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Protect your home from water damage.

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Simple measures to protect your home from water damage.
Water damage is one of a homeowner’s greatest worries since it can result in mold and expensive repairs. The following tips can help you prevent potential sources of seepage in your home.

Don’t plant next to your house. A flower or shrub border is lovely, and some folks like thorny bushes beneath their windows as a deterrent to break-ins, but watering those plants could damage your foundation. It’s wiser to keep your flower beds a few feet away from the house or make sure they slope away from it.
Use gutters and downspouts to divert rain runoff away from your foundation. If you notice water pooling after a rain, that area needs gutters. Also, make sure you have sufficient gutters for your entire roof. Extend downspouts away from the house and, if possible, discharge underground with PVC pipe to drain into the street.
Check your roof regularly for loose shingles – especially after high wind or rainstorms. Inspect metal flashing for damage and make sure skylights are properly sealed. Check your attic for wet spots or any signs of mold, condensation, damage to insulation, or a rodent or insect infestation that could lead to weak areas and subsequent leaks.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

How to keep your appliances in tip-top shape.

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How to keep your appliances in tip-top shape.
Appliances are a big investment, so it is important to make sure they are regularly maintained so they’ll last as long as possible. Cleaning them regularly and checking them for any leaks or mechanical issues is the first step, but there are a few lesser-known maintenance tips that will help keep your appliances humming along for years to come:

Clean your refrigerator’s coils once every few months. Coils are located at the bottom or in the back of most models and can build up dirt and dust fairly quickly.
Inspect your dishwasher for any leaks, especially in the hose, and make sure the sprayer arm is free of debris.
Keep your garbage disposal clean and fresh by feeding it half of a lemon every month.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

How to care for your garden and yard in every season.

How to care for your garden and yard in every season.
A garden can help you save money on groceries, while beautiful flower beds can add value to your home. Here are a few tips for maintaining your yard year-round.

Spring

Now is the time to sow seeds and take care to prevent a late-spring frost from killing your plants. Divide and plant any leftover fall perennials. Plant vegetables that turn over quickly, so you can get more than one crop over the summer. Aerate and fertilize your grass to ward off weeds or insects.

Summer

Many plants as well as your lawn require more frequent or deeper watering. Add mulch to help beds retain moisture, and make sure you pull weeds throughout the season. Finally, harvest your crops and replant where you can.

Fall

Enjoy the last of your crops and flowers, and then clear your gardens out for the season. Compost dead plants for use on your beds next year. Plant your bulbs for next spring. Fertilize the lawn and prune trees well before the first frost sets in.

Winter

Plan your garden for next year by perusing gardening books or exploring Pinterest for ideas. Maintain and repair gardening tools. If you have irrigation, check for any damage or leaks while the need for watering is low.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know who’s looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

Home Care Tips For Febuary

Home Care Tips February

You can keep your home in top shape with simple tasks throughout the year. This month, be sure to:

  1. Clean the vent duct for your clothes dryer. Fires created by clogged dryer vents are one of the most common causes of house fires.
  2. Test your smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms.
  3. Make sure you and your family members know the location of all gas shut-off valves.
  4. Examine your thermostat. Clean the heat sensor, contact points, and contacts; check your thermometer’s accuracy and replace if necessary.
  5. Pull out your refrigerator and clean behind the unit. Be sure to clean off the coils.
  6. Replace or clean furnace filters.
  7. Check your fire extinguishers. Refill or replace as needed.
As always, I appreciate referrals from my friends and past clients. If you know of anyone who is looking to buy or sell real estate, please send them my way!

Home improvement projects that add big value to your home.

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Home improvement projects that add big value to your home.
Even if you don’t have the funds or the energy for a big improvement project or remodel, small changes can make your home a more enjoyable place to live, increase its value, and help you command the best possible price when you sell.

Exchange light fixtures for ceiling fans. A stylish new ceiling fan instantly updates a room and can add value to your home. Choose fans that create a rustic vintage look or add a cool island vibe to an outdoor patio.
Replace your kitchen faucet and sink. If your sink is chipped and stained, or your faucet is grungy, new fixtures will make food prep and washing dishes more enjoyable. Even a basic but deeper stainless steel basin will sparkle, and a pullout faucet will add a modern touch.
Other simple changes in the kitchen and bathrooms can have a huge impact. A new backsplash can tie together the colors in your counters, floors and cabinets and can be an easy do-it-yourself project. New drawer and door knobs are a lovely addition. Adding a medicine cabinet or changing the mirror in a bathroom will instantly update the room.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

Take two minutes to get organized.

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Take two minutes to get organized.
Organizing your home can sometimes seem like a time-intensive endeavor. Breaking down projects into two-minute tasks every day could help to make clearing clutter more manageable and easily attainable. 

Two-minute task #1: Tackle desk and kitchen drawers one at time. Take two minutes each morning to sort through one. If you find something that doesn’t belong there, put it in its proper place and throw out any unwanted items.
Two-minute task #2: Organize and clean fridge and pantry shelves one at a time. If you’re already pulling out the milk for your morning bowl of cereal, take two minutes to pull everything else off the shelf, quickly wipe it down and put everything back in.
Two-minute task #3: Make your bed every morning. Making your bed starts your day off right, instantly makes your bedroom look orderly and will help perpetuate other good habits. There’s also a few studies that have linked making your bed to increased happiness!

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

Energy-saving tips can save you money year-round.

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Energy-saving tips can save you money year-round.
Saving energy whenever you can is important to reducing environmental impact, and it can also have a significant impact on your electricity bills. According to Energy.gov, there are several simple solutions to help save you energy and money: 

Heating water can be a significant expense. Try using less hot water by washing your clothes in cold water or installing low-flow showerheads. Turn down the temperature on the hot water heater
A power strip can help reduce your electricity bill up to $100 a year. By plugging in all of your electronic devices and turning it off when not in use, you can reduce phantom load – the power a device consumes when still plugged in, yet powered off.
Use fans to cut down on heating and cooling expenses. In warmer months, the effect of windchill from the circulating air will help reduce cooling costs. Having your fan spin counter-clockwise in the winter will push warm air down and heat rooms more efficiently.
Use sunlight to your advantage. Keep curtains open on windows that get direct sunlight to help heat your home in the winter.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

Create a calendar for worry-free home maintenance.

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Create a calendar for worry-free home maintenance.
Regular maintenance is an important contributor to the value of your home. The following steps will help you create an actionable maintenance calendar, so you feel confident your home is being cared for and kept in the best condition possible.

1. Make a list of what needs regular maintenance. Walk through the house and yard and jot it all down on a list. Write down small things like weeding the garden beds and big things like cleaning the chimney.
2. Take your list and decide how often each chore needs to be done. Air filters may need to be changed monthly, but windows may only need to be cleaned twice a year.
3. Meet with your family and determine who will perform each task. Are the kids going to mow the lawn? Is your spouse on board? Have you divided up the chores equally? Will you pay your kids for these tasks and, if so, how much? Consider which maintenance items require a pro.
4. Schedule your maintenance and set reminders on your phone. If you can auto-schedule maintenance such as AC and furnace checkups, call to set that up now.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

How can your home make you happier?

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How can your home make you happier?
Your home should be your sanctuary, a refuge from the stresses of everyday life, where you can relax, enjoy yourself and spend time with friends and family. If your home isn’t bringing you the happiness it should, take a look at the following tips to help put a smile on your face whenever you walk in your front door.

Surround yourself with mood-boosting colors. Red, orange and yellow are most often associated with generating positive feelings. If those colors don’t make you smile, surround yourself with the colors that you’re most drawn to. Try using one of your favorite memories for inspiration. If you took a life-changing trip to Greece a few years ago, why not paint your bedroom the deep blue of the Aegean Sea?
Fill the air with blissful scents. Many scents, including jasmine, citrus and freshly baked bread, are reported to be linked to happiness. Scent is also closely linked with memory, so filling your home with a scent tied to happy memories will give your spirits a lift.
Create a dedicated space for your favorite hobbies. Spending time on activities that bring you joy is important to your overall happiness. Whether your passion is reading, painting or woodworking, having a space devoted to your favorite hobby will motivate you to spend more time doing what you love.
Bring the outdoors in. According to Psychology Today, there is a significant link between time spent enjoying nature and happiness. To bring Mother Nature indoors, fill your home with plants and fresh flowers or just open your curtains to enjoy the view of any nearby gardens or trees.

Simple tips like these can create a happier, healthier and more valuable home. Thank you for thinking of me for all of your real estate needs, and be sure to share my contact information with anyone you know of looking to buy, sell or invest in a home.

 

 

Home Care Tips For January

Home Care Tips January

You can keep your home in top shape with simple tasks throughout the year. This month, be sure to:

  1. Check your attic for birds, squirrels, raccoons, etc.
  2. Pour 1 gallon of water down unused drains.
  3. Clean the refrigerator drain pan.
  4. Inspect your dishwasher for leaks.
  5. Check the operation of your sump pump if you have one.
  6. Have your air ducts cleaned.
  7. Service your kitchen disposal by grinding several cups of ice cubes.
As always, I appreciate referrals from my friends and past clients. If you know of anyone who is looking to buy or sell real estate, please send them my way!

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