Cypress Siding Provides A Natural Choice For Today’s Milwaukee Real Estate Homes

milwaukee home inspectionAcross the country, cypress siding is becoming increasingly popular among homeowners who are looking to add value, durability, and a lifetime of good looks to their homes.

Even as new high-tech siding materials flood the market, Chuck Harris of the Southern Cypress Manufacturers Association, www.cypressinfo.org, says homeowners continue to treasure the inherent beauty of nature’s purest building material, genuine wood.

“When homeowners are first acquainted with cypress siding, they are immediately impressed with its rich grain and texture,” he explains. “They like it even better when they learn that, unlike pressure-treated wood or composite materials, cypress is innately durable thanks to a preservative oil that nature itself puts into the wood.”

Architect Frank Harmon of Raleigh, N.C., agrees and says cypress possesses many qualities he prefers in a material that will be exposed to the elements. “Cypress weathers well, resists decay, and is friendly to the touch,” he notes. “Used in siding applications, cypress will easily last 100 years with proper care and maintenance.” [Read more...]


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Six Easy Ways To Improve Your Kitchen, Bathroom And Bedroom

Good Lighting Is Not Something Most People Think Much About Until They Don’t Have It.

milwaukee home inspectionLiving in a well-lit room is a much more pleasurable experience than trying to cook, read, entertain or do just about anything in a dark, shadowy space.

The American Lighting Association Offers These Tips For Improving The Lighting In Your Kitchen, Bathroom And Bedroom:

* Add To Your Task Lighting. Many bathrooms and kitchens have plenty of overhead light, but are often lacking when it comes to task lighting, says David Martin, designer with lighting manufacturer Hubbardton Forge. “At the kitchen sink, for example, you can eliminate shadows by including two sources of light.” The result is a workstation with easier-to-see spaces that alleviate eyestrain.

* Include Mood-enhancing Lights And Dimmers. “Places such as bathrooms and bedrooms – once mostly functional – now serve as an extension of our living spaces,” says Todd Phillips, owner and senior designer with Quoizel Lighting. The lights in those rooms should be both hardworking and mood enhancing. For example, inexpensive, easy-to-install cove lights in the kitchen can provide soft illumination after mealtime and cleanup. Additional lights placed at a bathroom vanity and aimed out toward the face can help brighten grooming tasks and offer awakening morning light. A bonus: Those controls can help accommodate varying levels of natural daylight, too. [Read more...]


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Selling Your Home? A Great Deck Spruces Up The Curb Appeal

milwaukee home inspectionCurb appeal is integral when selling a home, but when the trees are bare and the ground is covered in dirty snow, the winter months can make it very difficult to showcase your home’s attractive landscaping.

But smart sellers know that taking extra steps to care for and present a home’s exterior is a worthwhile investment, particularly during the real estate off-season. There is one improvement you can make that will help boost your home’s outdoor appeal no matter what the season: a deck.

When potential buyers visit your home in winter, they might not be able to envision how green and lovely your backyard will look come spring, but they will be able to see with their own eyes what a deck adds to the home’s living space. Decks, patios, sunrooms and porches have always been popular with homebuyers, but real estate agents say that too often these spaces are neglected or not used to their best advantage. [Read more...]


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Kitchen Trends For 2013: ‘Revamping Kits’ Offer High-End Results

milwaukee home inspectionIf You’re Tired Of Looking At Your Outdated Kitchen, But Feel Replacement Would Be Impractical, You’re Not Alone.

In 2013, consumers will be trying to find the beauty in the beast. Projects that help the old look new will be the next big makeover trend – especially in the kitchen where remodeling becomes more pricey.

“Revamping kits” that refinish countertops, cabinets, and appliances are already in growing demand. Here are three top kitchen kits that can easily, quickly and affordably help your existing kitchen look high end.

Granite remains the No. 1 choice for kitchen remodels, but the standard cost of granite runs from $50 to $110 a square foot (including installation). While there’s nothing functionally wrong with laminate, Corian and Formica, they’re not always what homeowners are looking for. So if your countertops need an uplift without a hefty price tag attached, try granite paint. [Read more...]


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Ten Lucky Home Decor Trends For 2013

Despite Its Negative Reputation, The Number 13 Doesn’t Always Have To Be Unlucky.

Take these top 10 decor trends for 2013 from design experts, manufacturers and trend forecasters across the country. They’re fresh, fun and sure to bring good fortune to any home.

A Splash Of Color

milwaukee home inspectionIndustry leader Pantone’s annual fashion color report sets the tone for home decor as well as clothing, and the spring 2013 report is no exception. Its softer-hued palette of Dusk Blue, Lemon Zest, African Violet, Grayed Jade, Linen and Tender Shoots is emboldened by Monaco Blue, Poppy Red, Emerald and Nectarine. Marc Thee, founder of the No. 1 residential interior design firm in the country, also sees a move toward pure color palettes such as cream and sea glass, khaki and white, or neutral with a pop of yellow.-

Not Your Mama’s Wallpaper

Repositionable wallpaper is a decorating mainstay, says Todd Imholte, president of Murals Your Way, whose website, www.muralsyourway.com, is the top online destination for wall murals worldwide. The company’s10 collections of peel-and-stick wallpaper are available in such themes as Vintage, Dots, Flower Prints and Mostly Modern, and can be removed and reused hundreds of times without losing their adhering qualities. Because the company offers color matching, customers can match their repositionable wallpaper to an existing paint color, updated decor or the new Pantone color palette.

Cooking Up Smart Ideas

Next year’s contemporary kitchen will include European frameless laminate cabinetry, multi-tasking appliances, hands-free faucets, and increased smartphone and tablet functionality, according to Jamie Gold, a certified independent kitchen and bath designer in San Diego, Calif. Value-oriented remodels will remain popular, she predicts, with homeowners incorporating existing flooring, fixtures, cabinets and/or appliances into their design plans to save money and retain favorite design elements.

Let It Shine

Jeff Dross, senior product manager of Kichler Lighting, says energy-efficient LED products will continue to dominate lighting, and will be prevalent in coves, tray ceilings, toekicks, and under and above cabinets. Chrome and polished nickel will appeal to the emerging “Y” generation and baby boomers modernizing their retirement homes. Tall, slender outdoor lanterns in contemporary, cottage and transitional styles will work well for those in smaller urban spaces.

MILWAUKEE HOME INSPECTIONHeavy Metal

Susan Goldstick of Susan Goldstick, Inc. predicts home furnishings will also shine in 2013. New metals such as rose gold and gun metal will be mixed, and pierced, hammered and oxidized textural metals will be especially popular. Vendors will add metal to their wood pieces, and faux animal print metalics will provide texture and reflective light in the textiles arena.

There’s No Place Like Home

Even as the economy shows signs of improving, homeowners still find comfort in “cocooning” in the warmth and safety of their homes, says Graeme Smith, conceptual designer at Second Nature kitchens.- Adding an on-trend color such as cranberry or velvety chocolate to a soothing palette of muted tones and delicate detailing creates timeless interiors, and incorporating vintage pieces fosters a sense of nostalgia, heritage and solidity.

Woodn’t It Be Nice?

Next year’s trendy furniture will boast reclaimed wood or reclaimed-looking synthetic wood, according to Lenny Kharitonov, president of Unlimited Furniture Group, Inc. Combinations of wood and metal will be popular, such as a desk with a wood top and an iron base. Thee also sees a new freedom to mix metals, linen or stone into wood, with the juxtaposition of materials and finishes creating a beautiful combination.

Watch Your Step

Lori Kirk-Rolley, senior marketing director at Daltile, notes that one of the biggest style trends of the year will be porcelain tile that emulates the look of hardwood in high-traffic areas, offering the natural beauty of wood with the long-lasting durability and ease of maintenance of tile. Rectangular-sized tiles – particularly those in long, linear plank styles – will remain popular in floor and wall applications.

MILWAUKEE HOME INSPECTIONBack To Nature

Consumers’ eco-friendly focus on using organic, sustainable materials will continue into 2013. Orange, Calif.-based Budget Blinds recommends woven wood shades made from bamboo, grasses, jute, reeds, rattan and other natural renewable resources for honest, simple beauty. Smith suggests using timber and wicker furniture, ribbed and woven finishes on accessories, and layered wool throws in the living area of the kitchen to bring a sense of the outdoor into the home.

You Can Judge A Book By Its Cover

Exterior design and landscaping say just as much about a home as its interior architectural counterparts. Artist and designer Pablo Solomon touts stone, concrete and brick that blend into the environment, requires little upkeep, and is superior weather susceptible wood decks, rust-prone metals and dulling plastics. He also sees increased use of eco-friendly native plants to save water and reduce pesticides.

Milwaukee Home Inspection News is Real Estate News You Can Use!

Milwaukee Home Inspection News is updated every week with a variety of information that you can use in and around your home. In the Milwaukee Home Inspection News, we share home decorating and home improvement ideas, as well as information on senior living, green living and much more.

Make Milwaukee Home Inspection News your exclusive source for information and ideas related to your home!

Plus, be sure to check out all of the wonderful local Milwaukee businesses here on our website! They stand ready to serve you today!¬† Please don’t forget to mention to the merchant that you saw their information here in the Milwaukee Home Inspection News You Can Use.

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Click With Confidence: Three Tips To Protect Your Privacy When Shopping Online

Milwaukee Real Estate If the growing online shopping statistics from the past few years have been any indication, buyers will again be flocking to online retailers this holiday season – perhaps in larger numbers than ever before.

However, as people become increasingly savvier as Web shoppers, awareness and concerns about online privacy and safety have also grown. As many as 91 percent of consumers say that they’re concerned about privacy when shopping online. Frequent news stories about consumer information being sold or mishandled have helped contribute to an atmosphere of mistrust, and more than half of consumers say they don’t trust businesses with their personal information.

For those who love the convenience and choice that come along with online shopping, there are a few ways to ensure that your information is kept safe and private.

1. Read Privacy Policies. You’ve probably seen them countless times, but how often have you actually read a privacy policy? If you’ve shopped without reading, you’re certainly not alone. While 97 percent of websites have a privacy policy, those documents average nearly 2,500 words – which is almost twice as long as the Declaration of Independence. It would take the average person at least 10 minutes to read that, and not too many online shoppers want to spend that much time. However, reading the privacy policy will give you the details about what a site is doing to keep your information safe. [Read more...]


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Garage Door Safety Knowledge Can Protect Your Whole Family

Pop Quiz: What Is Likely The Largest, Heaviest Moving Object In Your Home?

Milwaukee Home Inspection Here Are A Few Hints: it provides security and protects against the elements. If insulated and newer, it will help your home conserve energy. And it allows you and your family convenient access to and from your home.

Answer: It’s Your Garage Door.

But do you know how to operate and maintain your garage door safely? Do your kids know the potential hazards that a garage door may present? The Garage Door Safety Quiz, found at www.garagedoorcare.com, can help. [Read more...]


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Flu Season Etiquette Tips From The Emily Post Institute

When The Flu Hits, Manners May Not Be The First Thing That Comes To Mind.

Milwaukee Home Inspection Yet, good “flu etiquette” and hygiene can go a long way in helping to prevent the spread of influenza. While most Americans recognize that the flu virus spreads easily, they admit to sometimes forgetting their manners when they have the flu: a 2011 survey of more than 1,000 Americans found that three out of four Americans (75%) would go to at least one social situation if they had symptoms of the flu (out of a list of seven).

Influenza, or “the flu,” is a contagious viral infection of the nose, throat, and lungs which occurs most often in the late fall, winter, and early spring. Flu is a serious infection which is associated, on average, with more than 200,000 hospitalizations due to flu related complications and can lead to thousands of deaths every year in the United States. [Read more...]


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Green Living Project: Revamp Your Kitchen Pantry To Avoid Waste And Save Money

For A Basic Green Living Project With Benefits To Your Wallet And The Environment, Consider Revamping The Kitchen Pantry.

The cupboard is the starting point for most kitchen activity and is more than just a storage space. Develop good buying habits and build a strong foundation and you can avoid the waste of food and money. Here’s how to tackle the task at once or little by little.

Assess

When you are not in a rush to whip up a family meal or put away loads of groceries, take some time to really look at the items in your pantry. What is in front? What is hidden in the back? What’s used most frequently? What is expired?

“Be more aware of your consumption habits,” suggests Cory Schreiber, a chef instructor at The International Culinary School at The Art Institute of Portland. This awareness is a simple step to greener living. “Avoid impulse purchases by being more mindful of the emotions that can be involved in food shopping,” he adds. “Not only do you avoid waste this way, but conscious consumption is more cost effective too.”

[Read more...]


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Use The Winter Months To Update and Beautify Your Bathroom

Remodeling And Refreshing The Home Is A Great Way To Keep Cabin Fever At Bay During Long Winter Months.

Milwaukee Home Inspection Designing a bathroom remodel to incorporate innovative style, comfort and efficiency helps to speed the winter months along, and your family will certainly enjoy the rest of the season with a beautiful new bathroom.

Attention is often centered in the bathroom because it is a room frequently used by residents and guests. Even minor aesthetic changes can have a major impact in the room’s atmosphere. A bathroom remodel can be as simple as updating hardware on cabinets to a full redo of all fixtures. Consider the following ideas to incorporate new and innovative design, technology and eco-friendly products into your bath this winter season.

* A Fresh, New Look - The lavatory is seen and used by everyone who enters the bathroom. Bring traditional design into your bath with TOTO’s Vivian Widespread Single Handle high efficiency faucet. The curved spout provides sophistication and elegance that everyone will notice, and the faucet is WaterSense certified, adding a little green to your budget. [Read more...]


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