Home Design Resolutions for 2014

Design by Melissa Klebanoff Interior Design.

You may have New Year’s resolutions for your health or your finances, but what about resolutions related to your home? We asked a few designers for some suggestions. From big projects — such as revamping your kitchen — to smaller ones, here are some ways to achieve your design dreams in 2014.

Resolution No. 1: Plan it out

No matter which design project you want to tackle, designers say having a plan is the key for success.

“Start with a wishlist of projects to complete over the year,” suggested designer Alissa Pulcrano of bright designlab in Portland, OR. “Plan, plan, plan first! Then take your concepts to your favorite designer (or two if you don’t have one yet) and ask them to give you a proposal for your wishlist. Take the time to plan it right.”

Designer Melissa Klebanoff, principal of Melissa Klebanoff Interior Design in Seattle, offer similar advice to clients tackling design projects.

“Assign the following steps a time frame to keep you on track, and before you begin, determine if the project requires a designer,” she said. “Write down everything you want to accomplish with your project, define it, gather photos and do a space plan if needed.”

Resolution No. 2: Find your style and get inspired

Corian, Island, Breakfast Bar, Modern, European, U-Shaped, Undermount
Do you prefer a mid-century look, as is shown here in bright designlab’s work?

Sometimes the most overwhelming part of a project can be determining which direction to go in. Which color? What about textiles and finishes? The goal here is to not necessarily find the most trendy design but the look that will work for you and your household over time.

Before you begin gathering inspiration, determine the purpose of the room. Does it need to be highly functional and kid-friendly? Or is it a stylish retreat?

Once you have narrowed your purpose, gather photos and spend time visiting websites and saving images. Zillow Digs is one such place to collect inspiring designs all in one space.

It also helps to see materials in person, advises Klebanoff.

“Go to home improvement stores and design centers. Collect the finishes you’ll need and love — like carpet samples, stone samples, fabrics, furniture cuts, lighting ideas, appliance specs, paint colors and so on,” she said.

Resolution No. 3: Focus on one room at a time

Hardwood, Exposed Beams, Contemporary, Eclectic, Flush/Semi-Flush Mount
Make time to put together a gallery wall. Design by bright designlab.

Whether you’ve been meaning to clean out and organize the clutter accumulating in the hall closet or finally frame family photos for the living room, it’s best to tackle one space at a time.

“If you have a weekend, develop a plan and focus on one room: paint the living room, and buy a few key pieces, knowing that you can add to it over the year,” Pulcrano said. “Start with an overall design and then ‘chip away.’”

Resolution No. 4: Give the kitchen a refresh

Kitchen by Vanessa DeLeon.

Kitchens have become the center of many American homes — the place that sees the most foot traffic and activity. According to the latest Zillow Digs designer survey, kitchens top the list for planned 2014 renovations.

Kitchens in 2014 are trending toward open, “homey” spaces, says designer Vanessa DeLeon.

“More and more people are wanting an ‘open concept’ space and the feeling of comfort,” she explained. “They want to be able to eat, entertain, relax and enjoy the space with the rest of the house.”

Considering a kitchen remodel? Start researching contractors or designers.

“Ask people you trust for referrals for general contractors they’ve successfully worked with,” Klebanoff said. “Set up interviews with them and present your now very clearly defined project to them for bids. Check their references!”

By Erika Riggs of Zillow Blog

Source: http://www.zillow.com/blog/2013-12-23/home-design-resolutions-for-2014/

You may have New Year’s resolutions for your health or your finances, but what about resolutions related to your home? We asked a few designers for some suggestions. From big projects — such as revamping your kitchen — to smaller ones, here are some ways to achieve your design dreams in 2014.

Resolution No. 1: Plan it out

No matter which design project you want to tackle, designers say having a plan is the key for success.

“Start with a wishlist of projects to complete over the year,” suggested designer Alissa Pulcrano of bright designlab in Portland, OR. “Plan, plan, plan first! Then take your concepts to your favorite designer (or two if you don’t have one yet) and ask them to give you a proposal for your wishlist. Take the time to plan it right.”

Designer Melissa Klebanoff, principal of Melissa Klebanoff Interior Design in Seattle, offer similar…

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New home sales and mortgage apps see growing divergence

Mortgage News You Can Use

HousingWire – Trey Garrison

The November new home sales data from the U.S. Census Bureau includes "some surprisingly positive data points, and a continued divergence from the weekly purchasing applications trend as released by the MBA," according to research from Compass Point Research & Trading. Wilkes Graham and Ryan Gilbert at Compass Point say purchasing applications, which are usually a solid predictor of new home sales, are now down 11% year over year, and the divergence between purchasing applications and new home sales trends seems to be widening.

>> Read More: http://www.housingwire.com/articles/28412-new-home-sales-and-mortgage-apps-see-growing-divergence

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DIY This NYE

The holidays are so relaxing, said no one..ever. Even though Christmas is over, New Year’s is hot on our heels! We know you’ve probably started perusing Pinterest for some New Year’s DIYs, and we have been too. Here are some of our favorite DIYs to make before the big night.

New Year's Countdown Champagne from Martha Stewart

These Countdown Champagne Glasses from Martha Stewart are a gorgeous way to ring in the New Year!

DIY Marble Dipped Stemware from Linen Lace and Love

A more dramatic way to decorate your stemware can be found on Linen Lace and Love! They use a marbling technique to get those abstract patterns on each glass making every one unique!

Glitter Spiked Balls from the Sweetest Occasion

Avoid the crowd in Times Square with your own mini-spiked balls from The Sweetest Occasion. They are great for adding some sparkle to a tablescape.

Sequin Backdrop from Oh Happy Day

Strike a pose against this sequin photo backdrop from Oh Happy Day!

Tinsel Wrapped Numbers from Ruffled Blog

We love these tinsel covered letters! You could make a monogram for your home using the same concept, and some beautiful ribbon.

So what are you waiting for?! Get that glue gun out, and start crafting before the ball drops!

Source: http://blog.mjtrim.com/2013/12/27/plan-the-best-new-years-party/

M&J Blog

The holidays are so relaxing, said no one..ever. Even though Christmas is over, New Year’s is hot on our heels! We know you’ve probably started perusing Pinterest for some New Year’s DIYs, and we have been too. Here are some of our favorite DIYs to make before the big night.

New Year's Countdown Champagne from Martha Stewart

These Countdown Champagne Glasses from Martha Stewart are a gorgeous way to ring in the New Year!

DIY Marble Dipped Stemware from Linen Lace and Love

A more dramatic way to decorate your stemware can be found on Linen Lace and Love! They use a marbling technique to get those abstract patterns on each glass making every one unique!

Glitter Spiked Balls from the Sweetest Occasion

Avoid the crowd in Times Square with your own mini-spiked balls from The Sweetest Occasion. They are great for adding some sparkle to a tablescape.

Sequin Backdrop from Oh Happy Day

Strike a pose against this sequin photo backdrop from Oh Happy Day!

Tinsel Wrapped Numbers from Ruffled Blog

We love these tinsel covered letters! You could make a…

View original post 31 more words

Top 10 Home Improvement Projects

If you’re thinking of selling your home in 2014 or just want to ramp up your home value, it’s important to educate yourself on which improvement projects will bring you the most return on your investment.

Top 10 Home Improvement Projects

A great resource for your research is the 2013 Cost vs. Value Report, an annual collaboration between Remodeling magazine and REALTOR® Magazine, which breaks out the estimated cost of various projects and the estimated return on investment for those projects by region and by city, as well as by midrange and upscale projects. In general, this year’s report shows that exterior replacement projects are the most cost-effective. If you plan to sell your home later this year, remember that the first impression your home makes on buyers is their first glimpse of the outside.

Here are 10 home improvement projects you should consider:

1. Replace Your Front Door

You may not even notice…

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Housing Outlook 2014: 10 Predictions From The Experts

Mortgage News You Can Use

Forbes – Erin Carlyle

In 2013, the housing recovery was a welcome bright spot for the economy: prices were shooting up, fewer homeowners were underwater, and builder confidence was finally on the upswing. It’s looking like 2014 should be another good year for housing–mostly. Here are ten things housing experts expect to see in 2014:

1. More homes will be available.

2. Mortgage rates will rise.

3. Mortgages will be easier to get.

4. Home prices will rise 3.00%.

5. Fewer homeowners will be underwater.

6. Affordability will decline.

7. Ownership will decline.

8. Americans will move.

9. Foreclosures will fade.

10. Home buying process less crazed.

>> Read More: http://www.forbes.com/sites/erincarlyle/2013/12/23/housing-outlook-2014-10-predictions-from-the-experts/

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Will You Be Buying Your Next House With Bitcoins?

If you’re not ready to throw down cash for that new house, maybe you can dig deep for some … bitcoins?

BitcoinFor the second time last week, a seller promised to accept the virtual currency as valid payment for a new home, according to The Wall Street Journal.

One seller in the Hamptons is asking nearly $800,000 — or that value in bitcoins — for a four-bedroom, ranch-style home first listed in October. Earlier this week, a former casino owner said he’d be willing to accept bitcoins for his $7.85 million Las Vegas home.

Bitcoin is a digital currency introduced in 2009 that is not backed by a central bank or government.  The currency can be traded online through unregulated Internet exchanges.

Since a bank isn’t involved, using bitcoins can have fewer fees than traditional transactions.

But bitcoin prices fluctuate daily, and likely would be determined by the average exchange…

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Organization Inspiration

M&J Blog

Every year many of us make resolutions for the new year: getting active, spending more time with family, traveling, eating better, etc. There’s one resolution we continue to make to ourselves as crafters, which is to make our craftspace more organized. Take a look at these beautifully-styled workspaces for some aspirational motivation!

Organized Desk from Hello Forever

At Home in Love Workspace

A colorful craft room makes it easy to come up with ideas for your next project! Keeping all of the colors in sight makes it easy to choose color palettes.

Button Organization

White Workspace

White space is clean, and allows your eye to rest. It’s great for staying focused on one project or idea!

Crafts by Color

Dark Neutral Office Space

When it comes to getting things done, do you prefer to keep your space minimalist and modern, or colorful and inspirational?

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