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Blog › June 2017

Home Staging Worth the Money, Effort? Yes.

Nearly every home seller hopes to get their property sold quickly and at top dollar.

Staging may be just the thing to help in that quest, according to the National Association of REALTORS’® 2017 Profile of Home Staging (

Using things like furniture, color, lighting, and accent pieces, professional stagers transform for-sale homes from ho-hum to oh-ah and work to make a property appeal to the largest number of prospective buyers

And their work has an impact: 39 percent of sellers’ agents said that staging a home greatly decreases the amount of time the home is on the market, according to NAR’s report.

Here are some of the report’s key findings:


Additional findings include:

  • The most commonly staged spaces include the living room (83 percent), kitchen (76 percent), master bedroom (69 percent), and dining room (66 percent).

  • Staging the living room was found to be most important to buyers (55 percent), followed by staging the master bedroom (51%), and the kitchen (41 percent).

  • Seventy-seven percent of buyers’ agents said staging a home made it easier for buyers to visualize a property as a future home.



Alzheimer’s disease is now the sixth leading cause of death in the United States and kills more

people each year than breast cancer and prostate cancer combined. Worldwide, over 46 million

people suffer from Alzheimer’s—a figure that’s expected to nearly double every 20 years into

the future.


Prevention is always preferable to treatment, and with Alzheimer’s disease, it’s currently the

only option.


What are the primary risk factors for developing Alzheimer’s?

• Little/no exercise - #1 preventable factor

• Depression – 15% of Alzheimer’s cases

• Smoking – 11% of Alzheimer’s cases

• Midlife hypertension – 8% of Alzheimer’s cases

• Midlife obesity – 7% of Alzheimer’s cases

• Low education/low mental stimulation – 7% of

Alzheimer’s cases

• Diabetes – 3% of Alzheimer’s cases


These factors, coupled with related research, point towards several ways you may be able to reduce

your risk, including:


Protect your heart – While Alzheimer’s attacks the brain, protecting your heart can shield both essential organs from life-threatening damage. This includes consuming a healthy diet, staying mentally and physically active, and maintaining normal blood pressure and cholesterol levels.


Eat well – A recent UCLA study found that the Mediterranean Diet (rich in fruits, vegetables, olive oil, legumes, whole grains and fish) is considered one of the best options for providing antioxidant-rich foods and reducing cognitive decline. Some studies indicate resveratrol, which occurs naturally in red grapes, red wine and dark chocolate can lower risk and slow the progress of Alzheimer’s. Of course, it’s also important to note that recommendations

regarding food and nutritional supplements are constantly evolving.


Limit anticholinergic drugs – The long-term use of many popular over-the-counter medications like Benadryl, Dramamine, Dimetapp, Advil PM, Paxil, Unison and other common sleep and allergy medications have been linked to cognitive impairment and dementia.


Manage stress – Stress has been proven to induce negative biochemical effects on the human body. Proven techniques for reducing stress include yoga, deep breathing, rhythmic exercise, Tai Chi, and daily meditation. Among meditation techniques, Kirtan Kriya (which takes only 12 minutes) has been shown to improve memory in those with documented memory decline issues.




Perhaps your desire to travel is great, but your budget to tackle your bucket list is minimal.

That’s ok. If you are willing to be a little less conventional in your approach to travel, you

can still save money while getting a more authentic experience.


Some of the best options for seniors include:


Hostels – No, they aren’t just for backpacking 20-somethings who have left home to “find”

themselves. Many overseas hostels are immaculate, loaded with amenities, and offer private rooms

with bathrooms. They are a “best kept secret” in travel circles. Learn more at



House sitting gigs – Homeowners often look for older, more mature individuals to do house

sitting—perhaps including care for the family pet(s)—and this can be one way for seniors to

travel on the cheap. Resources to learn more include,,



Couchsurfing – Yes, seriously. This increasingly popular mode of travel involves joining a social

network of fellow travelers ( who believe in fostering friendly cultural exchanges

through local meet-ups and/or hosting travellers (who stay on their couch, an air mattress or in a

spare bedroom). Visit the site to learn more and join in!


House swapping – For people who own their own home (or even live in an apartment, if the lease

doesn’t prohibit it) and are willing to “swap” with someone in order to travel without incurring hotel

and lodging fees, this may be a great option. Check out opportunities at and

HomeBaseHolidays (


Adventures – Enjoy a full immersion experience in another culture through a variety of travel styles

(and costs) by booking through one of these sites geared to adventurous explorers:,,, and


Volunteer – One way to travel for free (or at very low cost) is to volunteer in your area(s) of expertise.

Visit for thousands of opportunities in exotic locations. (In particular, explore options

with “housing available.”) Imagine helping out in a wildlife sanctuary in Brazil, at an orphanage in

Tanzania, for a community development program in Uganda, or conservation programs in Costa Rica. All these and many more are listed on the site.


So, regardless of your budget, there is a way to go forth and see the world.