Creating the Perfect Indoor Garden for the Home Chef

A good chef knows that herbs and spices can make or break a dish. Growing your own plants in a garden will supply you with fresh ingredients that can take your home cooked meals to the next level.

If it’s chilly outside where you are, or if you don’t have enough space for an outdoor garden, don’t fret. You can create an indoor garden for all your cooking needs.

Popular Plant Options

The sheer number of plant options you have can be overwhelming. But for the home chef, it’s best to stick to plants and herbs that can be used for a variety of dishes.

Basil

You can buy potted basil at the grocery store, or you can choose to start from seed.

This herb is used in everything from pasta sauce to fancy cocktails, and it can be easily grown indoors. Basil loves a lot of sun, so be sure to position the pot or the container close to a sunny window. Continue reading

Spring Cleaning: High Tech vs. The Old-Fashioned Way

A good old-fashioned spring cleaning does the home, and the homeowner, good.

Some spring cleaning tasks tackled “the old-fashioned way” bring tried and true results. While other chores have a modern day, high-tech upgrade that can make your life easier. Keep reading for more options to help you accomplish some of the most popular spring cleaning tasks.

Vacuuming and Cleaning

There’s no escaping the need for vacuuming and general cleaning year-round. But spring cleaning is the time to get to hard-to-reach places and give your floors a refreshing, deeper clean. Continue reading

Selling Your Home: Commonly Forgotten Costs

After much consideration, you have decided to list your house and enter the real estate market. You have a list price in mind and believe that it should be sufficient to cover your mortgage, as well as any fees associated with selling. Yet, many homeowners overlook a few costs that are sometimes a necessary part of selling. Continue reading

3 Proactive Strategies to Reach Your Homebuying Goal

Buying a new home can be a smart and satisfying financial goal. Is becoming a homeowner for the first time or finding your next dream home one of your heart’s desires? Aiming for a big picture strategy and breaking your plan into steps over time can help make your homeownership goals a reality. If you don’t see yourself making a move for quite some time but know you’d like to buy a home down the line, following are proactive steps you can take sooner rather than later, along with some ideas to keep in mind.

1. Get Your Financials In Order

Buying a home is a huge financial investment that requires planning and commitment.

Credit Score

Checking your credit score early in the process is an important step. When you apply for a loan or are looking into a mortgage for your new home, one of the first things lenders will check is your credit score. You don’t want to be surprised, stalled, or have a loan rejected because of factors impacting your credit score that you could start tackling now. Continue reading

Household Chores for Children

Parenting experts say that involving children in the execution of household chores teaches them responsibility and gives them a sense of accomplishment. It also helps cement their role in the family by helping them feel they are contributing to the household. But how young is too young to start children out with their own designated chores?  Parents ultimately know best, but experts agree that children as young as two can start learning simple tasks that help out mom or dad.  As long as each task attempted is accompanied by specific instructions, realistic expectations, and copious praise, you can teach your children these age-appropriate household chores. Continue reading

Realty Executives Premiere Named “Brokerage of the Month” for December 2017

Realty Executives Premiere has been recognized as Brokerage of the Month for December 2017 by Realty Executives International. Now Celebrating 25 years of real estate excellence, the powerhouse firm in northern Illinois thrives under the leadership of Broker/Owner Pat Callan and Office Manager Jenny Holloway.

With Callan at the helm since the firm’s inception in 1993, Realty Executives Premiere began with just two agents and has grown by 1,500%. Today, the brokerage is home to more than 30 real estate professionals across two branch locations in Wheaton and Aurora, serving homebuyers and sellers throughout the Chicagoland area with a focus on the western suburbs. Realty Executives Premiere continues to redefine what it means to be a leader, with the company’s incredible per-agent productivity and hands-on engagement at the local, state, and national level making a lasting impact on real estate professionals, and championing the communities they serve.

Throughout the brokerage’s 25-year history, Callan has responded to the shifts and challenges in the real estate business with an active voice and profound commitment to industry leadership. The deeply held belief that it’s the Executive’s “Book of Business” and not the company’s business is reflected in leadership decisions across the board. Realty Executives Premiere provides a platform that allows it’s agents to operate their businesses within a supportive environment with cost effective tools and the philosophy that every agent is a stakeholder. As for the results? The agents at Realty Executives Premiere get more deals done and offer incredible local expertise because of their exemplary productivity and industry insights. Continue reading

Three Steps to Preventing Wire Fraud

It’s your worst nightmare as a buyer: one minute, everything is a go for purchasing the house of your dreams and the next, the entire down payment is gone with little hope in getting it back. This nightmare, known as wire fraud, has happened across the country to buyers who have fallen prey to a phishing scam resulting in losses of hundreds of millions dollars with devastating results for those in the process of purchasing a home.

The way this scam works is hackers target email and other accounts with messages relating to real estate activities, collecting contacts/email address of those in the process of buying a property. The scammer then spoofs an email to the buyer, often pretending to be an agent, title company, etc., directing them on where to wire their down payment. For those unfortunate buyers who follow through, they are out their down payment with little chance of ever getting it back. Continue reading

Portable Storage: The Key to Successful Home Staging

Do you want to sell your house as fast as you can for as much as you can? REALTORS® and home staging experts agree: staging your home should be at the top of your checklist. A big part of this process entails removing excess items and furniture. The inevitable question becomes, “Where do I put my stuff?”

It’s tempting to stuff everything you own into a closet or a spare bedroom, but even a single unorganized space could turn off buyers. For many years, the common solution to this problem was renting a storage unit. This was not convenient, and definitely time-consuming. You had to rent a truck, load it, unload it, and then subsequently do it all over again when you moved into a new place.

Continue reading

Success Starts at Home: Staying on Track with Your Resolutions

As we start the new year, many of us focus on self improvement and making changes. A majority of the new year’s resolutions people make are health related, but only about 8% of resolutioners succeed in maintaining their new goals.

Check out our tips and ideas to make your home and your home life work with you, so that you can be a part of the crowd of people who succeed.

Goal: Lose Weight

Losing weight and eating healthy are the two most common new year’s resolutions that people make. How can you use your home to help you shed some unwanted weight? Continue reading

Home Design Trends for 2018

With the new year comes brand new home design trends. And while some trends seem to continue on from years past, like the ever-popular metallic accents as well as sleek, simple designs, there are new and exciting home design trends you can implement in 2018.

Darker Wood Is Making a Comeback

This one might be surprising seeing as the past few years have emphasized lighter, blonde wood as the main design choice for the home. However, richer and darker woods like mahogany, rosewood, and walnut are making a comeback for the upcoming year.

The darker brown hue of these types of wood will make any room feel luxurious and grand. Whether this means getting a new dining room table, a new chair set, or even just décor featuring darker wood, this modern trend will make your home feel cozy and luxurious. Continue reading

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