Tracey Fiorelli
Janice Mitchell Real Estate, Inc | 508-509-8162 | [email protected]


Posted by Tracey Fiorelli on 5/23/2020

Image by Alex Qian from Pexels


 

Even higher-end homes need renovation after so many years. Fashions go out of style and things get worn out. If money is not an object and the sky is the limit, you can do beautiful things with a remodel. However, if you are remodeling because you are ready to sell your home, it’s better to keep colors neutral and update carpets and flooring with easy to clean materials that will match several styles and colors. It is easier to sell a home when people can picture their personal items in the house, and they match with the current updated color scheme.

Full Kitchen Update

If it’s been some time since you updated the kitchen, start your remodel project there. Both bamboo flooring and natural stone are popular products that will last and that clean easily. Choose neutral colors if you are selling your home or go bold with your favorite colors if you are updating everything for yourself.

Update the appliances to energy-saving appliances. For a larger kitchen or a kitchen that you will be enlarging, consider a French door fridge with a double freezer drawer and a gas stove with six or eight burners and a double oven. If you must go with electric, consider a stovetop and purchase a double oven that is built into the wall. Add an island that also functions as a bar.

When looking at new cabinets, you might consider upper cabinets that go all the way up to the ceiling. However, keep in mind that the top shelves are harder to reach, especially for people who aren't vertically gifted. Light-colored woods, such as maple, are in and dark-colored woods are out. For the bottom cabinets, choose a set with drawers. Some manufacturers are making cabinets without drawers, which leads to a ton of wasted space and no place to store smaller items. While they may look great, they aren’t the best use of space.

Full Bathroom Update

If your bathrooms are small and cramped, consider enlarging them. Use adjoining closet space or add on to the house so that you can redesign the layout for the bedrooms and bathrooms. If you’re adding on, consider combining two small bedrooms into one large bedroom, den or office space with its own bathroom.

Choose natural stone tiles for the showers. They last for a long time, and if you choose neutral colors or even browns, they’ll match many color schemes and stay in fashion longer. Update the toilets to water-saving, high-pressure flush toilets. Update the vanities to something decorative instead of the typical square vanity with a single sink and cabinet, especially if you are enlarging your bathroom.

Consider adding a stand-alone shower in the master bathroom and adding a jetted tub. Large 5-foot showers with two or even three shower heads are popular. When you choose flooring, go with a natural stone tile that will withstand the humidity better. Add an exhaust fan with heat built into the fan. These are perfect for the winter months when the bathrooms always feel cooler than the rest of the house.




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Posted by Tracey Fiorelli on 5/16/2020

Image by Selling of my photos with StockAgencies is not permitted from Pixabay

Cauliflower just keeps winning popularity contests, landing roles in everything from gnocchi to pizza crusts to rice replacements. Why have we fallen in love with cauliflower? Because it's a satisfying, delicious and healthy option!

Cauliflower, like Brussels sprouts, kale and bok choy, is a member of the Brassica (wild cabbage) family of vegetables. It's a low-sodium food. It brings zero fat and no cholesterol. Its nutritional value includes high amounts of the good things, including folate and vitamin C. An entire head contains just 150 calories and just 30 grams of carbs. 

Cauliflower happens to be perfect with pasta — whether you choose traditional semolina or whole wheat noodles, or the increasingly popular alternatives such as quinoa or red lentil linguine. 

So, when you prepare Linguine With Sweet Onions & Cauliflower, take liberties. Do it your way. Here's just one example of a great way to do it for 3 – 4 people. Enjoy!

Step 1. Gather Your Ingredients

You'll need:

  • A box of dry linguine
  • 1 head of cauliflower
  • Cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 large can plum tomatoes
  • 1 large Vidalia or white onion
  • 2 cloves garlic, minced
  • 2 Tbsp. yellow raisins
  • Crushed red pepper flakes
  • Ground pepper and salt
  • Step 2. Prepare a Sauce

    Cut the head of cauliflower into bite-sized florets and sauté them until lightly browned, with a dash of olive oil.

    Add the chopped onion and garlic. Continue sautéing until the onion becomes translucent. Then add the yellow raisins. Stir well.

    Add the tomatoes, crushed red pepper flakes, salt and pepper.

    Simmer 20 minutes over medium-low heat.

    Step 3. Cook the Linguine

    As the sauce simmers, bring the pot of water to a rolling boil. Making sure there is plenty of water allows you to stir the noodles easily and cook the pasta evenly. The water temperature will drop when the pasta goes in, so a fast boil is important, to keep the water hot for best results: non-mushy, non-sticking, perfectly cooked linguine. Use a wooden spoon to stir and cook the noodles evenly.

    Cook the pasta uncovered in the boiling water. Cooking al dente means stopping the boil and rinsing the pasta when just tender but still firm. To know when your linguine is ready, take a noodle out with your wooden spoon and sample it. Once the noodles are ready to be rinsed, rinse them quickly, because noodles keep softening until they're rinsed with cool water. 

    Step 4. Toss & Serve

    After rinsing and draining your linguine, return it to the warm pot and quickly toss it with a dash of olive oil.

    With a serving spoon and fork, combine the linguine together with the cauliflower and sauce.

    Serve Linguine With Sweet Onions & Cauliflower in warmed bowls with a side salad. Enjoy!




    Tags: Cooking   recipe   Dinner  
    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Tracey Fiorelli on 5/9/2020

    Photo by Pixabay from Pexels

    The short answer to our question of the day is...

    We all know what we like when we see it. 

    New flooring can greatly increase your home's beauty in the eye of the beholder, yet it's impossible to know what kind of flooring will attract your home's next buyer. That said, here are the top selling points of three popular options. 

    Kudos for Carpeting

    Carpet, especially if your home will be shown in the winter, is a popular way to add a comfortable look and feel to a home. Most often chosen for bedrooms, carpet can also hide a multitude of flaws beautifully and without a big dent in your savings. To spruce up a home for sale quickly, carpeting can be a great choice.

    Now, for the possible drawbacks. Carpeting can cause issues for people with chemical sensitivities or allergies. It doesn't last forever, and it usually won't be as stylish in five years as it is when first installed. 

    Tip: Going with one flooring choice throughout your main living spaces can produce an expansive, well put-together look.

    Hoorahs for Hardwood

    Hardwood flooring is a classic choice. Walk into a home with hardwood floor, and you get a sense of elegance, comfort and beauty. Over time, the essential oils of the wood offer a subtly aromatherapeutic and natural appeal. A well-maintained wood floor lasts for decades.

    Yes, a lot of moisture can impact its look, and the kids and pets can scratch it. And refinishing is a big job involving chemical abrasion, although fans of the DIY method point out to us that there are wood and laminate refinishing kits on the market for under $100.  

    Tip: A great, cost-effective alternative is engineered hardwood. Engineered hardwood comes prefinished, can be easily installed without a subfloor. 

    A Toast to Tile

    Tile is as practical as it is handsome. Well-chosen tile will last the home's lifetime. The richer the hues, and the narrower the space left for grout to show, the easier tile is to clean.

    In kitchens, either tile or laminate styled as tile works well. Expanses of tile are especially desirable in homes and condos throughout Florida and other warm states.

    If you have tile, talk it up! Note its ease of cleaning, especially to potential owners with pets.

    Tip: You can buy tile or laminate that looks like hardwood and have the hardwood look—without the refinishing needs.

    Sellers Can Offer Options

    If you're selling, and your flooring could use updating, considering offering to trim a little off your sale price, encouraging potential buyers to install their own choice of new flooring as desired. That offer itself might just make a deal happen.




    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Tracey Fiorelli on 5/2/2020

    Getting a mortgage is one of those things that everyone seems to have quite a bit of advice about. While people surely have good intentions, itís not always best to take the buying advice of everyone you meet. Below, youíll find the wrong kind of mortgage advice and why you should think twice about it. 


    Pre-Approvals Are Pointless


    Getting pre-approved for a mortgage can give you an upper hand when it comes to putting in offers on a home. Even though a pre-approval isnít a guarantee, itís a good step. It shows that youíre a serious buyer and locks you in with a lender so they can process your paperwork a bit more quickly when you do want to put an offer in on a home. 


    Use Your Own Bank


    While your own bank may be a good place to start when it comes to buying a home, you donít need to get your mortgage from the place where you already have an account. You need to compare rates at different banks to make sure youíre getting the best possible deal on a mortgage. Youíll also want to check on the mortgage requirements for each bank. Different banks have different standards based on down payment, credit scores and more. Youíll want to get your mortgage from the bank thatís right for you and your own situation. 


    The Lowest Interest Rate Is Best


    While this could be true, itís not set in stone. A bank with a slightly higher interest rate could offer you some benefits that you otherwise might not have. If you have a lower credit score, or less downpayment money, a bank offering a higher interest rate could be a better option for you. Low interest rates can have some fine print that might end up costing you a lot more in the long term. Do your research before you sign on with any kind of bank for your mortgage. 


    Borrow The Maximum


    Just because youíre approved for a certain amount of mortgage doesnít mean that you need to max out your budget. Itís always best to have a bit of a financial cushion for yourself to keep your budget from being extremely tight. When life throws you a curveball like unexpected medical bills or a job loss, youíll be glad that you didnít strain your budget to the end of your means. Even though the bigger, nicer house always looks more attractive, youíre better off financially if youíre sensible about the amount of money you borrow to buy a home.




    Tags: mortgage   mortgage rates   bank  
    Categories: Uncategorized  


    Posted by Tracey Fiorelli on 4/25/2020

    If you want to buy your dream house in the near future, you likely will need to put together a competitive offer to purchase. That way, you can boost the likelihood of receiving an immediate "Yes" from a property seller after you submit your homebuying proposal.

    Ultimately, it helps to know what differentiates a competitive homebuying proposal from a lowball one. If a homebuyer understands what to offer for a residence, he or she should have no trouble purchasing the right residence at the right price.

    To better understand how to acquire your dream house at the lowest-possible price, let's take a look at three tips to help you determine what to offer for a residence.

    1. Study the Housing Market Closely

    The housing market experiences ebbs and flows. Therefore, a real estate sector that favors homebuyers one day may favor home sellers the next. And if you fail to learn about the current state of the real estate market, you may struggle to put together a competitive offer to purchase your ideal residence.

    Analyze the prices of available houses in your area, the prices of recently sold houses in your preferred cities and towns and other housing market data. With this information in hand, you can find out whether you're operating in a buyer's or seller's market. Then, you can craft an offer to purchase your dream residence that accounts for the present state of the real estate market.

    2. Weigh the Pros and Cons of Your Dream Home

    No house is perfect, and even your dream home may have its fair share of flaws. Fortunately, a homebuyer who assesses the pros and cons of a house may be better equipped than ever before to submit a competitive offer to purchase this residence.

    If you view a house multiple times, you can learn about all aspects of this home and assess any property damage. After you obtain these home insights, you can create a competitive offer to purchase that accounts for the house's current condition.

    3. Collaborate with a Real Estate Agent

    When it comes to purchasing a house at a price that matches your expectations, it generally is beneficial to work with a real estate agent. This housing market professional will do everything possible to help you buy your dream home at a price that fits your budget.

    A real estate agent understands the ins and outs of the real estate sector and can help you map out a successful homebuying strategy. He or she first will offer insights into available homes in your preferred cities and towns. Next, when you find your dream residence, a real estate agent will help you craft a competitive homebuying proposal. And if your offer to purchase is accepted, a real estate agent will make it easy to navigate the final steps of the homebuying journey.

    Ready to streamline your quest for your ideal house? Use the aforementioned tips, and you can improve your chances of acquiring your dream home at a price that you can afford.




    Categories: Uncategorized