16 Best Survey Sites

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Sharing your opinions by taking part in surveys is a great way to influence products and services and make some cash at the same time. The best survey sites work with companies to get consumer thoughts on current and future products and services.

If you’re interested in learning more about how you can earn some extra cash by sharing your opinions, check out our suggestions for the best survey sites to sign up with.

In This Article

What are the Best Survey Sites?

Not all survey sites are the same. The best survey sites make it easy to sign up, easy to complete surveys, and easy to make money.

While some survey sites are definitely not legit, the survey sites mentioned here are the real deal. Here’s a bit of information about the best survey sites on the web.

1. Survey Junkie

You know Survey Junkie is legit when it’s one of the most popular survey sites around. And it was created in 2005 which makes it one of the longest running survey sites. Survey Junkie has over 10 million members so they must be doing something right.

How it Works

The company has two survey groups you can sign up for: The regular Survey Junkie and SJ Pulse.

The basic Survey Junkie gathers opinions through surveys and other types of market research. SJ Pulse works to have members participate in focus groups and share browsing activity.

If you choose to participate in basic Survey Junkie, here’s how it works:

  • You complete profiles to see if you’re eligible for surveys
  • Once you’re eligible, you can take surveys anywhere from any type of device
  • You earn points for every completed survey

With SJ Pulse, you just download the extension or opt-in on the Survey Junkie app. Survey Junkie does the rest as it assesses your browsing activity for market research purposes.

How Will I Get Paid?

So, with Survey Junkie you get points for each completed survey or activity. Then you can use your points to get PayPal cash or gift cards to a variety of retailers. If you choose the gift card option, you can get gift cards to Amazon, Walmart, iTunes, and more.

Oh, and you can get paid via bank transfer as well.

How to Sign Up

It’s easy to sign up for Survey Junkie: Just hit the “Join Now” button on the website’s homepage.

Trustpilot score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

2. Swagbucks

Swagbucks nears the top of our list as one of the best survey sites too. First launched in 2008, Swagbucks has paid out over $460 million dollars to its members.

How it Works

Once you’ve signed up, Swagbucks will show you a list of surveys you can take. As you answer the questions you earn points.

Bonus: Swagbucks has other ways you can earn points too. You can watch videos, shop online, play games, search the Web and more. In fact, the site often has signup bonuses of $5 or $10 to give you an earnings boost.

Just browse the site daily to look for ways to earn points that can be converted into cash.

How Will I Get Paid?

Once you’ve hit the minimum number of points you can redeem those points for PayPal cash or gift cards to popular retailers.

Some of the retailers Swagbucks partners with include Walmart, Target, and Amazon.

How to Sign Up

Simply visit the Swagbucks website and you’ll see a popup box that shows you how to sign up. You can sign up with your Facebook account or with your email address.

Trustpilot Score: 4.5 out of 5 stars

3. Vindale Research

Vindale Research is another long-time site in the survey business. They’ve been in operation since 2004 and have paid out nearly $8 million.

How it Works

Once you’ve signed up, you’ll get invitations daily to complete surveys on a number of topics. Survey topics include:

  • Automobiles
  • Politics and current events
  • Home improvement
  • Health and beauty

And other topics. You can also earn cash through Vindale Research by referring others to sign up and by participating in other activities.

How Will I Get Paid?

One unique thing about Vindale Research is that they pay you in cash. There are no points to earn or redeem. Just request a PayPal payout when you’re ready.

How to Sign Up

At the top of the Vindale Research website, on the right hand side, there are two buttons: Sign In and Sign Up. Hit the “Sign Up” button and become a member for free. The website will instruct you from there.

Trustpilot score: 4 out of 5 stars

4. InboxDollars

InboxDollars started up in 2000 and has paid out over $59 million to members. Oh, they often have sign up bonuses as well.

How it Works

When you sign up (for free) as a member, you’ll be asked a number of questions in order to complete your profile. The answers you enter will help InboxDollars direct you to surveys that are right for you.

As you fill out the surveys you earn cash for each completed survey. And you can also earn money by completing other activities such as:

  • Watching videos
  • Playing games
  • Shopping online
  • Taking advantage of deals

Each task has a dollar amount assigned to it so you know how much you’ll earn if you choose to complete the task.

How Will I Get Paid?

As with Vindale Research, InboxDollars pays you in cash, not points. When you’ve reached the minimum earnings threshold of $30 you can request your cash.

They’ll pay you via mailed check, PayPal, or you can get an e-gift card to retailers such as Amazon.

How to Sign Up

There’s a signup box right on the InboxDollars homepage. Fill out the information in the signup box to open a free account. Remember that you’ll get a lot more survey opportunities if you fill out the answers to all of the profile questions.

Trustpilot score: 3.5 out of 5 stars

5. MyPoints

MyPoints has been helping people earn money through surveys since 1996. They’re another trusted site you can earn some cash with.

How it Works

When you sign up on the site you’ll get notifications to see if you qualify for surveys. One cool thing about MyPoints is that they pay you even if you don’t qualify for the survey. They’ll pay you a bit just for trying. Many sites won’t do that.

There are other ways to earn with MyPoints too such as shopping online and watching videos.

How Will I Get Paid?

When you earn your points you can redeem them for a variety of gift cards. You can get gift cards to PayPal (i.e. cash) or gift cards to one of the company’s 75+ other retail partners.

How to Sign Up

Just head to the MyPoints website and fill out the signup box as directed.

Trustpilot score: 4.4 out of 5 stars

6. Harris Poll Online

Harris Poll Online is one of the longest-running survey sites. They’ve been in the market research game since 1975 and did in-person and mail-in surveys before online surveying became a thing.

How it Works

Once you sign up with Harris Poll Online you’ll be eligible to start receiving survey invitations. The invitations are based on the information you shared when you signed up.

Each invitation comes with a short questionnaire to see if you’re eligible. If you are, you continue on with and finish the survey to get points.

How Will I Get Paid?

You earn what are called “HiPoints” for each survey you complete with Harris Poll Online. After you’ve earned the minimum number of points, you can cash those points in for free gift cards to various retailers.

How to Sign Up

Just go to the Harris Poll Online website and click on the sign up button and follow the prompts.

Trustpilot score: 3 out of 5 stars

7. Pinecone Research

Pinecone Research is another longtime survey company with a great reputation. Although the website doesn’t say how much they’ve paid out, I can tell you they’ve been around for quite some time.

How it Works

When you sign up you’ll start getting notifications for surveys. Note that when you sign up you need to fill out your profile as accurately as possible. This will ensure you qualify for the highest number of surveys.

This is because companies that hire Pinecone Research have specific client bases for each market research project.

How Will I Get Paid?

Every time you complete a survey you’ll earn points. Then you can redeem your points for cash via a bank transfer. You can choose e-gift cards or other merchandise as payment too.

Note that with Pinecone your points do expire after 12 months of no earning activity. So if you’ve earned points and have decided to discontinue working with Pinecone be sure to cash out your points.

How to Sign Up

When you visit the Pinecone Research site, just click on the signup button and follow the directions.

Trustpilot score: 2.5 out of 5 stars

8. LifePoints

LifePoints has a member community of over 5,000,000 that earn money by taking surveys. The LifePoints website says that the company is ranked the largest provider of custom research and analysis.

How it Works

Once you sign up to become a member, you’re sent surveys you have the option to complete. As long as you complete the surveys within the specified survey period you will earn LifePoints.

Along with surveys, you might be asked to participate in market research that involves recording daily habits or trying out a new product.

How Will I Get Paid?

You can use your LifePoints to get paid by PayPal or to get other rewards such as e-gift cards. The site even has an option where you can trade in your LifePoints to make a donation to charity.

How to Sign Up

Head to the LifePoints homepage and click the “join now” button on the top right-hand side of your screen.

Trustpilot score: 4.6 out of 5 stars

9. Ipsos i-Say

Ipsos i-Say is an online survey community with millions of members. One cool thing about i-Say is that along with traditional market research surveys they have polls that are created by members.

How it Works

As with other survey companies, you start by becoming a member. You’ll earn points for each survey you complete. And there are contests you can enter as well. As with any of these sites, you can earn cash at home or anywhere else where you have a few minutes to spare.

How Will I Get Paid?

As you earn points, you can use them to get e-gift cards to retailers such as Starbucks, Amazon, and Walmart. You can get PayPal gift cards as well.

How to Sign Up

Once you reach the i-Say website you’ll see a “Join Now” button in the middle of your screen. Click the button and follow the prompts.

Trustpilot score: 4.2 out of 5

10. Opinion Outpost

Opinion Outpost is another upstanding survey company that’s been around for years. In addition to surveys, the company also offers product testing.

How it Works

When you first sign up you take a screen questionnaire to help match you with the right types of surveys for your demographic. Sometimes there will be duplicate questions in the screening questionnaire to ensure you’re answering questions accurately.

Once you’ve completed the screening session you’ll get access to surveys that fit your demographic.

How Will I Get Paid?

Opinion Outpost awards points for each completed survey or other activity. You can use your points to get PayPal cash, Visa gift cards, or other awards like Amazon e-gift cards.

How to Sign Up

Just hit the “Join” button at the top right hand side of the Opinion Outpost home page and follow the prompts.

Trustpilot score: 4.3 out of 5

11. Toluna

Toluna shares surveys on current affairs, new products and more.

How it Works

When you sign up to be a Toluna Influencer you’ll be a part of a community that influences the products and services of the future. Each survey takes about 15 to 20 minutes to complete.

How Will I Get Paid?

Toluna uses a points-based system. Points can be used to get cash, e-gift cards, or other prizes.

How to Sign Up

Click the Sign Up button on the top right hand side of the home page. Complete instructions from there.

Trustpilot score: 4.2 out of 5 stars

12. Branded Surveys

Branded Surveys is a bit newer on the scene than some of the other companies we’ve mentioned here. However, they’re already gaining a great reputation from survey takers.

How it Works

You’ll answer some demographics questions when you sign up, as with similar sites. The site has several different profile surveys you can fill out.

You choose which ones you fill out and which ones you don’t, but the more you fill out the more surveys you can be matched with. You’ll be given survey opportunities based on your screening survey answers.

How Will I Get Paid?

You get awarded points for each survey you complete. After you’ve reached the minimum threshold of 1,000 points, you can get paid via PayPal or Branded Pay, which is the company’s own payroll system.

You can get e-gift cards as pay too.

How to Sign Up

Just click on the Sign Up button on the top right hand corner sidebar and follow the prompts. You can sign up via Facebook or with your email address.

Trustpilot score: 4.4 out of 5

13 .PrizeRebel

PrizeRebel has been in business since 2007. They’ve got over 10 million members and they’ve paid out over 22 million rewards.

How it Works

The sign up process is super easy. Once you sign up, you’ll complete a demographics survey for which you’ll earn points. This survey will match you to surveys you can complete to earn cash.

How Will I Get Paid?

PrizeRebel works on a points-based system, meaning you’ll earn points for every completed survey. You can choose to redeem your points for PayPal cash, e-gift cards, online games, or other prizes.

How to Sign Up

You sign up with Facebook; there’s a big pop-up box on the home page. You can’t miss it.

Trustpilot score: 3.3 out of 5 stars

14. Valued Opinions

Valued Opinions has been conducting market research since 2004. They’re a part of a larger company called Dynata Global which is the largest research market company in the world.

How it Works

After you complete the registration form (it only takes a few minutes) you’ll start receiving survey invitations. If you fit the right demographic, you’ll receive invitations to test new products and review advertising campaigns as well.

How Will I Get Paid?

You can use your earned points to get a Visa gift card, a gift card to one of many store retailers, or use your points to make a donation to one of the company’s partner charities.

How to Sign Up

There are “Join Now” buttons in several places on the site’s home page. Click on one to begin your registration.

Trustpilot score: 4.0 out of 5 stars

15. Google Opinion Rewards

The Google Opinions Rewards app lets you share your opinion right from your phone (most of the other companies mentioned here do to, though).

How it Works

After you sign up, you can complete short surveys while doing other tasks such as waiting for appointments. The app will tell you when there is a survey waiting for you.

You’re chosen for surveys based on the information you fill out when you sign up. Each short survey pays between $0.10 and $1.00

How Will I Get Paid?

Every time your rewards balance reaches $2.00, Google Opinion Rewards will send the money to your PayPal account via the address you signed up with.

How to Sign Up

Just download the app for Android or iOS. Make sure you use your main PayPal address when you sign up for the site in order to receive your payments before they expire.

Trustpilot score: None listed

16. American Consumer Opinion

American Consumer Opinion started surveying customers in 1986 via phone and snail mail. Today the company’s digital surveys ask you questions about the economy, and about products and services they use.

How it Works

After you register, the company will send you survey invitations via email. Know that this company sends survey requests several times a year.

That means you might not get as many survey requests as you would with some of the other companies listed here. As you complete each survey you will be rewarded with points.

How Will I Get Paid?

You can cash out your points and get PayPal cash. Or you can choose from a variety of other rewards such as e-gift cards.

How to Sign Up

Just click the Sign Up button in the middle of the screen or on the upper right hand corner of the site’s home page.

Trustpilot score: None listed

Summary

You won’t get rich by taking surveys but it can be a great way to earn some extra cash. Especially if you use the sites listed here. Have you ever taken surveys to make money? If so, what do you think the best survey sites are?

Tell us in the comments section.

Laurie is personal finance writer and a licensed Realtor. Her goal in blogging is to help others find their way to financial freedom, and to a simpler, more peaceful life.

Source: debtdiscipline.com

The 10 Best Cities for Women’s Pay

Businesswoman smiling
ESB Professional / Shutterstock.com

This story originally appeared on SmartAsset.com.

Women’s earnings in the U.S. make up about 81% of men’s, according to U.S. Census Bureau data from the past several years. Though this figure has steadily grown over the course of decades, researchers predict the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic could set back pay for women.

U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data unequivocally shows that the COVID-19 crisis has had a disproportionate impact on women’s participation in the labor force and unemployment, and many analysts theorize this will carry over to women’s earnings.

In this study, SmartAsset uncovered the best cities for women’s pay leading up to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is SmartAsset’s third annual study on the best cities for women’s pay. Check out the 2020 version here.

We compared the 150 largest U.S. across four metrics: median earnings for women, growth in women’s earnings, women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings and the change in women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings. Both metrics that examine changes over time consider the years 2017 and 2019.

For details on our data sources and how we put all the information together to create our final rankings, check out the Data and Methodology section at the end.

1. Raleigh, NC

Raleigh, North Carolina
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Raleigh, North Carolina, ranks in the top quartile of cities for all four metrics in our study. It has the 32nd-highest median earnings for women (about $50,300), and women’s earnings make up the 10th-highest percentage of men’s earnings (almost 96%).

Between 2017 and 2019, Raleigh had the sixth-greatest increase in earnings for women (18.62%) and fourth-highest increase in women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (13.05%).

2. Tacoma, WA

Tacoma at night
Sean Pavone / Shutterstock.com

Women in Tacoma, Washington, earn roughly $49,700 on average.

Though this figure does not fall in the top fifth of the study, Tacoma ranks within the top 15 cities for our other three metrics: Women’s earnings increased by more than 17% between 2017 and 2019, and women’s earnings make up about 93% of men’s earnings — almost 10% higher than in 2017.

3. Huntington Beach, CA

Huntington Beach California
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings increased the most in Huntington Beach, California, compared with any other city in our study.

Census Bureau data shows that the gender pay gap there closed by almost 16% between 2017 and 2019. Huntington Beach also has the 12th-highest median earnings for women, at $61,148.

4. Sacramento, CA

Sacramento, California
Andrew Zarivny / Shutterstock.com

Sacramento, California, has the smallest pay gap of all 150 cities in our study. In 2019, women’s earnings made up 99.05% of men’s earnings. This figure is 7.27% higher than it was 2017.

As a gross figure, median earnings for women in Sacramento are about $50,400, 31st-highest of the cities we considered.

5. Jersey City, NJ

Jersey City, New Jersey
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

Earnings for women in Jersey City, New Jersey, grew by the second-highest rate of any city in the study.

Between 2017 and 2019, median women’s earnings increased by 22.82%. As a result of that growth, 2019 median earnings for women in Jersey City are the seventh-highest overall, at $62,530.

6. St. Petersburg, FL

St. Petersburg, Florida
Brian Lasenby / Shutterstock.com

Women’s earnings in St. Petersburg, Florida, have grown substantially over the past couple of years. In 2017, the median salary for women was less than $40,400, and in 2019, it was greater than $45,700 –marking a two-year growth of 13.39%, 19th-highest in our study.

Relative to men, women in St. Petersburg earn about 8% less on average.

7. Honolulu, HI

Honolulu, Hawaii
MNStudio / Shutterstock.com

Honolulu, Hawaii, ranks in the top third of our study for all four metrics we considered. It has the 38th-highest median earnings for women (about $47,700) and ranks 45th-best for women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (88.51%).

Between 2017 and 2019, the capital of Hawaii had the 20th-greatest increase in women’s earnings (13.24%) and the 19th-largest change in women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (almost 7%).

8. Portland, OR

Hiking in Portland, Oregon
Rajat Chamria / Shutterstock.com

From 2017 to 2019, median earnings for women in Portland, Oregon, increased by 18.40% — the third-highest increase of any city in our top 10 and seventh-largest overall.

With that increase, Portland has the 17th-highest 2019 median earnings for women, at more than $55,200.

9. Baltimore, MD

Port of Baltimore, Maryland tugboat
Cascade Creatives / Shutterstock.com

Baltimore, Maryland, ranks in the top 20 cities of the study for two metrics: women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (92.31%) and growth in women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (6.47%).

Census Bureau data from 2019 shows that the median salary for women in Baltimore is about $47,500, 39th-highest across all 150 cities in our study.

10. Boston, MA

Boston, Massachusetts
f11photo / Shutterstock.com

Boston, Massachusetts, rounds out our list of the top cities for women’s pay. Women’s median salary in Boston is the 11th-highest in our study, at roughly $61,700.

Boston additionally ranks in the top 25 for women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings (91.88%) and the two-year growth in women’s earnings (12.23%).

Data and Methodology

Man studying data on his computer
Rawpixel.com / Shutterstock.com

To find the best cities for women’s pay, SmartAsset looked at the 150 largest cities in the U.S. We compared those cities across four metrics:

  • Median earnings for women. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2019 1-year American Community Survey.
  • Women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings. This is median earnings for women divided by median earnings for men. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2019 one-year American Community Survey.
  • Growth in women’s earnings. This is the change in median earnings for women from 2017 to 2019. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2017 and 2019 one-year American Community Surveys.
  • Growth in women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings. This is the difference between women’s earnings as a percentage of men’s earnings in 2017 and 2019. Data comes from the Census Bureau’s 2017 and 2019 one-year American Community Surveys.

In all cases, earnings figures are for full-time workers 16 years and older.

To determine our final list, we ranked each city in every metric, giving a full weighting to all metrics. We then found each city’s average ranking and used the average to determine a final score. The city with the best average ranking received a score of 100. The city with the lowest average ranking received a score of zero.

Disclosure: The information you read here is always objective. However, we sometimes receive compensation when you click links within our stories.

Source: moneytalksnews.com

Should I stay or should I go? Wrestling with the decision to quit a career

J.D.’s note: In the olden days at Get Rich Slowly, I shared reader stories every Sunday. I haven’t done that since I re-purchased the site because nobody sends them to me anymore. But earlier this year, Mike did. I love it. I hope you will too.

Earlier this year, I sent my wife a text message: “On a scale of 1 to 10, how freaked out would you be if I quit my job this afternoon?”

My wife and I had only been married a short while, but she’d known since our second date that I didn’t plan to work in my traditional job until normal retirement age. She also knew that I hadn’t been very happy at work in recent months.

We’re very compatible financially — both savers raised in working-class families that didn’t always have a lot. We make a point of having what we like to call “Fun Family Finance Day” from time to time. On Fun Family Finance Day, we do everything from competitively checking our credit scores to discussing questions that get at the root of our money mindsets to help us create our goals.

But this question wasn’t part of the plan. Not then.

And it was never on any of the lists of questions that we’d discussed with each other. It was like a pop quiz, a pothole in the smoothest relationship road I’d ever traveled…and I was the one putting it there.

Dreams Remain Dreams Without Doing

My wife and I rarely argue, but when we do it’s usually about food. It’s the kitchen and the grocery store that are our battleground. Our finances are fine. Thankfully, when you’re confident in the life you’ve created and the person you chose to build it with, it’s a lot easier to be honest about what’s on your mind.

That still doesn’t always mean you get the answer you want. Or the answer you were expecting. She responded: “Wait what. Kinda. What would you do?”

A completely reasonable and fair question. Not to mention one that I’d probably have to get comfortable answering from a lot more people.

I think my immediate reaction was: We talk about this stuff all the time, where is my, “No worries baby, YOLO!”? (I must have watched too many romcoms back before we cut cable from our lives.)

Being a grownup, it turns out, is actually really hard sometimes. I was about to learn that talking about something, and actually doing it, are a world apart.

Life is full of dreamers and doers. Sometimes those two personalities cross over. But there are plenty of people who go through life talking about so many things they’ll never have the courage to try — or the discipline and determination to follow through with.

Which person was I? The dreamer? The doer? Or that fortunate combination of both?

Standing on the Ledge

There’s a quote perched atop my bucket list of long-term goals:

“At some point, you will need to take a long look in the mirror and ask yourself not just if this is something you wanted to do at one point, but if this is something you will want to have done.”

Words are meaningless without action. It was time for me to take that long look in the mirror. I thought back to one of the questions that my wife and I had previously discussed: What does money mean to you? To me, once I grew out of the “stuff accumulation” phase of my early- to mid-20s, my answer had always been freedom. Money meant freedom. To my wife, the answer was security. Money meant security.

You can probably see how freedom can conflict with security. That was the case here. Not only that, but I was asking to change the perfect plan, one that she was comfortable with and excited about.

That’s not one, but two shots against financial security. If I’d thought more about our financial blueprints and how they differ, I might have seen this coming from a mile away!

As I was standing on that ledge, about to quit my job, thoughts started to race through my mind. What did I actually have to lose if made the leap? Lots.

  • A happy relationship and marriage.
  • A secure job with solid income, not to mention a sixteen year investment in my career.
  • Great benefits, including lots of time off, health insurance, 401(k) — even a pension.
  • The ability to afford anything at any time without any real worry. (Our finances were already on autopilot.)
  • My work friends and work prestige.
  • The general day-to-day purpose of a job.
  • The opportunity to create generational wealth. If we worked until 65, the power of compounding would likely make us ridiculously wealthy.

Today at Get Rich Slowly, let’s perform a little exercise. Come stand in my shoes for a minute, won’t you? Join me on the ledge. Do you see the beautiful view? The endless opportunity? The excitement that’s felt only at the beginning of a grand adventure, an adventure where anything is possible?

Or do you get a queasy feeling in your stomach? Do you feel like you’ve lost your balance, like you’re on the edge of some great catastrophe? Do you see a frightening fall from grace? Does it make you want to back away immediately?

Let’s go back to what it felt like to make this decision…

Sitting on the ledge

My Situation

I’m 38 years old. I’ve worked for the same company since I was 22. Corporate insurance is all I know. I’m well paid. I work from home for a solid company with good benefits, plenty of time off, and I really enjoy most of the people I work for and with.

It’s the definition of stability — a solid guardrail protecting me from what lies over the ledge. So what’s the problem?

A year ago, I took a new position that seemed like a great opportunity. Only it wasn’t. The first misstep of my career. A year in, that spot has killed my enthusiasm and engagement. For the first time at work, I’m struggling to get things done.

As an extrovert that derives meaning from helping others, this feels like a prison. My job isn’t hard because it’s stressful. It’s hard because it’s boring me to death! And what are any of us doing thinking about personal finance and early retirement if we aren’t trying to make better use of our limited time on this planet?

There’s a project looming that would require some weekend work once in a while for the foreseeable future, I’ve avoided it in the past, but my luck is running out. My team — and, more importantly, my position — need to take it on. I understand completely. I just don’t want to do it.

At this point in life, my time is way more important to me than money. The weekends and vacations are what I live for. Adventures in the mountains with my friends, quality time with my wife, our dog, and our families – that’s what makes me feel alive.

Insurance? Meh.

No little kid ever said they wanted to work for an insurance company and play with spreadsheets and Powerpoint presentations when they grow up. I wanted to be a baseball player, a sports writer, even a professional forklift driver. (Because what’s more badass than a forklift when you’re a little kid and your dad works at a marina?)

A Glimpse of the Other Side

My wife and I just got back from a delayed honeymoon to Alaska. To say it was incredible would be an understatement. Denali. Kenai. Majestic train rides. Fjords. Glaciers. Bears. Bald eagles. Whales. Hikes.

Life slowed down.

I somehow managed to read five books while doing so many other amazing things. During our more than two weeks off, I got to see what my mind was capable of when it wasn’t drowning in useless information and mundane tasks that consume my braindwidth.

We talked to people who had ended up in this wild place through a history of taking risks. Parents that had hitchhiked cross-country and ended up there back in the 70s. Can you imagine? Where we live, a fair number of people never leave their town or state!

Before the trip, I had tried to apply for a few positions. For whatever reason, it just didn’t work out. I came home from an amazing glimpse into what life could be to a job that seemed like the polar opposite. (Isn’t that every vacation though?) I’ve felt like a square peg trying to fit in a round hole for a while now. Maybe normal life just isn’t for me anymore. Maybe I need something just a little less ordinary.

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Should I Stay or Should I Go?

I’ve been practicing the classic tenets of personal finance since I was in my mid- to late-20s. I found an awesome woman in my mid-30s who just happens to be down with this lifestyle as well. We’re probably two to three years short of where we want to be based on our master plan of a fully-paid house and a really comfortable number in invested assets.

We’d likely fall somewhere between Agency and Security on the stages of financial freedom.

I know good jobs don’t grow on trees, especially where we live. The seasons of the economy are always shifting and there’s a chill in the air. Economic winter can’t be too far off. My wife still has a solid job, and we live a pretty simple life — albeit in an expensive part of the country. Our main splurge is travel, but otherwise we live well below our means.

All of this knowledge and preparation comes with a cost. Having options can be a burden too, because then you’re responsible for making hard decisions. And you’re responsible for the outcomes of those choices.

What other options are there?

  • Be a crappy employee/teammate, and still get paid? Plenty of people have played that game. Get a surgery or two, go out on leave, let performance management run its course for however long that takes, and keep cashing checks the whole time. I don’t think I have it in me to put people I respect through that. It’s just not who I am.
  • I work from home, and I still can’t bring myself to abandon my laptop. What if someone needs me?
  • Am I giving up too soon? The finish line seems just around the corner — somehow so close yet so far away.
  • Should I just suck it up and sell a little more of my soul? Slump my shoulders a little bit more as I trade another piece of myself for money I don’t need to buy things I don’t want?

As I go back and forth, sometimes I briefly wish I’d never found the personal-finance community. Like Neo in The Matrix, why’d I have to take the damn red pill? Being a mindless consumer wasn’t so bad. I would have invested 6-10% in my 401(k) with a traditional pension on top of it.

Forty years on autopilot would have produced a comfortable life of work, nice things — and maybe some time in old age to relax and travel.

Facing Freedom

The whole point of everything I’ve done since I started this journey was to be in control of my own life. To not be owned by things or circumstances. To have options. Freedom of choice. F-U money.

I have the corporate battle scars and survivor’s guilt to understand why that’s important.

I’ve sat on the phone while I heard that my old department was closing down. The sadness and tears in the room. Everyone that had taken me in, given me my chance, taught me the job…basically gone, casualties of a business decision.

I’ve seen people get laid off who are petrified because they don’t know how they’ll pay their bills in a couple of weeks. People will be okay eventually though, right?

What about my friend who was struggling last year and left the company? He committed suicide a few months later. Maybe everyone won’t be okay eventually. Depression runs in my family. Am I really built for this? That thought is haunting.

It’s been said that one of the hardest decisions you’ll ever make in life is whether to walk away or try harder. Every bone in my body tells me it’s time to walk away, to bet on myself.

The End?

About six months after the text exchange that blindsided my wife, with her support, I hit send on the scariest, most exciting and important one-line email of my professional career. It would also signify the unofficial end of it: “I will be resigning from my position effective Wednesday, June 26th.”

To combine a few lines from my favorite movie, The Shawshank Redemption, some birds just weren’t meant to be caged. It’s time to get busy living, or get busy dying.

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Source: getrichslowly.org

Terrazzo flooring has stood the test of time, enduring for centuries as a durable and versatile surface.

To arrive in Venice for the first time is to be transported into a completely unique world—a city of gothic buildings floating on water, where grand palaces and churches stand above the ubiquitous canals, and an array of building materials is on permanent display. From the dusty-rose clay bricks that can be found on the exteriors of houses, palaces and churches, to the dazzling white Istrian stone that typifies many of the grander Venetian establishments, and the marble mosaics that adorn surfaces throughout the city, Venice is a city of contrasting textures and styles—and this is something that is reflected in one of its most famous exports: terrazzo flooring.

You might know it as that speckly concrete from government buildings of the 1970s and ’80s, but this hybrid flooring material was actually created in the 15th century. Venetian mosaic workers would gather up offcuts of marble and repurpose them, combining them with clay and other materials to use for flooring in their own residences. The workers would grind the stone down for an even walking surface, but without being coated, the color of the aggregate flecks would not emerge; terrazzo was merely a convenient and utilitarian choice for flooring.

The flooring style gained popularity when workers refined the process of installation by creating a grinding stone called a galeto to even out the surface, and discovering that a coating of goat milk would bring out the color and sheen of the stone. Since then, technology has advanced (and coatings other than goat milk have been developed), and terrazzo has established itself as a durable and attractive flooring material, first in Italy, and then across the globe.

In palaces and buildings throughout Venice, terrazzo is omnipresent, having been chosen for its aesthetic appeal and durability. In the centuries since its invention, the surface has made its way around the world, and recently, it has enjoyed a resurgence as a style statement in modern architecture and design.

David Filippi, Vice President of American Terrazzo Co., has a long family history with terrazzo, beginning with his great-grandfather Antonio’s emigration from Italy to the United States. Antonio Filippi set out for the United States from a small town called Casasola, not far from Venice, in the early 1900s. After an arduous journey and years of hardship as a foreigner in a strange land, Antonio established what is now American Terrazzo Co.

“Like so many Italian immigrants, my great grandfather left behind a wife and young child to board a ship and set sail for the country of his dreams,” Filippi says. “Some seven years after arriving in America, he called for his young family to join him and eventually secured a piece of property where he built his shop and home next door. Relatives and friends from the ‘old country’ joined my great-grandfather, and together they earned a reputation for performing the finest in terrazzo and masonry work.”

Terrazzo flooring has stood the test of time, enduring for centuries as a durable and versatile surface. image 1

Filippi’s family is dedicated to the continuation of the business, which is a testament to Italian ingenuity and Filippi’s great-grandfather’s hard work. “Over the years, terrazzo has had its ups and downs,” Filippi says. “Today, it is very popular.

Historically, you would have seen terrazzo mostly in airports and hospitals, and in the lobbies of large commercial buildings. Now, it has expanded to retail stores, universities and high-end homes.” As with many design and architectural trends, terrazzo has come in and out of style, but one of the enduring benefits of the material—and what makes architects and designers come back to it again and again—is that it is durable and versatile.

“Generally, of all building types, airports have the most foot traffic,” Filippi says. “One of the main reasons that terrazzo is so widely used in airports is that it is extremely durable.” It’s because of this that, even though the initial financial outlay for terrazzo might be greater than a simpler form of flooring, terrazzo is considered to be the most cost-effective flooring that there is—because it will never wear out. Fifty years from installation, a terrazzo floor will look as fresh as if it were installed yesterday.

Another major benefit of terrazzo flooring is its uniqueness, and the ability to customize its look to suit any setting. “It has many options,” Filippi says. “There is a wide spectrum of available colors, as well as many aggregate sizes and colors.” In recent years, terrazzo has been embraced as a wildly versatile material that can be used as a refined surface in professional buildings; for a fun and colorful addition to a retail space; and as a personality-laden feature in a beautiful home.

Because terrazzo is poured during installation, a fluid, unbroken surface can be achieved, providing continuity and connection between spaces in your home, which most other flooring and wall surfaces are unable to achieve. And designers are now experimenting with precast terrazzo, opening up a whole new channel for design experimentation—it’s no longer limited to just flooring and walls.

“Over the years, we have fabricated terrazzo sinks, bathtubs, tables, chairs and even sculptures,” Filippi says. “Terrazzo can be placed anywhere and everywhere. It has no limitations.” This expansion from building surfaces to accessories and decor is indicative of the strength of terrazzo in today’s design palette. Modern design outlets jumped on board, with Anthropologie selling a range of terrazzo-inspired bath accessories, West Elm doing a collection of melamine terrazzo-style dishes, and multitudes of furniture and fabric designers incorporating the material’s aesthetic into their products.

If you’re considering terrazzo for your home, there are a few important things to keep in mind. Consider your time line, because terrazzo is still laid by hand, and is considered artistic and artisanal work. If you’re going with traditional cementitious terrazzo, be prepared for it to take more than a month to install. Epoxy, on the other hand, can usually be completed within one to two weeks.

Cost varies, starting from $30 per square foot for installation. If you’re looking for intricate designs or installations in challenging areas, the cost will increase. But remember, the long-term maintenance costs of terrazzo are virtually nonexistent compared with other types of flooring.

Lastly, when you’re choosing the color and aggregates for your terrazzo features, make sure that you’re making a choice based on personal preference rather than trend, because this surface, with its virtual indestructibility, will be with you permanently.

Source: century21.com

Carmel’s 107-Acre Asherwood Estate Sells; New Owner to Build 40 Homes on the Property

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Asherwood, the suburban Indianapolis estate of the late billionaire Mel Simon, has reportedly found new owners. The Current, a local publication that reports on the Carmel area, has learned that the massive property will be divided in two and sold to different buyers for an undisclosed amount.

The opulent main house along with 20 acres that surround it will go to a private buyer (who will use it as a personal residence), while the rest of the 107-acre property goes to Gradison Land Development. The latter has already filed plans to built 40 homes on the sprawling property.

As a quick recap, the famous property — valued at $30 million — was most recently listed in March 2019, following its previous attempt to sell in 2014 which ended with Bren Simon (wife of the late shopping-mall magnate and Pacers co-owner, Mel Simon) donating the 107-acre estate.

Bren Simon, a known philanthropist, handed Asherwood Estate — as well as its lavishly furnished 50,000-square-foot mansion — to the Great American Songbook Foundation to support its dedication to 20th century American music history.

Asherwood Estate, Carmel IN. Photo courtesy of CJ Walker

In late 2018, the foundation led by Grammy-nominated musician and historian Michael Feinstein sought bids from top real estate brokerage firms to advise it on the best ways to market and sell the property. The winning bid went to global real estate firm Avison Young, chosen to lead sales efforts for the 107-acre property in Carmel, IN — an inspired choice, given the recent news of the successful sale.

“We invested a lot of time and effort in evaluating options to maximize the potential of this property, not only for our organization but for the surrounding community,” the foundation’s executive director Chris Lewis said in a statement. “We want to honor this generous gift by opening the opportunity to prospective buyers who are able to elevate the grounds beyond our capabilities.”

Stan Burton, an associate in Avison Young’s Indianapolis office, was leading the efforts of coordinating the sale of the Asherwood Estate.

History of the Asherwood Estate

Asherwood Estate, Carmel IN. Photo courtesy of CJ Walker

In the 1970s, Melvin and Bren Simon bought the Asherwood estate in Carmel, Indiana. Developed by race car driver and automotive engineer Louis H. Schwitzer, the Asherwood estate was significantly expanded under the ownership of the Simons.

In the years following their purchase, Mr. Simon, the co-founder of the Simon Property Group, became one of the world’s foremost shopping mall developers and the co-owner of the Indiana Pacers basketball team. When he died in 2009 at 82, Mr. Simon was worth $1.3 billion, according to Forbes.

Mr. Simon’s widow, Bren Simon, listed the property for sale in 2014 for $25 million, with no takers. She then donated the massive Asherwood estate, along with the house and all of its belongings, to Michael Feinstein’s foundation, The Great American Songbook.

The millions of dollars worth of art, furniture and fixtures that were inside the palatial 50,000-square-foot mansion hit the auction block on November 17, 2018 with proceeds from the sale going to the foundation.

Asherwood Estate, Carmel IN. Photo courtesy of CJ Walker

A real-estate deal to redevelop the vast estate into a luxury neighborhood and transform the seven-bedroom mansion into a boutique inn was also underway at the beginning of 2019, but was later abandoned due to restrictions that prevented the development of large-scale homes on the estate.

The existing fully furnished seven-bedroom mansion on the property includes two golf courses, two swimming pools, a tennis court, a clubhouse, greenhouse, guest house, home theater and caterer-ready professional kitchen. The property is located along Ditch Road between 96th and 106th streets.

Asherwood Estate, Carmel IN. Photo courtesy of CJ Walker
Asherwood Estate, Carmel IN. Photo courtesy of CJ Walker

Note: A previous version of this article was published in March 2019, when Asherwood Estate was listed with Avison Young. It was updated in 2021 to reflect the recent news surrounding the property’s imminent sale.

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Source: fancypantshomes.com

Trophy Apartment Once Owned by Composer Leonard Bernstein Asks $29.5 Million

An Upper East Side apartment that was once home to one of the most significant American cultural personalities of the 20th century has recently hit the market.

The Art Deco masterpiece at 895 Park Avenue was previously owned by famed composer and cultural icon Leonard Bernstein, whom music critics refer to as “one of the most prodigiously talented and successful musicians in American history”. In fact, this very property is where Bernstein — also a lifelong humanitarian, civil rights advocate, and peace activist — hosted an infamous “radical chic” party with and in support of the Black Panther Party back in 1970.

But its famous past owner is not the building’s only historical trait; built in 1929, it is designed in the classic Art Deco style, evoking New York City’s golden age glamour and sophistication. That, paired with its carefully preserved original architectural details (original wood-burning fireplaces and wide-plank wood floors) and panoramic Manhattan views make this residence a true gem.

Image credit: Warburg Realty

Clocking in at approximately 6,300 square feet, with an extra 700 square feet of private outdoor space, the 895 Park Avenue unit spans over two floors of the 21-story Upper East Side building. The entrance is through a private elevator landing which opens into a 34-foot grand gallery, further leading into the residence’s elegant formal living room, library, and dining room.

With 6 bedrooms and 6.5 bathrooms, the trophy apartment also comes with an enclosed solarium that’s bathed in sunlight and that, just like the rest of the rooms and outdoor spaces, opens up to picture-perfect views of the city.

Image credit: Warburg Realty
Image credit: Warburg Realty
Image credit: Warburg Realty

A grand staircase leads to the lower level, which houses the 6 bedrooms, as well as a home office and laundry room. All but one of the bedrooms enjoys their own en-suite bathroom as well as significant storage space in the form of walk-in closets or dressing rooms.

Image credit: Warburg Realty

The building itself adds an extra note of sophistication and convenience; the full-service white glove co-op has a long list of amenities, including multiple doormen, an elevator attendant, health club, squash court, basketball court, and private storage units. Though location itself may be its biggest asset: 895 Park Avenue is located right in the heart of the Upper East Side, on the southeast corner of 79th street and Park Avenue, providing direct access to world-class dining and shopping.

Priced at $29.5 million, the elegant unit is listed with Bonnie Chajet, Allison Chiaramonte, and Tania Isacoff Friedland of Warburg Realty.

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Source: fancypantshomes.com

Charming Estate With Ties to The Beatles On the Market in Connecticut

A gorgeous, sprawling Connecticut estate with ties to The Beatles, Prudence Farrow, and the Gershwin brothers is up for sale in Westport for $9 million. 

The seven-bedroom, eight-bathroom, 9,360-square-foot property at 157 Easton Road, also known as River Run Estate, is being marketed by Compass’ Susan Vanech. It was originally built in 1955, and completely renovated in 2020, pairing old-school charm with modern-day amenities. 

The marketing for the resort-style estate is inspired by John Lennon’s ‘Imagine,’ as a reflection of the home being restored and getting a new lease on life. But there is also another, far more fascinating connection to The Beatles. 

Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass

Their song ‘Dear Prudence’ was based on Mia Farrow’s sister Prudence Farrow, who fell into a deep depression during her teenage years after her father’s sudden passing. John Lennon and George Harrison, who were in the same social circles as Prudence, wrote the song to help lift her spirits — and it ended up becoming a massive hit. 

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At the time, Prudence Farrow was living at the River Run Estate, and in her memoir, she describes hiking in the woods near the property, canoeing, skating on the pond, and playing with the neighborhood kids.

Back when Prudence resided at 157 Easton Road, the property was owned by violinist and photographer Leopold Godowsky Jr., and his wife Frankie Gershwin, younger sister to George and Ira Gershwin (the songwriting team whose songs were synonymous with the sounds and style of the Jazz Age). The frequent parties and gatherings at River Run Estate are said to have maybe inspired some of the Gershwins’ most popular compositions. 

The estate is the epitome of relaxed, outdoorsy Connecticut living, featuring personal tennis courts, a home gym, and access to the river waterfront with waterfalls to canoe, paddle, or swim.

Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass

There are also plenty of walking and hiking trails, as well as a pool and spa with a steam room. The outdoor area also includes a river house and a greenhouse, so the property would be an ideal fit for someone who loves the outdoors and enjoys being in nature year-round. 

Inside the property, there is an exquisite owner’s suite, as well as separate guest quarters for when friends or family come to visit. The home incorporates quiet offices, perfect for a work-from-home setup, a spacious dining room, multiple fireplaces, and fantastic views. 

Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass
Westport, CT home with ties to The Beatles. Image credit: Compass

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Source: fancypantshomes.com

Here’s How to Match Your Music Taste to Your Home Decor

‘Hearing colors’ — I bet you’re all familiar with this expression already, but did you know that it’s actually a thing? It’s a rare neurological condition called chromesthesia, which affects roughly 1 in 3,000 people.

For people with chromesthesia, listening to a certain genre or musical piece can automatically trigger different color visualizations associated with the sound. 

It’s obviously a rare condition, but for musicians, it can be an incredibly useful tool. Duke Ellington, Aphex Twin and Pharrell Williams are among those with chromesthesia. Pharrell actually stated: ‘I know when something is in key because it either matches the same color or it doesn’t.’

Our friends at Home Advisor had their interest piqued, and they decided to put this rare gift to good use. They enlisted the help of two people with chromesthesia and had them listen to various Billboard chart songs from 10 different musical genres. They did this to see what colors each musical genre evoked, and whenever the two participants had matching colors, they were added to that genre’s color palette. 

Consequently, Home Advisor came up with 10 different living room color palettes that match 10 music genres. If you’re a fan of one or more of these genres, then you can use this guide to decorate your home to match your musical taste. Check out the 10 palettes and genres below.

1. Rock

The two chromesthesia participants in the study listened to some rock songs on the Billboard chart, to see what colors popped in their minds.

The result is a rather dark and strong color palette, which includes chocolate-y and caramel-y tones, mixed with Champagne, Cream, and a bit of Smoke and Black. 

2. Country

Given that country music is all about wooden guitars, cowboy hats, ranches, saloons and chestnut horses, it’s no wonder that the colors evoked by this genre match that imagery.

The participants envisioned a living room featuring browny, earthy hues like Redwood, Tortilla, Laguna and Cream. 

3. Pop

Pop music is usually a pretty accessible genre, so it’s only natural that this pop living room features a mix of prime colors, pastels, as well as metallic hues – something for everyone, basically. The pop palette includes Navy, Jade, Black, Abalone, as well as Jade, White and metallic Gold. 

Keep reading: Everything We Know about Trevor Noah’s Apartment — the New Set of the Daily Show

4. R&B

The R&B room looks like it was designed by a qualified interior designer, that’s how harmonius the selected hues are. The resulting color palette exudes coolness and chill-vibe-ness, featuring tones and hues like Charcoal, Champagne, Prussian, White, Pearl River, and a touch of Lime.

5. Rap

The rap room is definitely the showstopper in this list, incorporating various bold and bright colors (which is actually eerily similar to rapper Wiz Khalifa’s home in Los Angeles).

This eclectic result shouldn’t really come as a surprise, given that this musical genre also includes a mix of beats, samples and influences. This fun living room features bright hues like Blue, Jade, Lime, Fire, Red, Peach and Hot Pink. 

6. Latin

The Latin room, unsurprisingly, bears resemblance to the R&B room, as well as to the rap room. This mash-up of pop, R&B, rap, salsa, tango, and so on, has resulted in a bright and vibrant color palette that includes Yellow, Cream, White and Pearl River. 

7. J-Pop

This bubblegum-like color palette evokes the ‘cute and sexy’ image of this pop music trend originating in Japan. The palette features colors that normally wouldn’t go together, but somehow they work, and the result is a colorful and young living room painted in hues like Red, Orange, Thistle, Silver and Amber.

8. EDM

The EDM palette is in a league of its own, for sure. The palette is incredibly vibrant and energetic, much like the musical genre it represents. You might say there’s even a nightclub vibe to this living room, which features colors like Navy, Blue, Azure, Gold, metallic Mint, and Electric Purple.

SEE ALSO: 10 of the Most Stylish Minimalist Wall Clocks You Can Buy on Amazon

9. Lo-Fi Hip-Hop Beats

This lo-fi color palette works really well for a living room, and it’s really on trend with the pastel hues that interior designers are talking up this year. This easy listening music genre evokes gentle shades like Tea, Cream, Baby Blue, Laurel and Air Force. 

10. Heavy Metal

This living room is the darkest, and most aggressive of all the rooms on our list. That’s right in tune with the music genre it represents, as heavy metal is loud, bold, and focused a lot on imagery — heaven and hell, hellfire, depths of darkness, leathers and metals, and so on. Consequently, this living room features dark, solid hues like Black, Charcoal, Denim, as well as blood-like hues such as Maroon and Mahogany. 

There are obviously a lot more musical genres and sub-genres out there, so naturally this list doesn’t cover every possible music taste. But, if you’re a fan of some of these genres and are looking to incorporate your music taste into your home decor, then this study by Home Advisor might serve as inspiration. Happy listening (and decorating)!

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Source: fancypantshomes.com

Design Trends that Add Extra Flair to Your Fancy Home

After Celebrity Snoop Dogs launched on Channel 4 on June 26, our collective obsession with celebrity homes became even bigger. Thanks to a GoPro camera strapped to a celeb’s beloved pooch, viewers are afforded a glimpse inside an A-Lister’s house.

While some celebrity homes may be described in some circles as ‘understated’, others are unashamedly extravagant. The world has always been strangely fascinated with celeb homes, with countless regular Joes making a huge effort to replicate certain aspects of a celebrity home when designing their own abode.

Whether you are a world-famous celeb or just someone who appreciates an exquisite home, here are a few of the hottest home design trends to follow before the year comes to an end.

Decorative elements are more dramatic than ever before

If you want your home to have the same theatrical appeal as your typical celebrity crib, consider investing in a range of dramatic decorative elements that will breathe new life into your home.

Tapestries that depict tranquil landscapes, colorful oriental designs or mythological artwork are considered hot property right now. Additionally, old, ultra-modern accessories including black-lined frames and mirrors, modern prints, oversized sculptures and vases, and contemporary cushion covers, carpets and rugs can all add a touch of drama to a room.

You can even opt for a dramatic kitchen or bathroom by steering clear of traditional white tiles and finishes and opting for dark colors and copper or gold fittings.

Bonus rooms add significant value to a house

Celebs are known to have a love for the extravagant, which is why you will find  everyone from J-Lo to P. Diddy owning homes that feature bonus rooms such as gyms, sunrooms, cinemas and wet bars. Industry specialists ranging from Hollywood interior designers to home builders in Delaware are creating exquisite, award-winning homes that effortlessly incorporate innovative spaces such as sunrooms and home cinemas into a home design.

Depending on the amount of space you have available, you can add a number of lush spaces to your home design. Home offices are always popular, as are dedicated homework rooms for children. Smoking rooms, man caves, game rooms, home theaters fitted with all the latest hi-tech gear are also becoming increasingly popular among new homeowners, as are she-sheds.

Mixed metals make a lasting impression

Mixing metals is once again trending this year, with celebs and ordinary people alike opting to mix warm and cool metals to obtain an intriguing, luxurious look.

While metal finishings have been popular for quite some time, furniture in gold, silver, copper, tin and aluminum are all gaining popularity fast. Although metal is very fashionable, there are a few guidelines that need to be adhered to when it comes to decorating your posh abode. When mixing warm metals such as gold and brass with the cool colors of silver and stainless steel, it is important to choose a primary metal and an accent one. You can, alternatively, also opt for neutral metals, such as cast iron, that effortlessly combine with any other metals.  

This year’s design trends will make it possible to spruce up a house with ease. Even if you do not own a mansion in Beverly Hills or Presidio Heights you can still make sure your house is super-stylish and comfortable to live in (and nab some nice compliments from anyone that comes and visits).

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Source: fancypantshomes.com