Category Archives: Home Improvements

Money Monday: Rent instead of buying these things

Real estate and cars aren’t the only things you can either rent or buy; there are plenty of other rent-able things that you might not have thought about:

  • Tools – Perfect for when you have a DIY home improvement project, but probably won’t need that specific tool for anything else. Rent a chop saw for the crown molding in the bedroom, a chainsaw for the dead tree in the backyard, or a seeder to reseed your front lawn. Rent from local stores around you or Home Depot or Lowe’s, or see if a neighbor or friend has the necessary tool that you might be able to borrow. diy home improvement
  • Chickens and coops – Self-sufficiency can be a fun project or a lifetime endeavor; either way, with multiple companies with coops and chickens for rent, you can try out “home grown” eggs! Check out sites like rent-a-chicken.netrentthechicken.com, or rentacoop.com.
  • Art – Does looking at the same painting on your living room wall get boring after awhile? TurningArt.com allows you to continually rotate artwork for a monthly fee.
  • Clothes – Most cater to women, but there are several different websites now that do clothing rentals. Check out sites like renttherunaway.com, letote.com, or swapdom.com.
  • MSN.com’s article has several other practical things that you can rent: “10 Oddly Practical Things You Can Rent.”

San Diego County Events for March 4 – 6

There are so many great things to do this weekend — San Diego has a full slate of family activities and fun events to attend, starting today through Sunday!

San Diego county events this weekendWest Sycamore Star Party

Mission Trails Regional Park hosts this free stargazing party at the West Sycamore Canyon Staging Area located at the east end of Stonebridge Parkway. The viewing shindig will be led by the park’s volunteer George Varga. Telescopes will be available for attendees to use to view the stars and planets.

When: Friday, March 4 | 6:30pm

Where: Mission Trains Regional Park | 1 Father Junipero Serra Trail, San Diego, CA 92119
Cost: Free
More information: www.mtrp.org/events


The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch

Carlsbad flower fieldsSpring is in the air and Carlsbad is in bloom at the Flower Fields, open daily through May 8th. Take yourself out of the ordinary and spend a few hours in one of nature’s wonders – our Fields of Dreams, our Fields of Color. A place where kids can run and adults can linger – 50 acres of extraordinary color in bloom on a hillside overlooking the Pacific Ocean, with a special nursery, garden, and gift shop by Armstrong Garden Centers, and festivals throughout the season.

When: Now through May 8, 2016| 9am – 6pm
Where: The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch | 5704 Paseo Del Norte, Carlsbad, CA
Cost: $14 for adults, $13 for seniors 60+, $7 for children 3-10
More Info: www.theflowerfields.com


29th Annual Koi Showkoi show

The world’s largest Koi show comes to San Diego this Saturday. Stop by the free festival to marvel at more than 300 Koi displayed at Del Mar Fairgrounds in competition. Vendors will also be selling art, t-shirts, pond equipment and Koi of all sizes. If you’re looking to get a Koi garden started, experienced owners can offer advice.

When: Saturday & Sunday, March 5 & 6 | starting at 9am

Where: Del Mar Fairgrounds | 2260 Jimmy Durante Blvd, Del Mar, CA 92014
Cost: Free
More information: 29th Annual Koi Show 


Seaport Village Busker Festival

San Diego’s Seaport Village hosts the only Busker Festival in Southern California. We bring professionals from across the country to perform their bizarre talents from sword swallowing to knife throwing to pogo stick tricks and juggling on unicycles. Throughout the two-day festival, some of the nation’s top performers fill the bay front village drawing visitors to shop, dine and enjoy an entire day of one-of-a-kind entertainment.

When: Saturday & Sunday, March 5 & 6 | 12 – 6pm
Where: Seaport Village | 849 West Harbor Dr., San Diego, CA 92101
Cost: Free
More information: http://www.seaportvillage.com/events-calendar/busker-festival


31st Annual Spring Home Garden Show

The Spring Home/Garden Show returns to Del Mar Fairgrounds March 4-6, 2016 for a three-day extravaganza of inspiring real “Garden Masters” landscapes, hands-on demonstrations, hundreds of home-improvement products and services exhibitors, educational seminars, plant sales, and face-to-face consultations with top experts — all with the convenience of one-stop shopping for everything pertaining to home and garden, inside and outside. Much more info on their website or here.

When: Friday, March 4 starting at 11am | Saturday, March 5, 10am | Sunday, March 6, 10am
Where: Del Mar Fairgrounds | 2260 Jimmy Durante Boulevard, Del Mar, CA
Cost: Free – $10
More information: www.delmarfairgrounds.com


Cherry Blossom Festival

The Cherry Blossom Festival, or Sakura Matsuri, is an opportunity to partake in the Japanese custom of hanami, enjoying the beauty of cherry blossom flowers. We will also have food, cultural performances, beer garden, and activities for the whole family.

When: Saturday & Sunday, March 5 & 6 | 10am
Where: Japanese Friendship Garden | 2215 Pan American Rd E,, San Diego, CA 92101
Cost: $8 general admission, $7 seniors and students
More information: www.niwa.org


Free Family Day And Eco Fair

Enjoy this free event with the kids at our Indoor Family Day and Eco Fair presented by the San Diego Audubon Society Bird Festival.

When: Sunday, March 6 | 10am
Where: Marina Village Conference Center | 1936 Quivira Way, San Diego, CA 92109
Cost: Free
More information: San Diego Audubon Society Bird Festival

 

Remodeling in California

To get their dream home, many California homeowners still have work to do after they close escrow.

California is the third state most likely to do a home renovation project. For homeowners in our state, a full remodel after purchasing a house is fairly commonplace.

For those remodeling, the average cost of a full-home renovation is $263,384, probably due in large part because 93% of homeowners enlist (and pay for) professional help. But, as you might assume, fully renovating your house adds value; the average home value after a full-scale remodel is $725,000.

Have you done a full house renovation?

Homeowners renovating your home

This infographic is from the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS at CAR.org.

Focus on These Home Improvements

Home improvements that pay off:

  • Entry door replacement
  • Wood or composite deck addition
  • Garage door replacement
  • Attic bedroom
  • Sunroom addition
  • Bathroom addition or remodel
  • Vinyl or wood window replacements
  • Two-story addition

HomeImprovementsThatPayOffThis infographic is from the CALIFORNIA ASSOCIATION OF REALTORS at CAR.org.

Top Remodeling Choices

What do most choose to spend their money on when remodeling?

Many homeowners find the value in remodeling, with the focus being mostly on these remodels in 2014:

  • 84.3% focused on remodeling the attic bedroom
  • 87.4% work on a deck addition
  • 48.9% remodel the home office
  • 72.5% work on remodeling the kitchen
  • 77.6% work on the basement

The Value of a Remodel | CAR.orgThis infographic is from CAR.org: www.car.org/aboutus/onecoolthing/valueremodel

Springtime Gardening Tips

As we enter the fourth month of the year we can already see the drab hues of winter begin to give way to the promise of a colorful spring.

yardWhat better way could there be to celebrate this fertile and exciting time of year than to work on improving your garden? Gardening is a relaxing and fulfilling activity that the whole family can enjoy together. Plus, a rich and colorful garden can greatly add to the aesthetic beauty of your home. I’ve compiled some tips that you should keep in mind when attending to your yard this spring.

Don’t over water!– Horticulturist, Mitch Hoyles of Western Garden Nursery says the biggest danger at this time of year is over watering. “Now is the time when we have to start watering, and most people water way too much,” Hoyles said. Roots need air in order to grow. Clay soil must be allowed to dry between watering, so the water can be replaced by air to nourish the roots.

Watch your step – Make sure you don’t walk on delicate flowerbeds when they are saturated. Wait until the soil dries. If you compact the soil by stepping on it when it is wet, you run the risk of damaging new growth.

Spring-cleaning, for your yard – Pick up old leaves, broken branches, and debris accumulated during winter. Cut back any perennials that you have. Trim shrubs, and any other excess growth.

Tune up your tools – Sharpen mowers and clippers so everything is ready when things start to grow. Make a note of what’s missing and order tools for the new season of growth.

Check on your soil – Check soil pH with a Home Soil Test Kit, taking several samples from different planting areas for an accurate reading. Enrich soil as necessary. Add dolomitic lime to raise the pH, or elemental sulfur to lower the pH.

Don’t forget to fertilize – Apply balanced fertilizer (6-6-6 or 8-8-8), fish emulsion, or other soil enhancements suggested by soil-test results around trees and shrubs when new growth appears. Spread high-acid fertilizer and pine-needle mulch around acid-loving shrubs like azaleas and camellias. Begin fertilizing perennials when active growth resumes.

With a bit of luck and hard work your garden will be the envy of the neighborhood. By the time summer rolls around, you’ll be able to relax in your garden in comfort and style as you sip your favorite beverage and enjoy the beautiful environment you have created for you and your family.

HOAs May be Forced to Allow Artificial Turf

A proposed bill by the San Diego County Water Authority, if approved, would mean that California state’s HOAs would have to allow artificial turf lawns in their communities.

artificial grassCurrently, only a small percentage of California’s 47,000 homeowners associations permit owners in their communities to install the synthetic grass. Continue reading

How to be Content with Your Home

Whether you’ve been letting your home improvement to-do list get the best of you, or are finding yourself comparing your real-world home to professionally styled and photographed ones, it’s natural to get a little down on your home from time to time.

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Luckily, feeling content at home is something available to everyone, no matter the size or condition of your space. By working your way through these nine suggestions, you can gain a deeper appreciation of your house, just as it is today. Continue reading