The Great Debate: Remodel or Sell?


If you’ve been watching a lot of HGTV, you may be wondering if it’s time to remodel…or time to sell. Ask yourself this question: If you could improve your home and make it the way you want, would you want to stay a few more years or are you just ready for a complete change?

Homes show wear and tear after a few years, just like anything that gets a lot of use. Color schemes and decorative styles that used to be trendy can begin to look outdated. And, you may not have been able to afford doing some home improvements until now. The good news is that interest rates are still extremely low and the economy is improving. So, you will likely get most of your investment back for any home improvements when it comes time to sell.

REMODELING: Planning & Coordinating Resources
home-remodelHome improvements can involve making small changes or quite substantial ones, such as adding a bedroom and bath to your existing home, replacing your kitchen counter tops, cabinets, and appliances. Your home should include the standards set by your neighborhood, but you don’t want to end up with the most lavish house on the block.

Before you make a decision on remodeling, make sure you are going to get what you want, at the price you want to pay, and that you’ll be happy with the results for at least several years to come. Get started by putting together the right team. You may not need an architect, but you may need the assistance of the right contractors, kitchen planners, and interior designers to help you pull it all together. You’ll also need to talk to your lender to learn how much you can borrow. And, as a REALTOR®, I can help you determine if the current market value will support the proposed improvements.

As you’re putting together estimates, you may realize that additional work is required you weren’t expecting. It’s important to plan for problems that may come up, unexpected design modifications that are needed, or possible delays on materials. Planning for the unexpected will help you control your budget and resources.

SELLING: Understanding the Current Market
If you’re unsure that remodeling is the way to go, you may want to remain open about the possibility of finding another home. As a REALTOR®, I might know of homes for sale that have the size, features, and finishes you’re wanting. After you view a few homes, you should have a better idea of what you want and what you like.

new-york-city-housing-marketBefore you make a decision on selling your home, I will create a comparative market analysis of similar homes to yours that have sold recently and are currently for sale so you’ll know what you can reasonably expect to net from the sale of your home. You’ll also learn how long homes are staying on the market and if other sellers are getting their asking prices. Together we can discuss a price range for your home, based on its location and current condition. If you’re happy with where your home ranks amongst the competition, then it should be a good time to list your home for sale.

Keep in mind that whether you decide to remodel or sell your home, change is inevitable. You will be opening your home to workers or to agents and buyers, and you may experience some inconvenience during the process. What matters is that you achieve what it is that you and your family want and need, and that you realize it will all be worth it in the end.

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Tile Trends in 2015


Plan a bathroom or kitchen redesign with the hottest trends in the tile industry. Here’s what you need to pay attention to in 2015.

TREND #1: The New Way To Do Mosaics
Details can elevate a space from ordinary to elegant or from commonplace to unforgettable. Mosaics are more than little glass chips in a medallion. Here are some new ideas.

Specialty Shape Stone Mosaics
stone mosaicsPicture a mosaic of specialty shaped tiles like ovals, triangles, hexagons, or marquise. Natural stone adds a hint of luxury. Try limestone or marble. Offset the unique shape with a complementary grout or match the grout to the tile for an understated effect.

Glass Mosaics
glass mosaics
Multi-hued glass mosaics for the coming year have gotten away from the classic 1 x 1. Pencil tiles, and metallic finishes expand the definition of mosaic in designs this year.

TREND #2: A Shift In The Color Palette
Gray will continue to be the hottest color in 2015. Clay, taupe, and other neutrals are making a comeback and soft blacks will start to rival gray’s popularity.

2015 is the time to add to your palette of neutrals. This year, classic neutrals will rub shoulders with pastel blues and greens as they join the palette. Peach, coral, and purple will also become basic backdrops for the other elements in a room design.

TREND #3: Softer Textures
While polished and high-gloss are still in demand, matte textures are making a comeback this year. Tile with a matte or semi-gloss finish lets you create a softer, more livable feel. Any textured tile—wood look, fabric-look, or brushed finishes—make for that softer feel that’s big for the coming year.

Wall Tile
wall tile
Consider wall covering tiles. They let you put texture or patterns on the wall that rival the detail and softness of wall paper, without the mess. Find the perfect fit among our fabric-look tiles.

Wood-look Flooring
wood look tile
Get all the warmth and natural texture of wood in a tile. The latest technology has brought tile that looks so much like wood it’s hard to tell which is which. This year look for new trends in wood tile like:

•   Longer planks from 36″ to 48″
•   Reclaimed, barn wood, or aged looking wood
•   Mixing materials like natural stone and wood-looks
•   Parquet that creates geometric patterns with planks (no more linear)
•   Square-based patterns
•   Exotic looking hardwoods

TREND #4 SUBWAY TILE
subway tile
Love of subway tile will continue to influence designs into 2015. The classic 3 x 6 is always available in the perfect shades and finishes for your project. But consider adding a twist to your subway tile design. Go with a larger tile, vertical layout, or graphic design for a transitional retro look.

The Psychology of Color


You don’t have to be a professional decorator to properly stage a home. Check out leading department stores and home catalogs for inspiration…look to see what colors and styles are being used, and then copy them. Bringing in trendy colors immediately modernizes any home, as will fresh linens in the bedroom and bathroom.

When redecorating or freshening up wall paint, pay attention to the colors are you using and where. There is a psychology of color that when used wisely can help your home make a good impression on potential buyers. According to one researcher for a paint manufacturer, the following colors have a special effect on people:

color wheel with text1

If you are considering a remodel or moving, contact me for a free consultation on basic staging techniques. Staging doesn’t have to cost a lot, and I can help show you some simple ways to improve your home’s overall appearance.

Tile Trends in 2015


Plan a bathroom or kitchen redesign with the hottest trends in the tile industry. Here’s what you need to pay attention to in 2015.

TREND #1: The New Way To Do Mosaics
Details can elevate a space from ordinary to elegant or from commonplace to unforgettable. Mosaics are more than little glass chips in a medallion. Here are some new ideas.

Specialty Shape Stone Mosaics
stone mosaicsPicture a mosaic of specialty shaped tiles like ovals, triangles, hexagons, or marquise. Natural stone adds a hint of luxury. Try limestone or marble. Offset the unique shape with a complementary grout or match the grout to the tile for an understated effect.

Glass Mosaics
glass mosaics
Multi-hued glass mosaics for the coming year have gotten away from the classic 1 x 1. Pencil tiles, and metallic finishes expand the definition of mosaic in designs this year.

TREND #2: A Shift In The Color Palette
Gray will continue to be the hottest color in 2015. Clay, taupe, and other neutrals are making a comeback and soft blacks will start to rival gray’s popularity.

2015 is the time to add to your palette of neutrals. This year, classic neutrals will rub shoulders with pastel blues and greens as they join the palette. Peach, coral, and purple will also become basic backdrops for the other elements in a room design.

TREND #3: Softer Textures
While polished and high-gloss are still in demand, matte textures are making a comeback this year. Tile with a matte or semi-gloss finish lets you create a softer, more livable feel. Any textured tile—wood look, fabric-look, or brushed finishes—make for that softer feel that’s big for the coming year.

Wall Tile
wall tile
Consider wall covering tiles. They let you put texture or patterns on the wall that rival the detail and softness of wall paper, without the mess. Find the perfect fit among our fabric-look tiles.

Wood-look Flooring
wood look tile
Get all the warmth and natural texture of wood in a tile. The latest technology has brought tile that looks so much like wood it’s hard to tell which is which. This year look for new trends in wood tile like:

•   Longer planks from 36″ to 48″
•   Reclaimed, barn wood, or aged looking wood
•   Mixing materials like natural stone and wood-looks
•   Parquet that creates geometric patterns with planks (no more linear)
•   Square-based patterns
•   Exotic looking hardwoods

TREND #4 SUBWAY TILE
subway tile
Love of subway tile will continue to influence designs into 2015. The classic 3 x 6 is always available in the perfect shades and finishes for your project. But consider adding a twist to your subway tile design. Go with a larger tile, vertical layout, or graphic design for a transitional retro look.

The Psychology of Color


You don’t have to be a professional decorator to properly stage a home. Check out leading department stores and home catalogs for inspiration…look to see what colors and styles are being used, and then copy them. Bringing in trendy colors immediately modernizes any home, as will fresh linens in the bedroom and bathroom.

When redecorating or freshening up wall paint, pay attention to the colors are you using and where. There is a psychology of color that when used wisely can help your home make a good impression on potential buyers. According to one researcher for a paint manufacturer, the following colors have a special effect on people:

color wheel with text1

If you are considering a remodel or moving, contact me for a free consultation on basic staging techniques. Staging doesn’t have to cost a lot, and I can help show you some simple ways to improve your home’s overall appearance.

6 Ideas for Instant Curb Appeal


Curb appeal is one of the most important things to consider when you’re trying to sell your home. It’s the first detail that real estate agents and buyers will notice, and making a good first impression is always important. It only takes one undesirable thing to leave a negative feeling.

Many sellers can become overwhelmed as they look around at everything that needs to be fixed or updated. There are so many decisions to be made, and also the time, resources, and cost to consider…where do you start? You may think it’s more important to focus on the interior of your home, but it doesn’t matter how nice the inside of your house is if you can’t get a buyer past the yard and through the door!

Don’t be discouraged—here are six ways to improve your home’s curb appeal:

dead-1Remove Anything Dead—This includes trees, limbs, leaves, and flowers. Freshen up your flower beds and natural areas with new mulch or pine straw. Add colorful flowers, small bushes, or potted plants.

weedsPull Weeds—Spray and pull any weeds in landscaped areas, especially those that are visible in the path to the front door. Don’t forget about weeds that may be in your grassy areas, too.

mowing-1Mow the Grass—Make sure your lawn is mowed frequently, usually every week.

overgrown_bushesTrim, Replace, or Remove Overgrown Bushes—There’s nothing worse than overgrown or tired landscaping. It can hide important features of a home, like a front porch…or cover up windows, preventing light from coming in. Trim back bushes that have gotten too tall or wide, or replace them with smaller ones. When in doubt, remember that “less is more.”

Dennis-Premier-Landscaping-example1-1Focus on Hardscapes and Softscapes—Use decorative stone, brick, wood, and mulch or pinestraw to accent planted flowers and other landscaping. Add potted plants and flowers near the front and back entry doors, but be careful not to position them in the path of your guests. Leave an open and inviting space that welcomes them into your home. Don’t forget to add touches of color and texture to outer areas of your yard to bring attention to these spaces.

landscape lighting-1Add Lighting—Landscape lighting offer safety and security features, but it also softens the appearance of your home. It can add a dramatic effect and showcase architectural elements of your home. Consider adding inexpensive pathway lights leading to your front door, or uplighting one or more trees or the front exterior of your home.