I love meeting with Buyers for the first time and helping them create their top 5 most important considerations. Not only is it fun to listen to people talk about their dreams and their visions for their next home, but it is an important step that MUST happen before we go out looking at houses so we can create the right search criteria. Usually the list contains things like, number of bedrooms, bathrooms, a specific area, amount of square feet, etc. But then there are times I get things that are subjective like: charming, a great neighborhood, sunny. And that creates a whole new conversation. Let's talk about a SUNNY home...
For Madison Sellers - IMPORTANT!
Sunny. Who doesn't dream of a sunny, warm home? Look around your home, go through each room with your Buyer's hat on. I know it might be the room where your youngest child learned to walk, but you need to take off your homeowner hat and get to work. You want to sell your Madison house right! You might need to address the window coverings. Here are some things I've learned:
- If you have blinds that are old and dusty you have two choices, 1) take them down and donate them or 2) clean them and pull them all the way to the top so no one can see them. Don't leave your blinds closed during showings.
- Get rid of horizontal shades. They rarely do anything for the aesthesis of a room and are old and outdated.
- Use curtains to: add color or neutralize a room, add style and update a room, give the room personality.
For Madison Buyers - IMPORTANT!
Sunny. Who doesn't dream of a sunny, warm home? Your living room bathed in natural light. All the lights are off because the sun in pouring in. Sounds dreamy? Yes, very dreamy on a crisp November afternoon. Not so much if it is July, 100 degrees outside and your air conditioner is working overtime. You are buying a home that not only provides shelter for you and your family (and just for that we are grateful) but the reality of living in a 1st world country is that our home also becomes an extension of who we are, a safe place to come home to each day. Our home represents us. Give it style (unless of course you don't have style, which I hardly believe).
You can MAKE IT EFFICIENT! You have the ability to spend a little time making tweaks to your home that will save you a lot each month on your energy bills. Here are some more things that I've learned:
- Cellular shades are amazing for keeping the cold air out in the winter and the bright sun from overheating your home in the summer. Replace vertical or horizontal blinds with cellular shades. For living areas and kitchens I prefer the light shades so when you need privacy and when the sun is too hot, you can close your shades and the sunlight can still provide excellent natural light.
- Natural light means you can turn off your lamps and energy sucking overhead lights!
- Bedrooms can either go with the lighter shades if you like the sunlight to wake you each morning, or there are room darkening shades that work wonders for keeping your upstairs rooms cooler during hot summer days.
Create Energy Saving Habits
Summer habits: before you leave in the morning go through each room and close your shades and curtains. It will seem like you are leaving your home dark and depressing but this habit will keep your home as cool as possible throughout the day. Your air conditioner should be programmed through a programmable thermostat so you don't need to remember to turn the a/c down each morning.
Winter habits: Open your shades and curtains every morning and let the sun in for natural heating. At night, close all shades and curtains to keep the cold air out.
Be nice to yourself and remember that it takes a while to create a habit and it won't happen overnight. Do you unplug your cell phone charger every morning when you leave the house? Keeping chargers plugged in when not in use wastes a lot of unnecessary energy. But when you commit to creating that habit let me warn you (because it happened to me more than once) you will forget that it is unplugged at the end of the day and you will connect your phone but forget that the charger isn't in the outlet. The next day you will have a dead phone. Incredibly annoying. I promise you, it won't happen many times after that.
Do you need shades and curtains? Yes. Well no, of course not. We only *need* shelter, food, water and love. But you may want them and they will serve the purpose of saving energy, adding personality to your home and they will help you in staging your home if you are trying to sell it. If this overwhelms you, feel free to contact us to help.