Real Estate, in a round about way.

I had totally forgotten that I had started a blog. Well I have kicked myself and will now get it in gear. I will try to write about Real Estate, in a round about way. Not trying to jam my listings down anyone’s throat.

Have you outgrown your home? Has your home outgrown you? As a licensed Real Estate Broker in Oregon, it’s obvious I would like to sell you a new home. But sometimes buying just isn’t going to happen. So, what can we do to help our problem with home size?
Let’s look at storage options. Now anyone can go to Walmart or Lowe’s and buy storage containers. But what do the really creative homeowners do?
Do you need room for a home office? I know I do. What about some of these ideas:

Office in a box?

Office in a box?






What do you think?


12000 NE Honey Ln.  Newberg Or 97132

12000 NE Honey Ln. Newberg Or 97132

Listed at $430,000

Listed at $430,000

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Aug 12th 2012

Fads from the 1980’s & 1990’s to Remove Before Selling

By | At Home23 hours ago


Totally 1980’s: dense floral wallpaper, brass    fixtures and a Jacuzzi tub. By Linda Merrill, Networx

There is no question that decorative fashion and trends come and go. The hottest trends today will start to fade in a year or so and by 2025 and beyond most will be looking tired and out of date. When you are selling your house, “old” and “out of date” are not good messages to be sending. While intellectually we all understand that the furnishings are not staying and most decorating such as paint or wall coverings can be changed fairly easily, our emotional brains take over when evaluating a property. When we see things we don’t like because they seem old, dingy or outdated we start wondering more about the things we can’t see and how old they might be as well.

  Today’s empty-nesters were in their “up and coming years” during the 80’s and 90’s, when careers were settling in, families were growing and homes were purchased and decorated. In the intervening decades, those freshly decorated spaces have aged, and quite frankly, they haven’t aged very well. Here’s a list of the seven biggest offenders of 1980’s and 1990’s home decorating that sellers should consider removing or replacing when preparing the house for market:


1) Dense floral wallpapers and fabrics: For a long time, wallpapers were actually quite taboo in home decorating, specifically stemming from papers used in the 1960’s to the 1980’s. One of the biggest design trends in the 1980’s were dense floral wallpapers with the pattern carrying over to the fabrics on the windows and furnishings. Nothing says the 1980’s faster than a riot of roses coming at you from all sides. Slipcovering the furniture or replacing the wallpaper will relieve the overwhelming feeling of age.


2) Wallpaper borders: Along with floral wallpapers was the heavy use of decorative wallpaper borders, which were applied at the ceiling, as a chair rail or on top of the baseboard, sometimes all three at a time. As homes became larger during the period, we were seeing less fine detail such as crown moldings or paneling. Paper borders were used as a cheap and cheerful alternative but aren’t very much in use today. It is best to remove all the borders and simply paint the walls.


3) Overwhelming pattern and texture: In the 1980’s and 1990s, we saw a lot of mixed patterns and colors in our interiors. There was a lot of visual stimulation going on. This can include lots of different fabrics used in a single room, the use of mixed decorative tiles in kitchens and bathrooms and even the ubiquitous sponge painted walls. Too much pattern is overly stimulating and we don’t know where to look when faced with it and buyers may be less likely to spend time in a room that is too visually cluttered. Today’s style tends to be simpler with fewer colorful and textural elements. Replacing most of the older materials with solid colors, or simpler patterns will bring things up to date.


4) Brass hardware: Unless it’s of exceptionally high quality, brass fittings such as doorknobs, drawer pulls, hinges, electrical back plates and faucets do not stand the test of time. Most become discolored and even pitted or rusty, depending on the location. While we have seen a recent spike in the use of brass or gold-toned metallics in the home, the safest choices remain matte or shiny stainless steel, nickel or chrome fixtures and knobs, simple ceramic pulls and electrical plates that match the wall coverings. Most of these are easy to switch out and will make a world of difference.


For an example of how much of a difference replacing outdated brass fixtures makes, check out this post detailing the overhaul of a 1980’s kitchen. Note the brass chandelier; then note how much more modern and attractive the new light fixture is.


5) Overstuffed furniture: In the category of “bigger-is-better” was the overabundance of sofas, loveseats and chairs-and-a-half with the really fat rounded arms. Not only are these now out-of-fashion, they simply take up too much room in a space thus reducing the feeling of spaciousness in even the most generous rooms. Again, not the impression one wants to be projecting to the homebuyer. It’s rarely even possible to purchase slipcovers for these gargantuan pieces. If you’re selling, it is time to toss or donate and either purchase new (to be used in your new home) or rent some suitably subdued replacements.


6) Wall-to-wall mirrors: Mirrors are a fantastic way to create a feeling of spaciousness and light in a room (when used well). However, the days of floor to ceiling mirrored closet sliders are pretty much over. It’s best to remove the mirrors and repaint the doors underneath, or replace the doors altogether.


7) Carpet in the bathroom: One wonders really how this was ever popular, but for a while carpeted bathrooms were done. The first rule of home staging is that cleanliness sells and there is no way that a twenty-year old wall-to-wall in a bathroom will ever look or feel clean. Today’s bathrooms are spa-like in their Spartan cleanliness with little use of fabric at all. Rip out the carpet; new linoleum is a better choice if wood or tile isn’t in the budget.


Linda Merrill is an interior designer who works with Boston-area painting contractors and Boston-area remodeling contractors.

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Did you love school? Never wanted to leave? How about living in one?
How about this one in North Plains Oregon?


Shadybrook School House in North Plains

Call me if interested 503-412-8100 Duckett Realty

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Shadybrook School House in North Plains

Shadybrook School House in North Plains

Call me if interested 503-412-8100 Duckett Realty

Image | Posted on by | 1 Comment

Aug 3rd 2012

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Aug 3rd 2012

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Aug 3rd 2012

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Aug 2nd 2012

There really is a Spot of Gold at the End of the Rainbow -C.Hillestad 7/19/12
Let me help you find your new home at the end of the rainbow.
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July 31st 2012

Love Knows No Gender Difference

By By Barbara Bronson Gray HealthDay  Reporter, HealthDay Jul. 31, 2012 11:14AM PDTJul. 31, 2012 11:14AM
TUESDAY, July 31 (HealthDay News) — Think married men and women  show their love in vastly different ways? Not necessarily.

Although popular culture reinforces the stereotype that there’s a  gender gap when it comes to expressing affection, few studies have  actually tested the notion.

A small new study suggests, however, that men are just as likely as  women to be openly affectionate. The study, which also identified some  differences between the sexes, was published recently in the journal Personality and Social Psychology Bulletin.

“Men and women are actually more similar in the ways they express love  than they are different,” said study author Elizabeth Schoenfeld, a  researcher at the University of Texas in Austin. “But we also learned  that, even in the wake of feminism, wives express love by being less  assertive and more accommodating, while husbands show love by initiating  sex or sharing activities together.”

The study involved 168 couples in first marriages living in rural  central Pennsylvania. Data was collected in initial interviews, followed  by telephone interviews in which husbands and wives separately reported  activities and interactions. The interviews occurred within two months of  when each couple was married and then annually, with a final set of  interviews conducted after 13 years of marriage.

At the conclusion of the study, 105 of the original couples were still  married, three were widowed and 56 were divorced. Almost all of the  participants were white, and more than half had a high school  education.

Contrary to some common gender stereotypes, the research showed that  the more men loved their wives, the more likely they were to be  affectionate. They were also more likely to involve their spouses in their  leisure activities and in household chores. Love did not, however, mean a  husband did more chores around the house or was more eager to relieve his  wife of the chores for which she was responsible.

The researchers found, in general, that a husband’s love may create an  environment in which the couple does a variety of things together. The  more husbands loved their wives, the more likely they were to initiate  sex. For wives, though, increased love for their husbands meant they were  actually less likely to make the first move.

Why would that be? “If a wife is feeling unloved, it could be that she  is attempting to kick-start the marriage,” Schoenfeld said.

Wives’ love was less associated with interest in joint activities, and  relied more on expressions of love. More love also was associated with  greater accommodation to husbands’ moods and needs.

“Biting their tongues, letting men initiate sex more often, showing a  willingness to allow men to assert themselves a little more — this is  what we saw when women were more in love,” Schoenfeld explained.

Some experts believe differences between men and women in marriage are  typically overemphasized.

“There aren’t too many real gender and sex differences between men and  women on the whole,” said Stevie Yap, a researcher in the department of  psychology at Michigan State University in East Lansing. “If you look at  the overall research, gender differences don’t usually hold up.”

Yap, who recently published research on happiness and marriage in the Journal of Research and Personality, found that although matrimony  doesn’t tend to make people happier than they were when they were single,  it appears to protect against declines in happiness that can occur in  adulthood.

Yap said only a few gender differences actually have been shown by  research to be real: men tend to be physically stronger and more sexually  active, and have a greater tendency toward aggression. He said that even  these three characteristics, however, can be affected by socialization and  experience.

Schoenfeld, too, thinks differences between the sexes have been  exaggerated.

“Don’t be fooled by popular stereotypes,” she said. “Men are not from  Mars and women are not from Venus. We are all on planet Earth.”

More information

For more on marriage, visit the National Healthy Marriage Resource Center.

Copyright © 2012 HealthDay. All rights reserved.

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July 6th 2011

*Note: This was written by a Yahoo! contributor. Do you have a personal finance story that you’d like to share? Sign up with the Yahoo! Contributor Network to start publishing your own finance articles.

Household spending is a complicated aspect of nearly every budget. If only there were a way to use products already in the pantry to help alleviate this monthly strain. Well, good news: There is! Many items you currently have in your home can serve more than their original purpose. The following are a few I use regularly.

The mesh bags onions and potatoes come in from the grocery store generally end up in the garbage can. Instead of tossing them, I save a few and use their naturally abrasive texture to scrub pots and pans. The bags are far more gentle on hands than S.O.S pads filled with chemicals.

Paper towels are ridiculously expensive. Many people have moved to cleaning with old washcloths or a sponge, and that is certainly a great alternative. However, I am one of those people who prefer to throw away things I have used to wipe the toilet. If you are like me, try using cheap coffee filters. They clean better than paper towels (especially mirrors), and are way cheaper.

Speaking of cleaning, “going green” is in these days, so why not hop on that bandwagon for some of your kitchen and bathroom cleansers? Simple ingredients like baking soda splashed with vinegar are terrific for cleaning showers and toilets, and they’re especially great at opening drains. If your bathtub drains are clogged with hair, replace the Drano with a few shakes of baking soda, a splash or three of vinegar, and a kettleful of boiling water. These products are generally in the pantry already, and when combined they make amazing cleaning agents.

I love baking soda. It has so many uses. Another of my favorite tips is to pour about half a cup of baking soda into a small dish, add 12 drops of essential oil (or your favorite scented oil from Bath & Body Works), and place the dish wherever a little freshening is needed. I like to put a dish in the car after I’ve forgotten to bring in a cup of coffee and the spoiled cream has left a distasteful odor.

While I’m discussing cleaning, I would be remiss in not bringing attention to the most amazing corn cleaner ever. I love corn on the cob, but I hate the corn silk that can seem impossible to remove. Now I just use an unused toothbrush to brush the corn. The bristles do a great job of cleaning out all the silk, and I don’t have to spend half an hour per ear of corn.

Finally, the easiest of them all. Outdoor activities like concerts or picnics can be less comfortable if you are sitting on a blanket in soggy grass. I like to keep a cheap shower curtain liner with my picnic blanket for these occasions. The liner keeps the blanket dry, and my family and I no longer have to worry about wet bottoms after our picnic.

It’s surprising how many things you already own that can serve multiple purposes. Try these, and venture into the realm of repurposing. As you find even more new uses for old objects, share your knowledge with all of your friends.

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