Choosing the Right Fence Material and Design

Getting a new fence can be a daunting challenge considering all of the different types of materials and styles that you can choose from.

The climate of where you live and any local regulations will certainly impact what you choose. Ultimately, you’ll want something that fits your needs, budget, and of course, looks appealing. Continue reading “Choosing the Right Fence Material and Design”

What is a good neighbor fence?

Do you have a fence that shares a boundary line with a neighbor? If so, then you may know that it can be difficult to get your fence replaced. No one wants to be stuck with the backside of a fence facing their yard, especially if they’re paying for a portion.

However, a “good neighbor fence” can help homeowners on both sides be satisfied with what they see from their yard.

There’s no need to have an eyesore on one side of the fence. Here are a few things you need to know about good neighbor fences. Continue reading “What is a good neighbor fence?”

Homeowner’s Checklist — getting on top of home maintenance

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With most home projects, timely prevention is the key to keeping costs down. ezhome can help. 

There’s something about homeownership you don’t realize until you’re a homeowner — there’s a lot to keep track of. That goes for regular maintenance, like the stuff you need to do every year that you might not even be noticing, to the big projects that only come due every few decades but still require you to keep an eye out to catch them in time and prevent damage.

To help make all this easier, we’ve put together a Homeowners Checklist of items big and small. Continue reading “Homeowner’s Checklist — getting on top of home maintenance”

Fencing Made Easy

A fence provides privacy, security, and a safe place for kids or pets to play. In addition to the benefits you’ll feel while living in the house, it can also boost your home’s value. According to Realty Times, privacy wood fences “can net a profit of at least 50% of the material and installation costs on resale.”

It may be a big project, but there’s no reason for it to be difficult to navigate. At ezhome, we’ve done the hard work of researching great options and creating a process that’s easy on you. Continue reading “Fencing Made Easy”

Refresh — the Fourth “R” of Green Living

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Pressure washing blasts away dirt, grime, moss and stains from paths, patios and other hardscape, and uses less water than you might think.

Reduce, reuse, recycle — it’s the slogan for living a more environmentally friendly life that even school kids know by heart. While it’s great advice for dealing with small everyday items, what about bigger things, like major features of your home and yard?

A well loved home gets its share of wear and tear. Surfaces get scuffed. Weather takes its toll. Yet in many instances, a professional deep cleaning can restore much of what you’re craving.

Before you decide to replace what you have, see what a refresh will do.

A few projects around your home can have it looking good as new, and regular maintenance can help keep it that way.

Pressure Washing

Pressure washing is a great solution for concrete and stone surfaces that aren’t looking their best. It blasts away tough dirt, grime, moss and stains to leave your hardscape — like walkways, paths, patios and driveways — looking fresh and clean. Leaving the dirt where it is will actually lead to damage over time, making a more resource-intensive replacement necessary.

And pressure washing isn’t the water waster you might think it is. While a typical garden hose uses about eight gallons per minute, pressure washing can reduce water usage to only five gallons per minute.

Fence-series

Fence Cleaning and Restoration

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Let light in, even from your hard to reach windows, with a professional cleaning.

Detailed cleaning and restoration can give a fence new life. Pressure washing first removes built-up dirt, grime, and moss. Then adding a sealant will protect the wood from rotting, which is especially helpful if your fence is exposed to a lot of sun and humidity. Because sealer is a preservative, it’ll dramatically increase the lifespan of your fence if applied every other year.

Window Cleaning

Even a simple window cleaning can brighten up your views and let in more natural light. And a thorough cleaning twice a year can help extend the life of your windows by removing dirt and grime that can corrode the surface.

Floors

A professional deep clean for carpets gets rid of built up dirt, dust, odors and pollen and removes stains. Hardwood floors can be sanded and refinished over and over again to last a lifetime.

 

YOUR HOME, MADE EASY.

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Find inspiration with ezhome on Pinterest. 

Bathroom Remodel — getting a space you’ll love

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How much will a remodel set you back? Bathroom budgets aren’t so mysterious. In fact, at ezhome we offer a standard estimate for bathrooms up to 50 square feet. From there, you can add or remove items based on how much you want to spend.

For many homeowners, a bathroom remodel is high on their list since an outdated or drab bathroom can make your house feel, well, old, and not in a good way.

The great news is that even a handful of changes can yield a dramatic transformation, and if a complete renovation is what your bathroom really needs, that can be accomplished easier than you might think.

Organize your wish list

The first step in any successful remodel is getting clarity on your hopes for the space. Make a list of what you want and what problems you have with your current bath that you want solved. This is incredibly important in making the quoting and planning phase bathroom shutterstock_264139187 blog copygo smoothly when you start to work with a professional to get the job done.

To get an idea of the choices you’ll have to make, take stock of the elements:

  • Tub
  • Shower enclosure
  • Shower head and fixtures
  • Toilet
  • Sink and vanity
  • Floor
  • Wall color
  • Tile
  • Tile grout (yes, you actually have options here)
  • Lighting

Get a handle on costs

Because bathrooms are relatively small and standardized (the average home full bath is not more than 50 square feet), costs are easier to predict than a space with many more variables, like a kitchen.

A company with solid experience in bathroom remodeling should be able to give you a quote that transparently separates labor and materials. From there, you can adjust the number of elements you want changed and how much you want to spend on each.

Style you’ll want to live with

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If you’d like a little professional advice sorting out the fleeting trends from the keepers, ezhome’s bathroom design packages can help.

Because bathrooms are small, there’s a temptation to go bold. The incredible range of tile on the market right now does nothing to discourage that either.

If you’ve found some design ideas you love, but you’re nervous about whether you’ll still like them years from now — or how they’ll impact your resale value — you can get color and distinctive style in less permanent ways.

  • Go with classic lines and a neutral tone for the items that need to last, like tile, tub, sink and toilet, and express yourself with wall color.
  • A coat of pain is the easiest (and cheapest) thing to change down the road.
  • You can also build your style with accessories, like the mirror over the sink, framed art, shower curtain, rugs and towels.

If you really want to do something fun with tile, but also feel compelled to go with a safe choice, you can break out with the grout color (seriously, check it out our Pinterest bathroom board if you don’t believe it ). Recoloring the grout later is a lot less expensive and involved than putting in new tile.

Get the most out of your bathroom at any budget with ezhome’s experienced and fully-insured remodeling team. Request a free quote.

NEW Financing Move your list of home projects from “To Do” to “Done” with our new financing options for all work totaling $3,500 or more. Ask about our six month interest-free and reduced rate APR options. To learn more, email specials@ezhome.com or call 650-265-6662.

YOUR HOME, MADE EASY.

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Find Bathroom inspiration with ezhome on Pinterest.

Get Your Yard Summer-Ready for Outside Fun

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ezhome can get your to-do list done with over 40 services for your home and garden at ezhome.com

Whether you like to throw parties and show off your grilling skills, or just spend some time relaxing with family and friends, here’s a few things to take care of now to enjoy your yard all season.

Lawn refresh

If your lawn is dead, or has seen better days, and you want that lush green ideal to enjoy all summer, consider sod. Sod looks great instantly, but it needs a month to anchor itself fully for heavy traffic. So, if you want your kids to have the run of it come summer vacation, this is a good time to have it installed.

Pathways, patio, fence

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Pressure washing and a fresh stain and seal can have your fence looking good as new.

Blast away the mess of winter, and get your patio and paths summer-ready. Pressure washing removes dirt, moss and stains to have your hardscaping looking good as new.

After a wet and stormy winter, your fence may be in need of some maintenance. Check for loose posts, rotted boards, or other sections that may need repair or replacement. A cleaning, fresh staining and sealant will keep the wood in good condition and looking great.

Add mulch to protect your plants (and get a neat, put together look)

Mulch is a chem-free way to inhibit weeds, so the resources of water and sunlight go to the plants you want. It helps protect the soil from evaporation, so the water you give to your garden stays put longer. And a protective layer of mulch insulates your plants from extreme temperatures.

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Drip irrigation is over 30% more water efficient than sprinklers. ezhome can help you make the switch to drip.

Get water-wise

Make sure your lawn and planting beds are well irrigated for the season. In particular, you should look out for any dry areas, puddles, and leaks in your irrigation system. Or consider converting to drip irrigation for targeted areas, which is over 30% more efficient than sprinklers.

 

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Get inspired with ideas for every aspect of your yard with ezhome on Pinterest.

Kitchen Remodel — getting started on the kitchen of your dreams

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The kitchen is the heart of the home and the center of family life, from the daily bustle of meals to holiday preparations. And as the heart — it gets a workout.

That’s why a kitchen remodel is at the top of so many homeowners’ wish lists. And while updating your kitchen takes some work and commitment, it can pay off in both the day-to-day enjoyment of your home and increased value. According to the National Association of Realtors, “a significant portion of kitchen remodeling costs may be recovered by the value the project brings to your home” — typically around 67% of initial project costs, according to the 2015 Remodeling Impact Report.

Here are some tips to start turning your dream kitchen into a reality.

Plan, and Plan Again

Given the expense and inconvenience of a kitchen remodel, it’s not something you’re going to want to do often. The key to a kitchen you’ll be happy with over the years lies not only in how it looks, but also in how you’ll use it.

What’s your kitchen style? Do you entertain often and need a lot of flexibility?

Do you like quick access to kitchen tools, or do you prefer to have everything out of sight?

Should an island be strictly functional or a place for family and friends to congregate?

Think about how you move in the space when it comes to the essential triangle of cooking: stove, refrigerator, and sink. Many cooks like to have these three essentials no more than a few steps from each other, so they’re not rushing across the room for that extra ingredient.

Consider your Budget

Even with a generous budget, you’ll likely have to make choices based on cost because when it comes to options for the kitchen, the sky’s the limit, from cabinetry and appliances at all price points to extras like a kitchen island, pantry, breakfast nook, or window seat.

If you’ve having trouble balancing your desires with your budget, there are strategies for keeping your costs in check.

Reality check your appliances Be realistic about what you need and will actually use for appliances. How often do you use all four burners on your stove? If the answer is “not much,” will you really make use of six? Better ergonomics will enhance your experience of cooking more than unused features.

Keep the bones If you can live with where your sink and appliances are, leave them there. Moving pipes will drive up costs.

Renew not replace Instead of replacing your cabinets, consider a fresh coat of paint and new hardware. A professionally done paint job can have them looking good as new, and replacing cabinets and hardware typically counts for 30% of a remodel budget. A little online browsing of Before & After kitchen remodels might convince you of the power of well-chosen paint colors and knobs.

Get your materials in place Make sure you’ve secured all of your materials before you get started. You don’t want to find out that the sink of your dreams is backordered once your old sink has been pulled out or have to scramble for a more expensive solution than you bargained for. Making your decisions and getting the materials in hand is a good way to avoid over-budget surprises.

Get the most out of your kitchen at any budget with ezhome’s experienced and insured remodeling team. Request a free quote.

NEW! Financing available for projects over $3,500. To learn more, email specials@ezhome.com or call 650-265-6662.

YOUR HOME, MADE EASY.

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Find Kitchen and Bath inspiration with ezhome on Pinterest.

How to Hardscape

patio shutterstock_150192455 copyLandscaping isn’t just about plants. It’s about mixing softscape materials (grass, shrubs, flowers, trees, mulch) with hardscape materials (concrete, brick, stone, tile) to define space and create contrasts.

Landscape designers turn to hardscape for both functionality and visual interest, from driveways and steps, to patios and pathways. It’s the interplay of hard and soft that really makes a yard special.

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Just because a feature of your home is necessary doesn’t mean it should be uninspired. With a little imagination, even a driveway can be transformed into something beautiful that boosts curb appeal.

Try concrete that’s divided into panels, allowing a green or flowering ground cover or loose stones in between. Or explore the range of color tints available beyond the standard sidewalk gray. Concrete can also be stamped with decorative designs or even patterns that mimic brick and stone — but with lower maintenance and greater durability.

Carve Out Space

Just like with an open floor plan inside, setting aside more intimate areas with furniture and decorating choices can make a space more usable, no matter the size. This principle works just as well outside, and some of the most dramatic transformations are in small yards or nooks and side areas that before felt unusable.

Define a space in your yard for entertaining. It doesn’t have to be immediately outside your backdoor either. You can create separate areas for eating, lounging with friends, or even whiling away the hours around a fire pit.

Create paths that connect distinct areas of your yard, or separate different plantings, or use a path to draw the eye to a specific place.

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Have an existing patio that could use a refresh? ezhome can help with pressure washing and sealing.

Not Just Under Your Feet

Hardscape can go vertical too. Think benches, decorative walls, and sleek, modern planters.

Go Green

Using hardscape panels and low-water ground cover, mulch, and drought-tolerant plantings is a great way to decrease your lawn and water use without losing anything in usability or beauty.

And in a driveway, using panels of concrete or other paving with open, permeable areas of ground cover or loose stones allows rainwater to go into ground where it can be useful, instead of letting it run off into the street where it gathers contaminants from asphalt that can make their way into nearby bodies water.

Don’t let the season get away from you. With hardscaping, you need to plan ahead. So, if you want to be sitting out on that patio come summer, now is the time to get it put in.

Get the patio, path, driveway or other hardscape project you’ve been wanting. ezhome can help. Get a free quote.

YOUR HOME, MADE EASY.

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Find hardscape design inspiration with ezhome on Pinterest.

 

Mulch — the Little Garden Superhero

mulch shutterstock_429831499 copyHiding in plain sight like so many little Clark Kents, those mild-mannered bits of bark are the un-thanked eco-superheroes of the garden.

Got weeds? Big water bills? Shrubs and planters that look a mess?

This is a job for… Mulch.

Defeats invading weeds

Mulch keeps invading weeds at bay by denying their seeds access to sunshine. A good thick coating of mulch around your plantings allows what you want in your yard to flourish, while keeping out what you don’t.

Rescues moisturemulch shutterstock_424136419 copy

Mulch conserves valuable moisture in your soil. Not using any more water than necessary is a priority for the environment and household budgets, especially in the coming dry months. Mulch protects the water in your soil so less will be lost to evaporation, and it insulates the roots from extreme heat.

Aids soil quality

Made from bark and wood chips, mulch will decompose over time. But even after the mulch breaks down, its positive impact lives on by contributing nutrients to the soil. With every fresh layer of mulch, you’re making your yard a healthier place for plants to thrive.

Boosts curb appeal

When you look at a well-kept yard, you may not always notice the mulch itself, but you do notice how much nicer and neater everything looks. It’s a visual unifier, providing a color contrast with greenery and flowers and making them stand out even more.

Let ezhome help you get the benefits of mulch in your yard.

YOUR HOME, MADE EASY.

Give $50, Get $50 Got a friend or neighbor who could benefit from some help around their home and yard? Invite them to join ezhome. When someone you invited purchases a service from ezhome, you’ll each get $50 in credits.

Find garden inspiration with ezhome on Pinterest.