Do home improvement projects now, before winter


(ARA) - The to-do chores never seem to go away, which can make you want to leave the projects for another season.

After all, the deck is going to be covered by snow all winter and the house can always be repainted in the spring. But taking care of these jobs now has benefits beyond just crossing them off of your to-do list.

For homeowners in areas of the country that have harsh winter weather, refinishing the deck this fall will help protect it from the winter elements like sleet, snow and ice.

For those who live in milder climates, refinishing the deck now means you'll still get to enjoy the fruits of your labor into the cooler months - and get a jump on spring chores.

In addition, having your deck and your house in the best condition going into the rough winter months means that you'll minimize any damage that could be caused by harsh weather conditions. To get the maximum benefits out of your efforts, take the time to make any necessary repairs to your deck or siding before you start painting.

This could include patching any imperfections in your siding and sanding away peeling paint. On the deck, replace warped boards and nail down loose ones. A good cleaning ensures that the surface is ready for stain or paint.

Once you're ready to paint, make sure you have the right tools for the job. It will make the task quicker and easier, and provide more professional-looking results. Paint brushes and rollers have their place as useful tools, but for making quick work of painting a house or finishing a deck, nothing beats a power paint sprayer. The beauty of outdoor painting is that a paint sprayer can be used to get the job done in a few easy strokes.

One home improvement project that nearly pays for itself

(ARA) - Did you ever think that a new garage door could almost pay for itself?

Garage door replacement ranked No. 2 in "cost recouped" on a list of 35 common home remodeling projects in Remodeling Magazine's 24th annual Cost vs. Value Report. Only steel entry door replacement ranked higher.

The average midrange garage door replacement cost was estimated at $1,291. Resale value of the project averaged $1,083 - an 83.9 percent return on investment (ROI) at resale. In some cities, such as Charleston, W. Va., Honolulu, Providence, R.I., and San Francisco, the ROI for a new garage door was more than 100 percent.

Upscale garage door replacements were estimated to provide a 69.8 percent ROI - No. 4 among the upscale projects listed in the survey.

Beautiful Marseille home with reduced price

1848  N Salierno Ct,  Visalia, listed at $320,000.
Join one of northwest Visalia's most beautiful neighborhoods at a new, reduced price!

Take a look at this 3 bedroom, two bathroom home in Marseille with an office.

The 2,610-square-foot home is on a cul-de-sac lot. There are floor to ceiling windows from living room overlooking the patio and lush landscaping.

A formal dining room and nook complement the open kitchen with corian countertops and granite island. There is a spacious pantry and extra cabinets in the nook.

The owner's suite is split from the two guest bedrooms. The owner's suite features a soaking tub, dual sinks and a large walk-in closet. There is access to the yard from the owner's suite.

The home features a 3-car garage.

Call Darlene for an appointment today! (559) 625-9364.

The sweet smell of success: How aroma can help you sell your home


(ARA) - If you're selling your home, you've probably heard about the value of "staging" it. Visually appealing decorative touches and artful arrangement of furnishings can help potential buyers recognize the appeal of your home and picture themselves living there. To strengthen your staging efforts, don't overlook the positive power of aroma. 

Ambient fragrance started to trickle into the real estate market years ago with savvy agents baking cookies or cinnamon rolls in the homes they were showing to create a comforting, deliciously scented atmosphere that was meant to entice buyers.

"The essential oils that are used in the practice of aromatherapy offer a more practical and potent way to use scent marketing to move a tired property," says Tom Havran, branded products developer with Aura Cacia. "Using even tiny amounts of familiar, tempting aromas like the oils of cinnamon, clove, vanilla and orange can fill a whole house with pleasant ambient fragrance and make it an attractive purchase for potential buyers."