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Park the Car in the Garage in Chester County, PA

by Scott Darling

Do you actually park your car in the garage?  A 2015 survey from PRN News found that only 1 in 4 Americans keep their car in the garage when they’re at home!  The rest use it for storage, extra workspace, and, sometimes, junk.  Spend some extra time and a little money to get organized and get more use from this large space! 

 

- Hang folding outdoor chairs from wall hooks or strong nails to get them out of the way.  Plastic chairs can be stacked and placed in a corner. 

- Create off-the-floor storage space by adding shelves, and put lightweight items in clear plastic storage totes, and place them on the shelves. 

- Have the kids’ sports balls taken over the floor?  Use bungee cords to get them out of the way!   

- Use plastic window planter inserts for storage, mounting them on a wall with a washer/bolt combination for strength.  Store smaller miscellaneous items in the planters--gardening hand tools, spray paint cans, or paint brushes. 

- If your garage has visible studs, use that space to hang items by placing a tension rod in between the studs.  Hang spray bottles by their nozzles, add hooks to store garden tools, or attach small plastic baskets with shower curtain hooks for storing small items. 

- A worktable can take up a lot of space if you’re not using it all the time, so creating a fold-away table is perfect for the hobbyist.  Crafted Workshop shows us how to build one for about $35. 

- An unused filing cabinet can be turned into garden tool storage by removing the drawers, standing the cabinet on its back, and use the empty drawer spaces to stand tools in.   

- Toy bins with rope handles are sturdy enough to store garden hoses, extension cords, and actual outdoor toys, and the bins can hang via their rope handles on large nails or hangers. 

- Wood pallets can be put to so many uses, and the garage is no exception.  Attach them to the walls, add nails or hooks and hang items, or create shelving with them. 

- Keep small hardware and machine parts handy in jars with screw-on lids.  Make them even more convenient by attaching them to the undersides of shelving!  Instructables shows you how to DIY this project. 

 

Home centers have units and other materials to create hanging storage on the ceiling, as well as storage cabinets for things that need to be locked up or out of the kids’ reach.  However, you choose to tidy up your space, your hard work will pay off because you just might end up with room to park the car!

Courtesy of Chester County PA Realtor Scott Darling.

Photo credit: garagejournal.com

Chester County PA Real Estate Market Trends For June 2018

by Scott Darling

Chester County PA Real Estate Market Trends for June 2018

Chester County PA single family homes saw pending sales increase by 5.5% in June 2018 when compared to June 2017. 823 homes sold in June with a median sales price of $355,000.  The average sales price increased by 3.2%, and homes were on the market 15 days more.

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Backyard Getaways in Chester County, PA

by Scott Darling

Many of us have seen the “she shed” photos on social media, where an outdoor building has been made into an outdoor spot for Mom to unwind--the counter to the basement man cave.  With these ideas, you can take your garden shed, gazebo or covered porch to many levels to provide a place to relax, entertain, or watch the children play in the sprinkler.   

 

Outdoor Oasis Plan 

- First, check with your municipal codes for accessory buildings, garden sheds, and see what permits you need to add one to your yard. If you already have one, you’re one step closer to your party hut. 

- Decide on what will fit in your space, then shop pre-fab shed distributors, Pinterest for DIY material-repurposing ideas, or online for downloadable building plans.  

- How do you want to use your space?  Will it be an entertaining area, a place to relax, or a low-budget pool house? Make a budget for decorating and extras, and stick to it. 

- Once you have your building in place, choose your decor and paint scheme:   

  • - Beach-inspired colors are bright, and you can include an old surfboard, vintage buoys and signal flags found at tag sales. 

  • - Rocking chairs, light colored walls, natural elements, and floral seat cushions make for a country retreat. 

  • - Go modern with simple folding chairs, which offer a storage bonus, simple green succulent plants in sleep pots, neutral colors, and a sleek bar of polished wood. 

  • - Send guests a message of fun in the sun with a palm-frond roof, tiki torches, lots of wood elements and an open-air bar for a tropical feel. 

  • - Create a small pool house with space for lounge chairs, as well as hardware for hanging clothes and towels, and storage for pool toys.   

 

Outdoor Entertaining with Conveniences 

- Lighting can be tricky if you don’t have electricity running to your outdoor structure.  If you decide to fully wire the place, have an electrician take care of this aspect.  You want it well-lit, but not a shining beacon--soft lighting is perfect for Summer night entertaining. 

- Give self-charging solar lights a try.  LED’s associated with solar lighting have come a long way, and can be bright without being harsh. 

- Battery-operated LED lights are an excellent alternative, and come in many designs to complement your decor.  Strings of Chinese lanterns and vintage-style bulb covers can be found in many styles in home centers and online. 

- You may not want to deal with the cost of a hiring an electrician to wire your new party pad, but using solar power on your small building is easier than you may think.  Home improvement centers have small solar kits that you’ll need to light the night without adding to your utility bill. 

- Solar-powered ceiling fans for outdoor use are easily found online, as well as stand-alone units.  Moving air will keep you and any guests comfortable.   

 

With so many products and ideas available at our fingertips, thanks to the internet, an outdoor gathering place can be outfitted as simply or luxuriously as we want--there’s no need to break the bank.  Create a haven that fits the needs for your family, and make fun-filled Summer memories without leaving your backyard! 


Courtesy of Chester County PA Realtor Scott Darling.

Photo credit: Country Living Magazine

Pet Summertime Safety

by Scott Darling

When we’re enjoying the warm weather, our pets usually are, too.  When we’re spending time outdoors with family and friends, we usually include our pets.  Keeping our furry family members safe should always be a priority, and these tips may be a refresher course for some, but it never hurts to make sure all our loved ones are kept out of harm’s way. 

 

In the Backyard 

- Fencing should be examined to make sure there are no gaps at the bottom, and that all materials are in place and secure.  You don’t want Fluffy taking a neighborhood excursion by himself. 

- The garden and landscaping bring us great satisfaction, and animals like to take a bite of growing things occasionally.  Check these lists for cats and dogs from ASPCA to make sure you keep your pets from chewing on them. 

- Keep any swimming pool chemicals and mechanical lawn tools sealed and out of your pets’ way.  Some of these products have a scent that is enticing to animals, and they wouldn’t hesitate to give them a try.   

- It may sound sensational, but if you have an animal that is a toy breed, or weighs five pounds or less, keep an eye and ear out for any predatory birds.  Owls, hawks, and eagles have been known to attack small pets, mistaking them for a wild meal. 

- Sometimes it’s necessary to leave your dog or cat outside while you’re gone for a while.  Make sure they have adequate shelter to keep them cool, and plenty of cool water to prevent heat stroke or dehydration. 

- Allowing your cat to roam in the yard is great for them, as they are natural hunters, and they find great pleasure in all the sights and sounds.  Keep an eye on them in case they see a bird they’d like to get to know better, or find a snake in the flower bed.  Protecting wildlife and your feline friend go hand-in-hand. 

 

Out and About 

- Does your dog go with you for exercise while you’re biking or jogging?  Some active pet owners take a water bowl with them, so they can offer a cool drink to their pet, and you can train them to drink directly from the bottle using an adaptor created especially for dogs. 

- Going fishing or water skiing?  Make sure you have a life jacket for them, as well as an overboard plan.  If you think Fido would enjoy jumping into the water, maybe you should leave them at home or at the kennel for their safety as well as your own. 

- vetSTREET offers some great tips for taking your dog to the beach.  Heat, waves, and hot sand can all play a role in just how much fun everyone will have--or not. 

- It’s vacation time, and you’d like to bring your pet with you, so call ahead for information on pet-friendly lodging, and where they can stay for events where pets aren’t welcome. Make sure you have a vehicle safety harness or seat belt for them or their carrier while you’re traveling. 

 

Summertime brings water fun, cookouts, and don’t forget the insects!  Keep your pets safe from biting insects, and be sure they get a flea and tick repellent treatment and heartworm prevention to avoid any diseases these insects can cause down the road. Pets need to be kept as safe as small children, so take preventive measures so you can have a fun and healthy Summer with the whole family.   

Courtesy of Chester County PA Realtor Scott Darling.

Photo credit: allpetnews.com

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Photo of Scott Darling Real Estate
Scott Darling
RE/MAX Action Associates
403 W. Lincoln Highway #101
Exton PA 19341
(610) 594-SCOT
610-363-2001
Fax: (610) 363-5275