Category Archives: Life

Home Organization Tips To Make The Most Of Your Space

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It can be hard to keep your home organized, especially if you have very limited storage space. Most people generally just stop cleaning up after themselves because they don’t know where to put all the things they picked up. However, the key to smart home organization is choosing the right objects for storage and making the most of the space you do have. Try some of the organizational tips below to get started!

Baskets And Storage Benches

One of the best inventions in terms of home decorating are storage benches and ottomans that open up to reveal empty space. Regardless of how much space you have, you need furniture pieces and accessories that serve multiple functions. Choose an ottoman for your favorite chair that has inside storage and try placing a bench in your hallway to hide your shoes.

Large baskets with or without lids are a shabby chic way of keeping your home cozy and clutter free. Baskets can help you organize your magazines, remote controls, extra blankets, toys and pillows. If you don’t want others to see your clutter, just buy baskets with lids on top.

Closet Space And Organizers

Most homes don’t have walk-in closets and it can be really hard to make the most of your closet space, but all you really need is the right closet organizer. Before opting to purchase a closet organizer, take a look at all of the things you want to store. How much of it do you want to hang? What are the items you need to fold?

If you don’t have a lot of items that need to be hung, you can opt for an organizer with one rod and lots of shelves. If there is enough space in your closet, add a shoe rack or plastic storage boxes for the rest of your things.

Tall Shelves Are The Key

You don’t have to have a lot of books, but if you have many things you want to display, tall bookshelves are the way to go. They can serve as a great way to separate spaces in your living room, and they can save space as you can display much more than your average trinkets.

Photo Boxes And Jars

Photo boxes are very affordable and have almost any pattern and design imaginable. They are a great way to hide your photos, extra trinkets, or clear up the clutter in your office. They also allow you to place your labels on the end to avoid guessing the contents.

Clear glass jars provide extra storage in your bathroom and kitchen. You can store food in the jars or bathroom accessories such as q-tips, travel lotions, cotton balls, band aids and makeup brushes.

The most important thing to consider when keeping your home organized is functional storage. Only purchase furniture and accessories that make sense and don’t add to the clutter.

Some Benefits of Exterior Remodeling On Your Home

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When many people think about remodeling their homes, they tend to focus on the interior. This is only natural, since most of us spend more times inside our homes than we do outside. However, an exterior remodeling job offers many benefits as well, so it is a good idea to pay attention to both the inside and the outside of your home.

If you are planning to put your house on the market in the near future, remodeling the exterior is of great importance. Enhancing the curb appeal of your property will make it a lot easier to find a seller. When people get their first look at your house, you want them to be amazed at how nice it looks.

A home that is dingy and run-down looking from the outside is going to be a lot harder to sell. Even if the interior of your home looks amazing, it is going to be hard to overcome that negative first impression created by a shabby exterior. Put as much effort into the outside of your home as the inside when you are trying to sell.

Other exterior remodeling projects can be very beneficial if you are planning on staying in your home for a while. It is increasingly popular these days to create outdoor rooms for entertaining. Adding a deck or patio lets you make better use of the space you have in your yard. This way, you can entertain, throw parties, or even just enjoy an outdoor meal in nice weather.

Creating an outdoor refuge is another good way to remodel the outside of your home. A quiet retreat where you can get away from the stresses and strains of everyday life can be very relaxing. These and other ideas are great ways to remodel the exterior of your home.

Professional Advice For Choosing A Top Contractor

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Choosing a contractor can be challenging, due to the great number of variables you’re dealing with. The most volatile variable is nearly always unpredictability, simply because you don’t have a crystal ball with which to see into the future. What you do have though, is a good head on your shoulders. All that’s needed is a little bit of sound and professional advice.  Whenever I compare contractors I always compare them to one I trust.  When I lived in Chicago I used Innovative Home Concepts for several projects and they did great.  Now when I’m shopping for home improvements I size them up to Innovative.

Ask For Personal Recommendations

It’s very important that the professionals you hire are proven. Ask people you know who may have had personal experience with contractors if they can recommend a specific business to you. Having first-hand knowledge about people’s competence, work habits, prices and general attitude will be of enormous assistance in your search.

Conduct Electronic Interviews

Get to know the different contractors on your list of recommendations personally through email and phone conversations. Ask the vital questions that will reveal who the best person or people for the job are and that will lead to the greatest satisfaction for you. Inquire about their relationship with contractors and financiers. Make sure your particular job is of suitable size for them and that they won’t have too many others underway at the time they will be working on yours.

Have A Meet Up

Narrow your choices down and schedule a meeting in person. Knowing the contractor already fits a certain criteria means you won’t be wasting their time or yours, so be thorough in your initial investigations and qualify anyone with whom you will meet with thereafter. Evaluate personality and character and follow-up with what your instincts tell you by verifying all credentials and checking up on them with the BBB and review sites. Remember that the contractor of your choice will be spending a lot of time with you in the near future and compatibility is a must.

Accept A Few Bids

Provide your prospective professionals with blueprints and details, then ask for a bid. Have them break down the total cost and show you exactly what you’re paying for. Leave no stone unturned in this part of the process, as there’s nothing worse than surprise charges when they’re half way through the job. Figure that almost fifty percent of your entire bill will be based on materials required. Compare that part of the deal with other contractors as well as other crucial components. Negotiations can then get underway

Get Everything In Writing

No matter how good of an impression you have of your hired contractor, get a written contract. Make sure it’s well detailed, including an estimate for how long the job will take. Consider things like insurance and warranties too. Whether the work to be done is small and easy or enormous and involved, protect yourself in every aspect of it and read the fine print.

Hopefully, choosing the best contractor for you will be tough, because you find so many highly qualified candidates. Given the importance of the job at hand though, your best bet is to be a wise and defensive-minded consumer and demand nothing short of the very best.

Tips For Increasing The Curb Appeal Of Your Home

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With houses, as with people, you only get one chance to make a first impression. When you are trying to sell your home, you need to impress people right away. If the exterior of your home is unappealing, potential buyers are going to be turned away. Taking the time to enhance the curb appeal can really pay off in the long run.

If you are trying to sell your home in the spring, you need to clean it up from the long, cold winter. The exterior of your home can become quite dingy over the winter, so spend some time cleaning it up. A power washer can make the job go a lot faster. Clean up any salt residue or dirt left over from the winter, and give the windows and siding a thorough cleaning.

Even if your flowers have not come up yet, make sure that your flower beds look presentable. If you have dormant hostas or other plants, trim them close to the ground. Gather any sticks or branches that may have accumulated and remove them from your yard. A new layer of mulch can also make the outside of your home look a lot nicer, so add some to your beds.

Go out to the street and see what your house looks like to drivers passing by. Can they get a clear view of your home, or is it obstructed by low-hanging branches? If so, trim these back so that buyers can get a good look at your home right away. Any other obstructions that block the view of your house should also be removed.

Colorful pots and containers with plants growing in them can enhance the curb appeal of your home. These can be very useful when you are putting your house on the market in early spring, before your garden is in full bloom. Put some pots on your front steps or in your flower beds to add some visual appeal to your front yard.

Be sure to clean your gutters before trying to sell your house. If your gutters are full of sticks, leaves, and dirt, this can be a real eyesore. Get up on the ladder and give those gutters a good cleaning to make your home look as tidy as possible.

Curb appeal is an important part of selling a home, so use these tips to make your home look as nice as possible.

Fast And Easy Tips For Organizing Your Home

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When you get home at the end of the day, the last thing that you probably want to do is spend hours cleaning and reorganizing your home. However, if you keep putting off this job, before long your home will be too messy to live in. Fortunately, getting organized does not have to take forever. With these quick and easy home organization tips, you can clean up in a flash!

If you need more storage space in your bedroom, do not neglect the space under your bed. Many people use this area as nothing more than a place for dust to gather, but the space beneath your bed is the perfect spot to store all sorts of things. Use sliding or rolling containers to store out-of-season clothes or other items.

Part of staying organized is just developing the habit of putting things away when you are done with them. A good way to start is by making your bed every morning after you get up. Once part of your home is tidy, it is easier to keep the rest of it from getting as messy.

Bathrooms can frequently become very cluttered and messy, especially if they are shared by several people. If you keep finding bottles of shampoo, hair brushes, and lotion everywhere, a good solution is to buy a plastic container for each person to keep their items in. These containers can be kept under the sink and taken out when needed.

If you have a home office, keeping it neat and tidy can be a chore. However, the neater and more organized you are, the more productive you will be. If you are always having to hunt for the things you need, you will end up wasting a lot of time that you could be spending doing work.

Organize your home office into different zones. For example, one zone could be for work, where you actually sit down and get stuff done. A second zone can be for reference materials, such as computer manuals, dictionaries, and other items that you need to refer to. Finally, set up a third zone for supplies, such as printer paper, toner cartridges, pens, and pencils.

Keeping your home organized does not have to take a lot of time. Once you learn a few basic principles, you can stay organized and on top of things with ease.