Len and Leslie Marma's Blog
A troubling trend in today’s home is difficulty finding restful sleep. Most of us have heard of a few ways to create a more relaxing atmosphere before bed. Here are a couple others to add to that list.
Many people avoid putting plants in their bedroom because they’re afraid they’ll get forgotten and die. But many plants filter toxins and improve oxygen levels. Try adding a Pothos, Philodendron or an easy-care Sansevieria (also called a snake plant or mother-in-law’s tongue) to your room. Others add scents that encourage relaxation such as lavender and mint.
Reduce the Textiles
Modern design tends to add pillows, throws, curtains and fabric wall hangings to bedrooms. However, textiles tend to collect piles of dust. Take a moment to look at your curtain tops or canopy, and you’ll see more than you bargained for. Dust triggers allergies, and even in folks with no allergies, the extra dust in the air makes breathing more difficult and sleep less restful. Instead, decorate your room with a floral or geometric wall covering. Cover windows with easy-care plantation shutters that dust right off. Purchase coverlets or duvet covers that easily pop in the washer to keep the dust at bay.
Incorporating these simple changes into your bedroom helps promote a restful atmosphere and improve sleep. Simpler bedroom décor makes keeping your home up for an impromptu showing easier too. If your home is on the market, ask your agent about the best way to stage your bedroom so that you can combine restfulness with the peace of knowing your home shows at its best.
Your kitchen is the ultimate workspace, but only if it has the lighting needed to properly illuminate your work area. Without the right lighting, you could end up fumbling through your tasks, failing to complete them to the best of your ability. Thankfully, resolving that problem is as easy as installing LEDs under the cabinets. Here’s what you need to know about this awesome lighting solution for your kitchen.
Types of Under-Cabinet LEDs
When choosing under cabinet lighting for your kitchen, the following types tend to work best.
Resembling hockey pucks in size and shape, LED pucks allow you to shine light wherever you need it. As a standalone lighting option, these typically use batteries for power, giving you virtually unlimited placement options. But remember, if you choose this design, make sure you have plenty of batteries on hand to avoid losing light when you need it most.
Available in a variety of sizes and shapes, LED bars are the most popular under cabinet option. These lights securely fasten to the bottom of whatever cabinet you like and plug right into a nearby outlet for power. Since these use a plug, you are somewhat limited in placement options, depending on your kitchen design.
For a little more flexibility, you may want to consider LED strip lights, which come in a variety of lengths and sizes. These strips are typically plug in, though some run on batteries instead. Their extra length can make it easier to place them in hard to reach areas that are far from an outlet.
Once you decide which LED light design you favor most, you can pick up as many as you need to create the task lighting of your dreams.
Key LED Light Features for Under Cabinets
Under cabinet LED lights have a large price range, which is largely built around the standard features included with each unit. At the high end of the price range you might find lights with dimmable bulbs, motion sensors, and even color-changing features. At the low end, you just get basic lights that can be turned off and on with the press of a button.
To find your ideal options, take a look at your expectations, budget, and kitchen activities. If you frequently need extra light while cutting up meat, for example, you may want motion sensors to have light on demand without having to flick a switch.
Installation Tips for Under Cabinet Lighting
Whether you choose strips, bars, or pucks, there are a few things to remember when installing these lights:
When you take the time to select and install your LED under cabinet lights, you can transform your kitchen into a truly effective workspace. So, get started in planning this smart upgrade to treat yourself to a well-illuminate space to complete all your kitchen tasks.
You don't have to be an interior designer to bring color and life into a home when you put it on the market. And you certainly don't have to drop thousands of dollars to hire a professional stager, either. For most properties, a few staging basics can make all the difference between a hollow, echoing home and one that prospective buyers can actually imagine living in.
These top tips won't cost you much money, time or effort, but they can make a big impact.
1. Hang up towels.
Colorful, soft towels on the racks in the bathroom soften the space's edges and make it feel like an actual washroom. The same goes for the kitchen: choose a few simple, trendy tea towels to hang up in the kitchen to soften up the space. If there's a space to hang a towel, fill it.
2. Place a few rugs.
An empty living area will always benefit from a large rug, even if you're not staging with any furniture. A mostly-white space can take a colorful, trendy rug, so don't hesitate to choose something lively to make your living room feel a little more alive. A rug in the kitchen and bathrooms can also work wonders for those rooms.
3. Add some color.
Toss a colorful throw across the foot of a bed. Place a bowl of fruit on the kitchen island. Add a few fresh flowers to a vase in each bathroom. These small touches don't cost much, but add a personal touch that transforms the way visitors view a space.
4. Put a wreath on the front door and a new doormat at the entrance.
An in-season wreath or "welcome home" sign feels far more homey than a blank door with a realtor's lock gracing the doorknob. Add a fresh, new door mat and a large potted plant if you have room for it, and suddenly you've created a warm, welcoming entryway.
When in doubt, go with less. This is particularly important--and challenging--if you're selling your primary residence. You'll want your space to be as neat, clutter-free and open as possible. Box up excess stuff and put it in storage if necessary so your closets and storage spaces aren't filled to capacity.
If you find yourself listing multiple properties at a time, you'll quickly develop a quick-staging system--and a collection of a few key items you can use to stage practically any home you list.
Here's an added caveat about hiring a pro. Look at comps in your neighborhood as you firm up your approach for your property. Historic homes and niche homes in choice neighborhoods sometimes all but require a full staging to appeal to the buyers you want to attract. If you're certain it's worth it, by all means, make the investment. Otherwise, mini-stage it yourself using the tips above, and wait for the offers to roll in.
23 Schooner Way, Marshfield, MA 02050
When you've owned your house a long time, getting it ready to sell may seem like a daunting task. If relocation is on the horizon for you, get an early start and organize your spaces.
Ideas to help you get organized right away!
Resist the temptation to add items to your home that might not be needed or used in the short term. If you tend to purchase commonly used items in bulk, try to reduce the quantity you store to no more than you can use up within a month or so.
Sort your belongings and donate or throw away items or clothing you no longer need. Move items designated for donation into the trunk of your car right away so you have them with you the next time you pass by a donation center.
Start small. Choose one thing to organize at a time but make sure you can tackle the project in one day. A drawer, cabinet, or closet would be a great place to start. Every week — or if you're especially motivated, every day — choose another place to organize. Throw away or donate unused items as you go.
Get a handle on paper. You will need to keep some physical documents like marriage licenses, certified birth certificates, and passports but for other things like invoices and receipts, a digital version is all you need. If mail is an issue, consider switching to electronic delivery for bank or credit card statements and removing yourself from mailing lists for catalogs or other marketing that you don’t need to receive anymore.
Check the sentiment. When an object is received from a special person or under special circumstances it can be hard to part with even if it’s not an object that is used or displayed often. If there are items like this in your home, consider passing them on to someone who will use them. Memorialize the sentimental value with photos or journal entries, the memory is often more important than the thing.
Organizing is step one toward preparing for a sale.
Your real estate professional can help you plan for a home sale. They’ll walk through your house with you and show you what items to repair, what to update, and what you might want to pass on or put into storage, contact your agent today to get started.