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Text-only newsletter stories for Issue 8 Vl. 9


Feel free to use these stories in your own newsletter designs. If you want to use a completed newsletter template, check out the latest issues of Hometalk and Real Estate Advisor. If you want to use a completely editable newsletter template, please see the News & Views template.


Headline: Give Your Deck a Facelift

Hanging out with your family or hosting friends on your old, dingy deck is not very appealing. Lucky for you, refreshing it doesn’t have to be difficult or expensive. Try your hand at the makeover ideas below!

Restore your decking. Depending on the shape it’s in, sometimes all your deck needs is a little love. If it’s still fairly new, your deck might just need a deep cleaning and a new coat of sealant. There is a multitude of deck finishing and cleaning solutions on the market to choose from to achieve this. However, if its more worn down, the rejuvenation process may be a bit longer, including searching for larger repairs, tightening any hardware, giving it a good cleaning, applying a stain, sealant, and paint, and more.

Add lighting. Ambient lighting can completely transform your outside space into a relaxing, cozy oasis. Consider adding solar lights that don’t require a plugin or battery replacement. The lights turn on automatically when the sun sets, making your deck come alive. You can also consider paper lanterns, rope lights, mason jar lamps, or small twinkle lights, depending on the style and mood you’d like to set.

Build a privacy screen. Privacy screens come in all styles, shapes, and sizes. Consider purchasing and installing bamboo fencing or lattice panels for a quick and easy solution. Or, if you are feeling a little more adventurous, you can build a wooden frame and grow climbing plants or vines or stretch outdoor fabric in between. Whichever route you end up choosing, make sure you get the most out of your efforts by evaluating all lines sight before building.

Home Equity. Getting a home equity line of credit allows you to borrow money against the value of your home. You receive usually up to 80 percent of your home’s value, minus the amount of your loan.

Retirement Funds. Homeowners can consider pulling money from a 401K or IRA account, even though they aren’t specifically meant to cover a home renovation. This option might incur additional penalties or tax payments, but maybe worth it when making improvements that will benefit them financially in the long run.


Headline: Organize Your Closet Like a Champ

Do you desire a closet that looks like it’s straight out of a magazine? Then we have you covered! Follow the tips below to masterfully organize your closet and give yourself peace of mind.

Group like clothing items together. Group same-length dresses, long-sleeved shirts, blouses, pants, etc. together in your closet to both save space and create an esthetically-pleasing look. Add an extra bar. Need more hanging room? You can find additional closet bars in-store or online for under $20 and installation is fairly quick and easy. Then hang t-shirts, blouses, jackets, and more on the lower bar. Keep things uniform. Although you may have to spend a little more upfront, purchasing matching hangers, organizers, and storage boxes will give your closet a cleaner look. Invest in special hangers, dividers, and organizers. Purchase a few items to make closet organization a breeze, such as a space-saving pants organizer, shelf dividers to keep t-shirts, towels, or sweaters in place, or multi-shirt hangers that can fit up to 5 garments on one. Try color-coding. Feeling magically inspired? Try organizing your closet by color. You can even place the colors in order of the rainbow to help make dressing easier and more fun. Get creative with shoe storage. Shoes can take up a lot of room and keeping the pile neat and tidy can be difficult. Consider purchasing a shoe organizer that hangs on your closet door or install rails on the wall to hang high heels. You can also purchase cubby shelving or a shoe carousel to be placed on the closet floor.


Headline: Take 5: Top Gardening Tips for Newbies

Feel like trying out your green thumb, but have no clue where to get started. Check out these five tips for newbie gardeners.

  1. Get to know your soil. To grow a bountiful garden, you must first start with the soil. Determining whether you have loam, clay, or sandy soil can help you select the best flowers, bushes, fruits, vegetables, and more to plant. Try a soil test kit to determine this.
  2. Play to the sun. Watch the way sunlight moves throughout your yard before choosing your garden plot. A vast majority of edible plants will need at least 6 hours of sun per day to grow properly.
  3. Determine your frost dates. Don’t kill your garden’s chances of thriving by accidentally planting too early or late in the season. Make sure you know the average spring and fall frost date for your area so you plant at just the right time.
  4. Keep a close eye on weeds. After all the time and effort you put into planting your garden, the last thing you need is for your plants to be suffocated by weeds. Read up on the common weeds in your area and the safest and best way to rid your garden of them. Make sure to keep a record of these for the years following so you don’t have to repeat your research.
  5. Water and feed diligently. Morning is the best time to water your garden to allow it to fully soak into the soil before it is evaporated by the sun. Each plant is different so make sure you pay attention so you don’t overwater.

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