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Use an Old Paper Bag to Ripen Your Avocados in a Flash

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Avocados are a real superfood – you’ll find them packed with feel-good carbohydrates and a plethora of healthy fats. Of course, the avocado stands out for more than its satisfying taste and nutritional benefits; it’s also one of those fruits that is a nightmare to get right when you’re trying to choose between ripe and green.

It’s hard to walk through the supermarket and find an avocado that doesn’t either feel like it’s tougher than concrete or like it’s made of slush. Luckily enough, you can make your avocados ripen faster than ever when you get home, and all you need is a paper shopping bag.

What you need to do is take a normal brown paper bag and put your unripe avocado inside with another piece of fruit. It usually works best to use either a banana or an apple, and these will ripen up a little too into the bargain.

When you combine these fruits within the confines of a paper bag, something wonderful starts to happen. It might sound odd, but the two fruits will start naturally exchanging ethylene gases inside the bag. This is ripening teamwork, and it makes both items nice and ready for use sooner than you’d imagine. If you need to whip up a smoothie or prepare some guacamole, you don’t have to worry about unripened avocados.

Just make sure you use a paper bag instead of a plastic one. The paper bag does more than help your two pieces of fruit exchange gases – the trick is that it lets just enough of that gas out through its slightly porous surface. Using a plastic bag instead will not have the desired results, so remember to keep it paper.

We love finding out new ways people can put our popular paper bag products to good use after they’ve been employed during a good few shopping trips. As ardent foodies without the patience to sit around and watch fruit ripen, you can bet that this is one of our favourite paper bag hacks yet!

Long Haul Travel – Health Preparations

It can be a joy to travel for long distances, away from your home and headed off to explore somewhere new to you. Travelling by plane or boat for hours at a time brings with it unique joys. Many people spend the time just planning out what they will do when they arrive, eager to see friends and family or visit somewhere exciting. Others take the time to catch up on sleep, watch a movie or talk to their travelling companions.

If you make the proper preparations, then long haul travel can be a wonderful experience. Preparation is the key, though, and you definitely want to know about the health problems that can occur while travelling long distances and what preventative measures you should be taking.

During Your Travel

We’re going to break this up into what you need to be prepared for while you are in transit and what you have to be prepared for once you get to your destination. Starting with travel preparations, let’s talk about the discomfort of sitting in one place for a while.

That can cause thrombosis, or blood clotting. This is especially likely when you travel by plane, as the high pressure can make the problem worse. You can avoid this by getting up from your seat whenever possible and taking a trip to the bathroom or just stretching out. It’s advisable to drink as much liquid as you can during a flight so that you’ll need to get up frequently to use the bathroom. It’s a good idea to get up every two hours to exercise your legs a bit and ensure clots don’t happen. Diabetics and people with blood pressure problems are more likely to suffer from this problem, and they should see a doctor before they travel.

You also need to be concerned about diarrhoea when you travel. This can be caused by the unique travel conditions, by some bacteria you picked up while visiting someplace new or by simply eating food you are unfamiliar with. A lot of people get adventurous when they travel, even when ordering food on a plane or before their flight. You have to be careful about how that will affect your digestive system. If you have anti-diarrhoeal tablets ready to use when needed, though, you can be prepared for this eventuality. If your condition becomes severe and the diarrhoea continues for several days, then you may want to consult a doctor.

Once You Arrive

When you go to visit someplace new, you need to be prepared for the diseases that are common to the area. Many countries suffer from outbreaks of dysentery, malaria and small pox. You should check with the tourism websites and travel websites for that particular country before you visit it. You may be advised to have some vaccines administered before you travel. In some cases, a vaccine will be necessary for entry to certain countries or to return to your own country after visiting another country that has an outbreak.

It’s a good idea to check for travel advisories in the weeks right before you travel and not just in the months ahead of your travel. That’s because conditions can change, and new travel advisories may be in effect.

You may also want to catch up on any vaccine that is approaching renewal, such as tetanus. That’s because, once again, people can become adventurous on holiday, and you want to be prepared for the effects of taking some extra risks while you are abroad.

You also want to check travel advisories for the are you are going to for any political unrest or violent activities. Even in places as commonly visited as India or the United States, there are occasionally travel advisories warning visitors about outbreaks of violence. You need to be aware of which advisories apply to you and where you are visiting and take the proper precautions.

 

5 Reasons Why it’s Time to Sell Your Home

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Moving home is incredibly stressful, but there will probably come a time when no matter how much you love your home, you need to upgrade or downsize. If you look online, you will find a hundred and one house selling tips, but before you reach that stage in the process, it is a good idea to think about whether you actually need to sell. After all, there are plenty of ways to enlarge or improve an existing property, which could save you money!

If you are still undecided, here are five reasons why it is time to sell up and move on.

A Growing Family

A one-bed studio apartment is fine when there is just the two of you, but once kids come along, it will soon begin to feel a bit cramped. Kids take up a lot of room. They come with extra furniture, toys and hundreds of miscellaneous bits and pieces. Even if the bedrooms are large enough to accommodate siblings, as your children grow into teenagers they will want their own space. For this reason, most families take the decision to move to a larger property once their home begins to feel cramped.

Financial Reasons

A home is a huge investment. Unless you are lucky enough to be able to buy your home outright, you probably have mortgage payments to make every month. When times are good, this will not be a problem, but if the worst happens and you lose your job for any reason, it will be hard to pay the mortgage. One way to deal with this change in circumstances is to sell up and buy a cheaper property. Ideally, you can pay off your mortgage and be debt free, but at the very least, your repayments will be lower.

A Career Change

Ticking along in the same old job for years suits some people, but if you fancy a change in career, selling your home and buying something cheaper could release enough equity to fund a new business venture. However, this is not a decision to be taken lightly, as you could lose your home if it all goes wrong.

An Unexpected Windfall

Have you inherited a large sum of money or struck it lucky on the Lotto? If so, now would be a good time to trade in your one-bed apartment and upgrade to a beachfront condominium somewhere hot and sunny.

Bad Neighbours

Bad neighbours are a nightmare to deal with. Sometimes the situation can be resolved with some careful negotiation or legal action, but if you have tried everything to make the best of a bad situation, selling up and moving to a new home with nicer neighbours could be answer you are looking for. It is not ideal, but sometimes you just have to admit defeat and take the path of least resistance.

Selling a property is always stressful, no matter how well organised you are, so do not make the decision to move unless you absolutely have to.

6 Great Storage Tips For Your Garage

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It can be very easy for your garage to become a badly disorganised, storage area for junk with so many different boxes filled with stuff and other kinds of clutter, that it can be hard to pull your car into it, let alone work on the thing.  If you are interested in working on cars, and use your own garage for this or have a small business that you are trying to improve, the following article gives some very practical and easy to put into action tips that will help turn your garage into a more effective work and storage space.

Mount Everything On Wheels

If you want to make your garage a more functional space than it already is, it may be a good idea to put everything on wheels.  This means not only stools and things that you’d expect to be on wheels, but bench-mounted tools (such as those found here – http://www.sgs-engineering.com/garage-equipment), arbour presses, drill presses and cabinets are also much easier to handle and store if they are on a set of caster wheels.

Wall Mount Your Tool Boxes

Freeing up floor space is a must, as you need as much space as possible to fit a car inside the garage and work under and around it.  This can be achieved by wall mounting cabinets and tool boxes, to give you space to store your tools and other accessories, while keeping them off the floor.

Make Use Of Overhead Racks

Does your garage have a particularly high ceiling?  If it does, make effective use of this by using it as an out of the way storage area.  Pulley-controlled overhead racks can be bought for storing long items such as ladders etc. so that they are out of your way, but also easy to get back down when you need it.

Stainless Steel Sink

You need somewhere to clean yourself up and parts too at times, so if you haven’t already got one, it may be time to purchase a stainless steel stink.  As well as having the advantage of being durable, it is also easy to clean and can be grounded electrically, which is perfect for when you need to use the counter surface to plate metals chemically.  If you choose the right mode, you may also have a lot of under sink storage space as well.

Wall Mount Your Parts Bins

If you are constantly having to watch your step because of parts bins sitting on the floor, similarly to what was mentioned before, you need to find a way to free up floor space.  By wall mounting your parts bins, it will not only free up that all too important floor space, while keeping them stored away nicely, but also easy enough to find.

Reused Kitchen Cabinets

If you are looking for cheap storage space, look in junk yards and online for second hand kitchen cabinets.  These are normally sized well for use in garages and as they usually have shelves incorporated into them, it is not too hard to use them for a new purpose.

5 Kitchen Backsplash Trends for 2016

This Post is sponsored by Benjamin Moore

 

5 Kitchen Backsplash Trends for 2016

It used to be that many other “options” were prioritized when it came to a kitchen. Flooring for instance, was always considered the forefront of a home design. More and more though other factors are becoming important as well. Take a backsplash for instance. These not only have a form and function, but they can be used to invoke certain emotions (colors), they can be used to brighten a space up, they can be used to incorporate different styles, and they add interest to a kitchen. In most cases materials are quite inexpensive and yet they add so much value to a kitchen! If you are planning on going with a backsplash for your next project, here are a few of the top trends in 2016 to follow.

Extend Your Backsplash

If you think that you have to stop at a certain point with your backsplash tiles, think again. This new trend allows you to install your tiles all the way up to the crease between the wall and the ceiling. It acts almost like an accent wall for paint, but its tile. It can really create a nice look and if you really LOVE your material and want to use more of it, you can! Here is an example of a full wall backsplash tile design! This is also a good idea if you can manage to find a material that is inexpensive.

Install Your Tiles In A Pattern

If you think that you HAVE to install your tiles a certain way such as your brick shaped tiles vertically or horizontally, you don’t. Let’s be honest this is a trend, but it’s really not because even though trends are important, what is more important is designing your kitchen how you want. If you want to create a diagonal design with subway tiles; do it. If you want to create a checkerboard design with your diamond and circle tiles; do it! Right now though, horizontal and diagonally placed subway tiles are becoming a hot trend.

Hide Your Electrical Outlets

If you have electrical outlets on the same wall as your backsplash, and you probably do, it’s important to hide them as best as you can. This can really break up the design of the backsplash and make it look gaudy or disorganized. There are a few ways to hide them, but one of the best ways is to have an electrician come in and remove the ones on the wall and instead install them under the lip of the counter OR under the cabinet (above the counter space). If you absolutely cannot move your outlets, that’s okay, just make sure that ALL the outlets on the wall are facing the same direction i.e.; vertical or horizontal so you won’t break up the look of the design of the backsplash.

Wood Is In!

If you think that a backsplash is just made from things like ceramic, glass, stainless steel and stone, think again! Another popular trend for 2016 is using wood materials. You can use plywood, planks of wood, salvaged wood, wood flooring materials and more. This has a really nice beautiful look to it, but also if you can manage to find a place that has left over wood; it can be budget friendly as well. You can use crates and you can even use wood pallet – just break it down, sand it down, add a stain, add a coating, and then get them installed on your wall. Go by your local wood shop or home improvement store and see if they have any wood that they might just be throwing away. You can also contact a few companies that use pallets and see if they are throwing any away. Here are a few really nice wood backsplashes for you to look at.

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Use The Same Tile Materials Throughout The Design

A few years ago it was a popular idea to create a frame using one material or one color and then create another design inside. This trend is out. Instead, the new trend states that you should use ONE color or ONE material for your entire backsplash. Sure, a mosaic style backsplash is pretty to look at, but once you add in all of your other materials such as your granite countertops, wooden cabinets tile floor, etc. it just goes from pretty to busy. Definitely not something you want in a kitchen. Instead of using mosaic tiles, consider using mirrored or shiny surfaces such as mirrored glass, tin, steel or even glass to create a reflective design. This will make the kitchen seem simple and clean, but it can also make your kitchen look larger than it actually is, because the material can reflect the kitchen off of it. It’s a trick of the eyes, but it works.

How to Safely Store Cleaning Equipment with Children in the Home

How to Safely Store Cleaning Equipment with Children in the Home

We all use chemical-based cleaners to keep the home clean and germ-free. However, these chemicals can be dangerous to children if they get their hands on them. Brooms, mops and brushes can also cause damage in the wrong hands! We’ve collected a list of handy tips and hacks for storing home cleaning equipment in a way that minimizes risk to children.

Keep Brooms, Mops and Brushes Out of Reach of Little Hands 

Use wall space in your kitchen to ensure mops, brooms and brushes are out of reach of small children, but readily available for cleaning when you need. You can pick up cheap wall mountings or hooks in most hardware stores and install them yourself. Place them at a level that is out of reach of kids, but easily accessible to you. We recommend keeping mops and brooms near to a window or door so they can get some fresh air. This allows any moisture to dry off, and prevents bacteria from accumulating.

Organize your bathroom cupboards

Keep the bathroom cabinet neat and tidy by installing a cross-beam. You can easily make one at home using a broomstick handle or something similar. Hang bathroom and toilet cleaners from the beam to give yourself more space below for storing other products. If you have particularly harsh or abrasive cleaners in the bathroom, consider locking this cupboard, and keeping the safer bathroom items, like toothpaste and shower gel, in a bathroom storage trolley.

Maximize Kitchen Cabinet Space

As most regular kitchen cabinets usually consist of fixed shelves, cleaning products can easily get pushed to the back of the cupboard and forgotten about. One solution is to install a detachable basket on sliding rails. The basket should be big enough for your kitchen cleaning products and equipment and easy enough to remove so you can rearrange them when needed. This system makes it much simpler to keep track of what products you have, and to spot if anything has gone missing.

Make Areas of the Home Off-limits

You can make certain areas of the home where there is hazardous products or equipment ‘out of bounds’ to the kids, for example the laundry room. It probably isn’t practical to lock every single cupboard that contains cleaning products. However keeping one room locked and off-limits, then storing the most hazardous products here, is a good way to give yourself peace of mind.

Take Precautions When Ironing

A high quality iron and ironing board are worthwhile investments for safety reasons alone. Cheap models are often more unstable, making them easier to topple, and may have less secure storage points for the iron. Store your ironing board with a secure rack, rather than just leaning against the wall, so there is less chance of it falling.

Dispose of Used Containers Safely

Even after you’ve thrown away cleaning product containers, they can still pose a threat. Children can route through the trash and find the colorful containers, which may contain potentially dangerous chemicals. Rinse out the empty container before throwing them out, and for harsher chemicals, place them in a bag to add another layer of protection.

Child safety is a priority for any parent, and keeping a tidy, germ-free home is an important part of minimizing the risk of accidents or infections. We hope you find our tips for child-proofing your cleaning products storage useful!

These tips were provided by Helpling Cleaning Services, an online marketplace for finding local cleaners.

Gas Safety Checks: Everything You Need To Know

Gas Safety Checks

When it comes to gas, safety is a top priority. Keeping up on gas safety checks and knowing what to look out for are crucial for ensuring that your home is safe from unwanted gas leaks. From hiring a professional to checking in regularly yourself, here is everything you need to know about gas safety checks.

What is a gas safety check and who is authorised to do one?

A gas check is a safety procedure in which a Gas Safe certified heating engineer assesses your home’s gas system and appliances to make sure that everything is working properly. A Gas Safe heating engineer will have been through an apprenticeship program and received a Gas Safe ID to prove that they are qualified to perform gas safety checks.

During the check, the Gas Safe engineer will make sure that ventilation passages are functioning correctly and are not blocked, that the safety devices in your gas system are working efficiently, that the system’s pressure is accurate, that all of the fittings are secured and without leaks, and that the gas leaving the home is clean and not harmful.

How often do you need to get a gas safety check?

Gas safety checks should be performed annually by a certified professional. If you’re renting your home, be sure to understand the agreement of your lease with respect to who is responsible for carrying out these annual checks.

According to the Gas Safety Installation and Use Regulations of 1998, landlords are required to obtain a gas safety certificate (CP12) every twelve months to ensure that their properties are gas safe. Some commercial properties, however, hold the tenant responsible for arranging annual gas safety checks after the first certificate expires.

If you’re a tenant, understand the responsibilities of your landlord and the details of your lease. If you bring any appliances into your home, for example, your landlord is legally responsible for checking the gas pipes leading into those appliances, but not the appliances themselves. Try to be present when a Gas Safe heating engineer does a safety check in your home so you can ask questions and know if anything doesn’t get looked at during the safety check.

Why is it so important to perform gas safety checks every year?

Carbon monoxide is a colourless and odourless gas that can be fatal. It is produced when gas or Liquid Petroleum Gas are not completely burned off, like in the case of a gas leak. Carbon monoxide poisoning can cause brain damage or even death, so being cautious about gas leaks is one way to avoid these potential dangers.

Other dangers include explosions and harmful emissions into the air, all of which can be avoided by ensuring that gas appliances are functioning properly and are correctly fitted.

What else can you do to be extra cautious about gas in your home or commercial space?

Throughout the year, you can protect your home from gas leaks by knowing what to look for. Signs of carbon monoxide poisoning include headaches, nausea, dizziness, breathlessness, collapse and loss of consciousness. If you suspect there is carbon monoxide in your home, get fresh air immediately by opening doors and windows, turn off your gas appliances and leave the home. See a doctor right away, and call a professional Gas Safe heating engineer to inspect your home before returning.

Your home can also show signs of a carbon monoxide leak, including lazy yellow or orange flames on your cooker (rather than crisp and blue ones), dark staining on appliances, frequently blown out pilot lights, and increased condensation inside windows. The best detection method you can invest in – in conjunction with annual gas safety checks – is a carbon monoxide detector. This inexpensive device will alarm you if there is carbon monoxide in your home. Make sure it’s marked EN 50291 and is marked by a European approval standard.

By staying up-to-date on gas safety checks, repairing broken appliances and regularly servicing boilers, you can feel more confident that your home is safe from harmful gas leaks. Pay attention to warning signs and symptoms of dangerous leaks, and be sure that you are working with a Gas Safe engineer and asking him or her the questions you have about your home and appliances.

 

About the author: Dave Holliday is the owner of Watertite Plumbing in Bristol. Dave has helped many homeowners and landlords with their plumbing, boiler and gas safety checks. You can connect with Dave on Google+, Facebook and LinkedIn or call Watertite Plumbing and Heating on 01179 093 967.

Child Friendly Bathrooms

Child Friendly Bathrooms

It’s really important, when designing any room to be child friendly, that you ensure that the room is both practical and safe. Here are a few ideas that will help you with creating the perfect family space.

Height

Ensuring your little ones can confidently reach the toilet, sink or even bath unaided is important, especially when they have the tendency to want to do things alone and will do whatever it takes to do so no matter how unsafe or risky. There’s a simple solution, invest in a step stool, there are many on the market that serve different functional purposes, from fold away ones to ones that slide neatly under a ledge or onto a shelf. Just make sure that it’s accessible for your child at all times, so there’s never any risk of them not being able to reach it.

Accessibility

The key for a functional child-friendly bathroom is accessibility. You need to have confidence that your child can use the bathroom, with guidance, at ease. Sliding doors are the perfect item to have installed in the bathroom, they don’t only take up less space in both the bathroom and hall, but by using sliding doors, there is less chance of trapped fingers as you can install self-closing hinges that enable the door to close slowly and not slam shut when pushed. Another thing to consider is how accessible the cabinets are, it’s okay to have things in the shaving cabinet, but why not provide a smaller cabinet dedicated to the child’s own items such as toothbrush, bath toys, towels and so on. This way they can have more responsibility and sense of independence by getting themselves ready using their own things without having to climb up to your cupboards to reach what they need. You can also install self-closing hinges on your cabinet doors too, again this will just erase the risk or trapping fingers in the door.

Heat control

There are a few things to consider when it comes to heat in the bathroom. The main risk is the hot water, many boilers these days can reach up to boiling, or at least very hot, in a matter of seconds. The solution to this problem is simply installing a temperature controller. These devices can be installed either on the tap itself or on the boiler, and as the name explains, the device controls how hot the water temperature can go. The towel rail can also be an issue, as children are great when it comes to swinging and climbing, when they see a long towel dangling from the wall you can imagine the first thing on their mind. If you are thinking of installing a heated towel rail, position it out of the child’s reach, this way the towel can dangle down for them to reach, yet they can’t quite get their hands on the rail itself, so there’s no risk of it coming away from the wall.

Daily Routine

Make sure that it’s easy for your little one to copy your daily routine, when it comes to being in the bathroom you’ll notice they just want to do what you’re doing. Whether your brushing your hair, cleaning your teeth, washing your face or even applying moisturiser you’ll notice that if your little one has the option to join in, they’ll love it. Plus, this is a great way to encourage independence and get them used to day to day routines. Add a mirror above the sink that your little one will be able to use when they stand on their stepping stool, they’ll be able to use the mirror to brush their teeth and so on and it will also help boost confidence skills as they’re able to do little things on their own, making them feel grown up. Place a small (ish) basket in the corner of the room for laundry, don’t purchase one that is too tall as if your child can’t reach they will probably attempt to climb in and that would probably end in tears. Having a smaller basket will allow your little one to put their clothing in the wash bin and learn to be organized and tidy from a younger age.

How To Effectively Utilise Your Small Space With A Vertical Radiator

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Introduction

Every home should be equipped with a radiator if you and your family wish to keep warm during the harsh winter months. Even if you live in a cold area, a fireplace might not suffice in keeping your home warm. This is the very reason why heating radiators were invented in the first place! If you live in a relatively small house, consider yourself lucky as most radiators work best in smaller spaces. The bigger the house, the more challenging it is to create a centralised heating system.

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There are various factors that contribute to an effective heating system such as an energy efficient boiler and a range of control valves such as thermostatic radiator valves, but at its core, a radiator is one of the most important components in a heating system. With proper placement, even the simplest radiator is capable of producing heat evenly. You just have to know the ideal locations in your house for its installation which comes back to logical reasoning.

Vertical Radiators

Vertical radiators are not new in the market as they have been around for quite some time. These types of radiators come in various sizes and output capacities. Modernised ones also come with fancy designs but is not that necessary if you’re on a budget. Depending on how cold your area is, you might need more than one small radiator fitted but this is not always necessary. Don’t forget to visit stores such as the Radiator Factory to find out more about different radiators which come in a range of artistically beautiful or conventional designs.

Proper placement is essential here as for the best result, you should always install the radiator in the coldest room of your home. Try to avoid installing the radiator where sources of cold air might interfere with the heat output. For example, always avoid installing a radiator opposite a window, especially if cold air is coming in directly towards the radiator. Try to place the radiator away from the window such as below the window. This way, as cold air comes in, it is quickly eliminated from the hot air generated below the window. The Radiator Factory supplies a range of vertical radiators and even cast iron radiators to fit any home.

Advantage in small spaces

One of the greatest advantage of vertical radiators is its versatility in small spaces. As we mentioned earlier, you would be lucky if your housing is relatively small as you can save a lot of expenses with only a few radiators. Even if you were to rely on a single radiator, this should not be a problem. Small spaces have a tendency to confine heat effectively as opposed to larger spaces. If you don’t have any windows in any small room of your house, then a small BTU radiator is all you really need which saves you quite a hefty expense. Even if you did have a window, there should not be a problem as vertical radiators come in different sizes. Even some small vertical radiators come with a higher BTU output but that really depends on what you need.

Let’s say that you wanted to install a small radiator in a small room. You shouldn’t just buy any radiator, but you should purchase the ideal one. How to find an ideal one is relatively easy. First, you will need to calculate the space of the room by multiplying the width, length, height (in feet) of the room. When you have done this, multiply the number by four. That number is quantitates to the amount of BTU output your radiator needs. In this case, the smaller the figure, the more affordable it is (and especially if you stick to traditional designed radiators).

Conclusion

Vertical radiators are an excellent choice for any small family household. They can practically be installed in any location and most of them are budget friendly. There are various materials and styles available, but for small spaces we recommend that you keep the design simple and aim for efficiency. Don’t forget to calculate the BTU requirements of your room to prevent you from purchasing a radiator which lacks heating power or one that provides you with more thermal capacity than you really need.

Get More Out Of Your Garage

A garage used to be a kind of afterthought. It was something that would be tacked onto the side of a house. Its uses were functional. It was where you parked the car. If it was bigger perhaps it incorporated a workbench. Tools were stored in it and that was about it. These days garages have become ever more closely linked to the house in more ways than one.

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A garage today is virtually another room in your house. There’s a lot you can do to utilize your garage as a family friendly space, as well as using it for many other purposes. So whether you are refurbishing your property or building from scratch, here are some great ideas for getting the most out of your garage.

Thinking about the floor.

At its heart a garage is still the prime space for vehicle or boat storage. So you’ll want your floor surface to be functional and easy to clean. At the same time, as you’ll be using the floor for any number for projects, it will make sense to have a good smooth and level platform. A good self-levelling concrete finish on the floor should be acceptable. Polishing the floor will give you an ultra smooth result. Ideally any garage floor will be at the same level as the house. This will make the transition and moving of objects easier and smoother.

Open up the possibilities

Have a think about how a garage could incorporate other functions. For example it could take on the role of your utility room. Washing machines, sinks and dryers can easily be incorporated into the space. That means you may well be able to free up space inside the house. Other items that work well inside a garage area include freezer and spare fridge options. Again using the garage for this function frees up space inside the kitchen.

Apart from the obvious tool and bench facilities, have you thought about creating a spare room or space for hobbies in the back of the garage? If you have the space it might be practical to erect a stud wall and make a separate room. This space could make an ideal home office, or used for any number of activities.

Due to their functional nature, garages have in the past been sidelined as cold spaces. But there is no reason why a garage could not be insulated and even heated to some degree. Wall insulation simply means erecting a simple timber stud on the inside wall and lining it. As soon as you have created an effective barrier to the outside wall, the area will instantly become warmer.

Storage solutions

As the garage tends to be the leftover area, it can quickly become cluttered and difficult to negotiate. Using clever storage solutions on the ceiling and walls can take a lot of pressure off the area, allowing it to be a more functional space. For instance, both kayak and mountain bikes can be stored effectively on wall racks. These are easy and quick to install.

Getting in and out.

The modern garage also lends itself to a side entrance to the house. Therefore you want to ensure that it is secure. As the garage effectively is seen as a part of the house, it is essential to ensure that it visually integrates with the rest of the building. Stylish and secure garage entrances by Silvelox, are a great compliment to any house and garage design.

Garage doors have come along way from the sparse metal pull up and push down varieties of previous decades. It is now possible to have design incorporated with security. This means that you can have a garage that looks visually stunning as well as offering you security and peace of mind.

As the garage becomes an entrance in its own right, it makes sense to consider having a pedestrian door incorporated into your design. That will make it much more convenient to use. You won’t have to open the entire garage up to have access to the house.

Space above

If you are looking at building a garage then it makes sense to think how you could incorporate any space above it into your design. It might be possible after all, to add another floor and link that area back into the house. That could give you further living and sleeping areas. They could even become separate and self contained accommodation in their own right. You could form a guest unit or even fulfil the romantic idea of a garret above the garage. Perfect for the budding artist in the family.

With a little bit of forethought and planning, it can be possible to turn the idea of a garage around. Whether you are renovating or designing a new build, your garage could offer you a myriad of fascinating possibilities.