She Sheds as compared to Man Caves

She Shed 2

A popular trend is she-sheds. Let’s take a look at the unique features of these petite structures and how you can play them up when marketing your next property.

  • New Kind of Office: She-sheds can serve as a great office space for women who work from home, but also for those who are looking to keep their bills and important documents in an organized, safe place away from everyday household clutter.
  • Creative Corner: From painting to sewing to music and more, she-sheds can help to bring out the creativity in every woman thanks to their peaceful and secluded atmosphere. If gardening is more your thing, she-sheds can also be used to store your tools, grow your plants and improve your green-thumb – a mini greenhouse never looked so good!
  • Gal Time: With she-sheds, you’re able to get away, without going away – meaning they’re the perfect spot for the girls to gather while the kids have a play date. She-sheds can also be used to host book club, movie nights, or even Tupperware/gifting parties.
  • Romantic Night…In?: While she-sheds are created with the woman in mind, these quaint little spaces are actually a perfect spot for a romantic date night. Skip the expensive dinner in town, cancel the babysitter, whip up something in the kitchen and head out back with your significant other – the evening will feel just as magical, especially knowing that you’re saving money and that you could just walk up the stairs and crawl into bed after a few glasses of bubbly!

By playing up these features, you’ll paint a picture of a stress-free, serene space that every woman desires and deserves to have in their home – something potential buyers, male or female, will never forget.

Managing Finances

No matter what we do to prevent it, the dollars start flying out the door the second the temperature starts to rise. It might be very cold now but plan ahead and budget for all of known expenses, the extra expenditures still add up — and hurt.  Spring will come!

A coming cost can be the spring clean-up — mulch, new plants and flowers, and vegetable garden start-up. And then there is the rest? It’s all social — neighbors inviting us over for cookouts, dinners out and card parties. Warm weather stuff.

Nice thought as we all shiver and huddle by the fire.

Entertaining as the weather picks up, and even now while it is so cold can be enjoyable. It is fun to have people over for dinner and no one wants to say “no” to social gatherings or dinner nights when you feel lucky to get an invite in the first place.

Still, most of us need boundaries if we truly want to live within our means and stick to our savings goals. And most of us have at least one set of expensive friends — or sets of friends — to deal with.

And, that’s fine. Obviously, other people are entitled to spend their money how they want — even if it is on events or purchases others might see as frivolous. Paying $100 for dinner is enough to make some people puke, but not everyone feels that way.

How to deal with expensive friends

 

Here are a few ways we cope with expensive friends while still maintaining friendships:

Offer to whip up a fancy dinner at home.
We celebrated a special occasion with friends the other night, but instead of going out, we made an epic dinner at home. I’m talking crab legs, avocado egg rolls, spicy cauliflower, and all the extras — and all for less than $30 in ingredients.

That’s a lot for one dinner, sure, but the same meal could have easily cost $200 or more in a nice sit-down restaurant. Splurging is okay sometimes, but it costs a lot less to splurge at home.

Plan a pitch-in.
As long as someone is willing to host, a pitch-in is the perfect way to hang out and enjoy a meal with friends. Not only can it lead to huge savings, but you can also take your time instead of rushing out of the restaurant once you are done. And since we bring our kids with us to cookouts and pitch-ins, it also helps us avoid hiring a babysitter.

Suggest activities first.
This is my favorite trick when it comes to dealing with expensive friends. Any time we have tentative plans with someone, I’ll suggest an activity first. My go-to suggestion is something cheap like a pitch-in or cookout and, of course, I offer to host. Most of the time, it works.

Pick a weekend night to stay home.
Sometimes the easiest way to save money is just to stay at home. Easier said than done when the weather is beautiful, but it is a good strategy nonetheless. I actually find it rather exhausting to have plans every weekend, so we have been trying to stay home at least one weekend night — usually Fridays. Not only is it nice to save money, but it is also nice to have a family night with the kids.

Say “no” when you really don’t want to do something.
There will probably come a time when someone invites you to something you really don’t want to do. It could be a sporting event, an expensive dinner out, or something else. It doesn’t matter. Occasionally, you just have to stick to your guns and say “no.” We have done it before, and it hurts — but it was definitely the right thing. Our noes usually involve invites to expensive restaurant dinners that are late at night. I hate eating at 8:00 p.m. and can’t fathom the idea of overpaying for a meal I wouldn’t enjoy. So when a situation like that arises, I just have to say “no.”

Tell other people about your financial situation.
You don’t have to spill all of the gritty details. However, if you are truly trying to save money, it can help to let your family and friends know. So tell them. Explain your budget situation and tell them about your dreams and goals. They may not share your enthusiasm for frugal living; but if they are real friends, they will understand.

Dealing with expensive friends without losing friendships

For the most part, I tend to believe that it is all about striking a balance. You know you don’t want to be that family — the one that never has the money to do anything fun. But you also don’t want to go off the deep end and spend in a way that undermines your short-term and long-term goals.

For us, it is all about being selective and having fun in the most frugal way possible. It’s not always the easiest choice, but I know it’s the best one. Life isn’t all about having fun today; it’s about saving for tomorrow too. And sometimes, you have to bow out and make the right decision for your family.

How do you deal with expensive friends? What strategies do you use to try to keep the cost of social events down?

Waller Realty is committed to helping our readers save and achieve their financial goals. Savings interest rates may be low, but that is all the more reason to shop for the best rate.

Source: Get Rich Slowly

To Do List for New House Owners

I have always lived my life by making lists. These vary from lists of people to call, lists of ideas, lists of companies to set up, lists of people who can make things happen. I also have lists of topics to blog about, lists of tweets to send, and lists of upcoming plans.
Richard Branson

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New homeowners: is your to-do list starting to pile up? Before Spring arrives tick some of tasks off your check list.

  • Streamline your list. If you have multiple lists going, or post-its stuck all around the house, take a few minutes to combine and streamline. Depending on what you have to get done, break your list down by room, or by project category (i.e. painting, decorating, cleaning). Taking the time to get organized will save time in the long run.
  • Use mobile list apps. There are several apps available that allow you not only to make a categorized list on your phone, but also to sync it to your other devices and share it! Create one, shareable list among your roommates or family with all to-do list items and projects. That way, when one person gets a needed supply or finishes a project, everyone’s on the same page. Try do, Awesome Note, Evernote orAnyList to start.
  • Prioritise. Do all of your projects really need to be done right away? Probably not. Think about the cause and effect between various projects – will not completing one create a domino effect? You’ll also start to come across projects that will become regularly occurring ones, and that’s a good thing! Consider thishome maintenance checklist when doing so, which will help you prioritise what’s most timely.

 

Amazing Ideas for your Castle

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We’ve all got some sort of idea of how our dream home might look. Some of us have just got to have a pool, while others want clever modern design, sustainability, or integration with natural elements. No matter what it is that makes your dream home unique, here are a few examples of homes where people have been able to realize some of their greatest home design fantasies.

These ingenious home improvements run from pools and aquariums to cleverly-hidden storage spaces, multi-purpose furniture and… cat transit walkways. Maybe you’ll recognize something that you’ve always wanted to see, or maybe the pictures will get your juices flowing and inspire you to come up with or even build something new.

Warning – viewing some of these images may make you feel dissatisfied with your current home!

De Stress at Home

De Stress at Home

Most of us deal with some form of stress on a regular basis, whether from workplace pressure, the weight of exams, family dynamics, or a myriad of other reasons, and, let’s face it, we’d all like to keep it at bay.

Staff at the Mayo Clinic recommend starting with a meditation session as a way to keep yourself more calm throughout the day, while researchers from Harvard suggest meditation is particularly useful for treating conditions such as anxiety, pain and depression.

Fortunately, you don’t have to climb to the top of a mountain with your guru to achieve this. Like many goals we set, simply having a dedicated space for it helps us stop making excuses and start creating a healthier habit. Read More

Thinking of Moving to the Central Goldfields?

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If you are planning to make the shift to this region we suggest you take the time to do some homework and find out just what is on offer. Perhaps you may choose to rent  for a year before making the decision to settle permanently. We are here to support you with any of your rental or purchasing needs. Have a few weekends here! Take the time to visit our Open for Inspections of a Saturday. 

Master Built Stone Home on Fryerstown Acres

Landscape

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Turn into historic Castlemaine Street from High Street Fryerstown and follow the road until you come to a gate. The road behind this gate winds its way up to the rise where this beautiful, master built stone home (click the link to see the web feature) enjoys spectacular views of this unique countryside. Surrounded by acres of pristine Fryerstown land that has been farmed by the same family since the beginning of the last century this home looks down at the Fryerstown village. This is a place where you can be at one with the land, totally removed from the outside world. Here the most noticeable sound is the silence! The master built stone home was built by the builder to live in. No detail has been missed in the construction of this home that provides ideal spaces for a family and features magnificent stone masonry throughout. This is special home that was built to endure.

Maldon in Winter

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Friday 19 June – Saturday 25 July 2015

A warm welcome to Maldon In Winter – a festival of events that you can enjoy with family and friends during the coldest part of the year. There are puppet shows, steam train rides, the Maldon Market, the Maldon Art Show, craft beer and cider, walks, gold mine tours, music, dances, lectures – over 30 events.

Come for the day or stay for a weekend – there’s plenty to enjoy with family and friends in this beautiful old goldrush town. So grab a coat and hit the road for Maldon. Warm fires, old cottages, great food, specialty shops and much more.

Contact: Viv Markham ph. 5475 1474 (m) 0419 355 087

Maldon Market

MaldonMarket

Get yourself along to the Maldon Market tomorrow.

The Maldon Market is a monthly Sunday market for lovers of hand grown produce, home made food and gorgeous hand made crafty treats held on the second Sunday of every month in Fountain St & the Shire Gardens, Maldon. Follow us on Facebook for the latest information www.facebook.com/maldonmarket

The Maldon Market features specially selected stall holders from the creative and fertile heart of Victoria, as well as emerging Melbourne talent.

From soap to soup, fruit to furniture, plants to pants, jewellery to jumpers, the Maldon Market has something for everyone.

With a passion for grass roots creativity and quality products, the Maldon Market provides visitors the chance to meet the dedicated makers, bakers, sewers and growers behind the exciting range of things the market has on offer.

Located in the historic goldfields region between Castlemaine and Bendigo, Maldon provides a peaceful country market atmosphere that the whole family will love.

Spend the morning at the market and the afternoon in the town and you will have the perfect day trip to Australia’s first and only National Trust classified town.

The Village Festival

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Warm body and soul as Castlemaine celebrates the winter solstice. Events starts at 12 noon and finishes at 11pm

Music, physical theatre, circus, storytelling, visual art and the uncategorisable will all find their place within one of the highly decorated tents, out in the open park or around the communal fire

Highlights include the sideshow carnival, 10 minute dance parties and the Rascal-maine stage, run entirely by young people.

At dusk, be part of the fire lighting ritual that brings personal stories of Castlemaine elders to life through steampunk theatre, music, puppetry and pyrotechnics.

Good local food and drink add to the convivial atmosphere.

http://www.thevillagefestival.com.au/

We Can Help Sell Using Social Media

For SaleIf you are looking for a new and innovative ideas about selling your property why not work with us and try using social media? Although social media can be a great way to keep in contact with family and friends, many home owners are using it to advertise their property.

More home owners are beginning to use sites like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram and blogging to attract a larger pool of buyers. We can also help you feature your home using WordPress and talk to you about using a range of social media.

Advertising on social media complements traditional real estate advertising by extending the reach. This type of advertising can help create a personal attachment with the buyer. You can show your property from a home owner’s point of view?

Facebook – Your Facebook friends may just be looking for a house like yours, or know somebody who is, so why not start there? Update your facebook status to let your friends know that your home is  for sale. You could even create an ‘Open House’ event and encourage your friends to ‘spread the word’ to their family or friends, inviting them to come along for an informal viewing.

Twitter – Learning to describe your property in 140 characters for a tweet can be tricky, but make it concise and don’t forget you can add a picture and tag your location to add extra emphasis. Use Apps like Instagram to make the photo sharing process more interesting and colourful!

Pinterest – Pinterest is massively popoular for lovers of DIY, planning and general home improvement tips. Why not pin different key features of your home for sale to a Pinterest board? You can then share your pins through your other social media channels.

For more support selling your home make sure to talk to one of our agents about how we can help.

 

Designing a Nursery

Nursery Planning

Planning to decorate your baby’s nursery but not sure where to start? Here’s our top 10 tips to guide and inspire you.

1. Consider the room’s location and other practicalities If you have a choice, choose a quiet room close to your bedroom so you don’t have to walk far at night. Make sure that a cold room has adequate heating and a warm room has good ventilation. If the windows let a lot of light in, it may help your baby to sleep at night if you put black-out blinds or curtain linings up to keep the room dark.

2. Incorporate the style of your house into the nursery décor Is your interiors style traditional, contemporary or perhaps an eclectic mix? It’s important that your nursery design reflects your own personal style and how you’ve decorated the rest of your home. Otherwise, it will look out of place and you’ll tire of it very quickly.

3. Create your own mood board Search the internet and magazines for pictures you love and piece them together to create a mood board. This will help you to pick your colours, keep your ideas focused and pull your theme together.

4. Keep it simple With all the gorgeous nursery furniture and accessories available, it’s easy to over-decorate. Keep it simple and decide on a single focus for the room early on, such as a piece of furniture or artwork. Think child-friendly, not childish. Choose a neutral background and mix in age-appropriate accessories and you’ll reduce the need to redecorate every few years.

5. Choose soft, tranquil colours Consider using colours that are calming and nurturing. When your baby gets older she will tell you what she wants, so take this special time to consider what makes you feel relaxed. With the demands of a newborn, most mums need calm more than anything.

6. Choose adaptable décor Consider how long the nursery décor will last your baby. Wall paper with characters might have to be changed in a few years if your child finds it babyish or out-of-date. Wall stickers are a cheap, easy alternative for decorating that can be removed when your child gets older.

7. Think about safety If you are buying a new cot it should conform to AS/NZS 2172, as all new cots on sale in Australia and New Zealand have to meet this standard. This standard ensures that the cot is deep enough to be safe for your baby, that the bars are the correct distance apart, and that the cot does not have cut-outs or steps. Create a safe zone around the cot by positioning it away from windows, heaters, lamps, wall decorations and cords. Keep furniture that your baby could clamber on to away from the cot too.

8. Select key pieces first Select your furniture pieces before you start decorating. Parents often choose their colours first, but it’s actually easier and cheaper to match paints, fabrics and wallpaper to your key furniture pieces.

9. Strike a balance between form and function The hard part of designing your nursery is making sure it’s practical and easy to use. Consider what the room needs to be used for, the size of the room and how long it will be a nursery. This will help you design the space to fit your needs.

10. Think outside the box Just because furniture and accessories are not nursery-specific doesn’t mean that you can’t use them. The same can be said for wallpaper, fabric, and wall stickers. Choose items and colours that you love.