December 27, 2016

10 Ways to Keep Your New Years Resolution in Your Elite Home!

It’s a time-honored tradition to make resolutions for the New Year. We vow to improve ourselves – exercise more, start a home improvement project… the list is endless.  This year, take the initiative and see how many resolutions you can keep – right from the comfort of your own Elite Built home in Louisville!

1.     Get organized. De-clutter your drawers and desk. Sort paperwork, bills, mementos and mail. Find a spot that’s just for paperwork & bills, and create a system for sorting things as soon as they come in. Clean out the closets – and see how much space you have. Invest in a closet organization system if it will help you keep things tidier.

2.     Make technology your friend. Whether you’re trying to lower your heating bills or find time to exercise consistently, automation is the key. Automated thermostats. Automated bill paying. Automatic reminders. It’s easier to develop and stick to new habits with a little help from technology. 

3.     Start – and finish – a home improvement project. If it’s a large project, break it into smaller steps. Create a rough schedule and cover parts of the project in monthly increments. 

4.     A space for everything. Go room by room, and think about what you really use each part of your home for — watching movies and reading in the den, for example. Make sure that everything you need to do these things is at hand, and get rid of anything and everything unrelated.

5.     Actually exercise more. You’ve been wanting to create your own mini fitness center, so go ahead and turn your bonus room into a gym or yoga studio. And use your smart phone or tablet to remind you to exercise every day. No excuses!

6.     Read more. You know that pile of books (traditional or digital) that’s been sitting unread for ages? Create a reading nook for yourself. Find a comfy chair, a good light and a shelf or table, and settle in. (Don’t be surprised if you keep finding kids in your nook, though!) 

7.     Create and follow a budget. Get yourself on a healthy fiscal track. Once you have your bills sorted (#1), then you can create a budget to track your spending habits. There are lots of easy to use budgeting programs. Set one up and get your finances in order!

8.     Create a healthier environment. Slow down and think about what you’re eating, wearing or cleaning with. Get the junk food out of the house and load up on lots of nuts, fruits and veggies. Take the time to sit down and eat as a family. Be aware of the chemicals in your cleaning supplies. Replace them with non-toxic or earth friendly versions if possible. Buy better made clothes with natural fibers.

9.     Learn a new skill. Hop on the DIY bandwagon. Choose an area that appeals to you and search for tutorials online, pick up a book, or hunt for a local class or workshop to get started. The sense of fulfillment you’ll get when you finish a DIY project is unbeatable.

10.  Concentrate on quality. Don’t fritter away money on furniture that will fall apart within a year or decor bought on impulse. If you have your eye on a special piece, try keeping a picture of it where you will see it regularly (like on your phone) as a reminder to save up for what you really want.

December 23, 2016

New Home Trends in 2017

What design trends are going to be popping up in your Elite Built home in Louisville in 2017? Check out what styles are starting to make their way into homes as the year ends, so you can start planning your new home for the New Year!

·      COLOR. After years of stark whites and cool greys, the biggest trend for 2017 is color. From warm pastels, to earthy terracottas, to vibrant jewel tones.

·        METALS. Whether you’re mixing brushed silver accents with shiny chrome fixtures, or indulging in the warmth of rich copper, metals are a hot topic.

·      ORGANICS. Natural materials such as wood, cork and stone are increasingly popular for finishes. For example, cork walls, stone counters, salvage
d wood doors.

·      PORCHES. Whether for sheer nostalgia value or as a modern family gathering space, homes with porches are high on everyone’s list.

·        READING NOOKS. People are searching for quiet spots to “unplug” from their noisy digital worlds. Comfy corners for reading and unwinding are just the thing.

·        UPHOLSTERY & LUXE MATERIALS. Soft, furry and velvety are absolutely trending. From upholstered headboards to velvet pillows, faux fur rugs to down comforters, people love luxuriating in softness.

December 16, 2016

Ways to Spread Cheer and Spend Less this Holiday Season

The holidays are all about spending time with good friends and loved ones.  Whether you’re opening your Elite Built home in Louisville to guests or simply enjoying it with your family, there are a number of ways to surround yourself with the best parts of the season AND save money for more important things… like gifts!

Choosing a Bold Christmas Tree
You can get away with a smaller tree if it’s a less traditional color or tree type. The bolder the color, the more of an impact it makes, while costing less than a big evergreen. If your existing collection of Christmas ornaments isn’t enough, try a couple homemade ornaments for a personalized look. Also, stick to one vibrant color theme so they really pop!

Hanging a Festive Wreath
Wreaths can come in all different styles, sizes and materials, so it’s an easy do-it-yourself decoration. Gather natural elements from your yard or nearby park, or check out a sale at your local arts and crafts store. Hang it on your front door to spread the cheer with neighbors and passersby!

Getting a Head Start on Gifts
Wrapping gifts is already on your to-do list, so why not start early and use them in your festive décor! Some colorful wrapping paper, ribbon and ornaments are a special touch for the eventual receiver, but can also add some cheer placed under your tree in the mean time! The dollar store has all the materials you need, and will help you stay on budget if you choose to add a couple faux presents as well!

Using Colors of the Season
If you stick with certain color schemes, you’ve got the making of a festive home even if your décor isn’t specific to the holidays. Household items or natural elements in reds, greens, silvers, golds, blues and whites can help evoke the feeling of the holidays.  Create homemade vignettes with ribbon, candles, pinecones, berries and other cheap or free items. Cover mantles, tabletops, dressers and more with your favorite colors of the season.

Incorporating Holiday Scents
What aromas remind you of the holidays? Hot chocolate, freshly baked cookies, pine needles, cinnamon… whatever it is, fill your home with it! Bake cookies with your family or create a hot chocolate bar for any guests who stop by. Use scented candles and air fresheners as an affordable way to fill your home with a feeling of the holidays!

Other Tips:
·      If you’re planning a party, co-host with a friend to cut costs in half!
·      Prepare dinners and meals in bulk to cut costs on ingredients and save energy. Plus, you’ll have leftovers to enjoy!
·      When shopping online, look for promo codes and compare prices. Also, take it slow! Some sites give discounts if customers leave stuff in their cart overnight.

You CAN enjoy the holidays and turn your home into a winter wonderland without breaking the bank. Whether it’s some DIY decorations or a few sensory touches in your home, your family won’t want to spend the holidays anywhere else!

December 9, 2016

8 Reasons Why you Should Buy New in the New Year!

If you’ve been thinking about buying a new Elite home here in Louisville, taking the plunge before year-end could save you money and potentially even increase your future take-home pay. Here are some of the reasons the fourth quarter is a great time to buy a home.
1. Flexible schedules
There’s no need to wait until Saturday or Sunday to cram five house tours into your schedule. Rather than wasting precious weekends, take an end-of-the-year vacation day to check out available homes. Chances are, agents and sales people have some time on their hands as well, and would appreciate staying busy throughout December.
2. Low interest rates
The Federal Reserve continues its' slow march toward higher interest rates, signaling that it remains on track to raise its' benchmark interest in December for the first time this year. Expectations are that rates will be raised gradually, but even an extra half point can make a big difference in monthly payments as well as the lifetime cost of a loan.
3. Lending lull
With everyone off celebrating the holidays, December is traditionally a lean month for mortgage brokers. Since there are fewer real estate transactions, loan officers may be motivated to offer special incentives and possibly waive or reduce origination fees. With so few loans in the pipeline, underwriting turnaround times will be quick.
4. Tax savings
If you close by December 31, you can mortgage interest, property taxes,and interest costs. These deductions are significant, especially in the early years of your loan when you’re paying off a lot of interest.
6. Down payment options
For many years, 20% has been considered the magic number for a mortgage down payment – anything less could end up costing you. Consider how adjusting your down payment will affect your interest rate; generally the less you put down, the higher your rate will be. But if getting into a home quickly is your priority, a low down payment can facilitate that goal.
7. Available movers
Many moving companies are booked six weeks or more in advance during the busy summer months. In the fall and winter, it’s normally easier to secure the services of a moving company or rental equipment on shorter notice.
8. You have time to move and unpack
Coordinating a move takes time and energy. The whole process can be a headache if you’re juggling a move and full-time work. If your employer offers time off around the holiday season, this is the perfect opportunity to buy a house because you’ll have time to move and unpack before heading back to work.