homes

Spring fever? Spruce up!

Spring cleaning is usually on everyone’s mind this time of year. While clearing out your closets and drawers as well as donating or getting rid of superfluous items, consider how to create the interior space of your dreams. Your home is where you relax, revivify, …

Owning your style while renting your home

Do you want to know if an apartment has potential before you sign on the dotted line? Can’t see past those dingy walls and centuries old ceiling fan? Can’t imagine living in such unstylish conditions? You may have a dream home living under the last …

Wecora puts designers in the driver’s seat

Professional designers are interested in finding a way to create visual representations of their work online in a dynamic and stylized way, which hinges on superior organization, the means to share projects and the ability to capitalize on virtual communication. This is where Wecora, a …

One room. One weekend. One hundred dollars.

We’ve all been there: sick of our space but without a lot of resources to change it. So, we do nothing, or wait until something bigger comes along. However, you can find ways to makeover a space when you’re short on time and cash. It …

How to winterize your home

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Wind-burned faces and snow shoveling duties aren’t the only maddening symptoms of brutal Chicagoland winters: drafty, inefficient houses and cranked up energy systems mean trouble for the environment and your wallet too. How can you prep your place for the season with eco-friendliness in mind? …

The most earth-friendly landscaping trends of 2013

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Fire pits, swimming pools, and outdoor parties on the patio are all at the top of everyone's list in America. According to the 2013 Residential Landscape Architecture Trends survey conducted by the American Society of Landscape Architects, Americans are also increasingly more excited about sustainable and low-maintenance design for outdoor living trends. Here are some of the most common sustainable outdoor living trends designed to help save the environment and ignite the fun. 

Home sales and prices are up, leading indicators show

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What are we to make of the newest numbers on Chicago area home sales? Some show growth and positive energy, while others seem to indicate we lag the nation in home price upticks. New numbers from the Illinois Association of Realtors show that Chicago's nine-county …

Slush fund: Why it makes sense to move in winter

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When the weather outside is frightful, none of us wants to pick up and move to a new place. But it can make sense if you want to save money or have more to choose from.

Own a car? Chicago's 3 best neighborhoods for drivers

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It's not easy to be a car owner in Chicago, especially in the congested Loop and North sides. It's not just a slow drive, it's really, really hard to park. But it's not impossible. Broker Mike McElroy offers insider info on the best places to live - and park.

Big design ideas for small kitchen spaces

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Bigger isn't always better in the real estate world, and what's more, it's not always possible. With more baby boomers downsizing from McMansions to smaller, more manageable houses, and a growing number of people opting to rent rather than buy, many families are looking for …

Top trends to make your windows look hot this summer

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Windows do a lot more than just let the light in and keep the weather out. They're both key elements in your home's overall design and in the unique look of each individual room. If you're redecorating for warm weather, updating your window treatments is …

What lies beneath your dream home?

A sewer line inspection is not included in the standard home inspection and is regularly waived in the purchasing process. Additionally, many buyers do not know that responsibility for the condition of the lateral sewer line leading from the street to the home lies with the homeowner, not a municipality. Buyers should reconsider including this important step before they sign a deal.

PHOTO GALLERY: Low-maintenance at Lake Chapin Shores fits boomer lifestyles

Second-home owners are typically baby boomers, nearly half of whom were seeking a waterfront alternative to their primary residences in the suburbs, according to the National Association of Realtors. Couples in their 50’s and 60’s say they have two considerations at the top of their …

Black is back for up-to-date interiors

Love the way you feel after slipping into your little black dress, or donning a well-tailored black suit? Black is not only a great shade on you - it's also a great shade for your home. The stylish finish is especially perfect in the kitchen …

Need to know: Facts about pool, spa and hot tub installation

Does your dream backyard include a lush lawn, lovely landscaping and - at the heart of the action - a pool, spa or hot tub? If so, you're not alone, and this might be your year to turn that dream into reality.   A recent survey …

Home insulation 101

Insulation improves indoor air quality, protects from ice dams in the winter and saves money. It is important to consider a number of factors when installing insulation. Read on to find the right type of insulation for your home.

VIDEO: New product banishes tile grout, makes tiles look like new

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Tile grout can be one of the most frustrating things to clean. A new tile grout product makes this spring cleaning essential easier.

What every homeowner should know about ceiling fans

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Ceiling fans are the jacks-of-many-trades, useful in nearly every home space and in virtually every decor. They are also a necessary element for homeowners looking to cut utility bills. If you need a new ceiling fan, it's easy to get lost in the many available …

Real estate: Tips on buying and financing your first home

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For many younger Americans, the dream of owning their first home is alive and well. But for others, it's still an elusive dream.   Only five years ago, it was relatively easy to finance a home, but the Great Recession and the mortgage market's meltdown have …

Spring into home improvement with weekend projects

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Sprucing up your home for spring doesn't have to mean spending huge amounts of time and money. In fact, there are many projects that you can complete in a weekend that will improve the look and feel of your home. With a little guidance and …

Spring cleaning: 8 tips for a healthier home

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Allergens lurk inside and outside your home, causing more than 40 million Americans with allergies to cough, sneeze and have itchy eyes all year long, especially in springtime. And, for 25 million Americans with asthma it can be even more problematic. You'd assume cleaning your …

Clearing the deck for a new one

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There are many people injured, some fatally, every year from deck collapses. Make sure your deck meets or exceeds all local and state code requirements.