Cari Schwisow's Blog Posts

Good News For Borrowers Mortgage Rates Hold At Two Year Lows

Rates for home loans mostly held steady, and even declined slightly, as investor jitters about a slowing economy and geopolitics continued to keep bonds attractive.The 30-year fixed-rate mortgage

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7 Outdoor Projects You Can Accomplish This Weekend

Warmer weather offers the perfect opportunity to get started on a home improvement project. But if you're anything like us, you probably fear starting something you can't finish, especially when

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Fall And Winter Maintenance Guide For The Northwest

Certain home maintenance tasks should be completed each season to prevent structural damage, save energy, and keep all your home’s systems running properly. These home maintenance tasks are most

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CHOOSING THE RIGHT STANDBY GENERATOR FOR YOUR HOME

Approaching bad weather always produces a run on certain items. Incoming blizzards empty stores of snow blowers; heat waves have air conditioners flying off of the shelves; the threat of power

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What Buyers Should Know About Home Inspections

For many first-time buyers, buying a home can feel a bit scary.  They know they'll be maintaining or improving a home with little to no maintenance experience, so the solution is to buy a home

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Mothers Day Activities Around The South Sound

Happy Mother’s Day Weekend!Whether you are a mom, stepmom, grandma, or someone doing mom duties cleverly disguised as dad or auntie, I hope you have a wonderful day! If you’re looking for

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10 Unique Things To Do In The Pacific Northwest

We’ve lived in the Pacific Northwest for many years and one of the things we quickly learned is that there are certain things about this area that make it especially alluring to residents and

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10 INEXPENSIVE WAYS TO IMPROVE YOUR HOME SECURITY

Keeping your home and family safe is a priority we all share. But beyond locking the doors and getting a home alarm, there are numerous steps we can take to protect who—and what—we love, and it

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20 TIPS TO GET YOUR CREDIT IN CHECK IN 2016

Struggling to get your credit cards paid off? Juggling balances between several cards? Just plain tired of paying interest? Make this the year you get your credit in order. Whether your goal is to

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15 Effective And Efficient Ways To Make Your Home An Energy Saver

Energy wastage is a big problem in the US. Its even bigger of a problem because we end up paying for it in the form of our utility bills. By controlling your own personal energy usage, you are

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3 Home Improvement Projects That Last A Lifetime

Thinking of remodeling your home? Before you splurge on a finished basement or a new kitchen, make sure you choose a home improvement project that will add to your home's lifetime value. Check out

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Free Olympia Weekend Events To Keep Cool And Celebrate 4th Of July

Looking for some fun this 4th of July weekend while also trying to keep cool? Yes, Mother Nature is treating us to unseasonably (ok, HOT!) warm sunshine. I hope that you are reading this post

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A Buyers And Sellers Guide To Multiple Offer Negotiations

Information for Buyers In some situations sellers will have several competing purchase offers to consider. Sellers have several ways to deal with multiple offers. Sellers can accept the “best”

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How To Get A Mortgage Pre Approval

There’s nothing more frustrating than falling in love with a home and then discovering you can’t afford to buy it.Consulting with a mortgage lender is the first step you should

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16 Things To Do During Olympias Rainy Days

Despite our unusually mild and dry winter, rainy days will abound this spring as Mother Nature replenishes the soil and fills the watersheds that keep the Thurston County ecosystems healthy. With

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Fee Free Days At Washington State Parks

The State of Washington is home to some of the most beautiful places in the world, and the majority of them are just a few short hours from home. Our extended backyards lead to majestic

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Olympia Weekend Events

Still trying to cope with the last minute of the Super Bowl game?  It was a heart breaker but the good news is that we are only a few months away from pre-season and a chance at.

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New Buyers 4 Ways To Set Yourself Up For Success

As one of the largest financial decisions in a person's life, buying a home requires discretion, sensibility and budgeting. The following tips will keep you on the right path as you look to purchase

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Tis The Season For Free Holiday Events In Thurston County And The Spirit Of Giving

It’s that wonderful time of year again and the holiday season is in full swing in the Olympia area.  From the Lightstravaganza to jazz concerts and of course, Santa you can find a variety

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How Many Showings Until You Find The One

House hunters will visit an average of 10 homes before finding the perfect match, according to a survey of about 2,500 Americans by BMO Harris Bank. For about 51 percent of buyers, it'll take up

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10 Ways To Tell If You Need A New Roof

How often do you look at your roof? If you're like me, you run in and out of the house, shuttle the kids back and forth, and glance up at the roofline only occasionally as you back out of the

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6 Things Homebuyers Should Avoid Doing Once They Are Preapproved For A Mortgage

Getting a home loan these days is a very interactive process.To help avoid any surprises while waiting for final approval, here is a short list of “do’s and don’ts” to.

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25 Free Things To Do This Summer

Summer is here and warmer weather is just around the corner. The Thrifty Thurston has put together a list of 25 free things to do with the kids this summer in Olympia.Let's see how many of these fun

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Summer Fun For Kids At Thurston County Day Camps

Summer is just around the corner, and for some kids school is already out. Here is a fantastic list of Summer Camps around Thurston County to help keep kids learning while having a great time too

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Easter Egg Hunts Around Olympia

It's time to get out those Easter baskets for some fun egg hunts around Thurston County. This weekend will be packed with fun, family and yummy chocolates!Here is a list of fun activities this

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10 Steps To Prepare Your Home For The Market Place

 Often the first step in selling your home is making sure it’s ready for the market in the first place. By considering early on which improvements you may need to make, you will save

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Free Activities For A Fun St Patricks Day Weekend

Although St. Patrick’s Day falls on a Monday this year, there is plenty to do around the Olympia area to celebrate all weekend long. Visit the Tumwater Library tonight, March 14th, at 6pm to

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Its Clam Digging Time

Plenty of fat clams await diggers who turn out for the next razor clam dig, set to run Feb. 26 through March 3 on various ocean beaches.The Washington Department of Fish and Wildlife (WDFW) approved

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Story Time And Cupcakes Today In Olympia

"Frozen" author Barbara Jean Hicks will be at Miss Moffett's Mystical Cupcakes today, February 23 from 1-3 to celebrate the release of her newest books in the Disney Frozen Series. The family

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Weekend Events In The Olympia Area

Besides the Super Bowl on Sunday, there are some other fun activites happenening in Thurston County this weekend. Free Familly Fun Day today at Saint Martins University.Are your kids interested

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Celebrating The New Year Family Style

Looking for a fun way to ring in the New Year with your family?  Here is a link to a few great places to celebrate the New Years Eve day and not-so-late night in Thurston County.

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Toy Drive Today Dec 20

A toy drive is happening today to benefit 8 area non-profit organizations. Mixx 96.1 will be in downtown Olympia broadcasting live from 6am to 6pm. Volunteers will accept cash, new toys, art

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New Family Restaurant in Tenino

If you find yourself in the Tenino area, or if you are just craving some great authentic Mexican food, take a drive down to Tenino and visit Don Juans Mexican Kitchen.    You

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The Place For All Your Fall Needs in Yelm

  Though it seems like harvest time is just now beginning in the Pacific Northwest with tomatoes finally ripening on the vine (if you planted starts by Mother’s Day), canning season at

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State Farm Adds a New Agent to Yelm

  Yelm has a new insurance agent in town.  Steele Clayton has moved into Living Well Chiropractic Clinic’s old space behind Starbucks and beside Anytime Fitness on Yelm Avenue and

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Home Depot and the Housing Market

Home Depot is in the news a lot these days as a major indicator of the Real Estate Market recovery or bust.  CNBC reports regularly on the housing market based upon what they see in Home Depot

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A Bumper Crop in the Pacific Northwest

A friend of mine’s husband came back from a business trip to Illinois with tales of corn plants burnt to the roots, extremely high temperatures and land parched from no rain.  It reminded

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The Truth About Carpenter Ants

Munch, munch, munch.  If you hear that sound as you’re lying in bed at night, you might be tempted to suspect rodents.  Here in the Pacific Northwest, you are more likely to be

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Cottage Food Law Basics in Thurston County

Starting a home business is not easy.  Starting a food based business is even harder.  I have often wished there was an easier way to test the waters to see if a food business was feasible

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A Private School in Rainier

Choices in private schools are fairly slim in our region with only one private school within the reach of Yelm, Rainier, and Tenino for many years – Eagleview Christian School.  This year

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Are Public Utilities Right for Thurston County

Weighing in on a political issue as you stand outside Wal-Mart shopping center sometimes becomes an exercise in guess work.  The case of putting Public Utilities for Electricity on November

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Time to Fish in Thurston County Lakes

 I was waiting in line at a local grocery store, and I noticed a couple of guys checking out with the following items in their carts:  fishing lures, canned beans, charcoal, and beer.;

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The Triad Theatre Brings Arts to Yelm

For anyone who wonders if Yelm is big enough to support an Arts culture, I have news for you.  I attended a play put on by the Standing Room Only group led by Nancy Hillman at the new Triad

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Logging Your Property in Thurston County

It's spring clean up time.  Many of us still have quite a mess left from winter storms, and who doesn't need a little extra cash to finish those nagging home repair projects.  Some of us

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Seed Savers Group in Yelm

Have you ever wanted to know the mechanics behind growing a garden?  Maybe you just want to learn how to grow tomatoes in the Pacific Northwest, or you want to find the best seeds for your.&

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The Best Hanging Plants for Your Porch

I have tried a variety of hanging plants for my porch over the years.  I like to add that little patch of color to the neutral tones of my siding and front door.  Far and above any other

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Baby Chicks Bring Spring Home

Yelm, Rainier, Roy, Eatonville, and the surrounding towns in our Thurston/Pierce county triangle are quite appealing to a new generation of city dwellers who want to kick the fast-paced life and try

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Clean Indoor Air As Important As Energy Efficiency

Home owners should look for more than just energy savings in their home.  Indoor air quality may be just as important.  Research from the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious

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Testing for a Well Maintained Well

Among the many maintenance projects homeowners must undertake, well water testing often gets pushed to the background.  If you own a well, you are responsible for testing your own water yearly

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Demystifying Your Mound Septic System

If you've lived on city water and septic most of your life and find yourself facing a home septic system, you are likely to have heard many rumors about what you can and can't put down your drains.

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Thurston and Pierce County Storm Clean Up

A foot of snow may be beautiful for the day, but the devastation a full blown winter brings can leave you in tears.  On the other hand, perhaps you see the missing shingles on your roof or the

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Obtaining a Burn Permit in Thurston County

Did you know that you need a burn permit to burn your trash or yard debris in Thurston County?  Air quality and safety is of upmost importance in the county.  Heavy fog, at times, traps

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Cleaning Pacific Northwest Moss From Your Roof

Moss is beautiful here in the Pacific Northwest.  It clings to rocks, creeps up decaying logs, and gives an earthy, magical quality to trees in the forest.  However, moss is not beautiful

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Forced Air Heating And Your Nose

Washington State Energy Codes require new homes to be built tight and highly energy efficient.  In the winter, the result is that air flow in these newer homes can become stagnant without

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What Your Property Taxes Pay For

The deadline has just passed to pay property taxes in Yelm.  Property owners often become discouraged as they watch hard-earned dollars disappear into governmental coffers without  a

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Thurston County Offers Free Landscaping Workshop

Each month Thurston County  extension offices offer free workshops that help residents improve their property or way of life.  Last month, they sponsored a workshop on best practices for

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Holiday Decorating When Selling Your Home

When a friend of mine put her home on the market, she struggled with how to decorate to attract buyers.  She had just done extensive remodeling, including new granite countertops and bamboo

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Standby Generators Add Value to Your Home

Weather experts say we are in for an exceptionally cold, wet year.  With foul weather comes the possibility of those bothersome power outages.  If you're thinking about protecting your

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Power Outages in the Puget Sound Region

It's fall, and that means power outages.  Sorry, it's just a fact of life in the Puget Sound region.  Heavy winds and driving rain that knock trees down onto lines is the biggest culprit.

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Going Solar in Olympia

Are you thinking about going solar in Western Washington?  With an entire winter of clouds and rain it sounds crazy, but the Pacific Northwest receives 70 percent the amount of sunlight as Los

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Preparing Your Home for Winter

Autumn is the perfect time of year to start thinking about preparing your home for winter. As temperatures begin to drop, your home will require maintenance to keep it in tip-top shape

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Fun Wildlife Encounters Not Far From Home

Endeavoring to get in all our last minute summer fun, the kids and I took a trip to the Northwest Trek Wildlife Park last week. Seeing as this was my first time, I’m pretty sure I was more excited

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10 Plants for Your Fall Vegetable Garden

I can hardly believe summer is almost over. Back to school is just around the corner and even though you may still be harvesting tomatoes and squash, it is time to start thinking about replanting

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The 4th Annual Mushroom Festival

Are you ready for everything mushroom? The Rotary Club of Hawks Prairie is serving up its 4th Annual Pacific Northwest Mushroom Festival July 23 - 24 in Lacey, WA. You will enjoy the tasty

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A Fun Way to Explore Local Farms

If you like cheese, the farmers market is a fun place to be. At the Proctor and Olympia farmers markets, local dairy farmers sell fresh, aged and feta cheeses in all strengths and flavors, and often

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