The last hint of summer has left the air and we are left with the cool crisp breeze of autumn in every breath. The squirrels have begun searching for nuts and the bears prepare for hibernation as we start to do the same—including prepping the house for a cozy, peaceful winter full of late night snuggles in front of the fireplace and a cup of cocoa nearby.

For some of us, that fantasy is a reality with a crackling log fireplace and/or a solar powered central heating system that does not cost an arm and a leg. But for most of us, the draftiness of our historic houses and the bone chill that accompanies winter doesn’t go away no matter how high you crank the heat. Sometimes you just need a fire…that doesn’t mean you get to install a full blown stone hearth in the middle of your Midtown apartment.

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That’s where electric fireplaces come in. Don’t scoff—these are not the silly looking fake flamed eyesores of the ‘80s. Brands like Classic Flame have adapted to designs of today and worked to improve their technology so you can have an incredibly efficient functional and beautiful fireplace without having to renovate your entire living room.

We’re not exaggerating—we tested a beautiful Classic Flame Artesian fireplace in our offices last winter and almost every visitor thought they were seeing (and feeling) real leaping flames. Perception is indeed reality.

No firewood is needed to harness the heat of an electric fireplace…Wood burning fireplaces can messy and use firewood that you don’t always have space for. You pay a fortune for each square foot, and it’s not worth it to waste an entire room dedicated to wood. Unlike gas fireplaces, electric fireplaces do not give off any smoke or fumes, which helps to maintain the air quality inside your home, thus keeping everyone healthier.

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With an electric fireplace, zone heating is easily utilized – allowing you to lower the over-all temperature of your home by 10 to 15 degrees, heating only the room you’re in. This concept reduces the use of wasted energy and could save you up to 10% on energy bills. Gas and wood burning fireplaces actually work opposite of zone heating – creating a draft effect when lit that actually pulls heat out of the home.

Classic Flame electric fireplaces use an automatic shut-off timer function, allowing you to set the timer from 30 min up to 9 hours. Feel safe knowing that if you’re pulling an all nighter at the office and you left the fireplace on for Cheddar the Cat, both home and pet are safe and sound until you can finally get home and collapse on the sofa.

The best part? Recenter your feng shui weekly, monthly, however often you want with the pull of a plug and a simple slide to the next wall over. A lot easier than rebuilding a room around a built-in stone fireplace focal point. The fire insert is removable so you can update the mantel and exterior anytime you want…a perfect compromise to the indecisive voices in your head that change style and décor on a regular basis.

Fall is officially here and winter is just around the corner—don’t be caught off guard and shivering. Let the hibernation preparations begin!

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