7 Spooktacular Halloween Events in Columbia

Chris Laskowski10/26/2015  |  Categories: Columbia
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Enter Columbia if you dare! Whether you’re a South Carolina native or new to the neighborhood, get in the spirit of spookiness with the city’s halloween festivities. With a stacked lineup of haunting events, kids of any age can find something to rave about. Check out seven of Columbia’s most spooktacular events and click HERE for even more!

1. Boo at the Zoo (Oct. 16-30)

Gather the whole family and enjoy beautiful fall weather at Riverbanks Zoo & Garden. This event, geared towards young children, includes trick-or-treating, a marshmallow roast, a haunted carousel, a spooky safari and more. Though most animals will be MIA and getting a good night’s sleep, the zoo’s picturesque property makes for the perfect place to let your kids roam free in their favorite animal costume!

2. Deceased Farm's Madness Murder & Maize (Oct. 22-31)  

Geared more towards older (and braver) kids, Clinton Sease Farm’s spooky experience will take guest (or victims) through scream-inducing haunted houses and a creepy corn maze. Both attractions are not for the faint of heart and include live characters and scary props. Embark on this journey if you dare!

3. "Dracula: Ballet With A Bite" (Oct. 29-31)

Get into the halloween spirit with a night at the ballet. Count Dracula’s “reign of terror” is set to play for three short days with a costume contest during Saturday night’s show. Experience the art of ballet like you never have before: “with a bite.” 4. EdVenture's Halloween Happenings (Oct. 31)

Young kids can enjoy a not-so-spooky halloween party at the EdVenture Children’s Museum. Eembark on a scavenger hunt, participate in pumpkin smashing, create wacky inventions at a mad science lab and more. This hands-on, family-friendly event is free for kids!

5. “Frankenstein” (Oct. 29)

Take a trip to the National Theatre of London for a performance of “Frankenstein,” starring Benedict Cumberbatch and Jonny Lee Miller. Located at the Harbison Theatre for one night only, the performance of this award-winning play will be shown for a Columbia audience.

6. Trunk or Treat at Historic Columbia (Oct. 29)

Venture to the historic downtown Columbia area and participate in Trunk-or-Treat! Kids can experience a safe and fun way of trick-or-treating, collecting candy from creative trunk displays. The event is free, held next to the seasonal Scarecrows in the Garden exhibit, and located in the heart of a bustling downtown area.

7. South Carolina State Museum’s “Tricks & Treats” (Oct. 31) This year, take on South Carolina State Museum’s annual halloween tradition. Festivities including a play, scavenger hunt, wizard academy and two laser light shows make this a celebration that kids won’t want to miss!

Interested in relocating to a family-friend community with lots to do? Check out homes for sale in Columbia, SC.

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7 Great Apps For Redesigning a Home

Chris Laskowski10/19/2015  |  Categories: Other
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Whether you’re remodeling, preparing to hire a decorator, or moving into a newly furnished home, sprucing things up is always a great way to make a change. In this day and age, smartphones are more than just Angry Birds and SnapChat.They can be a great resource to use when remodeling or redesigning your home. Check out these innovative apps:  ---------------

1. Sherwin Williams ColorSnap

Picking the right wall color can make a room. This app goes one step further than your typical department store swatches and lets you find the perfect hue for your next big redesign. Not only can you browse different paints and match colors from pictures, but a virtual room design allows you to visual your color choice on walls.

2. HGTV app

HGTV is the home builder and decorator’s dream come true. If you’re looking to get ideas for building, redesigning or decorating your new home, download this app and tune into a surplus of home design shows. This app also includes HGTV Folio, a resource of endless home ideas!

3. Etsy

Looking to make your home unique? Etsy is a great tool for finding well-made, homemade gems. Order unique home decor that can give your new home the perfect, personalized touch that can’t be found anywhere else.

4. Houzz Interior Design Ideas

Houzz is one of the most innovative new home apps out there. Part furniture and appliance store, part remodeler resource, and part home advice forum, this app will give you all the tools that you need to remodel your home or decorate your new home.

5. LikeThat Decor

Ever seen a sofa or a table that you’ve immediately wanted for your home? Now you can easily find similar furniture by using the LikeThat Decor app. This app not only allows you to browse your favorite brands from your phone, but gives you matches for furniture you love and info on where to find it.

6. Photo Measures

Who needs tools in this day and age? Although it’s probably a good idea to have a tape measure on hand, Photo Measures lets your phone do the measuring in four easy steps! Simply take a photo, zoom in on the desired area, draw your measurement and magnify for greater accuracy. Use this handy tool when redecorating or rebuilding!

7. Vango Art

Looking to spruce up that blank wall with a colorful canvas? Vango Art sells a diverse set of original artwork, ranging from “wild” to “modern” to “minimal” paintings.

Looking to redesign more than just a room or two? Redesign your life by checking out gorgeous, quality homes for sale in Columbia, SC.

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5 Signs of a Quality Home Builder

Chris Laskowski10/14/2015  |  Categories: Community
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Choosing the right new home builder is the perfect first step to finding your new home. There are plenty of high-quality builders out there, each offering a unique set of attributes for their brand of homes. So how do you find the right builder for you? When looking, consider more than just location. Do your research and use these tips to find the best match.

Positive Reviews

Possibly the most efficient way to determine a home builder’s quality is through word of mouth. If they were recommended by someone who had a good experience, chances are you’ll experience that same positivity. Unfortunately, many of us may not know someone who can give us a detailed review. Luckily, we live in a technological age that allows us to check out reviews on websites. Read up as much as you can and try to see multiple perspectives.

Highly Praised in the Industry

Snatch an issue of Builder Magazine, New Homes Magazine, or local magazines that have real estate sections. These can be great resources not only to find recommended builders, but to get familiar with the lingo and practices in the home building world. In addition, these publications will provide great insight into the current real estate market in your specific area.

Consider Master-Planned Communities

Many new home communities are already formed with thriving communities. If you’re looking for a specific kind of community, consider finding a new home in one of these master-planned areas. These neighborhoods often come with amenities such as pools, trails, town centers and more.

Know Your Wants and Needs

Even if a builder is of good quality, the neighborhood or home design may not fit your needs. Ensure that you understand what it is that you (and your family) need to experience the best quality of living. For example, if you’re a military family specifically looking to find a neighborhood with similar families, check out Lake Carolina’s Fort Jackson Housing.

Understanding Sales Reps

Sales associates are generally friendly. But when looking into homes created by a new home builder, it is important that your sales agent takes your concerns into consideration. Though it is their job to sell that home, ensure that your sales agent understands your wants and needs right off the bat. Along with that, be willing to compromise some of your minor “wants”, especially if you’re letting that get in the way of an otherwise “perfect” home.

Take a Tour

For new homes that are already built, visit the community and the houses. While this is an obvious point, it is one of the most vital. Don’t just pay attention to square footage and amenities, but take the time to explore the community. See all that you can and spend as much time as you can on the property and its surrounding area.

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Welcome the Season in Style with These Decorative Fall Tips

Chris Laskowski10/6/2015  |  Categories: Nature
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Leaves are falling in the City of Columbia and it’s finally the autumn season. Welcome the festivities by revamping your home with these decorative tips.

1. Pumpkins & Co. Fall isn’t fall without pumpkins. Set out an array of creatively decorated pumpkins, squash, and other foods in the cucurbitaceae family (try pronouncing that word five times). In addition to those creative carvings your kids make, set the scene with different types of squash or a few white pumpkins.

2. Create an Autumn Aroma

Candles are one of the best tools to create a seasonal ambiance in your home. Scents of freshly fallen leaves or warm pumpkin spice lattes can bring a cheap, simple and cozy element to any room of the house.

3. Leaves, Leaves, Leaves Though actual leaves might crumble, stock up on “realistic” fake leaves from your local craft store. Boarder your windows with a stylish string of leaves. Welcome in the new season with a leaf-wreath for your front door. For an extra fall touch, fill a decorative vase with a bouquet of leaves and use it as a centerpiece.

4. Switch up the Pillows

Something as simple as changing up the pillows on your couch can bring a festive mood to the room. If the colors don’t clash, toss a few autumn-toned pillows on your furniture and enjoy this comfy decor.  

5. Painted Mason Jars Painted mason jars can be great for storing kitchen utensils, make-up brushes and stray pencils or for holding miniature candles. If you’re looking to accent a room in your home with fall colors, paint or purchase orange, yellow, and red colored mason jars to set on counters and shelves. Not only are these decorative but they come in handy!

6. Kids Favorite: Framed Leaves

During the fall season, do your kids keep trying to bring leaves inside the house because they look “cool”? Save their favorite leaves and create a framed collage at the end of the season. This is a fun decoration to hang in their room for the rest of the year. Click HERE for creative ways to display a leaf collection.

To enjoy a gorgeous fall season every year, check out homes for sale in Columbia, SC.

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