The power of a deck

The addition of any amount of usable square footage to a property increases its value. Customized decks are a hot trend in home upgrades. A great-looking deck may entice more people to come see your home.

Building or updating an existing deck isn’t simply a great investment, it provides unique opportunities to personalize your yard. With many families staying home to save money, why not create the perfect location for entertaining?

Experts agree that multi-level decks—a series of deck levels connected by stairways or walkways—are a very popular option. One level can be used to catch the sun, one can be positioned for shade and another can be set close to the house for entertaining and barbequing.

While wood decks are the most popular, they also require more upkeep. For that reason, people are considering composite materials as a viable option. They may cost more up front, but ultimately last longer and require less maintenance.

By designing your deck with accents, lights and unique accessories, you can transform your backyard and make a sizeable impression on potential buyers.

Five tips to beautify the bath

Updating a tired-looking bathroom is a great way to increase a home’s resale. The fixes don’t need to be costly or labor intensive:

  1. Beautify: Add decorative glass, stone tile or accents to make a bathroom stand out. Extra-wide wall tiles are popular and wood cabinets can be embellished with carved wooden inlays.
  2. Lighting: Add more lighting options around the room to reduce shadows and glare. Mood lighting around the tub area is also very popular.
  3. Bath/Shower: A new tub and a spa-like atmosphere can do wonders for a bathroom. Adding a massage element to the showerhead will appeal to buyers.
  4. Update Fixtures: Changing the fixtures in a bathroom can add a great deal. From cabinet handles to faucets, the addition of brushed nickel or other metals is always a huge hit. And if space permits, add a second sink.
  5. Think Green: Install fixtures that save water. A low-flow showerhead, low-flow faucet aerator and a dual-flush toilet can save thousands of gallons of water. Energy-efficient windows is another easy option.

A renovated bathroom offers an intimate, contemporary feel and is one of the things people will remember about a home.

Five Tips for Spring Cleaning

Spring is here and for those selling their home, there’s nothing more beneficial than doing a great spring cleaning job. It will not only make your home look great, but it can get rid of clutter that could distract potential buyers.

Here are five spring cleaning tips that will help you sell your home:

  1. Mow the lawn, pick up leaves and trim the hedges. Buy some colorful flowers and spread fresh mulch in flowerbeds. Fill in bare spots on your lawn. Clean gutters, wash the welcome mat and put away tools.
  2. Clean windows bring more light into a room and allows buyers the chance to see the view from their potential new home. Include all sliding glass doors, garage windows and outside doors.
  3. Inspect each room for things such as holes in the wall, outlets that are missing a cover or doorknobs that are loose and squeaky. Check caulking around sinks, faucets and tubs, as well as grout in counters or bathtubs.
  4. Power washers are easily rented from a home improvement store and they can remove layers of grime from stone, porch, deck and fencing.
  5. Go through closets and bag clothes that don’t fit, are out-of-style or you don’t wear anymore and donate them to charity. Take your old books, toys and knickknacks and hold a garage sale. A de-cluttered home is always more attractive to the homebuyer.