Western Region Landscape Design Trends for 2018

Landscape design trends can be fleeting and are very much dependent personal tastes. However, the evolution of gardening habits in hot climates has led to a unique and recognizable landscaping style emerging from places like Mesa, Arizona, California, Nevada, and New Mexico. Here are some landscape design trends that have evolved from these environments and will only gain in popularity.

Native planting:

In arid climates where soil can be quite compacted, plants native to these regions are more suited to surviving on little rainfall.As water conservation is becoming a greater concern, this is an important factor when deciding what to plant in your garden.

A xeriscape, a garden or landscape designed to reduce the need for watering or irrigation, could be considered. Many might envisage a garden filled with cacti, but this is simply not the case. There are thousands of diverse species of flowering shrubs and wildflowers that come from the Western Region. Researching what blooms best nearby can lead to a thriving,more hassle-free, garden.Native planting

 Reimagining the American garden:

Although long a staple of the stereotypical American garden, the truth is that a large green lawn is not a realistic option in arid areas. Certain climates and desert landscapes often encounter water shortages. An option is to instead have smaller, short-grass meadow-like areas filled with native grasses and wildflowers.

The sharp edges of overly-manicured lawns and hedges are giving way to a more natural space. So there is no need for elaborately sculpted trees and overly full flower beds. Take advantage of natural elements such as boulders and rocks, untouched hedges, or an existing tree. A garden should have no obvious “beginning or end”.

Gardens also tend to be smaller now. Rather than having to spend years trimming back shrubs, take advantage of species of dwarf shrubs and low growing plants. The options are vast and they provide a great low-maintenance addition.American garden

An outdoor living space:

A garden should be an additional “room” of the house. The ideal outdoor living space in hot climates should provide shelter from the heat during the day whilst being cozy on cool evenings. By adding lounging and seating spaces, areas to cook, eat, or entertain, the flow between your garden and home is more seamless.

When creating an outdoor living space, balance the design with functionality. A water feature can drown out the sound of neighbors. Installing an air circulatorto your sheltered area, and a fireplace for chilly nights, will improve the quality of your outdoor time.outdoor living space


Being environmentally conscious is of growing concern to many nowadays. There are many ways you can create an eco-friendly and sustainable garden.

Energy efficient materials can be used to create outdoor areas that shield from intense daytime sun and also retain warmth after dark. Any covered walkway or patio can be constructed from clay barrel roof tiles or natural cast earth.Lower wattage outdoor lighting is also more energy-efficient, creating a more relaxing outdoor space.Sustainability

Locally sourced garden materials, as well as native and endemic plants, can not only make your garden blend more naturally with the surrounding landscape, it also greatly reduces carbon emissions.

Selecting native flowersor flowering plants will attract pollinators, such as birds and bees. Plants can be watered using “smart irrigation systems” to avoid wasting water, useful in areas that encounter water shortages.



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5 Bathroom Remodeling Tips to Increase Your Home’s Resell Value

You don’t need to have a real estate license to know that selling your home for a fair price involves a lot of “playing the game.” This means there are steps you can take before your home hits the market to increase the value of your home. The idea is to make a smart investment on the right renovation projects so that you can make a greater profit in the long run.

While real estate agents have debated which renovation ideas actually pay off, here are some tips to increase your home’s resell value by remodeling your bathroom that are known to work. Whether you’re a family looking to move or a real estate agent who loves to flip houses, these tips are sure to increase the resell value of any home.

Install a double vanity countertop space.

This is a very attractive feature for families who have to share bathroom space but probably can’t justify spending their own money to replace a perfectly working sink. These convenient fixtures provide more organization and storage space and help busy families save time in the mornings if they don’t have to fight over who gets to brush their teeth at a time. In fact, more and more prospective homeowners have cited double vanities as one of the most important features of a new home!vanity countertop space

If a replacement is needed, stick with porcelain or ceramic tiles.

Simply put, the average homeowner can’t tell the difference between high-end flooring materials and regular ceramic. Opting for simple tiles lets you save hundreds on the floor replacement while advertising a brand new floor to buyers.

ceramic tiles

Install a water-saving toilet.

Similar to double-sink countertops, a water-saving toilet is a feature that will be attractive to families even if they can’t afford to renovate a perfectly toilet out of their own pocket. The great selling point here is that this toilet will help families save on their water bills (as well as sleeping a little better at night knowing that conserving water is good for the environment).

If your prospective buyers want more specific numbers, recent studies have shown that older toilet models use 5-6 gallons of water per flush, while newer toilets use 1-2 gallons, according to WaterSense. They’ll save on the order of tens of dollars per month, which might seem small in the moment, but will definitely add up to big savings over the lifetime of the toilet.water saving toilet

Install glass shower doors.

Shower doors aren’t really any more functional than a plastic shower curtain, but they help create the illusion of a larger, more open bath space. Glass shower doors let the light and air into the bath space, which will help an average, end-of-the-day shower feel just a bit more luxurious. If you think prospective buyers would be worried about privacy, install a good lock on the bathroom door and opt for warped, distorted glass panels that aren’t as clearly see-through.

glass shower doors

Update the lighting.

People spend a lot of time in the bathroom making sure they look presentable, so good lighting around the sink and vanity area is absolutely essential. Make sure the lights are close enough to the wall, not directly overhead where a person would be standing at the sink, to avoid casting annoying shadows.bathroom lighting

Bonus: people love dimmer switches as opposed to flip switches in every room of the home, and these are relatively inexpensive to install.…

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House Remodeling – Are you considering a ranch style design?

At some point in time you will consider remodeling the house. This is the time when most of the homeowners fall in the pit of confusion. Most homeowners have the complaints that their home style is pretty boring. There are many ways in which this element of boredom can be eliminated.

Ranch homes, in a nutshell, are four walls with a roof and without bells and whistles. Nevertheless, remodeling ranch style homes is quite simple. It is making the boring home stand out amongst the rest.

Whether you want a complete remodel or just trying to enhance some elements of the house, here is how you can help your ranch style home stand out.


Landscaping is an important aspect when it comes to home remodeling. The landscaping of ranch homes is usually as boring as the structure itself. You can replace the featureless lawns wit flower gardens and stepping stone paths. This will draw more attention to your exceptional landscape.

Whenever we think about ranch style designs, the first thing that comes to our mind is a house covered in cheap vinyl siding. Just changing this feature can enhance the overall look and appearance. Concrete fiberboard and aluminum siding can spice up your home along with an exciting paint job. Brick accents or small stone for chimneys can add good texture that tricks the brain into not recognizing the ranch floor plan.    

Many homeowners undermine the importance of windows. It can change the overall appearance of your ranch style design. As a rule of thumb, remember that bigger windows are better. Larger windows now only improves the view but also brings in more light. Install bay windows where appropriate. Uniform exterior must be added with more texture. Bay windows are an ideal way to do that. French doors and other styles of windows can be installed to give a more appropriate look. These window styles can create a new different feel from outside and inside of the house.

Ranch homes are built keeping economic considerations into mind. Because of this concern, the outdoor area is not often utilized. It can be recreated to enhance the overall appeal of your house. You can bring in a contractor who can add more character to your home and landscape. Whether it is a stone patio or a new redwood deck, this addition can be ideal to your house.

Totally visualize the ranch home

You can completely change the ranch home style by adding up a story if you have a single story home. Roofline can be raised to enhance the exterior texture of the home. Since most ranch homes are already part of a ranch neighborhood, there is not much needed to do to set it apart from other houses. The basic idea is how the home sets in the block. Change it according to the connections in the surroundings rather than changing it in vacuum. Make sure you follow this important step.  

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The keys to success to investing in real estate

Real estate investment is a challenging task. It is not simple as it seems and sounds. There is a lot of sophistications and technicalities involved that needs to be understood before entering the field. Beginners can find it pretty daunting in the start but with time, it appears easy and simple.

However, not every real estate investor reaches the pinnacles of success. There is a lot of competition in the market and every individual is trying to overcome their competitors. Nevertheless, here are some keys to success in order to become successful in the art of real estate investment.

Believe in yourself

This is the first and foremost thing that every real estate investor must do. Many investors commit the mistake of following the footsteps of others and copy them. Surely, you must learn from the experience of others but do not try to imitate them absolutely. Don’t let other people influence your thoughts and strategies.

Focus on what your plans and investments criteria. What works for others might not work for you.

Overcome the fears

There is a lot of information about real estate investment available out there. Too much noise can simply paralyze you. Information can surely help you make better decisions but an overload of it can be dangerous as well.

Learn how to overcome your fears. You will have to take a lot of risks and steps that might seem scary, but learn how to handle the pressure and stress in order to shine in the market.

The aim is not to make money

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Having this mindset is vitally important to become a successful real estate investor. There are a lot of investors in the market who are ultimately aim to make a lot of money. This mindset can result into taking a lot of shortcuts that might be dangerous to your career. In fact many investors have gone bankrupt in this case.

Your must be to gain more knowledge and gain more experience. With better skills you will make better decisions which ultimately leads to making more money.

Make long term investments

It is important to consider property as a long term investment. Having an impulsive approach can be dangerous for your real estate investment career. One of the best ways to have a profitable career is to hold on to the property for long term. When you adopt a short term approach, you are exposing yourself to losses.

Organize yourself

Having an organized mindset is vitally important for your real estate investment career. Consider real estate investment as a business. It is important to develop a business mindset and relevant hard-skills and soft-skills that will ultimately help you to run the real estate investment career. Moreover, organize each and every aspect of your job. This will allow you to make decisions more effectively and efficiently. It even impresses the clients and enable you to attract more potential customers ultimately generating more profits.

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