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When NOT to Do It Yourself!


When to call a professional for your home improvement projects
The move went well and your new home is perfect - except for a few little projects you have in mind. Some of them you can do yourself, like painting the bathroom. Others are more challenging, like installing a new exterior door. Do you accept the challenge and start shopping for a door, or should you hire a professional? Before you get in over your head, ask yourself these questions.

Do I have the time?
Many projects take weeks rather than days, especially if you're doing it yourself in your spare time. If you're planning to change out kitchen cabinets or countertops, know that your kitchen could be out of commission for a while. Measure the inconvenience against the cost of hiring a professional installer.

Do I have the right tools?
Rather than look at it as an opportunity to add to your tool collection, consider what special tools you'll need for the project. For example, installing a tile backsplash or floor calls for a tile saw. If you have more than one tile project, the saw is a good investment. If not, you might be better off calling a professional and using your tool money for one that will get more use.

Do I have the experience?
It’s true. There are lots of books that tell you how to do things. However, some projects are easier than others. Painting the bathroom requires little more than a bucket of paint, a brush and some time for prep and cleanup. Installing a hardwood floor calls for more, including knowing how to use power saws, nailers and sanders. Before you invest a lot of time in trial and error, consider calling a professional.

Since you just moved into the neighborhood, you might not know who to call for a reliable professional installation. Ask your neighbors or check with the experts at your local home improvement center. Many times, the folks who sell you the products can also help you with a licensed, insured installer. They can probably help you with financing, too.

Here are some home improvement projects that could benefit from a professional installer:

  • Exterior doors
  • Garage doors
  • Garage door openers
  • Roofing
  • Siding
  • Storage buildings
  • Stand-by generators
  • Water heaters and windows
  • Carpet
  • Tile
  • Hardwood and laminate flooring
  • Vinyl flooring
  • Kitchen cabinets
  • Kitchen countertops
  • Window treatments

Captain Wayne's Real Estate Tips




Captain Wayne’s Real Estate Tips





When you need to or want to sell your home, who will understand exactly what you’re going through?  Your local real estate agent knows about all the positives and negatives that can be associated with selling your home.


Perhaps you’re under the pressure of selling because of an unpleasant circumstance like divorce.  Being overwhelmed by the issues that are forcing you to sell can sometimes cloud your judgment when it comes to making decisions about the real estate transaction.  Place yourself in the capable hands of a qualified real estate professional who will coordinate the smoothest transaction possible.


Maybe you have other concerns about selling, or about looking ahead to your upcoming home-buying experience.  You want a safe neighborhood, or maybe you want privacy and seclusion.  You want the most house you can get for the money, but maybe you’re not sure what you can afford.  You made several improvements to your current home, but maybe you worry about pricing yourself out of the market.


Be sure to fully explain all of your anxieties and your desires to the agent, who is trained to handle the ups and downs, and who genuinely cares about helping you through a sometimes complicated and confusing process.  Even if you’re not sure what you want or need, the agent can offer solid information and guidance.  You deserve nothing less!



"Success is counted sweetest by those who never succeed."
- Emily Dickinson

Captain Wayne's Weekly Real Estate Tips!

Top 10 Fix-Ups to Help Sell Your House

From curbside to the inside, show your home at its best

When you're ready to sell your home, make sure potential buyers see it at its best. Here are the top ways to fix up the appearance of your home without investing a lot of money. A little time and effort now will pay big dividends at closing.

1.  Landscaping
Trim the grass and make sure all flowerbeds are freshly mulched and free of weeds. Prune overgrown shrubs, especially if they're hiding windows or blocking the entryway.

2.  Gutters and Fences
Reinforce sagging gutters and straighten crooked fences. Make sure the gutters are cleared of obstructions and the soil isn't washed out around downspouts. A quick power washing will brighten fences.

3.  Driveway and Walkways
Clear away clutter like bikes, tools and toys. Use weed killer on grass and weeds that sprout in pavement cracks. Keep edges neat with a weed eater or edger.

4.  Front Door
Freshen the door and trim with a new coat of paint. Tighten loose doorknobs, oil squeaky hinges and make sure the doorbell works. Clean any furniture or outside decorations. Add a colorful potted plant or a new doormat.

5.  Inside Entry
Shampoo the rug or scrub and wax the floor. Add a fresh area rug and make sure it has a nonskid surface for safety. Hang a mirror to make your entry look larger and brighter.

6.  Kitchen
Set a warm, inviting mood by keeping countertops free of clutter and adding decorative canisters or a scented candle. Clean out the refrigerator, degrease the oven, wipe down cabinet doors and keep the sink shining.

7.  Bathrooms
Make sure your bathrooms sparkle. Clear countertops of unnecessary clutter. Replace discolored or damaged caulking. Fix dripping faucets and leaky toilets.

8.  Closets
Organize the contents to make your closets appear larger. Donate unwanted items to charity and store what's left in stackable plastic totes to maintain a neat, tidy appearance.

9.  Garage, Basement and Attic
This is the time to sort through all the junk and decide what to keep and what to give away. Use easy-to-assemble storage shelves to stow tools and sporting goods; wall hangers for garden hose, blowers and other equipment.

10.  Lighting
Replace burned out bulbs and clean fixtures, inside and out, to get rid of dead bugs and cobwebs. Consider replacing dated fixtures in the most visible locations. Install indoor track lighting to highlight artwork and open drapes and blinds to let in natural light. Outside use landscape lighting to accentuate architectural features.

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