Have Too Much Clutter? Learn How to Better Store it Here!

Clutter is everywhere. It seems to accumulate out of nowhere. In order to help you store it better we found this article with 13 different storage ideas. We hope they help!

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From the article:

Don???t worry. I???m not going to tell you to throw out your stuff or give it away. And I???m not going to give you advice on how to part with it. Instead, I???m going to give you design tips on how to get it out of sight, quickly and easily. The trick to living without clutter is to make it super easy for you and your family to clean up fast. Follow these tips, and you???ll be amazed at how quickly your home can go from chaotic to calm in no time.

Bathroom. The same rules apply for the bathroom as for the kitchen. Keep your counters clear of stuff. Use a vanity with drawers. Don???t even consider a pedestal sink or a vanity with doors if you tend to be a hoarder. Get the most convenient, easy-to-use storage with drawers. (The drawers can even be organized.)

And don???t stop at vanity storage. Maximize your storage by using your mirror as a medicine cabinet as well. If you don???t like the feel of a bulky medicine cabinet at your sink, recess it into the wall. This can often create even deeper storage.

Bay window. As a designer, I???m always struggling with how to best deal with a bay window when I???m laying out a space. I love this idea of squaring off the wall and using that space as trunk-style storage.

Note: It???s really important that your window storage has locking hardware to keep the lid open. It makes it much easier to clean up faster.

Basement. This is another area that doesn???t always need closed storage, especially if it???s a space dedicated to storage. Stock up on budget racks and store everything you don???t want to part with but don???t actually use. If you apply the Pareto principle, you probably use only 20 percent of your stuff. So that means you can store the other 80 percent.

Looking for more clutter and organization tips? Checkout this article about organization tips that could be of interest to you.

Read the entire article here: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/54104714/list/13-storage-solutions-to-banish-the-clutter

Interested in What Features Homeowners Want Now? Find Out Here!

Every few years it seems to change what homeowners are looking for. In order to help you out we found this article. We hope it helps you plan your remodels and builds!

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From the article:

You’ve heard the real estate adage “location, location, location” as the golden rule of a home’s desirability. But today, homebuyers are thinking “features, features, features” — ones that add “convenience, livability and energy efficiency” to a home, according to a recent survey by the National Association of Home Builders.

Inspired by HGTV real estate shows and by images of gorgeous home designs on Pinterest, buyers — especially younger buyers who want a home to be turnkey, not needing upgrades or repairs — look for the following top features, and may put higher bids on homes that have them:

??? An open floor plan.
Buyers love to see wide-open spaces, with the kitchen open to the dining room and great room, as opposed to each room being blocked off by walls. An open floor plan fits with their dreams of entertaining, as guests can be in different spaces, yet all in the same area together. Guests are not out of view, sequestered in different, closed-in rooms.

??? Large kitchens with lots of counter space and granite counters.
With families cooking together more, and again with entertaining high on the homebuyer’s lifestyle wishes, a roomy kitchen with plenty of space for the preparation of meals and the display of buffet-style platters is a must. Granite counters, especially on a kitchen island with its own sink, offer beauty as well as easy maintenance, as do tile floors, another wish list feature.

??? Updated kitchen and bathrooms.
Buyers prefer updated kitchens with modern appliances and designer hardware and faucets. Since buyers plan to put most of their budget on the down payment for a home, they prefer to see that they won’t have to then spend a fortune on bathroom and kitchen remodels, which are among the priciest home projects. Kitchens are gathering spaces, a hallmark of the owner’s style and affluence, and bathrooms are now considered the home’s peaceful oasis, so they may have glass-wall showers, steam rooms, multi-jet showers and claw-foot baths as well as chandeliers and fireplaces.

??? High ceilings.
The National Association of Home Builders says that the desirability of high ceilings is important, perhaps a deal-breaker, with first-floor ceilings at least 9-feet high to begin with, with 20-foot ceilings in great rooms impress homebuyers who love the lofty, open look.

??? A home office.
Buyers who work from home full time and those who have office spaces but spend time working from home as well want a sizable, well-decorated, modern home office. Not a corner of the dining room with a laptop. They desire a large room, connectivity, great lighting and a view, in addition to plenty of storage space. The experts at Bankrate say that female homebuyers are especially interested in home offices, although both genders list this feature as among their preferences.

Looking for more trends? Checkout this article about home remodeling trends that could be of interest to you.

Read the entire article here: http://www.dailyherald.com/article/20140830/entlife/140839998/

Looking to Be Super Productive? Adopt These 7 Habits!

A new year means another opportunity to change habits about yourself that you don’t like. If you’re looking for ways to be more productive then you’ve come to the right place. We hope it helps you start off the new year with a bang!

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From the article:

There are some people who wake up at 5 a.m. without hitting snooze, meticulously write to-do lists, and keep their work area so clean you could eat off of it (not that they would ever have a sad desk lunch).

So how do they do it? Are they able to multitask at the speed of light? Can they leap over huge piles of paperwork in a single bound? Turns out, you don’t need any superpowers to be super-efficient. Below, productivity experts let you in on some of the habits that keep them on task.

They don’t check email as often as you do.
Do you keep your email up and running all day long? It could be draining your productivity. “Most super-productive people only check their email 2 or 3 times a day,” says Jennings. When you’re always hearing new message alerts you’ll never get anything done because there’s always something else to tend to. But if you can’t bear to turn off your email, at least enlist the help of filters. “We have this idea that everything that hits our inbox is urgent,” says Alexandra Samuel, Ph.D., author of Work Smarter with Social Media. But that’s far from the case. Filters — like sending anything with the word “unsubscribe” directly to the trash — can seriously up your efficiency.

They don’t forget about themselves.
You can’t be firing on all cylinders if your health is out of whack. “Your best resources are your body and your mind,” says Maura Thomas, author and founder of productivity website RegainYourTime.com. Getting enough sleep and exercise is the key to clear thinking, more creativity, and increased energy — which, in turn, make you more productive, she explains. And if by some fluke one of these super-productive people didn’t get quite enough sleep the night before, they’re not opposed to a midday nap. “Really, the most productive thing you can do is close your eyes for 10 minutes — even if you don’t actually sleep, that rest period is just as good,” says Thomas.

They like to sweeten the pot.
A little bribery can go a long way. If you have, say, an expense report that you’ve been dreading, allow yourself a little indulgence when it’s finally done, suggests Thomas. Time limits also have the same effect. “Set a timer and say ‘I’ll do this for 10 minutes,'” she suggests. Chances are, once you dive in you’ll keep going. “Getting started and getting over that hump is always the hardest part.”

They make technology work for them.
Technology can be both a blessing (calendar apps!) and a burden (Facebook!) during the workday. For example, Samuel has turned her phone into a personal assistant of sorts by setting reminders for everything that she has to do. It’s all about anticipating procrastination and then limiting any wiggle room you might have to keep you from getting a task done, says Pychyl, who lives by his color-coordinated email calendar. “Every category (work, personal, family) is a different color,” he explains. This way, he can see at a glance when he’s giving too much (or too little) time to one specific area of his life, and can prioritize accordingly.

Looking for organization ideas for your life? Checkout this article about organize your life that could be of interest to you.

Read the entire article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/prevention/7-habits-of-super-productive-people_b_8637820.html

Looking to Declutter and Organize Your Entire Home? Start Here!

If your home is like most homes there is just too much stuff and too little organization. In order to help you out we found this guide on ways to declutter and add some organization to your life. We hope it helps!

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From the article:

Take advantage of the new year and give your home a fresh start. We???ve compiled some of the best cleaning and organizing guides from Houzz, room by room, to help you start off the year with a clean slate.

Kitchen. Whether your refrigerator needs a good scrubbing, your drawers need to be reorganized or your pantry needs a complete overhaul, we’ve got you covered. Get your kitchen spick-and-span and ready for family dinners and parties all through the new year.

Organize Your Kitchen Drawers
Clean Out the Pantry
Spring Clean Your Kitchen
24 Hot Ideas for Stashing Spices

Bathroom. Even for those lucky enough to have a massive master bathroom, it can be hard to pinpoint what needs organizing in this part of the house. Usually the mess hides ??? under the sink, in the medicine cabinet or in the towel bin. Keep those tucked-away spaces tidy too with these bathroom organizing guides.

Organize the Bathroom for Well-Earned Bliss
Bathroom Storage: Where to Keep the Towels
8 Easy Tips for an Organized Bathroom

Living room. The living room often combines several spaces ??? a media area, a playspace and a dining room, to name a few. Get the craziness of your living room under control by determining your plan of attack: Choose one corner or part of your living room to tackle per week. These ideabooks can help you get started.

Organize the Media Cabinet
Lose It: CDs, DVDs, Cassettes and VHS Tapes
How to Hide Your TV Cables
How to Style Your Bookcase

Laundry room. Keep your laundry room from becoming a chaotic clothes-filled free-for-all, and aim for a pleasant space to clean clothes instead. Simple works better for this room ??? and you can get a surprisingly soothing laundry room of your own with these guides.

Make a Clean Break With Laundry Chaos
6 Ways to Care for Your Washing Machine
How to Give Your Laundry a Boost

Looking for more ideas to organize your home? Checkout this article about home organization ideas that could be of interest to you.

Read the entire article here: http://www.houzz.com/ideabooks/6006100/list/your-total-home-organizing-and-decluttering-guide

Remodeling? Avoid These Common Mistakes!

When remodeling there are so many things to think about and the last thing you want to do is make a mistake. In order to help you avoid mistakes we found this article with common mistakes people make when remodeling. We hope it helps you avoid these mistakes!

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From the article:

With so many potential remodeling pitfalls, it’s wise to learn from the mistakes of projects past. Knowing what not to do when you take on a remodel will help you make the most of your time and money, and ensure that your project doesn’t end up on the trash heap. To make it easier for you, we’ve compiled a list of the seven most common???and costliest???remodeling mistakes.

Rushing into your project.
“Develop a good plan, price it, then work it,” says Klaus Herring, associate and project manager for Paul Davis Restoration in Santa Fe, New Mexico. “If you think through your project and you know what you’re looking to do, that’s half the battle.

“When we go into a project, for example, we make a site visit first to get a feel for what our client wants. Then we develop a design and plan that is revised sometimes three or four times. By the end of the revision process, we have a project that is well put together, addresses perceivable eventualities, and will accommodate the unforeseen events that are inevitable in a remodel.”

Choosing the first contractor you interview.
Take your time. Get several bids. Check each potential contractor’s references, and check with your local Better Business Bureau to see if the contractor has ever been reported as being unethical. Make sure insurance coverage is in place: Every contractor should have business liability insurance, and every subcontractor working for that contractor should be covered under workers’ compensation insurance. Make sure that if the contractor is subcontracting work, those companies are insured. A contractor may carry insurance, but the company that’s actually doing the work might not.

Find a contractor who fits your personality and is open to communication. Look for one who will sit down with you, lay out his or her plan of attack, write it into a contract, show you the breakdown of labor and materials (or the flat rate), then have you sign the contract before the work starts.

Creating an unrealistic budget.
By “unrealistic,” we mean a budget that doesn’t allow for wiggle room. Generally speaking, you should calculate your budget, then increase it by 20 percent. That should be your budget. The 20 percent cushion will provide some peace of mind when the demolition of your kitchen walls reveals rot in your load-bearing studs, or when it becomes clear that an entire wall needs rewiring.

Being overly frugal.
“Don’t get swallowed up by the penny-pinching mind-set,” says homeowner and do-it-yourself remodeler Philip Bovenkamp of Bellingham, Washington. “Take vinyl flooring: It’s cheaper than ceramic tile, but it isn’t that much cheaper. And if you choose tile, the finished product will really set your house apart from the typical spec house in suburbia. That being said, don’t be foolish when thinking about tackling a challenging project. If something is beyond your skill level, don’t try to save money by doing it yourself; hire a professional.”

Looking for lighting suggestions for your remodel? Checkout this article about remodel lighting suggestions that could be of interest to you.

Read the entire article here: http://www.bhg.com/home-improvement/advice/expert-advice/common-remodeling-mistakes/