The Norton Group, Inc.



Posted by The Norton Group, Inc. on 4/21/2019

Moving brings a load of changes in your life. There's the picking and packing and planning. Then you have the actual move with the unpacking and organizing and decision-makingówhere to put this, how to store that. If you have children, there's finding the new school and getting them enrolled. You have to learn a new job, a new commute, making new friends. The last thing on your mind is finding a new dentist. That is until you look on the mirror and realize your teeth haven't had a cleaning for a while, or you notice something more severe like a crack in your tooth.

Now, the need to find a new dentist is urgent. So, where do you go?

Even if you have insurance, there may be dozens, if not hundreds of choices. Youíve only ever been to one dental office in your whole life. Where do you start to look? Your last dental group may be part of a regional or national chain with outlets in several cities. If you choose to go to a dentist in the same chain, chances are your records are easily transferable between offices and the pricing should be similar. If you have dental insurance at your new job, ask co-workers for recommendations. But ask more than just one. Your dental needs may be completely different from theirs so try to get as many recommendations as possible. 

When you have particular concerns such as allergies to dental medications or extra sensitive teeth, you'll want to look for a dentist that advertises as "gentle," or if you have a specific type of crown, you'll wish for someone knowledgeable about it. Online listings typically allow searching by specialty so that you can narrow down your choices that way. On the other hand, small, private practices may be more invested in the local neighborhood, so if that appeals to you, visit all the dental offices nearby your home to see if they support local ball teams or otherwise display signs of community involvement. 

Finally, you can ask your neighbors, church or civic organization acquaintances or the parents of your children's classmates if they recommend someone. And, if the same name comes up more than once, you can compare each person's experience to help you decide. And don't forget to view their websites. Watching a video of your potential dentist can smooth the way for the first time meeting allowing a more relaxed experience since you know who to expect. 

Your real estate agent might be an excellent resource for a recommendation, so donít be afraid to ask.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by The Norton Group, Inc. on 2/3/2019

Moving into a new home is an exciting time. As you look at each potential house you imagine yourself living your life there. Eating pancakes at the breakfast bar with your spouse, watching you children run around the large backyard, turning a spare bedroom into your own personal space. The expenses that come with a move, however, arenít quite as exciting. If youíve stretched your dollar a little further than you would have liked but still want to turn your house into a home try these renovations that can fit any budget.

In the kitchen

Pick up some peel and stick vinyl from your home improvement store to add a new backsplash to your kitchen walls without the fuss of tiling. Upgrade your kitchen faucet to something sleek and modern or to a different finish that suits your taste. Install new drawer pulls to cabinets to add your own style to the room.

The Front Door

When you move youíll have lots of people stopping by to visit and admire your new abode. Make a great first impression by updating the front of your home. Paint the front door a bright, friendly color; yellow and red are two classic options. Installing a kick plate to the bottom of your door not only protects your door from everyday wear but also gives your door a more luxe look. Placing vibrant greenery and blooms by the front door, both inside and outside, makes any home feel more welcoming.

Bring new life to old furniture.

You donít need to rush out and buy all new furniture for your new home. Instead, alter pieces you already own. Give your worn-out sofa and arm chairs a modern update with slipcovers. Buy a colorful ottoman and some throw pillows to give your living room a whole new feel. Adding wallpaper or an accent color to the back of a bookcase gives the piece some flair for little effort. Artfully arrange books and knick knacks without overcrowding to bring a designerís touch to the room.

Tiny Changes, Big Impact

Sometimes itís the small things that make the biggest difference when updating a home. Swap out old, basic switch and outlet plates for ones with more style. With options spanning the ornate to imitation stone, youíre guaranteed to find a style that suits your decor. Add bold new house numbers in a bright color or arranged in a unique way. The more creative you get, the bigger an impact youíll make. Install new light bulbs designed to bring a bright but friendly warm light to make each room feel more inviting.

Even if your budget is tighter than you would like there are still small home improvements you can make your new house feel a lot more like your home. Sometimes all it takes is a dose of your favorite color or the simple act of putting your own personal stamp on the place.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by The Norton Group, Inc. on 10/14/2018

Buying a home is a big change. New surroundings, new town and sometimes even a new state. And these things take time to get used to.

But thereís one thing you want to adjust to as quickly as possible - your new budget.

You already know that with a move comes lots of expenses and fees. However, there are a lot of long-term changes you might not realize to take into consideration until they show up in your mailbox.

One is your mortgage payment over the years. Okay, I know you know that your mortgage payment has changed. But what you should consider is how to plan to make that payment each and every month. Sometimes life happens and we donít have a great month and sometimes we have a string of not so good months. Itís best to come up with a plan now to prepare yourself if anything should happen

Itís recommended to keep three months worth of living expenses saved and put to the side for emergencies. Perhaps you already have money set aside and need to increase this amount to reflect your new lifestyle. And if you donít have any set-aside, itís wise to start a savings plan now. Even if you are only able to put aside a small amount each month, your total will grow over time as you stick to the plan.

Home insurance, property taxes, and homeowner association fees/dues. If this is your first time owning a home these will all be new expenses for you and ones you donít want to catch you by surprise. And if itís not they are certain expenses you will need to account for. Be sure to add these to your budgeting software of choice ASAP.

Seasonal budget changes. Throughout the seasons you may find significant changes to your expenses. If you have moved to a larger home you will probably find you have higher utility bills, especially in those months where you need to run the furnace or A.C. However, there are also yard maintenance costs to take into consideration. Does your new home have a pool, lots of landscaping or a snowy climate? Ease upfront costs by estimating expenses and create an account to put money aside each month to spread these costs throughout the year.

Another account to consider building up throughout the year is for emergency repairs and renovation projects. Replacing appliances, a roof, porch or pool lining are not expenses we typically expect and can easily shell out for. At least, not without some planning ahead of time. Setting up an account to add money to each month for these specific costs can help ease your mind and feel on top of things.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by The Norton Group, Inc. on 6/25/2017

Once you have bought a new house, you may feel lost as to where to start. Thereís a long checklist of things that you should do to get yourself established in a new space. Here, you'll find a plan on what to do next. 


Get Recommendations On Local People You Can Work With 


Your realtor is a good place to start in asking who they recommend for many types of workers including plumbers, electricians, contractors, and more. You may even want to talk to your next door neighbors and see who they have used in the past for these types of handy work jobs. Even if you donít need any kind of work done immediately, itís a good idea to have some names and numbers on hand for future reference.


Donít Paint Right Away


Although it seems much more practical to paint an empty house, once you live in your new home for awhile, youíll get a sense of where the light hits and what colors will complement your furniture. When you pick colors in a rush, you run the risk of choosing shades that you may not love in the long term. Focus on properly lighting your rooms before you even start to paint.


Donít Forget The Housewarming Party!


If you plan a housewarming party for a date thatís not too far after you move in, it will give you motivation to get things done in the house. The housewarming party is your accountability partner to get you to unpack those boxes and get decorating. Try to plan the party somewhere between one and two months after your planned move-in date. This will give you time to get things done, just not too much time!  


Meet The Neighbors


You should take some time very soon after you move in to meet your new neighbors. They can be a great resource for you as to what happens in your new neighborhood. Find out if any of your new neighbors have dogs that your own dog could meet for a friendly walk. Your new friends will even give you information about a neighborhood watch or important community activities as well.


Safety First


Youíll want to check all of your smoke alarms, carbon monoxide detectors, and alarm systems. Be sure that they work. Then, change the batteries in each system to start fresh. You should also equip your house with a fire extinguisher or two. You can never be too prepared for an emergency. 


Next, you should check all of the door and window locks. Replace anything that used a key. You never know who had keys to the home before it was sold.

When you start small in a new home, things will begin to come together slowly but surely just like puzzle pieces.




Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by The Norton Group, Inc. on 7/22/2012

Buying a house can be one of the most exciting moments of anyoneís life. You have just moved in and now you have a whole new set of tasks. Making your house a home can be a huge job. Here are some tips on how to get your house feeling like a home in no time without breaking the bank.   Space out your purchases Many first-time home buyers are coming into home-ownership without all the things they need to fill their new home. Many new homeowners feel the pressure to buy everything at once. It is important to focus on the most necessary items first. According to a study from the National Association of Home Builders, furnishings represent a substantial investment, with home buyers spending about $5,300 on furnishings during the first year after buying a home. Space out your home furnishing purchases and focus on the most necessary pieces first, such as a bed, living room sofa and dining room table. Windows can also present a problem for new homeowners. Donít feel pressured to choose window treatments for every window all at once. Make a priority list starting with the areas where privacy is a must and go from there. You will also need to prioritize appliances. You may want to rush out and buy that huge flat screen TV but consider what other appliances need to take priority, such as a refrigerator, stove, or washer/dryer. New Responsibilities A new home comes with new responsibilities. This may be the first time you have to take care of a yard. Don't go crazy, invest in a few key garden tools, such as hedge trimmers, a sprinkler, and a lawn mower. No need to invest big money in expensive landscaping services at first. Just focus on keeping your yard uncluttered and neat. Another new responsibility is home maintenance. There is no landlord to call when an issue arises. You will want to make sure you are equipped to handle minor issues on your own. Many home improvement stores have tool sets you can purchase, but make sure it includes a hammer, screw drivers, pliers, wrenches, a tape measure and a staple gun.




Categories: Help Around the House