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Just-Add-Salt

Design trends for 2019

There is something about storing away the Christmas decorations and returning my home to a state of minimalism post-the holidays that always triggers an urge to update a room or two — or the whole house.

Along with the New Year come new home design trends, and I’ve compiled a few of my favourite cosmetic style changes that you can seamlessly bring into your space without full renovation.

Out with the new, bring in the “vintage”

This particular trend is nothing new, as Turkish and oriental rugs have been in decorative use for ages. However, while the classic geometrics we are used to seeing won’t be going anywhere, more simple woven textiles are becoming increasingly popular.

Look for the minimal weave and design of flatweave Kilim rugs to add style without overwhelming a neutral space, as well as the clean stripes and lines on hmong fabrics for beautiful throws and pillow covers.

The future of white

There is something to be said for the lovely simplicity of white walls. While providing a shade for everyone’s tastes, the white palate is simultaneously bright, clean, and easy to blend with most home styles.

I don’t believe this trend is going anywhere soon, however what 2019 will bring is more experimenting with darker tones, particularly in kitchens and accent walls. Deep, earthy tones look beautiful on cabinetry and behind open shelving, particularly when combined with natural wood tones.   

It’s only natural

Though it seems like only yesterday that we saw the near disappearance of chrome and silver and the arrival of brass, I am told that this year will bring with it the arrival of more natural materials for fixtures within the home.

The organic texture of concrete and other stone lend themselves beautifully to light fixtures and storage containers, and the warm tones in copper offer timeless elegance when used for knobs and pulls.

I hope something on this list sparks your interest, or at least spurs some online shopping. Check back next month for a list of my favourite trends in home design, the renovation version.

For a full analysis of the best items to focus on for resale for your home in the coming year to increase the value upon sale by up to five per cent, give your local real estate professional a call or give us a shout.



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Top 5 home resolutions

It’s the same old story. Every New Year you vow:

  • to exercise
  • save more money
  • reconnect with old friends.

However, what do you do for you home? I’ve compiled a list of what I believe to be the top five resolutions for your abode in the upcoming year.

Minimize

Unless you are one of the very few homeowners who keeps their space paired down regularly, you probably have an abundance of stuff. From clothing and décor, to kitchen utensils and home improvement items, our natural instinct tends toward collecting and hoarding.

For clothing items and home décor, I believe the strategy is the same. If you don’t love it, lose it.

Trends and tastes change, but rarely do they come around in one lifetime. When it comes to more technical items such as appliances, first remove what is clearly unfixable or not worth fixing, then decide what to sell or donate.

The process might be daunting, but the end result will leave you and your home feeling lighter and clear the way for future updates!

Organize

Once you have eliminated the clutter, it’s important to keep everything else in order.

Having a specific location for every type of item in your home will keep life simpler and save you time. This is particularly important in the kitchen and office areas.

Labelling always helps too.

Reduce Energy Consumption

The benefits of this are two-fold — lowering your energy consumption lowers your bills and helps preserve this wonderful world we call home.

Luckily for you, this resolution has been around for a while, and therefore there are an abundance of products and ideas out there to help.

If you haven’t already, schedule an energy audit to get the full picture on what your home is using (or losing) on a daily basis.

Next, little changes such as replacing incandescent bulbs, lowering your thermostat when you’re away (a smart thermostat can help with this), and installing low-flow shower heads can also help.

Big changes like solar panels and updated insulation are also something to investigate.

Improve Indoor Air Quality

Whether you have children or are suffering from seasonal allergies and ailments, improving the quality of air in your home is an often overlooked, but vital thing to consider.

Start with keeping things clean, after you are done minimizing your stuff, take a day to thoroughly clean every nook and cranny to give your home a clean sweep.

Next, investing in an air purifier is a great way to maintain your home’s air quality if you live in a polluted area or city.

Lastly, air quality monitors are relatively inexpensive, and in today’s climate of smart-home products, they look the part too.

Budget Home Renovations

The beginning of a new year (and winter in general) can bring about new ideas for home updates and upgrades.

If your list is already growing, it’s important to prioritize these projects to avoid getting into financial trouble.

Further, when and if you decide to start a job, make sure to create a detailed outline and budget (and leave room for the unexpected!)

For a full analysis of the best items to focus on for resale and to increase the value by up to five per cent, give your local real estate professional a call or give us a shout.  



Winter home staging ideas

One of the concerns for home sellers when leaving their home on the market over the winter is the lack of natural light in their Okanagan homes due to the constant inversion.

There are, however, easy fixes for these winter time home staging blues.

Winter Home Staging Tip No. 1

Colour Accents: Brighten your room from the inside with colour. A quick and easy idea is to add some cut flowers to your living space or some new bright and cheery throw pillows.

It doesn’t have to be spring to enjoy some flowers and some fun colours inside.

Winter Home Staging Tip No. 2

Colour Your Walls: Whether it be an accent wall in your main living area, or a smaller room that needs a punch, adding a brighter colour will be a great addition to your home in any season.

Painting is an inexpensive do-it-yourself activity that can make a huge difference to the overall feel of your home.

Winter Home Staging Tip No. 3

Remove your screens: Getting rid of the mesh behind your windows brings in a much larger amount of natural light.

Winter Home Staging Tip No. 4

Area Rugs: If you have area rugs over your hardwood floors, a quick fix is to remove those rugs in rooms where light is at a minimum. This will help the light that does come in reflect off the hardwood flooring and onto your walls.

Winter Home Staging Tip No. 5

Light Bulbs: Beef up any dim light bulbs to a higher wattage. This may be the perfect time to switch to LEDs that come in bright colours than incandescent bulbs.

The difference between warm white, a cool white and a daylight bulb is amazing. Try a few and see what works best for the different rooms in your home that need a boost.

Just because it’s winter doesn’t mean it has to be dreary inside as well as out. Take advantage of trying a few of these tips for your home staging whether your home is on the market or not and brighten up your day.



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4 reasons to buy in the fall

Just as many sellers think that spring is the best time to sell a home in the Okanagan, often buyers feel that spring is the best time to buy.

However, there are many great reasons to consider a purchase in autumn instead.

Higher Seller Motivation

Some sellers keep their listings active in the fall and winter because of a motivating factor behind this decision.

They may need to sell prior to year end or a certain date due to a job transfer, to move to a home they have already purchased, or any number of other reasons.

This can be a huge benefit to you if you are able to find these homes with the motivated Sellers. Sellers are likely to have less showings at this time of year and some may be willing to negotiate more on an incoming offer.

Less Competition but More Deals

Often sellers are encouraged to take their home off the market for the winter months, or they choose to do so as they don’t wish to risk having to move in the winter. Although this means fewer homes for you to view and to choose from, it usually means better pricing in some areas and price ranges as year end nears.

Year End Benefits

For you as a buyer, the best deals on appliances, electronics, furnishings, etc. are usually found at year end. If you move into your new home prior to the holiday season you have a great opportunity to capitalize on all these year end benefits.

Plus your first mortgage payment likely won’t be due until the New Year, therefore Christmas can be a true celebration in your new home.

Lock in Your Interest Rate

Interest rates are on the rise. The only way to be certain of the interest rate and mortgage payment you will be paying on your new home is to activate your pre-approval and purchase a home before these rates rise any further.

Our best advice is once you make the decision to buy, discuss your decision with your realtor and they will be able to provide their best professional advice on timing.

In our opinion, there are many advantages to buying in the off season which may result in an even better deal than one may experience in the spring.



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About the Author

Lisa Salt is a Vernon born Realtor® who, along with her husband Gord Fowler from Calgary, lead one of the most successful and dynamic real estate teams in the North Okanagan. 

An international clay target shooting champion, Lisa brought the attributes of hard work and diligent focus to the real estate industry to create the success she and her team have today. 

To experience the local knowledge and expertise that only someone born and raised in the Okanagan can offer, call Lisa today and 'Just Add Salt'.

Website link:   http://www.saltfowler.com

Contact e-mail address:  [email protected]

 



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The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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