How to Safely Remove Wallpaper

You have been slowly trying to update your home to become what you have always envisioned. You have just selected your home’s new flooring, and it looks perfect! You definitely think it added value and charm to your space, but there is one thing that is still bothering you: your wallpaper. It is outdated, and you would like to switch over to regular paint without damaging the wall. Wallpaper can be challenging to remove if done improperly, but we are here to teach you how to remove it the correct way. Let’s take a look! 

Supply List:

  • Hot Water
  • Wallpaper Scoring Tool
  • Fabric Softener
  • Spray Bottle
  • Putty Knife
  • Bucket
  • Dye-Free Dish Soap
  • Sponge
  • Drying towel
  • Damp towel 

1. Use your hands.

The first step is to try and remove as much wallpaper as you can by peeling it off yourself. Note, this will not get all the wallpaper off, and there may be large sections of wallpaper left after this.

2.  Get out your wallpaper scoring tool.

You can pick up a wallpaper scorer at any home renovation store. Once you have your wallpaper scorer, you will go over the wallpaper with it. The wallpaper score cuts tiny holes throughout the wallpaper helping to separate your wall from the wallpaper’s base.

3.   Mix your solution.

DIY Wallpaper Solution is made up of hot water and fabric softener. Combine these two ingredients into your spray bottle. You will need to put the same amount of fabric softener with the same amount of hot water. Mix together small batches so that the water stays continually hot.

4.   Begin to spray the wallpaper with your solution.

Spray the DIY Wallpaper Solution over your wallpaper, but keep in mind that the wallpaper will only stay wet for 15 minutes. You will only have those 15 minutes to scrape off the sections that you just sprayed.

5.   Begin scrapping.

Let the solution sit only for a couple of minutes then grab your putty knife. The putty knife will be used to remove your wallpaper. Start from the bottom corner and work your way up the wall.

6.   Remove any leftover adhesive.

In order to remove the adhesive, you will need to mix together 1 TBSP of dish soap with hot water. The water should be extremely hot, but you will be dipping your hand into the bucket so be cautious when doing so. Begin to wipe your walls with your soaked sponge. The sponge will begin to remove any leftover adhesive from the wallpaper.

7.   Go over the wall one last time.

Take your damp towel and go over the wall one last time. After the wall is rinsed off, go over the wall with your drying towel. Make sure to dry off the walls entirely before finishing your project.

After you have successfully removed your wallpaper, you can begin to paint your walls and have the home of your dreams. 

Genius Ways to Light up The Night

Outdoor lighting is essential, especially during the summertime and holidays. Choosing the appropriate outdoor lighting for your home can become challenging and overwhelming. Before you pick and choose randomly, we want to make sure you know about all your outdoor lighting options.

Genius Ways to Light up The Night:

1. Tiki Torches.

These are perfect for outdoor parties and gathering because they embody the vibes of the islands. Plus, you can get insect repellant tiki torches to help discourage unwanted party crashers.

2. Chandelier.

If you are looking to bring indoor beauty to the outdoors, incorporating a chandelier may just be the perfect thing for you. Chandeliers are exquisitely beautiful and draw attention to the lighting by making a bold statement. If you have an outdoor dining area, incorporating a chandelier can add the perfect finishing touches.

3. Step Lights.

Do you find yourself stumbling to get inside once it gets dark out? If you do, adding lights to your steps can be a huge lifesaver. You will never have to wonder “where do the steps end” ever again!

4. Lanterns.

From paper to glass lanterns, you have a wide selection of styles to choose from when designing your backyard. Lanterns add a warm glow and are very subtle in their beauty. Do not be afraid to hang them from trees, posts or a string above your backyard.

5. Candles.

Want to create a romantic night? Incorporate some candles throughout your backyard’s dining area to set the tone for the perfect night. Candles add a warmth that many light sources cannot master.

6. Stringed Lights.

We are obsessed with Edison bulbs because they are energy-efficient and stylish. Add stringed Edison bulbs throughout your backyard to create a vintage look.

7. Fire Pit.

Fire pits add the perfect touch to outdoor gatherings. They provide a warm meeting place on chilly nights as well as a stylish addition to any backyard. 

Whether you are preparing for the holidays or the summertime, it is never too late to focus on your home’s lighting. Thanks for reading! 

How to Make a Space Appear Larger (Part 2)

Ideally, we would all love to live in large and roomy space. While living in small spaces has its challenges, it does not have to be difficult. To make the most out of a small room, you will have to make a conscious effort to trick the eye. In the second part of this series, we will discuss additional strategies you can employ to expand a small space visually. Let’s take a look!

All White Everything

Everyone knows that color sets the mood of the room. It also has the power to make a room feel spacious or cramped. According to experts, white has reflective properties that make it ideal to use in small rooms. White will help make a room feel airy, calm and clean. To open up a room, paint the ceilings and walls the same shade of white. Using a bright white will allow more attention to be placed on the architect of the room and it will blur the line between the ceiling and the wall.

Lighter-hued colors such as baby blue and light green can create a similar effect; however, steer clear of dark colors that will close in small spaces.

Clear Out Clutter

Of course, when working with small spaces, the key is to maximize space; therefore, you will want to clear out clutter. Get rid of unwanted junk and items that do not belong in the space. Be sure to scale down on the furniture used in this specific room. Remember, when furnishing small spaces, it is all about proportion. You will want to select furniture that is size appropriate. Large and heavy pieces will take up too much space. If you desire to implement a large statement piece in your design scheme, opt for something that does not take up floor space such as artwork.

Keep It Simple

Be sure to keep the design simple. Busy color palettes, excessive accessories, and furniture will lend to a cluttered feeling. Scaling down your design will create a more open feel. Stick to a single color on the walls, group your knick-knacks together for a unified look and use one accent piece on the wall.  A simple yet elegant design is well served in tiny spaces.

If you missed part one of the series, be sure to check it out here. Thanks for reading!

How to Make a Small Space Appear Larger

Small spaces are cozy and full of charm; however, it may be hard to see their character when you have clutter filling your space. As a result, the cluttered space may feel cramped or even claustrophobic. By learning a few techniques, you can fully maximize your small spaces. In this article series, we will discuss how you can harness the power of light, color, and traffic to enjoy the small rooms in your home. Let’s take a look!

Mirror, Mirror

While we are used to having mirrors in our bathrooms and bedrooms, they can play a much more significant role in the home. Did you know that mirrors can be used to visually expand the space of a room? Strategic placement of mirrors can create an optical illusion that helps make a cramped space appear more spacious. Here are some easy ways you can use mirrors to open up a tiny room:

  • Double Your Narrow Kitchen – Is your kitchen feeling too narrow? Before you get cabin fever, install a long mirrored backsplash against the wall where the sink and countertop lay. This will instantly, fill out lean dimensions and make the space appear larger.
  • Free Standing Mirror If you are searching for a quick fix, you can purchase a large, free-standing mirror and prop it against one wall. This is an easy way to reposition the room to feel much more spacious. To pull this look off effectively, you can position furniture pieces so that they are reflected in the mirror.
  • Mirrored Tiles – You can use mirrored tiles in any room to expand the space. The great thing about mirrored tiles is that it provides a warmer feel than using a large mirror.

Let There Be Light(s)

If you are working to expand a tiny space visually, you should avoid relying on a single lighting source. A single lamp will simply cast light into the middle of the floor. Try installing multiple light sources around the room such as pendant lights, floor and table lamps to open up space.

Layering light sources will evenly spread the focus around the room. Make use of natural light by allowing as much natural light to penetrate the room as much as possible.

For more tiny room hacks, be sure to check out our next post in the series here. Thanks for reading!

Things You Must-Know Before Buying a Home

Congratulations on having the opportunity to purchase your first home. This is an exhilarating time in your life. You will hear a lot of advice from a lot of different people, and we want to share ours with you before you buy. Here are seven things we want you to know before you buy your first home:

1. Make a List of Wants.

Realistically, you will not be able to get a home with everything on your want list, but you will definitely want to have a list of things that are important to you. Make a list of your wants and use it while you search for a home. 

2. Set a Budget.

When searching for a home, it is essential to set a realistic budget, and you will want to stick to that budget. Try to check off your needs before you check off your wants, and you may find something that fits well into your budget.

3. Get a Trusted Real Estate Agent.

Your real estate agent will be your best friend during the house hunt. Be sure to find a trustworthy and reliable agent. Ask family and friends for their referral to find the best agent.

4. Understand Your Mortgage.

You will want to find a mortgage with reasonable rates, and you will also want to apply for pre-approval before you start. Just keep in mind that your pre-approval is not you committing but it is imperative to have in order to put down an offer.

5. Gage The Competition.

It is essential to know who you are going up against during a bid. You will want to be aware that other buyers are looking at the place and you will want to be assertive when the right house comes along.

6. Have a Professional Inspection Done.

We always recommend that buyers have a professional inspection done before purchasing their home. It can be an essential factor to the house hunt. 

7. Explore Various Options and Stay Updated.

Be sure to keep your eye out for potential buys. You will want to be constantly updated with the newest homes for sale. Ask your agent to send you listings to make sure that you make a well-informed choice at the end.

We hope you enjoyed these tips. Be sure to check back weekly for more expert advice. Thanks for reading!

How to Design Your Home Office

Whether you work from home, are studying for school, or just like a room to get away and read, a home office is an excellent addition for your home. Designing a room for functionality, low distractions, and a classy look can be a bit challenging at first, but we gathered a couple of great pointers to keep in mind while designing your office or study to keep your design theme on track. Let’s take a look!

Simple Yet Entertaining

You want your room to be simple so that you can focus on your work at hand, yet entertaining enough in design to keep the space lively. Finding a balance between comfortable to work but not too cozy that you want to sleep is essential. Try adding plants to give the room a more exciting atmosphere. Pictures are also great to add as well to add character and charisma to your design theme.

Let There Be Light

Lighting is essential in all forms of room design. Consider mirrors and a well-lit task area. Task lighting can be a lamp at a desk or a focal light that helps your mind stay on task. Natural light is ideal for making your space feel big and more open. If you are easily distracted, consider putting blinds that allow lighting in but are more visually impairing to keep you from looking outside the whole time.

Make It Attractive

Your room should make you want to return to it. If you make your room a dreary dungeon, you will never want to go there to get your work done. Add colors that attract you to the room. If you have a design theme that you love, try incorporating it into your room’s theme; however, be cognitive to keep the space functional and purpose-driven as its main priority. You do not want a room that is more distracting than useful.

Make sure you optimize your space. If you are using an extra bedroom or spare room, chances are it may not be the largest room in your home, but it will work. Be aware of the amount of space furniture may take up in the room. You want to have a comfortable amount of room to work and not feel clutter or stuffy. For more great tips and tricks, visit us at From The Floors Up. Thanks for reading!

Professional Organizational Advice for Your Home Office

If you tend to bring your work home, you understand the importance of having a fully-functioning home office. Even homeowners who work from home, enjoy the luxuries of having an office space right there. Having a home office to work from can be great, but what if your office is underused. There is a desk, sure, but you have not been able to use your office in quite some time. We totally get it and that is why we have created four organizational tips to help make your office fully-functioning by this weekend. Let’s take a look!

Four Office Organization Tips:

Systemize. Your office may be a mess when it comes to the filing systems you have created. Using an efficient filing system will change your life. A good tip is to create a color-coded system for filing. You will want to divide each personal record into a different colored category for example:

Red: Medical
Orange: Dental
Yellow: School
Green: Home
Blue: Personal
Purple: Finances

Computerize. Just imagine all the space you could save by getting rid of the physical paper copies you own. Transfer all of your paper records onto your computer by scanning the documents onto your computer. Generally, it is a good idea to keep the physical copies of significant documents, but you could have two copies just in case. After you put all of your records on your computer, you can color-code your folders to match the color categories you previously used in your filing system.

Minimize & Categorize. Try to minimize the clutter by placing your office supplies in bins inside your desk. While you are sorting through your office supplies, it is a good idea to sort through the items that you want to keep and the items you can donate. After you have placed items inside a box, you can label each box with the category of contents inside of the box (I.e., writing utensils, crafting paper, etc).

Centralize. Your home office can be at the forefront for all of your household needs. Since mail will need sorted and potentially filed, it is a good idea to create a mail station in your home office. Just place a bin on your desk for the mail that needs to be read and sorted.

We hope that these four tips will help you organize your office space quickly and efficiently. We would love to hear your thoughts below in the comment section.

How to Personalize Your Rental Space

Rental properties can be a little tricky when it comes to making it personal and geared toward your taste. With very little wiggle room, homeowners may feel trapped in a lifeless design. Fear not, we have eight genius hacks for you to make your rental property feel like home. Let’s take a look!

How to Personalize a Rental:

Graphic.

Removable wallpaper can be a total game changer in rental properties. With the option to add a graphic pattern at a moment’s notice, you can completely transform the look of your dull space.

Brighten.

Depending on your lease, you may not have the option to switch out the paint or light fixtures to a more personalized choice. When you do not have a lot of wiggle room, you have to work with what you are given. Incorporating stylish, removable light fixtures can help make the space feel more like home without breaking your contract.

Cozy.

Coziness is key. Without a comfortable environment, you will be counting the days until your lease ends. Instead, you can take advantage of the temporary space by cozying up to the idea. Incorporating soft textures like blankets, rugs, and pillows can help you enjoy your space.

Dec’d.

Decorations can make or break your space’s uniqueness. To help add personality, incorporate decor pieces that are special to you. Pictures, memorabilia, travel goods, and gifts can be stylish, unique pieces that add to your overall decor.

Fabricate.

Do not leave your windows bare this season. Instead, spruce them up with some beautiful curtains. You can even use sheer curtains to help bring more natural light into your space and open up the room.

Nature.

Bring the outdoors, indoors with beautiful plants and flowers. Fill your space with gorgeous greenery to help create a more serene, relaxing environment.

New.

Sometimes, something new will help make you feel more comfortable in the space. If you do not love your rental property yet, try finding an item that you always wanted to have. Once you incorporate it into the design, you may begin to warm up to the space.

Store.

If you are living in an apartment or studio, you may be tight on space. Help make your rental property feel more feasible by incorporating stylish organizational pieces. Dressers, cubbies, and shelving will help you find a home for all of your items while creating a clutter-free environment.

Do you have any tips of your own that you would like to share with other readers? We would love to hear your ideas below in the comment section.

Why Blue?

Interior designers are always looking for ways to change how a room feels and flows. With so many outlets for themes and styles, there are endless possibilities for designing your space. Colors are one of the most powerful influencers when it comes to setting the tone and mood for a room. One primary color that designers love to incorporate is blue. This tranquil color can really give a room a relaxed, passive vibe throughout it. Here are our top three reasons why you should consider using blue in your next room design:
 
  • Relaxed Atmosphere
Blue is the perfect color to use to set the mood for a peaceful environment. This color has a calm nature which can help the room feel more opened and tranquil. With so many shades available, such as sapphire, royal blue, navy, robin’s egg, Prussian blue, azure, and more, this color has a broad spectrum of tones and hues to choose from for your room. 
  • Cool Tone
This calming tone is perfect for transforming a room into a cooler toned atmosphere. Using blue with other cool tones or neutral colors can help obtain a more secure feeling atmosphere as well. This color can go great in a boy’s room, living room, or any room that you are looking to make a relaxing environment. Blue does not have to be used in only boy’s rooms though because it has an equal appeal to both genders. Using blue in a girl’s room as well can add character to the overall atmosphere.
  • Trustworthy
Blue is used in many commercial and residential designs today. This trustworthy color has passed the test of time and proved itself loyal in enhancing homes. Blue is known as the color of loyalty, belonging, generosity, and passivity. Using this color is a robust way to help make a powerful statement in your space and create the vibe you want. 
 
Adding blue to your space would make a significant home improvement. Blue is one of the primary colors that always stands out and transforms the design of a room. If you feel like life is too fast-paced, and you need a place to relax, add blue to help you reconnect with your home and unwind. For more great tips and tricks, visit us at From The Floors Up

Tips for Beginning The House Hunt

Buying and owning a home is an enormous responsibility. You may wish that there was just a rulebook filled with specific guidelines on how to be a homeowner. Sadly, there may not be a book that tells you everything you need to know in order to never suffer loses, but we want to help home buyers. Buying a home is a monumental step for investing in your future. We want to help you gather more information before you begin the search. Do not panic, you may currently be stressed out, but that is natural. Here is our guide to starting the house hunt:  

Step One: Get to know your finances.

It may come as a surprise, but down payments are not necessary for home buyers. Granted, putting down a down payment will reduce the amount you borrow, but it is not required. You will need to figure out your financial situation before you begin house hunting. It is essential that you have enough to pay your mortgage but also enough to pay for other bills and items. Transitioning from renting to owning is like playing a different sport. You will have all the new expenses that you did not have while renting. For example, you will have homeowners insurance, property taxes, homeowner’s association fees, etc. 

Step Two: Understand mortgage loans.

Loans, they seem great, but you end up owing money to someone so be careful. Your pre-qualification is your standard, basic financial information. You will need to understand though that they are not including your monthly expenses (gas, food, household items, savings, etc.). You will need to understand your limit because they are qualifying you from what they can see. Also, the amount you are eligible for does not mean you have to apply for that entire amount. Stick to the budget you know that you can handle. 

Step Three: There will be additional fees.

Before you can own the home, you will have to pay earnest money and closing costs. The earnest money is paid when you make an offer on the home. This money shows that you are genuine about buying the house. The earnest money is there to help the seller if you back out of the sale. If you back out, the money goes to the seller. If you buy the house, the money is deducted from your house purchase. Lastly, closing costs are approximately two-five percent of the purchasing price. 

We hope that this information helped before you begin your house hunt. For more expert advice and tips, please visit From The Floors Up.