Month: September 2017

5 Things All Stylish People Have In Their Homes

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What Makes A Stylish Home?

Well, some might argue that it’s a great couch, while others may say it’s in the attention to detail. However, one thing is for sure, there are people who just seem to know what works and the same goes for their personal style. They are often the people we see on Instagram whose bedroom colour palettes always match their #ootd(outfit of the day) but how do they do it? Well according to Lyz Lynch of mydomain.com, there is an actual list. Time to take notes!

Greenery

A little predictable? Perhaps, although it has been proven that rooms with plants look and feel a little brighter and warmer. The most aesthetically pleasing ones that you can consider for your home are; Rubber plant, Bromeliar, Prayer plant, Schefflera, The Mother In Law’s Tongue, Cactus and of course, Swiss cheese plant and the Rainforest plant. (look them up)

Images: Haarkon, Pinterest

                                                                                                        Some examples of how you can add plants.

A Luxurious Throw  

You know you’ve seen them and wondered “wow, this blanket looking thing is really cool” and yes, throws are pretty amazing. They add an effortless luxury to living and bedroom spaces. Drape it over your couch or bed to create a look that will bring your space together.

You don’t have to be too extravagant. A simple knitted throw does the trick too. Images: Pinterest

An Antique Piece

A touch of vintage to your wardrobe is just as coveted when it comes furniture. Whether it be your aunt’s inherited vase or a chair or an ornament that you bought on a trip you took a few years ago, vintage items go beyond just being beautiful because they’re priceless too.

Images: Pinterest

Statement Art

Nothing adds personality and colour to a space the way an art piece does. An interesting art piece can really act as a centrepiece of a space where you don’t really need much else; invest on a timeless piece that speaks to your taste.

                                                                                                                                Images: Pinterest

A Bold Piece

Whether it be a chandelier or an unusual table –  take a risk and choose something that really shows off your quirky or eclectic side.

A statement can be made in a variety of ways; a colourful couch, a cool chair or a light piece.
Images: Pinterest

Now that you have all this inspiration, we certainly hope that you are excited to make some changes as you usher in the new season.

 

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How 1 Small-Space Dweller Scored Her Dream Bathroom

When Brooklyn-based radio producer Miki decided to treat herself to her dream bathroom, she called on Homepolish, an interior design start-up that only charges a flat hourly fee, to take her to the promise land. Let’s just say that Homepolish delivered.

To modernize Miki’s outdated bathroom without losing its prewar charm, Homepolish interior designer Sandie Tsai chose a black, white, and gray palette accented with pops of brass. While it’s not the largest bathroom, you hardly notice thanks to the luxe materials and strategic design decisions.

Keep reading for the full tour and Sandy’s smart renovation tips!

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

While brass details pair well with black and white, Sandie was careful not to overdo it. To keep it tasteful, she balanced the flashy brass with more subdued oil-rubbed fixtures on the sink.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

Limiting the palette to two or three colors and playing with texture helped make the small bathroom appear to be much larger. Marble subway tiles on the wall and black tiles with light grouting on the floor add subtle pattern and richness.

Photo by Samantha Goh via Homepolish

5 Questions to Ask Before Investing in a Fixer-Upper

by Brandon Turner | BiggerPockets.com

 

So should you invest in a fixer-upper? Despite a few cons, I would say yes, you should definitely consider it because of the overwhelming pros. However, before you jump into your next project, ask yourself these five questions about the deal.

5 Questions to Ask Before Investing in a Fixer-Upper

1. How bad is it?

There are many levels of severity when dealing with fixer-uppers. Some properties need just a few thousand dollars worth of paint, while others need a complete overhaul. As common sense would suggest, the less work a property needs, the less risk you’ll have that something will go wrong during the rehab.

At the same time, however, the less work a property needs, the more competition you’ll face. This is why I generally look for properties that appear to need a lot of work to the general public but that actually just need minor fixes. For example, homes that have a bad smell because of pets or cigarettes are a prime candidate for me, because smells are easy to rectify. An ugly exterior paint job or a bad roof are also fairly easy (if costly) to remedy, but they scare away more potential homeowners. So, before you buy a fixer-upper, I encourage you really look at the property and have an accurate estimate of what it’s going to take to fix it up. Don’t go into a fixer-upper blind.

 

2. Is it worth it?

Let me ask you a question: Is it better to buy a house for $120,000 that needs $30,000 worth of repairs, or a house that is $150,000 that is 100% finished? With all other factors being equal, the finished house clearly has the advantage. However, many investors fail to comprehend this logic and instead think “fixer-upper” automatically means “great deal.” It doesn’t!

Often, the cost of rehabbing a project will negate any discount you might get. On the other hand, if you could get that same property for $90,000 and put $30,000 into it to make it worth $150,000, now we’re talking!

3. Do I have the time?

Whether you plan to do the work yourself or not, fixer-uppers take time! You have to be present at the property often to make sure the work is being finished correctly, or maybe you’ll end up having to do the work yourself. I have a friend who bought a fixer-upper triplex with plans to live in one unit and rent the other two out, but it took him three years to fix up the two other units and get them rented! While this friend may still have a great investment on his hands, he lost close to $40,000 in potential rent over those three years because he didn’t have time to handle a fixer-upper.

4. Do I have the skills?

Most people who are looking to get started with fixer-upper rental properties plan to do the work themselves. I actually encourage this, as long as the work is on a small scale. Being able to do your own rehab can save you a ton of money and can help you get a good feel for how long projects take so you can better manage the hiring out of those projects in the future. However, if this is your plan, do you really have the skills to take on the project? If not, see the next question in this list.

5. Do I have the drive?

Or more importantly, do you have the mental skills and motivation needed to learn how to accomplish those projects? My first home was a fixer-upper, and I had never swung a hammer in my life! However, I picked up a book on home improvement and began learning on the job. I also called in a lot of favors from other people I knew and had them teach me how to do things. By the end of the project, I could install carpet, tile a bathroom, lay laminate wood flooring, solder copper pipes, and fix a leaky roof—not because I had the skill, but because I had the desire and motivation to learn.

By answering these five questions for every project you are about to take on, you can better decide whether it is the right path for you. Fixer-uppers can be a great way to supercharge your wealth creation, but they also present increased risk. Just be sure to do your due diligence on any fixer-upper you plan to buy and accurately account for the hurdles you might face. Then take action, and get a little dirty!

 

Realtors Agree—These Are the Worst Colors to Paint Your Home

by SOPHIE MIURA

PHOTO: Aaron Fallon for MyDomaine

Finding the perfect hue to paint your room might seem like a purely aesthetic decision, but it turns out the choice can have serious consequences. While it’s well-documented that green sparks creativity and fiery tones energize a space, a report from Zillow Digs suggests color can also impact the value of your home.

The home improvement website mined data from more than 50,000 photos of recently sold homes to uncover color trends. Worryingly, it discovered that rooms painted certain shades consistently fetched a lower offer, forming a blacklist of paint colors to avoid. These are the three paint shades industry pros say you should avoid at all costs:

  • Slate gray: Homeowners who opted to paint their dining room slate gray lost $1112. However, those who chose dove or light gray increased the sale price by $1104.
  • Off-white: While this shade might seem like a safe bet, the study found that kitchens painted off-white fetched $82 less than the predicted estimate. Interior designer Emily Henderson told Money that some shades of white paint can make a space look “flat” or “dead.”
  • Terra-cotta: People who took a risk by painting their living room this shade of orange took $793 of the value of their home.

Do you agree with these findings? What color do you consider to be the worst offender when selling?

4 Tried and True Downsizing Tips for Your Next Move

Photo by Fraher Architects

For many people, the prospect of downsizing from a larger home to a smaller one can be quite the challenge. Sorting through possessions takes time. It can be emotionally taxing. It can be liberating.

We asked Houzz readers to share their best downsizing advice, and share they did. We gathered some of the best tips below.

Step 1: Get into the right mindset. Many acknowledged that shedding belongings can be stressful, and several had thoughts on the benefit of doing so. “Even if you’ve made careful measurements and found new homes for the furniture that clearly wasn’t going to fit in your new place, you may not realize until you move in that what you’ve brought just isn’t going to work,” writes Joanna Tovia of the Houzz Australia editorial team. The upside: “You have the perfect excuse to go shopping for new furniture,” Tovia says. Houzz reader Lynn B agrees: “Downsizing is a wonderful time to change to a more minimal style and change your style and interior colors.”

Keep in mind that you may have a few regrets when your sorting is through, advises Houzz reader connieay. “There will be some things that you wish you had kept, but the rewards of having less stuff will be worth it!”

By Erin Carlyle – See more Home Design Photos

Step 2: Decide what to get rid of. Often the most difficult part of downsizing is deciding what to let go of. “Holding on to our past, whether in the form of corporate work clothes or hefty grad school books, can be tempting because it feels comfortable,” writes Houzz contributor Laura Gaskill. She advises spending time gaining clarity on your vision and goals for the next few years. “What are you still holding on to that doesn’t mesh with that vision?” she asks.

In the kitchen, it’s wise to keep appliances that are multipurpose and frequently used, says Houzz reader Anthony Perez. “If you entertain at all, don’t scrimp on the table and chairs,” adds bonniedale22. Downsizing is also an opportunity to adopt a minimalist mindset with your wardrobe, according to Houzz reader andrealew, who recommends keeping on hand only enough clothes for a three-week vacation or, if you will be living in a place with seasons, three weeks per season. Some readers advised not burdening family members with discarded possessions, while others noted the wisdom of at least asking your family members if they would like any of the belongings before you toss them.

By Erin Carlyle – See more Home Design Photos

Step 3: Make the process as easy as possible for yourself. Given the mental work involved in deciding what to keep and what to pass along, you might as well take steps that will make the process easier for you. Having a place to sort through possessions is key, according to Houzz contributor Jeanne Taylor. “To keep your job organized, you might want to create as much empty space as possible,” she writes. “I recommend picking a category, perhaps holiday decor, and then pulling every item from that category out of hiding and placing it in the staging area.”

It can also be helpful to involve an organized friend, someone you can trust to help you decide what to keep and what to let go. For seniors who would be comforted by a sense of familiarity in their new surroundings, take a photo of the furniture layout and replicate it as best as possible in the new place, advises simplynancy. And on that note, taking photos of prized possessions, whether parts of a collection or simply something with a lot of memories, can make the letting go a little easier.

Houzz reader AJ advises something unexpected: waiting until after the move to see what won’t fit and getting rid of items then. “This is counter-intuitive and goes against everything you’re always taught, but I wish I had done it,” AJ says.

By Erin Carlyle – See more Home Design Photos

Step 4: Maintain a lifestyle of less stuff. “When you’re living in small quarters, excess items will stick out like a sore thumb,” notes Houzz writer Melissa Cowan. “Use smart solutions, such as underbed storage and built-in wardrobes,” she advises. And just because you’re downsizing doesn’t mean that there won’t be upkeep. “[A] smaller house does not mean less work,” Ann Haller writes. “It gets dirtier fast because you are using the same room over and over. Buy better quality furniture because it is the only thing you sit on.”

By Erin Carlyle – See more Home Design Photos

A final word: Go easy on yourself, and be proud that you’re tackling a downsize. It will take some effort, for sure, but you’ll get through it, with a reward of a lighter lifestyle on the other side.