The Single Most Important Thing you Must Know if you Own a Home

Comments (20)


The Single Most Important Thing you Must Know if you Own a Home

By: Jeff Blovits

Don't ever, ever lose your job!

That's right, it's not your credit score or your assets or your equity or even Location, Location, Location that matter the most, it is whether or not you have an income stream capable of supporting your mortgage. Most people think of their home as the safest of investments that they have. It can be but only if you manage it correctly. If you have equity in your home, you are subject to the risk of loss of that equity at any time you can no longer afford to make your payments.

It doesn't matter how many years you have paid perfectly, if you for some reason can't, the bank will not let you slide for a few months to be nice. As a matter of fact, the more equity you have the more attractive it is to them to foreclose on you. That to me is the exact opposite of a safe investment!

I counsel my clients to understand that the most important thing they want to maintain is liquidity. They want to have the access to enough cash or near cash reserves that they are in charge or their financial choices.

This may not seem like a revolutionary idea but I would argue it is something that a great many people do very poorly. My clients are above average as far as wealth in their socio-economic groups. They tend to have more wealth per average income or job position than their peers. And most if not all of them have less than 5% equity in their homes!

There are many factors that contribute to wealth and putting your home equity to work isn't the magic criterion that assures you will be wealthy. But consider why these people are positioned this way and maybe the connection will become clear. In addition to liquidity, other benefits include increased safety, rate of return, tax savings, elimination of non preferred debt and establishing an emergency side or reserve fund.

How does all of this relate to income? Consider that if you lose your income you lose the ability to get access to the equity in your home. And guess when most people need access to that money the most? You guessed it, when something unexpectedly affects their income stream, like a job loss. Lenders will make loans to someone with bad credit, with no assets or reserves and with limited time in a certain field of work but if you don't have the ability to pay them back when you lose your job, they generally don't want to lend you money!

I would be willing to wager that most of you have either been affected by corporate restructuring or know someone who has. There are also a substantial number of people who lose jobs either because they or someone in their family becomes ill or are injured. In those situations would you be better off with $50,000 in an emergency fund to help you get back on your feet, pay doctor or home care bills, and allow you a cushion to find a good job instead of the first one you could find or have $50,000 in equity in your house that you couldn't access?

Now to finish up on the wealth equation as it relates to home equity. One thing that most people don't understand is their home equity is earning them a 0% rate of return. There are 2 components to your home value: what it cost to purchase it (basis) and appreciation. In 5 years your house will be worth the same whether you have a mortgage or don't. Any money you choose to put into the house is simply a return of your investment.

If you are willing to rethink the wealth equation and put your home to work for you it can be a great source for turbo charging your wealth. If you coordinate that with an integrated financial plan involving your planner, accountant and insurance agent then the results can truly be outstanding!

Jeff Blovits


Prospera Mortgage Group


Westerville, OH


www.columbusmortgageloans.com


p. 614.) 898.) 5656

About The Author

Jeff Blovits is the owner of the Westerville based Prospera Mortgage Group, a mortgage franchise location of the publically traded ssb out of Texas. Jeff has been in the financial services industry for 12 years as bank manager, underwriter, and mortgage lender. His innovative mortgage planning concepts are paving the way for countless clients to improve their financial lives.

Jeff@Columbusmortgageloans.com

Comments

Z 21.07.2012. 23:34

What are the most important places to visit in Italy in 7 days? Hello everyone, I am going to Europe soon and I only have 7 days to visit Italy, what are the must see cities and places that I need to see in this short time I have? Would you recommend booking a tour from home or should I wait till I get there to do so? How much money should I take with me if I plan to stay at hostels and eat at open air markets (yes, Im a budget traveler) Thanks in advance for your help.

Z

Admin 21.07.2012. 23:34

There is no single place that is best for everyone; it depends on your personality, expectations and preferences. Certainly if you've never visited before Rome, Florence and Venice are major attractions with lots of things to see and do. With 7 days you could split the time between the three places. Three days in Rome and two each for Florence and Venice would not be bad. Look for flights into Rome and out of Venice or vice-versa to maximize your sightseeing time.

But there are places like Cinque Terre, the Amalfi Coast, the lakes, the Dolomites/Alps with a lot of natural beauty, Ravenna with beautiful Byzantine mosaics, the small ancient hill towns of Tuscany, Umbria and other areas, beaches, castles, etc that are all worth visiting. There are a huge number of local festivals spread throughout Italy that can be a lot of fun and give you some insight into Italian culture that can be worth participating in depending on how much time you have. The key is to pick the places that appeal to you and don't try to overextend the number of places or travel times/distances.

If you're looking for a full tour that takes you around Italy and takes care of accommodations, transportation, some meals and entrance fees, you're better off booking before you arrive. Otherwise, you may have difficulty finding something that isn't fully booked or at best have a very limited choice of what is available. If you're looking for day or half day trips from the places you visit, I would wait until you're here to book those. It gives you more flexibility. Viator is one of the bigger providers of day trips: http://www.viator.com/Italy/d57. In Rome, you should make a reservation if you want to visit the Vatican Museums if you do this on your own rather than through a tour provider. The lines can be very long otherwise. You can use the Vatican Museum website: http://mv.vatican.va/3_EN/pages/MV_Home.? . You don't need to reserve a time for the Colosseum, Roman forum or the Palatine Hill area, but lines for getting tickets will be shorter at the Palatine Hill box office. then you can bypass the line for buying tickets at the Colosseum and go directly to the entrance.

Similarly, in Florence, you should make a reservation for the Uffizi or the Accademia: http://www.uffizi.firenze.it/en/eventi/e? . If you choose to wait until you arrive, you can still book reserved time tickets. There's a ticket office at the back of the Orsanmichele where the lines are much shorter than at the Uffizi or Accademia.

Venice is an easily walkable city unless you want to go to one of the outer islands like Murano, Burano, Lido ... It's also one of the most expensive places to visit here. I usually stay in the San Marco area, but the outer islands (e.g., Lido) or the mainland (e.g., Mestre) are less expensive. If you do that, you'll need to take the vaporetto or train/bus to get back and forth to your hotel.

Here are some resources that can help you plan and check options and current prices for your trip:

http://www.kayak.com/ - airfares & hotels; the explore function is useful for finding the less expensive places to fly into from your starting point.

http://www.trenitalia.com/cms/v/index.js? - train schedules and prices - use the Italian names for places (e.g., Florence = Firenze, Venezia, Roma ,,,). Trains are an excellent way to get around here. If you're trying to save money, the slower regional trains that make a lot of stops and require train changes are cheaper. You can get discounts on the faster trains for buying tickets in advance.

http://www.venere.com/ - hotels/B&Bs - prices for the same hotel can vary hugely depending on the season and what local events are going on.

http://www.hostelbookers.com/ - hostels.

http://www.monasterystays.com/ - monasteries & convents that offer accommodations. These can be a cheap alternative for places to stay and an interesting experience, but they are not always cheap.

http://www.whatsonwhen.com/sisp/index.ht? - festivals, exhibitions and events

http://www.backpackeurope.com/ - information & advice

Admin

madismommy3 16.06.2006. 03:42

What are all of the main things you need to know about to be the most successful realtor and investor? I am a young single mother who is just starting in the real estate business as a realtor. I have always been "Big" about always wanting to have a "plan of action" before I jump into something new, and that is why I am asking my question and hoping that someone with alot of experience will reach out with some advice!!! Thanks you- Michaela

madismommy3

Admin 16.06.2006. 03:42

To MadforMAC and trblmkr30, great advice.....I couldn't have said it any better!

I've been a licensed Realtor for almost four years and it can be very lucrative and I wouldn't trade anything in the world for it.

Remember, Michaela, always have integrity....your name is all you have in this business. Real estate is a great business but you must have patience and endurance. Always keep up with the latest trends in the industry.....take CE classes.

I've heard people say that everyone is becoming a Realtor, but you must find a niche so that you will "differ yourself" from other Realtors. My specialty is apartment building sells and development. I also own a couple of multifamily buildings and I do property management.

Lastly but most important. Family comes first! My work hours are between 10a-2p (this includes listing appointments and showings - never evening showings). I absolutely do not work on Sundays (this includes openhouse - I conduct my group showings thru the week)...this is the only day that I can vegetate. Sure, other agents get upset about this when they want to show my listings, but you can be just as effective with set hours. Otherwise, you will burn out quickly in this business,which I learned very early in my real estate career. Go after listings! As a seller's agent, you can set the appointments that are in sinc with your schedule. When you work with buyers, make sure you prequalify them. There are buyers out there who will run you all over town and can't buy anything. Make sure they've started the loan process, and find out what price range they can buy before you take them out. Again, to prevent the runaround, get listings. You heard of the old adage "work smart, not hard". The same goes with the real estate business. Always prospect....just a simple trip to the grocery store can materialize into a listing appointment. You can work from your home, as well as your vacation spot. All you need is a laptop, cell phone, pocket pc, and "Efax" and you're good to go, girl!

You'll be fine and good luck!

Realtor/Property Management

Admin

bring_it 06.04.2007. 00:25

how do YOU get your home organized? i have four kids, i'm a single mom. i am ALWAYS cleaning. and i feel like my life is made up of constant cleaning. i homeschool my kids, and we have scouts on tuesdays and folklorico on mon or wed. besides being in desperate need of a vacation i would like to know how you keep your home clean. i was raised that the home has to be spotless. but my house is wall to wall toys, clean clothes still needed to be put up and floors needing CONSTANT vacuuming, sweeping and mopping!! i'm so exhausted! any tips???

bring_it

Admin 06.04.2007. 00:25

Start with one room or even one area of a room and get it neat and clean. Don't allow anything that doesn't belong there back into that area. Get 3 boxes to carry with you as you clean each area. One for items that may need to be discarded, one for items that can be donated and one for items that belong somewhere else in your home. As time permits, move to other areas doing the same thing, until you have the entire home in order. Devoting even a few minutes each day to doing this will eventually get your entire home in order.
Give each child a space for his or her toys. Any items not returned to that area before going to bed is taken away for a predetermined length of time. If they have too many toys, only allow a certain number to be available to them and store the rest in a tote or box. Switch items every couple of weeks. There will be less clutter and they will have renewed interest in the toys that have been unavailable for awhile.
Since you are involved in Scouting, take a look at the Scout Oath and Scout Law. Use those points to encourage your children to participate in keeping their home neat and clean.
That pertains to Boy Scouts. I am not familiar with Girl Scouting but suspect they have similar standards which could be used.
Assign your children chores which they are responsible for. Make a chart to help them keep track of their duties. Children need to feel they are participating members of the family unit.
It is not necessary for your home to be spotless but it does need to be clean enough to be healthy and orderly enough to be enjoyable. Make each child responsible for cleaning up after himself or herself within the limits of their age.
Begin now to teach your children that the family must function as a unit, with each person doing their part and with RESPECT for EACH person as an individual. This means that YOU are a person with rights and interests of your own and deserve the time and environment to enjoy those interests as well as being their mother. This is important not only for your own well being but for theirs as they become adults.
Depending on the age of your children, they can be taught to clean up spills, reducing overall mopping. Even young children can learn to sweep and slightly older children can use a vacuum cleaner.
Divide and conquer the chores of maintaining your home!
Unite as a family to maintain a pleasing environment in your home!
If your children are accustomed to clutter and having you do all the housework, this may take some time to institute. Be patient and be consistent and persistent!

Admin

Irritated tenant 01.06.2013. 19:15

What kind of attorney do I need to write a letter requesting my rental deposit back? We moved in less than a month ago, the house was not cleaned, there is still piles of brush and junk in the yard (that have caused us to lose 3 big truck tires, and 2 on our Camry from trash and screws from the tenants before us) there was a roach infestation when we got there (we are still dealing with it) we rented the house thinking (because this is what we were told) that it had a dryer hookup, but it did not, and the electrician has been out 3 times (in almost a month) but is still not done and has not let me know anything. The drains were slow when we moved in but now they have stopped completely, so the kitchen sink, shower, and bathroom sink will not drain, and the toilet will not flush. It took 3 days for the PMC to respond to my calls and emails. Now they say in order to have my deposit returned I need an attorney to write a letter requesting the deposit to be refunded by the owner. What kind of attorney will I need to write that letter, and how much will it cost? Should I ask for more than just my deposit? HELP!!! This is a nightmare. I have had 4 other rentals and never encountered a single problem. I have been told that I do not really need an attorney, but I WANT one at this point. We have not been able to do laundry, now we cannot even shower or use the bathroom in our own home. So far I have refused to pay this months rent until the problems are handled.
Have had one answer with things I already know, that was discussed between the agent and myself, I only want answers to my actual question, not unhelpful information.

Irritated tenant

Admin 01.06.2013. 19:15

First, let me say I am not an attorney, nor have I ever played one on TV!

You cannot legally withhold rent without first doing several things. It varies by State, but one of them is, you must notify the landlord in writing of your intentions to withhold rent, and why. You also must put the rent money into an escrow account to be released once the conditions/terms have been met. Withholding rent is only going to get you evicted. Then you will have an eviction on your credit and thats going to make it very difficult to find future housing.

Why, would you move into a place that was in the condition you described?
If a w/d hook-up were so important, why didn't you notice there was none prior to renting? Did you even walk through the place? Or did you just go on hear say?

A landlord can't be held responsible for nails in your tires. Sorry. And as far as the slow plumbing goes, in the contract that I use, thats the tenants responsibility. It would be kind of the landlord to snake 'em for ya since you just moved in, but it's not a requirement. Check your rental contract for info on what your responsibility is regarding maintenance. The roaches tho, that's another thing. The landlord should handle that, and then bill the former tenants!

Send a letter if you want, but you signed the contract. Unless the landlord has violated his portion of the contract - and since they have sent out an electrician and the prop mgmt co did respond to you it doesnt sound like they have - there's not much you can do.

If I were your Mom, I'd advise you to let go of the anger, next time review the property a little better, and give your 30day notice, then move. Provided of course your on a month to month contract and not a lease. If you have a lease, it sounds like you have a problem on your hands!

As far as exactly what type of attorney you'll need, you should seek the advice of someone who deals with Landlord/Tenant issues. Here is a site that may be of some help: http://lawyers.findlaw.com/lawyer/practice/landlord_tenant

Rather than pay for an attorney, have you considered using a mitigation service? That usually works a lot better and is much more cost effective!

Good Luck

Admin

jackie 05.11.2008. 17:09

Why is society not kind to single women ? If a man is single and is not married ..nobody looks down on him or wonders what is wrong with him but how come society looks down on single women ?

How come marriage/babies are not the most important things in a man's life ? But to a woman - it;s the biggest symbol of womanhood ?

jackie

Admin 05.11.2008. 17:09

You are so so wrong

single guys dilemma

1) Why arent you married yet ? do you have commiment issue`s ?

2) Yeah he is a pervert allrite, saw the way he was looking at carol ? yeah they all kinda behave that way once they havent had a partner for a long time

3) He is out again tonite ? Im sure he is out to some stripper joint or to the red light district

4) I think he is gay

5) Son why are you not looking for any women out there, ( moms dont get it that women are difffrient these days, and we got to play the field )

6) You think you will be happy with all the money you got and no wife ? you are crazy, a home without a women is an empty home

7) Why is that guy arent married ? I better keep my kids away from him

8) I will hook you up with my friend, she is a nice lady but I think you buying her dinner

9) Hey you, you should be making a lot of money you know, because women nowdays sees men with money is good for financial security( tell me in a million years that women will provide and see men equaly in this part and i will still not beleive it, some things in nature simply dont change )

10) Oh he must be having problems performing, or he has some issue`s,

You know what ladies, we go thru a lot of stuff that we dont talk about, because we are guys ``and we have to take it as a men``. so please dont dont dont dont ever tell me its any diffrient to a guy. have to be men, have to be men. dammit, there is no place for guys to really get connected with his own feelings, gotta stomp it down.

Admin

Azafarus 18.06.2012. 13:31

How do you study 700pages in just 2 days? Its my finals the day after tomorrow and im freaked cos its engineering and i havent read a single page yet.

Azafarus

Admin 18.06.2012. 13:31

you cram. if that's not detailed enough for you follow this routine:
Get somebody to check on you every half an hour, like a parent or older brother/sister. Tell them to force you to study for 1/2/3/4 hours a day, no matter how much you want to stop.
The single most important thing is to TAKE BREAKS! This is not just me rambling on, it has been proven again and again by scientists. Every 45 minutes take 15 minutes break, you brain is physically unable to absorb any more information at that stage. but during breaks, don't watch TV, read, or go on the computer. This will only distract you and you'll loose track of time and not go back to your work. talk to somebody, but tell them in advance to stop you at whatever time. And don't text people, your phone is your worst enemy! turn it off! Give it to a parent to mind until you're finished! Let the charging run down!
Planning in advance what you want to study helps, like "Today I'm going to study all of chapters one, two and three in science" and don't stop until you've finished them (but still take breaks).
Make a study plan, like "I have three weeks until my history test, and 75 chapters. i want to have three days before my test to revise everything, but only skimming through to refresh my mind. That leaves my18 days to study 75 chapters. 75 divided by 18 is four chapters a day and three extra, which I will do on Saturday 18th." i know that sounds complicated, but just break up how much you have to do for each subject for how long you have left. write it down for each subject so you don't forget it.
i mentioned skimming through everything there, which is something everyone i've told to try found it amazing. I can't remember what i studied two weeks ago, but when i was studying it i made notes, pictures spider diagrams/ word webs for the major topics. if you don't know how to do these look on google images or something and you'll see it's a word in the centre with different parts on that subject coming out of it. for example the centre word(s) may be DIGESTION in a circle with the words teeth, stomach, liver, etc. at the end of a line coming out of it. then in turn incisors, canines and so on coming out of that. try using colour, you're more likely to remember it then. the day or so before the exam read over these notes (which you must always keep together in a folder of A4 pad).
for the distractions at home, my advice is everybody has a room with nothing in it. mine is my dads' study. yes his laptop is in there but i can't access it or if it's a TV give somebody the remotes (but the are not allowed watch it). i've already told you to get rid of your phone (that's what distracts most people).
if it's siblings or people distracting you, tell them fine, if the want to talk the can, then hand them a book and get them to test you or (a personal favorite) teach the (even if they already know), explaining stuff to them in simple terms and in your own words. get them to respond to this with questions and then break it down even more. if they can stand this, then great, they're helping you. if they can't, then they can either put up with it (your exams are more important than their gossip) or they can shut up and leave.
give people no excuse for distracting you, I'm giving my dad headphones for Christmas so he can't play his music in my face, and my mom her own copy of Romeo and Juliet so she'll stop stealing mine.
good luck, and hope this helped!

Admin

Alan M 26.12.2007. 03:55

When adding circuits to a home electrical distribution panel, can two circuits be wired to the same breaker? My breaker panel is full. In order to add a new corcuit, can I consolidate two circuits that are lightly loaded (just a couple lights on each) onto the same breaker? Does the electical code permit attaching two wires to the same breaker?

Alan M

Admin 26.12.2007. 03:55

Yes you can. Whos to say all that load would not have originally been on one circuit instead of two!

The matter of attaching two wires to one breaker is another matter.

Some breakers, such as Square D's QO line, have a saddle type arrangement that is UL listed to accept two wires. It even states so on the side of the breaker.

However some breakers only have a single set screw terminal that is only UL listed to accept one wire.

The important thing is that it is UL listed to do what you ask. The National Electrical Code (NEC) requires that equipment be installed in the manner in which it is listed.

If you have a breaker that only has a single set screw terminal you're still in luck. It is permissible by the NEC to make splices in a panel. In your case you would need to take a short piece of wire of the same gauge as the two circuits and simply splice the pigtail wire to the two circuit wires with a wire nut. Now take the other end of the pigtail and connect it to the breaker.

With this you have satisfied the NEC by using the breaker according to its listing, you are permitted to make panel splices and as long as you have not over fused any of the wires you are completely code legal.

When you do this you must make sure both wires are the same size. If one is smaller you must fuse it to protect the smaller wire.

For instance if both circuits use #12 wire, rated at 20A, you can put both to a 20A breaker in the manners described above.

If one wire is #12 and the other is #14 rated at 15A then you must size your breaker at 15 to protect the smaller wire.

I've done this before in my parents house and things like this are actually done all the time. Most circuits in a home are lightly loaded and can be consolidated. Nothing adverse will happen to this. If the load should be too great and the breaker were to trip then all youve got to do is simply split the two circuits back up!

I think you will be fine. By your own admission the loads on each are light so you shouldnt have any problems.

Hope this helps!

Admin

Selina 05.01.2013. 20:59

How much money should you make to live a comfortable life? How much should I make if I wanna live in san Diego, single, in a nice apartment, have my own car, and be able to go out and shopping whenever I want.

Selina

Admin 05.01.2013. 20:59

Hi Selina,
You sound like a nice person so I'm going to be honest with you. You talk of having a comfortable life but you don't mention the most important aspects of it such as having a family and your families happiness. Financial security does not automatically equal a comfortable life, in fact, nothing could be further from the truth. Ask most people will financial security and they will tell you that money does not equal happiness. The truth is, financial security tends to bring more stress into your life because it brings more responsibilities your way.
For anyone who has never experienced financial security for a prolonged period of time will always think that having money will make all of your problems go away. In reality, it will make all of your financial problems go away but these will be replaced by other problems.

I can understand why somebody would want a nice beautiful place to call their home but beyond that, all other items are worthless materialistic possessions that will never make you happy. Our greed-based consumer, capitalist society has forced all of us to value possessions more so than our own self-esteem. Capitalism makes us believe we are not worthy if we haven't become a successful consumer of possessions. A persons status in society is measured by the items they own and the money they have collected, rather than the good deeds they have done in their life. In fact, in our greedy society, money is more valuable than a human life as everything is considered to have a price tag. It really is a sad and morally bankrupt state of affairs and most people don't understand the wider implications of this type of society.
By the very nature of how modern society is structured, for all the people to have these meaningless material possessions, it means someone else, somewhere else will have to go without the bare necessities so the few can have their luxuries. Its an incredibly unfair and unbalanced system that creates so much poverty and hardships.

Spending your life shopping and consuming will NEVER make you happy no matter how much is satisfies you at the time. This addiction to consumerism will only ever get worse and it will only ever make you unhappy because the corporations trick consumers into thinking that they need their new product in order to be worthy. Its like saying your not a whole human being unless you have the latest 'must have' product. All your doing when you participate in consumerism is destroying your self-esteem and looking at yourself negatively. While you might get a short rush of excitement and joy when you first buy an item, this feeling will never last because your becoming addicted to the drug of consumerism.

The best advice I can give a young women like you is to find yourself a beautiful home and try to live a simple, CREATIVE life where you express your own personality in your life instead of a cloned brand personality. Find yourself someone to love and start a family. Try to find joy in the simple things in life away from meaningless possessions because these will only ever make you unhappy. Whats the point of spending your entire life chasing the latest product. Its a life of a slave.

I hope this makes sense to you. I'd be happy to offer you some more advice if you want, just drop me a message and I'll reply. Me message address is on my profile page.

Good luck.

Admin

Agirl. 07.11.2008. 01:42

How can I remember things for my exams? We have exams next week and for the science and geography exams we need to remember alot of things. For science theres a whole 3 pages of notes !! (Typed up).
My friends are doing a book full of notes but I want to do something different that will REALLY help me remember the things I need to know.
Any suggestions?? THANKS.

Agirl.

Admin 07.11.2008. 01:42

Well, this question is very hard to answer specifically. Different people have different study tactics, some can use flashcards for the material and others can talk about the facts among friends, say during a study group or a 'review day' at school. Therefore, for me to give you one specific type is virtually impossible. You should know your study genre. However, I will present to you all the study tactics that I know, hopefully you will be able to choose wisely or more wisely incorporate them all. Foremost there is the VISUAL learner. Personally, this is what works best for me. The visual learner is best supported by FLASHCARDS. Because I believe I have mastered this concept, I will tell what I do. Inorganic Chemistry, the downfall of mankind, is a challenging college course, it is prerequisite at my school to AP Chem. so I'm forced to take it. In this course there is an absolute plethora of facts, figures, ideas, concepts, etc... to remember, much more than three pages. With that said, I take everything necessary to answer questions on the test (vocab. facts, figures..) and place them on flashcards. I cannot stress the IMPORTANCE of how you MUST REPEATEDLY throw these flashcards in front of your face, over and over and over until you know all the imperfections of the paper, its lines, and most importantly, the information you write on it. In such a case for the visual learner, much will be learned. It took me about three days of flash-carding myself to remember all the elements and their symbols, with that consistent effort, I had the highest test score in my class (a 99). On the other hand there are AUDIO learners. These people remember facts best when, of course, spoken! A great method is to get with a friend and have them call out questions to you over and over. Hopefully you can get together after school in a quiet environment and go over the material until you remember it, be prepared not to know everything the first hour, you may want to get together two more days for 1-3 hours depending upon you learning stamina and overall willingness to study. Of course, this is a great way for both you and your friend to study. Sometimes, while I don't know why, if I type the facts on the computer I seem to remember them more from when I just do the flashcards, there may be some kind of TOUCH learner (who knows?!). So if I have the time, I'll sit down WITH NO MUSIC (VERY VERY IMPORTANT; NO MUSIC, it destroys the learning process, which by the way, is a biological process involving the formation of proteins, learned that from reading). Anyway, just type the facts, remember to actually think about the facts, understand them, put them into your own words (putting concepts into your own words, say the mole concept, the water cycle, electron configuration is a good example of how to know how much you know that information). All in all, these, as I find for myself and those who study with me, are great tactics. However, the best tactic is to incorporate all of them, form a study group after school or during lunch, review the material with flashcards, have study-mates ask you questions whenever they get a chance, in and out of the study group. After flash-carding or getting a parent to call out questions at home, and you think you have the general idea of the material, rigorously think through the notes while typing them. While some people can sleep through half a lecture and not write a single letter and ace a test, others may endeavor so far into the material as to profess within the mysteries of it and fail the test. But when you incorporate all the tactics you know, and study them all with you hearts greatest desire, you may not understand the material but I can almost guarantee that you will be able answer the questions on the test correctly. (Though as a side note, not understanding the material will probably not let you pass an essay or maybe a short sentence answer) I hope the 30-min. dedication has helped you if you have any questions just ask me, now I'm going to study Latin Mythology (whoo hoo...not) via typing!

Admin

Kristina 01.06.2009. 21:14

What is the easiest and cheapest way to file for divorce with kids involved? The custody is agreed upon.? I have been separated from my husband for 8 years and we have a ten year old son together. We agree on the custody arrangements but have had the money to file. I am tired of waiting for him to help with the divorce so I am trying to do it on my own but don't have much money being a single mom and working and going to school at night. Any suggestions would be great.

Kristina

Admin 01.06.2009. 21:14

WARNING: LONG WINDED OLD FART

An uncontested divorce or paternity action need not require the two of you to hire attorneys. You need only find a Certified Mediator, hack out the agreement, in detail, file it with the court, and set a hearing date. On that day the judge will swear both of you in, ask if you both agree to the terms set down in the document, than everyone signs it. Generally, there is a 30-60 day waiting period for the document to be recorded with the county and state registries.

The mediator will be a lawyer or paralegal, with specialized training. Each of you MUST pay half the fees. The fees could run from $200 to $1000, depending on the going rates in your area, and time spent on the document. Court fees could run $50 to $150, but if you are tight on money, you could request a waiver.

These are the things you NEED to cover in the document.

CUSTODY
Soul Custody
Joint Legal Custody
Joint Physical Custody
Bird Nest Custody (see below)

VISITATION
How close do you live to him?
How old is the child?
How often?
What specific weeks, or months?
What specific holidays on in a list of years, do each parent get the children?
What if the custodial parent wants to move out of state?


MEDICAL
Who covers medical insurance?
Who decides on treatment?

CHILD SUPPORT
How much?
Weekly, Bi-Weekly, or Monthly?
How Long? Eighteen, High School, or End of College
Do you split the cost of college?
What state(s) may they attend in?
What is the minimum amount of college credit hours the child must take?
Who gets the tax deduction(s)?
What if the child gets pregnant? Does child support stop?

DEATH
If the residential parent dies, who gets the child? Never assume anything.

***************************
May I ask why the divorce or separation? It's very important that the child(ren) have both parents in the home. Is there nothing that can be done to preserve this?

Stanford University
Divorce, Nontraditional Families, and Its Consequences For Children
"We know that children of divorced parents have more emotional and behavioral problems and do less well in school than children who live with both their Parent."
http://www.stanford.edu/~rmahony/Divorce.html

Fortune Magazine
?Ominously, the most reliable predictor of crime is neither poverty nor race but growing up fatherless.?
http://money.cnn.com/magazines/fortune/fortune_archive/1992/08/10/76732/index.htm

Stay married and save the planet
http://news.yahoo.com/s/nm/20090224/od_nm/us_divorce_odd

JOINT CUSTODY
Equal Time
How I divide my life between my divorced parents' homes.
By Charlotte Juerge - Newsweek Web Exclusive - Dec 15, 2008
http://www.newsweek.com/id/174698

Father Makes Two
Time Magazine
By Margot Roosevelt Sunday, Nov. 11, 2003
http://www.time.com/time/magazine/article/0,9171,183968-1,00.html


Here's a few books that might help.

Stupid Things Parents Do to Mess Up Their Kids
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbninquiry.asp?r=1&afsrc=1&pwb=1&ean=9780060933791&z=y

Ten Stupid Things Couples do to Mess up Their Relationships
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbninquiry.asp?r=1&afsrc=1&pwb=1&ean=9780060512606&z=y

The Proper Care and Feeding of Marriage
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/booksearch/isbnInquiry.asp?r=1&afsrc=1&z=y&EAN=9780061142826&itm=1

Fatherless America : Confronting Our Most Urgent Social Problem
http://search.barnesandnoble.com/Fatherless-America/David-Blankenhorn/e/9780060926830/?itm=1


BIRD NEST CUSTODY
It?s a form of access or custody where the children stay in the former family residence and it is the parents who rotate in and out separately and on a negotiated schedule.

The children simply live at "home" and the separated or divorced parents take turns living with them there, but never at the same time.

The core element of this arrangement is that each parent maintains a separate residence where they live when it is not their turn at the "bird's nest". When one parent arrives for his/her designated time, the other vacates right away, so as to minimize or eliminate the presence of both at the same time.

At times, bird's nest access can be coupled with specified access with the other parent say, for example, for dinner one night a week.

Sometimes, this form of access or custody will end when the youngest child reaches the age of majority at which time, one parent either buys the other out of their interest, if any, in the former family residence, or it is sold and the proceeds divided pursuant to the matrimonial property regime or separation agreement.

The arrangement can be expensive as it generally requires that three separate residences be maintained, the "nest" and a separate residence for each parent.

The concept is somewhat novel and appears to have as its origin a Virginia case Lamont v Lamont.
In Canada, Greenough v Greenough was a ground-breaker case in that the Court implemented a bird'

Admin

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