Wilson Wolfe Real Estate


Posted by Wilson Wolfe Real Estate on 8/2/2020

Home improvements are a vital part to keeping your home up-to-date with the times and also to ensure that it doesnít lose value when it comes time to sell.

To save money, many homeowners take the do-it-yourself route and use the tools at their disposal to upgrade their homes. Sites like YouTube have made it easier than ever to follow step-by-step tutorials that show you how to make substantial repairs and upgrades to your home without having to pay a professional.

The down side, however, is that when you choose to DIY, you take on the risk of going over budget by making mistakes. You also risk stretching out your project weeks or months longer than necessary due to a lack of time to work on it.

In todayís post, weíre going to talk about how you can stay on budget and on track to finish your home improvement project without bringing in the professionals.

Making a timeline

Letís start with the big picture for your home renovations. When deciding which improvements to make, itís important to know your limits in terms of the work you can do.

Set a reasonable number of hours you can work on your projects per week. Go easy on yourself. Most of us are already tired when we get home from work and probably wonít be able to start tackling big projects in the evenings. Rather, try to give yourself one weekend day to work on your projects and one weekend day to relax.

The most important aspect of creating your timeline is to try and keep your schedule open. So, write down the time you want to work on your home in your calendar, planner, or whichever app or tool you use to plan your time.

This will help you to avoid creating conflicting events and obligations, and help you stay on track to finishing your improvement projects.

If youíre looking for an evening activity related to your home improvement projects, itís a good idea to start watching some video tutorials of people doing the same renovations as you. This will help you avoid mistakes and look out for common obstacles that youíll face along the way.

Budgeting your improvement

Youíll want to save up for your project in advance, if possible, to avoid accumulating credit card debt. Your home improvement project should, in effect, gain you money by increasing the value of your home, not make you lose money on credit card interest payments.

Budgeting in itself is an art that few of us are taught in school. Fortunately, there are several free budgeting apps available. Or, you can simply draw one up yourself.

The key to creating a home improvement budget is to know how much of your monthly savings you can devote to this project without having to dip into other funds. To do this, youíll need a clear understanding of where your income goes.  

Once you have a budget and a timeline for your home improvement project, youíre ready to begin. Just make sure you check in on your timeline and your budget throughout the length of the project to make sure youíre meeting your goals and arenít overspending.




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Posted by Wilson Wolfe Real Estate on 2/16/2020

Photo by NakoPhotography via Shutterstock

Whether to protect your belongings when youíre not home or to protect your loved ones when they are, you might consider a security system. Burglars are getting smarter, and your home should follow suit. One way to improve your homeís security is by installing a smart lock.

Replacement or Add-On

In general, there are two categories of smart locks: (1) those that replace your traditional bolt lock entirely, and (2) those that install over the top of your existing door lock system. When you replace your current lock with a completely new locking mechanism, the device changes the appearance of your door handle on both front and back. When you use a retrofitting lock, it typically keeps the appearance of your traditional door handle. This distinction is crucial if you have a specific aesthetic you need to follow. 

What Features to Look for in a Smart Lock

The idea of electronic, wireless entry with remote identification is excellent. However, technological advancement does have its issues. For example, if your Bluetooth or wireless connection is blocked, your lock could end up keeping both you and intruders out of your home. Insist on a system that offers an alternative to wireless entry such as a key fob, keypad, fingerprint reader or self-powered touchscreen.

Here is an abbreviated list of other features to look for in a smart lock system for your home:

  • Auto-lock and unlock Ė some systems detect when the person with a key fob or smartphone app, for instance, is near to the door and will instantly unlock for them. This is useful when your arms are full of groceries or luggage. The detection distance (geofencing) is typically set by the user.
  • Voice activation Ė Many new locks offer control through a household or smartphone operating system such as Siri, Echo or Alexa. Typically, these require voice recognition or a PIN code to enable the "unlock" command.
  • Power systems Ė Many smart locks operate on batteries that alert you when theyíre low on power and need replacing or recharging. LED indicators also inform you when you need to change the batteries. Depending on the functions your lock performs and the type of battery it has, battery life can be from three months to a year.
  • Assigned PINs or keys Ė Many smart locks, including retrofit models, allow the user to assign separate keys or PINs to those approved for entry. Temporary PINs could let in a delivery person or cleaner, while permanent PINs monitor when family, housemates or clients (such as for short-term rentals) enter and leave.
  • Compatibility with other smart home systems means integration into your homeís other routines such as dimming the lights or controlling the temperature. Make sure your smart lock integrates with the system you have.
  • Finally, determine how weatherproof your system needs to be. Locks rated as having IP water/dust-proof protection from solids and liquids means your lock will operate through most wear and tear and outdoor conditions. Look for the IP ratings for the inside electronic works as well as the exterior parts.

If youíve retrofitted your homeís lock, let your agent know to promote your homeís smart features when you sell it.  




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Posted by Wilson Wolfe Real Estate on 10/6/2019

Photo by Mark McCammon via Pexels

If you usually spend your weekend sorting for ways to update your home, then doing some minor kitchen upgrades might be the ideal way to spend this weekend. Here are some easy kitchen projects that you can do in just a couple days, and youíll be glad you did.

1. Change Your Hardware

Changing your kitchen hardware will only cost you a few bucks, with no additional hectic work. Itís one of the perfect ways to experiment with gold or other elements in the kitchen before you start big budget items like a faucet or range hood. You can create more style if you add campaign-like, metal corners to your kitchen cabinets, too.

2. Free Your Cupboards

You donít have to take a big step to get newer-looking or different cabinets. Little by little, you can add more open shelving without replacing your the cabinets. Remove the doors from a couple of your upper cabinets and fill any holes left by the hinges. Add puck lights. Use them to display your pretty and colorful dishes or glassware.

3. Paint Your Kitchen Ceiling

Give your kitchen a whole updated look by simply painting the ceiling. Over time, a white kitchen ceiling yellows from rising cooking vapors. Refresh the white or change it to a completely new color to give the room a fresh glow.

4. Add Pendant Lightning

Adding a few pendant lights above your kitchen island or eating area helps make it stylish and more functional. Replace a recessed light with a pendant fitting Ö no rewiring necessary. Visit your favorite DIY site and order a pendant light kit to transform your kitchen into something remarkable.

5. A New Backsplash

If itís been a while since youíve done a kitchen remodel, perhaps now is the time to refresh your backsplash. The truth is, you donít even need a contractor to handle that. There are numerous peel-and-stick kits that you can use to transform your backsplash into something magnificent. Make sure you measure the area youíll be working on before you go shopping. If youíre removing tile, you may need time to fill any holes hidden behind the current backsplash.

There are many other things you can do to transform your kitchen over the weekend. These are minor upgrades that cost very little but give your kitchen a surprising boost. If youíre planning to place your home on the market, letís discuss some ideas! Contact me, and we can chat about ways to get you top dollar on your home upgrades.




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Posted by Wilson Wolfe Real Estate on 9/29/2019

There are quite a lot of reasons why you should consider a tankless heater today. Apart from the fact that it is easy to maintain, it looks attractive, and it does not run out of hot water. Below are a variety of the reasons why you should upgrade to a tankless heater. 

It saves space 

The traditional heaters take up to 20 cubic feet of space, but the tankless heaters are sometimes smaller than a laptop, so they do not eat up space. So, one advantage of using a tankless unit is that it provides you with enough space in case you have something to hang or display. 

It saves electricity cost  

Tankless heaters come with self-modulating technology. When the sensors attain the minimum activation rate, the heater is activated. This unit is better than the traditional heater that keeps functioning even while you are not at home. Most tankless heaters have a standby mode feature that comes into play at idle hours when energy consumption low. 

Tankless units are more energy efficient 

A household that uses an energy star qualified tankless heater saves about $100 or more every year.  A home that required about 41 gallons of water on daily can save up to 34 percent energy with a tankless unit.

Easy maintenance 

Tank type units are challenging to maintain when compared with a tankless unit. You can de-scale a tankless system via its maintenance valve within an hour. When carrying out this maintenance, you have to shut off the water valve to disallow cold water from surging in.  To get your unit cleaned, get five gallons of undiluted white vinegar, you can also use a chemical for this purpose provided you are not drinking the water.  White vinegar is preferred to avoid contamination.  

Increased life span 

Tankless units are the best when it comes to durability. One reason why they last longer than traditional heaters is that they do not operate continuously for a long time. Many homes use this unit for an hour or two hours daily while the tank heater runs round the clock.

Also, there is a tendency of elements like calcium and magnesium piling up in a tank heater due to prolonged storage of hard water that contains these elements. The accumulation of this minerals may reduce the lifespan of a tank heater, making it last less than the tankless unit. 

Are you still contemplating whether to upgrade your tank heating system to a tankless unit? Consider the above reasons to know why a tankless unit is more helpful than the traditional heater. 







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