Interior Design 101: Make It Cozy

Happy Friday, everyone! Welcome to part 3 of a series of posts on an introduction to interior design! We last left off with tips on how to choose the right colors, and today we’ll continue on how to incorporate your own sense of self into your design by making it… cozy?

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Yes, you heard it right. Cozy is the word. What’s with all the fancy colors and furniture if you won’t feel comfortable with it? Comfort is an important aspect that you should incorporate whenever you are coming up with a new design for a room, especially if it will be in your own home. Remember, looks aren’t everything. That sofa might make a stunning centerpiece in your living room, but will it actually feel good sitting on it?

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This is where saving money comes in. Just because you’re redecorating doesn’t mean you have to replace everything. A part of comfort is surrounding yourself with things you’re familiar with, things you’ve spent time with. Reincorporate old pieces in a new design. An example can be in the form of recycling old pillows by simply changing their pillowcases. Same comfort, new look. And you don’t even have to spend a single dime!

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Another part of making a room comfortable is by treating yourself to small luxuries. That can be as simple as scented candles to some people, for example. Remember, it’s your room and you can do anything–and put anything you want in it! Not only will you feel good being pampered in the comfort of your own home, you get to share the experience with others, whether they may be family members or guests.

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Were you able to find any of these pointers helpful? Don’t worry, this isn’t the last of it! There’s more basic home decor tips for you next time, so stay tuned!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Springfield Market Insider

Hey everyone! It’s that time of the month for another edition of Market Insider! This week I’m featuring the lovely town of Springfield, WV. If you happen to be buying or selling a home here, you might want to take a quick read at this!

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The number of active listings in Springfield increased by 4.8% from the previous month. The median listing price for homes in this area is $176,250.

Understand the difference between “listing prices” (what sellers are asking for) and “sold prices” (what buyers are willing to pay). By comparing these price trends, you’ll have a good idea of where the market is heading. The median listing and sold property prices are calculated based on the market activity each month. (Some sales are not immediately available from public records. As they become available, the data are updated.)

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Median household income is $37,058 with 68 households earning between $35,000 to $40,000 annually.

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The Crime Risk Index compares the likelihood of different crimes happening within this community to the national average. The national average for each type of crime equals a score of 100. A score of 200 would represent twice the risk as the national average, and a score of 50 would represent half the risk.

44
Median Age
33%
Married
654
Number of Homes
223
Homes with Children

The above data was gathered from multiple sources and includes current listings, recent sales, and more. Whether you’re a buyer or seller, the knowledge you gain will help put you in control of your real estate transactions.

Homes for sale in Springfield, WV

If you’d like to read more statistics on the current housing market in Springfield, visit my website here. You can find more information on it such as local schools, a list of establishments (categorized and searchable by map), and you can even compare areas/neighborhoods according to zip code. It can really provide you with a thorough insight so you have a better idea of the community you want to move into.

Enjoy the rest of the week, everyone!

What to Plant in September

It’s Friday yet again, guys! Any plans for the weekend? If you’re just going to be relaxing at home with your family, you might want to take a look at your backyard. With October just around the corner, there will be many significant changes to the state of your garden now that early fall has arrived. Let’s see what we can do to maintain our garden this month, shall we?

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For all you beginners out there, here’s a list of crops and vegetables you sow plant this month, especially if you’re in the Mid-Atlantic region like I am, as explained in our National Survey of Most Productive Garden Crops. (The criteria for selection include ease of culture, efficient use of garden space and time, ease of storage and desirability at the table.) The recommended crops are sorted by plant family to help you plan rotations so that the same plant families are not grown consecutively in the same area, as much as possible.

Sow Outdoors in September (Vegetables)
Arugula, carrot, endive, lettuce, mustard, parsley, radish, spinach, turnip

Sow Outdoors in September (Crops)
Alfalfa, buckwheat, crimson clover, hairy vetch, mustard, oats, winter peas, radish, triticale, wheat

Top 10 Crops in the Mid-Atlantic Region (all-year round)
Slicing tomato, sweet pepper, cherry tomato, pole snap bean, bush snap bean, garlic, potato, snow/snap pea, summer squash, bulb onion

Other Highly Recommended Crops

Cabbage family: Broccoli, cabbage, collards, kale, kohlrabi
Cucumber family: Cucumber, winter squash
Leafy greens: Arugula, chard, lettuce, mache, mustard (all types), pac choi, sorrel, spinach
Legumes: Asparagus/yard-long bean, bush lima bean, dry soup bean, edamame, peas (all types), Southern pea
Root crops: Parsnip, radish, rutabaga, shallot, sunchoke, turnip
Tomato family: Eggplant, peppers (all types), tomatillo, tomato (all types)
Miscellaneous: Asparagus, leek, okra, scallions, sweet corn

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Wouldn’t it be cool to have your own vegetables picked fresh right out of your own backyard? If that’s not healthy living, then I don’t know what is! Try it and knock yourself out!

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Interior Design 101: Choosing Colors

Hey everyone! Hope you had a great weekend! Now if you remember last week, I posted all about Interior Design 101: An Introduction here, so today we’re moving forward to teach you the next step in home decor basics: colors!

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Try It Out
Check magazines or websites (Pinterest, Houzz, etc.) on different color palettes and try to imagine how they would look like in your room. You can also buy actual swatches and place them against surfaces to have a more solid idea of how they will turn out. Fabrics can also be an alternative if you are dealing with patterns or more elaborate styles.

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For Small Spaces
Now it all depends on personal taste and preference, but if you live in smaller rooms, some designers believe that you shouldn’t use white as your base color. White has always been known to give the illusion of more space, but interior designer John Loecke believes the opposite. “There’s no truth that white makes small spaces look larger. It makes you notice how small they really are. Rather, I prefer color, and the darker the colors the better the walls visually melt.”

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Use Other Guides
While swatches are helpful in visualizing your ideas, simple, everyday items such as displays, furniture, ceramics, and plants can also help you materialize all the colors you plan to use. You can either use them as your base or accents, but actual sources of color in a room can help you plan your designs out on a larger scale.

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Feeling inspired yet? You’ll be pleased to know that there’s more to come! There are many layers to interior design, so stick around if you want to learn more. Stay tuned for more updates on this series!

(Images and concept from BHG.com)

Tips for Buying A Foreclosed Home

So you’re ready to buy your first or next home, but you want to get a discount. Foreclosures can definitely be cheaper than most brand new or resale homes, but you might want to read up a little more on bank-owned properties before you consider purchasing one:

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Buying a foreclosure is a lengthy process, and, although most investors prefer pre-foreclosure sales and auctions, you will face your share of competition for bank-owned homes.

Buying an REO

Purchasing a bank-owned property is much easier than buying a home at auction and much like a conventional purchase. You’ll need a loan preapproval letter from your lender, unless you’re paying cash, and the services of a real estate agent.

Most REO properties are vacant and somewhat cleaned up. Although the bank won’t supply you with property disclosures as sellers in a conventional transaction are required to, you will be allowed time for inspections.

Many experienced REO buyers perform extreme due diligence, such as checking the city planning office for permits that may be on file for any work the previous owner performed. Have anything that looks the slightest bit suspicious inspected, from the roof to the foundation.

Your buyer’s agent should be able to assist you in learning as much as possible about the home’s history. And, since real estate brokers are required to hold on to transaction files for a number of years (varying according to state), if the home sold in the past few years, your agent may be able to track down a past disclosure.

Banks typically don’t pay for repairs to the property, so you’ll need to take on that expense. Ultimately, although it may seem that you’re getting a bargain-priced home, once all is said and done, it may be worth it to purchase another home in turnkey condition.

Homes for sale in Martinsburg, WV

For more tips and advice on buying foreclosures, feel free to check out the rest of the article from my website here.

Have a great weekend, everyone!