Lifestyle Blog

Six DIY Projects to Scale Up Your Curb Appeal This Spring

Posted by Duane McPherson, CMCA, PCAM® on May 12, 2021 7:59:00 AM

Spring is here, which means more time outside, but it also means looking at what the fall and winter did to the outside of your home. Whether you are planning on selling or love the look of a beautifully decorated outdoor space, there are many ways you can boost your curb appeal. Most projects are easy and can be done in a day with a relatively small budget. Before you get started with one of these small projects that will make a big impact, check with your community association to ensure that these changes are in the community guidelines. 

Tighten the Edge

Edging is one of the easiest ways to give your curb appeal a facelift in a day. Tightening the edging around your landscaping gives a crisp, clear definition between the yard and the house's landscaping, which gives a clean look. There are various edging materials available at your local home improvement store, so if you feel like you need something new, it is easy to switch up the materials and give your landscaping a fresh new look. 

Facade Facelift

DaVinci suggests giving your home a makeover with decorative siding and moldings that accentuate the home's period. If that doesn't sound appealing, there are other ways you can give your facade a facelift, like adding a fresh coat of paint or replacing worn-out shutters with something new. While bigger projects may require professionals — and will definitely need HOA approval — smaller projects like the shutters are a great introductory DIY project. 

Give Your Mailbox Love

Something that most homeowners wouldn't think of is to give their mailbox a touch-up. Sometimes a fresh coat of paint or a new stand will make a world of difference on the part of our home that is often seen as utilitarian and not decorative. Check the HOA guidelines to see what types of mailboxes are permitted; it's possible that you can replace your current box with something that has a bit more flair. 

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Planning and Projects, HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas, HOA | Condo Maintenance

Are Pools the Ultimate Luxury or Overwhelming Hassle?

Posted by Katie Vaughan on Apr 7, 2021 9:45:00 AM

Lounging by the pool and taking a dip can be very refreshing, especially when the temperatures are high. Homeowners Associations and Condominium Owners Associations provide this ultimate luxury amenity for prestigious homes and condos.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Management Services, HOA | Condo Board Responsibilities and Education, HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas, HOA | Condo Rules & Regulations and Enforcement

The Value of High Membership Dues in a Luxury Condominium

Posted by Duane McPherson, CMCA, PCAM® on Jan 13, 2021 9:30:00 AM

If you're in the market to purchase a luxury condominium and are wondering whether the high membership fees associated with ownership are actually worth it, we're here to tell you... well that depends on what you value as a homeowner. We wish it were more concise but the truth is that every owner has to decide for themselves if the investment in their lifestyle is worth the value presented by the community. Some luxury communities may have more moderate dues and fees, while other community fees may run in the thousands per month.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas

Fitness Amenities for Luxury Community Associations

Posted by Duane McPherson, CMCA, PCAM® on Jul 15, 2020 8:07:00 AM

Luxury fitness amenities for luxury community associations have always been in high demand. What is important when discussing Luxury-Lifestyle/Resort-Living communities is making sure that your fitness amenities match your owners' needs.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas

Safely Reopening Your Community Association Amenities - GM

Posted by Amanda Causey on Jun 3, 2020 8:25:00 AM

As more states and local governments move toward lifting or easing shelter-in-place and social distancing guidelines, community associations have become faced with the very real prospect of needing a plan in place to address the reopening of amenities. Residents are becoming increasingly restless under stay-at-home state orders; naturally, they desire to use their community association’s recreational amenities. Restoring access to these amenities is a priority for many communities right now, and we want to provide your community with the knowledge and information to handle this situation effectively.Phased Reopening Guide

**In preparing to reopen amenity areas, it is recommended that the board of directors review all updated CDC Guidelines, as well as local and state orders/restrictions, additionally the board should consult with the associations legal counsel with regards to associated risks and protocols specifically necessary to reopen the pool.**

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas, HOA | Condo Emergency and Safety

The Art of being Green and Luxurious

Posted by Page Carlee on May 27, 2020 8:15:00 AM

There was once a time in real estate, not that long ago, when eco-friendly housing meant a downgrade from the highest level of luxury. But not anymore. Green living and eco-conscious construction no longer exclude the finer things. In fact, as styles and taste develop and as manufacturing technology improves, green has become something of a luxury item. The wealthy can afford not only the best materials and the finest environment, but they can also afford to pay more for elements that were produced sustainably, are recycled from historical sites, or provide greater energy efficiency.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Technology and Software, HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas

Marijuana in your Community Association: To Regulate or Not to Regulate?

Posted by Page Carlee on May 13, 2020 8:15:00 AM

As more states legalize the use of Marijuana there may be some special considerations your community association should address. Marijuana's medicinal properties began to change the playing field and now both medical and recreational marijuana is legal in several states including California, Nevada, Oregon, Washington, Colorado, Alaska, Illinois, Vermont, Maine, and Massachusetts.  There are still plenty of laws limiting where and when marijuana can be present or used and it may affect common areas in your community sooner than you think.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Legal, HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas

What You Need to Know About Resort-Style Living

Posted by Duane McPherson, CMCA, PCAM® on Feb 5, 2020 7:45:00 AM

Have you ever wanted to stay in your own home while feeling as if you're on vacation 365 days of the year? If so, then you need to know about resort-style living, also known as a Country Club lifestyle. On the other hand, not everyone is suited for this type of lifestyle or can afford it. Here's what you need to know about resort-style living, regarding the basic pros and cons. 

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas, HOA | Condo Homeowner Responsibilities & Education, HOA | Condo Other

How to Fit a Home Office in a Condo

Posted by Guest Blogger on Jan 8, 2020 7:45:00 AM

Advancements in mobile technology have made it easier than ever for people to ditch the office and work from home. From remote work opportunities to freelance opportunities to online businesses, more and more people are choosing to spend each day commuting just a few feet to work rather than several miles. 

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas, HOA | Condo Other

Five Ways to Make the Most Out Of Small Outdoor Spaces

Posted by Duane McPherson, CMCA, PCAM® on Sep 25, 2019 7:42:00 AM

No matter how small your patio might be, it's possible to transform it from one of those small common spaces you see in your neighborhood to a tastefully decorated outdoor space. While you may not have all the room you need to turn your dream backyard into reality; a small outdoor space gives you a chance to create a cozy little slice of heaven for you and your household. If you have no idea where to start, here are a few creative ideas to get you started. 

How to Spice up Your Small Outdoor Space

Spicing up your small space and turning it into an irresistible hangout is no rocket science and neither does it require a considerable budget. You just need a few tricks up your sleeve  as described herein, and you'll be good to go

Let an In-Built Bench Do the Magic

If your patio is incredibly tight on space, then an in-built bench is a great way to make the most out of it. Such a bench is usually customized to fit into your space, which makes it even more ideal as you get total control on how you want it to look. For a contemporary and vintage look, go for an inbuilt wooden bench and then later bring in a table and one or two stools to create the perfect chill spot. While at it, keep in mind that accessories will make your space appear bigger and cozier. Hence, dress up your bench by adding a few pillows, throws, and a beautiful rug to maximize comfort.

Create an Optical Illusion living

Living in a luxury condo managed by community associations comes with a whole bunch of perks. For instance you never have to stress about security, maintenance or upkeep. As a result, they're quite popular and demand is high. To satisfy this demand, HOAs are often left with no option but to reduce square footage which in turn means residents share common spaces and get smaller private outdoor yards.

Nonetheless just because the patio is small doesn't mean you forego the benefits that come with living in such a community. You can still enjoy these perks and at the same time the pleasure of having ample outdoor space by creating an optical illusion.  There are many ways to trick the eye, but one of the most effective is using bright colors.

For instance, the blue color tends to blend with the sky visually. Hence, painting your wall blue hides its hard edges, creating an illusion of a bigger space. Painting your deck with other bright colors also achieves the same effect.

If plants are your cup of tea, you can also use them to create an optical illusion of a bigger space by going vertical. Get yourself a few potted plants and create a beautiful hanging garden. Adding a few potted plants on your wall adds height and also draws the attention of your visitors away from the small space.

This, combined with the bright colors, is guaranteed to make small community spaces appear bigger. You can also place a few potted plants on the floor. However, be careful as too many potted plants will quickly clutter your space up, making it look smaller, which is what you're trying to avoid in the first place.

Screen Your Space 

In small common spaces, privacy might seem like an elusive pipe dream. However, with outdoor drapery panels, a lattice panel screen or a DIY bamboo screen you'll stylishly keep your business under wraps from nosey neighbors. For instance, outdoor drapes will give your small space an elegant and homely touch. If you have nowhere to hang the drapes, you can use the alternatives or get to work by installing a wood frame.

Let a hot-tub Reign

After a long day, we all want to come home to a long relaxing hot shower and then later slip into our pajamas. If you have a small balcony, you can make your evenings even more exciting by getting a medium sized hot tub. With this, every day will be a spa day for you and your significant other.

We believe there's no better way to unwind than sitting in a hot tub in the evening, sipping your favorite drink while enjoying views from your balcony and catching up with your spouse or friends. Spice up things by adding essential oils to your water to make the scene even more relaxing and thank us later!

But before anything ensure you consult the property managers to avoid sticky situations. Also, don't forget to screen your balcony for privacy sake!

Hammocks All the Way!

Again if you only remember you have a balcony when it's too hot inside, then a hammock is also a simple yet sophisticated way to enjoy your summer naps and get tanned. Bring in a hammock and install it on your favorite spot on your balcony. To create a complete impression of your own small jungle world, bring in faux grass and add a few faux plants and your summer naps will never be the same again.

Read More

Topics: HOA | Condo Amenity and Common Areas

Subscribe to our Lifestyle Blog!

Stay up-to-date on the latest community lifestyle trends and best practices.

GrandManors lifestyle blog is written by industry experts and is a cumulative resource for educational material for boards and general managers, industry news, and trends for lifestyle communities.

Topics include management software, creating lifestyle programs, HOA and condo laws, board member training, and more!

Subscribe Today!

Recent Posts