Nov. 15 2018 10:21 AM

OPEN HOUSES

Winter is also a great time to sell your house!

How can a house look good enough to attract buyers even in the middle of a Michigan winter? I am happy to report that with a few simple steps, this is possible. Make sure there is a clear path through any snow; salt your walkway and drive, even if flakes are still falling. Have a rubber mat by the front door for sludgy shoes and a rack for wet umbrellas. Once they enter the house, imagine them scanning it and prepare accordingly. Window treatments should be opened and every light in the house, including accent and closet lights, should be switched on. As a rule of thumb, don’t forget to increase the brightness of your bulbs when selling! If you have a fireplace, light it up, open the damper, place a screen and don’t leave it unattended for too long. If you don’t have a fireplace, make sure you turn the heat up a few degrees. Playing jazz or classical music will go a long way to create that ambience. All these little steps are to ensure that the buyers feel welcome and not rushed to make a decision about their future home. As always, please feel free to contact me for further information on selling your house in this season.

HOME & GARDEN

Spend time creating connections and art

This time of year, social media posts are filled with sentiments of thankfulness and sharing about family traditions. Overwhelmingly, these messages are not about things, but about loved ones and time spent together.If you’re looking for an opportunity to spend more time making memories, a chance to slow down and enjoy the company of friends and family this season, you’re sure to be excited by the Art a la Carte offerings at Delphi. Schedule your private event, bring your own refreshments, a festive mood, and your guests - it’s party planning simplified! Let Delphi set up the space, guide your group through a fun project and clean up after your event.Glass art is timeless, and creating special projects with people of all ages has been Delphi’s specialty for more than forty-five years. With options for every group, the possibilities are endless. Girls night out? You can make custom jewelry. Looking for something that appeals to all ages and genders? Consider custom drinkware, with options to create pilsner beer glasses, mugs, wine glasses, even water bottles for the kids. Take some time to build connections with the people in your life and leave with a fantastic glass project made by you! You’ll be glad you had a relaxing, creative night out, and you’ll have a cool piece of art to remember the event. Give Delphi Glass a call today!

JEWELRY

Custom jewelry in Old Town

Tell your beautiful story of falling in love with a truly unique, made-in-house, custom designed engagement ring from our Old Town store. We can also transform your great-grandmother’s chunky brooch into a beautiful wedding band. We pride ourselves on creating fabulous, distinctive designs that reflect the personality of our customer as well as the beauty of the diamonds and gemstones used in each piece. We are able to accomplish all this with our in-house start-to-finish process, from casting to stone setting and two expert jewelers for every design requirement. This process is reflected on the customer’s bill; by cutting out the middleman, we are able to offer custom designs at very affordable prices. Working one-on-one with the owners of Sweet Custom Jewelry, know that we take your precious memories and create something completely new! We use computer aided design programs with our clients. This helps them fully understand and participate in the design process. Make sure to check out our Facebook page for #TransformationThursday, where you can see the before and after pictures of the stunning jewelry we produce for our clients. Experience the pleasure of having your own personal jeweler making the designs you love. Please accept our invitation and consider yourself welcome in our retail store location, in Old Town, Lansing. We can't wait to meet you!

SALON / BARBER

Bliss Salon’s Holiday Gala 2018

Join us for a sparkling, glimmering and exclusive holiday boutique party at Bliss Salon on Nov. 25 from 3 to 6 p.m. Following years of holiday tradition, we bring to you another gala filled with your favorite people, clothes, drinks and hors d’oeuvres! This holiday season, our boutique is throwing its doors open once again for a wonderful holiday celebration. Our salon has many complimentary services during the gala, too. Hot paraffin hand dips, massages and braiding and curling stations. Ashley Medina, who was a finalist in this year’s Top of the Town contest for Best Hairstylist, will be giving hair tattoos, too! We have special holiday gift sets available, as well as deals on our gift cards — so treat yourself and a friend or loved one! At the end of the gala, we will be giving away a Michael Kors watch. You’ll also have the opportunity to win a $1,000 Bliss gift card. Shop local this holiday season with us on Black Friday and Small Business Saturday. Please contact us for further information about the gala. Happy holidays everyone!

ACCOUNTING

How much money should I be saving in my 20s, 30s, 40s?

The short answer here is obviously "as much as you can." That is not always very helpful though when you're trying to balance student loan payments, car payments, health insurance premiums, etc. Early on, focusing on taking advantage of any employer matching contributions to a 401(k) plan is a great way to multiply your savings quickly. Many employers will offer matching contributions of three percent of your income or even more. From there, actively reducing any high-interest debt and managing your expenses and your financial lifestyle are going to be just as critical as accumulating assets. Saving 10 percent of your income is a great target, but don't panic if you're not able to make that work right away. Plan on making small increases every six months or so. Moving from a five percent contribution to 6 percent in your retirement plan won't feel so bad if you've also managed to reduce some of your other debts and expenses. Most importantly. Do it now; even if you're only saving one percent of your income, you are developing good habits and strengthening financial muscles that you will need to use for the rest of your life.