For Rent: Rental Refresh Upgrades

Today’s blog post is brought to you by the letter R for rental refresh upgrades. The conversation of late between mama and papa Places In The Home and our soon to be college graduate son heading up to the Great White North to begin his career has revolved around rental property viewings, interiors, exteriors, accents (eh?) and scads of all things house that make a home (rented or owned) furnishings.  This is the time of year when thoughts of apartments, condos, townhomes and single-family houses for rent and rental refresh upgrades begin to take center stage in the minds of college bound students, career starting college grads and newlywed couples.  According to recent real estate and business reports, millennials trend more toward renting than buying.

house-for-rent-sign

The genius of internet listings, video viewings, real estate apps and Skype proves an essential tool in locating a property.  With a few clicks, well placed phone calls and virtual tours, our son has successfully rented a two story Victorian-era style home.  Now comes the fun part- the rental refresh upgrades.  He and his girlfriend are currently in putting a stylish spin on his new abode mode.  This is not our son’s first time at the rental rodeo.  He knows all too well renting comes with caveats, and property management firms have rules and code restrictions that must be adhered to.  Addressing the aforementioned right off the bat clearly defines the can and cannots.  Fortunately, the home owner is on board with the updates and rental refresh upgrades our son wants to do to the property.

BM-revere-pewter-framedBenjamin Moore

Fresh paint  rules the rental refresh upgrade playbook.   I ran across this quote yesterday and it really hit home.

“Color is the least expensive thing to put in a house.” —Ruthie Sommers

Color often gives the biggest return on your interior decorating investment. Paint is an instant update and covers a multitude of previous tenant color choice sins and the scuffs, streaks and uh-ohs made when moving out.  As a housewarming gift, Mr. Girlfriend’s Dad is painting the entire interior and key exterior areas of the house.  Going with a neutral color palette allows more breathing room in regards to accents and furnishings.  Landlords and property managers love neutral palettes, and come closer to approving the request for painting with this color choice.

rental-house-den

My inbox is experiencing a high volume of before, during and after pictures.  It’s exciting to be in the loop, share in the progress and to be asked to be a part of the process .

rental-staircase

Does it makes sense and cent$ to make updates and improvements to a rental property?  Absolutely!  Focus less on the fact your new residence is a rental and more on the fact that your new residence is where you call home.  All things house that make a home come together to make the out of your own pocket rental refresh upgrades worth it for the sake of your comfort, convenience and personal style touch.

Rental Refresh Upgrades

So worth it rental refresh upgrades good to go as in take it with you when you go ideas range from a programmable thermostat, stylish mirrors in bathrooms, accent rugs, light switch and wall plates, cabinet knobs and pulls, new shower head(s) and focal point light fixtures to exterior walkway lighting, planter boxes and a decorative mailbox.  Renting or buying, it really is amazing how a sense of personal style, displaying objects of individual interest and decorating with accents that capture and convey your personality makes a house a home.

studded-rug-FlooringHall’s Flooring

I’ll leave it there for today’s post and pick it back up with more pictures and suggestions for rental refresh upgrades.

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Spring Curb Appeal Enthusiasm

Rainy April afternoons create spring curb appeal enthusiasm.

spring curb appeal enthusiasm

Into every April garden and flower bed a little or a lot of rain will fall, but it’s those April showers and Spring Black Friday sales that bring us one stepping stone closer to May flowers.

spring-flowers-in-bloomVeranda

Updates, changes, additions and refreshes to the exterior of your home don’t have to break the bank.  That’s what summer vacations are for! Gallon shrubs, flower bed mulch and another honking big blooming hydrangea is at the top of my spring curb appeal enthusiasm gotta have it list.  Thank you, Home Depot!

Home-Depot-spring-black-Friday

Better Homes and Gardens offers their readers an informative how to mulch guide here.

how-to-mulch

From the curb to the front door, color on parade is both a preached and practiced way to instantly pump up the spring curb appeal enthusiasm.

sudbury-design-group-landscapeSudbury Design Group Landscape Architects & Landscape Designers

Bright and bold, coastal cool, summer primary color combinations or classic château chic with the emphasis on elegance ~  color makes a most effective statement.

curb-French

Mary, Mary, quite contrary, in what direction will your curb appeal garden path go?

garden-pathPinterest

A simple change such as the addition of new house numbers, exterior lighting, bedding shrubs or decorative fencing can produce big results and compliments.

 exterior-lighting-lanterns

 copper-lanternsBetter Homes & Gardens

A gallon of pure black hi-gloss enamel exterior/interior paint never met an exterior door, set of shutters, window mullions, front porch rocker or garage door it didn’t love to cover in dramatic hi-gloss beauty.

Behr-pure-black-paint

black-front-door1House Beautiful

Here’s to the soaking showers of April, blooming flowers of May and the decorative and affordable curb appeal ideas that create spring curb appeal enthusiasm.

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Capital One 360 Black Friday Sale


Black Friday shopping has gone in a different direction this year for Mr. & Mrs. Places In The Home.  I guess you could say we hit a doozy of a Black Friday sale. Sometimes an opportunity presents itself right outside our kitchen window. See the red brick house with the white shutters?  That’s our Black Friday flipping big ticket item purchase. While visions of financial success in 2015 danced in our heads, we signed on the dotted line. We’re now making a list and checking and savings it twice with Capital One 360’s Black Friday Sale.  This holiday, to encourage consumers to stay on track with their finances, Capital One 360 is decking the halls with Black Friday deals you can bank on, including new account bonuses, referral bonuses and closing cost credits. Talk about perfect timing!

kitchen-window-view1

Getting back into the housing market is both an exciting and challenging endeavor. Flipping houses feeds our remodeling and interior decorating passion and our family security plan to reclaiming financial peace of mind. No matter the size of the Black Friday purchase(s), establishing and sticking to a reasonable and responsible budget is the first line of defense in avoiding the January “financial hangover” when holiday shopping is over and New Year’s Resolutions kick in. Over this Black Friday weekend, Capital One 360’s Black Friday Sale offers checking, savings and closing costs deals that will help you give yourself a gift you’re sure to keep and one to share with family and friends.

Capital One 360 Black Friday Sale

For those of us with renovating, remodeling, decorating, gifts, greetings and get-togethers on the brain, it’s important not to lose sight of your financial goals.  All of  Capital One 360’s Black Friday Sale deals are designed to encourage consumers to keep their finances top of mind.  In addition to taking advantage of deals on banking, brokerage and mortgage products yourself, you can give your friends and family the gift of financial peace of mind by encouraging them to take advantage of the deals and refer them to the sale.  If they sign up, you may be eligible for a $40 referral bonus- holiday reason enough to add Capital One 360’s Black Friday Sale to your shopping list. Visit Capital One 360’s Black Friday Sale to give yourself the lasting gift of financial peace of mind by taking advantage of Capital One 360’s deals on banking, brokerage and mortgage products.

 

I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

Design Your Dream Room with Tarkett

This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Tarkett NA for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.

I never shy from a good challenge.  The steps involved in the selection process of core home furnishings can be daunting, but it doesn’t have to be.  It’s time once again for a Places In The Home show and tell. The time has come for our guest room to make the transition to home office. The repurposed space will be a better fit in the scheme of things.  There’s not much to change in terms of design, but tastes and trends change many a mind. After great debate, I’ve decided the carpet is out and flooring is soon to be in. The issues of comfort, ease of maintenance and quiet factor into the flooring selection, especially in certain spaces of a home.

I have questions about flooring options just like everyone else does. I like to take advantage of pro tips and tools offered by manufactures of all things house that make a home products that assist in the selection process of home furnishings and home decor.  Seeing a product in actual working spaces is a plus in the process.  The Tarkett iSelect system, a design feature which groups Tarkett flooring options into 6 beautiful, easy-to-live-with color families, is an innovative design feature that allows the homeowner to coordinate flooring types, from room-to-room, throughout the entire house.

Introducing the iSelect® System from Tarkett North America on Vimeo.

iSelect  features Fiber Floor® and Luxury Floors from Tarkett. Fiber Floor® is a unique flooring option that stands up to real-life wear and tear in a warm, comfortable and it-looks-great kind of way. Tarkett Luxury Floors offer the ultimate in style, durability and versatility. Tarkett Luxury Floors are available in tiles with-or-without  grout, planks, adhered floors and floating floors.

Tarkett has organized a selection of FiberFloor products into six easy-to-shop palettes- Hushed Conversations, Fireside Chats, Warm Gatherings, Champagne Celebrations, Evening Reception and Earthy Connections. Each design complements the others within that palette.

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The intriguing interior design feature of iSelect is that no matter which floor you choose, it will complement any other floor in the same palette making it easy to coordinate adjoining rooms. Flow is one of the most important factors to consider, and iSelect will answer those questions for you.

The next tool of use in the flooring selection process is TarkettNA’s online visualizer, RoomVūe. Visualize your room at RoomVue by designing a room using an image from Tarkett’s onsite photo gallery of room design inspiration or upload an image of your own room as I did.  A variety of viewing options puts the design control in your hands. Photos and information gathered can be saved in the “My Projects” tool on TarkettNA’s website, printed, emailed or saved to your computer for future ideabook reference. Tarkett also provides a chat feature where you can chat online with professional Designers regarding questions about room design, flooring options and product details.

 photo Champagne_Celebrations_zps0de51385.jpg

Are you in the decorative contemplation process, looking to update up a room in your home with new flooring in a design palette that suits your style?  Check out iSelect, RoomVūe, and the entire family of Tarkett Flooring. Tarkett Flooring has over 10,000 retailers across the country. Find a retailer close to you with Tarkett’s retail locater http://www.tarkettna.com/locator.  Further the flooring inspiration experience by following Tarkett on Facebook, Tarkett on Pinterest, and Tarkett on Twitter.

 

 

 

 

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Fresh Greens: Home Lawn and Garden

Lush and lovely landscapes and the home lawn and garden ornaments that adorn them possess a unique beauty all their own.  Louisiana springs and summers pack a powerful knockout punch when it comes to heat and humidity, but as oppressive as the days and evenings can be, the trade off lies within the lush and lovely lawns and thriving gardens of the region.

roses

A quick glance out the dining room window at the freshly mowed lawn and manicured flower beds enticed me to pick up the camera and conduct an impromptu home, lawn and garden tour.

bird-garden-statue

I finally indulged a love of hydrangeas and purchased a five gallon blue hydrangea as an early Mother’s Day gift for my Mother.  As I was walking the front and side yard in search of the perfect spot to plant it, I couldn’t help but notice how green and good things were looking on the lush and lovely front.  I grabbed the camera and snapped a few lawn and garden shots to share with you all.

gift-basket

Late last week one of our neighbors surprised us with a gift basket blooming in LSU colors.

home lawn and garden

I have no earthly idea what the formal name of this plant is.  We have affectionately assigned the name Mama Bea to it, after the lady who for over thirty years was nanny, housekeeper, confident, life adviser, bull s*!t recognizer, self-appointed horticulturist, best friend and highly revered adopted family member.  Mama Bea’s yard was full of this plant. My mother, who is famous for needing just a taste of, bite of, bit of,  and a little of most everything she comes into contact with, decided she had to have a little clipping of this plant.  Mama Bea obliged the request, and Mama D  got to clipping.  She brought the clipping home and promptly stuck it in the ground, water it and basically forgot about it.  This stuff is like Kudzu- it spreads everywhere!  It is super low maintenance, covers a multitude of landscaping sins and makes great flower arrangement filler. Mama Bea has been gone for twenty-one years, but she lives on in our memories and, well, you know.

jockey-club

My family is big into horse racing.  When Dave the Builder and I first starting dating, we would occasionally ride up to Shreveport to Louisiana Downs or down to New Orleans to the Fair Grounds to take in the races for the weekend. The finely manicured grounds and jockey statues known to racetracks have long piqued my interest.  Dave retained this piece of info and surprised me one Christmas with this jockey statue.  Ever since our son was a toddler he has shook the jockey’s extended hand and said, howdy do. The name stuck, and howdy do has been greeting guests to our home for years.

copper-garden

Copper with a hint of verdigris is a natural process in progress. Where some see it as an eyesore, others see it as an eye catcher.

ornamental wrought iron

Learning to see the beauty in items marked by age, patina and perfect imperfections is a plus in the hunt and find of antiques.  I can only win that argument so many times before I must wave the white flag of surrender.  Believe me, after this picture was snapped, uploaded and viewed, I am now “paintfully” aware a trip to Sherwin-Williams for a gallon of Tricorn Black is in my sooner than later future.  The ironwork on the courtyard wall is showing signs of chippy neglect and the shutters have dulled.  On the subject of shutters, I gave these the once-over and concluded I still like the look of this faux shutter treatment.  Behind the shutters is one of the original dining room windows.  When we knocked down the wall between the dining room and kitchen, the two single windows had to go in order to make way for the new cabinets.   Dave boarded up the windows and fastened shutters to newly constructed frames.  We dressed up the look with dummy scroll shutter dogs for no other reason other than I really like the look of shutter dogs.

shutter hardware

The decision has been made to take down the lantern and put it through a series of re- rewire, repaint and repair.  Dave the Builder, my dad, our son and our neighbor all have something in common.  All four of these men have experienced painful forehead to lantern contact.  Notice the broken glass panel?  That was the result of our son’s run-in with the lantern.  The other two missing glass panels met an untimely demise compliments of my dad and Dave the Builder.  Curb appeal shouldn’t have to be painful, so down it comes.

lantern-fixture

We are going to be busy bees around here over the next few weeks. Speaking of bees, stay tuned for the next post. You’ll see what I mean.

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The Master Bathroom Remodel Project Is Officially Completed

Change.  Change is good, but it also has the ability to drive me bonkers. Paint color that is one shade in the can and a totally different shade on the wall also has the ability to drive me completely bats%*! crazy.  It is this kind of particular color bump in the road that brings about the decision to change a paint color.  If it doesn’t look right you do it over.  It makes the client is happy and that’s what matters.

albert moodboard

The master bathroom remodel project is officially completed.  Before images and info post is here.  What Dave the Builder lacks in the professional photographer department he more than makes up for in the professional builder/remodeling department.

master bathroom remodel project

The new color on the freshly repainted and completed walls is not translating well in the photos.  See what appears to be three completely different paint colors in the image below?

SW renwick beigeSherwin-Williams Renwick Beige SW 2805

The wall between the tub and shower is the closest to the true color, Sherwin-Williams Renwick Beige.

master bathroom tub

From demo to prep

shower remodel

to master bathroom remodel project completed success.

tile shower floor

Making things pretty and new creates a mess, but it is so worth it!  This was about the time in the master bathroom remodel project where a bit of design and decorating persuasion came into play.

remodel before pictures

Two vanities, two sinks, two faucets, two lights- you’ve got to go with two mirrors.

And two mirrors it is!  I purposely removed the color field out of the image below to emphasize a point to the client.  We both loved the result and selected it to print and frame.

albert remodel1

Great space for a master bathroom walk in closet and extra linens storage.

tile-floor-install (1)

The client requested the stained louvered doors leading into the master bedroom remain.

louvered doors

I requested the louvered doors leading into the walk in closet be painted to match the trim.  A win-win situation.

walk in closet

The inspiration and the idea for the design direction we will be going in for the master closet.  Fabulous!

closet-ideasTraditional Home

Another project completed.

Attention To Detail: Bathroom Window Treatment Ideas

Finishing touches are the best friend of a big reveal.  Fashion, interiors, meals- it’s all about the presentation and the attention to detail.  The master bathroom remodel project is now in the detail phase, namely, bathroom window treatment ideas.  My better half is not happy with the results of the final paint application, the hardware install is not quite there, and my fixation with the cloudy mirrors who could benefit greatly from a meeting with vinegar and newspaper is driving me nuts.  The “it’s perfect!” point is coming into view and that’s what matters.

master bathroom remodel

This master bathroom remodel project for hire is more construction remodel than interior design and decorating based.  We went with 60% of the client’s choices and the client went with 40% of ours.  That is 100, isn’t it?  Cost and in-stock availability remain the biggest considerations behind construction and design.  Some projects present the need for custom fixtures and special materials orders, and then there are the projects where the materials are just a convenient trip to the local lumber yard, building supply, paint and home improvement store away.  This one falls into the latter.

window treatment ideas

While I’m waiting for paint to dry and fixtures to fix, I’m working on the  finishing details.  I’ve been consulted to design the window treatment for the single window in the master bathroom.  The window itself is fixed and the glass is textured for privacy.  The client wants a working treatment, and what the client wants…

roman shades

I want to stay as true to the aesthetic and period of the house as possible, but I also want the ease of operation and look a modern treatment offers.  We both agreed and narrowed it down to a roman in either jute or textured fabric.  A custom tier curtain is also in the running.

corbels

 

I fell in love with this new but made to look old distressed piece and immediately had it or something very similar to it in mind to use as a cornice treatment.

window cornice ideas

 

Do you prefer curtains, blinds, shades, shutters or no window treatment at all for a bathroom window?

love your style

 

Project Master Bathroom Remodel

When our team completes a project success is measured by the satisfaction seal of approval from the client.   If the client immediately hires you for another project it’s a pretty good indicator of job well done.

safety dance

We celebrated this master bathroom remodel and the upcoming project hire with a Places In The Home remodel dance. Part safety dance, part remodel celebration boogie.

albert moodboard

shower-demo1

The presentation board for the master bathroom remodel captures the design and decor element the client requested.

master-bath-tile-install

Good bones and an even better layout, structurally speaking, removed the need to move walls and reroute plumbing. The focus was all about aesthetic updates complete with new fixtures and materials.  We can certainly do that!

shower-prep1

The first to go was the fiberglass shower and bath inserts.  Mosaic tiles were used for the shower floor.

Stonefire Noce Porcelain MosaicStonefire Noce Porcelain Mosaic

The intent here is twofold- texture and palette variation of blended neutrals.

bathroom vanity area

We constructed the layers of the shower pan using a vinyl membrane and concrete (technical jargon for we built a custom shower pan).

Here’s a preview of the shower progress.

master bathroom remodel

We selected 12″ x 12″  ceramic tile for the flooring, bath and shower walls and shower floor.

Stonefire Beige Porcelain TileStonefire Beige Porcelain Tile

Moving onward and upward!

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