20 May, 2024
3 mins read

Love Your Home More With These Home Improvement Tips

Home improvement loans are the best great way to get all the money you need now to fix up your house and increase your equity. This type of loan can be very beneficial, as you do not have to always borrow large sums of money to get the job done.
If you don’t have enough space for a small office, you can use a small portion of your living room for that purpose. Buy a small privacy screen and place a desk behind it with a matching chair. You can purchase small shelves to install on your wall to store your pens, pencils, staplers and other important items.
Always use gloves, glasses, and earphones when completing a home improvement project. Even small projects can give off dust and debris that might harm your eyes, create loud noises that are dangerous to your ear drums, and require chemicals that are not safe for your skin. Taking a few safety steps may seem silly for a small project, but you will thank yourself when no harm comes your way.
An easy and cost effective way to spruce up your home is by painting the interior. To estimate the amount of paint you need, you have to calculate the square footage of the walls. Simply multiply the length of the wall by its height. One gallon of paint will cover approximately 350 square feet. Bear in mind that you may need two coats of paint, depending on what color you are painting over.
While most people know that taking a shower instead of soaking in a tub helps to conserve water, not everyone knows that you can actually save more money on your water usage by replacing your original shower head with a specially designed low-flow shower head. This is a quick and easy improvement that can be done in one day and with only a minor cost.
Before you think about downsizing your home, think long and hard about it. Although downsizing may be wise in certain situations, it also means you will have to get rid of many of your belongings and pieces of furniture. Also, downsizing means there is less room for people who may visit you.
You’d be surprised at how much difference an updated address and nameplate can make on the front porch of your house. Sleek and shining house numbers make your home easier to locate, while a custom-engraved nameplate adds class and distinction. Finally, spend a little bit of cash on an ornamental door knocker, even if you have a doorbell.
Candle wax can be hard to remove from tablecloths and other surfaces. A simple fix can be taking a piece of wax paper, laying it over the wax stain and ironing over it with the iron on the highest setting. The iron will melt the wax, causing it to stick to your wax paper.
As you can see it is very helpful to get a home improvement loan to do any remodeling or freshen up …

3 mins read

Floating Engineered Bamboo Flooring

The choices in flooring can often be overwhelming. One type of flooring that is not too common in homes yet, but that offers a beautiful and visually stunning foundation for your rooms, is floating engineered bamboo flooring. This flooring choice is one that is steadily gaining in popularity, due to its beauty, durability, and the fact that bamboo is environmentally friendly — a sustainable flooring product. If you have been trying to decide what kind of wood to choose for your floors, this type of flooring may be the choice that will make your room and home feel updated and look beautiful.
Bamboo flooring is known for the knuckle pattern that runs through it due to the stalk joints and the smooth and linear graining. The choice of vertical or horizontal graining can help you determine which one will work best in your home or room to make it look as beautiful as possible. The color choice is generally either natural or amber (or caramalized), with the color of the amber bamboo being created by a process known as “carbonizing”, which is when the stalks are steamed before being made into flooring. Floating engineered flooring made from bamboo features a top layer of real bamboo in the color and style that you want and need.
Floating engineered bamboo flooring can be used in many different rooms of your home. Even if the room you are flooring is prone to moisture – including basements, kitchens, and bathrooms – this is flooring a good choice. Solid wood varieties can’t withstand moisture without buckling or rippling, but this option can do well in moist rooms. This type of flooring is made of layers of bamboo that can expand and contract with temperature and moisture changes. The material and construction method combine to make a big difference in its durability. If you have been looking for a beautiful flooring choice for your basement or other moisture-prone room, then this is the right choice for you.
Easy installation is another benefit of floating engineered bamboo flooring. A moisture barrier is first laid down over a clean and dry floor. An existing floor can act as the substrate for the flooring, as long as that floor is affixed securely to the subfloor. The floating flooring is then clicked together on top of the barrier, which is why it is called a floating floor. Most do-it-yourselfers can install this type of floor easily.
Bamboo flooring is also known for being environmentally friendly. It’s a resource that replenishes itself quickly after it is cut, and does so quickly. It continues growing, unlike trees, making it a sustainable product. And because bamboo, a grass, grows so well, it doesn’t need fertilizers or pesticides, again contributing to its sustainable nature.
If you have been looking for an alternative to normal type woods like oak, pine, and beech in your flooring choices, you will want to think about floating engineered bamboo flooring. It can offer you beauty, ease of installation, durability, …

3 mins read

Hardwood – 9 Dangers of Acquiring Hardwood From a Big Box Chain Store

If you are looking for hardwood, then you know this is a very important investment you are going to be making. Read this report on the dangers of acquiring hardwood from a big box chain store before you start your search for the perfect store!
A “Big Box” store refers to the mega stores such as Home Depot and Lowe’s. They are popular with flooring customers because they have convenient hours considering they are open seven days a week and evenings, they have competitive pricing due to their high sales volume, and they have a good selection of low- to mid-quality hard surface products and carpeting in stock since higher quality products can be special ordered.
Flooring is a long-term investment that can increase the value of your home if it is purchased and installed correctly. If not, however, it can lower the value of your home. Imagine a home with cracked tile, warped wood floors, or carpet lifting at the is not admirable. Here are nine downfalls you need to be mindful of before buying floor covering from a Big Box store:
Pitfall #1
The Do-it-Yourself (DIY) community is who the Big Box stores are in business to help. If you have the skill, time, special tools, training, design background, and patience to do it yourself, a Big Box store is a good place to buy flooring products. Shopping for floor covering at a Big Box store will cause frustration if you do not fit the handyman category, or if you don’t have enough time or patience to do it yourself.
Pitfall #2
With Big Box stores, you waste too much valuable time. Their carpeting or hardwood sections may be disorganized, messy, cramped, and not well merchandised, making it hard for you to find what you need. It also means you will be obliged to make repeat visits for the smallest things.
Pitfall #3
Big Box stores mean no in-house designers. There is no professional help selecting the right products and combinations for your needs and flooring area. This makes your job much harder and takes you much longer to complete your project from the get-go.
Pitfall #4
Big Box store employees receive little or no instruction. These stores are not dedicated flooring experts and the employees often can not answer your simplest questions.
Pitfall #5
These stores will up-sell you. It’s natural for these stores to promote low cost, loss leader floor covering to get you in the door. However, when you arrive at the store, the advertised flooring products are either sold out, or there aren’t enough for your project. That’s when the Big Box stores will up-sell you on the more expensive products, even if they aren’t suitable for you.
Pitfall #6
These stores will also attempt to pile up undesirable or discontinued products on you. Contracts put Big Box chain stores under heavy sales pressure to sell inventory from certain manufacturers. This is not good news because they will put the pressure on you to …

2 mins read

The Truth About Home Protection Plans

In some cases, a seller may offer you a home protection plan in lieu of an inspection. Before you get excited about a home warranty plan, make sure you understand what you’re getting, and what you’re not getting.
Home Protection Plans Provide Limited Coverage
The coverage you get with a home protection plan is limited. Home protection plans typically restrict you to a specific provider or one of a few providers, who have agreements with the home warranty company. Generally, you make a co-pay when someone comes out to your home to inspect a problem, and you may also have to pay a portion of the repair cost, depending on the terms of the plan.
Unfortunately, home protection services provide limited coverage. They may include many exclusions that prevent the plan from covering common home issues. For example, a protection plan may not cover damage to the structure of the home, or may only cover damage if it occurs in a specific way or during a limited time period. Realistically, these plans have as many exclusions as possible to avoid paying out. These businesses only make money if they pay out less than they take in, so they generally overcharge for these plans and do what they can to avoid making payouts.
Even if a specific repair is covered, it may only be covered up to a certain dollar amount. That means that you’d have to pay any costs over that dollar amount, or accept a less optimal repair just to qualify for the coverage. Over the long term, this can cost you far more than doing a repair properly in the first place.
Never accept a home service plan in lieu of a property inspection. Some sellers or home builders offer home warranty plans as a token of ‘good faith’ to demonstrate to buyers that there is no problem with the property, and that buyers are protected if a problem should occur. Unfortunately, because home plans cover such a limited range of issues, buyers may not have the protection they think they have if a problem should occur. Buyers should never accept a home protection plan in lieu of a property inspection. Buyers should insist on a property inspection, and if the seller isn’t willing to grant one, buyers should walk away from the property.
Great Deals are everywhere right now and we find them all over the the United States.
Let us help you find your next Great Deal!…

3 mins read

Flooring Is an Equally Important Aspect of Home Decor

The one aspect that most people tend to overlook while giving a makeover to their homes is flooring. Somehow, we have an assumption that it is not a very crucial part of home renovation and there is no need to waste time and thought over it. However, that is a completely wrong notion. When you think of your home, you have to consider it in totality. Each and every aspect of it is vital and you cannot afford to ignore any part. Why do most people spend so much money and energy in decorating their bathrooms then? When a guest comes in, he would not straightaway walk into your bathroom. But, in case he does, he will definitely deduce conclusions about your taste based on it. Therefore, you can understand you have to give equal importance to every nook and corner of your house.
People have really begun to concentrate on flooring and are looking for bankable options like hardwood flooring. This particular type of flooring comes in both unfinished and prefinished has its own features and advantages. For instance,one of the most prominent qualities that differentiate pre-finished flooring from the rest is this type of flooring, you do not require for unfinished flooring, the most advantageous aspect is that the seal is much more is because the finish is not applied board-by-board but on the whole flooring surface at a time. This easily seals the minute gaps existing between the flooring boards thereby protecting the floor against moisture.
Another reason why hardwood flooring enjoys considerable popularity among consumers is that it offers so much variety in terms of stain and surfaces. It does get exciting when you have a lot to choose from so that you can settle for nothing but the best. For instance, some flooring is evenly planned at the mill so that you get a refined and smooth surface. Again, there are hand scraped ones where the plank is hand worked in order to create a seasoned, contoured is mainly done for the purpose of giving a lived-in impression. The same variety can be found in the sphere of stains as well. This flexibility works strongly in favor of this particular form of flooring.
However,if you want to be a bit different, you can go for other options as well. For starters, there is timber flooring type appears homely and that is one strong reason why it appeals to a wide range of consumers. Add to it the rich colors they promise to offer. On one hand, you have species like Karri and Jarrah which are dark-colored while on the other there is Tasmanian and Blackbutt of the light-colored ,again,the Wandoo species boasts of honey present, recycled timber are also being used for flooring purposes thereby making a positive difference to the you want to do your bit for the environment, you can go for them and install them in your house.…

2 mins read

Caring For Your Septic System – Safe Products and Habits

Many people have experienced all too expensive septic problems. Maintenance can be painful for the pocketbook and can also greatly affect the way your family functions in order to keep the septic tank from having future problems. But what about using products that help your septic function, and do not have the harmful effects of other products? Let’s look at some simple products that can prevent back up and problems with your septic system.
While the most commonly suggested maintenance product is Rid-X there are actually items that even powerhouse products are incapable of processing and breaking down. Some products that should never be flushed, washed down a sink or bathtub, or in anyway transmitted to the septic system are: cat litter, used cooking oil, paint and thinners, bleach, cigarette butts, coffee grounds, tampons or panty liners, paper towels or tissues, and pool chemicals or pool water. For some sensitive septic systems even toilet paper can cause costly clogs. What makes these products so dangerous to your system is that many homeowners don’t even realize how harmful they really are.
On top of scheduling regular maintenance, there are products available you can use that can be greatly beneficial. One example of a product swap you can make is a simple change in laundry detergent. Whatever detergent you choose should be a liquid with little or no phosphates. Some potential brand choices are: Amway S-A-8, Arm & Hammer, Boraxo, Cheer, Dash, Equator, Fresh Start, Oxydol and Seventh Generation. These detergents are even biodegradable and have less harmful effects on the environment than other choices.
As for the cleaning products you use in your home, avoid items with ammonia and chlorine, and make sure the products are biodegradable and non-toxic. Never use powder products, liquids are always the choice to make whether it is a laundry detergent or toilet cleaner. Even using liquid dishwasher detergent is suggested by some professionals. Ironically, cheap toilet paper is better for the septic system as the thinner sheets are much more easily broken down in the system. More expensive brands that boast ultra plush toilet papers have additives mixed in and that slow down natural processes.
By buying biodegradable and “green” products you may actually save yourself lots of money by keeping your septic system functioning and clean. As previously mentioned, no product will eliminate the need to have regular maintenance on your septic, but using products that are environmentally friendly can keep your system cleaner and prevent clogging or back ups.…

3 mins read

Improving Your Kitchen Without Renovating

The kitchen is the heart of your home, and a room you should take pride in and keep up to date, not only so you can cook, eat and socialise in a special area but also to increase the price the property should you choose to move one day. The kitchen is the first room potential buyers will look at, and if it’s up-to-date and looks good, buyers won’t have to worry about splashing out on any renovations.
If your kitchen is fairly up-to-date with appliances and furniture but you want to spruce it up, there are plenty of ways you can modernise your kitchen without a full renovation. Take a look below at some of our lighting tips to help give your kitchen a new lease of life.
Change the lighting
The lighting can really change the overall look of a room so why not speak to a lighting specialist to give you guidance on the best type of lighting for your kitchen? You’d be surprised how lighting can give the illusion of more space in your kitchen and create just the right ambiance for different tasks in the kitchen.
The first step is to make sure your kitchen is getting as much natural light as possible – natural light makes a room appear larger and gives it a light and airy feel. Keep your windows uncluttered so you’re letting in as much natural daylight as possible.
You should then think about practical lighting – for example, over the cooker and over food preparation areas so you have enough light to perform all of your usual tasks with ease. You should also consider feature lighting (if you have the budget for it) – feature lighting is aesthetically pleasing rather than practical, although it can create different tones to the kitchen, which can give the illusion of more space. It would be worth speaking to a lighting specialist if you want to implement feature lighting. You could add feature lighting to your cabinets or a focal area of your kitchen to give it more emphasis – for example, add feature lighting to a breakfast bar to make it stand out and show it off. Pedant lighting always gives a grand impression, think hanging lighting over the dining table to make your kitchen look luxurious.
Lighting is a brilliant way of transforming a room without fully renovating it – and it doesn’t have to cost the world. Some lighting fixtures can be pricey but you can also find cheaper, low budget budget, which still looks fantastic – it all depends on the budget you have.
You should consider using low energy light bulbs for your kitchen as you will be conserving energy to help the environment and also saving yourself money on energy bills, which as you probably know have gone through the roof recently.
It’s easy to give your kitchen a bit of sparkle without fully renovating but if you do choose to renovate or remodel, make sure you plan …

2 mins read

Beauty In Utility Travels With Colored Concrete Flooring

What better way than adorning your floor with colored concrete? Considering the fact that the modern lifestyle today seeks exclusivity, the options available with coloring concrete are endless.
Today’s colored concrete flooring is nothing but an elegant, wearable and a reflection of your personal style. You need the right contractor to describe the imagination you want to have with your flooring. However, note that color matching is not an exact science. Each contractor applies different techniques for coloring the countertops and employing different types and amounts of cement and aggregates to achieve great results.
Therefore, coloring the concrete surface throughout the remodeling schedule is the best way to enjoy the atmosphere in your place. A beautifully adorned place, with a dull and lifeless floor is like a bride covering a stained old coat over her spectacular wedding gown. No matter how lovely the space, the bad flooring kills the entire effect-and it is the first thing clients will notice. Similarly a home’s curb appeal soars when its image is complete. Shine on a floor is the pinnacle of clean, a symbol of a company’s attention to detail, and the best foot forward for your clients. You should remember that the floor is the basic foundation of your room and floor and d?�cor should go hand in hand. The function of a floor is twofold: it should be pleasing to the eye as well as practical.
So, you can enjoy that special feeling in with color surfacing. Color surface comes with assured exclusivity, and elegance; and the success of your business is built on the foundation in which it is handled. Just because concrete is underfoot, do not overlook your floor to be a style-maker. Take a look around. You will be surprised at how much plain and dull concrete is actually there.
It can hide future stains
When pouring new color on concrete, you can add colorant during the mixing process, which will provide a uniform tinting. There are also plenty of options for using color concrete mostly on driveway, parking lots, sideways, and other parking areas. With color concrete you can watch your concrete becoming stained with oil and grease, tire marks, and dirt.
It has chameleon like qualities
Colored concrete flooring has some rewarding qualities that will give you decades of service when properly installed and maintained.
Colored concrete remains a staple in the world of decorative concrete. While the technology has changed gravely in the past few years, its uses and popularity continue to grow. Bringing the beauty of colored concrete flooring into your place is a great way to instantly change the look of a business and home.…

3 mins read

Detoxing Your Space’s Space

The following is an excerpt from the book, Designing the Life of Your Dreams from the Outside In, by author/eco-shui design consultant, DeAnna Radaj. Enjoy!
Did you know that the air you breathe inside your house is more polluted than the air you breathe outside? In fact, the EPA considers poor air quality a top risk to human health. Indoor air is three times more polluted than outdoor air. But DeAnna, you’re thinking, I live in a quiet suburb not near a factory, so how can my air be bad? Carpeting, paint, household cleaners, fabrics, even the candles you light for ambience are all culprits in polluting your indoor air. Many of these things were created to make your life easier, however, they also give off vapors or volatile organic compounds (VOCs) which can cause allergies (or make existing ones worse,) compromise respiratory problems, cause headaches and make life miserable for those with environmental sensitivities.
Over the last 30+ years, houses and office buildings have been constructed with energy conservation in mind. Doors fit tighter, if they open at all, and window drafts are a thing of the past! At the same time, a new wave of chemicals has been invented and injected into building materials, cleaners and household supplies. There are about 75,000 chemicals being used in everything from carpet pads to dryer sheets, window cleaners, dish soaps, hair products, air fresheners, bedding, aromatherapy products and pet supplies.
We talked previously about off gassing, but what exactly does it mean? Molecules break down and pollute the stale air inside our tightly sealed homes and offices. People often complain about “canned, dead air” inside airplanes, sick building syndrome at offices, or colds passed back and forth between family members. According to the National Institute of Health, we are “marinating in a broth of invisible toxins that cause everything from headaches to cancers.”
***The best way to get rid of “dead” air-open a window! Even in winter, opening a window or door for even a few minutes will help clear the dust and energize a space and it’s occupants. ***
What’s one of the simplest least expensive ways to clean the air in your home? Plants. In fact, one of the best ways to breathe clean air in your home is to have one plant for every 100 square feet of space. Plants clean the air by breathing in dirty air and trapping pollutants, and then expelling oxygen-rich clean air. Substances such as formaldehyde, benzene and ammonia (the afore-mentioned VOCs) are transformed, while keeping humidity levels steady. This in turn helps to keep allergies at bay. “If you are bothered by mold, stop it from growing by putting an inch of aquarium gravel on top of the potting soil. This will also help stop cats from digging in there as well,” states Avery Hurt in his article Freshen the Air from the March, 2006 issue of Better Homes and Gardens. Although any kind of plant is beneficial, some plants do a …

3 mins read

Don’t Leave Home Without This Checklist – How to Buy Car Battery

Cars are a very important part of our modern lifestyle – we use them to go to work, to visit our loved ones, to go to the grocery, to spend leisure time. Our hectic days are very dependent on our means of transportation, so it is very important to make sure that our cars are in tip top shape and always running well.
The car battery, of course, is a very important part of car maintenance. There is no definite time span when you should change your car battery, but if you buy car battery of high quality and the right kind, then it should last for a very long time and serve you and your car for many miles. Here is a simple checklist for things you should remember before you go out and buy car battery again:
Check the size that your car needs. Consult your vehicle’s manual so that you would know what size of battery it requires. Car batteries come in four basic sizes: 37, 75, 34/78 and 65.
Check the shelf life – it is better to buy car battery that hasn’t been sitting on the shelf for a long time (this greatly reduces its warranty and actual life span on your car). Get one that has been there for at least twelve months. (tip: to know when the battery was manufactured or delivered, check the label on the bottom for the shipping date code. The letter stands for the month is was manufactured, and the number stands for the year. So a battery with a M8 label means that it was manufactured on March 2008).
Check if the auto battery comes with a good warranty. Warranties for car batteries will usually have two warranty periods: the free replacement period and a warranty coverage period. The warranty information on a battery usually comes in the form of two numbers, i.e. 24/84. The first number is for the number of months for the free replacement period, and then the second number is for the warranty coverage. It is usually better to buy car battery that has a higher free replacement period.
After you have purchased your auto battery, it is up to you to take care of it and prolong its life. Most people make the glaring mistake of leaving their headlights on in the garage, and then coming back to a dead battery and a car that would not start. You can install an alarm in your car to prevent these kinds of mishaps. Also, check if the car battery you buy is designed for extreme heat or extreme cold, so that you can choose one according to your usual driving conditions. Buy car battery with these things in mind and you can enjoy longer trips and a safer ride on the road.…