Embrace the sweet memories and smile

“I believe that the objects that bring us pleasure and comfort, that make us feel everything’s all right in the world, have their origins in the styles and sensibilities we were exposed to growing up.” — Nate Berkus

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Surround yourself with your favorite things

Home is where we surround ourselves with things that we love, including our favorite colors. Your home should tell the story of who you are. The best interiors are never instant, but develop over time.

Whether it is for a redesign, which is using what you already own, or for staging purposes when time to sell, I work with clients who have items they love hiding in closets and basements. Incorporate what you love into your decorating, and display it authentically. These are the things that have special meaning to you. Or if you have too much stuff, scale back so you can see what you love.

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Sweat equity + staging magic = sold

A big misconception is that staging is expensive. Depending on the condition of the home and its contents, staging can be quite affordable with a huge return on investment.

Do not remodel your home to sell. Do it for you to enjoy while living in it. There are cost-effective things to do to refresh your home. Replacing countertops with granite in a dated kitchen or bath is not one of them. Saving my clients from overspending by not over-prepping sells their home.

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Happy spring clean out: De-clutter, help community

Finally, spring! Besides spring-cleaning, this is a good time to get rid of anything that is no longer serving you. Many organizations have fundraising yard sales. Or start gathering up goodies for your own. Sort your stuff into piles: trash/donate/sell.

On the flip side, watch for local yard and garages sales to purchase “new-to-your-home” items. You never know what you might find, and the price can be remarkably lower than buying new. Look for Facebook online yard, too. Just as you are looking to change the look in your home, someone else is, as well.

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As Seen on TV “HGTV’s House Hunters!”

Laurel Lustgarten of Better Homes and Gardens Rand Realty was recently selected to film an episode of House Hunters for HGTV, after a multi-stage audition process.

The episode followed Lustgarten and her buyers, Daphne Garcia and Rudy Rodriguez, during their home search in the Goshen and Middletown area. Three properties that were listed for sale at the time were toured, as well as various locations in Orange County. The House Hunters episode is set to air at 3:30 p.m., Feb. 21 on HGTV. Look for reruns to air titled, “Moving Up in New York State”.

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Tips for a successful office makeover

Kathleen Day, chief organization officer at LifeSmith University, loves working with business owners.

“They give their heart, soul and the majority of their time to their companies. Sometimes the environment and the schedule get the short end of the stick. My intention with an office makeover is to create an immediate difference in those two areas, in a way that the clients can embrace, and most importantly, maintain,” says Day.

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Instead of tossing unwanted items, try upcycling

My mission this year is to really focus on getting rid of things I no longer need, with the possibility of downsizing in the future. It is never too early to start. This week I went into the storage area of my basement and almost had an anxiety attack. My intention was to start the purging process, but I got very overwhelmed. Read more

Improve your world with some favorite lifehacks

The definition of a lifehack is a strategy or technique adopted in order to manage one’s time and daily activities in a more efficient way.

The appeal factor for me is any lifehack that requires a minimal amount of time, energy and financial investment. Here are two of my favorites lifehacks that truly have instantly improved my quality of life.

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Things you should be doing to sell home

Keep these overlooked items in mind when selling your home.

Curb appeal

“Curb appeal is super important!,” says Janis Borgueta of Key Properties. “It starts with the buyers falling in love with the home before they even walk into the front door. If you can’t get them inside, then no sale happens. How does a home welcome a buyer? Clean up the yard is the first step. Paint if you have to, or power wash vinyl siding. Get rid of the weeds, and trim the trees and the bushes. Simple things like a clean welcome mat and a doorbell that works can say … ‘I’m home.’”

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