Q: What addition to my outdoor living space will I get the most use out of?
A: A screened porch addition is a great way to enjoy the outdoors year-round. It is ideal for reading the morning paper, serving family meals al fresco or entertaining guests. The shade and ceiling fans help keep you cool during our “famously hot” summers, while screens keep the bugs at bay. Four-track vinyl windows are a good option and will allow you to banish the cold when the temperature drops, extending your outdoor enjoyment well into the winter months.
Chris Metz Interiors
Q: How can I incorporate more color?
A: Magazines are full of sleek neutral rooms these days. They are stunning, but not for everyone. Your space reflects who you are. Creative, artsy, reserved, tailored. If vivid colors and patterns bring you the most joy, go for it. Try a toned version of your favorite bright color as a transition color that keeps the whole house flowing and united in style. Can’t decide? Try a neutral pallet on the walls, floors and furniture. Layer with vibrant, creative patterns in your pillows, art and accessories. Remember; let your home be YOU.
Jack Oliver’s Pool, Spa and Patio
Q: Why should someone consider an in-home sauna?
A: A sauna not only feels good, it’s good for your body. Saunas can help relieve stress, relax muscles, soothe joint and muscle aches and pains, cleanse the skin, help cardiovascular performance and even fight illness. Whether it’s the physiological changes that occur because of the warmth or simply the time spent in the calming and still retreat of a sauna, it just feels wonderful. As we go through our stressful everyday lives, a sauna provides a pampering retreat — where you can relax and restore your body and soul.
Top Hat Sweepers
Q: This past year we had some bird nests in our chimney, and the noise almost drowned out the television. Is there something we can do to keep them away?
A: The birds, known as chimney swifts, are very valuable members of society. They dine on the many insects we have here in South Carolina and are listed as a major predator of fire ants. They are also on the protected species list, which means that no one can disturb their nests while the babies are too small to fly. Have a Chimney Safety Institute of America® certified chimney sweep come and clean your chimney (removing the bird nest and remaining debris). After your chimney is clean, have them install a chimney top can. As an added bonus, the chimney top will also help to provide much needed protection to your chimney from rain and water damage.
Q: What can I do in my yard to reduce mosquitos?
A: Remember, you too are part of the protection plan. Here are five simple steps to help you keep a mosquito-free zone. They are the five Ts: TIP over items in your yard to eliminate standing water; TOSS excess grass, leaves and clippings; TURN over larger yard items that could hold water like a pool or sandbox; Remove TARPS that stretch over firewood, boats or sports equipment if they aren’t taut; TREAT with a barrier spray protection to eliminate up to 90 percent of the mosquitoes on your property. This will help you have a fun and safe summer in and around your home.
Q: How can I give my small space some personality?
A: A small space is a perfect opportunity to have some fun. Don’t be afraid to mix textures and finishes to give the space more dimension. We love the look of patterned hand-painted cement tiles on a small bath, laundry or powder room floor. They make such a statement and exude personality. When using a pattern on the floor, keep the walls soft and neutral so as not to compete. This will become your favorite room in the house.
Sox and Freeman Tree Expert Company
Q: Should I fertilize trees and shrubs in my landscape?
A: In the urban landscape, nutrients may be in limited quantity for both turf and trees. Many homeowners contract for lawn services that include fertilization. However, trees and shrubs often require additional fertilization, or they may need an application of additional minerals, especially certain micronutrients. The key to any fertilization program is to base the application on the plant’s needs. Soil tests will provide the information required to make educated decisions about your plant’s nutrient needs.
Ryan Brewer Enterprises, LLC
Q: How do you choose the right fence contractor for your job?
A: Purchasing a fence may be one of the most significant purchases you make to further invest in your property. Make sure you do your research and know who you are calling. You need a reputable, respectable and qualified fence contractor that will be in business for a long time. There are many good fence companies in our area and there are many “fly-by nighters.” Experience and product knowledge that best suits your fencing needs are a must.
Terri Irvin – Coldwell Banker
Q: Should a homeowner upgrade before selling?
A: Homeowners are sometimes hesitant to upgrade when it’s time to sell. However, the cost of inaction can be far greater than the small loss you’ll incur on any home-improvement projects. As your house lingers on the market, you will likely pay ongoing mortgage, insurance and maintenance costs. A few simple upgrades can make a big impact, like painting warm neutral colors that make your home feel inviting, larger and brighter. Remove old carpet that is covering hardwood floors. Change out brass fixtures with chrome or satin nickel finishes for a fresher look.
Mid Carolina Chimney
Q: How should I prepare my home for a chimney sweep service?
A: When a chimney sweep certified by the Chimney Safety Institute of America® arrives at your home, they will request that all of the exterior doors and windows be closed and kept closed during the sweep service. The sweep may also request that pets be kept out of the work area to avoid sooty paw prints. The sweep takes great care and precautions to keep your home clean.
Redd Flooring and Design Center
Q: I have children and a messy dog, and I’m tired of our stained carpet. What do you recommend to replace it?
A: Consider Shaw’s Life Happens collection which repels liquids. When liquids are repelled, it gives you more time to clean them up. The carpet’s special waterproof backing means spilled drinks won’t soak through and potentially ruin the padding. It’s truly pet and family-friendly, and because it comes in several patterns and colors at an affordable price, you can trust that this carpet will be in your home for years to come.