What Napa Valley home would be complete without it’s own vineyard? This modern California abode, listed by Billy McNair of the McNair Group at Coldwell Banker Previews International
Welcome to dinner at the Coldwell Banker house! Come on in and make yourself comfortable.
We know that the kitchen is the heart of the home, so we’re taking inspiration from beautiful Coldwell Banker homes around the world to create home cooked meals just for you. The first home recipe comes from a chef’s dream kitchen in “The Evergreen State.”
Let us start with a toast to this beautiful Washington home listed by Coldwell Banker BAIN. Feel free to take a tour. This magnificently outfitted home features dual kitchens, elevators, fire-pits, a resistance pool, garages for 6 cars, & indoor-outdoor living enhanced with covered terraces & expansive views.
As tribute to the bountiful wine region nearby, we’ve uncorked a bottle of chilled Ott & Murphy 2013 Chanson Rosé from the Columbia Valley, bottled just a few hundred miles from here. We’ve plucked it from the massive wine cellar.
The crisp rosé will go perfectly with our menu of Apple, Goat Cheese and Pecan pizzas which we’ve baked up in the kitchen’s wood burning oven. Since the apple was declared the state fruit of Washington in 1989, it’s only fitting to highlight the local flavors.
Apple, Goat Cheese and Pecan Pizzas
from Cooking Light
1 (1-pound) six-grain pizza crust
3 cups thinly sliced Fuji apple (about 8 ounces)
1 cup (4 ounces) crumbled goat cheese
2 teaspoons chopped fresh thyme
1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
2 teaspoons Dijon mustard
1 teaspoon fresh lemon juice
1 1/2 teaspoons honey
2 cups baby arugula
3 tablespoons chopped pecans, toasted
Preheat oven to 450
The first day of fall is here, and I’ve been eyeing up my fireplace for the last two weeks wondering what I need to do to prepare for the inaugural fire in our new home. Disclaimer: Fireplaces scare me. In every home we’ve ever lived, I’m always worried it’s not in proper working order and our house might burn down. As a result, we end up never enjoying it out of my fear. So in our new home I’ve decided to conquer this pyrophobia by doing some research and bringing in the professionals. Here are three steps to get your home fireplace ready for the upcoming season.
- A good cleaning. Get out your shop-vac and remove all the cobwebs or remnants from your last fire. After cleaning out the fireplace, you’ll be able to determine if you need to tackle any mortar repair issues. There are tons of how-to articles for this type of repair, or you can bring in the professionals.
- Shine a light on it. While you’re in the garage, grab the flashlight and take a peek up your chimney. According to Gary Spolar of Bay Village-based Century Chimney Sweep, you’re looking for “fuzzy or shiny material” called creosote. Creosote is flammable, so it’s important to bring in professionals to clean.
- Protect your outdoor friends. One of the reasons why I’ve been looking at my fireplace more than normal is the strange sounds coming out of it. Since I don’t have a ladder long enough to get up to the chimney vent to inspect what critter has nested, I know I definitely will be calling in the professionals.
Want to see some amazing fireplaces – check out these homes listed on coldwellbanker.com.
The post Getting Your Home’s Fireplace Ready for the Season appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
The humid summer air is slowly turning into cool and crisp bursts of wind. Colorful flowers like impatiens and begonias are being replaced with yellow and orange mums. Yup, fall is here.
As the countdown to summer resets, our list of things to do around house includes transitioning our house from summer to fall. For many of us that also means breaking out the Halloween decorations. If you want to show off your festive side but would prefer your home not to resemble that of Morticia Addams, then these tips are for you.
(Not So) Spooky Steps
Your steps are probably the easiest thing to decorate. If you want to go basic, you can buy a few pumpkins and you are all set. Want to take it a step further? Add a few lanterns for an elegant effect.
Porches were made for Halloween decorations. OK maybe I am exaggerating, but they are the perfect spot for seasonal decor. Focus on one corner of your porch and pick one large item as your focal point. Some ideas to get you started: a cauldron, broomstick, pumpkin topiary or a hay bale.
Mums are a fall classic that are an elegant addition for your curb appeal. In addition to planting mums you can find other garden decorations like flags and signs on sites like Etsy and Amazon.
Dressed Up Door
A simple wreath will tie the look together. You can make your own or buy one from Michaels or Etsy.
Eerie Entry Table
Creating a frightening foyer is as easy as picking a theme. You can go with colors, like orange, black and/or purple, creatures like bats, skeletons or witches or just an overall Autumnal theme. This is the first, and sometimes only, thing guests will see when they enter so you can show off your Halloween spirit without even touching any other room in the house.
Frighteningly Fun Fireplace Mantel
If you have a fireplace then you have prime real estate in your home for a Halloween display. Candles, mini pumpkins and simple garland are affordable touches that go a long way.
The post How To Decorate for Halloween Without Going Overboard appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
As the summery temperatures begin to subside and the smell of pumpkin spice takes over, today marks the first official day of autumn. To close out the summer of 2014, the National Association of Realtors (NAR) released its August existing-home sales report. After four consecutive months of gains, existing-home sales lost momentum due to a decline in all-cash sales from investors. The median existing-home price in August was $219,800, 4.8 percent above August 2013, marking the 30th consecutive month of year-over-year price gains.
On the bright side, this provides an opportunity for first-time homebuyers who have a better chance at purchasing a home with bidding wars declining and inventory constraints easing throughout the U.S. The percent of first-time buyers remained unchanged from July at 29 percent. First-time buyers have represented less than 30 percent of all buyers in 16 of the past 17 months.
As job growth continues, NAR predicts that steady purchasing power will help Americans’ demand for buying homes.
Take a look at a breakdown of the median price of homes sold in each region of the country during this past August. And as we start cozying up to the crisp fall air, check out the below home listings currently on the market, perfect for spotting foliage and celebrating the start of autumn.
Northeast median sales price: $265,800
o $265,000 for a 3 bedroom, 2.5 bath home (2,003 sq. ft.)
Midwest median sales price: $173,800
o $174,000 for a 3 bedroom, 1.5 bath home (1,600 sq. ft.)
South median sales price: $186,700
o $187,000 for a 3 bedroom, 2 bath home (1,947 sq. ft.)
West median sales price: $301,900
o $301,000 for a 4 bedroom, 2 bath home (2,194 sq. ft.)
The post Happy Autumnal Equinox! What You Need to Know about the August Housing Numbers appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
There are lots of things to do in Williamsburg Brooklyn — so many, the area has become a hub of nightlife and activity. A widely diverse neighborhood, semi-industrial Williamsburg attracts people of all ages to move there and enjoy life among its neo-rustic bars and vintage stores.
How to Get There
Where is Williamsburg? Well, according to Time Out New York, it’s bounded by the East River and Newtown Creek (an estuary that separates Brooklyn from Queens) and bordered by Bedford-Stuyvesant to the south and Greenpoint to the north. (Time Out also notes that the exact border between Williamsburg and Bushwick, located to the southeast of Williamsburg, is a bit ambiguous.) The G, J, M, Z, and L subway lines stop in Williamsburg, giving residents access to all the boroughs of New York City; transfer to the LIRR to get from Williamsburg to Long Island.
Where to Eat and Drink
Looking for a good place to hang out, meet some new people, and have a good time? Here are some of Brooklyn’s latest dining hot spots.
Reynard | 80 Wythe Ave.; 718.460.8004 | This hotel restaurant is brought to you by Andrew Tarlow, the restauranteur credited with redefining the Brooklyn dining scene. Whether you’re getting together with friends or on a date, Reynard will be sure to impress.
Dover | 412 Court St.; 347.987.3545 | If you’re looking for a classic cuisine with a French accent, stop in at Dover. This new Carroll Gardens storefront restaurant has become one of the area’s trendiest eateries. Some are even calling it a “hallmark of the next era of Brooklyn cooking.”
St. Anselm | 355 Metropolitan Ave.; 718.384.5054 | Savvy New Yorkers know that a great dining experience doesn’t have to be fancy. In the mood for some good food at some really reasonable prices? St. Anselm is known for its amazing, juicy steak that just falls off the bone — and it’s one of the best bargains around.
What to Visit
In addition to great restaurants and nightlife, Williamsburg is close to many points of interest and other fun things to do. Here are a few can’t-miss attractions.
The Brooklyn Bridge | Tillary St. at Adams St. | One of NYC’s most famous landmarks. Be prepared to walk a mile to cross it, and a mile to go back (unless you cab it back if you’re too tired!).
Brooklyn Museum | 200 Eastern Pkwy.; 718.638.5000 | This is the second-largest art museum in NYC. Give yourself ample time to explore its collection and prepare to be amazed.
Coney Island | 1000 Surf Ave. | An amusement destination since the late 19th century, Coney Island is a quintessential NYC attraction. Stroll the boardwalk, check out the circus sideshow, and go into the small shops — some which have been there for years. Great for families.
McCarren Park | 776 Lorimer St.; 718.218.2380 | Need a dose of green space to go with your city lifestyle? Head over to McCarren Park. It has everything from …read more
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
If powering off your cable box isn’t quite fixing those sound or picture issues you’re having, then our newest ‘Home Tip of the Day’ just might help. The fix is extremely easy and only takes a few short minutes – which means you’ll get back to watching the big game or your favorite TV show in no time.
The post Home Tip of the Day: An Easy Way to Fix Your Cable Feed appeared first on Coldwell Banker Blue Matter.
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
My alma mater, University of Miami–home of the Hurricanes, taught me a lot about tropical weather. After 2 severe storms hit the Miami area only weeks after I moved into the Freshman dorms, I knew I wasn’t in Jersey anymore. Since then, I’ve lived through several hurricanes, a few tropical storms and one unforgettable ‘Super Storm Sandy.’
As a ‘Cane, I know that the key to making it through hurricane season is being aware and prepared. First, it’s important to know that Hurricane season in the Atlantic begins June 1st and ends November 30th, with most activity peaking from mid-August to early October. While the majority of Atlantic activity happens in the Southeastern U.S., many of us in the Northeast remember all too well that we’re not immune to these natural disasters. So, now is the time to get your home ready for storm season.
Here are 5 ways to prepare your home for hurricane season:
1. Keep an Emergency Kit – Packing an emergency kit can sometimes feel over-cautious, but when a big storm strikes, you’ll be happy you did. Compile a hurricane emergency kit complete with:
- Water, one gallon of water per person per day for at least three days, for drinking and sanitation
- Food, at least a three-day supply of non-perishable food
- Battery-powered or hand crank radio and a NOAA Weather Radio with tone alert and extra batteries for both
- Flashlight and extra batteries
- First aid kit
- Dust mask to help filter contaminated air and plastic sheeting and duct tape to shelter-in-place
- Moist towelettes, garbage bags and plastic ties for personal sanitation
- Wrench or pliers to turn off utilities
- Manual can opener for food
- Local maps
- Cell phone with chargers, inverter or solar charger
(list from ready.gov)
2. Get Cash and Gas (early) – Should the power go out in your area, ATMs and gas pumps are no longer functional. We quickly realize the vitality of two things we take for granted in our everyday lives. To avoid long gas lines or running out of liquidity while power lines are down, get to the ATM and gas station before the storm (and before the crowds).
3. Know your home – Do your research ahead of time to determine if you live in an evacuation zone. You might be surprised (like those in downtown Manhattan) to find that your home is in a flood zone.
Also, because standard home insurance does not cover flood damage, it is also important to know if you live in a flood-prone area. Visit the National Flood Insurance Program website to learn more about obtaining flood insurance for your property. Ready.gov has some great information about which natural disasters different parts of the country should be prepared for.
4. Protect your home – Dorothy may have coined the phrase, “there’s no place like home” for the tornado belt, but it applies to hurricane protection just as well. Of course, for your own safety, it is important to yield to all warnings and mandates for evacuation; however, there are things you can do to protect your home from the elements. …read more
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog
Backyard Basics – Freezing and Dehydration: with Anne Ondrusek, owner, Honeys Homemade Jams and Jellies; sponsored by Fort Bend Master Gardeners. 9 a.m. at Fort Bend County AgriLife Extension Service, 1402 Band, Rosenberg; 281-342-3034, fbmg.com. $15, $25 couple.
Bulbs and Buddies: with Chris Wiesinger of Southern Bulb Co. and Heidi Sheesley of TreeSearch Farms. 10 a.m. at the Arbor Gate, 5635 FM 2920, Tomball; 281-351-8851, arborgate.com.
Rain-barrel workshop: sponsored by Galveston Bay Foundation. 2-4 p.m. in the Brown Education Hall, Houston Zoo, 6200 Hermann Park Drive; registration required, galvbay.org/rainbarrel. $30, includes barrel.
Plant Conservation in a Rapidly Changing World: with Peter Raven, in lecture series presented by Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Garden. 6:30 p.m. at Houston Museum of Natural Science, 5555 Hermann Park Drive; 713-639-4629; $12 members, $18 nonmembers.
Brazoria County Master Gardener fall plant sale: 8 a.m.-noon at Brazoria Environmental Education Station, Hospital Drive and County Road 171, Angleton; 979-864-1558, brazoria.agrilife.org.
Plants, children’s activities, butterfly garden, beekeeping, arts and crafts, food. 8:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m. at Knights of Columbus Hall and Grounds, 702 Burney, Sugar Land; sugarlandgardenclub.org. …read more
Today, we have a special treat, and it’s served on a silver platter. You’re about to tour one of the most incredible homes you’ve ever seen. In this segment of LXTV Open House, we explore one of New Jersey’s finest estates. This 20,000 square foot Russian-empire-inspired home–listed by Ronnie Aiosa of the Boswell Aiosa Group with Coldwell Banker–oozes luxury, elegance and lifestyle.
Less than 40 minutes from midtown Manhattan, the palatial estate boasts 30 rooms in all. It’s grandeur is matched by the opulent architecture and decor. Materials like 24 carat gold leaf and imported Italian marble are used in abundance around the home. With a focus on ‘ancient elegance,’ the home takes inspiration from empirical design–a hearth imported from a French castle, Italian marble flooring and fine silk wall coverings and drapery.
If you’re still not impressed, join us for a drink at the custom bar, where we’ll sip delicacies from the fine wine cellar. Or, play your hand at the poker table. Catch a movie in the private entertainment room, or shoot a round on the billiards table.
My personal favorite feature of the home is the two-story walk-in closet in the master bedroom. Hey, a girl can dream!
Via: Coldwell Banker Blog