for Kids
Home Insurance

Why Policy Details Matter

While most policies do cover fire damage and water damage in general, the causative events sometimes determine whether or not a homeowner actually obtains compensation.

Usually, insurance companies will not compensate the insured for losses caused by floods, seismic activity, power failures, or accidents resulting from neglected property conditions. If you’d like to receive specific coverage for a potential hazard, clarifying this issue with an experienced insurance agent in advance may help prevent misunderstandings and confusion later.

Additionally, homeowners insurance closely resembles automotive insurance in one important respect: people who file repeated claims frequently experience difficulty obtaining coverage.

From a practical standpoint, a homeowner may discover handling small accidental losses out of pocket helps keep homeowners insurance premiums more affordable.

**Insurance companies do not have to sell policies to customers who pose a high risk of becoming claimants. This situation sometimes impacts a customer’s ability to qualify for home financing.

The Process of Filing a Homeowners Insurance Claim

After a homeowner discovers accidental damage to the property (or to visitors on the property), the insured typically files a claim by contacting the insurance company.

In many situations, the insurance firm will assign a property adjuster to investigate the underlying fact situation. This process might involve an insurance investigator or adjuster visiting the premises and photographing the damage.

When an insurance company approves a claim, the firm pays the insured property owner an amount determined by the terms of the policy.

An insured receives this payment less the cost of the deductible. In some cases, the insurer will also specify property mitigation requirements. (For example, insurance policies for commercial realty sometimes require a property owner to obtain water remediation or fire remediation services in order to receive full compensation.

Conceivably, in some states, insurance companies may include clauses requiring homeowners to obtain these remediation services, too.)

Research Homeowners Insurance Carefully

It usually proves prudent for homeowners to discuss their policy provisions in detail with their insurance agent before making a purchasing decision.

By shopping carefully for coverage, you’ll often locate the best available policy provisions for your circumstances. Individual homeowners insurance needs vary, so evaluating the most significant property risks in your location with your agent in light of your unique needs usually makes financial sense.

Helpful Resources to Continue Research: 

  1. Bankrate
  2. Investopedia
  3. Wikipedia

Looking to sell your home?  Use these tips to help you sell from area realtors.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Jessica Kane

About the Author

Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Scaffold Store, the favorite and trusted scaffold supplier of the largest contractors.

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The Buzz About Tankless Water Heaters

Tankless Water Heaters

Property owners in the Greater Seattle Area, as well as around the country, sometimes face an important decision: selecting a new water heater. Should you purchase a conventional water heater with a large tank, or a newer “tankless” brand? This brief article will discuss some of the pros and cons associated with the installation of this technology.

The Development of Tankless Water Heaters

Today, it startles most people to realize the concept of hot water on demand remains comparatively modern. An Englishman named Benjamin Waddy Maughan reportedly patented the first rudimentary water heater in 1868.

Known as the “Geyser,” this Victorian Era device heated water immediately before it entered a bathtub.(1) The invention served as one inspiration for the modern tankless water heater.

During the Twentieth Century, the concept of using a big tank to supply a steady stream of warm water directly to a residential plumbing system gained popularity. The public welcomed this innovation. Obtaining a dependable flow of warm water by simply turning on a faucet became a popular residential amenity during the 1890s and early 1900s.(2)

For decades, most homes in the United States relied upon large tanks to heat water for use in kitchens, bathrooms, and laundry rooms.

Water Heaters

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

Electric Tankless Hot Water Heaters

Although experimentation with tankless water heating systems occurred during the latter half of the Nineteenth Century, this innovation did not become commercially available for several decades. During the late 1920s, a German firm named Stiebel Eltron began manufacturing small electric tankless water heating systems.

However, the technology did not really become competitive commercially for widespread residential use in the United States until the 1970s.(2) Today, consumers frequently opt to install tankless water heaters instead of conventional units with large tanks. Tankless designs operate using either gas or electricity. They fall into two categories.

Most frequently, an individual tankless system heats water immediately before use (at the tap level). A few companies also market “whole house” tankless systems designed to accommodate multiple faucets in a single residence.(3)

Some Important Tankless Water Heater Advantages

Tankless hot water heaters have gained popularity recently as a result of some important advantages. First, these units typically operate with greater energy efficiency because they heat water immediately before use. A homeowner does not spend money to heat 40 or 50 unused gallons of hot water at one time.

Second, tankless models tend to enjoy a considerably longer anticipated lifespan than units relying upon large tanks. The cost of this technology pro rated over the entire lifespan of the equipment usually proves less expensive. Additionally, gas-powered units often allow property owners to obtain federal or state tax rebates based upon the use of energy-efficient products.(4)

Third, tankless water heaters installed at the tap level frequently attach directly to a wall underneath a sink. The compactness of many modern tankless water heaters helps make them an ideal choice for use in some motels, hotels, and rental apartments. This technology does not monopolize valuable floor space.

Fourth, the absence of a water tank offers another important practical benefit. Although infrequent, leaks sometimes do occur in home water heating tanks. When they install tankless water heating systems, property owners don’t need to worry about ruptures in the tank soaking floors or causing water to spill onto nearby furnishings.(3)

Fifth, tankless systems permit the precise temperature regulation of hot water. This capability reduces safety problems associated with sudden spikes in hot water temperature. Many experts consider the new tankless units less apt to cause accidental hot water burns than conventional units.(5)

Tankless Water Heaters

The Cons of Tankless Water Heaters

Of course, like every item of equipment, a tankless hot water heater also holds some drawbacks. These units don’t suit every residential property. Equipment with large tanks sometimes remains the best choice for several reasons:

First, the initial cost of acquiring a tankless system sometimes poses a practical barrier to the use of this technology. These innovative systems tend to cost between two and four times as much as conventional water heating equipment. Some buyers consider the initial outlay of funds prohibitively expensive.(5)

Second, property owners frequently must spend money on infrastructure improvements in order to use energy-efficient gas or electric tankless hot water heaters.

For example, it may become necessary to upgrade a home’s electrical system or expand the size of the residential natural gas line. These costs sometimes make the adoption of a tankless system quite expensive.(3)

Third, some rooms in residential properties simply cannot accommodate gas-powered tankless hot water heating equipment. These units require venting to an outside wall. This safety consideration makes this technology impractical for some homeowners.(4)

Fourth, tankless hot water heaters generate brief transient temperature fluctuations which sometimes create discomfort for people desiring immediate access to hot water.

This technology heats water shortly before it leaves the tap. However, bathers must wait a few seconds for the faucet to expel unheated cold water already in the line before they experience a reliable stream of hot water on demand. This problem proves most acute during the use of whole-house tankless heating units serving multiple faucets.(5)

So while a tankless system eliminates safety concerns associated with the use of overly hot water, it sometimes contributes to complaints from users that they must wait for water to warm up.

Fifth, the complexity of tankless hot water heaters means most customers must obtain experienced installation services. Since the use of this equipment often necessitates an infrastructure upgrade, it generally makes sense to depend upon an experienced, licensed HVAC or plumbing professional for assistance. The technology does not lend itself to DIY installation.(4)

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Tankless Water Heaters

Selecting A New Hot Water Heater

Both conventional and tankless hot water heaters supply pros and cons. Consider speaking with an experienced plumber or HVAC contractor about your situation before selecting the best equipment for your home. Not every tankless system suits every property. On the other hand, this technology sometimes produces significant long term savings!

Useful Resources to Research:
1. https://tanksandheaters.com/edwin-ruud-father-of-the-hot-water-heater/

2. https://www.neyerplumbing.com/blog/water-heater-service/a-short-history-of-the-amazing-tankless-water-heater/

3. https://home.howstuffworks.com/tankless-water-heater3.htm

4. https://www.angieslist.com/articles/what-are-pros-and-cons-tankless-water-heaters.htm

5. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tankless_water_heating

Tankless Water Heaters

Looking to sell your home?  Use these tips to help you sell from area realtors.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Jessica Kane

About the Author

Jessica Kane writes for PlumbersStock, the top choice of do-it-yourselfers and professional plumbers alike for all of their plumbing supply needs. 

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Military Travel Discounts

Military Travel Discounts

A growing number of businesses in the travel industry honor U.S. service women and men by providing them with some pretty outstanding military travel discounts.

What is presented here is only a sampling of what currently is available from some of the major players in the travel industry when it comes to discounters for military service personnel.

Keep in mind that oftentimes these companies not only have discounts for military service women and men currently on active duty but they also have programs for vets as well.

7 Ways to Save

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Sandals is a travel industry leader when it comes to all-inclusive travel packages. Sandals resorts are located at luxurious tropical destinations.

At this time, Sandals is offering military service personnel with an across the board benefit. Active military service women and men get 10 percent off of any Sandals package. This discount applies to those packages that are already discounted.

In addition to a discount on all Sandals packages, different Sandals destinations oftentimes have special perks available for military service personnel. The company publicizes its ongoing commitment to thanking our troops for their service to our nation.

Norwegian Cruise Lines

Norwegian Cruise Lines is a travel industry leader when it comes to cruises. Norwegian Cruise Lines is also committed to honoring out troops.

The company offers active military service personnel with an array of different discounts on its multitude of cruises each year. Benefits include discounts on nearly every cruise the company offers throughout the course of any given year.

Norwegian Cruise Lines offers military service personnel added on-board benefits as well. These benefits for military service women and men and their families are in addition to discounts on cruise prices.

These different perks and benefits vary from one cruise to another.

Military Cruise Discounts

Westgate Resorts

Westgate Resorts has consistently been dedicated to supporting the men and women who serve our nation in the armed services. Westgate Resorts rightly refers to these brave people as “our nation’s greatest heroes.”

Westgate Resorts offers a special discount packager to all military service personnel. Men and women from the U.S. armed forces receive special 10 percent military travel discount at any Westgate property.

The Westgate Resort discount program is one of the easiest to access and use in the travel industry. All a person needs to is make note that he or she is a member of the armed services when making a reservation and the discount automatically is applied. At the time of check-in, a service member need only present his or her military ID.

All Westgate Resort properties participate in the military discount program. Westgate has spectacular five-star resorts located across the United States.

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Military Travel Discounts


AARP is well-known for the array of discounts offered to its members. Veterans are not forgotten by the AARP as the organization offers many specialized programs for vets and their families. These include access to a variety of travel discounts.

There are AARP members who are still on active duty. As a result, the organization has additional discount travel benefits for men and women on active duty as well, benefits that extend to their families.


Expedia is one of the largest comprehensive online travel services in operation today. Expedia provides a full spectrum of travel services, including booking air travel, hotel rooms, and so forth.

Expedia is also home to an array of travel bargains available in all sectors. Through Expedia, members of the military service can access an array of different types of travel discounts. These discounts include everything from airfare to lodgings and other travel related benefits.

Military Travel Discounts

Disney Resorts and Cruises

Over the course of many years, the Disney Company has been highly supportive of women and men in uniform. This remains the case today, including when it comes to special deals available from Disney at its resorts and on its cruises.

Members of the military service can obtain discounts for stays at any of the many Disney resort properties in the United States and elsewhere around the world. This includes discounts on lodging, admission to attractions, and many other offerings at a Disney resort property. A person on active duty, and his or her family, can also receive discounts on Disney package vacations. Want to see how one family was able to enjoy Disney on a budget? Click here.

In addition to discounts at resorts, Disney also offers military benefits on its cruises as well. Members of the military forces can obtain healthy discounts on the prices of cruise packages.

Many other enterprises in the travel industry offer discounts, special packages, and other benefits to military service personnel. When a member of the armed forces is planning a trip, it is always wise to ask what discounts or benefits may be available to a service member.

Wyndham Armed Forces Vacation Club

In order to honor men and women in the military service, Wyndham created the Armed Forces Vacation Club. The Armed Forces Vacation Club is open to all active members of the military branches.

One of the unique benefits offered via the Armed Forces Vacation Club is special access to Space-A stays. Space-A allows people, including families, rental options at travel destinations.

Military service personnel have access to $349 for weeklong Space-A stays in rental properties at different locations across the country. This truly represents one of the most affordable lodging options in the industry.

Getting ready to take a trip? Check out the most needed essentials here. Need some travel tips for your baby, click here. Have questions about traveling via airplane, check out this article on Airline Travel Tips.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

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Update Your Space with a Fence

Accessories for Real Estate

A simple way in which you can up the market value of your residence is to enhance its curb appeal. You do not need to spend a fortune on improving the street appearance of your home.

One step that you might want to consider taking as a means of improving the curb appeal of your property is to add a front perimeter fence to your property.

There are a number of factors to bear in mind when it comes to adding a front perimeter fence at your residence.

Functionality with Fencing

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

The Importance of Curb Appeal

Curb appeal is important when you have no plans to sell your home and want it to look tremendous.  Curb appeal is vital if you want put your home on the market for sale.

There is a saying that you can’t judge a book by its cover. That may work for reading, but it isn’t accurate when it comes to selling your house.

The reality is that potential buyers are judging your house by how it looks from the curb. In fact, you may have an amazing interior, but if the front of your home is not up to par, you will lose potential buyers who will not even bother to set foot inside your home.

There are more simple steps that you can take to enhance the curb appeal of your home.

This includes such things as giving your home a fresh coat of paint.

In addition, you can give your landscaping an uplift as well. This includes dealing with problems with your lawn and making sure any plants on the premises look their best.

As was mentioned, a perimeter fence should be considered as well.

The Focus of a Perimeter Fence

You need to contemplate exactly what you want the focus of your fence to be when it comes to the issue of curb appeal. For example, if your home is in a neighborhood that has had issues regarding crime, the focus of a front perimeter fence should be on protection and security. This type of fence sends a reassuring message to people who like your home but who may have heard about crime issues nearby.

Perimeter Fence for Decoration

Another primary focus of a front perimeter fence is decoration and enhancing the overall appearance of your home.

In this regard, you have a myriad of options.

When it comes to a decorative front perimeter fence, you can head down the traditional path or you might have some sort of innovative idea of your own. With these points noted, you will want to make sure that whatever you select compliments and harmonizes with the design concepts of the house.

Real Estate Accessory

Perimeter Fence for Security

As mentioned a moment ago, a prime focus for a perimeter fence can be security.

There are fences that are designed with a specific focus on security. These fences typically come complete with gates that activate via remote control, permitting you to drive onto the property without having to exit you automobile.

Keep in mind that just because a perimeter fence has a focus on security doesn’t mean that it cannot be attractive in appearance.

Perimeter Fence for Privacy

A key consideration for many people looking to buy a home is privacy.

Privacy concerns rise in a variety of situations. These include in neighborhoods in which houses are relatively close together.

When considering curb appeal, particularly with an eye to selling your home, adding a privacy front perimeter fence very well make your home far more attractive to potential buyers. In addition, adding a front perimeter fence with a focus on privacy works both ways.

Yes, it likely will make your property more attractive to a prospective buyer. However, it also allows you, your family, and your guests the ability to enjoy all that your front yard has to offer.

You are able to do this without the prying eyes of the neighbors or people motoring by.

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Defining a Space with Fencing

Perimeter Fence for Multiple Purposes

Keep in mind that even if you have a primary focus for a perimeter fence, you are not resigned to having a single purpose front fence.

Rather, you can construct a perimeter fence that covers all the bases, at least to some degree.

You can work closely with a contractor to convey what you really desire from a front perimeter fence.

You will find that there are preexisting designs and products that likely meet your needs.

In addition, there are fencing companies that will assist you in coming up with a customized option the specifically satisfies your needs.

Looking to sell your home?  Use these tips to help you sell from area realtors.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Jessica Kane

About the Author

Jessica Kane is a writer for Viking Fence, the number one fence rental company in Houston.


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The Secret to Coping with PTSD

PTSD Secret

Dogs are widely utilized to assist men and women who suffer from post traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD. There are a number of specific reasons why dogs can help heal a person afflicted with PTSD.

Dogs are Vigilant in Watching Over Their Owners

One of the reasons dogs can assist in coping with PTSD arises from the fact that they are truly vigilant. Researchers have concluded that the vigilance of a dog, in relationship to his or her owner, is akin to soldiers and the buddy system in the military.

PTSD secret

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A person who has a nightmare with a dog in the room can better appreciate the level of vigilance associated with a canine.

When a person wakes up from a nightmare, a dog provides cues and information to assure his or her owner was not experiencing something real.

Dogs can be helpful in this manner when it comes to assisting their owners suffering from the symptoms of PTSD.

A dog’s vigilance aids a person afflicted with post-traumatic stress in discerning what is a real issue and what is a symptom of the condition.

Dogs are Protective of Their Owners

Another attribute of dogs that contribute to their ability to aid in healing a person with PTSD is found in the fact that canines are highly protective of their owners.

Many dogs are literally inclined to fight to their very death if it meant protecting their owners from harm.

This type of protective behavior is highly beneficial to a person diagnosed with PTSD. The protective behavior of canines wards off perceived threats to an owner with post-traumatic stress.

Moreover, a person with this diagnosis is more confident to go about activities of daily living knowing he has a protective friend at his or her side.

PTSD Secret

Dogs Love Their Owners Unconditionally

A key problem many individuals with PTSD have is a perception that they are unloved. In addition, trust is a major issue for individuals diagnosed with PTSD.

Another one of the different reasons why dogs aid in healing a person afflicted with PTSD is the fact that canines love unconditionally.

A person with PTSD never has to question whether or not his or her canine companion loves him or her.

Further, a person with PTSD has a real difficult time maintaining, let alone establishing, loving relationships with other people.

A symptom of the condition is that individuals with PTSD perceive themselves as being unlovable. This line of negative thinking is discounted in the face of the devotion of a canine.

In addition, a dog is thoroughly trustworthy.

From this trust of a canine, a person with PTSD is able to begin building a foundation upon which he or she can start trusting fellow humans.

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Dogs Understand and Remember Feelings of Love

Another way in which a dog is helpful in healing PTSD is that they are not turncoats. This is associated with the unconditional love of a dog towards his owner.

The reality is that even the best behaved dog is not perfect. He or she will cause problems and need to be scolded.

With that noted, a dog does not hold grudges or stop caring for his or her owner merely because he has been disciplined for doing something wrong. In other words, a canine has the ability to understand he or she has made some sort of mistake.

But, a dog also remembers and maintains the feelings of love he or she has for his human — and that his human has in return.

Dogs Encourage an Owner to Get Out of the House

Many people with PTSD hole up at home. They fear and dread going out in public and limit their time away from home. A dog aids in healing a person with PTSD by making it easier for a person with that condition to get out of the house.

By getting out of the home with greater frequency, a person with PTSD is able to engage in positive activities. This includes interacting in a positive manner with other people.

Getting out of the home provides a person with PTSD with ever increasing control over his or her life, all because of the supportive assistance of a loving canine.

With increasing regularity, specially trained dogs are becoming key components in the lives of individuals with PTSD.

These canines truly provide a person with PTSD the support and security necessary to begin living a happier, healthier life.

In fact, even pooches lacking in special training can prove to be utterly invaluable to a person with PTSD.

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Jessica Kane

About the Author

Jessica Kane is a writer for Handicapped Pets, your most trusted source for dog wheelchairs and harnesses.

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The Best Hotels for Military Families with Pets

Pet Friendly Hotels

We just completed our 9 day (turned 10 day) cross country move from Georgia to Washington.  There was a lot of prep work and a lot of lessons learned along the way.

For the most part, our hotels were great and one was, well…not the best!

However, everywhere we stayed accommodated dogs for a reasonable price with some preparation beforehand.

Hotel Tips

*This post may contain affiliate links – if you purchase something from this post, I receive a small commission with NO extra cost to you. To see my full disclosure click here. Thanks for supporting us!

Making Cross Country Travel Plans

If you read any of my social media posts about our crazy cross country trip, you will know that we had quite the adventure.

On day 3 of our adventure, we had to spend an extra night in Texas, and I spent 2 hours calling 6 hotels and rescheduling our entire trip.

Most hotels kept us locked at our original rates, and a few changed it to match their current daily rate.

So as a military family (or any family that meets challenges on the road), you want a hotel that is flexible.

When you are traveling – there are a number of things you want to plan.

Create a travel plan.  I used Google Maps and put in the starting and final location.

Remember that traveling with children and pets will add to your travel time.

Also, if you are driving a moving truck – you will need to account for the moving truck.

When we went through the Rockies, my husband could only go 40mph climbing those mountains.

Plan for multiple breaks.

Best hotels for Pets
Decide on your route. I chose locations that were about 4-6 hours from each other.

When I chose my locations, I did it thinking that we would need to add an additional 90 minutes to fuel, grab food, and use the restroom.

I did this by looking at the map and gauging how far apart each location was. 

I started moving the map to find towns that would fit the time span, had a decent selection of hotels, and was outside of downtown major cities.

This is why Google Maps works perfectly (it shows distance and time between two points).

You can choose your route however you please – quickest route, sightseeing route, family route, etc.

I have always wanted to see Colorado. So we planned our trip around that.

It was well worth it!

Georgia to Washington Travel Map
Start booking hotel reservations. Be sure to have a calendar of your dates. I used Expedia to look at hotels in an area.

When I started making plans, I had my Google Calendar out (hard copy works great here if you use one).

I jotted down each location that was expected for each day. As you saw from above, I started playing with towns close to each other on the map based on the hotel selection.

I would check out the hotels in each place based on our budget and user reviews and pictures.

For me, safety and convenience was key. I wanted to make sure it wasn’t too remote nor did I want it right off the interstate.

I would take the address of the hotel and Google it, then look at the street view of the maps to see what was around it.

Surprisingly, I made a lot of decisions this way. Especially when the price point was similar.

We also avoided big cities like Dallas and New Orleans and opted to stay right outside to avoid the traffic.

Book the hotel by calling them individually and asking for a military rate. I saved tons this way and sometimes got an upgrade.

So even though I used a travel website to look for hotels around an area (and as a way to know where to stop), I did not make the reservations this way.

Get on the phone with each hotel and ask them for a military rate (you could even say that you are traveling on orders).

Do not call the number on the travel sites though, as this is THEIR call center to make reservations.

I google the hotel (based on the address given on the travel site) and on the right side of the screen, it will give the map, phone number, and address. 

Hotel Reservation Tips

Call that number!

I paid on average $20 cheaper than any listed price.

Also, be sure to ask the hotel if they can accommodate your moving truck size. 

This was a problem at one of the hotels we stayed at, but luckily they owned a sister hotel that let us park there.

We loved staying at the hotel above – if you are in the Colorado Springs area, give it a try. Click here for their website.

Pet Friendly Hotels
Write down your confirmation numbers (I had mine in a small notebook I carried with me in my purse) and ask them to email you a copy.

After speaking to the front desk about your reservation, be sure to ask them them for your confirmation number.

You should also get them to email it to you and go ahead and print out that copy.

Print out your confirmations and put them in your PCS notebook. 

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PCS Notebook

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Pet Friendly Hotels
Now see the best hotels here for traveling with pets.

We stayed at a Sheraton, two La Quinta’s, an Extended Stay, two Colorado resorts, two Best Western Plus’, and a Holiday Inn Express.

So which hotel was the best for the budget?

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La Quinta was the only hotel we consistently found to have $0 pet fee.

That’s right, nada!

Most of their hotels are pet friendly. 

As long as Starsky and Hutch don’t make a mess or damage the room, you will not incur any additional costs.

Most of the pet fees are either pet pet, per day, or per accommodation (per room for length of stay).

Be sure to ask!

Many of the fees ranged from $10 to $50 depending on the hotel we stayed at.

Resorts are typically more expensive , so keep that in mind.

If you have dogs that are barkers, and you planned on sightseeing, you may want to look into a doggie daycare as the hotel can ask you to leave.

Other Helpful Tips

  • If you are traveling or in the middle of a big move, don’t forget quarters for laundry. Be sure to pack a laundry bag. We found that after about day 6, we just wanted to have some clean extra clothes.
  • Most hotels with pools have complimentary towels at the pool, so no need to waste your bath towels.
  • When you book your reservations, be sure to give them any accommodations you would prefer (ground floor, near ice machines, near stairs/elevators, etc.).

If you found this advice, or any of my advice helpful, please consider buying from one of my affiliates at no additional cost to you and supporting The Military Move. When you click and make a purchase within 24 hours (at no additional charge), we receive a small donation. Thank you!

Kelsey Ramirez

About the Author

Kelsey Ramirez is a Real Estate Broker in western Washington. She is also a veteran elementary school teacher, military wife, and mom to two daughters.  She is the founder of The Military Move, a military-based website to help families in the PCS process. Kelsey loves to travel, write, and create amazing content.  She has her Masters in Technology, which she uses to learn all new things digital.

With three decades of military support, Kelsey’s mission is to help new and existing military families in their unique adventures through all military topics including PCSing, budgeting, school choice and rights, housing, and especially just being a military spouse.

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