Collins & Demac Real Estate



Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 10/1/2015

Updating your home can be costly. So any home improvement that you can do yourself will help save money. An easy update that doesn't cost too much and that you can do yourself is replacing your moulding. Whether you have basic trim, or common colonial style, there are a variety of new looks you can give to your home. To start, you'll need these tools:

  • a miter box or miter saw, for those angle cuts
  • a coping saw, for thin cuts so moulding meets flush to each other
  • finishing nails
  • a hammer, or finish nail gun
  • a nail set to sink nails below the wood surface
  • a tape measure
When making cuts, where the pieces of wood join together will determine what type of cut to make. Mitering allows for to pieces to join, like around the window. Splicing is used for long walls where one piece of wood is not enough. The moulding joins together by creating 2 45 degree angle cuts, cut opposite, creating a scarf joint, which is less noticeable. Coping is used on inside corners, where only 1 piece of wood is cut at a 45 degree angle and butts up against the other piece of wood. Your moulding doesn't have to be just the style bought at the store. Layers varies types of trim can add a more elaborate and dramatic touch. Home improvement stores will often have free booklets that give you ideas. Just remember to choose a style that matches your home. Something too dramatic in a home that is modest may look out of place. And don't forget there is more to moulding than your baseboard and window casing. Chair rails and crown moulding can really transform a room. There are a variety of decorative trims to choose from to add your own personal touch. Moulding tends to be around $1.00 a foot so depending on your room size, whether you layer trims, and if you add on elements such as chair rails, you could redo a room for a couple of hundred dollars. And make a big impact at the same time.





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 9/17/2015

Want to update your bathroom with a huge remodeling project? With a few simple updates you can change your old outdated bathroom to something more eye appealing. And the best part is you can do it all yourself with little to no cost! Replacing a toilet seat This is so simple and takes no time at all. If your toilet works just fine, but your toilet seat is outdated or worn out, a quick swap can really improve things. Start by removing the old seat by using a deep well socket to unscrew the bolt. A little WD-40 can help to loosen things up if needed. Line up the new toilet seat and bolt into place. And you are done! Replace your shower head Having a great shower head can make taking a shower a whole new experience. Find one that fits what you have been dreaming of, whether it's one that creates a waterfall effect, or one with a hand held shower head. Typically replacing your shower head is as easy as unscrewing the old one and screwing on the new one! And for added benefit, pick one that saves on water. Update your hardware Updating your towel holders, soap dishes and toilet paper holder can really add a whole new look to a bathroom. Outdated hardware can make your bathroom look like it's from the 1970s so pick new hardware that is modern and fits the overall look of the bathroom. Replacing hooks and towel holders is an easy DIY project as long as you know how. Many of these don't have exposed screws, but they do have a tiny screw underneath each side that needs to be removed in order to lift off the wall mount. Get new towels And this includes bath mats, shower curtains and window curtains. Updating all these things can change the color scheme all together. Just make sure if you aren't going to repaint that you pick colors and patterns that compliment the existing wall color. Bathrooms look best in neutral colors, or lighter shades of blues, greens and yellows.  





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 7/2/2015

As an individual's taste changes, there often comes the need to make some adjustments to the environment in which they live. Making changes to the home is typically where one starts. Home renovation projects can range from a complete overhaul, to changing out dated decor and appliances, to simply repairing or replacing furnishings and accessories. The most important factor in fixing up your home is that the end result reflects your personal taste and style. Another reason for renovating a home is for the purpose of expansion. Additional rooms may become necessary when children are born, or relatives move in. The decision to add a tenant to your home will also results in the need for renovation and expansion. The correct balance of living space and occupants is key in maintaining a happy home. A home can also be renovated to increase its value. Homeowners often decide to fix up their house when they are preparing to sell. Home improvements typically increase the value of the property, as well as improve its general appearance. Prospective buyers are attracted to houses in excellent shape as opposed to those in need of repairs. Government assistance programs can also assist individuals in need, such as the elderly and disabled with renovating their homes. Taking on projects that improve the living condition of the home as well as raising their standard of living. Renovations to an older home may include the replacement of a heating system, upgrading a bathroom and installing safety accessories, or simply applying fire resistant paint or wall paper. Their main focus being placed on providing a safe living environment. The following factors should be considered prior to starting a renovation project: Budget The home owner must first decide how much they can afford for home improvements, then base the extent of the renovation accordingly. Setting a strict budget will help guide the choice of materials to be used, and determine whether the job will need to be done by the homeowner or a professional can be hired. Materials The choice of materials, equipment and accessories to be used for home improvement projects is very important. Substandard materials should not be used. This is where the advice or services of professionals comes in handy. It is also advised that a professional accompanies the home owner when purchasing the materials to ensure their taste is also taken into consideration. Government Policy There could be a local authority directive on materials, paints and structure restricting how homes in a particular areas should be renovated. Thus, the owners have no choice but to follow the government’s directives. Skills For projects that are not very big and where the owner has the required skills, time, tools and equipment, they can go ahead and do it themselves. However, when the renovation project is large, requiring multiple skills, the services of licensed professionals is mandatory. Always be careful with who you hire, do your research to ensure they will provide the services you need at a competitive price.  





Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 7/24/2014

Painting the interior of your home is an inexpensive way of increasing its value. It improves the overall look of your home, while adding style and allure. It is not uncommon with residential home owners to take on this task themselves.  Do it yourself projects such as painting can be fun, while saving money at the same time.  The following outline will help you get started. Have a clear picture Having a clear picture of what you want the end result to look like is very important. Visit each room in the house and note the look and feel you desire for each area.  Keep in mind that the new wall color should coordinate with the current  furnishings in each room. Assuming you are painting the home for resale, keep the colors neutral, and consistent throughout the house. Discuss with others Talk with all the members of your household, and share your painting plans with them. Ask for their ideas, discuss your choice of colors, and listen to their input. It is important to be open to new ideas, you never know who might come up with the perfect solution to a problem area. Calculate Paint Needed At this stage, you need to determine the area to be covered and the quantity of paint required to completely cover each area. You need to take into consideration how many coats of paint will be needed to produce your desired finish on each wall.  Estimating the amount of paint needed is quite simple. Measure the height of the wall and multiply it by the length. This will give you the area to be painted. Calculate the area of windows and doors present on each wall and subtract it from the overall area. Make Your Budget The price of paint varies depending on the quality.  A professional can best guide you to  the type of paint and the finish that will best meet your needs.  You will also need to allow money in your budget for the equipment needed to complete your painting project.  Much like the paint, the quality and price will vary on items such as brushes, rollers, painter's tape and drop cloths.  Again, a professional can recommend how to best utilize your equipment budget. Planning and Preparation Planning is key, it is best to estimate how long the job will take before you get started. You will need to plan your household activities around your painting schedule.  Leave a little extra time in your work schedule for those unforeseen circumstances to avoid over whelming yourself. Clear the room:

  • Remove all furniture from the room to be painted, clearing out as much as possible. For rooms that have very heavy furniture, move them to the center of the room and cover them with a drop cloth to avoid accidental paint spills/spatters.
Wall preparation:
  • Prior to painting, walls need to be prepared.  Use a scraper to remove old paint or a steamer to remove old wallpaper.  Holes should be filled and the wall surface made smooth.  Seek the guidance of a professional on how to best prepare the surface of your walls as the technique will vary based on the construction of the wall.  Tape off the trim work around the doors, windows and flooring, and use drop cloths to protect the carpet and floors.
Prime the wall:
  • The purpose of priming is to prepare the wall for the application of paint.  Priming covers irregularities and stains, making the paint adhere to the wall much more effectively. Priming makes the surface uniform for the application of the new paint,  basically giving the painter a clean canvas to start with.
Start painting: When you are ready to paint, it's recommended to start in the more difficult areas or larger rooms first.  Apply paint consistently with even vertical strokes of a brush or roller. Be certain to complete a wall before moving on to another area to help ensure the paint dries evenly. Observe as you go how well the paint is covering and drying.  This will help you to determine how many coats of paint you will need to apply to achieve the look you desire. Once the painting is done, the equipment put away and the furniture back in place, you can sit back and admire a job well done.




Categories: Home Improvements  


Posted by Collins & Demac Real Estate on 4/4/2013

The cost of heating can really take a toll on us over the colder fall and winter months. Having a programmable thermostat can help in cutting heating costs and still staying warm. But just having one isn't enough - you need to know how to use it to its full potential! Programmable thermostats have the ability to be programmed so that you can have multiple temperature settings through out the day. The benefit of this, is not having to think about turning down the heat before you leave for work, or cranking it up when you get home. Instead, you get heating at the exact temperature you want, when you want. So what temperatures should you set it to exactly? While you are home and awake, setting it to 68 degrees is a pretty standard temperature. While you are away from home, or sleeping, reducing it to 58 degrees should be tolerable. Of course, reducing the temperature even more than that while you are out of the house is possible, just don't make it too low and freeze your water pipes. Reducing your thermometer by 10-15 degrees for 8 hours (like while you are at work) you can save 5-15% off your heating bill. So the benefits can really pay off for reducing your heat while you are at work. For example: if you pay $200 a month in heating, reducing the heat by 15 degrees during the day will save $10-$30 a month which can add up to $60-$180 for the year if you use the heat for 6 months. Finding ways to cut costs is important to everyone during tough economic times. Every penny counts. So add this money saving tip to your list and you could start racking up the savings.







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