Did You Read These 5 Trending Posts in June?

June was a big month for Coldwell Banker. If you didn’t know, we are still continuing with the roll out of our Home Field Advantage MLB partnership. We also announced our collaboration with BuzzFeed and we’re proud to be the first real estate company to do so. Our blog was also booming with great articles. To recap, here are our Top Five most viewed posts…

Three Reasons Why We Love the World Cup

The World Cup is well on its way and there are a few reasons why we’re excited about the 2014 installment of arguably the greatest sporting event on Earth.

Six Unique Ways to Light Up Your Backyard

Bright ideas to brighten up your backyard fun.

How to Plan a Successful Move with Children

Do you know the four steps to an almost seamless move?

Three Ways for Home Sellers to Maximize Showings in the Summer

Summer is finally here. Keep these ideas in mind for maximizing your warm-weather selling success…

15 Beautiful Backyard Swimming Pools

The perfect dose of some of the most beautiful and incredible swimming pools from Coldwell Banker listings.

The Blue Matter Blog is updated daily. Be sure to check back regularly for the latest industry news, trends and more!

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Town of Swett, South Dakota for Sale by Coldwell Banker

Bet you never thought you could own a town. But for half the price of a one-bedroom apartment in New York City, someone will be the proud owner of Swett, South Dakota.

For $399,000, you can get a three-bedroom home, tire shop, three trailer houses and your very own bar, the Swett Tavern. New York was recently ranked as the most stressful city in the country. So you’re telling me that for a mortgage of approximately $1,982 a month, I can move to South Dakota and own my own town? Sold. Well, I’ll at least consider it.

Check out the listing by Stacie Montgomery of Coldwell Banker Lewis Kirkeby Hall

Any takers?

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10 Cats Who Totally Rule Their Home

Cats are notorious for their sneaky but funny antics. In the war against doors, drawers, windows and more, it is clear they can’t be stopped. Here is a collection of cats that are totally dominating their homes.

“Oh that’s cute a baby gate. Hold on let me just hop over this.”

“I put the cat in cat burglar”

“Is there where my human hides my treats?”

“Actually I would prefer to be an indoor cat”

“Nice try but I guess you didn’t know I have the power to make my bones disappear”

“Well what did you expect with all those treats you have been feeding me?”

“Nothing like a good midnight snack. Whatcha got in there?

“I may seem lazy but I am actually a genius”

“Proof that Cats rule and Dogs Drool”

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A Day in the Life of a Real Estate Broker

Curious about what a day in the life of a real estate broker looks like? Let Coldwell Banker broker, Michele Flood, take you along as she hosts an open house in Rye, NY.

For Michele, the phone starts ringing at 8am. From then on, her day is filled with showings, phone calls and somehow she still finds time to make apple brownies for her open house! Sadly, she doesn’t share that recipe, but she does share a lot of helpful insight into a typical day for a real estate broker.

Think you have what it takes? Click here to learn more about careers in real estate.

Want to see more LXTV Open House segments like this one? Watch more here.

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The World’s Smartest Air Conditioner

Is your AC unit dumb and ungly? Well, after seeing the Aros A/C you may believe it is. The Aros air conditioner is crazy smart and much better looking than traditional window units. According to Quirky, this smart window air conditioner, priced at $300, learns from your budget, location, schedule, and usage to automatically maintain the perfect temperature and maximize savings for your home. What’s more, it can be controlled from anywhere right from your mobile device.

Here are some of the cool product features:

You can learn more about Aros here.

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6 Tips for Watering your Plants While on Vacation

weeper hose

You’ve spent months cultivating your garden and you deserve some time away, but how do you make sure your plants don’t wither while you play?

Here are 6 tips for watering your plants while on vacation:

6. The Weeper Hose – This hose allows a slow drip that penetrates deeper than spot watering. The best part? It’s camouflaged under your mulch!

5. The Plant Nanny – This terra cotta nozzle is the perfect nest for a recycled wine bottle filled with water. The Plant Nanny minds your plants, so you can free your mind!

Plant Nanny for Watering Plants While Away on Vacation

4. The Life Line – An absorbent cord carries water across a tightrope from source to planter.

Ways to water plants while you are on vacation

3. The Water Bottle Barometer – A plain old plastic water bottle and a pair of scissors is all you need to ensure healthy plants before you leave.

2. Use the plastic bag trick – This genius trick turns household items into a water wick.

1. Hire a garden sitter – When in doubt, ask a neighbor to stop by and give your plants a good watering.

Header Image Source: Flickr

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Colby Rasmus of the Toronto Blue Jays Has the Best Commute Home in Baseball

As a guy who constantly battles traffic on my commute to work everyday, I often envy those who have a home that’s within a convenient distance from their place of work. But after seeing where Toronto Blue Jays outfielder, Colby Rasmus, lives I believe he wins the prize for best commute.

He not only walks to work every day, but he can throw a baseball and hit his office if he wanted. Colby Rasmus lives in a gorgeous apartment right next to the Rogers Centre where the Blue Jays play all of their home games. And if that wasn’t enough his place has stunning views of the city with enough natural light to make any sun worshipper jealous.

When you see Rasmus’ video you’ll get a sense of how big a change living in metropolitan Toronto really is for him. Having grown up in a rural area and starting his career in the Midwest baseball Mecca of St. Louis, moving to not just a big city but another country can take some getting used to. Rasmus does call Toronto home now and has grown to love not just the place in which he resides, but the community as well.

Check out the latest episode of the Coldwell Banker Home Field Advantage video series below or click here to watch some of our previous videos with today’s MLB stars.

Header image courtesy of Flickr user James G via Creative Commons.

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Home of the Week: An Entire 50th Floor Penthouse in Chicago

In our newest ‘Home of the Week‘ we move from a beautiful lakefront home in Bellevue, Washington to a brand new penthouse in the heart of Chicago.

The entire 50th floor of 25 East Superior Street was recently built out and converted into a truly breathtaking and impressive $7.5 million penthouse. The never occupied home sprawls across 6,500 square feet and also boasts private outdoor entertaining spaces with more square footage than most apartments you’ll find in the entire city!

The home features 360 degree panoramic views of the city from virtually every room, which means you can soak in those million dollar views even when the famous Windy City cold kicks into gear come winter time. This 3 bedroom and 3.5 bath home is the embodiment of upscale city living; with sumptuous master suites, soaring ceilings, a cooks kitchen and a relentless attention to detail that is evident throughout every inch of this special home.

Click here if you’d like to see more of one of Chicago’s coolest new homes listed by Chezi Rafaeli with Coldwell Banker Residential Brokerage.

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Gardens in the Sky

I’ve become very curious after a trip to the Atlanta Botanical Garden where one can see a green roof, or a living / vegetated roof as some people refer to them, to understand the environmental benefits of this type of green construction. Although it doesn’t appear right now to be a widely adopted feature of residential homes in the United States, it does seem to be taking hold in some urban areas of the country. According to GreenRoofs.org, the North American green roofing industry grew by 10 percent in 2013 over 2012. And certain U.S. cities are pulling away from the pack in adoption rates of this roofing choice – specifically Washington, D.C. (No. 1). Rounding out the top five cities installing the most square footage of green roofs in 2013 were: Chicago (No. 2), New York (No. 3), Philadelphia (No. 4), and Boston (No. 5).

Since doing some online research to understand the benefits of green roofs, I’ve come to learn there is a rainbow of roofing types: white roofs, blue roofs, brown roofs, black roofs and of course green roofs. In a recent study by Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab), researchers found that white roofs are the most cost effective of them all yet acknowledges that their research was only economic based and didn’t take into consideration the environmental and health factors that green roofs only offer. GreenRoofs.org points out in the white vs. green debate that white roofs “can actually result in a net loss in cooler climates during winter months, thereby increasing energy usage.”

Here are three benefits of green roofing that stood out to me.

  1. One of the major benefits to a green roof is stormwater management. You would think local governments, in cities like Atlanta and Savannah (both of which I’ve lived and are prone to major flooding on residential streets during summer storms), would find this a wonderful solution to their cities’ water overflow issues and offer incentives to homeowners to offset costs for installation.
  2. Heard about the Urban Heat Island – sounds like a place you might want to go this upcoming 4th of July weekend, right? Except this isn’t a place you lounge poolside with a summer cocktail. Green roofs help reduce the UHI effect by decreasing the number of black rooftops within a city. They also help cool cities and therefore lower the UHI effect.
  3. Green roofs reduce energy consumption in both the summer and winter. One Canadian study found that a green roof reduced the daily energy demand for air conditioning in the summer by more than 75 percent.

Header image is courtesy of Flickr user Underdestruction via Creative Commons

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