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What’s the importance of the construction industry in the Australian economy? A report by the National Industry Insights shows that this industry produces more than $360 billion in revenue that generates 9% of the country’s GDP. It’s estimated that, by 2024, the home improvement and construction industry will employ 1.28 million Australians as well. But occupational hazards have made construction and home remodeling/renovation one of the most dangerous industries in the country. According to Safe Work Australia, 17 construction workers died in 2020, and this industry was considered the second-worst for employees in the same year. So, how can employers ensure the safety of their workers? We’ve compiled some suggestions here to help constructors enhance workers’ protection:

Organize health & safety training

It’s the employer’s responsibility to prepare employees for occupational hazards associated with the construction industry. Therefore, health & safety training ensures that workers are familiar with the dangers that can befall them and strategies to prevent such accidents from occurring. Even OSHA recommends similar training sessions for construction employees. These sessions teach them about escaping dangerous situations, e.g., working at height, in confined spaces, or with heavy machinery.

Establish a safety culture

Worksite managers and home improvement contractors need to establish a culture of safety in the working environment. Prioritize workers’ health, safety, and overall well-being. Safety culture includes not just implementing the suggestions we’ll talk about now. But it also means that you must remove hazards even before they harm your workers.

There have been several instances where construction workers were diagnosed with mesothelioma – cancer caused by asbestos exposure. So, eliminate all traces of dust, mold, and asbestos. If you’re working in Southeast Queensland, look up “asbestos removal Brisbane” on the internet to get specialized help for clearing toxic substances from the premises. Similarly, run a quick local search to identify companies in your neighborhood that provide niche services to keep your worksite safe and enhance your safety culture.

Keep the first-aid kit at hand

Accidents are often unprecedented and require instant action to reduce their consequences. Thus, ensure that finding the first-aid kit isn’t difficult. Employees must know how to locate it. Ascertain that it’s visible and accessible to encounter accidents when you least expect them. Remember that “time is of the essence” when a worker gets wounded. A quick remedy can potentially save a person’s life. Hence, delegate to one employee the task of keeping the first-aid kit well-stocked for disasters.

Avoid crowded areas

Ensure that the workplace isn’t crowded to avoid unfortunate accidents. People often assemble to watch heavy machinery at work on-site for enjoyment. Caution dictates that spectators should keep their distance from these machines and must never approach them beyond the limit of safety. Moreover, healthcare guidelines during this pandemic discourage crowded workplaces to eliminate the risk of infection among workers. So, ensure people remain distant from the operating location.

Wear head protection

Ensure that construction workers have access to proper PPE (personal protection equipment) to avoid injuries/fatalities. Falling objects contribute heavily to workplace accidents. Protective devices – therefore – eliminate dangers associated with threats such as exposed wiring and low-hanging items. In areas where workers are vulnerable to falling objects, wearing “hard hats” ascertains the safety of your employees. This piece of equipment protects workers against hidden/sudden dangers on-site.

Ensure forklift safety

According to OSHA, forklifts account for 100 deaths and 95,000 injuries annually in all industries. But further injuries/fatalities can be prevented by implementing forklift safety measures. Forklifts are dangerous machines only experienced professionals must operate. These machines are also operated nearby other workers so injuries can be diminished by strict regulations. These regulations dictate how forklifts must now be modified with prior approval only.

Implement fall protection

Poor scaffolding contributes to several wounds/deaths in the home improvement industry. OSHA reports that around 2.3 million construction employees use this technique annually. It’s even dangerous when appropriately erected, and only alert workers can escape falling. So, it’s essential to inspect scaffolding for stability. Transport material carefully upwards and consider weight limits when ascending them. Also, keep framing 10 feet away from power lines to make them safer for your workers.

Display clear signs

Accidents don’t engulf construction employees only, but even bystanders are also vulnerable to such dangers on-site. It’s crucial to display clear signs of danger for both workers and onlookers. This practice will highlight the risks associated with the workplace and strongly advise people to take precautions. For instance, these signs can indicate hazards, including falling objects, chemicals in the vicinity, or heavy machinery nearby. It constitutes a cost-effective method of saving people’s lives.

Employee wellness programs

Many employers organize employee wellness programs targeted towards improving the mental and physical health of construction workers. These programs will cover workers’ dietary habits, obesity management, hypertension screening, and alcohol abuse to prevent burnout in your organization.

Moreover, employers must ensure that workers aren’t consuming junk food on-site. Focus on healthy eating/drinking with fruits and vegetables. Keep food trucks off the location and promote nutritional meals among employees.

There’s an app for everything

We’re living in a modern world where there’s a smartphone application available for anything you need! Similarly, we have digital applications for the construction industry you can install to monitor the workplace effectively. We have wearable devices that alert everyone when an accident occurs. These devices have become popular among construction employees because they minimize danger to workers. So, use these “smart” solutions to enhance the safety of home improvement workers.

Conclusion

What job is the most hazardous for an Australian worker? Experts have listed all occupations based on hazards associated with them, and construction – after agriculture and transport – ranks third! Some calculations show that 123 construction workers died during 2008-09 to 2012-13. These deaths were caused by falling from heights, being struck by falling objects, or getting electrocuted. This industry also accounts for 16% of workplace deaths and 11% of workplace injury claims. Investing in workers’ safety isn’t just mandatory for employers, but it is also cost-effective since every dollar spent on safety training saves you 4-6 dollars! So, do implement the safety tips we’ve mentioned in this article.

Fireplace

Adding a fireplace to your living room is a great way to create a cosy and welcoming atmosphere. Just imagine sitting in front of a nice fire with some hot cocoa while it’s raining or snowing outside; colder seasons couldn’t get much more romantic than that. However, turning this idea into a reality requires some practical thinking, as well. So, to help you choose the best fireplace for your home, here are five things to consider. 

Set your budget

First things first, you need to set your budget before you even start looking at fireplaces. Plus, keep in mind that you budget should include the price of not just buying the fireplace, but also installing it and actually using it. Some types, like a wood-burning or a pellet fireplace, cost more initially but are less expensive to run. Gas fireplaces, on the other hand, cost less to build but more to use. Electric fireplaces are the most economical, both in terms of purchase and in terms of use, but you might not achieve the kind of vibe you’re looking for. All in all, consider the price of different types, and see what you can fit into your budget with the fewest sacrifices. 

Fireplace

Think about how much heat you need

The best type of fireplace for you may also depend on the amount of heat you need. For example, if you want your fireplace to be the focal point of a large living room, pellet and gas fireplaces would be the most efficient choice. Moreover, if you have a bigger than average living room, you can also get double sided fireplaces that can do an even better job of keeping you warm. On the other hand, if you want your fireplace to be a part of a smaller, cosier room, you can also go with wood, bioethanol, or electric options, as they are easy to use, and they don’t produce too much heat. 

Fireplace

Don’t forget the flue system 

Needless to say, if you choose to install a wood-burning fireplace, you will also need a chimney. This is why this type costs a bit more initially, as there’s plenty of work to be done. Pellet fireplaces also require a flue, but a less invasive one. Moreover, gas fireplaces only need a PVC piping flue system – but they also need a gas connection. Finally, electric and bioethanol fireplaces are the least demanding – the electric ones only need a power outlet, while the bioethanol ones don’t need any of the listed things.

Fireplace

Choose the right material

No matter what kind of fireplace you choose to install, it’s bound to be one of the most prominent elements in the room. However, this is also why you want to make sure it actually matches the rest of your room – and this is where materials come into play. There are many different materials suitable for covering a fireplace, from steel to brick. So, for example, if you’re interested in a bit more rustic design, fieldstone would be a perfect choice. On the other hand, if you prefer a sleek, modern look, you need your fireplace to shine, and the best option for that is metal. 

Fireplace

Create a cosier look

If you want to create a cosy and warm vibe in your living room, your fireplace can help you with that. For example, you can add a few extra lighting options, like string lights, lanterns, or scented candles. It’s a great way to create a soothing and romantic vibe. Or, you can also decorate your fireplace with family photos, art pieces, or your favourite collection of figurines. It would allow you to create a unique theme, and it would make your fireplace stand out even more. 

Fireplace

A fireplace can be an amazing addition to any home, as it can help you bring the design of your home to the next level. So, if this is something you’ve always wanted to have, consider the listed things, find more décor ideas online, and your fireplace is bound to fit your home perfectly.

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.

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 lawn with clean cut edges 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.

There are always ways to save money; especially in a society like America or Australia. We just become so used to creature comforts we forget we don’t need a majority of the things we spend money on.

There are options for saving money you may never even have considered. Here we’ll cover five ways to cut down your electric bill in a practical way that doesn’t involve anything too extreme, but a few things you may not have considered.

Carefully Monitor Electricity Use To Find Eliminate Waste

Where is the highest draw for your electricity? Is it in heating, in A/C, among the electrical devices you use? Look at the things in your home that use electricity, monitor how long they regularly operate, and calculate out what percentage of your monthly bill they represent. Toasters, washers, dryers, dishwashers, HVAC—these tend to be the high costs.

That said, lights can be expensive, too. It’s much like a leaky faucet. Sure, it’s only a drip every two seconds; but you’re losing a gallon a day. Well, leave the lights on all day and night, and that costs you money. When you leave a room, turn off the lights.

Invest In “Low” Or “No” Energy Appliances

There are actually low-energy lighting fixtures that use motion sensors to illuminate a space when someone walks through, only turning on when people are in the room. Additionally, you can buy low-energy appliances built to use a minimum of electricity. Beyond that, certain products exist that use no electricity at all.

For example, there are gravity lamps that work sort of like a cuckoo clock, where weight in conjunction with a fulcrum provides energy. When the weight hits the ground, you just reset it, and off you go.

Lights like these being used as alternatives to primary lighting can pay for themselves over time. Beyond gravity lights, consider LEDs as a replacement for incandescent bulbs. These provide high levels of light for low levels of electricity, and may even be more energy-efficient than things like gravity lamps owing to initial purchase expense and overall lifetime.

Explore Local Energy Rates—That Alone Might Halve It

The larger your community, the higher the likelihood you’ll have more than one choice for electricity. The way that electricity is produced, and the way the company producing the electricity runs itself, will do much to impact the price. Sometimes people buy a property with utility bills that they never question, they just keep paying.

Well, if you go to the following website, you may find that cutting the electrical bill in half every month is as simple as switching providers. Some energy operations use wind and solar, and the result is it costs them more to produce electricity. Traditional methods are often a lot more cost-effective.

Change Your Expectation On Levels Of Comfort

Electricity overuse often has to do with creature comforts. Maybe you’ve got a room in your house with a little fountain that plugs into a wall. It’s beautiful, and provides a fine ambiance—but it’s on 24/7; meaning it’s a constant drain costing you a predictable amount of money every year. Perhaps find another way of getting that ambiance, or eliminate it.

Off-Grid Alternative Energy And Associated Tax Relief

A solar array will cost about $100 per 100-Watt solar panel. A full family house will want about 50 panels; so you’re looking at $5k for those alone. You’ll probably spend another $5k on mounting equipment, cables, surge controllers, power inverters, and battery arrays—if you go the DIY route, which most folks can figure out.

For another $5k, you can install a wind-turbine as a backup. For $15k, you can be grid-independent. Add a diesel generator in the garage in the event the sun goes away or the wind stops, and you’ve always got energy when you need it in a way that’s totally independent of grid-based electricity.

Americans use about 10,909 kWh (kilo-Watt hours) of electricity a year, at about 13.31 cents per kWh. That’s a little under $1,452 a year. Spend $15k on grid-independent power, and in less than 10 years, you’ll be making money on your investment—you’ll have totally eliminated the bill; that’s a bit more than halving it! Also, some states offer tax incentives for green energy, which can offset installation costs.

Energy Reduction Options To Consider

Explore alternative solutions and tax breaks, change comfort expectations, seek cheaper electrical options in your area, invest in low-energy devices like LEDs or gravity lamps, and monitor how you use electricity to trim the fat. Moves like these cut your electrical bill in half, and may almost eliminate it.

rental

Most landlords wish for a stable, preferably long-term, relationship with their tenants. However, you cannot expect to have a harmonious and lucrative relation if you don’t offer anything in return. When they come to take a look at the rental, they don’t want to find a place in dire need of repair but a cosy nest they can live in. With that in mind, here are some tips on how to make your rental more appealing to the prospective tenants.

Obtain home insurance

Your rental is your source of income, so naturally, you wish for it and your belongings to be safe and from a tenants’ point of view, it shows that you are professional and thorough. Also, they would be at peace knowing that, in case something unexpected happens, they don’t have to worry about being blamed or expected to pay for items that got destroyed. Naturally, you need to do detailed research into different insurance options since you would want it to cover as much as possible – some even cover up to 12 months of rent if the property isn’t habitable after some disaster. Obtaining a comprehensive insurance policy is a practical move both in terms of security and the impression you will leave on your potential tenants.

rental

Invest in practical furniture

One of the elements that tenants appreciate in any home is functional and comfortable furniture. It often happens that they need to sleep on old sofas so if you have room for a proper bed, that will definitely pique their interest. If you don’t have enough space, you can purchase a pull-out sofa but make sure to test it so you are certain that one can get a good night’s sleep on it. As for the rest of the furniture, it depends on the size of the property and your budget. However, avoid overstuffing the rental because it will seem smaller and cramped. Also, you might be surprised by the popularity of sustainable furniture, so for instance by opting for a set of chairs made from bamboo, you will attract millennials who make up a big portion of current tenants and who are well-known environmentalists. 

rental

 

Provide quality appliances 

Perhaps the most decisive elements in the decision-making process of a tenant are quality appliances. Most will not even mind that much if the place is a bit smaller than they searched for initially as long as the appliances they use daily work properly. Provide them with a stove and the fridge for the kitchen so they can prepare and store food and feel more at home and also consider purchasing a washing machine. Since many rentals don’t have it, opting for a quality washing machine will give you an advantage from the tenants’ perspective. In general, if you can afford it, you may invest in energy-efficient appliances which is an excellent solution for decreasing the energy bills in the future.

rental

Improve the curb appeal 

Although not even a lavish exterior guarantees that the interior is in a good state, it still leaves a strong first impression with tenants. If the lawn is messy, tend to the grass and any bushes and trees and clear out the driveway. Another thing to consider is the front doors – sturdy front doors in combination with windows with functional locks give out the notion of safety and are something which will be highly valued by any tenant. If the current doors are in a state of repair, you need to take care of them immediately since the beauty of the interior will fade if they feel unprotected. Also, if your rental is a house, you can consider adding external motion sensor lights so that any unwanted guests are warded off due to this extra layer of security.

rental

Liven it up with some colour

Chipped paint is not something that tenants will think of as charming, so fixing such issues is essential for a long-term relationship with tenants. Also, adding a splash of colour can be a good idea to change the atmosphere of the rental. Naturally, you needn’t go too wild because dark purple walls might not be to everybody’s liking. What you can do is paint the rental in some neutral colours to refresh it and make it appear more spacious and brighter and then you can add a few walls in some colour that pops, such as blue or yellow. You can achieve the same effect with furniture, so white walls would go splendidly with a turquoise armchair.

rental

Conclusion

In the world of real estate, safety comes first. Only once you take care of that, you can tend to functionality and aesthetic appeal to attract reliable long-term tenants.

We all plan to move out of our house due to rent, or a new place, at least once. As much as we get excited to move to the new home, there is a hidden element of stress that later turns into the most nerve-wracking thing. If you ask people how they feel while moving out, they will answer that it is costly and tiring. People find moving out hectic or exhausting because they have to pack everything and plan their budget for carrying heavy material and furniture from one place to another.

It might surprise you, but if we get to look at the top five stressful events for human beings, moving-out ranks the third after death and divorce. For many people moving out is a life-changing event that brings a lot of panic and anxiety. It requires you to pack everything that you once bought and spent weeks in decorating your house. Imagine packing it first and then unpacking it again after reaching your new place. Double stress and more tiring days ahead till you finally get settled.

If you live in Seattle, then packing your stuff and moving out can be a real pain in the neck and on your wallet. Seattle has houses built on a large area; this means that an average home is big enough. Moving out of such a big house can cost a lot, and you cannot do it yourself. You will need to hire some moving companies in the Seattle area to assist you in moving your stuff.

Moving out of one place to another undoubtedly costs a lot. Therefore, let us explore how we can move out while staying in budget.

Plan wisely

Since you know that you will be moving out sooner or later, it is better to plan your budget. Before you start planning, get done with necessary and unavoidable payments. Be sure to pay your rent, cover all other bills, and not owe any debt to anyone. Once you tick off all the necessary fees, start planning the moving-out budget with the money you have. Check out the prices of various moving companies and compare what matches your budget.

Save on boxes

Moving box

The first thing that you need while packing your stuff is lots of boxes. Instead of paying for boxes, try to find some in usable conditions to get the job done. You can bring in boxes from the workplace such as printer paper boxes; they are strong enough and spacious. You can ask a friend or neighbor who has recently moved in. You can also ask at your local stores for empty boxes that they do not intend to use.

Cut a bit early on utility

Utility services are an integral part of living, and we only have to pay monthly bills. If the moving out date does not coincide with the bill payment date, it is wise to cut these services early. And if you are moving to a new location, search for services that can help you get the best deals from the utility services for the initial few months.

Declutter or donate some stuff

If the new house has the same area or a bit larger than the previous one, you might not need to declutter. If you move from a larger to a small house, you will have to let go of things. You can sell the stuff that might not fit in the new home or occupies a lot of space. Selling extra furniture or stuff can buy you some extra cash that you can use later. Try to pack the necessary stuff first and see if you need the unwanted material. You can sell old books that no one reads anymore at low prices and bag the money. Decluttering will also reduce the weight for which your movers will charge money. The lesser the weight, the minimum you will have to pay.

Plan your moving date wisely

Packing and moving

Many companies offer affordable rates at a specific time of year as compared to the rest of them. If you plan to move out, pick a date that can buy you around a 20-30% discount on moving services. Moving between October to April can save you money than moving in summers. Summers are usually a full swing moving season as many families wait for summer vacations to move without any hassle.

Conclusion

Moving out and packing every household item is indeed stressful and costly. There is a lot that drains you with the moving process, instead of making it complicated, start with one step at a time. You can also tap on your savings while planning your moving-out budget. Try to look for ways that can save you money instead of spending extra. You might be excited to buy new stuff; if you are moving around holidays, you can save a lot from sales and discounts offer.

Many of us have been spending some extra time at home during these last couple of months due to the Covid-19 pandemic and for some of us, that can be a weird experience. If you were used to being at work all day and now you’re forced to work from home, this can change your perspective on some of the aspects of your home.

Lighting is one of the main things most people realized is suboptimal in their homes during this bizarre period. Should you upgrade your lighting right now, however, or should you wait? Here are 9 reasons why you should upgrade your home’s lighting now.

Changing your home’s lighting fixtures or bulbs is usually only done out of necessity – the bulbs have burned out or the lighting fixtures themselves are so old they’ve become unsafe. There are quite a few other good reasons to upgrade your lighting, however.

Extra brightness

LED lights are usually touted as the best lighting option on the market right now and they are indeed. However, even simply getting a newer fluorescent or incandescent light bulb will likely increase the brightness of your lighting fixture considerably. Plus, if the brightness was particularly insufficient, some lighting fixtures are optimized for maximizing the brightness output of their bulbs too.

kitchen lighting

Energy-efficiency and lowering expenses

While all light bulbs can be bright, where LED light bulbs really surpass all other types is their energy efficiency. There’s plenty of research done about this such as this lighting comparison guide by the Natural Resources Defense Council (2) and many others (3) and it all points to LED bulbs as the most cost-effective option. High-quality LED bulbs, on average, recoup their costs through the energy they save after ~3 years.

Lower maintenance costs and efforts too

LED bulbs are cost-effective not only because of the energy they save but because of they last longer. This means that you’ll need to replace them less often and save more time, effort, and money from constantly changing your light bulbs.

Possible tax deductions

Depending on the specifics of your home or building, you may very well be up for a tax deduction as much as $1.80 per square foot or at least $0.60 depending on when your building was built, what its size is, and how much you’ve managed to cut off your energy costs (4).

Environmental approach and safety

All light bulbs are recyclable but they are all still different. Unlike their alternatives, LED light bulbs don’t have any mercury at all which means a couple of different things – 1) they are safer to handle and dispose of and 2) they are more environmentally-friendly.

Add value to your home

Even if you’re not thinking of moving out any time soon, adding value to your home and property is still a great idea. And one of the most cost-effective ways to do that is to upgrade your lighting fixtures with newer, better-looking, more effective, and more efficient models. Replacing all bulbs with LED bulbs and installing some track or recessed lighting in place of the older chandeliers can drastically increase your home’s value.

Boost security

Most homes have really poor outdoor lighting around them since homeowners tend to view it as unnecessary. Outdoor lighting isn’t just great for improving the look of your property, however, it’s also a great security tool. Studies have shown (5) that robberies and other crimes are less likely to occur on well-lit streets and properties, so installing additional lighting like outdoor motion security lights, for example, can be a great way to improve your home’s security.

house lamp

Protect your eyesight

If you’re just now finding yourself in a work-from-home situation, you may be noticing how suboptimal your lighting is for work. Bad lighting can be really terrible for your eyes over time and can lead to things such as headaches or migraines all the way to eyesight problems.

Make your home more comfortable to live in

Last but not least, good lighting means more comfort. Regardless of how much time you spend at home, it’s time that should be spent with a blissful smile on your face. And while good lighting isn’t the solution to all our problems, it’s definitely a great way to add more comfort and amenity to our living space.

 

Author Bio:

Arthur Smith is the main editor of LEDwatcher.com, a blog on all things LED and solar lighting. With years of experience in these fields, he’s passionate about finding new alternatives to traditional lighting and learning everything he can about renewable energy.

Air quality is something that it’s easy to overlook. When you live in the same house for years on end, air quality can steadily decline, and you may not even realize it until you’re coughing and sneezing like you’ve got some perpetual cold. Even if that isn’t the case, there are collateral negative effects of poor air quality in your home.

Following we’ll briefly cover three negative impacts that come from poor indoor air quality. Working with professionals to rectify such issues is absolutely integral for more than just your safety.

Direct Health Impacts

Certainly, the first and most obvious negative impact of poor indoor air quality pertains to the health of those exposed to it. Particulates can spread disease, and they can induce allergic reactions which otherwise may not occur. While it’s also true that long-term exposure to poor air quality can initiate some level of adaptation, this isn’t going to be a positive thing.

Think of it this way: you can learn to walk without both feet, but the prosthetic is surely less desirable than a good foot. Similarly, you can live in a space where the air is terrible, but it’s going to make life difficult. This is especially true for young children in development, and the elderly. The lungs need clear, pure, clean air for best functionality and overall health.

A Reduction In Property Value, And Integrity

Poor air quality will actually impact your property’s value because it will impact structural integrity over time. A clogged up HVAC system will accumulate dust and break down, and parasites become attracted to the dust. Insects go after the parasites, vermin go after the insects, and a bit of an ecosystem can develop in the walls of your home.

Poor air will lead to other problems that continue to propound over time, steadily destroying your property’s value. If the air makes people sick, they won’t want to buy it. Bad smells can also sour an otherwise likely sale.

Of course, this will depend on the specific type of poor air you’re contending with. Sometimes it’s poor owing to vast amounts of particulate matter floating about, sometimes you’re dealing with a chemical issue. Certain fumes can be corrosive.

Increased Maintenance Needs Owing To Dust Accumulation

If there’s poor air quality owing to circulation loss, there will be an accumulation of particulate matter that is steady. Dust can come to cover everything. The worse the air quality is, the more likely it is that this phenomenon will develop. If you treat the problem rather than the cause, you’ll spend unnecessary time performing maintenance that isn’t strictly necessary.

It’s necessary to keep things clean, but there are other steps that represent less work in the fullness of time which may be a better option. Think of it this way: if you get headaches because you’re dehydrated, it’s better to drink a bottle of water than take a bunch of painkillers. Likewise, with air circulation issues, figure out the source of the problem.

Avoiding Common Mistakes And Keeping Your Air At Its Cleanest

To fix a home or other property that’s suffering from poor indoor air quality, there are associated best practices. Sometimes the issue comes from outdoor pollutants entering a property owing to an opening somewhere that needs to be fortified. Sometimes you just need to service your HVAC system. Sometimes home materials are the issue.

Remember the health issues associated with asbestos? Well, sometimes home is made of things that break down over time and eventually make people sick. What this means is you want to court professional assistance as you go about seeking solutions to air issues of this type—you also need to know what you may be doing wrong so you can avoid such action.

Here’s a great resource to help you identify and avoid indoor air quality mistakes by IsoldMyHouse.com. It’s absolutely fundamental to be proactive in air quality management, and that means starting off with the right habits.

If you have been doing things poorly or improperly, now is a great time to change things up. Cleaning your air has many benefits, including increased health, increased property value, and a reduction in necessary maintenance. Accordingly, know what mistakes to avoid, and the proper preventative action.

There is no denying the fact that a clean and organized living space is a lot more comfortable, relaxing, and inviting than a cluttered one. While most homeowners pay much attention to keeping their interior spaces sparkling clean, the same doesn’t hold for outdoor spaces. What they don’t realize is that it is just as easy for an outdoor area like the patio to look untidy and messy, which can take away from their purpose to relax and enjoy the great outdoors or host fun dinner parties.

Clearing up a cluttered patio is pretty simple, and it will make your patio a whole lot more functional. Here are some ways to get rid of the clutter and give your patio a fresh, new look:

Decide the purpose of your patio

Every homeowner has a different goal they wish for their patio to fulfill. Perhaps you just want a cozy place where your family can sit back and relax in the evening, and the kids can play. Or maybe you are after a more sophisticated vibe to impress your guests when you host your next dinner. Some people use their patios to grow plants and do a bit of gardening. Knowing what you want to do with your patio can help you decide which of your existing items should stay and which things you don’t want.

Get rid of the clutter

Once you know the purpose of your patio, it is time to get rid of any clutter you don’t need. Start with any of the items first that takes more space, such as furniture, tables, planters, and pots before you begin sorting the smaller things. Once the big stuff is out of the way, the place will automatically start looking tidier.

Any items that are too dirty, broken, or worn out to be used should be thrown away. If you have a large patio and much clutter to get rid of, it is a good idea to seek the help of experts who deal with rubbish removal Sydney; they can get rid of your junk quickly and efficiently and take some of the burdens of cleaning off of you.

Make a style statement with lighting

Good lighting doesn’t just allow you to enjoy your patio after the sun has gone down, but it can also help you make a style statement. If you have a small patio, string lights or LED candles can provide sufficient lighting for a warm, relaxing feel. Remember, a patio doesn’t need much light; you need to aim for a soft glow that illuminates the various sections of the courtyard. For instance, you would want some light near the dining area and some sun to highlight the plants or pathways.

Pick the right furniture

Your choice of furniture, especially the seating arrangement, can make or break your experience of relaxing on your patio at the end of the day, and so, it is essential to get it right. Whether you want a daybed, lounge chair or hammock to sit back and relax in is entirely your choice. Just make sure you have some lovely pillows and a cozy blanket to match. Investing in some floor pillows is also a good idea for added seating space.

Invest in storage boxes

Every patio has some supplies that are used regularly but do not need to be out in the open at all times. For instance, you might have blankets, cushions, and pillows for the couch that you regularly use when relaxing on the patio, but leaving them on the sofa could expose them to dirt and reduce their lifespan.

For such items that you wish to keep in the courtyard but just don’t want to be visible, you can invest in storage boxes. You can store anything in these boxes, from gardening supplies and kids’ toys to random bits and bobs that you have lying around. Using these boxes will keep your patio looking a lot more organized.

The Bottom Line

By getting rid of any unnecessary clutter and investing in the right accessories and furniture, even a small patio can turn into a lovely place to unwind at the end of your tiring day. So, start working on building the patio of your dreams today – it is one of the best investments you can make as a homeowner!