Decorating with Mirrors

John Mark 9801 Eagle Rock132

You almost certainly have a mirror in your bathroom, and perhaps one above a dresser in your bedroom, but mirrors can make an appearance in nearly every room in your home. The five tips listed below demonstrate how the strategic use of mirrors can make a room look larger, more elegant, or just more practical.

"Hanging a group of vintage mirrors together as a group is another way to give your house an elegant designer look."

Propped against a Wall

Propping a tall mirror against the wall makes your room seem bigger, with the illusion of higher ceilings. As a bonus, a full-length mirror located in your bedroom can come in handy for that last-minute check of your outfit before you leave the house.

John Mark Custom Home Decorating with mirrors

On Kitchen Cabinets

Cut mirrors to fit the cabinet doors in a small kitchen, and suddenly the room seems bigger and brighter. This unusual look also lends a designer atmosphere to your kitchen, giving it an upscale look without breaking the bank.

On a Closet or Wardrobe Door

In small homes or apartments, space can be at a premium. Yet having a full-length mirror is a must for catching wardrobe malfunctions before you leave the house. Hanging a mirror on your closet or wardrobe door provides you with a much-needed full-length reflection without sacrificing even an inch of precious floor space.

Hung in a Group

Hanging a group of vintage mirrors together as a group is another way to give your house an elegant designer look. The mirrors need not be the same size or same shape. In fact, the grouping is more interesting if several different sizes and shapes are included.

John Mark Custom Home Decorating With mirrors Cluster

As Faux Windows

Every room should be blessed with an abundance of windows. For rooms that lack sufficient windows (or don’t have any windows at all), grouping four or six rectangular mirrors in a grid can give the appearance of a window where there is none. As a bonus, the mirrors will also reflect whatever light the room does receive, making the room seem brighter.

Overall, decorating with mirrors can really improve the space you have. At John Mark Custom Homes, we’d love to show you how we can help. Call us today.

Why Automate Your Home

shutterstock_315991190

In making the decision to purchase home security, you’ll hear the term "home automation" a lot. This designation refers to a home that lets you control everything going on inside it with the touch of a button. Things like regulating your home temperature, turning lights on or off, locking doors, and even controlling your security system become easy checkboxes. An automated home is one that thinks for you, one that leverages new technology and more readily available devices that are smart enough to save you time, effort, and money when it comes to protecting your home, your business, and your assets in general. In short, automating your home can be the ticket to peace of mind.

"With the touch of a button on your smartphone or device, you can keep an eye on your home or business."

The benefits to home automation technology include:

It’s safer. You can control lighting, meaning the lights come on when you get home, or when motion is detected. You can lock the doors, even when you’re already halfway to your destination. You also have the option to set up alerts for when visitors arrive.

It’s energy efficient. With a smart home, you can save energy and money by regulating your thermostat and setting lights to timers, so that they shut off when not in use.

It saves you money. Obviously, when your home operates more efficiently, you’ll save money in utilities, but you’ll also save on return trips home when you can’t remember if you locked the front door, or if you forgot to leave the lights on or off.

It’s convenient. With the touch of a button on your smartphone or device, you can keep an eye on your home or business. You won’t have to wonder about your assets while you’re away, and you don’t have to depend on neighbors to watch over it for you. Instead, everything you need to know is right at your fingertips.

It’s comfortable. Smart home technology learns to manage outdoor temperature spikes so that the inside of your house is always feeling just right.

shutterstock_701872057

Overall, you’re gaining peace of mind with home automation technology. At John Mark Custom Homes, we’d love to show you how we can help you make your home smarter, and help you live better. Call us today.

Create a Meaningful Home

shutterstock_795098068

Your home is more than four walls, a roof, and a floor - it is a reflection of you. Making your home a meaningful living space does not need to cost a fortune. Utilizing the three strategies listed below can help you create a home that truly represents your true nature.

"There is no law that prevents you from converting a formal dining space into a comfortable den."

Furnish to Fit Your Needs

It’s fine to take cues from professional decorators or home décor websites, but at the end of the day, it’s your home. You and your family are the ones who live there. Keep that fact in mind as you furnish your home. If you never have formal dinners but you have a large family that loves watching sports together, there is no law that prevents you from converting a formal dining space into a comfortable den or family room.

Choose Art from the Heart

Beautiful artwork is an enhancement to any home. But if you lack the budget (or the sensibilities) of a serious collector, that doesn’t mean settling for a house or apartment with no artwork on the walls. Photographs of places you’ve visited, or would like to see, along with drawings from your little ones, or portraits of family members and friends bring warmth and their own brand of beauty to your home.

Purge What Isn’t Essential

A lived-in look can make your home feel cozy and inviting. On the other hand, a house overrun with clutter is anything but comfortable. At the extreme, excess clutter presents a genuine hazard to your family’s health and well being. Take the time to periodically purge items that no longer fit with your lifestyle and your family’s needs. If you donate the items to charity, you’ll gain the extra bonus of knowing your unwanted items are available to another family or individual who may need or want them.

shutterstock_670592287

Your home may not be a castle, but it is certainly a reflection of you. Taking the time and effort to make your home reflect your values can ensure that your home is a place you want to be, as well as a place you’ll be proud to welcome friends and family.

How a Smart Home Will Increase Your Home Value

smart-home

Even if you aren’t in the market to sell your home now, there’s no harm in employing measures to increase its value. Installing smart home and home automation equipment can perform double duty – enhancing your quality of life now while increasing the value of your home if you decide or need to sell at a later date. How much? According to Consumer Reports, installing smart home technology can increase your home’s resale value as much as 5 percent. On a $300,000 home, a 5 percent increase translates to $15,000.  That’s huge. Here are just a few key ways that smart home technology can provide value.

Enhanced Security

Lighting systems with motion sensitive features and smart locks protect your family from burglary and home invasion. Carbon monoxide detectors minimize the risk of injury or death from smoke inhalation or faulty circulation.

lighting-home-control

Insurance companies recognize the value of home security systems; many providers offer significant discounts for homeowners who install home automation and smart home technology. Home-buyers also recognize the benefit of home security systems, often including smart home technology as a must-have.

Increased Energy Efficiency

energy-efficiency-layout

Three words: lower utility bills. Smart home technology allows you to take advantage of off peak rates offered by utilities for operating power-hungry appliances during periods of lower demand. Likewise, smart home technology allows you to detect sources of waste and correct them, which translates into even bigger utility savings.

More home buyers are seeking homes that offer energy efficiency. Having smart home technology built into your appliances and utilities is a definite selling point.

Greater Accessibility

Smart home technology was not originally designed to enhance accessibility. But with more seniors and disabled individuals striving to retain their independence, greater accessibility is a definite home selling point.  Smart home technology makes it easier for disabled people and seniors to remain in their own homes. Many smart home features can be operated remotely through a Smartphone by someone who has mobility issues. Likewise, pressing an app icon is less challenging for someone who has limited manual dexterity than turning a key to lock a door or twisting a knob to turn an appliance on and off.

seniors-opening-front-door

For more information on how smart home technology can increase the potential sale value of your home, give us a call today.

Ready to Renovate? Things to Consider

Renovating a home is not a simple process. It’s taking a small idea and nurturing it to life. No two home renovations are alike, and the challenge of crafting a unique and innovative renovation is a process. There is a lot to consider when starting a home re-design. Here are some things it is important to keep in mind:

It’s important to be open to discussing new ideas and solutions with your designer

Have an open mind

Home renovation is not a black and white practice. There are no boiler plates, and home re-design is a collaborative process. It’s important to be open to discussing new ideas and solutions with your designer so that you can have the best possible experience.

Future living

Before you commit to a home re-design, think about how you’re going to be living and existing in your house on a daily basis. What are the necessary and functional features you and your family require in order to be happy in your home? Make a list of your design priorities, and work with your designer to help figure out how to make those goals a reality.

Aesthetics

Beyond functionality, the color pallet and themes of your house are integral to your design. A good designer will be able to blend different themes together to help design an aesthetic that speaks to their client’s design aesthetic. They experiment with different elements and styles to figure out the one that best complements your home, and never push for the styles just because they are in vogue. The mission of a good designer is to find the style that fits your lifestyle.

Communication

Just as everyone has their own unique style and dream for their home, we all have different communication styles and ways of interpreting our needs. Before a designer starts drawing up the re-design, they should work with you to generate concepts and plans for how you want your space to look & function. A good designer will make communication and staying on the same page as their clients a priority.

Strategy

Design isn’t just putting pen to paper. It’s a practice that requires physical interaction with your space. Your designer should walk through the house, and discuss how you want elements like sunlight, views, and neighboring homes to come into play with your home re-design. They will contemplate the different angles in your home, and how to best maximize their use.

Renovating your home can make it into the space you always wanted. Considering these elements during the design phase can help make the process quick and easy.