As a result of the events surrounding corona, the home and its optimal design and utilisation have regained importance. Many a long-cherished dream is suddenly about to become reality. Many people are thinking about setting up a workshop in their home and how this can be realised. In this article you will learn about what you need to consider and what equipment and tools are worth acquiring. Let’s begin!

Ask yourself the following questions before setting up your workshop.

Such a project needs to be well thought out, because it is a decision that costs time, space and money. Once you have clarified the question of the budget, you can move on to the detailed planning.

Ask yourself the following questions before setting up your workshop.

Such a project needs to be well thought out, because it is a decision that costs time, space and money. Once you have clarified the question of the budget, you can move on to the detailed planning.

Hamburg - A workshop in your home: ➤ now is the time to make dreams come true ☛ learn all about design and set-up here

What is the best place for the future workshop in your home?

When choosing a room, you should bear in mind that in a workshop there are some things that could lead to the other occupants protesting:

• dirt, dust

• odours

• noise

Usually the basement or the garage is preferred. It is advisable to install insulation (noise, heat, cold) with optimum ventilation. In addition to artificial lighting, plenty of daylight should be available to optimise light conditions.

Which elements / components are needed in the workshop?

Before you start with the actual set-up, take the opportunity to optimise the “infrastructure” of the room:

• Sockets (220 / 380 volts): these should be installed above table height in sufficient number. Experts recommend at least four per wall.

• Lighting: Ensure good lighting (daylight) and seek advice from a professional. In addition to stationary lighting systems (ceiling, wall), we also recommend the use of portable luminaires.

• Sufficient shelves on the walls with adequate load capacity that are well secured.

• Sturdy tables / workbenches that can take a beating with a hammer.

• Water connections and drains to wash the dirt off your hands after work.

• Heating for the cold season.

Even if you are a skilled do-it-yourselfer, some work requires professional assistance. For safety reasons, you should leave everything to do with electricity and water, possibly gas, in the hands of professionals.

What tools and machines are needed

What tools to get depends above all on the DIY skills of the do-it-yourselfer. If you like working with wood, then a saw and plane will be part of the standard equipment. If you work with metal, you might consider getting a welding machine, a cut-off wheel or even a small lathe. If you mainly repair watches, then the requirements are quite different.

When it comes to tools, you should ask the advice of DIY pros in addition to the salesperson in the specialist store, namely people who have already set up a workshop and work in it.

Overview of the standard equipment needed for a workshop at home

• Drill and cordless screwdriver

• Various screw clamps

• Saws for wood and metal, possibly an electric jigsaw with different blades

• Metal and wood drills in various sizes

• Set of open-end or ring spanners

• Set of allen keys

• Set of screwdrivers (cross-head, slotted and spax), also suitable for the cordless screwdriver

• Several pliers (combination pliers, side cutters, pointed pliers)

• Hot glue gun

• Range of wood and metal screws (different lengths and thickness)

• Toolbox with miscellaneous items: insulation tape, possibly a current tester, screwdriver, 

torch, pencils, selection of different wood and metal screws

Should you buy or rent a workshop: what is recommendable?

If there is no space or capacity for a workshop in your home, think about whether it would be an option to buy or rent. Currently, the market is in flux and many people want to sell their property. Due to the effect that corona has had on property prices, buying real estate and sustainable living has again moved into the realm of possibility. Maybe this is the perfect time to fulfil your dream of having your own workshop.


Winter temperatures mean rising electricity and heating costs. That is an uncomfortable fact. Unfortunately, the solution is not as simple as simply heating less and putting on a thicker woollen jumper. After all: One of the decisive factors for whether or not we feel comfortable in our own four walls is the surrounding temperature.

Hamburg - Save energy and still be comfortable within your own four walls. Read our new blog post to find out how!

The warmer the better does not always apply

There are guideline values for a healthy indoor climate, whereby what is “healthy” also depends on the physical characteristics of the property. If the indoor and outdoor temperatures vary too much and the humidity is too high, the walls and brickwork may become mouldy, especially in rooms with a high humidity such as bathrooms or utility rooms and cooler rooms.

The recommended temperature for living rooms is between 68 and 72 °F, and for bedrooms it is between 61 and 66 °F, which promotes a restful sleep. If the bathroom is also being used as a wellness oasis, the feel-good temperature here starts at 73.5 °F. In the kitchen, bear in mind that the cooktop and oven are additional heat sources whose energy can also be used to raise the room temperature in order to reach the recommended 60 – 64°F.

Using energy sensibly and smartly

You can often save on heating costs by simply heating more efficiently. Thermometers help you check the actual temperatures in your home. Often these are significantly higher than the guideline values. Reducing the temperature by 37.4° can already achieve a total energy saving of 18 %.

During the day, when the occupants are out, the temperature in all rooms can be lowered to between 61 and  63°F. The temperature should not drop below this, otherwise there is again a risk of mould and heating up the house in the evening takes too long, which would also be an inefficient use of energy.

A possible alternative for bridging the uncomfortable half-hour warm-up period is infrared heating. It provides instant heat at close range, making it ideal for bathrooms or a home office during sedentary work. In principle, all heat sources should be free-standing and not prevented from radiating their heat into the room by curtains or sofas.

The consistent use of energy-saving lamps and the monitoring of appliances have a significant impact on the annual energy consumption. Switchable socket strips with save-energy switches are very useful here, because many electrical appliances in a household consume electricity even when they are not in use. This applies especially to older models. Timers can switch them off, as can modern smart home systems that can be controlled via an app while you are out and about.

Seal up gaps and draughts

Checking for possible leaks that allow built-up heat to escape unnoticed is another simple yet very effective way to save energy. In winter, warm air flows out of cracks in a home while cold air sneaks in. Therefore, check that windows and doors are properly sealed. You can easily carry out a candle test for this purpose. Professionals conduct a blower door test or use thermal imaging cameras to identify problem areas. If the windows are leak-tight, shutters, blinds or thick curtains can provide an additional layer of insulation at night.

All of the measures described are suitable for anyone who wants to save money, including tenants of apartment buildings, as they can be implemented easily and without altering the existing building structure.

New buildings and refurbishment – an opportunity to achieve energy efficiency

Whether you are planning a new building or renovating an old one, every building project geared towards the future should aim to achieve the highest possible standard of living and well-being with the lowest possible energy consumption to ensure a good ecological balance. Property owners or builders face different questions than tenants, which are more far-reaching in terms of the scope of the investment and always focus on the long term. It is advisable to seek professional energy advice and an expert opinion on the actual condition of your building. Then you can decide which changes make sense.

Is it enough to install new windows, or should the heating system be completely modernised or renewed? And what about insulation? If you want to sell a property, then at the latest you will also have to comply with the Energy Saving Ordinance. It stipulates that all the energy values of the building must be made transparent to the buyer in the form of an energy certificate.

If you are planning to build a new house or buy a property, you can opt for a low-energy house or passive house. In this case, you can expect the best possible energy values. Passive houses use heat exchangers and solar thermal systems. This is not only possible for new buildings, but also for old buildings that have been retrofitted with extensive insulation to achieve this standard.

A sensible addition for future-oriented heating systems such as heat exchangers and heat pumps is a photovoltaic system with energy storage and smart control, which takes over the entire energy management in the house.



The decision to sell a property is far-reaching and needs to be well planned and executed. The concept of “home staging” originated in the USA, where it became established in the real estate market as early as the 1970s. It refers to the optimal “staging” of a property for sale for potential buyers. The knowledge that a purchase decision is often actually made in the first moments of viewing further clarifies the relevance of the proverbial “first glance”.

Buying a house means leaving the well-trodden paths of the known, realising wishes and increasing the quality of life. This involvement of our dreams and emotions is an opportunity for the seller. If he succeeds in presenting his property in such a way that the prospective buyer can let his imagination roam free when entering the premises and visualise his own dream home there … then the course is already set for a successful conclusion.

Sales statistics show that properties prepared in this way will find a buyer twice as quickly as comparable properties that are not staged.

Hamburg - Do you want to sell your property promptly and at the best possible price? Read the new blog post to find out how home staging can be the path to success.

Cornerstones of successful home staging

A promising home staging concept manages to create a convincing balance between an inviting atmosphere and a neutral aesthetic. Of great importance for this is a professional lighting concept that is tailored to viewings in daylight as well as at dusk and after dark.

If the property is still occupied, it is advisable to create a neutral atmosphere as far as possible, despite any furnishings. This includes removing all visible personal belongings and replacing them with neutral decoration.

A more than thorough cleaning is called for. “Clean as a whistle” sums it up best, because viewers unconsciously infer the overall condition of the property from the cleanliness and quality of the interior.

The aim of home staging is to make the most advantageous and impressive aspects of your property visible to the widest possible range of buyers. An experienced stager will decide whether it can be sales-promoting to focus on a specific target group of buyers. Young families, for example, can be addressed by giving the children’s rooms special prominence in the design.

Giving the individual rooms a function in the overall living ambience through home staging is also conducive to making the potential of the property more visible.

The garden and exterior of the house form part of the first impression. This includes the state of maintenance of all plantings as well as the facade and exterior lighting.

DIY or would you rather have the professionals do it?

Of course, it is possible to carry out home staging yourself with intensive preparation and planning. However, if you are very busy at work, or if you are not particularly interested in interior design, and you generally entrust garden maintenance to a gardening company, then hiring a professional agency is definitely recommended. You can find a selection of local providers on the Internet. Then comes the selection process of the agency you want to commission to present your property in the best possible light. During an initial consultation, ask to be shown a selection of previous projects with before-and-after photos and the corresponding figures.

Your real estate agency will also be happy to assist you in choosing an agency you can trust. It can recommend competent and reliable partners with whom it has already had good experience and who are a good match for you and your ideas.

What should be included in the staging package and what it costs

Before awarding the contract, have a complete catalogue of measures drawn up showing in detail which services are included in order to get from the current state to a presentation-ready property. A good agency will in turn work with partner companies that provide cleaning services and with handymen and gardeners, should their services be required. It will also coordinate the various activities.

Another important component of a successful sales process is the use of highly professional photographs in the exposé. Home staging agencies tend to work with photographers who specialise in this field. A complete package should include all these services.

The costs for home staging are negotiated individually depending on the scope of the assignment and are usually based on square metres. In our experience, they range between one and three percent of the targeted sales price. Since this can be up to 15 % higher with home staging than without, the investment is definitely worthwhile.

Last Week’s Economic News in Review

January 27, 2021
Existing home sales grew, as did housing starts. Meanwhile, layoffs declined, but remained at extremely high levels. 

Existing Home Sales 

Existing home sales rebounded in December with transactions of existing single-family homes, townhomes, condos and co-ops ticking up 0.7 percent from November to an annual rate of 6.76 million, according to last week’s report from the National Association of Realtors. 

“Home sales rose in December, and for 2020 as a whole, we saw sales perform at their highest levels since 2006, despite the pandemic,” NAR Chief Economist Lawrence Yun noted in comments accompanying NAR’s report. “What’s even better is that this momentum is likely to carry into the new year, with more buyers expected to enter the market.” 

Looking at price, December’s median price for all existing homes of all types was $309,800, which marked a 12.9 percent increase over December 2019’s median price of $274,500. This was the 106th consecutive month of year-over-year gains. 

The number of existing homes for sale at the end of December dropped to 1.07 million units, which represented a 1.9-month supply at December’s sales pace. December’s inventory was 16.4 percent below November’s and 23 percent below December 2019’s supply of 1.39 million units.
Housing Starts 

Starts on the construction of private housing in December reached an annual rate of 1.669 million, which was 5.8 percent over November’s rate of 1.578 million, according to last week’s report from the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development. When compared to the same period a year ago, this was 5.2 percent higher than December 2019’s pace of 1.587 million. 

Most notably, starts on single-family homes shot up to an annual rate of 1.338 million in December, which was 12 percent over November’s pace of 1.195 million. This was the highest increase since 2006 and further proof that while COVID-19 caused pandemonium in other sectors of the U.S. economy, housing remained surprisingly robust. 

“We expect single-family construction to move up 9 percent in 2021 – a much-needed relief valve for homebuyers,” Danielle Hale, chief economist at Realtor.com, remarked to HousingWire. “While buyer demand has slowed since December, it remains notably higher than one year ago, giving builders a strong incentive to keep building.” 

Stars on buildings with five units or more dropped to a rate of 312,000 in December, which was 15.2 percent lower than November’s rate of 368,000.
Initial Jobless Claims 

First-time claims for unemployment benefits filed by recently unemployed Americans during the week ending January 16th declined to 900,000, which was 26,000 claims down from the preceding week’s total of 926,000, the Employment and Training Administration reported last week. 

The four-week moving average – regarded as a more reliable measure of jobless claims – grew to 848,000 claims, which was 23,500 claims over the previous week’s average of 824,500. 

To give an idea of how bad layoffs continue to be, initial claims for this same period a year ago totaled just 282,000 (consistent weekly claims below 300,000 indicates a growing job market). 

“It’s staggering, and it was worse than I thought,” Diane Swonk, chief economist for accounting firm Grant Thornton, told the New York Times. “This makes stimulus more urgent.”
This week, we can expect::Tuesday – Consumer confidence for January from The Conference Board.Wednesday – Durable goods order for December from the Census Bureaus.Thursday – Initial jobless claims for last week from the Employment and Training Administration; new home sales for December from the Census Bureau and Department of Housing and Urban Development; fourth-quarter GDP from the Bureau of Economic Analysis; leading economic indicators for December from The Conference Board.Friday – Personal incomes and spending for December from the Bureau of Economic Analysis.

Thank you, Randy Tickle!
Officer, Mortgage Banker
Office: (303) 318-6066

Oh, by the way ®…if you know of someone who would appreciate the level of service I provide, please call me with their name and contact information. I’ll be happy to follow up and take great care of them.

Design Trends to Try in 2021

January 12, 2021


In 2020, people spent on average 10-20% more time at home than in previous years.  As people find themselves at home more, many have invested in home improvement projects, new furnishings, and updated decor. The beginning of 2021 is the perfect time for homeowners to update the interior design of their homes and energize their spaces in preparation for another unprecedented year. From Cottagecore to Industrial Stylings, here are some of our favorite trending design styles to try to make your home more comfortable, stylish, and easy to manage this coming year.

Industrial Style Decor

According to Kobi Karp, principal designer and founder of Kobi Karp Architecture and Interior Design, industrial style decor is expected to rise in popularity this year. Industrial style decor is defined by a bold contrast between modern luxuries and timeworn, traditional design elements. Inspired by the lofty look of warehouses, industrial design is often marked by exposed stonework, high ceilings, wood and metal furnishings, and the use of salvaged or recycled materials. Minimalist decor and neutral colors seamlessly blend these contrasting elements to make a unique space that inspires creativity. To play into this style, focus on spotlighting exposed piping and brickwork and incorporate wood and metal as primary materials while placing vintage furniture carefully to highlight open spaces.

Cottagecore Style Decor

With the uncertainty that 2020 brought upon us all, many are seeking comfort in the idyllic rural atmosphere of Cottagecore style homes, distinguished by vintage character details that invoke nostalgia for simpler times. Cottagecore usually works best in homes that already have unique features like exposed beams, original floorboards, or paneled walls. These architectural features are combined with a muted pastel palette and carefully curated antiques and vintage items to design a home that celebrates pastoral life. The best place to start when transforming your home into the perfect Cottagecore hideaway is by re-flooring with warm, weathered-looking wood that creates a peaceful ambiance. Choose rustic furniture pieces made of natural materials and antiques to build on this atmosphere. Dried flowers, floral patterns, and soft cotton/wool fabrics tie together the room into a cozy oasis free from the bustle of modern life. 

Multipurpose Spaces

As COVID-19 has significantly increased rates of remote work and virtual learning, makeshift home offices and classrooms have become a necessity in many homes. With limited space, many homeowners have been reinventing rooms to serve more than one purpose. When creating a functional and organized multipurpose room, it’s essential homeowners take advantage of limited space. L-shaped furniture or shelving units are an easy way to store items in previously unused space and open up the rest of the room. Expanding vertically by using walls for storage will also increase the square footage available in a multipurpose room. 

Durable and Easy to Clean Materials

COVID-19 has also emphasized the importance of cleanly and healthy practices in the home to prevent the spread of germs. Designers predict that in 2021 there will be a resurgence of easy-to-clean materials such as glass and metal to make homeowner’s increased cleaning habits less time-consuming. Homeowners are also more likely to invest in antimicrobial materials like linoleum flooring or materials like stainless steel that can be cleaned with just soap and water. Further, kid-friendly and durable materials designed to resist stains are predicted to become even more popular as remote learning causes children to spend more time at home than ever before. As the pandemic continues into 2021, the increased investment in these materials is unlikely to change. 

Natural Materials

Natural materials saw a renewed interest in 2020 which will more than likely continue well into 2021. Designers have predicted that wood will be the most sought after material this coming year. Jute, leather, and ceramic will retain their popularity as well. When choosing what natural materials to use, reflect on your own personal style, and select materials you identify with most. Using wood furniture or wood accents is the easiest way to incorporate natural materials. Choosing marble or stone as primary materials helps to create a more luxurious atmosphere that still highlights the natural beauty of the material. Add depth and texture to any room simply by layering the natural finishes of different materials and adding live plants to bring nature indoors.


🌟 Remodeling your kitchen? 👍 Kitchen cabinets can be expensive, but here are several ways to find cheap – or even free – kitchen cabinets.


When remodeling a kitchen, as much as a third to half of your budget can be spent on buying new kitchen cabinets. While the cabinets make up a big part of any kitchen, it needn’t cost an arm and a leg to replace them. 

Below, we let you in on a well-kept secret: several ways to find cheap – and even free – kitchen cabinets!


The Internet makes it very easy to connect with other like-minded people in your area, and many homeowners doing remodels use the internet to advertise gently used items like furniture, clothing – and yes – kitchen cabinets. 

The downside to this kind of shopping, however, is that competition can be fierce. Everyone likes to get something for nothing, so if you’re lucky enough to find cheap or free kitchen cabinets online, you must move fast. Some good places to look for cabinets include Facebook local groups, Facebook Marketplace, and Craigslist. Check to see if your area has a Buy Nothing Initiative as this limits the advertising area to just your local area, which can lessen competition. 


The Habitat for Humanity ReStore is a great place to find kitchen cabinets on the cheap. With hundreds of stores nationwide, there’s probably a ReStore near you, and because kitchen cabinets take up a lot of precious space, you’re likely to find them at jaw-droppingly low prices. 


Commercial salvage yards are where gently used pieces of houses go to find new forever homes. From bathtubs, countertops, and flooring to sinks, mirrors, and kitchen cabinets, you can find just about any type of home element you need there. Be aware, though, that although the prices are cheaper than buying new, you’ll pay a higher price at a commercial salvage yard than the other methods discussed here as selling used home elements is what they do to earn a living. 


If you’re the DIY type, you may want to make a trip to your local Ikea store for kitchen cabinets. Ikea kitchen cabinets come flat-packed and ready to assemble, which is easy to do. They come in a variety of designs and color choices, and they are surprisingly good quality for the price. 


If you’re patient and take the time to notice, you might find showroom display cabinets on sale at a discounted price. Display cabinets are designed to give you an idea of what a kitchen full of said cabinets might look and function like. They are often packed with extras like bread boxes, slide-out spice racks, etc. to entice buyers to spend more. If a certain model becomes discontinued, its display model usually goes on sale at an extremely discounted price. If you’re not against cabinets that others have touched and used for months, this is a great way to save a lot of money on your kitchen remodel.


💡 Looking for a fresh, new look for your kitchen?👍 Take a look at the suggestions for using gray. Once thought to be a drab, boring color, gray is the perfect choice for any modern kitchen.


Choosing a color for your kitchen can be a bit overwhelming. There are so many color combinations that would work, but when you’re looking for something a little different, a little exciting, the typical white kitchen just won’t do. 

If you’re looking for a fresh vibe in your kitchen, consider incorporating gray. Gray cabinetry combined with white accents and other color combinations works well in nearly any kitchen design. Once thought to be a boring, drab color, gray is the new white, and here are a few ideas for using it in your kitchen. 


Gray doesn’t have to be boring, safe, or drab, especially when you mix and match it with white to create a gentle contrast. Try painting all your cabinets gray and then installing a white countertop. Or, another option is to paint the lower cabinets gray and the upper wall cabinets white. Either look is fresh, contrasting, and exciting. 


The kitchen is supposed to give off a warm and inviting vibe, but gray can be somewhat cold, so try pairing it with warm textures and colors like wood and wood accents, red, yellow, and gold. 

A good rule of thumb to remember is:

1. Darker shades of gray work well in modern kitchen designs

2. Gray and white combinations are well-suited for minimalist kitchen design

Gray can be an extremely fun and exciting color in the kitchen, as is evident by its popularity in home décor these days. Whether you’re remodeling your kitchen or building a new home, consider using gray as one of the colors as it is anything but drab and boring.


🏠 Putting your house up for sale? ⭐ Here are a few tips to help you get the most money out of your home.


So, you’ve decided it’s time to sell your house. What an exciting, and often overwhelming, time. Selling a home takes time and effort, from running a successful open house to bringing in serious offers, you’ll need to stay on top of things. Below, I’ve put together a few tips to help you with the selling process, so you get the best deal possible when selling your first home. 


Although it’s tempting to not hire a real estate agent when selling your home, resist the temptation. A local agent knows your neighborhood inside and out. I know the other homes for sale in the area and what yours is up against. Furthermore, I will handle all the hard work, from running the open houses to finding potential buyers, which can take a lot of stress off the table for you. 


The Internet is an important tool when selling your home. There is a lot of information at your fingertips including the going prices for other homes in the neighborhood, average time on the market and current inventory in your price range.


Without a doubt, selling a home is an emotional event, but emotions have no place in the home selling process. That’s why it’s best to leave it up to the professionals (me and my team) to handle as much of the sale of your home as possible. After all, I have no sentimental ties to the property, and getting the highest dollar in the sale is my job. It’s just another day at the office for a real estate agent, so let me do what I love to do…. Take care of YOU!


First impressions are everything, so make sure the outside of your home looks tidy and welcoming. Keep the grass mowed, pressure wash the outside of your home, and place plants and flowers outside the front entrance to make it appear as if buyers are entering a warm and welcoming home. 

On the inside of your home, give the walls a fresh coat of paint and get rid of any clutter to create a blank slate that interested buyers can use to picture themselves and their belongings in your home. 


Creating a blank canvas inside your home doesn’t mean it should be empty, however. If you’ve already moved your things to a new location, consider adding a few pieces back in for staging. Staging a home can help your home sell up to 80 percent faster and for as much as 20 percent more money. 

If you’re selling a home for the first time, take the tips above into consideration. They will help you get the most out of the home selling process. And, of course, call me!



If you’re like most homeowners, you want to get the most money when you sell your home. To do that, you need to put some effort forth to make your home as appealing as possible to potential buyers. Here is a list of five important home improvement projects you should make before listing your home. 


First impressions are everything, so the first thing you should do is up the curb appeal of your home. Give the exterior a fresh coat of paint, trim the hedges, keep the grass mowed, and power wash wooden fences. Give potential buyers a reason to want to come inside for a closer look. 


When selling your home, you want potential buyers to be able to picture their belongings in your home. To make this easier, you should create a blank slate that enables them to use their imagination. 

Give the walls a fresh coat of paint using neutral tones such as gray, beige, and white. The nice thing about light, soft neutral colors is they also make rooms appear larger, too. 


If the light fixtures in your home haven’t been updated since the 1980s, it’s time to do it now. Take a look at Pinterest for trendy inspiration and replace those old light fixtures with something modern and fun. 


Your home’s floors make a big statement, so if yours is dingy, pet-stained, or otherwise unattractive, make it a point to replace it with something warm, shiny, and inviting. 

Dark-stained hardwood floors are always a plus, but there are many laminate flooring options that are just as beautiful and more cost-effective. Just be sure to allot more of your flooring budget to high-traffic areas such as the kitchen and living room to ensure durability and beauty. 


Popcorn ceilings have exceeded their appeal, so if your home has any, be sure to get rid of them before putting it on the market. While no one wants to spend an entire afternoon scraping the ceiling, the result is so worth the effort. Not only will the ceiling look better, but buyers can’t use it as a reason to not make an offer on your house. 

Like most homeowners, you want to get the most money possible when you sell your home. To do so, you need to consider addressing all the areas listed above before placing your home on the market.