Thursday, January 17, 2013

Preparing for an appraisal...and some inexpensive lighting ideas.

Well...hello again!  Seems like forever since we talked.

Recently, Studs and I had our house appraised.  In preparation, we decided to attack all of the boring, little tasks that we'd kept putting off.  Paying someone a hellish amount of money to walk through your house and scrutinize every little detail has a way of motivating you to do all the things you didn't care about doing before...just sayin'.

The entire week prior to the appraisal all Studs and I did was walk around the house with a container of spackle {filling in holes from old screws and nails and discharged BB's...NO, I am not kidding} and a paint brush {for touching up walls "tagged" by our darling three year old using whatever weapon of mass destruction she came across that particular day...sharpie, dry erase marker, finger nail polish...}.

I have to say, the house was lookin pretty spiffy by the time the appraiser came.  Too bad it won't last.

I did a little bit of research on "preparing for an appraisal" and thought I might share some of what I found.  So, for those of you who might be considering refinancing or selling a home, here are some helpful tips I learned to help get the most out of your house.

1-  Type up a list of updates/upgrades you've made on your home.   Include the approximate date of the improvements and how much they cost {this would include everything from a new light fixture to a major renovation...and everything inbetween}.

2-  Don't spend a lot of money getting your house ready for an appraisal {unless it's on things you were going to do anyway}.  Chances are you won't get back the money you put into it.

3-  If you are willing to invest a little money on your house, updated lighting {and faucets} will always yield return on your investment.  The lighting doesn't have to be expensive, but it needs to be attractive and current...boob lights be gone!!!

4-  Touch up any peeling, "tagged" or discolored paint.  Even though this doesn't necessarily reflect on the integrity of the home, it can reflect on you as homeowners...if you're not concerned about maintaining the paint, then what else aren't you concerned about maintaining?

5-  Clean and declutter.  Even though an appraiser should be completely objective and unbiased, first impressions count for something.  Tripping on a pile of shoes by the front door isn't the lasting impression you wanna make...though it would be totally hilarious.  Also, if your house smells like last night's dinner, you may want to consider using some air freshners or baking a fresh batch of brownies or something beforehand.  And if your carpet smells like a dirty toilet bowl you might want to get them cleaned...back to the whole first impression thing. 

6-  Look at your house through the appraisers eyes.  Are you trying to cram too much stuff into a small space {if so, edit some things out.  Too much furniture can make a space looked cramped and cluttered thus giving the illusion of a small space}?  Does your home flow well?  Do you have to squeeze between a couch and end table to get into the family room {if so, you might consider rearranging the furniture so things flow more easily}?

7-  Don't follow your appraiser around like a lost puppy.  Leave him alone and let him/her do his/her job without distraction.  You're better served hiding out in the office praying that the appraiser somehow overlooks the water spot on the ceiling from an old leak that has since been repaired but that you forgot to touch up.

I hope you find these tips helpful as well as amusing...learn from my mistakes peeps!!!

And because this blog is all about being thrifty and stylish and doing for are a few inexpensive lighting ideas I implemented recently.

brightly colored chandy's 
{These babies are readily available at most thrift stores and can be turned into statement pieces simply by painting them in an eye catching hue.  For added interest you could string similarly colored beads/jewels from the arms.}

Drum shade pendant
{Drum shades can be both sophisticated and fun.  I made this one out of a $10 lamp shade from Ikea and some faux wood contact paper}.

I also really love the chevron pattern on this drum shade pendant.  This might be my next project.
Modern/Industrial pendant
{I found this pendant at Ikea for $20.  It has a nice shape and is a nice neutral color which can be a good thing when trying to appeal to the masses.  It was just a little too netutral for me, so I added a little color blocking to it to kick it up one more notch.  It's still neutral, but with a little more style.}

All righty peeps.  Good bye and big bulbs...for your {new}stylish lights, that is!


  1. Glad to see you back! And I hope your appraisal came through like you wanted!

  2. Anon is rife without a life. *Looking at the Anon with an L shaped hand to the forehead* 'sup with the appraisal? Are you guys moving/refinancing? I hope it all works out with all your hard work!!!! That's a ton to do!!! I laughed at the boob light comment.


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