Consumer Real Estate News

    • Superior Snoozing: Top Tips for Improving Your Sleep

      9 November 2018

      You likely know you can improve your productivity, fitness levels, and eating habits - but did you know you can improve your sleeping habits? It's not just about hitting the pillow earlier. Some of the ways you can impact your sleep may surprise you.

      Consider the following tips from the VELUX Group.

      - Increased exposure to daylight will help you sleep at night – sitting near a window at work or school and making an effort to get outside more will also help with this
      - Eliminate light from the outside to enter your bedroom at night
      - Sleep in a cooler bedroom
      - Avoid looking at electronic devices (TVs, smartphones / tablets) which distribute blue light before going to sleep – this can trick the brain into staying alert at the wrong time of day
      - Establish a good bedtime routine – read a book instead of having more screen time
      - Give children a red or orange night light if they are afraid of the dark as these are the least disruptive to sleep

      Source:  The VELUX Group

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Best Things to Buy in November

      9 November 2018

      Hoping to hit the mall this month? November is a great time to shop for holiday gifts, but some items offer more savings than others. See the following.

      Electronics. Many big box stores offer savings on larger ticket electronics during the month of November, so snag that new sound bar or TV you've been eyeing.

      Vacuums. Need a new cleaning machine? Pick it up in November to save anywhere from 20 to 50 percent.

      Appliances. Take advantage of Black Friday to grab a big ticket item like an appliance. A 10 to 15 percent savings can be huge with a larger item.

      Clothing. Many clothing retailers offer month-long deals in November to entice you to do some holiday shopping for yourself.

      Smart home devices. Like large appliances, smart home devices can go for a steal on Black Friday. Plan ahead for big savings.

      Source: NerdWallet,

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Tidy 10-Minute Clean Home Plan

      9 November 2018

      Running behind on your cleaning duties? By dedicating only 10 minutes a day to snazzing up your space, you can keep it clean and clutter-free. Or, use some of these tips when guests are on the way and time is short.

      Set a timer. When you know a timer is ticking, you're less likely to waste a minute or two answering a text or other time-sucking distractions. Set a 10-minute timer on your phone, and go!

      Work outwards in. Start at the perimeter of a room and work inwards, stashing clutter and picking up clothing or other items that haven't been put away before you get to things like vacuuming.

      Pick a room. The 10-minute game is easiest if you go one room at a time. If you plan to do the 10-minute game daily, schedule out a room each day, i.e., bathrooms on Monday, kitchen on Tuesdays, etc.

      Designate a random object basket. Do you constantly find random, homeless objects lingering in your space? Grab an empty laundry basket and spend 10 minutes running through your home filling it up with things that don't belong. The next day, spend 10 minutes finding homes for each of these items.

      Enlist help. When all hands are on deck, 10 minutes goes a long way. Enlist the help of a roommate, spouse or kids to divide and conquer in 10-minute blocks.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Frying Your Turkey? Consider These Safety Tips

      8 November 2018

      Many families enjoy fried turkeys, both during the holidays and beyond. However, frying a turkey does take some specific safety precautions. To help, Erie Insurance provides seven deep fryer tips to keep you and your home safe this holiday season.

      Buy the Right Sized Bird. A 12 - 14-pound turkey is usually the biggest bird a turkey fryer can accommodate.

      Follow the Thawing Process. Let your turkey thaw and dry. Excess water causes oil to bubble up, which increases the chances of a spill. The National Turkey Federation recommends thawing the turkey in the refrigerator approximately 24 hours for every four or five pounds of whole-body turkey.

      Find the Right Spot. Place a propane-fired outdoor fryer on a level spot far away from your house and any other structures. Indoor electric fryers are often safest on porches, patios, garages or an outdoor area within reach of an electrical outlet; otherwise, place it on a countertop that's a safe distance from any overhead cabinets.

      Do Not Overfill. Most fryers have a "fill line" indicating how much oil to put in the fryer. If yours doesn't, place the turkey in the fryer and fill 3 - 5 inches from the top of the fryer. Do not exceed the fill line. During cooking:

      - Heating Techniques. Heat the oil slowly. Also monitor the oil's temperature. Always check your user manual for the manufacturer's recommendation.

      - Don't Go Anywhere. Stick around the fryer while you are cooking. Many flare-ups happen when no one's keeping an eye on things. The quicker you spot a fire, the faster you can put it out.

      - Putting Out the Fire. Keep an all-purpose, dry-powder fire extinguisher close by. Never use water on a grease fire.

      Source: Erie Insurance Group

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • How to Ease Those Winter Blues

      8 November 2018

      Approximately 5 percent of the U.S. population struggles with Seasonal Affective Disorder, otherwise known as SAD, according to a Progress in Neurology and Psychiatry study. Typically, SAD lands in the winter, often independently of social or lifestyle factors. So how can you ease the burden of winter blues? Below are a few tips.

      Track when it hits. Keeping a mood journal can help you identify patterns, which will allow you to modify your lifestyle. For instance, if you know SAD tends to hit you hardest in early November, you can plan your social calendar accordingly.

      Plan accordingly. So how do you plan for SAD? By managing your schedule to fit your mood. For instance, if social time with friends lifts your spirits, plan a few weekly coffee or dinner dates with your pals during the months you suspect your mood may be low. If, on the other hand, you prefer time alone, avoid planning stressful social situations as much as possible during the months you crave solitude.

      Let your social circle know. Those close to you may notice—and possibly be hurt—if you pull away during the winter months. If you can, let your loved ones know why you may be less than social for a few weeks.

      Spend time outdoors. Many researchers think SAD is linked to dwindling daylight hours. Plan activities outside to help, such as long walks with your pup, or even a hot coffee enjoyed bundled up on a bench.

      Be easy on yourself. Those with SAD often have a hard time finding motivation when impacted. If this is something that happens to you, plan more down time with less on your to-do list during the months you find it hard to get moving.

      Give time. Those who struggle with depression have often noted a mood lift when they do something selfless. The holidays are the perfect time to schedule a little give-back time. If your mood allows for it, volunteer at a local animal shelter, organize a small charity fundraiser, or simply donate gifts to a children's drive.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.