Archive of ‘Home’ category
Windows are an important part of any building, in terms of security and bringing light into the home. Modern window frames are designed for a long life, which we will talk about in a moment, but older properties may still have windows fitted that are not as secure as you may want. This is not only a security risk, but it can also mean you are losing heat through ill-fitting windows or older frames, which is constantly costing you money.
The question of how often to replace windows is one that comes up often. If you are buying a house – or looking at buying one – it is always worth checking with the vendor as to the age and state of the windows, and when they were last replaced. In short, you should expect quality modern windows to last at least 15 years, even 20, before you need to think about replacing them, and most window installers will offer you a 25-year guarantee.
What to Look For
How do you know that your windows might need replacing? There are several tell-tale signs that windows are past their best, including the following:
- Fogged or Misty Glass – this happens when you have double, or triple, glazed windows. It can signify that your frame or the pane has a hole in it and condensation is present, or in the case of gas-filled windows, that the gas is leaking. In each case this can be repaired so replacement is not necessary, but have an expert look at your windows to be sure. A good glass company near Birminghamis Oak Mountain Glass, and they have 20 years of experience in domestic and commercial glass installation and repairs in the region.
- Cracked Panes or Frames –this is a definite sign that you need to consider replacement windows, especially if there is more than one cracked pane. You will be wasting energy on a regular basis if this is the case, so have the experts check it out.
- Draughts in the Room –if you feel a draught in the room then there is air leaking in somewhere. This is often due to cracks in windowpanes or frames, and is something that needs to be dealt with by repair or replacement.
- Sticking Windows and Doors – if you find that doors and windows are sticking when opening and closing them regularly, you may have damp that has caused the wooden frames to expand. Modern windows are less likely to do so as they use more robust material, so have a look at getting replacements if this is the case.
Windows do not have an infinite life so they will certainly need replacing at some point, and if you want to get a sensible quote for quality installation, talk to the team at Oak Mountain Glass right away. They can help with all your requirements for glass in and around the home, so get in touch and they’ll be happy to answer any questions.
It is possible that you’ve not given much thought to it, or perhaps you didn’t even realise, but the condition of your gutters can influence other parts of your property. One part, that’s greatly impacted by your guttering system is your home’s foundation. How so?
If your gutters are not functioning properly, there is a chance that the structural integrity of your home could be affected, this could lead to water ingress issues and costly repairs on the foundations. On top of all that, the value of your property could be decreased.
Most Common Problem Affecting Guttering Systems
By far the problem that most homeowners must deal with regarding their guttering is that they are failing to channel or drain rainwater a safe distance away from the property. It is normally that the guttering is clogged by debris or leaves that stops water from moving along. During autumn is when this is an especially common problem, because leaves are falling off trees. Clogged guttering that’s not dealt with quickly enough, could create issues with your foundations that would need to be fixed. This will not only cost you a considerable amount but will also disrupt your life as foundational repairs require a lot of work.
Damage Caused by Clogged and Overflowing Gutters
When your guttering clogs up, water starts to overflow and pools around the foundations of your property. In time, as well as causing unsightly puddles, this can cause the soil that’s underneath your property and around it to erode.
As the soil erodes, the foundations start to weaken. This eventually can lead to the foundations starting to crack or shift and move. That really is as bad a problem as it sounds. Subsidence and foundation issues are not easily sorted.
How to Prevent Your Gutters Getting Clogged and Causing Damage to Your Foundations
Fortunately, you don’t have to have these kinds of problems. How? By having your gutters at least one or two times every year, to stop them clogging up. You don’t even need to do the work yourself. Even if you are not afraid of heights, you might not have the time in your busy schedule to dedicate to that kind of work or have the right equipment. The great thing is that you don’t have to, as there are plenty of reliable and skilled professional guttering cleaners. What’s more, these companies often have the skills to carry out repairs on your gutters, if necessary.
Benefits of Hiring Professional Gutter Cleaners
The point of this post was not to scare you, not in that negative way anyway. It was to educate you and to get you thinking about things related to your property, you may never have considered before. By regularly having your gutters checked, cleaned and repaired (if necessary), you can be sure that you will not have to face the headache, disruptive and costly problem of damaged foundations. Your property, the gutters, the foundation and your bank balance will be safe.
As we head further into 2019, during spring you may have plans to give your home a fresh look and feel. One room, because of how frequently it’s used, that you may want to focus your decorating and makeover on, is the living room. It can seem like a huge task, when you first start thinking about this kind of project. Especially if it’s been a while since you last did any decorating. To help you out and guide you, we’ve put together a selection of great ideas that you can incorporate into your own plans.
A Fresh Coat of Paint
By far, one of the easiest and quickest ways to update a room, like the living room is with a fresh coat of paint. Even just using the same colour that’s currently on the walls can give the walls and the ceiling a renewed life.
Of course, changing colour is often what you’ll have in mind to do. If you’re not keen on repainting the whole room and don’t fancy hiring professionals. Either because of the size or health issues, you could always just repaint a wall or two and make them focal points.
Update the Flooring
What about the flooring in your living room.? Although you may not look at it very often, the type of flooring you have can really set the atmosphere you, your household and guests will experience. For instance, if you’ve always had carpets, it may be a good idea to change to vinyl or even wooden flooring. As well as reducing the number of allergens in your home, it can also give a light and breezier feel. Whereas carpets are great for giving your home that warm and comfortable feel.
Change the Fireplace
Looking around the room, what is your fireplace like? When was any work done on that part of the room? Have you simply had the same fireplace since you bought the property, that’s potentially been there for many decades (if own a particularly old house)? You’d be amazed at home much of a difference redoing your fireplace could have for the whole room.
With many modern designs out there, you can still benefit from having a traditional type of heating element in your living room, with a more contemporary twist. In fact, with some serious thought and planning, giving your fireplace a makeover can completely change the look and feel of the room.
Above the fireplace mantle is an ideal location for a home theater installation to gather the crowds and liven up the living room.
Declutter and Minimise
Another easy way to alter the look and feel of your main family room is by having a serious look at the stuff you have in the room. Whether it’s the furniture itself or the trinkets, ornaments and just anything you have in the room. Think about reducing the amount of clutter and even reducing the number of furnishings you have in the room. Just moving some things around, recycling, selling and handing on items you no longer need, want or use, can give your living room a new lease of life and renewed energy.
Your belly is growing, and the anticipation is now sky high. You spend your time reading and watching materials that will help you feel like you know what you’re doing once the little one has entered the world. Want to know a not-so-secret fact? All those tips are valuable, but they might prove useless as well. It all depends on the baby and your dynamics, as you’re about to see. Common denominators, though? Development, sleepless nights, and a lot of stress. Sorry for saying this! We know you’re heading to the most exciting period of your life so far, but we would be doing any new mother a disservice if we told her it’s rainbows and butterflies. Because of that, here are five things you can do beforehand to make those first months easier!
1. Set Up the Nursery
You are going to spend a lot of time in the nursery, so make it as convenient for yourself as possible. Diapers and wipes should be kept close to the changing table; it should be close enough to the cabinet where you keep the baby clothes. Remember, going into the nursery will require a lot of dizziness from being woken from sleep, low light, as you don’t want to upset the baby, so take that into account. You won’t always be able to rely on finding things on the spot, so just act as if you will never be able to do that! Know where everything is well in advance, so when the baby comes, you’ll feel like you already know what to do. (Well, not really. But kind of.)
2. Stock Up on Food – Particularly Easy Meals
The person who invented easy meals should be awarded a medal. Honestly, you won’t have much time for cooking, but it doesn’t mean you should resort to pizzas all the time. (You could, but that probably doesn’t provide many nutrients to your baby!) Your freezer should be full of things that only require a quick defrost in the microwave, or alternatively, ready-to-cook meals that also only need to be reheated. We’re talking sausages, tikka masala, all kinds of stews, soups, pancakes, muffins… Smoothies are great as well, so to save your time in advance, prep smoothie ingredients in separate Ziploc bags, so once you feel like having one, put the contents in the blender with water or milk, and voila!
3. Set up Baby Leaving the House Stations
An image of a new mother and the things she carries around when going out with the baby is close to a meme. That’s because you truly do need everything! So to avoid losing and forgetting things, dedicate some things for an emergency and then forget about them. We’re talking clothes, diapers and socks that you will keep in your car and inside of your stroller. You will need a stroller that offers good storage, such as those from Maxi Cosi, and you will never have to panic when your child pukes in the park, but you have forgotten a spare shirt or a onesie.
4. Think about Diapers
We didn’t say “get tonnes of diapers” here because chances are that you will get a gazillion of diapers and then it will turn out that your baby isn’t a fan of the specific brand or type. But do your research and get small packs of as many different types as possible in newborn size – this is literally a trial and error practice. Once the baby arrives, and you find the perfect match, set up a subscription, so you are never left without a number of diapers at home.
5. Say Yes to Help
Parenting is beautiful. It’s also very hard. We get that you probably want to enjoy the new family of three (or two, or more) and keep it to yourself, at least in the beginning. But when friends and family ask you if they can come over or even stay a couple of days, don’t be quick in saying no. Yes, your house is going to be messy and you will probably smell bad. But having someone over almost always means they will offer to do laundry for you, or go shopping for groceries or just take care of the baby so you can shower for the first time this week. Accepting help is not a sign of weakness, quite the opposite. Accept it from those who have it easier in this stage of your life. After all, a shower is a blessing.
We hope we’ve given you the right hints on where your attention should go right before and right after childbirth. It’s going to be stressful, but targeting these things will be helpful, at least in the beginning. And it gets easier, we promise! You’ll realise it when your child turns three.
Are you looking to invest in a professional carpet cleaning NYC company? As there are many out there to chose from, you need to know how to find the best for the job at hand. Not all carpet cleaning companies are made equal and some are less reputable than others. To help you with your search, therefore, in the following post we are going to look at some of the main things you need to consider before hiring a company.
Do They Have Adequate Training and Experience?
Whether a carpet cleaning service is expensive or not, it’s an investment, nonetheless. An investment that you want to be sure, offers you the best returns in terms of their carpet cleaning skills and experience. No-one wants to throw away money on a bad job, so don’t be afraid to ask companies when you are seeking quotes, what their experience is, how long they’ve been involved in the industry and where they received their training.
What Kind of Resources Do they Have?
One thing that you should be interested in is just how big their operation is and whether a carpet cleaning company you are interested in has access to high quality resources. Some ‘one-man’ operations have very limited supplies of equipment and resources and are not able to provide the higher standard that others can.
Do they regularly maintain and look after their equipment? This is important because, like many other machines and pieces of equipment, a carpet cleaner will only work at the optimum level, if it has been maintained properly. So, you need to know that the company you are interested in hiring has regularly services, cleans and maintains their equipment.
Are They Being Upfront About Costs?
You need to be careful when you see a carpet cleaner offering their services for what seems to be ridiculously cheap rates. While not all are out to rip you off, some have been known to add extra charges and hidden fees on. So, you hire that company, thinking you are getting an excellent deal, only to discover when it comes to paying them that the bill is a lot more than you expected and were told in the beginning.
Look for companies that are transparent about their pricing structures and who welcome questions and answer them fully. Be less trusting of companies who you feel might be hiding something. As with many things in life, go with your gut instinct. If something seems too good to be true, it more than likely is.
Do They Use High Quality Products?
Further to the point about resources, you want to know that the carpet cleaner you hire only use good quality and effective cleaning products and machinery. The last thing you want is to spend all that money, hoping you are going to have your carpets returned to as good as new condition, only to find they’ve been stained or just not cleaned thoroughly enough because the company has scrimped on the cost.
If in doubt, ask them. Most professional carpet cleaning companies who are not looking to rip you off will be happy to discuss the equipment, cleaning solutions and other products they use.
Divorce (and the separation of cohabiting parents) typically lies on a spectrum of “mildly unsettling” to “utterly horrendous” and the fact that the UK does not currently recognise “no-fault” divorce creates additional challenges for those who are trying to manage an amicable separation, even though the legal process of divorce in the UK has a fundamental principle that the welfare of any children must be put front and centre at all times.
While members of the legal profession will do everything they can to minimise the impact on children, at the end of the day, the main responsibility for the welfare of children lies, as always with their parents. With that in mind, here are three suggestions which might help.
Have a solution prepared before you tell children the problem
Create a plan of action for you and your partner, so you are both clear on the way forward, before you tell your children. This is less about focusing on the positives of the change, as, from the children’s perspective, there may be absolutely none, but about limiting the negatives and, crucially, emphasising to your children that you remain united as parents.
NB: It is a sad fact of modern life that the more people know about something, the more likely it is that children, even younger ones, will get to hear about it, or at least rumours of it, via social media. Even if you limit your children’s access to social media (or ban them completely from using it), the reality is that they will almost certainly interact with children who do have access to it and who will pass on the gossip to their friends as people do. With that in mind, it’s strongly advisable to be very careful about where, when and with whom you discuss your feelings and plans.
Underline the fact that the divorce is about you and not about them
It can be very tricky to decide just how much to tell children, even older ones. You may wish to take the approach of telling them the truth and nothing but the truth, but not necessarily the whole truth. There is, however, one fact which must be underlined in all situations which is that the divorce is about you and your partner as individuals, not about you and your partner as parents. Not only does that mean that you will both expect to have the same relationship with your children, but it also means that you will continue to work together with regards to the practicalities of parenting, such as setting ground rules for behaviour and ensuring that they are enforced.
Keep change to a minimum
In a sense, keeping change to a minimum is a way of making good on your promise that this change is only going to affect you and your partner as individuals, rather than having a negative impact on your children. If you find yourself having to make unwelcome changes to their established routine, then you are basically demonstrating that your divorce is going to have a negative impact on them.
K J Smith Solicitors are family solicitors in Reading, specialising in all aspects of divorce and separation in including finances on divorce, family mediation, cohabitation agreements and collaborative law.
Washing machines are one of the most useful of modern white good appliances that we have today. However, they are only as effective as the way you use them. In the following post therefore, we want to discuss the kind of things you think might be okay to put in the washing machine, but that you should never actually put in the washing machine.
While normal trainers are mostly fine, especially if they are not particularly expensive, we wouldn’t recommend putting those fancy running shoes into the washing machine. The harshness of the wash cycle could reduce their plushness or even shrink them. If you need to wash those running shoes, it is better then to hand wash them and then just air dry them out.
Stains Caused by Flammable Sources
Most stains can be washed out in the washing machine, apart from one specific group of stains. That is, stains caused by flammable substances such as petrol, diesel and other solvents that are combustible. If you put clothes that have been stained with these kinds of substances, you run the risk of having a fire or even causing an explosion.
Who has time to hand wash their underwear every single time without fail? Well, it might be time to start doing that, if you want to get as much life out of your underwired bras as possible. The underwire can easily get destroyed by being thrown around during the wash cycle in your machine. If you can’t face washing them by hand every single time and need to use the washing machine, perhaps because you are in a rush, stick them in a mesh wash bag or even a pillow case to protect them.
Incredibly Small Items (E.g. Baby Socks etc.)
Have you ever put a load of clothes into the washer and been sure there were pairs of baby socks in there only to find when you take the load out, you only have one sock of each pair? You are not alone. Just where do those smaller items go? They get sucked into the vents and hoses inside your machine, or at least, they can. If you are going to wash smaller items in your washing machine, and we don’t really blame you for doing so, you need to follow the same advice as above and use a mesh bag or pillow case to keep them safe. Failing that you could wash them in the sink by hand.
There are a few areas where you need to use a bit of caution, because some types are okay while others aren’t okay to wash in the machine.
- Blankets and Throws
- Sofa Covers – As most are pre-shrunk, they are safe to machine wash. Without the label outlining instructions, it is best to stick with your gut and have them dry-cleaned.
- Pillows and Duvets – It all comes down to the capacity of your washing machine whether you can wash duvets and pillows or not.
We’ve looked at some of the items you really shouldn’t wash in your washing machine in this post, but if you want to know some of the surprising things you can wash, check out this post at Repair Aid.
Washing machines are obviously incredibly convenient. They are more effective than hand washing and avoid you needing to take your clothes down to the nearest stream or launderette. However, they also use a lot of water, energy and chemicals. If you are looking for ways to make greener use of your washing machine, you’ve come to the right place. Check out the six great tips we have provided below.
Always Wash a Full Load
As a rule of thumb, it is best to only use your washing machine when it has a full load in the drum. It should go without saying that while you want it to be full, you don’t want to overfill it or not all the items will wash as thoroughly.
Pick the Right Washer
It is important to choose, if you are in the process of buying a new washing machine, the right one. That is one that is rated for water efficiency and energy efficiency. This helpful guide at Repair Aid gives further suggestions worth considering.
Avoid Using Prewash Cycles
Although it can be very tempting to use those prewash cycles if you have clothes that are particularly dirty. You know the kind we mean – the kids have been to football practice or are home from a weekend at Glastonbury. That kind of muck. However, you could increase the efficiency of your machine by avoiding them all together and instead using laundry balls, these help to mix the laundry up much better and improve the overall effectiveness of the wash cycle.
Always Wash at 30-Degrees Where Possible
It is possible that you have heard many advertisements proclaiming about how effective washing your dirty laundry at just 30-degrees can be. This is not a sales pitch. The truth is that most washing machines are now efficient and effective enough to wash clothes thoroughly, even if the temperature is set to 30-degrees. This obviously saves on the energy required to warm the water and it also is a gentler way to get your clothes clean. An important tip though would be to use a liquid detergent, rather than a powder if you are washing at lower temperatures as these are already dissolved.
Avoid Overusing Detergent
Try to follow the guidelines on the back of the bottle or box of detergent. If you want to prevent your machine from working inefficiently or being more polluting, measure it carefully. Besides, using too much each wash will increase the amount of money you are having to pay out for washing machine detergent.
Choose the Time of Day You Wash Your Clothes Carefully
This only applies if you have a dual day/night meter. If you do, avoid using your machine during the day and try to use it more at nighttime or even at the weekends to enjoy a reduced tariff. If power is sourced from photovoltaic solar paneling, you are best using your washing machine during the day to get the full benefit from all that free electricity generated from the panels.
Parasites are tiny organisms that reside in or on a host organism, deriving nutrition from the host and gaining an advantage on the latter’s expense. Undoubtedly, parasites can be dangerous in more than one way as they can deprive the host of nutrition and even cause a myriad of diseases. Tapeworms, candida, amoeba, and yeast are some of the most common parasitic organisms found in humans. While some consume your food and leave you hungry, others feed on your blood and cause anemia.
Since parasites can be bad for your health, you need to prevent them in the first place. This is possible by ensuring that you do not consume contaminated food and water. If they do somehow enter your body, the best bet is to eliminate them naturally. While you can rely on medicines, it is still better to look for natural remedies as they do not have side effects and can be used long-term. Here are some herbs that can be used for treating parasites safely and effectively.
Garlic is a common household herb yet is revered for its amazing health benefits. It is loaded with a potent compound called allicin, which is antifungal, antibiotic and anti-parasitic in nature. This makes it capable of destroying dangerous microorganisms that reside within your body. Consuming fresh garlic everyday is a good way to get rid of these unwanted organisms naturally. You can chew a clove or two of fresh garlic on empty stomach every morning for best results.
Another herbal remedy that is amazingly effective for eliminating parasitic organisms is black walnut. Both the hull and nuts are capable of cleansing the intestines and blood. The hull is particularly efficacious as a remedy for fungal infection. Black walnuts kill pinworms, tapeworms and Candida infections. Furthermore, they are work to bring down the sugar levels and accelerate the detox process as well.
Natural cleansing remedies are always better than conventional medicines because they are easy to adhere, inexpensive and safe. If you have tried doing something like this before, you will probably be aware about the wonderful benefits of clove. This small herb surprisingly has potent anti-fungal, antiviral and antibacterial properties. It can be chewed directly or used in the form of essential oil, though both deliver favorable results against parasites.
Ginger is a common herb with an incredible range of health benefits. It is great for digestion and increases blood circulation as well. The powerful herb boosts the acid production in the stomach, which plays a key role in protecting against intestinal parasites and killing the ones that enter your body. Not only this, ginger is also effective for alleviating the symptoms of parasitic die-off. You can consume it in fresh and dried forms for best results.
Turmeric is a herb that has been revered for its medicinal properties for ages. Besides being anti-inflammatory and antibiotic in nature, this herb also acts as a worm expelling agent. Additionally, it has a purifying action on the body and eliminates harmful toxins and parasites too. The best thing about turmeric is that it is easy to include in your daily diet and completely safe to consume on a regular basis.
Another herb that makes a great option for natural elimination of parasitic organisms from your body is thyme. It activates the thymus glands and awakens the natural defensive mechanism, thus curbing the growth of internal parasites. Additionally, it inhibits the growth of bacterial within the body as it is a natural antibacterial agent.
Amazingly, the super-hot cayenne pepper not only adds flavor to your food but works wonders against parasites as well. It is a natural anti-fungal agent and kills fungus, parasites and mold. Also, it enhances the efficacy of other herbs when combined with them for remedial purposes. If you want ginger or garlic to kill parasites faster, just combine them with cayenne pepper.
Raw pumpkin seeds
Another remedial measure that you can try to relieve parasites naturally is raw pumpkin seeds. They have been used traditionally in relieving tapeworm infestations. These tiny seeds are loaded with a natural fat which is toxic to parasite eggs and kills them. Grind the seeds and mix them in smoothies and salads for availing quick and lasting relief from parasitic organisms.
These herbs are commonly available, easy to use and completely safe in most of the cases. Also, they are a cost-effective alternative. Still, you should consult a healthcare provider before trying any herbal remedies. Pregnant women, lactating mothers and people suffering from chronic diseases should use them only under medical supervision.
Few experiences are as devasting as a house fire. Leaving your home can be a traumatic experience and losing your home can leave you unsettled, making it difficult to recover.
Emotional distress is common after a house fire. Evacuating, relocating, and rebuilding is stressful and emotionally exhausting. The emotional distress can make it difficult to move forward, especially when it comes to your insurance claim.
Home insurance typically covers three types of expenses after a fire:
- a) Structure/Dwelling
- b) Personal Contents
- c) Additional Living Expenses
These three categories should cover a) rebuilding your home after a fire, b) replacing personal belongings lost in the fire, and c) the increased cost of living while you are out of your damaged home, such as staying in a hotel.
It can be expensive to rebuild after a fire, and you need the fair compensation from your insurance company.
If you don’t have the cash to cover your living expenses, it can be tempting to accept any offer just so that you can get back on your feet. Before you accept, consider asking your insurance company for a cash advance on your claim. The insurance company is responsible for making sure you don’t suffer undue financial hardship. The advance will be deducted from your final claim, but accepting an advance does not mean that you’ve accepted the insurance company’s initial offer, either.
If you need help with a home insurance claim after a fire or flood, you won’t find many law firms that practice directly in this area. In Canada, only one firm practices solely in this area: Virani Law. They negotiate on your behalf with insurance companies. While they operate similar to an independent adjuster in some respects, they use their legal knowledge and negotiation skills to their benefit, and can also take your insurance company to mediation, or through the legal system if your family isn’t getting what they deserve.
Most negotiations resolve without ending up in mediation or court, as both the homeowners and the insurance companies want to avoid the extra time and added expense. A qualified lawyer can use both insurance and legal knowledge to recover more fulsome compensation for your family. To learn more about how your family can get everything you’re entitled to from your insurance company, visit Viranilaw.ca and ask about how it works.
Many people assume that calling a lawyer will be too expensive. However, the billing model used by Virani Law focuses on helping families who have been through a fire or flood maximize their return. Clients only pay legal fees on the extra funds your lawyer is able to obtain. It’s an unconventional billing system designed to protect families.
A fire is a traumatic experience for families. As you put the pieces back together, you don’t want to stress over your insurance claim. Better compensation can help make your rebuild and recovery smoother and less frustrating after the devastation of a fire. Get professional help to look after your family’s best interests.
Your home insurance claim shouldn’t be complicated. A law firm can take the stress out of your insurance claim while increasing the compensation offered to you by the insurance company. This will help you collect what’s fair.