5 HOME IMPROVEMENT & REMODELING IDEAS

We’re still in a buyer’s market according to the latest real estate statistics. For those looking to purchase a home, the time is right. Prices are down and interest rates are low. On the other hand, more homeowners are making the decision to stay in their current location, at least until the market returns. With this in mind, more people are looking for home improvement ideas that will not only make their home more comfortable to live in right now, but will also increase the value of their home when it comes time to sell. This is a smart consideration, since many home improvements can actually detract from your home’s value when it comes time to sell. Believe it or not, most people aren’t really looking for a back bedroom that’s been converted into a recording studio.

So, how do you know which home improvement projects are the best overall investments and which should be avoided? Below, we’ve given you 5 solid home improvement ideas that will increase the value of your home. When making your final decisions just keep in mind that the more people your remodeling idea will appeal to, the better off you are.

Updating Kitchen Appliances – Most people consider the kitchen to be the focal point of the home. Because of this fact, updating your kitchen with the latest appliances will always pay off. According to statistics, you can expect to recoup up to 120% of the investment you make in your kitchen. With that in mind, new tile, cabinets, and countertops are always a sound investment as well.

Add a Garage Organization System – Everyone these days is trying to fit more stuff into smaller spaces. With that in mind, the addition of a garage shelving system is very attractive to potential buyers. Garage overhead storage and the addition of garage storage shelves along one or more of the side walls can provide a place for holiday items, stored memorabilia, luggage, sporting goods, and other large items that would normally take up precious space in the back of a closet. By using hooks along with the garage storage shelves, you’ll also be able to get yard tools, hoses, bikes, and other items up off the garage floor. Garage organization systems are a smart addition to any home, but if your home is lacking in square footage, investing in extra storage space can make it or break it when it comes to selling your home.

Fresh Paint – Repainting is almost a given when you are about to sell, and luckily it’s one of the most inexpensive ways to increase your home’s asking price. While you are living in your home, paint your rooms whatever color makes you happy, but always revert to warm, neutrals when you get ready to sell. You may think a red bathroom decorated with Scarface memorabilia is awesome, but chances are good that your new home buyers will not agree.

Energy Efficiency– One of the first questions many potential home buyers ask these days is, “How much is your average electric bill?” By saving your statements for the past 12 months and providing the figures, you’ll have the upper hand over other homes for sale. Installing energy efficient windows and Energy Star rated appliances can reduce your energy bill by as much as $500 per year. If you can show the drop in your monthly bill after the installation of certain items, you’ve got a huge selling point. There are also tax credits for energy efficient windows that you may qualify for.

Home Office or Room Addition – Garage organization and storage shelves are a great first step, but have you considered a garage remodel? By turning a portion of your garage into an extra bedroom or home office, you will create more space for yourself as well as appealing to a whole new group of people when it comes time to sell your home. With more people than ever working from home, a home office is a very attractive feature.

With these solid ideas you should have an excellent starting point and source of inspiration. Whenever contemplating certain projects, just keep in mind to create a win/win situation, — useful to you and to potential buyers down the road.

National Clean Out the Your Garage Day

Today is National Clean Out The Garage Day here in America.

This is a great opportunity to better utilize one of the biggest spaces in your home. If you’re doing it today, just follow the 5 step process that we outlined in a previous post. You’ll feel better when its done.

Even if you don’t actually get out in the garage today and finally make room for your car, at least you can start thinking about it. Take a look at what you have in there. Is there anything that you can live without? When you come across some items that you don’t want anymore, you can turn those items into cash by having a garage sale. If its junk, just get rid of it. If its still in good condition, is it something that you can safely donate to a charitable organization such as St. Vincent de Paul or Goodwill? (If you have a few items, you’ll have to drop them off yourself. But if you have a lot of stuff, they will come and get it from your home.)

See, you’ve already made a dent in your garage chaos. Watch for upcoming posts on the actual process of cleaning and organizing that garage of yours. We’ll help you through the process when you’re ready to start.

Be sure to check out our website http://www.azgarageconcepts.com for a complete line of garage organizational products.

5 STEPS TO RUTHLESSLY DE-CLUTTER ANY AREA

 

Okay, when it comes to de-cluttering, we can be pretty ruthless. Being in the garage organization business, we’ve seen too many people with way too much stuff.  After helping countless families with their garage organization plans, we’ve come up with a 5 step de-clutter plan. Now, this is not for the faint hearted, but it’s guaranteed to work. Follow these 5 steps and you’ll have a clean, neat, clutter free garage, closet, or whatever other area you’d like to de-clutter. These steps work for anything. Ready? Here we go:

Step #1 – Take it All Out

Whether you are cleaning out the back of a semi-tractor trailer, your bedroom closet, or your garage shelves, nothing can be accomplished properly until everything is unpacked. Trying to move things from one garage shelf to the next or to organize while things are in boxes just turns into a time consuming mess. If you’re going to do it, commit to your plan 100% by getting everything out in the open.

Step #2 – Trash or Treasure…The Two Second Rule

Once everything is out in the open, it’s time to get your garbage can, garbage bags, dumpster, or whatever you’ve decided to use for the items that won’t be staying. This is generally the part where most people fail. We like to use the two second rule. It’s pretty simple, and brutally ruthless. Pick up an item. If you can’t think of a reason why you need it or a recent time when you have actually used it in two seconds or less, it’s trash. That’s right, trash. Also, never keep anything that’s broken but “might be repaired” sometime in the near future. We both know it will never happen.

Step #3 – Categorize

Now it’s time for your storage bins. It’s best to store things together according to category. Of course, items such as Christmas decorations and tools are easy to categorize, but try to make sense out of the rest of your things as well. If you have a hobby, label a bin for it. Do you have a Coca-Cola collection? Great. Organize the items in bins and label them.

Step #4 – Your Organization Plan

It’s not enough to organize inside the bins. You need to have an organization plan as well. If this is a garage organization plan, your garage shelving should be divided into sections with items used less frequently toward the back and items used more often in the front. Bulky or awkward items can hang from hooks to make additional use of wall space.

No matter what you are organizing, use every inch of space possible.

Step # 5 – Keep it Up!

After you’ve turned your garage organization ideas into reality, many individuals forget the most important step…Upkeep!  Trust me, it only takes a couple of times saying, “Oh, I’ll just set this here for now,” and before you know it, your neat and organized garage becomes that same mess you started out with. It takes a bit of self- discipline but once you’ve organized and de-cluttered, do your best to keep it going. In the long run, you’ll be glad you did.

Hello world!

Welcome to the Monkey Bars of Phoenix Blog.

We will be discussing tips, products, innovations and concepts that will assist homeowners make the best use of what may be the largest, most under-utilized space in their homes, the garage!

Monkey Bars of Phoenix mission is to assist homeowners in the North Valley areas of Phoenix take back garages that have been surrendered to items of everyday living, one garage at a time.