Is your kitchen a headache for you?  Thinking on a style upgrade?  Many people want to make their kitchens more comfortable to be in, but don’t have the first clue where to start.  Here’s a few ideas.

Hide your garbage can – One of the first projects that you can undertake is moving your kitchen garbage can to an out-of-sight place, like under your sink.  This is a simple project that you can undertake yourself, and will help simplify your kitchen’s look, on top of increasing your floor space.  You can also take this as an opportunity to consider whether or not you’d like to try your hand at going green.  Consider making a separate hidden bin under your sink for recycling.

Under-cabinet lighting – Under-cabinet lighting is an easy way to add some ambiance to your kitchen.  You can install strip-lighting under your cabinets yourself, or hire a contractor to install a few.  This will serve to highlight certain aspects of your kitchen, which can’t really be done by relying solely on overhead lighting.

Tile backsplash – Installing tile in the area between your cabinets and cupboards will make cleanup nice and easy, while adding a bit more style to your kitchen.

Solid surface countertops – This is one of the big remodels, but it is also one of the most beneficial.  If you live in a home with laminate countertops, then it may be time to consider upgrading to something a little more style-conscious and useful, like granite or marble.

For more ideas, visit http://www.houzz.com/photos/kitchen.

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Who wouldn’t like to pay off the mortgage early? Getting rid of mortgage debt will allow you the security and the psychological benefit of owning your home free and clear. There are lots of ways to accomplish these goals. Here are some suggestions on ways to get rid of your mortgage debt. Compare the options and do what works best for you.

1. Add more money to your monthly payment. This will help pay down the principal balance shortening the length of your loan. When you pay more on your principal is gets lower, and the lower your principal gets, the more every payment from then on is applied to principal, as less goes to cover interest expense.

2. Refinance. Refinance your mortgage to 10, 15 or 20 years. Your payments will be higher on a 15-year loan, but often the rate is lower and the loan is paid off much quicker. If you are afraid to take out a 15- year loan take out a 30-year loan, but make payments as if you had a 15-year loan.

3. Make biweekly payments. Most banks have a biweekly payment plan. Since there are 52 weeks in the year if you pay half your regular mortgage payment every other week, you’ll have made 26 half-payments, or 13 payments.

There are options when it comes to owning your home free and clear. Just decide which one works for you and be on your way to being mortgage free.

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Wilmington, MA:

This Single-Family in Wilmington, MA recently sold for $619,900.

This is a Colonial style home and features 8 total rooms, 3 full baths, 1 half bath, 4 bedrooms, 0.58 acres, and was sold by
Janet Laughead – CENTURY 21 Commonwealth

Here are some other properties available in Wilmington,MA you may like:

Wilmington
$540,000
Wilmington
$529,900
Wilmington
$519,900
Wilmington
$523,000



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Protecting your home from burglars may seem like a no-brainer to some. Unfortunately for many homeowners, it takes an actual break-in for them to turn their attention to securing their homes against intruders. Here are a few preemptive steps that you can take in order to put your mind at ease.

1. Install a security system.
Many modern homes come equipped with some form of security alarm. However, if you find yourself purchasing a home that doesn’t already have a security system in place, you should consider your options for outfitting your home with one. There are many different types of security systems to choose from, and picking the most expensive plan doesn’t always mean you are getting the most protection for your dollar. If you live in a rural area, for instance, focusing on a deterrent-based form of home security might better suit you than one that places police response as their most-prized feature. If it will take 15 minutes or more for a police officer to respond to your property, then you may need to consider a plan that places emphasis on loud alarms, or even a form of motion-sensor lighting to deter a break in. TopConsumerReviews.com has compiled an up-to-date list of some of the most comprehensive security plans on the market today.
http://www.topconsumerreviews.com/home-security/
2. Keep your doors and windows locked.
Many break-ins don’t actually require anything being “broken” in order for an intruder to gain access to your home. Keeping your windows and doors locked may seem like an obvious step, but you’d be surprised at the number of burglaries and home invasions that occur from homeowners ignoring this very practical safety measure. Also, if your home doesn’t already come equipped with them, consider purchasing deadbolts for all of the exit doors in your home. Additionally, consider installing a peephole in your door if you don’t already have one. Sometimes, all it takes is opening your door in response to a knock that can set off a home invasion. Never open your door to a stranger unless you are comfortable and secure in doing so. Don’t feel foolish asking for credentials when opening your door to someone claiming to work for the water or gas company, either. Many times, a burglar can shut off certain things in your home from the outside to pave the way for knocking at your door, claiming to be there to help restore your services.
3. Alert a trusted neighbor when you go on vacation.
Having a trusted neighbor pick up your mail and newspapers will give your home the appearance of being occupied, and will take the attention away from the wandering eyes of a potential burglar. Also, if the neighbor sees suspicious activity, it will give you an extra line of defense in the event that your security system and safety measures happen to fail.
4. Leave an electronic appliance on that is visible through a window.
Many burglars prefer to do their work in your home while you are away. Leaving a television on in a room, or a light on in a window visible from the outside will give them the impression that your house is currently occupied. Many former burglars have stated that they avoid break-ins where there is an obvious risk of coming into contact with the homeowner.
5. Keep track of your spare keys.
Putting a spare key to your home under the mat isn’t the smartest option, and is in fact one of the first places many burglars check in order to ensure they can get into your house quickly and quietly. Consider hiding your spare key under a rock, away from the front door. This will ensure a tougher hunt for the potential burglar.
6. Landscaping.
Many people haven’t considered landscaping being an enabler of home invasions, but many landscaping options we use for our privacy concerns can actually end up HELPING a potential burglar gain access to your home. Privacy bushes and fences outside your first-floor bathroom window might seem like a good idea at first, until you consider that you are also giving a potential burglar an easily concealed place to work on entry into your home. Consider more sensible options, like window tinting or decorative cling wraps instead. If you must have a privacy hedge, consider one that loses it’s concealment capabilities when viewed from the front yard. This will ensure that your neighbor cannot see you get out of the shower, but would severely limit the amount of concealment a burglar could take advantage of.
For more information on how to secure your home, as well as tips for protecting yourself against home invasions, please visit the following links.

http://home.howstuffworks.com/home-improvement/household-safety/security/home-security-tips.htm
http://www.statefarm.com/aboutus/_pressreleases/2010/burglary_is_probably_the_most_preventable_crime-az.asp
http://www.crimedoctor.com/homeinvasion.htm

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