Retiring, changing jobs, or wanting a change of scenery are all excellent reasons to sell your house and move.

However, executing the plan is often more complicated than you might think, especially if you are in a hurry. If you want to move, follow all crucial steps to take when selling your house to ensure a successful sale. You'll make a profit and watch your home fly off the market as fast as you listed it with these tips.

Research When to Sell Your House

Most people's top priority when selling their houses is to maximize their profit. To do this, you'll want to pay attention to whether you're in a buyer's or seller's market. The market changes with supply and demand, and if you can wait until it's a seller's market, you could get a better offer on your listing. When the thought of selling your home starts to cross your mind, remember your motivation for moving. Consider the pros and cons of giving up your home, and decide how long you are willing to wait for the right market to come around.

Pro Tip: Accurately priced homes sell promptly! Don't be afraid to ask for guidance from real estate agents to calculate your home's worth.

Decide Who Will Sell Your House

Once you've decided to sell, consider whether you want to sell your home by yourself, which is known as “for sale by owner" (FSBO), or hire a real estate agent. Agents offer a wealth of resources and advice about marketing and promotion. With FSBO, you will be responsible for marketing your listing, showing your home to prospective buyers, and all legal aspects of the sale. It is a lot of responsibility, and most people find that it's worth the cost to hire an agency.

Prepare Your House for Sale

Complete Home Improvements to Sell Your House

It is hard enough to sell a home, let alone one that is in disrepair. Any real estate agent will tell you to fix obvious damage that reduces the curb appeal of your home. If you've been skipping important exterior home repairs, take a walk around your property, and look for loose siding or missing shingles. Your home may only need a few touches of paint or a new window.

Stage Your Home

One of the most crucial steps to take when selling your house is to set it up like a furniture store showroom display. You want the space to look generic but lived-in enough that it is inviting. If you have any overcrowded rooms, it's best to begin moving pieces into storage or to your new space, if you have bought it already.

Pro Tip: While staging a home can be one of the most daunting parts of selling it, this process makes the photos for the listing look stellar. Your listing photos can make or break your chances of selling your home in a timely manner.

How to Market Your House

Good marketing is essential to getting your home off the market. Start by identifying your house's selling points. If you are working with an agent, they will create a marketing plan that you'll then be able to approve. Most strategies will include high-quality photos to go with your listing. You will want to saturate the internet with images of your house to let everyone know when it is officially for sale.

For some, the sale will come quickly, while others may take their homes on and off the market before finding the right buyer. If you're following these crucial steps to take when selling your house, your time will come. In the world of real estate, patience is the key.

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Over the past month, both Haiti and Afghanistan have been pummeled by tragic disasters that left devastation in their wake.

In Haiti, a 7.2 magnitude earthquake erupted, leading over to 2,189 deaths and counting. A few hours later, in Afghanistan, Kabul fell to the Taliban just after U.S. troops had pulled out after 20 years of war.

In many ways, these disasters are both chillingly connected to US interference. The United States invaded Haiti in 1915, ostensibly promising to restore order after a presidential assassination but really intending to preserve the route to the Panama Canal and to defend US creditors, among other reasons.

But the US forces soon realized that they were not able to control the country alone, and so formed an army of Haitian enlistees, powered by US air power and intended to quell Haitian insurrection against US controls. Then, in 1934, the US pulled out on its own, disappointed with how slow progress was going. Haiti's institutions were never really able to rebuild themselves, leaving them immensely vulnerable to natural disasters.

Something similar happened in Afghanistan, where the US sent troops and supported an insurgent Afghan army – only to pull out, abandoning the country they left in ruins, with many Afghans supporting the Taliban.

In both cases, defense contractors benefited by far the most from the conflict, making billions in profits while civilians faced fallout and devastation. While the conflicts and circumstances are extremely different and while the US is obviously not solely to blame for either crisis, it's hard not to see the US-based roots of these disasters.

Today, in Haiti and Afghanistan, civilians are facing unimaginable tragedy.

Here are charities offering support in Afghanistan:

1. The International Rescue Committee is looking to raise $10 million to deliver aid directly to Afghanistan

2. CARE is matching donations for an Afghanistan relief fund. They are providing food, shelter, and water to families in need; a donation of $89.50 covers 1 family's emergency needs for a month.

3. Women for Women International is matching donations up to 500,000 for Afghan women, who will be facing unimaginable horrors under Taliban control.


4. AfghanAid offers support for people living in remote regions of Afghanistan.

5. VitalVoices supports female leaders and changemakers and survivors of gender-based violence around the world.

Here are charities offering support in Haiti:

1. Partners in Health has been working with Haiti for a long time, and they work with the Department of Health rather than around them, which is extremely important in a charity.

2. Health Equity International helps run Saint Boniface Hospital, a hospital in Haiti close to the earthquake's epicenter.

3. SOIL is an organization based Haiti, "a local organization with a track record of supporting after natural disasters." They are distributing hygiene kits and provisions on the ground to hospitals and to victims of the earthquake.

4. Hope for Haiti has been working in emergency response in Haiti for three decades, and their team is comprised of people who live and work in Haiti. They focus on supporting children and people in need across Haiti.

via Tiffany & Co.

When the new Tiffany's campaign was unveiled, reactions were mixed.

Tiffany's, the iconic jewelry brand which does not (despite what some might be misled to believe) in fact serve breakfast, featured Jay Z, Beyoncé, and a rare Basquiat painting in their recent campaign.

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Road trips can be a lot of fun — but they can also drain your wallet quickly if you aren't careful.

From high gas costs and park admission fares to lodging and the price of eating out every night, the expenses can add up quickly. But at the same time, it's very possible to do road trips cheaply and efficiently. Without the headache of worrying about how much money you're leaking, you can enjoy the open road a whole lot more. Here's how to save money on a road trip.

1. Prepare Your Budget, Route, and Packing List in Advance

If you want to save money on a road trip, be sure you're ready to go. Try to count up all your expenses before you hit the road and create a budget. It's also a good idea to plan your route in advance so you don't end up taking unnecessary, gas-guzzling detours. And finally, be sure to pack in advance so you don't find yourself having to buy tons of things you forgot along the way.

2. Book Cheap Accommodations — Or Try Camping

All those motel rooms can add up surprisingly quick, but camping is often cheap or free, and it's a great way to get intimate with the place you're visiting. You can check the Bureau of Land Management's website for free campsites. Freecampsite.com also provides great information on If you don't have a tent or don't want to camp every night, try booking cheap Airbnbs or booking hotels in advance, making sure to compare prices.

Camping camping road tripConde Nast Traveler

If you're planning on sleeping in your car, a few tips: WalMart allows all-night parking, as do many 24-hour gyms. (Buying a membership to Planet Fitness or something like it also gives you a great place to stop, shower, and recharge while on the road).

3. Bring Food From Home

Don't go on a road trip expecting to subsist on fast food alone. You'll wind up feeling like shit, and it'll drain your pocketbook stunningly quickly. Instead, be sure to bring food from home. Consider buying a gas stove and a coffee pot for easy on-the-go meals, and make sure you bring substantial snacks to satiate midday or late night cravings so you can avoid getting those late night Mickey D's expeditions.

Try bringing your own cooler, filling it with easy stuff for breakfast and lunch — some bread and peanut butter and jelly will go a long way. Bring your own utensils, plates, and napkins, and avoid buying bottled water by packing some big water jugs and a reusable water bottle. Alternatively, try staying at hotels or Airbnbs with kitchens so you can cook there.

4. Avoid Tolls

Apps like Google Maps and Waze point out toll locations, so be sure to avoid those to save those pennies. (If it takes you too far off route, you might have to bite the bullet and drive across that expensive bridge).

You can also save on parking fees by using sites like Parkopedia.

Road Trip Road TripThe Orange Backpack


5. Save on Gas

Gas can get pricy incredibly fast, so be sure that you're stopping at cheap gas stations. Free apps like GasBuddy help you find the most affordable gas prices in the area. Also, try going the speed limit on the highways — anything faster will burn through your tank. Be sure that you don't wait till you arrive at touristy locations or big cities to fill up.

6. Get a National Park Pass

All those parks can get really expensive really fast. If you're planning on visiting three or more parks, it's a great idea to get an America the Beautiful National Parks Pass. For $80 you can get into every National Park for one year.