3 Easy Ways to Illuminate Your Home for the Holidays

holiday(StatePoint) ‘Tis the season of friends, family and entertaining! If you’re planning on hosting guests — whether for an entire week of family fun or a one-night celebration — now’s the time to get your home in the holiday spirit.

“Preparing a home for the holidays doesn’t have to require adding extensive decorations or undergoing a total remodel to update favorite spaces,” says Jennifer Kis, director of marketing communications for Progress Lighting. “Small changes through lighting can create a festive and comfortable environment with minimal effort and investment.”

Here are three easy tips to try:

Update Entryways and Foyers. Your entryway is your opportunity to make an exceptional first impression and set the tone for the rest of the interior. Add drama to your foyer with a grouping of striking, oversized pendant lights in lieu of a traditional chandelier.

Pay Attention to Shared Spaces. Popular spaces where friends and family are likely to gather most during the holidays include great rooms, living rooms and dining areas. A large statement chandelier in a common living space creates a focal point and also ensures there is enough illumination for card games, movies and coffee and cocoa by the fireside.

Illuminate Walkways to Enhance Curb Appeal. Simple outdoor lighting techniques can improve a home’s appearance and also offer functional features during the holidays and beyond. Added illumination will improve safety and enhance security, while bringing a new bold look to the front of your home. To create instant curb appeal, hang a large lantern on either side of your front door, or install a post lantern at the front of your walkway.

For more design inspiration and to view on-trend lighting collections, visit progresslighting.com.

In a few easy steps, you can light up your home for a warm and welcoming holiday season.  If you would like more holiday ideas or you are looking for  homes in the West Essex area,  contact me and I will be happy to help you find the home of your dreams.

6 Home Decor Trends to Make a Style Statement

 

Picture1(StatePoint) Is your home decor starting to feel a bit stale? Spruce up your interiors with some of the hottest home design trends for 2018 — from customized cozy to natural textures to retro touches.

Here are some stylish ways to incorporate new trends, from one of the nation’s most sought-after celebrity interior designers, Taniya Nayak.

1. Create an Oasis: Make your home a tropical escape all year long. Add floral or banana leaf accents to form a staycation-worthy “at-home paradise” no matter the temperature. Nayak suggests pairing pops of metallic gold with plush greens and crisp white to build a look that is sophisticated, yet fun and exotic.

2. Keep it Simple: In 2018, Nayak encourages DIYers to “go big or go home…in the simplest way imaginable.” An easy way to accomplish this is to paint your baseboards, trim or window mullions a dramatic contrasting color, like black against a white wall, for an effortless, yet powerful effect. And when it comes to achieving clean, sharp paint lines, one of Nayak’s vital, go-to tools is a premium painter’s tape, like FrogTape brand painter’s tape that delivers the sharpest paint lines possible. Treated with patented PaintBlock Technology, FrogTape is a fool-proof way to get professional-looking results and eliminate the need for touch-ups.

3. Incorporate Natural Touches: This trend is all about nature’s textures — think wood grain, geodes or ocean waves. One way to incorporate this look is to combine earthy tones like browns, beiges and deep blues with vibrant neon colors to generate the effect of the northern lights around the home.

4. Get Back to the Future: Give what’s old a modern, futuristic update to achieve this trend. Try painting a vintage chair with a pop of color, like the Sherwin-Williams 2018 color of the year, Oceanside, a combination of rich blue with jewel-toned green. This creates an eye-catching masterpiece that seamlessly integrates into both retro and modern home decor. Introducing bright colors to antiques produces a beautiful new spin on a classic look.

5. Design it with Love: What’s “in” in home design this year? Creating warm and cozy spaces that are customized just for you. This is the true essence of DIY. Painting an accent wall in a pastel color, like lavender, will set a relaxed and comforting tone in the room. From there, add personal pieces like a soft woven blanket, a macramé wall hanging or ivory plates on a wall to transform any room to “your” room.

6. Embrace New England Prep: This style embraces the timeless combination of crisp white linens and navy blues, but what really gives a room an authentic New England vibe is the addition of camel-colored leather decor accents. Nayak recommends adding monogrammed pillows to a leather accent chair, or whitewashing your brick fireplace to create a look that never goes out of style.

Visit FrogTape.com for more trend information and inspiration.

Get started on your home projects now so you can enjoy your refreshed decor all year long.

3 Mini-Makeover Ideas to Refresh a Room

(StatePoint) Looking to bring new energy to a space? Hoping to update that outdated décor?  These easy tips can help you revitalize any space in your home with minimal time and effort — utilizing color, accessories, accents and more.ab8e9dae

A New Color Scheme

Looking at the same wall color day after day can be uninspiring. Consider a new color scheme to change the dynamic of your space. Blue hues are shown to create a calming, tranquil effect, making them the perfect choice for a baby’s nursery or spa-like bathroom.

Pastels are also a fun way to stimulate the same soft, calming effect of blue, and their less saturated nature creates a unique twist.

Color is also a great way to explore new looks. Both coastal and farmhouse styles are easy to accomplish through a neutral color palette, giving you plenty of opportunities to incorporate your unique style accents.

Find a Focal Point

When choosing a design aesthetic, many find inspiration from an accessory, like a piece of artwork or textile. However, highly functional objects that feature great design can also serve as your muse. One such example is a ceiling fan. Its elevated, and often central location, can serve as a stylish focal point, while enhancing comfort.

Whether you decide to incorporate a fan that blends into the existing style or opt for a statement piece, the addition can help put a new spin on your room. Consider stylish, yet timeless options, such as the Hepburn from Hunter Fan Company. Its mid-century, modern flair is complemented by light and airy colors, combined with a brass finish.

Accessories and Accents

Revamp a tired space with new and inexpensive accessories. A new duvet cover, vibrant pillows, or a statement floor rug can help to refresh a room without a high price tag. Adding in mixed metal items can add texture to an otherwise boring countertop, while positioning items in groups of threes can create a visually pleasing setup.

Go shopping in your own home. You can also switch things up by using objects from around the house, to make a space new again. Decorating a built-in bookshelf with jars, candles, pottery and those favorite items you just can’t find the right place for, can make your room feel new without having to purchase anything at all.

More design tips and inspiration can be found at hunterfan.com/inspiration.

Updating a room doesn’t need to cost a fortune or take months to complete. Mini-makeovers that focus on smaller details can make all the difference.

 

Does Home Staging Work?

REALTOR Magazine Daily News recently published this article about the effectiveness of home staging:

Home staging can influence buyers’ perceptions of a home and even motivate them to pay more, according to the National Association of REALTORS 2015 Profile of Home Staging, a survey of more than 2,300 REALTORS representing buyers and sellers.

Eighty-one percent of REALTORS who represent buyers say that staged homes make it easier for their home buyers to visualize a property as their future home.  Forty-six percent of buyer agents also reported that staging makes their buyers more willing to tour a home they viewed online, and 45 percent say that buyers tend to view the value of the home more positively if it is decorated to buyers’ tastes.

Buyer agents also say that staging can potentially influence how much their buyers are willing to offer for a home.  According to the survey, thirty-two percent of buyer agents surveyed say that staged homes increase the dollar value buyers are willing to offer for a home by 1 percent to 5 percent; 16 percent said it could increase offers by 6 percent to 10 percent.

However, not everyone chooses to stage a home in prepping it for sale. The survey showed that agents felt they could only recommend to sellers that they declutter and fix property faults.  Yet, nationwide the median dollar value to stage a home is $675.  The survey found the three most important rooms to stage for buyers are the living room, kitchen and master bedroom.

Quick and Easy Bathroom Makeovers

Now that the winter weather has set in you are probably spending more time in your home.  Are things looking a bit dated?  Here are four quick and easy ideas from Century 21 to freshen up your bathrooms without spending much time or money.

Replace Showerheads

Still stuck with the same showerhead that was there when you moved in? Consider replacing it. It’s an easy installation that may make all the difference. Look for a showerhead with settings for water pressure and flow so that each member of your family can choose their own preferences.

Update Towel Racks

While towel racks and other hardware in your bathroom don’t exactly expire, their styles might. Browse options available across all types of racks, such as free standing, wall mounted, and over the door, to find a more current look that fits your home decor personality. Visitors may notice that new pieces give an updated look to the entire room.

Add Fresh Linens

When was the last time you bought new bathroom linens? If you’re not sure, then it’s time for new ones. Set your new, fluffy towels on display (on that stylish towel rack you just installed) for a fresher look. Make sure to invest in a couple extra for any overnight guests to use.

Frost Windows

Since bathrooms tend to be smaller, they need as much natural light as they can get. While covering up bathroom windows with curtains is essential for privacy, you’re blocking precious sunlight. Instead, try frosting your windows for maximum light while maintaining your privacy.

You might be surprised with how these quick fixes can give new life to an older looking bathroom. Get started today!

15-Minute Home Makeovers

We are all starved for time these days.  It is overwhelming to plan large “do it yourself projects” when it feels like there is never enough time to do the things that need to be done on a daily basis.  Lisa Kaplan Gordon, writing for HouseLogic.com, came up with 7 ways to freshen up your house that can be done in under 15 minutes.

1. Switch the plates. Upgrade your drab, plastic switch plates with snazzy covers that match or accent your decor. Even the most expensive brass switch plates cost less than $20 each.

Or, spend a buck for a plastic plate and decorate it yourself. Use craft paint, or cover the plate with decorative paper (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSdHjKY243s).

You also can switch outlet covers, but don’t get too fancy. Outlet covers should blend with the wall.

2. Touch-up boo-boos. A bit of new paint gives any room a fresh face, which is why you should keep extra color-matched paint after you remodel. Touch up banged-up baseboards, door and window trim, and wall marks that won’t wash away. Even spot painting requires care; use a drop cloth to protect other surfaces.

3. Change out drawer and door hardware. Upgrade your kitchen or bathroom by installing new pulls and knobs. Be sure to measure drawer pulls so you won’t have to drill new holes. Home improvement centers have a large selection of inexpensive pulls and knobs.

4. Update your mailbox. Bump up curb appeal  by spray-painting your old mailbox. You can freshen the same color, or go wild with bright hues. Don’t forget to scrub off dirt and rust before painting with rust-proof paint ($6-$12 for a 10-oz. can; lots of decorative textures and colors).

5. Play the numbers game. Decorative house numbers and plates give your home a custom and classy look. Some numbers are quick peel-and-stick affairs; others you’ll have to screw in. They’re made of wood, plastic, brass, stainless steel, and other materials; $6 to $30 each.

6. Embellish your throne. A new toilet seat gives you a regal bearing. Plastic and enameled seats ($12-$25) in a rainbow of colors add a dash of panache; a solid wood mahogany or walnut seat ($45-$60) makes an executive statement; cushioned seats ($15-$20) won’t make a lasting impression – and that’s a good thing.

7. Declutter. You’ll be amazed how a 15-minute daily declutter can make a room look like new. First, get rid of stuff  from your fridge door: that large, blank canvas will immediately brighten your kitchen. Corral mail and papers in decorative boxes with tops that can close and hide the mess. Organize school supplies in caddies. Every day, tame a new spot.

Even small  improvements will pay off in an easier and more profitable sale of your house. If you are thinking of selling your home contact me at 973-349-6731or kim.fiore@century21.com for a free market analysis or use the form below. I will work with you so you get the most for your home in the West Essex area.