Diane Minguez
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RE/MAX 440   Diane Minguez
1110 North Broad Street  Lansdale, PA  19446
Office Phone: 215-362-2260    Phone: 267-575-6818  Fax: 267-354-6882  Cell: 267-575-6818
dminguez@remax.net

My Blog

8 Summer Must Haves to Keep Kids Safe

May 23, 2013 2:20 pm

Summer is right around the corner and June is National Child Safety Awareness Month. Summer is full of fun, travel, going to the beach and more. Here are eight summer must-haves to keep kids safe this summer:

1. Parking Pal Magnet: Safer unpacking

This is a super safety product; unpacking the car at the beach can be challenging -- beach chairs, coolers, beach umbrella, towels, toys, kids, etc. The Parking Pal Magnet is a magnet to place on a safe part of the automobile and a child places their hand on the magnet to stay in place safely while the car is unloaded. Parking Pal makes trips to the beach and anywhere else this summer easier and safer.

$8.99
www.parkingpalmagnet.com

2. SwimZip Swimwear: Safer swimwear

We are all aware of the dangers of exposure to the sun. SwimZip Swimwear offers super cute swimsuits in UV50+ protection. SwimZip blocks 99% of the UVA and UVB cancer causing rays from your little ones skin! We all might as well purchase SwimZip suits because it offers safety from the sun for kids so simply.

$17.99 - $29.99
www.SwimZip.com

3. The Noblo Umbrella Buddy: Safer beach umbrella use

Invented by two moms to stop fly away beach umbrellas (and the injuries that can result from this), the Noblo is a simple to use beach umbrella anchor. Three easy steps: 1) Fill noblo with sand, 2) velcro to beach umbrella, and 3) relax at the beach. Noblo will take care of your beach umbrella.

$14.99
www.thenoblo.com

4. Zoe b organic Beach Toys – Safer toys

Zoe b organic beach toys are made from corn, not petroleum. They’re safer for our kids, containing no toxic chemicals like BPA or phthalates. They’re also safe for our oceans: if washed out to sea, these toys will fully break down in two-three years (not 500 years, like ordinary plastic). They’re the world's first biodegradable beach toys. They come in a five piece set: bucket, sifter/lid, shovel, and two cups, and come in turquoise/lime or pink/orange.

$22.00
www.zoeborganic.com

5. Eye Cream Shades - Safer eyes

Eyes Cream Shades is a leader in providing quality sunwear for kids ages six months and above. All Eyes Cream frames are fashion forward, comfortable, as well as durable; and all lenses are polycarbonate and provide 100% UVA & UVB protection. As everyone knows, sunglasses are not "toys" or novelty items, but serve an important health function -protecting precious eyes.

$22.50
www.eyescreamshades.com

6. S'well Water Bottle -- Safer days with proper hydration

S'well is a fashionable, reusable, sustainable water bottle company. Their bottles are double walled in stainless steel leaving liquids cold for 24 hours and hot for 12. Not only will you have a great water bottle for the beach, but you will help in S'well's effort to bring clean water to the world's poorest communities. Water is essential for life, but one billion people (one sixth of the world's population) do not have safe access to it. To address this crisis, S'well is a proud to partner with WaterAid.

$35
www.swellbottle.com

7. Dr. Robin All Natural Chemical-Free Sunscreen SPF 30+ - Safer sun protection

With all the information about sunscreen/sun exposure, a safer choice is Dr. Robins. It’s made in California and specially formulated by a Pediatric Dermatologist. Believing less is more, Dr. Robin created this broad spectrum mineral sunscreen without irritating chemicals, phthalates, parabens, or fragrance. Dr. Robin's special formula is: Gluten-free, water resistant, formulated to minimize allergic reaction, and coral reef safe.

$24
www.drrobin.mdt

8. Little Toader AppeTEETHERS - Safer teething toy

While adults and children have fun this summer, so can babies with AppeTEETHERS by Little Toader. AppeTEETHERS are fun, safe and effective teething toys that look like real food. While BBQing this summer, baby can enjoy a Chompin' Chicken Wing or Baby-Q Ribs…coming soon are fruits, veggies and sweets. These patented silicone teething toys are free of BPA, phthalate, PVC and lead providing the perfect amount of resistance to soothe babies' sore gums and best of all they are fun.

$9.99
www.littletoader.com

"One super important safety necessity at the beach is to show your children where the lifeguard stand is and tell them to go to the lifeguards if they are lost. It’s easy to get disoriented at the beach and children do not always think to go to the lifeguards," shares Kathleen Pisano, inventor of Noblo.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Make Your Outdoor Space Help Sell Your Home

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

Spring is finally here, and it's a beautiful time of year to spruce up your property and get it ready for the warmer weather. For many people, this means creating an outdoor environment that is inviting and fun to use during the warmer months. This is just as important if you're planning on selling your home as if you're going to be living in it.

Nicer weather means that people want to spend more time outdoors working, playing, socializing, and even eating. Most homeowners invest some time preparing their yards and gardens for warmer days, and the same rules apply when prepping your home for sale. Buyers will be tempted by the accessibility and appeal that you enjoy in your yard.

Making your yard and the outside of your home enticing doesn't have to be expensive. All it takes is a little elbow grease and a few key investments – most likely the same investments you make every year as the weather warms up. Here are a few small fixes and embellishments that you can use to your advantage when making your outdoor space appealing:

Clean it up. Your outdoor space can give prospective buyers the impression of an additional "room" when viewing your home. And as with any other room in your home, you want everything to be in order. Stow lawn tools and outdoor toys in a garage, shed, or storage bench when you are not using them. Clean up anything that has gotten grimy during the cold winter months. Wash windows and clear gutters. Rent a power washer from a local home supply store to clean off siding, decks, patios, and fences that look dirty.

Make quick fixes. Replace or repair anything that has taken a beating. Paths and patios should be free of chipped or cracked tiles or paving stones. Shore up fences that are damaged or leaning. Repaint any trim or decking that is in bad shape. Make sure all of your outdoor lighting is working.

Make your landscaping stand out. While you don't necessarily want to plant a huge vegetable garden that will require maintenance (and for which you may not reap the benefits), well-placed and carefully maintained plantings are an easy and attractive way to make your home stand out. If you don't have the time to maintain flower beds, add a few pots and planters brimming with bright blooms. Hanging baskets of flowers are available at virtually any home store or nursery, while small pots of fresh herbs are pretty and you can take them with you when you move. As always, stay on top of weeding and keep grass trimmed and bushes and trees pruned. Investing in some fresh mulch will give your yard a clean appearance.

Add charm. A prospective homebuyer will likely be drawn to the allure of dining al fresco, so if you have a grill or barbecue area, make it inviting with some attractive outdoor furniture. If you have a pool, open it and maintain it. Keep the water sparkling and inviting, and store pool toys out of sight. And don't forget how your property will look during evening hours. Outdoor lighting comes in all shapes and sizes, and much of it is very affordable. Invest in some fixtures that highlight your property's best features. And keep lawn ornaments to a minimum. Remember that buyers want to imagine themselves in your home, so it's best to give them room to imagine their own belongings in your outdoor space.

With summer just a few weeks away and winter just a memory, it's time to get out and enjoy the nicer weather. The best part of preparing your lawn and yard for sale is that you can enjoy the benefits while you are waiting for an offer to come through.

Susie Shortsleeve is a REALTOR® Weston, Mass.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Rate Increases Ahead for Some National Flood Insurance Program Policyholders

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

Changes are coming to the critically important National Flood Insurance Program that could impact real estate transactions and property owners across the country. That’s according to experts from the Federal Emergency Management Agency, which manages the government’s flood insurance program, who spoke to REALTORS® at the Flood Insurance 101 session during the REALTORS® Midyear Legislative Meetings & Trade Expo.

Kristin Robinson, senior advisor, summarized last year’s Biggert-Waters Flood Insurance Reform Act, which reauthorized the critically important NFIP through 2017 so property owners could affordably access flood insurance.

The National Association of REALTORS® strongly supported the legislation and believes the government’s insurance program saves taxpayers property and money because it increases the number of self-insured properties and reduces the cost of post-flood disaster governmental assistance.

The NFIP is responsible for writing and renewing flood insurance policies for more than 5.6 million home and business owners in more than 21,000 communities nationwide where flood insurance is required for a mortgage. Before Congress passed the legislation, the program operated under short-term extensions. In the past five years, there were 18 extensions and several lapses in program coverage, delaying or cancelling thousands of real estate transactions daily according to NAR’s own research, wreaking havoc on real estate markets.

Robinson said the NFIP is $24 billion in debt following several disastrous storms in recent years since the costs and consequences of flooding continue to increase. “For decades the program has made flood insurance available at subsidized rates that did not reflect the true risk of flooding; artificially low rates and discounts are no longer sustainable,” she said.

Andy Neal, actuary, addressed the gradual phase-out of subsidized rates, which was included in last year's legislation to preserve the flood insurance program and critically important property insurance coverage for the nation’s homeowners. Neal said rate subsidies are being phased out over the next several years to help increase the NFIP’s soundness and financial stability.

The majority of policyholders, more than 80 percent, are not subsidized and won’t be impacted by subsidized rate changes since they are already paying full actuarial rates, he said. However, these owners could see routine annual rate increases.

“Only about 20 percent of NFIP policies receive subsidies, mostly older structures built before the community’s first flood insurance rate map was issued, which are known as pre-FIRM properties. Some of these policyholders will be impacted by the gradual phase-out of subsidized rates; an even smaller number will see immediate changes to their insurance policy rates,” said Neal.

Rate changes are likely to affect owners of subsidized pre-FIRM non-primary residences, business properties, and properties that have experienced severe repetitive flood losses. Owners of some pre-FIRM condos and multi-family units will also see their rates gradually increase. Owners of pre-FIRM primary residences will retain their subsidies unless the policy lapses; it suffers a severe, repeated flood loss; or it’s sold to a new owner, which is retroactive to July 6, 2012, when the legislation was enacted. Some grandfathered principal residences will also lose their subsidies over a several year period, but not until the communities’ flood map is revised.

Neal recommended that home and property owners talk to their insurance agent to determine if their property is currently being subsidized. He said flood insurance rates vary based on a property’s location, elevation and flood risk and can be as low as a few hundred dollars up to $10,000 or more if the property is well below flood level and had severe repeated flood losses.

While higher rates may place a greater burden on families, there are investments homeowners can make to either reduce or better access their flood risk so they can continue to protect their families and possessions from damaging floods. According to Neal, homeowners can lower their risk by elevating their property and potentially reduce their flood insurance rates by having an elevation certificate completed to determine the property’s elevation relative to the base flood elevation. Elevation certificates can cost several hundred dollars to complete but could potentially lower homeowners’ flood insurance premiums.

Some homeowners with flood insurance policies have already received quotes for higher rates, which may be caused by several other factors such as improvements to mapping. As FEMA improves its mapping technology and draws more accurate flood maps, some homes may now be located in a flood zone, or a higher risk zone, where flood insurance is more expensive. Also, some insurance agents may adjust rates to correct previous mistakes made about the home's features when they are re-evaluating an insurance policy at renewal.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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10 Travel Tips to Get Your Family Road Ready

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

As we approach the traditional kick-off of the summer travel season, Rand McNally 's editors have compiled a list of Top 10 travel tips to keep the "Are We There Yet’s?" at bay. These easy-to-implement suggestions will help keep families and friends road-ready instead of road-weary.

At Home

#1: Engage everyone in the planning. If you already have an endpoint in mind, have the family fill in the blanks. Ensure something from each person's list makes it onto the itinerary – from a particular food stop to a funky festival, or an unusual place to take a break.

#2: Scope out something new along the way. Tap into websites as well as magazines, guide books, friends and family to find interesting places to visit. Even the non-readers of the group can get involved with helping you select – simply cite the kid-friendly amenities at each of the possibilities, and note what excites them the most.

#3: Map out the trip. Get out the GPS or pull up a mapping site on the computer, and begin plotting your journey. Encourage youngsters to hone their map-reading skills by finding places and attractions and highlighting routes between locations. Bonus for those math and map inclined in the family: Ask the kids to figure out the distance and direction between various points using the map keys.

#4: Gear up the car. Take your vehicle in for a once-over, ensuring that all necessary repairs and maintenance are done – and maybe a fresh wash and vacuum for good measure. Gather the essentials you need for both your car and the people in it, including a first-aid kit; a tool kit and work gloves; jumper cables; tire jack; rain ponchos; road-side emergency gear; and extra blankets, food (energy bars are great for this), and water.

#5: Shore up things at home. Set timers for lighting, and arrange for mail pickup, lawn mowing and pet care. Clear the refrigerator of all perishable foods and take out the garbage. Do not leave a house key hidden outside your home. Adjust the thermostat, unplug small appliances so they don't drain energy unnecessarily while you're away, and turn off computers and other electronics susceptible to power surges. Share your itinerary with family or a trusted neighbor – but never post these details on a social networking site!

En Route

#6: Delegate road-trip tasks. Give everyone a job while on the road: navigator, treasurer, keeper of the spare keys, fun-and-games maestro, photographer, historian/documentarian, snack server. Alternate roles throughout the trip.

#7: Keep everyone engaged. Digital devices are great for keeping kids distracted, but, every so often, have everyone look up and around – connecting with each other and the journey is a benefit of being together in a vehicle for hours. See how many different state license plates each person can spot. Play 20 Questions with answers related to the trip. Watch road signs looking for towns beginning with a specific letter. Name the state capitals, or mottos as you are passing through them.

#8: Keep things interesting. Surprises – a new toy, game, or app to share or special snacks – help with those "can't-keep-it-together" moments. Be sure to allow time for unplanned stops at festivals, historical markers, produce stands, quirky attractions, or other interesting road-side finds.

#9: Stay happy and healthy. This means eating healthfully, stopping when you first feel hungry rather than waiting till everyone's ravenous and cranky. It also means hydrating – preferably with water as well as juice and other nutritious beverages. And, finally, it means resisting the urge to simply press on. Don't hesitate to stop whenever you need to reorganize, regroup, rest or relax.

#10: Share the journey. At day's end, have everybody share their favorite sights and experiences. Vote on the best photos taken that day. At the end of the trip, select the best overall picture and sight or experience.

Source: Rand McNally

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Why the Perfect Workout Buddy Is Hairy, Panting and Shirtless

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

Typically, your ideal workout buddy would not be someone with an exposed hairy torso who is panting heavily, drooling and staring intensely in your direction. To encourage pet parents to get back on the fitness track by getting outdoors with pets, animal-lover and celebrity trainer, Gunnar Peterson, and Petco give five reasons why they are the best workout buddy one could ever hope for.

1) Being a no-show is out of the question. Ever have a workout partner that was never on time or just didn't show up at all? A dog is always there, raring to go so pet parents don't lose motivation. Plus, a fitness routine involving a pet has additional benefits. Besides helping keep you both physically fit, exercise also keeps dogs mentally alert and emotionally happy. They'll be more content and less likely to get into mischief.

2) They look forward to new adventures. If you have ever worked out with a Debbie Downer, they were likely resistant to exploring new places. Most dogs are always enthusiastic about a change of scenery. Routine long walks will also help cure boredom and satisfy their exercise needs too. Changing the walking route is a great way to challenge dogs because it is mentally stimulating to explore new smells, areas, pets and people, while also giving them vital exercise and time to bond with their pet parent. Retractable leashes are a great option to offer dogs freedom, while still keeping them safe and stylish.

3) They're great for your social life. Not only will you both be in great physical shape, but getting outdoors with a dog can actually help you meet someone. According to an article in the U.K.'s Daily Mail, one in four pet parents has met dates while walking their dogs and one third of owners have made new friends. Dogs are social creatures too, so you both will feel emotionally and socially fulfilled.

4) They will never get bored with helping perfect your throw. Whether you're in a summer softball league or gearing up for football season, a dog will never roll its eyes when you want to work on your pitching arm for the tenth time this week. In fact, you couldn't ask for more enthusiasm when it comes to ball time.

5) They're always up for a new challenge. Dogs look forward to a challenge, as should you. A sharp mind is equally as important as a sound body, so why not combine both? Get outdoors with a Kyjen Agility Kit. The dog takes cues from you to make his way through an obstacle course while racing against the clock. Unlike many other dog sports, basic activities on beginner obstacles are relatively easy to learn and most dogs can do well and have fun with minimum training. It's also a great way to enhance the emotional bond between you and your dog. The agility obstacle course keeps your dog's senses sharpened, body properly exercised, teaches problem solving skills and brain occupied.

Your pal's exercise program should be tailored to her age, size and breed. Ask your veterinarian how much exercise - and what kind - is appropriate for your dog.

Source: Petco

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Choosing the Best Mattress for You

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

Health experts agree the average mattress should be replaced after 10-15 years. But traditional mattress types have given way to new breeds. If you are in the market for a new mattress, which type is best for you?

“The only way to choose the right mattress is to lie on it for at least 20 minutes,” said Omaha mattress store manager Joe Paginolo. “Don’t let anyone rush you. Get comfy in the position you usually sleep in—and try it out for at least that long.”

Paginolo points out some of the pros and cons of four basic mattress types:

Innerspring
• Pros: They range in firmness, price and fluffiness of the pillow top to satisfy nearly everyone’s preference and budget.
• Cons – The cheapest may not have enough springs and cushioning to offer proper support. Be sure the mattress you choose has at least 390 coils. Firmer versions are best for the overweight and people with chronic back pain.

Memory foam
• Pros: By molding to the shape of your body as your weight shifts through the night, memory foam reduces pressure points and relieves pain. Memory foam also absorbs movement, so if you sleep with a partner, you're not likely to be disturbed by his tossing and turning.
• Cons - Because they are temperature sensitive, they soften and mold with body heat, so they can make you feel hot during the night. Also, some memory foam mattresses have been known to emit an unpleasant chemical smell.

Latex
• Pros – Made from either natural or synthetic rubber, they provide a very firm, bouncy support that is uniform throughout the bed. They are supportive but comfortable for most sleepers.
• Cons - If you don't like the feel of a firm mattress, latex is probably not the right choice for you.

Air mattresses – (Unlike the blow-up kind you use for overnight guests, the high-end types known as “sleep number” beds use air-filled chambers instead of coils, and are covered by a foam layer on top.)
• Pros – The firmness of each side can be altered, so they are a good choice for couples who have different firmness preferences.
• Cons – They can tend to pop up on one side when you sit on the other. Be sure your choice has multiple chambers, so this does not occur.

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Study Reveals Americans' Rising Faith in Housing Market

May 22, 2013 2:00 am

Nearly half of Americans (47 percent) say they feel more comfortable purchasing a home today than at any other time in the past five years, according to results of a recent survey by Mayflower. And nearly a third say they are now ready to make a move.

Compared to 2012, residential moves were up 18.9 percent in the historically slowest moving months – January through April.

The survey data is also consistent with other national data showing continued rises in existing home prices and sales. Growth appears to be the strongest in the West, where data showed 54 percent of survey respondents are now comfortable purchasing a house.

The data reflect an easing of the wariness Americans have felt in recent years in the aftermath of the bursting of the housing bubble in 2008. Although the average American reports moving six times throughout their adult life, nearly half of Americans (49 percent) say they have put off moving since the bubble burst nearly five years ago.

Among those now interested in searching for a new home within the next year, the survey showed the desire for a new or better home is the leading motive. Other important motives include a desire for a more attractive neighborhood and the desire to become a homeowner.

Most mobile are the young, with half of Millennials (18-34 years old) more receptive to buying a home than renting and looking to move within the next year. While younger consumers would be more likely to move due to a change in employment or a growing family, half of adults over the age of 65 would consider moving in the next year because of retirement.

The peak moving season begins in May and will continue until September. Here are some tips to help consumers save time and money throughout their move:

• Move on a weekday. Weekends are the time when most people want to move, but on weekdays, moving trucks often go unused. Book a truck on a Monday or Tuesday and use the weekend to prep for the movers' arrival.
• Move in the early part or middle of the month. A lot of household moves happen at the end of the month, which means prices will be higher.
• If given a choice, avoid moving in the summer, especially June and July. You can save big on your moving costs.
• Book in advance. Once you know the date of your move, book your mover right away.
• Do some of your own packing. You can easily pack clothes, blankets, pillows and other non-fragile items yourself. For the breakable items, consider letting professionals pack them to avoid having to replace broken items.
• Consider a do-it-yourself option like a container. Portable moving and storage containers allow you to pack and load your things at your own pace. A professional will pick up your loaded container and deliver it to your new home, so you don't ever have to drive a truck.
• Bundle other services into the price of your move. Look for a carrier that can arrange for services like cleaning, PC and network assembly and disassembly, and ID theft protection. Bundling these services with the cost of your move can help you save hundreds of dollars compared to hiring separate companies for each service.

Source: Mayflower

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Figuring out Finances after Divorce

May 20, 2013 1:40 am

Divorces can be messy. Emotionally, spiritually and financially. If your partner handled the finances, then you can be left clueless. Budgets and bills can be overwhelming if you’ve never had to take them on before. Or, maybe it’s not the new responsibilities, but the divorce itself is cleaning out your savings. Alicia Klat a contributor to SupportInASplit.com offers four ways to help yourself, or a friend in need, find financial empowerment and the happiness that comes with it.

Break it up. Approach one element of finances at a time or set a time limit and work in 10-minute chunks. Removing the pressure to “do it all” in one sitting will help ease anxiety. 

Remain positive. Focus on the fact that you are taking action. Positive association around money objectives will reinforce a good energy.

Team up. You can’t do it all. If you’re feeling fluster, then ask for help. Know a financially literate friend? Make a date to review paperwork together. 

Source: Supportinasplit.com

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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What Do We Like to Do Most in Our Yards? Relax, Says Poll

May 20, 2013 1:40 am

 With spring 2013 around the corner, many Americans will finally be venturing out to enjoy their yards. And according to an online survey conducted by Harris Interactive in December 2012, those with a yard/landscape will be looking forward to three yard and landscape activities most of all: relaxing, planting, and spending time with family. 

The study, conducted among more than 2,800 U.S. adults (ages 18+) on behalf of PLANET, the national trade association of landscape professionals, finds that yard/landscape ownership is highly prevalent (88 percent) among Americans. In fact, 81 percent of those with a yard/landscape say the upkeep of their yard/landscape is important to the look of their home.

Why Take Care of That Yard/Landscape?
When asked the chief reason for maintaining or improving their yard/landscape, yard/landscape owners are most likely to cite showing pride in their home (42 percent) as the primary motivator, although creating an outdoor relaxing space (16 percent) and raising or protecting their property value (15 percent) also win double-digit support.

But, when it comes to what the yard or landscape is commonly used for, relaxing rises to the top (26 percent), followed by planting flowers/vegetables (17 percent) and spending time with family (14 percent).

Not surprisingly, those with children under 18 in the household are more likely to view the yard as a place where the whole family can interact, and where kids can play. 

• 70 percent of people aged 55 and over and 75 percent of retirees say that the upkeep of their yard/landscape is important to them vs. 40 percent of 18-34 year olds.
• Yard owners 55 and over are much more likely than any other age group to use their yard mostly for relaxing (33 percent vs. 26 percent for the 45-54 age group, 18 percent for those 35-44, and 22 percent among those 18-34.)

Hiring Professional Help
Since taking care of a landscape often requires help, if yard/landscape owners were to look to landscape professionals for help, the most important factors they would look for would be price (69 percent) and quality of work (68 percent). Interestingly, men place more value on quality of work, whereas women cite price as particularly important.

“Our members dedicate their lives to helping homeowners keep their yards and outdoor spaces healthy and inviting,” said PLANET CEO, Sabeena Hickman, CAE, CMP. “We’re glad to see that consumers are taking pride in their well-kept landscapes and find them important areas for relaxation and quality time with family.”

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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Easy Ways to Tackle Interior Project Planning

May 20, 2013 1:40 am

Home remodeling and redecorating can be a fun and rewarding experience, but it can also be an awful lot of hard work. Among the many areas of focus for project work are stages of planning, getting any required licenses or permits, interviewing subcontractors and getting proposals with bids, looking over materials and making selections and making sure the entire project is on track and remains that way through completion. And many people find enjoyment as well as fulfillment with making material selections: choosing just the right color combinations and patterns, the best products and service for the budget and top quality providers to help build your projects. Consider the following suggestions when planning your interior project plans:

1) Budgeting Basics--Start by seeing if you have to completely remodel or if perhaps you can redecorate instead, and save money and time. Remodeling often means ripping apart old structures and then building new ones; like for extra space for a new window or set of shelves or a new room, ceiling or floor. However, with redecorating, you can frequently add simple new structures to those in your existing environment like a new bookcase, new curtains and plush carpeting, or new textured ceiling paint with all paper plus new hanging pictures and plush cushions. 

2) Contractors, Invoices, Project Materials and More
—Next, you will have a lot of decisions to make: which project materials to buy, which vendors to use, which subcontractors to hire, how to agree to payments, how to handle problems and other important issues and emergencies along the way, etc. So start a project notebook with an accompanying folder specifically for this project. Keep all important documents, receipts, bids, business cards, designs, paint colors, fabric swatches and other info there, to ensure that everything is in one place.

3) Project Parts - Some areas of your project may have sub-categories or basic design elements that will involve work with different areas of focus for each part. For example, you may be remodeling one floor, so you'll have several main areas of focus under this heading like: bedroom walls, hallway and bedroom floors, all window treatments, upgraded lighting and new wood furniture. Use dividers in your notebook, extra folders or extra see-through sleeved pocket folders that fit into your binder to handle these separate areas of focus, so you can concentrate on specific tasks within each area. 

With the proper planning, you can choose the easiest and most affordable redecorating or remodeling options that best suit your home's needs. 

Source: MyHomeImprovementTips.com

Published with permission from RISMedia.

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