Spring’s arrival means time for spring cleaning, however it’s not limited to the interior of your dream home. Protect your investment, and your family, by performing some routine exterior maintenance.
Here is part one of our spring home maintenance checklist.
1. Clean gutters and downspouts. After the last Southeast Michigan frost, it’s time to clean your gutters and downspouts. Failing to clean gutters can result in major damage such as causing a flood in your basement. Also, when gutters and downspouts are clogged, the wood trim surrounding the eaves may rot which welcomes a variety of critters into your attic. Gutters and downspouts that flow properly ensure that water will be diverted away from your house instead of accumulating around its foundation. Fortunately, cleaning gutters won’t take more than hour. Wear heavy-duty gloves, climb a ladder and pull all of the leaves and debris out. Short on time? You can usually hire someone to perform this task for approximately $40.
Whether you are planning to break ground on your dream home in the New Year or are already in the process of selecting finishes, keep these top design trends in mind.
1. Painted and dark finishes trump oak for cabinets. If decorating or watching HGTV show marathons is a hobby for you, you’ve already seen how simply painting cabinets can make a huge impact. Dream home builders are also opting for painted cabinets given the wide range of color options. Dark finishes are the other top choice for cabinets in the New Year. You will see less natural oak and cherry cabinets, and more contemporary paints and stains, so keep this in mind when selecting cabinets.
Last week, we covered how to choose the best paint color. This week, we reveal five professional painting tips.
1. Start with clean surfaces. Once you’ve removed the room’s accessories and smaller pieces of furniture, and covered large furniture, it’s time to prep the surfaces. Paint cannot bond to dirty or greasy areas such as the wall above your kitchen stove or where your kids toss dirty shoes in the mudroom. Using a de-greaser to remove grime will help the paint adhere. Sand the walls to level out Spackle patches and smooth nail-hole ridges. Using light pressure, sand from the baseboard all the way up to the ceiling with fine grit paper.
If you’re like many who have built their dream homes, you may love your new house, but one or more of the paint colors you chose has turned into a nightmare. Simplify the paint selection and application process by following these tricks of the trade.
1. Mind your mood. When selecting paint color options, consider the mood you want to create. If your goal is to create a soothing and relaxing atmosphere, select soft, cool colors and neutrals. On the other hand, a dramatic and bold atmosphere is best accomplished by choosing intense colors.
Last week, we revealed two current eco-friendly garden trends—microgreens and raised garden beds. As promised, here are two more trends worth checking out should you wish to go green while saving some green this spring.
An ‘environmentally-friendly’ water feature sounds like an oxymoron because one could easily assume using water for aesthetic appeal is wasteful, however water features can enhance and complement the environment. An eco-friendly water feature is self-sustaining and requires minimal maintenance. While one must initially fill the feature with a lot of water, the fountain or waterfall feature itself requires much less water than would the grass it replaced had it not been installed. Homeowners can incorporate a variety of fish and aquatic plants without investing time and money into becoming a knowledge expert. Lastly, water features are an ideal way to enhance the local ecosystem as birds, butterflies, frogs and more species than one could possibly imagine are attracted to them.
Last weekend, thousands of people flocked to the annual Novi Spring Home and Garden Show at the Suburban Collection Showplace. This popular home exposition offers everything you could possibly need for your home and garden. Visitors strolled through over 25,000 square feet of gardens featuring patios, outdoor kitchens, fire pits, water features, and plants created by 24 landscapers.
“First seen in Hus & Hem, beautiful black stained beds are a new take on the traditional raised garden bed. Photograph by Peter Carlsson.”
First seen in Hus & Hem, beautiful black stained beds are a new take on the traditional raised garden bed. Photograph by Peter Carlsson.
Eco-friendly gardening includes tactics such as using rain barrels to conserve water; mimicking nature’s own method of planting in layers of trees, shrubs and groundcover to minimize runoff; growing edible gardens; and incorporating products that have a positive impact on the environment.
If you missed the show, fret not. Here are a couple of easy, eco-friendly outdoor garden trends that enable you to go green—and save green too!
The latest home design trends were revealed by 125,000 builders, designers and media pros at the International Builders Show in Las Vegas, NV in January. There was no need to attend the industry’s largest trade show because the home design and construction experts at Echelon Homes are here to fill you in!
Whether moving across town or across the country, meeting people is the best way to get settled in your new construction home. This can be somewhat challenging if you are one of the first homes in a new community because there simply aren’t many neighbors. Regardless, you can settle in to your new neighborhood by following these three simple steps:new home construction site
Love thy neighbor. Get to know the people who have already moved into the community. While it may feel a little intimidating, chances are that they would like to meet new people too. Keep an eye out for when neighbors don’t appear to be preoccupied and walk over or drive by. Introduce yourself as you would normally would and let them know how excited you are to finally be in your new construction home. Ask questions about your new neighbors, for example, where they moved from; if they have children; how they like the area, etc. Showing an interest in them will make you feel more comfortable gathering the information you need to settle in, such as which local gym is best. If there are common areas such as a fitness center, playground and/or swimming pool, go frequently and you are sure to meet nice neighbors.
Valentine’s Day recently passed and if you celebrated with your sweetheart, it was probably an evening full of fun and love. Building a dream home, on the other hand, can be stressful at times. Buyers who choose to build their dream homes can expect to make quick decisions with long-term impacts and deal with delays. No one says it will be easy, however everyone believes building a dream home is worth it.
Designing and building your new Southeast Michigan home can be a dream come true. The financing of your dream home, on the other hand, can be challenging and frustrating. This is because banks have always considered new construction loans to be inherently risky. Worse yet, the bust of the 2000s rendered many lenders stuck with an inordinate number of these loans on their books and many new construction loan programs have disappeared.
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