Tips For Buying Your First Home

When you are getting ready to buy your first home, it can truly feel overwhelming. But in today’s market, you can get a lot more for your money then just 10 years ago. Just take a deep breath, and make sure you cross all your t’s and dot your i’s and you will have smooth sailing as you find your dream home.

The next thing you should focus on is paying off your debt. This will not only allow you to have confidence that you can pay your mortgage off each month, but also eliminates expensive credit-card debt. Most people have a higher rate on credit cards then for a mortgage, and it also limits how much you can borrow to buy your home. Make sure that for at least the past year, each and every bill has been paid in full and on time.

Next, figure out what you want in a home. Are schools important to you? Perhaps you require [Read more…]

Top 5 Translation Apps for Overseas Travelers

Being a stranger in a strange land can be fun for a while – right up until you order the
special and wind up with a plate of live squid or you hop on a train to get back to your
hotel and wake up in another country. While most people will struggle to use pocket
translation books (populated by ridiculously tiny print) modern technology can make your
trip a little easier with a slew of translation apps. Here are a few of the best.

  1. iTranslate. Okay, let’s be honest: this app is free to download but a lot of the
    features will require payment (at prices of $0.99 to $1.99 a pop). That said, there is a lot
    to love about this translation application, which features 50 languages (20 of which have
    spoken translation), a dictionary, speech-to-speech mode (handy for conversations), and
    options to save phrases. It may cost you a bit for some of the neat features, but even
    without them you get a basic translation tool that’s better than most of the offerings out
    there.
  2. Word Lens. Many travelers know the frustration of looking at signs in foreign
    countries and having no idea if they’re giving you directions to your hotel or offering you
    a bowl of fried rice. This app lets you take pics of signage in order to have it translated.
    It doesn’t have a lot of language options yet, and although the app itself is free you will
    have to pay as much as $4.99 for each one you download, but the upside is that you
    only need to buy the languages you want to use, rather than shelling out for a program
    that comes with dozens that you’ll never need. And the first time you use it to read a
    menu in France or a train schedule in Spain it will be worth every cent.
  3. SayHi Translate. This app will [Read more…]