Previous month:
December 2019
Next month:
February 2020

Which Interior Decor Design Matches Personality?

Fotografia-de-interiores-4

Ever wonder why you like a particular style of interior design for your place? This is because your taste of interior design is based on your personality!

Let us go through the interior decor trends for 2020 and find which one suits your personality. 

  • Interior Décor Design

There are considerable options for you in decorating interior of home. You can use trendy and modern furniture with classic colours or you like to keep it low key and sophisticated. Every choice defines your personality. If you are an artistic guy, then you will prefer to have your walls and floors designed artistically, your furniture would give the vibes of fresh air even though the windows are closed. 

You check magazines and internet to explore the options of interior decorating however, the choice that you make would always reflect your personality. Secondly, your personality is influenced by various experiences and it is made up from your interest and traits that defines your personal.

  • Personality

Are you a talkative person or likes to remain quiet? You prefer outdoor sports or indoor? Are you stylish of sophisticated? Believe it or not, these things impact your choices in and living style. Let we tell you how you can choose particular decoration of interior design according to your personality.

  • Interior Décor Design and Personality

If you are organised and professional person, you would definitely go for simple and functional interior design. Your choice of colour would black, white and neutral primary colours. Furthermore, your personality would let you choose sleek and spacious for your place.

If your noble and elegant person who likes to have balanced life, you would definitely go for historical and full of heritage decoration in interior design. Moreover, your personality of elegance and gracefulness would go for colours like beige, gold and olive.

Your choice of Scandinavian interior décor design is based on your friendly and elegant personality. You prefer thinks simple, yet stylish and comfortable. Timber tones are whitewashed colour would be the one that most admires you. 

If you are an introverted personality, then you would go for simplest interior design as drawing attention makes you nervous and you like things simple and aesthetic.

If you are lively person than your preference would be trendy and classic as you would like the aesthetic in a trendy manner and your design would drives towards relaxing flair of rustic aesthetics.

If you are social and outdoorsy then your admiration comes from creative and fresh interior design and you want home your home to embrace colours and freshness into your life, thus reflect your choice of shabby interior décor design.

Conclusion

We believe every individual consist of different personality and their preference would vary according to it. But in terms of interior design, the surrounding highly impact your living quality and provides you with comfort, so your personality defines the interior décor design.

partnered post • client image


Safety Tips for Heating Your Home this Winter 

30262204981_1feb6cc5cb_c

From preparing your yard to buying the kids winter clothing, you've worked hard to ensure everything is ready for the brutal winter that has been predicted for much of the country. Even so, it's surprising to note that many homeowners neglect to follow the safety tips needed to heat their homes after the snow starts to fall. 

There are many things that can happen when heating your home during the winter months that can end in fire and tragedy for your property and the people you love. While it is true that you need to heat your home during the fall and winter of the year, you need to be extremely careful to prepare that home and the equipment you will use. 

Have Your Heater Inspected

The first thing you'll need to do before flipping the switch on your heating unit that first chilly morning is have a reputable residential heating and air conditioning professional come out and inspect the unit. From frayed wiring to malfunctioning units, much can happen over the spring and summer months to make your unit unsafe to use. Calling in the heating professionals to inspect and repair anything that is needed will go a long way toward keeping you and your family warm and safe this winter. 

Have the Chimney Cleaned and Inspected

While a blazing fire in the fireplace can keep you warm and cozy during the winter months, there are also dangers if you don't have your chimney cleaned, inspected, and properly maintained. The last thing you want is a chimney fire, so make sure you have the chimney swept and taken care of by a reputable professional. 

Always Supervise Your Fireplace 

As previously stated, a fire is a great way to keep everyone warm on a cold winter's night. However, you should never leave the fireplace unattended, as sparks can easily fly out onto rugs and carpets causing a fire to break out. It's also important to pay constant attention to any children or pets that might be in the room with the fireplace as well. 

Don't Overload Power Strips and Electrical Outlets

One of the biggest causes of electrical fires is overloading a power strip or a faulty electrical outlet. You should always plug any heaters into an electrical outlet that is in tip-top shape. Never plug these units into a power strip as it can cause the power strip to overheat, melt, and start a fire. 

Turn All Heating Units Off if You Go Out or When You're Sleeping

While no one wants to wake up to a cold house or come home and have to wait for the house to heat up, it's important for your safety to switch off heating units when you're not going to be right there to monitor them. This is for portable heaters, kerosene heaters, and fireplaces. As long as your central heating unit has been inspected and given a clean bill of health, you can keep it running when you're out or sleeping. However, you may want to turn down the thermostat at these times to save on your heating bill. 

Always Be on the Alert

During the winter months, it's easy to become complacent or to think that just one night of leaving the units on can't hurt. You need to be alert to keep you, your property, and your family safe. It only takes one spark for your whole world to go up in flames. 

These are just a few of the safety tips that should be followed when heating your home this upcoming winter season. It's better to follow these tips than to be sorry you didn't.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by Lifes2Short


Increasing Your Curb Appeal on a Budget

2926973287_2a0644ea57_c

The outside of your home is the first thing people will see when they approach your home. It doesn't matter how elaborately you’ve cleaned the inside your home, if the exterior is lacking, it can leave people with a bad first impression. A large budget is not needed to increase your curb appeal or give your home's exterior a fresh new look. There are simple things that can be done on a budget that can make a very big difference. 

Spruce Up Your Front Door

You want your home to look welcoming, which is why having a nice-looking front door can make a big difference. If your door is already in good condition, you may just want to slap on a new coat of paint or go with a new color to change things up. You can also replace or restore the hardware to give it a fresh new look. If you want to make your door really stand out, go with a bold color that goes well with the rest of the house. To spruce up your front door even more, add some decor, such as a wreath or a decorative sign. 

Replace or Update Light Fixtures

Replacing faulty light fixtures is not only for decorative purposes. They can also be a safety issue, helping you spot anything that may be wrong. Motion lights can help you stay safe when walking at night and they can also be a deterrent to criminals. Check with your homeowner's insurance company to make sure your coverage is up to date and see if they offer any discounts for security features like lights.

If you already have good-looking light fixtures, sprucing them up with a coat of paint can help them look even better. 

Tend Your Lawn

Your lawn is likely going to be the first thing many people notice when they come over. This is why it's important to take good care of it. Mow it on a regular basis and rake any leaves that have fallen. If you have patches where the grass isn't growing properly, throw down some grass seeds and fertilizer. Weeds can easily take over your yard if you let them. When you mow the grass, you'll need to take care of the weeds too. There are some things you want to keep in mind when it comes to lawn maintenance, such as: 

  • Avoid cutting grass too short 
  • Keep the mower blades sharp 
  • Try to mow when you have shade 
  • Adjust the blade height accordingly 

You can also utilize a method called “grasscycling.” This is when you leave your grass clippings on the lawn after cutting. This helps to keep things fertilized. 

Plant and Maintain Flowers

Planting a garden is a great way to transform the look of your home's exterior, allowing you to get as creative as you'd like to be. Gardening is also a great hobby; it is known to be a great stress relief tool. When it comes to flowers, you can plant an assortment all over your yard in all the areas that need a splash of color and design. Hydrangeas are large plants that are spectacular when they bloom. They look good along the edges of a property. Azaleas are also plants that are often utilized for increased curb appeal because they sit nicely in flower beds and around the mailbox. They also look great along the porch.

Pressure Wash  

To brighten up the outside of your home, a very budget-friendly way to increase your curb appeal is to power wash your siding to clean off the dirt and grime that has accumulated. Always follow proper power washer safety, such as avoiding accidentally spraying yourself or anyone else because doing so can cause serious injuries.

It doesn't take a lot of effort to make your yard look well-maintained and pretty to look at, and it doesn't cost a lot either.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by one2c900d


Some Essential First Aid Items

16800384582_82bfe8ae70_c

Work can be dangerous. It does not matter what field; there are hazards at every job. There are the most obvious dangers on construction sites or assembly lines due to the heavy machinery, but even in an office, accidents can happen involving scissors, staplers, and such. Any use of tools creates a certain amount of risk. The best way to deal with the potential workplace mishaps is by being prepared. Every worksite needs to have a first aid kit so that if anything unfortunate does happen, it can be addressed quickly and efficiently. There are a few things that every great first aid kit should have inside.

Gloves

Gloves are an essential part of a first aid kit. It is impossible to be sure if a person's blood is safe, and in an emergency situation, there is no time to ask. A pair of gloves keeps that from being a problem. A few pairs of latex gloves will do the trick, but a lot of people are allergic to latex. Nitrile gloves can be a safer alternative.

Bandages

Bandages are given in first aid, and it is important to have a variety. Steri strips are a great alternative to stitches when attention needs to be given fast. You do not have the means to do stitches at home. Steri strips can solve the problem.

Normal bandages of various sizes can help manage any minor cuts, burns, or scratches. A roll of extra gauze will help to manage any excess bleeding. It is important to have large-sized pad type bandage with soft padding. This size has many uses but comes in handy mostly for use as an eye patch. Fingertip bandages are good for minor cuts and slices, such as papercuts.

Rubbing Alcohol

It is important to have a fast-acting antibacterial agent to get into cuts right away, even if they are minor. An injury may not seem so bad at first, but infection can creep in and make a relatively minor injury into a big problem. 

Not too long ago, people would still die of minor cuts because of infection that spread from the cut rather than the cut itself. The simple act of disinfecting an injury with alcohol before dressing it is the solution. Often, instead of liquid alcohol, a first aid kit will have single-use alcohol pads for disinfecting.

Antibacterial Ointment

Alcohol is good for a quick disinfecting but does not guarantee that everything will stay sterile. A thick antibiotic ointment, such as Bacitracin cream, will get deep into the wound and clean out lurking bacteria. It also has a comfort factor which makes it preferable over alcohol. 

While alcohol burns as it is applied to a wound a cream cools and soothes. The ointment should not be used instead of alcohol, however. If both are available, the injury should be cleaned with alcohol first and only be smeared with the cream just before applying the bandages.

Joint Wraps

An injury is not always as obvious as an open wound. Sometimes a person just pulls their wrist or ankle out of place. Just because an injury does not get blood everywhere does not mean it is just as critical or painful. A first aid kit should have elastic joint wraps for just such an occasion. 

A wrap helps to keep a dislocated joint in place by taking some of the pressure off of tendons with its elasticity. Applying a joint wrap can often even make a person feel better enough to get more work done, as long as the injury was only minor.

Eye Rinse

Eye rinse is usually just a simple saline solution, but it can prove to be the difference between keeping an eye or not. Any worksite that involves chemicals should have an eye washing station, but at least a bottle in the kit. A washout can keep chemical burns to a minimum. 

It is also important to have a rinse at any job that may have particles in the air, such as sawdust or metal shavings.

Tweezers

Tweezers are an important item to have in a first aid kit as well. When dressing a wound, it is crucial to remove any foreign material before covering it. Tweezers are perfect for removing tiny splinters and shards.

partnered post • cc-licensed photograph by DLG Images


How to save money on your wedding flowers & decor

5673200601_93e38c48ef_c

It's meant to be the happiest day of your life, and as a result a lot of couples head into the big day with the no expenses spared philosophy.

Unfortunately, there is only so far said policy can go. We don't have bottomless bank accounts, and there are some areas where you simply have to shave the bill to stay afloat.

As you may have gathered from the title, today's post is going to hone in on wedding flowers. These are one of the easiest things that you can adopt a DIY-approach for, or simply become creative, and save huge sums in the process. Let's take a look at some methods which can help you achieve this.

For the DIY enthusiast: find out what the experts are doing

You might have lots of experience when it comes to flowers (you may even be a florist in the making). If you fall into this category, feel free to move onto the next point.

However, for anyone else, try and buy from a reputable source first. For us, it was Avas Flowers. We looked for reviews on Avas Flowers first, before then progressing to look at the usual suspects like the Avas Flowers website and some of their Pinterest channels.

When they arrived, it just gave us a basic idea of what we need to do to at least compete with the professionals. Are you going to get anywhere near the standard of a professional florist? Probably not. However, by looking at the type of things that they do, you can gain some good insight into the types of flowers and arrangements that look the best with each other.

Stick with seasonal flowers

One of the easiest ways to cut costs, whether you do everything yourself or rely on a florist, is to stick to seasonal flowers. This follows the basic supply and demand principal. After all, if the flowers are difficult to get hold of, we all know what is going to happen to the price.

As such, stay as seasonal as can be. Some flowers are year-round, with roses and orchids usually falling into this category. These can help to cut your costs as well.

Big blooms can sometimes save you big sums

As a general rule of thumb, choosing the big blooms is going to cost a lot of money. For example, cymbidium orchids are the prime choice, but naturally have the big price tags.

However, there is a caveat. Sure, these flowers might cost more, but they also take up more space. It means that you require less of them, and can fill up the rest of your bouquet with creative greenery.

You don’t HAVE to turn to flowers

It might not be conventional, but this is why we have saved this last tip until the very end. An up and coming trend is to turn to a religious symbol, instead of the traditional bouquet that brides are famed for carrying.

Is this going to be suitable for all of you? Absolutely not. If it's appealing to you, it goes without saying that you can save significant sums of money though.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Andrew Davies


Choosing a Home: Old or New 

22652799397_d43121e821_h

If you're in the market for a home, the first decision you'll need to make is whether to buy new construction or an older house. Listed below are a few pros and cons to both to help you narrow the search to the one that best suits your needs. 

Character 

An older home, especially one that's more than half a century old, tends to have more character than new construction. This provides you with a unique layout and often a conglomeration of smaller bedrooms, parlor rooms, large kitchens, and grand living areas. Today, many of the new homes are predictable and cookie-cutter. This is especially true in newly developed neighborhoods where a single construction company developed the land. 

No Immediate Repairs 

One of the perks of purchasing new construction is the ability to move in without having to spend any money on repairs. In fact, you can count on having five years or more before you'll need to invest any money into the home. Whereas an older home generally has outdated electrical wiring that can't handle the demands of a high-tech, plugged-in era. Plumbing is another area that can cost many thousands to do a complete overhaul. Of course, with a product design degree and a wealth of knowledge in lighting design, you can change out the existing structures and bring in additional lighting as well, to suit your needs. 

Energy-Efficient 

One of the biggest downfalls of owning an older home is the lack of insulation. Most older homes are cold and drafty in the winter and warm in the summer months. To add insulation to every room and to replace single-pane windows and less than efficient doors can end up costing you a bundle. One the other hand, if you purchase a new home, the walls are insulated, the attic has insulation, the windows are double-paned and the doors are new and heavier. 

Updated Appliances 

When you buy new construction you acquire brand new updated appliances. This can help you to save a lot of money when it comes to cooking, washing dishes, and doing the laundry. New appliances will also help you to save money on your home's heating and cooling costs. On the other hand, an older home generally has outdated appliances, which in the end can ramp up your utility bills. 

Making Changes 

A new construction, especially during the building stages, brings with it choices. For instance, you can choose things such as what type of countertops you want in the kitchen, the grade of flooring, how many light switches in each room and the materials for cabinets. An older home is already complete, so while you can make changes, everyone will cost you additional money. 

The Price Tag 

If there's one benefit to purchasing an older home it’s the price tag. By comparison to new construction, you're talking about a significant difference, often to the tune of tens of thousands. If your budget is tight, purchasing an older home might prove to be a better fit, at least initially. 

Settled 

An older home has already weathered the storm and settled. You won't have any additional cracks in the walls over the next few years. Whereas a new home will need to settle and it can cause you to have to make minor repairs to ceilings, floors and walls. 

Easier to Get a Mortgage 

New construction home sites generally have a single builder who, in many cases, has a direct connection with an exclusive lender. This can make it very easy to not only know the requirement for a mortgage ahead of time but to actually get an approval as well. 

Before buying a house, make sure to weigh the pros and cons that come into play when buying a new home or an older home.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by Frank Lammel


How to Save Money for Your Dream House

2170878590_1a1009279c_c

There's nothing quite like the feeling of being a homeowner. You can rent out rooms, paint or remodel without asking permission from someone above you. Plus, it's a building that can stay within the family for years to come. As a result, it can become a source of generational wealth for your family. However, it's not a cheap investment. In order to save for the down payment, you'll need to set aside thousands of dollars. Thankfully, with intention and discipline, you can make it happen. 

Consider the following ways you can save up for your dream home:

  1. Cut your food budget in half.

If you're someone who likes to eat a lot of food at restaurants, it's time to quit that habit while you're saving for your dream house. If you look at your monthly bank statements and find that a large number of your transactions are food-related, you're letting money go down the drain. This is especially true when you could completely cut your food budget in half by cooking at home. Learn how to make your favorite latte drinks at home. Watch cooking shows on YouTube to learn how to cook your favorite meals. When you prepare great meals at home, it'll be easier to drive past the local fast-food restaurant. Plus, as you see that number rising in your savings account, you'll be surprised at how much you can save by cooking at home.

  1. Make the necessary sacrifices.

When you write down your goals on a daily basis, they remain at the top of your mind. As a result, you'll subconsciously make decisions that will help you get the results you're looking for. If you and your spouse are newlyweds who desire the perfect dream home, write down your goals together. Then, as you two make it a habit, you'll both find ways to become more resourceful. For instance, you two might choose budget-friendly men's black wedding bands and women's wedding rings. The money you save can be the same money that goes to the dream house down payment fund.

  1. Pick up a second job.

If the funds from the full-time job aren't enough to gain financial leverage, it's time to get a second job. In addition to applying for jobs at local establishments in your area, find ways to make some extra income on your own time. Babysitting, rideshare services and cleaning houses are great ways to pad the savings account with more funds.

  1. Make accounts difficult to access.

When the money begins to add up, one of the worst things you can do is cut into the funds. If you're not disciplined enough to leave the money in the account, make your savings account inaccessible to you. Connect it to the direct deposit of your second job so that you don't see that paycheck at all. Use a separate bank account that you can access with the swipe of a debit card. There are plenty of banks that penalize you for taking money out of your savings account too often. Find one of those accounts so that you can stick with the savings program you designed for your future home fund.

When you're preparing for ownership, you don't need to cut corners in order to get what you want. After all, this is your dream home. Just know that in order to get the dream, you might have to save a lot more in order to beat out the other buyers in a competitive market. With these tips and the right realtor, you can make your dream a reality.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by Marcel Lemieux


Protect Yourself from Identity Theft During a Move with These 5 Tips 

31741053885_31eeca4b64_h

Moving to a new home is anything but easy, and everyone is constantly looking for ways to make the moving day process easier. It requires a lot of patience, planning, and packing to pull off a move, whether it’s across town or across the state. 

One thing many people who are moving don't realize is that you're also transporting your personal information from one place to the other, which makes you a prime target for identity theft. Identity theft fluctuates from year to year, but the one thing that remains the same is the fact that anyone can become a victim. 

While many communities and homeowners have a package delivery lock box system in place, there are a few other tips you should follow to ensure your identity isn't stolen during a move. Read on below for a few of those tips. 

Choose a Credible Moving Company

It’s important to do your due diligence when you’re getting ready for a move. This means that you should not hire the first moving company you find online. It’s easier to find a good moving company if you seek referrals from family, friends, and even co-workers who have used a moving company before. Even when armed with referrals you need to do careful research to make sure the people who work for the moving company are legal and trustworthy. Ask the company to provide the information needed; if they refuse, then you need to find another company to move your stuff. 

Put in a Change of Address

You would be surprised at the number of people who forget or just don’t put in a change of address when they move to a new location. This means that your bills, parcels, and even your bank statements are going to be going to an address that you don't live at any longer. It's important to put in a change of address before you move, so it has time to kick in before your final day living at your current residence. 

Keep Your Electronic Devices Secure 

Before the movers come, make sure to shut down and secure any electronics in the house. This includes laptops, computers, and tablets. As a matter of fact, it is usually best if you move these items yourself. This way, you don’t have to worry about the electronics being damaged. You're also ensuring that no one can hack into your computer and retrieve your personal documents and other information. 

Move Your Personal Documents Yourself 

It’s never a good idea to throw personal documents into a box, tape them up, and leave them for the movers to transport. Instead, get all of your personal and sensitive information together and move it yourself. It’s a great way to ensure no one is able to look through your stuff and find things that allow them to steal your identity. 

Always be Present During the Move 

While it may be tempting to go do some of the other million things you need to do during the moving process and leave the movers to take care of the moving, it’s not a good idea. You need to be clear and present and able to supervise the movers while they are loading your boxes and other belongings. There is so much being transported that it would be easy for a few things to go missing, and you don’t notice it until it’s too late and your identity has been stolen. 

These are just a few tips that you should follow to prevent identity theft when you’re moving from one location to the other. Remember, while most moving company employees are good people, there are those that aren’t, so it's better to be safe than sorry.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by CafeCredit


Alternative Funding for Real Estate Investments

Screen Shot 2020-01-27 at 9.00.03 AM

The real estate investment business is blowing up. Everyone who is anyone has come to realize the long and short-term earning potential that comes from purchasing properties. Whether the purchase of the property is to increase its value and flip or to update it and rent it out, property investors are able to supplement and even surpass their traditional income. Though investing in real estate can be a lucrative opportunity, many avoid getting involved due to costs. 

It’s true, purchasing a property can be expensive. If you don’t have thousands of dollars saved up for the purchase of the property, repairs, and other associated fees, you’ll need to find other financial resources to invest. While the most common choice would be to take out a second or third mortgage, the eligibility requirements are strict and not everyone can get approved. Fortunately, there are alternative funding options you can turn to such as those listed below: 

Hard Money Loans

One of the first alternative funding solutions for real estate investments is hard money loans. These are loans provided by investors or private companies to those interested in investing in real estate. As this guide to hard money loans points out, they’re a lot easier to qualify for than a traditional mortgage. This is because borrowers put collateral (the property you’re purchasing) against the loan. So, should they default, the lenders can take over the property to compensate for the financial loss.  While credit, track record, and income/capital do still matter, the underwriting process is a lot less strict and easier to get through. 

To apply for a hard money loan, you’ll need to have as much information as you can on the property. This includes its resale value before and after repairs have been completed, how much repairs will cost, and how long it will take to get the property sold or rented out. The loans are typically for a term of 1-5 years and investors can repay these quickly by flipping the properties and using the proceeds to repay the loan in full. 

Retirement Loans

Another option for those interested in investing in real estate is to borrow from your retirement account. Depending on the type of account you have you are able to borrow as much as 50% of your account balance. While there are some interest and fees applied to the loan, you will have up to five years to repay the balance in full. Keep in mind, however, that should you go this route there are tax implications you will have to account for. Also, if the loan is not repaid in full as agreed you can also have to pay penalties and fees to the local and federal governments. Again, a retirement loan can quickly be repaid by using part of your profit to pay the balance in full or applying a portion of the monthly rental income to the retirement loan payments. 

Bring in Partners

Do you know someone else who would be interested in investing in real estate with you? Perhaps a relative, co-worker, or friend that you trust? If you know them to be pretty good professionals, have a great work ethic, and also have the capital to help reduce your out of pocket costs, why not consider it? Adding someone else to the mix means more financial resources. It can make it easier for you both to get approved for loans and/or add more money to the pot from your personal finances (i.e. savings, retirement, life insurance, etc.). If you’re going to partner with someone, however, be sure that you have drawn up a contract that protects you both. 

Liquidate Assets

If you’re really serious about investing in real estate and don’t want to take on too much debt or acquire a partner, there are still ways to find capital. This option would require you to sell things of value. If you have two vehicles, for instance, you could sell one and put the cash towards purchasing an investment property. You can take out a home equity loan on any existing properties that have equity in them, sell some shares of your stock, or have a yard sale and get rid of things you have lying around the house.

Investing in real estate isn’t cheap, but that doesn’t mean you need to be rich and famous to get into this market. All it takes is a bit of creativity, sacrifice, and the above-mentioned financial resources. Once you’re able to secure funds to purchase the property, the goal is to get it up to code, complete remodels that help to increase the value, and get it sold or rented out so that you can repay the loans in full while also turning a profit.

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed image by InvestmentZen


Home Decor Trends for 2020

Armin-djuhic-mcL2f-J74GY-unsplash

As we enter into 2020, we are entering into a new decade of design. While many home decor trends tend to last longer than just one year, this year is significant; It marks the start of a new era. Trends are only temporary, but this year sets the tone for what you will eventually look back on as the “2020s.” So what are the upcoming trends that interior designers are raving about?

Black is Back

The all-white trend has been one of the biggest recent trends in home design; it brought a clean, minimalistic, and brightening feel to a room, and has been especially popular in kitchen design. However, it is predicted that this trend will quickly diminish in 2020 as it lacks personality.

Instead, the contrasting black and white color scheme is beginning to make its comeback. This bold color combo allows the bright white element to remain while adding pops of pattern and sleek style.

The color black has been avoided previously since it has the potential to make a room feel smaller. To avoid this issue, refrain from painting entire walls black. Open up the room in other ways with features such as open shelving found at ezfloatingshelf.com.

Customize with Couches

Retro or classy, the rounded couches are in again. The best thing about this trend is that you can customize the look to fit the setting and personality of your home. The material and color of your couch can add a unique element to your living space. Velvet is a popular choice amongst these trendy (and comfortable) pieces of furniture.

So hit up the thrift stores and give that retro rounded couch a go, or opt for a cozy velvet sofa to spice up your living room.

New Entry Era

Colorfully-painted front doors have created a fun pop of color to homes seeking more personality, but have you considered painting a door within your home? Dark painted doors are making an appearance this year as we step away from the ordinary white we see in every entryway.

Painting doors with a rich neutral color can add character without the hassle of painting an entire wall. You don’t want your colored door to be too distracting, but it can add a touch of creative elegance when done right. 

Touch of Warmth

The “bright whites” trend has been all the rage lately, but these blank color palettes are fading out as designers start to lean towards the warm side of the color spectrum. So if the black and white trend doesn’t fit the feel of your home, then try a slight change in tone from cool whites to warm. Play around with subtle undertones of yellow, orange, and pink. Rather than all white, try adding in some beige and warm greys. 

These are just a few of the upcoming design changes to expect in 2020. There’s much to look forward to with contrasting tones, unique couches, painted doors, warm palettes, and more. Here’s to the new decade of design!

partnered post • photo by armin djuhic on Unsplash


Yard Design Ideas for Small Spaces

1029954331_2491f735be_c

Your backyard serves as an extension of your home. When the weather allows, it is a place you can retreat to for relaxation, fun, and entertainment. For properties with smaller yards,  the idea of turning it into an outdoor oasis seems impossible. The space seems too small to create anything worth enjoying. Contrary to popular belief, however, there are lots of things you can do with a small backyard. Here are some yard design ideas for small spaces: 

Create Separate Spaces

One way to make your yard more functional and appear larger is to divide it up into separate spaces. You might have a patio which would be used for sitting, cooking, and entertainment, a grassy area for the children and pets to run around and play in, and a designated area for a small garden in another corner.

Install an Outdoor Kitchen

Adding an outdoor kitchen to your backyard not only adds aesthetic appeal, but it can also help to boost the overall value of your property. If you enjoy preparing meals outdoors or entertaining during warmer weather, an outdoor kitchen can be very instrumental in helping you to enjoy your yard even further. Don’t let the limited space stop you, as there plenty of outdoor kitchen ideas for small spaces you can draw inspiration from. You can use a portion of your patio and lounge area to install a small stove, a mini-fridge, and a kitchen island. 

Go Minimal But Comfortable with Furniture

To truly enjoy your backyard, you need comfortable furniture. While your outdoor space may be small, there are plenty of options when selecting furniture. Instead of a full-sized patio set, you could swing for a small bistro table and a few comfy chairs with cushions. If you feel comfortable, you could ditch the table and chair concept altogether and instead invest in large pillows and bean bags to set up when you’re ready to kick back and relax or share a meal outdoors. Don’t have the room for a firepit? You can always go for a tabletop fire pit instead which can still provide some heat during those chilly nights. 

Use Planters Instead of a Garden

Do you like the idea of having fresh fruits, veggies, plants, and flowers growing in your yard? While you may not have much space or a lot of soil to create a traditional garden, that doesn’t mean you have to forego the produce or greenery altogether. Instead, incorporate it into your yard’s layout and decor with the help of planters. A few potted flowers and plants strategically placed on stairs or hung from awnings can liven the space up. A box garden is also easy to build and maintain as well. 

String Lights for Safety and Ambiance

A well-lit backyard is ideal for safety and is a great way to set the mood and keep the party going long after the sun goes down. Installing too many outdoor lamps or landscape lighting features can clutter your backyard making it look even smaller. Instead, purchase string lights and hang them from walls, pillars, awnings, and other tall structures. They come in an array of colors and levels of brightness to compliment the rest of your yard’s decor. 

Finish With Statement-Making Decor

No outdoor living space is complete without decor to give it more of a home vibe. Just as you would if you were renovating in other parts of your home, think about color schemes and/or themes you’re going for in the yard. Then, do some shopping to find neat items to personalize your space. For instance, you might want to invest in tiles for your patio, cushions for your yard chairs, vases and sculptures for your tables, and water features like tabletop fountains for your tables. 

When you watch home improvement shows or look at home magazines it can be easy to assume that your small yard can never be transformed into the outdoor sanctuaries that you dream about. While it will take some creativity, compromise, and effort, the reality is that there are plenty of ways to create an extension of your home that can be enjoyed all year long. Hopefully, some of the above-mentioned ideas have given you some inspiration to turn your small yard into a space you can’t wait to relax, have fun, and entertain in. 

brought to you by our site supporters • cc-licensed photo by Jeff Sandquist


How to Update Your Kitchen without Having to Gut It

Screen Shot 2020-01-13 at 2.42.10 PM

When it comes to kitchen renovations and remodels, many people take the approach of “go big or go home” and completely gut the room right down to the studs. While this is a great way to get some impactful results, it doesn’t have to be the approach you take. Updating your kitchen, creating a fresh new modern look, and making it more functional in general can be done without having to totally gut the space.

Here we’ll take a look at a number of ways you can refresh and update your kitchen in a relatively short period of time, making it feel like a whole new room, without turning it into a massive renovation project.

Give Your Appliances a Good Cleaning

If your appliances are starting to look a bit tired and worn, this isn’t a sign that you need to rush out and replace them. Let’s face it, major appliances such as an oven, dishwasher, and refrigerator aren’t cheap. Instead, they may just need a good and thorough cleaning. 

While you’re giving all the appliances a deep cleaning, this is also the perfect time to replace your fridge filter, which will help it to run efficiently. Companies like the Discount Filter Store offer homeowners the ability to shop from home, and search out the exact filter they need for their particular model. The Discount Filter Store also sells water filters, under sink filters, and reverse osmosis filters - all of which may be due for replacement in the kitchen.

Paint – Big Results for Little Investment

For those looking to get the maximum bang for their buck, painting is an excellent option. Even if you still like the color of your kitchen, if it’s been more than a few years, there’s a good chance the paint could use some refreshing. Putting a fresh coat of paint on the walls helps to brighten up the room, and makes it feel cleaner and just more modern in general.

Create a Customized Cupboard Look for Less

Another area that can create a lot of expense and mess is ripping out the existing cupboards and replacing them with a custom option. Sure, it would look great, but it's not necessary to go to these extremes. You can create a customized look by switching out the hardware, adding under cupboard lighting, and refinishing your cupboards (if the material allows for it).

Install Additional Lighting

The kitchen is one room of the house that needs to be highly-functional. People can spend a fair amount of time in the room preparing meals and then sharing it with friends and family. With that said, adequate lighting is very much needed. Installing additional lighting and also changing up the current fixtures can completely transform the space.

Keep in mind that if you do want to install additional lighting, you'll need to hire an electrician to come out and install the proper wiring for the new fixtures.

A Fresh New Kitchen

By following these tips, you’ll be able to create a fresh and modern feel in your kitchen without having to gut it and take on projects that are too big and too costly.

partnered post • photo from Pixabay


Big Home Remodeling Mistakes That Need To Be Avoided At All Costs

Screen Shot 2020-01-08 at 9.09.40 AM

Homeowners are not really inclined to put their money into remodeling projects because home sales are now declining. It is no wonder to see this since home remodeling is definitely expensive. You want to maximize your time and money so you need to be aware of the various remodeling mistakes that are common these days. This will help you to make the most out of your budget and actually make your renovations less stressful. 

Adding Too Many Fixtures

Fancy fixtures are always loved but they do not actually help when you want to sell a home. This is where square footage is much more important. There are many real estate agents that hate the fact that price is usually determined based on a per-square-foot basis. It does not say much about space quality but it is what the buyers mainly look at. 

Try not to add countless custom features to your home during a remodel project. This is only a good idea if you do not ever intend to sell the house. If you do, you have to keep fixtures at a minimum. 

Working With Unlicensed Contractors

It is really tempting to work with your friends when they are handymen or have some experience in doing work like plumbing or electricity. Unfortunately, future costs can easily exceed how much money you put into the project. It is paramount that you hire only licensed contractors, no matter what work you need to be done. If you want to do plumbing work, hire someone like https://www.fixitrightplumbing.com.au/plumber-canberra/blocked-drains-canberra/

Remember that most of the home improvement projects will require permits. When the contractor is unlicensed, permits cannot be legally pulled. You might end up with really bad property damage because of the shoddy work that was done. This is especially the case when the remodeling work requires some sort of demolishing. 

Improper Order For Remodeling Jobs

When you plan home remodeling, budget is vital. This is obvious. What is not really obvious is how this is done. So many homeowners end up neglecting a huge part of the entire project, which is workflow. If planning is poor, you end up with huge delays. That will only add costs. 

Different things that happen as you remodel your home need to be done in a specific order. As an example, you cannot refinish your flooring and then start painting the home. This is because during painting, floor coverings can end up damaged. 

The Problem With Huge Structural Changes

It is often tempting to make some large structural changes to your home but these are rarely a good idea. Real estate agents all agree that such changes, like when you move plumbing around or tear down walls, end up being a bad investment. They will cost a lot, take a lot of time and require harder engineering work. It is just not worth it since you will not be able to recover the money that is put into the project. It is always much better to focus on the changes that actually need to be done, like plumbing repairs.

partnered post • client image


2020: Natural Elements Blending in Home Designs

9989408953_70640fb18f_k

Home Designers: Natural Materials and Sustainable Living

The new year of 2020 offers so much in terms of home designs and natural styles. Natural beauty within the home is trending and many people have opted to use natural items throughout their homes. We are bringing more of the natural elements inside.

You may be curious about the trending of natural materials that will be used by designers. In a sense, nature is being brought into homes for beauty and enjoyment. Can you imagine incorporating beautiful barn doors with barn door track and hardware inside of your home? The possibilities are endless in terms of natural materials that can be used for stunning home designs. Natural materials are in abundance for grand designs. They include the following materials:

1. Travertine 

This is a great choice for countertops, floors, showers, bathrooms, and more. It is a natural stone tile and it can come in highly unique patterns and breathtaking colors. It is reasonably priced and offers a large variety of uses in a home. It is viewed as a type of limestone and tends to provide a sense of sophistication and it is a natural material.

2. Bamboo

This is a highly sustainable, natural material that offers durability too. A bamboo floor or window treatment can be blended beautifully into a home design. This natural composite material offers many different uses in a structure.

3. Leather

Leather has many uses and it is not just for furniture. It is smooth and adds comfort to any home or piece of furniture. Natural leather is often used for upholstery purposes in home design. It adds much comfort and softness.

4. Seagrass

This can really look amazing in a variety of different household schemes. It is a durable and natural material that looks marvelous in a rug. When seagrass is used in a natural way, beautiful styles and furniture can be created with this natural material.

5. Iron

This natural material has many uses and it tends to offer a very distinguished ambiance in a room. It is a common metal that will go well with many styles. Iron offers many options and will look appealing in most rooms.

6. Rattan

Rattan is a superb option that looks stunning in a woven basket or it can be used to enhance a piece of furniture. A covered patio is an excellent spot for this natural material. It is derived from palms and adds lush texture to any room.

7. Feathers

You can find many knickknacks, upholstered furniture pieces, and outstanding accessories made with feathers. They can be used to create stunning wall hangings and much more.

These are only a sample of the natural materials being used by home designers. Many people love the idea of bringing the beauty of nature right into their homes. Add a touch of natural beauty into your home and leave a greener footprint this year. Furniture and other items in the home can be highly intriguing in this day and age. Gone are the standard and routine items that used to fill homes across the globe. It is time to say “hello” to unique and natural.

Nature and Beauty In the Home

The trends are definitely moving toward natural beauty and nature in homes everywhere. Solar is making a big impact on the environment. Homes in the city and homes in the country setting are being designed to benefit the planet in positive ways. More and more home designers are weaving the natural elements into their designs. 

Sustainable designs and natural materials are known for benefitting the health of homeowners and proving to be useful in terms of restoring the planet. The rise in environmental awareness has impacted many different areas of our lives, including the construction of homes and the way they are designed. These changes have been occurring over the last few years. 

Natural materials are healthy for the inhabitants and their well-being. They offer a cozy and calm ambiance too. The natural materials can be viewed as a simple change in style. Natural materials will not be going out of style in the near future. Health-conscious homes filled with natural beauty are surrounding us and making life more fulfilling and intriguing for many. A sustainable home will offer many advantages for years to come. Saving money and enhancing health are a few of the benefits of incorporating the natural elements in home designs.

partnered post • cc-licensed image by Hazel Owen