Author

Chloe Taylor

Chloe is an art historian and recreational ballet dancer. She is passionate about photography, dance and music. Her biggest dream is to travel the whole world with her husband and take stunning photographs of beautiful places. She also enjoys learning and writing about home design, since she is crazy about aesthetics.

Every year, low temperatures, high winds, and sudden rainfalls create many problems for homeowners. Sometimes, they notice water dripping from the ceiling, while often, cracks start appearing on walls because of plumbing issues. One thing for sure is that the temperature within the home doesn’t match the temperature outside. As a result, the conditions outside start affecting your home from the inside.

The only way to go about this problem is by weatherproofing the entire house. From windows, gaps in the walls, leakages to doors – you have to ensure the weather doesn’t affect your home’s structure. Perhaps, you can get a thermostat to keep tabs on the temperature, seal the gaps, and install a ventilation system. A few amendments would reduce the chances of wear and tear in the house, improving longevity and durability.

However, if you don’t know how this will work, let us show you the ropes. Here we are listing seven tips for weatherproofing your home.

Fix Leakages

At times, rusty and broken pipes create a lot of mess inside the house. As soon as it starts raining, the water comes dripping from the pipes, straight into the kitchen sink and bathrooms. If you have come across something similar, it is time to fix these leakages. First, grab your plumbing supplies and try fixing the leakages on pipes. Change the ball value and install brass fittings to strengthen the pipes’ grip. Also, use cover plates to conceal the significant gaps around the pipe.

If repairing the pipes seems impossible, you can replace the pipes with new ones. Here, you would need help from expert plumbers since they have to tear down interior walls and fix new pipes. It might seem like an extensive process, but it would save your home from harsh weather conditions in the long run.

Get a Programmable Thermostat

With current weather conditions, the mornings and evenings are frigid; however, nights are chilly. Thus, turning on an air conditioner and then switching the heater at night seems impossible. So, why not install a programmable thermostat to avoid this hassle? It would adjust the temperature according to the weather without consuming a lot of energy. In addition, you can even program it to lower degrees during the day to let some cool air inside the house.

For people who have multiple climate zones in their homes, you can customize the thermostat settings. Perhaps, your parents might prefer a super warm room whereas you like your room a little brisk and cold. Alongside weatherproofing the house, it will ensure house members feel comfortable and cozy.

Overhaul Windows

Old and rusty window frames damage your home’s look and start to let the water in, spoiling the décor. Therefore, monitor your windows carefully to ensure they are in good shape. If you notice any signs of damaged wood or broken frames, try to fix them at your earliest possible. You can extract the damaged wood and replace it with new timber. Afterward, fill the holes with some sand and once it dries out, repaint the frame. Otherwise, you can even varnish it using exterior products.

By making these few amendments, you can weatherproof your home. The thick timber and sand filling would ensure water doesn’t enter through any of the windows. Also, it will protect your home from extreme moisture during the summer season, offering optimal protection.

Repair the Walls

In many homes, the puffed-out and cracked portions of the walls become a leading issue for people. Not only the water starts penetrating every nook and corner, but such conditions also cause structural damage, weakening the home’s foundation. Before weatherproofing, you have to get cracks checked by a professional to repair structural damage. However, if the cracks are small, you can fix them yourself by removing loose material and filling them up.

After that, you have to repaint the wall using high-quality paint. It would withstand all the weather, and the color will stay intact for years. Above all, it will keep your home protected from harsh weather conditions, closing doors for water-related problems.

Clean the Gutters

During the rainy season, clogging is one of the most common problems homeowners encounter. The leaves and debris stuck inside the drain trap the water inside the house that damages the structure. Due to this, water often starts dripping from the ceilings and edges of the home. Fortunately, you can eliminate all this mess by keeping your gutters cleaned. You can call in experts to remove trees, debris and unclog the drains.

In addition, you can get your hands on a plastic wire or a hedgehog gutter leaf-guard filter to clear up the mess. It would also prevent future build-up, weatherproofing your home in the best possible way. Remember, you have to clean gutters after every season to remove any added strain on the system.

Install a Ventilation System

Not having a ventilation system inside the house can significantly affect the air quality. After all, you would be breathing the same contaminated air 24/7, leading to respiratory problems. In addition, your home won’t be able to shed the hot and cold air it doesn’t need. To weatherproof your house, invest in a ventilation system. You can check the vents connected to the HVAC system and ensure they are clean before installing the system.

Moreover, ensure all the vents leading to the attic are free of dust and debris. After all, blockages can trap heat in the vent, causing your ventilation system to run less effectively. Besides this, having a proper plan will come in super handy, especially during harsh weather conditions.

Seal the Gaps & Cracks

Are there any gaps around your doors and windows? Even a 1-2-inches gap between the window or door can invite humid and cold air inside the house. Therefore, you have to seal the holes and cracks around the non-moving parts of the windows and doors. For this, you can either use caulk or foam sealants to bridge and conceal the gaps.

However, if any of the moving parts have cracks, air sealing will work better. You can opt for weatherstripping on the exterior side of the house and seal the unwanted outside drafts. It would prevent moisture and dust, closing doors for heat and mold. Besides this, proper weatherstripping will also improve air quality while keeping small insects and bugs out of your home.

Final Words

As the weather conditions change in a blink of an eye, homeowners have to weatherproof their homes. In addition to eliminating damages in the long term, it will close doors for wear and tear. However, weatherproofing doesn’t require massive repairs or overhauling; instead, a few amendments will be enough. You can clean the gutters, fix leakages, seal the cracks, or install a thermostat to weatherproof your house.

If you like home renovations, you’re no stranger to knocking your walls down, drilling, and even fixing tiles. However, while you may enjoy making your house beautiful – or those of others if you’re a professional renovator, you may be exposing yourself to asbestos. Asbestos is made of naturally occurring fibrous silicate used construction products.

So you have material mixed with asbestos throughout your house. When these products sustain damage, microscopic fibrils enter the atmosphere. These thin fibers are toxic to inhale, and long-term exposure can lead to cancer. Hence, while renovating, you need to be mindful of a few things in your house. Here’s how you can ensure you work around asbestos and avoid exposure:

Don’t touch asbestos

Suppose you feel like you can see traces of asbestos, such as a damaged, brittle insulation material in the drywall. Even if you think you can handle it, you should avoid going anywhere near. Look up asbestos professionals online who can help you get rid of these products. A professional can also help you confirm if you have asbestos in other components of your house.

Get yourself tested

You may be inhaling asbestos unknowingly, especially if you’re living in a seemingly run-down house constructed before the 1980s. In that case, you need to reach out to your primary care provider and get yourself tested. A doctor can guide you better on mesothelioma symptoms and how risky it is for you. Also, hire a professional to get rid of all asbestos products from your current home or move into a new living space. Don’t prolong exposure even if you have minimal asbestos quantities in your home.

Be mindful of the way you dispose of asbestos

You can’t get rid of asbestos the traditional way. Your waste disposal system should only get rid of regular wastes such as those from your everyday use. If you mix stable waste and asbestos products, you expose a larger population to toxic fibers. A professional asbestos removal company can guide you on getting rid of these products or get rid of them for you. Your dumpster and recycling bin should only contain garbage that will not hurt anyone if they are exposed to it.

Don’t clean asbestos products

You may think that if you sweep asbestos off, you can get rid of it. That’s not the case. Your cleaning products can get tangled with asbestos fibers. As a result, when you clean other spaces of your house, you end up spreading more of these airborne fibers exposing yourself to greater risk. It would help to avoid damaging products that contain asbestos while regular cleaning activities. Abrasion can cause fibrils to break off and spread in the air.

Curb your curiosity

You may feel like getting your science on if you have asbestos in your house. However, never collect and test samples unless you are a trained professional. You can mishandle the sample and the apparatus and may cause more damage than good.

Let professionals clean your space

Only professionals can repair asbestos-ridden spaces. They can also determine if there is too much asbestos, they will either remove it or conceal it. However, avoid doing it yourself. If you feel demolition is the only solution, get the appropriate approval from your government and then work on your property. You should always hire professionals with substantial experience to make quick work of the process.

How can asbestos spread?

You can spread asbestos when you’re not careful while renovating and don’t know how many products contain asbestos. Companies can use them in construction materials. It could be in products such as insulation material. Here are some possible ways you can cause an exposure:

  • Renovation projections

Usually, when remodeling different parts of your house, especially the attic, you may cause an asbestos breakout. Asbestos is present in the insulation material packed behind the drywall. When you renovate them, the asbestos can crumble and fall on the ground. In addition, when you get rid of old insulation in your garbage, you increase the risk of exposure. So if you plan on renovating your space, you need to get a professional to verify if the walls are safe to drill. Never attempt a renovation before confirming your house is secure and you have approval.

  • Brake dust

Older brakes may contain asbestos. If you have a vintage car, you may notice that brake drums may have a layer of dust on them. This dust may contain asbestos. So when you go around cleaning your brake drums by banging them and using an air compressor, it can release toxic fibers into the air. While you may find this method easier to give your brakes a quick clean, in the long run, this is dangerous. The best way to take care of your car is to take it to a professional who knows how to handle it while being mindful of such risks.

  • Drilling into asbestos

If you want to hang paintings in your home, always check the walls first. You want to know what material is in the insulation. If you drill into asbestos, you risk fibers becoming airborne, which is dangerous since prolonged exposure increases the risk of developing health problems. Debris on the floor can also spread around your house when you sweep them.

  • Removing tiles

Tiles, especially vinyl, contain asbestos. If you have a generational house, it probably has vinyl tiles installed. When you start removing them with a scraper, you loosen the asbestos and spread the fibers. The best way to renovate flooring is to install the new one over the existing one. This method is far safer and also less time-consuming.

  • Removing popcorn ceiling

Popcorn ceiling takes tremendous work to remove. In most cases, you will need eye protection and a dust mask to scrape and sand while re-doing the roof. Popcorn ceiling contains microfibers of asbestos. So, if you attempt to remove/repair it, you’ll be spreading microfibers all over the place. Hiring a professional may cost you extra money, but it is the safest option. Don’t compromise your health for the sake of cheap renovations.

  • Insulation on pipes

Most pipes contain insulation that has asbestos. The insulation can deteriorate with them, especially around hot pipes. So if you try replacing old insulation by cutting into it, you risk releasing fibers. It is best if you don’t take matters into your own hands. If you know that the house you’re living in is old and the insulation needs repair, call professionals to get the job done.

Wrap up

Asbestos can spread via air if you’re not careful. The fibers expose you to the risk of developing mesothelioma – a highly lethal form of cancer. Have a professional survey your property to determine asbestos levels before renovating it. Don’t attempt any renovation projects that require you to scrape, drill, and cut without proper help, safety, and approval. Suppose you accidentally damage any product that may contain asbestos. In that case, you should move back and get professional help to ensure you can safely remove it. In addition, don’t attempt to clean the space and risk further spreading the asbestos. Last but not least, always ensure proper disposal of asbestos products to prevent cross-contamination.

When you are about to buy your first house, it can be a very exciting prospect. You get to visit gorgeous establishments, name your price and finally settle on a home you want. A real estate agent is lucrative to the process. These experts know everything when it comes to buying and selling a house. They know precisely how to match your budget with the best houses and how to ensure you get them. But how do you find the most suitable real agent for yourself?

If you step out to look for your real estate agent, you meet numerous people. Some of them may look like they know what they’re talking about, but they don’t. There is nothing worse than putting your life savings in the wrong place. You may never get another opportunity to get your dream house again. Here’s how you find the real estate agent for you:

Get Referrals

If you don’t know any real estate agents, then referrals are essential. They help you find what you’re looking for much faster. You also end up with reliable real agents instead of letting anyone in the market fool you. Talk to any one of your friends who bought a house recently. You should even visit websites and check reviews to make sense of who you want to work with. If you go without asking, you may get lost in the process.

There are so many real estate agents to choose from. It’s a good idea to select an agent located in a specific area where you want to buy your house. For example, suppose you’re looking to buy a house in Newcastle. In that case, you can search online by typing Conveyancing Newcastle to find the best possible solution.

Choose the Person

It would help if you had a real estate agent who can work well with you. While experience is necessary, you need someone who can get along with you. You’ll be spending copious time with your agent. So, find someone who knows what you want and makes sure you spend more time exploring the best properties. You also want an agent who knows how to relate with you and drive a good bargain. Remember, you’re buying a house. If you’re not happy with your agent, you will make a hasty decision. It is so you can get over the process fast and not deal with the agent anymore.

Moreover, see how well the real estate agent you’ve selected works with others. A good experience generally means they have a good client base. Therefore, it should make it easy for you to work with them. Experience also shows their success rate. If an agent isn’t doing well, they won’t be able to procure experience. So stick to the seasoned professionals in the industry to help you.

Make Sure You Can Trust Them

If you’re someone who trusts easily, this can be a source of problem for you. When it comes to real estate agents, you shouldn’t trust them easily. Try a litmus test to determine whether they want you to get what you want or make a profit. Ask them about the neighborhood and try to match this information with other residents. If you tell them how you want a specific property, make sure they pay attention to you. You can’t work with someone with whom you don’t have an element of trust. So, before you start looking at properties, gauge your feelings. You also want to be able to talk to your real estate agent openly. If there is skepticism between you, there is a chance you’ll hold back.

Check Their Support System

You want an agent that has a team in their corner. Most agents are handling several customers at a time. So, you don’t want your agent so wrapped in another client they forget you. When agents work in a team, their assistant can guide you to the next step. It saves you from waiting for your agent to get back to you. If an agent who works alone juggles too many consumers, they may end up inconveniencing you. As a client, you deserve the best customer service. If you’re unhappy, look at the next agent.

Establish Clear Communication

You want to make sure your real estate agent knows what you want. This means you should be clear about your specifics. Don’t generalize properties assuming your real estate will catch on. If you don’t know what you’re looking for, it’s best to go online and search. As much as you want real estate to cater to you, they can’t help you if you’re unsure. Take the time out to conduct your research. Shortlist houses and make a budget. No one likes an unprepared client, and real estate agents are no different. It will help if you make sure you communicate with them about your demands. If a real estate agent has a website that allows you to shortlist properties, make sure you do that.

Wrapping Up

An excellent real estate agent is all that keeps you from getting your dream house. Buying and selling a property is not easy. Many factors go into getting the best option. A real estate agent can help you there. First, find someone with whom you’re comfortable working. Make sure professionalism and knowledge are part of their personality trait. You should seek referrals to connect with a good agent right away. It would also make things easier if you did your research before starting the buying process. When you pay attention to these factors, you will find the agent for you.

Running a home office isn’t exactly the least stressful way of working, in spite of what many people tend to believe. Whether you are operating a business out of your home or if you are a remote employee for a company, you will have struggled with the multiple distractions and temptations at some point in time. While there are certainly multiple benefits to working from home sometimes, the distractions do take their toll.

For example, Rover wants you to take him for a walk. Or for that matter, your kids and spouse don’t understand the importance of privacy while you are working in your home office. The list of distractions is endless. However, a well-planned home office can help you to achieve that oft-elusive work-life balance. Let us see how you can create a well-planned home office that will allow you to enjoy the best of both worlds.

Location is very important

It is likely that you will spend most of your waking hours in your home office, so it won’t be a good idea to opt for a very small space. Yes, it is possible to squish a very small workstation or desk into a windowless closet but you will also have to consider traffic flow patterns as well as your own innate ability to withstand distractions. Maybe, you can give your best only when there are plenty of people around, or perhaps you can only work in pin-drop silence. Finally, you have to make sure that your office is always tucked away into a very quiet space with plenty of seating arrangements if you plan to invite your clients there.

Functionality Triumphs over Form

It is very important to understand that your shelves, desk, and storage exist to serve you, and it should never be the other way around. You have to plan your daily workflow before remodeling your workplace. You have to understand exactly what items you need permanently at hand and at your fingertips before you consider investing in any furniture or other long-term office supplies. Once you have an idea of everything in your head, you should try to look for highly attractive pieces provided that they are also fully functional. It is imperative that your home office furniture should act as a sort of complement to the other rooms around your office. Otherwise, it will simply scream ‘soulless cubicle’ to every visitor. It is up to you to decorate your working space with your living one. If you have an artistic home, your office can follow suit. Conversely, if you have a modern and metallic outlook then you can do the same for your office as well.

Indulge in your Favorite Colors

There is no need to be hung up on the ubiquitous office beige. You need a color that will help you to max out your creativity and really get your work motor humming. You will have to find out for yourself which color brings out the workaholic in you. For example, it might be a really bright and cheery color such as red-orange or even lime green. On the other hand, many people like to work with a more calming shade such as botanical green or for that matter, even seafoam blue to bring out their very best. You can even use plenty of pictures and multiple shades to break the monotony of staring at the same-colored wall day in day out. It would also help if your new home office has a room with a decent view that will help you to recharge your batteries.

Utilize Extra Space to Create a Home Addition

If your home has plenty of space but is not optimized for a home-based office, you might consider making a few home additions in order to create that perfect custom office. This will save your current living space and prevent your home from becoming cramped.

Conclusion

Making or remodeling a home office to maximize your productivity is not exactly rocket science. You just have to figure out and plan ahead in order to derive maximum mileage from your new and dedicated home-based workspace. Good luck!

Water damage is a common phenomenon and a problem that costs billions in repair every year. It is also a problem that is easy to avoid, but due to negligence and inferior building materials, water damage to property is a growing concern for residents. It not only causes monetary loss and contamination but also forces the displacement of residents.

But what causes water damage? When the water reaches where it is not supposed to be, it leads to leaky underground pipes, seepage in the walls, and structural deformity. The issue is so crucial that knowing why it happens in our daily lives and avoiding it becomes imperative.

With that said, the following are some of the most common causes of water damage and ways of avoiding them.

The common causes of water damage and ways to avoid it

The most common places in our house consistently at the brink of being affected by water damage are the kitchen, bathrooms, hot water tanks, faucets. The list is long, meaning water damage can practically happen anywhere there’s water.

Various professional services provide support for water damage and advice on how to avoid it. If your property is a victim of water damage, click here to learn more about the reasons and remedies to prevent more damage in the future. Below we have curated some of the common causes of water damage and how to avoid them.

Extreme weather

Extreme weather like floods and hurricanes are common causes of water damage. These natural disasters are merciless when wreaking havoc on property. If water finds its way through cracks and openings, you’re in trouble.

Torrential downpours are another reason for causing property damage, especially if there’s no proper water flow system. The clogged water becomes detrimental to the structure of the building because when there’s no outlet for moisture to escape, it causes mold and weakens wooden frames.

If you reside in a flood-prone locality, you must be mindful of taking proper measures to protect your property against water damage. In severe cases, you can use the flood protection alarm system to help prepare for the worst with time to spare if you have to evacuate.

Acting promptly to alarm systems helps avoid long-term damages to property and, you’re always ready to cover up the damage with flood insurance well before time.

Leakage in the kitchen sink and faucet

The kitchen is among the most utilized places in the house and prone to get damaged the most due to clogged water. The kitchen sink and faucet are the most susceptible to leakage due to worn-out gaskets and washers.

Additionally, due to mold and corrosion build-up, the rusty moving parts of the faucets start leaking with constant water dripping on the floor, which can ruin the flooring and damage food items.

To remedy this problem, make it a habit to inspect your house every once in a while. This way, you can isolate and fix the issue before it goes out of hand. You may find a crack in the pipe, or the gaskets in the kitchen might be getting loose, and being proactive can save you a lot of trouble.

Leaking pipes

Leaking pipes are another cause of water damage. Older buildings with outdated plumbing systems are especially prone to water damage and can worsen if the house has underground or behind the wall pipes. With clogged water, the damage spreads across the wall, and control gets more costly because the entire area needs to be repainted after repairing the pipes behind.

You can spot a water problem in the form of bulges, stains, and signs of moisture. You may also find the paint flaking off the wall wherever there’s moisture inside the wall.

This can quickly get out of hand; therefore, it is always appropriate to systematically call a plumber to deal with the issue. Additionally, when buying or constructing a house, always have a detailed blueprint of the house to know about the plumbing system.

This way, you can spot the nearest water pipe or a junction in case of leakage and have it fixed before the damage worsens.

Clogged gutters

Having gutters is a common and yet excellent way to keep the water running and prevent stagnation on the roof. However, when leaves or debris block the gutters, it prevents the regular flow of water. Hence, the rainwater does not find its way for proper flow.

Stagnant water or leaky pipes can cause fungus on the roof, or worse, the water will inundate and fall through the sides of the wall. The unsightly streaks of dirty water on the walls, not to mention the water damage caused to the walls and floor, are unbearable.

Therefore, make an effort to clear the gutter opening, especially during the rainy season, to allow continuous water flow.

Conclusion

Water damage is a leading cause of concern in areas prone to storms and floods. According to an estimate, water damage is a rising concern in the U.S, with repair bills getting higher due to storm season getting more and more severe every year.

A proactive approach and timely action can avoid water damage in most instances. It is always prudent to look out for any signs of water damage in the form of mold, find an expert who can guide you, and manage issues like soggy and stained walls to avoid costly repairs.

There is no denying that relocating to a new place builds up anticipation and excitement. After all, a new chapter of life awaits you. However, let’s not forget, the moving process is not a piece of cake. You won’t even realize how many household items you might have accumulated over the years. You need to wrap up everything in your house and safely take it with you to the new place. The stressful and challenging moving and packing process burns out all the energy and excitement of relocation. Even the most expert individuals find the moving and packing process quite daunting.

However, luckily, some proven hacks can make moving less stressful if you are a newbie and save your precious time and energy tenfold. So read on below to discover simple tips and tricks that can make your moving experience stress-free and enjoyable:

Plan ahead

First and foremost, you need to have a clear moving plan to save yourself from stress and frustration. One better way is to start planning about your move once the date of moving is confirmed. Doing so can keep you from running and scrambling at the last moments. You can also sort out all your belongings in a relaxed manner by starting early. To start packing weeks before the actual moving date is a perfect way to keep everything in control.

Packing in a rush increases the chances of getting things damaged or irresponsibly placed in the boxes. So make sure to purchase packing supplies beforehand to pack everything securely. Whether you are moving within the country or cross-country, getting all the moving resources can help you move seamlessly. These resources can guide you with which services are best for home inspections, self-storage options, cleaning services, and much more.

Label boxes

Cheerful diverse couple writing in notebook near boxes before relocation

Don’t just start packing randomly. Since there are many household items to pack, making a packing list can save you from hassles. You can define in the lists which items will go in which room or which items you need to discard. Once you have listed down everything, start putting things in different boxes. Make sure to label your boxes on all four sides, as it will save your time when you unpack these items in your new place.

Declutter

Picture this; you are halfway done with your packing, only to realize you don’t even need a few items in your next home. It would be a wastage of time, and all your efforts would go down the drain, leaving you frustrated to no end. That is why it is essential to clutter unnecessary belongings to save your time and effort. The best way is to start with your storage room. Look for items that you haven’t used in months; chances are, these are the items that you won’t need in your new home.

Don’t hesitate to take help

There might be a chance that any of your friends or family members might have gone through at least one move in their life. Instead of starting from scratch, asking for help in your moving process can save you from stress. While relocating is somewhat depressing, too, having them around is a great way to lift your mood. However, make sure not to take too much of their time as they might have other commitments also. You can ask them if they could spare a few hours and help you with your packing.

Keep paperwork safe

Your whole house might look like a messy place during packing. Due to this, few essential documents might go misplaced. Thus, a better option is to set aside all your necessary documents, including insurances, resume, passport, visa, etc. You can place them in a box or file that you have easy access to, so you don’t have to run like a mad man later on when you need them. Ensure to keep a soft copy of all your documents in dropbox or any other location to have all your paperwork readily accessible.

Prepare yourself for unforeseen situations

No matter how robust your plan is, some things don’t turn out as you expect them to be. Instead of worrying, it’s better to check out some of the best travel packing and house moving tips and have a backup plan for worst-case scenarios. Suppose your mover company has ditched your plan, no worries. Have a backup plan by listing down last-minute moving services that can help you get out of this crisis. Or, if you are facing a parking or traffic jam issue, it would be wise of you to book your parking space for the moving truck beforehand.

Conclusion

Although moving is a dreadful experience, you can save yourself from stressful times and enjoy this time with the proper planning. Often people overlook their healthy routine during moving procedures. Make sure to get enough quality sleep and intake healthy foods. For smooth moving, it is crucial to stop procrastinating and follow your plan rigorously. Remember, it is okay to feel everything as chaos during the relocation. Take deep breaths and allow yourself to relax even if a lot of work is pending to maintain your sanity.

Designing your new home is an excellent opportunity to be imaginative and add some unique features and customize every detail to match you and your family’s desires and expectations. In the US, every state demands a different approach towards building a house. Usually, the weather showcases the kind of house people live in.

For example, in a state like Atlanta, GA, in the suburbs like Dacula, Berkeley Lake, Tyrone, and Woodfield, the houses are enormous with lavish gardens, outdoor living areas, and pools, either inside or in the backyard.

Georgia has a subtropical climate where the summers are hotter, more humid, and longer than almost any other state. Daytime temperatures can reach a staggering 95F, with widespread precipitation and tropical cyclones from June till August.

So, where do you start? following are a few pointers

  • Look for knowledgeable professionals for help
  • Check with the builders whether or not your customizations are possible in your budget
  • Don’t fear customization, be imaginative and creative
  • Take a tour of models that are similar to what you’re planning

After you have the basics taken care of, let’s move onto the list of the must-have features to include in your brand-new home.

An Exotic Pool

Putting a pool into your new home feels posh and exciting. Building a pool might take building costs higher, but it’s worth it because it contributes towards the home’s overall value. If you need ideas of the kind of pool you’d want to have, search for the term backyard pool designs Atlanta ga for some stunning examples.

You can go for either an exotic, high-quality outdoor pool, depending on what kind of style suits you; either way, it will increase the resale value of your home. A pool area is,

  • The best refuge in summer to keep you cool
  • An excellent venue for parties and get-togethers

Outdoor Living Area

If you intend to entertain your neighbors and guests during the summer, an outdoor living area is necessary. You can include a TV or any other entertainment system in the outdoor living area to make it more accessible for gatherings and stuff.

Incorporating technology right in the backyard is one reason why outdoor living spaces have gained so much popularity. Besides using this space for entertainment or gathering, you can also utilize this space for the following.

  • You can place a flat-screen tv in the enclosed area
  • Outdoor kitchen spaces for cabinets, sinks, cooktops, and refrigerators
  • Installing fireplaces and pits for cozy winter evenings
  • Outdoor lounge or dining area with comfy seating

High Ceilings

Homes with high ceilings offer more visual appeal because it’s space for hanging chandeliers, architectural details, paintings, and other decoration items. High ceilings also increase the resale value because they depict that classical look popular among today’s property enthusiasts. Other benefits of high ceilings are:

  • Making the area look larger
  • Showcasing a passion for decoration items
  • Allowing more natural light to enter the house
  • Giving options for custom décor and light features

Personalized Built-Ins

With custom built-ins, you can upgrade unused space, add more value and elegance to your home. Building a new home gives you the liberty to add as much space as your family requires. You can customize what materials you’d want to use, depending upon the purpose of your built-ins. Following are examples of built-ins you might like.

  • Shelves for storage and display that are practical and attractive
  • Customized cabinets in the kitchen or the stairway
  • Benches or window seating with concealed storage
  • Tv and entertainment systems that provide room for unnecessary electronic and wires

A Mudroom

A mudroom is usually located at the back, the side of the house, or the shed. It is a beneficial addition to every family home. Nowadays, people are looking for more than just a coat closet. You can add a mudroom with a functional cubby system featuring extra storage, coat hooks, and shoe cabinets. A closed closet hides everything and gives the impression of being more organized. A mudroom can include the following:

  • A bench or a couch to sit and remove shoes or clothes
  • You can add furniture depending upon the size
  • An overhead and task lighting
  • Cleaning necessities of the room

Smart Home Technology

It is a blessing to have a home that adds comfort and ease to your daily routine in your life. The advancement in technology has introduced devices for home automation and security. Via the internet of things, you can monitor every part of your home through home automation. There are endless opportunities in home automation, whether you want to run your home through a central system or app-based devices. You can also use this technology for the following purposes.

  • Home security system: intelligent door locks, doorbell, CCTV camera, security alarm
  • Built-in speakers
  • Built-in Air Conditioning and heating systems

A Central Vacuum System

A central vacuum system is something to consider if you don’t want to drag around a bulky vacuum cleaner. Issues arising from portable vacuums can be kept away by central vacuum systems. CVS keeps all the heavy machinery out of the house, so you don’t have to listen to the loud noise of the motor. They are more powerful than portable vacuums, with up to three times the suction power. The benefits include:

  • It allows deep cleaning by getting into nooks and crannies, and the dirt in the carpets
  • It improves the quality of air and consequently impacts the lives of people
  • It has a series of outlets placed in the wall that makes it easier to use
  • CVS is a long-term investment

Programmable Thermostats

Programmable thermostats are ideal for families that are out for a more extended period during the day. They assist you in keeping your home comfortable while conserving energy and power. These thermostats are of two types: mechanical and digital. They automatically control your home’s temperature, so you’re at the ideal temperature whenever you walk in. Other benefits include:

  • Low energy bills and reliable precision
  • Programmable system alerts

Summarizing

While constructing or buying a new home, you have a lot of leverage over the features you’d want to include; take advantage of. Many of the features listed above would cost a pretty penny, but they’re worth it in the long run. They not only offer an outstanding experience when you use them and increase the resale value of the house if you decide to sell it later. If you still can’t choose, try speaking to professional builders to assist you in adding favorable features to your new home.

It’s a common misconception that only wealthy people can afford to have an art collection. However, it is not about having only expensive artworks that you buy at auctions for a ransom price. It’s more about collecting artwork that shows your individuality.

But if you’re only at the beginning of your path as an art collector, you may find it daunting to determine which artworks you want to have around you and which art movement is close to your heart. Moreover, you also need to have a good knowledge of the places where you can buy artworks that won’t bleed your bank account dry.

So, today, we will cover these as well as some other points that you need to know if you want to start an art collection.

1. Research the Style That’s Close to Your Heart

First and foremost, the artwork you collect should resonate with you and make you feel aesthetically pleased. So, start your journey by researching different art styles, going from older artistic movements to modern ones. Browse different art books, journals, and editorials to see what you find most appealing and what you would want to have around you.

Besides, the artworks you collect should look natural in your environment. It’s important to choose art that would complement your house and not make it look too cluttered.

So, look around you and think, what would fit in well. For instance, if you have a minimalist home design, blank walls, you might want to add some subtle colors with the paintings of plants. This picture of monstera deliciosa would fit perfectly in a minimalist home:

Also, it is important that your art collection conveys a certain emotion that would fill up your space and make it feel complete. That’s why you need to research your art interests first before buying artwork for your collection.

2. Estimate Your Budget

Another point for prior research is the initial budget for your art collection. This budget will help you decide, which artworks will start your collection and where you will buy them.

When estimating your budget, don’t go overboard. Instead, start small; the initial budget of $1,000 would be enough to purchase the first artworks.

You will also need to create an outline of your budget for all your future purchases. It should include how much you have spent and are planning to spend on artwork in the future. To make it concise and clear, you can use online editors from platforms like TrustMyPaper or Supreme Dissertations, which will also help you proofread and organize your budget outline.

Also, when writing your artwork collection budget, decide, whether you want to start with one original piece on which you’d spend your entire budget or a few smaller and less expensive artworks. Whatever you choose, remember that an art collection is about quality, not quantity.

3. Find Art Places that Won’t Rip You Off

Now, as you have figured out the art style that’s close to your heart and your initial budget, you have a better understanding of where you might go to purchase the first artwork for your collection.

There are places where you can buy art that meets any budget and taste. Here are a few suggestions:

  • Art fairs – There, you will not only see the artwork for yourself but will also be able to communicate with the author, discuss the style of the artwork, and maybe even get a discount.

Credit: Instagram

  • Graduate shows – Art school alumni often participate in exhibitions where they sell their artworks, which are often quite unique, at a low price. You can take advantage of that and also support young artists, who might one day become famous.

Credit: Instagram

  • Online art platforms – Here, you can find rare gems that fit any art style, like this unique pop art poster of Queen Elizabeth with her favorite corgi:

However, if you’re looking for artwork from a particular artist but don’t want to spend a fortune on it, follow them on Instagram to see whether they are selling copies of their pictures that you would like to have in your collection. This is a great option for those who are not interested in buying expensive art but would like to support their favorite artist.

4. Work with an Art Consultant

If you are interested in purchasing expensive artworks and are planning to re-sell some of the items in the future, you might need an art consultant to help you curate your collection.

There are a lot of benefits that you can get from a partnership with an art consultant as well:

  • You will get original art pieces – An art consultant knows when and where to look for such artworks, and you won’t have to waste your time browsing the websites and attending the art fairs.
  • Your art collection will be properly managed – Besides helping you find valuable art pieces, your art advisor will also help organize your collection. For example, you can hire a professional that specializes in art from an online writing service, who will help you write descriptions for artwork and create a review, which you can later publish on different online resources before re-selling it.
  • You will have the opinion of a professional – An art advisor has the experience and education needed to find art that would fit your style and can differentiate an original piece from a copy.

Of course, your budget should allow you to hire an art consultant, which isn’t cheap. Typically, such advisors charge their clients 20% of the price of an artwork, so you need to be prepared for such cooperation financially. But it is definitely worth the money if you have big plans for your art collection.

Wrapping Up

Starting your own art collection is an exciting event in your life, but you can make a lot of amateur mistakes that would affect the quality of your collection.

So, make sure you research and find your favorite art style and evaluate your budget first. After that, you can start looking for the art you like within your budget. And, if you have ambitious plans, it’s always a good idea to get an art consultant, who will help you fill your collection with unique and original artworks.

 

Guest post by Nicole Garrison

One of the most significant joys in life is owning your own house. A place to call your own serves a sense of comfort like no other. Owning your own home means you can do just about anything you want with the area. If you are looking to make your home space as unique as possible, it would be best to express yourself through your surroundings. You might want to consider remodeling it to your liking from the inside out, so the house radiates a sense of comfort and refuge.

Not only does remodeling your house make it a better living space for you, but it also bumps up its resale value. And one of the best ways to do that is to remodel the exterior, especially the curb walk-up.

Your home’s curb appeal is the first thing you or anyone else notice while driving up the front. And trust us when we say this, regardless of how good or bad it is, the curb appeal has a lasting impact on what people think about you or the property in general. Whether it’s a group of guests or potential buyers, the curb acts as the first exposure to outsiders. Thus, it should have a certain appeal to it.

With that said, here are four tips to enhance your property’s curb appeal!

Fix the driveway

A nice, smooth, and clean driveway is always a big plus! It certainly looks better than a cracked one full of dirt and loose soil. In fact, some towns and counties slap you with a hefty fine if you have a damaged pavement as it is a potential health hazard.

And if you live in a state where it snows like crazy, such as Connecticut, bad pavement can become quite a nuisance. Imagine having to shovel snow and mud early in the morning.

So here’s our first tip: consider fixing your driveway paving in Stamford CT, or any place for that matter, to keep your property looking sleek from the front. Not only will re-doing the asphalt increase your house’s curb appeal, but it will also make life a lot easier for you during challenging seasons. Besides, who doesn’t like driving up to a smooth pavement after a tiring day of work?

Remodel the front of the house

One of the best ways to increase the houses’ initial appeal is to work on the house’s frontal structure. Imagine yourself walking down the road in front of your home. What would impress you if you were a passerby?

Consider both minor adjustments that add to the house’s charm. Add a patio, install a fancy door, or paint the house’s front for a fresh look. Changing things up and working with aesthetics can drastically alter your house’s appearance from rags to riches and make for a much more appealing property.

You can’t go wrong with landscaping

Everyone likes seeing greenery. Psychologically, being exposed to nature and natural vegetation can increase one’s mood and create a calming effect.

Landscaping can do wonders for your home’s curb appeal. A lovely sheet of freshly manicured grass and perhaps a row of flowers will spruce up the exterior charm. Coupled with ground lights in the garden and voila! You have all the makings for beautiful evenings in the garden with friends and family!

Work with the roof

Naturally, one’s line of sight moves from the bottom to the top areas of the building. And you wouldn’t want your roof looking like a broken shack while everything below it is spick and span, would you?

Once you’re done with all the groundwork, consider looking at the higher side of one’s line of sight to seal the deal on the curb appeal! Look at the roofing situation. Whether you have shingles on a sloping roof of a dead angle, it would be wise to make the top look as presentable as possible. Fixing up the roof includes changing the shingles, repainting the pipes, and cleaning up the house’s upper half to create a more charming and presentable impression.

Conclusion

If you are thinking about whether enhancing or remodeling your house is worth it or not, the answer is a hard YES! Not only do the aesthetics increase the property’s value, but a neat and tidy place is more enjoyable to live in. Consider these incremental changes as a boost in your living standard and personal satisfaction while at the same time adding more to your property’s longevity and lifetime value.

During the pandemic, home is where we found refuge and solace. Therefore, our houses must be peaceful, serene, and aesthetically pleasing, which is the opposite of a rental bathroom. Think about a rental bathroom, and what is the first image that comes to mind? Mismatched fixtures, insufficient lighting, and outdated color schemes. This image is enough to give us chills and keep us up at night.

The best idea is to redecorate your bathroom. But renovation costs are very high, and a bathroom makeover can be twice as expensive. Why is that, you ask? Because for a successful bathroom project, you have to hire many different people. Many people have a hand in the project, from the electrician to the Floor installer to the plumber. The average cost of a bathroom renovation can be at least $12,000 for minor upgrades.

A bathroom model is expensive, but it can increase the value of your property. According to the National Association of the Remodelling Industry, homeowners can get 50% of the cost they invest in bathroom renovations. Therefore, experts suggest fixing up your bathroom before putting the house on the market. A bathroom can make or break a real estate deal.

A word to the wise

If you are going to remodel your house, you have to provide high-quality bathroom services to the laborers. Therefore, rent portable bathrooms from companies with excellent reputations. For example, Oregon residents can rent porta potties from American SaniCan in Oregon for the best service.

Furthermore, we recommend doing most of the work on your own to cut down costs. It is better to make small changes to your bathroom instead of doing a complete overhaul. Try to update old items and modernize fixtures. Since bathrooms usually have limited space, it is better to make functional changes to the design.

Think about Textures

High-quality textures can instantly upgrade your bathroom. They create a cohesive look and create a visually dramatic anchor. Bold colors can give a modern look, whereas floral patterns add a vintage touch.

Keeping this general advice in mind, we have a list of seven ways you can spruce up your bathroom.

Change The Ceiling Tiles

If your bathroom has a busy pattern on the ceiling, then your bathroom can end up feeling too congested. It is better to use simple coverings and monochromes to cover up the roof. There are two ways you can go with this. Either cover the ceiling with epoxy color or use contact paper. If you want to use epoxy paint, keep in mind that it is a very labor-intensive process. Not only do you have to paint the surface many times, but you also need much ventilation for drying. Contact paper is a comparatively quicker fix.

Pro Tip: To deflate any bubbles in your contact paper, stick a pin in them. They will automatically flatten.

Lay Down Some Flooring

You can lay down tiles or use the other method by laying down vinyl sheets. We recommend using vinyl. Not only is it easier to handle this covering, but you can also change the look when you get bored of it. The best way to go about it is by measuring twice and cutting once. As a rule of thumb, always buy extra tiles in case of mishaps. You can use masking tape to map out the floor and cut your sheets accordingly. Give the bathroom a good scrub and wipe the surface with rubbing alcohol before beginning.

Hang A Shower Curtain

Sometimes renovation can be as simple as just hanging some curtains. A curtain can change the look of your bathroom and secure your privacy. It is a great strategy to hide a permanent fixture without spending too much on demolition. Remember to buy curtains with a different texture to give an overall pleasing effect. For a more personalized touch, sew your curtain yourself with a mixture of plains, patterns, and prints.

Paint Your Bathroom

Decorators suggest painting as a quick way to refresh your house. Ask your landlord for permission before you paint your bathroom. If you want an elegant look, then dark colors are the way to go. But, if bright and cheerful is more your style, then choose a pastel color. Pastels go well with vintage fixtures as well. Not sure about which color will look best? Color it all in neutral and classic tones to make it feel less cluttered. You can create an accent wall to create a dramatic impact without putting in too much effort.

Change The Light Fixtures

Rentals usually have outdated fixtures in bathrooms that give a very dull look to the room. Fortunately, there is a quick face for this. You can either change the shades or replace fixtures with modern lighting. But electrical work is dangerous, so take all necessary precautions before you try to do it on your own. If you find yourself too out of your depth, then you can follow an online tutorial on the subject.

Storage Ideas

Storage can play a decorative role as well. Try a floating shelf if you have limited space. You can also use your imagination for unconventional storage options. For example, use a vintage cart to add an eclectic touch to your home. For a more ethnic touch, use rattan baskets that add character and functionality to any space.

Other Ideas

You can retouch the grouting. Not only will it beautify your tiles, but it will also prevent water damage. Watch this video to learn how you can do it on your own. You might also add fresh plants for a splash of green in the room. Furthermore, plants can keep the loo fresh smelling. Get colorful towels to introduce color to your bathroom. Give your fixtures a good clean to reveal bright surfaces. Soak cotton balls in lemon juice and wrap them on your faucets. Keep it like this overnight, and you will get a sparkling bathroom. Add a mirror to your bathroom to bring some light to the area. Wall mirrors can also conceal flaws and give a modern touch to the place.

Conclusion

A home improvement project can add much value to your home. But, if you live in a rental, then the rules are different for you. People who live in rentals can not make any lasting changes to their homes. Always get prior permission before you make permanent changes to the structure. Furthermore, keep everything you remove from the bathroom so that you can return them when you move out. Lastly, leave the tough stuff to the professionals.