Tips of the Trade

Home Edition

Writer/ Julie Yates

Cottingham Concrete (Brad Cottingham)

Maintain Your Concrete to Protect Your Investment

  • Fix hairline cracks and chips before they become an even bigger problem.
  • Power washing is key to prep surface and remove dirt before sealing. Visit sites like to hire experts.
  • Wait at least 24 hours after power washing to allow drying before sealing.
  • Use a quality sealant to penetrate the concrete and protect it from surface damage, corrosion, and staining.
  • Too much sealer will yellow your investment and it’s costly to get it stripped off.


Custom Moves Real Estate (Nicci Perkins)

Tips of the Trade to find Your Dream House!Tips of the Trade

  • Get prequalified before making an offer because other buyers will be.
  • Be open minded; your criteria changes when you get out there.
  • Do not rush if you don’t have to; don’t make a rash decision- look around.
  • Don’t look at homes you can’t afford- you ‘ll just be disappointed.
  • Use a realtor even if you are buying a For Sale by Owner, a realtor is free to buyers. Check out sites like Lowcountry Real Estate / houses for sale in Beaufort SC to see some options.


Susan Cone, Realtor, The Wyman Group

Freshen Up Your House to Sell it This Spring!

  • Get started your spring cleaning! Clean gutters, vents, patio furniture and check smoke detectors.
  • First impressions count- add plants and colorful pillows to patio furniture.
  • Clean windows, repair screens and refresh caulk to let the light in and make the house look well maintained.
  • A new coat of paint makes the house look clean. If you need cash immediately, will buy your house as it is.
  • Remove winter clutter and add simple things like a new shower curtain or bright table runners.
  • Bring the outside in; put flowers on the table.
  • Have a realtor walk through the house. A pair of fresh eyes will notice things you don’t.


Cone and Daughter Lawn Care (Bill Cone)

Tips of the TradeKeep Your Lawn Beautiful This Spring and Beyond

  • Every other year roll and then aerate your lawn.
  • Keep your yard at 3 ½” to 4”- it shades the dirt which keeps it wet and helps the grass stay green and fresh.
  • Four times a year, check for grubs, the larva of Japanese beetles, which attack grass and plants
  • Spring is the best time to plant shrubs because they don’t need to be watered as much.
  • Keep dead leaves and sticks out of grass to prevent it from dying underneath.
  • Hire a lawn treatment service to professionally maintain your lawn.


Fuel Church (Jessica Petty)

Ways to Worship at Home

  • Before you begin, make sure all cell phones are on silent and out of the room you’re going to worship in.
  • Tune into an online service, but just don’t watch- participate by singing, standing and praying.
  • Choose a chapter from the book of Psalms and write it out as your own prayer to God, inserting your own praises and requests to the Lord.
  • Make a date with Jesus to just sit and have some quiet time with Him, resting and listening.
  • Take communion. You can use plain ole crackers and grape juice.
  • Read from the Bible and make it a holy moment unto God.


Ruoff Mortgage (Aimee Romero)

Be Prepared in a Competitive Sellers’ Market

  • Present your offer with a credible, preapproval in hand- especially one from a local lender with a good reputation.
  • Be ready to make an offer non-contingent; the seller is more likely to choose your offer.
  • Don’t waste time with indecisiveness; sellers get multiple offers and if know what you want, put in the offer right away.
  • Write a personal letter to accompany your offer that tells the sellers why this is the perfect home for you and your family; sentiment can make a difference.
  • Include an escalation clause that states you’ll pay a certain dollar amount over any other offer submitted.


White Lilies in Paradise (Susan Perry)

Tips of the Trade

Add Flowers to Your Home to Improve Your Quality of Life

  • Place easy care green plants such as peace lily, fiddle leaf fir and pothos in living areas to increase oxygen levels, boost focus and reduce stress.
  • Bring life to your kitchen and improve your cooking with little pots of edible herbs.
  • Beautify your home and make it more inviting with a bouquet of flowers on your counter.
  • Deflect the musty smell in your bathroom by hanging up a bundle of eucalyptus; it also fights irritability, chronic fatigue, depression and insomnia.
  • Refresh your bedroom with a lavender plant; its aroma reduces stress, smells clean and helps you sleep better.


Urban Homestead (Kindra Tragesser)

Tips of the Trade: How to Decorate from the Floor Up!

  • Pick your flooring first- hardwood or engineered flooring is timeless!
  • Paint your walls in neutral hues; it updates a room.
  • Don’t be afraid to choose neutral furniture; today’s fabrics such as Sunbrella and Crypton are kid proof.
  • Select canned or recessed lighting which never goes out of style. Change out dated hanging fixtures.
  • Add color and trendiness with accessories- they are easy to replace when styles change.


Gaffney Insurance Agency (Michael Gasaway)

Get Great Insurance Coverage at an Economical Price

  • Work with an independent insurance agency that can offer multiple carriers to have ability to compare plans and prices.
  • Have a good credit score to ensure your insurance score is optimal.
  • Bundle your home and auto insurance together to maximize discounts.
  • Check auto insurance when buying home; you are experiencing a life changing event so evaluate all your coverage.
  • Look for an Independent Auto Agent; if something were to happen, you have ability to deal with a real person you know and not an 800 number. Visit sites like for additional guidance.


North Central Outdoor Power (Brad Zeck)

Tips of the Trade: Get Your Mower Ready for Spring and Summer

  • Change the oil and replace the oil filter, fuel filter and air filter.
  • Put in new spark plug(s).
  • Sharpen the blades.
  • Clean underneath the deck shelf; scrape out old debris to make sure your mower can do a good job.
  • Inspect all belts for cracks or even chunks missing from them.
  • Check the air pressure in the tires- if tires are uneven your mowing will be too.
  • Tighten all hex head bolts and replace any that may have fallen out.

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