4 Ways to Prepare Your House for Winter

4 Ways to Prepare Your House for Winter

As the weather turns colder, it becomes increasingly important to take steps to protect your home from winter damage. In addition to preventing your house from experiencing weather damage, it will help you save on heating bills over time. Conduct the following checks to make sure you are adequately prepared for the colder months.

Check Your Foundation

Check for signs of foundation damage. Look for doors that aren’t working or appear to be sagging, cracks that draw up from the home’s foundation and flooring areas that appear to be uneven or sinking. During your foundation check, you will also want to note the presence of any other damage that could result in you needing attic or basement repairs. Addressing minor fixes sooner rather than later will save you money in the long run while also protecting your home’s value.

Address Excess Moisture

Be aware of any excess moisture that might be gathering in crawl spaces or your basement. Address any leaks or cracks that might be allowing moisture to seep in to help prevent any wood from rotting, the development of mold and other structure-damaging concerns.

Clean Your Chimney

If you intend to use your fireplace during the colder months, make sure your chimney is cleared out and is usable. You may want to stock up on firewood as well. Make sure your carbon monoxide and smoke detectors are working and have new batteries.

Check Your Gutters

Make sure your gutters are cleaned out especially if you live in an area that gets lots of rain and snow. In addition to making sure rain will be properly routed on your property, it will help protect your home’s exterior from damage.

By doing regular maintenance checks and cleanups in advance, you will be able to protect your home from unnecessary weather damage during winter.

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Renovating Your House For Adding Value

Renovating Your House For Adding Value

Every homeowner has a list of things they want to change about their space. Perhaps it’s something small and cosmetic, such as new paint, or it may be something much larger. Even if you plan on staying in your house for years to come, it’s always a good idea to be mindful of those renovations that add value to your home and are attractive to potential buyers.

1. Kitchens

Renovating Your Kithcen For Adding Value

You probably have heard that a kitchen renovation in Sarasota FL, for example, is one of the best ways to increase your home’s worth. Kitchens are no longer just a functional room; instead, they are used as entertaining and gathering spaces. High end countertops are important, as well as more cabinet space. This is one investment that is worth the time, energy and cost.

2. Bathrooms

Another area of focus is a modern bathroom or powder room. Adding one will yield much better prices at sale, but simply renovating existing areas will help as well. Most buyers want a bathtub, and tile showers are extremely popular. Powder rooms often aren’t as pricey to renovate, so this may be a good place to start. Upgrading countertops and a new mirror may be the only changes needed for a new look.

3. Flooring

If your home is still overrun by carpet, it’s probably time to consider new flooring. Carpet is usually fine in bedrooms or finished basements, but wood flooring is desirable in common living and dining rooms. It’s best to pick neutral patterns and not go with wood that is extremely dark or light. Actually bring home samples of potential flooring and put it next to walls, cabinets and any other area the flooring will be near to make sure the coloring works.

A home renovation can be an exciting and rewarding process. Before implementing any changes, make sure they will add value to your house. Kitchens, bathrooms and new flooring are some of the best ways to increase your home’s worth.… Read more

3 Ways To Change the Exterior of Your Home

Curb appeal is about more than getting your home ready to sell. When you enhance your home’s appearance, you can expand your pride of ownership and heighten the property value of the whole neighborhood. If you are wondering what you can do to change your home’s appearance in a radical way, here are three ideas you can use to alter the exterior of your house.

1. Paint, Shutters, and Railings

Paint can drastically change the look of your home in a number of ways, but the most common is by using two or three colors of paint to accent different areas of your home’s exterior. Add traditional shutters and paint them in a contrasting color, and your home will take on a whole new look. If you add railings and paint them the same color as the shutters, you can create a standout statement house with a modern look.

2. Siding To Cover Exterior

No matter what your home is currently covered in, siding can cover your entire house and give it a new, fresh, and modern look and appeal. With dozens of colors and styles available, the low maintenance option of siding is becoming more popular than ever before and with good reason. Not only has siding proven to be pest resistant, but it can also withstand most of the coldest temperatures Mother Nature can throw at it. Contact siding contractors Lake County IL today and find out what is available in your area.

3. Door or the Entryway

A change to your door or entryway may not seem like a big enough modification to the exterior of your home to matter much, but just the opposite is true. How often have you driven down the road and noticed a brilliant red or dark brown door on a neighborhood home? The change can be striking and can update and modernize the whole appearance of your home.

Altering the exterior of your home can be easier than you think. Use the tips above as a starting point and go wild.… Read more

Developing a House for Short-Term Renting

If you are in the process of trying to sell a home or are waiting for the right time to move, there is always the option of holding on to the property and banking some extra cash. In recent years, the short-term rental market has exploded world-wide. Convenient mobile apps and websites dedicated to providing accommodations for travelers are abundant, so consider fixing up what you currently own and make some dollars along the way.

Interior Upgrades

Renters are looking for nice, clean spaces to stay while visiting new areas. A few locations to spruce up around the house include flooring, fixtures and furniture. Replacing worn down vinyl linoleum or dirty carpet is a good first step. Installing a long-lasting base using provenza floors or similar hardwood provides a sleek first impression upon entry. Perform a quick scan of all wall fixtures such as towel racks, knobs and window accessories to ensure they all function properly. If any furnishings are showing signs of wear, especially in the bedroom, switch them out for something more functional.

Check Local Ordinances

Given the popularity of these types of rentals, most cities have instituted rules to govern the practice. Some towns may have a cap in place that limits the number of properties that can be in operation at one time. You will more than likely be subject to inspections from the fire department or city to confirm that all guidelines have been met. Although it may be inconvenient, these reviews are necessary for safety and liability reasons.

Create a List of Expectations

Open the lines of communication with your guests by providing them with a list of contact numbers and rules to follow when they arrive. You can also include short explanations of how to operate different amenities such as saunas, pools or appliances. These short descriptions will save many calls made to you and make renters’ stays more enjoyable.

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Preparing Your Home for Winter

As the seasons change, if you live in an area where it snows, it may be time to start thinking about winterizing your home. Here are some tips for keeping your home safe and warm during the winter months.

Check Your Doors and Windows

Doors and windows are the number one place in your home where heat can escape, significantly increasing your heating bills. You can re-caulk around your windows to make sure you’re keeping out the drafts, and you can consider adding bubble wrap or blackout curtains to help insulate your windows. Replace the weather stripping around your doors to block incoming cold air. You can even make your own draft stopper to make sure every crack is covered.

Prepare Your Roof

One thing you absolutely want to avoid is a leaky roof, especially in the winter. Before the first snowfall, you’ll want to test your roof for leaks by searching for water damage or running a hose along vulnerable spots to check for leaks. Heavy snow can also cause damage. When the weather gets particularly bad, be sure to have your roof snow removal plans in place so you can avoid costly repairs.

Fix Your Furnace

Many people don’t think about their furnace unless it’s not working. But it can save you money if you have your furnace serviced before the winter months set in to be sure it’s running properly. Change furnace filters often and your furnace will be safer and run more efficiently.

By making small changes to winterize your home, you will be able to save money and energy. By doing things like lowering your water heater temperature, improving the insulation in your home, and preparing your doors, windows, and roof, you will enjoy the winter months a lot more in your snug and comfy home, safe from the elements.… Read more

6 Exciting Trends in Kitchen Design

The transitional seasons of autumn and spring are good times to think about updating home décor with the help of Austin kitchen and bath remodeling professionals. If your kitchen is due for an update, here are some exciting trends for 2020 and beyond that may give this important room the unique atmosphere you are looking for.

1. Bold Colors

Bright oranges, cool blues, or even dark, dramatic blacks are all viable colors for your kitchen. You should base your choice less on current trends and more on your personal preferences. Think about the feeling you want to create within your kitchen and choose color(s) that produce that effect on you.

2. Marble

It’s not just for countertops anymore. Those who have the means are now adding marble backsplashes to the walls for added luxury. Those who cannot afford more marble surfaces in their kitchens are choosing smaller accessories made of the material, such as bowls or plates.

3. Handle-less Cabinets

“Simple” and “streamlined” are the current buzzwords when it comes to kitchen cabinetry, and homeowners are achieving the look with handle-less models. The look can be achieved with recessed handles or push-open cupboard doors.

4. LED Lighting

LED lighting is more efficient and lasts longer than other types. Though the bulbs do not produce much heat, the light they produce is no longer as stark and chilly-feeling as it was in the past because of the continual advancement in technology.

5. Deep Drawers

Now, here’s an idea that is practical as well as attractive! Deep drawers are more accessible and make cooking and storage so much easier. They are likely to be most effective when placed near the range.

6. Open Layout

Gone are the days when cooking and dining areas were strictly separated and isolated from the rest of the house. Open kitchen layouts provide a more comfortable cooking environment and a less formal dining experience. Family members and guests alike should find an open kitchen more friendly and inviting, and whoever does the cooking will appreciate feeling more included in the activities.… Read more

Problems You May Encounter When Buying a Home in the Country

If you have dreamed of settling in the countryside on acres of land with sprawling lawns all around, you aren’t alone. As more jobs allow for remote working and telecommuting, the decision to move into rural areas is becoming more common. A recent study showed a 30 percent rise in home-based workers, and a rise in productivity and job satisfaction as work hours became more flexible. Before you buy that home that stands in the rural countryside, consider these three problems you may encounter when buying that home.

Road Maintenance

If you have never lived outside of town, you may not realize that the road linking country homes to the main street is the responsibility of the homeowner. That can include street cleaning, snow removal, pothole repairs, and de-icing. Many country services will let homeowners pay a monthly fee to keep roads clear, and the service can be well worth it in heavily snow-laden areas.

Septic System

There is no sewer system that takes your refuse away to a major city artery when you live in the country. Instead, there are septic tanks and drain fields to deal with. You may have to learn to take shorter showers, use a new type of detergent, or even start a compost heap. The use of septic tank Orlando FL is very different than when you could pour anything you wanted down the drain.

Power Problems

When big storms hit, the power frequently goes out, and it may stay out for days. That is why most rural homeowners have a backup power source available. Some choose a firewood burning stove with a cooktop or a full propane underground tank with a propane generator. Staying warm, having the ability to cook, and heating water are all vital when your power is out for several days.

If your dream is to live off the main road, then go for it! But make sure you know what you are getting into before you make that dream come true. The three tips listed above will help.… Read more

Ways to Prepare for Summer in Texas

Summers in the southwest United States can take a toll on its residents. Here are some steps to take before the summer months hit, to make sure you are best prepared for the rising temperatures.

Invest in Insect Screens

With the weather heating up, there is always an uptick in bug activity. Purchasing a bug screen to ward off these critters can provide relief while cooling off on an outdoor porch or deck.  Depending on your specific needs and budget, there are a wide variety of screen types to choose from. If you own pets, you can also look into screens that will be able to withstand dog paws and cat claws.

Check Your Air Conditioning System

When the temperatures soar, sometimes it is worth the added cost to have an air conditioning unit in your home. If your home does not have air conditioning, or you are interested in getting your air conditioner repaired or updated, it can be a better idea to take care of it before the weather gets too warm. Find a company near you with an internet search. If you live in Magnolia, search for air conditioning magnolia tx to find air conditioning installers near you.

Keep Yourself Hydrated

Although it may seem rather obvious, almost 80% of Americans do not drink enough water to keep their bodies out of a state of dehydration. During summer, it is even more imperative to drink water to compensate for sweat cooling down your body. Make sure to have several glasses per day, and add water-rich foods to your diet, such as watermelon and cucumber, for an extra boost.

Although looking toward the midyear temperature increase can seem dismal, it does not have to be difficult to deal with the heat. Using these solutions is guaranteed to help keep you cool and feeling good all summer long.… Read more

Preparing Your Home For the Winter

Cold weather is coming and your need to get your home ready so it will keep you warm with the snow falls. Insulating your house properly will make it more comfortable while saving you money in energy costs. Here are a few things you can do to insulate your place.

Seal Things Up

You can block the cold from seeping in by closing up the cracks to the outside. Apply delaware spray foam along your doors, window frames and in the corners of your attic. When it expands, it will fill any fissures in these spaces. You can also cover your windows in plastic for the winter. This additional barrier keeps the heat inside and the cold out.

Make a Change

One of the most important steps to get your house ready for winter is to change your furnace filters. If the filter is blocked, warm air has trouble getting through and this can cause damage to your furnace. It is also a good idea to get your furnace checked to be certain that it is running well and will stay running when the frigid temperatures arrive.

Set a Timer

To be more cost efficient, you should program your thermostat to drop to lower temperatures when your family is gone for several hours. This keeps your heater from running when the house it empty. You will, however, want to keep it high enough that water keeps from freezing in the pipes and have the heat return to normal before anyone comes home.

One Last Layer

You can purchase thicker curtains to hang during the winter as an additional barrier to the cold. Thin curtains will allow the frozen air to get through into the room while denser fabric repels it. If you do this, though, you should add brighter lights to give the appearance of warmth and makes the spirit happier.… Read more

4 Critical Steps To Take Before You Sell Your Home

There are always issues that appear at the last minute when someone tries to sell their home. However, you can prevent these problems from ruining your home sale. Here are four critical steps to take before you sell your home.

Mold Issues

If potential buyers see any mold, it can make them turn and run. That means at the first sign of the fungi you should remove excess moisture and call a service company to come and deal with the mold issues. Fungus spores can fly all through your home, so it is best to have a professional team clean and sanitize all possible growth areas.

Pest Visitors

If you have visiting mice, bats, roaches, termites, or squirrels nesting in your home, it is best to remove the critters before you put your home on the market. Not only can the urine stink your home up, the gnawing creatures can cause electrical problems and shred your insulation. Call a rat exterminator Salem OR to remove any pests before you sell your home.

Water Stains

Water stains on your walls or ceiling are an indication there is a problem with a leaking roof. Water stains under windows can mean there is a gap that has not been sealed that is letting water into your home. Warped floorboards or baseboard can mean your basement flooded or there was standing water on the floor. Any of these conditions can kill a possible sale, and water stains need to be fixed before putting your home on the market.

Structure Problems

Sometimes homes settle – it doesn’t matter how old they are. As the structure falls into the compressed layer of earth, your home may do so unevenly, resulting in foundation cracks or slippage. Walls can also crack above windows or doors, and doors can refuse to close or open. These issues can drive most buyers away.

If you want to sell your home, make sure the structure doesn’t have any of the problems listed above. Fixing the problems is a critical step in selling your home.… Read more