So you’ve found the perfect home, but there’s just one problem: the kitchen isn’t as big as you’d like it to be. At first glance, a smaller kitchen might seem like a deal-breaker, especially if you love to cook.
With a few space-saving design tricks, though, you’ll have all the space you need and then some. It’s all about making the most of what you’ve got. Here’s how you can turn even the smallest kitchen into an efficient cooking and dining space.
Fill Up The Walls: There’s Ample Storage All Around You
Walls are a surprisingly underused surface area in most kitchens. From spice racks to towel racks to magnetic knife boards, walls can offer a wealth of space options. Ditch the bowl fruit painting and throw up some hooks and shelves.
Not only will everything you need be within reach, you’ll open up more space in your cabinets and on your counters. For the gadget obsessed, rack storage will give you the chance to show off your nifty kitchen gadgets.
Repurpose Your Corners with Shelving And Other Amenities
In a small kitchen, sufficient counter space can be hard to come by. While knife blocks and spices racks tend to encroach on what little space is available, not all space saving designs are about reclaiming lost space. Sometimes it’s about repurposing forgotten spaces like corners.
Most homeowners dismiss the corners of their kitchens, thinking the space is too awkwardly shaped to be of any real use. Take advantage of corners by installing clever storage like a lazy Susan system for under the countertop, built-in shelving for above the counter, or for a really creative update, dedicate the corner to an invaluable feature like the kitchen sink.
Hang Your Pots and Pans
Pots are bulky and often difficult to store without taking up several cabinets. A circular pot rack mounted to the ceiling allows you to take advantage of the height of your kitchen in the open space right above your head. In fact, pot racks can be used to store all kinds of cookware and cooking utensils that are too cumbersome to store in drawers, like ladles and colanders.
Placing a rack in the empty space above an island or by the stove can provide excellent storage space and easy accessibility. Ceiling and wall-mounted pot racks often have hooks to hang your cookware from, so make sure you mount yours in a place that doesn’t force visitors to navigate an aerial obstacle course just to make it to the sink.
Invest In A Rolling Tea Trolley
Kitchens with very limited counter space can gain an extra work area as well as storage space with a tea trolley. A mobile work surface means to you can roll it anywhere in your kitchen to do your dicing and slicing, and then store it away when you’re done. Add multiple shelves to the trolley to create even more storage.
There’s no need to be discouraged by a cozy kitchen. Not only can these space saving tricks help you gain extra space, they can also give you the chance to explore new ways to express your personal style.
For more advice on homeownership and making the most of your home’s various features, or to find your next home, contact a real estate professional today!
Are you working on decorating your home? Perhaps you want to spruce up your decor, but you aren’t sure where to start. Where can you find inspiration for your home decor, besides the obvious home decor magazines and websites?
Here are some fun and creative ideas that will inspire you when designing your decor:
The next time you go on a vacation, you can find decor inspiration at your hotel. Most hotel rooms in mid-range to luxury hotels have beautiful, comforting and understated designs, so take photos if you find something that you like.
Perhaps you can invest in plush throw pillows for your bed, a sleek bed table lamp or thick white towels for your bathroom to recreate the look of a luxury hotel.
Take a walk around your local art gallery and see if you can find some inspiration there. Perhaps the harmonious colors of Impressionist paintings or the angular shapes of Cubism will inspire you to add visual interest to your decor.
You might not be able to afford an original Picasso or Monet, but you can always order prints of your favourite artists online and add art to your home on a budget.
The Beauty Of Nature
Another place to find beauty and inspiration is from Mother Nature herself. Take a walk outside in the country and take some photos of what you encounter.
Perhaps you will be inspired to paint your walls a shade of green just like the spring leaves, or create a centrepiece for your table made from pinecones.
You can also find inspiration from the colors, textures and patterns that are popular in the world of fashion design. Look at magazines, fashion shows and advertisements to see what colors and styles are popular at the moment.
If you love the look of a certain item of clothing, think about how you can incorporate that color, texture or pattern into your decor.
If you have an open mind, you can find inspiration for your home decor all around you. These are just a few ideas to get you started, but of course there are many other sources of inspiration out there.
For more info and tips regarding your home, contact your trusted real estate profesional.
Moving can be a stressful and exciting process, and when moving with pets, your furry friend most certainly feels the stress and excitement as well.
Pets don’t always respond well to a new environment, so it’s important to do whatever you can to ease your pet into your new house.
Settling yourself and your pet into your new home may take time, but you can make it a smoother process by doing some research and planning. Here’s how you can create a stress-free transition for your beloved pooch or kitty.
Where To Put The Pet During The Move
During the actual move itself, it is best for your dog or cat if you can get them away from the action altogether. Ideally, it’s best if a neighbor or family member that your pet is familiar with can take the pet for the day.
For long haul moves, some pet owners opt to take their dog or cat to a kennel for a few days to help them avoid the stress of the moving atmosphere.
A slow and steady packing of boxes will also indicate a change to your pet, and if done over a longer period of time, can help them prepare for the upcoming change of scenery.
The Interior Introduction: Getting Your Pet Settled
Before the actual move of all the boxes, it might be a good idea to take your pet’s belongings to the new house first. Having some of their familiar items, such as toys, a kennel, and blankets, can help to ease the process of settling into the new home.
You may also want to dedicate a room or part of the house as your pet’s sanctuary, where they can feel safe and secure while boxes and pieces of furniture are being moved into the new home. Ensure that you don’t switch your pet’s food too much around the time of the move, as this can exacerbate the effects of the change.
Some pet owners have found it effective to wait until the new house is unpacked and settled before introducing their pets to the home. This way, the pet can becoming acquainted with the new atmosphere without the chaos of movers, piled up boxes, and a stressed-out, scrambled owner! If using this method, you can keep your pet at the kennel of family member’s house until you are settled in.
The Surroundings: Exploring The New Neighborhood
If you have a dog, it is just as important to get him acquainted with the new neighborhood as it is to get him acquainted with the home itself. This is something you can also do well before the move; when preparing for a move, drive your dog over to your new neighborhood and let him explore where his new home will be.
This way, when you arrive to introduce your dog to the home itself, he will already be familiar with the area, thereby reducing the stress of the new atmosphere in the house.
Moving is no easy feat, and it’s even more complicated when pets are involved. By following some of these simple steps and planning ahead, you can achieve a move that involves much less stress.
Avoid the furry friend blues and introduce your pet to its new home in a gentle way. For more great moving tips, or to find the home that’s right for you, contact a professional realtor today.
Last week’s economic news included construction spending and the CoreLogic Home Price Index for January. Reports for February included ADP Employment, Non-Farm Payrolls and national unemployment data.
The Federal Reserve’s Beige Book report and weekly reports on mortgage rates and new unemployment claims rounded out the week’s economic news.
Highlights for last week include:
Consumer spending gained 0.40 percent for January. The expected reading was 0.20 percent and the reading for December was flat.
The Commerce Department reported that increased spending was less an indicator of consumer discretionary spending than an indicator of high utility costs caused by severe winter weather.
Construction spending ticked upward in January with gain of 0.10 percent as compared to expectations of -0.40 percent and the prior month’s reading of 0.10 percent.
January’s reading translates to a seasonally adjusted annual figure of $943.1 billion.
Federal Reserve: Winter Weather Obscures Accurate Economic Outlook
According to the Fed’s Beige Book report, much of the U.S. economy was impacted by severe winter weather. The report is based on anecdotal information provided by business contacts and industry leaders throughout the 12 regions of the U.S. Federal Reserve System.
Eight regions reported slow economic growth. Janet Yellen, chairwoman of the Fed, noted that winter weather was not expected to alter the Fed’s plan to continue reducing its asset purchases under its quantitative easing program. She also said that it may be months before accurate economic readings can be obtained in the aftermath of winter weather conditions.
Freddie Mac’s Primary Mortgage Market Survey brought good news on Thursday as mortgage rates fell across the board and discount points were also lower in most cases.
Average mortgage rates were down nine basis points for a 30-year fixed rate mortgage at 4.28 percent. The average rate for a 15-year fixed rate mortgage was 3.32 percent, a decrease of seven basis points.
The rate for a 5/1 adjustable rate mortgage was 3.03 percent, down by two basis points from the prior week. Discount points were unchanged for 30-year fixed rate mortgages at 0.70 percent, but dropped to 0.50 percent for 15-year fixed rate mortgages and 0.40 percent for 5/1 adjustable rate mortgages.
Employment Sector: Surprise Results
The ADP payroll report showed a reading of 139,000 jobs added in February as compared to the prior month’s 127,000 jobs. ADP tracks private sector jobs. The BLS released its Non-Farm Payrolls report for February, which also surpassed expectations.
175,000 jobs were added against expectations of 140,000 jobs added and January’s reading of 129,000 jobs added. The national unemployment rate rose to 6.70 percent against an expected drop to 6.50 percent from January’s reading of 6.60 percent. Once again, foul weather was seen as a major influence.
What‘s Ahead This Week
This week’s economic news schedule is relatively light with no releases set for today.
Mortgage rates will be released by Freddie Mac on Thursday, along with weekly jobless claims. Retail sales and the University of Michigan consumer sentiment index round out next week’s schedule.