Screen Shot 2014-02-19 at 10.16.09 AMYears back, we moved into our home in the Lake Region area with a one week old baby! Having closed on the house in Naples just days after the arrival of our firstborn, it is safe to say that, despite our excitement to decorate, our priorities were on other matters. “Do we have enough diapers? Is she eating enough? Are we doing this right?” However, when we did find time to indulge in home decorating, we began with a few cans of paint. Transforming our space room by room took time, but was an exciting and enjoyable process. Selecting patterns for upholstery and making decisions on lighting may have taken more time than the average home-buyer, but it was fun to work at our own pace. Over the years, we’ve taken note of new trends in flooring and kitchen design while growing more confident in knowing which decorating choices fit our likes and needs. We’ve recently painted our kitchen cabinets, installed granite countertops, and tiled a backsplash. Our projects have been do-it-yourself weekend adventures but we’re also well aware that by investing time and a little money into our home, we’re adding to its equity, not to mention its aesthetic value.

Some homeowners make renovation plans for their newly purchased property before the closing date has even arrived. Lists of quick fixes to change carpeting, to switch out lighting fixtures, or to repaint a child’s room are common. Others feel the need to live and breathe inside the walls of a new home, slowly getting boxes unpacked, and developing a feeling for the space before making changes. No matter how quickly or leisurely the pace, it usually doesn’t take long after buying real estate that a desire to “make it one’s own” will kick in.

Whether its time to renovate, redecorate or invest in a new home altogether, attending local open house tours is a good way to become educated on the latest real estate trends. After deciding upon a budget, do your research. Decide upon a plan and secure recommendations from others on how to best proceed.

Our homes quickly become an expression of our personalities and lifestyles. What does your home say about you?