Re-posted from http://www.lushome.com/modern-interior-design-trends-2018-bright-coziness-frugal-luxury/182192 Modern interior colors and design trends 2018 reflect a cultural impulse of people to support each other and protect the Earth, finding harmony in life in their communities instead of spending money. The bold, eccentric, often expensive decorating ideas of the previous year are gone. Reasonably frugal, practical, eco-friendly and comfortable are the design trends 2018 for creating functional, pleasant and modern interiors. Lushome intends to explain the intelligent latest trends for 2018 interior design and decorating. The year of concentration on families, love, success in relationships and work, brings the most recent trends in decorating which creates welcoming spaces and improve the quality of the communication between people. Modern interior trends 2018 assist in designing friendly rooms, which encourage people to act selflessly, happily and generously, but allow to save money and effort at the same time. Spending a lot of money is not essential. Seeing the potential in existing things is the important message that the interior trends 2018 bring. Modern interior design trends 2018 1. Coziness Light room dividers, reading nooks, small spaces for different tasks, united in one open interior with zones are design trends that improve contemporary homes and offices. Comfortable corners allow to relax, unwind, and enjoy peaceful moments in style. Beautiful and comfortable zones add charming and stylish coziness to modern interior design. Decorating all small areas and mastering micro-zones fill homes and offices with luxurious and trendy comfort. 2. Modern color palette Design trends 2018 blend green and brown color shades with secondary blue, white, black, dark red, soft orange and deep yellow colors. Earthy room colors serve well cozy and warm decorating. Sparkling details in metal gray or golden color beautifully enhance quiet and comfortable room colors 2018 while balancing modern color schemes. Majestic copper and bronze are stylish materials which add warmth and chic to decorating modern interiors. All white hues, gray color tones, terra-cotta, dark purplish red and wine colors are smart choices for decorating in 2018.   3. Dark wood, cork, bright lights Light brown colors of natural wood are modern and appealing, perfect for small spaces. Dark wood is one of modern interior design trends 2018 which bring delicious chocolate brown hues into interiors giving a touch of luxury to room decorating. Cork is another beautiful material which makes not only beautiful floors but cabinets doors and walls also. Filled with wood and soft textiles the rooms ask for bright lighting design. Combined with spectacular lighting ideas, wood creates spacious, warm, and comfortable rooms. 4. Simple shapes and metal furniture Simplicity is another trend in lines and shapes. Geometric, clean and elegant designs with...

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Re-posted from http://realtormag.realtor.org/sales-and-marketing/feature/article/2017/06/rules-for-hiring-high-quality-photographer [Editor’s Note: Need a photographer? Give us a call! We’ve got a recommendation!] Don’t let poor listing photos or restrictive copyright terms stymie your marketing efforts. Here’s what to look for in the right photographer for your real estate business. JUNE 2017 | BY ERICA CHRISTOFFER Fourteen of the last 15 homes Erika Villegas has sold went under contract within 10 days. One of them was previously listed by another agent and sat on the market for nine months at $199,000. When Villegas, SFR, a sales associate with ERA Mi Casa Real Estate in Chicago, relisted the property for $209,000 in May, it sold in five days. What made the difference, she says, was the photography. While the first agent put crooked photos taken with a cell phone of the home online, Villegas used a professional photographer. “People are looking online first and foremost,” Villegas says. “They’re seeing these homes and then contacting their agent to request showings. We have to approach marketing from that perspective.” Finding the right photographer for your listings can be a daunting task, especially if you’re a new agent or have had negative experiences in the past. But professional photography can make all the difference in the world to you and your clients. Learn how other real estate pros identified the right photographer for the job and what qualities to look for when it comes to photography services, image rights, and costs. Choose someone who’s familiar with real estate. Villegas says she chose her photographer, Tony Escareno, director of photography at 360 Media Services in Chicago, because he understands the business: His wife is a real estate agent. So, he’s willing to work around an atypical schedule. “He’s not a ‘this is how we do things’ kind of person,” Villegas says, adding that Escareno is open to taking creative, nontraditional listing photos. She adds his photography to Canva and Xpressdocstemplates to create printed marketing materials. “People have been surprised by his work.” You might find photographers with specific qualifications you seek at networking events. Nico Hohman, broker-owner of Hohman Homes in Tampa, Fla., met his photographer, Sean Febre, at a local Chamber of Commerce event. Hohman says he appreciates that Febre, owner of central Florida–based photo and video marketing firm Febre Frameworks, is also a young entrepreneur. Even more appealing is that Febre’s company, which grew from a two-person team to 20 employees in 10 months, focuses exclusively on real estate and isn’t dabbling in other types of photography. Febre’s photography packages start at $100 and increase based on the square footage of a home; virtual tours cost $50; and video walkthroughs are $150. Pay attention to their...

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Re-posted from http://www.hgtv.com/design/real-estate/top-10-tips-for-selling-your-home-during-the-holidays Attract homebuyers even during the holidays with these useful tips. The holiday season from November through January is often considered the worst time to put a home on the market. While the thought of selling your home during the winter months may dampen your holiday spirit, the season does have its advantages: holiday buyers tend to be more serious and competition is less fierce with fewer homes being actively marketed. First, decide if you really need to sell. Really. Once you’ve committed to the challenge, don your gay apparel and follow these tips from FrontDoor. Deck the halls, but don’t go overboard. Homes often look their best during the holidays, but sellers should be careful not to overdo it on the decor. Adornments that are too large or too many can crowd your home and distract buyers. Also, avoid offending buyers by opting for general fall and winter decorations rather than items with religious themes. Hire a reliable real estate agent. That means someone who will work hard for you and won’t disappear during Thanksgiving, Christmas or New Year’s. Ask your friends and family if they can recommend a listing agent who will go above and beyond to get your home sold. This will ease your stress and give you more time to enjoy the season. Seek out motivated buyers. Anyone house hunting during the holidays must have a good reason for doing so. Work with your agent to target buyers on a deadline, including people relocating for jobs in your area, investors on tax deadlines, college students and staff, and military personnel, if you live near a military base. Price it to sell. No matter what time of year, a home that’s priced low for the market will make buyers feel merry. Rather than gradually making small price reductions, many real estate agents advise sellers to slash their prices before putting a home on the market. Make curb appeal a top priority. When autumn rolls around and the trees start to lose their leaves, maintaining the exterior of your home becomes even more important. Bare trees equal a more exposed home, so touch up the paint, clean the gutters and spruce up the yard. Keep buyers’ safety in mind as well by making sure stairs and walkways are free of snow, ice and leaves. Take top-notch real estate photos. When the weather outside is frightful, homebuyers are likely to start their house hunt from the comfort of their homes by browsing listings on the Internet. Make a good first impression by offering lots of flattering, high-quality photos of your home. If possible, have a summer or spring photo...

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Re-posted from https://www.moneytips.com/top-5-reasons-to-buy-a-home-during-the-holidays Why it Makes Sense to Buy a Home at Year’s End Few people like to uproot their family and go through the stresses of home buying and moving during the holidays, but for those who do not mind, the holiday season may provide home buying bargains. Here are a few of the reasons why. Less Market Activity – Lots of family, school, and work activities, combined with the weather in many locations, lead to fewer real estate transactions over the holidays. Since fewer people overall are looking to buy houses, you will have less competition for your preferred house – and this gives you leverage. Holiday home sellers often have to adjust their price downward or make other concessions if they want to sell. Keep this in mind as you search for homes. Bargains may be available, and listed prices may be more open to negotiation. Motivated Sellers – People who are selling their homes over the holidays often have great incentive to sell, such as an upcoming job relocation. If a house has already been on the market for some time, that incentive is multiplied. You may be able to use this urgency to your advantage (assuming you are not in a similarly urgent need to buy). Negotiate fairly but firmly with sellers and you should be able to extract a lower price and/or other concessions like paying part of the closing costs. Potential Tax Advantages – If you itemize your taxes, you can deduct any points you paid upon closing, as well as property taxes and mortgage interest. Whether it is to your advantage to buy before or after year’s end depends on factors such as how many other deductions you have this year and expect to have next year. It is best to consult with a tax professional before purchase. Even though you do not want to make a decision on a home purchase strictly for tax reasons, it could be to your benefit to close before the end of the year. Better Interest Rates – Within the general trend of interest rates, there is often a cyclical trend of lower interest rates during the holidays – not from the generosity of lenders but due to limited demand forcing greater competition among lenders. There are plenty of factors that can obscure or swamp this cycle, but in general, you should see preferable interest rates around the holidays compared to the times immediately before or after. Faster Closings – Generally, all parties involved have incentive to complete transactions toward the end of the year. Lenders want to close their books, real estate agents want to receive their commissions before the year closes, sellers want to move on to their...

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Re-posted from http://www.hgtv.com/design/decorating/design-101/30-cant-miss-home-staging-tips Designed to Sell designer Lisa LaPorta shares some of her best home staging tips. Grimy bathroom walls are a major red flag to buyers. Here is an easy way to get rid of surface mold: Mix a spray bottle with one part water and one part bleach. Just spray it on the wall, and watch the mold disappear. Give it a fresh coat of paint, and your grimy bathroom will go from red flag to red-hot. Don’t replace a yucky shower door: Just scour it. A grimy glass shower door can really wash out your sale. Instead of replacing it, clean it with a mixture of one part muriatic acid and about 10 parts water. Scrub with steel wool. After wiping it down, reinstall the door and you’ll have a shower that’ll help you clean up at the open house. Avoid dated tile by painting. Bathrooms sell houses, but dated tile in a bathroom doesn’t. A low-cost alternative to replacing the tile is to use paint. First coat the tiles with a high-adhesion primer. Next, brush on a special ceramic epoxy covering. For a fraction of the cost of new tile, you will have an up-to-date bathroom that brings in big bucks. Pedestal sinks are a big hit with buyers. They show off square footage in small bathrooms beautifully. First, your old vanity has to go. Next, just hook up your new sink, and your bathroom will have dramatic appeal that brings in big bucks. Plus, buyers will see how much floor space your bathroom has. A master bedroom should appeal to both sexes. When you are selling, your master bedroom should appeal to buyers of both sexes. Get rid of features that seem too gender-specific. Paint the walls a neutral color, and choose bedding that matches. Then accessorize with items that complement the overall color scheme. Do you have an overpowering brick fireplace that sticks out like a sore thumb? Here’s an easy way to tone it down with paint. Use a rag or brush to rub a light coat of paint on the bricks, one at a time. This will give them a new tone without covering them completely. And, if you use a paint color that matches the walls, your fireplace will go from sticking out to standing out. Updating an old fireplace screen is a cheap (and quick) fix. After removing the screen and wiping it down to get rid of the dust, mask off the windows so you won’t get paint on them. Then, using a can of heat-resistant spray paint, give the screen a facelift. Hold the can about 18 inches away, and use long, even strokes....

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Originally posted on http://styledstagedsold.blogs.realtor.org/2016/03/21/designing-for-an-open-floor-plan/ Walls are vanishing from newer homes and the open-plan layouts are showing off multi-purpose areas, such as kitchens and dining rooms and living rooms that seamlessly flow into one another. But how do you decorate one large space – to make it comfortable and beautiful for eating, entertaining, relaxing and more? “The key is continuity,” says Kim Kiner, Vice President of Textile & Material Design and The Alustra® Collection for Hunter Douglas. Here are some ways: Color To keep an open-plan interior open, the No. 1 element for achieving continuity is wall color, says New York designer Glenn Lawson says. Whether “warm” or “cool,” you can use the same one throughout or paint such architectural elements as pilasters, soffits and chair rails variations of the main color, from light to dark, Lawson says. Large furnishings such as sofas and area rugs are most successful when they are, color-wise, “cousins” of the walls, three shades of blue, for example, Lawson adds. “This way the eye keeps travelling throughout the space and is not interrupted by large disparate areas,” Lawson says. Also, consider using pops of the same color, such as a grey sofa in the living room and then a grey chair-seat fabric at the dining table and a grey lamp shade in the library, suggests Shea Soucie of Soucie Horner in Chicago. “Thread a single color – or varying shades of a color – throughout an open space, and you’ll have a comforting sense of continuity as you move from one end of your home to the other,” she says. Flooring “When you have an open-concept living space, it’s important to keep the flooring material consistent so you don’t chop up the flow of the space,” Soucie says. “You can make it interesting by laying wood planks on the diagonal, for instance, or by setting reclaimed European tiles in a herringbone pattern. Whatever you choose, make it the same throughout the space.” Rugs can then be layered on top to soften the look and add warmth. It can also help in identifying the rooms within too. “Rugs are amazingly versatile,” Soucie says. “No matter what kind you choose, they add personality, color, texture and style. And you don’t have to restrict them to your floor by the way – you can hang a beautiful rug on the wall just like you would a piece of art!”   Art and accessories Use art or pillows to enhance the space, such as by repeating or contrasting with an existing color in the room. Add texture with the frame. Don’t just hang the artwork to the wall, though,...

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