Articles Tagged "Home Improvement"

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August
3

Hardscaping Tips

A functional and beautiful outdoor space can help make your summers more enjoyable, and when it comes to creating the perfect outdoor oasis, hardscaping has a big role to play. Our real estate agents always make it a point to invest in new outdoor elements that enhance the outdoor experience. New hardscaping not only helps to improve your home value, but it can also be aesthetically pleasing.

Below, we'll discuss the importance of hardscaping and how you can use it to make the most out of your yard this summer.

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July
27

Bookshelf Tips

Part of making your house a home is getting to customize it with your interests. Put your personality and hobbies on display when you design a built-in bookshelf.

Built-in bookshelves complement your home, and you can use them as a focal point instead of furniture. Additionally, built-in bookshelves are customizable, easy to organize and make the space look bigger. Our real estate agents put together this guide to help you add built-in bookshelves after buying our Raleigh homes for sale to customize them to your taste.

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June
22

Indoor Plants

Want to purify the air while improving the appearance of your home? Add a few indoor plants to improve your indoor air quality, reduce your stress levels, and enhance your home's aesthetic.

Our real estate agents also know that indoor plants effectively make any space look more inviting. Here are a few plants that will boost your indoor air quality and help your home look its best.

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April
27

Garden Tips

Spring is here at last! Our real estate agents have been looking forward to another year of beautiful, thriving plants at our Raleigh and Durham homes for sale. In their time working on local properties, they have seen some incredible examples of gardening prowess and learned which plants grow best in this area of North Carolina. Here are some of the plants they are most excited to recommend to local gardeners this year. 

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March
2

spring cleaning tips

Spring isn't here quite yet, but it's poking its head around the corner. If you're someone who looks forward to a good spring cleaning, then you probably can't wait to pull out your mops and buckets. Planning ahead for spring cleaning is a great way to stay busy and make sure you're ready to go the second the weather breaks. So, how do you plan for a successful spring cleaning? Our real estate agents have some helpful tips.

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February
2

Cleaning Schedule

Not everyone loves cleaning, but everyone will agree a clean home shows the best! One of the best ways to keep your house clean is to create a cleaning schedule. This is especially important if you'll be selling your house soon, as Raleigh homes for sale need to be showing-ready at all times. Here are a few tips for creating a cleaning schedule you can stick to.

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December
29

HPW Appliances

Many buyers looking into Raleigh homes for sale are attracted by updated appliances that make life more convenient. Upgrading your home's appliances before selling is a great way to increase your home's value and spark interest among potential buyers. Our real estate agents have reviewed the most exciting appliance upgrades for 2022 and listed them below.

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November
10

Recycling Tips

Home sustainability plays an important role in keeping our planet and our community healthy and clean. From recycling to energy efficiency, eco-friendly best practices can help reduce pollution, diminish dependence on raw materials, and ultimately helps prevent garbage from filling up landfills.

With National Recycling Day coming up on November 15, our real estate agents thought we'd take a moment to reflect on the importance of green living. Here are some everyday sustainability tips to incorporate into your home and life.

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October
13

Household Items

If you're preparing to add your home to the list of Raleigh homes for sale, it's essential to replace worn-out items. Worn-out items give the appearance that your home isn't properly maintained, and in some cases, can harbor germs and make it more cumbersome to maintain a clean living space. Here are some guidelines for replacing these common household items. 

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September
15

Raleigh CatsYour pets are a part of the family. Our real estate agents are well aware of that and, since September is National Happy Cat Month, we want to share with you some of the many ways you can make your home more comfortable for them. Make your home the purr-fect place for your feline friends by following these tips. 

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September
8

Composting Tips

Looking for an easy, affordable way to improve your garden and reduce your waste output? Create your own backyard compost pile!

Composting is the natural process of recycling garden, yard, and kitchen waste into fertile garden soil. When you add compost material to your soil, you improve its health, help it retain moisture, and provide protection against disease and pests. 

Our real estate agents know that a property with attractive landscaping appeals to prospective buyers. Here are some tips to follow for optimal backyard composting. 

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July
14

Kitchen Updates

Once you've found your perfect home, the next step is to make it your own - starting with the kitchen. If cooking is your passion, you can up your culinary game with a few simple design ideas. There are plenty of Raleigh homes for sale with amazing kitchens to suit your needs. Here's how to take those kitchens even further.

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June
9

Raleigh Patio

What's so hard about buying patio furniture? Why not just go online or to a store and pick something pretty and buy it? You can do that, but you may not be happy with how that plays out in the patio area of the dream home you chose among homes for sale in the Triangle. A little planning will help you make the most of your outdoor living space. If you're not sure what questions to ask about a patio furniture purchase, follow the guidelines our real estate agents have put together. 

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May
19

Interior Design Mistakes

When you find furniture, artwork, or a decor scheme that you love, it's natural to want to incorporate it into your own home. However, our real estate agents know that some stylistic components aren't a good fit for every home; they may make the room appear small, cluttered, or unattractive. Your space will then be unappealing to you and potential buyers. Here are some common interior design mistakes you might be making and some simple solutions for fixing them. 

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April
14

Paint Color Tips

Have you ever noticed how some rooms entice you into settling back and relaxing, and others make you feel energetic and ready for fun? Understanding the effects of your choice of colors will help you send the correct message to potential buyers. Our real estate agents can tell you that painting your home will probably bring the greatest return on investment of any upgrades you make when selling your home. Keep in mind the psychological effects of these colors before starting to paint. 

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March
31

Raleigh Home Theater

Whether you enjoy binge-watching your favorite shows or like to host at-home movie nights, a home theater system is an excellent addition to your home. Our real estate agents find that a home theater system is also appealing to potential homebuyers and helps define your home's unused spaces. Here are a few ways you can take your home theater to the next level.

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March
24

Raleigh New Pet

If you feel your home isn't complete without a four-legged friend, you're not alone. Many homeowners have at least one pet. Whether you're thinking about getting your first pet or adding yet another to your pack, introducing a new pet requires some planning and finesse. Here are a few tips from our real estate agents for bringing a new fur-buddy into your home.

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December
2

Indoor Plants Raleigh

Indoor plants are a good way to liven up your living space, but taking care of them can be tricky in the wintertime. Changing temperatures, humidity, and exposure to sunlight all play a role in your plant's overall health. If you recently bought some new indoor plants or are simply bringing your outdoor plants inside to escape the cold, our real estate agents have some recommendations that can help you keep them healthy and vibrant this winter:

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October
29

Fall Landscaping in Raleigh

Autumn is here, and Mother Nature is ready to put on a show with colorful leaves, crisp cool nights, and the bounty of the harvest. The vibrant fall season is the perfect time to make your home stand out and prepare for what lies ahead. Our REALTORS® know that a home with curb appeal is much more attractive to buyers, so it's important for those with Raleigh homes for sale to give their landscaping some extra love. These tips and fabulous fall landscaping ideas can help you make the most out of your outdoor spaces this autumn.

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October
14

Packing for Raleigh Move

Moving is a major life event, and an unorganized packing process can add stress to what is already a stressful situation. Organizing a move can present challenges for even the most experienced of planners, but crafting effective packing and unpacking strategies can help ensure the process goes as smoothly as possible. If you're in the market for one of these beautiful Raleigh homes for sale, consider these packing tips from our real estate agents when planning your move:

  1. Declutter Ahead of Time
    The golden rule of packing: the less you have, the easier it will be to move. Start the decluttering process a good 2 or 3 months before your actual move date. Go through all of your belongings and determine what can go. Many people struggle when it comes to parting with their stuff, so it can be helpful to consider how frequently you use an item and whether or not it brings you joy. Once you've determined what you can part with, consider donating your items to a local thrift store, have a garage sale, or you can even try selling them online for a little extra cash.

  2. Pack A Little Bit Each Day
    Waiting until the last minute to pack can add a lot of extra stress. However, packing too soon may leave you without some things you need in your day to day life. The trick is to pack a little bit each day leading up to your move. Consider setting aside 1 to 2 hours per day to work on the packing process. This strategy will help you to feel like you're making good progress over time. 

  3. Labels Are Key
    Labeling your boxes will make the moving and unpacking process significantly easier. Make sure each box has a labeled with the contents of the box and the room it belongs in. This will help inform the movers where to place the boxes in your new home. Using color-coded labels will make the process even easier.

  4. Save Room For Your Clothes
    Clothing always takes up more room than you'd expect, so if you're using a moving truck or have limited space, keep this in mind when packing. Any clothing you hang in the closet cut a hole in a garbage bag and place it over a group of hangers. If your dresser is light enough to move, you may be able to get away with leaving clothes in the drawers; however, be careful your dresser isn't too heavy.

  5. Don't Leave Empty Spaces in Boxes
    Avoid half-packed boxes when possible. If your items have room to move around, they can easily become damaged during the move. Pack your boxes, so they are full, but not too heavy. If you do end up with extra space, consider adding newspaper or packing peanuts to keep items secure. Also, don't forget to add extra padding to any boxes that contain fragile items.

Moving doesn't need to be a stressful process. With a bit of planning, you'll be into your new home in no time. Contact us for more tips on how to make your move less stressful.

September
23

Buying a Home

Once you close on your new home, it might feel like the hard work is over. However, there are still a lot of tasks you need to add to your to-do list to get your new home set up so that it's safe and comfortable for your family. Here are some things you need to do after buying your home. 

  1. Change Your Address
    Now that your new address is official, you need to update it with anyone that you conduct personal or official business with. Update your address with your:
  • Friends and family
  • Employer
  • Financial institutions
  • Lenders and credit card companies
  • Schools and afterschool programs
  • Doctor and dental offices
  1. Clean Your New Home
    Make sure that your new space is ready for your family by giving it a thorough scrubbing before you move in. Our real estate agents know that it's much easier to clean an empty home that one that's filled with moving boxes and furniture. Work from the top of the room to the bottom of the room so that you don't have to backtrack with your cleaning efforts. Worried you won't have time to clean before your moving date? Hire a pro to come in and deep clean your new home for you. 
  1. Connect Your Utilities
    Ideally, you should start the process of connecting your utilities prior to your closing date. It can take 2-3 weeks for everything to get connected and set up, and some utility companies may not have an immediate opening. 
  1. Test Your Smoke and Carbon Monoxide Detectors
    Even if your home inspector examined all of your smoke and carbon monoxide detectors during your home inspection, you want to ensure that they're still in good working order. Check the batteries, and determine if you need to add any additional detectors based on the size and layout of your new home. While you're at it, see that your home has ample fire extinguishers. 
  1. Change the Security Codes and Locks
    Make sure that you're the only one who has access to your home by changing the security codes and the locks. Change all your gate, door, and garage codes. As long as your door locks are in good condition and you're pleased with their appearance, you can save money by having them rekeyed (versus replacing them entirely). Remember to also replace locks on exterior buildings and doors.

  2. Get Started on Your Home Maintenance
    While some Raleigh homes for sale may have minimal must-dos on their home inspections, others may have a more extensive list of items that need to be completed. Examine your home inspection report, and decide which items you want to get started with. Prioritize any items that are safety concerns (such as clogged dryer vents) or that are simply long overdue (like changing dirty filters). 

Want to start exploring properties that might be right for you? Contact us today to get started!

September
9

Home Inspection Tips

You've prepared your home for the market, attracted a buyer, received an offer, the finish line is in sight... but a home inspection still stands between you and closing the deal. Handling the home inspection process is easier when you know exactly what to expect, how to prepare, and how the results of the home inspection can impact your transaction. Our real estate agents are here to help you prepare with our guide for what to expect from your home inspection.

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July
22

Home Maintenance Issues

Taking care of regular maintenance is an important part of being a homeowner. This ensures that your home stays in good repair and that smaller issues don't turn into larger, more expensive ones. While some projects can be delayed, others require immediate attention.

Our real estate agents point out the following home maintenance issues you shouldn't wait to fix:

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July
8

Pool MaintenanceA pool is a fantastic addition to your outside space, but it does add a little extra work to your to-do list. Fortunately, by staying on top of your pool maintenance, you'll cut down on the time and money that you devote to your pool.

Follow these maintenance tips to make sure your pool is sparkling and ready for swimming all summer. 

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June
24

Garden Maintenance Tips

Summer is the most difficult time of the year on plants. Our gardens take the brunt of the harsh sunlight and temperatures. To keep your garden looking healthy and beautiful all season long, here are summer garden maintenance tips our real estate agents recommend.

  1. Water Properly
    Watering is undoubtedly the most important aspect of summer garden maintenance, but how you go about it makes a big difference. There are many pathogens in the air and soil that need water to reproduce, grow, and move. So, be sure to apply water directly to the ground using drip irrigation or soaker hoses to limit moisture on a plant's foliage. Water sitting on the leaves can lead to mold formation and disease infestation.

    When giving your plants a drink, you want to make sure that the water goes down to the deep roots. 

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May
27

Cleaning Your Washing Machine

Spring is traditionally the time when we do a thorough cleaning of our homes, undertaking tasks that we don't normally include in our cleaning regimen -- such as cleaning the washing machine.

Why does the washing machine need cleaning? After all, it's continuously washing itself with soap and sometimes hot water. Isn't it clean enough? Not really.

Soap leaves scum. Detergent residue can build up. There are also crevices in the washing machine's interior where dampness prevails, and where mold and dirt can take hold. Though you regularly wipe down the washing machine's exterior, and you often give the inner tub a wipe with a sponge, your machine may need a more thorough cleaning.

Front or top load, your washing machine could use a thorough cleaning at least once every year. It wouldn't hurt to clean it more often. 

  1. Clean Filters and Dispensers
    Depending on the type of washer you have, look at your manual to locate filters and dispensers. If the washer has them, remove them and soak them in a solution of vinegar or bleach and water while you're cleaning the drum. If you have dispensers that aren't removable, clean them with a sponge dipped in a cleaning solution.

  2. Clean the Gasket
    Mold and mildew can grow behind your front-loading washer's gasket. Clean under the gasket, using hot soapy water and a rag. You may even find one of those socks that went inexplicably missing last time you washed. Among other locations (under the agitator or wash plate, or in the washer's filter), socks are sometimes found under the gasket. 

  3. Wash the Drum 
    Clean a top-loading washer with 4 cups of vinegar and 1 cup baking soda; for a front loader, use 2 cups of vinegar and 1/2 cup baking soda, or some kind of washer cleaner tablets.

    To thoroughly clean a top loader, fill it with hot water and add a cup of bleach. Let it sit for an hour, then run a long cleaning cycle. Then run another cycle with vinegar, followed by another hot water cycle to clean it out. Remember the next time you are ready to wash clothes to wash whites first, just in case there are traces of bleach in the machine.

    For top loaders, set the control to hot and on the large setting. Once the drum is full, add vinegar and baking soda and turn the washer on full cycle. For a front loader, put vinegar in the dispenser and baking soda in the drum. Set controls at highest heat and largest load and turn it on for the whole cycle.

    Once the cycle is over, wipe out the drum with a clean cloth.

  4. Leave the Door Open 
    After cleaning the washer, leave the door open so the machine can air out and dry. Always leave the door open once you've completed a wash cycle, to air out the washer.

If you're anticipating putting your home on the market, a substantial spring cleaning is one way to ensure it stands out among other Raleigh homes for sale. Looking for more tips from our real estate agents to get your Raleigh home ready to show? Contact us today.

May
20

DIY Fire Pit

Is it summer yet? Maybe not quite, but it's finally starting to feel like it, and our real estate agents are more than ready. The warmer weather has us thinking about sitting outside at night, looking up at the stars while a crackling campfire blazes. 

After all, summer is campfire season, and these DIY backyard fire pit ideas will ensure that you're ready to take advantage of those warm summer nights! Summer will be here before you know it, so why not go ahead and get started today?

Buy or DIY

A lot of homeowners debate between building their own fire pit and buying one. Sure, you could pick one up at your local Walmart or Home Depot, but there are a lot of advantages to going the DIY route:

  • The design options are endless. The types of fire pit you can buy at a store are fairly limited. When you build a DIY fire pit, you can choose among countless styles and building materials. 
  • You can save money. Sure, it's possible to sink a lot of cash into building an elaborate outdoor fire area, but a basic DIY fire pit can cost less than a store-bought model. 
  • It's fun! There's nothing quite like the satisfaction you get from building something yourself! 

DIY Fire Pit Ideas

You have endless options when you build a DIY fire pit. The blank slate your backyard offers can be intimidating, but remember that there's no such thing as a "bad" fire pit design, as long as it's safe and functional! Make sure to do the following:

  • Choose building materials. You can use anything from natural stones to man-made materials like bricks, concrete pavers, and blocks. Kiln-fired bricks will withstand heat better and last longer. 
  • Integrate your landscaping. Take your surroundings into account so that your fire pit feels like an integral part of your landscaping. A stone "patio" surrounding the fire pit can help tie the whole yard together. 
  • Avoid standing water. Water can accumulate inside your fire pit if it's in a low-lying site. Lining the bottom with sand or gravel can help. 
  • Make it functional. Want to cook over your fire pit in addition to enjoying a crackling campfire? Include a cooking grate in the design. 

A Note on Fire Pit Safety

Once you've dreamed up the backyard fire pit you've always wanted, it's time to start building! And when you're done, you can gather your friends for a fun summertime hangout. But before you do any of that, keep a few safety tips in mind: 

  • Build your fire pit on a level site. This is especially important if your fire pit is completely above-ground.
  • Make sure the site you've chosen is at least 20 feet from your house, and at least 10 feet from trees, plants, fences, and other structures. 
  • Don't operate a fire pit under any overhanging branches or trees. 
  • Only burn firewood that's been seasoned at least six months. Avoid burning composite wood and other construction materials. 
  • Have a bucket or garden hose handy while burning.
  • Use a screen to keep sparks from escaping the fire pit, or surround it with a non-combustible ground covering like sand or gravel. 

Contact us today for more ideas. Our team has helped countless families find beautiful Raleigh homes for sale, and we're committed to helping you live life to the fullest in the Triangle this summer!

June
9

Home Improvement Apps

Tackling DIY home improvement projects is a great way to pass the time at home and make your house a more pleasant place to call your own. And you don't need to be a construction expert to improve your home! Our real estate agents are happy to report that there are a ton of apps available to help with your home improvement projects, whether you're looking for guides, inspiration, or a community of like-minded DIY enthusiasts. Get a leg up on your next project, with our guide to the best home improvement apps for your devices.

  1. Pinterest
    Whether you're looking for inspiration for your projects, dreaming about Raleigh homes for sale, or seeking helpful tips from DIY experts, there's no doubt that Pinterest is an excellent resource. The Pinterest app makes it easy to browse all of the content on this popular social channel, and even share progress on your projects to help inspire others. Search for specific home improvement projects, or browse away until you find a project that inspires.

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May
13

Bathroom Remodel Raleigh

If the kitchen is the heart of the home, then the bathroom is the sanctuary. The master bathroom, guest bathroom, and even the downstairs half-bath should all feel comfortable and clean. Our REALTORS® know that a little renovating in these important spaces can go a long way. Here are six bathroom remodeling ideas that will inspire you to refresh the room where your family and guests freshen up.

  1. Bathe Yourself in Beauty
    Aside from larger master bathrooms that may feature a tub and a shower, most bathrooms contain one or the other. A great way to refresh this space is to swap out a tub for a shower or vice versa. You can remove your tub to create a walk-in shower with dual showerheads or a waterfall shower head. Alternatively, you could scrub the shower from the plans and instead install a lovely stand-alone tub for maximum relaxation.

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April
15

Raleigh Gardening

Scientific studies show that gardening burns calories lowers blood pressure, relieves stress, and elevates your mood. Our real estate agents love to unwind working on their gardens. Plus, it's a great way to enjoy the North Carolina sunshine while practicing social distancing.

Starting a garden of your own is super easy. Use these five tips to start a thriving vegetable garden in your own Raleigh backyard.

  1. Decide on a Location
    First, look for a spot where the garden will receive at least eight hours of daily sunlight. Plants also need plenty of moisture, so make sure the garden will be close to a ready source of water, such as a faucet or hose. Stick with areas away from trees, shrubs, and other large growth that may steal valuable resources from the plants.

  2. Select a Garden Type
    Planting seeds directly in the ground isn't the only way to create a garden. Depending on the type of soil and other factors, that method may not even be the best way. Container gardens and raised beds are two options that allow you to control the type of soil used. They're also good choices if you're dealing with limited space.

    According to The Old Farmer's Almanac, the biggest mistake made by beginning gardeners is being overenthusiastic. It's better to start small and expand later rather than bite off more than you can chew (no pun intended).

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March
18

Greenhouses in Raleigh

Is it just us, or does it finally feel like spring might be just around the corner? As always, our real estate agents are excited about the idea of warmer weather and greener lawns. If you're looking to spruce up the landscape around your North Carolina home this spring, we'd like to recommend some of our favorite local greenhouses and plant stores!

  1. Homewood Nursery & Garden Center - 10809 Honeycutt Rd, Raleigh, NC 27614

    A long-running favorite source for gardening supplies and specialty plants, Homewood Nursery and Garden Center is the perfect place to find some new additions to your spring landscape. Located just minutes from many Raleigh homes for sale, the nursery offers an incredible selection of trees, shrubs, and other plants, along with a knowledgeable staff. 

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February
26

Unfinished Attic Ideas

When our real estate agents help sellers price their homes, the amount of usable space is always an important factor. While some of the best Raleigh homes for sale make great use of all the available space, most do not. 

If you have an unfinished attic or basement, you're missing out on the opportunity to increase the value of your home. Even better, you'll also create a new space that you and your family can enjoy. Not sure how to get started? Here are seven of the best ways to reclaim your unfinished space.

  1. Create a Cozy Sleeping Nook
    Taking advantage of your attic brings some challenges, like limited space and awkwardly angled ceilings. However, despite (or maybe because of) this, it's the ideal location for a cozy sleeping nook. Most attics are the perfect size for two twin-sized beds with a small bedside table in between. Create a clean and cozy feel by painting the walls a stark white and adding brightly colored bedspreads and a matching throw rug. 

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February
19

Moving Tips

After our REALTORS® have helped you find the perfect home among the Raleigh homes for sale, it's time to pack your boxes and plan for moving day! Moving into a new home can be time-consuming, expensive and stressful especially if you don't plan it well.

Streamline your move with this list of actionable steps you can follow to make your move more bearable.

  1. Decide if You Will DIY or Hire Relocation Services
    The dynamics of moving and the decisions you make from now on will depend on whether you will be in charge or you will hire a moving company. Getting movers could be costlier but more convenient. You will have experts on your case and won't have to worry about packing, the actual transportation, and unpacking. DIY moving lets you stay in control of the entire process. It will be tiresome and time-consuming but it is, in most cases, cheaper for shorter distances or if you have most of the resources you need to relocate.
  2. Identify the Moving Date
    If possible, set a moving date that gives you at least a month to organize. Choosing the date in advance gives you time to do the rest of the preparations in a countdown mode, making the final moving day less stressful.

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January
22

Smart Home Features

For many buyers, smart home features are not just the wave of the future. They are a very real priority for the present. Popular tech solutions are transforming homes, providing homeowners with better security, easier access to entertainment, and more convenience than ever before. But not every smart home feature will have buyers swooning, so it's important to direct your efforts in all the right places. Our real estate agents are here to help, with our guide to the smart home features that buyers are looking for in 2020.

  • Smart Security Is the Perfect Place to Start
    If you want to pick one smart home feature that will help your property stand out from other Raleigh homes for sale, then security is a great place to start. Smart security systems provide an unparalleled level of peace of mind for homeowners, making it easier to monitor your home even when you're away. Video doorbells have become a popular solution in many homes, while smart security cameras are perfect for keeping an eye on a vacation home. Wireless security systems make it easy to bundle a variety of security features into one convenient package.

  • Going Green
    Going green is a priority for so many shoppers, and smart home features make green living easier than ever. Perhaps the single most popular smart home technology is the smart thermostat, which allows you to program the temperature in your home no matter where you are and ensure that your home is always comfortable when you return. Adjust the temperature while you're on the road, or set it to be at just the right level when you get home from work. Many smart appliances and lighting systems can also offer significant energy savings.

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December
26

Resolutions for Your Home

New Year's is the perfect time to make home-related resolutions and improvements. This is true whether you're planning to stay in your home or would like to move into one of the Raleigh homes for sale. Either way, you'll be improving the appearance of your home and making it more comfortable to live in.

Our REALTORS® suggest making the following improvements to your home in the upcoming year:

  1. Install a programmable thermostat
    Installing a programmable thermostat can help you save between 5% and 15% on your monthly heating and cooling costs throughout the winter and summer. It allows you to program a heating and cooling cycle that fits your lifestyle, so you can set it and forget it. For example, you can set the heat to turn down after you go to work and set it to heat up again shortly before you return. And if you're going out of town or need to make another change, you can update its programming accordingly.

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December
11

Kitchen Remodel Tips

Considering a kitchen remodel in 2020? A newly remodeled kitchen can have a big impact on your enjoyment of your home while making it more attractive to buyers if you decide to sell. However, it's easy to make mistakes that cost you time and money. 

Our REALTORS® have looked at many kitchens over the years, and they point out 7 common kitchen remodel mistakes – as well as how to avoid them.

  1. Failing to Research

    Simply hiring a general contractor without doing your research may leave you unprotected if problems arise. For example, if your contractor doesn't have a state license, you won't receive all the possible protection from the state license board.

    Avoiding this mistake: When you're choosing a general contractor, make sure they have a state license as well as insurance. Also, check their references.

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November
27

Benefits of Living Room Staging

In 2018, the average property was on the market for approximately 68 days. Back in 2010, this number was a whopping 140 days. Though the exact length of time a property remains for sale varies based on the current housing market and existing financial climate, one thing you can do to help your property sell as quickly as possible is stage your living room. 

On average, homes with staging sell 73 percent faster than their unstaged counterparts. Plus, the sooner you sell your current home, the sooner you can start browsing other Raleigh homes for sale

Home staging is the act of setting up a room or space so that it appeals to potential buyers. Staging helps buyers envision how they will utilize a room in a potential home; it also creates a comforting, inviting mood that helps enables buyers to see themselves in a new home. Check out a couple of ways that living room staging can help you make a good impression and sell your house.

Home Staging Allows Your Home to Appeal to More Buyers

Some home sellers decide to leave their living rooms as is when selling their homes. Though there's nothing inherently wrong with your existing living room set-up or decor, staging allows you to appeal to a large number of buyers. 

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January
6

Cold Weather Home Projects

With forecasted temperatures below freezing in the days ahead, it will be the perfect time to stay inside and knock out some easy-to-execute home projects. Consider these cold days your chance to get ahead of your spring sale staging plans and get to work on overlooked tasks around the house.

 

Battle the baseboards

Have your baseboards been collecting dust and dirt? It's time to tackle them. Use your vacuum to suck away loose dust and dirt in the baseboard grooves. Then bring out a sponge and soapy water to wipe away the remaining residue. A bit of elbow grease followed by a clean water rinse should leave your baseboards gleaming once more.

Raid the refrigerator and pantry

It's time to toss out expired condiments, too-old leftovers and stale foods that are taking up space in your fridge and pantry. Go shelf-by-shelf and drawer-by-drawer to toss out outdated items that are taking up space. Wipe down shelves with soapy water to remove sticky or smelly spills.

Clean the oven and microwave

Chances are your holiday cooking left your oven and microwave in need of a deep clean. Use your oven's self-cleaning option (remember to remove your baking racks) if your kitchen is well ventilated or make a paste out of baking soda and water that you can scrub on, leave for up to an hour, and then rinse off. While you wait for your oven to clean or the baking soda paste to set, you can work on your microwave.

Change air filters

When was the last time you replaced your air filters? It's time. Clean air filters will help your HVAC system run more efficiently and ensure that dust, pollen, and other contaminants don't recirculate back into your home.

Dust light fixtures and fans

Turn your attention to your light fixtures and fans. Are they donned in unwanted cobwebs and dust? Get out your extendable duster or vacuum arm extension and get to work. A microfiber cloth or fuzzy duster head will capture and contain the dirt and dust that has collected on fan blades, fixture arms and wiring.

Say goodbye to spider webs

Grab a clean broom, long-armed duster, or vacuum arm extension and go room-to-room checking corners, window crevices, and ceilings for cobwebs. If you have a textured ceiling that collects spider webs or dust bunnies, a feather duster is an ideal tool to use to avoid scraping off any speckles as you clean.

Sanitize switch plates and doorknobs

Has your family been fighting the cold-weather crud? Get out the Lysol or your preferred antibacterial cleaning spray and start sanitizing switch plates and doorknobs. Germs and grime won't stand a chance in your newly disinfected home.

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