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Make the Most of Your Bonus Space

10 Ideas for Your Shed Remodel
Making the most of your bonus space!

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

Shed remodel

Your storage shed has endless possibilities!

If you’ve been home a lot more often in the last year, you might be itching to create an escape, and your own backyard might have the perfect solution.

There are endless ideas for how to transform your boring old shed into an personal oasis. That could be a fun way to add that extra appeal to your house if you’re looking to put it on the market soon, too.

Here are 10 fun ideas to transform your backyard shed from meh to marvelous:

  1. Make a home gym
  2. Create an art or photography studio
  3. Give yourself a greenhouse
  4. Grab some popcorn and visit your personal home theater
  5. Work from your new home office
  6. Create a crafty nest
  7. Add some windows for the perfect green house
  8. Enjoy your own personal music room
  9. Send the kids to their awesome playhouse
  10. Enjoy your own private library

Landscaping Trends for 2020

Make Your Home Landscaping Shine This Summer

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

Landscaping trends

While you’re at home, make the most of your time!

Many people find themselves tackling big projects at home during this season of waiting and social distancing. This is the perfect time to identify some of the best landscaping trends and decide which might perfectly help your dream home get even better. Here are some of the best 2020 outdoor trends for you to consider:

  • Ornate, Geometric Designs – patterns are making their way onto porches, patios, walkways, and retaining walls.
  • Contemporary and Transitional Landscaping – many people are extending their love of clean lines and colors outside their houses and into their landscaping.
  • Shades of Blue – 2020 was declared a year for the blues, from navy to cobalt and everything in between. This calming color isn’t contained inside the walls, though. Many people are finding ways to integrate their blues in their landscaping and outside choices.
  • Uniquely You – There is a rising trend to embrace your own quirkiness and desires and integrate them in your outdoor spaces, whether it’s surprising gardening ideas, outdoor kitchens with pizza ovens, or vine-covered pergolas, now is the homeowner’s time to shine!
  • Remote-Controlled Irrigation – Our smart tech is used everywhere inside the home, so it makes sense that it’s beginning to expand to the yard and landscaping. Creating irrigation that can be remotely controlled is a smart and efficient trend to try.

What trends will you try this summer?



Trendiest Summer Colors for Your Louisville Home

Add a splash of color to fill your house with summer vibes

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

Paint colors

Color is trending this summer. Which color inspires you?

Many people have found themselves spending many more hours in their houses as they wait out a global pandemic. Maybe you’re getting tired of the view?

Whether you’re ready to sell your current home, settle into your brand new space, or just bring a little change into the home you already love, this summer’s trendiest paint colors might be just the change you need.

Here are some of this summer’s hottest paint ideas for interior color:

  • Vibrant green
  • Peachy pink
  • Bright Red
  • Soft blue
  • Saturated blue
  • Neutrals
  • Melon
  • Pewter
  • Blue greens
  • Off-white
  • Sunshine colors
  • Blush
  • Classic blue
  • Gray

[Source: Good Housekeeping]


What Home Trends Might 2020 Bring?

From colorful kitchens to pretty powder rooms!

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

kitchen decor

Check out these rising trends sure to hit the home in 2020.

Whether you’re settling into your dream home, sprucing up a house to sell, or just looking to make some changes, here are some predictions for hot home décor trends in 2020!

  • Colorful Kitchens – The classic white kitchen has held its top spot for years, but décor experts predict that 2020 will bring more color into the kitchen, like grays, soft blues, and natural wood elements.
  • Formal Dining Rooms – More and more homeowners have gone casual with their eating spaces, but it’s looking like formal dining rooms will make a comeback, with new focus given toward the impact and statement a great dining room can create.
  • Seating in the Bathroom – As bathrooms become more useful as a spa-like retreat in the home, extra seating can be a valuable asset, whether it’s a window seat, a bench, a cute vanity seat, or a catch-all chair by the bathtub, seating in the bathroom is a logical next step in decorating.
  • Tiled Bathtub Aprons – Tiles have long been used as an inexpensive way to create beauty in the bathroom, but the experts are predicting that this year will see an expansion of the idea, with bathtub aprons the next option for a quick spruce-up.
  • Double Floating Vanities – Homeowners have been growing in their use of floating vanities. They open up space and create a clean, minimalist feel. This year, there will likely be a rise in double floating vanities.
  • Creative and Clever Laundry Rooms – The functional laundry room has been neglected in design for too long, and experts predict that 2020 will see a burst of creative ideas for both beautiful and functional laundry rooms.
  • Fully Wrapped Powder Rooms – The pint-sized powder room has been a creative outlet for the home for a while now, often sporting accent walls and brighter colors. This trend will probably expand, with whole rooms being wrapped in a single image or bold wallpaper.
  • Wood Range Hoods – As homeowners seek to bring warmth to their farmhouse-style décor, wood range hoods are a rising way to marry cool color palettes with warmth and whimsy.



Floral Tips for Faster Selling

Some Tips for using Flowers to Add Curb Appeal

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

Spring is the perfect time to think about floral curb appeal.

Spring is the perfect time to think about floral curb appeal.

Potential buyers will see the outside of your house first, and some fresh, spring flowers could provide just the charm they’re hoping to find. As you’re getting your house ready to sell, consider adding some of the following floral touches. Remember, less is often more, so choose the options that best let your house shine!

  • Add simple window boxes with brightly colored seasonal blooms.
  • Clean all the winter weeds and debris out of front flower beds and make room for bright spots of color and leafy greens.
  • Never underestimate the appeal of simple groupings of potted plants on the porch or patio. First add some small evergreen options, then fill in with seasonal flowers to add color year-round.
  • Clean any rogue vines or branches away from the house.
  • Hang a seasonal wreath – well kept and lovely – on the front door.
  • Consider adding pathway flowers and greens along the sidewalk or path leading to the front door.
  • Add statue-esque potted topiaries on either side of your front door.
  • Employ the skills of a landscaping specialist or friend with an enviable green thumb!
  • Use ivy or climbing roses in specific areas to create a striking visual.

[Source: Southern Living]


Designers Predict the Next Trends for 2018

Ready for a design change or want to get your house ready to sell? Try these design tips.

By Mike Hall, Broker/Agent/Owner

artisan light fixture

Top designers predict artisan light fixtures will be huge in 2018.

Some top designers are weighing in on what they think will be the trends in 2018. Here’s a quick list of what to watch for, explore, and maybe try in your own home:

  • Light purples, lavender, and other soft tones
  • Higher contrast rooms, with neutrals mixed with brighter colors
  • More circle patterns in accents like pillows, art, and wallpaper
  • Shades on the same color on both walls and furniture
  • Less brushed silver and more copper or brass fixtures
  • Richer color schemes, using more metals, gem tones, velvets, and sheek blacks
  • Olive and chartreuse greens
  • Localize wood, stone and other natural pieces
  • Woven accessories
  • Textured and layered wallpaper
  • Trim in braver colors
  • Broad variations of subway tiles
  • Warmer colors
  • Velvet couches, pillows, chairs or seat cushions
  • Bolder patterns worked into the design
  • Local artistry – especially in light fixtures

What trends are you ready to try? We’d love to help you find the house of your dreams – move-in ready or a blank canvas for your creativity. Contact an agent today to find the perfect house in the Louisville area.


[Source: HouseBeautiful]


Appliances in Your Louisville Home

How long will they last for your Louisville home?

by MIKE HALL Owner/Broker/Agent

Below is a list for the average lifespan of home appliances. Give your home a lookover to check if you need to save up for new and shiny upgrades. Or, if looking to buy, make sure your prospective home’s appliances fall on the lower end.  

Refrigerators for Louisville home

Average Appliance lifespan:

Water heater and air conditioner: 10-15 years

Furnace: 15-20 years

Toilet: 10 years

Washer, dryer and dishwasher: 10 years

Garbage disposal: 12 years

Shower: 20 years

Fridge and oven: 15 years

Roof: 20 years

Pipes: 75-100 years


Louisville Home Décor - Is Classic Best?

Classic is timeless, trends are fleeting.

by MIKE HALL, Owner/Broker/Agent

 Good kitchen

When researching what is on trend for the year or season, I always feel a bit superficial. The thing is, trends are trends. They are fleeting, ever-changing and inconsistent. The classic look wins time and time again. It’s almost like true love, you know it when you see it (or feel it,) and it lasts forever.  So, when styling your home, keep this classic/timeless look in mind. I’ve come up with a few classic observations which I think would stand the test of time in any home.

White, bright and clean kitchens and bathrooms. White kitchens and bathrooms are just a staple, offering a trusted clean and timeless look. White tile is a classic look for your floors or backsplash too.

White, bright and clean rooms throughout the home. White paint goes with everything. The guessing game with thousands of paint swatches is non-existent, and white makes any space look larger. Want to get a bit crazy? Paint one or two walls in your home, but leave most of it a clean slate. White especially looks amazing in a well-windowed room which brings me to…

Lots of natural light. Windows, lots of them, or large scale windows, are ideal. Plus, the more earth-friendly we become, the less electricity we use. Many young house-hunting couples are looking for extra natural light.

Timeless furniture. There is a reason vintage furniture is making a come-back—they don’t make them like they used to! Opt out of the cheap plywood table which will fall apart in a few years, and go with the sturdy, wooden piece that might need a little sanding and new coat of stain. Quality.

Pops of color with your accents. White walls look great with dark wood floors and neutral pops of color from furniture, throw pillows and…

Oriental, Persian or fur rugs. Need I say more.

Natural décor. Look for natural material when buying décor and flooring. No plastic lamps, carpet or vinyl, people. Use wood, stone, metal, things derived from the earth, not man-made material.

Houseplants and candles. Giving off clean oxygen and a warm feel makes for a positive environment.

Personal library and family photos. These make for great conversation pieces, and have been around for ages.

It’s in the details. That intricate crown molding, detailed fireplace, those woodwork floors, the metallic patterned ceiling? They will always be highly sought after because they are high in artistic quality and rare to come by.


Renovating your Louisville Kitchen

Don’t forget these 7 tips if you’re forgoing a kitchen up haul.

by MIKE HALL Owner/Agent/Broker

Whether you’re renovating your new home, or giving a facelift before a sale, always keep in mind future prospective buyers. Here are seven keys to a successful renovation:

  1. Remember your workflow. Imagine cooking Thanksgiving dinner, and design around the easiest layout for doing so.
  2. First and foremost, set your budget. Secondly, decide what features are most important to you.  If installing completely new cabinets, keep in mind new cabinetry will take up about one-third of your total budget. This way, you can plan accordingly. 
  3. Precious real estate: Do not give up counter space. Extend with shelving supports if need be, but keep workspace as open as possible.
  4. Also precious real estate? Cabinet storage: consider a lazy susan, your pantry, even spice and wine rack storage.
  5. Cohesively tie your colors together- this includes cabinet and wall paint, backsplash, and countertops.  Make sure they mesh with your kitchen appliances. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: white makes for a clean, open and bright space for every area of the home. Stainless steel is also highly sought after right now.
  6. Don’t forget to cover surrounding areas. Paint splatter, and remodeling debris don’t look good on your grandmother’s dining room table.
  7. Even the DIY type needs some help here and there. Consult your local Home Depot or Lowe’s to really add the last bits of expertise. Plus, they have free consultations.

Timeless Style for the Home

Smart decorating tips to save money in the long run

by MIKE HALL Broker/Owner/Agent

As most of us can't afford to redecorate our homes over and over again, smart decorating decisions save anyone money in the long run. Whether your personal style is modern, victorian, or farmhouse, the key is keeping your choices timeless.

When buying furniture, try to envision it in your life 30 years from now. Stick with versatile, quality pieces that you may splurge on now, but never need to replace. Keeping off-trend with your bigger home buys will save you money in the long run.

As far as flooring redo's, save yourself and skip the carpet all together. When it comes to resale, you are seeing more and more homebuyers turned away from the bacteria-clinging cover, and looking for wood and tile throughout.

Making some paint changes? White, ivory and creams are always a safe bet. Touch ups are simple, and that magic eraser doesn't rub a noticeable shade of paint color off the wall. Not only does the brightness open and freshen your space, but neutral walls match practically any and all furniture. When color and personality is focused on pops from dark wood accents, that antique rug, collected wall art and patterned throw pillows, you can easily update to-trend, or change the overall look for less.

 If Louisville house-hunting with your real estate agent for a move-in ready home, and you walked into a wood-paneled, mustard colored shag-carpet house of the 70's, would you be interested? So, before you decide on a change, always remember to ask yourself if this choice will stand the test of time.



Where to Start: Louisville Kitchen Remodel

Tackling a ktichen remodel? Start here.

by MIKE HALL Broker/Owner/Agent

Investing in the kitchen is usually a smart decision for homeowners. But it's a big project that carries a hefty pricetag of anywhere from $20,000 to $50,000. Before you make any calls, make sure you know what you want. Take some time to look over and create a collage, either online, on your phone or in a folder of what you like of the following:

1. Cabinets - Kitchen cabinets with drawers that pull-out are fantastic.

2. Sinks - From farmhouse to undermount, know your budget and your kitchen use.

3. Countertops - Consider quartz.

4. Flooring - Hardwood is preferable if you have the budget.

5. Appliances - New finishes that offer an alternative to stainless steel are on the rise.


Three Unbelievably Easy Ways to Make Your Exterior Pop

Spend a Saturday to give your exterior some TLC and reap the $$$ benefits.

Decided to sell your home? Now's a hot time to get it listed and here are three ways you can make the outside of your home look drive-by delightful.

1. Paint your front door. Give it several coats of a semi-gloss throughout the day. Voila, much improved!

2. Pot some plants. Add a splash of color to your front stoop with some in-season flowers. Welcome to your new home, potential buyer!

3. Power-wash siding. Clean is always eye-catching to buyers.


Do You Watch HGTV?

Do you feel inspired or overwhelmed when watching HGTV?

"Million Dollar Listing" is about as far from my reality here in Louisville than setting up a multi-family residence on the moon.

These shows can inspire people to make changes to their homes, but one thing is certain. It ain't going to happen in a half-hour time slot.

If you spend your weekends watching HGTV and planning your next remodel, keep in mind all the work, money and sweat equity. None of these are bad. In fact, I think investing time and money in your home is important, but go into with a clear head.

Know there will be obstacles. It will take longer than planned. And, you'll be frequenting Home Depot on a regular basis.

Happy home improvement to you!


Where should you put your treadmill?

Does the exercising eyesore belong out of sight?

Yes, yes and yes. If you're showing your home to buyers.

While you may be ready to flex your muscles after a New Year's resolution that's inspired you to get after getting toned, potential home buyers won't be impressed with your weight loss machine. The large equipment makes the room appear smaller and is the unfortunate focal point in the room.

If you've put your house on the market, you have a couple options when it comes to your elliptical machine, stair climber or treadmill:

1. If you bought the kind that folds up neatly, stow it under the bed before your showing.

2. Allow yourself to gain a couple extra pounds while you wait for your house to sell. If you use Red Edge, that shouldn't be too long of a wait. So, put the treadmill or elliptical, along with any other clutter in a storage unit or garage. You can dust it off, settle it into your new home, and pick up where you left off.

3. Move it to another room. If your bedroom hosts the treadmill, consider moving it to the basement while your house is on the market. You can still get your workout in, but maybe in a different environment.

4. Leave it as is. I don't recommend this option unless you have a gigantic house with an exercise room. But, it's your house to sell. I can only give the best advice - it's up to you to take it.

You may have to put the sweat equity on hold as you rack in those last few months of your home's equity.


What Your Holiday Decor Says about You

Everyone has a preference for holiday decorations. But what does your affinity say about your personality? Maybe a lot. Read on to find out!

All white lights. You have a type-A personality and showing some class is what you aim to do.

Colored lights, galore. Christmas is about fun. What's more fun than a ga-zillion multi-colored bulbs lighting the path to your front door.

Blow up decorations. Kids. You have kids. No adults love inflatables like a six-year-old.

Twinkling lights. You're filled with wanderlust and the promise of Christmas.

No decorations. Maybe your religion doesn't ascribe to the holidays but if so, you may be a Christmas villian. Grinch? Scrooge? Abominable Snowman? Jack Frost? Put up a tree at least!

How do you decorate your Louisville, Ky. home?


Update your Kitchen like a Trendsetter

Update your Kitchen like a Trendsetter

Read up on these trends from designers speculating on what 2014 has in store for kitchens.

Paint brush in hand?  Sander purchased?  If your kitchen (tired of oak cabinets?) needs some TLC, here are five hot trends designers predict to take shape over the course of this year. 

  1. Contemporary design – clean lines and less clutter
  2. Quartz countertops
  3. Wood flooring
  4. Glass backsplashes
  5. Satin nickel for faucets and stainless steel for sinks


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