Eco-Friendly

Traditional Food Harvest Preservation Methods

 

Keeping garden harvests stored for the winter season can be as simple as freezer storage or as traditional as old-fashioned canning for homesteaders living off the land. No matter the method, the choices are designed to keep the food supply preserved for winter consumption.

While many of the methods require power, several traditional techniques are designed for storing food without electricity. Canning, cool storage, and drying are among the methods most appealing to homesteaders or eco-minded individuals seeking alternative lifestyles.

Freezing and Drying for Vegetable Storage

The most convenient method of harvest storage for most fruits and vegetables is freezing. Sliced, seasoned or sweetened, then stored in special containers, the vegetables can be kept for extended periods. While the preservation period varies due to fruit type and temperature levels, this method provides quick access and flavor quality in comparison to traditional canning recipes.

 

Drying fruits and vegetables alters the flavor and texture of most, but as a means of storage provides one of the longest-lasting methods for preservation. Many consumers love the flavor of dried fruits, perfect for trail mixes, dips, and soups. Basic additives are sometimes necessary for quality production, while techniques range from sun-dried or natural methods to home drying appliances with quick results.

Methods of Canning Vegetables

Traditional canning allowed farmers’ wives and gardeners to fill jars with boiling water and vegetables or pickled recipes, sealed off in airtight jars that could be stored for months. The method often involved heat, steam, and a hot stove to seal jars of produce, but the results filled the family cellar or pantry with fruits and vegetables for the winter season.

Modern-day canners follow much the same process; but many modern recipes offer improved flavors and freshness for the vegetables sealed inside. Other canning method avoid boiling water to encourage crisp or less-watery produce that resembles fresh garden stock.

Root Cellars for Cool Storage

For gardeners with a back-to-basics mindset, dry root cellars and dugouts are one of Nature’s best pantries for storage. The cool shelter protects thick-skinned produce from wilting heat; it also protects potatoes, pumpkins, and winter squash from harsh freezes during the winter months.

Traditional farmers stored potatoes and onions in barrels; they stacked pumpkins, carrots, and root vegetables or laid them out on racks. Canned goods could also be stored in deep root cellars to provide additional space for farm families.

Preserving vegetables for winter consumption was a means of survival for rural families. For modern-day gardeners, it can be a means of frugality or enjoyment, making the garden last beyond the few short months of summer and the fall harvest.

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Green Living

Green Living Gift Choices for Pets: Natural Pet Care and Natural Pet Foods

 

Environmental gifts are healthy for your pet. You can recycle products as a green lifestyle gift for your pet. Making green choices in pet gifts will help the quality of the environment. There are different types of environmental pet gifts from which to choose.

You can choose gifts for comfort, safety and nutrition for your pet. Your pet’s skin absorbs whatever is put on it. You can choose natural formulas for pet care such as natural shampoos, flea and tick repellents, skin products, dental products, odor control products, hair care products and litter. Look for natural fabrics and fillers in furniture and beds.

You can buy sturdy pet furniture, steps and gates for your pets comfort. You can make or buy natural pet kibble, goodies, treats and even a pet celebration recipe. Check out your local health food stores for their stock in natural pet foods, treats, supplements and pet care supplies.

Recycling is earth friendly because it reduces pollution and the waste of energy and resources. You can recycle pet products and supplies for your pet’s gift. You can find recyclable pet supplies at second hand stores, flea markets, farmer’s markets, garage sales and through the classified ads. You can recycle grooming supplies, furniture, dishes, collars, clothing and accessories in your area.

Buy sensible pet gift items that will truly enhance your pet’s life. Avoid one time use items or items that will be infrequently used. Look for gifts without unnecessary packaging. Buy supplies in bulk if appropriate. Buy quality items that will last and will not become junk in a short time. Choose items that can be reused.

Choose hemp clothing, collars, accessories and supplies because hemp is a renewable and useful plant source. Do not buy real leather accessories. You can invest in a pet psychic, a pet consultant, dog training classes, and even have your dog join you in yoga classes. You can even also make your dog a promise to take regular long walks as a wonderful gift to be enjoyed by both you and your pet.

You can have a natural celebration for your pet with ethical gift choices as an important part of the event. Do not forget that you will be doing your pet and the environment a great favor when you recycle items for your pet’s gifts. It is possible for your pet to enjoy a variety of environmentally aware gifts for any celebration. Your pet’s level of health and happiness can be raised with the right environmental gift.

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Home Appliances

Refrigerator

There’s a long list of things a man was never meant to do. Changing diapers, painting toenails (for other people) and polishing the silverware come to mind. I’m convinced that cleaning out the refrigerator comes under that heading as well. Most men can gut a fish without problem, but the odor of rotten meat emanating from the chasm of forgotten foods in the back of the refrigerator will make even the stoutest heart take on the demeanor of a sissy. Not that I cried when my beloved Pamela hinted that the refrigerator in question was long overdue for an appointment with Mr Baking Soda and the saucy Ms Vinegar, two natural cleaners she favors, but I did protest.

“But Sweetie,” I whined, “I’ve got to change the oil in the Subaru so we’ll be able to start out vacation with a clean engine. Then I have to….”

“Do not Sweetie me, just clean out the fridge, or work isn’t the only thing you’ll be taking a vacation from. Understand?” She paused at the kitchen counter and gave me….that look. Not the look, that look. The look means I’ve been bad and punishment will include various and sundry tortures including but not limited to deprivation of a sexual nature. That look means it is a holiday, vacation or otherwise a day of no work coming up wherein the keys to the playground are within my reach if I just don’t stupidly mess things up. I understood completely. That refrigerator must be pretty nasty if I was getting a sex bribe right off the bat. A man of greater moral character would have changed the oil and done whatever the other thing was and never looked back. I not only looked back, I drooled at the prospect.

When my wife bribes me with sex, I’m a greedy politician with empty pockets and a long list of earmarks if you get my drift. Disneyland, Six Flags and Dollywood combined can’t hold a candle to my wife when she’s properly motivated. She must have wanted that refrigerator cleaned bad.

Now our refrigerator is not an ordinary refrigerator, it is an almost quarter century old Amana. One of the few appliances bought new by my cherished mother, it was passed on to me with love and has kept my soda and bologna coldly preserved for many years. Until my doctor removed both soda and bologna from my eat this and live list. As with most older creations, the ancient Amana tended to have a few idiosyncrasies all it’s own. It tends to leak fluid for unknown reasons at times, not unlike some people I know. This condensation causes a puddle to collect below the vegetable crisper drawers, allowing mold, fungus, penicillin and possibly the cure for aids to grow unchecked if left to its own devices.

Armed with my two earth friendly cohorts, baking soda and vinegar as well as an automotive ice scraper I headed to the kitchen, dressed not in combat fatigues, but in my pajamas. I figured I still look somewhat sexy in pajamas and they are more comfortable for all the bending and twisting and moaning and groaning required to properly clean a fridge, you dirty minded person, you. With visions of my sugarplum dancing in my head (ever see a sugarplum pole dance?) I zipped the ancient door open.

A general unpleasantness wafted gently through the air, reminescent of fine American and provolone cheese left to rot unnoticed in the lake of rancid water underneath the stuck vegetable crisper drawer. Unable to free the stuck drawer, I quickly began removing the contents of the shelves, wading through forgotten pepperoni, moldy fish and genuine antique hamburger patties. Lastly I removed the entire bottom two vegetable crisper drawers, frame and all. Only then did I manage to free the stuck drawer from the frame, revealing a putrid mass of moldy butter, wet, smelly cheese and a very rotten, malodorous piece of steak. I fought valiantly, my ice scraper flailing like a windmill in one hand, vinegar here, baking soda there and rotten, rotten, rotten stink everywhere. Triumphant, sick to my stomach, but with a bucket of defeated goo, I enlisted the aid of my favorite and only son to hurl the messy concoction outside where it could safely be dealt with when I recovered. From both my sick stomach and my much anticipated reward.

Now I’m forbidden to say just why the refrigerator got in such a mess, but it could be my Sweetie is about to campaign for a new model and just wanted to soften me up a bit beforehand. She would have been better off using the sex angle to blackmail me, but don’t tell her that.…

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Eco-Friendly

Making Eco-Friendly Changing Mats: VOC-Free Diaper Pads Make Great Baby Shower Gifts

 

Most baby changing mats, or diaper pads, are made of a soft, wipeable surface to ensure a hygienic change. However, most are coated with PVC (polyvinyl Chloride) a plastic that has been linked to asthma and other breathing difficulties. PVC does not biodegrade quickly, and when discarded it leaches greenhouse gasses into the air, as it breaks down.

 

Biodegradable Changing Pads

When choosing a fabric for a changing pad, an organic cotton or fabric means that no pesticides were used in growing the material. When the use of the changing pad is over, it can biodegrade quickly. Organic versions of cotton, bamboo fibre, and flannel can be found online, if a fabric store doesn’t supply unbleached or naturally dyed fibre cloth.

Using Online Resources to Buy Organic Fabric

Buying fabric online may make some people nervous: If it’s not the quality of the fabric, or the texture, not being entirely sure if the colour on seen on the computer monitor matches the actual item are all considerations when buying anything over the Internet. However, if the store has a return policy for items bought online, buying organic fabric online may be worth it.

In many cases yardage costs less online than in a store, as shopkeepers don’t have to pay for storage, inventory and staff. If an online purchase is truly an eyesore, sending it back to the warehouse if the purchase policy allows may still be worth the cost of shipping.

Where to Find Organic Fabric Online

Some sites that sell organic cloth online are:

 

  • Organic Fabric Online (Australia)
  • Atlantis Fabrics (USA)
  • Rawganique (Canada)

An online search using words like “sustainable fibres” or “organic, unbleached” along with the name a destination closer to delivery will also reduce the carbon footprint for making this homemade gift.

Making A Changing Pad

Some changing pads are as decorative as others are simple: Some use quilted fabric for texture, and others sandwich a thin foam rubber between two sheets. Using a plastic based foam padding is not recommended for children; the glues and the materials often release deadly Volatile Organic Compounds, or VOC’s, for short.

Once a style of fabric has been selected, making one doesn’t have to involve long and complicated sewing patterns. The average diaper pad should be a foot longer at the head and the foot to accommodate a child who may be up to two years old, and slow to potty training.

Online patterns for making your own diaper pad can be found on the craft blog, Sew Take a Hike, which includes photographs and a step by step tutorial. Another option is modifying a pattern for placemats by making them a foot longer at each end; eHow has several options that include photographs.

A changing mat as a baby shower gift is especially well received when it includes the colours of the baby’s nursery: A discrete peek or some questions can make this gift an eco friendly delight.

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Home

Eureka!

Fall is in the air. The fur kids are grateful for every degree the temperature drops. They want to be outside whenever the mercury drops below 80 degrees. They chase the falling leaves and wait with baited breath for the approaching fall. They know it is coming and they are anxious for it to arrive.

I took some time off from computer repairs so they all got to go to the new property yesterday. It is still heavily wooded, even with the clearing we did for the houses. They frolicked through the woods, getting acquainted with the resident squirrels and birds. They followed all of the wonderful new smells of wildlife and nature. They were excited and overjoyed.

They found deer trails and were awestruck by the fabulous new scent they had never experienced before. They spent more than an hour trying to find the mysterious creature that had left such a heady marking. Soon they will live there and they will find this fascinating animal, but for now they could only smell and dream.

We ran ourselves ragged just keeping them in sight as they explored this wonderland. They found chipmunks, squirrels and birds. Tried to dig out dens and ran headlong into an armadillo. It was hard to determine who was the more startled or amazed. They were all curious about each other, the armadillo cautiously eyeing this horde of fur and flying ears, the fur kids announcing their discovery with raucous barking. The armadillo curled into a ball, patiently enduring the inquisitive noses of this strange pack of impertinent fur balls. The more daring boys cautiously chanced to touch with extended paws while the girls encouraged them from a safer distance. They finally decided that this new discovery did not want to play and soon lost interest when the armadillo, who steadfastly maintained his immobile behavior. The fur kids raced off in search of more adventure and the armadillo uncurled and meandered away apparently unruffled by the encounter.

Every tree and bush had to be examined and relegated to an appropriate category. Each rock was tested and marked. The boys had a very busy day, indeed. The location of the spring was found and committed to memory. The proper tree for each squirrel was carefully determined and noted.
The location of dens, trails and other still unchartered realms were securely recorded for further study.

Finally, tired but content fur kids were ready to be loaded in the truck for the trip home. Now they have flung themselves into the moving preparations with a vengeance. Impatient to have it done and get back to this new paradise that awaits them, they encourage the packing and cleaning with their own special brand of incentive, the thoughts and dreams of this beckoning Eden never far from their minds.…

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Environment

Volunteering for a Healthy Environment: Cleanup Organizations in Florida and Beyond

The old quote from John Wesley that “cleanliness is next to godliness” may not be used much anymore, but the idea that a clean and orderly personal and collective environment contributes to good health is without a doubt the driving principle behind a number of national and state-specific volunteer organizations. Research has shown that neatly maintained homes and communities can not only provide a safer environment for families, but can lift mood and create a more positive, productive lifestyle. When combined with the satisfaction of volunteerism, promoting cleanliness becomes a powerful and healthy way to make a huge difference in neighborhoods and surrounding areas.

The State of Florida is a great example of the ways in which environment can directly impact health and how volunteerism can contribute to personal and collective well-being. Known for its beautiful waterways and recreational opportunities, Florida boasts a number of clean up organizations and projects that enlist the enthusiasm of groups and individuals to help maintain and protect its unique natural resources. Volunteers can show civic pride in Florida’s roadways, tidy up a local park or community center, or preserve the natural beauty of waterways—there’s a job for young and old alike.

Adopt-A-Highway

Sprucing up Florida’s highways for over a decade, Adopt-A- Highway groups help the Department of Transportation put a fresh face on the roads that bring millions of visitors to Florida each year. Hundreds of dedicated volunteers restore the appearance of naturally stunning right-of-ways by picking up litter that detracts from the scenic routes. These efforts enable the state work crews to concentrate less on litter and spend more time on maintenance and special projects. It’s a winning combination that not only improves visitor’s first impressions of the state, but also promotes a distinct sense of civic pride among residents.

Groups or individuals that join the Adopt-A-Highway program are asked to “adopt” a two mile section of a state highway, follow DOT regulations, remove litter at least four times a year, and dedicate two years to the project. The Department of Transportation assists by aiding in safety instruction, providing safety vests and litter bags, picking up collected litter at pre-arranged locations, and posting signs along the group’s section to recognize their contribution.

For more information on Adopt-A-Highway call 1-800-BAN-LITT or visit Florida’s Department of Transportation on the web.

Keep America Beautiful, Inc

Promoting litter prevention, waste reduction, and community beautification and improvement since 1953, Keep America Beautiful (KAB) is a national non-profit network of affiliates and other organizational participants that marshal millions of volunteers to improve land, waters, and built environment. Focusing on education, cooperation, and inspiration, Keep America Beautiful provides programs that strive to effect behavioral changes to reduce litter, reuse resources, and recycle waste. KAB contends that behavioral changes and beautification projects not only clean up the environment, but also have an enormous impact on the economic health and safety of local communities.

There are many active Keep America Beautiful affiliates in Florida that work hard to improve the quality of life for residents by facilitating public service and civic pride through a variety of community improvement programs. KAB’s largest annual campaign, The Great American Cleanup, is a key activity for the most local chapters. For more information on Great American Cleanup activities nationwide, visit Keep America Beautiful, Inc.

Watershed Action Volunteers

While keeping roadways and neighborhoods tidy has spawned national organizations like Adopt-A-Highway and Keep America Beautiful, Florida’s unique network of waterways creates another avenue where keeping things clean is of vital importance. For those who love Florida’s amazing lakes, streams, and rivers and the creatures that populate them, the St. John’s River Water Management District’s Watershed Action Volunteer Program is an excellent opportunity to help protect these splendid resources.

Volunteers are trained by WAV coordinators to test water quality, survey for pollution, participate in revegetation and clean up projects, and conduct educational presentations in the community. Protecting Florida’s water systems is critical not only for the resources used for drinking, maintaining wildlife habitats, and natural resources, but also because they impact recreation, jobs, and food supplies throughout the state. Since research has shown that unhealthy conditions in waterways can be reversed, the more volunteers that commit to making a difference, the more long lasting changes can be made.

For more information call the St. John’s River Water Management District WAV Program (386)329-4345.

Combining the uplifting benefits of a clean environment and volunteerism can contribute to the well-being of individuals in communities everywhere. Picking up litter, providing safe and clean parks and playgrounds for kids or ensuring the waterways that feed into the drinking water that sustains all may prove John Wesley right. Cleanliness may truly be a sacred act. Get involved in a cleanup organization today!

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Green Living

How to Be a Member of the New Greener Generation: A Good Place to Start is Active Participation in Earth Day

 

Since Earth Day was founded in 1970, awareness about various environmental issues has become more and more widespread across the globe. Today, children and young adults are increasingly well informed about eco-related concerns and are more willing than ever to help make a difference. This 40th anniversary of Earth Day is a great time to get involved and join the up-and-coming greener generation to help conserve the planet.

 

Attend a Green Rally

Earth Day, April 22nd, offers an opportunity to be involved in activities beyond the norm as hundreds of millions across the globe participate in Earth-related events. Local rallies should be easy to find, particularly in urban areas: look for flyers around town; check the “Events” section of CraigsList; or contact the city events board to see what’s been planned for this Earth Day. Rallies present the opportunity to connect with others who are passionate about saving the planet, and help to raise awareness about current environmental issues.

Be Proactive and Get Educated

Those who want to be part of the greener generation will be best able to make an impact if they are educated about the facts of certain concerns. Choose an interesting topic and research it to find out applicable information. With controversial topics like global warming, look for studies that present unbiased information about scientifically proven facts. Use credible sources for these sorts of topics – not Wikipedia, volatile comment boards on the Internet, or authors with a political agenda; but websites or books written from a purely scientific angle. The ability to quote well-founded factual information when speaking to others about environmental concerns should be helpful to everyone involved.

Work Hard and Make a Difference

To truly become a part of (rather than an observer of) the greener generation, it is imperative to get off the sidelines and work toward making a difference. Sometimes that takes really hard work but it is for a very worthwhile cause – our planet.

Find a good environmental cause and, after researching it more thoroughly, find out what to do to contribute in a positive way. Link with others through social networking outlets, plan or attend local events, and chip in personally to take action and help make a change.

 

Since 1970, Earth Day has provided an amazing opportunity to connect with other environmentally minded people and get involved with saving the planet. Don’t waste the chance in 2020 to join the greener generation and make a meaningful impact.

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Environment

Majora Carter: Greening The Neighbourhood: Award Winning Environmentalist Speaks About Urban Renewal

 

New York Post awarded Majora Carter the Liberty Medal for Lifetime Achievement for her work in ecological and social awareness. The MacArthur “Genius” Grant was hers for calling attention to what she terms “ecological racism.”

However, the people of South Bronx, New York, know her as the woman who transformed an illegal dump along the waterfront to a tourist-worthy spot of lush greenery and lovely views: In fact, Ms. Carter had her own wedding at the very spot that was once a garbage-strewn wasteland.

A compelling speaker, Ms. Carter addressed issues that everyone who lives in a city – be it Canadian or American or anywhere in the world – asks: Can we afford to be green? How much would cities lose in revenue if they opted for more sustainable industries? Carter addressed these issues in a speech as part of a panel titled, “Greening the Neighbourhood & How Much It Won’t Cost Us.”

University of Toronto’s Hart House seated a crowded room on March 13, 2018. Students, environmental activists and fans of Majora Carter crowded The Great Hall to hear Deputy Mayor Joe Pantalone, Youth Activist Ben Powless and Professor Dr. Blake Poland tackle problems about the cost of greening and raising awareness towards environmentally friendly industry.

Majora Carter Discusses “Greening the Ghetto”

Environmental Racism is defined as the tendency for governments or large businesses to place toxic, dangerous or otherwise unattractive industries in poor neighbourhoods, as she phrased it “the ghettos.” Less affluent neighbourhoods that feature house subsidized housing, or concrete industrial wilderness are less likely to be sustainable, and therefore become less affluent.

Carter’s Jacobean analysis of urban living reveals that cities with concrete jungles are less likely to thrive economically, if surrounding areas are unattractive. Broken windows make a neighbourhood appear derelict, which draws neither tourist industries, nor any investors to that part of town.

Broken Window Theory: Broken Branches

Referring to the “Broken Window” social study that maintains that a building in poor repair invites further vandalism, Carter insists that her mission is not to create a sense of ill will towards neighbourhoods with more advantages, but to create as much opportunity for neighbourhoods like South Bronx as its wealthier counterparts have.

“This is what I would call the ‘Broken Branch’ analysis of the city,” says Carter. While she doesn’t condone vandalism, she does feel the city comes down much too militantly on transgressions. Carter repeats that there are opportunities to use the many skills the residents of South Bronx have and branch out their abilities to teach and learn from others.

“If we give people an opportunity to thrive, people will respond positively. I believe that green industries improve people, improve business – the two work together.” The Sustainable South Bronx (SSBx) project boasts green roofs that reduce the reflective heat as well as providing edible vegetation for the locals.

The garbage recycling programs provides jobs for various individuals, as well as job training and bringing money into the neighbourhood in the form of investors. A sustainable and attractive street is one that generates more income and businesses than a barren, concrete runway.

How Aesthetically Appealing Streets Prevent Crime

An example of community improvement, Carter cites the example of Sustainable South Bronx planting trees on street corners. Trees not only reduced the heat in summer and provided more ambient temperatures in winter, but it also reduced street crime.

Streets that looked pleasant drew more people to sit comfortably and socialize under the boughs. With more neighbours in the street, fewer crimes occured where there were witnesses. With more people getting outside and socializing during daylight and evening hours, the crime rate in the area dropped dramatically.

Part 2 of this article features how she raised awareness and garnered funds towards transforming her neighbourhood towards sustainability.

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Home

Throwing Light on Home Repair Grants

Home repair grants is a type of grant given to families who are economically deprived to enable them to make repair or improvements to their building of residence.These are grants given to elderly citizens to enable them to live in a safe and secure environment by removing unwanted hazards from their homes and other obstructions which might pose grave risk in the long run.These grants are normally given to people over the age of 62 years. who cannot afford funding from normal loans because of the high interest levied on them.The eligibility criteria for the receival of these grants are-

1.The person should be national of United States and also he must have a permanent place of residence. 2.Should meet all the legal criterias needed to receive the grant.
3.Should have a good record of repaying of loans in the past.
4.Should be living below the low income line.
5.The person should be in a job with sufficient earning which would enable him to repay the grant.
6.Should be the sole owner of the property on which he is currently living in.

A building or a dwelling usually has a number of projections built into them which is otherwise normal but for elderly people it may pose grave danger as they may slip or trip over them hurting themselves which might even prove to be fatal.Repair grants are used for the purpose of removing these obstructions such as heating ,electrical and plumbing systems and also disposal of water and waste.On top of this they are also used for installing insulation,screens which would further improve the living conditions.

Home improvements also includes modernising of a building so that it is in sync with the current times and the inclusiong of additional rooms,remodelling an existing room.In order to do this the person who has taken funding from the grant must be the current owner of the building and should not be a tenant or somebody who has rented the building. A home repair grant cannot be used for the purpose of constructing a new building, improper repair of a dwelling with the safety hazards still in place and making improvements to places not within the property concerned and the moving of a mobile home.The receiver of a grant cannot misuse the funding for making ellaborate design change or appearance related changes to the building.If the person who applies for a repair grant happens to sell the property within three years of issuing of the grant,then the finance given as per the grant would be converted to a loan and would have to be repaid in full.

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Home

Top 5 Home Renovations that Will Increase Your Home’s Value

The recession has created a buyer’s market for those looking to purchase homes. As a result, people can afford to be a lot pickier about certain details that they’re looking for. If you watch any of the programs on HGTV, you’ll notice a trend in the kinds of features that they expect to see for the amount of money they’re spending. If you’re thinking about putting your house on the market, take a look at these attributes-as they can sometimes make or break a deal.

Bathroom Fixtures

One of the main things that potential home buyers are interested in are the bathrooms. More so than the number of them that exist, people are paying attention to what they look like. Obsolete bathroom furnishings will instantly “date” your home, making room look less appealing. Jazzing up faucets, lighting fixtures, and even the tile will drastically bring your bathroom up to date.

Kitchen Counters and Appliances

If your home has granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances, you can consider yourself lucky; because according to many of the experts on HGTV, these two features are the most requested in real estate. In some cases, home buyers consider these accents necessary aspects of a modern, functioning kitchen. But these aren’t the only materials that will improve the value of your home. Take a walk through your local Home Depot and you’ll be surprised by the plethora of textures available that match your home’s character. The idea in essence, is to make your kitchen look warm, relatively neutral, and most of all-modern.

Curb Appeal

Even if all the improvements in your house are phenomenal, you will still need to entice potential buyers to actually enter the premises. This probably won’t occur if your home’s “curb appeal” is less than desirable. You need not spend tons of money to create a fantasy landscape (though it might help in some cases.) But in general, shrubbery should not be overgrown. Debris and supplies should be kept out of sight. And at the very least, the entrance should appear manicured and well-cared for. Once you’ve given your yard a “shave” you can then concentrate on adding a few simple touches to enhance the look. Metro Atlanta’s Pike Nursery (and even Wal-Mart) is literally a landscaping Mecca for those with a green thumb.

Extra Closet Space

Unfortunately, some houses as nice as they are, don’t offer residents enough closet space. Master bedroom closets are often the first to be inspected by potential homeowners. If your closet is lacking a little breathing room, you might want to consider investing in creating some bigger storage dimensions. Sometimes a complete rebuild cannot be accomplished, in which case you might want to consider refurbishing storage space in another area of the house.

Livable Basement Area(s)

In a time when people are looking to cut corners and save money, homeowners are now looking to their basements as viable living quarters instead of places to store old stuff. If you happen to have a finished basement, you’ve probably got a goldmine on your hands. Homeowners love the idea of having a separate area to comfortably house in-laws, older children, or even renters. Suffice it to say, finishing your basement and providing some additional functionality to your house will boost its value tremendously.

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