Home Design Find - Interior Design, Architecture, Modern Furniture - Part 2
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3 Things Essential To Your Home Security System

We’re living in the future. Virtual reality is used for mental health treatment, augmented reality lets us bring what’s on our phones into real life, and we’re trading in virtual currency.

However, the more things change, the more they stay the same. And unfortunately, one thing that hasn’t changed is home invasions. Break-ins occur every day, and we’re all vulnerable to it. Even with insurance, a home invasion can leave us feeling violated and unsafe in our own homes.

Home security systems are as important as ever, but they’ve evolved quite a bit over the years. They’re no longer just sensors that set off alarms when a burglar (or pet) crosses their paths. There are now some essential features all the best home security systems share.

Make sure that your home security system has the following 3 features.

Mobile access to surveillance footage

  1. Mobile access to surveillance footage

These days, surveillance cameras should not be a luxury. They’re relatively cheap and easy to install. Every home security system should include CCTV cameras.

But there is one feature they should have beyond simply recording footage. You should be able to access the footage from wherever you are. The best home security systems allow you to stream the CCTV footage from your phone. This way, if the alarm goes off when you’re not home, you can easily check whether your home is actually in danger.

Also, if you’re worried about an elderly parent, you can make sure that they’re alright by viewing the surveillance footage when you cannot get hold of them.

Remote control

  1. Remote control

Not only should you be able to access the surveillance footage from afar, but you should also be able to control the system wherever you are. By being able to control the lights, you can make it seem like someone is home. With the ability to control the alarm, you can stop it and reset it in the case of a false alarm.

Furthermore, most burglars ring the doorbell before trying to enter. This is an easy way for them to check that nobody’s home. Your security system can have your intercom go to your phone, so that even when you’re not home, you can answer the doorbell.

Keep it wireless

  1. Keep it wireless

In the past, one of the easiest ways for burglars to bypass your security has been to simply snip the wires. Wires can even betray where cameras are hidden. In a world in which wireless is the norm, this should no longer be the case.

Make sure that your system can work wirelessly. It does not need to be completely wireless – but it should still work for a time if the wires are cut.

Home security systems have evolved a lot since their early days. Remote activation, camera surveillance, and wireless capabilities should no longer be luxuries. When choosing the best home security system, you should find an option that includes all of these features.

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Design Dilemma: What’s Hot, What’s Not, 2018

modern kitchen how to tips advice

Welcome to 2018! At times it felt like we wouldn’t make it. And yet, here we are, preparing for another year of decor and design. Will your home stay on trend and in fashion? Or will it seem a little dated? If you want to keep things hip and happening, check out the design trends of 2018, as predicted by the  design sages.

Colorful Kitchens.

All white or all wood kitchens are gone, replaced by kitchens that exude warmth and playfulness with the liberal use of color. The rush to color may reflect the need to cozy up the home a bit and make things fun in the face of serious times. Above, a kitchen mixes white cabinetry with an aqua blue island and colorful chairs and stools in bright primary colors for a happy, modern feel. Below, a mustard yellow backsplash is all it takes to bring life to a modern kitchen.

contemporary kitchen how to tips advice

And here, an unexpected wall color brings life to a very traditional kitchen:

mediterranean kitchen how to tips advice

Color everywhere.
The color trend doesn’t stop in the kitchen! Designers are predicting color will be splashed all around the house. Again, we think this may reflect a desire to make home feel cozier and more personal than in years past, when everything was neutral beige. You can get in on this trend by keeping your wall color a bold neutral, but by adding bright pops of color in cushions and pillows.

transitional living room how to tips advice

Or, you might go for a bold color on the walls. Blue makes a statement but doesn’t overpower.

eclectic living room how to tips advice
eclectic living room how to tips advice

Vintage lighting
To be honest, vintage lighting has been going strong for quite a few years now, perhaps an outgrowth of the industrial trend of a few years back. An antique fixture is an easy way to add personality and style to a home, giving things a “lived-in” look.

contemporary entry how to tips advice

Here, a vintage lamp is perfect in a Victorian home.

eclectic kitchen how to tips advice

And here, a vintage table lamp from the 50s looks oh-so-cool on a bedside table.

scandinavian bedroom how to tips advice

 

Use of organic and recycled materials.

Again, this trend is not exactly new. For several years now, designers and homeowners have been turning to using reclaimed wood and recycled materials around the house. It only makes sense, as more of us try to reduce our carbon footprint. Organic and recycled materials also tie into the desire to make home feel lived-in and cozy, in what some are calling the “wabi-sabi” trend. It seems we’re all looking for objects and spaces that have a history, and recycled materials fit the bill nicely.

Below, a greenhouse was designed from recycled materials.

eclectic shed how to tips advice

And here, a couple uses old windows to create one big picture window.

eclectic exterior how to tips advice

Here’s an inside look at the same house.

eclectic how to tips advice

Intricate tile designs as a backsplash

We’re seeing more and more backsplashes that make a strong statement using bold patterns and designs. Used in the right way, they are a focal point that makes a great stand-in for wallpaper.

transitional kitchen how to tips advice
traditional kitchen how to tips advice
traditional kitchen how to tips advice

What else are designers predicting for the new year? More people, they say, will be seeking out calming, minimalist bedrooms, as well as bucket sinks. The trend toward brass continues while copper has taken a back seat. And more people will be opting for sink finishes other than the traditional white or stainless steel. It will be interesting to see if any of these design predictions come true!

 

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Design Dilemma: Shopping for a Home for Entertaining

modern dining room uncategorized

With the holiday season upon us, many of us may be bemoaning our lot — the lack of a coat closet or the absence of a dining room. Perhaps it’s the fact that our home has no “flow.” If you love to entertain but you’re feeling a bit restricted by your present space, here are a few things to look for next time you’re in the market for a home.

1) A real entry hall or foyer.

transitional entry uncategorized

Many of us overlook the entry way when shopping for a home, but once you move in, you’ll notice it’s absence if you don’t have one. A good entry way is spacious enough to allow a space for guests to enter and remove their coats and/or shoes. It should have good lighting for guests searching for keys. Outside the entry door, there should be a covering that protects visitors from the rain. Don’t forget a rug to protect floors from wet shoes and provide a soft pad if you ask guests to remove shoes. An umbrella stand is a welcome touch.

2) A decent-sized coat closet, preferably in the entryway.

transitional entry uncategorized

When you’re having a party, one of the big dilemmas always seems to be where to store the coats. If you’re unlucky, you only have the bed as an option. If you’re lucky enough to have a decent-sized coat closet, preferably located right in the entry, you can stow away guests’ coats and sweaters out of sight right there. When it’s time to leave, guests can easily find their coats without having to tramp through your bedroom.

3) An open concept floor plan.

rustic entry uncategorized

While some are not fans of open concept, nothing makes for throwing a better party. Guests can mix and mingle and open concept plans are flexible enough to allow for a variety of seating arrangements, whether you’re hosting your book club or hosting poker night. Many open concept plans feature an island between the kitchen and dining room with counter seating. This is another boon to entertainers who can use the island for extra seating, or as a buffet where guests can serve themselves. Another plus: the cook doesn’t have to be isolated in a closed-off kitchen.
4) If you don’t like open concept, a good-sized formal dining room.

traditional dining room uncategorized

Nothing can beat the coziness of a formal dining room for a sit-down dinner. Look for a dining room with maybe a built-in china cabinet and fireplace.

5) A walk-in pantry.

contemporary kitchen uncategorized

This one may be less obvious to many of us, since it is a bit of a rarity in homes nowadays, but having a walk-in pantry is a boon for those who love to entertain. There’s always a space to store extra ingredients and platters. Make sure your pantry has deep-shelving and good light.

6) A powder room on the first floor.

traditional powder room uncategorized

Inevitably, guests will need to use the bathroom. Make things easy for them by looking for a layout where the bathroom is located on the first floor, preferably near the entry. Having a guest bathroom also makes your life simpler, since you won’t have to clean up your private bathroom every time you have guests over.

7) A patio or deck.

contemporary entry uncategorized

This is especially useful if you live in a warm weather climate where you’ll want to host barbecues and cookouts.

8) If you have kids, a basement recreational room.

transitional basement uncategorized

This may not be necessary for smaller families or those without kids, but larger families often make use of a separate entertaining space where the kids can go play or where dad and his buddies can watch the big game in peace.

9) Indoor-outdoor flow.

contemporary deck uncategorized

Indoor-outdoor flow is great for large parties and for summer gatherings. A sliding glass door that gives you direct access to a patio or garden is a great feature to have and enjoy when you entertain.

If you are able to find a home with most of these features, we guarantee that you’ll be able to throw fun, stress-free parties. So don’t forget to take our checklist along, next time you go house-hunting!