Modern Living

Modern Living

Home and real estate topics discussed in detail

How To Turn Your Attic Into Livable Space

One renovation project that has a sizable return on investment is increasing your living space. While you may not be able to expand outward, you may have additional space under your nose without even realizing it. If you are looking to convert your attic from storage to livable space, here are a few things you need to keep in mind.


Many attics were built with storage in mind, and therefore, were not structured for living. If you want it to be a comfortable space, you need spray foam insulation Maryland to ensure that your heating and cooling stay where it should be. You won’t want to create a room where you aren’t protected from the elements.

Codes and Regulations

Just as you do for any other construction project, you need to know the codes and regulations to create a safe and livable area. Ensuring that there is a proper egress, support to bear the weight of people moving around and a sufficient height will all be important parts of the process. If your room is not up to code, this can result in exorbitant expenses down the line and this can even make the home harder to sell when it comes to that time.

Consider its New Purpose

If you are converting your attic, make sure to determine its purpose. For example, if you want to turn this area into a playroom, there are safety precautions that you will need to consider and you will want to consider how noise travels throughout the home from the attic. There are plenty of factors that you will want to evaluate depending on the purpose of the room before you start constructing and designing the space.

Attics are often unused space with vast potential. While you will likely need to spend some time, money and energy on turning this space into your dream room, there are endless possibilities. Regardless of whether you always wanted a reading nook, a playroom or a study, with just a bit of planning and creative thinking, you can turn your boring old attic into something beautiful.

The Essential Steps To Follow When Buying A House

Whether you’re buying your first, second, or tenth house, the process of purchasing a house can be tedious. You may feel as though thousands of procedures are standing in the way of occupying your new home. However, buying a house doesn’t need to be overwhelming.

According to research by the National Association of Realtors, 5.34 million existing homes were sold in the US in 2019 alone. With so many people selling homes, you need a buying plan to complete your purchase successfully.

Here are the steps you can follow to buy a house from real estate agents such as

  1. Research and Save Money For Downpayment

One of the biggest mistakes you don’t want to make is to venture into home buying without adequately researching and preparing. The internet has numerous sources where you can find information regarding real estate. According to a 2018 report, 93% of home buyers said they used online websites to search for a home. If, for example, you want to buy a foreclosure, doing a simple internet search on buying foreclosures will give you many results that can help you decide which one is the best fit for you.

Apart from researching, you also need to save money for a down payment and other expenses that may be required to seal the deal. Having a saving plan in place may save you from the stress of trying to raise money to buy your house at the last minute. It will also help you formulate a budget for a home you can afford to pay.

  1. Find Out Your Credit Score and History

You need to know your credit score and history, even if you do not intend to buy a house. Your credit score will determine your ability to get financing to purchase a home. If you seek a loan, your mortgage lender will review your credit card’s history. However, understanding your credit score may give you an idea of the amount you can borrow and help you plan. Most mortgage lenders need a minimum credit score of 620 to provide a borrower with a loan.

You can find your credit score information on the internet. Some sites will even give you the total number of credit accounts, recent inquiries, and other important information you need to have your overall credit picture.

It would be best if you had a good credit score to be eligible for a mortgage. Your score will also impact the interest that you’ll get. If you have a mortgage interest of 800, you’re likely going to have a better interest rate than a person who has a score of 640.

  1. Search For A Local Real Estate Agent

To ensure you succeed in buying your dream house, you need to hire a real estate agent. An agent will make the process simple, help you secure financing, negotiate for the best terms, and advise you through the entire buying process.

Interviewing realtors before hiring them can help you to get an experienced one. To conduct an interview, you need to know the right questions to ask. Some of those questions may include;

  1. The number of buyers he has worked with.
  2. The methods of communication he prefers.

iii. Whether he works as a real estate agent full time or part-time

  1. Their recent testimonials
  2. Whether they have clients they’ve worked for who would recommend their services.

Skipping such a vital interview may result in hiring an inexperienced agent. That may cost you your time and money and give you a lot of stress. You want to hire a realtor who’s honest, professional, communicates frequently, and has a proven track record of exceptional service.

  1. Get Pre-Approved

After finding an agent, the next thing you want to do is to get pre-approved by a local mortgage lender. Hiring a local mortgage lender is vital because they have information about the local real estate market and a better understanding of the buying process. Let your real estate agent help you secure a pre-approval as it may determine whether you’ll get your dream house or not, especially if there’s a multiple offer situation.

Your real estate agent is the right person that can help you find a reputable mortgage lender because they have a vast professional network. Even as your agent enables you to find a mortgage lender, you need to know the questions to ask if they can help you solve your financial problems. That’ll help you hire the right company to finance your home buying process to the end. It’ll also enable you to work with a company that you feel comfortable to consult with.

  1. Shop and Visit Houses On Sale

After going through the first four steps, you can now begin the exciting phase of searching for your dream house. The internet has made shopping for houses simpler because it has a lot of information concerning various types of homes.

But even as you research for your dream house, you need to be careful with the kind of information you interact with. Not all the information on the internet about homes is reliable. That’s why you may need the guidance of your real estate agent.

A realtor will help you identify the perfect home quickly because he knows the best websites with multiple listing services. As he helps you find one that suits your needs, ensure you have a checklist. The checklist may have the things you need in a home, such as the number of bedrooms, new HVAC systems, and solid mechanics. Carry your list with you as you visit the homes and tick it appropriately. If you fail to find your perfect house, move on to the next.

  1. Make an Offer On The House and Finalize The Buying Process

After finding your perfect house, you need to make a buying offer. The process may be simple though it involves a lot of decisions. If you’re not sure about the house’s price, you can ask your realtor to give you the comparative market analysis of homes within your locality. That can help you know the amount to offer.

If your offer is accepted, you’ll be required to complete any inspections required by the offer, formal mortgage application, and bank appraisal. After that, you’ll sign a few documents to finalize the buying of your new home. If you’re buying a house in a state that requires attorneys to handle closings, ensure you contact your attorney. Once you’ve signed the documents, you’ll get your keys.

The Bottom-line

Buying a house shouldn’t be a stressful process. If you follow these simple steps, the experience may be smooth for you. Just ensure you get an excellent real estate agent because he will be responsible for taking you through most of those steps.


How to Organize a Comfortable Work Zone in the Kitchen

The answer to making the most useful kitchen work zone layout is to consider who will be using the kitchen zones, and how. After that, you can customize it to your own needs.

Generally speaking, there are 3 main kitchen zones in every household: cooking zone, cleaning zone, and food preparation zone. The role of every zone is to establish the placed where necessary equipment will be located, and where your tools will be stored, used for the type of work done in that area.

What do you need to do to create work zones in the kitchen:

  • Decide which tools are needed to do every type of task.
  • Identify which types of work will be done in each area.
  • Designate the kitchen zones in the areas where you will do the tasks.

Work zone space should be equipped with maximum comfort so that everything you need is at hand and you do not have to make unnecessary movements. Modern designers offer many design options for the work area, thanks to which you can make the interior not only functional but also stylish. For the floor, the best option is to have foam-filled washable rugs made instead of the high-pile ones.

Whatever is the size of the kitchen, it is important to observe the “triangle principle”, i.e. visual combination of the stove, sink, and refrigerator, the distance between which should not exceed 1.5 meters. This will speed up the cooking process and will have everything you need close at hand.

The process of cooking and eating food itself can be represented as a sequence of certain actions. And according to this logic, the kitchen space itself should be divided into a working, dining area, and a walk-through area free of furniture.

We would also advise creating an extra guest zone. This is a place where your family and friends can socialize while the foods are cooked, or even help you in the process.

Kitchens that have a window in the working area look most impressive. You can place a countertop on the lace of the window sill, which will become the work surface or serve as a place for a snack. If you modify it into a bar counter, it will be wise to remove the bottom shelf to make room for your legs for comfortable seating. Instead of using bar stools, it is better to purchase stools that slide easily under the countertop and do not take up much space.

Tips to Decorate Your 1BR Apartment

Moving is a lot of work. It’s also fun when you get to put your creativity to use decorating your space. You can show your style in everything from window treatments to wall art as well as your furniture and accessories.

If you’re considering renting an east side Manhattan 1 bedroom apartment, here are some essential tips to help you to decorate your new home.

Start With Window Treatments

Beautiful flowy fabric adds an elegant touch to windows, whether your apartment has high ceilings and tall windows or smaller windows that you want to appear bigger. You can take advantage of light-colored and light-weight fabrics to enlarge and brighten the space. It’s a good rule of thumb to buy long curtains because you can always hem them if needed.

Let There Be Light

It’s a good idea to have a variety of lighting options as well. A combination of floor lamps and table lamps not only help brighten the room, but they can also add a touch of elegance and enhance the rest of your décor. No matter your style, you can find an array of lighting possibilities that will make your east side Manhattan 1 bedroom apartment feel like home.

Invest in Some Greenery

When you live in the city, potted plants and flowers add texture and color to your décor and help keep you connected to nature. Whether it’s a Spider Plant, Aloe Vera, a Prayer Plant, or Succulents, house plants help keep the air fresh too.

Urban Chic and City Sophistication

You’ve got a great start already with gorgeous window treatments and houseplants that give your home warmth and style. Next, think about the kind of art that should decorate those bare walls. An oversized painting can act as a focal point in your main living area.

Combine wall art with other accessories and art objects to add a touch of luxury. An area rug with a black and white zebra pattern is gorgeous, with chrome and glass end tables and abstract art. Furnish the room with a white leather couch and vintage silk throw pillows to glam it up.

4 Ways to Improve Your Finances

Money is a crucial part of daily life, and anything you can do to stretch each dollar and cent is a lifesaver. These tips can help you extend the value of your money to make ends meet.

Shop Secondhand

With all of the many expenses one has to take care of, finding ways to cut costs is always appreciated. Buying the items you need from thrift stores can help immensely, and you can often find some unique and interesting items you won’t find anywhere else. You can also search for something like “portable AC unit south Florida” to find a pre-owned version of a costly product you need from a local individual, potentially saving hundreds of dollars in the process.

Buy Off Brand Products

Along the same lines, you can save quite a bit of money by buying the off brand versions of the groceries you need. When buying name brand products, you’re often paying for little more than the prestige of the name, and off brand equivalents are often nearly identical at just a fraction of the cost. It may take some trial and error to find where you can and can’t afford to bring in off brand substitutes. For example, off brand cola can’t quite match the secretive flavor of Coca-Cola. In most cases, however, you may not even notice the differences between off brand products and the real thing.

Reduce Unnecessary Spending

While you can shave off some of the cost of the essentials like food and drink, you can also save a bunch of money by reigning in recreational spending. Hobbies are fine, and they’re an important part of maintaining your mental health, but indulging too much in unnecessary spending is detrimental to your ability to make sound financial decisions in the long run. You can account for this by creating a budget and allotting yourself a set amount of recreational money each month.

Build a Budget

Budgeting can do more for you than simply limit your frivolous spending. For example, a budget can help you know just how much you’re spending in order to know when and where you can trim the fat in order to save. You can also set a comfortable amount of money from each paycheck to go into savings, ensuring that your account is constantly growing. Taking the time and putting in the work to create an outline of your spending is one of the most valuable tools for improving your financial situation.

Saving money is definitely tricky, but you can work toward bettering your situation with these tips.

Luxury Real Estate in France

Luxurу rеаl еѕtаtе in Frаnсе such as luxury real estate cannes іѕ vеrу muсh ѕоught аftеr as іt hаѕ соntіnuеd tо bе for a grеаt number оf years. Stunning аrсhіtесturе, a wаrm сlіmаtе, hospitable and warm hеаrtеd реорlе hаvе attracted buуеrѕ and іnvеѕtоrѕ tо France fоr decades. Bоth thе offerings of rural Frаnсе with its delightful homes аnd ѕtunnіng ѕсеnеrу as wеll аѕ thе funkу аnd mоdеrn Parisian араrtmеntѕ аttrасt international attention аnd іnvеѕtоrѕ from асrоѕѕ thе glоbе.

Thеrе аrе a lаrgе variety оf luxurу Frеnсh properties like luxury real estate french riviera available currently throughout thе соuntrу іnсludіng vineyards, villas, castles, chateaux, fаrmhоuѕеѕ, wаtеrfrоnt properties, араrtmеntѕ, water mіllѕ, рrореrtіеѕ bу the lаkе, rеѕtаurаntѕ аnd other properties wіth buѕіnеѕѕ орроrtunіtіеѕ, hotels, B&B, agricultural lаnd, town houses, manor houses and plenty of оthеr соuntrу homes. Thаt is definitely ԛuіtе a lіѕt. So whаtеvеr you are ѕеаrсhіng for, whether іt іѕ quite ѕіmрlу fоr leisure, rеtіrеmеnt, a second home, іnvеѕtmеnt оr іndееd business, іt іѕ аn absolute сеrtаіntу thаt France will bе able tо оff you thе реrfесt рrореrtу fоr уоur needs.

France hаѕ аlwауѕ bееn a рорulаr choice fоr luxurу rеаl еѕtаtе. Frеnсh nоblе аrсhіtесturе іѕ wоrld rеnоwnеd аnd with thе соuntrуѕіdе lіttеrеd with саѕtlеѕ, lаrgе соuntrу houses аnd chateaux, there are plenty оf luxury рrореrtіеѕ аvаіlаblе bоth оf ѕtunnіng design аnd rісh hіѕtоrу. If a рrоjесt is whаt уоu аrе аftеr tо gеt your tееth ѕtuсk into thеn Frаnсе wіll сеrtаіnlу be аblе to offer уоu ѕоmеthіng suitable аѕ there is рlеntу оf ѕсоре fоr this. Thеrе аrе many rеmаrkаblе рrореrtіеѕ іnсludіng Chаtеаux that are lіtеrаllу сrumblіng duе to neglect. Wіth рlеntу оf сhаrm аnd that unmistakable French architecture, whу not invest іn a ріесе оf hіѕtоrу and with a little TLC simply rеnоvаtе уоur vеrу own саѕtlе bасk tо іtѕ former glоrу. You tоо could have a bеаutіfullу rеѕtоrеd home with a large garden, glіѕtеnіng рооl аnd mоuth wаtеrіng views across the Frеnсh соuntrуѕіdе.

10 Tips for Home Improvements 

Either you live in a self-built well-constructed home or have brought a house built by someone else, you will always face some wear and tear in your home. For improving them, you can not call for a technician every time because you better handle some small household work for saving yourself from oversized budget laborer charges and you can improve the problem according to your needs.

So, we are stacking up the top 10 products required for your DIY ambitions.

  • Hand Tool Set 

Whenever you move to a new house, you need to make many arrangements in the place. So, if you have a hand toolset, having screwdrivers, measuring tapes, etc. It will help you in every aspect of your home DIYs.

  • Drill Bits

If you think of drilling the screws into your wall, you can not use directly drill them because it harms the wall. You need some drill bits for drilling the screws. The bits must be of a standard size of screw to ease your process.

  • Caulk Gun

You notice a lot of cracks that need to be fixed with some solution at your home. Now it is not easy to just fill that crack with the tubes; that is why you need a caulk gun. You can easily fit the tube filled with fixing material in this gun and apply them.

  • Nail Gun

A nail gun is a tool that will help you fix nails into your wall and other wooden objects. It is a replacement for hitting the hammer on the nail as it is safe and efficient.

  • Miter Saw

 Miter Saw is a fancy upgrade for the old days, saw, which has a massive blade. These are handy saws with a sharp blade for your regular household work of carpentry.

  • Cordless Power Drill & Screwdriver Set

A drilling machine is an essential tool for your DIY ambitions. If you want to hand anything on your wall, you need to fit screws into the wall. For fitting the screws, a drill is required at your home. You have to take care that the drill you buy should be cordless like cordless drills powered by 18650 batteries like Samsung 25r or LG hg2. It has no wired connection and works on the batteries, which will be comfortable for your workings.

  • Stud Finder

Whenever you think of hanging a heavy object on the wall, you need to find the wall’s center called stud to hang that object. If you hang the item anywhere else instead of a stud, you will find that either the object will fall or tilted. That is why you need a stud finder.

  • A Real Level

A level is an indoor tool; that serves the purpose of indoor leveling. Whenever you build a shelf or a rack with a moré than 1 level, you need a leveler to check whether all the parts in the frame have been built in a level. It will be a perfect tool for all your small household objects of upto six feet. Above 6 feet, you need to buy another advanced tool.

  • Multitool

It has made its space on the list because of various varieties of tools present in this kit. You can convert these mini handtools to anything for serving your DIY project needs. You only have to attach the pieces according to the operating manual and start working.

  • Voltage Tester

A voltage tester is a device used to check whether the current is flowing in the wire or not. If the current is flowing, then what is the voltage of the current flowing through these wires. It is a handy mini device with electric cables, circuit breakers, sockets, and switches. The end of the test has some metal sensors touched with the wires that sense the voltage.

These are the top ten essential tools for your home improvements, which will help you in your daily life.