How To Clean That Moldy Siding

Vinyl siding is a durable, versatile, and resilient building material, but it does require some routine care and cleaning.
Luckily, vinyl siding is fairly easy to clean, and there are a wide variety of products to help remove typical stains. According to the Vinyl Siding Institute, the best way is to use a soft cloth or an ordinary long-handled, soft-bristle brush. To prevent streaking, start at the bottom and work up towards the top of the house. Thoroughly rinse any cleaning solution as you go.

Some good cleaning solutions include:
• 70% water, 30% white vinegar makes a great all-purpose cleanser that removes light mold and mildew stains.
• For a stronger solution, mix together one-third cup powdered laundry detergent, two-thirds cup powdered household cleaner, one quart liquid laundry bleach and one gallon of water.
• If you are concerned about landscaping, use a solution comprised of one gallon of water mixed with one cup oxygen bleach in a bucket. The oxygen bleach will clean the vinyl without damaging your landscaping.
• Simple Green offers an environmentally friendly cleaner that is specially formulated for use on vinyl and aluminum siding, stucco, terra cotta roof tiles and painted wood. The non-toxic biodegradable concentrate can be used manually or with pressure washers.
Another effective way to clean vinyl siding is by using a pressure washer, although some manufacturers advise against it, and other manufacturers recommend a limited amount of pressure.
Avoid using any cleaning products that contain organic solvents, undiluted chlorine bleach, liquid grease remover, nail polish remover, or furniture polish or cleaners.
With just a little bit of time and effort, vinyl siding can be kept looking “like new” and will provide many years of trouble-free protection for your home.

The Seller’s Road Map…

  • Meet with a Real Estate Professional:There’s no commitment required on your part for the initial meeting. It will be educational and help you identify your next steps.
  • Establish a Price:Your agent will provide a market analysis, which will help you set an asking price.
  • Strategic Price:As difficult as it may be, it’s important to review the market analysis and consider your home price objectively.
  • Prepare Your Home:View your home through the eyes of the buyer and ask yourself what you’d expect. Your agent will offer some useful suggestions.
  • List It For Sale:When everything is in place your agent will put your home on the open market. It’s critical you make it as easy as possible for potential buyers to view your home.
  • Showings:Potential buyers may ask to see your home on short notice. It’s best if you can accommodate these requests, you never want to miss a potential sale.
  • Offers and Negotiation:If everything goes well, a buyer and (most often the agent who represents them) will present your agent with an offer.
  • Choosing an Offer:Your agent will present the benefits and risks of each offer. You will have the opportunity to either accept or counter any offer based on its merits.
  • Under Contract:At this point, you and the buyer have agreed to all of the terms of the offer and both parties have signed the agreements.
  • Final Details:While under contract, the buyer will work with their mortgage provider to finalize the loan and perform other due diligence.
  • Inspection:The buyer will usually perform a physical inspection of the home. They may even ask you to make certain repairs. Your agent will explain all of your options regarding the inspection.

Kitchen Cabinetry – What do Buyers Want?

THE 4 THINGS HOME BUYERS REALLY WANT IN KITCHEN CABINETRY

The 4 Things Buyers Usually Want in a Kitchen

  1. Quality

Do: Choose quality hinges and runners, including soft-close drawers, and custom-made cabinetry.

Don’t: Go for large fillers and ill-fitted modular cabinetry.

  1. Symmetry

Do: Keep the wall cabinetry sizes the same where possible. Drawers look nice when they are large and expansive – if you have multiple sets, keep them the same size, with the same proportion of drawers.

Don’t: Add multiple cabinets in varying sizes. Try to keep the look and feel consistent in the whole space.

  1. Light, Bright Spaces

Do: Keep the space open, bright and light with white cabinetry. If you want some contrast, go for a darker bench top. Backsplashes should be kept fairly neutral too – try to introduce texture instead of color into the backsplash. The more neutral and elegant the space is, the more potential buyers you will attract.

Don’t: Use darker-color cabinetry, which can make the space feel closed. While adding a strong color may suit your taste, it may not be to everybody’s liking. You want to attract as many potential buyers as possible, and while white may not be the most daring color for your cabinetry, it’s the most popular.

  1. An Open Layout

Do: Have a large open-plan space with a kitchen island if possible. Buyers often want to multitask in the kitchen. They want to cook, have their kids do their homework and socialize in it.

Don’t: Place your kitchen in a small and poky room. The kitchen is now often the hub of the house, and buyers want to see a kitchen that is interactive and sociable.

Water Damage!

Water Damage!

Yes – water stains are not pretty. Also, they may be a sign of an active leak plus a breeding ground for mold and mildew. Remeber – they are also easy to hide from potential buyers with the right decoration and staging.

Be sure to look behind that pile of cardboard boxes or suitcase in the corner. You should always ask the owner to move the furniture a few inches and shine a flashlight around. If the home has obvious red flags (an odd odor or visible wall cracks), it’s not unreasonable to request removing a large picture frame to take a peek at what’s behind it.

Popular way sellers will conceal the water stains is with a fresh coat of paint.

Be sure to ask the owner when they last painted. If it was a year ago, they’re probably not trying to hide water stains.

What are the 3 things a buyer really wants in kitchen cabinetry?

1) Quality

Buyers prefer quality over quantity.
Quality hinges, soft-close drawers, custom-made cabinetry

2) Symmetry

Keep your kitchen cabinets simple and appealing. Simplicity is the key when you want to appeal to the majority of buyers

3) Light, Bright Spaces

Many buyers want an open, light and airy space to enjoy. Having a white kitchen is universally appealing and also leaves a blank slate for buyers to re-envision the space.

 

 

Charlotte’s 10 Favorite Neighborhoods

Charlotte is now one of the largest cities in America. It’s known for its very diverse neighborhoods plus its local attractions. There are even smaller cities within itself like Ballantyne and South Park.

Here are the top 10 neighborhoods:

  1. Eastover
  2. Commonwealth
  3. Barclay Downs
  4. Dilworth
  5. Myers Park
  6. Fourth Ward
  7. Foxcroft
  8. Plaza Midwood
  9. Ballantyne East
  10. Wessex Square

When Do You Think I Should Sell?

The question we get a lot is “When should I sell my home?”

Here are a few situations that might make you ask those kinds of questions.

  • A job change
  • Employment relocation
  • Outgrown your home
  • Empty nester looking to downsize
  • Increase in family income
  • A decrease in family income
  • Maybe you are needing money

You should also be aware of the current economic situations and also the future economic outlook.

 

 

Keeping Mosquitos Away

We all know about using bug spray and citronella candles. But what about other ways to keep those pesky mosquitos away? As if they weren’t annoying enough before, the threat of the Zika Virus has made mosquitos even more dangerous. So we’ve scoured the web for the best tricks for keeping the buggers away.

1. Plant a garden. There are several plants that are known to be mosquito repellants, including lemongrass, lavender, and marigolds.

2. Grow your own herbs. One of the best is something you might want to grow for other, tastier, reasons as well.
“Basil is so effective at repelling mosquitos (and adding a delicious flavor to Italian fare!) that you’ll want to grow it all around your house,” said POPSUGAR. “Windowsills, porches, the garden…the possibilities are endless!” Not only will it keep those nasty flying things away, but you’ll also be able to make some killer pesto!

3. Make your kitty cat happy. “Some studies report that catnip is 10 times more repellent to mosquitos than sprays, so this plant is a big win for gardeners,” said POPSUGAR. “Bonus: if you’ve got a cat, they’ll get plenty of entertainment from any catnip you plant!” And, it’s pretty to boot!

4. Trap them. You can easily make an effective mosquito trap with a plastic soda bottle or milk jug and bait made from brown sugar and active dry yeast. Get directions here.

5. Make yourself smell delicious. Dabbing vanilla extract on your pulse points has been said to help repel mosquitoes. Beware the urge to bake cookies later!

6. Recycle your coffee grounds. Turns out, they make a great mosquito repellant. “That’s right, old dried up coffee grounds work as an effective repellent for mosquitoes, according to the EPA,”

How Big Of A Home Do You Really Need?

When it comes to homes, most would say that more is better. Right?

Well ask yourself this – is this my “forever” home, or is “right now” good enough?

We can’t predict the future but it is possible to evaluate the likelihood of moving in the coming years. If this is the case then maybe you don’t need to buy that perfect “forever” home may be a “right now” home is good enough.

Lots of times people feel that when searching for that “forever” home they want to get the all the space they might ever need. Well, this often leads buyers to purchase something that is just too big.

Largest Zoo In The World Is Now in North Carolina!

Did you know that our state-owned zoo is actually the largest walk-through zoo in the world? It currently sits on over 2,000 acres of land mass with over 1,600 animals from 250 different species.

Open 364 days a year, the zoo receives 700k+ annual visitors.

There are two main sections, Africa and North America.

The North Carolina Zoo is also one of only 2 state-owned zoos in America.

 

These lions @nczoo are beautiful.

A post shared by James LaCorte (@gasparphotos) on

Have you been to the NC Zoo yet?

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