Category Archives: Home Improvement Ideas

Stage the Home Yourself!

Thinking about selling? Inventory is low in and around the Charlotte area, so the market is on FIRE! Now is the time to get your home listed, but there are a few things you might want to consider before listing. Here are a few tips for staging the home yourself:

  1. Make it “Move-In” Ready!
    Neutralize paint, furniture and window coverings. You may love that red kitchen, but not everyone will. Buyers are more likely to put an offer on a home they feel gives them a fresh start and clean canvas.
  2. Declutter and depersonalize
    Potential buyers want to see themselves in your home. Simplify spaces by removing TV remotes, schoolwork, piles of laundry, to-do lists on the fridge, personal photos and excessive amounts of toys. Clean out closets and begin boxing up items… you need to get a head start on packing anyway!
  3. Appeal to the senses
    Deep clean your home or hire a professional cleaning company to make it sparkle – it gives buyers the impression the home has been well cared for! Open the blinds, turn on lights and fans, play some calming instrumental music, and consider a clean plug-in or order neutralizer.
  4. The Devil in the Details
    Look for items in your home that are dated, have harsh patterns or edgy colors, are too small to fill a wall or are too large on a small one. Styles that clash with one another, aged wallpaper, broken items you can’t repair, rusted car parts or clutter in your yard or patios all create eyesores. It’s better to have an empty wall, an empty room or nothing at all than something that doesn’t work for the space or is unappealing. Mirror your space after current styles and trends found in design magazines…. Pinterest is your friend!
  5. Remove Evidence of Pets
    If you have pets, consider confining them to one area of the house while your home is on the market, limiting wear and tear they have on the home. Buyers may be allergic, terrified, or just annoyed by pets and a barking dog will absolutely hurry a showing along.

Spring Break = Home Projects!

Charlotte residents are officially enjoying Spring Break! Hopefully you took Monday and Tuesday to sleep in and relax. If you are anything like me, however, you might be getting a little antsy. Add that to the fact that the KIDS are home, and you may need some new family activities. Nothing like a little SPRING CLEANING to give you an amazing sense of accomplishment this week. Here are a few projects to tackle before you go back to work.

  • Clean out those closets. With the change in season comes a change in fashion! Gear up for your summer wardrobe by cleaning out some of those things you’re never going to wear again. Have the kids get rid of items that no longer fit, and make a donation to your local Salvation Army.
  • Get rid of mold and mildew. Take some time to rent a power washer from your local home improvement store, and give the exterior of your home a good once over. Not only will your home look fabulous under our Carolina blue skies, but you will wash away mold and mildew that can build up and cause significant damage to your home.
  • Clear the gutters. Spring time brings with it new life and unfortunately some of that new life is nesting in your gutters! Now is the time to pull out the ladder and do a quick sweep. You can check to make sure all the gutters are secure BEFORE our summer rain, and you can remove buildup for excellent water flow.
  • Schedule a check-up for your AC unit. As temperatures rise, more of us will be turning on our air conditioners. It might be a good idea to have someone come out to make sure your unit is in tip top shape before the summer heat wave. Contractors get busy over the summer as AC units start to go out, so get yours checked now.
  • Refresh the refrigerator. Between cookouts and kids people are in an out of the refrigerator all summer, so give your fridge a nice thorough cleaning. Wipe down shelves and drawers, and use the hose on your vacuum and clear out dust and grime from the refrigerator coils. It takes less energy to keep things cool if the coils are clean, and with the door opening and closing all summer you’ll want to keep everything nice and cold.

For tips on preparing your home to SELL, call Sarah for a free consultation: 704.706.4160

spring_cleaning

 

National Home Warranty Day!

Today is the perfect time to review home warranty protection plans and ensure you have the coverage you need should a major system or appliance break down!

Things you should know:

  1. Know the difference between homeowners insurance and a home warranty. Homeowners insurance generally covers damage due to things like theft, fire, tornadoes or other catastrophic situations. A home warranty is a service contract that helps protect homeowners against the costs of unexpected covered breakdowns or repairs.
  2. Know your options. Not all plans and providers are the same. Be sure you choose a plan that best meets you needs. You may want a home warranty provider that is financially solid, with a proven track record, who is available 24/7.
  3. Know what to ask. Review your contract thoroughly to fully understand what the home warranty covers, what it doesn’t cover, any limitations & exclusions, as well as the amount of their trade call fee!

We recommend:

  • HSA Home Warranty
  • America’s Preferred Home Warranty
  • The Home Service Club

Tips for Creating a Home Gym

It is mid-January, so New Year’s resolutions are in FULL SWING! If you are working to become more active, it might be important to create a space in your home where you can work out. Unfortunately, not everyone has the space for a home gym. Here are some tips for making due with what you already have.

  • Find something you enjoy! That is first and foremost. If you don’t enjoy it, you won’t make a habit of doing it at home.
  • Get a coach! Fortunately for us- coaches come cheap in the way of workout videos. Nowadays there are videos for everything, FREE, and online!
  • Invest in a mirror! Find a comfortable space where you can workout, and purchase a mirror for the area. You’ll be able to correct your form AND watch the inches melt away.
  • Equip yourself! You don’t need major machines. The local sporting good store will have yoga mats, weights, chin-up bars, tension bands, etc. Stock up on simple items- your body weight will do the rest.
  • Create your space! Often the best places in your home to workout are sunny and warm. Pick a corner of your favorite room, then..
    1. Put up the mirror
    2. Find an inspiring quote or picture
    3. Grab something easy to store your equipment
    4. Put your playlist together
    5. Get moving 😉

 

Home Gym

Replacing Carpet with Hardwoods: Is it worth it?

Hardwood Flooring

Thinking about replacing your floors? Especially if you have carpet, the choice seems clear. Hardwood flooring is preferred by home buyers and renters across the United States.

But consider carefully whether hardwood floors are the right choice for every room in your home—and what type you might want to install for the best resale value.

As you weigh investing in your floors, you’ll need to evaluate your budget, the preferences and traditions in your community and your own personal taste. Some people only want to step on soft carpet, while others prefer hard surfaces. In some warm climates, such as Florida, ceramic tile flooring rivals hardwood in popularity.

In more traditional markets, tastes still lean toward oak floors, but some owners of more contemporary homes are choosing to stain their wood floors in different colors. Other trends in hardwood include wider planks, the use of reclaimed wood or hand-scraped wood that looks antique and exotic species of wood such as hickory or walnut.

Homeowners on a tight budget also may want to look into laminate flooring, which offers the look of wood at a lower price point.

Keep in mind that people with allergies typically want a hard surface that won’t hold dust. You should also think about the care and maintenance required for your floor surface since you’ll need to take care of it for years. Hardwood flooring lasts longer than carpet, can be easier to keep clean and can be refinished.

In the end, though, the decision about whether to install hardwood or carpeting in a bedroom should be based on your personal preference, at least if you intend to stay in the home for years.

Hardwood Flooring: It’s What Buyers Want

According to HGTV, the top request of home buyers and renters when looking for a home is hardwood flooring. In fact, a study of home buyer preferences by USA Today using data from the National Association of REALTORS® found that 54% of home buyers were willing to pay more for a home with hardwood flooring.

Installing hardwood flooring can cost between $9 and $12 per square foot, compared with about $3 to $5 per square foot for carpet—so some homeowners opt to install hardwood only in some rooms rather than throughout their home. However, carpet typically needs to be replaced if it becomes stained or worn out. Good quality carpet can last about 10 to 15 years, while hardwood can last forever.

The return on investment for installing hardwood will vary according to your market and other factors, but hardwood flooring can often help your home sell faster.

Reasons to Install Carpet

While many buyers and homeowners prefer hardwood flooring throughout their home, some people prefer carpet in the bedrooms—because they like a softer surface. When you live in a two or three-story home, carpet also helps reduce noise.

If you would still prefer hardwood floors throughout your home, you could use put area rugs in your bedroom.

This story was rewritten from an earlier version on realtor.com®.

By: Michele Lerner

Living Room Meets Dining Room

I absolutely LOVE the current trend of putting a sofa/settee in the Dining Room! It brings such a unique warmth to the room, and it’s so welcoming. It will make you want to sit and chat for hours after a meal 🙂