Guiding Light

by Teryn on July 10, 2014

lamp by dillon

Need a little more light in your life? See for yourself the difference that light bulbs and lamp shades can make with a room’s mood. Check out these bright ideas from RealSimple.com.

In the bathroom, use overhead lights to get rid of shadows; sidelights flanking the mirrors are perfect for makeup application. In the kitchen, overhead lights brighten surfaces. In the bedroom, try cozy tinted, low-wattage bulbs to give a candlelit, romantic effect. To create a grand atmosphere in the dining room, use a chandelier. Place one directly over the table, but make sure to measure the ceiling height and table height before making a purchase. Indirect lighting — in all parts of the home — softens spaces. Small table lamps or wall sconces can also add a subtle glow.

Use ambient lighting to brighten the exterior of your home. Motion-activated or timer-equipped lights can ensure your home’s exterior is well-lit in the evenings. Don’t go too dim or too bright — no need to attract intruders, nor bother your neighbor.

Photo courtesy of Dillon Scheps

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Design Tips for Room Projects

by Teryn on July 2, 2014

IMG_5699

Before you start your next home renovation project, consider your space needs first. HGTV and DIY Network offer these tips for taking on room projects that will give your home a fresh look.

First, think long term. Since most homeowners are likely to stay in the home at least five years before they see real appreciation, avoid installing the hottest design trends of the moment for expensive items like flooring, bathroom tile and backsplashes. Instead, design with affordable and more disposable accessories such as pillows and throw rugs, which can be changed out easily and quickly.

Don’t purchase furniture before you move in to the home. Live in the space for a few months and get accurate measurements of each room before spending your hard-earned cash on oversized items that may not fit. The same holds true for selecting paint colors. A room’s natural lighting changes throughout the day, so paint colors that stand out during daylight hours may appear muted at dusk.

When it comes to your kitchen, focus on quality, not quantity. Not everyone can knock down a wall to install a kitchen island. Develop a good space plan that includes efficient storage for your dinnerware and small appliances.

Need a second opinion? Seek the advice of a novice home designer who can give you a fresh perspective at an affordable rate. Finally, make sure all decision-makers are on board with the project and budget. Otherwise, you’ll have to start all over.

Photo courtesy of Dillon Scheps

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Sweep it Clean

June 24, 2014

You want to roll out of the red carpet for potential buyers — not a dirty one. Consider these tips from Martha Stewart for keeping your carpets in tiptop shape this season and every season. Shoes track in most of the dust and dirt. This buildup can create foul odors and trigger asthma attacks. For [...]

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It’s Rattlesnake Season!

May 19, 2014

With the weather warming up, rattlesnakes are showing up a lot earlier this season! California Poison Control has recorded 84 rattlesnake bites in California this year, higher than usual. Of the 800 bites each year in California there’s usually one or two deaths. Most bites occur between the months of April and October. Here are some [...]

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Allergy Proof Your House

May 15, 2014

Spring is prime time for itchy, watery eyes and never-ending sniffles. Do you or someone in your house have allergies? Get relief — in every room — with tips from the Mayo Clinic on how to allergy-proof your house. Bedroom: Choose bedding that is made of synthetic materials, and wash sheets, pillowcases and blankets in [...]

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Houses Get Older

May 1, 2014

The well-documented aging of the baby boomer generation may be mirrored by the aging of American’s housing stock. The US Department of Housing and Urban Development’s American Housing Survey finds that the median age of an owner-occupied home in the US was 35 years old in 2011, up from a median home age of 23 [...]

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Ventura County Homeowner’s Exemption

April 14, 2014

If you own and occupy your home as your principal place of residence, you are eligible for a Homeowners’ Exemption, which reduces your property tax by about $70 annually. You will be sent an application about three to four months after your deed is recorded. From time to time homeowners may receive solicitations from private [...]

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2014 Tax Planning Tips

April 1, 2014

  IRS Tax Filing Deadline is right around the corner – Tuesday, April 15th, 2014! Here are a few quick tips to help you get the filling process started! Get ready to wait early in the year. Due to the federal government shut down last October, the IRS says Jan. 31, 2014 is the earliest [...]

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5 More Tips on a Smooth Close!

March 27, 2014

When purchasing a home the most often cause for delay in closing on time has to do with the very last piece of the puzzle and that is getting your loan docs in order and through underwriting. Here are a few things to do to ensure your home closes on time! 1. Do respond quickly [...]

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5 Tips for a Smooth Home Sale Closing

March 22, 2014

When purchasing a home the most often cause for delay in closing on time has to do with the very last piece of the puzzle and that is getting your loan docs in order and through underwriting. Here are a few things to NOT do to ensure your home closes on time! 1. Don’t deposit [...]

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