Coleman & Sons Real Estate
451 Main St, Waltham, MA 02154
781-894-7100 | coleman451main@gmail.com



Posted by Coleman & Sons Real Estate on 2/14/2020


 Photo by James DeMers via Pixabay

That bathroom tile once looked terrific, so newly laid contrast between tile and grout. You were so proud to show it off to all your guests. 

But over time, grout becomes dull, stained and chipped. Tiles fade and look dated. When they do, it's time to refreshen or replace tile and grout. 

If you love the tile, keep it. Refresh the grout to make that tile job look sparkling and new. If not, replace the flooring too. Here's how to refresh or replace tile and grout.

What you'll need

  • Margin float
  • Sponge
  • Earplugs (if using power tools)
  • Safety glasses
  • Rotary tool (required for big re-grouting jobs)
  • Manual grout removal tool with a carbide blade (for smaller spaces)
  • Grout

If also replacing tiles, you'll need:

  • Tiles (measured and cut as required)
  • Chisel
  • Floor scraper
  • Drop sheet (for debris)
  • Hammer
  • Notched trowel
  • Thin-set mortar

And we're ready to do this!

Cut away the grout

First, put on your safety glasses. Now use your rotary tool or grout removal tool to loosen the grout between each tile. It should chip away and pull right out.

In either case, work slowly to avoid damaging your tiles. If at any point you feel you've taken on more than you can handle, contact a professional.

Mix & apply grout

Mix your grout in a bucket. Then apply it using your margin float. Let it set for 10 minutes. Then clean the tiles with your moist sponge. 

And you're done. Don't your re-grouted tiles look fantastic! It really is that simple. But what if you want to replace the tiles? You'll add some extra steps in front of mix and grout.

Remove your tiles

After removing grout as described above, use a hammer to break a tile to remove it. Be careful not to cut yourself. Now use the chisel to remove the remaining tiles. The floor scraper helps you crack and lift the adhesive underneath. 

Do a dry run

Here's a pro tip! Always place your tiles out dry to make sure they fit. Then make any adjustments. 

This seems like a waste of time. But unless you've tiled hundreds of bathroom floors, adjustments are almost a certainty. And once you lay mortar, you'll have a limited time to work.

Apply your mortar & place tiles

Apply a thin layer of your thin-set mortar to a small area using your trowel. Then lay each tile over it, evenly spaced. Press down gently but firmly. 

After laying tiles in a small area, repeat and lay more tiles until all tiles are laid. Wait 24 hours. Then mix and apply grout as described above.

Enjoy your new floor! And follow our blog for more home maintenance and repair tips.




Tags: diy   tile   grout  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Coleman & Sons Real Estate on 1/17/2020

Photo by u_jup1hbno via Pixabay

Paint is the magic elixir when it comes to inexpensive home makeovers. It rejuvenates space in a way few other things can do. Yet many homeowners have blinders on when it comes to the places they can paint. Namely, they only see the walls as a palette. Let's challenge that notion and remind you of a new way to use paint -- on cabinets.

Step One: Prepping

Whatever you do, don't skip step one ó prepping. Though tempting to overlook, the risks of ruining your cabinetry if you do are simply too high.

To prep your cabinets, begin by labeling each cabinet opening and door front with corresponding numbers marked on painter's tape. This will save you countless headaches when it comes time to reinstall. You'll remove the labels before spraying with primer and paint, and then replace the tape when you're ready for reinstallation. You can place the labels just above wherever you've set the pieces to dry so you don't lose track.

Remove all hardware, including hinges and screws. If you're getting new hardware, it likely won't align properly, so be prepared to redo these holes later.

Wipe each cabinet front with a bonding solvent. Allow 1 1/2 hours of drying time before troweling a thin layer of spackling compound over the entire surface to fill holes, blemishes and wood grain pores. Use a second coat if deep holes are evident.

Next, it's time to sand. Doing so eliminates any existing sheen or protective sealant from your cabinets, thereby allowing primer and paint to bond appropriately to the surface. Fine-grit sanding blocks or pads work best for most cabinet and drawer fronts; however, rough-grit sandpaper is acceptable for cabinets with a lot of lacquer or shellac.

Step Two: Add Primer

After vacuuming or wiping down the cabinets, add primer using pigmented shellac sealer and a 2-inch brush. Pour about 1 1/2- inches of your primer into a small can and dip the brush about 1-inch. Press the brush against the side of the can to remove excess primer. Donít wipe it across the rim, as this removes too much primer. Shellac dries quickly, so move fast and avoid going back over areas that have started to dry. Try to avoid heavy buildup and runs, but don't be overly concerned with uneven patches.

Step Three: Paint

Brush on the first coat of paint, then smooth it out with just the tip of the brush. Follow each layer by sanding lightly using a fine-grit sanding sponge.Allow at least 8 hours for each layer to dry before going over it again. Work from top to bottom to avoid dripping on finished areas. Likewise, paint the insides of the cabinets before moving to the outside. If any paint spills onto a finished area, simply dab it with a cloth dampened with mineral spirits.

Step Four: Reinstall Hardware

Finally, it's time to reinstall door hinges, handles, pulls, mounting plates, and other hardware removed for the project. Once this is complete, attach the door fronts and reset the cabinets in place.

Getting ready for a move or remodel can be stressful. Call, email or use the contact form on the site to schedule a consultation today.




Tags: diy   home improvement  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Coleman & Sons Real Estate on 12/27/2019

Photo by Arka38 via Shutterstock

After spending enough time researching real estate online, you probably think you can do just as good a job selling your home as a professional real estate agent. However, it's more difficult than it sounds. Even though you can access many of the same advertising venues as a professional, they have a wide network and breadth of experience that you canít leverage when trying to DIY. 

Experience and Know-How

Real estate agents are sales and advertising professionals. First, consider if your work experience and skill set falls in those same zones. Are you familiar with negotiating deals in the hundreds of thousands of dollars? Your real estate agent spends all day, every day working with other agents and negotiating deals in a variety of amounts. They know how to tell if the other party is willing to reduce or increase the amount, and what perks might push a deal through. They also know the best way to spend their advertising dollars to get interest in your property and often have standing arrangements with printing companies, an existing real estate website and membership in the local MLS board ó all of which give them deals on advertising whereas you would be paying full retail price to print postcards or mailers and may not have access to things like MLS listings at all.

In addition to the actual sales process, real estate deals come with a ton of paperwork. Not only is this complex in any area, but it also varies from location to location and getting it wrong can cause the purchase or sale to fall through, or, worst of all, might cause you to incur high fines from your local governing bodies or the IRS. While you can look up the right process for your area, you may not be able to trust the information available online. It's not surprising that information listed by non-official sources may be incorrect or incomplete, but official government sources often take a while to get updated when rules or laws change. Your real estate agent, on the other hand, is required to be notified of any changes, and the MLS board they are a member of also keeps an ear to the ground and their agents informed.

Local Area Information

Real estate agents often have access to, and even pay extra for, information about the areas they work in. That means they know what properties sold for over an extended period of time, what features they have, and even how long they stayed on the market. A lot of this information is protected, and only licensed professionals have access. This makes them uniquely suited for pricing your home correctly for the market. If you price your home too high it may not sell at all, causing you frustration or costing you money. On the other hand, if you price it too low, you may get a quick sale, but youíll miss out on the additional income you could have made.

Regardless, you may still think the agentís commission is not worth the price. Most buyers and sellers agents make a percentage of the purchase or sale price of your home. This is great for sellers, since the higher the selling price, the more everyone makes. However, it can be a downside for buyers if they think the agent is trying to talk them into higher prices or different homes just to make a larger commission. Many agents are willing to negotiate on this point and often agree to a flat rate in the beginning, regardless of the purchase price, as long as you talk to them about it upfront. This removes the worry that they are trying to find the highest amount youíll spend rather than the best deal in your market.

Before making the decision to DIY your real estate purchase or sale, talk to a real estate agent in person to get a full understanding of the services they can offer you and how much control you have over the costs. Most often, you will find itís worth the comparatively small cost of the agent over the larger costs of self-advertising, lost sales price and time required to handle any interested parties. Talk to a professional today for the absolute best results.




Tags: diy   fsbo   buyers agent   New Buyers   FAQs  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Coleman & Sons Real Estate on 10/11/2019

Everyone has experienced that overflowing, chaotic closet. Clothes everywhere and you can't find what you're looking for. For some, this occurs occasionally, but for others, especially those with smaller closets, this can be a constant stressor that effects your time getting ready in the morning and your mental stress when trying to get where you're going. Not everyone can afford a fancy closet system that easily helps organize your clothes, and some simply don't have the space to implement one. So, what can you do to help yourself organize your clothing without installing a system? Here are a few simple organization methods to consider.

Organize by like colors. 

If you pair your outfits by matching colors, it can help to organize your clothing by color. Arrange black with black, blue with blue and so on. It can further help to hang your clothes to organize by color and in a sort of gradient pattern. Start with black, then grey, then white, then yellow, green, blue, purple pink, brown, patterns, etc. You get the idea. When you look in your closet each morning, you can head directly for the color you want to wear that day and easily find the clothes to match.

Organize by like items. 

Hanging your clothing by like items is another simple way to organize. Hang jeans, pants, skirts then dresses together. Then, hang shirts together and separate by type: tank-tops, t-shirts, long sleeves, button downs, sweaters, sweatshirts, jackets. When you go to get ready, you'll be able to easily see the different pieces you need to complete your outfit.

Organize by purpose. 

If you wear specific clothing for work that you donít wear outside of work, it can be beneficial to organize your clothing by purpose. Put all your work-wear together and all your casual wear together. Place workout clothes together and all your dress clothes together. 

Organize by frequency worn. 

One more idea, particularly useful for narrow closets is to separate your clothes by the frequency that you wear them. Put the clothing you wear most toward the front of your closet and the clothes you wear least toward the back. Depending on the season you might consider moving your winter or summer clothing to the back of your closet until the appropriate time. 

By implementing any one or a combination of the methods above you'll be well on your way to staying organized, saving time and reducing morning stress. If you have a lot of clothing and will be moving to a new home soon make sure that a large closet with a built-in organization system is on your checklist of required home features. Your professional real estate agent will help you find the best home for your wardrobe.




Tags: how to   diy   organization tips  
Categories: Uncategorized  


Posted by Coleman & Sons Real Estate on 8/10/2018

Putting a skylight in your home can be a very attractive feature. More natural light will be let into the room, making it bright and cheery. There are a few things that you should know about installing a skylight before you start shopping for these special windows and begin the installation process. Itís a serious project and you should really think the decision through before you start the project.   


Quality Is Key


Itís important that a skylight has a few special aspects including:

 

  • Energy efficiency
  • Water tightness
  • Sound reduction
  • Wind resistance
  • Ventilation
  • UV coating


Many manufacturers also try to appeal to those shoppers who are looking for environmentally friendly materials. Keep in mind what those are and how the quality will be affected.  


Injury Is A Real Possibility During Installation


  • Whether youíre installing the skylight yourself, or having a professional do the job, thereís a risk of falling and injury. 
  • The ladder should be the right height and type. 
  • The shoes being worn should have good traction. Itís also a good idea to use roof jacks for extra support during the installation process. 
  • The jacks should be secured and clamped down to ensure extra support. If you donít know what youíre doing, the short answer is that you should hire a professional and leave the job to them. Be sure that anyone you hire is using safe work practices. 


Weather Can Delay The Project


Remember, since youíre essentially cutting a hole in your roof to install the skylight, itís a real possibility that weather can put a damper on the project. If rain, snow, wind, or ice happen to be a part of the equation when installing these new sky windows, it could pose a real problem. Weather could not only be a safety issue, but a hazard to your home as well. Try to plan for the installation of the skylight during a more temperate part of the year. 


The Installation Starts From The Inside


After the outline of the skylight has been cut out of the sheathing of the roof, youíll need to mark the opening of the skylight with screws or nails in the corners. This will help you to locate the skylight opening. 


The next steps are as follows:


The shingles will need to be removed before you even start cutting the rest of the opening.

The flashing will need to be waterproofed in order to keep snow and ice away from the opening of the skylight. 

Extra drywall and insulation will need to be added to avoid too large an opening in the ceiling. 


A skylight can be a great asset to any home. With a little thought and planning on your part, you can add something that youíll enjoy for many years!




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