Charity: Why You Should Give Your Money Away

I’ve wanted to write this for a long time because I feel it is very important to give to local charities especially because of the state of the economy is at this time.

Charity – in fact, altruism in general – is a very difficult concept to explain in a general sense. What I’ve found often is that you either have an innate understanding of why you give or you don’t, and introducing the idea to someone who doesn’t see the benefit is likely to get a shrug of indifference. The best I can do is explain in detail why I give to various causes.

First of all, charitable donations are a direct reflection of my values and perspectives. Whenever I donate money, I’m contributing it towards something that I feel has importance. If I want to see food available to homeless people in my community, I can donate to the local food pantry or soup kitchen. If I want to give toys to needy children, there are plenty of organizations that will gladly accept such donations. The real question is whether you have found something with enough importance to you to speak out with your pocketbook.

Second, helping others improves yourself worth in many ways. Once you’ve given something to a charity that you truly believe in, you feel good about it. The money in your pocket went towards a cause beyond what you can manage in your daily life, a cause that combined with the similar actions of others can actually bring about change in the world. That’s not something you can get from buying yourself a flat panel television.

Third, charitable donations have indirect benefits. Here’s an example: My oldest daughter Lexii helped her youth group at Our lady of Angels, get donations for over 200 back packs filled with school supplies. She and her youth group then distributed these back packs at Sister Nora’s Stillpoint House of Prayer to over 200 needy children who didn’t even have a back pack or schools supplies to start this years school year. In the process she also drug her two sisters, Jordan and Taylor along with her. All three of my children not only were able to brighten up child’s face but also learned a valuable lesson. A child can make a difference in this world one child or family at a time. Most of the kids they helped that day were mostly older than my own children. Not once did my children or youth group members feel they were better than the children they helped. They just gave and were amazed at how grateful these children in need were. Lexii not only devoted her time but was an incredibly positive example to her younger sisters. Shortly before I wrote this, Lexii agreed to volunteer three Sundays in October for the Special Olympics’ games at the Hunsader Farms Pumpkin Festival. At only 14 years old, Lexii not only helped out a large number of needy children but also inspired other children and adults to follow her lead.

One final comment: I don’t think, like many do, that whether or not you tithe or give to charity is a sign of whether you’re a good person or not. I know some very wonderful people who don’t give to charities and I also know some people who give to charities that I wouldn’t trust my child around. A person should only give to a charity if they truly feel it is the right thing to do with their money – if it doesn’t feel right, don’t donate.

In short, even if you don’t donate any of your income to charity right now or you don’t see the purpose, don’t close your mind or your heart to the idea. When the right reason comes to you, open up your wallet and see what happens.

By the way, what have your learned from a 14 year old today. Hopefully, allot!!

Matg Augustyniak


Buying & Selling


BETTER MARKETING MEANS A QUICKER SALE – A Horizon Realty International, Inc.
Agent invests in the sale of your home by advertising the property to gain maximum results
and by promoting the property through a multiple listing service. (MLS)

SHOW YOUR HOME IN THE BEST POSSIBLE LIGHT – A Horizon Realty International, Inc.
Agent is an expert at developing ways to make your home more saleable. Often a
few minor improvements can increase the speed of the sale as well as the selling price.

HELPFUL FINANCING TIPS – A Horizon Realty International, Inc. Agent can assist the buyer in
obtaining a mortgage and can help guide the buyer through the details and stress of escrow, closing,
property taxes and down payment.


GETTING THE BEST PRICE – A Horizon Realty International, Inc. Agent is experienced
at presenting your offer to the homeowner and can help you through the process
of negotiating the best deal.

CHOOSING THE RIGHT NEIGHBORHOOD – A Horizon Realty International, Inc. Agent
is a great source to learn about your community. For example, zoning codes, schools, churches,
shopping, transportation and other necessities.

KEEPING A COOL HEAD IN THE NEGOTIATIONS – A Horizon Realty International, Inc. Agent
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FINANCING 101-SOME EXPERT ADVICE – A Horizon Realty Agent International, Inc. Agent
will team you with a Horizon Financial Mortgage professional who will pre-approve you
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5 Things Homebuyers May Regret Later When Buying a House

In the excitement of finding a home to purchase, buyers may neglect details that could come back to haunt them.

So, you’ve found a house you like, come up with a down payment and gotten preapproved. What could possibly go wrong? Plenty, if you and your agent rush through the deal without doing all the homework.

Take look at the little tasks or details that buyers may neglect that could come back to haunt them.

Buying without regret
Buying a house is like getting into a marriage: You must make sure there aren’t any problems you might have missed during the courtship. After all, you might have to live with your mistakes for a long time. Just ask buyers who purchased six or seven years ago.

List of mistakes that buyers make in the rush to close on that house of their dreams.

Here are some of them:

1. They ignore the maintenance and repair costs.
When people see a house they really like, they don’t see all of the bumps and bruises the first time they look at it.

They might disregard the ancient heating and cooling system or not factor in adequately the cost of running or replacing it. Ditto for that awful plumbing system or roof. If a roof is more than 10 years old, a replacement should be accounted for in your bid.

2. They blow off secondary inspections.
After the general home inspection, many rushed buyers blow past other recommended once-overs, such as checking out the pool for leaks and electrical problems or getting that tiled roof looked at by a contractor. These oversights could pose a terrible problem later when an owner has to spend money on repairs rather than on new furniture.

3. They don’t do enough research on the condo project they are buying into.
Often, people scrutinize the unit but neglect to fully inspect its homeowners association documents and the building’s insurance coverage or to do a check for pending litigation.

Read all of the condo documents, such as the financials, covenants, conditions and restrictions, and HOA board-meeting minutes.

4. They don’t check out the neighborhood.
Finding the perfect house is wonderful, but if your neighbors are disrespectful or the local amenities are sparse, you might get buyer’s remorse.

Get the lowdown by knocking on doors around the house. Tell neighbors that you’re interested in purchasing there and would like to know more about the neighborhood.

Don’t forget to check out the local restaurants, grocery stores, parks and service establishments before you commit to a house.

5. They don’t calculate the commute.
Sure, that neighborhood is quiet and kid-friendly, but how long will it take to get back there from the downtown where you work?

Drive the commute to your office during peak traffic time so that you know how much time it will take to get to your job and to get home.

Good luck in your home buying decisions. You won’t regret it, if your smart.