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Bundle Up Your Home From The Cold!

by The Rullo Team

Winter is officially here! Our days are filled with cold temperatures and snowfalls. Keep your Fox River Valley home toasty all season long while saving money on your energy costs! Focus on these elements of your home as we enter the coldest months of winter!

  • Energy Monitor - Install this helpful tool to learn where your home uses the most energy so you can easily discover ways to cut costs.

  • Windows - Use a Window Insulation Kit to add an extra layer against the cold. Be sure to properly caulk around all windows to avoid leaks. add an additional buffer against cold air.

  • Doors - Add a draft blocker underneath all outdoor doors. Be sure to caulk and weatherstrip as needed. Consider switching to a Storm Door for added energy efficiency.

  • Furnace - Change the filters to increase airflow and remove illness inducing irritants. Have the system professionally cleaned and adjusted. Save money in the long run by upgrading to an Energy Efficient Furnace. keep your family healthy all season.

  • Insulation - Just as you do to go outside, your home needs to wear some added layers this season. Add insulation between walls, to the basement ceiling, and the attic floor. Also, wrap insulation around your pipes to avoid costly issues from freezing.

  • Thermostat - Keep heating costs low by turning down the heat whenever you leave the house. Also consider reducing the temperature by a couple degress and cuddling up with a warm blanket instead!

 

For additional helpful home owner’s tips, check out our website at http://www.therulloteam.com/!


New Year's Resolutions For Your Fox River Valley Home

by The Rullo Team

The New Year is here! That means it is time to set your New years resolutions. When thinking about all that you want to achieve in the New Year, do not forget about improvements that you can make to your home. 2019 is the perfect time to make sure that your home is in tip top shape. Here are our top New Year's Resolutions for your Fox River Valley home.


1. Set a Budget.

Before determining any of your other home improvement goals, you should create a budget for yourself. This will ensure that you do not overspend when making improvements and will help you when unexpected maintenance costs pop up! If you are able to make it throughout the year without spending all the money you set aside (Lucky you!), continue to save the money into the following year when you might need it.

 

2. Focus on Decluttering.

We all accumulate a lot of stuff over the years. Start of the New Year right by getting rid of items that you truly do not need. Donate anything that is still in good condition. If there are items that you do not regularly use but have sentimental value, put them away in storage for the future. You will feel less stress throughout the year by only having the things in your home that are necessary. It will save you time on cleaning and tidying up.

 

3. Reduce Water and Energy Usage.

Help conserve our planet's natural resources while saving money yourself by making improvements to your home that cut excess water and energy usage. You can reduce the amount of water your home uses by installing low flow showerheads and high efficiency toilets. To improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling systems, seal and insulate your ductwork.

 

4. Improve Indoor Air Quality.

Keep your family healthy by improving the air quality in your home. Reduce harmful pollutants by using high quality furnace filters and changing them regularly. Invest in air cleaners that can be utilized in individual rooms to remove specific irritants. Make sure that smoke and kitchen fumes are properly ventilated outside of your home from the kitchen. The same goes for the excess humidity in your bathrooms.

 

5. Install Maintenance Free Materials.

Spend the time in 2019 installing maintenance free materials throughout your home. This will reduce recurring stress throughout the year by eliminating upkeep and will make the need for continual improvements a thing of the past. Within your home, use ceramic tiles that are extremely tough and stain and moisture resistant. They will make your floors look fantastic for years without any need for repair. On the outside of your home, use fiber cement siding, which is weather proof and resists insects, fire, dent, and rot. This siding will last you for over 50 years without need for replacement!

 

6. Achieve Other Resolutions While Improving Your Home!

You will have more personal resolutions that you make this New Year. Work to achieve those resolutions while making improvements to your home. It's incredibly easy to do. If focusing on exercising more is one of your goals for 2019, focus on do it yourself projects around the home. You can burn calories by taking on simple tasks, such as caulking, cleaning, painting, and yard work. If your resolution is to spend more time with family, focus on projects around the home that you all can work on together and find fun ways to complete the task as a team.


 

Pet Safety Tips For A Happy Holiday Season!

by The Rullo Team

Ensure a happy holiday season for the furriest member of your family......your pet! During this time of year, our homes are filled with many new things that peak their curiosity. Their curiosity can cause damage to holiday decor or, and more importantly, be hazardous for our beloved pets! Keep your furry friend happy and healthy during the holidays by following these easy tips for pet safety!


 

  • Although we want to treat our pets during the holidays, avoid sharing table scrapes with them. There are many foods on our holiday plates that are toxic for them, such as chocolate, raisins, garlic, and onions. Keep them away from tables and garbage that might contain bones or plastic utensils. These items can be hazardous if swallowed. 
  • Alcohol can have incredibly serious effects on the the health of your pet. Keep all adult beverages far away from your furry friend. 
  • Candles are a beautiful part of the holiday season but they can very easily be knocked over by your pet. Opt for flameless candles so you can still keep the ambiance you desire. 
  • Cables seem like a delicious new chew toy to some pets but this can lead to electric shock to your animal. Hide any cables and/or use citronella infused covers to deter chewing. 
  • Poinsettas are a beautiful holiday plant but their leaves are incredibly toxic to animals. Avoid any health disasters by opting for silk plants or sprinkle pepper on the leaves to deter your pets from eating them.
  • Cats and dogs are invariably intrigued by the new tree in the house. Keep them away by using household ground white pepper or another natural deterrent around the lower branches and tree skirt. Avoid using ornaments made out of edible materials as they become far to inticing for your curious pet. 
  • Always have a responsible family member keep an eye on your pet during gatherings. This will ensure that your pet isn't stealing food from the table, getting into mischeif, or accidently getting outside. 
  • During large gatherings, find a quiet room that you can keep your pet in. Just make sure to provide them with lots of toys and treats to distract them. This gives you a break from having to watch them while you entertain and more importantly gives them a peaceful spot away from the hustle and bustle (which causes anxiety in some animals).

 


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Great Home Maintenance Tasks To Tackle This Winter!

by The Rullo Team

Winter Home MaintenanceWith the cold weather outside, December is the perfect time to take care of some maintenance around the house. Keep your Fox River Valley home in tip top shape this winter and all year round by completing some tasks. Here are easy tasks to complete this month and keep your family healthy and cozy in your beloved home.

1. Give Your Wood Floors Some TLC. Winter can be the toughest season on your wood floors. Heating in your home can dry out the planks, resulting in cracks and shrinkage. Salt can scratch and stain the floors. There are several simple steps you can take to resolve these issues. Add a humidifier in your home to add moisture to the air. Sweep and mop the floors routinely to remove salt and buildup. Add rugs and mats in areas with a lot of foot traffic.

2. Prepare For Winter Storms. Winter is here for the next few months. That means freezing temperatures and percipitation. Keep shovels and snow fear close to the door so that you can easily access them when needed. Keep walkways cleared of snow and ice. Remove large snow piles, when the weather permits, from the roof and tree limbs to avoid costly damage.

3. Clean Your Oven. During the holidays, your oven sees a lot of use. There is likely a lot of grease and grime built up. Use the self-cleaning function once a month if your oven has one. Create a paste of baking soda and water to scrub out the buildup in the oven.

4. Take Care Of Drafts. Hot air can be escaping from your home and increasing your energy bill. Pick up some door sweeps from your area home improvement store to all doors leading outside. Add weatherstripping around windows.

5. Remove Allergens. Indoor allergens increase during the winter. Keep your family healthy all season by removing these issues. Dust throughout the house, particularly blinds and ceiling fans. Be sure to vacuum all carpeted areas regularly. Add an air purifier with HEPA filter to your home to remove particles from the air. Wash your bedding in hot water weekly and cover your mattress in a zippered allergen-resistant cover.

6. Complete A Property Inspection. Brave the cold weather and complete a home inspection in the winter. This is important since major issues are more likely to take place during this season. Check the conditions of gutters, look out for frozen pipes, and inspect windows and doors. Make sure to change out the batteries in the smoke and carbon monoxide detectors. Consider hiring a professional to complete the inspection to ensure that all potential issues are found.

 


Contine to check The Rullo Team's website for more helpful home maintanence tips throughout the year!

Tips to Prep Your Home for Thanksgiving Day Guests!

by The Rullo Team

Thanksgiving is next week! If you are hosting the big feast at your Fox River Valley  home, now is the perfect time to prepare so you feel less stress as the day approaches. Along with planning out your delicious menu, get your home ready so all your guests will be comfy and happy this holiday!


1. Keep It Bright!

You know your home like the back of your hand but your guests don't. Make sure that everyone can safely navigate throughout your home no matter what time of day it is. Check that all outdoor lights are working. Add nightlights to hallways and in bedrooms and bathrooms that guests will be using.

2. Clear The Space!

Remove all unnecessary clutter to accomodate more people in your house. Store these items out of the way in closests and the basement. Make sure you have ample space on counters and tables for all of your food prep.

3. Say Welcome!

Create an amazing first impression for guests as they enter your home by focusing on the foyer. Add some welcoming touches for a festive, homey feel. At the same time, keep it functional for your guests. With the colder weather, you will need ample space for guests to place their coats, shoes, and gear.

4. Get Your Kitchen Ready!

Your kitchen will be the central hub of your home next week so make sure that it is ready to go before the cooking starts. Have all essential items easily accessible. Make it possible for guests to keep you company as you cook by creating a comfortable hang spot for them in the kitchen.

5. Feels Like Home!

If guests are spending the night, make sure that they will be as comfortable as possible. Stock up on warm bedding for them to use. Even if they aren't sleeping over, have spots throughout your home where they can relax since we all get tired after the big feast!

6. Stock Up!

Make sure that all essential items are available in your home's bathroom to account for your additional guests. Stock up on toilet paper, towels, and toiletries for them to use. Keep these items in spots that are easy for guests to locate when they are needed.



The Rullo Team wishes everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving!  

 

How to Spruce Up Your New Home!

by The Rullo Team

There is always a lot of information and advice about Buying a home. What the process entails, when to do it, what you need, etc. But, after you close on the home and have your boxes packed and ready to go, what should you do? There are actually a few simple chores that you should always do once you move into your new home. You just made a major investment and you want to make sure it is in tip-top shape as you start to make it your own.  


Change Locks: In all reality, when you purchase a new home, you truly have no idea who all has keys to it. As soon as you move in, change all of the locks. You can either re-key or buy entirely new lock sets.

 

Check for Leaks: Other a home inspection has been completed, you still want to verify that there aren't any plumbing issues. Check for any leaks throughout the home. You want to handle these right away because they could lead to costly damage in the future if left unchecked.

 

Remove Pests: Hopefully, this is not an issue that you run into but you want to make sure you do not have any unwelcome "roommates" in your home. If you find pests, consider hiring a professional in order to complete eradicate the issue from the onset and give you peace of mind.

Inspect the HVAC System: Living in the Fox Valley, we know that we need our AC in the summer and our heat in the winter. Make sure you know how to use the HVAC system and that it is working properly throughout the home.

 

Update Lighting: The lighting throughout the house might not be your preference. As you start to settle in, determine how you prefer the lighting in each room and make changes accordingly, whether with overhead lights or accent lights.

Know the Circuit Breaker: If the previous owner did not do so, label the fuses in the circuit breaker. Figure out which ones control which rooms and mark accordingly so you can easily turn the power back on when needed.

 

Understand the Main Water Valve: We can get stormy weather in the Fox River Valley. Between this and plumbing emergencies, it might be necessary to turn off the main water valve from time to time. Find out whether it is located inside or outside of the home and know how to turn it off for these situations.

Clean the Carpets: Have a completely fresh start in the home by deep cleaning the carpets. Rent a steam cleaner or hire a professional to handle. Although the carpets might appear clean, this will give you the peace of mind that your home is sparkly and new.

 

 

If you are looking to BUY, work with The Rullo Team to help you find your dream home in the Fox River Valley. Give our team a call today or visit our website at http://www.therulloteam.com/.

Fall Home Maintenance Tasks!

by The Rullo Team

As the weather gets increasingly colder, you want to make sure that your Fox River Valley home  is in tip-top shape. That means autumn is the perfect time to complete some easy but important home maintenance projects. Here are the top maintenance tasks that you should do around your home this season.

 

Complete Important Yearly Checks!

Fall is a great time to complete those yearly maintenance tasks. Service and clean your HVAC system to keep it running properly throughout the rest of the year. Check all your fire/smoke alarms to ensure they are working properly. Clean out your chimney so you can safely keep your family warm during the colder months.

 

Keep Pests Away!

Just as you will be escaping the colder temperatures inside, pests will try to as well. Avoid unwelcome house guests by checking for small and large holes around your house. Use caulking or netting to cover up. Do an inspection of your attic's insulation to make sure that there are no holes created by pests. Cover up those holes to avoid ice damage from occurring to your roof.

 

Check The Exterior!

Now is the perfect time to do a thourough check of the outside of your home. Finding necessary repairs now will help save you on stress and money as we head closer to winter. Clear gutters of fallen leaves and debris so water can properly move away from your home. Look for loose or missing shingles that need to be replaced. Make sure that all the caulking around doors and windows is adequate and repair as necessary. Remove debris and trim your vegetatin so it can grow properly come the spring.

 

Winterize Your Irrigation System!

Check the manufacturer's instructions on winterize your irrigation/sprinkler season so that it remains protected during the colder months. You can continue to use your sprinklers in the fall but consider putting them on a timer since we tend to experience more rainfall that can naturally hydrate your lawn and garden.

 

Safety First!

With increased precipitation and colder weather, ice starts to become more of a risk throughout the season. Inspect the handrails and supports on your patios and decks to ensure that you and others have something to safely grab onto should you fall. Make sure that walkways are clear of icy patches and well as fallen leaves and sticks.



For more home maintenance tips throughout the year, check out our website!

How to Prep Your Garden for the Fall!

by The Rullo Team

As summer winds down, it is the perfect time to get your garden ready for the end of the year. Protect your Fox River Valley garden during the fall and winter for following these simple tasks!

 

Water

Your plants and trees will need lots of moisture in their roots to survive the colder months. Be sure to water them well over the next several months to ensure their survival.

Amend Your Soil

Till the soil and add compost to get the soil ready for next year.

Plant Fall Annuals

Keep your garden looking great well into fall by planting annuals that thrive in autumn, such as mums, kale, and pansies.

Add Shrubs and Evergreens

Plant shrubs and evergreens early in Fall to allow their roots to grow before the ground freezes.

Lower Your Lawn Mower

It is important to keep cutting your grass before the winter. Allow the soil to dry out quicker in the spring by keeping its cutting height low.

Clear Rose Beds

Remove fallen debris from roses from the bed since this foliage can cause diseases to thrive and will destroy your garden next year.

Divide Perennials

Rearrange your plants as you divide your perennials.

Remove Weeds

Make sure to take out all the weeds from your garden before you cannot get them out of the frozen ground.

Dig Up Annuals

Remove any dead annuals from your garden.

Save Summer Bulbs

If you loved some of your flowers from this year, dig up the bulbs and save them for next year.

Plant Bulbs

For bulbs that are hardy enough to survive the winter months, plant them at the beginning of fall so you will have beautiful blooms right away in spring.

Feed Your Lawn

Add important nutrients to your lawn so it remains healthy throughout the winter.

Rake & Mulch

Get rid of all fallen leaves from your yard and add mulch to your garden beds.

Protect Plants

Plants that cannot survive the colder temperatures should be protected. After the first freeze, place mulch or other protective coverings over them.

Force Bulbs Indoors

Plant some bulbs indoors so that they bloom early in the year and are ready to transfer to your garden as soon as the ground thaws.

Keep Container Plants Indoors

Make sure to remove pests and dead foliage from container plants and bring them indoors to protect them from the cold.

Empty Hoses and Other Watering Equipment

Be sure to remove all water from your hoses, irrigation systems, fountains, and other watering equipment before storing them in a dry place for the winter.

 

Continue to check The Rullo Team's website for more helpful home maintenance tips throughout the year!


 

Summer Spruce Up Maintenance Tips!

by The Rullo Team

Keep your Fox River Valley home in tip top shape all year round by tackling some home maintenance projects while the weather is beautiful outside. These projects for inside and outside of your home will help spruce it up for you and your family this season. Here are 15 Summer Spruce Up Maintenance Tips!

1. Touch Up Exterior Paint - Boost your home's exterior appearance by touching up the paint. If you do not have any exterior paint on hand and need help matching the color, ask a professional to come out to help you find the perfect match.

 

2. Wash Windows - Be able to see the beautiful scenery of your landscaping by washing the outside of your windows. You will get best results by scrubbing with a bucked of hot soapy water.

3. Clean Window Screens - Window screens also need to be washed at this time. Gently scrub them with the same mixture. If they are too covered in dirt and grime, it is a great time to replace them.

4. Clean Exterior of House - This might be the most difficult summer maintenance task but is also vitally important. The warm weather gives you the opportunity to wash the outside of your home and after our winters it is a good idea. Do a soft washing to update your curb appeal and extend your home's lifespan.

 

5. Reverse Ceiling Fans - Change your ceiling fans to spin counter-clockwise so that a breeze is created throughout the home.

6. Clean A/C Filter - Keep your family cool all summer long by cleaning the air conditioner filter. Wash with warm water or vacuum cleaner if your system does not have a self-cleaning function. Remember that this task should be done frequently while your air conditioner is in continual use.

7. Remove A/C Fan - After dealing with the A/C filter, now is a good time to dust off the fan. Remove it, clean it, and return it to its rightful place when done.

8. Check Furnace Filter - Your furnace has also been accumulating dust. Remove the filter and give it a thorough washing if the filter is a reusable one. If it is not, be sure to replace it with a new filter.

Getting tired of dust? We haven’t even scratched the surface. Your furnace has a filter and, just like your A/C unit, it needs to be cleaned. All you have to do is turn off power to the furnace and then locate the filter behind the service door. You may need to unscrew a panel or two. Remove the filter and give it a wash it if it is a reusable one. If the filter has a cardboard frame, you will need to replace it instead of washing it.

9. Maintain Washing Machine - Give your washing maching some TLC so your clothes continue to come out clean. Remove soil buildup from the seal around the door.

10. Inspect Driveway and Walkways - Driveways and walkways take a beating throughout the year. Check for cracks and weeds and handle those issues as they are found. Afterward, it is a good idea to pressure wash these areas.

11. Clean Baseboards - It's a great time to work on those areas of the house that often get overlooked and that includes the baseboards. Give them a clean with a damp cloth to remove built up dust and dirt.

12. Clean Garbage Disposal and Dishwasher - Just like the laundry machine, now is a good time to clean the garbage disposal and diswasher. Refresh both by using vinegar. This will help remove food odors that have been building up.

13. Inspect Hoses - Look for cracks, wear and tear, or any signs of leaks in the hoses located around your house (i.e. dishwasher, refrigerator, washing machine, toilets, etc.). Replace as necessary.

14. Inspect Attic and Basement - Check both of these spaces for water leakage, mold and mildew, and pests. Handle any issues that you might discover right away.

15. Declutter - Get rid of those items that you really do not need around the house by hosting a rummage sale or donating them. If you discover that you have a lot of items to simply toss, consider renting a dumpster so you can do a giant purge at once and be done with it.

 


Continue to check The Rullo Team's website for more helpful home maintenance tips throughout the year!


Find Great New Ideas for your Kane County Home!

by The Rullo Team

 

 

 

Ready to make some renovations or improvements to your Fox River Valley home? Come to the Chicago Home Show this weekend at the Kane County Fairgrounds (525 South Randall Road, St. Charles)! Taking place Saturday, March 17th, and Sunday, March 18th, from 10:00 am to 5:00 pm, you will find hundreds of contractors and awesome ideas for your home projects at this FREE event!


Bring your ideas, plans, or repair needs and talk to local contractors and service providers to make them a reality. There will also be helpful products available for purchase. You will find everything that you need for inside and outside of your Fox River Valley home including, but not limited to:

 

 

  • Interior decorating ideas
  • Home organization ideas
  • Financial services
  • Home security
  • Windows and doors
  • Decks and patios
  • Kitchen remodels and updates
  • Bathroom remodels and updates
  • Roofing
  • Siding
  • Gardening
  • Landscaping

 

Chicago Home Show Details

Dates: Saturday, March 17th - Sunday, March 18th

Time: 10:00 am - 5:00 pm (daily)

Location: Kane County Fairgrounds (525 South Randall Road, St. Charles)

Cost: FREE admission and parking!


 


If you are interested in Buying or Selling your Fox River Valley area home, give the The Rullo Team a call today or visit our website at http://www.therulloteam.com/.

 

Image Credit: The Home Show

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