Category Archives: Real Estate News

How to Keep Your Family Organized

Wishing for efficient, effective home care? Make yourself a plan to tackle everything your busy life throws at you and make your job as Mom or Dad easier. Here are eight tips for keeping your family organized by implementing a home organization routine that will streamline your life.

  1. Downsize and donate. Create donation boxes dedicated to toys, clothes and household items you don’t want in order to make room for new things while also lending a helping hand.
  2. Get rid of clutter. Imagine the daunting buildup of useless stuff you’ll face at the dawn of 2018 if you don’t take the time this year to give away things you don’t need while getting rid of any unnecessary clutter in and around your home.
  3. Label shelves, drawers and containers. Fantasizing about your kids picking up after themselves will be so 2016 once you label the places where everything you’ve decided to keep will go, and make it easy for everyone to put things back in the right places.
  4. Clean storage spaces. Enjoy your clutter-free home even more after you empty your storage areas, such as drawers, closets and cabinets; clean them thoroughly; and put the items back in an orderly fashion.
  5. Plan meals ahead of time. Appreciating your clean living spaces is something you can do after you’ve completed your other duties as a parent, so start by planning your meals a day ahead to make your life easier.
  6. Organize work and play time. Munching on your well-thought-out meals is much more satisfying when your kids have finished their homework and you’ve completed your full day of work, so mark designated working and relaxing hours on your calendar to keep everyone in your family on track.
  7. Narrow down extracurricular activities. Benefiting from scheduled work and fun time is even easier when everyone is focused on and dedicated to their hobbies, so limit your kids to three hobbies per season, and cut back on the running around you have to do on a weekly basis.
  8. Make a schedule. Bask in your beautiful, organized home and high-functioning family life once you’ve made a weekly schedule dedicated to carrying out each and every tip successfully throughout the year.

A fast, simple route to an orderly living space and a prosperous family life is what every family needs. This collection of eight tips for keeping your family organized is a great place to start, so take each one to heart and make it work for you and your loved ones. When you’re ready to take the next steps toward an active home organization system, I’m only a phone call away.

linen closet savannah

Must-know Tips for Arranging Your Linen Closet

Spring is here, and you shouldn’t forget your linen closet as you start your household cleaning. In fact, this is a great place to start, as this household area is often in disarray. Here are seven must-know tips for organizing your linen closet and keeping these household items put away neatly all year round. linen closet savannah

1. Get rid of things you don’t need. Clearing out things you don’t need is a stellar space-saving strategy. Figure out what you want to keep, and donate everything else, as you never know who might need it.

2. Clear out and clean the closet from top to bottom. Once you’ve gotten rid of everything you don’t need, clean out your linen closet. Dust the shelves, vacuum the bottom, wipe the shelves down with a damp cloth and then let the space dry before putting the linens back neatly.

3. Add extra storage space. If you feel you need more storage space after you’ve cleaned your linen closet, maximize the closet with added shelves, baskets or hooks before you put your things back in it. Take advantage of shelf dividers or towel bars on the doors, for example, to create more efficient storage space as well as easy access.

4. Label each space. After you optimize the closet with your choice of space-saving hacks, give each shelf its own identity. Keeping tabs on where each type of linen goes helps you, your family and your guests put things back in place after they use them, so you’ll be surprised by how neat your linen closet will stay throughout the year.

5. Prioritize everyday items. Once you figure out where you want everything to go, prioritize items you use often for easier access. Keep the most important linens front and center so your family doesn’t have to dig around for towels, blankets or sheets.

6. Vacuum-seal seasonal items. After you’ve finalized your linen closet organization, seal items you use only occasionally in plastic bags, and store them in a different place.

7. Freshen up the air. After you’ve cleaned and organized your linen closet, keep the space cool and dry. Linens can get smelly over time, so add an air freshener on one of the shelves to help your linens stay clean and fresh.

You’re now equipped to tackle any small space with these cleaning and organizing tips, so get ready to up your storage game. Even though it may be a hectic time of year, you’ll be able to conquer with ease whatever tasks your spring-cleaning throws at you. If you’re interested in finding out more must-know tips for organizing your linen closet or any other small space in your house, get in touch with me today.

home tech savannah

10 Fun Home Technology Gadgets

Is your home up to date with the latest technology? Whether you’ve upgraded to the newest iPhone or invested in a hybrid car, there are still a number of ways to make your home tech savvy. The Consumer Technology Association makes your job easy with its annual conference dedicated to the latest consumer technologies, so you can update your living space with top-notch technologies annually. home tech savannah

Here are 10 fun home technology gadgets from CES 2017, with a brief discussion of what they are and what they do.

  1. Kuri the Robot Nanny – Mayfield Robotics introduced a robotic household nanny you can preorder for next year; it serves as a mobile security camera with smart-home control capabilities.
  2. The Sleep Number 360 Smart Bed – Sleep Number unveiled a smart bed you can get this year that works to keep you comfortable with prewarming features and automatic snoring adjustments.
  3. The Luke Roberts Smart Light Show – Luke Roberts opened the door to smart design lamps in 2017 with a bright hanging lamp that infiltrates any room with normal light from the bottom and colored light toward the roof at the touch of a smartphone button.
  4. Smart and Blue’s Hydrao Smart Showerhead – Smart and Blue displayed a smart showerhead that communicates how much water you’re using with its eco-friendly technology.
  5. LG Signature OLED TV – LG disclosed a 4K HDR Smart TV that provides a picture-on-wall design with its state-of-the-art black and cinematic color and wide viewing angle.
  6. JBL Pulse 3 Speakers– JBL showed waterproof speakers you can buy this spring that improve sound and light up the room like a lava lamp with their Pulse Bluetooth speaker and built-in light show.
  7. Hello Egg Kitchen Helper – Hello Egg uncovered a kitchen helper you can preorder now that assists with meal preparation through advanced voice activation technology.
  8. Moen’s U Connected Shower Range – Moen came out with a new range of U connected shower applications that will let you customize your shower with technology designed with your shower preferences and personal device in mind; they’ll be available soon.
  9. Norton Core Router – Norton announced a household router you can preorder that protects your digital life with its tough Wi-Fi security and cordless design.
  10. Nabi Aristotle Voice Assistant – Nabi will offer a smart baby monitor this year that comforts, teaches and entertains your young child with its voice-activated smart assistant.

These 10 fun home technology gadgets from CES 2017 were some of the biggest home-tech items presented at the conference this year. You now know what each cool product does and where to find it, so revamp your living space to avoid falling behind.

If you’re interested in learning more about innovative home technology or the CES events and experiences, please connect with us today.

home improvement savannah

The 5 Home Improvements That Give the Best ROI

Someday, whether you’re downsizing or moving to another region, you’ll probably want to sell your home. Whether this is something you’ll be doing in one year, five years or 20 years, spending time and money upgrading your house now will increase its market value. How well these strategic home renovations work often depends on where you live, so keep your residential area in mind when you consider the different ways to improve your home. home improvement savannah

And meanwhile, of course, you’ll be able to enjoy these upgrades yourself!

Here are five home improvements that in general give the best return on investment.

  1. Upgrade your home’s systems. Many homebuyers plan to renovate specific rooms after they invest in a place, so appeal to these shoppers with fully functioning home systems. Make sure your appliances are working properly, especially in extreme climates where appliances require additional maintenance, and upgrade them if needed to save your buyer from dishing out extra cash on home upkeep.
  2. Improve your home’s exterior. Most homebuyers are drawn to places based on curb appeal, so impress these shoppers before they enter with a top-notch exterior. Check your roof regularly and replace it accordingly, especially in the East, and add fresh siding, a built-in porch, a modern garage door or a trendy front door to seal the deal.
  3. Expand your home’s interior. A number of homebuyers want additional space, within their budgets, so address these shoppers with creative additional rooms. Increase square footage where you can, especially in competitive markets, by transforming your attic into a bedroom, extending your family room or adding a sunroom to increase house size and maximize your sales price.
  4. Remodel your home’s kitchen. Many homebuyers appreciate minor kitchen remodeling, so appeal to these shoppers with quality improvements in this area. Install hardwood floors in and around your kitchen, especially if you’re in a place like Miami, San Diego or New Orleans, and include all-wood cabinets, trendy appliances or stone counters to bring in more than the total cost later on.
  5. Renovate your home’s bathroom. Every homebuyer spends a lot of time in his or her bathroom, so tempt shoppers with convenient bathroom additions or a completely new bathroom. Install a walk-in shower or replace the tub, especially in Baltimore, where bathroom remodels recoup over 100 percent of their final costs at resale. People want to save space in America’s most populated cities, so tap into these markets to earn nearly triple-digit returns.

These five home improvements that give the best ROI enhance your home’s quality and augment its resale value.

Of course, this is just general. There can be wide geographic differences; some features are almost mandatory in one state but are met with “who cares?” in others. We’re the experts who know what works in your neck of the woods. When you’re ready to take action and guarantee yourself a satisfactory ROI on your home, we’re only a phone call away!

savannah pest tips

The Regional Pest Control Tips You Need to Know

Although spring brings sparkling sunshine and flourishing flowers, it also comes with a whole host of pest problems depending on where you live in the United States. Whether you live in a big city or a rural town, you will face pesky pests at some point, so it’s best to start the new year off by controlling for unwelcome guests. savannah pest tips

Here are region-by-region pest control tips as we approach spring, so you can cut out critters and protect your living space.

The north 

  • Keep your gutters clean. If the leaves change color and fall off the trees in your area, make sure to clean out your gutters when spring comes along to offset mosquito breeding and control termite populations.
  • Tempt rodents with tasty treats. If your city or town is susceptible to invasive rodents, lure them to traps with rich foods to curb population growth and protect your health.

The south

  • Cultivate native plants near your home. If your region supports tree and bush growth at the dawn of spring, grow plants to create natural habitats for wildlife as a way to keep animals and insects out of your home.
  • Keep moisture away from your home. If you live in a moisture-inclined area, drain water away from your home’s foundation and store wood away from your house to prevent termites from causing serious property damage.

The east 

  • Abolish potential allergens. If you reside in a place where you run into cockroaches from time to time, clean your home thoroughly and limit their hiding places to discourage them from sticking around.
  • Use over-the-counter sprays, but in moderation. These can be helpful, but if you find yourself spraying every crack and crevice in your house as a part of your spring cleaning routine, hold back on how much you apply to keep family members and pets away from unnecessary exposure to chemicals. Try using various kinds of insect baits that can be safely left in basements, for example.

The west 

  • Plant rosemary to ward off insects. If you face problems with insects in and around your home, grow rosemary plants near your front door to keep ants away from your house in the springtime.
  • Keep household waste to a minimum. If you live in a populated area that serves as a feeding ground for scavengers like raccoons, limit the amount of waste your household produces and keep their potential food sources away from your home.

These are great starting points when protecting your home and guaranteeing your health. Preventing pest problems is much easier than getting rid of an infestation, so take the right steps toward keeping creepy critters out and ensuring your safety all year long. If you’re looking for additional information about pest control in your area, I’m only a phone call away!

fire safety tips savannah

4 Common Items That Start Home Fires

The potential causes for house fires may be the last thing on your mind. Paying close attention to fire hazards and taking the right precautions, however, are key safety measures every household member should take. Everyday items, which are often overlooked, can lead to fires and property damage, so it’s best to know what to look out for, why certain products can start a fire and how to avoid an emergency situation. Here are the four common types of items that start home fires and how to prevent a fire from breaking out.

1.     Candles

Candles are one of the most common items that start home fires. They’re often left unattended, placed to burn too close to flammable items or played with by kids. You can prevent candle-related house fires by keeping lit candles away from objects that catch fire easily, being in the room while they’re burning, ensuring they won’t tip over and blowing them out when you leave the room.

2.     Electrical connections and wiring

Electrical connections and wiring are a second group of common items that start home fires. They’re often related to instances of equipment malfunctions and incidents of overheating in and around the home. You can prevent electricity- and wiring-related house fires by putting little strain on outlets and electrical cords, employing the correct type of cord for the job, supervising lights and Christmas trees, and checking your home’s wiring system for required updates.

3.     Household appliances

Household appliances are a third band of items that start home fires. They’re often left unattended, exposed to flammable items and susceptible to performance issues regardless of their power sources. You can prevent appliance-related house fires by supervising food on the stove, cleaning the lint and dust out of your dryer, watching for leaks, cleaning vents, and updating aged wires and cables.

4.     Cigarettes and cigars

Cigarettes and cigars are a fourth and final set of items that start home fires. They’re often discarded incorrectly and exposed to flammable household items. You can prevent smoking-related house fires by smoking outside, utilizing wide, sturdy ashtrays, and searching for lit butts that may have fallen.

Pay attention to the common items that start home fires to prevent outbreaks and maintain your household’s security. If you have one or more of these products or issues in your home, do your best to understand why each one is known to start a house fire and know the many ways you can prevent an incident. Please don’t hesitate to reach out to us for more information regarding fire safety and other ways to keep your house and family safe, as we’re always happy to lend a hand.

spring cleaning savannah

The Ultimate Spring Cleaning Checklist

Spring is right around the corner, and there’s no better way to chase the winter blues away than with an all-inclusive plan to tackle your spring cleaning. With a simple step-by-step guide to cleaning every room in your house, you’ll get into the swing this spring without missing a spot of dirt or dust. Here’s the ultimate spring cleaning checklist by room, so you can hop into spring with a fresh, clean home:spring cleaning savannah

The living room

  • Vacuum and/or wash curtains.
  • Wash windows and dust window sills.
  • Vacuum and/or wipe down sofas and chairs.
  • Wipe blinds with moist cloth.
  • Scrub floor or shampoo carpet.
  • Wipe down electronics.
  • Dust lamps, lamp shades and light fixtures.
  • Dust furniture, especially bookcases.

The dining room

  • Dust wall hangings, picture frames and mirrors.
  • Vacuum underneath dining table and chairs.
  • Wipe down dining table and chairs, and polish if needed.
  • Clean out drawers and cabinets.
  • Dust and polish cabinets.

The kitchen

  • Wash trash can.
  • Scrub microwave.
  • Clean out and wash fridge and freezer.
  • Deep clean oven and/or dishwasher.
  • Clean stove top and burners.
  • Scrub under oven and fridge.
  • Clean out and organize drawers and cabinets.
  • Bleach counters, sink and drain.
  • Throw out expired foods and organize pantry.
  • Brush crumbs out of toaster.
  • Wash pet food and water dishes.

The bedroom

  • Go through closet and donate old clothes and linens.
  • Sweep or vacuum under the bed.
  • Wipe down bed frame and other furniture.
  • Put on clean sheets, wash duvet and clean curtains.
  • Remove items from dresser, wash drawers and put items back.

The bathroom

  • Wash toothbrush holders and soap dishes.
  • Spray and wipe down mirror, cabinets and vanity.
  • Bleach and scrub toilet, shower, tub and sink.
  • Replace shower curtain liner.
  • Wash shower curtain.
  • Wipe down countertops.
  • Mop floor.
  • Shake out and wash mat.

The laundry room

  • Remove lint from dryer filter.
  • Vacuum underneath washer and dryer.
  • Sweep and mop floor.
  • Wash inside and outside of washer and dryer.

Every room

  • Disinfect light switches, outlets and door knobs.
  • Clean air vents and wash registers.
  • Change air conditioner and furnace filters.
  • Dust and wipe down ceiling fans.
  • Wash doors, walls and trim thoroughly.
  • Touch up paint.
  • Remove scuff marks from floors and doors.
  • Disinfect electronic devices like cellphones and remote controls.
  • Deep clean all flooring.

With spring fever comes spring cleaning, and the ultimate spring cleaning checklist by room is here to help you clean out the old and make room for the new. These important maintenance tasks and cleaning responsibilities let you transition into spring without a care in the world. If you’re eager to learn more about spring cleaning and how to take care of other rooms in your home, get in contact with me today.

savannah basement remodel

How to Finish Your Basement Right!

Like most things, planning a basement renovation is easier when you have all the right tools at your disposal. Read on to learn about a few tips and tricks you can use to make your project as quick and inexpensive as possible.savannah basement remodel

Tip #1: Find a good contractor.

Finding an experienced contractor can help make the renovation proceed as smoothly as possible. The contractor will be able to help you acquire all the necessary building permits that might be required by your city. This person’s business network and connections can also be a huge asset when you are arranging subcontractors to help you with specific parts of the basement renovation.

Tip #2: Choose the right materials.

You will have to order or purchase the building materials for each phase of your basement upgrade, and it is important to make sure you choose the best materials for the job in every scenario. A good contractor will be able to help you make the right decisions about each of your building materials.

Tip #3: Increase airflow.

The basement tends to be the coldest room in the house. Many homes have the furnace at one end of the basement, making the opposite end chilly by comparison. Consider installing ducts with an in-line fan in order to even out your basement’s temperature.

Tip #4: Check for signs of possible water damage.

Before you proceed with the renovation, check the foundation for cracks and check the basement floor for any pools or drips. Repairing any potential problems before you begin to renovate can save a lot of time and money down the road. If you live in a particularly damp climate, you might want to consider adding a vapor barrier before sealing off your walls and floors. Another way to reduce moisture in your basement is to offset the interior walls from the home’s exterior walls. This can be done using thin strips of wood or metal, and can also be used to balance out an uneven exterior wall.

Tip #5: Add additional insulation.

Most basements are not as well insulated as the home’s other levels, so if you are planning to start spending more time in the basement, it might be a good idea to add some extra insulation to your basement’s walls.

Tip #6: Sand down your ceiling joists.

Many older homes have ceiling joists that are beginning to sag, and this can cause problems if you are installing a new ceiling in your basement. Sanding or planing these joists can help make your ceiling appear as smooth as possible. You can easily do this yourself by using a level and an electric sander.

These basic steps can help give your newly finished basement a solid foundation to grow from and become an integral part of your family’s life.

3 Ways to Welcome Your Boomerang Kids With Ease

With the rise in student loan debt, the difficulty of finding good-paying jobs and the high cost of living, more and more millennials and recent college graduates are moving back in with their parents to save money and make paying bills easier. If you have found yourself in this situation, make living with your boomerang kid easier with these three tips.

Create a Budget
Work out a household budget and determine how much extra money having your boomerang child will cost you each month, from the upkeep to the extra food you’ll need to buy. Make sure you have also taken into account your own retirement security. Having your child move back in will come with a cost, and you should budget for these extra expenses. If your child is employed, have them contribute to the home food budget or pay a few of the smaller bills to hold them accountable for some of the finances.

Discuss With Your Child
Have a conversation with your child and discuss how things have changed in your household since he or she last lived there. You should also discuss how long your child can continue living with you. Offer to help with a job search or an apartment search. Discuss rules such as curfew and spending with your child to help make the transition back home an easy one. If your child has a job, charge “rent” and save the money for when your child leaves permanently. Give him or her the savings then to help with the costs of starting a new household.

Don’t Enable
Everything you do should help your boomerang kid leave home as soon as possible. Don’t agree to cosign on a new car loan or give cash loans. The last thing you want is to give your child a free ride as he or she watches TV every day and doesn’t look for a job or help out around the house. Help your children, but don’t enable them to continue living at home and not live up to their full potential.

The Bottom Line
Open and honest communication is the key to making living with your boomerang kid easier and more comfortable. Set solid, easy-to-follow and reasonable rules for your child, and make sure you budget for the new addition to your household. Help your children in their time of need, but don’t enable them to continue living at home.

Is your child moving back in? What are your plans to handle the new member of your household?

savannah storage space

Things You Should Probably Know About Your Crawl Space

Whether you’ve just moved in or you’ve been a homeowner for years, chances are there are a few places in your house you haven’t come across yet. Your attic and basement are good places to explore upon purchasing a new home; however, you’ll need to venture into smaller, tighter spaces to maintain your place. Here’s what a crawl space entails and four things you should probably know about it.savannah storage space

What Is a Crawl Space?

The crawl space is the area of limited height under your floor or roof. Because this area houses important features like vents, beams, drains and pumps, it needs regular attention. Familiarize yourself with your crawl space and set aside time every month to check it.

Have You Ever Been in Your Home’s Crawl Space?

Now that we’ve gone over what a crawl space consists of, you should know whether you’ve been in the one in your house. If you already monitor this space from time to time, you’re off to a good start. There are’ several things to keep in mind when you do evaluate it, and, in case you haven’t taken a peek at it yet, the list below includes a breakdown of what you need to know about this area.

Things You Should Pay Attention to in Your Crawl Space

1.     The Vapor Barrier Prevents Buildup

Your crawl space includes plastic protection and insulation, which need to be replaced every few years to prevent moisture, dirt and dust buildup as well as energy losses from heating and cooling.

2.     The System of Ducts Affects Energy Efficiency

Your crawl space encompasses ductwork, which requires routine checkups to ensure that the ductwork pertaining to your home’s appliances and heating and cooling systems is hidden and insulated.

3.     The Plumbing Can Suffer From Mold Infestations

Your crawl space also includes your home’s plumbing system, which depends on renewed insulation to ward off condensation and additional moisture that can cause corrosion and other damage.

4.     The Electrical Wiring Can Be Chewed by Critters 

Your crawl space contains electrical wiring, which, although often insulated and coated with thick plastic, is a target for rodents and at risk of snagging if it is loose or dangling.

Be proactive and consider these sensitive areas of your house so you can avoid electrical, plumbing and other issues, and care for your home. Once you find your property’s crawl space, evaluate it according to this list and, if anything appears out of the ordinary, make sure to take the proper measures to resolve any problems. Reach out to us today if you have any questions regarding your house’s crawl space or additional queries regarding home ownership.