Our weekly “This or That?” posts over on RealEstateAgent Facebook every Wednesday get a lot of attention – so we’ve decided to create an entire blog post with a roundup of “This or That?” choices from the front of the house to the back.
First up: As you approach a property, do you prefer a privacy fence… or a picket fence? Some people prefer a high wooden privacy fence so people can’t see in – and dogs can’t see out. If you have pets, a tall fence could be an imperative. However, if you like seeing the neighbors go by and would rather have an aesthetic look, a picket fence is terrific for planting climbing flowers such as morning glories or roses.
Moving up to the entry, should you have a wooden deck… or a stone walkway? Wood does have to be maintained – power washed and stained and sealed on a yearly basis – but it’s nice to walk on and looks great with a more rural setting. Stone is elegant and a step up from casual, but does get slippery in rain or sleet and snow. Of course, you can have a stone walkway and then a wooden deck and mix things up.
We’re inside the house now! Wood parquet flooring… or tile and grout? Wood flooring is undeniably warm feeling and gorgeous. You do have to maintain it, sanding, staining and sealing as needed once or twice a decade. If you go barefoot or in sock feet or slippers in the house you won’t mar it, and if you don’t have indoor pets it will stay looking beautiful for years. Tile and grout is more durable, won’t get scratched easily, and is easier to clean. It will be cold underfoot in winter but strategically placed rugs can help with that.
A big bay window adds a lovely touch. Do you go with a breakfast nook… or a reading room? If your family enjoys gathering around a small table to bump elbows in a friendly way while scarfing down pop tarts, cereal, or eggs and toast in the morning, a little nook is ideal. It’s also good for after school snacks followed by supervised homework. A couple of empty-nesters might prefer a quiet reading nook with comfy chairs and a small table to keep their coffee on while enjoying a good book.
What about the kitchen? Undermount sink… or country style porcelain? The undermount version is sleek, stylish, and gives you plenty of room to maneuver. The porcelain country style sink can hold everything from the biggest stock pot in your kitchen to a wriggly dog getting a bath! It’s also easier to clean than undermount sinks, even if the plumbing involved is a little more complex.
Take a peek out of the windows. Sliding… or swinging? Sliding windows work well for more modern homes and can be secured with a simple dowel rod in the slider slot. They rarely jam thanks to their all metal and glass construction. Swing windows are cheerier and more casual, and allow the entire window to open instead of just half, but wood can swell and if you live in a humid area wood rot can also be an issue.
Let’s go upstairs. Do you prefer a closed stair landing… or an open staircase? A closed staircase provides some privacy for the upstairs and can be blocked easily if children or pets need to be kept away from the steps. A spiral open staircase is aesthetically pleasing and can be used in situations such as in a room with a loft for an airier feel.
Into the boudoir! Modern attic bedroom… or antique roadshow? Attic space is easy to renovate and insulate, and the possibilities are endless. A sleek modern, minimalist bed frame can be paired with windows that are understated and have frosted glass. Carpeted flooring gives the room a peaceful quiet feel. A vintage bedroom set with plenty of finished wood and a complete bedroom suite can be accented with a handmade quilt. Don’t forget a comfortable antique rocking chair!
Finally, the back yard. Dog mansion… or luxury cat villa? If you are a dog person, your best friend will need a place to sleep if he’s not an indoor only pet. A doghouse like this one may not be as fancy as the one Paris Hilton made for her dog but it is rather luxurious. On the other hand, if you are the type that adopts all the stray cats in the neighborhood, a multi unit cat house might be the best option.
What would you like to see next on “This or That”? Leave your comments in the section below!