Consumer Real Estate News

    • A Winning Recipe to Feed Game Day Fans

      28 October 2021

      (Family Features) Settling in for an afternoon of gridiron action calls for football food from dips and appetizers to full-blown feasts. Whether you’re a diehard fan, casual observer or just there for the game time grub, a full day of “homegating” requires flavorful eats to refuel the crowd.

      One of the easiest ways to take your menu from benchwarmer to superstar status is to add foods from one of the country’s top authentic Mexican food brands, Cacique, to your playbook. For example, flavor-packed, heaping Cheesy Chorizo Nachos can score a touchdown at your gathering, even among the pickiest of fans. When the game is on the line, call on this dish to keep your team satisfied from kickoff to the final whistle.

      Made with crumbly, creamy, pleasantly milky queso fresco; authentic real cheese queso dip that’s ready in minutes; robust, spicy pork chorizo; fresh-tasting Crema Mexicana; and small-batch homestyle salsa, this shareable dish can feed a houseful of hungry fans. Ready in less than an hour, it’s a perfect solution for pregame baking so it’s ready just before the coin toss.

      To find more game day recipes, visit

      Cheesy Chorizo Nachos

      1 package Cacique Pork Chorizo
      1 package Cacique Queso Blanco Queso Dip
      1 can (15 ounces) refried beans
      2 tablespoons water, plus additional, if necessary
      1 bag (12 ounces) tortilla chips
      1 package Cacique Ranchero Queso Fresco
      1/2 cup Cacique Crema Mexicana
      1 large jalapeno, sliced thin
      2 radishes, sliced thin
      fresh cilantro leaves, for garnish
      guacamole, for serving
      Cacique Mild Homestyle Salsa, for serving

      In a large nonstick skillet or well-seasoned cast-iron pan over medium-low heat, cook pork chorizo, using a spoon to break it up. Stir regularly until completely warmed through and deep brown, scraping crispy bits from the bottom of the pan.

      Microwave queso dip 2-3 minutes until heated through.

      In a medium bowl, thinly refried beans with water. Beans should be thick but nearly pourable; add additional water 1 tablespoon at a time, if necessary.

      Heat oven to 350 F.

      To assemble nachos, add half the tortilla chips to a 13-by-9-inch rectangular baking dish. Use a spoon to drizzle half the queso dip and half the refried beans evenly over chips, distributing as evenly as possible. Sprinkle half the crumbled queso fresco. Repeat with remaining chips, queso dip, beans and crumbled queso fresco. Bake 5-8 minutes until crumbled queso fresco softens and queso dip is creamy.

      Remove from the oven then drizzle with crema Mexicana and scatter pork chorizo over top. Garnish with sliced jalapenos, radishes and fresh cilantro. Serve with guacamole and salsa.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Benefits of Installing Motion-Activated Outdoor Lights

      28 October 2021

      Your yard can be much more dangerous at night than it is during daylight hours. Objects you can’t see, ice on the ground, animals and trespassers are sources of concern for all homeowners. Installing motion-activated outdoor lights is a simple way to protect yourself and others from these hazards.

      How Do Motion-Activated Lights Work?
      Motion detectors detect infrared waves, or heat waves, from moving objects, such as people, animals and vehicles. When a warm object passes its field of view, a motion detector causes a light to turn on. It stays on for an amount of time set by the homeowner, then turns off if the detector no longer senses motion. The field of view and distance range vary depending on the model of motion detector and the settings the homeowner chooses.

      Reasons to Install Outdoor Lights
      Motion-activated outdoor lights can help you avoid accidents and injuries at night. For example, if you need to walk up steps to enter your home or walk across your driveway after a snowstorm, a light can help you avoid falling. Outdoor lights can be particularly helpful if guests who are unfamiliar with your property come to visit at night.

      Motion-activated lights can let you know if someone or something is in your yard. If you hear a noise, a light will come on when it senses motion so you can look out the window and see if the sound was caused by your pet, a wild animal or a burglar and take the appropriate action while staying safe inside your home.

      How to Prevent False Alarms
      Homeowners are sometimes reluctant to install motion-activated lights because they are concerned that a light will turn on every time leaves blow or a car passes by. Having lights come on several times an hour and stay on for several minutes each time can be annoying to both homeowners and their neighbors, particularly if a light shines outside a bedroom window while someone is trying to sleep.

      That problem is easy to avoid. You can adjust the distance and range so the sensors only detect and respond to motion in a limited area, which will keep the light from turning on when it shouldn’t.

      Where to Install Lights
      Depending on the size and layout of your home, you may need to install several motion-activated lights. Position them so they’ll cover your driveway, front walkway, backyard, any gates on your property, and a porch, patio or deck. If you have a shed where you store valuables, such as lawn and garden equipment, make sure you have a light in that area.

      Protect Your Family and Property
      Motion-activated lights are a simple means of preventing accidents and frightening away animals or intruders. Outdoor lights are relatively inexpensive and easy to install and can be adjusted to cover a required area and to prevent them from coming on when they shouldn’t. If you are concerned about safety and security, look into installing motion-activated outdoor lights.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Consider Updating Your Garage to Boost Curb Appeal

      28 October 2021

      Want to make your home stand out from the others in your neighborhood? Updating your garage can be a simple way to accomplish this while boosting curb appeal at the same time. Here's how to get started:

      Try a New Color
      One option to make your home's garage door draw attention is to use a unique color. You have to be careful here, because a color that’s too odd could actually be a drawback. Consider the overall look of your home and choose a color that’ll complement your home's architecture while still being different from the other homes in the neighborhood.

      Choose a Unique Material
      Are all the doors in your neighborhood metal or vinyl? Consider upgrading to a real wood door. Wood doors give a home character and a classic look, and they can be an asset to your home's curb appeal. If you don't want to spend more for a real wood door, consider a metal or vinyl door that is finished to look like wood.

      Add a Unique Design
      Most garage doors look very similar. Four rows of paneling, often decorated with squares and maybe a row of windows at the top, is fairly standard. Mix this up a bit, and your home will stand out. Use a flush style or long panel door. If you have the budget and the time, consider redoing the door and the frame to add some curves. Arched garage doors instantly grab attention and attract interest in the home.

      If your home doesn't give you room for arches, get creative with the four-panel look. Use molding or glass to add a unique design to this standard shape. Vertical paneling and arched windows can also make the door stand out, without changing its overall shape. Paint the panels to match your siding and the trim to match the house's trim for a distinctive, yet classic look.

      Upgrade the Finishing Touches
      From the handle to the glass in the windows, the finishing touches on your garage door can be the final piece of the puzzle as you try to make it stand out. Wrought-iron decorative touches on the panels can add the distinction you need. Even changing the lighting near your garage door can make a difference. Upgrade these small touches and give your garage door some extra pizzazz.

      Updating your garage door can be a valuable way to make your home look distinctive and increase its curb appeal. If you’re thinking about selling your home in the near future, consider making this change now to improve your selling experience.

      Source: Mid-Atlantic Door Group

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Healthy Holiday Baking Swaps

      27 October 2021

      (Family Features) Many holiday hosts tend to pull out their most treasured family recipes when entertaining loved ones. After all, taste is the most important aspect of most holiday spreads, particularly when it comes to favorite baked goods and desserts.

      Put a better-for-you twist on your baked classics this holiday season by swapping out less healthy cooking fats like butter, canola oil and vegetable oil with an option like Pompeian Light Taste Olive Oil. Ideal for baking desserts like this Lemon Cake or Sugar Cookies with Orange Glaze, as well as frying, this light tasting olive oil provides a healthier take on your holiday recipes without impacting the taste you and your guests love. This olive oil is high-quality and authentic, backed by a brand that has been perfecting the craft of olive oil since 1906.

      Find more better-for-you holiday recipe inspiration at

      Lemon Cake
      Prep time: 10 minutes
      Cook time: 1 hour, 15 minutes
      Servings: 30

      1 1/3 cups Pompeian Light Taste Olive Oil, plus additional for oiling pan
      2 cups all-purpose flour
      1 cup sugar
      3/4 cup brown sugar
      1 1/2 teaspoons kosher salt
      1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      1/2 teaspoon baking powder
      1 1/4 cups whole milk
      3 large eggs
      1 1/2 tablespoons grated lemon zest, plus additional for garnish (optional)
      1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
      1/4 cup limoncello
      powdered sugar, for garnish (optional)
      dried sweetened lemon rings, for garnish (optional)

      Heat oven to 350 F. Oil 8-by-12-by-2-inch pan with olive oil and line bottom with parchment paper.

      In a bowl, whisk flour, sugars, salt, baking soda and powder. In another bowl, whisk 1 1/3 cups olive oil, milk, eggs, lemon zest, juice and limoncello. Add dry ingredients; whisk until just combined.

      Pour batter into the prepared pan and bake for 60-75 minutes until the top is golden and the cake tester comes out clean. Transfer cake to rack and let cool for 30 minutes.

      Run knife around edge of pan, invert cake onto rack and let cool completely, 2 hours.

      Sprinkle it with powdered sugar, lemon zest and lemon rings right before serving, if desired.

      Sugar Cookies with Orange Glaze
      Prep time: 15 minutes
      Cook time: 10 minutes
      Servings: 36

      2 cups all-purpose flour
      1 cup cake sugar
      1 teaspoon baking powder
      1/2 teaspoon baking soda
      1/2 teaspoon salt
      1/2 cup Pompeian Light Taste Olive Oil
      2 teaspoons vanilla extract
      1/2 teaspoon almond extract
      2-3 tablespoons unsweetened milk of choice

      1 cup powdered sugar, plus additional if needed, for thickening
      2-3 tablespoons fresh orange juice
      1/8 teaspoon salt
      orange slices or blood orange slices, for topping
      sugar, for topping

      To make cookies: Preheat the oven to 350 F. Lightly grease the baking sheet.

      In a large bowl, stir flour, sugar, baking powder, baking soda and salt to combine.

      Add olive oil, vanilla extract and almond extract. Stir until crumbly dough forms.

      Add 2 tablespoons milk; stir until soft dough ball forms, adding more milk if needed.

      Place the dough ball on a lightly floured surface. Roll out dough until 1/4-inch thick. Using a jar lid or other circular object, cut out cookies; place on a baking sheet. Repeat until all dough is used.

      Bake for 8-10 minutes; do not overbake. Set aside to cool.

      To make glaze: In a small bowl, stir powdered sugar, 2 tablespoons orange juice and salt until thick glaze forms. Add more juice, if needed, to thin out glaze or add more powdered sugar to thicken.

      When cookies are cooled, glaze them. Top with orange slices or blood orange slices and a pinch of sugar.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.

    • Parties to Plan: Themes You Can Choose From

      27 October 2021

      One of the joys of owning your own home is getting to host parties with your friends and family. But you don't have to limit the fun to simply birthday parties. There are plenty of occasions to bring people together and enjoy a special day. 

      Kentucky Derby: This takes place the first Saturday of every May and is a wonderful event to create a party around. Considered "the fastest two minutes in sports," the day will be much more than just watching an exciting race. Have people dress up the way they would at Churchill Downs, which means plenty of bow ties, fancy dresses and elegant hats. Serve up the Mint Juleps and offer traditional Southern fare for food. Have every guest choose a horse in the race and offer prizes for those whose horses finish in the top three. Or better yet, have everyone throw in $10 (or some other figure) to a pot and let one person walk away a big winner, just like they do in Kentucky.

      The Oscars: This is a great night to gather up your friends, dress in fancy clothes, and cheer on your favorite movies from the past year. You can play on the movie theme by having people dress as their favorite movie characters, decorating with movie memorabilia and posters. For a little more fun, have a red carpet at the entryway for people walking in, and buy a large Hollywood backdrop for taking pictures. Hold a contest to see who can pick the most winners and have a fun prize for the champion—movie-themed of course.

      Super Bowl: You don't have to be a football fan to enjoy a Super Bowl party. Considering this is often the most-watched television event of the year, it only makes sense to watch with your friends. Food doesn't need to be anything glamorous—barbeque, nachos and other typical bar-type food are big hits, and beer is usually the drink of choice. Run a contest where everyone puts their name in a box so they have scores to root for to win money. This way it doesn't matter if their team is in the game or not, they have something to root for regardless.

      Murder Mystery: About a decade ago, Murder Mystery Dinner Theater was all the rage, and now those fun nights are finding their way into homes with themed murder mystery parties. You can buy a board game or find rules for a game online, but they generally involve inviting a group of guests and giving each instructions on how their character should act at the party. Since it's themed, people will have to wear a costume to go along with their character and then during the party they will get more details on what their character should be doing, all the time trying to decipher who the murderer is. It's a great game to see a new side of your friends come out.

      Published with permission from RISMedia.