Adding touches of stone within a backyard can create a rustic yet elegant atmosphere, blending in beautifully with surrounding natural elements. Here are some ideas for incorporating stone in your own yard:
Adding stone steps to either a front entryway or backyard can create a stunning attraction that catches the eye. Mix and match different tones, colors, and textures of stone to establish a nice contrast between green foliage and rock.
Stone walkways are widely unique installations that can be designed in many different ways. Choose large cut stones for a smooth walkway of square or geometric design for a classic modern look. Or instead, use small and rough stones to create a quaint fieldstone path, perfect for cottages and gardens.
Redo a driveway by laying down a pattern of different colored stones to add a cozy and stylish element to your drive. Choose smooth stones in different textures and patterns, and watch your driveway transform into a work of art.
Fillers And Pathways
Replace grass with earthy tones of gravel for a modern and desert feel. You won’t have to worry about the upkeep of watering grass, and gravel provides a natural alternative for those living in hot climates. Gravel is also charming for pathways leading up to a house or for winding around gardens and yards, and provides a nice texture for walking.
Pieces of peach colored flagstone can make the floor of any patio elegant, and adds nicely to a surrounding yard of flowers and trees. Its smooth surface is ideal for families walking and playing, and creates a welcoming atmosphere for parties and relaxation.
It’s always a good idea for homeowners to thoroughly review their warranty to note the coverage on their plan. Most homeowner warranty plans cover systems in the house no matter the age, as well as appliances and systems regardless of their make or manufacturer. Some things not listed on the warranty may not be covered—so as a precaution, here are a few things to note about home warranties:
The excitement of purchasing a brand new home can often be overshadowed by the time and stress of having to make hundreds of decisions and oversee the work as the new house develops. Many people opt not to build nor to live in a neighborhood where new homes are under construction.
Sometimes prospective homeowners fall in love with an established community or features of an existing home.
Purchasing an existing home requires careful research. Prospective homeowners need to be ready to put the time into doing a thorough assessment of the home or homes they are considering for purchase.
If the house is not relatively new, purchasers need to think about the climate of the area and the thermal heating and cooling efficiency, the condition of the structure, roof, exterior and interior needed improvements. Other considerations include the state of the landscaping and how much maintenance and replacement will need to be done.
How well your purchase will hold its value in the real estate market where it is located is also a factor.
Ask yourself whether you and your family will be comfortable in this existing home. Can you afford the mortgage, taxes, maintenance, future home improvements, and upkeep on this house?
If this is a “fixer-upper” make sure you have budgeted for the things that need to be replaced.Consider repairs in stages from needed immediately, to nice…but. These considerations should include renovations, repairs, maintenance, and rebuilds; retrofitting things like kitchen or bathroom; upgrades to appliances or water systems, wiring and/or plumbing.
Before you make the final decision to purchase an existing home, have professionals come in to do an assessment of wiring, plumbing, water, and structure of the building. A thorough pre-purchase evaluation is an absolute must. This is not an area to economize. Spend the money to hire an experienced, professional home appraiser who is knowledgeable about identifying the home’s hidden problems. Have this consultant advise you about the costsinvolved in rectifying problems or renovating. Or refuse to purchase until the present owner has fixed these problems to your evaluator’s satisfaction.
Make sure you get a guarantee in writing that any emergency work for a specified time period will be at the cost of the present owner who has guaranteed these things.
Once you have purchased, you will want to start on the wish list you created when you first looked at this dream home. Your realtor can be a good source of information about renovations and local tradespeople.
New development homes are springing up all over the West and are a tempting option for many. They can represent savings, good value for money and who doesn’t love the prospect of a brand new home with all modern finishes? But before you jump in and commit, here’s what you need to know about new development homes.
Pros of New Development Homes
Value: They can be good value and give the space you need without the premium price tag of an older home.
Modern: There’s a lot to be said for modern appliances, electrics, plumbing, and contemporary design. Many people enjoy the feeling of a brand new home, not to mention not having to worry about repairs.
Communities:Developments are often close-knit communities with communal areas, which many people like. Homeowners’ associations are often established in new developments.
Choose your finishes: Depending on the development and price level, you might be able to choose certain furnishes and layouts.
Cons of New Development Homes
Cookie cutter style: These homes are often very generic with entire neighborhoods looking the same. If you like individuality, they’re not for you.
No charm: People who like the charm that comes with an older property will be disappointed with a new development home.
Quality varies enormously: Many modern homes are not finished to ahigh standard. Some developers will cut corners, leaving you with costly repairs. At best this could be cosmetic, at worst it could be structural.
Outside Space is often limited: In new homes, the back yard areas tend to be smaller than with older homes of the same size.
3 Golden Rules when Considering a New Development Home
“Buy the builder”: This means only considering developments by reputable builders with a track record of developing high quality homes. Do your research and ask a round. Calling planning departments and local real estate agents is a good start. Ask if developers finish their projects on time and fulfil their contractual obligations. Draw up a list of quality developers and ones to avoid, based on criteria like build quality, warranty, customer service and reputation.
Carry out Inspections: Have inspections carried out during the process and after. This ensures that the developer is doing everything it agreed to. A contractor can examine the quality of the work, allowing you the opportunity to get it changed before it is too late. When completed, take a final walkthrough to check for defects or shortcomings.
Always get a Warranty: Make sure the home comes with a warranty provided by an independent insurance provider. Developer warranties may not be up to scratch, soalways ensure that the warranty covers repairs for a fixed period and includesplumbing, electrical, heating, AC and structural defects.