Francesca Volpe - RE/MAX Alliance



Posted by Francesca Volpe on 6/18/2018

When youíre short on space, it can be difficult to see how you could ever possibly declutter your closet. It is, after all, a convenient hiding space for all of your items that you have no idea where to put! Thereís a few tips that can help you to get on the road to decluttering your closet and getting organized.


Make Things Accessible


One reason that clutter builds up is that things are not very accessible. As youíre trying to find something, items fall and become misplaced. By spreading out your organization system a bit within the closet, youíre able to see what you have and exactly where it is. 


Group Like Items Together


In the same light of being able to find things that you need, grouping like items together makes it easier to find what you need. If you know that all of your haircare items are in a certain bin, youíll be able to reach in the same spot without thinking.   



Find Places You Can ďDropĒ Things


Closets tend to be that kind of space where we just drop things and forget about them. We always think ďIíll deal with it later.Ē When later never comes, we end up with quite a cluttered closet. Keep baskets or trays handy in the closet in order to keep things that you may empty out of your pockets or put away at a later time. This way youíll only have to clean out one basket instead of the entire closet. 



Make Use Of Drawers


Drawers are incredibly useful in a closet space. You can place a dresser in the closet if space permits. If you donít have room for a dresser, you may want to create your own drawer units. For an alternative option of storing things, try installing shelving units and placing baskets across the shelves, giving the illusion of drawers.   


Encourage Tidiness


Everything that you do to organize your closet should have the goal of keeping tidiness in mind. If the closet is a walk-in, youíll organize it much differently than if you have a smaller space. No matter the size of the closet, youíll want to divide the space into zones of sorts. This way, youíll know where everything goes and how to keep it neat.   


Light The Space


Without adequate lightning in the closet, itís pretty difficult to find what youíre looking for, no matter how organized you are. If your closet doesnít have a lot of natural light, youíll need to install some lighting. Whether you put in overhead bulbs, or install touch- activated portable lights, the brighter the better when it comes to your closet. Be sure that thereís lights in key areas like darker corners where the main light source doesn't reach. 





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Posted by Francesca Volpe on 6/11/2018

If you donít have a dedicated playroom space in your home, you may feel as though toys and children have taken over. Toys, games, stuffed animals, coloring books, and crayons may be all over the house if children donít have their own space to play. 


It doesnít have to be this way. There are a few options that you can use to let your kids have their space, and the adults have theirs. You donít need to move just to find a home that has an area for kids to play. Read on for some ideas to help you stay stylish yet kid-friendly in your home.    


Versatile Furniture


Buying furniture that has a couple of purposes can be handy when you have kids. A coffee table with storage drawers can turn into a great place to store board games. An ottoman that has a storage component built in is a fantastic place to fantastic place to keep stuffed animals or action figures. When you have kids, finding ways to keep your style but allow children to play freely can be done easily with these types of furniture.   


Turn An Ordinary Shed Into A Magical Place


No matter what part of the country you live in, you can buy a small outdoor storage shed and turn it into a playroom. You can install portable heaters or fans in the shed for comfort. This space can become your childís playroom detached from the house with all the comforts of home. You might even consider a treehouse, but that may afford slightly less storage or possibilities than a storage shed.    


Use The Corner Of A Room


Kids donít have to take up the whole of a room. Consider giving little ones a corner of a room dedicated to their stuff. A small chair with a bookshelf and a few baskets of toys is all they need for a play space without fuss. Depending on the size of the room, you can even put a toy chest there for the playroom effect without the space.   


Use Baskets


Baskets are the next best things to furniture that has hidden storage. Baskets look pretty, and the contents are colorful, fun toys. Thereís not too much wrong with this solution! You can even give the dog a basket for his toys.   


Find Ways To Incorporate Kids Into The Rooms Of Your Home


You can get creative when it comes to living with children. Chalkboard walls. Tiny furniture and more items are available to make your kids comfortable yet creative and keep your home stylish. Consider a chalkboard wall that allows kids to change their artwork on the daily.

With a little creativity, your kids can feel at home without a playroom and without taking over the whole house.  




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Posted by Francesca Volpe on 6/4/2018

Itís inevitable that you will have just cleaned your carpet and suddenly, someone will spill something on it! The most important thing to know about stains is that the longer they sit in a material, the harder they are to get out. Thereís different methods that tend to work better for different kinds of stains on carpets. When you know what to do to clean a stain, the next time a spill occurs, youíll know exactly how to clean it up. 



Food Or Drink Stains


when the spill occurs, youíll need to start by getting what you can up from the carpet using a paper towel and something to help scrape up the remains of the item like a paper plate. Then, use a clot to blot over the stain with warm water. If the spill is liquid, youíll need to try and absorb as much of it as possible. Press down firmly with a cloth and/or a paper towel to pick up the remains of the stain. Hopefully this will all that needs to be done, but most likely, youíll need to clean the area more thoroughly.  


For more stubborn food and drink stains in your carpet, make a solution using one part non-bleach laundry detergent and one part warm water. Apply to the stain and let it sit for around 5 minutes. Then, rinse again with warm water. Make sure that you get all of the detergent out of the carpet. Residual detergent could cause more permanent staining to the carpet. 


Pet Problems


The same procedure used for food and drink stains applies to pet stains. You need to scoop up any residue and blot the stain. You can use the same simple detergent solution thatís mentioned above to remove the stain. After the stain is removed, add 2 tablespoons of white vinegar to warm water. This is used to neutralize the odor. 


For any type of liquid stain, along with the solutions used to clean up solid stains, itís really important for all excess moisture to dry completely. If stains arenít dried, mold and mildew could result. Following clean-up, vacuum the area to return it to normal. 


Nail Polish


Nail polish is actually simpler to remove than you would think. First, get rid of the excess nail polish that may be on the carpet with a rag or paper towel. Blot well. You can use nail polish remover right on most carpets. Do this with caution however, as some carpets can lose color when nail polish remover is applied. Test a non-obvious area of the carpet for colorfastness. If you do find that the carpet loses color, youíll need a professional to help you get the nail polish stain out of the carpet.




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Posted by Francesca Volpe on 5/28/2018

At itís best, packing and moving your things when you buy a new home is a lot of work. At its worst, it can be downright dangerous if you arenít careful when lifting and moving heavy items.

A necessary evil of moving to a new home, packing is probably the least favorite part of moving for your average homeowner. However, there are ways you can make this process easier, saving you time and ensuring that decorating your new homes is a simple and satisfying task.

In todayís post, Iím going to run down the list of 5 packing and moving tips to help make your move faster and easier than you thought possible.

1. Cleaning and decluttering

One of the best times to clean out your home is leading up to a move. First, if youíre selling your old home, it will pay off to make the house as clean and uncluttered as possible to attract potential buyers. However, youíll also likely find that there is a lot of junk that you simply don't need to bring to your new home.

When packing each room, keep a garbage bag with you for things you might want to donate or throw away. A good rule of thumb is to ask yourself if youíve used or appreciated the item in the last two years. If not, you might find that itís easier just to get rid of.

2. Schedule your packing

There are some items in your home that youíll want available up until the day you move. Others you might not need for weeks or months until after youíve settled into your new home. You can lessen your workload by spreading out your packing process across the span of a month or so, tackling a few items each week.

A good example of planned packing is to start packing your seasonal clothing that you wonít need until the next winter or summer.

3. Have someone carry away your old junk

If you have bulk items or furniture that you plan on getting rid of, put them on Craigslist or call a donation center with pick-up a month in advance of your move. This will help you get rid of large items without ever having to leave your home.

4. Hiring movers

Hiring movers might be out of some new homeownersí budgets. However, there are certain times of the week that you can get lower prices. Movers are typically the busiest on the weekend, often making weekdays a more affordable alternative.

5. Find your local box stockpile

Thereís typically no need to spend money on boxes if you give yourself enough time to find a good supplier. Some grocery and department stores will give away their boxes for free because youíre saving them on recycling costs.

Another good option is your local liquor store who probably has several empty wine and beer cases to give away.




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Posted by Francesca Volpe on 5/21/2018

Believe it or not, getting pre-approved for a mortgage can be quick and simple, even for a first-time homebuyer. In fact, here are three tips to help a first-time homebuyer streamline the process of receiving pre-approval for a mortgage:

1. Meet with Several Lenders

Many mortgage lenders are available in cities and towns nationwide. Meanwhile, these mortgage experts are happy to teach first-time homebuyers about assorted mortgage options and help them get pre-approved for a mortgage.

Set up face-to-face meetings with various lenders in your area. That way, a first-time homebuyer can gain unparalleled insights into a wide range of mortgage options.

In addition, don't hesitate to ask questions during meetings with banks and credit unions. Mortgage lenders possess comprehensive mortgage expertise, and as such, a first-time homebuyer can rely on these mortgage professionals to receive the support that he or she needs to make an informed decision.

2. Understand Your Credit Score

Do you know your credit score? Ultimately, a first-time homebuyer's credit score may dictate his or her ability to obtain the ideal mortgage.

An individual can request a free copy of his or her credit report from each of the three major credit reporting agencies (Equifax, Experian and TransUnion) once a year. This report may prove to be exceedingly valuable, as it can help a homebuyer identify opportunities to improve his or her credit score before a mortgage application is submitted.

Also, if you identify errors in your credit report, it is paramount to contact the agency that provided the report immediately. This will allow you to correct any potential errors quickly and ensure that they won't affect your ability to get the best possible mortgage.

3. Consider Your Homebuying Budget

A first-time homebuyer may have lofty expectations prior to entering the real estate market. However, this individual should consider his or her finances before submitting a mortgage application.

With a budget in hand, a homebuyer can establish realistic expectations as he or she tries to get pre-approved for a mortgage. Plus, this homebuyer may be better equipped than others to obtain pre-approval for a mortgage and accelerate his or her search for the perfect residence.

Lastly, it may be worthwhile for a first-time homebuyer to meet with a real estate agent to learn more about assorted mortgage options.

A real estate agent understands the challenges associated with purchasing a house for the first time. As a result, this housing market professional can teach a homebuyer about all aspects of the property buying journey and help this buyer plan accordingly.

Perhaps best of all, a real estate agent can set up home showings, keep a homebuyer up to date about new residences as they become available and negotiate with a home seller on a buyer's behalf. This housing market professional will even provide honest, unbiased homebuying recommendations to make it easy for a property buyer to acquire a top-notch residence at a budget-friendly price.

Move one step closer to purchasing your dream house Ė use the aforementioned tips, and a first-time homebuyer can speed up the process of getting pre-approved for a mortgage.




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