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Libby Gatewood
REALTOR®, ABR,GRI,RAA
Associate Broker/Appraiser
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Articles Tagged "Kitchen Remodel"

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June
20

Kitchen Gadgets that Come in Handy

Kitchen Tools

Cooking is so much more enjoyable when you have the right tools for the job. And yet, selecting kitchen gadgets is not always as simple as it may seem. You don't want to purchase tools only for them to sit there unused. Unused kitchen tools can make your kitchen feel cluttered, especially to potential buyers!

Here are some key kitchen gadgets that our real estate agents recommend adding to your collection. Each of these tools simplifies your life and cooking routine in its own unique way.

  • A Pressure Cooker
    If there's one countertop appliance worth buying, it's a pressure cooker. These devices can cook meals like stews and braises in 30 minutes, versus the 4 or 5 hours they would take on the stove. You can also use your pressure cooker to make perfect rice, steam veggies, and craft perfect risotto.

  • An Electric Can Opener
    Opening cans with a handheld can opener can be pretty frustrating. If you have money in your budget for an electric model, definitely spring for one. You won't have to suffer through wrist fatigue to make tuna casserole ever again.

  • A Salad Spinner
    Buying whole heads of lettuce is often cheaper than buying pre-bagged lettuce, but then you have to clean it. Luckily, cleaning heads of lettuce is easy if you have a salad spinner. You just spray them down, then pile the leaves into the spinner. Press the button a few times, and the spinner will dry the lettuce, preventing it from wilting in your fridge. You can even store your lettuce inside the spinner.

  • A Spray Bottle for Oil
    Are you tired of trying to lubricate your pans without flooding them with oil? There are spray bottles made specifically for cooking oil. Fill one up, and spritz your pans with ease. This is also a more eco-friendly option than using aerosol non-stick sprays.

  • A High-Powered Blender
    If you like making smoothies, dressings, and sauces, then it's worth investing in a high-powered blender, such as a Vitamix. They do a much better job than low-end blenders, and their motors last longer, too.

  • A Vacuum Sealer
    Are you tired of throwing away food that spoiled too soon? Maybe you like to pre-portion food into bags, but they often leak. A vacuum sealer will solve both of these problems. Vacuum-sealed food stays fresh for a lot longer since it is not exposed to air. Plus, vacuum-sealed bags are far less likely to break open and leave a mess in your fridge or freezer.

  • A Knife Sharpener
    When your knives get dull, you don't have to throw them away and replace them. Instead, invest in a good knife sharpener, and use it to keep your blades in tip-top shape. If you get into the habit of sharpening them every week or two, you'll never find yourself fighting with a dull blade again.

  • A Digital Thermometer
    If you're looking at Richmond homes for sale and you see a digital thermometer in the kitchen, you know the owner is a serious cook. A thermometer lets you cook meats and other foods more precisely. Digital versions are easy to read and give quick results.

If you fill your kitchen with these gadgets, you'll have a lovely time making your favorite meals and snacks. Contact us if you're still looking for the perfect place to call home. We'll help you find a kitchen to decorate and fill. 

March
22

Know These Things Before Starting a DIY Project

DIY Project Tips

Whether your home needs a few upgrades or you want to complete some overdue repairs to get it ready to put on the market, opting for a DIY project can help you save money and let you complete the project on your terms. Our real estate agents know that an updated, well-maintained property is attractive to potential buyers. Here are some best practices to follow before starting a DIY project. 

  1. Know What Tools You'll Need
    Having the skills and ability to complete a DIY project is part of the process; you also need to confirm that you have the tools to do the job (or can access them). It's surprising how many tools a seemingly simple project requires. You don't want to put your project on hold because you have to scramble to find a special wrench or drill bit to complete the work. If you don't have the tools in your toolbox, see if you can borrow the items from a friend or even rent the piece. Many hardware stores have rental programs for tools commonly used in DIY projects. 
  1. Consider the Time Required for the Project
    Another component to research is how long the project will take. Remember, you'll need to prepare the space for the project and gather supplies for the project. Once the project is complete, you'll need to clean the space and return it to its former appearance. All of these tasks can add hours to a seemingly quick project. If something goes awry during the project, this will add even more time.

    For example, let's say you want to paint your living room. After all, a fresh coat of paint often helps Richmond homes for sale look their best. Before starting, you'll need to research your options for paint and paint tools, compare prices, and purchase your supplies. Moving and protecting your furniture and photos will take some time. You'll also need to clean the walls and fill any holes or cracks; this adds another hour to the project. You anticipate spending two hours painting the walls. However, this is for one coat of paint. If the paint requires two coats of paint, you'll need to double your estimate. Once all your painting is complete, factor in an hour to clean up, uncover the furniture, and move things back into place. A job that you thought might only take 2-4 hours can actually take double that amount of time. 
  1. Go Through the Project Before You Get Started
    Before you start the project, read through the instructions from start to finish. This ensures you understand the time, resources, and skillset required to complete the project. Make sure to keep your limitations in mind. Some projects seem simple but call for advanced skills that novice DIYers may not have. 
  1. Know How to Handle Mistakes
    Mistakes are a part of any DIY project. Try to prevent mistakes by using the correct materials and tools. Slow down, and make sure to double-check your measurements. When a mistake occurs, have additional materials on-hand to remedy your errors.

After you complete your latest DIY project are you ready to put your home on the market? Contact us today to get started!

February
1

Renovating? 5 Tips to Keep Your Pets Safe

Richmond Pet Tips

Home renovations can be stressful for the whole family, as you shift furniture out of the way or temporarily lose access to important parts of the home. It can be especially hard on the furry members of your household, who struggle to understand why their favorite spot by the window is suddenly off-limits. But with some careful planning and reassurance, you and your pets can get through the renovation process comfortably. Follow these tips to make the process less stressful for your pets. 

  1. Communicate With Your Contractors
    Ask the contractor what areas of the home the workers will need access to for the renovation and for approximately how many hours of the day. Note that this may change slightly, as projects can take unpredictable turns. But you'll be able to know which areas of the house to keep your pet out of most of the time. Let them know how many pets you have and where they will be while they are working. Clear communication will help ensure your pet isn't let out of the house accidentally while the renovation is in progress. 

  2. Give Them a Spot 
    Choose an area well away from the noise and mess for your pet to seek refuge. This area should have their food, water, favorite toys, and a bed or blanket. Your bedroom may be the best room for this, but if yours is one of the Richmond homes for sale getting a new master bath downstairs would be better suited for your pet's space. 
     
  3. Take Them Away from the Noise
    Getting out might be the best strategy for large or noisy projects. Visiting a pet-friendly store is a great chance to get a new treat or toy as a reward for putting up with all the mess. Stop by a dog park, or if your backyard isn't full of lumber and tools, a day closer to home might work well. If your renovation project is extensive or your pet is especially nervous around strangers, you may want to consider boarding your pet for a portion of the project's duration. 

  4. Don't Forget Their Routine
    Change is always stressful, and the antidote to stress is routine. As much as possible, keep feeding times and other important rituals as closely as possible. Remember to take them on their daily walk or other activities they enjoy.

  5. Examine the Space
    When the work is completed, do a thorough inspection of the area. Look for small tools or bits left behind that could harm your pet. Make sure there are no chemicals left behind, and any paint or lacquer is at least dry to the touch. The "after" of a home renovation looks amazing, but for a pet, it's a maze of unfamiliar sights and smells. Ensure that these aren't overwhelming as you and your pet get used to the new look. 

Our real estate agents love seeing all family members enjoy their home, four-legged family members being no exception. If you have any questions about keeping your pets happy through home renovations and projects to complete before listing your home for sale, contact us today. 

November
9

Lighting Upgrades That Make a Noticeable Difference

Lighting Upgrades

No home makeover is complete until you upgrade the lighting. Proper lighting choices can set the ambiance, change the mood, and help highlight a room's design. Plus, why settle for outdated and inefficient lighting when the fun, functional options out there are unlimited? With the right pendants, recessed lights, lamps, task lights, sconces, and flush mounts, you can purposefully give your rooms an entirely new look. Here are our real estate agents' tips for transformative room-by-room lighting upgrades.

  1. In the Kitchen
    Cooking, baking, cleaning, and gatherings can benefit from careful consideration of task and ambient lighting. When it comes to your kitchen, lighting should set the mood and help you see properly for all your food preparation. Think in particular of under-cabinet lighting that can illuminate your countertops while you work without relying on an overhead light that casts shadows. Light the dark corners of your kitchen like counters, pantries, shelves, cupboards, and counters. These areas become more beautiful and functional when properly lit. Pendant lamps above kitchen islands, breakfast nooks, and kitchen sinks can be a fun and functional upgrade.


  2. The Bathroom
    With an emphasis on personal grooming, the bathroom requires proper lighting placement. Most bathrooms have a central ceiling-mounted fixture and over-the-mirror strips of lights that cast odd shadows. You can replace those with recessed light in the ceiling and vertical wall sconces on the sides of the mirror. Alternatively, you can install vanity lighting around your mirror to cast the perfect amount of light and create a soft glow. 


  3. Living Rooms
    As an area where people spend a lot of time and engage in a wide range of activities such as watching TV, chilling after work, having conversations, hosting friends, or playing board games, the living room is incredibly versatile. As such, you should consider making your lighting as adaptable as the room. The concept of layering light works great in the living room. Table lamps are great, but adding a big floor lamp, oversized pendant, or large lantern can create a great focal point.

  4. In Hallways and Along Staircases
    Staircases often form the main focal point in a hallway, but dark ones aren't safe. This offers great opportunities for fun, dramatic, and practical lighting. To begin with, the space above a staircase is a perfect place to add sparkle and visual interest with a show-stopping chandelier. You can also layer your lighting and bring a dramatic effect to your hallways and stairs with inset floor-level lights, LED strips, and wall lights. If you want to focus on the stairs, LED strips underneath individual stair treads can bring that noticeable difference you're going for. LED lights are a good choice because they're inexpensive to burn, cool to the touch, and have a lifespan of 10 or more years.

In general, when you are planning to install new lighting fixtures in your space, it's best to:

  • Install layered lighting. Go for general lighting (pendant or overhead), ambient lighting (decorative sconces or candles), and specific lighting (table or task).
  • Incorporate reflective surfaces such as metallic finishes, glossy floors, and mirrors.
  • Choose the right shade for fixtures.
  • Install smart lighting, energy-efficient lighting, and dimmers.

Contact us today to learn more about how lighting can bring a noticeable difference to your space while also appealing to buyers looking for Richmond homes for sale.

October
12

How to Get a Timeless Look in Your Kitchen

Timeless Kitchen RichmondThe kitchen is one of if not the most important room in the home, so if you're redecorating it, you might be tempted to look for the latest stylish trends. However, it's better to consider timeless looks that are functional, pleasing to the eye, and draw in prospective buyers when you're ready to sell your home. The latest and greatest kitchen design elements may become passe in another few years, so it's better to stick with looks that have stood the test of time.
  
Our real estate agents suggest the following ways to get a timeless look in your kitchen:

  1. Neutral Tones
    Using a white, off-white, or neutral palette in your kitchen creates a sophisticated look. It's easy to brighten up with pops of color that can easily be switched out as your preferences change. And when it's time to sell your home, a neutral kitchen palette appeals to most prospective buyers, who can determine what color of accents they'd like to use.
      
  2. Subway Tiles
    A subway tile backsplash creates a clean appearance and is easy to install. You'll find that it brightens your kitchen and works well with many different styles of décor.
      
  3. Stone Countertops
    Stone countertops are durable and work well in kitchens that are anywhere from rustic to modern. If your budget is slightly higher, you may want to consider stones such as marble or quartz, but if you're trying to lower your budget, granite or limestone are good choices.
      
  4. Deep, Wide Sinks
    A deep, wide sink is highly functional, enabling you to take care of kitchen tasks such as peeling fruits and vegetables and peeling pots and pans more easily. Add a sink top chopping board that's the sink's size, and you'll have a timeless, efficient setup.
      
  5. Kitchen Islands   
    Islands can increase your storage space, seating, and workspace and serve as a focal point to your kitchen, but they're about style in addition to function. Choose one that's impressively styled with contrasting counters, intricate woodwork, and cabinet colors like navy.
      
  6. Ample Storage  
    Ample storage is crucial in a kitchen and will never go out of style. To make sure your kitchen has enough storage, consider getting built-in drawer organizers and pull-out cabinets for pots, pans, and canned goods. Toe-kick drawers are also popular options.
      
  7. Ceiling Treatments
    You probably don't give much thought to your kitchen ceiling, but it has the potential to add to the room's timeless style. If you have a small space, shallow coffers are ideal, and if you have a larger kitchen, try adding molding that complements the shape of your kitchen island.
      
  8. Fold-Down Tables  
    Fold-down tables let you save space since they can be folded up and stored anywhere. They can also be moved to another room or even outside if that's where you need them. They're also attractive, whether you're using them to eat dinner on or as a study table on a given day.
      
  9. Shaker Cabinets
    Shaker-style cabinets are one of the best examples of timeless design since they've been in style for more than a century. They're known for their recessed panel doors and minimalist design that goes well in any kitchen style, from traditional to modern.

Contact us today at Napier ERA to find out how to make your kitchen stylish and functional while also appealing to prospective buyers looking for Richmond homes for sale

Disclaimer: All information deemed reliable but not guaranteed. All properties are subject to prior sale, change or withdrawal. Neither listing broker(s) or information provider(s) shall be responsible for any typographical errors, misinformation, misprints and shall be held totally harmless. Listing(s) information is provided for consumers personal, non-commercial use and may not be used for any purpose other than to identify prospective properties consumers may be interested in purchasing. Information on this site was last updated 11/27/2022. The listing information on this page last changed on 11/27/2022. The data relating to real estate for sale on this website comes in part from the Internet Data Exchange program of CAAR MLS (last updated Sat 11/26/2022 11:10:19 PM EST) or CVRMLS (last updated Sun 11/27/2022 1:07:42 AM EST) or Williamsburg MLS (last updated Sat 11/26/2022 10:54:24 PM EST) or NNAR MLS (last updated Sat 11/26/2022 10:26:31 PM EST) or Chesapeake Bay & Rivers (last updated Sat 11/26/2022 8:50:22 PM EST). Real estate listings held by brokerage firms other than Napier Realtors ERA may be marked with the Internet Data Exchange logo and detailed information about those properties will include the name of the listing broker(s) when required by the MLS. All rights reserved. --


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