Saturday, April 23, 2011


If you're like me, you don't like the sound of the word mold and certainly don't like to see it in a home.  However, there are things that can be done to prevent it from starting in the first place, things you can do to get rid of  it when it does show it's ugly face, and professionals who can step in when it gets out of control.

Here are three of the most common questions asked about mold and the answers from professionals to those questions.

1. Is It Dangerous?Although it doesn't hurt most people immediately, the truth of the matter is that mold can cause long-term health problems. Respiratory problems could very well develop if the mold is not removed.

2. Will It Go Away?Not on it's own. The truth of the matter is that if you do not takes steps to get rid of it, mold will spread. Mold needs to be eliminated as soon as it is detected or what starts out as a small problem, becomes a serious issue.

3. When Should I Get Professional Help?You first need to determine how much of a mold problem you have.  If you notice only a small surface area, there is a good chance you can correct the problem yourself. However, if you suspect mold is on the insde of walls or areas you cannot reach, you should consult with a professional.

Best Prevention Tips

Be clean.  Housekeeping is a must in the prevention of mold.  Dirt and grime can aid in the growth of mold which is often the case around bathtubs and showers.  Regular cleaning can stop mold from getting out of hand. This is critial in the bathroom, laundry and basement areas where moisture is present.

Be dry.  Mold loves moisture.  If possible use an air conditioner or a dehumidifier to reduce the humidity level in damp areas of your home. Other things to help in reducing humidity levels include exhaust fans, good ventilation in crawl spaces and basements and ensure dryer vents move the moist air outdoors. 

Be uncluttered. Avoid storing boxes up against concrete walls or in direct contact with concrete floors. The moisture in a basement or any moist area will be attracted to enclosed boxes.  In the same way your attic needs air movement, your basement, laundry room or any area of the home and everything in it needs to have air circualation around it.

Be proactive.  If there is a moisture problem, you need to deal with it.

Do It Yourself Ideas

For small mould issues there are products on the market to help in a clean-up or here are two household products that work well.

VinegarVinegar is the safest and one of the most effective ways to clear mold on just about any surface and with no fumes it's a safe choice for your health.  It is recommended that for bathroom moulds to mix 3 parts of white vinegar with 3 parts water. Use a sponge to soak the moldy area and let it set for a few minutes. Wipe down the area with a dry cloth after.

Chlorine BleachThis works best for nonporous surfaces like counter tops and tiles. Check manufactures recommendations for recommended mixures and ensure you have good ventilation before using the mixture.  Place the solution inside a spray bottle and spray on mouldy surfaces. Let it soak for a few minutes and then wipe off until mold in completely gone. Although bleach is a good mould cleanup solution, it can be very dangerous when
inhaled and because of the strength of the liquid you should first test a small, inconspicuous area to see how the surface reacts to the bleach.

 Check for more information on mold and how how to deal with it.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Best Colours To Paint A Home For Resale

According to one professional home stager, this is it!

It amazes me how many home buyers do not look past the colour of a room to see the potential of a home.  However, the more I think about this situation it's not about the colour as much as the feeling the home gives a potential buyer and colour projects a powerful feeling.

That being said, to take the time to repaint before you put your home on the market can be a good investment, especially if your home has been decorated to a personal taste that doesn't necessarily match the majority of home buyers.

Have you ever wondered what a home decorator or home stager would suggest for colours to make your home more appealing when it comes time to sell?  I came across the following information that I found very helpful.  The article is from a professional home stager and provides great colours to use.  The key thing to remember is you are not repainting your home to your liking, but to ensure your home provides the right feeling for the majority of potential home buyers.   

Barely beige CC-140  (see It here ) is one colour that Professioinal Home Stager Dana J. Smithers has found to be the best to sell a home.

The information below provides you with other suggested colours.  I hope this helps you with the sale of your home and if I can be of any assistance please contact me. 



Best Colours To Paint A Home For Resale

In the past 5 years the Exterior and Interior colour trends have not changed much. Look around at any of the new developments or house improvements in your area and you will start to get an idea of what the trend is.

If you are in the market now or the next few years the colour trend will stay the same.

By trend I don't mean trendy as 'heretoday, gone tomorrow' I mean trendy in the sense of being 'most popular' at this time period. This too will change but not for a few years yet.

Exterior and Interior Resale Paint Colour Trend

Neutrals - Grey Tones - Mat Finish (semi-gloss fordoors and trim)

I highly recommend that you check out these websites and take a look at some great choices on the web:

They have some very fun and interactive choices for you to see what their colours will look like on the exterior or interior of your house.

NB These colours will not be exact but will give you a very good idea of what your home could look like in neutral, softer, less stressful colours.Remember though since 'your home is for living in and your house for selling' do not get too attached to the colours. Keeping them neutral will appeal to more buyers and you can add colour by useful tasetful and colourful accessories such as art, cushions, area rugs, pottery, throws, etc.

My favourite store to work with is Benjamin Moore because as an Interior Decorator/Redesign Stager they provide me with a very professional 'architectural kit' which has large colour samples to work with. However, you can buy or they will lend you their Designer Classics Collection and this is primarily what I use for choosing redesign staging paint colours. As mentioned in a previous newsletter I alwayscoordinatewith the flooring as that is what is staying. You can add colour with your accessories.

My standard selection from the Designer Classics Collection is:

BEIGE -Yellow Undertones(toned which means they all have grey added to them)
•Brandy Cream CC 60  
•Natural Linen CC 90
•Muslin CC110
•Barely Beige CC 140
•Stone House CC 120
•Sandy Brown CC 150
•Honey Harbour CC170
•Summer Harvest CC 190
•Delaware Putty CC 230
•French Vanilla CC 248

BEIGE - Pink Undertones
•Dusty Road CC 310
•Sandpiper Beige CC 368
•Stone Castle CC 396
•Old Montreal CC398
•Old Stone CC424
•Bone China CC 426
•Smoky Taup CC 490
•Rocky Road CC 470

•Maid of the Mist CC 728
•Killarney CC 698
•Tea Light CC 610
•October Mist CC 550

•Cloud White CC 40 (this is the only one I use!)

TIP You can buy testers and do your own colour boards. Many of the Benjamin Moore stores now carry pre-made Designer Classic colour boards 18 x 18" which are the perfect size to see what the colour looks like. Always check the colour morning, noon and night time to get the whole colour picture as colour is most affected by lighting.

I have many clients who in the beginning do not like the neutral colours that I have chosen (Barely Beige CC 140).  However there is no denying that the end result is what helped sell the house!

Dana J. Smithers is an expert in the fields of Home Staging and Home Redesign. Dana has taught 1000s of people her 'Secret Success Home Makeover Formula' for living and selling. She teaches a 5 Day PRES® (Professional Real Estate Stagers) Home Staging & Redesign course in Western Canada. She is the Founder & Creative Director of both Sun On My Back Redesigns and PRES Staging Resource Centre. Look for her book Home Staging Made Easy: Getting Ready for an Open House in 10 Easy Steps!