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Egg-citing for PWR!

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By Karen DeBord and Jodee Jeans

The Incredible, edible egg. That’s the slogan used by the poultry council to market eggs in the early 80’s when Karen was an Extension Agent. And having held a chicken and candled eggs then, it was only recently that Karen acquired her own chickens. So without a program at the last minute, Jodee and Karen decided to present something from the kitchen. Karen is the owner/operator of Bedford Landings Bed and Breakfast in Moneta, while Jodee is the owner/operator of Ippy’s restaurant in Rocky Mount. They both used eggs daily!

A few eggs facts where followed by demonstrations. Eggs provide a naturally good source of Vitamin D and the same egg protein builds human tissues. Vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common deficiencies in adults today. With the threat of skin cancer and the use of sunscreen we are blocking the total effects that the sun can provide in terms of Vitamin D. Look to the egg for Vitamin D if you are feeling blue and achy! One large egg contains only 70 calories and 5 grams of fat.

Hard cooked or raw egg?

If you have ever mixed up a hard-boiled egg and a raw egg in the refrigerator, simply spin them. A raw egg spins more slowly and wobbles as fluids move around. Hard-boiled eggs don’t wobble. A raw will spin a little longer (as the liquid moves) and the Hard-boiled one stops spinning instantly.

eggAccidently drop an egg?

If you accidently drop an egg (as happened during the above spinning demonstration), simply coat it with salt and it will pick up more easily than trying to manage the slimy mess!

Why is the free range chicken’s egg yolk darker ?

The color of the yolk depends on the diet of the chicken. Foods that contain carotene (like carrots or red cabbage) help the yolk look the dark orange color.

Do you need a rooster to get eggs?

Really? Think about it ladies. Do you need a rooster to produce eggs that wash out of our bodies monthly? Nope. Now if you want baby chickens, you need a rooster!

Do eggs need to be refrigerated?

Fresh eggs from the chicken nest do not need to be refrigerated as they have a protective coating that seals the eggs pores and prevents bacteria from getting into the egg. Once you take the egg and plan to refrigerate it, it should be washed and at this point it must be refrigerated since the protective cuticle has been removed.

How many eggs do chickens lay?

Hens (or pullets) lay about 300-325 eggs a year. Averaging one per day, it takes a hen 24-26 hours to produce one egg.

Secrets to cooking with eggs

Cracking

  • Crack on a flat surface- fewer bits of shell fall off
  • Use extra egg shell to dip out shell broken into your egg – it adheres to itself better

Separating

  • The bottle method- Crack a whole egg into a dish then use a rinsed water bottle to suck the yolk away from the albumin. Then simply pour (squirt out) the yolk into the separate bowl.

Peeling

  • Fresh eggs are harder to peel
    • Fresh eggs  - sink to the bottom of a bowl and lay flat
    • Eggs that are a few weeks old - sink to the bottom and stand on end
    • Eggs that sink to the bottom of a bowl of water - toss them!
  • Fill bowl with water. Cover with lid and shake then pinch off shell for easier peeling

Cooking

  • Use butter
  • Cooking eggs does not have to be a quick process.  By cooking them slowly, the heat lets the spices savor (basil, tomato, onion, pepper, wild rice). Put a lid on the pan and the cheese melts better too!

Jodee and Karen presented a few other egg uses including skincare, healing, composting, housecleaning, pet food, and as glue.

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Stupid questions—or not?

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My name is This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and I am the Mortgage Specialist for Virginia Mountain Mortgage located inside of the Bank of Botetourt at Lakewatch Plantation at Smith Mountain Lake.  I have heard many of the same questions over and over from customers concerned about the terms of their mortgage loan.  I compiled a few of these to help you understand about loans. 

Will my loan be sold right away or will Bank of Botetourt service it?
We do not service any of our secondary market mortgages they will be sold to one of our lender partners at the time of closing.   In selling the servicing of your loan will not change any of the terms or conditions of your loan, just who you make your payments to:

Can my loan be directly withdrawn from an account each month at the same time?  Yes, once your loan is set up in servicing that servicer will send you documentation giving you all the options to pay your mortgage monthly.   You can set it up at that time.

If you are getting an in house mortgage then we would be servicing your loan but your only options are 5 year ARM or 15 year fixed.

mortgage

You say I have to have mortgage insurance on my loan that I pay monthly. Does that mean that if I die that the mortgage will be covered by that insurance?
No, the mortgage insurance that is included in your loan is insurance for the lender if you are to default on your loan.   It is required by all lenders if you have less than 20% equity position on your property.   Depending on the type of loan that you obtain will determine whether you can eventually drop that mortgage insurance off of the loan completely.

If you are interested in that type of insurance that would be a question that you could ask a financial officer because that would be a life insurance policy.

 Credit Karma, Credit card company or even Equifax says my credit score is 800, so that is what you need to work off of right?
Unfortunately, these scores are helpful to know what range your score is in but is not one that we actually can use in the mortgage industry.   Each of these companies have different credit score models and the mortgage industry only accepts, and works from the FICO score model.   This score is always helpful to get a feel for where your score is but I cannot use that to base anything to do with the loan I will originate for you. 

I just had my credit score pulled by another company and I do not want my credit score to go down with you pulling it again.
That is fine to use as a guide, but ultimately we will have to pull all three scores again.   Inquiries make up about 10 % of your total score and built into the rules for credit scores is if you are shopping for an automobile or mortgage within a 14 day window all of those inquiries are looked at as one inquiry not multiply.   The caveat is that every day is a new day for credit scores so there could be other factors that are valued higher that affect the credit score going down not just hard inquiries.

What is a hard pull vs a soft pull of my credit?
Hard pull actually is shown on your credit report as an inquiry and can affect your score a soft pull is just an inquiry that sees what is out there but does not affect the score in anyway.   Every loan on the secondary market has a soft pull of credit around 3 days prior to closing to see if there have been any new inquiries made and if there are the borrower will have to explain and if there has been new credit given the new loan would have to be counted in the debt to income ratios

What parts of my credit report impact my ability to get a loan?
The part that most affect your ability to get a loan is you paying your loans on time. That is weighted most heavily at 35% of your overall score.   How long you have had credit and how much credit you have can affect the ability to pay off.

What kind of credit you use makes up about 15% of your total score.

Having collections that are medical are basically negated from the equation now up to $2k total, once you go over that then they want to see that you have at least set up a payment plan and are paying or pay them off at settlement

Judgments usually are required to be paid and shown paid by the court in order to eliminate from the report and the decision making process

What kinds of loans require less than 20% down payment?

Conventional requires as little as 3 -5%

FHA requires 3.5%

USDA requires 0

VA requires 0

How can I get money for my down payment?
Down payment money can come from a blood relative or a very close friend subject to establishing that relationship.   It can only be gifted,  meaning a letter will be signed that there is no paying back and the person giving it must be willing to show that they had the money to give it to you by a 30 day bank statement.

Should I pay off my credit cards before I apply for a loan?
Not necessarily,  t is usually best if you are wanting to prequalify for a loan that you let us take a look at what you have first and then together we can determine if there is anything that should be paid off.  

Can I borrow my down payment?
Yes, you can if you are using secured funds meaning the money is coming from an asset that the loan can secure ie: another piece of real estate, automobile, or other type asset

Can I use money that I have saved at home that is under the mattress or in the safe?  
The only way this can be used is if you are to deposit that money into an institution and then sit and wait for it to season for at least 60 days before it can be used in a mortgage transaction.

If you have additional questions, please contact me at Virginia Mountain Mortgage!

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Lessons Learned as a New Business Owner

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Before we built and opened our Bed & Breakfast business, we read “B & B for Dummies.” The main thing we both remember is that running a Bed & Breakfast will not make you a fortune, but it will afford you to live where you want to live.  I wanted to move back to the beautiful mountains of Virginia.  Jack wanted to live at an airport; so when we discovered Smith Mountain Lake we knew this was the right location. 

Opening your home to people to come and go is a little different from a business that can operate under standard hours and lock the doors at night.  We designed our house to welcome guests but also with privacy for ourselves.    We try not to post a bunch of rules but we do invest in a full tour once guests arrive.  We don’t just leave a key.  We want to start building our relationship with the guests when we confirm their reservation then when they walk in the door.

We have also learned that customer service is about the relationships you form.  Guests love to hear our story and ask us questions.  When people seek out a vacation destination, they want to walk away with something memorable.  They want an “experience.”  We designed the house with lots of common areas but with unique touches like themed rooms and fun knick-knacks.  Each room has a theme and we have added special events that gusts and the community can enjoy.  We have offered happy hour painting parties, biscuit school and Murder Mysteries.  These supplement our income slightly but also in the long run help market the experiencing of spending time and money at Bedford Landings.  We also tell them that they can see Smith Mountain Lake by air if they want to book a flight with Jack 

House4 taxiwayGuests love that we pay attention to details - from the cleanliness of our home to the way the food is presented on the plate.  We try to attend to special dietary needs, leave sweet treats in the rooms, and sell inexpensive souvenirs like t-shirts, books I wrote, and honey from our bees.

Our mission is to offer guests “comfort better than you have at home” and we hope we are fulfilling that.  Enjoying a Trip advisor five-star rating tells us we are doing something right. 

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(Just a few of the) Perks of Being a Member of PWR

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When I joined PWR, I was a new business owner and fairly new to the Moneta/Smith Mountain Lake area. My husband, Jack and I had lived in the area two years, but most of that time was spent building our business…I mean really building it. We own Bedford Landings Bed & Breakfast and we literally built the house! We joined the Chamber of Commerce and started marketing even before we opened our doors to guests.

During my first visit to PWR, I found the other women amicable but I was still new and not sure who to sit with nor who to talk to, wondered what I was doing there, and if I fit in. We have now been in business nearly four years and I have been a PWR member for a little more than two years. But what I find amazing is that I have made some solid business partners but also some very good friends. I think of them first when I have a business need. Here are just a few examples of how PWR has benefitted me or someone I care about.

  •            I wanted a family photo taken one summer when the kids and grand kids were visiting. It is a motley crew but we all were able to clean up pretty well for Jen (JollyJen Photography) to actually get a decent shot! She professionally cajoled the little ones and the big ones to stand still for a family photo!

    Family2015
  •  I can go to Hickory Hill Vineyards and take friends to their Sunset Saturday concert or for a wine tasting and I always feel welcome. We even had that family photo (right) taken at Hickory Hill! Wendy and family welcome me as well as my guests. She has referred guests to stay with us at the B & B and I send our B & B guests her way for wine tastings.
    WendyBD HH 7
  •       Our housekeeper at Bedford Landings was having difficulty financing her car and was prepared to pay what I thought was an exorbitant interest rate on her new/used car. I took her to see Cheryl at Bank of Botetourt and she helped her with the loan but has since helped her with many other banking issues.


  •         When Jack and I decided to build and operate a Bed & Breakfast we took an sort of aptitude test. We complemented each other in about every category EXCEPT bookkeeping! Bring in JKG Accounting. She has helped us come up with a system that interfaces with Quick Books that we can use and she can understand in order to pull reports.

There are many other examples but I will save those for future shout-outs!  But, having a network of first responders is the best! Thanks PWR!

Karen DeBord
Bedford Landings Bed & Breakfast and Bedford Landings Air Tours

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