Tag Archives: Homeownership

Express Yourself: Choosing Paint Colors You’ll Love Living With

The ABCs of Interior Paint Colors

There’s a lot riding on your paint choices, for today and for tomorrow. You don’t want to be that seller who wonders why their bronze-colored sponge-painted living room isn’t attracting more buyers. Turn off HGTV and focus. Trendy painting techniques can be fun, but they also create a lot of work for you if you decide to repaint. That doesn’t mean there’s no room for them, just use them sparingly.

Instead, we’re going to focus on creating a timeless palette that not only makes sense in your space, but that will eventually make potential buyers walk in the door and say, “Wow.” Color conveys a deep stream of meaning, it can influence such varying perceptions as:

Scale of the room. In general, dark colors tend to shrink spaces, where light colors open them up. The more light you can get into your house, the better for your mental health and the more positively people will see the room.

Emotions associated with your home. Believe it or not, there is something to that whole “colors affect emotions” thing. In fact, they can even influence your behavior, something marketers have known for a while. If you want people to linger, you have to choose colors that won’t make them anxious or claustrophobic.

How the room is to be used. Again, if you can influence emotion with color, you can also sort of non-verbally indicate the room’s role in the home. Want to turn a nondescript dining room into a formal dining room with minimal effort? Deep, rich colors for the win.

The colors you choose to use inside your home say a lot about your space, how you think you’re going to use it and, frankly, tell a bit of a story about you or your family unit. This is probably why people who move from apartments into their first homes are often so eager to jump right into a painting frenzy.

Choosing Paint Colors You Won’t Regret

With your fancy new color wheel in hand, you can pick color schemes that are:

Monochromatic. These are the easiest of all. Start with a single color, say, blue, then just follow the color wheel to the center and choose various saturations of the same color to make your palette. Typically, a middling hue is used for the wall color, a darker color as accent and a lighter color (or just white) as trim paint. It’s a classic look for any color on the wheel.

Complementary. Choose a color you like, then zip directly across the wheel to find its complement. Some of these work better than others. For example, red and green are great for the holiday season, but might be a bit much indoors. Now, if you’re painting the outside of your WWI-era cottage, that’s a whole different bag of pigment.

Analogous. One of the most subtle, but elegant configurations, analogous colors are colors that are literally right next to one another on the color wheel. These colors are similar, but different enough that it’s obvious. Blue, blue-green and green make a great combo for a relaxing spa-style bathroom, but I’ve even seen some wild stuff done with analogous shades of purple that really kind of took my breath away. Choose one as your primary and use the other two to support it.

Triadic. For the bold and adventurous, triadic color schemes can create very personal spaces. Although these colors harmonize, in theory, they can be potential sales killers later, so if you go with a triadic color-scheme, don’t be offended if your future Realtor suggests a paint job. Start at the main color you want in the space, then choose the two colors that are equal distance away from it. For example, a triadic purple color scheme would include green and orange. Again, one color should dominate and the others support.

Tetradic. Much like the triadic color scheme, tetradic color schemes can be really loud if done incorrectly, so do so with caution. Instead of there being three colors spaced equally around the color wheel, this scheme uses four. So, if your main color was blue, you’d also use yellow-green, orange, and red-violet. Definitely not for every home or for the faint of heart.

To be honest, most people choose one color and then a different color (often white, black or deep brown) as a trim color. And this works, too. It does. As long as you know what that color is going to look like when it’s dry. This is an important caution, because what the paint looks like at the store, what it looks like when you pour it in the tray, even what it looks like when you paint it on the wall — that’s not what it’ll look like dry.

Try Your Paint Before You Buy

Oh, my, but there is a way to try the paint on before you buy it. It’s not a secret, it’s not easy, there’s no refund if you don’t like it, but you’ll have saved yourself a lot of effort and sadness if you use this one simple trick.

When you’re at the paint counter with your paint chip, and you’re really excited about your paint color, ask the person behind the counter to mix up two samples. One of the color you want from the chip, and another of the color that’s just below it. That second color is a slightly less saturated version of the one you chose, so it’s very similar, but you’ll notice a difference in any well-lit room.

If you’re looking at ultra light colors, do the opposite. Choose the color that’s slightly more saturated. Those ghostly paints have a bad habit of all looking white at the end of the process, instead of having a hint of pink or blue or whatever, unless they’re placed in just the right color scheme.

Over the weekend, paint a fairly large area of the room you want to do with both paints. A two-foot-by-two-foot space is good, a four-foot-by-four-foot space is even better. This gives you a really good feel for what that paint is going to look like in your space with your lighting. The lighting in the paint or home improvement store is never a great one to pick paint by.

Harmony Throughout the Home

One last very important point to note that might have been better mentioned sooner is how your color choices should also harmonize with existing materials that are expensive or difficult to remove, like carpets, tile, countertops, tubs and the like.

Let’s say you bought a super cool, mostly restored ranch style house from the 1950s. There’s a lot going on there, but it’s mostly pastel. You’ve got one bathroom that’s pastel green, another that’s pastel blue. This is not the place to break out the burgundies. One of two things will have to happen, either you have to find a way to bridge from pastels to the richer color families, or you need to pick a different color.

Bridging these color gaps usually requires making small steps in the right direction until you’re at your destination, so you’re going to be putting in a lot of effort to make those two choices work. But gutting both bathrooms isn’t really an option, either. So, choose a color that makes sense for the room. A cool gray is often a great companion to these colors, depending on the countertops.

But you don’t just want to think of harmony in terms of one room, you want to sort of make the whole house feel like it was painted with intention and a plan, so that as you move between spaces, some elements from one room travel with you to the next. There needs to be some kind of continuity, be it color, tone, design elements or a mix of these to pull the whole house together.

If your house opens into a back garden or outdoor kitchen, moving those elements outside or the outside elements in also makes a lot of sense. The main point: avoid jarring changes between rooms because it is jarring — to you, your family members, your visitors and one of these days, a potential buyer.

You Don’t Have to Go It Alone

I know, you opened this article hoping for some quick and dirty paint advice that ended with you choosing Seafoam Green because it’s soothing to puppies and instead ended up with a mini education in interior design. Even though there’s a lot of info here, it’s really not as complicated as it sounds. But if the thought of designing a plan for your whole home at once is too overwhelming, help is just around the corner.

Call Regina Singh for more info.

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Build Family Wealth with #Homeownership #Equity #ReginaSingh

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Over the next five years, home prices are expected to appreciate 3.22% per year on average and to grow by 17.3% cumulatively, according to Pulsenomics’ most recent Home Price Expectation Survey. So, what does this mean for homeowners and their equity position? As an example, let’s assume a young couple purchased and closed on a $250,000 home in January. If we look at only the projected increase in the price of that home, how much equity will they earn over the next 5 years?

Since the experts predict that home prices will increase by 4.4% this year alone, the young homeowners will have gained $11,000 in equity in just one year. Over a five-year period, their equity will increase by nearly $43,000! This figure does not even take into account their monthly principal mortgage payments. In many cases, home equity is one of the largest portions of a family’s overall net worth.

Bottom Line

Not only is homeownership something to be proud of, but it also offers you and your family the ability to build equity you can borrow against in the future. If you are ready and willing to buy, find out if you are able to today!

Want to avoid an unpleasant insurance surprise with your next house? Get a CLUE #ReginaSingh

Magnifying glass on house model

The rambler or split-level you’re eyeing looks perfect in every way, but prior damage and other issues may be lurking in the house’s backstory. These are details you’ll want to know about before signing the closing papers. And you can, thanks to a free tool that lists insurance losses on a property going back seven years. The majority of home insurance companies contribute claims history information to a database called the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange, or CLUE. Underwriters use the information in a CLUE report to rate insurance policies. More info.

#Mortgage or #Marriage?? #reginasingh

It's Not Always Marriage Before Mortgage | Keeping Current Matters 

There are many people sitting on the sidelines trying to decide if they should purchase a home or sign a rental lease. Some might wonder if it makes sense to purchase a house before they are married and have a family. Others may think they are too young. And still, others might think their current income would never enable them to qualify for a mortgage.  Unmarried couples jumped up to the third spot, right after their married counterparts and single women. Many couples are buying a home before spending what would be a down payment on a wedding.

National Association of REALTORS most recent Profile of Home Buyers & Sellers. Here are some interesting statistics on the first-time buyer:It's Not Always Marriage Before Mortgage | Keeping Current Matters

The Truth About Housing Affordability – call #ReginaSingh

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From a purely economic perspective, this is one of the best times in American history to buy a home. Black Night Financial Services discusses this in their most recent Monthly Mortgage Monitor. Here are two of the report’s revelations:

  1. The average U.S. home value increased by $13,500 from last year, but low interest rates have kept the monthly principal & interest payment needed to purchase a median-priced home almost equal to one year ago.
  2. Home affordability still remains favorable compared to long-term historic norms.

The report explains:

“Even though the value of the average home in the U.S. increased by about $13,500 over the last year, thanks to declining interest rates it actually costs almost exactly the same in principal and interest each month to purchase as it did this time last year. Even taking into account the fact that affordability can vary – sometimes significantly – across the country based upon the different rates of home price appreciation we’re seeing, that’s a pretty incredible balancing act between interest rates and home prices at the national level… Right now, it takes 20 percent of the median monthly income to cover monthly payments on the median-priced home, which is well below historical norms.” However, the report warns that affordability will be dramatically impacted by an increase in mortgage rates. “A half-point increase in interest rates would be equivalent to a $17,000 jump in the average home price, and bring that ratio to 21.5 percent. This increase is still below historical norms, but puts more pressure on homebuyers.”

Bottom Line

If you are ready and willing to purchase a home of your own, find out if you’re able to. Now is a great time to jump in.

How long do families stay in a home? #reginasingh

The National Association of Realtors (NAR) keeps historic data on many aspects of homeownership. One of the data points that has changed dramatically is the median tenure of a family in a home. As the graph below shows, for over twenty years (1985-2008), the median tenure averaged exactly six years. However, since 2008, that average is almost nine years – an increase of almost 50%. How Long Do Families Stay in a Home? | Keeping Current Matters

Why the dramatic increase?

The reasons for this change are plentiful. The top two reasons are:

  1. The fall in home prices during the housing crisis left many homeowners in a negative equity situation (where their home was worth less than the mortgage on the property).
  2. The uncertainty of the economy made some homeowners much more fiscally conservative about making a move.

However, with home prices rising dramatically over the last several years, over 90% of homes with a mortgage are now in a positive equity situation with 70% of them having at least 20% equity. And, with the economy coming back and wages starting to increase, many homeowners are in a much better financial situation than they were just a few short years ago.

What does this mean for housing?

Many believe that a large portion of homeowners are not in a house that is best for their current family circumstances. They could be baby boomers living in an empty, four-bedroom colonial, or a millennial couple planning to start a family that currently lives in a one-bedroom condo. These homeowners are ready to make a move. Since the lack of housing inventory is a major challenge in the current housing market, this could be great news.