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Thursday, August 30 2018
7 Super Easy Cleaning Recipes for the Most Awesome Smelling Home

7 Super-Easy Cleaning Recipes for the Most Awesome-Smelling Home

Essential oils are the key to these sweet-smelling (and highly effective!) homemade cleaners

“What’s that smell?” That question could go either way when potential buyers enter a home for a home tour. If you’re trying to sell your home, you most definitely don’t want a foul odor to turn away a buyer. Take a look at some of these great all natural ways to clean your home and fill it with soothing smells rather than harsh chemical smells as you clean for your next showing or open house!

If you get light-headed just reading the ingredients on your cleaning products, take heart: There’s another way.

These make-in-minutes, super-cheap recipes create potions that use sweet-smelling essential oils that won’t fumigate your home, while having superpowers to fight grime and bacteria.

And much like a food recipe you may try, you can modify the oils to suit your own olfactory senses.

Citrusy All-Purpose Cleaner

tray of orange fruits

  • 15 drops of essential oil of lemon
  • 5 drops essential oil of sweet orange
  • 5 drops essential oil of rosemary
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar
  • 1-1/2 cups filtered water

Funnel all these ingredients into a spray bottle, seal, and gently shake. There’ll be a battle of odors here, with the acidic vinegar likely winning out against the sweet-smelling oils, but don’t let this deter you.

The vinegar scent disappears quickly, but that citrusy, herby zing lingers on. And these oils aren’t just there for their scent alone. Lemon oil is a natural disinfectant, orange oil busts grease, and rosemary oil has some antibacterial and antiseptic qualities.

Lemon-Scented Window Cleaner

  • 2 tablespoons distilled white vinegar
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 10 drops essential oil of lemon

Mix all these ingredients in dark glass spray bottle (it’ll protect the oils from breaking down).

Spray on any glass surface and polish in with a microfiber cloth. You’ll have sparkling panes and mirrors in no time, and that wondrous essential oil of lemon will kill off the bacteria left behind by mucky fingerprints.

Eucalyptus Toilet Bowl Cleaner

person wearing pair of yellow rubber gloves

  • 25 drops essential oil of eucalyptus
  • 1/3 cup Castile soap
  • 2 cups filtered water
  • 1-1/3 cups baking soda

Fill a squeeze bottle with the water, baking soda, and eucalyptus oil.

Seal the bottle and shake. Next, add the Castile soap. Shake again. Squeeze around the bowl. Leave for 15 minutes, then scrub with a toilet brush, flush, and you’re done.

Aside from having a deliciously fresh aroma, eucalyptus is a natural germicide.

Lavender-Thyme Dish Cleaner

  • 20 drops essential oil of lavender
  • 10 drops essential oil of thyme
  • 5 drops of essential oil of tea tree
  • 1 cup filtered water
  • 1 cup liquid Castile soap
  • 2 tablespoons baking soda

This one does require some stovetop time: Bring the water to a boil, then mix in the oils. (Thyme and tea tree goes to war on salmonella while emitting a pleasant aroma along with lavender.) Add the rest of the ingredients slowly. After that, remove from heat and allow to cool.

Once cooled, pour into a squeeze bottle. Shake gently before using.

Peppermint-Lavender Floor Cleaner

tray on coffee table

  • 5 drops essential oil of peppermint
  • 5 drops essential oil of lavender
  • 5 drops of essential oil of tea tree
  • 1/4 cup distilled white vinegar

Pour the vinegar into a bucket, fill that bucket up with hot water and add the oils.

Works on stone, tile, and wooden floors. Not only is peppermint oil anti-bacterial, many believe it can deter mice and other pests.

Tea tree oil is antibacterial, antiseptic, and antifungal. Not only is lavender oil antibacterial, too, but its aroma also has soothing properties that can calm your whole household.

Lavender Linen Spray

white textile

  • 6 drops of essential oil of lavender
  • 2 tablespoons witch hazel
  • Filtered water

Fill a spray bottle with the witch hazel and lavender. Shake, top off with water, shake again, and then spray away.

Cinnamon and Sandalwood Air Freshener

  • 10 drops essential oil of cinnamon
  • 10 drops oil of sandalwood
  • 1 cup filtered water

A spritz of this subtle-but-effective scent erases stinks in seconds. Fill a spray bottle with the water and the oils. Cinnamon scent boosts brain power and sandalwood is calming — perfect for a hardworking, stressed out home!

Essential oils do mix, so if any of the scents in these recipes don’t appeal, play around with other oils. Just keep the quantities the same. For example, if you switched sandalwood for orange oil in this air freshener, stick to the 10 drops specified in the recipe.

Article adapted from HouseLogic-Anna Tobin


Greenbrier Valley Upcoming Events

September 8, 2018 10a.m. – 4 p.m. White Sulphur Springs own Freshwater Folk Festival
The Freshwater Folk Festival is a celebration of our nation’s fish, wildlife, and natural resources. The 2018 festival will feature great music, food, dance, crafts, fun and educational activities.


Contact us for any real estate needs in Lewisburg, WV and ALL surrounding areas!
304.645.2255

Posted by: J Allman AT 07:02 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, August 25 2018
Accent Wall Ideas that WOW

Transform any wall in your home from boring to BOLD in a short amount of time.

What a great DIY project to add some flair and interest to a room. A quick and easy update to any room is to add an accent wall.

An accent wall can totally transform a room, taking it from boring and drab to bold and exciting. Accent walls create a new focal point for your space, add liveliness and contrast, and are typically a very inexpensive DIY project.

The starter accent wall

You can easily add an accent wall to your room in one afternoon by applying a new paint color. Deep blues and bright oranges are common choices for accent walls, but choose a color that will complement your existing decor and overall design aesthetic.

Image result for painted accent walls

Interesting textures

Bright, contrasting paint is a good starting point, but there are other options for accent walls that are even more eye-catching and distinct. Floor-to-ceiling wood planks can make your home seem both rustic and modern all at once and provide a natural, outdoors-inspired feel. It’s more work than simply painting a wall, but it’s still relatively inexpensive. You can source the wood from pallets and stain it yourself before attaching it to your wall. It takes a little extra elbow grease, but it’s worth the effort.

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Patterns, murals, and more

Paint and wood are bold enough on their own to transform a room, but they’re still pretty subtle compared to other accent wall options. A chalk paint accent wall is a creative idea for any room and makes for some fun moments when you’re entertaining. There are also endless options for wallpaper and stenciling if you want some patterns or you can get really bold with a mural or oversized art print.

Image result for wallpaper accent wall


Other fun accent wall ideas

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Image result for MURAL accent wall

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Contact us for any real estate needs in and around Lewisburg, WV. We proudly serve the Greenbrier Valley and surrounding areas with our experienced and dedicated team of REALTORS. 304.645.2255

Gregory Allman, Broker

Posted by: J Allman AT 10:31 am   |  Permalink   |  Email
Wednesday, August 22 2018
The 5 Best Things to Do When You Move into Your New Home

The 5 Best Things to Do When You Move into Your New Home

Moving into your dream home can be a daunting task. Between unpacking, cleaning, and trying to find that stray roll of toilet paper, it may feel like you’ve lost your mind in a sea of Bubble Wrap.

That’s why we wanted to share with you five simple things that you should do during the first month in your new home. These may feel like back-burner tasks, but really, they’ll help you sleep better at night and make your new place feel less like a house and more like your home.

#1 Lock It Up

Security is the No. 1 concern for most people in a new environment. You can easily switch out your locks and deadbolts to your new home to protect your valuables and your family.

building metal house architecture
Photo by PhotoMIX Ltd. on Pexels.com

Now’s the time to consider the lockset finish, and the options are endless. When it comes to exterior locks, make sure you choose something that looks timeless and can be cleaned easily.

A new security system is also a good idea. The options for this are endless as well. Systems with online monitoring, smartphone compatibility, thermostat control, and even video monitors for the interior including the baby nursery are super helpful. Even if that room is empty now, it might not be in the future – so go ahead and secure it!

#2 Remove Toilet Seats

Some folks may think it’s unnecessary to replace toilet seats, but my point here is to simply remove them. By removing your toilet seats, you can really deep clean under the bolts and hinges where the “yucks” like to hide. 

You can reinstall your existing seat or opt to shop for a new one. New versions with night-lights, padding, or even child-sized attachments are available. Either way, you’ll know your favorite seat in the house is ready for your entire family.

#3 Improve Your Home’s Air

Changing an air filter is a three-minute task, and it should be done right after moving into a new home – even if the previous owners swear the chore was just done. Changing out a filter can help improve the performance of your air conditioning and furnace and help with any allergens in the home.

Image result for change air filter

This inexpensive fix can also save you money! The U.S. Department of Energy says that replacing your dirty air filter with a new one can lower your A/C’s energy consumption by 5 percent to 10 percent.

It’s a good idea to write the replacement date directly on the filter when you put it in so you can be sure you know how long it’s been since the last change.

Also, take the time to test and change out batteries in all your smoke alarms and carbon monoxide detectors. These are often tested during inspections, but the batteries can die and tampered-with units aren’t uncommon, especially if a house was left vacant.

#4  Paint Your Front Door

Painting your front door (or freshening it up with a coat of oil if it’s wood) can show your new neighbors that you’ve arrived on the block and are investing in your home. This simple task is so easy!

Related image

After you do proper prep work, which includes sanding the surface, make sure you pick an exterior-grade paint and use a high-quality bristle brush to give it multiple thin coats for the best coverage. It’s a great time to show off your personal style, and these days any color goes!

Every day you walk in through your newly made-over door, you’ll feel welcomed into your new home and inspired to keep creating a space you love.

#5 Choose Your Signature Scent

Every house has a smell. You know what I’m talking about. It’s that “other people smell” that’s definitely not your own particular brand of aroma. Even if the smell isn’t bad, it just isn’t yours, and that makes you feel like an intruder in someone else’s space. Make your dream home even more dreamy by filling it with your signature scent.

Don’t have a signature scent? Check out a candle store or the air-freshener aisle to peruse the options, and then regularly use your favorite in your new home. My favorite is a lemon-vanilla-rosemary mix that I let simmer all day on the stove; it fills every room of the house.

In homes that have particularly distressing “stanks,” try getting the carpets cleaned before moving in the furniture. It can eliminate the smell as well as remove allergens, dirt, and stains.

This article was adapted from Katie and Jeremy Bower/House Logic


Thinking of moving to our area? We would love to help you find your new home?

Contact us! 304.645.2255
Gregory Allman, Broker

Posted by: J Allman AT 07:36 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Saturday, August 18 2018
To - Dos Your August Home Checklist

To-Dos: Your August Home Checklist

With the transition from summer travels to school beginning in just 10 days in Greenbrier County, August can feel like a sudden downshift from the fun of vacation. Stretch out these last days of summer by squeezing in a few more home projects, savoring simple pleasures and, when the time comes, cleaning up the beach toys and preparing the house for a busy fall. Pick from these 13 to-dos to create your perfect August plan.

1. Clean and store summer gear. Once the last beach day is behind you, take the time to clean out the buckets, shovels and boogie boards so they’re fresh and clean for next year. Toss out cracked or broken toys, and shop end-of-season sales to replace items if needed.

person pinpointing pen on calendar
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

2. Set up a shared family calendar. Whether you choose a big paper wall calendar or a digital version, having one calendar to rule them all will be a big help come fall, when schedules get busier. Set up your preferred method now, and record important back-to-school dates and recurring events.

3. Clear the way for easy weeknight dinners. A too-packed kitchen (and fridge and pantry) can make meal prep harder than it needs to be. Clear away clutter to create a clean work space on the counter and remove expired, stale and unwanted food from the pantry, fridge and freezer. Donate unwanted and unexpired foods in their original packaging to a local food pantry.

4. Share your backyard harvest. Have a glut of tomatoes, squash or other summer produce? Pack up a basket to share with your neighbors, or check out Greenbrier County’s own Waste Not Want Not Project they host a Produce Market every Sunday in Fairlea, WV at Swift Level Fine Meats. A great project that benefits our area farmers as well as low income families and seniors in our area!

food salad healthy summer
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Tackle These Tasks Over a Weekend

5. Organize family photos. Have a bunch of new photos from your summer adventures? Take this opportunity to sort and organize them — back up digital photos with cloud-based storage, and make an album or a book of recent photos.

6. Clean carpets and floors. Sand and garden dirt tracked in over the summer can really take a toll on floors. Vacuum and mop floors, and have area rugs and carpeting professionally cleaned if needed.

person using mop on floor
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

7. Get organized for back to school (and work). Consider what would make this fall run more smoothly for your family: a few extra hooks in the entryway to handle coats and bags, perhaps? Or if papers are a constant problem, take the time now to set up a simple filing system and an inbox for each family member.

8. Check emergency kits.Emergency supplies don’t last forever. Open up your kit and check expiration dates on food and any medications; replace as needed. Don’t have an emergency kit yet? Make this the month you create one.

first aid case on wall
Photo by rawpixel.com on Pexels.com

9. Organize closets before fall shopping. Before making any new purchases, spend some time assessing what you already have in the closet: Try on clothing, fold and hang up any clothes on the floor, get rid of items you don’t wear and make a list of what you need. Doing this before shopping can help save money and prevent cluttering up your closet.

10. Schedule some do-nothing time. It can be surprisingly hard to relax and simply do nothing, even when you do have a pocket of free time. I find that the key is not calling it “free time” at all: By planning to do nothing, you are actually giving yourself permission to fully relax.

11. Clean and organize the garage. If you haven’t cleaned out your garage in a while, it’s likely this project will take an entire weekend (or more), so plan accordingly. It helps to think ahead and find out where you can take items (donations, hazardous waste, things to sell) before starting, and get a dumpster if you think you will need it. Wait until you’ve cleared away the clutter before purchasing new shelving or wall-mounted organizers. You’ll have a better idea of what you need once the decluttering is complete.

12. Finish up outdoor projects. Make use of the long August days to finish up any outdoor projects you started (or intended to start) over the summer.

13. Check your home for signs of pests. It’s not a pleasant subject, but being proactive when it comes to pests in and around your home is much better than trying to solve a pest problem that has gotten out of hand.  If you do need to use pesticides, choose the lowest-risk product first, and use according to the directions. If you hire a pest control pro, ask him or her to use bait, and crack and crevice control when possible; fogging should be a last resort.

What’s on your TO-DO List for the end of summer? Soak it up, get things done, and get ready for fall in the Greenbrier Valley!

Article adapted from Houzz.com-Laura Gaskill


Thinking of  moving to our beautiful “neck of the woods” Contact us! We’ll help you find your home sweet home!

Greenbrier Real Estate Service
1047 Washington St. E.
Lewisburg, WV 24957
304.645.2255

Posted by: J Allman AT 04:52 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
Sunday, August 12 2018
5 Myths and 5 Truths About Selling Your Home

5 Myths and 5 Truths About Selling Your Home

Breaking down myths and truths when it comes to selling your home!

Everyone has advice about the real estate market, but not all of that unsolicited information is true. So when it comes time to list your home, you’ll need to separate fact from fiction.

Below we’ve identified the top five real estate myths — and debunked them so you can hop on the fast track to selling your property.

Myth #1: I need to redo my kitchen and bathroom before selling

Truth: While kitchens and bathrooms can increase the value of a home, you won’t get a large return on investment if you do a major renovation just before selling.

rectangular white wooden kitchen table
Photo by Sarah Jane on Pexels.com

Minor renovations, on the other hand, may help you sell your home for a higher price. New countertops or new appliances may be just the kind of bait you need to reel in a buyer. Check out comparable listings in your neighborhood, and see what work you need to do to compete in the market.

Myth #2: My home’s exterior isn’t as important as the interior

Truth: Home buyers often make snap judgments based simply on a home’s exterior. Therefore, curb appeal is very important.

CROWFIELD.jpg
Great curb appeal! 409 Crowfield Circle home. MLS# 18-1019

A lot of buyers search online or drive by properties before they even enlist my services. If the yard is cluttered or the driveway is all broken up, there’s a chance they won’t ever enter the house — they’ll just keep driving.

The good news is that it doesn’t cost a bundle to improve your home’s exterior. Start by cutting the grass, trimming the hedges and clearing away any clutter. Then, for less than $50, you could put up new house numbers, paint the front door, plant some flowers or install a new, more stylish porch light.

Myth #3: If my house is clean, I don’t need to stage it

Truth: Clean and tidy is a good first step, but professional home stagers have raised the bar. Tossing dirty laundry in the closet and sweeping the front steps just aren’t enough anymore.

Stagers make homes appeal to a broad range of tastes. They can skillfully identify ways to highlight your home’s best features and compensate for its shortcomings. They might, for example, recommend removing blinds from a window with a great view or replacing a double bed with a twin to make a bedroom look bigger.

529court6
Beautifully staged 529 Court St. in Lewisburg, WV

Of course, you don’t have to hire a professional stager. But if you don’t, be ready to some of these tips to get your home ready for sale — especially if staging is a trend where you live. An unstaged house will pale when compared to others on the market.

Myth #4: Granite and stainless steel appliances are old news

Truth: The majority of home shoppers still want granite counters and stainless steel appliances. Quartz, marble and concrete counters also have wide appeal.

Most shoppers just want to steer away from anything that looks dated. When you a design a space, you need to decide if you’re doing it for yourself or for resale potential.

She suggests that if you’re not planning to move anytime soon, decorate any way you like. But if you’re planning to put your home on the market within the next couple of years, stick to elements that have mass appeal.

Myth #5: Home shoppers can ignore paint colors they don’t like

Truth: Moving is a lot of work, and while many home buyers realize they could take on the task of painting walls, they simply don’t want to.

That’s why one of the most important things you can do to update your home is apply a fresh coat of neutral paint. Neutral colors also help a property stand out in online photographs, which is where most potential buyers will get their first impression of your property.

Hiring a professional to paint the interior of a 2,000-square-foot house could vary in costs depending on your area. You could buy the paint and do the job yourself for $300 to $500. Either way, if a fresh coat of paint helps your home stand out in a crowded market, it’s probably a worthwhile investment.

Article credit to Mary Boone at Zillow Porchlight


Feel free to contact us for any real estate needs! 304.645.2255

Greenbrier Real Estate Service
1047 Washington St. E.
Lewisburg, WV 24957

Gregory Allman, Broker

Posted by: J Allman AT 07:48 pm   |  Permalink   |  Email
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    Greg E. Allman
    Greg Allman Group
    Greenbrier Real Estate Service
    1047 Washington St. East
    Lewisburg, West Virginia 24901
    Office: (304) 645-2255
    Direct Dial: (304) 646-1500

    Email:
    Greg@GregAllman.net

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