8 Easy, Frugal Ways to Welcome Fall Into Your Home

haybaleIt’s official – fall is here! Although the weather still feels summery for the moment, we will soon be experiencing cooler temperatures, changing colors in the flora around us, and the crunch of fallen leaves under our feet. Autumn is an undeniably beautiful season, especially here in the Metro St. Louis region. But why just enjoy the season outside when you can welcome elements of autumn into your home?!

Here are 8 easy ways you can welcome fall into your home without breaking the bank!

Switch Out the Bed Linens – As soon as the nighttime temperatures dip and remain cool, it’s time to ditch the summery coverlet and break out the cozy comforter or duvet! Comforters are perfect for snuggling in when the weather turns colder. Don’t forget to rotate your mattress and wash or replace any older pillows!

Bring the Outdoors In – Now it’s time to go outside and gather a few choice items from Mother Nature to bring into your home! Decorate with twigs, dried flowers, gourds, fall leaves, and pinecones. Of course, it just isn’t fall without a few pumpkins in the mix as well! You can decorate your mantel with these items or put them in a glass bowl or a cornucopia.

Add Some Chunky Blankets – Strategically placing a chunky knit blanket or faux fur blanket on your sofas or chairs instantly adds an air of coziness to your space. While you’re at it, switch out the light, summery pillows for heavier, plush pillows.

Get Your Fireplace Ready – Before you fire up your fireplace for the season, make sure you get it cleaned and inspected by a professional! Arrange some logs and kindling nearby for easy access and to add a bit of warmth. You can also arrange a few pumpkins by the fireplace to give it that fall feel!

Dress Up the Dining Room Table – Spruce up your table with some table linens or fabrics in warm fall colors! We’re thinking dark, rich fabrics in shades of red, orange, and gold. Dark shades of purple can also work well as an accent!

Add Fall-Scented Candles – Pick out a few of your favorite autumnal scents and light them on the first cool afternoon for a cozy feeling in your home! Try scents like pumpkin, apple pie, or cinnamon. These will work perfectly in your living room and kitchen!

Treat Yourself to a Few Fall Treats – With the change of season, take some time out to treat yourself to a few autumnal goodies like a fresh selection of tea or hot chocolate mixes and maybe a new thermal mug. If you don’t have one already, make yourself a tea or hot chocolate station so you can enjoy your favorite fall beverage whenever the urge strikes. Don’t forget to complete the station with all of your favorite flavors, sugar, and marshmallows!

Bake Your Favorite Fall Treat – Bring the scents of fall into your home by baking and enjoying your favorite fall treat! Heat up the oven and create some delicious cinnamon rolls, pumpkin bread, or caramel apple cobbler to enjoy. Better yet, invite some friends over and enjoy these desserts together!

How do you welcome fall into your home? Tell us in the comments below or on Facebook! Better yet, show us how you decorate for the season on our Facebook page! We love seeing our fans and clients get creative!

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5 Essential Tasks to Help Prep Your Garden for Fall and Winter Now

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It might still feel like summer out there, but fall and winter will be here before you know it. When it comes to our gardens and flowerbeds, it’s important to think ahead and prepare for the upcoming seasons. So don’t put those gardening tools away just yet! Here are 5 important tasks you should do in your garden to prepare it for the colder months.

Gather Crops and Destroy Debris – Have you planted any veggies in your garden this year? If so, now is the time to gather your tomatoes and squash and dig up your potatoes. If you have fruit trees, be sure to gather any fallen fruit since this will keep wasps to a minimum and limit the spread of disease. Speaking of disease, take steps to prevent it by removing all plant parts from your garden, including leafy materials and pieces of the vegetables. Double-bag those parts and put them out with the garbage. This will help stop spores from reproducing and ruining your plants next year!

Tidy Up – Fall is the perfect time to clean up any foliage from your roses, peonies, and other plants that could have diseased foliage. Bag up those dead and diseased parts and put it out with the garbage as well. If you have spring-blooming plants or late bloomers, we suggest dividing them for next year. These include spring bloomers like irises, dianthus, brunnera, laminum, and primrose and late bloomers like black-eyed Susans, geraniums, hostas, daylilies, coneflowers, and yarrows.

Rake and Break Down Leaves – Your leaves don’t have to go out with the trash! Instead, rake them up, bag them, and let them break down over the winter. If you’d like to use them sooner, shred them with a lawnmower or with a leaf blower set on reverse and rake them into your flower gardens. These leaves will provide rich nutrients for next year’s flowers and plants.

Map Out a Crop Rotation – While you’re enjoying your cup of hot chocolate or hot tea indoors, take the time now to plan out your veggie crop rotation chart. Planting your veggies in different spots can help reduce the risk of disease during the next growing season, so be sure to plan ahead!

Plant Trees, Shrubs, and Perennials – It might seem counterintuitive to plant anything when the weather starts to get colder, but these plants can grow their root system quite well during this time. That’s because the weather is cooler and more cooperative with plentiful rain and soil that isn’t stressed out from extreme summertime conditions. So if you want to see some new shrubs and trees take root and grow in your yard, go ahead and plant them now!

What do you do to prepare your gardens and flowerbeds for the impending cold weather? Tell us in the comments below or on our Facebook page!

Love Your Living Room With These 8 Intriguing Color Schemes!

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Are you bored of your tired living room colors? Do you feel unrested or uninspired whenever you enter the room? This special space is not only the first room that your guests will typically enter, but it is also a sanctuary for you to unwind in at the end of your busy day.

Fall in love with your living room all over again! Check out these 8 unique paint color combinations and choose a look that’s right for your space:

Complementary Vibrance: Cornflower, Tangerine, and White – You might think that blue and orange, while complementary, can be a bit blinding, but these lighter shades are soft enough to make any space cheerful and bright! Use shades of white as your main color and sprinkle in these soft hues of orange and blue in your accessories, throws, and pillows.

Warm and Traditional: Chartreuse, Peachy Yellow, and Oatmeal – Is your style more traditional? Give it a fresh new update with this warm color scheme! Peachy yellow makes a fun and infallible alternative to boring beige, and chartreuse is the perfect shade of green to pepper in as accent pieces. Tie it all together with oatmeal-colored furnishings to create a warm and inviting space!

Modern Vibe: Sky Blue, Gunmetal Gray, and Soft White – Who says gray isn’t cool? Make your living room a modern space by painting the walls a cool gray. Intersperse plenty of blue to give it some life, and choose a soft white to give that extra bit of warmth to the space. Wood furnishings would go nicely with this color scheme as well!

Green Dream: Leafy Green, Cream, and Coal – If you love spending time outside, you can bring the outside in with this color scheme! Use cream as your wall paint and sprinkle in natural green shades in your accessories and furnishings. If you want to stay away from a heavy theme, try using patterns and prints in your curtains or smaller pieces of furniture! Hints of coal black will lend the space an air of sophistication.

Maritime Getaway: Crisp White, Pale Turquoise, and Coral – Is the beach more your scene? Bring the sand and surf to your living room for a daily getaway! A crisp white on the walls and in your larger furniture pieces brighten up the room while watery shades of turquoise glimmer in your rugs, vases, pillows, and lamps. Throw in hints of coral red in smaller furnishings to complete the look.

Fresh Countryside: Citrus Green, Wheat Beige, and Driftwood Brown – Pastel, citrusy greens do such a great job bringing warmth and playfulness into a space! Bring this same feeling into your living room by painting the walls and choosing some pivotal fabrics in this hue of green. Wood furnishings and rustic pieces help tie in the feel and make the space comfortable. Don’t forget to intersperse some clean some white to uplift the space!

The Bold and the Blue-tiful: Cerulean, Mustard, and Khaki – Who says a living room has to be nothing but pastel colors? We think it would be fun to take a risk with some bold color combinations! All you need to do is balance your bold color (in this case, cerulean) with neutrals, and you can pull off the look you want! Be daring and paint those walls with cerulean blue, and balance it all out with a khaki colored sofa and table. Sprinkle in mustard yellow accents to give your room even more contrast and vivacity!

Punchy Pinks: Fuchsia, Raspberry, and Warm Browns – Turn your living room into a pretty pink dream! Use plenty of warm neutrals like various shades of brown in your major furniture and light white on your walls to provide a neutral base. Next, use rich hues of pink, fuchsia, and raspberry in both solids and patterns throughout your room to tie it all together!

Even though a new paint job can work wonders in your space, sometimes you outgrow a space. That’s where we can help! Call the experts at The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298 to get started and find the house of your dreams today! You can also take a peek at our listings by visiting www.dianamasseyhomes.com!

8 Popular Kitchen Countertop Materials to Choose for Your Kitchen

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Your countertops are the star of the kitchen. It’s typically what homeowners and even potential buyers notice right away as soon as they step inside the kitchen. If you’re considering renovating your kitchen or need new countertops to replace any old or damaged countertops, you might be feeling a little overwhelmed with so many different choices of countertops at your fingertips. After all, it’s important to choose a material that’s right for your lifestyle, suits your budget, and looks good in your kitchen.

Choosing the right countertop for your kitchen doesn’t have to be difficult. Here’s a quick look at the various types of countertops you can have in your kitchen. See which one fits your needs the best!

Polished Granite – By far the most popular countertop choice for most homeowners, traditional granite provides a durable prep surface while offering a high-end look that boosts your kitchen’s value. No two pieces of granite look the same since it is a natural material, and it is always a stunning finishing touch to practically any kitchen. Be aware, however, that it requires a little extra care to make it continue looking its best. You’ll want to wipe up all stains quickly, particularly oils, wine, acids, and soda. Additionally, it’s wise to follow a regular sealing routine; typically, once a year is enough.

Quartz – Next in line in the popularity rank is quartz. This countertop material is practically maintenance-free and is resistant to stains, acid, scratches, heat, and impact. Because quartz is a non-porous surface, they don’t need to be sealed like natural stone countertops. You can find this countertop material in a wide variety of colors and patterns as well!

Marble – Marble isn’t just beautiful, but it also can help hide light stains and wear. It possesses a timeless appeal and can make practically any kitchen look sleek and sophisticated. The only downfall is that marble is porous, so staining can be a problem. You can avoid this by regularly sealing it and taking special care with any acidic items.

Honed Granite – Much like polished granite, honed granite is resistant to scratches, chipping, cracking, and heat and is one of the most durable countertop options available. It also gives a soft, matte finish instead of a glossy look, complementing just about any kitchen style.

Laminate – If you’re looking for a budget-friendly option, then laminate countertops might be the way to go. This material is seeing a resurgence in popularity because homeowners are combining the material with patterns that resemble natural wood, stone, and even quartz, all for a fraction of the cost. This type of material is very versatile and easier on the budget than any other material.

Stainless Steel – Stainless steel appliances can be found in countless kitchens, and now stainless steel countertops are gracing kitchens nationwide. The metal surface can coordinate with nearly any color and is incredibly easy to clean. All you need to do is wipe off the surface with a clean cloth and a mild soap. For a modern, industrial looking kitchen that is easy to maintain, stainless steel might be best for you!

Wood – For a functional, decorative, and warm look in your kitchen, wood countertops are ideal. They’re great for prepping food; all you need to do is make sure that they’re properly sealed. Unlike other budget-friendly options of countertops such as laminate, wood countertops are highly resistant to heat, so you won’t have to worry about putting any hot pots, pans, and utensils on the surface.

Tile – This material is an excellent choice if you’re looking for something that is inexpensive and easy to maintain. Mix and match it with various design styles to create a look that you want in your kitchen. Best of all, tile countertops can be a great DIY project if you’re handy and have a little time on your hands!

Looking for the kitchen of your dreams in a new home? Talk to the experts at The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway Home Services Elite Properties! Call us today at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298, or check out our listings online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com.

How Long Do Your Appliances Last?

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Whether you’re moving and are in need of new appliances or you’re in the hunt for a sorely-needed update, it’s always a good idea to be aware of your appliances’ shelf life. After all, you don’t want to be caught unaware when a major appliance goes on the fritz or breaks down permanently.

That’s why we’ve put together this handy little list to help you remember your major appliances’ shelf life! While you’re reading this list, keep in mind that these numbers indicate averages. Your appliance may last longer if you purchase a higher quality of equipment or if you maintain them well. Here is the list from Consumer Reports:

Air Conditioning – A small air conditioning unit that is used in a room will last an average of 10 years. Your central air conditioning has an average shelf life of 15 years.

Boilers – If you have an electric boiler, you can probably count on it being around for 13 years. If your boiler is gas-based, it has a longer shelf life at an average of 21 years.

Dehumidifiers and Humidifiers – Both your dehumidifiers and your humidifiers should last for an average of 8 years!

Dishwashers – Do you have a dishwasher in your home? You can expect it to last for an average of 9 years, just shy of a decade!

Dryers – Both electric and gas dryers have a shelf life that clocks in at an average of 13 years.

Freezers – Your freezer should keep your food nice and cold for an average of 11 years.

Furnaces – Typically, furnaces will last between 15-20 years, on average. If your furnace is electric, its lifespan should be 15 years. If it is gas, it should last an average of 18 years. If you have an oil furnace, you should be able to enjoy it for an average of 20 years.

Garbage Disposals – These little wonders under the kitchen sink should stay in good shape for an average of 12 years.

Microwave Ovens – While not a major appliance, your microwave is essential in the kitchen. Expect it to last an average of 9 years.

Ranges – It depends on the type of range you have! If you have an electric range, it should last an average of 13 years. If you cook dinner on a gas range, it should last about 15 years.

Refrigerators – For the full-size refrigerator, count on it to be chilling your food for an average of 13 years. Compact fridges should last an average of 9 years.

Washing Machines – Your trusty washing machine should help you wash your clothes for an average of 10 years.

Water Heaters – Last but not least, your water heater’s shelf life can vary, again, depending on the type you have. If you have an electric or gas water heater, you can expect to see it live for 10-11 years on average. Tankless water heaters, however, can last 20 years or more!

You can always pick up a great major appliance, but you should really trust the experts to help you find the home of your dreams. Trust The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties! Call us today at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298 or check out our listings online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com!

Traveling? Take Care of Your Home First With These 9 Tips!

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If you’re planning on taking a trip sometime this summer for business or for pleasure, you’ve probably thought about which hotel to check in, which restaurants to try out, and which attractions to see along the way. You might also have your bag packed and ready to go. But what about your home? You’ll need to take steps to secure your home before you take a trip – otherwise, you could have a possible break-in on your hands.

Don’t worry – there are plenty of easy steps you can take to deter would-be thieves! Here are 9 simple steps you can take to keep your home safe while you’re out, whether it’s for 2 days, 2 weeks, or somewhere in between.

Stop Your Mail –Nothing attracts thieves more than an overstuffed mailbox or countless newspapers strewn across your front lawn. The trick to deterring thieves is to make it look like you’re still home. Before you embark on your adventure, place a hold on your mail. This includes newspapers and all other deliveries. You can also ask a trusted friend or neighbor to grab your mail for you.

Keep the Lawn Trimmed – Not only is it a good idea to mow your lawn before you leave, but if you’re going to be gone for a while, it’s also a good idea to hire someone to maintain it for you while you’re gone. Hire a lawn care company to make everything look perfect until you come home. Leaving during the winter? Arrange for snow to be shoveled while you’re away!

Time the Lights Just Right – Want to make it really look like you’re home even though you’re not? Invest in some timers on various lights around your home! You can either have them all go off at one universal time, or you can set them to go off randomly. Visit your local home improvement store to find the perfect option for you.

Install Motion Detectors – If you haven’t already, be sure to install motion detectors on your outside lights. They make an excellent security measure since the lights are triggered whenever someone or something steps into the sensor’s range!

Ask Your Friends for Help – Before you leave, ask your friends, relatives, or trusted neighbors to keep an eye on your home or drive by once in a while when you’re away. Remember to return the favor whenever they leave for vacation or on a business trip!

Leave No Keys Outside – If you have the propensity to hide keys into your home under your doormat or elsewhere outside, this could be a big mistake while you’re on vacation. Thieves know where to look, and if they find your key, it gives them easy access to enter. Don’t leave an emergency key outside while you’re gone. Instead, leave it with someone you trust in case of emergencies.

Come Unplugged – Remember to unplug your electronics, except for your freezer, refrigerator, and any items you’ve put on timers. It won’t just help you avoid any electrical troubles while you’re out, but it can also save you some money on your electric bill!

Secure the Doors and Windows – Before you leave, go around and make sure that you’ve locked and secured all of your doors and windows. If you have any sliding glass doors, you can take extra precautions by putting in an appropriately-sized rod into the track so an intruder can’t open the door, even if they’ve picked the lock.

Regulate the Temperature – If you haven’t done so already, you might want to install an automatic thermostat, which will help regulate the temperature in your home. Not only can this prevent disasters like frozen pipes, but it can also save you some money while you’re enjoying your vacation or out on your business trip.

What do you do to secure your home before heading out on vacation? Did we forget any other important tips? Let us know in the comments below or on our Facebook page! We’d love to hear from you!

6 Ways to Get the Most Out of Your Sunroom This Summer

traditional-sunroomThere’s no doubt about it – summer is here to stay for a while! While it’s fun to spend time with your friends and family outdoors during the summer months, but it’s also plenty of fun to spend time indoors in your sunroom as well. Your sunroom doesn’t just provide you with hours of enjoyment, but it also shields you from bug bites, pollen, and sunburns.

Whether you’ve had your sunroom for years or it’s brand-new, here are 6 ways you can get the most out of your sunroom this summer!

Get Comfortable – Although many sunroom owners feel like they need to have nothing but wicker furniture in their sunrooms, we totally advocate comfort first and foremost. Remember, this space will function like a second living room in the warmer months, so make sure you have furniture that is both comfortable and inviting. We’re thinking plush seating, plenty of pillows, some throw blankets, and maybe a rug or two.

Put In a Small Dining Area – What’s better than enjoying a delicious meal or fun tea party in the sunlight? If you can, try putting a small dining table and chairs somewhere in your sunroom for those summertime get-togethers with your friends or for the times you want to enjoy dinner while watching the sunset.

Keep It Cool – More than likely, your sunroom doesn’t have air conditioning. If not, make sure to keep the temperature comfortable with a ceiling fan. It can make a big difference in temperature and allow you to enjoy the room in comfort as you read a book, watch TV, play a game, or simply admire the view.

Don’t Forget the Shades – The best part about sunrooms is those big, generous windows that really let the sunshine in. If you want some privacy or want to regulate the temperature more effectively, it’s best to install some sturdy shades to keep the room cool during those sweltering summer days.

Plants, Plants, Plants – You know what else likes your sunroom, aside from you and your family and friends? Plants! Bring some potted plants and cute flowers into your sunroom to make the space even more enjoyable. These plants won’t just give you clean air to breathe, but they will also add a splash of color to the space!

Keep It Simple – As you’re adding all of these furnishings into your sunroom, try to keep it as streamlined and simple as possible. A simple atmosphere makes for a calming retreat that you’ll want to spend all of your time in every day!

There’s so much you can do to make your sunroom the most enjoyable it’s ever been this summer! If you don’t have a sunroom and are looking for a home that has the sunroom of your dreams, then call the experts at The Massey Team at Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices Elite Properties at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298. You can also view our current listings on our website at www.dianamasseyhomes.com.

Want a Little Home Office? Turn Your Closet Into an Office in a Snap!

Blue closet officeThere’s nothing quite like having your own little home office to retreat to so that you can do your bills in peace, continue some work from the office in the comfort of your own home, or write or create something beautiful. Sometimes, though, space just isn’t an option. You might not have that extra room to dedicate as your own personal home office. You might not even have room for a desk in your home or apartment.

So how can you have your own little home office without having to move, renovate, or build on to your home? It’s easy! Just turn a closet of yours into your own little compact office!

When you begin making your closet office, so to speak, start by maximizing every square inch of the space with smart storage solutions so that your new space will be worth showing off! You will need to keep in mind that this new “room” is also not like any other in your home; you will need to be very wise about how you implement pieces of furniture and space-saving devices.

See below how you can start making your compact office now!

Choose a Great Wallpaper – Since this is an interior segment of your room, you will want to make it pop and stand out from the rest of the room instead of blending in with boring paint or, worse even still, leaving it that nasty white, beige, or off-white color that has been on the wall since the home was built, a wall that has been shrouded in darkness and covered with dust. We humbly suggest using wallpaper instead! Find a really gorgeous piece of wallpaper that speaks to you or makes you feel more creative or productive. A great wallpaper will take your space from closet to a destination

closet office- my home ideasTry Floating Planks – Shelves are a great way to help conserve space, but clunky hardware and the visual clutter of brackets can really put a cramp on your compact office space’s style! Instead, try using floating planks! The won’t overwhelm a tiny room, but they will still have all the space you need to store all those things you need for your office! As a bonus, they will hardly obscure your gorgeous wallpaper!

Select Fun Organizers – With this small space, think outside the box a bit! You don’t have to be tied down to boring office supplies and organizers, especially when office supplies and boxes come in so many great prints, colors, and designs these days! Choose files and boxes that spark your interest. Instead of using a boring old cup for your pencils and paper clips, opt for something more fun like a trophy or a nice vase!

closet3Light It Up – If you’re familiar at all with design, then you probably know that the right lighting can make a space come alive and that poor lighting can negate any positive effect that any paint choice or piece of furniture could provide. To make this closet office a bright, inviting space, choose overhead lighting or even a dainty chandelier to provide the right light while giving your small space an ambiance of elegance. You may also wish to use a desk lamp for practical task lighting as well.

Make Your Own Desk – If you want to place a small desk in your closet space, that’s fine by us, but did you know that you can easily make your own custom desk! You really can! Just start with two standard file cabinets and attach a wheeled stand to the base of each cabinet (to make moving it a cinch!)! You can brighten up the boring cabinets with a bit of indoor/outdoor spray paint as well. Finally, position a ready-made melamine desktop on top of the two cabinets, and you’re ready to use your very own easily-movable desk!

Choose Your Final Furnishings – When you’re done creating your own closet office, select your final furnishings to finish the job! We suggest picking a nice, soft rug that has a big of a personality to make a soft spot for your bare feet and also a small, versatile chair that can easily move elsewhere within the room or underneath the desk if at all possible.

Want more tips? Searching for a home of your own that has enough room for a home office (or at least a big enough closet) and your other must-haves on your list? You’ve come to the right place! We can find you that perfect place just for you in no time. Just call us at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298 or visit us online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com to see how we can best assist you!

7 Quick and Easy Ways to Brighten Up Your Home for Spring

Colorful plants in a pretty vaseIt’s springtime, which is a wonderful time to throw open the curtains and windows, put away the heavy draperies, and let the sunshine pour in! It is also a fantastic time to brighten up your home just a little bit!

Don’t worry, you don’t have to go overboard or spend a ton of money in order to reinvent your home! There many things you can do to brighten up your home that takes very little time, effort, and money! In fact, we have 7 quick and easy ways for you to spruce up your home today! Check them out below!

Purchase Cheap Houseplants – Want a really easy way to perk up your home and bring some it some life? Buy some cheap but beautiful houseplants! They will not only bring a pop of color to your home, but they will also provide you with free, clean air and make your space seem more cheerful! You can easily find very cheap houseplants both big and small at your local nurseries, grocery stores, and in large stores like Lowes and The Home Depot!

Switch Out the Pillows – As the weather gets warmer outside, you know it’s time to switch out your pillows to match the nicer ones! Put away the warm winter pillows and opt for plain and patterned pillows in pastel or bold shades of pink, blue, green, and yellow. Feel free to mix and match pillows to match your rooms’ different feels and styles!

Bring Out the Candles – Instead of going to the beach and the outdoors, bring the beach and the outdoors inside to you! A scented candle can change the atmosphere of your home very easily, so choose scents that remind you of spring weather! Opt for citrus-flavored or floral scents, or you could even choose to begin pining for summer by selecting a “beach” scented candle!

Spruce Up Your Dining Table – Give your dining table a pop of spring color with a beautiful and simple tablecloth! Select a tablecloth that blends well with your dining room’s décor and curtains. Opt for shades of pastel and material that is easy to clean and maintain.

Grab Some Fresh Flowers – What’s more spring-like than fresh flowers? Add a touch of color and calmness in your kitchen, living room, hallway, or any other room by selecting colorful spring flowers! For ideas, try using yellow daffodils, purple tulips, or maybe even a bright carnation or two. Be sure to display these gorgeous flowers in attractive vases painted in bright or pastel colors! Remember, you don’t have to have a huge bouquet of flowers to make this work – even one or two fresh stems can look just as beautiful!

Springtime BeddingSwitch the Bedding – That’s right, it’s time to put away those heavy, warm comforters and blankets and switch for light-weight bedding and throws! If you can, select bedding in fresh spring colors like blue, pink, green, or yellow to help make your room pop and bring life back into it!

Break Out the Paint – One of the most inexpensive ways to reinvent and revive your home is with a simple bucket of paint! Find a color that lifts your spirits and makes you think spring, and get to work! You can opt to paint just an accent wall or paint an entire room one color, or you can turn that paint on cabinets, vases, or other small decorations!

Remember, springtime is a time of renewal, so let the warm weather and sunshine energize and inspire you to help you brighten your home this spring! If you’re looking for a new home to brighten up your life, then you’ve come to the right place! Just give us a call at (618) 791-5024 or (618) 791-9298 or check us out online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com! You’ll be glad you did!

9 Easy Ways to Make Your Patio Pop!

Nice porchSpring is finally here, and several people around the nation will begin working on their yard and garden. But what about your patio? It’s time to start thinking about what you want your patio to look like and what function you want it to play!

There are so many things you can do to make your patio accent your yard and garden instead of the other way around. Make your patio work for your yard this year instead of always feeling like you are working for it!

Here are 9 quick and easy things to do to make your patio this pop this year!

Tone It Down– If your yard has a good variety of plant types and textures, then you want your patio to be a little more toned down. You don’t want to try to add too many additional types of patterns to an already diverse setting because it can become very overwhelming and too jarring to be relaxing.

Say Hello To Your Biggest Fan! If you have a structure overhead to help shield you from the elements you may also be shielded from the refreshing summer breeze. This could warm you up during the summer months rather than help cool you down. One way to counter this is by installing a ceiling fan if possible. This will not only help get the air moving and help keep you cool but it is also an added light source!

Light Up Your Life – When creating a beautiful patio, why not consider using exterior lighting? It not only helps keep you safe at night and illuminates your pathway, but it can also help create gorgeous ambience!  It’ll help cast light on your dinner plates after the sun has set as well as make the light source decorative and fun looking.

Potted plantsBring Nature to Your Patio– Tie your patio together with the rest of your yard! You don’t want your patio to come to an abrupt end when it hits your yard and garden. By placing decorative potted plants on the patio you can make your patio and yard flow together nicely despite how large or small your patio is. Try putting your favorite plants and succulents in beautiful pots of all shapes and sizes to give your patio life and a chic look!

Over the Garden Wall – Trellises are a simple and easy way to soften the edges of your patio. By choosing the height, spacing, and type you can easily find a design that fits the needs you have. They also provide a nice way to add a flowering vine to your yard!

Consider Using Your Front Yard – Front yard patios are not all that common, but that doesn’t mean you have to let all that space go to waste! Instead, move your patio to the front! It will give you a place to easily entertain your guests and neighbors and can accent your home beautifully. Using mid-height flower planters will provide you with an elegant and beautiful privacy wall and will also give you more space to plant!

Get Creative – If you have a partially enclosed patio or a patio that is protected from the elements then it’s time to decorate it! Accent it with cushions, pillows, accent rugs, decorative pots, and more so that it has the feel you want. Add in favorite pieces of art – just make sure they are properly shielded from the elements! Add a photo frame or two of your latest vacation. Make your patio a space that you’ll never want to leave!

Make Your Patio Multi-Functional – Make your patio have more then just the typical use. Make your prep station work as a breakfast bar as well. Allow one side for seating so that you can eat your breakfast or lunch out there while having a larger table for dinner and dinner parties! Not only will you have a prep-table and a serving area but also a great place for you and your closest friends to gather for small get-togethers!

Introduce the Element of Water – Water features, even a small one, provide a soothing sound and a calm environment. Birds and butterflies also find themselves attracted to these water features to drink from and bathe in. Allow these beautiful water elements to become a focal point in your yard to help you attract and appreciate the beauty of nature!

You don’t have to take part in all 9 of these ideas in order to create a vibrant, welcoming patio that will be the envy of all your neighbors! Feel free to employ one, two, several, or all of the tips to get that patio you’ve always dreamed of!

Speaking of dreaming, now is the time to find that dream home you’ve always wanted! We can help! Just call us at (618) 791-5024 or at (618) 791-9298 or visit us online at www.dianamasseyhomes.com today to find that home you’ve been dreaming of living in!