Little beats a breathtaking outdoor view. In fact, you may have bought your house because of where it’s located. Large, bay windows and wide sliding doors are just two ways that you could enjoy observing nature without stepping outside.

Fantastic outdoor living options

An outdoor patio offers an excellent opportunity to take in nature. If you’re an interior design traditionalist, think outside the box on this one. Decorate your patio with a two or three-seater sofa, coffee table and end tables, similar to how you would a small indoor living room. Live in an area that enjoys cold temperatures or snow? Encase your patio in plexiglass.

Build large columns at the sides of your front walkway. Another option is to lay light brown or reddish brown cobblestone up your front walkway. Use the space for entertaining or for enjoying a glass of freshly squeezed orange juice as you survey your surroundings during the early morning.

Gardens filled with a wide assortment of tall flowers and plants break down the separation between your property and the larger outdoors. Gardens are also good because they inspire you to get outside, put your hands in the earth and help cultivate increase. Grow flowers and plants along the sides and back edge of your yard. It will serve as a gorgeous natural fence. Flowers growing in three to four large clusters in your back yard are a welcomed sight as well. Let your creativity flow. For example, if you love birds, consider placing a marble birdbath in the center of your back yard near a tree.

Don’t stop with a garden. Opt for a kitchen or a den that is bordered in rows of windows. Install windows from the ceiling to the floor. Have them wrap around an entire side of your kitchen, making it easy for you to see across the back of your property for acres. Get maximum outdoor exposure by placing your kitchen island, sink and stove on the floor so that they face the windows.

More ways to bring gorgeous outdoor views into your home include opting for a home that has a bathroom window. You can get added privacy by placing the window up high enough so that no one can see inside the bathroom from outside your home.

Go for houses that have tennis courts and a swimming pool. Give yourself reasons to get outdoors. You don’t need a large budget to do this. For example, instead of buying expensive porch or patio furniture, get two colorful chairs from a local housing goods store. The aim is to soak in as many natural views and outdoor experiences as you can.

Of course,the best way to enjoy beautiful, natural views at home is to buy a house that’s located near a river, lake, gurgling stream, woods, desert plain, mountains or canyon. These settings offer amazing year round natural views. Houses in these types of breathtaking settings tend to also be pricey, for the views alone. But,all is not lost. You can cut down on these housing costs by bringing Mother Nature to you.

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Buying a new refrigerator that runs cost efficiently can be a wise investment. Maybe your old one still keeps the food cold, but does it take a lot of energy to run? The newer models usually use about half the electricity of the older models sold in the 1980s. But what to buy? It’s confusing, to say the least. It’s a good idea to shop around and read the Energy Guide label on each new model. If the number looks small compared to another model, that means that the smaller numbered one uses less energy.

Don’t get carried away with all the bells and whistles and size, however. Buy only the size you will need to avoid wasting energy. Also, think about where you typically prefer the freezer to be located: top, side, bottom. Freezers on top have been found to run more efficiently. Side ones are less efficient.

Check the seals; they must be airtight. Close the door over a piece of paper to see if you can pull it out easily. If so, the seal may not be tight enough, or the close latch may not be right. Even if the refrigerator is a new model, you need to check this.

It’s also a good idea to purchase a self-defrosting model. Most newer models come with this feature, but check, in any case. Ice makers are a nice feature, but if you don’t mind filling those ice cube trays, you can save a little money. Water supply on the door is another convenient feature, but again, this can raise the cost of the appliance.

A little bit of shopping can save you money in the long run. Scratch and dent models can be had for a fraction of the cost of a pristine refrigerator, so check that section first. A small dent or scratch may not be bothersome to you, especially if the appliance will be recessed, anyway.
Don’t wait until your old model conks out. It can be nerve-wracking to have to run out to an appliance store at the last minute to save your food in your now-warm old refrigerator. You run the risk of making an unwise investment by buying in a hurry.

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