5 Trends in Exterior Home Colors

Choosing a paint color for your home’s exterior can seem like a crazily daunting task. So many options! So crucial in making the right first impression on guests or potential buyers!  Should you go with basic beige, white, or (way) outside the paintbox?

Thanks in part to influential designers like Joanna Gaines, more homeowners today are stepping away from the traditional and choosing less common modern palettes, like cheery teal or moody charcoal gray.

“We’re seeing homeowners go a bit bolder when it comes to curb appeal,” says Erika Woelfel, vice president of color and creative services at BEHR. “While variations of white traditionally make a popular exterior paint color choice for many different types of housing styles—and are an easy way to play it safe—dark grays and browns are increasing in popularity this year … [or] painting the body a bold color like green or blue, or adding a pop of red on the front door.”

Sue Kim, senior color designer at Sherwin-Williams, agrees.

“Accent colors and colorful pastels are suggesting that homeowners are taking a step outside of their comfort zone,” she says.

Here’s a look at some of the top trends in exteriors right now.

1. Sea blues

148 Sam Black Church Rd. Smoot, WV $99,955 MLS#19-78

Eager to venture beyond a neutral palette but antsy about committing to too much flash? Watery hues are a charming way to settle the conflict.

From faint skylike shades to rich jewel tones, blues can make a big splash without requiring the learning curve of more outspoken colors.

2. All black

Image result for ALL BLACK HOME
Freshome.com

It might feel like a scary choice, but a dark exterior can really make your home (and the trim) stand out.

“An interesting trend we’ve been seeing is all-black exteriors,” says Sue Wadden, director of color marketing at Sherwin-Williams. “It makes a statement and is a marked departure from the light neutrals of Scandinavian design.”

It’s no surprise the look has proven a go-to for certain top-tier celebs. Whether it’s Calvin Klein’s all-black-and-glass mansion in the Hamptons or, just down the road, Madonna‘s moody black farmhouse-style compound, a black exterior demands a certain degree of chutzpah. But if you can pull the trigger, it’s a contemporary look that conveys a fearless sophistication.

3. Taupe

Photo by Atelier A Bellavance Architect 

If you’re looking for an alternative to gray, Woelfel recommends taupe—a cross between dark brown and gray.

“Grays remain a key neutral for exteriors, but warmer tones in taupe and brown are on the rise,” she says. “Taupe is a great foundation that looks stunning on a variety of architectural types and pairs well with white trim and a bright-red front door.”

But a word of caution: When going with taupe (or any shade of brown or gray, really) be sure to consider your home’s position in relation to the sun.

“It will drastically impact how the color appears,” Woelfel says.

4. Spanish moss

296 Squirrel Ridge Rd. Caldwell, WV MLS#19-134

Even if you live in the ‘burbs, a nature-inspired color can make your home look and feel more like a retreat. That’s why Vincente Wolf, a spokesman for PPG paints, recommends going with a woodsy green, like Spanish moss.

“It has all the brownish tones of tree bark, which allows the house to slip into nature and makes the greenery pop, too,” Wolf says.

5. Neutral with a bold front door

Photo by Groundskeeper

Not ready to take the plunge on a new coat for your home? Consider a fun front-door color to change the entire look of your exterior. Try a bright red, blue, or even pastel to show off your home’s personality.

“A bold color makes an impression on anyone who walks through the front door,” Woelfel says.

Article adapted from Jane Chertoff of realtor.com


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Programming Your Thermostat the Right Way for Each Season

Looking for a way to save money on energy costs? A new thermostat might just help.

thermo'.jpgBefore you get started, you’ll need to pick a programmable thermostat you’ll actually use. Here’s how.

According to a study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Lab, nearly 90% of Americans say they’ve rarely (or never) programmed their thermostat because they’re not sure how to do it.

But it’s really not that hard, and it’s definitely worth doing because it can save at least 10% a year on heating and cooling costs.

The U.S. Department of Energy says you can achieve that 10% by turning your thermostat back 7 to 10 degrees F from it’s normal setting for 8 hours a day.

The first step is to pick the thermostat that best suits your scheduling needs so you can “set it and forget it,” an approach the Energy Department advocates to get the most savings.

Pick the Right Thermostat

There are four types of programmable thermostats, each with a distinctive scheduling style:

7-day programming. Best for individuals or families with erratic schedules, since this is the most flexible option. It lets you program a different heating/cooling schedule for each day of the week.

5-1-1 programming. One heating/cooling schedule for the week, plus you can schedule a different heating/cooling plan for Saturday and Sunday.

5-2 programming. Same as 5-1-1 programming, except Saturday and Sunday will have the same heating/cooling plan.

1-week programming. You can only set one heating/cooling plan that will be repeated daily for the entire week.

You’ll need a program for both the cooler months and the warmer months.

TIP: Before buying a programmable thermostat, identify the type of equipment used to heat and cool your home so you can check for compatibility. For example, do you have central heating and cooling, or just a furnace or baseboard heating? Otherwise, you may not reap the rewards of energy savings and may risk harming your heating and cooling equipment.


The Department of Energy suggests the following settings as an energy-saving rule of thumb:

Winter months:

  • For the hours you’re home and awake, program the temp to 68°F.
  • Lower at least 10 degrees for the hours you’re asleep or out of the house.

Summer months:

  • For the hours you’re home, program air conditioning to 78°F.
  • For the days you don’t need cooling, manually shut off the AC. Keep in mind, it will kick back on if the house gets too warm.
  • Program it to be warmer than usual when you’re out of the house.

Here are a few programming timing tips that can help you create the best set-it-and-forget-it heating and cooling schedule for your home:

  • Shut down heat or air conditioning 20 to 30 minutes before you leave home each day.
  • Turn on heat or air conditioning 20 to 30 minutes before you come home each day.
  • Reduce the heating or cooling 60 minutes before you go to sleep each night.
  • Increase heating or cooling about 30 minutes before you wake up each morning.
  • Spend time tweaking your program for a few days to make sure it feels right.

TIP: With a Wi-Fi-enabled thermostat, you can control your home’s temperature while on the go. That way, you’re not wasting energy if you’re running late or forgot to create a new program before going on vacation.

FYI: A furnace does NOT have to work harder to warm a house after the temperature has been set low during the day.


 Use a Wifi Thermostat to Make It Super Easy

Want something that’s simpler? Newer more high-tech models have simplified the process:

nest.jpgThe Nest Learning Thermostat: It creates a custom heating and cooling schedule for your home based on motion detection technology. Plus since it is Wi-Fi, it can be controlled remotely. Price: Usually a bit more than $200.

 

 

 

 

honey.jpgHoneywell Wi-Fi Smart Thermostat: This device makes it easy to create a custom heating and cooling plan. Unlike conventional programmable thermostats, it has a large color interface that displays a simple menu that walks you through all the programming steps. It also “learns” your home and will send you personal notifications if the temperature is not right, or if there’s a power outage. Price: Usually under $200.

 

Article by: DEIRDRE SULLIVAN-House Logic


Upcoming EVENTS:

TONIGHT! November 3rd- 6-9 p.m. at Greenbrier Valley Airport

comeflywithus

November 17-18 Lewisburg Holiday Event

The shops of Lewisburg will again transform the city into a holiday wonderland on Saturday and Sunday, November 17-18. And there’s so much to enjoy! From holiday caroling, horse-drawn carriage rides and storytelling to trinkets and treats sprinkled throughout every shop, to cookies and/or cocktails….event goers are sure to find a remembrance or create their own holiday traditions.
https://greenbrierwv.com/events/4249/lewisburg-holiday-festival-1527620986

For any real estate needs~ Contact us! 304.645.2255
Gregory Allman, Broker

What’s Causing Those Spooky Sounds and Smells?

Are you haunted by strange noises and weird odors? With the proper maintenance, you’ve got more than a ghost of a chance to rest easy.

Haunted? Or NOT? As the Greenbrier Valley, Lewisburg and all of our other great communities are gearing up for Halloween festivities we found this article interesting and wanted to share! Have you ever wondered what those creaks and cracking sounds may be? Maybe they keep you up at night wondering, take a look at some common concerns homeowners may have–and this article may just allow you to sleep a little easier tonight!

Creaking and Popping in the Night

The many materials that make up your house — wood framing, plywood, glass, metal ducts, nails, plumbing pipes — all expand and contract at different rates.

When a house cools at night, these materials may move slightly, rubbing against each other and making noises. Occasionally, they’ll contract with an audible pop.

These sounds tend to be more noticeable in fall, when warm days give way to rapidly cooling nights. The bad news? Not much you can do about it. The good news? Those sounds are harmless and normal.

Zombie Odor

It’s either time to throw out the garbage, or you’d better call your gas utility to check on your gas lines and connections.

Natural gas is odorless, but natural gas suppliers add a foul-smelling odorant — butyl mercaptan — to alert occupants to any leaks. The smell is like rotten eggs.

Leaks can occur at your gas-fired water heater, fireplace, clothes dryer, and any gas line. Leaking natural gas is potentially dangerous — leave the house and call your natural gas provider to assess the situation. Most utility companies perform safety checks for free.

Footsteps in the Attic

Amplified by an unfinished attic space, a raccoon or even a good-size squirrel on your roof might sound like an ax murderer is doing the polka overhead.

These rooftop transits are normal for critters — roofs offer a nice long unobstructed highway.

Make sure your sofit, rafter, and gable roof vents are covered with screens and in good shape, or your rooftop buddies might find their way into your attic for real. Trim back branches that provide critters easy access to your roof.

Something’s Burning

You can smell the odor of burnt wood, but the smoke detectors aren’t going off and there’s no smoke in the house. The culprit could be your fireplace — even if you haven’t had a fire for days.

The probable cause is a drafty chimney and negative air pressure in your home, meaning that outside air is infiltrating down your chimney, bringing stale burnt smells with it.

Stop drafts by making sure your damper has a good seal. Regulate air pressure by adding more cold air return ducts to your HVAC system. You’ll get rid of the odor and save on your energy bill, too.

Moaning and Clattering

These classic spooky sounds often show up when the wind blows and there’s a storm brewing.

Vents for clothes dryers, bathrooms, and water heaters exit out the roof or the side of the house. To prevent backdrafts, these vents have dampers — flaps designed to let vented air out and prevent outside air from coming in. These flaps sometimes move and rattle in high winds.

Because dampers often are located in attics or in between floor joists, the sound can be difficult to pinpoint. You may need a new damper ($85).


Article by John Riha

5 Home Remodeling Projects With Top-Dollar Returns

Not all home improvements are created equal. These will reward you the most when it comes time to sell.

Your home is in the perfect location, came at the perfect price, with the perfect lot.

But the home itself? Perfect isn’t the adjective you’d use. But you knew that moving in, and now you’re ready to start making it just right.

Here are the best seven home remodeling projects with equity-building might:

#1 New Roof

If you find yourself sprinting for the buckets when it starts to sprinkle, getting a new roof should be your No. 1 to-do. Measuring rainfall from the indoors isn’t cool.

The cost: $7,500

The return: 109% at $8,150

Considering it’s what’s between you and the elements, it’s a no-brainer.

Not sure if you need a new roof? Signs you might include:

  • Shingles are missing, curling up, or covered in moss.
  • Gritty bits from the asphalt shingles are coming out the downspout.
  • The sun’s shining through your attic.
  • You notice stains on ceilings and walls.
  • Your energy bill is sky high.

#2 Hardwood Floors

You flip on the TV to see that your fave home reno-ing duo is it at again, flipping a ranch that’s stuck in the ‘80s.

They make it to the living room, pull back the dingy carpet to reveal hardwood floors in great condition. They’re psyched — and for good reason.

Hardwood floors are a timeless classic. Refinishing is a no-brainer. Neither will you regret adding new hardwood floors if you have none.

The cost to refinish: $2,500

The return: 100% at $2,500

The cost to buy new: $5,500

The return: 91% at $5,000

#3 New Garage Door

No surprise that a garage door replacement project made it onto this #winning list — a new garage door provides a big boost for your home’s curb appeal at a relatively modest cost.

The cost: $2,300 (for a two-door)

The return: 87% at $2,000

There are options galore, too. A host of factory-finish colors, wood-look embossed steel, and glass window insets are just some of the possibilities that’ll give your doors bankable personality.

#4 Better Insulation

Insulation is tucked out of sight, so it’s often out of mind — that is, until you’re forced to wear your parka indoors because it’s sooo darn cold.

The cost: $2,100

The return: 76% at $1,600 (plus the added savings on heating and cooling costs!)

#5 New Siding

In any color! And never paint again.

Those are two of the three benefits of vinyl siding. The third, of course, is your home’s value.

But if long-time homeowners look at you funny when you mention vinyl siding, just tell them that today’s vinyl is way better than what they remember because of fade-resistant finishes and transferable lifetime warranties.

The cost: $13,350

The return: 75% at $10,000

Want fiber-cement siding instead? It also shows a strong payback of 83%. Although it’s the pricier option — you’ll spend about $18,000 with a payback of about $15,000 — it has one thing vinyl still lacks — the perception of quality.

And quality matters. In a survey from the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB), “quality” was the one of the most important traits that home buyers focused on when house hunting.

Article Adapted from HouseLogic.com Author: ANNE ARNTSON


3 Design Tricks to Make Your Small Space Feel Big

Low on square footage? Don’t sweat it — a small space is an opportunity to get clever.

Got a small space in your home that you’re not sure what to do with? Or is your cramped apartment forcing you to get creative with your furniture arrangements? You’re not alone.

Make your small room or living area fit your needs with clever solutions that will streamline your life and maximize your space.

1. Thoughtful paint choices

Choosing the right paint color for your small room can instantly give the impression of more space. Traditional neutrals like white, cream and light gray are great choices, because they provide a clean and streamlined look that makes the room feel brighter and more expansive.

Painting the ceiling white to draw the eye upward is an easy way to create visual openness overhead. You’ll have an airy and inviting space in no time.

On the other hand, if you want to play up the small-space vibe even more, go bold with dark colors. You can emphasize the smallness of a room by making a cozy, den-like atmosphere with colors like black, dark gray and navy.

Whether you decide to go light or dark, adding paint to your small space will help you get the effect you’re going for, both quickly and affordably.

2. Savvy storage

Tight spaces don’t often come with great storage. But by incorporating creative and flexible storage solutions, you can keep clutter out of sight and keep everything you need handy.

The kitchen is a great place to implement clever storage solutions:

  • Create an adjustable cooking area with roll-away islands and pantries.
  • Hang spices or wine glasses beneath your cupboards.
  • Attach holders to the backs of cabinet doors to keep foil and cleaning supplies neatly out of sight.

Don’t forget to look up! The ceiling is a great place to hang big items like bicycles, and you can add shelving high up in closets for rarely used items.

3. Multitasking furniture

When you have limited floor space, it’s important to make your furniture work double duty. Choose pieces that have hidden storage and multiple functions or furniture that you can compact and store when not in use.

If you can’t fit a dresser in your bedroom, try using drawers or crates under the bed for clothing and extra linens. A pouf or leather ottoman can easily transition from a seat to a footrest or side table.

Add function to your entryway by employing a bench with storage inside to hide extra shoes, gloves and scarves. And if you have wall space to spare, hang a fold-down dining table.

Limited square footage doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice function and style. Small-space living is a great way to lead a simplified and streamlined life.

With creative thinking, you can go from a cluttered, cramped mess to an organized and inviting space with room for all.

Article by BY ERICA SOOTER Zillow Porchlight


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Contact us for any real estate needs! We love living in and serving Lewisburg, WV — Greenbrier Valley — and surrounding areas!

304.645.2255
Gregory Allman, Broker
Greenbrier Real Estate Service

Five Money-Saving Green Upgrades

Have you considered making some changes to your home? Whether it be to increase value or increase the interest of buyers–maybe going GREEN is a good idea for you!

Going green is great for the environment, but that’s not the only benefit. When you make green upgrades in your home, it can also lead to some major savings.

  1. Solar panels: The upfront cost is big, but the long-term savings are huge. Solar panels will cost several thousand dollars to install, but ongoing maintenance costs are very low, and a typical system could save you hundreds of dollars per year. You can even sell your surplus electricity.black and silver solar panels
  2. Wood furnace: Wood-burning furnaces are relatively inexpensive, and though the yearly savings aren’t as dramatic (about 10% on heating bills), it adds up over the long run.
  3. Insulation: There’s a good chance your insulation isn’t very efficient, especially in older homes. Look into installing floor, cavity, wall, and loft insulation to reduce your heating bills.
  4. Rain barrels: Rain barrels are extremely inexpensive, and provide gallons of free water to use when you wash your car or water your garden.Image result for rain barrel
  5. Geothermal system: OK, so the price tag is scary at first. A geothermal system uses the earth’s temperature to heat and cool your home, but can cost $30,000 to install. But tax credits allow you to get a lot of that money back, and the energy savings average about $1,900 per year. If you plan to be in your home for a decade or two, it’s a great investment.Image result for geothermal system

    Greenbrier Valley Upcoming Events

    September 7, 2018 First Fridays After Five
    Check out the shops, galleries, and restaurants in downtown Lewisburg! Most stores staying open until 9 p.m. serving complimentary refreshments and entertainment!

    September 8, 2018 10a.m. – 4 p.m. White Sulphur Springs own Freshwater Folk Festival

    The Freshwater Folk Festival is a celebration of our nation’s fish, wildlife, and natural resources. The 2018 festival will feature great music, food, dance, crafts, fun and educational activities.

    September 8, 2018 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Ronceverte 1882 Heritage Days Celebration
    Celebrate Ronceverte’s rich hertitage

    September 8, 2018 10 a.m.- 4 p.m.  DARE to CRUZ Car Show
    Showcase of more than 100 street rods, muscle cars and vintage automobiles. All proceeds benefit the Lewisburg Police Department’s D.A.R.E program.

    Contact us for any real estate needs! 304.645.2255

Gregory Allman, Broker

7 Super-Easy Cleaning Recipes for the Most Awesome-Smelling Home

Essential oils are the key to these sweet-smelling (and highly effective!) homemade cleaners.

“What’s that smell?” That question could go either way when potential buyers enter a home for a home tour. If you’re trying to sell your home, you most definitely don’t want a foul odor to turn away a buyer. Take a look at some of these great all natural ways to clean your home and fill it with soothing smells rather than harsh chemical smells as you clean for your next showing or open house!

If you get light-headed just reading the ingredients on your cleaning products, take heart: There’s another way.

These make-in-minutes, super-cheap recipes create potions that use sweet-smelling essential oils that won’t fumigate your home, while having superpowers to fight grime and bacteria.

And much like a food recipe you may try, you can modify the oils to suit your own olfactory senses.

Citrusy All-Purpose Cleaner

tray of orange fruits

  • 15 drops of essential oil of lemon
  • 5 drops essential oil of sweet orange
  • 5 drops essential oil of rosemary
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1-1/2 cups filtered water

Funnel all these ingredients into a spray bottle, seal, and gently shake. There’ll be a battle of odors here, with the acidic vinegar likely winning out against the sweet-smelling oils, but don’t let this deter you.

The vinegar scent disappears quickly, but that citrusy, herby zing lingers on. And these oils aren’t just there for their scent alone. Lemon oil is a natural disinfectant, orange oil busts grease, and rosemary oil has some antibacterial and antiseptic qualities.

Lemon-Scented Window Cleaner

  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 10 drops essential oil of lemon

Mix all these ingredients in dark glass spray bottle (it’ll protect the oils from breaking down).

Spray on any glass surface and polish in with a microfiber cloth. You’ll have sparkling panes and mirrors in no time, and that wondrous essential oil of lemon will kill off the bacteria left behind by mucky fingerprints.

Eucalyptus Toilet Bowl Cleaner

person wearing pair of yellow rubber gloves

  • 25 drops essential oil of eucalyptus
  • 1/3 cup Castile soap
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1-1/3 cups baking soda

Fill a squeeze bottle with the water, baking soda, and eucalyptus oil.

Seal the bottle and shake. Next, add the Castile soap. Shake again. Squeeze around the bowl. Leave for 15 minutes, then scrub with a toilet brush, flush, and you’re done.

Aside from having a deliciously fresh aroma, eucalyptus is a natural germicide.

Lavender-Thyme Dish Cleaner

  • 20 drops essential oil of lavender
  • 10 drops essential oil of thyme
  • 5 drops of essential oil of tea tree
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1 cup liquid Castile soap
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda

This one does require some stovetop time: Bring the water to a boil, then mix in the oils. (Thyme and tea tree goes to war on salmonella while emitting a pleasant aroma along with lavender.) Add the rest of the ingredients slowly. After that, remove from heat and allow to cool.

Once cooled, pour into a squeeze bottle. Shake gently before using.

Peppermint-Lavender Floor Cleaner

tray on coffee table

  • 5 drops essential oil of peppermint
  • 5 drops essential oil of lavender
  • 5 drops of essential oil of tea tree
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar

Pour the vinegar into a bucket, fill that bucket up with hot water and add the oils.

Works on stone, tile, and wooden floors. Not only is peppermint oil anti-bacterial, many believe it can deter mice and other pests.

Tea tree oil is antibacterial, antiseptic, and antifungal. Not only is lavender oil antibacterial, too, but its aroma also has soothing properties that can calm your whole household.

Lavender Linen Spray

white textile

  • 6 drops of essential oil of lavender
  • 2 tablespoons witch hazel
  • Filtered water

Fill a spray bottle with the witch hazel and lavender. Shake, top off with water, shake again, and then spray away.

 

Cinnamon and Sandalwood Air Freshener

  • 10 drops essential oil of cinnamon
  • 10 drops oil of sandalwood
  • 1 cup filtered water

A spritz of this subtle-but-effective scent erases stinks in seconds. Fill a spray bottle with the water and the oils. Cinnamon scent boosts brain power and sandalwood is calming — perfect for a hardworking, stressed out home!

Essential oils do mix, so if any of the scents in these recipes don’t appeal, play around with other oils. Just keep the quantities the same. For example, if you switched sandalwood for orange oil in this air freshener, stick to the 10 drops specified in the recipe.

Article adapted from HouseLogic-Anna Tobin


Greenbrier Valley Upcoming Events

September 8, 2018 10a.m. – 4 p.m. White Sulphur Springs own Freshwater Folk Festival
The Freshwater Folk Festival is a celebration of our nation’s fish, wildlife, and natural resources. The 2018 festival will feature great music, food, dance, crafts, fun and educational activities.


Contact us for any real estate needs in Lewisburg, WV and ALL surrounding areas!
304.645.2255

 

Accent Wall Ideas that WOW!

Transform any wall in your home from boring to BOLD in a short amount of time!

What a great DIY project to add some flair and interest to a room! A quick and easy update to any room is to add an accent wall.

An accent wall can totally transform a room, taking it from boring and drab to bold and exciting. Accent walls create a new focal point for your space, add liveliness and contrast, and are typically a very inexpensive DIY project.

The starter accent wall

You can easily add an accent wall to your room in one afternoon by applying a new paint color. Deep blues and bright oranges are common choices for accent walls, but choose a color that will complement your existing decor and overall design aesthetic.

Image result for painted accent walls

Interesting textures

Bright, contrasting paint is a good starting point, but there are other options for accent walls that are even more eye-catching and distinct. Floor-to-ceiling wood planks can make your home seem both rustic and modern all at once and provide a natural, outdoors-inspired feel. It’s more work than simply painting a wall, but it’s still relatively inexpensive. You can source the wood from pallets and stain it yourself before attaching it to your wall. It takes a little extra elbow grease, but it’s worth the effort.

Related image

Patterns, murals, and more

Paint and wood are bold enough on their own to transform a room, but they’re still pretty subtle compared to other accent wall options. A chalk paint accent wall is a creative idea for any room and makes for some fun moments when you’re entertaining. There are also endless options for wallpaper and stenciling if you want some patterns or you can get really bold with a mural or oversized art print.

Image result for wallpaper accent wall


Contact us for any real estate needs in and around Lewisburg, WV. We proudly serve the Greenbrier Valley and surrounding areas with our experienced and dedicated team of REALTORS.
Gregory Allman, Broker

To-Dos: Your August Home Checklist

With the transition from summer travels to school beginning in just 10 days in Greenbrier County, August can feel like a sudden downshift from the fun of vacation. Stretch out these last days of summer by squeezing in a few more home projects, savoring simple pleasures and, when the time comes, cleaning up the beach toys and preparing the house for a busy fall. Pick from these 13 to-dos to create your perfect August plan.

1. Clean and store summer gear. Once the last beach day is behind you, take the time to clean out the buckets, shovels and boogie boards so they’re fresh and clean for next year. Toss out cracked or broken toys, and shop end-of-season sales to replace items if needed.

person pinpointing pen on calendar
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

2. Set up a shared family calendar. Whether you choose a big paper wall calendar or a digital version, having one calendar to rule them all will be a big help come fall, when schedules get busier. Set up your preferred method now, and record important back-to-school dates and recurring events.

3. Clear the way for easy weeknight dinners. A too-packed kitchen (and fridge and pantry) can make meal prep harder than it needs to be. Clear away clutter to create a clean work space on the counter and remove expired, stale and unwanted food from the pantry, fridge and freezer. Donate unwanted and unexpired foods in their original packaging to a local food pantry.

4. Share your backyard harvest. Have a glut of tomatoes, squash or other summer produce? Pack up a basket to share with your neighbors, or check out Greenbrier County’s own Waste Not Want Not Project they host a Produce Market every Sunday in Fairlea, WV at Swift Level Fine Meats. A great project that benefits our area farmers as well as low income families and seniors in our area!

food salad healthy summer
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Tackle These Tasks Over a Weekend

5. Organize family photos. 
Have a bunch of new photos from your summer adventures? Take this opportunity to sort and organize them — back up digital photos with cloud-based storage, and make an album or a book of recent photos.

6. Clean carpets and floors. Sand and garden dirt tracked in over the summer can really take a toll on floors. Vacuum and mop floors, and have area rugs and carpeting professionally cleaned if needed.

person using mop on floor
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

7. Get organized for back to school (and work). Consider what would make this fall run more smoothly for your family: a few extra hooks in the entryway to handle coats and bags, perhaps? Or if papers are a constant problem, take the time now to set up a simple filing system and an inbox for each family member.

8. Check emergency kits.Emergency supplies don’t last forever. Open up your kit and check expiration dates on food and any medications; replace as needed. Don’t have an emergency kit yet? Make this the month you create one.

first aid case on wall
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

9. Organize closets before fall shopping. Before making any new purchases, spend some time assessing what you already have in the closet: Try on clothing, fold and hang up any clothes on the floor, get rid of items you don’t wear and make a list of what you need. Doing this before shopping can help save money and prevent cluttering up your closet.

10. Schedule some do-nothing time. It can be surprisingly hard to relax and simply do nothing, even when you do have a pocket of free time. I find that the key is not calling it “free time” at all: By planning to do nothing, you are actually giving yourself permission to fully relax.

11. Clean and organize the garage. If you haven’t cleaned out your garage in a while, it’s likely this project will take an entire weekend (or more), so plan accordingly. It helps to think ahead and find out where you can take items (donations, hazardous waste, things to sell) before starting, and get a dumpster if you think you will need it. Wait until you’ve cleared away the clutter before purchasing new shelving or wall-mounted organizers. You’ll have a better idea of what you need once the decluttering is complete.

12. Finish up outdoor projects. Make use of the long August days to finish up any outdoor projects you started (or intended to start) over the summer.

13. Check your home for signs of pests. 
It’s not a pleasant subject, but being proactive when it comes to pests in and around your home is much better than trying to solve a pest problem that has gotten out of hand.  If you do need to use pesticides, choose the lowest-risk product first, and use according to the directions. If you hire a pest control pro, ask him or her to use bait, and crack and crevice control when possible; fogging should be a last resort.

What’s on your TO-DO List for the end of summer? Soak it up, get things done, and get ready for fall in the Greenbrier Valley!

Article adapted from Houzz.com-Laura Gaskill


Thinking of  moving to our beautiful “neck of the woods” Contact us! We’ll help you find your home sweet home!

Greenbrier Real Estate Service
1047 Washington St. E.
Lewisburg, WV 24957
304.645.2255

 

7 Small Home Flaws That Can Be Big Deals for Buyers

After living in the same home for a while, it’s amazing what you can get used to. A creaky floorboard, for instance. A chipped tile that you’ve been meaning to replace but haven’t gotten around to. A doorknob that needs a little coaxing to turn. No big deal, right?

Well, these small flaws can be huge deal breakers when you decide to sell your home.

Prospective buyers are going to add all the ‘flaws’ they find to the price of the property, and that’s when they start trying to discount the price.

Curious what some of these seemingly small problems are? Check out this list of minuscule (to you) things that buyers see as big hurdles to closing a sale.

1. An old electrical panel

This issue could arise when the home inspection is completed and an inspector might claim that repairs occur to get it “up to code.”

Sellers, you may see this as a small issue, and insist that the current panel works just fine.

But buyers, you more than likely see the electrical panel as a bigger issue that could fail at any time.

2. Ripped window screens

Window screens will wear out over time, but if yours are torn, take it seriously.

Image result for replace window screens

They’re a pain for anyone to replace. Therefore, sellers don’t want to do it and buyers will insist that they do. If the sellers refuse to fix it, the buyers will demand a credit.

3. The location of your laundry room

Even if you own a state-of-the-art washer and dryer—and plan to bestow both on your lucky buyers—they may not be so thrilled with these nice appliances if they aren’t situated in what they think is the “right” place.

Some buyers have a problem with the laundry being on the ‘wrong’ level, especially in a three-level house or townhouse-style condo.

In other words, you might be fine lugging your laundry to the basement, but don’t expect all buyers to feel the same way. Offer to move these items to a new locale to warm buyers up.

4. Sticky door locks

Live in a house long enough, and you’ll encounter a malfunctioning door latch or lock. That may be no big deal to you, but it may alarm buyers big-time.

Image result for door locks

If it’s an exterior door, they will likely view this as a major safety issue. And although it may seem like a simple fix, it’s often a complex one.

5. Your bathtub or shower

Some people prefer showers, others want baths (particularly parents who must clean up small kids). So if you’re missing one or the other, watch out.

In an ideal world, you’ll have both: a bath with a showerhead above. But even if your bathtub works just fine, make sure the style isn’t too off. Not everyone is excited to soak in a tub straight out of “Stranger Things” in avocado green.

Image result for shower/bath combo
Nice, clean, and crisp bathroom will attract buyers. This combination offers a tub and shower.

6. Small closets

Many buyers focus on closets. Are there enough? Are they large enough? Walk-in closets are also preferred.

There are a few things you can do to ease these concerns. For one, try to make your closets look roomier by decluttering them as much as possible. Put excess items elsewhere (like a rented storage unit). You might also consider hiring a contractor to build or extend closets where needed—or at least point out to buyers that they can do this themselves.

7. The walls of your kitchen

Some people like—no, make that love— open kitchens. So if your kitchen currently has four walls, you could be in trouble.

Image result for open kitchen
Beautiful, open kitchen is as inviting to buyers as it is to future guests in your new home!

Buyers may look at the possibility of breaking down a wall. But be warned, many might not want to do the work, or just get such a bad first impression of your kitchen that they move on. If you think your kitchen’s four walls feel cramped and is stalling your sale, consider opening it up yourself.

Article adapted from Realtor.com


Contact us for any of your real estate needs! We would love to offer our experience and expertise to you in you home selling or buying journey!

Greenbrier Real Estate Service | 304.645.2255 | 1047 Washington St. E. Lewisburg, WV 24957

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