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Archive for the ‘Home Improvement’ Category

Spring Home Care Tips

You can keep your home in top shape with simple tasks throughout the year. This month, be sure to:


  • Take a look at your lawn mower and give it a quick tune up
  • Examine the exterior foundation grading/slope and ensure water moves away from your home. If water is collecting near the house, you’ll want to get things fixed right away.
  • Drain approximately 2 gallons from your water heater to eliminate sediment.
  • Examine, repair and replace caulk and grout around your tubs and showers.
  • Service your kitchen disposal by grinding several cups of ice cubes.
  • Vacuum your bathroom vent covers.
  • Test you smoke detectors and carbon monoxide alarms.
  • Clean your clothes dryer vent duct.
  • Vacuum your bathroom vent covers
  • Replace or clean your furnace filter.
  • Clean your refrigerator’s condenser coils to keep it operating efficiently.
  • Clean around your air conditioning compressor and make sure that it gets sufficient air flow.

Would you like to know how much your home is worth? Click here for a free home valuation.

As always, I appreciate referrals from my friends and past clients. If you know of anyone who is looking to buy or sell real estate, please send them my way!

How to fill that new empty room your college student left behind

empty_nest_exBecoming an empty nester comes with lots of dramatic changes. From a quieter house to less cooking and laundry, it can be an adjustment. You may miss your college-bound child dearly, but an empty room has so much potential.

Here are some ideas to help you fill the unoccupied space:

Guest room
With most of their belongings gone, you can clean the room and add a few items to create a cozy space for any and all visitors. And chances are good that your son or daughter will need a place to sleep when they come home on holidays and breaks.

Home office
A space dedicated to paying bills, maintaining the budget or working from home can make your life a lot more organized. With only a desk, computer and swivel chair, you can turn any room into a productive zone in no time.

Hobby room
If you’ve always wanted a place where you can get your creative juices flowing, now’s your chance. Add some organizational items like cabinets, counter space and a chair and you’ll have a place to draw, bead, scrapbook and craft. The possibilities can be endless.

Workout room
All you need is a treadmill, elliptical and a couple of free weights for a functional home gym. You won’t even need to leave the house to squeeze in your workout.

For more ideas, or information on homebuying or selling, call Valerie Reece, Realtor at 407-312-2191.

5 must-haves for your seasonal home-maintenance checklist

FallMaintAs the summer heat fades and we transition into fall, it’s a good time to take a check of your home and see what can be improved. Do you have a seasonal home-maintenance checklist? This can be a great way for you to keep your home up to date without letting an important chore slip through the cracks.

When creating your checklist this season, don’t forget to include the following:

Replace the filter(s) on your home heating and cooling system to keep the air in your home clean and freely flowing.

Clean and examine bathroom vent fans to keep them running efficiently and quietly.

When was the last time you cleaned your range hood, filter and fan? Use a citrus-based cleaner to cut through the grease.

Vacuum your refrigerator coils. When the coils get dirty, your fridge runs less efficiently.

Check the driveway and pavement for cracks and make plans to have them resealed before winter.

Don’t be that house on the block with the overgrown yard, peeling paint and home-improvement list a mile long. Creating a checklist can help put your home maintenance on auto-pilot so you won’t forget the details.

What type of return will I see on installing new windows?

Ever heard the suggestion that new windows will increase the value of your home? Of course you have and it’s typically true. Whether you plan to stay in your house for years or you want to sell tomorrow, new windows offer amazing financial benefits.

So how mwindowuch?

The answer depends on the type of windows you install, but according to Energy Star, homeowners who install Energy Star-rated windows save up to $500 a year on their heating and cooling costs. These savings come simply from making the home more energy efficient and require no lifestyle changes at all. It’s also worth noting that you may also benefit from a 10% green energy tax credit if you install Energy Star-rated windows. Additional credits may be available depending on which state you live in and any promotions being offered by your local utility.

That’s great for those who plan to stay in the home, but what if you want to sell? Well, many agree that installing new windows likely adds real value to your home. According to HGTV, homeowners who install new windows can expect to recoup 60-90% of their investment in energy-efficient windows. You’ll be making your home more appealing and perhaps getting some of your money back as well. It’s win-win.

You can learn more about savings and rebates in your area by visiting the Energy Star Rebate Finder website.

About The Author
I'm Valerie Reece, Realtor with Century 21 Carioti in Orlando. My husband, Peter is also a Realtor with Century 21 Carioti and we work as a team to service the needs of home buyers and sellers throughout Central Florida and abroad.


Vjordanreece@gmail.com SeminoleOrangeRealty.com