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Retiring? Don’t make Farmhouse Style these real estate mistakes How to Nail the BY MISSY KING 2019 Bryan-College Station Regional Association of REALTORS® President Looking forward to retirement? It can be an exciting transition. Unfortunately, some people find themselves in tough circumstances due to unwise real estate moves. Here are some mistakes to avoid. Don’t make impulsive decisions If you’ve been planning to sell your current home to downsize or move to a new location, you’ve likely done research and given some thought to the idea. If not, though, a quick decision right after you retire could lead to disappointment or financial difficulty. Take time to explore all the factors that go into any move you’re considering. You can also discuss your ideas with a local Realtor. He or she has experience helping many others who have made the same kinds of moves you’re now contemplating. Remember that retirement isn’t the same as a vacation You may have loved going to your favorite vacation spot each year and dreamed about one day retiring there. But vacationing in a place is not the same as living there. Before you make that move, spend time in the area and imagine it as your permanent home. Does it have the year-round amenities, weather, and lifestyle that work well for you? Also, can you afford the kind of home you want and the ongoing cost of living there? Don’t forget your health and mobility Whether you want to remain in your current home or sell it and buy something else, think about how your life could change as you age. Does your location provide access to the medical care you may need? Is the home itself navigable if you become less mobile? Planning for these possibilities now may save you from having to move again if your health declines. Keep the costs in mind Whether you’re thinking about buying a second home or selling your current house and buying something nicer, be sure to carefully run the numbers. It’s easy to underestimate all the costs of homeownership. Can you really afford the homeowners association fees, insurance, maintenance, and taxes without depleting your retirement money too quickly? Have a plan for your sale proceeds If you make a sizeable profit from downsizing, what will you do with that money? A new car and lavish vacations may be tempting, but soundly investing your proceeds may be just what you need to shore up your retirement nest egg. The Bryan-College Station Regional Association of REALTORS® is a notfor-profit trade organization established in 1967 that represents approximately 1000 Realtors and real estate industry professionals across six counties. More information about our organization can be found at www.bcsrealtor.com or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org in Your Interior Decorating (StatePoint) Farmhouse style is cozy, rustic, charming and eclectic. While creating the vibe in your own home is easy, according to home decorating experts, it requires some attention to detail. Designer, Instagram personality, blogger and business owner Liz Marie Galvan, who recently renovated her 1840s farmhouse, is sharing a few key elements to consider: Natural Wood Elements Searching for the perfect table, picture frame, or bookshelf ? When in doubt, use natural wood. “Natural wood really evokes that old-time feel. In our home we have wood flooring in every room, but you can also bring in natural wood kitchen cabinets, dressers, trim and so much more.” To be eco-conscious while nailing the weathered look, consider sourcing locally reclaimed lumber, where possible. You can continue the wood motif by adding shiplap accent walls or even shiplap ceilings to certain rooms. Replacement Windows “Most people don’t think a lot about windows -- window treatments, yes, but windows...not so much,” points out Galvan. “But windows themselves can be a gamechanger. One of the key parts of our renovation was all-new windows with a historically accurate grille pattern, which totally changed the look and feel of the house.” This upgrade not only complemented the historical period of the home’s structure to define the look, it also eliminated the draft she was experiencing from the old windows that came with the home -- a good reminder that old-school charm does not need to be accompanied by old-school discomfort. While Galvan did hers in white with colonial grilles, other colors, such as black, would also go great in a farmhouse-style home. Keep in mind, there are many elements to consider, and you’ll want the flexibility to customize. This is why Galvan turned to Renewal by Andersen, the fullservice custom replacement window division of Andersen. Offering a start-to-finish process, one can select among 49 color combinations, numerous hardware choices and a wide variety of grille patterns and frames -- including a custom-designed option. For customization inspiration, visit renewalbyandersen.com/style. As for trim, Galvan says you can get instant farmhouse vibes and make a new build look old by using thick, chunky window, door and floorboard trim throughout the entire home. Extra Touches Decorate with items you’d actually find on a farm, as much as possible. Galvan used rustic farmhouse fabrics like grainsack, tobacco baskets, chicken nesters, farmhouse signs, barn wood and more. And about 80 percent of her home’s furniture is antique or vintage, she says. Antiquing is not only fun, but when you find that perfect treasure, there may be a touch of triumph involved. However, if the treasure hunt starts to feel more like a search for a needle in a haystack, consider going the “faux antique” route. Many stores sell convincing reproductions. For more style inspiration and to learn more about Galvan’s project, visit: renewalbyandersen.com/farmhouse.