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If you are planning to install new kitchen cupboards, consider cupboards with very little detail and think long and hard about what handles or knobs you use. A lot of detail means more cleaning. I don't know about anyone else, but scrubbing nooks and crannies on my cupboards is not high on my list of fun things to do. Also the cupboard handles are knobs and when working at my counter, quite often when I try to walk away, I get hauled back because my pocket or some part of my clothing has caught on the knob. I don't plan (6 comments)
Poisonous Plants - 11/28/10 12:19 PM
Christmas plants lend a feeling of holiday cheer to your home during this festive season. However, beware that poinsettia leaves can be toxic. Sometimes eating the leaves can cause vomiting and a latex substance in the leaves is caustic to the eyes and mouth. Keep toddlers and pets away from the plants and pick up any leaves that have dropped to the ground. It is a good idea to keep young children away from all houseplants just to be safe. (4 comments)
Christmas Gift for New Homeowner - 11/26/10 11:47 AM
A good idea for a Christmas gift or a gift from a Realtor® for a new homeowner is a basic tool kit. A number of basic tools are a must; a metal hammer, screwdrivers with a variety of heads, a small saw, electric drill, adjustable wrench, pliers and measuring stick. Sandpaper and an assortment of screws and nails are also very handy. These tools will help with simple repairs such as tightening drawer handles, adjusting a door, installing a lock, hammering a nail that is sticking out etc. (7 comments)
How Much Can You Afford - 11/24/10 10:27 AM
It is important to be prequalified by a bank or mortgage company before you start looking for a home. If you have decided on your lender then get the credit check and a prequalification letter. Also you may be able to afford a more expensive home than you thought. I had clients who thought they were prequalified but no credit check was done. It turned out they had to have someone co-sign for their loan. Luckily I had them get prequalified before we started looking at houses. Remember that if you get into a bidding war, the bank may not feel (3 comments)
Carpet Maintenance - 11/22/10 03:35 PM
It is important to keep your carpets clean and in good condition. Some hints for this are: Wipe up spills immediately. If left, they can permanently stain or discolour your carpet. Sweet drinks, especially cola can leave a black mark. Remember to blot the spill, don't scrub. Vacuum the carpets regularly, at least once a week if it is a high traffic area. Put down a mat at the entrance. This will collect a lot of dirt that your bring into the house. Removing your shoes indoors also helps to keep the carpets clean. If you wear your shoes in the (3 comments)
Wild Colour - 11/19/10 10:26 AM
When you want to put your house on the market, make sure the walls are freshly painted in neutral colours. The buyers can always paint, however , maybe they don't like to paint. Also they will always over estimate the cost of having the home painted. Do it yourself or hire a professional so it is fresh and clean. If it is a do it yourself job, make sure the paint job looks professional. Paint on the ceilings, missed spots or just sloppy work isn't worth your effort. It will have to be done again. If a buyer goes into a (2 comments)
Hard to Sell Homes - 11/17/10 10:50 AM
Some sellers don't realize the importance of an uncluttered home. I recently went through a newly listed home that had so much stuff that I didn't know where to look. I almost got a headache thinking of packing it all up and moving it. The homeowners where downsizing. I don't remember much about the house, but sure remember the clutter. If as a Realtor® all I remember is clutter, then what will be the reaction of a Buyer? If you are going to move, it will have to be packed, so do it before you put your home on the market. (3 comments)
Considerations When Buying a Home - 11/16/10 09:38 AM
Be sure the neighbourhood you are looking at is where you want to live. You won't be happy even in the nicest home if it is in a bad area. If you really love a certain part of town but it's out of your price range you may want to consider buying a less-than-perfect home then doing renovations. Renovations can be expensive. The greatest payback on renovations are the kitchen 70-80%, bathroom 70%, interior painting 90%, floors 90%, exterior painting 60%. However, this depends on how much you spend. A kitchen can cost you $10,000 - $70,000 depending on choice of (4 comments)
Increasing Your Closet Space - 11/10/10 09:00 PM
To most people, the thought or organizing their closet space is a daunting prospect. The tiniest closet can be changed without breaking the budget. Shelving units, baskets and bins or whatever fits in your closet can be used to add more storage. Before your reorganize your closet, remove everything and discard unused items. A good rule is toss anything that you haven't used or warn in the past year. Give unused items to charity. Add shelves right to the ceiling to add more storage. A variety of shelving for shoes, sweaters, handbags, etc. will give you more space. A shoe rack (3 comments)
How to Make Your Home Look Modern and Up-to-date - 11/05/10 02:24 PM
Open the space by tearing out unnecessary dropped ceilings / bulkheads, etc to lighten the space. Beautiful floors in dark walnut, cherrywood or maple hardwood give a warm feeling to a home. Choose wall-to-wall carpet in a sisal or low pile in a neutral shade to keep your home looking light and airy. Be sure to purchase a good underpad to make the carpet last longer and give it a comfortable luxurious feel. It is well worth the extra expense. Use a mix of old and new furniture pieces focusing on traditional classical lines for the larger items, some vintage if possible. (5 comments)
Information for First Time Home Buyers - 11/02/10 12:20 PM
Before shopping for your first home, it is important to get preapproved with your bank or a mortgage broker. They will be able to tell you what size mortgage you can afford. They will also do a credit check. A good credit rating will give you the best mortgage at the best rates. You can still get a mortgage with a lesser credit rating but it will be at a higher interest rate. Your Beacon Score is what determines your rating. Be aware that every time you get credit (i.e. a new credit card) or have your credit checked it affects (1 comments)
Renovating Your Kitchen - 11/01/10 12:09 PM
Renovating your kitchen is a good investment in your home. You can get 80-100% back on resale of your home with a well planned kitchen renovation. You will get back the most on a resale if you don't go too high end. Granite or solid surface counters are most attractive and will give good payback. Most buyers cannot tell overly expensive cupboards from moderately priced ones, so it doesn't always pay to go overboard on this part of the renovation. Think carefully about the layout, the way you use your kitchen and what bells and whistles you want. Pot drawers are (0 comments)
Disclaimer: ActiveRain Corp. does not necessarily endorse the real estate agents, loan officers and brokers listed on this site. These real estate profiles, blogs and blog entries are provided here as a courtesy to our visitors to help them make an informed decision when buying or selling a house. ActiveRain Corp. takes no responsibility for the content in these profiles, that are written by the members of this community.