Wednesday, November 25, 2015
If you are looking for a home with a huge master bedroom, huge walk in closet and a kitchen with granite countertops, look no further! You wont be disappointed with the 1766 square foot Manchester plan by Chateau Homes. The main floor has a nice family room and a large kitchen with an additional sun room adjacent to the kitchen which makes the plan perfect for entertaining. From the kitchen walk through the sliders to a patio on the back of the home. The second floor has 3 bedrooms, two bathrooms and a spacious laundry room with a pocket door. The master bedroom is 21x14 and has a private bathroom and walk in closet. The 5 year tax abatement will save you thousands of dollars! Customize this home today!
Square feet: 1,766
For more information about this property, please contact Rob Davies at 515-208-5957 or RobDaviesTeam@gmail.com. You can also text 3201249 to 67299.
See more listings at: www.daviesandkidd.com
MLS ID: 508300
Tuesday, November 24, 2015
You just dont find this everyday!! A very well maintained 1 owner home. 1 car garage plus 2 sheds for storage. Nice fence in yard, 2 covered patio areas for nice summer evenings. Come take a look.
Square feet: 952
For more information about this property, please contact Laura Mullin at 5153062027 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also text 3199580 to 67299.
See more listings at: lmullin.remax-central.com
MLS ID: 508260
Monday, November 23, 2015
A little advanced planning can help alleviate some of the traditional stresses travelers experience during holiday visits, winter vacations and spring break trips, allowing everyone in the family to enjoy the journey.
* Be organized - Keep a folder or notebook filled with every detail of information you will - or might - need. These details include important telephone numbers, insurance information, as well as all travel details like flight times, car rental information, hotel reservation, addresses and tickets to any events you might be attending while on your trip. Also pack photo copies of your personal information like driver's license, passport and credit cards separately from your purse. Create a second set and give them to a friend or family member not traveling with you who would be able to email or fax them if an emergency situation happens. Having the photo copies of the original information will help shorten the time it will take to get official replacements.
* Pack a medicine bag - It's very easy to catch a traveler's cold or end up suffering with digestive issues from eating out and indulging in too many sweet or spicy foods. Make certain to include over-the-counter pain killers, cold and allergy medicines and don't forget about packing an all-in-one solution to handle both anti-gas and antacid digestive relief. It's available in liquid, tablet and on-the-go forms to treat symptoms of heartburn, upset stomach, constipation, indigestion and acid indigestion.
* Use technology - Smartphones and cellphones make travel much easier. Airline and hotel applications can notify you about delay and cancelations, allow you to check-in for your flight before leaving for the airport, select seats on the plane, and confirm your hotel your reservation. Some airlines even allow you to scan a boarding pass directly from your smartphone. A bonus - pack headphones and use your smartphone to carry favorite tunes to help soothe your mind and relax your body while traveling. It will make the long road trip or flight go much quicker.
* Bring snacks - Airport food is expensive and many airlines have done away with in-flight snacks. Dry foods can be taken through airport security, so bring along trail mix, granola bars or sandwich crackers to help keep hunger pains at bay, and save you time and money when at the airport. For longer flights that serve a meal, call the airline ahead to request a special needs meal, like heart healthy or vegetarian. These meals tend to be fresher and lower in sodium than the regular meals and will ensure that you feel great when you land.
* Comfort is king - A long road trip or plane flight can have anyone feeling rumpled and uncomfortable. To make these travels more comfortable, consider wearing slip-on shoes - they're easy to remove to go through security at an airport and can be kicked off in the car to help relax your feet. Also pack breezy and loose-fitting clothing, because most people tend to indulge in convenience foods and alcohol while traveling, which can cause tight-fitting clothing to feel very uncomfortable later on in the trip.
Traveling for the holidays, or a spring break vacation is meant to be a relaxing and enjoyable time. So plan ahead for any stresses, and when the big day for departure arrives, let the fun begin.
When you are not in a rush to whip up a family meal or put away loads of groceries, take some time to really look at the items in your pantry. What is in front? What is hidden in the back? What's used most frequently? What is expired?
Be more aware of your consumption habits, suggests Cory Schreiber, a chef instructor at The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Portland. This awareness is a simple step to greener living. Avoid impulse purchases by being more mindful of the emotions that can be involved in food shopping, he adds. Not only do you avoid waste this way, but conscious consumption is more cost effective too.
Another cost-effective method that Joshua Joe, storeroom manager at The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of California - Los Angeles, a campus of Argosy University, recommends is a common inventory and accounting process used by schools, hotels and other food service providers. Practicing a first-in, first-out method of consuming your pantry goods is a true way to save money and prevent food waste, says Joe, who purchases the school's food supplies. With approximately 500 culinary arts students regularly coming through the school's dry storage area, Joe encourages the students to use the earliest bought, or oldest, goods first. The tendency is to go for the freshest or A+ product when the A grade item will do, he says. You don't want to let perfectly usable goods go to waste.
Once you have a handle on what you are buying and how you are consuming it, it is time to stock up.
Schreiber proposes buying high-quality essentials and purchasing goods in bulk. Buy the highest quality staples you can afford, recommends Schreiber. For example, six pounds of a good butter can last you a solid five months. Other items where quality counts and the products can endure include oils, vinegars, salts, dried herbs and spices.When possible, buy dry goods in bulk too, he adds. Grains, rice, legumes and pastas are all good products to shop for in a food store's bulk department.
To store the loose pasta or grains, look for containers with a lower environmental footprint. Using glass, metal and ceramics is the easiest solution, says Chris Stanley, an Industrial Design instructor at The Art Institute of Seattle. Stanley, who has taught courses on the history of industrial design and in materials and manufacturing, adds, choose something classic in design so you won't be tempted to throw it out in two years. Or, you can re-use glass jars and that fruit cake tin your aunt sends you each year.
Not only is buying in bulk less expensive, but less packaging means less energy used to create the materials and less garbage to throw away - all of which are more friendly to the environment.
Better than new brick ranch resale.Pride of Ownership shows in this one owner custom built home.This is a very open plan with nice upgrades including a kitchen with tile floors,dovetail drawers,cabinet pullouts,quartz countertops and large center island.The family room opens up to an amazing sunroom with great views of a walking path to the East and West.You can also enjoy the views from the maintenance free deck that wraps around the sunroom.The master suite w/double vanity and walk in closet sits on one side of the home while 2 of the other bedrooms and another bathroom sits on the other side.The walkout lower level has a finished family room,full bathroom & 4th bedroom.There is an additional heated space w/french doors on the lower level for a workshop, mower storage,etc.Additional features include rounded drywall corners, 36" handicap accessible interior doors,a heated garage with workbench and hot and cold water and a fully irrigated large corner lot.You need to see this home!
Square feet: 2,028
For more information about this property, please contact Rob Davies at 515-208-5957 or RobDaviesTeam@gmail.com. You can also text 3198294 to 67299.
See more listings at: www.daviesandkidd.com
MLS ID: 508196
Saturday, November 21, 2015
Some kids engage in team sports after school. Others participate in school-sponsored extracurricular clubs. Still others go home and spend time alone until parents are finished working. Regardless of how a child spends the hours after school, personal safety should be important—and a topic of conversation between parents and kids.
Consider how your child will spend their after-school hours, and work together to develop a list of relevant safety tactics. For example, if your child plays a sport, discuss ways to avoid injury and make sure they always wear appropriate safety gear. For students who will arrive home before parents, set ground rules, such as go straight home and check in via phone call or text once they arrive. Remind children not to open the door to strangers or answer phone calls from numbers they can't identify. Safekids.org offers a wealth of safety tips that can be applied to virtually every child's after-school situation.
Snacking is actually a very healthy habit when done smartly. Teach kids to reach for a sensible and filling snack to help keep their minds alert for homework and their bodies fueled for after-school activities. Encourage kids to use portion control and choose healthier snacks, like fresh fruits or veggies or fat-free options like pretzels.
Portion-controlled, pre-packaged choices are convenient and healthy options for after-school snacking. For example, 100-calorie pretzel packs from Snyder's of Hanover are a great-tasting snack kids love. Plus, ample research - and common experience - indicates chewing on something crunchy stimulates the brain. Try a low-fat combination of pretzels with apple slices or carrot sticks, which are more stimulating to a child's brain than something sweet and fatty. Visit www.snydersofhanover.com to learn more.
Follow a schedule that builds in fun and eases homework headaches
Naturally, all children want to work some fun into their day, whether it's before or after homework is complete. Since most kids thrive with guidance and structure, talk to your child about creating a schedule or "to-do" list for after-school time, and make sure it includes a combination of fun activities, snack time and homework. Keep in mind that every child is different. Some children need to run around before starting homework, while others do best when saving the fun time for last.
Once kids have completed homework and gotten a little physical activity, many may prefer to spend hours online, playing video games or watching TV. Finding a balance can be tough. Many parents take a "homework first" approach, having kids complete school assignments before they're allowed the treat of screen time. Also consider parental control software to set limits on when kids can use the PC, laptop or tablet and to restrict when—and where—they can go online.
You can also encourage kids to use technology in a manner that stimulates their brain, such as reading a book on a tablet, working on a brain puzzle on the computer, or practicing their keyboard or typing skills. Many schools will provide a list of fun websites kids can access at home or the library to reinforce skills taught in school.
Once the bell rings and school is out for the day, keep your children safe, smart and healthy with each of these approaches.
Friday, November 20, 2015
Feeling uninspired in your space? Updating the decor in your home is an easy way to add more color, style and personality to rejuvenate your residence. Whether you're making a few updates, like new artwork or wall colors, or renovating an entire room with a completely new look, decorating should be fun, not stressful. With a few simple tips, you can up the design ante in your home without breaking the bank.
Decorative painting for design
Painting can consist of much more than simple strokes of one color. Take things to the next level with decorative painting. Create different patterns on your walls with textured rollers to achieve an artistic design. Sponge and fabric paint rollers provide unique patterns to give your walls a one-of-a-kind look. Low in price and high in design, using textured rollers is a great option for redecorating on a budget.
Painting stripes in your room is a refreshing way to update your current color scheme. A sequence of wide and narrow stripes in complementing colors is a stylish option. To achieve crisp, clean lines between each stripe, painter's tape will get the job done. It will also help toprevent paint bleed, leaving precise lines and keeping the transition between your colors looking sharp.
A plethora of plates
Artwork is a great way to change things up and give any room a boost. Expensive traditional framed pieces of artwork aren't your only option anymore. Instead, create an eclectic art piece with plates you already own, or find them at garage sales and antique stores. Opt for various sizes and shapes and attach each one to your wall with plate hooks. You can cover an entire wall, or focus on a smaller area - but before you get started, be sure to lay out your design on the floor first. This way, you'll achieve your desired look, without extra nail holes on the wall from hanging as you go.
Perk-up hallways with runners; rooms with rugs
While re-energizing your home, the hallways may seem a little drab. Add a pick-me-up to your walkway by hanging portraits with funky frames along the walls. Add a runner along the length of the floor for a touch of pizzazz. Runners come in a multitude of lengths, patterns and colors - not to mention price ranges. Updating the flooring will keep your feet cozy and help to diminish the sound of footsteps during the night.
If you have a space you want to update, but a full room makeover isn't in your budget, consider an area rug to spruce things up. If the color in your room is dull, the rug can add visual interest and a pop of color, serving as an aesthetically pleasing addition. Area rugs also help to break up the space of a larger room and can add grandeur to a small space. A new rug will also protect your pre-existing carpet, vinyl and hardwood floors, keeping them looking newer, longer.
Opt for accents as design elements
No home redecorating project is complete without a few perfectly placed accents. These interesting items stand out from your primary colors and furniture pieces, offering a fresh look to any space. Accent pieces - like chairs, frames or vases - will spice up a monotonous color scheme, while harmonizing with everything else you may already have in a room. Consider a bright beanbag chair for your child's bedroom, a bold lawn chair on your patio to enthrall while entertaining or a lamp base in a complementary color on your console. Keep in mind accents are meant to speak for themselves; so there's no need to have another elaborate piece in the room to pair with an accent piece. Just one affordable piece is all it takes.
When the redecorating bug bites, embrace the opportunity to freshen up your home inexpensively. With a pinch of creativity and a dash of design inspiration, you can easily make over any space into one that's perfect for you.
Caption 1: Create different patterns on your walls with textured rollers to achieve an artistic design.
Caption 2: Painting stripes in your room is a refreshing way to update your current color scheme.
Thursday, November 19, 2015
"This Old House" magazine notes that since the front door is the first and last thing we touch when entering and leaving our homes, "it's easy to understand why many of us still like our doors to be made of wood - nothing else matches the material's warmth and satisfying heft."
"People choose wood entry doors first and foremost for their beauty; it's a fine piece of furniture on the front of your home," says Brad Loveless of Simpson Door Company.
For homeowners who enjoy the beauty of wood entry doors, options are now available to stand up to the harshest climates - from the wind-driven rains of Nantucket Island to the desert Southwest. Following are three ways to have the wood door you want and to ensure it will look great for years, no matter what the climate throws at it.
Bring your dreams to life
With doors available in hundreds of wood species, and numerous designs and glass options, it can be hard to envision how a particular door will look like on your home. Short of hiring an architect to make a sketch, most people have had to rely on their imaginations. Recently, easy-to-use, free online tools have become available to simplify the door selection process. For example, Simpson's "Test Drive a Door" enables people to upload a photo of their home and view different door options on it. This allows a homeowner to be sure before they buy.
Go for performance
People are used to looking for high performance when shopping for new cars or computers, but might not realize the same approach can apply to doors. Manufacturers have developed high-performance wood doors with superior weather resistance that last in the most demanding exposures, including coastal homes with no porch or roof overhang to protect the door.
One high-performance option to consider is choosing wood species that perform best in moist conditions, as this varies among wood types. Species that have been shown in laboratory testing to have natural moisture resistance include Douglas Fir, Black Locust, Nootka Cypress and Sapele Mahogany, among others. In recognition of the use of such species and advanced joinery techniques, "Window & Door" magazine selected Nantucket Collection doors from Simpson as its "Most Innovative Door."
Another performance option some manufacturers offer in their wood doors is water-resistant composite blocks within the bottom of the door, where water can infiltrate. Doors also are available with full exterior cladding to protect them from rain and sun, while retaining the beauty of wood inside the home.
A strong finish
With any door, whether made of wood, steel or fiberglass, it is crucial to finish it for long-lasting protection from the elements. Doors are sold either factory finished or unfinished. If unfinished, the door must be finished by the door dealer, a contractor or the homeowner. Manufacturers provide step-by-step instructions for best results from finishing, and those steps typically must be followed to ensure warranty requirements. Chief among these are to finish all six sides - front, back and all edges. As no wood surface should be left unfinished, finish should also be applied to the cut-outs for the handle and lock set, as well as any other openings, such as for mail slots or pet doors.
If the door is exposed to sun, it is generally better to use lighter color paints or stains as those absorb less heat from damaging UV rays.
If people are looking during the holidays...they are SERIOUS! They are ready to buy!
While it may seem inconvenient during such a busy time of the year, you always remain in control of the showings.
Check out this infograph from Tom Ferry and then give us a call! #515.964.9400
Wednesday, November 18, 2015
1. Gift your services
Rather than giving a tangible item, give your services; it's the perfectly practical gift for the person on your list who may be short on space, lacking financial resources or would just appreciate a little extra help. Love kids? Offer free child care so the recipient can enjoy an evening out on the town without worrying about the little ones. Have a knack for cooking? Gift a weeknight meal that you deliver to the recipient's doorstep. Known for your organization? Offer your skills to help the recipient organize a closet, office or other cluttered space.
2. Make a miracle happen
Positively impacting others by giving a charitable gift in the recipient's name embraces the true meaning of the season. The new Give Miracles Holiday Catalog from national nonprofit Children's Miracle Network Hospitals features in-demand pediatric items and services that local children's hospitals need anything from comforting teddy bears ($30) to a case of extra-small preemie diapers smaller than the palm of your hand ($170)! For high-impact gifts like a physical therapy toy kit ($375) or a pediatric wheelchair ($970), funds can be collectively raised by numerous gift-givers. This option is ideal for extended families looking to do something more meaningful than the typical gift exchange.
And to make that 'do-good' feeling for the recipient last long after the holidays are over, Give Miracles donors receive ongoing communication from Children's Miracle Network Hospitals throughout the year about how their gift is making an impact at their local hospital. Browse the gift catalog at www.GiveMiracles.org.
3. Purchase a membership to a monthly club
Rather than wasting money on a new gadget that will quickly be forgotten, give a gift that benefits the recipient all year long. Monthly clubs provide fun deliveries to a loved one's address, an ongoing reminder of your generosity. Monthly gift clubs are available for just about anything, from wine and beer, to jams and cheese, to bacon and fruit.
4. Give a gift that grows
Potted plants are a fantastic gift idea because they represent how your love continues to grow for that special someone. Plus, plants are a wonderful addition to interior decor and help clean the air. With so many houseplants readily available, you're sure to find the perfect one for the person who has everything. Does he gravitate toward decor with vivid color? Choose a flowering plant that provides delightful blooms. Does she love Asian culture? How about gifting a bonsai tree or a bamboo plant?
5. Provide an experience
Often, it's not what's in the box, it's the memory that stays with so many people after the holidays have passed. That's why giving a special experience can make a truly meaningful gift. Think about what really interests the recipient or an activity they've had on their bucket list. Perhaps it's a hot air balloon ride or a white water rafting daytrip. If the person really loves to shop, hire a personal shopper for the day and let them see what it's like to live like a star. If the recipient loves gourmet food, purchase a spot in a class taught by your town's hottest chef.
Any one of these ideas is sure to show that hard-to-shop-for person on your list that you've put some real thought into their gift. And ultimately, isn't it the thought that counts?
Square feet: 954
For more information about this property, please contact Bonnie Christensen at 515-971-9973 or email@example.com. You can also text 3190145 to 67299.
See more listings at: bonniechristensen.remax-central.com
MLS ID: 507882
Sunday, November 15, 2015
Consider these top five color trends for kitchen and bath spaces:
1. Gray reigns king
The NKBA Trends Report names gray the coveted color of the year. According to the report, use of gray color schemes in both kitchens and baths has dramatically increased, particularly over the past year. The hue is currently used in 55 percent of kitchens and 56 percent of bathrooms.
"I regularly work gray into my projects because it instantly elevates the design and adds depth to the palette," says senior interior designer Travis Rotelli, who works at the Kohler Design Center in Kohler, Wis. "I love incorporating it with Kohler enameled cast iron sink - there are five different shades of gray to choose from, which makes it easy to find one to complement the other colors in the space and then echo that shade through the backsplash tile or paint color."
2. Bold and beautiful hues
Neutrals are classic, but pops of strategically placed color add life to kitchen and baths. "Emerald and varying shades of green are hot pops of colors, and the color will be all about cobalt," states Rotelli. While he says "it" hues are fun, he encourages homeowners to identify colors they personally enjoy. "We all have one color we're always drawn to; the one that repeats in our wardrobes and home decor. That is the color to use as an accent in the kitchen or bath. Color trends come and go, but one that resonates with your design aesthetic and reflects you as an individual you'll always love," Rotelli says.
3. Evolve from white
Neutral no longer simply means white. Homeowners are eagerly embracing other colors in place of white, like Dune from Kohler, available for sinks, baths, shower bases and toilets. "Dune is a subtle balance of beige and gray that brings a cool tone to the space - a true neutral that works well in place of white and adds a nuance of sophistication to the room's color palette," says Rotelli.
4. Colors that evoke emotion
"Color psychology is a powerful thing," Rotelli says; restaurants use appetizing hues to stimulate hunger, and stores harness its influence in hopes that you'll shop more. "Certain colors can evoke certain emotions throughout the home, as well." Homeowners who keep the emotional aspect of color in mind during the design process reap the reward of a truly personalized space. "Blues and greens are popular bathroom choices for good reason: both evoke a soothing sense of calm and healing." When it comes to kitchens, Rotelli says people are often drawn to colors from their past, because it evokes fond memories from their childhood.
5. Unexpected color
When it comes to color, sometimes you need to break the rules. Some of the best kitchen and bath designs incorporate color in unexpected ways. Remodeling projects provide the perfect opportunity to incorporate color beyond a fresh coat of paint or new window treatments. "Glass tile in kitchens or baths make it easy to introduce new color and texture," Rotelli says. For those looking to create a more cultivated color scheme and palette, he also suggests thinking outside the box by considering a new faucet finish or incorporating new materials, such as metal. "I always encourage clients to have a little fun in the bathroom, and the sink provides a perfect opportunity, whether it's a cast iron sink in a bright color, or a vessel sink that serves as functional art and a focal point for the space."
If you're ready for color, but still feel a little unsure, Rotelli has one final piece of advice: "When you do select a color, bring samples, swatches and chips home. Let them sit in the space and observe them at different times of the day. Materials can look much different in your home than how they appear under the bright lights of a showroom," he says.
Saturday, November 14, 2015
The 8 Traits that Successful Real Estate Investors Embody
1) Passion for investing: The time and personal equity that is required to become a successful investor is overwhelming for many people, which is why most people who plan on becoming real estate investors fail. Passion fuels drive and drive fuels action; without action the chance of becoming successful is zilch. Passion provides the boost needed for difficult days and enthusiasm on routine days. In short, without passion, real estate investing is just another job.
2) Discipline in decision-making: I have yet to meet someone I would consider both undisciplined and successful, and doubt I ever will. While discipline may be a difficult trait to define, I find it is often fairly easy to pick out, as disciplined people plan for the future, work diligently in the present, and learn from the past.
3) Understanding core principles: Failure is almost certain if you do not understand the foundational principles of business, real estate, and the specific niche you are engaging in. Long term success requires not only an understanding of buying and selling real estate, or how to be a landlord, but also basic economic principles. Understanding market fluctuations, economic cycles, monetary policy and other facets of economics will ensure you can react intelligently when changes do occur. Learning the basics is not always fun or exciting, but it is critical in achieving long-term success.
4) Integrity in business dealings: Real estate is notorious for attracting people looking for a quick buck at all costs, but if you look at successful investors, their success spans years and is attained through incredibly hard work. While it may seem easier to look for a short cut (and rip someone off in the process), a long real estate career must be built on a solid reputation.
5) Flexibility: Murphy's Law is alive and well in real estate, and to survive inevitable surprises, market fluctuations and bad deals, you must be flexible enough to adapt your plan as you go. Planning is absolutely critical, but equally so is the ability to quickly decide when it is necessary to deviate from the plan. Successful real estate investors know when they need to re-evaluate their current blueprint and make adjustments to preserve the long-term success of their investments and business.
6) Money management skills: Most small businesses fail due to poor money management. Forecasting, budgeting, and financial planning is becoming a lost art among small business owners, and it can be lethal to your business. This is why understanding the basics of accounting, tax law, cash flow management, debt management, and other financial principles is so important, even if you have a great accountant and book-keeper.
7) A Team of Successful People: You can only take your business so far, and at some point you will be forced to rely on other people. Real estate is a people business and every real estate transaction requires a team of people to close. Once a transaction is complete, even more people are involved so it is important to form and maintain relationships with lenders, attorneys, contractors, agents, accountants and other people who can contribute to the growth of your business.
8) Superior communication skills: You have probably heard it a million times but that is because it is true, being able to effectively communicate with other is vital. How else will you be able to negotiate prices, interview contractors, screen potential tenants, partner with others, and so many other daily tasks? Communication goes beyond face to face discussions too, email and text messaging are ever-growing in the life of most business people, and the occasional written note will never go away, so make sure you hone your writing skills as well as your verbal skills.
All investors can say they are involved in real estate, but very few can say they are among the best. Find those whom you consider to be the best and study their habits and practices. Try to understand where they have been and how their skills helped prop them up during difficult times and propelled them during good times. Figure out which areas you have mastered and which you can improve upon; self-realization will lead to positive changes and others will begin looking to learn from you.
Author: James W. Vermillion III
James W.'s Website: http://www.kandvinvesting.com
Friday, November 13, 2015
Paint to please
Throughout the year, our walls can undergo stress from energetic kids, furniture moving and everyday traffic. If your home will be busy during the holidays, welcome guests with a newly painted entryway, or, freshen up your family room with a colorful accent wall. Painting is one of the easiest and most affordable ways to transform a room, so embrace the season and try a fall-inspired hue that harmonizes with your existing space like deep emerald green, royal purple or burgundy. To achieve the best results, use painter's tape to attain sharp paint lines. To help incorporate the color of the accent wall into the room, add d�cor and accessories in similar shades throughout the area, such as new pillows in your family room or a coordinating rug in your entryway.
Clever copper accents
Group together the season's leaves and branches to create a unique centerpiece, or place them throughout the house to bring life to your living areas. Crafting with fall foliage is a cinch - simply gather an assortment of thick leaves, either real or faux - and after they're rinsed and dried, spray each side of the leaf with copper paint and leave to dry for a few hours. Line these leaves up along a table runner, string them from your mantle or use them to dress up place settings. To extend the life of your metallic leaves, consider using them as place cards for holiday dinners. Easily allow guests to find their seats in shimmery style by placing printed nametags atop the leaves at each setting.
Freshen up the front door
Increase your home's curb appeal with a front door refresh just in time for the fall. For starters, give your door a new identity with a distinctive paint color - consider hunter green, colonial red or cognac. The color of your door introduces the world to those who live inside, so choose one that speaks to your family's style. After you've added personality to your door with paint, add a final touch with your family's monogram to the center of the door. If your door is metal, glue magnets to the back of the letters and it will easily adhere to it.
Proper party prep
During the fall, more time will be spent in the home's entertaining spaces to accommodate holiday soirees and family gatherings. Increase the functionality of this room - whether it's the den, family room, dining room or finished basement - and encourage guests to congregate comfortably by adding casual seating. Spice things up with a mixture of options; choose decorative stools and poufs, or upcycle vintage chairs with new, reupholstered seats. The style of your chairs can vary, but be sure to coordinate the colors and patterns. When you're not in party mode, stow away the extra seats.
Wow with a refreshed washroom
When decorating for fall, don't overlook the bathroom! A few simple changes can take this space to new heights. Start by swapping out your soap dishes and lotion pumps with new, coordinating options fitting for the season. If budget allows, replace your everyday towels with new, plush ones in fun fall colors that add a pop of color to the room. Next, add candles with autumn-inspired scents for an aromatic effect that brings the outdoor aura indoors. For subtle changes that go a long way, replace your bathroom hardware including the toilet handle, cabinet pulls or hinges and towel racks.
The fall season is a great time to revitalize elements of your home as you prepare for indoor holiday entertaining. As you choose updates, make sure they maximize your personal style.
Better than new, one owner Westwinds resale! This 4 bedroom, 3.5 bathroom, 1 1/2 story home has almost 3900 square feet of finish. The front of the home has a formal dining/living room and French doors leading from the front entry to an office/den. The kitchen has new granite countertops, a center island and is open to the vaulted great room. The master has door to a private deck, a master bathroom with whirlpool tub, separate shower and his and hers vanities. The upstairs has 3 large bedrooms and full bath with double vanity. The walkout lower level has an exercise room, recreation room and an additional full bathroom. The yard is irrigated and fenced. Westwinds Park is right across the street.
Square feet: 2,686
For more information about this property, please contact Rob Davies at 515-208-5957 or RobDaviesTeam@gmail.com. You can also text 3182092 to 67299.
See more listings at: www.daviesandkidd.com
MLS ID: 507809
New! New! New! The drywall, cupboards, all flooring, roof, trim, sinks, toilets, lighting...what more could you want? This home has been updated from top to bottom with the latest colors and in the latest styles! You will love the quiet serenity of the chosen color palette. The 3 bedrooms are large and spacious. The eat-in kitchen is open and spacious and has all new stainless steel appliances. The backyard is fenced with a new deck, large patio and a storage shed. The detached 1 car garage is oversized. Be sure not to miss this hot property.
Square feet: 1,248
For more information about this property, please contact Bonnie Christensen at 515-971-9973 or firstname.lastname@example.org. You can also text 3182086 to 67299.
See more listings at: bonniechristensen.remax-central.com
MLS ID: 507737
Thursday, November 12, 2015
Front door, first impressions
Your front door is one of the first things people notice about your home. Give your door a fresh face with a coat of paint in a bold fall color to draw the eye to this focal point of your home.
Another project is to replace the door entirely. Consider options with decorative glass accents, and stunning sidelights (windows on either side of the door) to add more natural light while maintaining a sense of style and privacy. Plus, as temperatures start to drop, Energy Star -qualified entry doors will help maintain your home's energy efficiency. For entry door inspiration check out Pinterest, your resident showroom or your local home improvement store.
Accessorize with new hardware
Replace your front door hardware for a quick, easy facelift. Choose hardware finishes that compliment light fixtures, mailbox and house numbers for a polished, cohesive look. You'll be delightfully surprised what a difference new hardware can make in creating an updated look to your home.
Refresh exterior body and trim colors
For a dramatic change, repaint your home's exterior. It's bold and can make your home stand out from other homes on the block. Not up for the bold change? To make an impact with a smaller change, add new trim colors. When updating trim, choose color schemes that match your home's primary exterior color, or complement it with a fresh twist.
Create points of interest with plants
You don't have to stop enjoying beautiful plants and flowers simply because summer is over. Add pops of color by arranging pots filled with hearty fall flowers like mums, sedum or asters around your front door, or on a porch or deck. Incorporate planters or container gardens of varied sizes, shapes and colors to add visual interest.
Accent with lighting
As summer light fades into shorter, darker days, add exterior accent lighting to the front of your home. Illuminate a walking path with ground-insert solar lights. Or consider solar spotlights to bring out landscaping or to shine on your updated front door. Install matching light fixtures outside your front door, garage door or patio door to provide well-lit entrances that are stylish and inviting to neighbors and guests.
Wednesday, November 11, 2015
It's better by far to avoid making a big mistake when renovating a kitchen. Here are six totally wrong moves that you should never make when improving the most-used room in your home:
1. Give up cabinets.
Maybe you long for a window over the kitchen sink. Perhaps replacing or upgrading all the cabinets in the kitchen will take too big a bite out of your budget. Or maybe you intend to become a minimalist and need storage space for only two plates, two mugs and two wine glasses. Whatever you think your "reason" is for reducing the number of cabinets in your kitchen - don't do it. Cabinet storage space is a top priority in any kitchen; it can help keep clutter off your countertops, and improve the room's appeal to potential buyers. Never give up cabinet space unless you have a ridiculous number of cabinets, in which case, see move No. 2 ....
2. Cover every inch of wall with cabinets.
The only thing worse than not enough cabinets is having too many. We've all seen kitchens where the cabinets visually overwhelm the space. Sometimes they're too large for the scale of the room. Other times there are just too many of them. Keep in mind the need for visual balance, and turn to online calculators to help you understand how much cabinetry is appropriate for your kitchen.
3. Cheap out on appliances.
New appliances can be a large part of your kitchen renovation budget, and the temptation to cut costs by buying cheaper quality products can be compelling. Yet kitchen appliances are among the most-used in any home. When you consider how often you'll use them, how much wear and tear they'll endure, and how great their impact is on the usability of the room, it makes sense to invest in the best appliances you can afford. What's more, if you choose cheaper models - or worse yet, keep old, inefficient appliances - you may miss out on the energy savings that new appliances can deliver.
4. Give up even a single ray of sunlight or breath of fresh air.
More than one kitchen renovator has chosen to solve the problem of too little cabinet space by covering up a window. Not a smart move, especially when you consider the value of natural light and fresh air in a kitchen. If you have no wall space to spare for windows, adding Energy Star-qualified no-leak fresh-air skylights, like those from Velux America, can solve the problem.
Modern skylights are as dependable as high quality vertical windows and they admit much more natural light. Solar powered fresh air skylights passively vent humidity and cooking fumes from the kitchen while bringing in light. Pair them with solar-powered designer blinds, and your skylights become not just more energy efficient, but more functional, since both are operated by a programmable remote control. As an added plus, solar powered skylights, blinds and installation costs are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit for energy-efficient home improvements.
5. Pick materials that are too fragile for life in the kitchen.
Just as you never pick a partner or a vehicle based on their looks alone, choosing kitchen materials based on beauty is doomed to disappoint. For example, recycled glass countertops can chip, scratch or crack more easily than other options, and may not stand up to rigorous use. Limestone has a lovely, luminous look but is vulnerable to stains. Before you choose a material for its looks, find out its durability and weigh that against your tolerance for cleaning and repairs, as well as how brutal you're likely to be on the surfaces in your kitchen. And in that vein ....
6. Let looks trump practicality.
Choosing an overall design or materials that look great and are fashionable, but that aren't practical for your lifestyle, is a recipe for regrets. Whether it's buying a refrigerator that's too big for the scale of the room, or opting for a countertop color that's too unusual to be universally appealing, conceding practicality to appearance will make the kitchen harder to work in and harder to sell down the road.
A well-executed kitchen renovation can boost home value and improve your enjoyment of the kitchen, which is the heart of the home. With planning and care, it's possible to avoid the kind of renovation mistakes that no one wants to live with.
Move in ready ranch townhome with 2 car attached garage. Bright southern exposed kitchen with all the appliances staying, eat at bar included with a generous dining area with tile flooring. The great room features a corner fireplace, vaulted ceiling, door to the deck with lots of window exposure. The master bedroom has a walkin closet with full bath, guest bedroom also features a full bathroom. The family room is in the lower level with daylight windows. Not on the Assessors page is the rec area that is dry walled on the walls, just need to finish the ceiling and the partial wall for a third bedroom or an office space. The lower level is stubbed for a bath.
Square feet: 1,156
For more information about this property, please contact Lois Lundgren at or email@example.com. You can also text 3177896 to 67299.
See more listings at: loislundgren.com
MLS ID: 507667
New home with 3 car garage and almost 1800 square feet finished! This is a very open and inviting plan with vaulted ceilings from the great room into the kitchen. The kitchen has a large center island with pendant lights with plenty of space for cooking and entertaining. From the kitchen walk through the sliders to a deck on the back of the home. The first floor has two bedrooms and two bathrooms. The lower level is loaded with windows and has a 3rd bedroom, large family room and full bathroom. Other standard items include 2x6 construction, a passive radon mitigation system, 2 water meters and more. The 5 year tax abatement will save you thousands of dollars! All this and use of the Wolf Creek private clubhouse and exercise room.
Square feet: 1,052
For more information about this property, please contact Rob Davies at 515-208-5957 or RobDaviesTeam@gmail.com. You can also text 3177885 to 67299.
See more listings at: www.daviesandkidd.com
MLS ID: 507626
Tuesday, November 10, 2015
Here are five upgrades you can make for under $5,000 to help put your home at the top of every buyer's must-see list.
1. Upgrade your entryway - Replacing an old, dated or worn entry door can be a cost-effective way to ensure buyers get a good first impression when they walk in your house. Whether you choose a fiberglass, wooden or steel model, installing a new entry door can cost a few thousand dollars, yet the return on investment at the time of resale can be significant. A fiberglass entry door returns about 72 percent of its investment, while a steel door recoups more than 100 percent of its value, according to Remodeling Magazine's Cost vs. Value report.
Enhance your new door with attractive plantings, fresh paint and clean windows around the entryway to create a memorable, attractive entry for just a few thousand dollars.
2. Increase natural light - More buyers are becoming aware of the mood- and productivity-enhancing benefits of natural light, and homes with big, bright windows have always been in demand. Adding windows to a room can be a costly, time-consuming affair. Not so with adding a skylight. For well under $5,000 and in just a day or two, a professional can install an Energy Star qualified, solar powered no-leak fresh-air skylight, like those from Velux America. Professional installation costs nationally ranges from around $900 to $2,325, with an average of $1,400, according to HomeAdvisor.com.
The low installation cost will leave you plenty of budget to enhance the skylight upgrade even further with energy efficiency-boosting solar-powered blinds. The skylight and blinds are operated by remote control and the blinds are available in designer colors and patterns to enhance your d�cor. The products, as well as installation costs, are eligible for a 30 percent federal tax credit to further reduce the cost of the improvement.
The most popular rooms in the home for fresh air skylights are baths, where they provide privacy in addition to natural light, and kitchens, where they vent cooking odors and humidity naturally while brightening this much-used workspace. Visit www.veluxusa.com to learn more.
3. Beautify a master bathroom - Bathrooms and kitchens sell homes. Making a few cosmetic upgrades to even a small master bath can help increase a home's appeal and value. For less than $5,000 you can easily repaint, upgrade faucets, replace old cabinet hardware and add decorative touches like designer towels.
If you've already done all that, take a look at the floor or countertops - two cost-effective upgrades that can wow buyers. Since counters don't make up that much square footage in most bathrooms, replacing them with granite can cost just a couple thousand dollars. Tile flooring is also a relatively inexpensive way to improve a bathroom's look and usability.
4. Heat things up in the kitchen - Kitchen remodels can offer high ROI for sellers, but a full remodel may be outside your budget. If you've already done the obvious - like repainting and decluttering - it's time to look for a few more cost-effective improvements that will appeal to buyers.
Just as in the bathroom, swapping old faucets and cabinet hardware with new designer options can enhance the appeal of a kitchen. Shabby, outdated appliances can hinder a speedy sale, so consider replacing them with new ones. You don't necessarily need to install top-of-the-line, high-priced appliances to make a good impression, either. Newer, Energy Star qualified appliances represent savings for buyers down the road.
5. Lavish landscaping - No single aspect of your home has a greater impact on a buyer's first impression than the landscaping. A great front yard sets the tone for the rest of the home, appealing to buyers on a number of levels, including beauty, practicality and savings.
With $5,000, you can accomplish a lot in terms of landscaping. You can sod a small front yard, add decorative planting beds to a lush lawn, or even install shade trees that will both beautify the yard and enhance the home's energy efficiency in summer. Decorative concrete stamping of walkways and driveways is another cost-effective way to improve a home's curb appeal.
Whether it's a buyer's market or a seller's market, no one wants to see their home linger long before selling. A few simple upgrades can help ensure your home gets plenty of attention this season.
Monday, November 9, 2015
To prepare your home for listing - or simply to enjoy it a few years longer - check out these top five home improvement projects you can do yourself to make your home more attractive to buyers:
1. Give the front door a new look - The front door sets the tone for your home's curb appeal and security, and it signals how well you maintain everything else. Buyers will be walking into your home via the front door, so be sure to give them a good first impression. If your door is in good shape, you might just need to give it a refreshing new coat of paint or new hardware. But if it's seen some wear and tear over the years, consider replacing it with a steel door - one that will show buyers your home is safe.
2. Update the most-used entryway - While the front door needs curb appeal, the garage door is traditionally the most-used door in the home. Old wooden garage doors will start to sag and the paint will peel, giving your home a run-down look. Replacing this door with an insulated steel door will not only improve the exterior look of your home, but also keep the garage space warmer. Finishing off the garage can also be a big draw for buyers, but you probably won't be able to recoup as much of the expense as you would by replacing only the garage door.
3. Add additional living space - You might not think about adding a deck as the same thing as adding an extra room to the house, but if you're selling your home during the warmer months, that's how buyers will see it. They'll be able to picture themselves enjoying breakfast and picnic dinners outside, or curling up on a lounge chair with a good book on a summer afternoon. To make your deck a good selling feature, consider using ProWood Dura Color, a color-treated wood that retains its color for years. This means your buyers can easily move into your house and can enjoy the space without the annual chore of staining. Realtor.com estimates that homeowners can recoup 87 percent of the investment of adding a deck when they sell.
4. Create a bathroom retreat - As the smallest room in the house, the bathroom tends to cost the least to remodel. If you have a guest or master bath that can use a little help to transform into a relaxing oasis, take the opportunity to replace the flooring, add cushy rugs, paint the walls and replace the accessories with more modern styles. Faucets, showerheads, the mirror and even the toilet can all be upgraded with water-saving and stylish designs. Buyers will take note of a maintenance-free bath, making your home one they'll remember as move-in ready.
5. Turn the backyard into a private paradise - Buyers will be visualizing themselves in your backyard when touring your home. They're looking to see how quiet and secure the space is. Consider adding a beautiful wooden fence to enhance the privacy. It will make the home attractive to families with children and pets, and for couples who aren't interested in having a conversation with the neighbors every time they go outside. To make your fence an attractive selling feature of the home, consider using ProWood Dura Color fence pickets or pre-built panels. The cedar-tone or redwood-tone colorant driven deep into the wood fibers will stand up to the sun's harsh rays and won't gray out over time, unlike cedar fencing. You can match it to the deck coloring for a beautiful accent look that connects the colors in your backyard.