Tuesday, November 26, 2019

How AI is transforming lifestyle for Keller homeowners

Smart Home Interior
We all love the idea of our Keller homes having a washer, refrigerator or smart appliance that gives us important messages and guides our next steps.

But not all smart technology is alike. The last thing you want from your investment is a gimmicky gadget that does nothing more than turn your mobile device into a glorified remote control. So how do you identify the brands with game-changing technology that will be relevant and useful for years to come?

The most advanced smart home technology is equipped with artificial intelligence and allows for plenty of helpful tools to make your everyday life easier.

AI and the vision of a more connected living experience is driven by innovations and its focus on improving quality of life. Proactive products and services that offer a connected experience through personalized and efficient AI for users with diverse needs and tech preferences in their homes.

The goal is always focused on elevating the quality of life at home and beyond.

Here’s a look at how this highly evolved smart technology equipped with AI is transforming how people are living.
  • Easy, intuitive, effortless: Smart devices shouldn’t be complicated, period. Along with operability that’s practically self-evident and mistake-proof, well-designed AI should be smart enough to fit seamlessly with your existing smart home technology. So, if you have a favorite voice-assisted technology, your new AI-enabled appliance should be easily integrated into your system of choice.
  • Personalized to your needs: One of the cornerstones of AI is learning, which means the more you use these smart devices, the better they operate for you. Because they use the data to learn your preferences and routine, they create a customized user experience that best meets the needs of you and your family.
  • Responds proactively: The most intelligent smart devices on the market also alert you of issues before they turn into full-fledged, costly problems. For example, users can receive tips on when to clean the drum of a washing machine and recommendations on which detergent is best for their clothing.
  • Uses energy efficiently: Many users of intelligent devices appreciate saving energy. Not only do AI-enabled products track energy usage, but some can also be programmed to maximize your energy conservation. Some devices come with settings, such as Save Mode and Vacation Mode, that synthesize the analytics, sensors and usage data to maximize both your energy savings and pocket savings.
These individual benefits of AI intelligence — from learning your behaviors to proactive alerts and energy savings — come together to transform your daily life! This technology streamlines your routine, takes the guesswork out of everyday tasks, and frees up time for things you’d rather be doing.
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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Monday, November 25, 2019

5 simple winter projects for Keller homeowners

Frozen Ice

The winter months are here. While you may be preparing to celebrate the holidays and spend time with loved ones, it’s also important to ensure your Keller home is protected from the cold weather.

There are several ways to lower your heating bill and protect your home this winter. Below are five easy projects for both experienced and new homeowners that make a big impact.

1. Change air filters
Easiest to do, easiest to forget. A clean air filter provides healthy air quality and savings on your energy bill. Regularly changing an old air filter can reduce energy costs by permitting air to flow more easily through the HVAC system, according to the Department of Energy. Fresh air filters are also important for the long-term health of your HVAC system. Keeping this system clean can prevent costly repairs and it creates healthier air quality for your family. This project benefits your wallet both now and later down the road.

2. Upgrade your thermostat
A smart programmable thermostat can save you up to $180 a year on utility costs, according to EnergyStar. This thermostat works by automatically raising or lowering the temperature in your home to keep it consistent, which saves fuel. For example, you can program most thermostats on a mobile app to keep your home at a lower temperature while you’re away during the day and warm back up again at night.

3. Inspect doors and windows
Keep pesky drafts at a minimum this season. Set aside time to look at all the windows and doors in your home and check for gaps. Fill any gaps you find with simple caulk work and replace any worn doorstops to help prevent unwanted air from flowing in or out of your home. This step helps insulate your home and generate energy savings.

4. Clean your gutters
Cleaning your gutters before the snow flies can help you avoid major issues later on. This prevents ice dams, which can turn into a leaky roof. And even if you live in a warmer climate, full gutters are heavy and can cause damage — like mold growth and leaks — by pulling away from your house.

5. Seal and protect your water sources
It is important to protect the water sources inside and outside of your home. If you have an outdoor water spigot, be sure to cover the faucet. You can find simple-to-install covers at most local hardware retailers. Empty out your water hoses and bring them inside so they don’t freeze and become damaged. On those below-freezing nights, let your indoor faucets drip to maintain a flow of water and prevent your pipes from bursting.
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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

8 simple ways Keller homeowners can prevent break-ins

Home Break-in

Did you know most burglaries are home break-ins? Keeping your home secure is vital to the safety of yourself, your family and your belongings. Here are several simple ideas to increase your personal safety.

1. Install a home security system.
Security systems offer perhaps the most powerful protection for your Keller home. Even a simple alarm system and a few well-placed signs in your yard and on your windows can greatly diminish the likelihood of home break-ins. If you can afford it, motion sensors on doors and windows, along with 24-hour monitoring, delivers even greater protection. Check for discounts on your home insurance for a monitored security system.

2. Check out smart home technology.
Consider investing in security cameras and other smart home technology, such as video doorbells and keylocks. These systems are much easier to install now using wireless devices and can help you monitor your home and alert you to potential activity. They also provide a great way to check in on pets when you're away from home.

3. Don't hide keys outside the house.
For convenience, many people hide a spare key outside near the front door. It might be under the welcome mat, in a planter or on a ledge. If a key is easy for your family or friends to find, it's also easy for thieves to find. Instead, consider leaving a key with a neighbor you trust.

4. Keep those bushes trimmed.
High, full bushes and shrubs around your home are ideal places for thieves to hide while they work on opening your window. By keeping bushes trimmed and lower to the ground, you're making it harder for would-be burglars to gain access to your house.

5. Make it look like you're home.
Most thieves want to strike while you're away. With some good sense and creativity, you can fool them into thinking you're home even when you're not. Consider purchasing timers that turn your lamps and TV on and off at different hours of the evening. You might also consider a timer for your front porch light. If it's lit during the day, it could be a telltale sign that you're away for an extended period. Along that line, don't let the mail or newspapers pile up when you're on vacation. Either suspend service or ask a neighbor to pick them up for you. Check into newer technology lighting that allows you to control lights remotely using your smart device.

6. Install outdoor lighting.
Darkness is a burglar's best friend. When thieves approach your home and bright lights in their faces suddenly confront them, it can be a strong motivation to move on. Motion-activated lighting systems are inexpensive, easy to install and a great way to put thieves in the spotlight. Plus, when you come home at night, these lights will switch on and illuminate the path to your door.

7. Make friends with your neighbors.
Chances are, the neighbors surrounding your home are just as interested in home security as you are. Together, you can create a network of eyes that's always on the lookout for suspicious behavior. If you're going out of town, let your neighbors know in advance so they can be extra vigilant. When they go on vacation, you can do the same for them. Exchange phone numbers and emails with your neighbors, so you can contact them when an emergency arises. Consider joining neighborhood watch groups or online forums to keep informed about things going on in your neighborhood and local area.

8. Keep windows and doors locked.
This tip may seem obvious, but unlocked doors and windows are the cause of many successful burglaries. When the weather's nice, you may open a window and then forget to close it at night or when you run an errand, offering a tempting target for burglars. In addition, don't leave valuable items, such as purses, laptops or credit cards, in plain view through your windows. Thieves may take this opportunity to quickly break the glass and grab your valuables.

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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

3 cost-saving maintenance projects for Keller homeowners

Plumbing Maintenance

Routine maintenance: two words that likely evoke eye rolls, exasperated sighs and dread for most Keller homeowners who read, hear or even think about them. However, they’re also a homeowner’s best line of defense when it comes to protecting their most important investment — their home.

So, with that in mind, here are three inexpensive projects from The Grove Team that could save you a lot of money in the long run.

1. Inspect plumbing connections, appliance hoses, and pipes for leaks.

Refrigerators with icemakers or water dispensers, dishwashers and washing machines all have hoses that connect to your water supply. If these hoses wear out, blister or crack, or the connections loosen, they can cause leaks that can cause a lot of damage to your home and appliances. Replace these hoses with steel-braided hoses because they are less likely to fail and can be purchased at your local hardware store for around $20. Consult your owner’s manual for hose specifications and recommended replacement intervals.

Periodically inspect the pipes under your kitchen and bathroom sinks for leaks. Also, if there’s a bathroom in your home that’s seldom used, turn the faucets on and off, and flush the toilet once a week to ensure water continues flowing through the pipes properly.

If you suspect you may have a leak, but the source isn’t easily accessible, time is of the essence. The average cost to hire a plumber is about $300, which is less than the potential amount of damage an untreated leak might cause.

2. Clean dryer ducts and vents.

According to the National Fire Protection Association, U.S. fire departments responded to 15,050 home fires involving clothes dryers and washing machines in 2014, which is the most recent data available.

It’s important to empty your dryer’s lint filter after each use because lint is highly flammable. Combined with the high heat given off during a tumble cycle, this is a recipe for disaster. Lint also accumulates in dryer ducts and vents. While they take a bit more effort and know-how to clean, it’s just as important to do this at least once a year.

Unfortunately, one Mercury policyholder learned this the hard way.

The average cost of a professional dryer vent cleaning is less than $200.

3. Visually inspect your home’s exterior.

Make a point of walking the perimeter of your home to look for cracks, chips or holes in the fa├žade and lose shingles on the roof. Imperfections like these can be access points for unwanted water to enter the home, which can cause rot, mold or structural damage.

If your exterior walls are coated with built-up dirt and debris, wash them first to make it easier to detect potential problem areas. You can do this by attaching a cleaning tool to your garden hose or renting a pressure washer. Costs will vary depending on which option you choose, but start as low as $20.

Windows are another potential danger zone for leaks, so be sure to check the condition of your weather-stripping, as well as look for chips and cracks.

Consult a professional to determine the next steps if you find damages to your home’s exterior.

Taking care of your property now with these simple maintenance tips could save you time and money in the long run.
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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Sunday, November 10, 2019

5 carbon monoxide safety tips for Keller homeowners

Father Helping Son

Along with the cold temperatures, snow, and ice, winter also brings unpredictable dangers, including the threat of carbon monoxide (CO) poisoning. According to the Journal of the American Medical Association, CO poisoning is the number one cause of accidental poisonings in the U.S. Referred to as the “silent killer,” CO is a colorless, odorless and tasteless gas that can only be detected with a CO alarm.

As colder temperatures start, it is important that Keller homeowners have an adequate CO alarm system.

Every year, CO poisoning takes the lives of over 400 people, while an additional 50,000 people are treated for it, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention — and half of these deaths occur between November and February.

Here are 5 ways to ensure you are practicing CO safety this winter:

Check your alarms. Be sure to check all carbon monoxide alarms in your home by testing them regularly and replacing the batteries at least twice each year. Generally, CO alarms should be replaced every five to seven years. However, newer CO alarm models, such as the First Alert 10-Year CO Alarm, now offer a lifespan of 10 years, allowing you to rest easy without having to worry about changing the batteries every six months. CO alarms should be installed on every floor, including the basement, and in or near every sleeping area of the home.

Warm-up your car outside. Do not attempt to warm up your car or leave your car running inside of the garage, even if the garage door is open. Garages are a common source of carbon monoxide, and in the case of attached garages, these fumes can leak into the home. Other common sources of CO  include but are not limited to, heaters, fireplaces, furnaces, appliances or cooking sources using coal, wood, petroleum products or other fuels that emit CO as a by-product of combustion.

Ensure proper ventilation. The kitchen stove is among the most frequent sources of CO poisoning in the home. To help eliminate the danger of overexposure, always run exhaust fans when cooking and periodically open a nearby window when using the oven or stove to allow fresh air to circulate. Never use the stove to heat your home.

Maintain fuel-burning appliances. Have a professional inspect any fuel-burning appliances throughout the home each season. This includes furnaces, water heaters, ovens, and dryers, as carbon monoxide can leak from any fuel-burning device. If using a fireplace to heat your home, make sure your flue is open and have your chimney checked and cleaned each year by a professional.

Know the symptoms of CO poisoning. Because you can’t see or smell carbon monoxide, you might not recognize the symptoms of CO poisoning, as they can be confused with common cold and flu symptoms such as headache, nausea, dizziness, weakness, chest pain and vomiting. If a CO alarm sounds or symptoms appear, exit the home immediately and call 911.
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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Tuesday, November 5, 2019

How Keller homeowners can bring autumn indoors

Blanket on Chair

With the weather cooling down and trees changing to vibrant colors, it's no wonder many consider autumn their favorite time of year. Fall draws people outside to apple orchards and pumpkin patches and fills homes with the smells of seasonal baking.

A recent YouGov survey found that most people (over 69%) think exposure to daylight, fresh air and nature has a positive effect on their well-being, including reducing stress. Yet according to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), people today spend 90% of their time indoors.

Even houses now are built to be more sealed, trapping bacteria and toxins inside, with many people unaware that indoor air can be up to five times more polluted than outdoor air, according to the EPA.
To enjoy the positive benefits of nature even when spending time indoors, why not open up your house and bring more of the outdoors in?

Try these five strategies for bringing more nature into your home this fall.

1. Open your windows or skylights
Before cold weather arrives, take advantage of pleasant temps to let in fresh air and sunlight, and even enjoy viewing the beautiful yellows, oranges, and reds outside. The fresh air will help you breathe easier, ridding the air of toxins, bacteria and musty odors inside.

Skylights are great options for adding fresh air and natural light, which can help make your indoor living environment healthier. Skylights are a simple home renovation project that can dramatically improve your home’s health and have changed a great deal from those of decades past. The latest skylight models and skylight blinds can open via smartphone app or remote control to bring in fresh air and control light.

2. Fill your home with cozy, natural scents
Use fresh herbs and spices like rosemary, sage, cinnamon sticks, and cloves to create your own homemade potpourri. Or you could make a wreath using sprigs of your favorite herbs, including lavender, rosemary, bay, and sage. You can add sprigs of similar aromatic dried options to fresh-cut flower arrangements, adding layers of scent, deeper colors and contrasting textures to your floral displays.

3. Bring pumpkins indoors
Autumn is not complete without pumpkins, but there’s no need to banish them to the front porch. Pick up some smaller pumpkins and other types of gourds, adding dried corn cobs to create a centerpiece for your dining room table or adding a pop of color to a coffee or side table.
Some types of edible squash are almost too pretty to eat, so why not display them for a while before cooking them? Look for visually interesting acorn, delicata and buttercup squash for your displays.

4. Leafy bouquets
Rethink your cut-flower bouquets. Take a walk outside to collect branches of colorful leafy fall foliage to add to your floral bouquets, along with flowers of similar autumn hues. Think chrysanthemums, sunflowers, dahlias and daisies in tones of orange, crimson and gold.

5. Incorporate fall design elements
Use autumn colors and shapes to inspire new design ideas. Swap decorative elements, from pillows and blankets to throw rugs and tea towels, for new items highlighting earthy tones like brown and orange. Look for items with nature-inspired designs — from leaf or vine patterns to migrating flocks of birds — that bring a feeling of autumn into your home.

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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.

Monday, November 4, 2019

2020 exterior home trends for Keller homeowners

Exterior Patio

Whether you are thinking of selling your Keller home next year, or simply looking to update certain elements, investing in your exterior will deliver a return on your investment in both resale value and enjoyment.

From siding and garage door to the landscape and patio, there are many opportunities to refresh the outside of your home for style and function. The top trends of 2020 are all about bringing fresh ideas to tired spaces, updating with the latest product innovations, and ensuring your exterior gets as much love as the interior of your home.

Indoor-outdoor living
With a strong desire to expand living space, homeowners are investing in decks and patios that have a seamless flow from indoor to outdoor. Premium decking offers all the beauty of real hardwood flooring without the maintenance. Rich colors allow homeowners to create intricate designs and inlays that add an upscale look that can be completely customized.

Screened porches with floor-to-ceiling windows and sliding doors are popular as well as porch/deck hybrids that can be designed to feature built-in kitchens, fireplaces, and seating. To further personalize the space, homeowners are mixing textures and materials, including metal, wicker, and wood, in outdoor furniture and features to create individualized style.

Mixing styles and designs
Following the popularity of farmhouse styles in the last decade, homeowners continue to create a hybrid look that incorporates select modern farmhouse designs, as well as elements of midcentury modern and industrial influences into the exterior home design. Mixed-use siding is at the forefront of this trend. Board and batten siding mixed with stone continues to gain popularity for a modern farmhouse look. Another popular design is mixing clapboard siding with textures of shake or vertical style of board and batten to create visual interest and balance. Black windows add a modern industrial look along with a sleek metal garage door to pull together the overall design.

Exterior colors and accents
Across the country, darker, more pigmented colors are transforming homes with showstopping appearances that stand out from a sea of beige that was so popular in the past.

The traditional red front door is being replaced by statement doors that define an entryway with style and class. Black and blue doors are trending as well as designs that feature glass and iron elements. Dutch-style doors are also popular for 2020 and beyond. In addition to a statement front door, homeowners are thinking about entryway decor, adding personalized doormats, house numbers, and door knockers, as well as changing out decor seasonally.

Minimalist maintenance
Homeowners are continuing to invest in design solutions for their exteriors and yards that require little to no maintenance, yet allow them to fully enjoy outdoor living. They are opting for high-quality products using durable materials, such as limestone, gravel, and bamboo. Garden bed designs incorporate pavers, rocks, evergreen plants, and annual plants, to achieve a low maintenance exterior that still delivers on curb appeal.

Above all else, Keller homeowners are looking to make exterior designs their own in 2020. New builds and home renovations that utilize durable materials are a top trend, and the sky's the limit when it comes to design.
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Grove Team 2017/2018

Whether it's selling your home or finding a new one, we have designed this site so that you can quickly and easily locate the information you are looking for. The Grove Team's client-centered approach results in the best possible outcome for you. Please contact us now to begin the process of achieving your dreams in homeownership. Call 817-337-0000 for Keller Home's for sale in Keller ISD.