Lisa Gonzalez, maintain personal hygiene, hygiene, caregivers, caregiving, ElderCorps, elderly, PDFfiller

Advice for Caregivers: How to Help Your Loved One Maintain Personal Hygiene

Welcome back to PDFfiller’s blog, which brings you advice from experts in various fields on a regular basis.  Below, learn more from an expert about how best to care for the hygiene of the elderly. For more great insights from Lisa Gonzalez, check out her website at

Caring for a senior loved one comes with many challenges, but personal hygiene doesn’t have to be one of them. Maintaining personal hygiene can be a team effort for you and your loved one. Together, you’re sure to maintain the level of hygiene they need to lead a healthy life for years to come.

Talk to Them About Their Needs

Depending on their level of activity, your loved one might not need to shower every single day. Instead, they might only require a daily sponge bath along with full-body bathing 2 or 3 times a week.

If you must bathe your loved one, learn how to bathe an elderly person properly and efficiently so you don’t make the process longer or more unpleasant than it needs to be.

Don’t Forget Dental Care

Dental care is often overlooked in the hygiene process, but it’s necessary for keeping your loved one’s teeth functional.

Electric toothbrushes can make brushing easier for the elderly. Ensure that they’re brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash as often as they should be. If you help them brush their teeth, be sure to know their dental health history so you can know which areas are sensitive and which need extra attention.

Having trouble getting your loved one to visit the dentist? Talk to office staff about using PDFFiller instead of coming in and filling out forms, and see what other steps you can take ahead of time. If you can arrange everything in advance so your loved one can walk in and immediately be seen, it can alleviate their anxiety and make the visit more pleasant. Moreover, it’ll make any future appointments feel like a simple errand.

Make the Bathroom a Safe Place

The risk for falls is two-fold in the bathroom, where water and bathroom products can make the floor slippery and dangerous for your loved one. Since putting oily bath products in their bathwater can affect their ability to get in and out of the tub, it’s best to avoid them altogether.

Adaptive equipment for seniors such as hand railings, rugs with gripping, and shower benches can keep your loved one safe in the bathroom.

Take a Step Back

For the sake of your loved one’s mental and emotional health, it’s crucial to let them maintain as much of their personal care as they can manage. Have a discussion about their need for assistance when it comes to keeping up with personal hygiene.

Remember – if your loved one isn’t very active, there’s no need to force them to shower every single day. But if they’re dropping the ball with bathing or any other personal hygiene habit, be quick to step in and get them back on track.

Take Pets Into Consideration

You may realize it’s difficult to keep your loved one hygienic if a troublesome pet is constantly making messes. Or perhaps your loved one doesn’t have the ability to give it proper care.

You may take it upon yourself to go over some basic obedience with the animal to correct bad behavior. But if you truly question whether you and your loved one are able to provide it with the best possible care, it may be time to consider re-homing the pet. Talk to your loved one about their options and decide together the best route.

Maintaining a level of cleanliness is incredibly important for your elderly loved one. Their immune system, self-esteem, and overall wellbeing will benefit from an adequate hygiene regime.

The best thing you can do for them is to let them look out for their own personal hygiene as much as they can while making sure they know you’re available to help when they need you.

Lisa Gonzalez has had years of experience with volunteering in nursing homes and organizing local senior activities. Realizing that this was her passion is what got her involved with, a resource geared towards the care and well-being of the aging population.

demand, holiday sales, home inventory, home selling tips

Reasons to Sell Your Home During the Holidays

Welcome back to PDFfiller Realtor Guest Blog series, which brings you advice from the experts!  The second part of this two-part post comes to us from Holly Gray who discusses when is the right time to sell your home.  For more great posts from Holly, check out her website at

2015 has been a good year for real estate. Many markets are experiencing very low inventory with increasing demand. Most homeowners feel they should wait until after the holidays to put their homes on the market. But in reality it might be the most ideal time of the year. If you are thinking about selling your property, consider these facts:

1. Buyers that shop during the holidays are perhaps the most serious and motivated buyers of the year. Some buyers want to buy for tax reasons. Some buy to relocate for a job. Some need to settle before school starts. The reasons may vary but the shoppers in the market this time of year typically need to buy, and fast.

2. Buyers have fewer homes to choose from during the holiday season. The supply of listings increases after the New Year. So homeowners who sell during the holidays tend to sell their homes by leveraging supply versus demand. Take a look at the inventory last year vs. this year as reported by NAR (

demand, holiday sales, home inventory, home selling tips


3. Houses show incredibly well when they are decorated for the holidays. The festive decor tied with the warmth of the holiday season showcases a home at its best. Buyers resonate with the time of year and all the things a home represents during the holiday season. Many sellers fear that listing their property around the holidays will interfere with their festivities. But as a seller you can restrict showings on any days and times needed.

If you are a homeowner thinking about selling, don’t delay! Interest rates are low, inventory is low, and there are many buyers anxious to buy before year-end. Call your realtor for a current price evaluation for your neighborhood today!


Broker & REALTOR |  (direct) 206.291.5453
800 Bellevue Way NE Suite 400 Bellevue, WA 98004 |


3 Questions to Ask before Selling Your Home

Welcome back to PDFfiller Realtor Guest Blog series, which brings you advice from the experts!  The first part of this two-part post comes to us from Holly Gray who discusses when is the right time to sell your home.  For more great posts from Holly, check out her website at

Many homeowners often wonder when is the right time of year to sell their home. It is one of the most common questions real estate agents get. As a whole more listings come up for sale during the summer season, so many homeowners have concerns about listing property at any other time of the year. The thought process is, “well everyone else is listing their house during summertime, so shouldn’t I?” A valid question, but following the crowd isn’t always the best move.

The reality is that there isn’t a blanket right or wrong time of year to sell a home. It’s just not that rudimentary. You have to consider certain factors when choosing the right time based on specific factors. There are some very good indicators you can use to help minimize your risks. Asking these questions will help arm you with the knowledge you need when deciding whether now is the right time to sell your home or not.

1. Is it a sellers’ market?

Timing really does depend on supply and demand. In many markets, if not most, we are seeing low inventory in the U.S.. During the recession new construction building stopped and subsequently we fell into a housing shortage. The way you can determine if it’s a sellers’ market is by looking at how many months of inventory are on the market in your area. Typically, anything under 4 months of inventory means it’s a sellers’ market. Anything over 6 is a buyers’ market. And a balanced market is between 4-6 months of inventory. If properties are selling fast, it’s a strong indicator that now is a good time to list your property.

2. How are interest rates doing and what’s the forecast?

If interest rates are decreasing, buyers will probably wait. However, right now in the U.S. we are seeing very low interest rates. These have been predicted to rise twice this year and haven’t. But buyers know they will soon rise and are shopping for homes. If interest rates are predicted to rise, you can bet buyers previously on the fence are looking. And the moment the interest rates do rise, the buyers that have to “see it before they believe it” will also start shopping before the rates go even higher.

3. Is your home in the condition it needs to be in order to receive top market value?

Sellers need to be wise with their approach before selling. Even if you are in a hot sellers’ market, pricing too high and not doing the necessary maintenance prep can subject sellers to low ball offers and a high number of days on the market, ultimately netting much less than the competition. Sellers who do spend the extra time and effort to clean up the yard, hire a staging consultant, service the components and remember the importance of curb appeal have the best chance at selling for full price and attracting the bulk of the relevant buyers.

Every year is different than the last, and will be different then the coming year ahead. Hindsight is 20/20 and there is no crystal ball when forecasting the future. Considering these three questions before selling is the first step in coming to a decision you, as a homeowner, can feel confident about.

If you are a homeowner right now considering selling your home around the holidays be sure to read my next blog installment –  “Reasons You Should Sell Your Home During The Holidays”.



Broker & REALTOR |  (direct) 206.291.5453  
800 Bellevue Way NE Suite 400 Bellevue, WA 98004

What to Look for in a Second Home

Welcome back to PDFfiller Realtor Guest Blog series, which brings you advice from the experts!  This week’s post comes to us from John Watkins who discusses how to refine your search process for a second home.  For more great posts from John, check out his website at

I work in real estate within a resort community, where many of the houses I sell are second homes. The second home buyer tends to be looking for something different in a second home than in a primary residence. For example, while nearby schools or access to public transport may not be of great concern for a second home, there are certain things that buyers need to consider and rank before they begin the process of searching. This is because what buyers think is important at the start of the search changes as they zero in on certain properties.

For example, this summer I had what appeared to be the perfect home for a couple that was both in their price range and included some unique features they really liked. However, when they started really talking about their vision for their get-away home, they realized they wanted a place where they could walk to get a morning paper and a coffee, and that the house they were considering was 3 miles out of town. To them, driving to get a paper was not the same as walking and talking with people in the community. When we started the process of searching for their second home, proximity to town was not even raised as an important issue!

By examining lifestyle priorities in addition to basic home features, people can develop a more accurate search image for their ideal homes. To that end, I have developed a list of things that I encourage people to rank as we start the search process, then continue to revisit as the process moves forward. This list includes:

Being on the water
Close to town – what can I walk to?
Close to golf
Close to skiing
Close to trails
Sense of community
Number of bedrooms
Number of bathrooms
How will you entertain at this house
What does the kitchen need to have
What source of power
Septic or sewer
Number of children and/or grandchildren in house at one time
Will it be used year round
Would you/could you rent
Garage and or out building
When do you want to buy
How much property do you want to have
Upper limit of price range

During our initial conversation we rank these items by most important to least important and only then can the real process of searching begin.

I recommend using and building on this basic list to help people ascertain what their visions are for their second home. In this way the searching process becomes much clearer and the possibilities can be narrowed down to a manageable level. And perhaps most important of all, the resulting home purchase will be a better fit for the buyers’ vision and will help them to fulfill the lifestyle priorities they have identified during the search process.


Real Estate One
113 N. Main Street
Leland, MI 49654

The Benefits of Using a Tech-savvy Agent

Welcome back to PDFfiller Realtor Guest Blog series, which brings you advice from the experts!  This week’s post from Connor Southworth lays out why it’s important to have a tech-savvy agent when marketing your home.  For more great posts from Connor, check out his blog at


There was a time when business was done on paper; when homes were sold by a sign in the front yard; when people still had home phones and called regarding real estate ads in the newspaper. It was a simple time filled with huge televisions with small screens – you were really cool if you had a (enormous) cell phone that you probably paid upwards of $2 per minute to use. This was back before GPS, iPhones, and Facebook. As much as we all miss those days, some things have changed – and hopefully, your real estate agent has changed, too.

Yes, he once wore bell bottoms and now he’s sporting some nice skinny jeans – but I’m not so concerned about fashion – except that if he was old enough to wear bell bottoms he’s got to be pushing 60, so his pair of skinny jeans probably don’t look nearly as good on him as he thinks they do. I’m talking more about your real estate agent’s integration of technology into his business.

Business now is done digitally. Documents can be created and signed online without ever having to print. Fax machines are a thing of the past. Actually, I haven’t sent or received a fax in years. Recently I had another agent at the office named Tim ask me for my fax number. We all laughed hysterically and then joked about it for days.

As fun as it was driving 45 minutes each way in rush hour traffic to get a simple signature on a time-sensitive document, it is really nice to be able to send and sign documents with the click of a button from your computer or smart phone. Offers are written, signed and submitted within minutes instead of hours. Working with an agent who uses these tools allows you to be much more competitive in today’s market where homes are being sold in hours. Getting your offer in first can be the difference between getting the home of your dreams and spending the rest of your life living in your parents’ basement.

As for marketing your home, an agent with a strong web presence has a huge advantage over other agents. Posting ads in the newspaper classifieds doesn’t work anymore. Are newspapers even still around? I was a paperboy as a kid and now I haven’t seen a real print newspaper in years. In fact, if you still have one, call up the Smithsonian and see if you can make some money on it.

People look online for homes now. Extensive knowledge of internet marketing, social media, SEO, PPC, CRM’s and a bunch of other 3-letter abbreviations that I may or may not be making up as I go, are all critical for a good agent to know. A tech-savvy agent can sell your home faster and for more money and can make you a more competitive buyer.

Now get on out there and find yourself a good, technologically inclined Realtor. If you live in Utah, I know a good one 😉

Connor Southworth, REALTOR, CNE, SFR
Licensed in Utah
801-792-5326 (direct)