Increasing your property value by renovating it can be a real labour of love for people with a unique vision they hope to make into a reality. But for out of the box thinkers, achieving that vision requires more than just creative thinking. It requires hunting down the perfect building materials to bring the vision to life. And good quality material manufacturers who can work outside the box are not always at your fingertips.
Unique designs of both interiors and exteriors can lend themselves to structures and windows that could require anything from oversized and structural glass to unique styles of high end stone. To find the right manufacturer or supplier to create your vision, you might need to look beyond your own backyard.
I have seen some amazing examples of architectural designs both here in Europe during my last trip and in the United States. From the modern architecture to century buildings, there are countless examples in both places of creative design to inspire would-be renovators.
North America offers a treasure trove of high quality construction materials that are worth considering for your next renovation. I often use materials for renovations to enhance a design to complete my vision. I have a few go-to manufacturers that I will often turn to first for projects, regardless of the fact they are on the other side of the world.
Glass is one of those things that I have found worth paying and waiting for to get from Canada as I have a favourite glass manufacturer (Agnora) who I turn to for most of my high end projects, not just because they provide oversized, high-precision glass fabrication, which I love using on stair cases railings and feature walls, but because the quality I get from them is absolutely amazing.
It’s not that there aren’t good manufacturers here in U.S. I’m sure there are. But for specific projects, especially ones that have complex designs or require architectural glass, I’ll always opt for a company I’ve worked with in the past that I can rely on for consistent high-quality work.
The same can be said for any building materials. Renovators with vision shouldn’t have to compromise their creativity to realize even their most complex design ideas. Finding the right materials provider, no matter where they are, can enable that vision to become a reality.
U.S. still recovering from the last real estate bubble, I can’t risk putting property values and prices on the brink of a down fall, upgrading and updating properties to be special and unique will give any home owner an advantage when the property goes on the market. High end finishes and unique design are the best ways to make a property stand out.
Shopping locally for building materials is definitely the more convenient and affordable option. But when it comes to achieving a dream design, sometimes it is worth the cost and the wait to hold out for the best quality product, no matter where in the world it needs to come from.
I haven’t told this before, but I’ve been seriously thinking about investing in the real estate market in Russia for the last year or so. Other BRIC countries like China and Brazil have seen steep price increases on their housing markets, but Russia has been lagging. Since I always try to find bargain deals I got interested in the land where the vodka supply never run out. I have traveled there a few times to talk to experts and scout a couple of areas, but no contracts have been signed so far.
Recent Developments in the Ukraine
Anyhow, I guess you have seen on the news what’s been happening in the Ukraine lately. The Ukrainian president has fled the country, parliament of the street has taken over, and now Russia (or should I say Mr Putin’s personal army?) has invaded the Crimean Peninsula (in the southeast of Ukraine). So what has this got to do with me? Well, as I try to minimize risk in all investments, I don’t like these events at all. Russian leadership has shown that they are prepared to do whatever it takes to control their neighboring countries as well as the opposition back home in Russia. They are unpredictable and not to be trusted. Since I had already found the perfect area and had started to look at specific properties there, I was very disappointed and disheartened by the whole thing. But I’m trying to stay positive and think that perhaps I was lucky? I got a chance to see the leadership’s truce face before investing A$10 million or more.
My Updated Plans for the Russian Real Estate Market
So what are my plans regarding the Russian real estate market? Well, risks are too high in my opinion so my plans are put on ice, indefinitely. Perhaps some time in the future when democratic and humans rights are more respected, I will rethink. But for now, I will stay away.
Taking Care of my Health
As my mortgage business doesn’t take much of my time nowadays, and since I can’t find any bargains on the stock market right now, this means I have much more time on my hands. Time I can use for more personal things, like taking care of my health. To be honest, I weigh too much. A lot to much actually. But I know losing weight isn’t a complicated thing. Exercise and healthier food is all it takes. But I’m kind of a lazy guy, and exercise isn’t for me (or so I think). So I will be focusing on eating healthier, and I have already done quite a bit of Googling trying to find a diet that I could live with. I found this website that presents all kinds of diets, but none that is really attractive to me. However, they wrote about a very interesting way to lose weight that would suit lazy people like me. The concept is that you take B12 vitamin shots that will help burn fat and sort of enhance your metabolism. I don’t know if it works, but it sounds intriguing. So who knows, I might test it!
That’s it for now. Take care!
The subject of home improvement can of course cover many areas; one that might not spring to mind would be electric toothbrushes! Allow me to explain further, before you think I may have gone mad.
Since spending considerable time and money improving the layout and interior on what is safe to say, the closest I will get to my ideal home, I’m now faced with the issue of how to furnish it. Most rooms pretty much take care of themselves, I mean, how much time you can spend positioning the sofa in the living room.
So after nearly reaching the point of what I am happy to call finished, something caught my eye the other day, which made me think, there is just one more thing to get. And as I said earlier, it was an electric toothbrush. You see my designer bathroom, is exactly how I envisioned it in my head, but without the things that are actually used on a day to day basis. Add the lotions, potions, towels, toothpastes and it starts to look a little less designer, more shabby chic, which is not the look I’m after.
So over time, I’ve carefully selected, only the items that fit with the vision and look I’m trying to achieve. I think I’m nearly there. Towels were easy, put the cheap hand lotion in the fancy looking dispenser, hide the toilet roll away in another fancy looking dispenser, hide the cheap perfumes and display the expensive ones, you get the idea. Except, there was one problem area I couldn’t solve. Yes the toothbrush. It stands there on my bathroom shelf, pride of place and looks, well horrible. Too inconvenient to hide it away, and just too ugly to have on display.
Anyway, back to what caught my eye the other day. An electric toothbrush that just oozes quality. The sort of thing that just makes you want to pick it up and use it. The best way I can describe it is if Apple made toothbrushes, this would be the one. All top quality white and chrome finish, but that’s not the best part.
No what you are getting here other than the greatest looking toothbrush ever are really 2 amazing things:
• The charging stand is a glass, the sort of glass you would get in the finest of restaurants. Yes, that’s right, to charge your toothbrush, you just pop the brush into the glass! I didn’t believe it at first, but it does indeed work. How? I guess it works by black magic.
• Next, the toothbrush is supplied in a travel case, the coolest of travel cases of course. And here’s the best part. When you go away, pop your toothbrush in, and charge it via a standard USB socket. No more extra charging stands and leads to forget to take with you. Genius.
So there you have it, look hard enough and you will always find a solution – at a price of course, for your next home improvement project!
A quick search for retirement options on the internet will show millions of results and dozens of approaches. Most common are IRAs, Savings Accounts, Roth IRAs and many others. Most of them, you’ll notice, are very similar and rarely if ever do they include real estate, that is, unless, its real estate in a self-directed IRA.
For young folks just getting out of school or going to school there are very few alternatives to what’s been mentioned above. That lack of options seems are there no other options, but I’d like to introduce you to considering real estate as a very good method to build a retirement income.
Just consider that a piece of real estate purchased at 25 will be completely paid off with a bread and butter mortgage in 30 years. The issue is that you’ll need somewhere to live.
Now, instead of purchasing a home or a condo, purchase a nice triplex or fourplex. This can easily be done with regular residential financing.
A savvy REALTOR in Phoenix, Arizona who runs Phoenix Market Trends has been helping quite a few young people do just that, start building a solid financial base and a very nice, expected, income with real estate, often with very little money up front.
Let’s start with the “very little money up front.”
There are many loan options, especially for owner occupied buyers. These are often accessible with very low down payments. These programs change, but there are FHA loans with 3.5% down payments or conventional loans with 3% down payment. There are options where the down payment may be gifted. Combine a gifted down payment and a seller contribution toward closing costs and one can purchase a property for a few hundred dollars.
Purchase a 4 unit property in a good neighborhood with residential financing. The buyer will live in one and rent out the other 3. In Phoenix these are usually mixed size units. Some have a mix of one and two bedroom units and sometimes there are three bedroom units.
The newly graduated student can move into a one bedroom unit and rent out the other tree. If he or she needs a larger space they may move into the two bedroom unit and still rent out the other 3.
In most cases this new owner/investor will live in this space for free since, if purchased properly, the income from the 3 tenants will cover the mortgage and other costs and in some cases there is some left over.
Over the longer period the left over can be applied toward the principal helping pay off the loan sooner.
If the owner wants to move, say into a nice big home, she can keep this fourplex and have all units rented out. Keep in mind that she lived there from free. Now that unit is leased. That extra money is now income which can go toward paying part of the mortgage on her new home or it can be applied toward the principal on the fourplex.
If she applies just part of the positive income toward paying down the mortgage the loan could easily be paid off in 15 years instead of 30 years.
This is where the magic happens. Once paid off this fourplex’s entire income less expenses is now profit and just one of these will provide a good amount of income. $2,500 net profit a month on a fourplex with no mortgage is very middle ground.
In addition rents go up. If you take that into account the income grows too. When she goes to retire that one fourplex will not provide a nice inflation adjusted income for as long as she owns it.
One can easily have two or three of these paid off well before traditional retirement. At current rates a net income of $7,500 per month will make for a very nice retirement for most people.
Very savvy indeed.
Once you’ve settled into your new home, you soon realize you need small appliances to make different edible food items to soothe your taste. For those new homeowners that love the smell and taste of home made bread, below are the two most famous and desirable brands by Cuisinart and Oster.
Oster and Cuisinart are two well-established brands in kitchen equipment. These brands are extremely famous among home users. One most common thing about these two bread makers is that they have a wide variety of settings, which makes them perfect to use in baking different kinds of bread.
The Oster Bread Maker
The Oster bread maker can easily make bread loaves about 1, 1.5, and 2 lbs in size. This kitchen appliance is equipped with a non-stick aluminum pan that makes it easy to create horizontal loaves. Its 18 settings makes it possible for you to bake various kinds of natural breads. This oval shaped machine has a removable lid and glass viewing window to help you make bread easily and efficiently. Also, the cool touch exterior of Oster bread maker prevents accidental burns.
This machine is extremely convenient to use, as you can add ingredients even if the kneading process is taking place. You can add fruits, nuts, to your bread easily. This machine also includes a manual, with over 50 bread recipes. The control panel of this machine allows you to program the baking process in three simple steps. Finally, the machine is equipped with a special 13-hour timer that can keep the bread fresh and moist, even after 13 hours.
The Cuisinart Bread Maker
One of the best things about the Cuisinart bread maker is that it gives you the ability to deploy varying bread making time, depending on the dough used. This machine can be used to create various types of bread, such as artisan dough breads and low carbohydrate breads. There are five versions of this machine and they feature 3-16 settings.
This machine ensures that you will not create breads with monotony in form. With this bread making equipment, you can produce breads with up to three distinguished crust colors. This is a perfect option for people looking to serve different breads in the basket during dinner. Like the Oster bread maker, this machine enables you to add nuts and fruits to the bread even if kneading is going on.
Cuisinart bread maker is designed to function almost like a convectional oven. There is a large amount of air passing through the bread during the baking process, which makes the bread softer and lighter. This bread maker is made with a stainless steel body, and can withstand the rigors of everyday use with the well insulated handles. The machine is equipped with several controls that make it easy to use. For example, it has a timer that helps you postpone the baking process for up to 12 hours.
Making bread at home is a common task, and it’s probably one of the best ways to bring a family more together. Those people looking to have fresh baked bread on their table during special dinner can buy and use Oster bread maker or Cuisinart bread maker. While I say congratulations on your new home, try home made bread as a welcoming gift for your many guests. Additionally, these machines are quite affordable amd you can get one for less than $100.
Attracting a house for sale is a form of marketing. You (or your real estate agent) are marketing the home to potential buyers. There are a handful of simple tips you can utilize to attract a house sale that won’t break the bank or your back.
Little things like putting a good coffee machine in the kitchen and allowing the smell of freshly brewed coffee to waft through the air can make the house much more welcoming and therefore attract more house sales. I recently bought a new coffee machine after reading the reviews here and it is a great investment.
That’s simple. The smell of freshly brewing coffee in the kitchen will quickly permeate the entire house. Generally speaking this is a smell that most people are familiar with and associate with their own kitchen. By making the kitchen “their own” via the coffee maker and the brewing cup of Joe you are transporting the potential buyer and allowing them to mentally picture themselves living in this home. And that is the key. You always want the potential buyer to picture them and their family living in your home. That is what makes the sale. If they cannot see themselves living there then they won’t buy.
On that note it is important that you de-clutter all of the rooms in the home too before you put in that new coffee maker and open the doors to guests. The last thing you want is your clutter all over the living room or the kitchen. While it is likely these odds and ends that make the home “yours” and add a touch of “you” and your life to every room, it is this exact reason that the potential home buyers will not find it appealing. They need to picture themselves living in the house and they can only mentally put their odds and ends where yours are if yours are gone. As you walk through the house and prepare it for show try and remove anything that you wouldn’t take with you on a quick camping trip. Take away all the books and the extra blankets your mom made for you last Christmas. Store them until after the home has been sold.
As you prepare the rooms for show try and balance the hard surfaces and the soft surfaces. You don’t want the room to sink because it is too heavy. If your kitchen has a hard counter top on which the coffee maker will rest try and soften it with a nice kitchen towel on which three coffee cups are resting. This leads to the final thing you can do to increase home sales. Arrange items on hard surfaces like your kitchen counter in sets of one or three. This is ideal for the coffee maker seeing as it is one unit. You can then set three coffee cups around it. You want to superimpose a triangle throughout the home and draw the eye of the potential buyers to the room. By doing these things and keeping fresh coffee brewing you can increase home sales quickly.
You may or may not agree but your room is supposed to be a sanctuary. It is supposed to be a place of rest, recreation and relaxation. So, what are you doing with a TV, laptop and all those heavy files? Ditch them and upgrade your bedroom. The big question is how can you improve your room?
* De-clutter your environment. Get rid of unnecessary stuff and gadgets. Simplify your life and sleeping space to enjoy good quality rest after a hard day’s work.
* Add life to your room with a floral arrangement or single bud by the bedside or a corner live plant. We all know how important fresh, non-polluted air is to our health. Candles and pictures can also make a big difference in the look of your room. You can get these items inexpensively from local or online stores.
* Use lighting effectively-task lighting if you read in bed, ambient lighting to create a mood. Ensure the light is nice and soft. You can even get a low watt energy saving bulb to make your room look intimate, while being environment-friendly. Energy saving bulbs don’t cost much and are easy to change. You can also use music to create a soothing environment.
* Try painting the walls a new color but avoid bright paints (which can prevent you from sleeping). Instead choose the more natural colors to give your room a relaxing and comfortable feel. If you prefer not to paint, just arrange sheets down walls with staples, and also from center of ceiling. It’s quick and easy. Choose your favorite colors and have fun with them.
* When it comes to flooring, just buy a nice material (based on your budget). Options include carpet, wooden floors, tiles and granite.
* Invest in a good quality bed (if you can afford it). Experts say a comfortable bed is key to getting the kind of sleep you need to function effectively. And while you may think this is going to be expensive, I dare say it depends on the features you want and your definition of comfort. A good mattress should last 8 to 10 years. Once you have the bed, please make it regularly; a well-made bed will definitely give your room the kind of feel you want.
* Great headboard ideas can completely change the look and feel of your bedroom. As you probably know, headboards come in a variety of sizes and fabrics. You can either buy a simple ready-made one to match your bed, or you can come up with a headboard that takes the uniqueness level in your bedroom high heavens!
* Keep clothing and laundry out of public sight; you can get a ward robe for this. It gives your room a clean look.
* If you’re on a budget, just move things around. Change the location of your bed and move your furniture to a new place. Clean your sacred place and you’ll have a changed room. But, if you can afford it, by all means buy a few things to transform your personal sanctuary.
* Make your room your own; just ditch what people think your room should look like and give it your personal touch. Whether it’s about placing your photograph on the wall or having a Mozart playing when you’re around, just get it done. After all, it’s your space; your inner sanctuary. Click here to get more bedroom makeover ideas.
The Irish Government continues to be called to permit householders to purchase their IBRC mortgages which are expected to be offered.
The mortgages were initially issued by Irish Nation wide as reported by mortgagecalculatorireland.info in Dublin Ireland.
Donnelly stated he has talked to households, who’ve told him they got two worries about this.
The very first is they are definitely not definitely going to be permitted bid for his or her own mortgages. The mortgages should be sold in mountains of several 1000 at a reduction.
Donnelly stated that under the present strategy, the reduction about the mortgages is going to be “turned in to gains for big monetary companies as opposed to benefitting tens of thousands of Irish households as it could”.
He explained the households’ 2nd concern is the fact that when their mortgages are offered, they “are definitely going to be stripped of crucial protections” from the Central Lender code of perform mortgage arrears, along with the Economic Ombudsman.
He stated that Finance Minister Michael Noonan has got the capability allowing households to bid due to their own houses at market price.
He requested the minister in Oct if he’d use that strength, but “he refused”, mentioning guidance that it could be more effective to market the mortgages in batches, mentioned Donnelly.
Donnelly requested the Taoiseach concerning the matter, planning to understand when the homeowners in query must be permitted bid due to their own mortgage at whatever price reduction will be offered to companies.
In addition, he requested if Enda Kenny would introduce laws that can ensure all mortgage-holders in Eire the same amount of protection in the Central Lender code of conduct of the Economic Ombudsman along with mortgage arrears.
Minister Noonan had analyzed the problem in consultation with all the Issuing Authority, stated the Taoiseach. “It is a complicated legal problem [that] will need some rather cautious thought,” he mentioned.
Kenny said the result of the selling procedure will discover what ought to be achieved at that stage.
Donnelly said that the “wait and see following the deal is signed” strategy isn’t good enough.
“There is not any tradeoff between receiving the most favorable cost to get a mortgage and supporting these households,” he mentioned. “This is possibly a win-win [scenario].”
“Would you at least consider one more appear and see if some thing might be resolved,” he appealed to the Taoiseach.
As technologically-advanced as the world is, people still rely on old methods to make most things work. Automobiles, cooking, heating living and working spaces—all of these things still rely on the wonderful effects of the combustion of gas.
There are many types of gasses, though the subject of scrutiny will be all about propane and natural gas. What are their differences and similarities?
Let’s talk about natural gas first. No—it’s not that kind of natural gas. This is the gas where almost all of our daily use-gas comes from. Natural gas is derived from burning fossil fuel, that incredibly important, nonrenewable natural resource left to us by the hulking dinosaurs that roamed the earth billions and billions of years ago. When they died, their remains turned to fossil fuel, which in turn are utilized to keep us fed, warm, and out and about.
Of course, fossil fuel cannot be sustained as easily. It’s not easy to create a billion-year fossil fuel. As such, natural gas is a rare commodity, and is processed to harness other types of gasses, including propane.
Propane, as was mentioned, can be processed from natural gas, along with butane and ethane, but it also comes as a byproduct of refining petroleum. As such, it is often referred to as LPG, or liquefied petroleum gas.
Uses and Environment-Friendliness
Natural gas is most often used to produce energy, specifically, electrical energy. Fossil fuel gas has been lighting homes and firing computers for centuries. Oftentimes, natural gas is used alongside renewable sources of energy, such as wind and solar energy.
In developed countries such as the US, natural gas is being pushed by environmentalists for domestic usage, such as in stoves for cooking and in heaters or coolers. Natural gas produces less carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide during combustion, therefore more environmentally-friendly than other combustible gasses.
Of course, that’s not to say that propane is a wicked invisible force. Propane is also environmentally-friendly before and after combustion—the gas burns clean and is non-toxic to humans and animals. In fact, propane is an odorless and colorless gas, and the only reason a leaking tank of LPG has a certain smell is because ethanethiol is mixed with the propane, for the exact purpose of being able to detect it if it starts leaking.
Obviously, propane is used for cooking, in gas stoves and portable barbecues. It is also used in vehicles, in an effort to make automobiles become “greener”. Most gas stations now also carry propane for these types of vehicles, or to refill tanks used for cooking. Commercial propane tanks come in 250, 330, 500, and 1000 gallons. Though not advisable for home use (why would you want a 7-foot tank of combustible gas in your home?), buying one of these tanks is easy, with transactions possible over the internet, and the tank delivered straight to your door.
The cost of natural gas and propane varies from state to state (and country to country), but generally, propane comes as a little more expensive than natural gas, mainly because propane has to go through a process of extraction and condensation to get it to the point where it can be stored as a liquid. Many homes that have switched to either gas after using the other as their source of heating could vouch that natural gas is more affordable and more efficient than propane.
If both are efficient and both are environmentally-friendly, it’s smart to go for the cheaper solution.
I grew up in a house that had a basement. It wasn’t a half basement with windows at ground level, it was one that had a window under ground level. There was a hole in the ground to allow light to get down to the window and into the basement. Our basement flooded whenever it rained heavy. It seeped through the walls and filled the basement with an inch or so of water. My parents spent thousands of dollars trying to waterproof the walls but in the end they should have just installed a sump pump system. With said system all the water seeping in would be re-directed with a piping system into a sump pit, also within the basement. That water would then be pumped out to the street grey water using a pump. Here I’d like to talk about how to protect your basement from weather events with a sump pump system in detail.
Ideally, you want to install the sump pump system during construction of the house. That way the piping and sump pit can be built at the same time as the basement. However, you can also build the system affordably after the house has been constructed. To do this you should hire a qualified contractor. He’ll be able to follow the codes of your area and get the job done right. Be prepared to pay for about 1 week’s labour and a few thousand dollars in materials. All up the job is going to cost at least $5000 (for a small basement). But in the end that money will save your basement from flooding – and possibly destroying all your furniture and carpets etc.
When you hire the contractor, he’ll help you decide which type of sump pump to get. There are different ones to suit different situations: pedestal, submersible, backup, floor sucker and water powered. You can see the different sump pump options in a table to see the different prices and styles. The most common is submersible paired with backup. The submersible pump sits at the bottom of a sump pit in your basement, usually in the corner under a metal grading to stop things falling into the pit. Drain pipes are installed exterior to the house a few feet underground and have small holes to collect all the water that would otherwise drain into your basement. There is also some interior piping and drains installed to collect the water that does make its way into your basement. All these pipes lead to the sump pit. Once the pumps float switch is activated it will turn on and pump the water out to the street grey water system.
Because the pump is electrically powered you should pair it with a battery powered backup pump. Think about when it rains a lot. Usually during a storm, and usually if it’s a big storm the power will go out. So you need that backup to keep your basement dry.
The type of contractor to call is an expert in drainage. Look up backyard drainage in Google and you should get some local resources to call in your area.
In the current competitive housing market, you need to make your property stand out from the rest. Often real estate brokers recommend staging your home to make it more appealing to buyers. While this makes a difference, you have to clean up and clear out the house before you put it on the market.
Nobody Wants to Live in Your Dirt
Often we get comfortable in our homes and fail to notice the little details. If there are cobwebs in your corners, it’s time to reassess your house or apartment. Buyers notice mold in between the tiles in your tub or grimy carpets with stains. Contact a local cleaning company to determine what your house needs to make it look truly pristine. A cleaning company will let you know what should be done to market the home. Typically services such as window washing, oven cleaning and scrubbing the floors are ways to refresh your house after the wear-and-tear of daily living. The cleaning company will also give you an estimate for the cost of the job.
Clutter is Confusing
Life is hectic and often we toss items around without realizing it. Are your shoes lurking in every room? Do you have laundry tossed on beds or overflowing in hampers? Have your kids’ toys taken over the house? This type of clutter is confusing. While you have to live in your home until it gets sold, it is important to put everything away. The bread and cookies on your kitchen counters should be put in a cabinet or drawer. School books belong in a backpack and toys should be tucked away in a chest. The living space should look orderly when potential buyers come to check it out.
One Man’s Treasures are Another Man’s Junk
The oversize vase filled with plastic flowers might be a gift from your beloved aunt but it looks like junk to prospective buyers. It is time to put away family photos, knick-knacks and anything that defines your personal life. A buyer must be able to visualize themselves in the home. If it is filled with your possessions, it might make it impossible for buyers to view the home clearly. Sometimes homes are filled with useless gadgets and bags filled with miscellaneous stuff. While these items might be your treasures, they could look like junk to others. Consider whether you want want to move all these items when your house is sold. Hire a hoarding specialist to help you clean out your excess stuff and create a visually pleasing environment for possible buyers.
Set the Stage
Once your home is clean and free of junk, your real estate broker might suggest staging it. Your old, dingy furnishings would be removed and replaced with rental furniture. Sometimes your nicest pieces are displayed along with general items rented from a staging company. The key is to make your home look the best it can be to appeal to potential buyers. The old furnishings you want to retain can be temporarily kept in storage. The cost of storage is well worth it if your home sells quickly or for more money than you expected.
The first step toward selling your home is to get it cleaned. Click here to learn more about cleaning and hoarding services to make your house more appealing. Once your house is clean and cleared out, buyers will be more willing to make an offer.
Most people will spend at least hundreds of hours watching TV, so if you’re thinking about getting a new one any time soon, it’s worthwhile to invest time and effort to make the best possible choice. Beyond that, good home aesthetics can definitely increase it’s value in the eyes of an appraiser or potential buyer – a decent TV and entertainment center will bring together a room in a very noticeable way.
TVs, like any other appliance, are a tricky thing. The average consumer only buys a replacement every few years or so, and will likely know little to nothing about the product. If you jump on Amazon right now you’ll literally see thousands of different TVs for sale, and unless you have decent prior knowledge on the subject, you won’t have an easy time figuring out not only which TVs are better than others, but also which of the best TVs will be optimal for your room specifically. Two TVs that are good in a general sense could perform very differently for you depending on the nature of the room you’ll put it in. This is going to be the main focus of this article, and we’ll get to it in a minute, but first I want to talk about how to shop for a TV.
User Reviews – the Good and Bad
User reviews are generally a good thing – no one will argue that there isn’t a strong positive correlation between aggregate user review score and product quality. However, don’t take this number as gospel, because it doesn’t tell you much else beyond whether the product is worth considering or not. Average user’s aren’t usually competent TV authorities, and they may be ranting or ragging on a product for the wrong reasons. You really ought to trust only authority review sites who are experts in the field, and really understand what makes a TV a good purchase, for example:
- Cnet.com – a widely popular tech review site
- Smarttvreviews4u.net – a review site that focuses specifically on comparing smart TVs, and reviewing smart platforms & features
- Digitaltrends.com – another tech review site that also has a focus on news
Sites like these will review individual TVs, as well as post informative articles on topics like how big a TV you should get based on the distance it is from the couch, or how to pick a TV that will do well in a room with a lot of sunlight. There’s not much else that needs to be said on that, but I just wanted to emphasize how important it is. Now lets focus more on what I know – how to make your TV work well in your room
Making a TV look Good in the Room – a Realtor’s Perspective
Insiders like me have known that subtle visual queues can make the difference between a buyer agreeing to an offer that’s tens of thousands of dollars more, or even an appraiser locking in an interest rate that’s .1% lower (it makes a BIG difference over the long run!). Here’s what you need to know:
Get the Right Size
Firstly, measure out dimensions beforehand if you plan on placing the TV into a fixture. Leave a Spare two inches at least for wiggle room and connectivity access. If you don’t have any fixed size limit, I say go as big as you can. a TV that’s too small is an eye sore to the room, honestly, and will definitely detract from the viewing experience. I’d say 6 inches of screen per foot of distance you’re couch is away from the TV is the bare minimum. That means if your chouch is ten feet away from the TV, you should go 60 inches or bigger.
Aesthetics Do Matter
Most modern flat screen TVs look pretty decent, but if you’re at all concerned with aesthetics like I am, a high end edge lit LED TV will look amazing in a room where a bulkier, low end TVs might not so much. This is particularly true if you plan to mount it. Some of the more budget TVs use bulkier components to save money, but they can kind of protrude awkwardly from the wall.
External Light is Really Important
Any objective review worth it’s salt will discuss how a TV performs when dealing with external light. Some TVs will look very bad and reflective, while others will barely look different than if the room were pitch black.
What TV do I like?
It’s easy to point at the super slick high end LED and say get that one, but I also understand that not everyone has thousands of dollars to blow. I recently helped set up a TV room for a buddy who was a bit tight on cash, and we ended up choosing the 50 inch Vizio M-Series – after researching for a bit we found that these TVs look great, have good picture quality, and are also very competitively priced.
When it comes to the value of a home, small changes can mean big bucks worth of difference in your favor, so think about that when you’re setting up long term fixtures and appliances.