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Have a Fun Fourth: DIY Outdoor Games

July 2, 2015

Are you planning a cookout to celebrate the 4th of July this weekend? This year, why not add a little fun to your barbecue with some simple, DIY lawn games? Apartment Therapy has rounded up 10 tutorials, many of which are just giant versions of popular tabletop games like checkers, chess, pick up sticks, Yahtzee!, and Kubb (also called Swedish Chess, pictured above via Apartment Therapy). Check them out here and have a great holiday!

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Temporary Wallpaper

June 26, 2015

I love some of the gorgeous, modern wallpapers that I’ve been seeing out there over the past few years, but I’m hesitant to commit to any for my own home. I have traumatic memories of helping my grandmother remove her kitchen wallpaper when I was about ten. There was a vinegar spray, there was steam, there were scorers, and yet we were still reduced to scraping slivers of paper off the wall with our fingernails. Ugh.

But what if wallpaper weren’t so permanent? Tempaper is a removable wallpaper that is mostly marketed to renters or college students, but as a commitment-phobic homeowner, I find it very appealing. There are lots of really nice patterns, and they’ve even got some interesting textured options (think faux brick or wood panels).

They’ve also just come out with a line of blank, paintable wallpapers. It’s awesome for murals that you might want to remove without having to repaint.

These are also great for folks who are planning to move in the next few years. Wallpaper can be a huge turnoff to buyers, so removing it before you sell is a great way to increase your home’s appeal.

Playground-Inspired Decor

June 22, 2015

I have long desired a swing in my home for my daughter (and for everyone, because who doesn’t like to swing?). And now that IKEA sells an indoor swing, I think my dream will become a reality very soon! Playground inspired decor has been popping up all over the place for a while now, from slides to lower floors to climbing walls in kids’ rooms. Check out these fun applications:

My elementary school playground had metal slides that basically incinerated our backsides on hot, sunny days. No such problem with this stainless steel beauty from Apartment Therapy.

This indoor swing from Urban Outfitters is so pretty. At $98, the price is a little steep, but if you want fun and style, it’s worth it.

Installing climbing wall is as easy as screwing the hand and footholds into the wall, and then you can literally say your kids are climbing the walls. This one is from Aligned Real Estate

These are tree trunks that have been scraped, polished and installed as climbing structures for the kids. They are beautiful and super fun. From Remodelista

This picture just cracks me up. Look how high that kid is!! A bar is lots of fun for kids to flip and hang upside down on. I found this on on Remodelista.

8 Home Upgrades that Are Worth the Cost

June 19, 2015

As you make improvements to your home, it’s always good to consider how your work will affect your resale value. Some renovations will pay off (whether in actual cash, or fewer days on the market), while others will actually hurt your home’s future value.

Trulia has listed eight upgrades that will make your house a better place to live, while also increasing its value when it’s time to sell. Many of these projects deal with your home’s curb appeal-new siding, professional landscaping, and a new front door are just a few. My favorite improvement, though, is a new deck. Adding a deck is a great way to add some seasonal square footage to your home. For eight months of the year, you’ll have a few hundred extra square feet. Best of all, if it gets dirty, you can just hose it off!

Check out the full article over on Trulia.

Image from Trulia

Columbus, Ohio Most Intelligent City EVER

June 15, 2015

This made me laugh today. Apparently, Columbus, Ohio has been named the most intelligent city on Earth by the Intelligent Community Forum. Mayor Coleman received the honor in Toronto last week, along with other cities that are slightly less intelligent than us. Columbus beat out cities such as Rio De Jeneiro, New Tei Pei, and Arlington, Virginia for the honor. Mayor Coleman said Columbus was singled out for its collaborative spirit, use of technology to attract and grow business, and innovations.

Image from Mentalfloss

Buy a House Today and Save $217,726

June 9, 2015

There is no question that buying a home is a costly endeavor. Besides a mortgage payment, you have repairs, renovations, taxes, and general upkeep, and the whole thing can seem like more trouble than it’s worth. But get this, because interest rates will likely rise this year, and rents and home prices are getting higher in most markets, every day you delay buying a home is costing you money. And, according to the analysts over at Realtor.com, buying today would save you about $217,726 over the course of your 30 year mortgage! While in some markets, the savings are not so extreme, in some locations on the West Coast, you could be saving more than $1 million, since both home prices and rents are skyrocketing over there.  So, what’s stopping you from buying today?

Check out the full article at Realtor.com.

Image from Giphy

$500 Million Mansion Most Expensive Listing in America

June 8, 2015

Ground has been broken on the largest residence in LA. At over 100,000 square feet, the compound includes a 5,000 square foot master bedroom, five swimming pools (Drought? WHAT DROUGHT?), and a ‘Monaco-style casino’. The designer, Nile Niami, estimates that construction will be complete in about 20 months and the property will be listed at $500 million, making it the most expensive listing in the US.

See more pictures at Curbed.com

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