Tag Archives: home

Three Things to Keep in Mind When Scouting for a New Home

family happily owning their new homeBuying a new home can be part exciting and part stressful. It is exciting because you can finally have your own space; it can even be the biggest purchase of your life—a hallmark of being an adult. However, it can be stressful, especially when you are scouting for a property.

It can be quite overwhelming, as you will need to look into different factors and talk to a lot of people. But there are some easy ways to go about it; the key is that you need to go for what matters—the essentials. Here are some of them:

The Location

Primarily, three things matter in real estate: location, location, location.  So when you are looking for a property, you need to make sure that it is close to major amenities and facilities, such as schools and hospitals. If you are in Kansas, there are many cities and communities you can go for.  For one, you can find new homes for sale in Overland Park.

The Theme

Home aesthetics is one of the things that influence the price of a property. So if you want to invest, you need to make sure that your home is really beautiful. You may want to choose properties with timeless themes; minimalism is on the rise, so you may also consider getting a Zen-inspired home.

The Neighborhood

Attend an open house to get a feel of the neighborhood. See if it is close to major facilities and amenities. More importantly, you have to find out if the neighborhood is safe, especially when you are planning to raise your kids.

These are just some of the things to keep in mind when buying a new home. To make things easier, you have to work with reliable professionals, such as brokers and real estate agents.

French Country Style: How to Add Rural Charm to Any Room

French style home exteriorFrench country style has been a popular design choice for many years. This can give any room in your home an elegant and timeless look. A report by Realtor.com explains that this style trend started in the United States during the mid-20th century.

When giving your home a touch of the French countryside, expect to use materials like wrought iron, which Artmexinc.com says can add beauty to your interior; it also lasts a long time. Other notable elements of the French country style are painted furniture and exposed beams. Most of the designs took inspiration from the countryside, like Provence.

Achieve a Chic Living Room

Windows are some elements you need to consider to achieve a chic French country living room. Remember not to overwhelm them with heavy drapes. Keep natural light coming in to illuminate the space. Try using sheer panels to maintain the sunshine without compromising your privacy.

You may also play with fabrics that you’re using in the space. Using certain prints is a common way to add a French feel to a room. Toile de Jouy is a popular design that reflects Provence. You can use this print in your upholstery, curtains, or wallpaper.

It’s also helpful to mix and match pieces of furniture, such as sofas, chairs, and tables. For example, select accent chairs, like a pair of wingback chairs or a bergère chair, to give your living room a stately feel.

Sleep in a Warm, Welcoming Bedroom

Incorporating French country style into your bedroom is an excellent way to make it look feminine, colorful, welcoming, and casual. If done properly, you don’t have to worry about overpowering your personal style.

Colors play an important role when you’re styling any room in a French country way. Generally, you may use warm, muted colors, like off-whites, earth tones, and muted pastels and jewel tones. For your bedroom, you can use different airy, pastel hues along with strong, vibrant accents.

Popular palettes include creamy white and pastel tints of yellow, orange, and red together with various shades of gold, burgundy, sage green, sky blue, and black.

French country style is also an excellent way to add contrast. Have fun layering fabrics with different patterns and textures to create an interesting visual appeal. You may also incorporate other elements in the room to create contrast, including the floor, wooden furniture, and headboard.

Eat and Cook in Classic French Country Style

The dining room and the kitchen are also ideal areas to use French country style. For your kitchen, consider having exposed ceiling beams, open shelving, and distressed wood floors. This combination can add charm to the communal space.

Wrought iron décor and furniture can add a rustic look to your kitchen, too, especially with wooden materials. You can choose from iron shelves, tables, or chairs.

If you want to use a chandelier in your dining room, better mix them well with other elements to achieve the look you want. For example, using a high-end chandelier and antique table and chairs will give your dining room an authentic Provence design.

A French country interior never goes out of style. It’s the perfect way to introduce a bit of rural ambiance while still maintaining a hint of elegance.

How to Improve Air Quality in Your Home

Living room with door opening onto patioHave you ever entered a room and felt like fainting? This feeling is usually brought about by air pollution. Poor air quality can aggravate asthma and cause problems with your cardiovascular system.

Given all these adverse effects of polluted air, it is essential to understand the potential causes as well as know what is needed to improve air quality. Contractors such as Conduct Air Conditioning can help you apply quality fixes to your indoor air issue. However, there are also other ways to improve indoor air quality.

House-plants

Do you know that you can use house-plants to purify the air in your home? Varieties of house-plants have been scientifically proven to absorb toxins and clean the air that you breathe. Ensure to identify which plants emit carbon dioxide at night so that you can place them in your living room and not your bedroom. Also, make sure that you do not over water your plants because this might cause them to grow mould.

Humidity

Check your plumbing for leaks that might be causing humidity and mould growth. Spores from mould are often airborne and responsible for many respiratory problems, especially in people with allergies. Regularly aerate your rugs to avoid mould growth.

Ventilation and Cleaning

Keep your windows open during the day to increase air circulation and prevent the build-up of musty scent. Make sure that you leave your wet shoes outdoors until they are thoroughly dry. When it comes to upholstery, ensure that they are adequately vacuumed to remove pet hair. In case of a spill on your rugs or upholstery, you should use a vacuum cleaner to remove the moisture.

Finally, make a point of installing humidity detectors in your home. These gadgets can help you know when the air is too dry or humid. By paying close attention to air quality, you will improve the comfort of your home as well as your overall health.

How to Save Money When Building a Home

house under constructionBuying a house, especially in a prime location such as Burnside, is expensive, but there are ways to own your home at a lower cost — building a home instead of buying, for example. Before you build a home, though, you’ll need a piece of land in a location that is good enough for you and your family.

In addition, you need a real estate developer who understands your requirements and can build your home according to your specifications. It is easy to decide on the type of home you want, but it isn’t simple to keep your requirements under your budget.

With proper planning and the right choices, you can build a home of your dreams without breaking the bank. Here are some tips to keep in mind.

1. Wait for several bids.

Don’t settle for contractors who don’t meet your requirements. Instead, wait for several bids to flow in before you consider the budget, timeline, and how well they understand your requirements.

If a contractor seems reasonable but has quoted a price that is a bit higher than what you expected, make sure to keep in touch and try negotiating adjustments.

2. Consider house and land packages.

House and land packages not only make it easier for you to own a home, but they also make it cheaper. Financial organisations and lenders will waive associated fees for such developments most of the time.

The only fees you would then have to pay are stamp duty on the value of your land. Besides, you will be in a position to claim depreciable assets and the construction.

3. Open floor plan.

The more walls in your home, the more you will spend on construction. Opt for an open floor plan that allows you to have more space at a lower cost. Also, you get to use the floors in any way you see fit. Decorating an open floor plan is also easy, and your dream home won’t feel cramped.

When constructing your dream home, you shouldn’t be frugal, but you shouldn’t go overboard with your spending either. It is important to work with how much you are willing to spend and build a nice home that is within your budget.

4 Interesting Ways to Decorate Your Fireplace Mantel

Living room with fireplaceIt takes a lot of time and effort to decorate your home fully. You need to start somewhere to make your house a little more interesting. The French fireplace mantel is a great place to start your decoration since it’s the most common focal point of a living room. So here are a few tips on how to style your mantel like an expert.

Take Risks

Don’t be afraid to be playful when it comes to interior design. You may try to mix a few items such as artwork and even books. Try to create a little playfulness when it comes to decorating your mantel.

Create a Focal Piece

One way of decorating your mantel is by creating a focal piece that’ll be the focus in the room. You may want to add a large mirror or a painting above the mantel. Always remember that the height of the piece should depend on the height of the ceiling. If your ceiling is a bit low and you have a wide mantel, choose a long horizontal rectangular art piece or an oval mirror.

Show Your Collection

A mantel is also a great place to show your collection of dishware or any of your favorite objects. You may hang a few pieces of your dishes or arrange them based on its size and shape.

Make It Personal

One way to make it personal is by adding a few of your family photos on top of the mantel. Doing so will create warmth and a feeling of home throughout the room. You may even add a few colorful vases to add a bit of color as well.

These are just a few of the things that you might want to consider when decorating the mantel. It’s always best to design it based on your taste and how you want it to look.

Modern Living: A Guide to Fire Pits and City Life

Modern fire pitEven in the city people enjoy gathering around the warmth of a fire. Choosing between a wood- and gas-burning fires pits should be a decision you consider carefully. In a rural setting, wood-burning firepits are definitely the choice. However, in a city setting, there are a few more things to consider.

Aesthetics

Urban fire pits have to match up to their surroundings. Though there is a certain charm to wood-burning fire pits, fire glass crystals, and other decorative elements make gas-burning fire pits sights to behold.

Brightly colored fire glass crystals evoke a feeling of magical fantasy while remaining classy and elegant. Wood-burning fire pits can be problematic in an urban setting. The smoke produced can be unsightly and can bring about complaints from the neighbors.

Safety

Some cities regulate or even prohibit the burning of wood within city confines. Gas-burning firepits produce almost zero smoke, minimizing the risk of an overly excited neighbor calling emergency services.

Less smoke also means less soot and particles. About 80–90% of wood smoke is fine particulate matter. These cause irritations to the eyes and lungs, causing sneezing, coughing, or shortness of breath. The dangers are heightened on people with asthma and heart problems.

Chronic exposure to smoke can also lead to respiratory problems, lung cancer, and heart disease. Both wood and gas-burning fire pits have safety issues, but proper installation and use can bring down the risks to negligible levels.

Convenience

In a rural setting, it is most convenient to use a wood-burning fire pit since wood is free and accessible. In a city setting, access to wood is limited and a bit costly.

Wood also takes a bit of time to light, maintain, and clean up. On the other hand, gas-burning stoves need less maintenance, are easier to use and need almost no cleaning.

Take into account where you live before deciding on a fire pit. Your city may have regulations on size and fuel, so do a bit of research to make sure you abide by the rules.

A Life Without an Air Conditioner: Learning the Repercussions

an air conditionerAn air conditioner is something that you may want to have in your home if you want to live comfortably. Its known function is to stabilize the temperature inside the home. But it fulfills a much more important function: it maintains the space’s humidity at conducive levels. Therefore, it helps in improving the quality of air at your home, thus making it more livable.

When your air conditioner breaks, you can only assume that a string of repercussions will follow. This is why you need to address the problem right away by seeking a reliable air conditioning repair expert in Salt Lake City. Whipple Service Champions lists some of the repercussions of not having an air conditioner:

It is hot

Suffice to say, the absence of an air conditioner will lead to a much hotter space. Heat means uncomfortable or tossing and turning in bed. You may have an electric fan, but an air conditioner is much better, especially during dog days.

Allergens thrive

When the humidity is present in the air, your space easily invites pests. Humidity turns your home into a nest of different allergens, which obviously have a negative effect on your family. These include black molds, bugs, and mildew. If you suspect that there is already an infestation, it will be necessary to seek the help of an inspector.

Foundations crumble

You may not notice it, but humidity can also cause damage to your home. Too much moisture in the air can cause wood to rot. Rotting of wood can result in the weakening of your home’s wooden components and parts, such as the foundations and the ceilings.

A life without an air conditioner may sound exaggerated for some. But if you come think of it, an air-conditioner is something that you can treat as an investment, which turns your home into a place of comfort.

Bed Bug Infestation: Ways to Prevent and Stop It

Clean, modern style bedAlthough bed bugs are not known to transmit diseases to people, they can be a nuisance in your home. Members of your family might have different responses to their bites. If you don’t want your family to sport red, itchy bites on their skin, you need to have these measures in place.

Maintain cleanliness

Thoroughly vacuum your home regularly especially those hidden areas, which could be the perfect hiding spots for bed bugs. When you’re changing bed sheets, you also need to take the time to inspect the mattress for blood spots, cast skins, or bed bugs feces, which could appear like tiny dark spots on the seams, tufts, or folds of your mattress. Furthermore, avoid clutters in your home to reduce hiding spots for these critters.

Be vigilant

When you’re using shared laundry facility, be sure to transfer your clothes from the dryer directly to a new plastic bag. High temperature eliminates these critters, which is why pest control professionals employ bed bug heat extermination methods to eliminate these pests.

If you’ve had visitors, be extra mindful when you’re cleaning the house, as bed bugs can easily be transported through their luggage.

Know the early signs of infestation

It helps to be aware of the early signs of bed bug infestation before they get out of hand. Some signs to look out for are itchy bite marks in areas like the arms, hands, face, and neck. Some bite marks could disappear after a couple of days while some could become a fluid-filled blister. You could also sense a musty and unpleasant smell in the room.

Bed bugs are one of the most resilient pests. They spread from room to room, and they can travel long distances lodged in clothes, furniture, or luggage. And they can go on without food for months and even years. Thus, if you’ve noticed some signs of infestation in your home, it’s best to be proactive in dealing with it and seek the advice of a professional before it gets to be too much of a problem.

Dealing with Fire Damage: A Homeowner’s Guide

House with fire damageWith just one careless mistake, you can lose your things, your whole property, and even your life to a fire at home. The unfortunate thing is, an accident usually causes fire and you would not know when it would hit. Thus, being prepared will certainly be useful.

Whether you are dealing with the aftermath fire yourself, or simply want to have an idea of what to do should such things occur, knowledge about the situation is important.

Knowing these points and seeking some help from fire damage restoration services in Salt Lake City will be essential in helping you get back on your feet.

Secure the site

Cover all possible entrances to prevent theft. Securing it from natural elements like rain, too much sun, or even fire (again) is your responsibility as a homeowner. As much as possible, refrain from staying inside the fire site, as there might be live wirings that can cause further accidents.

Contact your insurance agency

Once the site is safe, document the damages to your property. Do not move or throw anything until your insurance agency arrives. Aside from your friends and family, they are the important people you should contact after the fire happens.

Restoration

The insurance company shoulders most restoration services, depending on the coverage. Finding a reputable fire restoration company can help you secure your remaining valuables and the property itself while at the same time help you restore some parts of your home to reduce repair costs.

Replacing valuable documents

Allot a time to replace burned documents like your passport, national identification, bankbooks, etc. You should always update these important records and, in some cases, you would be required to present these to access your insurance claims.

Having your house on fire is a nightmare that no homeowner would want to face. Knowing what to do if it happens can help you handle the situation better.

3 Benefits of Getting BIBs Insulation for Your Home

a professional installing insulation in a homeInsulation is one of the top investments you can get for your home, and it has many types. If you’re planning to get one or replace an old one, consider getting a blow in blanket system (BIBS). Keep these benefits in mind if you’re thinking of getting one for your home in Kansas City:

BIBS does not contain formaldehyde.

Insulation helps improve safety in your home; as long as you choose the safest one for you and your entire family. BIBS has no formaldehyde. If the level of this chemical in the air is higher than 0.1 ppm (parts per million), you may experience coughing, wheezing, skin irritation, and a burning sensation in the throat, nose, and eyes.

BIBS prevents mold growth.

Insulation hinders the growth of mildew and molds. Unfortunately, there are types of insulation that doesn't do this effectively. When you're exposed to mold and mildew for a long time, you could experience similar symptoms when exposed to formaldehyde. These include coughing, skin irritation, and nasal stuffiness. If you have small children, senior adults, and pregnant women at home, you have to be vigilant in limiting exposure to these.

BIBS offers seamless installation.

Insulation helps you save energy in your home. It keeps the cool air in when it’s hot outside and keeps the hot air in when the weather outside is cold. If you don’t want to waste your investment in insulation, you have to choose a type that offers seamless installation, which means there are no gaps or voids.

If you’re looking for a meaningful home investment or upgrade, consider getting a BIBs insulation for your home. Do not waste time by wasting money on DIY solutions. Get reliable BIBs installers and get your home upgraded.