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Home Buying in Central : Real Estate Advice

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Activity 2
Tue Apr 26, 2011
T.E. & Naima Sumner answered:
The second question is easy: Realtors® may suggest a lending institution to assist their customers and clients, but I can't think of a circumstance that obligates you to use "their" lender.
Many times we recommend a lender because they can deal with the situation of the buyer or we have dealt with the person before and know they're good at what they do.
If you have a lender that you're confident can help you, you should stick with what you want, although a second opinion won't hurt.
If you don't have a lender, at least start with the suggested person and try at least one more lender, to be sure.

The first question is a little more complex.
Think about it as a food server at a restaurant. Realtors® work solely for commission, similar to waiters. If you talk to a waiter, discuss food items and then order food from one waiter, you wouldn't tip a different waiter. That would be ethically unacceptable.
But if your waiter doesn't meet your needs in some way, you need to ask for help from the manager (and maybe get a different waiter). The bad waiter will eventually quit his job if he doesn't change, simply because he won't earn enough.
Similarly, Realtors® leave the business when they can't please customers and earn income.
Are you legally bound to a particular Realtor®? No, unless you sign a representation agreement (for them to be your server).
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Tue Mar 29, 2011
T.E. & Naima Sumner answered:
A typical pump for a swimming pool is a 1-1/2 HP electric motor. These typically consume less than 2 kW. If your swimming pool motor ran continuously for a whole month, it would use about 1400 kW-hr. Rates in Oncor tend to be around $0.10/kW-hr. So, worst case running your pump 24x7 you're talking $140/mo.

You will find, however, that most people run the pump about 6 hours a day and the actual consumed energy is only about $30/mo. You can pay more for electricity - some providers are quite high. I didn't use my provider's rate (Champion), but it's only about 9 cents/kW-hr.

Remember to add the cost of the pool light, if you have one. A 100W main bulb will knock down 70 kW-hr worst case 24x7, which is about 5% of the pump. You'd have to leave it on all the time, and you're probably only lighting the pool a couple of hours a night or just on demand. So, it's probably negligible in comparison to the pump.
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