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  • How to Make Your Home's Entryway Pop

    The entrance of your home says a lot about your character, from interior design to overall aesthetics. Below are some helpful tips for making sure your space wows you and your guests every time.

    Kill the clutter. Clutter is a huge no-no in your entryway, as it impacts the entire vibe of your space from the moment you set foot in the door. However, this can be hard, as the entryway is the space you dump your keys, mail, boots and coat. To remedy this, make sure you have designated, tucked away spaces for everything you store at the entrance of your home. Hooks for coats, baskets for mail and a covered bin for shoes can all work wonders.

    Add a statement. Placing a beloved piece of art or furniture in the mouth of your home is a great way to appreciate it every time you enter, and can offer a fantastic conversation starter between you and guests.

    Have a seat. Whether it’s a plush chair or a simple bench, a seat in your entryway is great for roosting as you tie your shoelaces, and makes a perfect place for attractive accent pillows.

    Light it right. Good lighting in your entryway is a must. Add an attractive lighting fixture, set up a dimmer for mood and a floor or table lamp for added options.

    Personal touches. Placing photos of your family and pets in your entryway can add a nice personal element and warm your heart every time you pass by.

    Published with permission from RISMedia.

  • 5 Tips for Designing a Welcoming Foyer

    Published with permission from RISMedia.

  • The Pros of Buying a Home Warranty

    For $600 or so a year, plus a service fee of around $75 every time you ask for repair, a home warranty can be an inexpensive way to have peace of mind as a new homeowner.

    Home warranties cover breakdowns in a home, from HVAC systems to appliances. A broken water heater can be repaired within hours, but if it cant be fixed, a home warranty can pay for a new one to be installed.

    For homeowners with an older house, they may want more things covered than a newer home would need"such as older appliances"and will likely pay more for it. If you just bought new appliances and have a manufacturers warranty for a year or more, you wont need this coverage. You may be able to exclude new appliances from a home warranty to cut down on costs.

    Things that can be covered by a home warranty include ductwork, electrical, plumbing, dishwashers, refrigerators, ovens, stoves, clothes washers and dryers, and water heaters.

    Things that are unlikely to be covered include expensive items such as septic tanks, wells, heating systems, pools, garage doors, windows and doors, sprinkler systems, pre-existing conditions, and walls. Coverage for such items may cost more. Roofs may also be exempt, though some home warranty companies sell plans to fix leaking roofs.

    Consider Cost
    A big factor in deciding if a home warranty is worth buying is cost. Basic coverage can start at about $300 and go up to $600 or more.

    Some home warranties charge for a service call, such as $75 or so, while others allow unlimited service calls. Contractors are screened and sent out by the company.

    To determine if a home warranty cost is worth it, start by learning how old your appliances and home systems are and if the original equipment manufacturer warranties still cover them. Find out what the expected lifespan of each item is to help you figure out if a home warranty is needed.

    Some home warranty companies require annual maintenance on appliances and home systems to keep the warranties valid. Some may ask how long youve had them. Dont expect the home warranty company to pay for the annual maintenance of your appliances or home systems.

    Read the contract carefully to make sure that old appliances are covered in the home warranty. Some dont cover old appliances, such as anything more than 10 years old.

    Any home, whether old, new or somewhere in between, will have things break sooner or later. Appliances and home systems only last so long. For $50 a month or so, a home warranty can provide peace of mind when things eventually fail.

    Published with permission from RISMedia.

  • 5 Laundry Tips to Save on Energy Costs

    Laundry machines use a lot of energy.

    To save on power costs, consider the following when doing laundry:

    1. Use cold water to cut a loads energy use by more than half. Cold-water detergents can help ensure clothes get clean.
    2. Your washer will use about the same amount of energy no matter the load size, so fill it up.
    3. Use lower heat settings to save energy, even though the drying cycle is longer.
    4. Clean the lint filter often so the dryer runs more efficiently and safely.
    5. When possible, hang laundry outside or on a drying rack to avoid using the dryer altogether.

    Laundry can be a big chore, so let lower energy bills help ease the burden.

    Published with permission from RISMedia.

  • Make Your Home Stand Out With Millennial Pink

    Like the generation its named for, millennial pink is all around us. Its a fun, daring, sophisticated hue that isnt exactly new, but lately seems to have caught the eye of legions of clothing and dcor designers.

    Not quite salmon, not quite rose and a far cry from traditional Barbie pink"millennial pink can best be described as a soft, subtle pink with some gray tones and a slight hint of peach. Its hard to miss if youre browsing the racks for trendy clothes or checking out the newest paint colors.

    At your hardware or home maintenance store, check out Victoriana or Precocious by Benjamin Moore or Everythings Rosy by Behr. If the hues appeal, and youre ready to add their subtle vibe to your home dcor, here’s few fun tips to maximize the colors sunshine-like qualities:

    Mix it up. Paint the whole living room or bedroom pink, or paint just one wall pink and accent with white or other pale neutrals and a touch of black. Framing neutral artworks with simple black frames are a good way to help a pink wall sing.

    Add bolder pinks. Accenting millennial pink walls with deeper pink vases, lamps, bed linens, furniture and/or pillows can make the overall look of the room both relaxing and cohesive.

    Try it on a door. Want just a dash of millennial pink? Paint a door this color to create an eye-catching architectural statement without overwhelming the room. Switching out the hardware to something with a black or bronze finish can be a perfect punctuation mark.

    Use it as an accent color in your guest bathroom. You can add personality to a white bathroom with rosy pink towels, soap trays and other fun accessories. Try a blush pink for small accents, then top off the look with a few fresh pink blossoms in a pink vase to make the small space stand out.

    Published with permission from RISMedia.

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