March 6, 2017
The Urge to Purge
Many of us hibernate somewhat at this time of year, meaning we have lots of time to reacquaint ourselves with our great indoors and all of its associated "stuff," much of which we may even have forgotten about. Take this opportunity to purge unwanted, unneeded and unused things from your home. You'll be surprised at how good you feel once you've opened up your space!
A good purging is necessary when putting your home up for sale or when you're thinking of downsizing to a smaller footprint. Even if you have no plans to move, your motivation could still be as major as getting ready to welcome a new baby into the household, or as simple as recognizing you have a lot of things you'll never use again. In fact, you may have no other reason for tackling your overcrowded household than wanting to claim your space back.
So, once you've made the decision to purge, what do you do with all that stuff?
Tackle each room with large, empty boxes, each marked with a different purpose. There will be the "keep" box for things you absolutely need or can't let go of, the "donate" box with things to give either to charity or to friends or family who may make use out of the items, and the "sell" box. Yes, someone might actually, thanks to the far-reaching wonder of the Internet and sites like eBay, Amazon and Craigslist, magically translate your junk into money in your pocket — you'll be surprised at what people will pay for!
Finally, there will be those items you'll transfer from one hand to the other, and spend much too much time pondering. To help move the cleanup process along, put those treasures in another box that you'll mark with a date six months from the current date. When you approach it half a year from now, you'll probably first shake your head in disbelief that a whole six months has already flown by, and then as a second step recognize that if you didn't need those items in the past half year, you can probably let them go now.
Clutter can be a source of stress, so purging can benefit your mental well-being. In some cases, letting go of certain memories will allow you to move onto a new phase of life. Other times, clearing the physical clutter in your life frees up the space, both mentally and physically, to move towards a clearer future.
At the very least, less stuff in your home means less stuff to clean and, when it comes time to move, less to pack up and move!
April 20, 2016
6 Things to Check On Your Home This Spring
Source: Lori Watson Mortgage Specialist Canadian Mortgage Experts - DLC
Ah spring, a time when the sun pours in the windows, plants are growing, things feel alive, and we give the house a good spring clean!
Although this winter was relatively mild, we certainly had some proud Canadian winter moments. You will probably want to make sure that your property weathered the storm and is in good condition. So here are six things to check on your home this spring!
Your roof will have undoubtedly received the brunt of the winter weather, so when you can, it’ll be important for you to ensure that everything is still working as it should; that your shingles are securely fastened and (obviously) that none are missing. Additionally, for those who live in wet climates, check to make sure your roof is free from any kind of developing growth (moss etc.).
Shingled roofs should last approximately 20 years (depending, again, on variables such as climate) so as the years go on, don’t be surprised if and when sections of your roof begin to break down and deteriorate. A good idea to be prepared for such eventualities is have a separate account where you put money away, little by little.
Check your gutters for any loose connections, leaks and cracks, as well as for debris that may have gathered throughout the winter months. Keep in mind, as well, that downspouts should always be pointed away from the foundation.
Low-lying sections of your property (especially near your home’s foundation) can be problematic. These pools, if left to form in the wrong location, can lead to water coming through your home’s foundation. Not to mention, they can become an excellent breeding ground for all sorts of pesky insects.
Avoid these pitfalls by leveling the ground, sloping the soil away from the house (and adding soil as necessary).
Outdoor concrete (patios etc.) can shift or crack during those months when the ground around said pad freezes and thaws. So, as you come into spring, check to make sure that the concrete that surrounds your house hasn’t begun to slope into your foundation (starting to see a trend here? Hint: water = good. Water leaking into house = bad).
Additionally, if you do find cracks, or if the aesthetic appeal of your concrete has declined, take the time to clean and re-seal.
Paved driveways have a tendency to crack and wear over time (not unlike concrete). Springtime is the perfect time to reseal, while you're in that spring cleaning mood! This job will restore the color to a fresh black, while also ensuring that your driveway is free of bumps and weed protrusions.
Keep in mind, however, that most sealers will take about 48 hours to dry properly, so watch the weather, and don’t start anything that might be compromised by rain or windblown elements. Popular Mechanics has a great article to get you started!
The AC Unit
The reality is that air conditioning units run constantly throughout the summer months, so in addition to servicing your unit after the summer, consider having it serviced in the spring as well, since it will have been sitting dormant for several months.
There you have it. Six home/property areas to pay attention to as winter gives way to spring. I trust these will be helpful to you as you invest time and love into your property.
However if you are considering a little more than just regular maintenance this spring, mortgage rates are at an all time low, now might be a great time to talk about using some of the equity in your property, to renovate and/or increase your property’s value!
March 25, 2015
Turn Spring Cleaning into Spring Staging and Sell Your Home Fast
Mark Twain described spring fever, saying, "When you've got it, you want -- oh, you don't quite know what it is you do want, but it just fairly makes your heart ache, you want it so!" According to Realtor.com, spring is the perfect time to sell your home. Why not capitalize on Twain's spring fever symptom by feeding your buyers burning desire for something new?
Make the most of your annual spring cleaning by staging your home at the same time. Use spring's positive associations in your staging both inside and outside. When buyers feel the fullness of the season, your home will almost market itself. Here are some ways to let spring help you sell your home.
1. Quit "nesting" and freshen up. Winter causes people to create a cozy environment with throw blankets and other clutter than make a room feel snug and welcoming. Begin your spring staging with a good spring cleaning. Pack up the comfy clutter to give your home a clean, fresh appeal. Pay special attention to windows. When the sunshine streams through sparkling windows, your home is filled with optimism.
2. Use colour to your advantage. Yellow and red both create an urge to purchase. According to Entrepreneur, yellow is the first color our eyes can perceive. A small, yellow display in a boutique can sometimes cause us to stop in our tracks and stare at it. Why not make the most of this phenomenon by bringing spring inside? Transplant some daffodils in a pot and place them strategically near one of your home's most attractive features. For a red accent, try tulips. Bringing nature inside and using colour to your advantage is a great way to inspire buyers.
3. Ready your closets for spring. Removing winter clothes from your closet may seem impractical as you face a season known for wild temperature swings. However, you should box up your dark, winter wear and make your closets sing about spring with plenty of room and pretty pastels hanging in a row. Keep your closets no more than half full and remove everything from the floor. Your staged closets may even cause you to catch spring fever too.
4. Change the scent. In the fall and winter, you may have baked cookies or used a cinnamon scent to create a welcoming environment. However, in the spring, clean, fresh scents become alluring. Use fragrances that mimic beach scents, citrus scents, or light floral scents. For even more impact, keep fresh flowers in each room.
5. Capitalize on potted plants. Since your yard is probably still only beginning to wake from its winter sleep, use potted plants to add life. First, remove all traces of dead foliage and any piles of leaves. Next, arrange several pots together, making sure to vary their heights. Place a grouping of pots by the back door, the front door, on patio corners, and even at logical points in the yard. Annuals, like petunias and impatiens, are inexpensive and readily available at big box stores before customers even remove their winter coats.
6. Add a splash of calming colour. Replace your checked flannel throw blanket with pastel pillows. Replicate your chosen pastel with candles and a figurine or two. Add some pastel towels to your bathrooms. Great seasonal colours include coral, sea-foam green, soft yellow, and robin's-egg blue. Use just enough colour to suggest spring without overpowering your buyer.
While you are busy spring cleaning, take a moment to make your home feel more that just clean. A few extra touches can create the feeling that spring has moved indoors. Spring brings with it the promise of lazy summer days and warm summer evenings. If Mark Twain's assessment of spring fever is correct, when buyers sense that optimism, an offer is sure to follow.
April 8, 2014
Spring Preparation List!
Source: Gary Ladwig CMHI, A-Z Home Inspections
Old man Winter can do damage to your home so these are simple things you can do to save energy and repair costs.
- Change your furnace/ air conditioning filter
- Change batteries in smoke detectors and carbon monoxide detectors.
- Hook up your hoses to the hose bibs and check for leaks.
- Consider a seasonal maintenance check up on your air conditioner.
- Make sure your gutters are clean and pitched toward down spouts.
- Ensure that down spouts extend away from your home.
- Exterior GFCI electrical receptacles should be tested and or reset.
- Clear out window well drains and driveway drains.
- Check exterior wood surfaces for flaking paint and wood damage.
- Inspect roof from the ground for loose, curling, missing, cracking and cupping shingles. Binoculars work very well for this.
- Check masonry chimneys and siding for loose brick and mortar.
- Check chimney caps and vent openings for insect infiltration and bird nests.
- Look for water damage on fascia boards and soffits from over flowing gutters and down spouts.
- Check driveways and walkways for cracks and trip hazards.
- Check exterior wood steps and decks for slippery sections.
March 21, 2014
Spring Has Sprung Giveaway!
>>>THIS CONTEST IS NOW CLOSED<<<
I'm so excited that spring has arrived! The flowers are blooming, the weather is warmer and it's usually the time where everyone begins "spring cleaning". From de-cluttering to home renovation projects, why not get a little help from me!
To celebrate the season of spring, I'm having a giveaway!
1 lucky winner will receive a $200.00 HomeSense Gift Card!
- This giveaway will end April 30, 2014 – One Entry per Person
- Earn bonus entries by telling your friends and family
- The winner will be chosen at random
- The winner will be notified by email
All you need to do to enter is submit your Name and Email, that's it!
Don't worry, the information I collect is used solely by me and strictly for the purposes of collecting entries for this giveaway. I never release the information entrusted to me to anyone without authorization.
Thank you so much for stopping by, for your comments and your continued support!
>>>Click on the link to enter: Spring Has Sprung Giveaway!<<<
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