Home Improvements

Found 211 blog entries about Home Improvements.

As you are looking for the ideal home for you and your family, you may find yourself trying to decide between two similar homes. You could have worse problems than this on your Santa Cruz home search, but how do you decide which home is better for you and your family?
Here are primary points to consider:

1. Location. This is where you are going to live. You need to consider how far away it is from work, schools, and shopping. You probably want to do as little driving as possible. A Santa Cruz home close to where you will be spending your time away from home may be the better choice for you.

2. Home repairs. What will you need to do to the home once you move in? Think about the time and money you will have to invest in the home before making your

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Nothing makes a Santa Cruz home for sale look better than a new coat of paint.  Many people are intimidated by the thought of painting the exterior of their home, and hire someone else to do it.  But, you can do it yourself, with these easy steps:
Getting Your House Ready to Paint
The first thing that you’ll need to do is inspect the house.  Look at all the walls, under the eaves and around the doorframe and windows.  Check for peeling paint, mildew and rough surfaces.
You’ll need to gather a few tools before getting to the repairs and putting your Santa Cruz home up for sale:

• Power-washer
• 2-3” inch putty knife
• 2-3” inch pull scraper
• Wire brush
• Sander 
• Chlorine bleach

Preparing the Surface
Power-wash the walls so you'll have a clean surface.  You

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 The national real estate market, state markets and city markets all seemed to be wrapped up in a nifty bundle that effect whether your Santa Cruz home for sale will have a buyer. With the news reports over the last two years about the pop of the housing bubble, homeowners everywhere essentially lost their minds.

Here are a few examples:

• Some homeowners panicked and immediately put their houses up for sale
• Some homeowners chose to walk away from it all, leaving their homes vacant and mortgages in default
• Some homeowners went into a flurry of home renovations, with the idea of selling
• National and Santa Cruz home for sale listings shot through the roof

The amazing thing isn’t that the real estate market seems to be stabilizing – that’s not the

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Even though it may sometimes seem like it, home building and design trends are not conjured up using a crystal ball.  They are the result of surveys, observations, lifestyles, socioeconomic issues, entertainment, technology, and most importantly, the needs and desires of buyers.

Here are some of the national and Santa Cruz homes trends to expect in 2010.

Green is growing
A study conducted by Burst Media in late December, 2009, found that 90 percent of Web users surveyed have incorporated some aspect of going green into their lives, and overall, they are willing to pay a premium for environmentally friendly products. 

Homes are getting smaller.
For 2010, home builders say they will focus on lower-priced and smaller homes. More than 95 percent of home

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Nothing will turn off a potential buyer quicker than an offensive odor in your Santa Cruz home for sale. It may make them think you don’t take care of your home. At the very least, the odor will interfere with their ability to picture themselves in your home.  Take the time to remove odors from your home.

Here are 5 tips to make your home smell fresh and clean:

1. Clean your carpets. Your carpets are fibers that absorb odor. Have your carpets cleaned by a professional to remove odors stuck in the carpet and pad. Another option is to rent a carpet cleaner and clean them yourself.

2. Paint. Sometimes odors like smoke can be trapped in your walls. A fresh coat of paint will not only brighten your room, it can seal the walls and mask the offending odors.

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I can hear you now, “Oh, no! Not another article on curb appeal to sell my Santa Cruz home!” To which I reply, “Oh, yes.” One more time around the block, but this time, we’re doing it in style.

The 21st Century Curb

Curb appeal is that thing you do to pretty up the outside of your home. It’s the landscaping, the painting and the checking of the little details. However, many home sellers (and real estate agents, for that matter), don’t take into account that the curb nowadays isn't just the view from the front of your house. In the 21st century, the “curb” starts right here on the Net.

Your online home listing has only three seconds - three short moments of time - to catch a potential buyer’s eye and turn them into an interested party. Unfortunately,

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We’re all looking for ways to cut costs in our Santa Cruz homes.  One of the most efficient ways to save money is to insulate.  There are two simple ways to insulate your home that you may not have thought of before.  Here is the low down on each of them:

Add Weatherstripping

You may be familiar with weatherstripping on your car, but have you ever thought about weather-stripping your house?  It comes in many different sizes, so you can easily choose the right kind for your Santa Cruz homes.  Pre-weather stripped doors are now sold in many home improvement stores. 

When choosing which weather stripping to buy, consider the amount of friction that it will need to stand up to.  It would be better to use vinyl weatherstripping in high traffic areas. You

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There are many different ways to update your Santa Cruz home to make it more eco-friendly. 

• In your Santa Cruz home, install ceiling fans and thermal windows.  Ceiling fans are low energy, cost effective ways of cooling your home without using the air conditioning.  Thermal windows offer insulation from outside heat and cold. 

• Use foam caulking around any cable lines or cords leading to an exterior wall.  This will provide insulation against temperature changes.

• In the winter (or in climates that are cool year round), use the natural sunlight during the day.  Opening the drapes and allowing the sun to come in decreases the amount of energy needed to light and heat your home.  Closing the drapes at night adds another layer of insulation against

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It’s that time of year again, when the temperatures fall and the costs of heating your Santa Cruz home go up.  Do you worry about the increasing cost of heating oil and the rise in energy prices?  Then you may want to try these suggestions for saving on your home’s heating costs:

• Check all your home’s air vents to see that they are clean and free from any blockages.  Replace your furnace filters to keep the system running efficiently.

• Weather Seal your home.  Look around all the door and window frames on your house for obvious gaps and spaces that could let cold air into your house.  Fill in the gaps with a silicone caulking, sold at all hardware stores.  For high traffic areas like the doorway, you may want to apply a vinyl or metal

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If your Santa Cruz home for sale isn’t selling, you’re probably wondering if you’re missing something. Well, here’s a list of things you might not know that could make all the difference:

1. If the location of your Santa Cruz home for sale isn’t great, the price and terms are the only thing that will sell it. Make them outstanding!

2. Attractive, competitive terms may help you get a higher price. For instance, if you’re allowing the option of owner financing, and also allow a smaller down payment (say, $20,000 - $30,000), you may be able to sell your house for a higher overall amount.

3. Because of the current high competition, your home has to be in the best condition at a competitive price. Check out the competition, accept that yours might need

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