Real Estate News


    • Getting Maxi Space Out of a Mini Bath

      2 July 2020

      A small bathroom can be a major dilemma, especially for families or for anyone who regularly accommodates guests. But making more space in a small bathroom can be like fitting a puzzle together; it takes an eye for design, a little savvy and being open to some outside help.

      From bath designers and solution-seeking parents, here are seven ideas for getting maximum use out of small bathroom space:

      1. Redirect the door. A door swinging into a small bathroom makes things seem even tighter. Reposition the door to swing outward or, if that’s not feasible, try a sliding pocket door.
      2. Make the most of under-sink storage. If there is no vanity under the sink, install one. If there is one, chances are it’s a wasteful cavern. Invest in portable, under-sink organizers, available at most hardware or big-box stores, that provide tiered storage bins you can tuck into the vanity to hold bath toys, grooming supplies, cleaning supplies and more.
      3. Install a countertop extension. Expanding the vanity countertop with a banjo-style extension that goes over the toilet provides extra space for guest towels, aerosol containers, tissue boxes, cosmetics and more. If that’s not feasible, try hanging a couple of basket shelves on the wall next to the sink.
      4. Capitalize on shelving. Moving the towel bar to behind the door leaves more room on the wall next to the shower for a storage cabinet or shelving. Maximize storage by rolling small towels to fit into small cabinet cubbies.
      5. Keep paper goods in plain sight. Stack toilet paper rolls on an attractive vertical stand tucked in a corner next to the toilet.  
      6. Use accessories to your advantage. As space allows, use attractive baskets, bowls, designer hooks and boxes to store a wide variety of bath items.
      7. Trick the eye. A large, well-placed mirror reflects light and adds depth. Give it double duty by positioning it over the sink so that two people can use it at the same time. 

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 5 Organizing Tools You Didn't Know You Needed

      2 July 2020

      Home organizing can seem overwhelming at times, and it can seem like a task best left to the professionals. While you may not have every item in your home color-coordinated for a photo worthy of social media, organizing your home is perfectly achievable for the average person. These five organizing tools are the perfect place to start. 

      Bamboo Drawer Dividers
      This is a must-have if you find that your kitchen utensils are constantly in disarray. With the ability to customize your spaces for each item, this is a far more user-friendly option than a traditional box utensil organizer. While it may seem like a small place to start organizing, since you likely cook daily, you will notice the impact right away.

      Wire Bins
      With an industrial and modern feel, wire bins are the perfect option for anywhere in the house. Utilitarian enough that they will work in a closet or cupboard, but sleek enough to be displayed out in the open. They’re design makes them ideal for viewing groups of items at-a-glance making a grouping of a few together ideal in a children’s room for toys or your pantry for various foods.

      Clear Plastic Totes
      Clear totes in a range of sizes are an essential item to house any gear or clothing that is out of season. Be sure to stick only to clear and weathertight totes. This will ensure that your belongings are protected if you decide to put them in a garage or shed. Keeping the totes clear makes it easy to see what you are storing in case you are unable to see the label.

      Cabinet Door Wire Rack
      If you need a good spot to store your favorite hair dryer and other accessories in your bathroom, look no further than a cabinet door wire rack. Organize your hair care tools with ease while ensuring they stay off the counter with this handy way to add usable space to your bathroom cabinets.

      Cabinet Pullout Shelves
      Installing pullout baskets in your cabinets is a simple task that can add a lot of extra utility to your cabinet storage. Opting for a two tier model not only doubles your vertical space, but allows you to easily access items that are being stored in the very back of the cabinet. These pullout shelves are ideal for anything from pots and pans to cleaning supplies. Once you get one, you’ll be hooked.

      Getting your home better organized can feel like a breath of fresh air. Get started today with these tools and you will be on your way to becoming an organizing guru in no time.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • 10 Household Cleaning Tricks Using Vinegar

      2 July 2020

      Commercial-grade cleaners may make your home sparkle, but many have chemicals that can be hazardous. If you want to clean your home using natural products, try using vinegar, a non-toxic agent, in these 10 ways:

      In the kitchen, vinegar can be used in place of appliance cleaners.

      • Clean your refrigerator’s ice and water dispenser by running vinegar through the system. Flush the vinegar out by running water through the system for 30 to 60 seconds.
      • Deodorize the garbage disposal by pouring in half a cup of baking soda and half a cup of vinegar. Let sit for five minutes, and then run hot water down the disposal.
      • Rid your dishwasher of mineral buildup by pouring half a cup of vinegar into the reservoir and running an empty cycle.
      • To clean a grease-splattered oven door window, saturate it with vinegar. Keep the door open for 10 to 15 minutes before wiping with a sponge.
      In the bathroom, vinegar can help maintain plumbing fixtures.
      • Rid faucets of lime deposits by tying a plastic bag containing one-third to one-half cup of vinegar around it and leaving it there for two to three hours. Wipe down with a sponge, and scrub any remaining deposits with an old toothbrush. The same approach can be used to remove buildup on a showerhead.
      • To clean the toilet bowl, pour in a cup or more of vinegar and let it sit for several hours or overnight. Scrub well with a toilet brush and flush.
      • Vinegar and baking soda can unclog and remove odor from a tub drain. Pour half a cup of baking soda in the drain, followed with two cups of hot vinegar. Immediately plug the drain with a rag to keep the bubbles contained for 10 minutes. Rinse by pouring a kettle of boiling hot water down the drain.
      In the laundry room, vinegar can help preserve your garments.
      • Forgot you left wet laundry in the machine? Pour a few cups of vinegar in the machine, and wash the clothes in hot water. Run a normal cycle with detergent to rinse the clothes.
      • Remove coffee and tea stains on clothing by flushing the area with vinegar, rinsing and repeating. For wine stains, saturate the spot with vinegar and allow it to stand for several minutes. Wash as normal.
      • Restore yellowed clothing by soaking garments overnight in a solution of 12 parts warm water and one part vinegar. Wash them the following morning.

      These are just some of the (endless!) uses for vinegar. How will you use it in your home?

      Source: Mizkan Americas

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Flavor Fusion: Update Summer Classics With Asian-Inspired Flair

      1 July 2020

      (Family Features) A distinctive and unexpected ingredient like rice vinegar is an easy way to bring faraway flavors to your favorite summer dishes. This pantry staple adds an Asian-inspired flavor to recipes of all kinds, from marinades to high-end meals.

      Explore a new way to enjoy steak this summer with a recipe for zesty, marinated beef paired with crisp broccolini and peppers to give a familiar dish a fresh makeover using flavors from another origin. Give fajitas an Asian makeover with shrimp seared in a decadent hoisin-ginger sauce or try a fresh take on a crunchy salad with this Mexican-meets-Asian layered approach that’s perfect for lunch.

      Include seasonal produce like cucumbers, bell peppers and tomatoes to enhance your summer flavor fusions. Pantry staples like black beans and canned corn also offer accessible ways to make elevated summer classics.

      Capture Asian flavors with ingredients like NAKANO Rice Vinegar, which has perfected its rice vinegars over eight generations to offer unique and delicious flavors perfect for making mouthwatering Asian-inspired recipes at home.

      Find more flavorful ways to put an Asian twist on your summer dishes at nakanoflavors.com.

      Sizzling Shrimp Fajita Stir-Fry
      Prep time: 15 minutes
      Cook time: 10 minutes
      Servings: 6

      • 1 1/2 pounds large, raw shrimp, peeled and deveined (21-25 shrimp total)
      • 2 tablespoons soy sauce, divided
      • 4 teaspoons cornstarch, divided
      • 1/4 cup NAKANO Roasted Garlic Rice Vinegar
      • 3 tablespoons hoisin sauce
      • 2 teaspoons grated fresh ginger
      • 3 tablespoons vegetable oil, divided
      • 1 red onion, cut into thin slivers
      • 1 red bell pepper, cut into thin strips
      • 1/2 pound shishito peppers, stemmed
      • 6 warmed corn or flour tortillas
      • 1/2 cup finely shredded red cabbage
      • 1/4 cup thinly sliced green onions
      In a medium bowl, combine shrimp, 2 teaspoons soy sauce and 2 teaspoons cornstarch; let stand for 5 minutes to marinate.

      In a separate bowl, whisk remaining soy sauce, remaining cornstarch, rice vinegar, hoisin sauce and ginger until blended.

      In a large nonstick skillet over medium-high heat, heat 1 tablespoon oil until shimmering. Add half of shrimp; cook 1 minute on each side. Transfer to a clean bowl; repeat with remaining shrimp. Wipe out the skillet with a paper towel.

      In the same pan, heat remaining oil until shimmering. Add red onion, bell pepper and shishito peppers. Cook, stirring, 2-4 minutes until peppers begin to blister. Add vinegar mixture; cook, stirring, 1-2 minutes, or until sauce is slightly thickened. Add shrimp to the pan. Cook, tossing well until shrimp and vegetables are coated with sauce.

      Fill tortillas with shrimp mixture, cabbage and green onions.

      Pro Flavor-Fusion Tips
      • The key to a successful stir-fry is to use high heat to quickly cook meats and vegetables in stages without overcrowding the pan. This ensures that veggies stay slightly crisp, and meats develop a delicious sear instead of steaming.
      • Avocado oil has one of the highest smoke points, making it a great choice for high-heat cooking like stir-frying.
      • Hoisin sauce, which you can find in the Asian section of most grocery stores, is used frequently in Chinese and Vietnamese cuisine. It’s a salty, fermented soybean paste often combined with garlic, chiles and five-spice powder, which adds a sweet, umami-rich, aromatic flavor to the dish.
      • Shishito peppers are slender, mild, green Japanese peppers available in the produce section of well-stocked grocery stores or Asian markets. If shishito peppers are unavailable, substitute with multicolored mini peppers.
      • To accommodate those who love a lot of spice and those who prefer less spice, serve mild-to-medium-spicy foods with additional chili sauce on the side.
      • Swap out heavy, high-calorie salad dressings for a splash of additional flavor with NAKANO rice vinegar.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Why You Should Automate Your Savings

      1 July 2020

      Whether you want to save for retirement, your children’s college education, a house purchase or a dream vacation, you’ll need dedication and time. For many people, the temptation to spend money on things they want or need now, or the belief that saving a large sum of money is too difficult or impossible, keeps them from reaching their goals. Automatically transferring funds to separate accounts for long-term priorities can make saving easier.

      Why Saving Automatically Works
      Many people find that automating their savings helps them because they consider the balance in their checking account the amount that they have available to spend. Money in a separate account is still accessible, but a withdrawal or transfer is required to access it. That minor inconvenience helps keep people on track because it forces them to ask themselves whether the things they want to purchase are really necessary. People often feel disappointed with themselves if they take money out of an account dedicated to a long-term goal and try to avoid doing so.

      How to Automate Your Savings
      If you have a retirement plan through work, your employer likely already transfers a portion of your earnings to the account each pay period. You can set up savings accounts with competitive interest rates to work toward other goals, such as college, home renovations or a vacation. It’s best to have a separate account for each objective so you can track your progress and stay on track.

      Automatically transfer money into one or more accounts each time you get paid. Your bank or credit union probably has an easy way to do that through its website or app. If your pay is direct-deposited, your employer may even be able to divide your earnings among multiple accounts so you won’t have to think about it.

      Save Extra Money You Receive
      If you have a budget and use your regular earnings, minus automatic savings, to cover your bills, any extra funds that come your way, such as an annual bonus or an income tax refund, can be used to beef up your savings. If you were getting by fine without that additional money, you won’t miss it, but you will appreciate it later when you reach your savings objectives.

      Prioritize Your Long-Term Goals
      If all your money goes into one account, it’s too easy to spend it in a pinch or on a whim instead of thinking about the big picture. Automatically saving money can help you achieve financial success. Even if you only set aside a small amount each time you get paid, doing so consistently over a period of months or years can help it grow. As you become accustomed to making ends meet with a little less money and see your balances increase, you may be inspired to make other small changes that can help you boost your savings and reach your goals even faster.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.