Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Renovation 101

Now that the summer's sun is beating back down, it’s prime time to get some renovation done. We’re sure there are some areas of your home that have been neglected over the colder months, especially your garden. This post is going to go through a few renovation tips to transform your home ready for BBQ season.


Two ideas are going to be spoken about here. One is going to involve a lot of money, the other isn’t. We’ll start with the easiest first. The small bits and bobs that will need tidying up. The kitchen is the first place that needs refreshing. Give it a lick of white paint, and a new lease of life. White is the best colour for a summer kitchen. Grab yourself some handy appliances ready for summer fun. If you’re planning on having a few BBQ’s. Get yourself a blender ready for some tasty summer smoothies or cocktails. If you have curtains or blinds covering the windows, take them down until winter returns. Find yourself a cute wooden chalkboard, nothing too big and hang it on an open wall. They look so nice against a crisp white background, and will be handy for note taking etc. Throw in a pretty indoor plant, and you’ve got yourself a cute kitchen ready for the summer.
In pretty much every area of the house, the same steps in the kitchen can be applied elsewhere. As long as you’re making the area bright and open, and full of different colours that compliment each other, you’re onto a winner. A fresh paint in every room will always do the trick. White is the best for a summer look, if you can afford to splash the cash a little, some black furniture set against the white wall would be perfect. But one more expensive, yet amazing renovation is always the bathroom. The contemporary designs available today are just stunning. You will need a lot of money for this. You’ll need the bathroom set, a skip bin, a fitter, and a lot of time. Try and save money by finding cheaper bin hire and a reliable fitter. The whole bathroom will be gutted out and transformed. It’s long term investment if you wanted to sell the house as well.


Hopefully the outdoors is where you’ll be spending most of your days and evenings. It’ll be the center for a gathering of friends or family. It’s so easy to make it look pretty. Lay down some grass seeds, and look into the cost of sprinklers. It’s hard to maintain the garden on your own, so rather than watering it, sprinklers may be easier. This coupled with the seeds will give you some lush green grass. Then, uproot any dead and old plants, nothing makes a garden prettier than fresh bright looking plants. Go to your local store and you should be able to find an array of colours that will make your garden pop. When you’re there, get a new state of the art BBQ ready for all the fun you’re going to have.


Monday, October 23, 2017

Sold! Getting Your Home Off the Market as Quickly as Possible


Everyone sells properties in different ways. Some people will be emotionally invested in their personal properties and won’t want to let them go for a lower price than expected. Others are particularly fussy about who is going to take over the property, becoming the new homeowner and living their lives out within its walls. However, if you’re selling for profit, chances are that you want as fast and smooth a sale as possible. So, if you are working with a short time limit in mind, here are a few ways to get your home on and off the market as quickly as possible.

Know Your Angles

We are all well aware that a good estate agent can make a hovel look like a perfect family home. How? Well, it’s all about the angles. Most people will get their first impressions of a property from images posted online. Now, you should aim to give potential buyers as honest a view of the property as possible. After all, do you really want someone to be massively disappointed when they see the bricks and mortar in person? However, if you know your angles, you will be able to achieve this honest representation of your home at the same time as displaying it in the most flattering way possible.


Be Ready to Do Business At All Times

If you are looking at securing a quick sale, you need to be ready to do business at any time of the day. After all, you don’t want to see a potential buyer slip by because you are unavailable to talk to or conduct a viewing. Dedicate the majority of your time and effort to actively selling your property. You should have your laptop on you at all times, as well as any notes or pieces of information that you may require to secure an agreement. Keep all of these essentials in a smart bag. This will give you easy access to whatever you may need while ensuring that your belongings and private information are kept safe and sound. Answer calls and emails as quickly as possible, as they could be legitimate leads to quick sales.

Advertise in the Right Places

Get to know the property that you are selling and work out who your target audience is. Are you selling a house with multiple bedrooms in close proximity to good schools? Then you might gather a lot of interest from families. Is the property a studio apartment on a side street near a bustling and busy town centre? Well, it is more likely to appeal to young professionals starting an independent life. If you know who your property caters to, you can then work out where’s best to advertise. For families, you may want to post adverts on parenting sites. If you’re trying to attract students or young professionals, share details of the property on social media. You just need to make yourself visible in the right places to gather the right attention.

While you can’t expect your property to fly off the market as soon as it is listed as “for sale”, you can take certain measures to speed up the sale process. These simple steps will help you to secure a sale in next to no time.


Friday, October 20, 2017

Letting Mother Earth Into Your Home


Is your home made of plastic? In trying to make our homes feel modern, many of us can get carried away with linoleum flooring and polypropylene furniture and nylon upholstery. This can make a home feel cold and synthetic. Sometimes it can be nice to bring a natural touch into the home. Here are a few ways that you can make your plastic home feel earthier.

Touch wood

Wood can instantly bring a more earthy touch to your home. Wooden flooring is particularly in vogue right now and homes that have it are going up in value. This could be easily achieved in some cases by stripping away the carpets in your home and exposing the wooden floorboards below. Alternatively, there are plenty of click-fit wooden flooring options out there that could drop over the top of a linoleum or tiled floor. On top of wooden flooring, you can also give your home a rustic look by buying wooden furniture, installing wooden countertops and even opting for a veneered feature wall.  


Rock out

Stone is also an earthy material that can look great in your home. This could be anything from a granite worktop to a marble sink. You can even opt for stone furniture such as a concrete dining table. Stone can be expensive, but is certain to add a sense of elegance to your home.

Spruce up with plants

Plants will literally ‘bring life’ to your home’s interior. They can help to provide colour and purify the air in your home. Certain plants may even have benefits in certain rooms. Many tropical plants such as aloe vera and peace lily are ideal for the bathroom as they thrive in low-light humid conditions, even helping to dehumidify the room. For the kitchen meanwhile you could try some foody plants such as a chilli plant or tomato plant, the produce of which you can then incorporate into your cooking.


Create a fishy feature

Fish are some of the easiest pets to keep. A well-placed fish tank can also make a great natural stylistic feature in your home. It could be placed opposite a TV to create a new focal point in the room. You could even make a bathroom have an underwater feel by adding in a fish tank. Just make sure that there is some natural light getting into the tank as fish can benefit from this.

Have some scents

Want your home to smell nice? Take a break from synthetic cleaning chemicals and bleachy smells and consider some natural methods of deodorising the air. Adding lavender oil to a pine cone can create an earthy forest smell, whilst cinnamon and orange peels in water can create a fresh fruity aroma. Then of course there are many strong smelling flowers that can help to bring some natural scents to your home. Orchids and peace lilies are just two examples.


The Perfect Home Additions

Your home is what you make of it. Most of you reading this will know how much pride and joy you take into the design of your home. Once everything is perfect, you’ll still find something to change. That’s the true beauty of owning a home, you can recreate its style depending on how your taste varies. There is no better way of doing this than mixing up the little additions you can put in your home. Some will be necessities, some will just be for show. Take a look at what you can do!

Housework aid’s are always handy. There are certain chores we all hate to do. Washing, ironing, hoovering. They’re all necessary evils after a hard day at work. So why not purchase a few things to make it a little easier. Let’s start with Dyson 360 eye. It’s a hoover, that pretty much hoovers for you. Did anything ever sound so perfect? Its camera monitors where it's heading, and it’ll clean every floor from top to toe of the house. As lazy as it may sound, it’s any homeowner's dream, especially if you’re a mother. You can check out similar brands here!

Ironing, this might come as number one of hated household tasks. Like most people, you’re probably the type to let ironing pile up and up until you have an impossible mountain to tackle. But the gods have blessed us with a way of making this a little easier. Try getting yourself a steamer. Give the clothes a quick steam before hanging up, and they’ll look just as if they’ve been ironed. Try the best garment steamer from Steamer Spy and watch the difference it’ll make to your life. You’ll never look back again!


Two practical things out the way with, let's take a look at some aesthetic additions. Now that summer is upon us, your living room will turn into an open airy paradise. Something that’s really quirky to add in is a hammock. They’re ever so cheap, and will easily support you by being attached to the ceiling or wall. Put it by the window and you have the perfect place to relax. It’s a great mix of style and comfort. If you don’t have enough space in the living room, then try putting one up in the garden for an even more relaxed vibe in the summer's sun.

Another funky addition, but also a comfy one, is a sofa bean bag. They’re not as big as you think, and could easily fit in either your room, or the living room. If you have children, it’ll be the highlight of their room for them. They’re so unique but at the same time stylish, give it a try and see what room it suits.

No matter how hard you try, you’ll always be on the hunt for additions to the home. No matter how big or small they are, they always have the power to completely transform any room. Have a look around and see what look works for you, and remember, experimenting is key to a unique home.


Friday, October 13, 2017

The Ultimate Two Step Plan To Selling Your Home

There are two aspects to a home sale. The first is the home itself. It needs to look absolutely stunning, and essentially, you have to sell the dream here. Remember, property buyers aren’t looking for a roof and four walls. They are searching for their ideal place to live. The other side of the sale is the business. When you sell, you will be represented by a real estate company. If customers don’t like the business behind they sale of your home, they won’t buy. It’s as simple as that. So, to sell your house fast for the right price, you need to do two things. You need to make your home look stunning, and you need to choose a real estate agency that really captures the attention of buyers.

Bright And Beautiful

First, let’s make sure your home looks stunning, and the key to this is minimalism. You need to aim for a minimalist design, and that’s actually rather easy to accomplish.. We have an entire post dedicated to minimalism so there’s no need to get into too much detail about it here. The main factor to consider is whether you have too many items and accessories in each room of your home. As well as this, white walls help make a room look brighter and more open.

Aside from this, aim for contemporary decor in your home. You probably think that contemporary decor is going to be expensive, but it doesn’t have to be. While you can upgrade your kitchen with stone marble countertops, you can also get an aesthetically identical material that is far cheaper. As such, making your home look beautiful doesn’t have to break the bank.

The last key factor of making a home look beautiful is the photos. Don’t forget that these days, the first impression of your home won’t be captured the first time they walk inside. They’ll see your home long before that, with photos online. You need to make sure they are absolutely stunning and hiring a pro photographer is the best way to guarantee that.

Perfect Pitch

As for the business behind the sale, it’s all about making buyers feel at home. For instance, they could organize an open house on your home. With events like this, it’s great for buyers to feel taken care of perhaps with free merchandise like trolley coins readily available. Or maybe even stress balls. It might not seem like much, but an extra gift like this will persuade buyers they are dealing with a pro company.

As the seller, you should also choose a company that is completely open and available to buyers. There’s nothing that homebuyers hate more than being left on hold or not being able to contact the company representing the house when they want to arrange a viewing. You can lose a lot of interest, simply by using a real estate agency with poor customer service.

We hope you see now that these two factors are of great importance when selling your home. With a home that looks stunning and a real estate agent that looks the part, you’ll get the home sale you desire.


Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Why Does Your House Smell And How Can You Stop It?

Most weird smells in the house have a pretty obvious cause. Maybe it’s something you cooked, or you’ve got a teenager living there, but whatever it is it’s usually pretty easy to sort out. But what about those weird background smells that you just can’t pinpoint? You can spend days turning the whole house upside down to try to find the source and still come up with nothing. Don’t give up just yet, it could be one of these things.


A Leak

If the smell is a damp one, you’ve probably got a leak somewhere. If you can’t find the source, it’s probably in the back of a cupboard or hidden behind some furniture in a corner somewhere. If you leave it, it’s just going to get worse and worse. Employ plumbing services to check all of your pipes and see if they can find any problems. If you leave it then you risk developing a mold problem which is going to make things a whole lot worse.

Old Carpets

Over the years, carpets will soak up all of the bad smells that are lingering around the house. That will all build up gradually and each one of those smells will add together to form an overall bad stench. You can try giving the carpets a deep clean but if they’re particularly old then it might be too late. You’ll have to bite the bullet and just replace all of the carpets in the house if you want to make things fresh again.

Electrical Problems

The smell of cooking fish sticks around for a while but that smell can come from something else. Dodgy electrics give out a smell that is surprisingly similar to old fish. The plastic on the wires gives out the odor if it’s too hot but most people don’t notice because they think it’s just cooking smell. That doesn’t mean you should call an electrician every time you’ve cooked a fish but if the smell sticks for weeks afterwards maybe you’ve got a problem somewhere.

Hot Water Heater

Experts recommend that you replace the anode rod in your hot water heater every five years. Most people haven’t heard of an anode rod, let alone had it replaced regularly. If you don’t though, it’ll start giving out a bad smell. It sometimes smells like a gas leak so it’s worth getting checked. The best way to tell whether it’s your hot water heater is to turn the taps on and see if the smell gets worse. It’s also worth checking whether it’s stronger when you’re near the sinks. All you’ll need to do is get somebody to check your plumbing and change it for you and the smell should disappear overnight.

Old Dishwasher

A dishwasher is meant to make life easier but when you’ve had yours for a few years it might become more of a hindrance. It’s pretty easy for it to get clogged up with bits of old food and it’ll all build up into a stinky mush that starts to rot over the years. All of that smell will start to seep out into the house. The best way to avoid it is to rinse everything off before you put it in but if you’re too lazy for that and you’ve left it too long, you’ll probably need to buy a new dishwasher.

Nobody wants to go to a house that stinks, so if you’ve got an odor problem, sort it out now.


How Long Before A Robot Cooks Your Breakfast?

2017 may be the year that will update the old saying: Home is where the heart is. Home, now, is where the high tech comfort, safety, and decor coexist in harmony. As for the heart, it seems that it has eclipsed the equation for the profit of the Millennial requirements: A home that is simple, safe and modern for all; in other words, a home that is the natural extension of a smartphone. The intelligent home is at the core of every homeowner’s dream. Science fiction has long portrayed homes that can cook a yummy breakfast while we get up, do the laundry and the washing up, and maybe even get the garden landscaping on the way. Admittedly artificial intelligence may not be that advanced yet — yes, you still need to mow the lawn yourself — but homes are getting smarter in many ways, using digital, nature and design intelligence to make our lives easier every day.


Simple: The minimalist decor that changes your home

Do you want a lovely home that is fresh and welcoming? No need to answer the question; you probably do. But what you may not realize is that you can quickly create an inviting atmosphere in your home, using nothing else but a minimalist decor. A minimalist decor is a type of interior design that has precisely what you need and nothing more. More importantly, it sets the focus on smart room settings — a clutter-free decor accumulates less dust and therefore less bad odours — and intelligent plants designed to clean the toxins from the air. While the shapes and decor lines are kept to their most simplistic levels, a minimalist decor gives an immediate sensory satisfaction.

Safe: Protect your family

What’s a home if not a place where you and your family can feel safe? That’s exactly why you need to ensure that your home has smart security devices from your smoke alarm to the burglar alarm. Additionally, there are always two steps with each security system: First the installation and then the maintenance, whether you’re considering smoke alarm maintenance or CCTV checks. There’s only so much protection you can expect from an unmaintained device. So, while it can seem dull, it’s best to get all your security systems checked on a yearly basis. Besides, as the security sector never stops innovating, you need to ensure that the intelligent solutions you’ve installed can still provide the best protection.

Modern: There’s no home with gadgets

Alexa, change the lights to blue.
Amazon’s voice service, Alexa, can not only answer questions, but it can also play music, control some of your home settings, and pass Amazon orders for you. The Millennial home is a smart home where you can order your favourite film while sitting on the sofa, just by using your voice. According to the sci-fi world: We’re already living in the future! Admittedly, robots are not yet serving the human race. However, we’ve got smart fridges that can track groceries and expiration dates and reorder food with Alexa. Smart appliances are the essence of the modern home.

The intelligence home looks after itself: It keeps clean through its intelligent decor, protects its inhabitants through a security system and arranges setting and grocery shopping at the sound of your voice. All your home needs to learn now is how to bake the perfect breakfast and bring it to bed!


Wednesday, October 4, 2017

Is It Hot In Here Or Is It Just You?


Most of the time, it's hot because you walked into the room... Obviously. But regardless of how amazing your hair is today, when a house gets too hot, it can be a really uncomfortable environment to live in. Even opening the windows and letting in a breeze won't work if the air is humid outside - no circulation will go through the house in order to keep you cool. So here are some creative tricks to help you instead.

The DIY cool sea breeze

If you're feeling rather clever, get a bowl and fill it up with ice, frozen peas, an ice pack, or whatever you have, and put the bowl in front of a large fan. The air that is created by the fan will pick up the cold air that you have made, and sweep it off in whatever direction you apply it in.

Do the obvious!

If you haven't already got air conditioning installed - go and sort it out! Aircon will give you instant relief to all your sticky problems. The best thing there is on a hot day is to wake up and turn on the ac; you only have to leave it running for a couple of minutes until you feel that cool breeze caress your body

Be smart about your doors

Closing doors to rooms will stop the cool air entering, which is sometimes deliberate, like when using aircon as this will only keep the rooms cool that you're using so no energy is wasted. Although if you know you're going to bed soon, it'd be wise to open the door so that it has time to cool down before you try getting to sleep.

Invest in blackout curtains

Closing your usual blinds and curtains helps to stop the heat from the sun shining through the windows and into your home, but if you want to prevent this even more - go vampire and get yourself some blackout curtains. These works to insulate the room while blocking the sun which can reduce heat gain by a huge thirty-three percent.

Swap your sheets

Sheets, blankets and quilts that are made out of flannel or fleece are great to keep you toasty in the winter, but since you're just too darn hot, switch them for cotton as it breathes easier and will stay cool. Also, consider getting yourself some buckwheat pillows. These have a natural air space inside of them that won't hold onto your body heat like ordinary pillows, even when it's stuffed inside a case.

Start grilling

Using your oven and stove in the summer - no matter how much you love cooking that marinated chicken of yours - will just heat up the kitchen and spread through the house. This isn't what you need! So instead, make the most of this weather and start grilling on your barbecue instead. Not only does it make dinner more fun, but it's a healthier option, and your chicken will still taste divine - if not better!