Smith Mountain Lake Real Estate – Debbie Shelton

How To Control Allergens in Your Home

While the spring season ushers in blossoming trees, fresh grass, and seasonal flowers, you might also see an onslaught of itchy eyes and sneezing fits. And while the most common culprits are flourishing on the outside of your home, you might be surprised to see how many allergens are found within your home.

If you suffer from allergies, read on to find out what they are and where they might be hiding.

The main source of indoor allergens are pets, carpet, bedding, and indoor plants. Surface allergens can enter the air when you dust, sit, or start moving things around. You can control dust mites by keeping surfaces clean, especially in the bedroom where you spend one-third of your time. Keeping bare floors and walls are best.

Keeping your windows and doors closed will help keep pollen and other outdoor allergens from entering the home. If you use a window unit air conditioner, make sure the air setting is set to recirculate so that outdoor air doesn’t make its way inside.

Mold spores are another allergen that can wreak havoc on your sinuses and trigger asthma attacks. The best way to avoid mold spores is to reduce moisture around your home. Using a dehumidifier will help to reduce both mold and dust mites. Also fix any leaks or other causes of damp areas so that mold doesn’t have the chance to grow.


Source:, “Control Indoor Allergens to Improve Indoor Air Quality”

What is Title Insurance and Why Do I Need It?

Title Insurance protects property owners and mortgage lenders against issues that might arise with a title whenever there is transfer of ownership. If a title dispute comes up during a sale, your title insurance company may be responsible for covering legal damages.

When you begin the process of obtaining title insurance, the title company (or an attorney) researches real estate records to make sure that there are no issues with the title. Examples may include undisclosed heirs to the property, unpaid taxes, or pending legal action. This is to ensure that the title is clean and that the seller truly owns the property and has rights to sell it. Homebuyers usually need both an owner’s policy and a lender’s policy.

Some examples of issues that could potentially cause issues with your title are: forgery, errors in documents or surveys, misinterpretation of wills and trusts, heirs born after the execution of a will, and incorrect indexing of land records.


Source: Chicago Title Insurance Company, “Why You Need Owner’s Title Insurance.”

2019 Design Trends

If you’re thinking about performing updates to your home this spring, consider these following design trends that are trending high for 2019.

What’s In

Modern Interior Design: Design professionals are still leaning toward modern lines and clean aesthetics over rustic style. However, we’re moving away from highly contrasting black-and-white and incorporating natural elements like wood paneling and richly colored fabrics.

Smart Homes: Homeowners are choosing to modernize their homes with more voice-activated technology that’s compatible with Google, Amazon, and Apple. The trick is to make sure that this technology is seamlessly integrated into the existing home.

Quiet Retreats: Even though we’re becoming more automated, homeowners are beginning to incorporate more meditative and sound-cancelling features that help you unplug from the noise. Design professionals are integrating acoustic panels, colored lights, and sheer fabrics to create a relaxing, spa-like retreat.

What’s Out

Fixer-Upper Farmhouse Chic: We’re moving away from reclaimed barn wood and moving toward glass and metal. Edison bulbs will be replaced with concealed lighting creating a more relaxed glow. And brushed brass and matte black are making a comeback.

Bold, Bright Colors: Trendy colors like millennial pink are being trumped by neutral blues, ivories, and grays. If you need a pop of color in your décor, consider purchasing throw pillows, blankets, or rugs in bright colors that complement neutrals.


Zillow Porchlight, “2019 Design Forecast: What’s In, What’s Out.”