3 Must-Have Home Amenities


modern kitchen

 

Some amenities that homebuyers once considered “nice-to-have” are moving into the “must-have” category. Below are three that experts say have grown in demand among home shoppers:

 

Smart Homes

More and more homes can be controlled via smart phone or tablet. Appliances and home systems can be turned on, off, or programmed via mobile devices. Some smart refrigerators have built-in apps that can create grocery shopping lists and smart ovens can be remotely controlled to start dinner or check on the status of what’s cooking.

 

Stainless-Steel Alternatives

Stainless-steel appliances have long dominated but some homebuyers are seeking alternatives. White ice and slate are increasingly growing as options to stainless-steel. Slate is being touted as an easy choice to blend in with other black, white or stainless-steel finishes. It can resist fingerprints and washes easily, too.

 

Energy Efficiency

Many homebuyers place a premium on finding a home with energy-efficient, cost-effective appliances. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10 to 50 percent less energy than their older counterparts. Also gaining popularity are smarter appliances, including dishwashers with sensors that can determine the appropriate cycle length and water temperature and washers that can extract more water from laundry during the spin cycle so the dryer has less drying to do.

Spring Into Energy Savings


Spring Into Energy Savings

 

Improving the energy efficiency of your home is not only great for the environment, it can also contribute to substantial savings in the long run. Below are some small changes you can make throughout your home to help lower your energy bills:

 

Turn off the thermostat – When away from home, avoid keeping your thermostat on. When home, adjust it in small increments to reach your desired temperature. Even better, open windows and use ceiling fans or space heaters to cool or warm your home.

 

Switch your light bulbs – Switch the light bulbs in your home to more energy efficient ones (think CFL and LED bulbs). Not sure which ones to choose? Check out our helpful light bulb guide here.

 
Clean and replace filters once a month – Clean filters allow systems to run more efficiently and for shorter periods of time.

 
Keep a full refrigerator and freezer – A full refrigerator unit will operate the most efficiently. On the other hand, be sure not to overcrowd it.

 
Keep your oven and stovetop clean – Regularly cleaning your oven and stovetop will enable them to run more efficiently.
 
Run your dishwasher when it’s full – Running your dishwasher with a full load every time is the most efficient use of the appliance. In addition, use the lowest temperature dry cycle if you prefer not to air-dry your dishes. Heated drying is not always needed and can even damage plasticware.

 

Use power strips/surge protectors – Cords that remain plugged in while not in use still expend energy in standby mode. Feeding them all into a power strip makes it easier to switch them all off at once instead of keeping them on standby. In addition, it also protects your electronic devices from unsafe voltage spikes.

 

Turn off lights – When leaving your home, turn off all lights. When at home, turn off lights in any room not being used.

 

Mind the gaps – Check windows and doors for cracks, gaps, and openings. Replace broken glass, framing and caulk where necessary.

 

Purchase wisely – When purchasing appliances such as computers and dishwashers, be on the lookout for the “Energy Star” logo denoting high-efficiency. Many newer appliances are required by the U.S. Department of Energy to be more efficient than older ones.

Fresh Listing Friday: Stunning Contemporary


FLF Logo

Happy Friday all! This week’s Fresh Listing Friday is a stunning contemporary home in Dallas. Completely remodeled in 2016, 16926 Davenport Court is ultra energy-efficient and features a solar system, tankless water heater, dual flush commodes, and an electric car charger. Take a virtual tour below and see all the high-end finishes throughout.

Need-to-know Details:

• Priced at $525,000
• 2,475 square feet: 3 bedrooms, 3 baths
• Custom handrails, tile, and fixtures
• Master suite with spa-like bath

113544563-2386923 113544563-2386943 113544563-2386963 113544563-2386983
113544563-2386903 113544563-2387003 113544563-2387023 113544563-2387043 113544563-2387063 113544563-2387073 113544563-2387093 113544563-2387113 113544563-2387123 113544563-2387143 113544563-2387153 113544563-2387273 113544563-2387293 113544563-2387303 113544563-2387313 113544563-2387323

To view this listing, contact Lori Hudson at 214-385-3665 or LoriHudson@Ebby.com.

Spring Into Energy Savings


Cooking on a gas stove
 
Improving the energy efficiency of your home is not only great for the environment, but can also contribute to substantial savings in the long run. Here are some small changes you can make throughout your home to help lower your energy bills:
 
* Turn off the thermostat
When away from home, avoid keeping your thermostat on. When home, adjust it in small increments to reach your desired temperature. Even better, open windows and use ceiling fans or space heaters to cool or warm your home.
 
* Switch your light bulbs
Switch the lightbulbs in your home to more energy efficient ones (think CFL and LED bulbs). Not sure which ones to choose? Check out our helpful light bulb guide here.
 
* Clean and replace filters once a month
Clean filters allow systems to run more efficiently and for shorter periods of time.
 
* Keep a full refrigerator and freezer
A full refrigerator unit will operate the most properly and efficiently. On the other hand, be sure not to overcrowd it.
 
* Keep your oven and stovetop clean
Regularly cleaning your oven and stovetop will enable them to run more efficiently.
 
* Run your dishwasher when it’s full
Running your dishwasher for a full load every time is the most efficient use of the appliance. In addition, use the lowest temperature dry cycle if you prefer not to air-dry your dishes. Heated drying is not always needed and can even damage plasticware.
 
* Use power strips/surge protectors
Cords that remain plugged in while not in use still expend energy in standby mode. Feeding them all into a power strip makes it easier to switch them all off at once instead of keeping them on standby. In addition, it also protects your electronic devices from unsafe voltage spikes.
 
* Turn off lights
When leaving your home, turn off all lights. When at home, turn off lights in any room not being used.
 
* Mind the gaps
Check windows and doors for cracks, gaps, and openings. Replace broken glass, framing and caulk where necessary.
 
* Purchase wisely
When purchasing appliances such as computers and dishwashers, be on the lookout for the “Energy Star” logo denoting high-efficiency. Many newer appliances are required by the U.S. Department of Energy to be more efficient than older ones.

Which Light Bulbs Are Right For You?


 

set of light bulbs

With so many types of light bulbs available, it can be overwhelming to select the right ones. Read this guide to determine what you need for your fixture, space, and budget.

Factors to Think About

*Lumens (brightness)
*Wattage (energy used)
*Appearance (warm vs. cool)
*Bulb lifespan
*Estimated yearly cost
*Contains mercury?
 
When shopping for light bulbs, take a look at the Lighting Facts label on the packaging in order to compare different bulbs. The label looks similar to a Nutrition Facts label:

FTCLightingFacts
Lumens
Lumens represent the amount of light emitted from a lightbulb. The more lumens, the brighter the light. When purchasing light bulbs, start by comparing how bright of a bulb you want before factoring in other characteristics, as lumens are the same across the board. The number of lumens needed to light a room depends on the size, color of the walls, and how much light you prefer.
 
Watts
Watts are the amount of energy a light bulb uses. The higher the watts, the higher the electric bill. (CFLs and LEDs have a lower wattage than incandescent.) When purchasing bulbs, follow instructions provided by the lighting fixture about the maximum wattage. A bulb with too high of a wattage can create a fire hazard due to the production of excess heat. It can also damage the light fixture.
 
Today, light bulb packaging shows the number of lumens. If you’re used to looking at wattage to figure out how much light you need in a room, check out this helpful chart below.
 
Energy Chart

Types of Light Bulbs

Incandescent
Incandescent bulbs are the traditional bulb type, but today, standard 60- and 40-watt bulbs are no longer produced or sold. This has been the case since 2007, when Congress passed the Energy Independence and Security Act, which requires incandescent light bulbs to be 25 percent more efficient.
 
Halogen Incandescent
Halogen bulbs are perhaps the closest alternative to incandescent bulbs, but with a longer lifespan. While more energy-efficient than incandescent, they are still not as efficient as CFL or LED bulbs. These inexpensive bulbs produce a crisp, bright light, and do not fade with age. They operate at high temperatures, which can cause burns if touched, but they do not contain any mercury. Halogen bulbs are commonly used as task lighting — think spotlight or flood light bulbs.
 
CFLs
Compact Fluorescent bulbs (CFLs) emit a similar light output in the same color range as incandescent bulbs, but consume significantly less energy. CFL bulbs can be used anywhere a typical incandescent bulb would go, including both indoors and outdoors. These bulbs may take a few minutes to reach their maximum output.
*CFL bulbs do contain a small amount of mercury, and care should be taken to prevent breakage, as well as to dispose properly.
 
Fluorescent
Fluorescent lights need a controlling ballast to operate, but new ballasts eliminate the buzz and flickering often associated with fluorescent lights. In addition, fluorescent lights are now available in a wider variety of colors and sizes. Fluorescent lights are energy-efficient, but like CFL bulbs, require a warm-up time and proper disposal. They also produce a small amount of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, which some people may be sensitive to.
 
LEDs
Light Emitting Diode bulbs (LEDs) are just as energy-efficient as CFLs, but with a longer lifespan. In general, LED bulbs are pricier than other options, but are becoming more affordable as they grow in popularity. LEDs are cool to the touch and do not contribute to indoor heat buildup. They come in a variety of whites and colors, and are also shock-resistant.
 
Smart LEDs
These “smart bulbs” have all the characteristics of traditional LED bulbs, but connect to your home Wi-Fi to be controlled by a smartphone or other smart home device. These bulbs will set you back a bit more than your average LED bulbs, but allow you to change the color, set an on/off timer, and more.

 

3 Home Amenities in Demand


3 Home Amenities Growing in Demand

 

Some amenities that homebuyers now consider “nice-to-have” may soon move into the “must-have” category. Below are three that experts say are growing in demand among home shoppers:

 

Smart homes – More and more homes can be controlled via a smart phone or tablet. Appliances and home systems can be turned on, off, or programmed via mobile devices. Some smart refrigerators have built-in apps that can create grocery shopping lists and smart ovens can be remotely controlled to start dinner or check on the status of what’s cooking.

 

Stainless-steel alternatives – Stainless-steel appliances have long dominated but some homebuyers are seeking alternatives. White ice and slate are increasingly growing as options to stainless-steel. Slate is being touted as an easy choice to blend in with other black, white, or stainless-steel finishes. It can resist fingerprints and washes easily, too.

 

Energy efficiency – Many homebuyers place a premium on finding a home with energy-efficient, cost-effective appliances. Energy Star-qualified appliances use 10 to 50 percent less energy than their older counterparts. Also gaining popularity are smarter appliances, including dishwashers with sensors that can determine the appropriate cycle length and water temperature and washers that can extract more water from laundry during the spin cycle so the dryer has less drying to do.

 

Home Amenities Likely to Grow in Demand


Home Amenities Likely to Grow in Demand

 

Some amenities that homebuyers now consider “nice-to-have” may soon move into the “must-have” category. Below are three that experts say are likely to grow in demand among home shoppers:

 

Smart homes – More homes will be controlled via a smart phone or tablet in the coming years. Appliances and home systems can be turned on, off, or programmed via mobile devices. Smart refrigerators are emerging that have built-in apps that can even create grocery shopping lists and smart ovens can be remotely controlled to start dinner or check on the status of what’s cooking.

 

Stainless-steel alternatives – Stainless-steel appliances have long dominated but some homebuyers are seeking alternatives. White ice and slate are increasingly popular. Slate is being touted as an easy choice to blend in with other black, white, or stainless steel finishes. It can resist fingerprints and washes easily too.

 

Energy efficiency Many buyers place a premium on finding a home with energy-efficient, cost-effective appliances. Energy Star-qualified appliances use up to 50% less energy than older counterparts. Also gaining popularity are smarter appliances, including dishwashers that can determine the appropriate cycle length and water temperature as well as washers that extract more water from laundry during the spin cycle so the dryer has less to do.