Dean Sarris | Lowell Real Estate, Chelmsford Real Estate, Dracut Real Estate, Westford Real Estate


Decorating a small space requires plenty of creativity and a good eye for what works well given the purpose of the room and its inhabitant. Unlike a big room or space where there's plenty of square footage to play with, the focus of small areas is a bit different but not an impossible task.

Here are some simple tips to follow to make your home look amazing despite the small space:

Multi-purpose furniture

Save space with furniture pieces that can either do more than one job or can fold out of the where when necessary. There are many desks, dining tables and even beds that can be moved around to make space or provide you with storage or other benefits. A living area sofa that can also serve as a foldable bed is an excellent addition to any home.

Mirrors make rooms look bigger.

You can create the illusion of a much bigger room. Mirrors also reflect both natural and non-natural lighting and can help to brighten up a small room when appropriately positioned. Not only are they functional and beautiful, but they can also be fancy enough to act as decorative pieces in a little place.

De-clutter

Living in a small space ensures that you only buy what you need. If you are feeling cramped up, look around the room, and there will be things you can do without. Take these out and find ways around it. Decorating a small space means you have to be careful with what you put to avoid it looking unnecessarily tight.

Use bold colors

Small spaces bring out the best of textures, bright colors and prints. Tie in solids with neutrals in cool ways like throw pillows, picture frames or accent walls. You can also put at vibrantly colored wallpapers to create a focal wall in the space and decorate around the theme.

Use large rugs

Large rugs give the semblance of more space and trick the eye into making the room more prominent than it is. They can also form part of your design theme and bring character to a small space.

Plants and flowers

Greenery and flowers are always adorable in small spaces. Flower pots on the windows or table add color to small rooms. Many plants don't need regular watering and thrive in small areas like succulents and Aloe Vera. Faux plants are also a way to go for zero maintenance and more color.

Use your intuition when designing a small space and less is typically more. The above tips will help your small space shine and look amazing.


If you’re a first-time homebuyer you might be worried or anxious about the process of making an offer on a home. After all, negotiating isn’t something most of us look forward to on a day to day basis and we try to avoid it when possible. When it comes to buying a home, however, negotiating is usually part of the process.

One of the benefits of working with a real estate agent is that they have the knowledge and expertise to help you out through the negotiation process. Not only will they help you formulate your offer, but they’ll also present the offer for you and handle the in-person negotiations.

Buyer’s vs seller’s market

Whether or not the odds are in your favor depends on many things. One important factor is the state of the real estate marketing. In a seller’s market, which is what we’re in right now, there are more buyers looking for homes than there are sellers trying to sell them.

However, you can still edge past the competition in a seller’s market if you plan accordingly. This is when negotiation comes into play, and when effective negotiation can get your offer accepted where others are declined.

Time is of the essence

When you’re shopping for a home in a seller’s market, you’ll need to be swift with your offer and counteroffers to stay ahead of other prospective buyers. However, being too hasty with your offers can seem imposing or reckless. It’s better to take a day longer to come up with a more effective offer than it is to make an offer that looks bad to the seller.

Be clear and concise

Just as you’re nervous making offers on a home, sellers are usually nervous fielding them. So, if you want to make things easier for you and your seller, make sure your offer is simple and straightforward.

This involves removing unnecessary contingencies and sticking to the contract basics--inspection, appraisal, and financing. If the seller receives another offer that is riddled with contingencies, they might prefer to work with you since you presented them with a simple contract.

Be prepared

Having your paperwork in order, getting preapproved, and making yourself available as much as possible will go a long way in the negotiation process. Now more than ever it’s important to be well-organized.

Do your homework on the house and neighborhood you’re interested in. Make sure you know if there is a lot of interest in the area and the house in particular. This will let you know how much breathing room you have.

Getting preapproved will not only help you know the limits you can offer but it will also signal to the seller that you’re a serious buyer.


Buying a new home is a joyous occasion, one that should be celebrated by family members and friends. However, telling people about a new home purchase sometimes can be tough, particularly for those who may be leaving roommates or others behind.

Lucky for you, we're here to help you alleviate the stress and worry commonly associated with telling family members or friends about a new home purchase.

Here are three tips to ensure you can remain calm, cool and confident as you inform your loved ones about your decision to buy a new home.

1. Prepare As Much As You Can

Purchasing a house is a life-changing decision, and as such, your loved ones may have concerns. Therefore, you should plan ahead for any questions that you could face about your new house.

Why did you decide to buy a home in a particular city or town? How much did you pay for a house? And what does your home purchase mean for your loved ones? These are just some of the questions that you should prepare to face when you share the news about your new home purchase with loved ones.

Also, it is important to realize that you and your loved ones won't always see eye to eye. And if a family member or friend disagrees with your home purchase, accept his or her opinion and move forward.

2. Take a Proactive Approach

When it comes to informing others about your home purchase, it is always better to err on the side of caution. Thus, taking a proactive approach will ensure you can directly inform the most important people in your life about your home purchase.

Communication is key between family members and friends. With a proactive approach, you can inform your loved ones about your homebuying decision and minimize the risk that they will hear the news from a third-party.

Don't leave anything to chance as you determine who to tell about your home purchase. If you believe there is a risk that a loved one will be left in the dark about your new home, be sure to reach out to this individual directly.

3. Understand the Emotions Involved with a New Home Purchase

A new home purchase represents a new opportunity for you and your family. If some family members and friends feel left out of your upcoming move, many emotions may bubble to the surface.

Keep the lines of communication open with family members and friends – you'll be glad you did. That way, loved ones can share their thoughts and feelings about your new home purchase and understand you will allocate the time needed to hear them out.

If you need extra help as you get ready to tell loved ones about a new home purchase, don't be afraid to ask your real estate agent for assistance, either. This real estate professional understands the intricacies of purchasing a home and can provide expert guidance throughout the homebuying journey.


As incredible the act of purchasing a home is, many buyers end up regretting their purchase. There’s a variety of reasons for this. It all comes down to being ill-informed about buying a home and the type of home needed for the most liable situation. Read on to find out some of the biggest regrets home buyers face and how to avoid them. 


Buying Too Small Of A Home


The most prominent regret that many buyers face is not buying a larger property. Many people want to live in a specific location or type of home that they overlook the size altogether. One reason that people end up buying a home that’s the wrong size is that they rush to find a property in a particular area. If you branch out on your search, you’ll have a better shot at finding the right size home. The area might not matter as much as the space you’re living in, s keep that in mind. 


Not Doing Your Research


People tend to skip out on the research phase of buying a home. It’s critical that buyers understand things like mortgage rates, fees, credit reports, how much needs to be saved, and more. There are so many things that go into buying a home that you could easily miss out on something if you don’t know what you’re in for ahead of time.


Not Saving Enough


Your home will be one of the largest purchases you make in your entire life. There is a lot more to the cost than just the monthly mortgage payment. You’ll need a lot of money upfront when you buy a home including a downpayment along with other closing costs and fees. Plus, you’ll need to set some money aside for any repairs or replacements you need to do in the home once you move in. It’s also a good idea to have an emergency fund available just in case. Life happens, and you don’t want your savings to be depleted because you bought a house. 


Keep in mind that the bigger of a downpayment you make, the better off you’ll be. Even if you can buy a home with a low downpayment, you want to put down as much as possible. A higher downpayment will keep your mortgage payments lower, get you a better rate, and you may even be able to avoid paying for PMI (private mortgage insurance.) Aim to save a 20 percent down payment for the most optimal mortgage situation.      

   


So, you want to create a command center to enable your family to all be on the same page once in a while. The ideas online are as numerous as they are creative. Your supply list grows along with your doubt; maybe this wasn't such a good idea. As thoughts go, a command center is a great plan when you have several people on different schedules and many activities to attend. A command center doesn't have to be large to be effective. The size all depends on what and for how many people you need to keep track.

What to track

Common things you will see command centers track are:

- Weekly Menus
- Calendar
- Budget/Bills
- Keys/Leashes/Umbrellas
- Chore Lists
- School Bags/Homework
- Quotes

To keep the command center as simple and easy to use, limit the number of things you track to five or six. This way there is a better chance your household will adapt to using this tool and not be overwhelmed. 

Where to set it up

Most of the command center examples show them set up in and around the kitchen area. The kitchen is one place you know everyone in the house will at one time frequent at least once a day, hopefully. Other locations could be a small corner of shared space or even an exposed side of the refrigerator. A mudroom or entryway could work as a more substantial drop zone and command center. Anywhere that you know it will be seen and utilized will work. The key is to make sure the accessibility is appropriate for the entire household, keeping the age of all users in mind. 

How to put it all together

Now that you have a scope of the things you want to incorporate in your command center look around your home and see if there are items you can use before you rush out and start purchasing new things. Old clipboards and corkboards are great for hanging up and controlling papers. Use whiteboards for making menus, tracking chores or writing those inspiring quotes. Even old picture frames with glass can house an updated calendar page, and with a dry erase marker you can create your family calendar. Layout all the pieces on the floor before you hang anything up, that way you can play around with it before you commit.

Visit some open houses this weekend and look for places a command center would be useful. Contact your local realtor for a list of open houses.