October 17, 2016

Top Tips for New Homeowners at Elite Homes

Here at Elite Built Homes in Louisville, Kentucky, we make sure that the building process is easy for our buyers, but we want to help you throughout the entire process - inducing after the move! You’ll need things to help get settled. Here are some tips to help make the transition a little easier.

·       Tools / Around the House items. If you’re moving from an apartment or other rental, chances are you may not have some of these items. Now that you’re a homeowner, you should get them as soon as possible.
o   Tool set including a hammer, Phillips and flat head screwdrivers, and a mix of nails, hooks and other hardware.
o   First aid kit
o   Fire extinguisher
o   Toilet / sink plunger
o   Flashlights and batteries

·       Cleaning closet supplies. Another often forgotten set of items for a new home is cleaning supplies. For the ones that will be used through the entire house, you may need to buy multiples.
o   Toilet brush and toilet bowl cleaner
o   Rubber gloves
o   All purpose cleaner, safe to use on glass and wood
o   Stove cleaner
o   Bucket with mop
o   Broom and dust pan

·       Plenty of essential paper supplies. You do not want to be digging through boxes looking for toilet paper, paper towels, and tissues.

·       An overnight bag. No matter how well organized your move is, chances are the house will be a little disorganized for a while. Pack an overnight bag with extra changes of clothing (include sleepwear and underwear), and toiletries (soap, shampoo, toothbrush and toothpaste, deodorant), plus towels and washcloths for cleaning up. 

·       Rudimentary pantry supplies. Cleaning and unpacking is hard work, and going out for take-out isn’t always possible. Make sure you have snacks like fruit, nuts, and granola bars since they require no refrigeration, no preparation, and no utensils. Don’t forget drinks - bottled water, juices, tea bags, instant coffee. And for meals, stick to basics like pasta and sauce, cereal and milk, bread and peanut butter, canned soup, etc.

·       A personal treat or two. If you always end the night with a glass of wine, bring a bottle to reward yourself at the end of your long first day. (Don’t forget the wine opener and a wineglass.) If you’re an avid reader, bring a book you’ve been dying to read to help you fall asleep at night. You’re going to be working hard when you first move in, so make sure you also allow yourself a bit of fun to make the transition as easy as possible.

October 11, 2016

Best Apps for Your Home

We’ve all heard the saying, “there’s an app for that,” because today, there really is an app for everything. Technology has made communicating, traveling, working, and even living in your Elite Homes home in Louisville, easier than ever.  So check out our list of the best apps to help simplify and improve your life in your home. 

This E-coupon app gives you kickbacks for the stuff you want and need on a usual basis. You simply pay the normal price for things like food and household supplies, and the savings from the coupons add up in the app.  Once you reach $5 in savings, you can choose to add it to your bank account, redeem as an Amazon gift card or donate to a charity.  What a great way to manage your spare change!
Imagine if everything you had to plug into the wall at home became a smart device… your microwave, curing iron, coffee maker. With WeMo, they can be.  You won’t have to worry about forgetting to turn anything off ever again now that you can switch it off from anywhere on your smart phone! Program certain appliances or equipment on a schedule, so your coffee could be ready and waiting for you when you wake up. 

Love to cook?  Ziplist helps you digitize your shopping list with ingredients from recipes of your choosing.  With over 300,000 recipes stored from popular sites like Martha Stewart and Food.com, you can pull your favorites and send the ingredients directly to your shopping list, or email them to family and friends. Finally, grocery shopping made easy!

Everything you could possibly need to know about design and improvement is all within the social network of Houzz. Browse an extensive collection of articles, photos and discussions from dedicated home design enthusiast and experts, while connecting with them for consultation on your own DIY projects. Whether you simply need some inspiration or are looking for a local professional, everything you need is right here!

Sometimes a DIY guide just isn’t going to cut it for the home improvement project at hand.  If you don’t have the time or skills to get the job done, Handy is here to help. This app allows you to browse specialized (background-checked) professionals. You can book and pay securely within the app for any home improvements from AC installation, leaky pipes, electric and more.

This app works with your choice of an Alarm.com-enabled system to give you full control over your home. In addition to normal remote-monitoring capabilities such as activating your home security from another location, the app’s integrated GPS system knows when you’re home, or out, in order to adjust temperature and lights. Push notifications can tell you when your kids arrive home, or when things are left on or open.

Apps have not only made it easy to find help and guidance for improvements inside the home, but have also made it possible to protect our homes from anywhere!  Whether you’re tackling a new home project or planning for an upcoming vacation, check out which of these best apps can help you!

September 28, 2016

How to Move into Your Elite Home Like a Pro

Despite your excitement about your new Elite Built Home in Louisville, chances are you’re not as excited about the acutal moving part. The good news is that we have a few tips and tricks to help you get more involved without sacrificing the quality and efficiency of a professional mover.  As your big day starts approaching, here’s how you can be sure to move like a pro!

Ask Yourself these Questions:
  • When is the official move out date?
  • What can we live without and get rid of before the move?
  • What packing supplies do we need?
  • What needs to be canceled at current house and what needs to be set up at the new home: utilities, internet, address changes, doctors, etc.
  • What will we need immediately after the move?
Know your Timeline.  Moving isn’t an overnight process, so make it easier by starting to gradually remove junk and pack up smaller items a couple months out.

Remove the Junk. No matter how long you’ve been in your current home, you’ve most likely acquired a lot of “stuff.” Start going through each room and figure out what you can live without. Toss old items, hold a garage sale or donate them to a local organization.  The less you have to move, the better.

Snap Some Photos. Take quick photos of various TV/cable wires and other complicated assembly items to reference when you’re setting them back up in the new place.

Use Other Household Items to Help Pack. There are a lot of different items that you plan to take with you that can be used to help transport others. Use blankets and sheets to wrap picture frames and vases, while throwing spices and other kitchen items into trashcans, baskets or even crock-pots. They’ve all got to get to the new place somehow so why not multi-purpose them!

Buy and Resell Packing Materials. A lot of home improvement stores will have boxes for purchase, but try asking friends or other stores if they have some they’ve saved or need to dispose of. Websites like Craigslist also have free or inexpensive moving boxes available. When the move is over, break everything down and use the same resources to resell everything.  

Color Coordinate Rooms with Duct Tape. Aside from labeling ALL sides of the boxes, assign each room a colored duct tape to mark the boxes so it’s even easier to identify and organize once you’re unloading.

Don’t Overpack Boxes. You may be able to stuff A LOT into your boxes, but try to plan ahead by weight. Fill smaller boxes with heavier items so they stay about 50 lbs. or less, while trying to keep similar items together.

Separate Your First Day Essentials. Plan an overnight bag for each person that contains his or her specific toiletries and change of clothing. This bag is also a great place for laptops and other important electronics.  Anything else that you may need in the first 24 hours (i.e. trashbags, cookware, toilet paper, etc.) should be packed in a clear storage box so it sticks out from other boxes in the truck. It’ll be easy to find, so you’re prepared for the first night in your new home!

September 23, 2016

5 Home Improvements to Sell Your Home Faster

Not all home improvements are meant to be enjoyed as a homeowner as much as they’ll benefit you as a seller. But Elite Homes, a homebuilder in Louisville, Kentucky, is here to show you some upgrades that may not be elaborate, but they could make or break the sale of your home. Here are five home improvements can increase the value of your home. 

1. Bathroom Remodel.  Bathroom upgrades can provide as much as almost 80% returns.  This includes new countertops, faucets, light fixtures and other simple, but essential features. No need to splurge on fancy fixtures, but instead keep things neutral and classic to appeal to all types of buyer tastes.

2. Landscaping. Your yard is the first thing people see, so any improvement will be valuable.  When deciding what upgrades to make first, start from your curb and work your way to the front door. This mimics what the buyer will see first as they arrive and begin making their initial judgments. Small year round plants add nice appeal, while larger trees and shrubs also help with erosion and water run off. 

3. Exterior Improvements.  New siding makes a huge difference aesthetically, but more importantly protects your home. Certain materials like fiber-cement provide much more return on investment than vinyl, for example, which can crack, rot or fade. Swapping in new energy efficient windows is also big for buyers as they make a home feel warmer and save significantly on utilities overtime.

4. Attic or Basement Conversion.  Whether your goal is to convert the space into a bedroom for guests/in-laws or an area to entertain and relax, some new dry wall, floors and lighting can reap significant return on investment. 

5. Build a Deck or Porch. While these areas provide potential buyers the chance to envision themselves enjoying family cookouts and gatherings, they also offer a nice, seamless transition from the inside out.  These additions typically recoup about 85% of costs and can make a huge difference in the eyes of buyers who appreciate the bonus living space a nice outdoor area can provide.

If you’re ready to move into an Elite home, then start thinking about what your buyers may want so that you can sell your home in the near future! Some of these improvements may not be as valuable to you as they are to the next owners, so it’s important to see how noticing the difference can be more of a benefit when you’re ready to move.