Decorating, Staging and Enjoying Your Home in all Four Seasons

If you are thinking of selling your home at a certain time of year, it is great to decorate for the season.  Even if you are not planning on selling, it is fun to get festive and spruce up your home seasonally.   Here are some decorating tips for the whole year long.

Let’s start with winter.

DECORATING IN THE WINTER MONTHS

One of the concerns for home sellers when leaving their home on the market over the winter months is the lack of natural light in their Okanagan homes due to the constant inversion. There are, however, some easy fixes for these wintertime home staging blues.

Colour Accents: Brighten up 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.

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.

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

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.

Light Bulbs: Beef up any dim light bulbs to a higher wattage. This may be the perfect time to switch to LED’s 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!

SPRUCING UP YOUR HOME FOR WINTER

4 Kitchen

If you are selling your Vernon or North Okanagan home, you may have heard that selling your home in the wintertime is almost impossible, for a variety of reasons. Although it may be a challenge to sell your home in the winter, do not get discouraged, it can be done. There are ways in which you can maximize your home selling potential in the winter.

The key is to present a first impression that will last even after the potential buyers have left your home for sale in Vernon BC and turn them into active buyers. Even the slightest discomfort will turn those potential buyers away and on to the next house to view. You can avoid these pitfalls by following just a few simple steps:

  • Sure, the weather is less than desirable and there is a foot of snow on the ground, but that does not mean that your potential buyers need to see or feel that when they arrive at your home viewing. Make sure that your driveway and walkways are clear of any snow, ice, or other obstacles. You want to make sure that your home is accessible and clean looking. In addition, many buyers will not even waste their time getting out of their car if they must hike through snow, just to get to the door.

 

  • When showing your home to potential buyers, keep in mind that they have probably been viewing multiple homes for sale in Vernon BC. That involves many trips in and out of cars and other homes. It is best to keep your home a little cooler than normal, as your potential buyer may be slightly overheated from all the traveling around. This will make them feel more comfortable when they arrive and are more likely to take their time looking around and asking questions, than trying to get in and out because they are uncomfortable.

 

  • You know that lighting is key when showing your home. It can be critical, as it tends to open up a room and make it seem and feel more appealing and homey. Typically, during the winter months, there is less natural light, therefore, you must utilize other lighting to make sure that your rooms stay well light and still present the ‘welcome home’ feeling.

 

  • It is a given that every person coming to view your home will have some wet boots or shoes. Be sure to provide a specific area for those wet boots and shoes. Keep the area clean and free of water, so people are not stepping in water puddles. This will show functionality and organization within your home and show that you are thoughtful.

Selling your home in the wintertime is not impossible with a little help from the information above and real estate agents in Vernon. So, go ahead and show your home in the wintertime. Show your potential buyers how this oasis from the cold can be theirs.

SPRING STAGING AND DECORATING

Spring is the perfect time to sell your home at full market value for several reasons.  The large number of housing choices and an eager group of potential buyers looking to find their dream house makes this season the perfect time to list.  As the premier agent for all your Vernon real estate needs, I would like to offer you the following tips on how to get your home ready in this hot spring market.

Deep Clean

In whichever season you are looking to sell, it is essential that you have it in tip-top shape and thoroughly cleaned.  Take the extra time this spring and pay attention to the smallest details to ensure that your home is clean enough to attract a wide range of potential buyers.

Here’s the Deal:

An unkempt or unclean home is the quickest way to lose a sale, so ensure that your home is clean and ready for the market.

Some overlooked areas that need to be addressed when cleaning your home include:

  • Scrub walls and baseboards and touch up any scuffs or nicks.
  • Rent or hire a carpet cleaner to deep clean the carpets and rugs in your home. Vacuuming alone will not get your carpets clean enough for a potential sale.
  • Power wash the exterior of your home as well as your driveway and walkways.
  • Clean the inside and outside of windows, wash drapes and curtains and dust blinds in.

Celebrate the Season

A great way to have your home ready for a spring sale and have it stand out from the competition is to bring spring inside.  Some creative ways to celebrate the season in your home include:

  • Display spring flowers such as tulips in various rooms throughout your home. This will give your home an added level of freshness and a pop of spring colour.
  • Light scented candles. Try to find a relaxing and inviting scent, such as vanilla.  The added scent and ambiance are great additions to any open house.
  • Open the doors and windows to let the fresh, warm spring air in.
  • Change up the accessories. Add some spring colours such as pastels to your throw pillows, blankets and bedspreads.  This is an inexpensive yet effective way to not only make your home more colourful, but to also make it more spring-like.

These simple, yet effective, tips should have your home standing out from the competition and ready for a spring sale.

YOUR SPRING LAWN

In order to get that perfect, green, lush lawn for the summer, you need to begin your routine now.  By starting your yard maintenance in the spring, you will give your lawn the head start it needs and extend its growing season.  As the premier agent for all your Vernon real estate needs, I would like to share the following spring lawn care tips that will get your yard ready for the summer.

Rake

It is important to thoroughly rake your lawn to remove that layer of dead grass, otherwise known as thatch.  If not removed, this dead layer of grass can wreak havoc on your lawn and cause drought, dead patches and allow weeds to flourish.  By removing the thatch, you will allow for better aeration and more even and deeper watering.  Before doing any other lawn care jobs, make sure to rake your yard.

Seed and Weed

After you have raked your yard and removed as much thatch as possible, add a layer of grass seed. By reseeding your lawn, you will make it more weed resistant and you will also end up with a fuller and lusher lawn.

Proper mowing, seeding and irrigation are the best ways to keep weeds at bay.  However, it may be worth your while to dig out dandelions and other unwanted weeds before seeding your lawn.

Routine

The secret to any great lawn is a well-established care routine.  Why not start this routine early?  In order to get the healthiest and fullest lawn possible, your yard care routine should include the following:

  • A watering routine. Always water early in the morning or in the evening to prevent any burning and to limit evaporation.  Make sure to follow any watering restrictions or other bylaws.
  • A proper mowing schedule. Raise your lawnmower to a higher setting and mow your yard more often to encourage a healthy lawn.  It is also recommended that you alternate direction each time you mow to keep your grass as vibrant and healthy as possible.
  • Seed your lawn a few times a year to fill in any bare patches. You can also use an organic fertilizer when needed to give your lawn that extra boost of nutrients.  Always follow the directions on the labels and never overfeed your grass.

Maintain

Your most important lawn tool by far is your lawn mower.  It will keep your lawn healthy and even all year long, so you need to take good care of it.  Before mowing your yard, take the time to do some routine maintenance.

  • Clean or replace the air filter and sparkplug.
  • Add a fuel stabilizer so that your mower runs smoother.
  • Change the oil.
  • Sharpen the blade. A dull blade makes your lawn more susceptible to disease and weeds.

These important spring lawn care tips will get your yard ready for the summer months.  If you would like other care tips or are interested in some of the new and exciting real estate properties that are available in Vernon, please contact me today.

 SUMMER HOME MAINTENANCE

Whatever the weather, taking some time to take care of your home will ensure a worry-free, comfortable summer.

OUTDOORS

  • Inspect siding for cracks and make any needed repairs.
  • If paint is peeling, cracking, or chipped, repair and repaint now to limit damage to the underlying materials.
  • Repair any damaged caulking around windows and doors.
  • Remove window screens and clean with a soft brush and soapy water. Repair any holes or tears before reinstalling.
  • Have air conditioning units serviced to ensure good operation. Promote good air circulation around the unit by keeping shrubs and plants trimmed.
  • Clear debris from gutters and eaves to allow rainwater to drain properly.
  • Seal cracks in the driveway and keep walkways clear of debris and overgrown plants.
  • Test irrigation/sprinkler systems and replace any broken sprinkler heads or emitters. Check for proper water coverage and adjust if necessary.
  • Power wash decks and patios and seal surfaces as appropriate.

INDOORS

  • Vacuum refrigerator coils to help maintain energy efficiency.
  • Empty dehumidifier pans and clean hoses according to the manufacturer’s instructions.
  • If possible, take area rugs outside and hang them over a deck or porch rail to air out.
  • Adjust ceiling fans for proper balance.
  • Change filters in window-mounted air conditioning units.
  • Switch heavy bedding out for lightweight summer fabrics. Have the winter bedding cleaned before storing.
  • Close the chimney flue to prevent insects from entering and to help keep cool air in.
  • Repot houseplants to give their roots a fresh start for the summer.
  • Check door and cabinet hinges and lubricate any that stick or squeak.
  • Open windows on cooler days to keep fresh air flowing throughout the home.

Another excellent option, to update your home and add the extra comfort is to add awnings to your home.

ADDING AWNINGS TO YOUR HOME

Turn your deck or patio into added living space, combining the comfort of indoors with the enjoyment of outdoors by the addition of an awning. Here are some of the benefits.

  1. An awning shields out harmful sun rays while keeping you cool. It blocks the sun from entering your home, cuts cooling costs and protects furniture and carpet from fading.
  2. Awnings are fully customizable and available in a wide variety of style options and vibrant acrylic fabrics to compliment any home.
  3. An optional wind or motion sensor automatically retracts the awning when wind speeds reach a predetermined level.
  4. A sun sensor can be added to allow for automatic operation determined by the sun’s strength.
  5. An Interior wireless remote control can be added for easy-access operation.

When not in use, awnings can easily be retracted, safely stored, and will subtly blend in with the exterior beauty of any home.

SPICE UP YOUR FALL KITCHEN

With the fall season upon us, chances are you are starting to spend more time inside.  Beat the cold and wet weather blues by adding seasonal décor to make your kitchen warmer and more inviting.  As the premier agent for all your Vernon real estate needs, here are some simple tips to make your kitchen the coziest room in your home this fall.

Go Dark

Believe it or not, one of the best juxtapositions you can achieve is by tying in dark textiles or tablecloths to depict contrast to some of the brighter items that are on display in your kitchen such as:

  • Seasonal fresh fruits and vegetables – bright reds of apples, oranges and yellows of squash and pumpkin.
  • Warm, inviting and brightly coloured placemats to contrast a dark tablecloth.
  • Smooth, natural wood surfaces such as butcher block (see next point), benches or tables.

Butcher Block

Butcher block seems to be in every kitchen these days as it is an integral part of any farmhouse or rustic home look.  It is also a great choice for countertops or tables because of its durability.  Even if you aren’t in the market for new countertops, you can easily bring a touch of earthiness to your kitchen by adding a large cutting board.  This simple addition will make your kitchen an inviting and warm space this fall.

 Add Some Colour

You may be pleasantly surprised at how quickly you can transform the feel of any room in your home.  If you have an accent wall or a blank one in your kitchen, consider adding deep colours such as reds, oranges, browns or olive tones.  You can also add colourful fall décor to your table or even your dishes.  Try a few different looks and see which one works best for you.

 Be Natural

Houseplants are an inexpensive and easy way to add a decorative feel to your home.  Houseplants will not only add life and colour to your kitchen this fall, they can also double as an herb garden.  Create a mini garden on your windowsills or just add a touch of class and uniqueness to your kitchen by adding live plants.

These simple tips will transform your kitchen into the coziest room in your home.  By adding a juxtaposition of dark and warm colours, your kitchen will be an inviting space this fall.  If you are interested in other ways to make your kitchen cozy or would like to see some of the new and exciting real estate opportunities that are available in Vernon, please contact me today.  I look forward to hearing from you soon.

FALL DECORATING

If you have your home on the Vernon BC real estate market during the fall months or even on Halloween here are a few decorating tips.

Decorate for the season… not the holiday. Use fall colours on your table with placemats and on your sofa with throw pillows.

Use more fall flowers and less blood and gore. A few pumpkins at the front door and a nice fall wreath will be warm and inviting for your potential buyers. You want them to see your house… not your skeletons and ghouls. Homes that are cluttered or over decorated are harder to see through. Your buyers will leave your home and not remember the wall colours, the size of the rooms and sometimes a few great selling points. They will remember walking in and seeing a scary scene.

Your buyers will also be looking at your motivation and time frame to sell and move. Often if a home is decorated or overly cluttered, your buyers will feel that you will not be able to move in time for them to move in. You can avoid this by keeping your Halloween decorating simple.

Here are just a few of the creative staging and decorating tips that we have up our sleeve.  It is fun to decorate for each season and if you are planning to sell your home in one of these seasons, a good idea to decorate accordingly.

If you or someone you know are interested in Selling or Buying a home in the Vernon B.C area please contact us today.