Tips To Increasing Value In Your Home

We all know what the Real Estate Market is like right now. Great time to sell, extremely difficult time in being a buyer. Unless you've been living under a rock- you know this to be true. So what's happening? People are going to be staying in their homes longer. So why would you need tips in increasing the value in your home? I mean the real estate market is doing that on it's own, so why put in the work? Ultimately the real estate market won't always be like this. The real estate market will find it's balance. With interest rates rising, we are slowly starting to see this happen. So what can you do to increase the value of your home and make it stand out?

Think About A Possible Remodel

This can sound like a lot of work, but it doesn't have to be. Take it one step at a time. Kitchens, and Bathrooms sell homes. Start there....especially with the kitchen. Studies have shown that 80% of the cost to your remodel will go back into increasing the value to your home. Always, always, always consult a designer before going down the remodel route. A two hour consultation could save you a lot of money in the long run. Sometimes you don't need to do a major remodel. Sometimes just switching up hardware, replacing light fixtures, and a little paint can go a long way. A Designer could also help you love your home again. Sounds crazy, right? Maybe you want a more open floorplan. There could possibly be a wall or two that could be taken out that could make your home more liveable, feel bigger and give you that open floorplan that you've been desiring.

Curb Appeal Counts

First impressions are critical, especially when selling your home. When was the last time you were at Disneyland? Did you really pay attention to their landscaping and flowers? Have you ever seen a wilted flower at Disneyland? Or a weed? Pay attention the next time you go. Put color into your landscaping. Add flowers, pull weeds and possibly new bark around the flower beds (if you have them). Power wash your driveway, replace burnt out light bulbs and clean off debris. It sounds so minimal, but sometimes the little things go farther.

Hire A Home Inspector

A Home Inspector, depending on the square footage of your home, can run from $250-$500. They will take about 3-4 hours and go through your home and determine what's working well, and what (probably) needs to be replaced. How's your plumbing? How's your electrical? How many years does your roof have left? Are any of your windows leaking? If you're reading this, I'll bet most of you can't answer those questions. Let's say you're thinking about replacing all the windows and doors in your home. Are you sure that every single window needs to be replaced? This is where a Home Inspector can help. Just like a Designer, it can help in saving you money in the long run.

Exterior Paint/New Roof

How's the exterior paint of your home? Most homes needs a good little exterior face lift every 10 years. It's not an inexpensive endeavor but well worth it in the long run. This kind of falls under the same category as Curb Appeal as when you pull up to a home, and you see paint chipping, what's the first thing you think to yourself? The home isn't taken care of. What else is wrong with the home? But please do us all a favor when painting your home, no bubble gum pink, or purple homes. Save those colors for the interior of your home.

Let's talk about your roof. I've represented a lot of buyers before and the #1 question I would get asked when walking through the home is, "how's the roof?" It's a major expense and an expense that no new homeowner wants to take on themselves. A new roof can increase the value of your home and help when the time comes, in selling your home. Always consult with three roofers as sometimes the entire roof doesn't need to be replaced.

Paint Paint and More Paint

I think a lot of people lose sight of how far painting the interior of your home can go. A room can go from looking very sterile, to having so much life with a little bit of color. Studies show that painting your bathroom blue will increase the value of your home. Thinking about replacing your kitchen cabinets? That alone can cost you upwards of $8-$10k depending on the size of your kitchen. What if I told you a lot of designers have their clients cabinets painted. Painting your cabinets can 1.) save you a lot of money in the long run 2.) change the look of your kitchen dramatically. My husband and I are thinking about doing this to our kitchen, as we have brown (ugh) cabinets. Brown cabinets can be nice, in a home with a ton of natural light. But let's be honest, I live in Seattle....we don't have a lot of natural light here. So lightening my kitchen up, will change things dramatically for our home.

So the takeaway to all of this is, talk to professionals. Sit down and create a budget and then meet with a Designer. Spend some money now, to save money later. Trust me, hiring a Designer will save you money!!


Creating Comfort Through Interior Design

Creating Comfort Through Interior Design

Just because the Christmas decor is put away and the festive mood of the holidays is over doesn’t mean we have to stop creating a snug and cozy home. It’s a good time to embrace winter Hygge! If you aren’t familiar with Hygge, it’s a Danish word for feeling content and cozy.

Here are seven ways to bring Hygge style comfort to your home, even during the dreariest winter month of the year!


Even if you feel like you’re lacking in the cozy department, simply addressing your lighting will make a huge difference. Layers of lighting make every room feel more welcoming. In the daytime, natural light is ideal. But for evenings, it’s nice to add a cozy glow. A good rule of thumb is to try to have a least three light sources in every room. Use a mix of table lamps, floor lamps, task lamps, and overhead lighting. Consider using warmer lightbulbs for the coziest ambience.


Your home will offer a sense of comfort when you incorporate some favorite photos of loved ones, treasured hand-me-downs, antiques or flea-market finds, eye-catching conversation starters, art that inspires you, special mementos, or simply things that make you smile.


What aroma feels ‘cozy’ to you? Set the tone for your home by filling it up with winter scents that inspire you.


The coziest homes contain a variety different textures that delight the eye. Incorporate different touch-worthy materials through pillows, drapery, throw blankets, rugs, lamps, and furniture. The fabric possibilities are endless: velvet, woven, knit, embroidered, grain sack, faux fur, tweed, etc. You can also consider creating contrast with varying materials like metal, wood, glass, rattan, mirrored, painted, and more.


Make yourself a special cozy place to relax. A reading chair will be extra cozy with some good books nearby in a basket, a lamp, a footstool, a side table to set a cup of tea, and a soft blanket you can curl up in.


Every home can benefit from warmth. No matter what your color scheme, you can add warmth through natural tones like wood, leather, jute, warm metals, etc.


A room comes to life when an organic element is incorporated into the decor. Every room can benefit from having at least one plant, bouquet of flowers, or even a sprig of greenery like eucalyptus to remind us that spring is on its way.

Getting Organized is Good for Your Home & Your Health


Getting Organized Is Good for Your Home and Your Health

For the last nine years, the HomeGain National Home Improvement Survey has been asking real estate professionals across the country the same question: What are the top 10 things a homeowner can do to get their home ready to sell?

And every year, the number one answer is: clean and de-clutter. In the latest survey, 99 percent of the real estate professionals queried ranked this task the most important. What’s more, they estimated that, for every dollar spent on the task, the homeowner would receive a whopping 403 percent return on their investment.

De-cluttering delivers big benefits to those who are not selling their homes, too. Studies show that living in a cluttered house is mentally stressful for the occupants and often leads to weight gain and other health problems.

So why do so many of us put off this important task? It’s hard work. It takes time. It’s physical. It’s emotional. And there are lots of decisions to make about what goes where, what gets tossed, and more. Worst of all, thinking about it makes it seem like an even bigger project than it really is—which is why experts say the best way to get started is to simply jump in.

The easy way to get started

The toughest part of getting organized is getting started. It’s too easy to say, “I’ll go through that closet later.” “I’ll get rid of those boxes later.” “I’ll donate those clothes later.”

Instead, replace “later” with “now.”

Grab a couple cardboard boxes and spend 90 minutes right now organizing one part of one room (a desk in your study, for example). Once you see that it’s not nearly as tough as you imagine, and actually feels satisfying and freeing, you’ll become energized and ready to take on even bigger organizing tasks tomorrow.

Here are some tips to keep you on track:

  • Tackle one room at a time.
  • Start with the easy stuff. Rounding up the things you know you want to toss, recycle, sell, or store.
  • Finish the task you start. Don’t pull everything out of a closet, for example, and then stop for the day, leaving the mess for later. Finish organizing the closet.
  • Get the whole family involved (these are important life lessons to pass along to your children).
  • Let phone calls and other disruptions wait until you’re done for the day.

Deciding what to keep

Once you make your way through the things you know you don’t want any more (broken appliances, unused gifts, outdated electronics, store returns, etc.), then it’s time to focus on the items that are useful, but don’t get used very often. Experts suggest two strategies. Choose the one that works best for you, or try using them in combination:

  • The 12-month test – If you haven’t used the item in the last year, get rid of it.
  • The cardboard box drill – Put items you’re not sure about in a cardboard box and set it aside. Whatever gets pulled out and used over the next two months can stay. The things that don’t get rescued should be sent packing.

How to handle keepsakes

Now for the toughest decision of all: What to do with those trophies, mementos, greeting cards, photos, kids’ art projects—and all the other things that trigger strong memories and emotional reactions.

First, go through these things and make sure they’re still things you want to keep. Some items may now remind you of a time—or a person—you want to forget.

Spend no more than 30 seconds reviewing each item. If you allow yourself to start wandering down memory lane, your organizing work will come to a screeching halt.

Take photos of items that are bulky or hard to store—especially the kids’ artwork, which tends to fall apart over time, anyway. Once you’ve captured the item in a photo, let the original go.

If there are keepsakes you inherited from your parents or relatives that hold no sentimental value for you, it’s time to say goodbye.

Stop saving so many things for your children. No matter what they say now, your kids will most likely only be interested in a few key mementos when they’re older. Designate a single memento box for each child.

Other people’s belongings

You should not be storing anything that doesn’t belong to you and/or the other current members of your household. Give back things you’ve borrowed. Get rid of the belongings of ex-spouses, ex-boyfriends, and ex-roommates. Get tough with your adult children; your days of providing a roof for their belongings are over.

Working with a professional

A professional organizer can teach you the tricks of the trade, help you make tough decisions about what to keep and what to let go, and consult with you about the best storage systems. Hiring a professional is also a good idea if you’re having trouble getting started or sticking with it. Expect to pay around $50 to $90 per hour for this kind of help.

Some final words of advice

While you’re getting organized, do not allow yourself to buy any non-necessities. Groceries, yes. But say no to clothes, toys, electronics, sporting goods, and other feel-good purchases.

When you’re done organizing, a good rule of thumb is that for every new item brought into the house, an old one has to leave.