A Family, Beauty, Health and Lifestyle Blog
“Home is where the Heart is.”
Elvis Presley couldn’t have sung truer words. Your home is where you spend your free time. It’s surrounded by people and things you truly love and cherish. So it makes sense that you want to take care of it.
As time passes and you change and grow, so does your home. But every now and then, you look around the space, feeling like it doesn’t truly represent your style accurately. Perhaps the posters and colorful carpets look too overbearing or the wallpapers look drab.
The reasons for sprucing up your home are many. The good news is that you can make some changes, refresh the décor, and make you fall in love with your home again.
If you have never done this before or don’t know where to start, here are a few tips that can help.
Revamp your Walls
A fresh coat of paint on the walls is an instant way to give your home a makeover. You don’t have to make much effort or spend a load of money too.
If you do it yourself, the more money you will be able to spend. However, the caveat is that you’ll have to spend a lot of time on it; especially if you’re the only one doing the work.
For the summer, light, cool tones will do the trick of making your home appear bright and open. If your walls are painted dark or have loud wallpapers, paint the walls a shade of white.
If all white walls are too plain for your taste, why not try adding a feature wall? You don’t have to spend too much time or effort into it. Consider a colorful simple pattern or even wallpaper if it’s in your budget.
Replace old Hardware
You’ll be surprised at how much of a difference new knobs, door handles, and faucets can make. A simple change of metal color can give your kitchen or bathroom an entirely different look and change the aesthetics.
For instance, if you’re tired of the old-school 80s style faucets and fixtures in your bathroom, swap them with trendy brass or rose gold ones. You can also mix your metals to make it more unique to your style.
You can freshen up the cabinets and drawers by removing the old industrial-style knobs and pulls. From patterned ceramic knobs to metal, geometric designs, crystals, and much more, you can find ones that go with your theme perfectly.
Refresh your Cabinets
In most houses, especially when there are children around, the kitchen is the heart of the home. It makes sense that you would want it to look cozy and inviting all year long. A complete renovation is understandably not a smart decision.
Instead of that, refresh your cabinets. Even a simple repaint job can renew a dreary kitchen. Discover how just a color change of the cabinets can make your kitchen brand new. You can supplement that with changing the pulls and handles on the cabinets too.
One caveat here is to make sure you use paint safe for cabinetry in the kitchen. If you are taking the project on yourself, make sure you follow the right procedure and prepare the cabinets before painting them.
Bring in a few Plants
Adding plants to any room instantly makes it feel more alive. It can be a few succulents lining a shelf along the wall, a pothos or Devil’s ivy handing from a macramé hanging pot or a snake plant placed in a modern planter.
Plants are a great way to change your home’s environment. They add décor and can freshen up the air at the same time. Here are some easy house plants that require minimal care.
If you have a busy schedule and keep a plant alive, you can find fake ones that look quite real. This way, your place will look fresh without you actually having to worry about having to water them all the time.
Change the Rug
Besides walls, the flooring is the main area that grabs attention and catches the eye. Adding a few rugs around can change your living space. They can redefine your space without you having to rip up carpeting.
The colors and patterns you choose are important and will make a big difference. For instance, a traditional Afghan-inspired rug in reds and orange tones will warm up a room instantly.
Besides the design elements, the placement of the rug also makes a huge difference. To bring visual interest, you can try layering two rugs too.
Change your Throw Pillows and/or Bedding
Textiles around your home also make a big difference. Whether it’s the throw pillows on your couch, your bedding or the blanket, they add visual interest in the room and transform the place.
If you think your place is looking a bit bland, swap your throw pillows and/or bedding with more vibrant alternatives. These elements are like makeup for your room. So you can try changing them out every season to make it more appropriate. For example, you can use deeper warm tones during the winter season to make your home look cozier.
Rejuvenate Window Treatments
Your windows are the eyes of your home. They can also be compared to a frame. Whether you look at them from the inside or the outside, they define the style of your home. In short, your window treatments are crucial to your home.
Switching them out is a simple process, but can transform your space completely. There are many types of window treatments you can choose from. If you don’t like the traditional horizontal or vertical blinds most houses come with, you can opt for sheer curtains or dramatic drapes for a more luxurious look.
By making simple changes and spending a little time, you can make your house into a home. Adding a few knick-knacks and by changing up the décor, your house will become an extension of you.
You don’t have to spend thousands of dollars. Adding framed photos, painting a wall, bringing in a plant, etc. will add personality to your home and make it truly yours.
If you’re buying real estate property for the first time, you may not realize just how costly it can be. We’re not just talking about the cost of the house itself or the associated interest rate. You also have to look at other expenses related to the transfer of the property from the owner to you. Here’s what you should know:
When checking out houses for sale in West Melbourne, Victoria, you should find out how much the government is levying real property tax. Real property tax is taken out of the beneficial owner of the property and must be paid for every year. If you’re going to buy a high-value property, then be prepared for a high tax payment because the rate is based on the assessed value of the land. Ideally, you should set aside a specific amount each year for the property. Note that if there are back taxes that you will have to pay, this must be taken out of the buying price of the land.
Someone has to pay the taxes associated with the sale, and this is often a certain percentage of the value of the property. Sales tax is often paid for by the seller, but there are times when the buyer has to pay for it –the value often docked out of the overall cost of the house.
This is the final expense you’ll have to shell out before you get the keys to the home. Closing costs is the term used for an aggregate of costs from the processing of the deed, the registration of the property in your name, mortgage taxes, title insurance, and so on. When paying for closing costs, have an itemized listing of the expenses to make sure you’re not paying double for the same service.
Service taxes are required for people who are constructing property on an empty lot. So, if you only bought the lot with the intent of building your dream home, be prepared to pay this kind of tax. They’re usually predicated on the predicted value of the home or the construction costs.
Finally, don’t forget that there’s an associated cost to home maintenance. We’re not just talking about the utilities but also the general upkeep of the house, such as the roof, the yard, the walls, the flooring, furnace, windows, garage, and other areas. The homeowner’s association may dictate home maintenance of your property if you live in a gated community. Some local governments also impose certain restrictions or maintenance guidelines for homeowners such as the quality of the fence, the growth of the trees, the use of lights, and even the kind of materials or structures they can build.
Buying property comes with associated costs that may shock you if you’re not prepared for them. Just because you can afford the down payment doesn’t mean that’s enough. Make it a point to prepare for not only the initial payment but also associated costs, so you won’t have to borrow more than you need.
Nothing gives your bathroom a classier look more than a clean and tidy bathroom. A bathroom that is full of tiny dust pockets in the tight spots of the accessories loses its charm in seconds. But, these cleaning issues will be no longer a thing with these amazing tricks.
Hotels regularly check their bathrooms with a white cloth before a guest moves in. So, to know the secret tricks on how to make a bathroom sparkling white, we are here at The Mark. This luxury hotel is located in the city of New York and it is run by the operating Manager, Mr. Olivier Lordonnois. We spoke to him to know how they maintain such a clean and bright white bathroom at his hotels. So, let's get started here with all the tricks he told us about how to make your bathroom as clean as new:
1. Check for the Sealer: If you are planning for your bathroom then this might be the best and penultimate solution for a clean bathroom. Check for the material that your contractor is using to seal off the marbles and tiles with. Search about the best Sealer in the market as per your needs and then discuss it with your contractor.
Later, Mr. Olivier added that the sealing we use in our bathroom plays a very important role when it comes to avoiding stains. He told us that stains like watermarks or liquid marks (Tea or Coffee) can be removed very easily if the right sealer is used to seal off the marbles. Every year they get the marbles polished and then use the sealer to seal it again, Mr.. Lordonnois says. This saves the marble and it will shine as new for more than the next eight months.
2. Effective Use of Sponge: Sponges are the most cost-effective alternatives that you can use to keep your bathroom neat and clean. Most people run towards their white paint buckets as soon as they see a stain in the bathroom. But, all this hassle can be reduced to simple swiping with the help of a sponge.
Mr. Olivier told us that sponge works like a magic eraser and it can clean any stain on the door or walls. He continued that unlike paint, the sponge does not leave any spot which might outstand with the rest of the paint.
3. Say no to bleach: One of the most common things that we use to clean our bathroom is bleach. It is extremely harmful and can cause a variety of issues on a delicate surface. Some people are insensitive to the smell and chemical remnants of bleach. Its use can lead to irritation and other problems.
Olivier told us that at The Mark, they do not use bleach at all. He addressed the fact that there are other products, which are easily available and work even better than bleach. He added that cleaning products that do not carry bleach in its composition can be an alternative to bleach.
4. Keep your Grout clean: Cleaning Grout is a great issue as the random cleaning sessions involving the use of brush are not effective at all. A brush is not compatible enough to clear out the mold and gunk that accumulates in the Grout.
Mr. Olivier explained that the use of toothbrush to clean the grout is not the best option by a long shot. He added if you want to clean the grout, clean it until very depth with the help of a special tool.
By ‘Special Tool', he meant to refer to the grout cleaning rake. It is a common article that you can purchase from your nearest home store. With a rake, you can scrape out the mold and other gunk. Once the cleaning is done, use the silicone paste as a coating to prevent your grout from marks and molds.
5. Timely Replacement of Towels: Towel is one of the essentials of any bathroom. It is important to change them timely for a perfect white finish of your bathroom.
Mr. Olivier says that there is no trick applicable when it comes to the wear and tear of Towels and bathrobes. So, changing bathrobes and towels at regular intervals adds a great grace to the clear white look of the bathroom.
6. Sweeping is not enough: A common misconception that is performed by almost everyone is the practice of sweeping the bathroom. To make a bathroom spotless, it is important to understand that there are many things wandering around on the floor that you cannot clean with sweeping. Mr. Olivier explained that to maintain the pitch white bathroom, first they vacuum the area and then move onto sweeping.
This way hair strands and similar things that mops miss out are cleaned easily. Mr. Olivier added that at The Mark, they check the cleanliness of the bathroom with a white cloth. This way they ensure the beautiful white finish of the bathroom before new guests check-in.
Owning a home can be a big expenditure. You have to fix things all the time and even when you do it, you’re never certain when a new problem will pop up. Because of that, it is much better to rely on professional assistance than to try and repair things yourself.
This is especially true when it comes to the roof.
While roof repair might seem like a pretty basic repair, there are things that can go wrong. In most cases, homeowners are not aware of the full extent of damage and tend to underestimate it. In some cases, they will repair a larger surface than needed leading to unnecessary expenses. Of course, there is also a risk of getting hurt due to lack of experience or not knowing how to properly use tools.
In order to avoid all this mess, it is much better to hire a roofing contractor or a company. Here are 5 things that a professional can help you with.
1. Reroofing or replacing your roof
Sooner than later, you will have to do a big fix or completely change your roof. Whether we’re talking about roofing or reroofing, these things shouldn’t be taken lightly. They are both very big investments and are something that should be handled by an experienced roofer. But, there is another thing that needs to be considered. Most homeowners don’t even realize the difference between reroofing and getting a new roof. They are different processes and unless you’re very experienced, you won’t be able to tell what you actually need. Make sure to call an experienced roofing contractor so you can assess the state of your roof and see what repairs to make.
2. Addressing nearby trees
One of the best things about backyards is having a nice tree nearby. Although trees give a lot of pleasure, they can be rather troublesome for the roof. This is especially true for bigger trees as their branches tend to hit against it during volatile storms. As if that wasn’t enough, you also have to consider that households with trees have much more leaves. In other words, a lot of leaves will likely end up in your gutters clogging it in the process. As for the branches, you can easily trim them prior to the rainy season. However, even though a tree can be a nuisance for the roof, you should definitely avoid cutting it!
3. Check flashing
Flashing is the metal that surrounds your chimney and represents one of the most important parts of the roof. Its main purpose is to provide some sort of isolation in the area that is hard to access and that otherwise can cause all sorts of issues. Flashing help protect the roof from the rain. Unfortunately, because it’s so thin, placed on an angle, it is really susceptible to damage. Professional roofers know this which is why chimney is the point of concern.
4. Removing shingles
When we mention roof, shingles and tiles are the first association. The whole roof is covered by them and they create an amazing protective net against rain and snow. However, individual shingles are susceptible to damage, they can easily get cracked and discolored. When such a thing occurs, most homeowners find it hard determining the full extent of the damage. Oftentimes, they repair a big part of the roof without any need for it. This leads to additional costs. It’s even worse if you not fix the whole issue; sooner or later it will come back to bite you.
If you have any issues with your roof, make sure to call your local roofing company.
About the author: Nikolay Stoyanov is the content writer of DoItRightRoofing – Vancouver roofing company with more than 1300 completed projects and 900 happy clients in Canada. If you're in need of a qualified roofer, you've come to the right place.
Have you ever walked from one comfortably heated room to another area in your house that feels cold and drafty? If so, you’re not alone. Even if you have a high-quality HVAC system, you’re likely to experience rooms of varying temperatures.
Why does your HVAC system not heat your home at a uniform temperature?
There are a variety of factors at play that impact the temperature of a room. For instance, the direction the room faces and how many windows are present can greatly affect a room’s temperature. It’s a problem we see often at Entek. But fortunately, there is a way to control the variable temperatures throughout your home. It’s called zone heating and we’ll help you determine if it’s the right solution for you.
What is zone heating?
Just as the name suggests, this type of heating divides areas of your home into different zones. Each zone is heated according to its needs, with each area being controlled by its own thermostat.
There are a few ways to integrate zone heating into your home. Electric baseboard heaters, for instance, supply heat to individual rooms and are one way to integrate zone heating.
Another way to employ zoned heating is by installing a zoned HVAC system. If you select this option your Entek service technician will install zone dampers in the ductwork of your home. The unit control panel will then regulate the temperature of each room by opening and closing the dampers according to each zone’s thermostat reading. The good news is that you don’t need to purchase a new system if you’re interested in converting to zone heating. Nearly all forced air systems can be retrofitted for zone control.
So what are the benefits of zone heating?
Obviously, one benefit is increased comfort. You’ll no longer have to put on a sweater when you move from one room of your home to a cooler area. With zone heating, the room temperature can be controlled so that every area of your house is uniformly heated. Also, if you live with other people who prefer a different thermostat setting, zone heating can be a great way to satisfy everyone and keep the entire family feeling comfortable. However, there are a number of other benefits to zone heating as well.
An important benefit is that zone heating increases your cost savings on utility bills. According to the Department of Energy, using zone heating for your home can translate to more than 20% savings on your energy bill. Using zone heating can also extend the lifespan of your equipment. With zone heating, you can choose not to heat areas of your home that are normally not in use, such as your guest bedroom. This can keep your HVAC system from working on overload to heat up all areas of your home.
Using your equipment only when necessary means it will last longer than an HVAC system that’s in constant use. Over time, these savings can really add up.
Zoned heating systems are also more convenient to use. Many of them come with remote controls so that you can adjust the temperature settings from the comfort of your favorite armchair. Zoned heating offers the luxury of modern convenience coupled with increased comfort and cost savings over time.
While zone heating will save you money in the long run, the initial cost is likely to be greater than the purchase and installation of standard HVAC equipment. While it’s certainly a worthwhile economical investment, the extra expense is something to keep in mind when budgeting for a new system. Also keep in mind that the installation of a zoned heating system can be tricky and should only be performed by a certified HVAC technician.
In addition to the upfront cost, a zoned heating system has many more parts than your standard HVAC system. This means that the system may require more maintenance since there are more parts that could potentially malfunction. Repairs are also likely to be more complicated and require professional expertise. In other words, zoned heating systems often need a little more TLC than the standard counterparts, but regular maintenance appointments with your Entek technician will ensure that your equipment is running smoothly and save you the expense of costly repairs.
Is zone heating the right option for you?
Zone heating systems are convenient options for use in multi-level homes. As most people know, heat rises and that’s one reason rooms on different floors can greatly vary in temperature. If your home has additions, such as an attic or basement, you may also benefit from a zone HVAC system. In general, homes with certain architectural features such as large windows, high ceilings, or loft spaces are also likely to greatly benefit from a zone heating approach.
An important thing to remember is that your home should be properly insulated before you install zone heating. If you’re losing energy through leaky windows or other poorly insulated areas, then you likely won’t benefit from a zone heating system. You’ll first have to fix the areas of your home where you’re losing energy. Often times this is sufficient to fix the issue itself. In any case, work with an HVAC professional to make sure your home is properly insulated before installing a zone heating system.
Entek offers h ome performance energy tests to help you assess where you could benefit from energy improvements and savings. We can help make HVAC system recommendations based on your family’s needs and budget. Schedule an appointment for an in-home visit today. We’ll help you determine the best way to heat things up so you’ll be comfy all year long.
Maintaining a clean and organized house is not an easy task if you have pets and young kids running around but they are the reason you must keep a spotless house in the first place. Young kids have low immunity and are vulnerable to falling sick to diseases caused by a dirty surrounding.
With kids around, sometimes it can seem that all you do is clean but it doesn’t have to be this way. You can keep a clean house without feeling strained, stressed up and always exhausted. These are the cleaning tips and tricks you need to clean your house faster and let it stay that way for longer.
You give yourself a more difficult job if you ignore dirty spots until you the next time you have a major clean up. The longer stains are left to stay, the more stubborn they become and the more effort you will spend in removing them.
Learn to clean up immediately you spot a mess and you will always have a clean house. Wipe you spills immediately and clean any mess the kids make before they attract bugs and insects and dry up and become difficult to clean up.
Leave dirty shoes at the door
Getting into the house with dirty shoes in unhygienic and dangerous especially if you have crawling babies in the house.
You shoes accumulate a lot of dirt outside the house and you transfer all these into the house when you fail to remove them at the doorstep. Your crawling baby will then touch these germs and ingest them when they suck their thumb making them seriously ill.
Instead, remove your shoes at the doorstep and carry them to the shoe rack. You will have less cleaning work to do and your kids will stay healthy.
Get rid of clutter
A house full of clutter is not only difficult to clean but is also stuffy and looks less. Do a major house cleanup every six months or at least annually, and identify items you have not used within that period and get rid of them.
There’s no use keeping your old electronics in the house that you have no chance of ever using again. Same to old clothes and other household items that you haven’t used in years. You need to get rid of all these clutter in your house.
Organize your living room
It may be time to revamp your living room arrangement and interior décor. You can create the illusion of space in your living room by simply rearranging your furniture and learning some basic house décor tips from the Mashoid Website. You living room also should be well lit.
Arrange your furniture in a manner that maximizes your living room space but be careful not to block doorways. You don’t people knocking their toes on the edges of your seats. Also, remember to clean and change your curtains every so often because accumulate a lot of dust.
Granite countertops are known for being durable and beautiful, which is why they are pricier than the alternatives. However, if you don’t take good care of your granite countertops, ( which is all too easy to do) they will quickly lose their beautiful shine.
With a little TLC, you will keep your granite countertops looking their absolute best for years to come. Rock Doctor offers a full line of products to help you do just that!
Cleaning Granite Countertops
Using Rock Doctor’s Granite Cleaner, you can get your countertops clean without worrying about causing irreversible damage to them. While other cleaners may cause discoloration, scratches, or leave behind a residue, Rock Doctor’s Granite Cleaner won’t. This cleaner is gentle enough to be used every day.
The Granite Cleaner was made to safely clean granite, marble, quartz, and other rock surfaces, as well as stainless steel. While other cleaners will get your countertops clean, they are likely to leave a film behind and many can cause slow damage to the surface of the granite. If you want to have a shiny finish on your countertops after you clean, Rock Doctor Granite Cleaner is for you!
It left my countertops looking cleaner than they have in years!
Polishing Granite Countertops
While clean granite will have some shine, that stone needs a little polish to take it up a notch. With Granite Polish from Rock Doctor, you can get your countertops to look as shiny as the day they were put it.
I think it is nice to have shiny countertops, but that isn’t all this polish does. It also helps to protect your countertops from damage. The polish helps fill in small cracks in the stone, and it coats the stone with a water-resistant covering to prevent water damage.
The best part about this polish is that it enhances the colors in your countertops, which will just make you want to show them off more! Plus, you only need to use it once a week. It’s time to finally start planning that dinner party you keep putting off.
Sealing Granite Countertops
Making sure your granite countertops are sealed is one of the most important aspects of having granite countertops. If the sealant starts to wear off, your countertops are left exposed to moisture and stains, as well as other damage. Rock Doctor Granite Sealer lasts for a year on your natural stone surfaces, so you won’t need to constantly worry about whether your countertops are protected.
I love that this sealant is easy to use and protects the porous surfaces in my household for a long time.
With Rock Doctor, you won’t need any other products to protect and clean your granite, quartz, or marble countertops. Check out Rock Doctor’s full line of products to keep your stone surfaces looking brand new.