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These 9 Fab Outdoor Grills Will Ensure Your BBQ Bash Stays Lit

 | May 29, 2017

Barbecue lovers, rejoice! Summer is here, and it’s grilling season. It’s time to dust off your grill after months of neglect and enjoy the taste of meat cooked over an open flame. And not a moment too soon.

There’s nothing more American than grilling a fat steak (cooked medium, and for God’s sake, hold the ketchup!) over a fire on a warm summer weekend. While you clean off your grill and marinate your meats, we invite you to take a gander at these nine mouthwatering outdoor barbecue heavens…

6620 Wells Burnett Rd, Fort Worth, TX

Price: $2,200,000
Grill bits: Texans are big on barbecue, and the grill lives large in this backyard.

This grilled-meat mecca is outfitted with stainless steel appliances set against a stunning stone floor. Like any good Texas barbecue, the barbecue area is outfitted with a smoker and multiple grills—as well as griddles to fit your Texas toast, and a cooler for an ice-cold Lone Star.

And if you’re a true pit master, you can roast your food directly over two fire pits.

grillfortworth
grillfortworth

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4 Country Club Dr, Charleston, SC

Price: $7,750,000
Grill bits: Two is always better than one! If you want to double up on ribs, sausage, and brisket, there’s room enough for all. We spy two grills wedged behind this luxurious brick minibar in the heart of the Carolinas. Just make sure to bring the appropriate Carolina barbecue sauce.

grill1
grill1

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2634 Castlewood Ln, Simi Valley, CA

Price: $1,294,900
Grill bits: You need look no farther than this Southern California home to see that grilling isn’t simply a Southern thing. This home features a patio with a grill, rotisserie, a high-performance fridge, sink, and tiered decking. And while it’s not standard BBQ fare, we’re in love with the custom built-in paella gas burner. All this set up in front of a gorgeous view of the Simi Valley hills? We’re ready to eat!

grillsimivalley
grillsimivalley

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635 Lakeview Dr, Zephyr Cove, NV

Price: $2,450,000
Grill bits: Speaking of hills, this outdoor grilling area provides a great view of Nevada’s often snowcapped hills and majestic trees. Even without snow, the outdoor patio creates the perfect backdrop for some grilling in nature. It’s another dynamic duo ready for your grilling getaway!

grillzephyr
grillzephyr

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8707 E Cholla St, Scottsdale, AZ

Price: $2,249,000
Grill bits: This outdoor cooking arena features a gas grill, smoker, wok burner, storage, ice bucket, refrigerator, and Kegerator—which will totally come in handy for staving off the arid Arizona summers.

grillscottsdale
grillscottsdale

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31105 Countryside Rd, Steamboat Springs, CO

Price: $2,750,000
Grill bits: Stainless steel is the finish of choice for these outdoor barbecues, and this Colorado setup offers an ultra-sleek, wraparound version. Nestled in the northeast corner of the state, this outdoor kitchen comes complete with a grill, sink, stone countertops, and backsplash. Simply turn around and enjoy a view of the majestic Rocky Mountains while munching on a burger.

grillsteamboatsprings
grillsteamboatsprings

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14800 Flat Top Ranch Rd, Austin, TX

Price: $7,200,000
Grill bits: Everything’s bigger in Texas, and so is this outdoor grill, which is part of a massive, 13,371-square-foot home in the state capital. This grill and wet bar combo comes outfitted with luxurious countertops and brick columns. In a state known for its over-the-top barbecue challenges, this place is a true prize winner.
grillaustin

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200 Ccc Camp Rd, Norris, TN

Price: $939,000
Grill bits: The barbecue mecca of Memphis is on the opposite side of the state, but this East Tennessee property is home to one mean barbecue setup. The backyard is graced with a wood-fired brick barbecue pit, and an attached rotisserie for some serious flame-roasted goodness.

grillnorris
grillnorris

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3973 Indian Trl, Destin, FL

Price: $3,750,000
Grill bits: Smoked fish, anyone? This home in the Florida Panhandle features an outdoor summer kitchen with a brick inlay finish. The outdoor setup comes complete with numerous built-in smokers and a wet bar. After you’re done smokin’ and grillin’, you can sit out on the gazebo and admire the views of the Gulf of Mexico.

grill2
grill2
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What to Consider Before Buying a Beach Home

APR 24, 2017

 

Sea, surf and sand. Consider more than just those elements before buying a beach home.

Dreaming of a home on the beach? The rhythmic sound of crashing waves, a sweet, salty breeze, and bright sunny days make living by the shore an appealing spot to call home. In fact, according to the National Association of Realtors (NAR), 16% of all homes bought nationwide last year were vacation homes. Of those, 40% bought in beach communities.

But, before you consider making your home along the coast, there are a few things to keep in mind. From location to amenities and of course, budget, there’s a lot to think about when buying a vacation home at the beach. Jessica Edwards with Coldwell Banker Sea Coast Advantage in Wilmington, NC shares her tips for what to consider before buying a beach home in this segment which first appeared on NBC Open House.

If you’re ready to pack up and head to the beach, visit coldwellbanker.com to find your escape.

 

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You’re Cleaning Your House Wrong! Here’s Why

It’s that special time again. Time to throw open the windows, bust out a mountain of cleaning supplies, blast some Beyoncé, get into a zone, and start working on making your home spick-and-span.

But hold on, hasty home cleaner: Before you get started, we need to tell you how to clean. Yes, we really do. You probably think you know all there is to know—after all, you’ve been doing this all your adult life, right? But it turns out that creating a gorgeous, dust- and grime-free space is a lot trickier than it looks, especially if you’re not hip to professional cleaners’ sneakiest tactics.

So we did the dirty work for you. Here, we’ve rounded up eight ways you’ve been tackling spring-cleaning all wrong, according to the pros—and how to do it right.

1. Dry mopping

What’s the best way to get all the dirt and crumbs out of the way before you wash down the kitchen or bathroom floor? Dry mopping (aka “dust mopping”) might seem to make sense, but you’re better off busting out the Hoover. Trust the pros on this one.

Vacuuming removes two times more debris, says cleaning expert Donna Smallin Kuper. And you want as much debris as possible out of the way—otherwise it will just get spread all over your kitchen when you wet mop. And that will make getting rid of it the next time even harder.

2. Not emptying the vacuum receptacle

Before you dig out the vacuum for your spring-cleaning escapades, get rid of the evidence from the last time you cleaned. All of it. If your dust buster’s canister or bag is more than half-full, empty it before you start sucking.

A too-full vacuum makes a much less efficient cleaner, meaning you might have to go over your living room two or three times just to remove your dog’s latest layer of hair. Emptying the bag at the start (or if it gets too full midcleaning) means much less work for you.

3. Going rogue

Cleaning might not seem like a science, but it’s certainly simpler if you treat it like one. If your lemon floor cleaner says you need only 1 tablespoon per gallon, follow that instruction. You’d be amazed (or perhaps not) how many people think more is always better.

“If more worked better, they would recommend more,” Smallin Kuper says. After all, it’s in their interest to sell more product. So why would they tell you to save when they could tell you to splurge? Because their stuff is made to work a certain way.

Pay attention when you read (not skim) the manufacturer’s instructions, and follow them closely to save yourself time, sanity, and money.

4. Using paper towels and rags

Ditch the paper towels—and don’t use rags in their place.

Microfiber cloths are far more effective at removing dirt and grime than cotton cloths, and you can pick up these miracle workers in every shape and form—including gloves that fit over your hand for easy general-purpose dusting to varieties specifically designed for cleaning electronics or wood floors.

As a bonus, microfiber clothes catch dirt and dust (and even bacteria!) between their superthin threads, letting you clean most surfaces without the need for chemical cleaners. Of course, heavy-duty stains may require some additional work, but as a general rule you’ll be cutting costs in your cleaning cabinet.

5. Not wiping down your light bulbs

Cleaning your old bulbs isn’t just an aesthetic- or allergen-related requirement. It actually helps you keep your home cheery and bright—and your electricity bill under control.

Dirty light bulbs emit 20% less light than clean bulbs, Smallin Kuper says. And that’s not just wasted light—it’s wasted energy.

Before cleaning, make sure the lights are turned off (no shocking surprises here). Use a dry microfiber cloth to clean off your bulbs—water or cleaning sprays can affect the electronics—and enjoy the sudden rush of brighter light when you flip the switch.

6. Storing things in cardboard boxes

Boxing up your seasonal odds and ends? While it might be tempting to use the pile of leftover moving boxes accumulating in your garage, you need to a trip to the store.

One cleaning mistake Smallin Kuper frequently sees is “storing things in cardboard boxes in the basement, attic, or garage instead of waterproof, insect-proof plastic bins.” Mold, termites, or just dampness after a rainy spring can damage your precious belongings. Pick up some heavy-duty plastic boxes instead.

7. Not decluttering first

We see you eyeing that dust rag. Wait! If there’s still a layer of clutter around your home, don’t even think about cleaning.

If you don’t pick up things first, you’ll be making multiple passes through a room, putting toys on the couch to clean the floor, pushing them in the corner to clean the couch, then realizing the dirty toys left another layer of dust, which requires another quick cycle.

Make sure there’s nothing out that shouldn’t be visible. Only then do you have our permission to start cleaning.

8. Spraying the glass

Cleaning glass-framed artwork or mirrors? Here’s a less-than-obvious tip: Make sure you’re spraying your cleaner onto the cloth, not the glass itself.

“The cleaner can drip or spread into the frame and damage the artwork,” Smallin Kuper says.

We’re sure you’re quick with your hands, but it’s better to be safe than sorry—especially when it comes to high-value artwork.

You’re forgiven if nothing makes you like cleaning. But with some help from the pros to smooth out the onerous process, hopefully you can start having a little bit of fun while you’re ditching the dust.

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