Real Estate

These Are the Advantages of Building a Custom Home

Are you thinking about building a custom home? It can be a great idea. While moving into a house that is already constructed comes with many benefits, there is nothing like designing your dream space and watching your vision come to life.

However, if you have never built a home before, it can seem like a long and costly venture. There are many moving parts to the process, which can feel intimidating and overwhelming.

Although having a custom build does take some time and effort, the result is well with the wait. If you are ready to move and are considering a custom build, here are several advantages you can expect to experience.

You Can Design Your Dream Home

One of the advantages of building a home and using a quality company like Currahee Home Builders is the ability to design your dream home. When you purchase a home, you are somewhat limited to working with what has already been built. When you opt for a custom home, you are giving yourself unlimited options for the build.

You Can Use the Best Materials

A great benefit of building a custom home is choosing the materials that are used to build your home. You can choose the best of the best or the highest quality that fits your budget. This is ideal because many homes are built using builder-grade materials.

You Can Save Money on Maintenance and Remodeling

If you’ve ever moved into a new home, you know you will likely incur costs for maintenance and remodeling or updating. With a custom build, your home is move-in ready, with no preexisting issues or need for upgrades. This can save you money, time, and effort, along with stress and frustration.

You Can Optimize Your Property

A useful benefit of custom homes is the ability to optimize your property. You can choose the positioning of your home, the size of your front and back yards, and more. This is essential, as it can affect everything from energy efficiency to how comfortable you are living in the space.

You Can Design Your Landscaping

While you may think of building a house as just the home itself, part of a custom build is your landscaping. By opting for a custom build, you can start with a blank slate and design the landscaping of your dreams. This can include indoor-outdoor living, a front yard full of curb appeal, and more.

These Are the Benefits of Building a Custom Home

There are many benefits you will experience when building a custom home.

You can design your dream home and watch it come to life. You can also use the best materials, save money on maintenance and remodeling, and optimize your property. One of the best benefits of a custom home is being able to design your landscaping from a blank slate.

If you are ready to move, building a custom home is a great option.

Don’t forget to visit our site for all of your real estate and home improvement needs.

Real Estate

7 Ways to Make Your Kitchen Stand Out

Are you stuck in a kitchen rut? Or are you trying to figure out ways to make your kitchen unique?

For many, the kitchen is the center of the household. It’s where you prepare meals together or meet up to hang out and spend time together.

Staring at the same kitchen space can get boring after a while. But, that doesn’t mean it has to stay boring!

Feel like you’re digging for new ideas? There are lots of large and small options to upgrade or change up your space to help you feel right at home.

New Kitchen Paint

Though this may not seem like a ground-breaking idea, changing your paint will help give your kitchen a boost!

Maybe you moved into your home recently but didn’t think much about the kitchen colors. Or, maybe you moved into your home decades ago and settled into your surroundings. Or, maybe you’ve been busy but want to shake things up.

One of the easiest ways to transform a space is to add a fresh coat of paint. You can do this in several ways:

  • Paint your walls a totally new color
  • Paint one wall for an accent color
  • Paint your cabinets a new color
  • Get some wood stain and stain your wood a different shade
  • Paint your kitchen island one color and cabinets another color
  • Paint your light fixtures

You can add all your favorite colors! Unfortunately, this is not a renter-friendly option.

To add a fresh feel to a rented kitchen, add color in other ways. You can bring in small items of your own, like a red toaster, or a green serving board.

Add Tiling

This idea may not seem as obvious as painting your entire kitchen, but it works. Adding tile onto a backsplash is a fun way to change up your area!

Hexagonal and subway tiles are popular right now and make clean up a breeze. Instead of having to scrub your walls after a food fight or baking mishap, you just wipe down the tiles.

To decide where to add your backsplash, think of the most used spots in your kitchen. These are the most likely to get dirty and benefit from a backsplash.

Renters, if you love the look of a backsplash, but cannot tile your kitchen, look into faux backsplashes online!

Fresh Lighting

Adding new light anywhere transforms the space, especially in your kitchen. The lights set the mood for the room.

You can add overhead light to your bar top, or switch out the kind of light your fixtures are giving off. Look into ways to have a dimmer. This will make going from prep time to quality time simple!

If you’d like softer light, consider getting a light strip that you can run under your hanging cabinets. These lights will illuminate your cooking and give you a warm glow when you’re relaxing afterward.

New lighting is renter-friendly, too! Just be careful with adding and removing any temporary light strips and sconces.

New Countertops

Are you thinking, “I would love to remodel my kitchen, but I’m not sure where to start?” If so, you need to look into countertop replacement!

One of the most modern items is a waterfall island. These centerpieces are a traditional kitchen island but are one piece. Instead of a wood foundation with a separate top piece, these waterfall islands are streamlined marble.

They look like a box of marble with one side missing. They are elegant and sure to have your family and friends amazed. You can choose any color marble to fit your style, too!

You can also change up the marble on your existing bartop and counters.

Nontraditional Floors

Maybe you’re thinking, “I’d love to know how to make my kitchen stand out.” A fun, new way to have a standout kitchen is to have standout flooring!

When someone mentions kitchen tiling, most people picture something similar in their mind. Usually, kitchen floors don’t get a lot of love.

But, if you want to make sure your floors are durable and beautiful, look into wood or stone flooring. Each of these has it’s own unique flair, but can stand up to tough messes!

Or, if you can’t change your floors at the moment, try adding fun rugs in front of the refrigerator, or a soft mat in front of the sink. Not only will you add something new to the room, but your feet will thank you, too!

A Low Profile Ceiling Fan

Low profile fans are some of the most popular home furnishing items right now. They work well in any space and add airflow. This is perfect for your kitchen so your entire home can smell what you’re cooking up!

These fans don’t hang as low as other fans, meaning you have more headspace with all the great benefits of a fan. This also makes them perfect for any size kitchen.

If you live in a smaller home, go for one fan above the island. If you have a larger kitchen, hang two above the island and one above an open entryway.

Low profile fans are also versatile, so you can stick with a traditional look or a modern twist!


Inspiring art doesn’t have to be just for the living or bedroom! You can add art to personalize your space and tie everything together.

Kitchens are one of the most practical rooms in your home. Art adds dimension to a space that can feel utilitarian.

But, you don’t have to stick to food-themed art! You can choose your favorite flowers to liven things up. Or, find maps of your favorite places. Be sure to add a protective layer to any art you hang in your kitchen, too.

Ready to Remodel?

Are you ready to shake things up in your kitchen? Start small and work your way up. You’ll have your dream kitchen ready to use in no time.

Remember, no matter how long you’ve lived in a home, it’s never too late to add the things that make you happy! Who knows, maybe a fresh kitchen will even inspire you to cook more and find a new passion.

Real Estate

Your Basic Guide to the Real Estate Market in Hawaii

Are you dreaming of moving to Hawaii?

There’s no doubt this island paradise has a lot to offer, whether you’re a recent graduate, a family with kids, or a satisfied retiree. 1.4 million people currently call the Aloha State home — and you could be next!

Before you seriously considering buying a house in Hawaii, though, you first need to get familiar with the real estate market. Is now a good time to buy, or should you put your dream on hold for a bit?

Keep reading to find out all about the real estate market in Hawaii!

The Real Estate Market in Hawaii: At a Glance

At the end of 2020, the median listing price for a house in Hawaii was $640,000. Here are some other key facts to know about the real state market right now:

  • It’s a buyer’s market (there are more homes available than buyers)
  • Mortgage rates are low, averaging 2.63% for a 30-year mortgage
  • Experts predict property values will increase by 6.8% during 2021

What’s the takeaway? Now is the perfect time to consider buying a house in Hawaii!

Tips for Buying a House in Hawaii

As you begin your search for your dream Hawaiian home, keep the following tips in mind.

  1. Know When to Go House Hunting

One important thing to know about the Hawaiian real estate market is that trends fluctuate drastically throughout the year. If you’re looking to save money on your purchase, wait until the summer months to start looking.

Sale prices historically are lowest during June, when homes are $86,800 less expensive than other times of the year. In contrast, homes listed in January are $156,792 higher than the annual average.

  1. Consider the Elevation

Next up on our list of things to know is that temperatures vary greatly across Hawaii based on the elevation of your home. All the touristy hotels on the beach offer air-conditioning, but you might be surprised to learn that a lot of private homes don’t come with this feature.

If you plan to live near the coast, make sure the home you’re considering has AC installed — or be prepared to install it yourself, if you want to stay cool. Otherwise, look for a home that’s higher up in elevation so your home will stay comfortably cool year-round.

  1. Choose a Local Realtor & Lender

Real estate in Hawaii looks a lot different than on the mainland. You won’t find gated communities with hundreds of cookie-cutter houses here. Each home, street, and neighborhood comes with a unique set of features and equally unique pricing.

For that reason, realtors and mortgage companies on the mainland don’t usually have the knowledge required to understand Hawaiian underwriting and property values. When you narrow in on a part of the island you like, look for local companies that have a thorough knowledge of the area. This will help you get the best home at the best price!

Looking for Houses for Sale in Hawaii?

The real estate market in Hawaii is good for buyers right now, so take advantage of it! Property values are only going to go up from here, making 2021 the perfect time to invest in Hawaiian real estate.

Was this article helpful to you? Keep browsing our site for more great home-related advice!

Real Estate

The Ultimate Bathroom Organization & Storage Guide

Graphic created by Modern Bathroom.

Real Estate

What Is a Retaining Wall and Do You Need One for Your Yard?

What is a retaining wall? You have passed them every day without even taking notice. They are in many places, such as in homes, schools, parks, and mountain passes.

These structures have twofold purposes. They prevent landslides and erosion of soil, plus they provide us with extra useable land.

How do you know you could benefit from having a retaining wall? This guide will explain what you need to know.

What Is a Retaining Wall

A retaining wall gives additional support to stop the earth from sliding downhill by erosion as well as diverting rainwater.

Sometimes, retaining walls are also built for better usage of garden space, such as new herb gardens or extra seating space.

Retaining walls are built with a variety of materials. They come in different sizes and shapes. Materials used are timber, concrete, blocks, or natural stone.

To Retain or Not to Retain, That Is the Question

Do you need a retaining wall? Here are some suggestions that will help in the decision of building a retaining wall.

Your Property Is On a Hill

Living on a Hill brings its space problems. Should the slope of your property prevent you from maximizing the usage of space, the addition of a retaining wall can create a more fruitful space. This space could be a parking space or a patio. The possibilities are endless.

Erosion Prevention

Prevent soil erosion by building a retaining wall. This prevents the sliding of soil down your slopes onto the road.

The loss of soil from your garden is dangerous as it could affect your house foundations.

Flowing Rainwater

Water is one of mother nature’s elements. It can cause damage to your foundation and flood your basement. By building a retaining wall, you can divert the flow.

The retaining wall will also help prevent the water from eroding the soil around your home.

Out With the Old In With the New

Retaining walls have a lifespan if built incorrectly. Inspect your existing retaining wall to see if there are any cracks or weak spots.

Make sure you get professional help before building one, as sometimes a DIY job can become a disaster. Residents of Austin, Texas, try CLC Landscaping, LLC for reputable and professional landscaping services.

Extend Your Garden Planting Space

If you love gardening and do not have enough space, building retaining walls will help you build planting spots. From a herb garden near your kitchen to a feature garden near your pool.

Retaining walls can create a terraced garden to be proud of!

Enhancing Your Entertainment Area

If your entertainment area lacks space, the top of a retaining wall can be extra seating together with its other functions. Why not enhance the seating area with cushions to brighten up a dull corner?

With a bit of creativity, turn retaining walls into interesting features for your home.

Do Not Lose Out, Retain It

Have we helped you to answer the question, what is a retaining wall? Apart from that, whether you need one?

A retaining wall, apart from being a preventative safety measure, can improve the value of your home. How? By optimizing the usage of the space provided by them and making them aesthetically pleasing will go a long way to increase the value of your home.

If you require help with all things home, why not browse our website?

Real Estate

Marylebone Property Rental Experts

These tips can help you to find the right agent to help you with your Marylebone property rentals, sale or purchase. It’s important not to be overwhelmed by the vast amount of information available online, especially when your home is probably the biggest investment or purchase you’ll ever make. Not all estate agents are reliable and will get the job done; read on to find out how you can be assured of working with someone who will actually get the job done.

Consider the Type of Transaction

Many agents specialize; they might work with buyers purchasing a home for the first time, or with those on the buying side of any transaction. A seller’s agent may work mostly with marketing and listing houses and flats. However, all agents are able to work on the seller’s behalf or the buyer’s behalf.

Just as in other areas of life, it pays to work with someone with specific and relevant experience. It probably makes sense to choose a seller’s agent if you are selling your property so that you can buy and move into another home, and if you are not selling but are only buying, working with an agent whose area of expertise is helping buyers is a better approach.

And if you’re renting, an agent specializing in Marylebone property rentals can best help you.

Industry Experience

Because the amount of regulation to be an estate agent is minimal, it’s true to say that anybody can work as an agent, which means not everybody is good at it. It’s not like qualifying as a lawyer, which takes years and requires extensive training. It pays you to talk to a potential real estate agent, ask about their background, their approach to the work and their track record of transactions. Your success is better assured when you work with someone experienced and an agent who seems to have limited experience probably means it’s time to look for someone else to handle your sale or purchase.

There are some things that just shouldn’t be left to people who have little or no experience, and helping clients to buy or sell the property is one of them. One Marylebone agent that does have the experience you’re looking for is Jeremy James and Company, and we can help achieve your property goals, whether buying or selling. Our agents will help you through every step of the process, know the local area inside out, and will help to ensure that it’s a successful and smooth process, whether you’re renting, selling, or buying. 

Real Estate

5 Things to Know Before Installing Solar Panels

Everyone wants to reduce their carbon footprint and save a little money on electricity too. Solar panels have long been popular and with the efficiency improving every year, it continues to grow. With solar panels, either roof-mounted or as part of a solar farm, they generate electricity through photochemical reactions with sunlight.

If you’re considering installing solar panels on your home or business, then we’ve created this guide to help you understand the many benefits of solar panels and choosing an installation company.

There are many benefits of installing solar panels on your home both for you and the environment.

  1. Why Install Solar Panels on Your Home?

People like the idea of reducing their carbon footprint but there are several reasons why installing solar panels is a great idea. You’re saving money on your electric bill because you’re generating your own electricity. Some homes or businesses create more than they use and sell the energy back to the electric company.

Many states and the federal government have tax incentives and other programs to encourage people to install solar panels. These create incredible savings compared to the cost of the solar panel installation process.

The look of solar panels on your home is attractive and makes your home stand out from the rest of the neighborhood.

  1. Choose the Right Installation Company

Not every roofing company is qualified to install solar panels, so when choosing a company ask specifically about solar panels and their experiences. Residential installation can be different than commercial, so find a company that specialized in your specific need.

There are many different solar panel products and systems and not all of them are created equal. You may get a low quote from an installation company but find out the panels are cheaper, and you won’t get the longevity you want.

  1. Roof Solar Panels vs. Solar Farm

There are two ways solar panels are installed: roof a solar farm. Businesses with lots of green space may choose a solar farm because it creates more electricity and follows the sun as it moves across the sky. The biggest downside of a solar farm is the space needed to create it.

Roofing solar panels are the most seen, but factors such as shading and placement to the sun can impact the overall amount of solar power created.

  1. How Much Do Solar Panels Cost?

Thanks to improved efficiency, the cost of installing residential solar panels decreased significantly over the last several years. The average cost of installation is less than $3 per watt of electricity created.

Get a quote from the installation company to find out the exact cost of the solar panels. Keep in mind higher quality solar panels cost more. Don’t forget about the tax and other incentives available.

  1. Solar Panels and Roof Repair

High-quality solar panels can last more than 40 years, but roofs need replaced every 10-20 years. If you’re considering solar panels, then have a roofing company inspect your roof. If there is damage and it’s been a while since it’s been replaced or repaired, consider replacing the roof shingles before installation.

You don’t want to go through the installation process only to nee roof repair in five years.

Enjoy Your Green Lifestyle

Choose to improve the planet and your pocketbook by installing solar panels on your home or business. You’ll love the electricity savings and what you’re helping the planet.

If you want to learn more about solar panel installation, then please explore our site.

Real Estate

Top 5 Most Common Roof Problems Homeowners Must Watch Out For

In his hierarchy of human needs, Abraham Maslow suggests physiological needs are the foundation. Among these are food, water, and shelter.

Because shelter is so important, it’s critical to ensure yours is in good shape. Specifically, you need to maintain the roof over your head.

Your roof is obviously very critical to your shelter, but how do you know what to look for? What are some issues to be aware of?

This guide will point out five of the most common roof problems to watch out for.

  1. Missing Shingles

If you live on the east coast, you are familiar with hurricane-force winds. These storms blow through with 100+ mile-per-hour winds wreaking havoc on your house. Many times, the winds can tear the shingles from your roof.

If you notice your roof missing any shingles, you have problems. These spots can lead to water damage to your home.

Fortunately, if the problem areas are small, they can be replaced. A roofing contractor can usually match the color for a full repair. Check out this site to see how the process works.

  1. Interior House Leaking

Beyond missing shingle spots, water can penetrate the roof in other ways. If you notice water leaking from the ceiling, your roof needs work.

When it’s raining, you may see water damage or dripping from the drywall on the ceiling. Poke your head into the attic to determine where the water is getting in. This will determine what part of the roof needs inspecting by a professional.

  1. Pooling Water

Keep an eye out for water pooling on your roof. This is a more common issue with flat roof setups. Again, after a rainstorm, take a look for large puddles forming. You may have a sagging roof.

If your roof has a low spot, much of the water will settle there instead of draining. If you ignore pooling, the weight of the water over time can damage the structure.

In many cases, a low spot can be remedied by a roofing contractor.

  1. Ice and Snow Damage

Much like hurricanes, another natural occurrence that can harm a roof is snowstorms. In winter, snow will repeatedly build up on a roof, melt, and then refreeze again.

This process puts quite a bit of wear and tear on your shingles. The ice built up under the shingles pushes on them. The added space will let more moisture into your home.

After a harsh winter, consider having your roof inspected.

  1. Clogged Gutters

Clogged gutters are a major issue for roofing. A build-up of leaves in the gutters will seep moisture into the eaves of your home. Constant moister will begin to rot the edges of your roof, leading to costly issues.

It’s a good habit to clean out your gutters about once a month.

Keep an Eye on These Common Roof Problems

Your roof is an important part of your home. Keep an eye on these potential roof problems to ensure quality conditions. Remember, shelter is the foundation of human needs. Protect your roof, and it will protect you.

If you liked this article, peruse the rest of the blog for other homeowner tips.

Real Estate

Get the House of Your Dreams: 3 Real Estate Tips

What are your dreams made of?

If you’re anything like a good number of Americans, you can’t stop dreaming of homeownership.

How does your dream house look like? Perhaps it’s a beach-front house (no surprises!) with amazing views. Or maybe it’s a sprawling condo in the heart of a bustling city. Or it’s a farmhouse far away from the city (or any form of civilization for that matter!)

So, how do you make your dream come true?

We’re sharing top real estate tips that will help you get the house of your dreams.

  1. What’s the House of Your Dreams?

Of course, you already have a version of the house of your dreams in your head. But is it really the house of your dreams?

Many a time, prospective homebuyers go into the market looking for a specific house, only to find a different house that blows their mind away. So, if you’re thinking that a penthouse condo is the house of your dreams, maybe you’ll change your heart the moment you see a sea-front property.

As such, the first step to buying your dream house is to be sure that the house in your dreams is indeed your dream house. Visit various types of properties and assess their pros and cons before making up your mind.

  1. Choose the Location Wisely

There are several elements that go into making a house a “dream house.” It’s not just the styling of the house itself. The location also plays an important role.

This is to say, a condo in the heart of New York City isn’t the same as a similar condo in the heart of Phoenix. The living experience is different. This is brought about by the nature of the location.

Therefore, you need to be careful when choosing the location where you’ll buy your dream house. Ensure the location has everything you consider an ideal location to buy a home.

  1. Get Your Financial Ducks in a Row

Your dream house isn’t going to come on the cheap. You have to make a plan for how you’re are going to finance the purchase.

There are two ways: buy in cash or secure a mortgage.

If you’re a cash buyer, ensure you have the money at hand when you enter the market. Most people who buy their dream houses in cash typically save for a long time and sell their current homes.

If you’re in this situation, you’re probably asking: how can I sell my house fast? Well, it’s easy to do so when you know how to go about it.

If you’re relying on bank financing, get a mortgage pre-approval before you start shopping around for your dream house. This will help you know how much house you can afford.

Implement These Real Estate Tips to Get Your Dream House

Buying the house of your dreams is a big achievement. Not many people will get to buy their dream houses in this lifetime. But with these real estate tips, you’re now in a better position to get that dream house.

Need more helpful tips and insights? Keep reading our blog.

Real Estate

4 Benefits of Home Ownership

Did you know that in 2019 the homeownership rate in the US was 65.1% of households?

There’s always a toss-up of choices between deciding to rent a house or purchase your own home. Understanding the benefits of homeownership can help you decide which route you want to take.

So, if you’re on the fence about buying a home, then keep reading to find out the top benefits of home ownership you need to know before taking the plunge.

  1. You Can Choose Your Area For The Long Term

One of the main benefits of owning your home is the fact that you’re able to select the area in which you’ll be staying in the long term.

When renting a home, you don’t always think about the future whether that be short or long term. When buying a house, however, you can think about things like schools, neighborhood activities, and other things that would benefit your family as time goes on.

The beauty is that you may have been in the area for a while renting, and you now know that this is where you want to settle, buying a home can allow you to do this permanently.

  1. Your Monthly Payment Will Remain Constant

With rentals, monthly rent amounts can fluctuate each time you renew your agreement or lease. When buying a house, the agreement that you sign at the time of purchase with the bank will lock in what you need to pay per month on your mortgage.

So, one of the great benefits of deciding to buy a home means that you’ll be able to accurately budget for months and even years to come.

  1. There Are Awesome Tax Benefits

When purchasing a home, you gain access to many tax benefits allocated to homeowners only.

What tax benefits you may ask?

Well, the amount you pay in property taxes and your interest rate (depending on the value of your mortgage) are tax-deductible.

Also, once you own a home, there are tax benefits to deciding to make your home green and more energy sustainable.

  1. It’s Almost Always An Investment Well-Made

When buying a home, you’re restricted to what you can afford at that time or what mortgage you may be approved for.

This doesn’t mean you’re locked into that home forever, depending on the area and what the years bring, more often than not, your home is an investment that will always reap benefits for you.

One day, if you decide to upgrade or move to a larger home, you’ll at least make your money back, and depending on the improvements you’ve made to the home, sometimes you can make a large chunk more.

Understanding The Benefits of Home Ownership

Now that you understand there are benefits of home ownership, you can decide whether to take the plunge or not.

Remember though, that choosing the right home for you can be a journey, from hundreds of viewings, to price negotiations, and more.

Stay patient, and be transparent with your realtor on what it is you’re looking for.

Head on over to the mortgage section of our website if you’re looking for more great content.