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Posts Tagged Do it yourself

Paint Like a Pro in 5 Steps

shutterstock_58664035Nothing transforms the look of a home as simply and inexpensively as paint. Whether you’d like to liven up a dated design or refresh your entire home to sell, paint like a pro with these tips.

 

1. Look for high-quality products.

When it comes to paint, quality matters. Search for a combination paint-and-primer to save a few steps and ensure complete coverage and deep color saturation. The paint should have high hiding ability and resist dirt and scuffs.

2. Get inspired online.

Color selection can seem intimidating, but it’s a chance to infuse your personality into your home. Many online resources are available for homeowners to explore, coordinate and experiment with different looks. Pinterest and Apartment Therapy are great websites for browsing images, finding home décor inspiration and colors that speak to you.

3. Use paint samples, rather than chips.

The most realistic way to envision the color in your home is to see it in action. Many paint retailers offer small sample cans for just a few dollars. Use these to paint a few stripes of each color option in the room you’ll be painting. Note how color changes in different lighting conditions.

“Sunlight, shadows and furniture can all alter the appearance of paint in your space,” says BEHR Vice President of Color Marketing Erika Woelfel. “Before fully committing to a hue, make sure it’s one you’ll love morning, noon and night.”

4. Use the right painting supplies.

High-quality painting tools save you time over the course of your project and produce the most beautiful finish. For best results, use a lint-free roller cover. Select brushes made of nylon and polyester. For flawless edges, use a painter’s tape specifically designed for your surface type.

5. Prep before painting.

Begin by removing all wall fixtures, such as pictures, doors and light switches. If you have small cracks or holes in your walls, remove any dust and apply a patching material. Make sure to allow this to dry completely before sanding the finished area. Wash away oil, grease or wax stains by dampening the surface, applying mild detergent with a sponge, and then rinsing the wall clean. Once dried, you’ll be ready for smooth application and beautiful color.

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

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12 Questions to Ask Before Overhauling Your Bedroom Closets

By Lea Schneider

As a professional organizer, my clients are often frustrated by their closets and overwhelmed by piles of garments. They seek me out for answers to their storage dilemmas, and they are usually surprised when I deliver a list of questions in response.

Those questions, based on years of experience as a professional organizer, are the basis for building terrific storage solutions.

1 Storage Hallway

IMAGE 1: STORAGE HALLWAY

A great custom closet should be designed and organized to suit the way you live and the way you think. The very reason the generic closet you have now isn’t really working is that it wasn’t designed with you in mind.

Closet designers and contractors are wizards at taking a space and creating storage in many different ways. Because there are so many variations, in order for them to work their magic in a way you will love, you need to be able to convey to them what you want.

Before you inquire about a custom closet project, start by asking yourself these 12 questions. The answers you come up with will help build a closet that truly suits you, and help you explain to experts the kind of storage you need.

Does more than one person share the closet? If the answer is yes, you’ll want to answer these questions separately for each person using the closet. The two sides of a shared closet do not have to be a mirror image of each other. A custom design can and should take in the needs of both people.

IMAGE 2: HANGERS

IMAGE 2: HANGERS

Do you love or detest hangers? Some people love to see everything hanging up. Other people are happiest with their clothes folded and stacked, and without smart storage, they end up piling them in chairs and even on the floor.

How tall are you? If anyone using the closet is tall, the bars should be raised so garments have plenty of room without dragging the ground or getting entangled in hangers on the lower bar. Likewise, if you are smaller in stature, you may wish bars to be lower so you can easily use them without a stepstool.

How many garments do you plan to hang in your closet? An accurate count of your hanging garments (plus things you wish were hanging) can best help your designer meet your needs. A foot of hanging bar space may hold about 10 dress shirts or 5-6 suits or dresses.

How many long garments do you have? By long, I mean anything that cannot hang on a double bar without dragging. If you prefer to hang trousers or slacks by the waist with clip-style hangers, you’ll need to count these in your long garments.

IMAGE 3: HIDDEN STORAGE

IMAGE 3: HIDDEN STORAGE

Are you ‘hidden storage’ or ‘open storage’ minded? Getting organized means different things to different people. While some would prefer for clothing to be put into drawers or armoires with doors that close, so clothing is hidden from sight, another group could simply not function that way. These folks do best if they can see and find items stacked on open shelving.

What do you have a lot of? You may have a collection because you love it, such as purses, or maybe the weather where you live dictates what you stockpile, like sweaters. Either way, your custom closet needs to be able to house your collection.

How many pairs of shoes need to be accommodated? Since shoes often end up in an unorganized jumble, think about what storage system you would actually use. Are you more likely to hang them on a rack, kick them onto low shelves as you remove them or pick them up and put them on higher shelving?

How many pairs of those shoes are tall? Not all shoes can go on a rack or regular height shelf. Be sure to count your dress boots, winter boots, hiking boots and so on separately, as they will need taller storage.

Would you also enjoy having clothing accessories in the closet? If you’d like to have belts close by the trousers, make a note. Likewise, jewelry, scarves and other accessories can be worked into the design. You can even add baskets or drawers for undergarments and swimwear if you let your closet expert know.

IMAGE 4: STORAGE BASKETS

IMAGE 4: STORAGE BASKETS

What is frustrating about your current closet? Now that you are armed with a list of all the things you want your new closet to accommodate, it’s a good time to make sure the contractor’s plan is going to eliminate frustrations you currently have.

Is there anything not currently in your closet you wish was there? Frequently, homeowners turn to closets in other rooms or storage tubs for storing off-season or extra garments. Now is the time to make sure those items are included in your dream closet.

A custom closet is something you will enjoy using immediately, and if you want to sell your home later, you can be sure buyers will appreciate a thoughtful, efficient closet as well.

Lea Schneider loves finding order in the midst of chaos. Lea is a nationally recognized organizational expert and journalist who writes on home organization for The Home Depot. Info on Home Depot’s closet and storage installation services can be found on the company’s website.

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7 Ways to Wow Buyers with Outdoor Staging

As one of the busier times of year for real estate activity, summertime is ideal for sellers hoping to unload their homes for top dollar. If you’re listing a home on the market this summer, stand out from the pack with these outdoor staging tips.

1. Invite Buyers In

welcomeIt’s no secret curb appeal matters to buyers, but too often, minor details are overlooked when setting the stage out front. To roll out the welcome for buyers, replace your worn welcome mat with a summery alternative, and install large house numbers in a prominent location that can be viewed from the street.

 

bobvila.com

bobvila.com

2. Shine Up Windows

Cleaning windows inside and out can be taxing, but it makes a noticeable difference. For the exterior sides of the windows, scrub off any accumulated film from tree pollen and polish until glistening. Buyers will be pleased to see not only a sparkling home outside, but a light-filled interior as well.

 

fabuloushomeblog.com

fabuloushomeblog.com

3. Showcase Small-Scale Color

In lieu of a costly exterior paint job, choose specific areas outside to add pops of color. Window boxes bursting with blooms are often well-received by buyers, as well as container plantings. If the exterior could use refreshing, consider re-painting the front door before recruiting a professional to do the entire home.

 

 

plowhearth.com

plowhearth.com

4. Spotlight for Safety

Make sure the outdoor spaces around your home, including the front entrance, deck, patio, and walkways, are appropriately lit. Updated light fixtures are not only aesthetically pleasing, but are an added safety feature to the home.

 

5. Maintain the Landscape
hgtvgardens.com

hgtvgardens.com

A well-kept home speaks volumes to buyers, and the exterior is no exception. Whether you hire a professional landscaper or DIY, trim the lawn and any hedges – the latter can be a trip hazard if left untouched.

 

 

6. Deck Out the Deck
deck

hgtv.com

Whether your home features a deck, patio, porch or other outdoor living area, take time to power wash the surface to remove any debris. If your outdoor furniture is lacking, consider purchasing a fresh set, complete with all-weather cushions and pillows in vibrant colors.

 

7. Make the Pool Picture-Perfect
home.howstuffworks.com

home.howstuffworks.com

Pools can be a make-or-break feature for buyers, so play it up as best you can. After having the pool cleaned by a professional, take care to skim the surface for any debris that accumulates between buyer visits. Be sure the pool cover, mechanized or otherwise, is free of damage and the filtering system is in proper working order.

Source: RISMedia’s Housecall

Reprinted with permission from RISMedia. ©2015. All rights reserved.

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