Top 2018 Design Trends We’re Thankful For

 

The modern home is always evolving. Here are top 8 design trends we are thankful for in 2018.

A Pop of Color

Adding a pop of color in the kitchen allows for a featured item to be accented in a creative way without spending a lot of money. Try painting your island or lower cabinets a bright color. We’re thankful for this trend bringing a bit of a personal touch to any kitchen.

 

Hidden Appliances

Magic appliances are a new trend catching on to new homebuilders and designers. Homeowners are hiding ‘stainless steel fatigue’ with wood paneling to conceal large appliances. With these eye sores out of view, the space looks and feels larger. Imagine how clean your kitchen would look as you cook a Thanksgiving feast using your disappearing appliances.

 

Curves

A large piece of furniture featuring soft lines, ruffles, and even ruching creates an inviting space while allowing family to gather and fit harmoniously in one space.

 

Wallpaper

Wallpaper has made a big comeback! High-end designers are picking this trend up and embracing it unlike ever before, by creating beautiful statement walls. You won’t see this artsy trend going out of style anytime soon.

 

Dining Rooms with an Open Floor Plan

Create an open floor plan dining room to instill an impactful sense of togetherness that flows through the space from kitchen to table and allows you to spend more time with family.

 

LED Lighting

With a new holiday season comes new advancements in tech gear. We’re thankful for the smart technology featuring LED tape lighting. Place a strip under your kitchen cabinets to illuminate your backsplash, counter tops, or to highlight your favorite kitchen gadgets.

 

Large Tiles

Make a statement with flooring in your bathroom, kitchen, entry-way and more! Play with intricate tile design playing with the lines of the room.

 

Detailed Ceilings

Creative ceiling designs can range from new crown molding, natural wood or stained shiplap, gold leaf detailing, and metallic painted ceilings. Discuss with an interior designer to find out which element would best complement the style of your home.

 

 

Article courtesy of HGTV. com

Images courtesy of Houzz.com


Sell your Home for More Money

Drastically increase the amount of money you make on the sale of your home with these eight easy tips.

1) Price it below market value.
List your home below the current market value; maybe even as much as 5-10%. As a homeowner, you may be reluctant to try this approach, but the results may surprise you. This can be highly effective, create a sense of urgency and drive in even more offers and buyers than you ever imagined.

2) Brighten up the bedroom.
Bring in as much natural light into the room as possible. If you can’t remember the last time you cleaned the windows in your house, now is the time–inside and out! Replace any burnt out light bulbs and bring in an extra lamp or two.

3) Clean out the closets.
Open up the closet doors, pull everything out, and get rid of 50% of the clutter. If winter has passed, pack away all of your winter clothes. When a buyer opens up the closet doors, they see the available closet space, and not an unorganized, overstocked storage area.

4) Paint the front door.
Don’t let an old, weathered door be a buyer’s focal point. Painting the front door can make a home feel more welcoming. By carefully choosing the right color, you can unexpectedly make your house stand out from the rest.

5) Enhance the landscaping.
To help give your home a boost in curb appeal, spruce up the landscaping around the front of your home. By carefully planning and doing your homework, you can achieve a nice upgrade on a small budget.

6) Stain the deck and driveway.
Staining your deck and driveway is a cost effective way to prolong the life of an area that takes a beating from the weather and heavy foot traffic. It will let the buyer know your home is properly maintained.

7) Paint the walls a neutral color.
Don’t let the color of your walls be the focal point of a room. It will be easier for a buyer to relate to a neutral wall color, and they won’t be distracted by a room that is bold or too loud.

8) Make kitchen improvements.
Kitchen improvements can yield high returns if done properly. Popular upgrades include resurfacing or replacing kitchen cabinets, adding a new backsplash, or replacing outdated countertops.

Article courtesy of garrettsrealty.com


Top 7 Interior Design Trends for 2018

 

The modern home is always evolving. To get an idea of what it’s evolving to, look no further than what’s happening within its walls today. Here are 7 of the top design trends for 2018.

1) Bold colors

Rich jewel tones are making their way onto our walls and moldings in a big way—think ‘English library,’ but with peacock teal, black, or rich burnt orange colors.

The proof is in the paint: Sherwin-Williams’ 2018 Color of the Year (Oceanside SW 6496) is an intense shade of blue-green, while Pantone recently announced the rich and regal Ultra Violet will reign supreme in the coming year.

2) Mixed metallics

Buyers really love to see modern, eclectic choices such as a hammered copper light fixture above the kitchen island paired with sleek chrome faucets and cabinet hardware.

To warm up the industrial feel of some metals, pair them with a natural stone like marble or limestone, and look for unexpected finishes like matte black, satin brass, black nickel, and unlacquered brass.

3) Bright yellow

As designers, fashionistas, and millennials will all tell you, the hue that’s being dubbed “Gen Z yellow” is the one to watch.

It’ll certainly make an impression, whether a bright ‘minion’ color or a burnt shade resembling turmeric.

If you can’t quite warm up to a bright yellow sectional, test the waters with an accent chair or painted side table.

4) Quartz

In the kitchen, sleek quartz is taking the place of the ubiquitous granite and hard-to-clean marble. Quartz products are appealing to the ease of living that we all crave, and the surfaces are much more modern, clean, and versatile.

5) Light textured wood floors

Flooring trends are moving toward lighter color palettes in domestic American woods such as maple, pine, or hickory.

Why? Light-hued woods, including natural tones and blond and whitewashed woods, brighten interior spaces and easily hide scratches and imperfections, making them a great choice for families and households with pets. For extra credit, choose a distressed or wire-brushed wood, which offers vintage appeal with a less aggressive look than a scraped floor, and choose 5-inch-wide planks, which create a sense of openness and space.

6) Black fixtures

Black fixtures will take the place of brass as the new hot home hardware, predicts Ryan Brown of Brown Design Group in Southern California. The first reason is easy: Black pretty much goes with everything. The second? Black fixtures—especially in matte finishes—are much easier to clean (and don’t need to be cleaned as often) than lighter, polished metals, with no water spots to clean.

7) Large tiles

Larger tile has less grout and is both easier to install and maintain.

Clients want a really clean look for their homes and that doesn’t appear to be a trend that’s going away.

Article courtesy of Realtor.com.


Winterize Your Home

 

Spending a weekend or two on maintenance can prevent expensive home repairs and alert you to developing problems before they become serious. Here are a few tips to help you prepare for the winter season.

Clean Gutters

It’s imperative that your gutters are ready for the heavy workout they’ll receive from winter rains. Most homeowners in the Northwest will need to clean their gutters several times during the fall, because the leaves won’t be finished coming down until the first big winter rain or snowstorm.

Have your furnace checked and tuned up.

Schedule a fall appointment promptly to get your furnace ready for winter (it’s a good idea to have a biannual HVAC service contract so that fall and spring tune-ups are automatic). Find out what items are on your HVAC professional’s fall checklist and ask questions about any maintenance. The service should include checking fuel connections, burner combustion, and the heat exchanger.

Check your furnace filters monthly and change them whenever they’re dirty. Inspect and vacuum out the floor grates and return duct regularly, especially if you have children or pets.

Combat moss on the roof. 

Fall is the time to apply moss-killing granules or liquid solution to your rooftop. Be sure to buy the granules that are made especially for roofs, not those for lawns. Lawn granules contain iron, which will rust on your roof and make a mess. For even distribution, apply roof granules in a bead along each side of the roof ridge rather than sprinkling them all over; the first big rain wets the granules and spreads the moss-killing agent uniformly over the roof.

Check weatherstripping and caulk on doors and windows.

Walk around outside and examine the areas where window, door, and corner trim meets the siding; caulk any gaps. Open doors and check the condition of the weatherstripping. If the doors are drafty or the old weatherstripping foam is crumbling, remove it and apply new weatherstripping.

Disconnect hoses and winterize your lawn irrigation system.

These steps are important anywhere you experience freezing temperatures—keeping water from freezing in pipes prevents potentially expensive repairs.

If you have a lawn irrigation system, make sure all the water has drained from the system before the first freeze. Depending on the type of system you’ve installed, this may require the assistance of a professional. A pro charges $50 to $150 to winterize an irrigation system.

Visit your crawl space in January.

This is where moisture and drainage problems can cause the most damage. Because the summer is often so dry in the Northwest, standing water typically doesn’t show up in a crawl space until January or so, when the soil has been fully re-saturated. If you have standing water, try to pinpoint whether it’s coming from pipes inside the house or from water flowing in through cracks in the foundation.

Prune trees. 

Contact with trees is bad for roofs and siding; friction and trapped moisture shorten the lifespan of building materials. All major pruning should be done in winter, when trees are dormant.

Article courtesy of houselogic.com


Moving Checklist

 

Two Months Before
• Sort & purge: Go through every room of your house and decide what you’d like to keep and what you can get rid of. Think about whether any items will require special packing or extra insurance coverage.
• Research: Start investigating moving companies. Don’t rely on a quote over the phone; request an on-site estimate. Get an estimate in writing from each company, and make sure it has a USDOT (U.S. Department of Transportation) number on it if you are moving to a different state.
• Organize school records: Go to your children’s school and arrange for their records to be transferred to their new school district.

Six Weeks Before
• Order supplies: Order boxes and other supplies such as tape, bubble wrap, and black markers. Don’t forget to order specialty containers, such as dish barrels or wardrobe boxes.
• Take measurements: Check room dimensions at your new home, if possible, and make sure larger pieces of furniture will fit through the door.

One Month Before
• Choose your mover: Select a company and get written confirmation of your moving date, costs, and other details.
• Begin packing: Start packing the things that you use most infrequently. Note items of special value that might require additional insurance from your moving company, such as a computer. Clearly label and number each box with its contents and the room it’s destined for.

• Do a change of address: Go to your post office and fill out a change-of-address form, or do it online at usps.gov. Notify important parties. In case there are stragglers, it’s wise to ask a close neighbor to look out for mail after you’ve moved.
• Alert the following of your move: Banks, brokerage firms, your employer’s human resources department, magazines and newspapers you subscribe to, credit card, insurance, and utility companies.
• Forward medical records: Arrange for medical records to be sent to any new health-care providers.

Two Weeks Before
• Contact the moving company: Reconfirm arrangements.

One Week Before
• Pack your suitcases: Aim to finish your general packing a few days before your moving date. Then pack suitcases for everyone in the family with enough clothes for a few days.

A Few Days Before
• Defrost the freezer: If your refrigerator is moving with you, make sure to empty, clean, and defrost it at least 24 hours before moving day.

Moving Day
• Verify: Make sure the moving truck that shows up is from the company you hired: The USDOT number painted on its side should match the number on the estimate you were given. Before the movers leave, sign the bill of lading/inventory list and keep a copy.

Article courtesy of realsimple.com


5 Tips for Real Estate Investing

 

If you’re just beginning to invest in real estate, it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with the fundamentals before getting your advanced degree. Here are 5 basic tips to get started investing in real estate.

1) Location matters

You may want to invest in the worst house on the best street because it gives you an opportunity to build equity. Invest some money to fix it up and sell it to someone else who wants a ready-to-move-in house in a fabulous location.

2) Wholesale properties

Avoid paying “full price” for properties. Instead, look for so-called wholesale properties that are offered at a steep discount. Sure, they’ll probably need some work. Run the numbers and see if the investment in rehab is worth the ultimate selling price.
You can easily invest $20,000 in a property and add twice that much to the selling price.

3) Tax Benefits

Uncle Sam offers significant tax benefits to real estate investors, including the depreciation write-off. When you buy an investment property that includes a building, you get to write off the depreciation of that building as a tax deduction.

Keep in mind that the IRS views your real estate investment efforts as a business so you also get to claim the “necessary and ordinary“ deductions that business owners take, including mortgage interest, insurance, and maintenance expenses. Remember to consult your tax advisor about specifics.

4) Check your credit score

Banks aren’t going to loan money to you for a property that’s not your primary residence as readily as they’ll loan it to you for your own home. That’s why your credit has to be spectacular. If you have problems on your credit report that are mistakes, get those resolved as quickly as possible.

5) The 1% rule

The 1% rule simply states that an income property must produce 1% of the price you pay for it every month. For example, if you’re looking at buying a property for $150,000, the monthly rental income should be 150,000 x 1% = $1,500.

Article courtesy of HuffingtonPost.com


8 Top Real Estate Mistakes

 

Get insider secrets to avoid costly blunders on the most important investment of your life.

SELLERS:

Failing to Showcase your Home
When you are selling your house, you have to look at it objectively from the viewpoint of the house hunter. Make minor enhancements to the house, perhaps hiring a professional stager to arrange your furniture. Staging is about decorating your house for the buyers’ taste, not yours. Home staging is designed to increase the potential selling price and reduce the amount of time the house stays on the market.

Setting a High Listing Price
To price your home, your agent will suggest a figure that is comparable to what the homes in your neighborhood have sold for, unless you have upgraded features. It’s always better to price a home this way rather than start too high and have to reduce. Once you reduce, people may think something is wrong with the home.

Doing Major Renovations Before Selling
Minor upgrades usually have a higher return on your money than tackling major renovations before placing a home on the market. The main reason? Huge construction projects always cost more than you think and take longer than expected.

Not Hiring an Agent
There’s a lot more to selling a house than just putting a sign on the front lawn. If you don’t have an agent, you will miss out on somebody negotiating on your behalf. It is really important to have someone on your side who understands all the complexities, paperwork, and legalities.

BUYERS

Buying What You Want–Not What You Need
Look at the space you already live in. It will help you realize what you have been missing and what you need in your next home. Make a list and ask your agent to start shopping based on those needs.

Overlooking Hidden Costs
Buying a home is not just about the money you spend up front. Find out what the property taxes are, what your water and other utilities might cost, possible HOA fees, insurance, and if you need to factor in furnishings or renovation costs.

Buying a Home Without an Inspection
A professional home inspection can reveal many things about a property that are not visible to the naked eye. Be sure to hire someone who comes with a good referral, who’s been in the business a while and knows what to look for. Once you find an inspector, make sure they compile a written report, complete with photos. Photographs are important because there are areas a home inspector will look at that you might not see.

Skipping the Loan Pre-Approval Process
When you are pre-approved, the bank is saying, “we will give you a mortgage of up to this amount, so now all you have to do is find your home.” Some sellers only allow real estate agents to show their house if someone has a pre-approved letter. That indicates that the shopper really is serious about buying a home.

Article courtesy of HGTV.com


10-Minute Tricks: Freshen Up your Home for Spring!

With spring fever comes a desire for a change in décor. Check out our top 7 quick, easy, and dollar-conscious ways to freshen up your living space before the flowers start to bud.


Rotate your Artwork

Are your walls cluttered with stagnant artwork? If so, it’s time for a change. Some people hang everything they own on every wall. Look at it all the time, and you start taking it for granted. Try this: Separate art into summer and winter piles. Hang the lighter, pastel colors for spring and summer, and put the darker oil paintings in storage. Every six months, rotate your pieces. This way, you enjoy your art with a new vigor, and it’s something you can do in minutes.

Natural Scents

Spring is not only a colorful season, but a fragrant one, so bring the aroma indoors. Scents have a profound effect on mood. Infuse aromas into your décor with essential oils, natural candles, fresh cut flowers, or incense to change the overall feeling of a space. A quick, floral tip: Purchase an inexpensive bouquet of flowers, split them up by color, and place the bunches in small vases around your home.

Buy New Bulbs

You’re thinking flower bulbs, right? Not a bad idea, but we’re talking about light bulbs. Many of us aren’t using our lights properly­—in the winter you need more light, but in the spring you can get away with less. Swap your 60-watt bulb with a 3-way bulb to allow you to soften a room’s light.

Let the Sunshine In

In the winter, dirty windows can go unnoticed. On the first day of spring, take advantage of the sunny season by giving the windows a wash. You can have a gorgeous room, but if the windows are dirty, it won’t look as beautiful or as bright. As an added tip, pull back dark window treatments and add a shade or valance for a touch of color. Or, you can also replace window treatments with ecru or white sheers for an elegant look.

Update Accessories

Just as you’d add a scarf or necklace to enhance an outfit, do the same with your home—dress your home like you would yourself. Look for great accent pillows in bright colors. Put away the winter throws and drape light, bright throws on your sofa. Pick out spring-hued vases or candles to boost a cocktail or dining room table.

Beautify your Boudoir

Bright, new bedding can do wonders for your personal space. Tuck away the heavy, winter flannel comforter and pull out crisp linens with coverlets for color. Bring in the spring with floral-designed spreads or colorful solids. Don’t forget accent pillows for added style and comfort.

Lose the Magnets

In just minutes, you can tidy up a kitchen by getting rid of the scraps of paper, business cards and take-out menus stuck to the fridge. If you have odds and ends everywhere, it looks messy. If you clear it, your kitchen looks and feels organized.

Article courtesy of HGTV.com


Top Interior Design Trends for 2016

DesignTrendsHeader

 

The modern home is always evolving. And to get an idea of what it’s evolving to, look no further than what’s happening within its walls today. Here are 10 of the top design trends for 2016.

1) Two-tone kitchen cabinets. Keep upper cabinets white or neutral for a clean, timeless feel, then go crazy with the lower cabinets by playing with various wood tones and deeper colors to take your kitchen in two different style directions.

2) Living rooms that ditch the tech for family. With so much screen time throughout the day and night, homeowners are looking for a calm respite where they can read a book, chat with friends and family or just sit quietly. Thus, the rise of living rooms devoid of digital distraction.

3) Niche appliances. Looking for a little added luxury in the kitchen? Steam ovens (shown here) promise to cook food more thoroughly and healthily than microwaves; warming drawers give cooks a little wiggle room to deliver hot meals to family and guests; induction cooktops save space and are safer for homes with young kids; and kimchi refrigerators offer fans of the popular Korean condiment a chance to make their own at home.

4) Bidets. The separate bidet unit in bathrooms never really took off in America. But since manufacturers began creating combination bidet and toilet units, like the Toto version shown here, they’ve been catching on. According to Houzz data, 5 percent of renovated master bathrooms now include bidets.

5) Heated entryway floors. Sure, heated floors are popular in bathrooms, but if you live in a cold region, consider putting them in your entryway to help melt snow and dry boots.

3d rendering of the modern bathroom6) Statement mirrors in bathrooms. So long, medicine cabinets. Hello, statement mirrors. Think large wood-framed beauties, backlit modern marvels and ornate vintage gems that boost style in a bathroom.

7) Bathrooms that feel more like living spaces. Graphic wallpaper, ornate chandeliers and furniture-like pieces turn sterile spaces into ones that feel a lot more like home.

8) Fireplaces and fire features. New advances mean you can have all the ambiance without the smell, pollution or hassle of traditional wood-burning fireplaces. Plus, fireplaces are making a comeback as living room focal points in lieu of the dark void of a TV screen.

9) Farmhouse entryways. Stripping away the need for fancy flourishes or decor for decor’s sake, farmhouse style gets at the root of function. That’s why the style makes sense for mudrooms, where simplicity in storage and durability in materials are paramount.

StainlessSteel10) Colored stainless steel appliances. Black stainless steel is making a buzz on Houzz. In a poll, nearly two-thirds of Houzzers say they would consider the dark alternative to shiny silver metal. (Shown here is LG’s new Black Stainless collection.) Not into the darkness? Head to the light with Whirlpool’s Sunset Bronze finish.

Article courtesy of Houzz.com.


Appeal to Male Buyers: Enticing Staging Tips

MaleBuyersfb
Professional stagers consult with homeowners to sell their homes quickly and for the most money possible. They consider buying psychology, design elements and lighting. Often lost in the process, however, is the fact that those with masculine tastes are also involved in the buying decision.

Learn how to make your home universally appealing to buyers with both feminine and masculine design preferences, and increase the odds of making a sale.

Personal space: Real estate agents report that the average male tends to gravitate towards rooms with gadgets and electronics. They often appreciate open spaces and high ceilings—clean, streamlined rooms that one can easily walk through without obstructions.

Cater to interests: Masculine doesn’t mean fancy or frilly. Think about enhancing niches to watch the big game with buddies or relax after work. Modern Home Theater Room Interior with Flat Screen TV angled perspective view

Simplified color scheme: Don’t overwhelm any potential buyer with wild colors or furniture, even if you feel it makes your home special. Warm interior tones are generally preferred over cool tones.

The yard: A lawn that is well-maintained can really help boost your home’s appeal along with thick, healthy grass, minimal bushes to trim and easy-to-maintain flower beds.

GarageWorkBenchToolsGarage envy: Think about painted walls, clean floors and enough storage for various hobbies. A built-in workbench, organized shelving as well as clean, spacious areas for tools, equipment and maintenance supplies are a great draw.

Staging your home to visually appeal to men as well as women will ensure a better joint response from potential buyers.


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