Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Vanilla Ice Giving Two Winners "Rock Star" Room Renovation

I came across this article on the DIY network.  Thought I would share.  Vanilla Ice is giving two winners a "rock star" room renovation on the DIY network.  Apparently, viewers can submit videos and photos to DIYNetwork.com from May 24 to July 2.  I had no idea that Vanilla Ice was into home improvement.  Take a look at the article from marketwatch.com

NEW YORK, May 24, 2012 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- DIY Network, the go-to-destination for home improvement television, and Vanilla Ice, 90s pop icon, home remodeler and host of The Vanilla Ice Project, are giving two lucky viewers a rock star room renovation. From May 24 to July 2, homeowners can upload videos and photos to DIYNetwork.com telling Vanilla Ice why he should renovate a room in their house. The two winners of the "Ice My House" contest will each receive a $30,000 room makeover courtesy of Vanilla Ice and his crew. In addition, the transformation will be documented in two one-hour specials called, "VIP: Ice My House," which will premiere in 2013.

"Twice is nice, man," said Vanilla Ice when asked about this year's DIY Network "Ice My House" contest. "I'm looking forward to sharing my passion for home improvement with two lucky homeowners this year, and taking their rooms from worst to first." 

Currently in production on the third season of The Vanilla Ice Project, rock star turned home improvement all-star Vanilla Ice and his crew are back for another season of 13 half-hour episodes of jaw-dropping renovations as they tackle a new, busted up Palm Beach area mansion. After his chart topping hit "Ice Ice Baby," Vanilla Ice turned his focus to a new hobby -- buying land and flipping houses. He's renovated old homes and foreclosures, and taught himself the basics through hands-on experience and a lot of research. The first season of DIY Network's The Vanilla Ice Project premiered to critical-acclaim in October 2010. The second season premiered in January 2012, and currently airs Sundays at 4 p.m. ET on DIY Network. 

To enter DIY Network's "Ice My House" contest and for restrictions, official rules and details, visit DIYNetwork.com/VanillaIce. 

Members of the media may also obtain additional press materials, talent bios and show images by registering at DIY Network's online media newsroom. Viewers can also become fans of DIY Network and interact with other home improvement enthusiasts and do-it-yourselfers through Facebook and Twitter. DIY Network is available nationwide on DISH Network Ch. 111 and DIRECTV Ch. 230, and additional cable channel designations may be found by checking local listings and www.DIYNetwork.com/tv

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Wednesday, May 16, 2012

5 Home Improvements That Won't Sell Your House

Here is a great article about upgrades to your house that won't sell it.  Take a look!  

If you remodel your house because you plan to live in it forever, then do whatever you want. But if you plan to remodel to help your resale value, beware of these projects.

Homeowners upgrade their homes for two reasons: They always dreamed of having a walk-in shower, or they think remodeling will boost their home’s value when it comes time to sell.

While the emotional value a remodeling project adds to a home usually pays off, unfortunately the monetary value rarely does.
Let’s face it, you’re not always going to recoup the money you spent on a remodeling project when it comes time to sell. Check out these examples to get an idea of what you shouldn’t do before you sell…

1. Adding a new facade to the exterior of your home

I live in a historic neighborhood comprising mostly of turn-of-the-century Craftsman Bungalows. A few years ago, adding a brick front over the original wood became all the rage in my neighborhood. Now it just looks out of place in the area. Last month, three houses went up for sale on my street – two with the brick facade and one with the original wood. The wood house sold right away while the brick fronts are still sitting there.

I’m not saying that was the reason why one house sold and the others didn’t, but spending the extra money sure didn’t seem to help. According to MSN, homes that stick out – like brick facades nestled among wood bungalows - won’t do anything for their value.

Alternative: While you should update the exterior of your home before you sell, stick with the original plans. For example, replacing weathered siding with the higher-end fiber-cement siding returned an average of 78 percent of what homeowners paid, according to Remodeling Magazine.

2. Putting in a pool

According to SmartMoney, adding an in-ground pool to your backyard won’t add any real value when it comes time to sell. In fact, large outdoor projects don’t typically appeal to a wide range of buyers. Most buyers would rather see an open yard space than a koi pond or 16-seater hot tub.

Alternative: Clean up the yard and add some basic landscaping to the front and back. Having a nice yard gives your home curb appeal, and it’s one of the cheaper remodeling projects you can do. In fact, a study by HomeGain shows that the average landscaping job costs $540 and adds $1,932 to your home’s value.

3. Converting your attic to a home office

Converting attic space into a useable room will appeal to buyers – if it’s the right kind of room. Rooms like home offices only appeal to buyers who consider working from home a plus. In fact, HGTV reports that a home office remodel only recoups 60 to 73 percent of the cost on average.

Alternative: Converting your attic space into something that appeals to everyone, such as a bedroom. On average, homeowners saw up to a 90 percent return on this project, according to HGTV.

4. Overhauling your entire kitchen

Kitchens are the one room in the house that will appeal to the most buyers, so you want it to be eye-catching. But, that doesn’t mean you need granite counter tops, wood floors, and a double Viking oven to sell your house. On average, homeowners spent $110,938 on an upscale kitchen remodel. But the new kitchen only increased home values by $63,731 on average (or about 57 percent), according to MSNBC.

Alternative: Do a smaller-scale kitchen remodel, and focus on the areas that are the most outdated. As a comparison, MSNBC found that a smaller kitchen remodel cost $19,588 on average but raised the home’s value by an average 72 percent.

5. Installing solar panels

Green homes are becoming more popular, so making your home more energy-efficient will appeal to buyers. But the big greening projects are costly. For example, The New York Times reports that while the cost of solar panels has gone down by about 40 percent, one homeowner still paid a whopping $77,000 to install a solar panel system. It would be nearly impossible to recoup that investment in this housing market.

Alternative: Upgrade your windows with energy-efficient models – you’ll make your home more energy-efficient without the hefty price tag of those huge greening projects. Double-pane energy-efficient windows provide better insulation, which lowers utility bills – improvements that appeal to every buyer. And if you buy Energy Star-rated windows, you’ll qualify for a tax credit.

Questions to ask yourself

Before starting a remodeling project, consider these points…
1. Will this upgrade add value to my house? If you’re remodeling because you plan to eventually sell your home, run your ideas past a real estate agent or professional contractor. Not every project automatically adds value to a house.
2. How will my house compare to other homes in my neighborhood? If you put your house on the market the same time as five of your neighbors, your house needs to stand out – but not too much. Most buyers won’t consider your house if it’s priced much higher than others in the same area – even if your upgrades are worth the higher value.
3. Does this upgrade appeal to a wide range of buyers? If you’re going for a standard kitchen remodel, odds are it will appeal to almost every buyer who comes through your house. But, if you’re planning to break the mold with your home remodel, you might be wasting your money. Run your idea past a few friends and see if they’d buy it.

To order your copy of Remodeling Hell, CLICK HERE
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Article source: moneytalknews.com

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

10 Terrific DIY Home and Garden Projects

It has been a while since I've posted some DIY projects, and I came across these and thought I would share!  Add Spring panache inside your home and out with these engaging DIY projects for all skills levels.  From fixing up roadside furniture to installing an edible container garden and building a stone fire pit, these 10 DIY projects for the home and garden are for both newbies and pros!

Project: Painted quotation
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated time: 1 hour

The book Flea Market Chic by Liz Bauwens and Alexandra Campbell features a quote painted on the wall above a bed's headboard. You can easily re-create this poetic look with a small can of paint and a set of letter stencils — or very good handwriting.

  Project: Burlap-wrapped pots
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated time: 15 minutes

Jennifer of The Old Painted Cottage covered basic pots with burlap to enhance her maidenhair ferns. Buy a roll of burlap at a garden store, cut a section that fits your pot and place the stylishly covered pot in a plant stand. You can also finish the look by tying the burlap with twine.
Project: Two embellished paper lanterns
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated time: 20 minutes to 2 hours

Monica Ewing of Crafty Nest whipped up these delightful paper globe lanterns with nothing more than a glue gun and embellishments from a craft store. The flower design takes a bit more time, but you can finish the pom-pom creation in just minutes.

See the full instructions here
Project: Container garden
Difficulty: Easy
Estimated time: An afternoon

Want an edible garden in raised beds but don't have the time or desire to do major construction? Take a cue from the folks at Banyon Tree Design Studio and fill galvanized troughs (yes, the kind livestock drink from) with soil and compost, and use them as containers to plant your seeds.
Project: Reclaimed dining chairs
Difficulty: Moderate
Estimated time: 2 days (including drying time)

Monica Ewing of Crafty Nest scooped up these chairs for free on the side of the road and transformed them with black paint and decorative fabric.

This is a no-sew project, so it's even appropriate for newbie DIYers. Read the full details and how-to here.
Project: Stenciled rug
Difficulty: Moderate
Estimated time: 2 days

Upgrading a sisal rug with a modern print creates a fresh look that's inexpensive. Read more about this project here.
Project: Outdoor chalkboard
Difficulty: Moderate
Estimated time: 2 days

Shades of Green's portfolio on Houzz inspired me to research outdoor chalkboard DIY projects. I discovered the perfect method: Mix outdoor paint with a dark sanded grout and apply it to a sheet of plywood for a version that will hold up against the elements. Get the full how-to here.
Project: Front-door face-lift
Difficulty: Moderate
Estimated time: 2 days (includes drying time)

Designer Brian Patrick Flynn, aka the Decor Demon, upgraded a basic hollow-core door in a weekend with new hardware, fresh paint and crisp graphic design. It may look complicated, but with time and patience, even a beginner can tackle this project.

Read the full story with step-by-step instructions
Project: Placemat pillows
Difficulty: Moderate (sewing machine required)
Estimated time: Several hours

Living in a Nutshell by Janet Lee covers creative and budget-friendly projects for small spaces. Here's a genius tip from the book: Sew designer placemats together and fill with stuffing to create a pillow. Read the Houzz coverage of Living in a Nutshell for more ideas.
Project: Backyard fire pit
Difficulty: Hard
Estimated time: Several weekends (and helping hands)

If you are ready to bust out the power tools and do some heavy lifting, this stacked stone fire pit could be yours in time to enjoy warm summer nights. Erin Lang Norris did a wonderful job outlining step-by-step instructions, so if you decide to tackle this project, you are in good hands.
Source: www.houzz.com

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Friday, May 4, 2012

Irion Books needs you! - Contribute to Remodeling Hell

Irion Books needs you!  We are looking for individuals that want to help contribute to the update we will be doing to the book Remodeling Hell.  The book Remodeling Hell, contains a Salvation Guide which has tips and ticks of the trade and real life horror stories to help educate others so that they avoid experiencing the same hellish event that Charles Irion endured.  

Anyone out there that has a home remodeling horror story of their own to share, someone working in construction, or a contractor with inside information on what home owners should look out for would be great!  You can remain anonymous, or at your approval, if we print your contribution we will name you in the book.  

Help us save people from enduring a Remodeling Hell experience!  If you are interested in contributing please email Jennifer at Jennifer@IrionBooks.com

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Home Remodeling Tips: Preventing and Cleaning up Dust

Remodeling your home is the hardest part, but keeping the dust and dirt down to a minimum and cleaning it up afterwards can also be a challenge. Find out some handy tips you can use to ease both tasks in this article!

Home remodeling projects can make your home look brighter and more attractive. They can also give you and your family much – needed additional living space. The down side of remodeling your home, though, is the plaster, wood and other dust particles that always result.  Not only does it make the interior of your home dirty, but an estimated thirty – five million Americans suffer from dust – related allergies, and you might be one of those sufferers. You can greatly prevent the amount of the dust particles in your house that is created during a home remodeling project, and relieve your allergy symptoms by following these simple tips:

Home remodeling tips: Preventing and cleaning up dust

Tip 1
When working on one room, isolate it in order to keep the rest of your home dust – free. To do this, close all of the doors that lead to any other rooms. Place old rugs at the bottoms of the doors so the dust cannot escape. If the room doesn’t have a door on it, moisten one or two old blankets with tap water and hang them in the doorway to cover it completely. The water in the blankets will help to trap dust particles and keep them from entering the rest of the house.

Tip 2
No matter if the heating or if the cooling system in your house is running or not, close the registers in the room you are remodeling. This action will keep your furnace or central air system from spreading the dust around the entire house. Then, after they are closed, moisten an old rug or towel with tap water and cover each register. This will prevent the dust from entering your registers and infiltrating your ductwork.

Tip 3
Immediately clean up any wood dust, plaster dust messes, et cetera, that you make during your remodeling. Don’t wait to clean up after you are done, because, the dust will be tracked through your house on the soles of people’s shoes, and it will filter through the air.

Tip 4
Always cut wood, drywall, plastic, metal, and all other materials that you may use in your remodeling project, outside in the fresh air away from your house. Cutting all of these materials creates dust particles that you don’t want floating around inside your home.

Using these tips can help to keep the amount of dust that a remodeling project creates in your home to a minimum. However, there will still be a certain amount of dust that is created from all of the activity involved.

Cleaning up the dust during and after a remodeling project can be relatively easy if you follow these tips:

Tip 1
The best device to use to clean up dust and other messes – either wet or dry – is a canister – type vacuum, such as a SHOP VAC. Don’t try to use your upright vacuum sweeper, because that will just blow the dust particles around in the air. A SHOP VAC is specially designed to pick up only dust, but also small pieces of materials. Picking up a small screw or nail won’t hurt this type of vacuum either, but it can ruin your vacuum sweeper.

Tip 2
Don’t use a broom to sweep up dirt and debris from the remodeling project. A broom creates an enormous amount of dust and dirt. If you have large pieces of remodeling materials to clean up, either pick them up by hand, or scoop them into a dustpan with your hand. If you have laid plastic down on the floor, simply fold up the corners of it and take it outside before you clean it off.

Tip 3
Trying to clean up dust with a dry rag is a futile task. All a dust rag does is simply puts the dust and dirt into the air. When the air settles down, the dust just re – settles again in a different area of the room. A more effective way to clean furniture and other wood surfaces, is to dampen a soft rag with furniture cleaner first. The dust will collect on the rag, and it will be removed from the air, as well as from the room. Turn the dust rag over when one side gets soiled, and replace it when it is thoroughly soiled.

For other home remodeling tips and tricks, order your copy of Remodeling Hell by CLICKING HERE!  

Article source: Newsolio.com