<img height="1" width="1" style="display:none;" alt="" src="https://analytics.twitter.com/i/adsct?txn_id=l5bzd&amp;p_id=Twitter"> <img height="1" width="1" style="display:none;" alt="" src="//t.co/i/adsct?txn_id=l5bzd&amp;p_id=Twitter">

Indianapolis Community and Life

Spring Guide to the Indianapolis Theatre Scene

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 26, 2015 10:30:00 AM

It's probably not too late to get tickets to a show this week at one of the many fine Indianapolis area theatres. But if you like to plan ahead, we have your spring guide to the stage covered right here.

theatre

What's hot in Indy? Check out the schedule and ticket information for the upcoming spring season.

Civic Theatre

Booth Tarkington Civic Theatre is wrapping up their Centennial Season! Don't miss the final show of the season.

Monty Python's Spamalot

Lovingly ripped off from the classic comedy film Monty Python and the Holy Grail, Spamalot retells the legend of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table in the irreverent signature style of Monty Python. Set to an upbeat score with clever lyrics and plot twists, Spamalot also features a bevy of beautiful show girls, not to mention cows, killer rabbits, and French people. Join King Arthur and the Knights on their musical quest for the Holy Grail and experience one of the greatest, and certainly one of the funniest, Broadway musicals of the modern age!

(Contains mature content and may not be suitable for children under 12.)

Dates: April 24 - May 9
Thursdays, Fridays & Saturdays at 7pm, last Saturday (5/9) at 5pm, Sundays at 2pm

Get Tickets Here

IRT

Enjoy a romantic date night on the town in Indianapolis at the Indiana Repertory Theatre. Hurry over to see one of the last shows of Sherlock's most terrifying adventure!

The Hound of the Baskervilles

Join Sherlock Holmes and Dr. Watson as Baker Street’s fabled detective duo investigate a deadly threat to the heir of the Baskerville estate. Will Victorian London’s keenest mind deduce the source of the monstrous mongrels before they claim another victim? Family secrets, haunted hounds, romance, and mysteries abound in Sir Arthur Conan Doyle’s timeless tale of supernatural suspense.

Dates: Now through March 15; IRT OneAmerica Stage

Get Tickets Here

What I Learned in Paris

1973 Atlanta. The politics of race, class and gender are rapidly transforming as the city elects its first black mayor. What better time to begin a romantic escapade than during the eve of an historic election? Old loves rekindle and new loves ignite in this expertly funny and delightfully urbane love story.

Dates: March 17 - April 12; IRT Upperstage

Get Tickets Here

On Golden Pond

Touches the heart of anyone who has one.
-NY Daily News

As Ethel and Norman return to the familiar summer ritual of their tranquil vacation home on the water, they get a surprise guest in the form of their daughter’s young stepson-to-be. This tender tale paints an honest look at the labors and liveliness of a couple in the midst of their twilight years. This beloved Tony Award winning play reminds us that each moment we receive is a gift we share with those we love.

Dates: April 14 - May 10; IRT OneAmerica Stage

Get Tickets Here

Phoenix Theatre

For an intimate, contemporary theatre experience, head to the Phoenix. Their spring lineup looks intriguing!

Buyer and Cellar

Americans crave celebrity. Whether we’re reading People, or watching E!, or inhaling the newest celebrity biography, we want to know what their lives are like. But how many of us actually get to engage with our celeb-crushes? Or even take the time to imagine what that interaction might entail? That’s where playwright, Jonathan Tolins, steps in to satisfy our craving, in a whimsical and fictionalized telling of a day in the life of employment to Barbra Streisand.

Alex More has a story to tell. A struggling actor in L.A., Alex takes a job working in the Malibu basement of the beloved megastar, Barbra Streisand. One day, the Lady Herself comes downstairs to play. It feels like real bonding in the basement, but will their relationship ever make it upstairs? This hugely successful Off-Broadway hit is an outrageous one-man comedy about celebrity, the oddest of odd jobs and the pursuit of utopia.

“It’s a seriously funny and remarkably sustained slice of absurdist whimsy.” –New York Times

Dates: March 5 - April 5

Get Tickets Here

Typhoid Mary

You’ve probably heard of “Typhoid Mary,” but most of us are unfamiliar with Mary Mallon, the cook behind the name. This quirky, anachronistic telling of the discovery of Mary’s peculiar disease, as well as her forced quarantine, unfolds in front of a backdrop of changing notions of medicine, morality and cleanliness – Did she willfully infect others? Was she a victim of a misguided medical authority? Or is the truth even stranger?

Dates: April 30 - May 24

Get Tickets Here

Theatre on the Square

Walk to dinner and a night at the theatre in downtown Indianapolis. Theatre on the Square, or TOTS, is within walking distance of amazing bars and restaurants in the arts district of Mass Ave.

An Adult Evening of Shel Silverstein

Welcome to the darkly comic world of Shel Silverstein, a world where nothing is as it seems and where the most innocent conversation can turn menacing in an instant. The ten imaginative plays in this collection range widely in content, but the style is unmistakable.

“Shel Silverstein — cartoonist, songwriter, author and playwright — was a beautiful oddball, and his quirky comedy is the best reason to catch the hour-long An Adult Evening with Shel Silverstein.” – The Washington Post

Dates: March 6 - April 4

Get Tickets Here

Rapture, Blister, Burn

After grad school, Catherine and Gwen chose polar opposite paths. Catherine built a career as a rockstar academic, while Gwen built a home with her husband and children. Decades later, unfulfilled in polar opposite ways, each woman covets the other’s life, commencing a dangerous game of musical chairs—the prize being Gwen’s husband. With searing insight and trademark wit, this comedy is an unflinching look at gender politics in the wake of 20th-century feminist ideals.

“Thoughtful, funny…One of the top ten plays of 2012.” —Entertainment Weekly.

Get Tickets Here

What shows are you excited about seeing this spring? Share your favorite Indianapolis theatre scene tips in the comments below!

Download our ultimate guide to buying a house!

Topics: Indianapolis, Historic Indianapolis, Downtown Indianapolis

How to Buy a House with No Credit Score

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 24, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Good credit is necessary for easily securing a home mortgage. But what if you don't have a credit score?

credit-score

First things first: most people do have a credit score. If you have debt of some kind, like a school loan or credit card, then you automatically have a credit score. Mortgage lenders will check your credit score as part of the underwriting process of deciding whether or not to loan you money.

There is a small but mighty segment of the population who have a goal of living debt free. This means they pay cash for major purchases, don't use credit cards, and have paid off all prior debts. Sounds good, right?

For instance, people who follow Dave Ramsey's financial plan will pay off all their debt, save money and pay with cash, and eventually what happens is that they have no credit score.

Why Is It Difficult to Get a Mortgage With No Credit Score?

It doesn't seem fair that people who have zero debt, plenty of money saved, and can pay cash for almost anything, would be penalized when it comes time to get a mortgage. But that's what can sometimes happen due to several reasons.

Think back to the financial crisis that started in 2007. Much of the crisis was due to "risky" mortgage products on the market. These not only stopped the flow of capital into the mortgage bond funds, it created a domino effect in the economy.

There are 3 major government entities that set the guidelines for most of the mortgage loans in the United States. Those agencies are the FHA, Fannie Mae, and Freddie Mac.

When these agencies audited their defaulted loan portfolios, they all found a high amount of those defaults came from borrowers that had qualified using "alternative credit sources." This is the term they use for no credit score or insufficient credit on the credit report.

The agencies took action and began tightening their guidelines for those that have no credit scores or have insufficient credit reporting.

The servicers that have to collect the payments for these loans have gone even further by adding more requirements and the majority of conventional mortgage servicers will not underwrite a loan with no credit score at all.

And that's why it's difficult to get a home loan even if you are extremely responsible with money.

How To Get Around It

You can go through a process called manual underwriting.

There are a few lenders who use this process, but it isn't common. A mortgage company that offers this service describes it this way on their website

"No credit score loans require an underwriter to scour every piece of documentation in the file from your paystubs and W2s to the 24 pages of the appraisal to make sure the risks have all been identified. That takes time - about 3 times as long as a normal borrower file. Don't look for quick answers, because the quick answer is easy - no. We want to give that underwriter time to be familiar with all the aspects of your loan file so they can give the approval with confidence. This may even require additional documentation that doesn't seem to make sense to most of us. But let's remember the goal; give the underwriter what they need to feel comfortable with the risks on the loan to issue an approval. From the time the underwriter receives the file, I would give them at least 2 weeks to underwrite it. That probably takes a normal 30-day loan process up to about 45 days. Therefore, keep this in mind when writing a contract closing date."

How to Prepare

Dave Ramsey recommends the following steps for preparing to get a loan with no credit score:

  • Put at least 20% down on your home.
  • Choose a 15-year, fixed-rate conventional mortgage.
  • Have a strong employment history and personal income to support the loan.
  • Demonstrate 4–6 trade lines that span 18–24 months. These are just regularly recurring expenses such as rent, electric bills, water bills, cell phones, etc.
  • Your old credit history has to be in good shape

You may be in the minority if you don't have a credit score, but it's still possible to buy a home and get a mortgage loan if you know the secrets.

How do you pick a house that is best for you?

 

 

 

 

Topics: Buying a Home, Mortgage, Loans

Perfect Indianapolis Date Night Ideas for Empty Nesters

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 22, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Your empty nest may come furnished with a variety of emotions: relief, sadness, joy, loneliness, excitement.

This time of life can feel quiet one moment, and extremely busy and fulfilling the next. You might be selling your home or moving to a different neighborhood. Perhaps you're traveling and visiting old friends. If you're a settled empty nester, you might be looking to reignite the passion with your spouse and spend more time together.

empty-nesters-date

We've put together a few ideas for the perfect Indianapolis date night, just for you empty nesters. Whether you're planning a double date with old friends, or celebrating your 30th wedding anniversary, you'll find a great plan right here.

Brewery Tours for Beer Lovers 

Enjoy a casual night out touring the town, making new friends, and sampling delicious local beer. A brewery tour would be the perfect double date to go out with old friends or even "getting to know you" friends. It does help if everyone at least enjoys beer, so make sure your date is on board.

Indy Brew Bus is a fun way to visit multiple craft breweries in Indianapolis. You can choose to tour breweries in Downtown Indianapolis, Broad Ripple, or the Southside. So first things first, book your tour.

Each brewery offers a wide variety of samples of their house, seasonal, and specialty beers. Each tour will visit four local breweries, so you can relax knowing you only have to hop on and off the bus as you whisk around Indianapolis enjoying the suds. Order a pint of your favorite or get a growler to go and they'll keep it cold for you on the bus! Each tour participant will receive a Personal Sampling Scorecard to help you keep track of the all the beers you like. The cost is $30 per person.

Depending on the area you tour, you may stop at breweries or bars that serve food. Some have food trucks hanging around outside the brewery. Or you may need to make arrangements to eat before or after the tour.

Plan your brewery tour here.

An Evening of Music

If you've never been to the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra at Hilbert Circle Theatre, it's high time you take your special someone out for an evening of music!

First, purchase tickets ahead of time. Start with dinner and drinks at Tastings, a one-of-a-kind wine bar located a block away from the theatre. They have a variety of menu items, including artisanal cheese and charcuterie plates, flatbread pizzas, gourmet sandwiches and salads, bistro and tapas plates, and desserts. 

Don't forget to take your concert ticket with you because on the back you'll find a discount to Tastings!

After you've enjoyed your meal and drinks, take a short walk to Hilbert Circle Theatre and enjoy the performance! The Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra performs 200 concerts each year to an audience of more than 500,000 people. Since 1994, the group has been heard in more than 250 radio markets in 41 states and has performed in three European musical capitals. Some tickets start at just $15. 

Plan your musical evening here.

Cheer On Your Team

Whether you're a huge basketball fan or not, a night out enjoying a live game in the heart of the city is a recipe for a great date. Cheer on the NBA Pacers or the WNBA Fever at Bankers Life Fieldhouse. This retro-style fieldhouse has been recognized as the finest NBA basketball arena in the country by Sports Business Journal.

If basketball isn't your thing, the Fieldhouse also hosts events of all types year-round, from rodeos and concerts to parties and ice skating.

First, figure out your parking situation ahead of time.  

Start the night at one of the nearby bars, like The Pub Indianapolis or Kilroys. If a loud bar isn't the right vibe, go for a classic steak and wine dinner at Prime 47. You can find a list of nearby bars and restaurants right here.

Since you're so close, after dinner you can walk over to the Fieldhouse and cheer on your team!

Plan your night on the town here.

A Very Special Day

If you're planning a special anniversary or you just want to celebrate the fact that the kids are finally out of the house, we have the perfect daytime date. 

Start with a walk along the Canal in downtown Indy. You can find so many ways to get around this beautiful space - walking, biking, pedal boating, or even traveling by gondola.

The Canal Walk is part of the Indiana Central Canal, which was dug in the early 1800s, in an effort to facilitate interstate commerce. Today, the refurbished Canal Walk (stretching north through White River State Park to 11th Street) serves the downtown community as a beautiful waterside promenade.

If it's a chilly day, take a thermos of coffee or hot chocolate, or stop for a warm treat at a nearby cafe. 

Next, it's time to museum hop! Two of the cities premier museums conveniently sit next door to the Canal and White River State Park.

The Eiteljorg Museum of American Indians and Western Art is the largest museum of its type east of the Mississippi. This beautiful museum has traditional art as well as an impressive contemporary collection.

The Indiana State Museum showcases science, art, and culture in celebration of Indiana’s history.

If a museum visit isn't what you're looking for, catch a matinée! You can also find the IMAX Theater at the Indiana State Museum, with its six-story screen that plays 3D IMAX films as well as contemporary Hollywood films.

Finally, to top off the festivities, take your special date out for a romantic dinner. 

Reserve a table at the nationally acclaimed St. Elmo Steakhouse. You must order their famous shrimp cocktail.

A more rustic, but just as amazingly delicious, option is Bluebeard in nearby Foutain Square. They were rated Best New Restaurant by the James Beard Foundation in 2013. Order the Moscow Mule and their homemade pickles to start!

Plan your special day here.

Wherever you go, we hope your date night is made even sweeter by knowing that you have done your duty as parents, your young have fledged, and finally you can reap the rewards of your hard work. Enjoy yourselves, you empty nesters.

And tell us about your favorite Indianapolis date night spots in the comments below!

Do you need help selling your home?

 

 

 

 

 

Topics: Indianapolis

How to Pick the Perfect Wedding Venue

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 19, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Here at Home to Indy, we work with a lot of newly-engaged couples looking to purchase their first home. It's such an exciting time in their lives, and we love being part of it! 

If wedding bells are in your near future, you’re likely looking for just the right spot to say your “I dos.” With all the options out there, it can sometimes be overwhelming to select the right venue. Below you’ll find some questions to consider as that will help you pick your perfect location.

wedding-venue

1. Do we have to invite great aunt Martha’s son I’ve never met?

The first place to start is with your guest list. You and your fiancé need to make a list of the people you want to witness your nuptials. If you’re sending out 500 invitations, the local city hall likely won’t be able to accommodate all of your guests, let alone a band, if that’s something you’re wanting.

2. Here or there?

If you want a destination wedding, you need to consider if your family/friends will be able to attend. Rio de Janiero may be gorgeous, but it also may be financially impossible for some of your desired guests.

3. How much can you spend?

When it comes to your wedding budget, only you can determine how much you want to spend on the venue, let alone the dress, flowers, food, photographer, etc. Costs can range from free (if you use a rich neighbor’s well-groomed backyard) to upwards of $20,000. Choose a range that you’d like to stick with and start there.

4. Do you want to be a June bride?

Availability can be difficult if you’re planning for a quick engagement. Some wedding venues book up years in advance. One way to get around this is to have your wedding on a Friday or a Sunday, which are often more availiable than traditional Saturdays.

5. How much work do you want to take on?

You may have always dreamed of getting married at your grandma’s ranch. But you have to consider who’s going to move the hay bales, clean out the barn, place the port-a-lets, and set up the tables and chairs. While reception halls still require a decent amount of planning, they usually come with a wedding coordinator to help iron out all the details.

6. Do you want your wedding and reception at separate venues?

If you have both your wedding and reception at the same site, you can save on rental fees and decorations.

7. Have you looked outside the reception hall box?

If you don’t want a traditional reception hall, lots of cities have unique places to host a wedding. Check out local zoos, museums, botanical gardens, and libraries. Oftentimes, you can get a discount on a Masonic Lodge or Country Club if you have family who are members.

8. How well do you know the church?

If you plan to get married at a church, make sure you ask about their stipulations. Some churches only allow members to use their facility. Others only let their pastors officiate or certain songs to be sung.

9. Do you want to worry about the weather?

If you choose a venue that’s outside, you need to consider the weather. An “in case of bad weather” plan is usually put in place, which can require more planning. You also need to consider if it is public space. Noise can be an issue, as can public festivals if you were considering a park.

10. Does this include the kitchen sink?

Make sure you ask lots of questions about what is included in venues you check out. Some places provide linens and silverware, while others require you to rent them from an outside vendor. Are there additional set up fees? Cake cutting fees? How many hours do you get with rental? Is alcohol allowed? Can you set up the day before?

Research online for venues then visit to ensure that you love the location in person. By asking the right questions and doing a little research, you will no doubt find the perfect venue to say, “I do.”

Renter to Homeowner in 6 Months

Topics: wedding

How to Have a Wildly Successful Garage Sale

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 17, 2015 10:30:00 AM

When families move, they often take the opportunity to go sort through their belongings. Oftentimes, they will find that they own more than they realized, so a garage sale ensues.

If you're looking to get rid of some clutter, hosting a garage sale is a great way to do that while actually making some money! Here are a few tips that will help you put on a successful garage sale.

garage-sale

The Planning Process

Planning is probably the most important part of the process. You want to have a good inventory of items, whether it’s clothes, toys, or random other things you want to sell. Garage sales are only as good as the products in stock. Also, keep in mind that it’s always a good idea to look into restrictions in your area or the covenants in your neighborhood. It is against the law in some areas to host a garage sale without a permit, and in other places, there are strict laws about signage.

1. Collect, collect, collect.

Have the garage sale on your mind all year long. Find a bucket or carve out a corner in the basement for those things you'd normally throw out or donate that someone else may find valuable. Remember - one man's trash is another man's treasure.

2. Choose the right location.

Don't have your sale at home if you’re tucked away on a long driveway off a country road. Find a friend who lives on a busy street or in a condensed suburb or find a public place to have your sale. No matter how great your inventory, it’s not worth a thing if no one sees it.

3. Think about the weather.

Check the forecast. Just because it is sunny in the morning when you’re setting up doesn't mean it will be clear all day. Obviously, you’ll do the best business on a good weather day, start to finish.

Setting Up

Don't overlook the importance of setting up a garage sale properly! Think about the customer experience and the things that make you stop at certain garage sales, even while you drive right past others.

4. Realize the importance of great signage.

A cardboard box with dripping spray paint nailed to a pole isn't going to attract the most and best customers. Make clear, bright, aesthetically pleasing signage that will stand out. Put signs up at busy nearby intersections with clear directions as to how to get to your sale.

5. Display your best items most prominently.

The one thing that makes people stop at a garage sale is seeing something that intrigues them from the road. Put your best stuff out there to be seen, so that shoppers will be interested immediately. Make the things you display diverse, as to draw in a wide range of potential buyers.

6. Set up your sale in sections, like a retail store.

Create sections. Don't force a potential buyer to bounce back and forth looking for things. They’re more likely to buy in bulk if things that you display are similar and close together. Make 25 cent, 50 cent, and one dollar tables. Your customers will love to search for affordable little treasures. It makes the experience easy and fun for them and makes organization and set up easy for you. Everything beyond those commonly priced tables though should be marked individually and clearly. If you’ve had a previous sale, be sure to remove old price stickers from your items unless the price is the same this time around. You don’t want customers confused about pricing.

7. Don't overprice.

Know the value of your items, and keep in mind that the reason you're having a sale is to clear some clutter, right? There’s no need to expect huge profits or make people feel like you're taking advantage of the opportunity.

Hosting Your Sale

Once customers start coming in, your job has just begun. You’ll have a lot of tidying up and negotiating to do!

8. Be willing to negotiate.

Don't just give things away, but if a person makes a reasonable offer, accept it. They're more likely to keep shopping and come back when they see you're having another sale. You may turn off other potential customers if they see you arguing with someone else over fifty cents.

9. Make it a family affair.

Set up a lemonade stand, give out hot dogs, and decorate with colorful flags. These elements will bring attention to your garage sale, and get your kids involved.

10. Have a lot of fun.

The most important thing about a garage sale is keeping it fun for everyone, both the seller and the buyer. Remember the importance of keeping things upbeat and making everyone feel welcome. If it’s fun, you're more likely to sell more and have repeat customers at your next garage sale. Here’s to making your garage sale a roaring success!

Do you need help selling your home?

Topics: Garage, Garage Sale

Where to Find a Wedding Dress in Indianapolis

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 15, 2015 10:30:00 AM

You’ve got the ring, the date, and the perfect groom. Now you just have to find the perfect dress. Whether you’ve watched every episode of Say Yes to the Dress and think you know exactly what you want or have absolutely no idea, wedding dress shopping is a treat. Check out the following stores below to guide your perfect dress wedding search right in Indianapolis.

wedding-dress

Alfred Angelo

Located: Castleton

Alfred Angelo accommodates walk-ins if they have fitting rooms and consultants available. They carry wedding dresses sized from 0-30W and have a 15% discount with a valid military ID. Their Dream in Color collection allows you to add a splash of color with a palette of 60 shades to your dress that will perfectly match your wedding party.

David’s Bridal

Located: Castleton

David’s Bridal offers dresses in sizes 0-26W, free shipping on sale dresses, and discounted bridesmaid dresses (when the bride purchases her dress there). They currently house Vera Wang’s White collection. Appointments are helpful, particularly on weekends. They boast that they have wedding dresses for every bride, regardless of budget.

Nancy’s Bridal

Located: Keystone

This family-owned boutique has been serving brides for more than 20 years. They have more than 300 gowns in stock, including exclusive designer collections, ranging from $450-$4,000. Appointments are not required, but they are strongly recommended.

Sophia’s Bridal

Located: US 31/Southport Road

Locally-owned Sophia’s, which has been serving brides for 5 years, has gowns ranging from $750-$1,700. If you’re looking for a deal, they have Trunk Shows that offer 20% discounts. They currently have dresses from the “hottest new European designer with traditional and cutting-edge designs: Robin Jillian.”

Bridal Superstore by Posie Patch

Located: Castleton

Family owned and operated, Posie Patch has been in business for more than 30 years. The bridal superstore exclusively offers dresses from Allure Bridals, Casablanca Bridals, and Maggie Sottero. If you visit during their Semi-Annual Sample Sale, you can get a dress for 40% off.

The Perfect Stitch

Located: 465/74

The Perfect Stitch offers custom-made gowns by their two expert seamstresses. They are also a bridal consignment, so if you’re on a shoestring budget, you might consider purchasing a previously worn gown. In the event that it’s not your size, they can do your alterations right there at the store.

Visit a few stores, try on a few gowns, and eventually you will say yes to your dress!

Download our ultimate guide to buying a house!

 

Topics: Indianapolis, wedding

7 Ideas and Tools to Help You Create a Family Budget

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 12, 2015 10:30:00 AM

The hardest part of creating a family budget is knowing where to start, and actually getting started. There are so many tools, methods, and advice for how to do this, that we decided to do a roundup of some of the best.

family-budget

But first, why should you have a family budget?

Mint.com says it simply: "It's important to look household finances squarely in the eye, because that's the only way to control them; otherwise, they control you."

A budget helps your family save for future plans, from an overseas family vacation, to a college fund, kitchen remodel, or retirement. A budget is also useful for paying down debt and building an emergency fund.

Getting Started: Pick Your Financial Guru

There are experts out there to help you get started, if you're not sure what to do first. Check out these top financial gurus (some local) who are ready to hold your hand through the process.

 

1. Pete the Planner

Indianapolis financial wizard Pete the Planner has a ton of useful tools, books and information on his website to help you get started. 

We love this particular infographic that shows, in a pie chart, the breakdown of your family budget. Go check it out to get all the details about why this budget makes sense.

pete_the_planner

Image: PetethePlanner.com

2. Dave Ramsey

Many people have found their way out of debt thanks to Dave Ramsey's program. Not everyone agrees with his methods, but it's worth checking out if you have serious debt and want to attack it with a solid plan.

You can find free tools on his website, like these budget forms.

There is also an online class called Financial Peace University.

3. Suze Orman

This money guru has a strong following, as well. There's a bit of a competition between Suze and Dave, because of their difference in philosophy. 

Her website offers books, kits, and a resource center to help you get started.

4. And/Or, Work With a Financial Advisor

If a financial guru is not your thing, and you want more one-on-one help with investments and budgeting, consider working with a financial advisor.

Top-Rated Indianapolis FinancialAdvisors:

Next, keep track with your favorite app.

5. Mint

Mint is the de facto financial app. It's at the top of all the lists for a good reason. Not only does Mint.com have tons of resources to help you learn create your budget, their mobile app makes it easy to see where you are with your finances, at a glance.

Mint

6. Accounts

Accounts is a simple $1 app that acts as a digital checkbook register. You can enter all your monthly bills, your debits, credits, and paychecks, and keep track of your spending. It also has simple budgeting reports that show where your money has gone throughout the month or year.

7. Old Fashioned Methods

There's nothing wrong with pen and paper budgeting, or spreadsheets. The method and tools that you choose are important. If you choose a method you don't enjoy using, you are less likely to stick with it.

A local couple told us that they use the "envelopes of cash" method to control spending. Every payday, or once a week, they budget their spending, pay bills online, and then anything else like groceries, gas, etc, gets an envelope of cash. This keeps them on budget, and helps them avoid extravagant impulse purchases.

What are your family's favorite ways to create, manage, and stay on a budget? Share your experiences in the comments below.

Want to protect your home?

Topics: Family, Financing

4 Wine Bars in Indianapolis You Didn't Know Existed

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 10, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Wine bars put a new spin on wine tasting by providing a casual, relaxed atmosphere. Whether you are wanting a quiet corner of the world for a romantic date or a long talk with friends, a wine bar is the perfect spot! Order an appetizer and linger while you sip some flavors of the finest wines from around the world.

Thankfully, we have several wine bars to choose from here in Indy. Here are a few of our favorites that you might not even know existed.

wine-bar

Tastings - A Wine Experience

With over 200 wines in stock, Tastings offers the entire selection by the taste, by the glass and by the bottle. Every bottle is sold at retail price and can be opened in the store or taken home to enjoy. They also have an extensive selection of spirits and craft beers in their full service bar and delectable food to enjoy while you drink.

Corner Wine Bar

Corner Wine Bar offers an award-winning wine list and an outstanding bistro-style menu. With innovative offerings featuring Certified Angus Beef and fresh seafood, there's something for everyone. Set in a charming turn of the century building in Broad Ripple, Corner Wine Bar is also noted as one of Indy's most romantic spots.

Mass Ave Wine Bar

Mass Ave Wine Bar has 100 wines $15 and under, and the bottles they have priced higher are because they truly believe they are worth it. If wine isn't your thing, they alo offer a variety of bottled beer and unique spirits and liqueurs. Enjoy small plates and sweet treats at the cafe while you drink.

Shiraz

Shiraz Wine Experience and Art Cafe paints itself as a playground where lovers come to escape, friends come to relax, and the wine curious come to experience the newest wines from all over the world. Shiraz features self-serve, state-of-the-art wine tasting machines that allow guests to explore boutique wines at their own pace - with 1, 3, or 6 ounce portions.

If you're a wine connoisseur, put these four wine bars on your calendar today.

What are your favorite wine bars in the area? Let us know in the comments below!

Renter to Homeowner in 6 Months

Topics: Things to do in Indianapolis, Wineries

Where to Find Prom Essentials in Indy

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 8, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Many high school girls dream of their Prom nights, which includes the perfect dress (among other details). Prom season is right around the corner. So if you're searching for your gown and other prom essentials, Indianapolis has an abundance of stores for you to check out. Here are a few shops we recommend.

prom

Bridal Superstore by Posie Patch

Although the name implies that the Posie Patch is a bridal store, they offer their special Prom Shop inside the boutique. The store has a large selection of prom dresses in addition to other formal wear. The Prom Shop offers private dressing rooms and a well-lit theatre area where your friends can weigh in. 

Bridal Superstore by Posie Patch

5447 East 82nd Street

Indianapolis, IN 46250

David's Bridal 

David's Bridal is a national chain and very popular for bridal, prom and other special occasion dresses. While they offer many styles of dresses, they also have a selection of dresses under $100. David's Bridal has two locations in the Indianapolis area - Castleton and Greenwood.

David's Bridal - Castleton

Clearwater Springs Shopping Center

5025 East 82nd Street

Indianapolis, IN 46250

David's Bridal - Greenwood

Greenwood Pavilion

1238 US Highway 31 North

Greenwood, IN 46142

RaeLynn's Boutique 

RaeLynn's Boutique carries the top dress designers in the markets of prom, social occasion, and cocktail dresses. RaeLynn's has received several awards, including being voted WRTV Channel 6’s #1 Women’s Boutique in Indianapolis, and was named one of the Top Ten Prom Dress Boutiques in the United States for the 2nd time.

RaeLynn's Boutique

455 Greenwood Park South Drive, Suite E

Greenwood, IN 46143

Sophia's

Sophia's has created The Prom Store - a store specializing in prom dresses apart from their bridal selection. The store is designed to make your quest for the perfect prom dress simple and easy. They have 10 dressing rooms and hundreds upon hundreds of dresses from fantastic designers. The Prom store offers over 1,000 dresses in stock.

Sophia's

7015 US 31 South

Indianapolis, IN 46227

Stephen's Prom and Beyond

Stephen’s specializes in prom and special occasion dresses and offers many designers and over 1,500 dresses in stock. The store, located in Castleton, also features 16 dressing rooms and registers dresses for each prom to ensure your dress is unique and special.

Stephen's Prom and Beyond

8520 Castleton Square Drive

Indianapolis IN 46250 

What stores did we miss? Where did you find your prom dress? Let us know in the comments below.

 

Moving with children?

Topics: Prom

The Amateur Photographer's Guide to Beautiful Indianapolis

Posted by Paula Henry on Feb 5, 2015 10:30:00 AM

Here at Home to Indy, we're proud of our city. We love living here, and we love showing it off to visitors (who might potentially move here). While people are here touring, we'll often get asked where they should go to visit - or take pictures. Thankfully, Indianapolis is a beautiful city, so we're never low on suggestions. 

Whether you're a visitor coming to Indianapolis or an Indy resident, here are some scenic spots to get great shots! Grab your camera and head on out. (While you're at it, email us some of your favorite pictures - we'd love to see them!)

indy-skyline

Downtown Indianapolis

The heart of the city is a great location to take some urban shots. The Soldiers and Sailor's Monument, the State House, and the Circle all make for great spots. But, there are lots of fun nooks and crannies within the city including rustic alleyways and fun store fronts. Don't forget the Canal and Lucas Oil Stadium (if you're a Colts fan)!

Downtown Carmel

Bring your walking shoes and travel around charming downtown Carmel! It has a variety of fun places to take pictures, including the Monon Trail, older-looking store fronts, and the creative art statues. It lives up to its name being in the arts district.

Indianapolis Museum of Art (IMA) and 100 Acres Woods

The IMA is located on the near North West side of the city and is home to the trendy LOVE statue. It also has lots of gardens that are groomed professionally. 100 Acres Woods is right around the corner from the IMA and is such a fun location! Here, you can photograph a modern basketball court with fun tubing, an interesting tunnel, and stairwells. This area isn’t as well manicured as the IMA, but that's part of the beauty of it.

Lockerbie Square Historic District

Located near downtown, Lockerbie boasts some charming older homes and beautiful mansions that make for wonderful pictures. On a warm day, you're sure to see families out walking their dogs. Oh, and don't miss famous poet James Whitcomb Riley's home!

Crown Hill Cemetery

Take a peaceful stroll through Crown Hill Cemetery. (If you have time, you might even take a tour.) Crown Hill is the 3rd largest cemetery in the nation, spanning over 555 beautiful acres. We recommend admiring taking pictures at sunset from the Crown, Marion County's highest hill. You can get some breathtaking pictures of the city's skyline.

Holcomb Gardens

This location is on Butler University’s campus. Here, you will find a gorgeous, giant weeping willow tree over the canal, a fun bridge, well-groomed greenery, an area of ungroomed greenery, a gazebo, and even a little water feature. This location is great yearround! You can probably even snap a pic or two of college students and Butler's historic buildings.

Fort Harrison State Park

Fort Harrison State Park is on the northeast side of the city and is a great spot yearround. (It's perfect in the fall to capture the beauty of the changing leaves!) if you're wantin nature, you're going to find it - from lakes to trees to ducks and geese; you'll feel like you're in the country! Additional pictures can include wooden bridges, walking paths, and more.

Keep in mind, these aren’t the only places in Indianapolis to take great pictures. In fact, do you know of a spot that we missed? If so, leave it in the comments below. We'd love to know!

How do you pick a house that is best for you?

 

 

Topics: Indianapolis, Photography