Home: Adding Value for Little Cash

Let’s talk equity!  I’m always thinking of what I can do around our home to add value without spending a lot of money.  Sometimes staging plays a part in selling a home for more (that’ll be another post!). But often times there are lasting home improvements that can add value for just a few dollars.  This blog post is dedicated to those ideas.

Here are a few ways that have helped us create equity for little money:

  1. Maintenance. Be sure you are taking care of what exists in your home before trying to add updates and upgrades.  Whether consciously or subconsciously,  buyers notice when the caulk around the shower is cracking, the doors squeak, and the knobs are loose.  Be sure you are stewarding these little things well.  It will pay off!
  2. Paint.  You’ve probably heard it a hundred times. Fresh, neutral paint will help sell a home.  Even if buyers want custom colors, they can move in without having to worry about it until they’re ready.Paint
  3. Curb appeal.  Buyers may not even decide to walk in a home if the exterior is a mess.  Consider simplifying your landscaping, freshening up your mulch, weeding, and painting the door.  Buyers don’t want complicated upkeep bidding for their time.  Also, exterior paint that is chipping can keep buyers from getting certain types of loan approval. Save the trouble by making sure it’s painted, or consider an allowance at closing.
  4. Switches.  Consider updating switches, and adding dimmers.  They aren’t expensive, but give a little extra “Oooo.” When buyers are checking out your home.  If your switches look like this, please update:   ;P light switch
  5. New Hardware.  Consider swapping out the builder grade door knobs or cabinet pulls with something nicer.  Ikea has great knobs and pulls for cheap that look as good as some of the high end stuff.  They can change your cabinets from plain to contemporary for just a few bucks and a couple hours.
  6. Tile: Consider updating the flooring in a small space.  Your big box hardware stores often offer free classes on installing tile or other flooring.  You can often get tile for less than a dollar a square foot and it’s a great update to a vinyl or linoleum floor that will add much more value to your home than you spend on it.

Ok, so those were just a few ideas.  If you have questions about updates you’re considering, or want more ideas,  feel free to comment!  Also, if you are planning to sell your home in the Colorado Springs area, call Seth!  He’s happy to help with any questions or needs you have regarding selling, purchasing, or building your home. His info can be found at http://www.sethcoloradosprings.com .  Thanks for reading!

Herringbone Headboard

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I’m so excited to post about our most recent project, our herringbone headboard.  We were able to create this fun look for just about $40. We utilized various stains we had on hand, which saved on cash.  If you are planning to recreate this on a tight budget, ask around!  I’m sure you know someone with some extra stain in their garage looking for a project. Here’s a list of the tools and supplies we used.

  • Miter Saw
  • Finish Nailer and compressor
  • Hammer, Screws, Nails (to distress)
  • Various Stains
  • Chalk Line
  • Level
  • 1″x2″s (I used 3)
  • 1″x1″ (around 40)

Since I wasn’t looking for a “perfect” look, I used the cheapest wood I could find which cost less than a dollar a stick.

To begin, I laid all of the wood out on top of a drop cloth, pulled out my hammer, and started attacking.  That’s right, I wanted dents and dings galore!  I used screws on their sides, and indented the wood by hitting them with a hammer. I indented nail heads into the wood, and used the hammer itself (both sides) to make indentations.   After my wood took the beating, I stained each piece various colors using stains I had in the garage.

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Once my wood was ready to go, we got out the chalk line and marked the perimeter vertical lines for our edge pieces, and the center vertical line for a guide when nailing. We were sure to check our top and bottom horizontal lines with a level, and chalk those out too. One can’t assume walls and ceilings are straight or level especially in older homes. We then nailed all of the perimeter pieces.  We chose to make the sides about two inches wider on each side than our queen bed frame.  Now we were ready to set up the miter saw (for 45 degree cuts), compressor, and nail gun. It was time to start cutting! Seth cut while I nailed. It went fairly quickly once we got in a groove.  We started by cutting the edge of a 1″x1″ at a 45 degree angle. Then we put the board inside perimeters and  marked it at the center line. Now to cut and nail. 🙂 We could measure the length beneath, or we could use the board above to measure the board that would fill in beneath by using the length of the bottom to measure the length of the top of the next board we cut. We chose the latter).  We alternated sides as we went so that we were sure things fit properly. We used 1″x2″ boards randomly in a couple places throughout.

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After the bottom was filled, it got easy for awhile. We continued using the same length as the first board cut until we got to the top where the boards get shorter again.  Then we just repeated the process again until it was completely filled in.
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There you have it!  The whole process only took a few hours, and I’m really happy with how it turned out.

Now to finish painting! Ha!

Next I plan to make some side shelves with matching wood and copper piping.  I want something a little less industrial than the galvanized piping, and I think copper will look great!  So, stay tuned for that post!

I love owning a home because it allows me to let my creative juices flow without limit! If you live in the Colorado Springs area, and are interested in buying or building a home, call my husband! He loves serving families and individuals in our community by helping them find their perfect nest.  Check him out on Facebook here. Thanks for reading!

Big Changes

It’s been a looong time since I’ve posted.  Much has changed.  We have a precious 2 year old foster daughter, Lilianna, whom it looks like we will be able to adopt this year.  We also gave birth to another beautiful girl, Liberty, in June. We moved from our cute little house on Chestnut to a much larger home in suburbia two weeks after Liberty’s birth.  It’s a great home already, but have a few ideas to make the place our own.  Since we have had to take our time budgeting for my design ideas, and much of my time is spent caring for our five beauties, the projects have been slow coming.  But I can’t wait to share them as they are able happen.

Having a gaggle of FIVE girls has been quite the change (and challenge!).  Between school, basketball, golf, church events, and miscellaneous appointments,  life can be hectic. We have committed to family meals around the table, weekly worship nights (to include djembe, maracas, ukulele, piano, beat boxing, etc.), and monthly dates with kiddos (usually informally).  We are also planning to build a large dining table together as a family project (yay!).

I’m also excited to announce that I will be starting a new, small Facebook based jewelry business.  It will include a small inventory of inspirational jewelry meant to encourage and remind us of God’s faithful work in the midst of life’s challenges.  I can’t wait to share it with you!

Seth is still very much enjoying his work as a real estate broker in the Colorado Springs area.  If you or someone you know is looking for a home, check him out at http://www.sethcoloradosprings.com .

Keep your eyes peeled for a new post with DIY details on the herringbone headboard wall I just finished in our master bedroom. 🙂

Lathe Accent Wall

I wanted to add some serious “hello” type character to our tiny dining room, and found a picture(here) that inspired me.  I LOVE the look of well-done pallet walls and pallet furniture, but let’s be honest, it’s getting to be a liiiittle overdone, right? Then I saw the lathe!  If you aren’t familiar, lathe is small wood strips that are used behind plaster walls. I a firm believer in reclaiming, reusing and recycling, but I had a really hard time finding any old lathe locally.  So, off to Home Depot I went. Lathe comes in bundles for around $12. I think I used three for this wall.

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So here’s a brief run down of the process. If you want more deets or have questions, feel free to message me below. 🙂 Because I wanted a rustic-meets-industrial look in this area, after a brief sand, I took a hammer and a couple nails to destruct the wood a little.  I hammered the sides of screws. nailed and removed nails, impressed nail-heads, and just smacked it with a hammer to get a bit more of a used look.  Then I used various stains to treat the wood.  I’m not 100% cracked on the colors I used, but it works.  After this, per my husband’s advice, we made horizontal chalk lines at various places throughout the wall. This kept me on track as I worked my way up, so that I didn’t end up crooked (good call, hubs!). We also chalked some vertical lines where studs were, so that I nailed the piece of lathe into at least one stud. I didn’t want my work falling off!  I used a nail gun to nail each piece of lathe on to the wall, and a miter saw to cut the end pieces. It went fairly quickly. I had to be sure to stagger my different colors of lathe since I used various stains, but other than that it was just nail, nail, nail, cut. I’m pretty happy with the result!

I finished the room with a great over-sized, industrial pendant light from Ikea, and some taboret chairs from Overstock. Most of my frames and mirrors were thrift store finds.

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And of course, I have to include the “before” picture. It’s quite strange, really.  Stone wall, no fireplace. Carpeted closet in the dining room?  I love that I can change whatever I want, and be as creative as I want!  If you are interested in home ownership and live in the Colorado Springs area, go here or go to Seth’s Facebook page!

Hope this has inspired you to let loose and be creative as you design your home!

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Trends…

Fun Home Trends

Bright Paint Colors
Vibrant (and even neon) hues can look really chic on your walls. If you are looking for a way to freshen up a dull room, a bright pop of color can really do the trick. It doesn’t have to be overwhelming if you keep the rest of the room neutral. I’m not a huge fan of the “accent wall.” I prefer doing an entire room.

Original Artwork
Decorating your home with original works of art from funky local artists is a way to add a unique touch to your home. You could find such pieces at a local art fair or on online craft auction websites. You could also check out a local art school or university art program in your area where you can buy some student artwork at cheap prices.

1920s Inspired Designs
Love this look! The lines and glam of 20’s furnishings are so great. Why not incorporate some gorgeous Art Deco furniture or decoration into your home? Check out auctions to find authentic vintage pieces for cheap prices.

Simple Wood
Another trend I’ve been noticing is unfinished exposed wood furniture, with a very natural texture and feel. These simple wood pieces give your home a natural beauty that compliments any color. It works well with neutral accents to give the home a very peaceful and welcoming atmosphere. I’ve incorporated this trend in a BOLD way in our dining area. I’ll blog about that soon. 🙂

Stripes and Graphic Prints
Crisp patterns, graphic prints and stripes are popular at the moment in everything from fabrics to wallpaper to furniture. If you really want to add a bolder look, incorporate some of these eye-popping graphic designs into your décor. It can be done easily and inexpensively (think throw pillow, framed fabric swatch…)

These are just a few of the home décor trends  that may suit your style. Which ones will you incorporate into the décor of your home?

For more information about home ownership, feel free to contact my husband, Seth, at any time by calling (719)373-9803 or check out his blog at http://www.sethcoloradosprings.com.

Keywords: Colorado Springs Home