4 Low-Cost Curb Appeal Boosters for Your Home

Curb appeal, the illusive secret weapon that enamors potential buyers from afar and draws them into your home. There have been several attempts to nail down the “secret formula” for curb appeal.

In reality, the best approach to improving your home’s presentation from outside is to take the time to consider what fits.

In this post, we’ll give you some budget ideas to help you find the curb appeal boosters that will match with your home.

1. Fresh paint

One well-known curb appeal strategy is to repaint some of the notable components of the outside of your home. The places that have to most impact?

  • Front door – a front door that pops, but that also fits with the style of your home and complements its main color will make your home stand out from the neighbors.

  • Shutters – repainting your shutters is another inexpensive area to add some color to your home. However, be wary of choosing bright colors for your shutters if they’re going to clash with or disrupt the overall style of your home.

  • Mailbox – a neglected, dented, and a dirty mailbox is a huge turn off for potential buyers. Buying a new one, or adding a fresh coat of paint to your old one that matches one of the highlight colors of your home, can be a great way to add a sense of continuity to the exterior of your house.

2. Sparse decorations

Just like the inside of your home, less is often more when it comes to decoration. There are a number of things to add to your yard that will improve its overall presentation. But, just be sure that it doesn’t appear out of place or tacky. A single, small, and brightly colored bird house in a tree is usually a safe bet.

3. Simple landscaping

There’s no need to hire contractors for elaborate landscaping or to purchase expensive plants and shrubbery. A well-manicured yard is enough to make your home stand out. And, remember that potential buyers will most likely be looking for a home that is low-maintenance. A simple lawn and walkway say just that.

Also be sure to trim and prune your current trees, bushes, and flowerbeds. You might find that a cleanup is all they needed to be impressive once more.

4. Pressure washing

Most of us grow accustomed to how our home looks and might not notice the accumulation of dirt on the siding. By hiring or renting a pressure washer for a day, you’ll be able to update a number of aspects of curb appeal. From siding and decks to walkways and driveways, you can cover a lot of square footage with a pressure washer.

One note on pressure washers: the better ones can be dangerous. That means hiring a professional could help get the best results for your money. Also, while you can buy a pressure washer, you might find that for the amount you use it, it’s easier just to hire or rent every few years.

Save Money on Your Grocery Bill

 in a supermarketIf you are looking for ways save money, cutting back on grocery expenses is often an easy way to reduce your spending.

Here are ten tips to master frugal grocery shopping. A little planning can save you some big bucks over the long term.

1. Make a list.

Before you head out to the store, prepare a list of everything you need, making sure you have everything needed for your weekly menu. Before you leave, check to make sure you don’t have it in your pantry, fridge or freezer. Stick to that list and don’t buy anything else.

2. Plan a menu.

Plan a weekly menu for each week. This way you will know exactly what to buy. Be sure to plan a leftovers night.

3. Don’t shop hungry.

When you’re hungry, everything looks good. When you shop hungry you’ll end up spending a lot more. Eat first and then you will be able to stick to your list.

4. Set a budget.

When you go to the store, know exactly how much you can spend. Then try your best to stick within that limit. Keep a running tally as you shop to ensure that you’re within your budget.

5. Create a grocery spreadsheet.

Keep your grocery receipts, then enter into a spreadsheet. This will be your price and comparison list. Use it so you know when bulk or sale items are a good deal.

6. Cook and freeze.

Plan to cook a big amount of food and freeze it for multiple dinners. A great idea is to use one Sunday and cook a week’s (or even a month’s) worth of dinners. Plan 5-6 freezable dinners and cook them all at once.

7. Shop for specials.

Every store has specials. Be sure to look for them in the newspaper, or when you get to the store. Don’t buy things you don’t use just because they are on sale; make sure you will use the items.

8. Buy store brands.

Brand names are often no better than generic, and you’re paying for all the advertising they do to have a brand name. Give the store brand a try, and often you won’t notice a difference.

9. No “one-item” trips.

They waste gas, and almost inevitably, you buy more than that one item. If you plan ahead, make a weekly menu, and shop with a list, this should drastically reduce the number of trips you make for a small number of items.

10. Stock up.

Sale items can be a great deal. If it’s an item you normally use, buy a bunch of them.

Tips to Help Secure Your Future Financial Health

In today’s economic climate protecting your financial health is more important than ever. From health insurance to your plans for retirement, there’s a lot to consider. Here are some tips from Family Wealth Management Group, LLC to help protect your assets and financial future.

It is never too early to plan

In order to plan, you need to know what you have. Review your pension plan, 401 (k), IRAs, Social Security benefits and other savings plans to assess whether they meet your long-term retirement goals and will generate an income stream to meet your projected expenses.

Curb spending

Time to take an inventory on how much you spend. Keep a log on trips to the market, afternoon lattes, dry cleaning and all of your miscellaneous spending. Try to eliminate a portion of these expenses. Once you track them you will realize you are spending more than you thought.

Re-define your financial goals

Ask yourself where you see yourself in five, 10 or 15 years. See if it is possible to redefine your goals. You may be able to retire earlier or pay for college. Set goals to achieve the things you want.

Get help

Professional advice about investment losses, financial products, insurance coverage and other important issues will help you make the right choices for your current financial situation.