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 Real Estate Blog 
Thursday, December 15 2011

December is a great month to cozy things up at home. The brighter and warmer a house looks and feels, the happier you will be. That's why we are including with this letter a few tips to make your house as cheery as possible!

And don't forget, if you have any real estate questions, you can always reach Rolando at

499-9234 or Kathy at 499-0246 or visit our Web site at: www.TheTrentiniTeam.com

FIVE WAYS TO MAKE YOUR HOME BRIGHT, COZY AND CHEERFUL

 

Fix it up:

 

Candlescaping:

 

Mirror mirror, on the wall:

 

Light the way:

 

Open up:

During daytime hours, keep your draperies and window coverings open. This will not only allow your home to absorb heat, but it will brighten up the winter days that you spend at home.
Lighting isn't just for indoor decorating it's also a valuable addition to the exterior of your home. Line your walkway or garden with cost-efficient solar light fixtures (no electricity needed!) to create a brilliant nighttime landscape outside your home.
Mirrors not only create the illusion that your rooms are even more spacious than they already are, they also reflect light! Make your house warm and cozy by adding a few inexpensive mirrors in hallways, bedrooms and living spaces.
Candles are generally inexpensive and are extremely versatile. Adding various candle arrangements to different rooms in your home will instantly create an atmosphere of warmth and style. Get creative! You might also favor scented candles to add a pleasant scent to different areas of the house.
The light fixtures in your home are a reflection of your personal style and taste. Adding additional fixtures or replacing ones that aren't your favorites can be a fun and creative way to brighten up your home!

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, May 19 2011

 

BRING ON THE MAY FLOWERS
Did you know that, on average, quality landscaping adds 5 to 11 percent value to your home? Even if you’re not looking to sell landscaping is an improvement that appreciates over time. Here are some ideas to get a head start:
 
 
If you’re selling in a year or less
If you’re looking to buy a new home and sell your current one, you’re likely on a budget and short on time. Consider these simple enhancements:
 
 
·         Edge the beds and nourish the grass – a clean, well-kept lawn gives a great first impression.

·         Add some color
There are a lot of inexpensive flower varieties that can make your home stand out to potential buyers.

·         Pay attention to your selection– Buyers will appreciate plant, tree and flower varieties that are low-maintenance and require less water.
If you’re improving for the long-term:
 
·         Make your backyard your space – A fence is a great investment for added privacy and one that will pay off if you decide to sell.

·         Trim down, add drama –
Cut down overgrown, out-of-control bushes and add some exotic varieties to give your yard a unique look.

·         Change your view –
Stemming away from traditional plant patterns can help accentuate your home’s best features. If you’re not sure, many nurseries offer free design help.
Herb gardens add fragrance and provide great options for fresh summer recipes. Here’s a great one to try:
 
Easy Grilled Pork Chops with Fresh Herbs
 
Ingredients
·         2 (1-inch thick) bone-in pork chops
·         Salt and pepper to taste
·         Extra virgin olive oil
·         1 tablespoon chopped mixed
·         herbs (such as parsley, thyme and chives)
 
Method
Season the pork chops with salt and pepper. Lightly brush both sides of the chops with oil, then set aside on a plate at room temperature
for 20 minutes.

Grill chops over direct medium heat, turning once, for 12 to 15 minutes. Transfer to a platter and set aside to let rest for 5 minutes. Garnishwith herbs and serve.
Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
Thursday, February 17 2011
TRIMMING COSTS STARTS AT HOME
Many Americans have resolved to cut costs in 2011. One of the best places to start is in your home. There are several low-cost ways to create significant savings on your utility bills throughout the lifetime of your home.
 
 
Check for leaks.
Cold air seeping in through your doors and windows and weak spots in your insulation can have a huge impact on your energy costs. Test for these issues by taking infrared images, conducting a blower door test, or simply locating cool air by touch. You can save 10 percent on your energy bill by plugging air leaks with caulking, sealing or weather stripping.
 
 
Upgrade your attic insulation.
This simple, inexpensive solution can reduce your home's heating and cooling costs by as much as 30 percent. The recommended insulation level is 12-15 inches, depending on the insulation type.
 
 
Take a close look at your windows.
Windows can also account for 10-25 percent of your heating bill in the winter and can kick your air conditioner into overdrive in the summer by letting sunlight in. Consider installing energy-efficient windows to help block solar heat. If that’s not in your budget, simply modifying your window treatments with thicker or longer curtains can also help lower bills too.
Upgrade your appliances.
Swapping out all appliances isn’t realistic for most homeowners, but if you’re in the market for a new washer, dryer or fridge, consider an Energy Star product.
 
Check your filters.
Dirty filters slow down airflow, making your system work harder to keep your home warm or cool. Clean filters also prevent dust and dirt buildup – an issue that can lead to expensive repairs or system replacement. Filters should be replaced every three months.
 
Swap old light bulbs for new, energy-efficient ones.
Energy-efficient light bulbs require much less power to provide the same amount of light for a much longer time.
Make small adjustments
to your routine.
-Turn off lights and electronics when  
 they’re not in use.
-Do laundry and wash dishes in the
 evenings instead of midday, when
 usage is typically greatest.
-Wash clothes and dishes in hot water,
 but rinse them in warm rather than
 hot to save heating costs.
-Don't run the dishwasher until it's full
 or consider washing dishes by
 hand occasionally.
-Don’t use too many appliances at
 the same time.
 

Picking up on small changes can make a huge impact on electric and energy usage. For more on what you can do to save on home costs, follow Energy Star’s Maintenance Checklist.

When searching for a home service agreement, check to see if plumbing stoppages are included. Sometimes they are not covered at all and other times you may have to pay extra. With a HomeTrust home service agreement, plumbing stoppages are covered under the standard coverage.
www.2-10.com

 

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Tuesday, July 13 2010

TIPS FOR CHOOSING PATIO FURNITURE

True outdoor furniture is manufactured to resist the rigors of radical temperature fluctuations and the onslaught of moisture. Arrange furniture for your deck or patio just as you would any room. Create groupings for various activities. Place seating close enough for easy conversation, but not so close as to invade personal space. Allow for traffic to flow easily between furniture groupings. Certain materials are designed to withstand the weather. Here are some durable options:

Cast- or wrought-iron furniture is heavy and durable yet prone to rust. It also requires periodic touch-ups and repainting if exposed to the elements. This type of outdoor furniture is appropriate in windy climates, where its considerable weight makes it less prone to being shifted around by gusts.

Synthetic wicker Synthetic wicker is typically made from moisture-proof polyester resins and rustproof aluminum framing. Colors mimic those of natural wicker, but the furniture can be placed outdoors and exposed to the elements without damage. Synthetic wicker is slightly more expensive than comparable pieces made of natural wicker.

Plastic and resin furniture is inexpensive and offered in limited styles and colors. When buying plastic furniture, look for qualitytop-grade plastic furniture has a 10-year warranty. Some plastic furniture is made from recycled materials. It's thick, heavy, and looks like wood, but never needs to be painted.

Source: BHG.com

 

DIY DECORATING TRICKS

 

Can't find (or afford) that perfect rug for your hallway? Make a custom runner by piecing together smaller floor mats.

 

A painted staircase "runner" can bring bold color to a small space.

 

Painting a floor can give form to a room where everything is function. Before you start painting, take a long look at the shape of the room: The more complicated its layout the more radiators and hearths and pillars it has - the less complicated the floor pattern should be. A small area seems larger by a floor painted with oversize squares in closely related tones of blue and green.

 

Add an element of surprise to a staircase. Create stair-climbing vines with a rubber stamp and latex paint; use a brush to apply paint to the stamp. Wipe mistakes away with damp paper towels.

 

A carpet remnant one of your own or from a rug store - can serve as the basis of a distinctive but inexpensive custom floor covering.

 

Turn any surface into a unique faux-brick wall or floor with a decorative painting technique.

 

Rough jute upholstery webbing is normally hidden beneath layers of batting and fabric. When handwoven in a simple under-and-over pattern, this practical textile becomes a trim, durable floor mat or decorative runner for a front hallway.

Source: MarthaStewart.c

 


TIPS FOR CHOOSING PATIO FURNITURE

True outdoor furniture is manufactured to resist the rigors of radical temperature fluctuations and the onslaught of moisture. Arrange furniture for your deck or patio just as you would any room. Create groupings for various activities. Place seating close enough for easy conversation, but not so close as to invade personal space. Allow for traffic to flow easily between furniture groupings. Certain materials are designed to withstand the weather. Here are some durable options:

Cast- or wrought-iron furniture is heavy and durable yet prone to rust. It also requires periodic touch-ups and repainting if exposed to the elements. This type of outdoor furniture is appropriate in windy climates, where its considerable weight makes it less prone to being shifted around by gusts.

Synthetic wicker Synthetic wicker is typically made from moisture-proof polyester resins and rustproof aluminum framing. Colors mimic those of natural wicker, but the furniture can be placed outdoors and exposed to the elements without damage. Synthetic wicker is slightly more expensive than comparable pieces made of natural wicker.

Plastic and resin furniture is inexpensive and offered in limited styles and colors. When buying plastic furniture, look for qualitytop-grade plastic furniture has a 10-year warranty. Some plastic furniture is made from recycled materials. It's thick, heavy, and looks like wood, but never needs to be painted.

Source: BHG.com


 

DIY DECORATING TRICKS

 

Can't find (or afford) that perfect rug for your hallway? Make a custom runner by piecing together smaller floor mats.

 

A painted staircase "runner" can bring bold color to a small space.

 

Painting a floor can give form to a room where everything is function. Before you start painting, take a long look at the shape of the room: The more complicated its layout the more radiators and hearths and pillars it has - the less complicated the floor pattern should be. A small area seems larger by a floor painted with oversize squares in closely related tones of blue and green.

 

Add an element of surprise to a staircase. Create stair-climbing vines with a rubber stamp and latex paint; use a brush to apply paint to the stamp. Wipe mistakes away with damp paper towels.

 

A carpet remnant one of your own or from a rug store - can serve as the basis of a distinctive but inexpensive custom floor covering.

 

Turn any surface into a unique faux-brick wall or floor with a decorative painting technique.

 

Rough jute upholstery webbing is normally hidden beneath layers of batting and fabric. When handwoven in a simple under-and-over pattern, this practical textile becomes a trim, durable floor mat or decorative runner for a front hallway.

Source: MarthaStewart.com

 

Grilled Spare Ribs with Barbeque Sauce

2 slabs pork spare ribs (2 1/2 pounds each) 2 tbsp chili powder Coarse salt Ground pepper

1 tablespoon butter
1/2 small onion, grated

2 garlic cloves, minced
1 1/2 cups ketchup

1/3 cup cider vinegar

2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce
1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper

Desired variations (Kansas City style: 1/2 cup packed light-brown sugar, 2 tablespoons molasses, and 1 tablespoon yellow mustard; Memphis style: 1/2 teaspoon hot sauce (such as Tabasco) and 1/4 cup sugar; Dallas style: 1 tablespoon chopped chipotle in adobo sauce and 1/2 teaspoon ground cumin)

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Season ribs with chili powder, salt, and pepper. Stack slabs on a double layer of aluminum foil; wrap tightly. Place on a rimmed baking sheet. Cook until meat is fork-tender, 1 1/2 to 2 hours.

Meanwhile, make barbecue sauce: In a medium saucepan, melt butter over medium heat. Add onion and garlic; season with salt and pepper. Cook until soft, 2 to 3 minutes. Add ketchup, vinegar, Worcestershire, cayenne, and desired variation (see ingredients above). Bring to a simmer. Cook, stirring occasionally, until slightly thick, about 5 minutes. Set aside.

Heat grill to medium-high; lightly oil grates. Carefully remove ribs from foil, pouring off any accumulated liquid. Brush ribs generously with sauce; grill until charred, 2 to

3 minutes per side. Serve with extra sauce, if
desired.

 

 

WARRANTY WISDOM

Home warranties are often used as a negotiating tool in competitive real estate situations. Whether you are buying or selling your home, a HomeTrust Warranty® home service agreement provides protection from unexpected breakdowns of covered appliances and in major systems. It can also give you the assurance that someone is there to help you with a problem on covered items.

 

 

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 10:00 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Thursday, April 29 2010

Organizing Your Linen Closet

Sort and Organize - Sort all your towels and sheets to determine which are worth keeping and which should go to charity. Try to limit yourself to three sets of sheets per bed and as few as three sets of bath sheets or towels, hand towels, and washcloths per person.

Make a Plan - First, divide linens into groups: bedrooms, bathrooms, dining, etc. The everyday and the current season should be stored at eye level, and the special-occasion and out-of-season linens farther from reach.

Map the Closet - If you're short of space, think compact. Another good idea is to slip folded sheets into the matching pillowcases. And don't forget the closet door: It's a great place to hang robes or shallow baskets for soaps and toilet paper.

Label Everything - Once everything is in order, label the shelves to help you keep the closet that way. Use adhesive labels or tape a slip of paper to the shelf front to indicate “Master Bath,” “King Fitted,” or “Summer Blankets.”

The key is to use your closet¯however tiny¯for daily linens while moving the less needed items elsewhere. Whatever you do, aim at a system that works best for the person who's doing the laundry.

Source: RealSimple.com

Essential Spring-Cleaning Tools

Microfiber Cloths - Woven from superfine synthetic fibers, these delicate cloths safely clean computer screens, stainless steel appliances, and other surfaces that are easily scratched. Fingerprints and other small smudges can be rubbed off with a dry cloth; a damp one will clear away even stubborn marks.

Chopsticks - Save spare sets of these take-out utensils and repurpose them as stakes for indoor plants and stirrers for paint. Or carefully place one under the edge of just-washed stemware that's resting on a towel to ensure the glasses dry completely.

Corn Broom - Corn brooms are best for rough surfaces, such as a garage floor, driveway, or sidewalk. They will scrape up debris such as leaves and gravel but won't pick up fine dirt. Look for a nonslip handle that is comfortable to hold -- thicker handles cause less strain. 

Bon Ami Polishing Cleanser - This gently abrasive powder leaves enamel stove tops and stainless steel pans spotless, without a scratch. It's also great for routine shower and tub cleaning and removing stains from outdoor furniture. The cleanser is nontoxic and biodegradable and contains no dye, fragrance, or bleach.

Source: MarthaStewart.com

 

How to Save Money on Groceries

Plan your meals and shopping lists around featured sale items - Use your store's weekly sales ad flier to plan your menus for the week. Write your shopping list around the items and brands that are on sale. Taking a few minutes to make a detailed plan will save you the time of making unplanned trips to the store during the week—which can ruin your budget. 

When is the best time to use grocery coupons? Use grocery coupons, ideally when the item is on sale. Buy the Sunday newspaper—75% of grocery coupons come from the newspaper. Buy two to three copies per week to save dramatically. Go online—grocery stores often have their best deals and printable coupons on their websites.

When should you buy the store brand? Be flexible about brands and stores.  Buy the brand that's on sale with a coupon, or get the store brand if it's less expensive. Shop at the store with the best prices for your items that week.

Source: Oprah.com

 


Asparagus Gruyere Tart

Ingredients:

Flour, for work surface

1 sheet frozen puff pastry

5 1/2 oz (2 cups) Gruyere cheese, shredded

1 1/2 pounds medium or thick asparagus

1 tablespoon olive oil

Salt and pepper

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a floured surface, roll the puff pastry into a 16-by-10-inch rectangle. Trim uneven edges. Place pastry on a baking sheet. With a sharp knife, lightly score pastry dough 1 inch in from the edges to mark a rectangle. Using a fork, pierce dough inside the markings at 1/2-inch intervals. Bake until golden, about 15 minutes.

Remove pastry shell from oven, and sprinkle with Gruyere. Trim the bottoms of the asparagus spears to fit crosswise inside the tart shell; arrange in a single layer over Gruyere, alternating ends and tips. Brush with oil, and season with salt and pepper. Bake until spears are tender, 20 to 25 minutes.

EASY Repair Process: Warranty Wisdom

A home service agreement can make your repair process easy. We make the call to arrange for a licensed and insured contractor to take care of your problem. With a home service agreement, you pay a small trade fee for your covered repairs…without it you could pay hundreds. A HomeTrust Warranty® home service agreement gives you the protection you need against breakdowns of covered appliances and major systems such as plumbing, heating, electrical and A/C. Ask your Realtor® about www.HomeTrustWarranty.com.

 

Posted by: Rolando Trentini AT 08:00 am   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  |  Email
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The Trentini Team
F.C. Tucker EMGE REALTORS®
7820 Eagle Crest Bvd., Suite 200
Evansville, IN 47715
Office: (812) 479-0801
Cell: (812) 499-9234
Email: Rolando@RolandoTrentini.com


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