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BEST B2B MARKETING PRACTICES IN 2020

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When we talk about marketing, our mind straightaway focuses on the customers and by which we mean the people. However, even customers have types, and they are all not the same. Most businesses must market their products to people. But did you ever wonder where companies get the raw material for producing their products?

Providing raw materials to businesses is itself a business. In simple words, businesses are selling their products to other companies so they can create something extraordinary and put it on the shelf. Raw materials were just an example, and there are services and products other than them that companies must acquire from other businesses. The only way two enterprises can connect is through Business to Business (B2B) marketing.

B2B marketing can be anything, raw materials, software, tools, office equipment, you name it. Many companies fall in the category of both B2B and B2C, the latter meaning business to customers. Much like B2C, B2B employs various marketing strategies through which they reach their potential clients. Return on investment is usually one of the considerations for business buyers, which is quite different from the priorities that people have while buying. In B2B marketing, businesses employ many techniques such as gated content to generate leads, which is a fancy way of saying that it develops the interests of a customer in the product. Let’s delve into the trends that are common in B2B marketing for the year 2020.

BETTER WEBSITES

Gone are the days when you would sign up on WordPress, buy a cheap template, and make a simple looking website for your business. There is a reason that they are readily available, and everyone uses them. As they have become so common that people are not charmed when they visit any such site. Instead, now businesses are focusing on making more customized and mobile-friendly websites that present something different from the rest of the internet. A good website also shows your customers how much their interaction with the information you are providing means to you. Your website must be not only easy to interact with but also unique so that it can leave a lasting impression on the customer’s mind. The iconography and symbolism of your business have to be to the point and reinforced again through the website. Yeah, it will cost a little extra but will help your business, leaving a mark in the longer run.

USE MEANINGFUL DATA

It is the age of information, and several tools are available to collect and analyze the massive amount of data. It is a marketer’s paradise only if they understand how to use that data to target potential customers. Tools such as Google Ads and Google Analytics has made data-driven marketing much more straightforward. Though the information is available in profusion, marketers now have to pick and choose which data is essential and which one is useless. Many people ignore this crucial and base their decisions upon the wrong parameters that do not get them the desired results. Search engine marketing is among some of the tools that are becoming popular in which marketers try to understand which keywords diverted people towards their products.

BETTER CONTENT

People need content. Content is something you present to the customer for them to spend their time on. It can be anything, from a blog to a YouTube video. If it is serving the purpose of marketing, it falls under the umbrella of content marketing. Content marketing is subtle and should not be straightforward in presenting your product to the people. That can be an instant turn off. But over time, marketers started creating content just for the sake of filling the space, and that kills the purpose. People think their time is precious, and nobody can deny that, but if you are expecting them to pay attention to your low-quality content, then that’s like living in a fool’s paradise. In the year 2020, marketers are getting more adamant about improving the quality of their content so the customers can feel connected. The more quality you provide to the customer when it comes to content, the more quickly you are going to woo them towards a product.

CONTRAST WITH B2C MARKETING

As B2B marketing flourished, many people started bringing the techniques of B2C marketing towards it. But it does not always necessarily work as both types of marketing are fundamentally different. In B2C, you target a massive audience, which is sometimes possible through Social Media campaigns. In the case of B2B, you must target a very specialized audience to be even remotely practical. Getting a better comprehension of the prospects of your business is necessary to create a strategic approach towards B2B marketing.

FOCUSING ON PROSPECTS

Just because a set of data or a marketing tool worked for another business doesn’t necessarily mean that it will work for you too. You must respect the idiosyncrasy of your client to create a better strategy to persuade them to buy a product. Their behavior patterns and their personal preferences play a crucial role in devising a suitable approach for them. You must focus on what your potential client actually needs and then market your product accordingly.

BETTER USE OF GOOGLE PPC

PPC here means pay-per-click, which is an auction by Google to decide whose page to show first. The more a company pays them, the better prospects of them appearing in the ads even though their company would have nothing to do with that keyword. Such a strategy puts small businesses at risk, and multi-million-dollar businesses already occupy most of the commonly used keywords. In 2020, companies must ignore the generic keywords and instead focus on the exact needs of their customers.

KEY TAKEAWAYS

As B2B marketing expands and explores uncharted avenues, businesses are employing better strategies to market their products. Producing quality content and websites is the need of the day if one wants to have any chance to persuade their potential clients. Instead of relying on junk data, it is pertinent to understand which data is essential and leverage that instead. Furthermore, we recommend that businesses employ finely devised strategies instead of just picking up what worked for others. Nobody knows the requirements of the clients better than you, so you are advised to market your product in the way they want to see it.

What to Do on a Staycation: The Ultimate Planning Guide

Are you trying to figure out what to do on a staycation? If yes, you should check out our guide right here for some great ideas.

So, the pandemic ruined your vacation plans. What now?

It’s time to plan a staycation!

Planning a staycation can be exciting to think about, but what to do on a staycation is the real question. You may feel that you have already seen everything that your city has to offer, however, a staycation can open your eyes to a whole new side of the city that you have never seen before.

We are going to provide you with all of the tools and information that you need to plan the best staycation that you could possibly plan.

Plan, Plan, and Schedule 

You need to approach the planning of your staycation the same way you would approach planning your vacation. You wouldn’t hop on a plane to another location and not have any plans when you get there.

Ensure that you mark your calendar for the staycation and make a list of the things that you need to do before the staycation begins. After setting a date for your upcoming staycation, try not to commit to other things during the dates that you have marked.

After the date has been set aside, begin researching activities that you can do while you are inside. Some ideas might include cooking up a new dish or creating your own art gallery.

Book the “Hotel”

Instead of booking a hotel, which would be difficult during this time, try creating a hotel atmosphere within your home. Set your room up so it resembles a hotel room and offers you the maximum amount of relaxation possible.

Elevate your room experience by adding incense and candles to create an atmosphere worthy of a staycation. Just because you can’t physically stay in a hotel doesn’t mean you can’t pretend!

Become a Tourist in Your City

Just because you’re not able to be out and about right now doesn’t mean you can’t visit different places in your city. You can still do these virtually – all you need is a laptop, television, or a cell phone.

Most places offer sections on their websites where you can take a virtual tour of their facilities before you visit. If all of your electronics fail, you can use your imagination and take a relaxing trip to a place you’ve always wanted to go in your mind.

You may find that it helps you reach another level of relaxation during this staycation.

What to Do on a Staycation: Don’t Drive

We are being told to stay inside our homes during this coronavirus pandemic. So since you can’t drive to different locations, try visiting different rooms in your home.

Treat yourself like a celebrity in a new place and spend time vacationing in each room. To make it feel more authentic, try having a different theme for each room to help your celebrity lifestyle come alive.

Take Time to Relax

Staycations are the best time to make sure you get in some quality time for yourself. Take the time to participate in some self-care which can include:

  • Lounging by the pool
  • Getting a massage from your partner
  • Sleeping in late
  • Giving yourself a facial
  • Enjoying a latte while reading your favorite book
  • Enjoy a glass or two or three of wine

Treating yourself means doing things that you usually don’t get to do. And for some people, that could mean finishing a cup of coffee before you have to head to work. Or it could mean sleeping without an alarm clock reminding you that you have responsibilities.

This could even mean finding the inspiration you need to view houses on the current home market that you are interested in. Focus on you and taking time for yourself while we are all spending time indoors.

Disconnect from the World

In today’s world, everyone is connected to technology in some way. Whether that means using social media, sending a text message, answering a facetime call, or sending an email. We all use technology to communicate with the outside world.

When you are on your staycation, take time to completely go off the grid. When you spend so much time with your head in a phone, you forget to live and take in the beauty of things that are around you.

Make an effort to be invested in the moment and appreciate the time you’re spending by yourself or with your loved ones.

Accomplish Something on Your Bucket List

Do you have a bucket list? While you’re disconnected from the world and spending time with yourself, take the time to accomplish something that you have put on your bucket list.

This could mean taking a YouTube cycling class that you have always wanted to take, or trying a different hair color that you usually wouldn’t think of trying. Perhaps you want to start a novel but have never had the time to do it. Now is the time to try all of these things (or at least a few of them!)

There’s no time like the present time to do or start something that you’ve always wanted to try.

Staycation Ready

Now, you have all the information you need to plan the best staycation possible. So, the only thing left for you to do is to start planning and go on your staycation.

Take this time to relax and do things that you’ve always wanted to do before you return to work. A staycation will help you reset from the stresses of everyday life.

For more helpful tips, be sure to keep reading our blog!

 

Benefits Of Installing Air Filters In Your Home

You may have heard a lot about why it is good to install air filters inside your home. The truth is that there are certainly situations wherein it is necessary to have a working air filter system in the house. For one, someone in your household might have allergies, so an air filter would be useful for that. There might also be young children in your family who are particularly sensitive, so you would definitely need some high-quality air filter system to keep them from getting sick.

Air purifier system cleaning dust pm 2.5 pollution in living room with cute dog in home

Here are the other benefits of installing an air filter system in your home:

Minimizes Floating Particles

One of the most common indoor air pollutants is dust. If someone in your home is allergic to it, you will need to have the air filtered to keep household members from inhaling it. You will know if dust is accumulating if they tend to sneeze and cough more often than normal. Also, it is important to note that whenever you do the cleaning, dust particles get released into the air. An air filter system can remove the floating particles for you.

The same holds true if you have pets living indoors with you. Interestingly, some people who are allergic to pet hair do keep pets indoors, which could result in them coughing and sneezing more often. If this sounds like you, it would be best if you’ll have an air filter system installed in your home so the floating pet hair will be removed from your indoor air.

Reduces Strain On Your Heating, Ventilation, And Air Conditioning System

If you already have an HVAC (heating, ventilation, and air conditioning) system installed at home, you’ll probably think that you won’t be needing an air filter system anymore. This is not true. 

You’ll still need an air filter system precisely because you already have an HVAC system installed. An HVAC system cannot function well if there are too many indoor air pollutants to remove. Having said that, it would be ideal to have an air filter system at work in tandem with your HVAC system so that you can enjoy clean air without taxing your HVAC system to its limit.

You can now purchase an air filter system for your home at less cost with an air filter discount. This would allow you to save money, plus the system will get installed right away in your home. This way, you don’t anymore have to worry about overworking your HVAC system, and you will have better air to breathe as well.

Removes Unpleasant Odors From Your Indoor Air

You won’t notice the quality of your home’s indoor air until an unpleasant smell develops, and you wonder, “Where is that smell coming from?” 

There are various ways for unpleasant odors to develop indoors. For one, your kitchen may contribute to the smelly indoor air, especially when you cook something that releases a lot of odor into the air, such as fish. Perhaps, you have a large aquarium within your living room that hasn’t been cleaned lately.  It could also be because someone forgot to take out the trash on schedule. In order to avoid experiencing these nasty issues, it pays to have an air filter system installed so that the air will smell better and you won’t have to hold your breath each time you enter the house.

Prevents Infection From Spreading

Indoor air quality is often the culprit when you tend to get sick despite staying at home all the time. This is because if someone is infected with a bacterial or viral infection and starts sneezing and coughing, the airborne droplets tend to stay floating in the room for hours, probably even days. Then, other household members might inhale these droplets and eventually get sick as well. Therefore, having the right kind of air filter system installed in your abode is a must as it will remove the droplets from the air, helping ensure your own and your family’s well being.

Ficus green leaves on the background ceiling air conditioner in modern office or at home. Indoor air quality concept

Conclusion

An air filter system is a necessary piece of home equipment. For one, some household members may have allergies, which means indoor air has to be filtered all the time so they remain symptom-free. Another reason is that your HVAC system might be overworked because of the level of dust indoors. Also, you want to keep any of your household members from spreading viral or bacterial infections through airborne droplets. Having said these, you need to make sure that you have the right kind of air filter system installed in your home so that problems can be fixed before they exacerbate.

15 Modern Loft Design Ideas

Transform your loft into a cozy, contemporary retreat that you love returning to every day with these 15 modern loft design ideas.

Loft conversions with a unique loft design are one of the most popular and appealing house conversion options today.

What was once a rarely used storage space can become an all-new hideaway in your new home. Be it a new bedroom or a dedicated gaming space, there are more options than ever to turn your loft into a feature room of your house.

Due to the nature of a loft (quite high usually) its the ideal area to make into a cozy space for you, your partner or your children.

These are 15 modern loft ideas you can use to transform your loft into your favorite room in the house!

 

  1. Stairway To Heaven

The first thing you need to focus on in your loft redesign is how you get up there. If you have stairs, spruce them up! You could add a spiraled staircase for some real originality, or create freestanding stairs like these. It’s the first step (excuse our pun) to a fabulous new loft!

 

  1. Got A Ladder? Electrify!

If you get up to your loft via a ladder, rather than stairs, you can upgrade them too! Nothing impresses guests more than an electric ladder up to your loft, like a spacecraft landing. If you want to wow your guests with an electric ladder to your loft, shop here.

 

  1. Sneaky Entrance

Another great loft apartment design idea is disguising the way up. Whether you have stairs or a ladder, if you hide them away as part of your ordinary decor, it can add a secretive element to your loft. Your kids will love having a secret passageway to their loft space.

 

  1. High-Rise Sleeping

You can transform your loft space into a new bedroom. If you have a baby on the way, it’s the perfect way to create a family home. Once you’ve transformed your loft into a bedroom, you’ll never sleep downstairs again!

 

  1. Curtained Off

When it comes to loft decor ideas, you need to be thinking about design as well as privacy. Curtains can be a great way of separating your loft space from the rest of your house. You can match the color with the interior to maximize aesthetics, whilst still being functional. Or, you can get creative with your barriers and install wooden beams to hide your loft space away.

 

  1. A Window To The World

Because they are so high up, you can really get creative with your use of windows in your loft. Angled windows can let a lot of natural light in, whilst offering a great view of the outside world. Make the most of your surroundings and the height of your loft by installing a large window to the outside world.

 

  1. Loft Design: Let Your Artistic Side Loose

A loft can be a space that has been specially designed for you. You can put up the artwork that you love, but you don’t think is quite right for your guests. This allows your loft to be the perfect place for you to go to and relax. Think of it as your bedroom when you were a child; it should be unapologetically you. 

 

  1. Or, Go Full Guest Mode

Or if you’d rather go in a different approach, you can design your loft as a guest room space. Think clean lines, pleasant artwork and a homely atmosphere. You want somewhere where your guests can rest their heads with just enough character to not be intrusive.

 

  1. Game On!

As we mentioned before, a loft space can be perfect as a video gaming hideaway. All you need is a TV, your games console, some comfy seating, and good lighting, and you’re away! You’ll no longer have to kick your kids out of the living room or push your partner off the PlayStation to watch TV.

 

  1. Work Work Work

If you often work from home, sliding a desk into your loft can be a good way of separating work life from home life. Not only is it a quiet place to work, but a loft can also often be just big enough for all the things you need. Just make sure you install a router if the WiFi isn’t as strong up there!

 

  1. A Bookshelf Up High

If you’re concerned your loft space isn’t big enough to optimize, think again. Many ideas require minimal space for maximum comfort. If you’re a bookworm, consider making some bookshelf walls and buying a comfy chair. This is all you need to turn your loft into a library of luxury.

 

  1. Desk and Wall Lights

When you think of a loft, you think of a dark and dingy room. But this doesn’t have to be the case! If you have limited space, get a small desk lamp or a wall light. These can work wonders for the lighting in your loft space, at a low cost and taking up a minimal amount of room.

 

  1. Beautify Your Barricades

Barricades can often be a necessary part of loft design for the safety of those up there. But they don’t have to be garish. A lick of paint can transform a barrier from a necessity to a feature. Consider matching the wood to your house interior, or the color to the loft itself. In this way, the barricade becomes part of the room, rather than just a safety measure.

 

  1. Ever Slept In A Hammock?

Your loft doesn’t even necessarily need a bed to serve as a bedroom. Though perhaps not ideal for a regularly used bed, a hammock can be a fun and exciting way to differentiate bedtime for kids. Just make sure its safely hung and far away from the edge of the loft!

 

  1. En-Suite

If your loft is located in your bedroom, why not transform it into a shower space? This way you can have that en-suite you always dreamed of. This is a practical use for loft spaces that few people consider as an option.

 

And So Much More!

These are just 15 ideas but there are so many more loft design options you can implement.

Make sure to focus on saving space, maximizing on essentials and never forgetting the loft’s purpose. If you do this, your loft will look spectacular in no time!

Enjoy reading this article? Check out our website for more posts like this one.

 

5 Tips for Buying a Commercial Building

Tired of renting your office space? Check out these 5 tips for buying a commercial building.

Thinking about buying a commercial building?

Wondering how to buy commercial properties?

If you’re tired of renting office space, acquiring real estate for your business can be a great alternative option. While there are pros and cons to this, owning commercial property can potentially be helpful for moving your business forward and helping it thrive.

Fortunately, we’re here to help you out. Below we’ll list 5 of our top tips for buying a commercial building.

 

  1. Have a Funding Plan

One of the things you’ll need to think carefully about when buying commercial property is how you’ll finance your purchase. It’s important to have a clear plan for how you’ll pay for it before you start looking too far. You should try to get financing locked down beforehand.

Additionally, it’s important to temper your expectations and resist the urge to borrow more than you can really afford. Buying a commercial property can be risky and you don’t want to end up biting off more than you can chew.

 

  1. Investigate the Property Thoroughly

When buying commercial property you need to make sure you’re not rushing into things. Take the time to get to know the property you’re considering.

Remember that your needs will vary based on your business’ specific needs. if you’re planning to purchase dentist real estate, for example, you won’t have the same needs as someone who needs a warehouse space for an online business.

Be sure that you understand the ins and outs of a property, including its drawbacks. Learn everything you can about zoning regulations and building codes. Also, be aware of other property specifics such as security features and nearby traffic patterns as well.

 

  1. Look Beyond the Property Itself

While you should learn about the commercial property itself, don’t stop there. You also need to make sure that you’re intimately familiar with the local market and the area where it’s located.

Just because you’re fond of a specific location or a specific property, that doesn’t mean that it’s a good choice for your needs. Ensure that the location you’re looking at is right for your purposes and will be strategically located to help your business succeed.

 

  1. Be Ready For the Risks

With any type of real estate purchase, there is always a certain amount of risk involved. Be sure that you’re well aware of this and that you’re prepared to maintain and make payments on your property even if things don’t go according to plan right away.

Having money saved up for payments and planning for potential business setbacks is essential your property purchase doesn’t end up causing unnecessary burden.

 

  1. Remember to Do the Math

When buying a commercial property, it’s best not to let your emotions cloud your judgment. While you may be excited about the prospect of buying a certain building or office space, you always need to do the math and make sure it will be a worthwhile investment.

Be sure you think things through thoroughly by crunching the numbers and finding out everything you can about a potential property well before buying.

 

Successfully Buying a Commercial Building With These Tips

If you’re thinking about buying a commercial building, be sure that you’re thoroughly prepared. You need to do the research and think about your goals carefully before buying a building to ensure that it meets your needs and will help you in the long run.

Looking for more real estate advice and guidance? Start reading through our blog now to find more helpful tips and strategies.

 

How to Install Your Over-The-Air TV Antenna

Proper antenna placement has a lot to do with the channels you pick up. Discover here how to install your over-the-air tv antenna.

If you’re installing your own TV antenna for the first time, you probably have a lot of questions.

Roof antenna installation is a delicate process, one that you will have to get exactly right if you wish to get the channels that you want to see.

While antenna placement is an exact science, it is possible for anybody to master it. Read on to find out everything you need to know about how to install antenna devices above your home.

 

  1. Find Out What Antenna You Need

Before getting into the nitty-gritty of how to install TV antenna parts, you will need to figure out exactly what antenna you need.

Your needs will depend on where you can place the antenna and how far away the stations are that you want to pick up.

Do your research to figure out what antenna will give you the reach that you need.

 

  1. Consider Your Building 

If you’re considering an outdoor antenna, then the kind of building you live in is a crucial consideration.

According to this article on the costs of antenna installation, standalone, single-story homes are the cheapest and easiest places for antenna positioning.

Meanwhile, apartment buildings are more complex and costly to install on.

 

  1. Antenna Placement: Indoor or Outdoor?

Deciding whether to install your antenna indoors our outdoors is a crucial consideration.

In this country and in this day and age, most people tend to opt for indoor antennas. However, you may only be able to get the antenna height and direction you wish for by placing it outdoors.

Do your research to see which situation will give you the service you require.

 

  1. Mount the Antenna 

Once you have the facts established, it is time to begin the TV antenna installation process. There are three main ways to do this:

  • Wall installation – for this, you will need wall brackets that will hold the mast in place.
  • Chimney installation – for this, you can use chimney straps to attach the mast to your home’s chimney.
  • Rooftop Installation – you can use a standard adjustable antenna mount to attach the mast to the roof of your house.

Remember, no matter which way you mount it, always make sure that the mast is totally verticle, otherwise, you will struggle to get reception.

 

  1. Run the Cable to Your TV

Once your antenna is safely mounted and stable, it’s time to connect it to your television. Simply attach one end of the coaxial cable to your antenna, to begin with.

Then you will likely need to drill holes in your roof or walls in order to run the cable through your house to connect it to the TV. Make sure that you are creating the shortest route possible for the wire.

Once this is complete, all you need to do is take the final step of grounding the antenna to protect it against lightning strikes.

 

Learn More 

Proper antenna placement is just one technology that everyday engineers can install. Make sure to read our engineering technology guides to learn more!

 

How to Hire a Professional Exterminator: The Complete Guide

How to Hire a Professional Exterminator: The Complete Guide

There are certain things you should know and do when it comes to hiring a professional exterminator. You can check out our guide here to learn more.

According to the National Pest Management Association, pests like termites create over $5 billion of damage to U.S properties every year.

And termites aren’t the only culprits. Spiders, rodents, and cockroaches can also wreak havoc on our homes unless we call in the professionals.

Sounds familiar? If so, you’ve come to the right place. Here’s how to find the best professional exterminator for the job.

 

Benefits of Hiring a Professional Exterminator 

There are many advantages to hiring the best pest control services. Some of them being:

 

Guaranteed Pest-Free Home

The top pest control companies offer quality services so your uninvited guests never return. They’ll make the right decisions, have a robust skill set, and equipment to eliminate all pests from your home. Far more effective than trying it yourself!

 

Safe Products

Professional exterminating technicians are equipped with the right products to make the job easier. Their products are safe to use around humans, pets, and the environment. If you aren’t knowledgeable in this area, you could cause more harm than good.

 

Saves Time

The best exterminator will tackle your pest control problem in the shortest amount of time. They will also educate you on how to prevent a pest infestation and give you a step-by-step explanation about how they’ll treat your home.

 

Tips for Hiring a Professional Exterminator 

Before you hire a professional pest control company, you should consider the following:

 

Ask For Recommendations

To get the best exterminator for the job, ask friends and family for recommendations. This is a fantastic way to get firsthand information about the exterminators in your area, their methods, and prices.

Contact your state pest control association or visit the National Pest Management Association’s website for a reliable list of providers in your area.

You should also check online reviews as it shows the exterminator stands by their work and is a trustworthy, reputable technician.

If you have any exotic pest infestations, check out the helpful post.

 

Ask to See Their Certification 

Every exterminator must have the relevant licenses, registration, certificates, and insurance to protect your home.

Having the required documentation proves they know the best solution for whichever pests are present. Certifications make it easy to follow-up if they don’t do a good job which would be impossible if you hire a company that has zero qualifications.

 

Compare Costs

Create a list of at least four exterminators and compare prices, otherwise, you may overpay for their service.

Avoid choosing the cheapest company as they’ll most likely end up doing a terrible job. This will force you to hire another exterminator which would add to the overall cost.

The technician’s uniform and appearance should be pristine and professional. Everything from their truck to their equipment should give you a feeling of security.

 

Get Them to Inspect Your Home

Exterminators may charge a fee to evaluate your site, and give you a written diagnosis of the problem and which type of pest is behind it.

The inspection can last 30 minutes but may take longer depending on the size of your property like crawl spaces, basements or attics.

An exterminator will check for any signs of infestation, damage, or areas that could attract pests. For instance, gnawed wiring, damaged wood, and animal droppings are telltale signs of unwanted visitors.

Once the exterminator has conducted a thorough examination, they’ll be able to draw up a treatment and payment plan. Exterminators have a wealth of knowledge but if they don’t know something off-hand, they should be honest and say they’ll find out and let you know.

If any answers sound made-up, that’s a major red flag.

 

Their Pest Control Treatments

The exterminator must use modern eco-friendly treatments that kill pests while being safe for people and a majority of pets. If you have exotic animals like birds or reptiles, ask whether any particular treatments will put them at risk.

Exterminators must breakdown the treatment so you know what type of pesticide will be used, how many times it’ll be used (for larger infestations), and the cost of the treatment plan.

Reputable exterminators must be transparent about the chemicals they’ll use. Each chemical should be labeled and have a clean, professional appearance.

If you’re unsure, ask the technician for a Material Safety Data Sheet and a specimen label for each chemical to be reassured about their level of expertise.

 

Review the Contract

Every exterminator should present details about the pest problem like why they’ve chosen the treatment and the application technique. The contract must include their company’s name, the service’s duration, the treatment plan, price, and guarantee.

Before signing the dotted line, check the backside for details they may have excluded. For instance, if you cancel the contract, will there be a penalty?

You should also look out for their liability insurance and whether they’ll redo the work in case it fails. Insurance is crucial, because if something goes wrong in the process, then the insurance will cover it.

Once you’ve sealed the deal, stay in touch with the exterminator to ensure you’re getting the agreed service or if there are any recent changes in pest populations.

 

That’s How You Hire a Professional Exterminator 

As soon as you notice an infestation, you must consult with a professional exterminator.

You can find a reputable one through recommendations and online reviews. It’s essential they have up-to-date licenses and certifications to prove they’re knowledgeable.

Compare several exterminators so you get a fair price, have the best treatment plan, and have a good contract.

Did you find this article helpful? If so, check out our posts on everything from travel to real estate.

 

Beautiful 2020 Kitchen Design Trends You Need to See

They say the kitchen is the heart of the home. It should be designed to your liking, right? Check out these jaw dropping 2020 kitchen design trends.

With 58% of homeowners planning to make an investment in home improvement, what’s the best project to embark on? Not every project will give you a return on investment. The top returns come from kitchen remodels.

If the kitchen is the heart of the home that makes it the room in your home that you absolutely have to get right. Check out these amazing 2020 kitchen design trends and start planning.

 

Our Favorite 2020 Kitchen Design Trends

The kitchen trends for 2020 are interesting for their diversity and apparent contradictions. There is no one direction to focus on. Instead, there are contrasting trends, competing for your attention.

When this range of options exists, it’s an opportunity. You can express your own identity while still being on-trend. Your friends, family, and neighbors might go in a quite different direction and that’s on-trend too.

So, explore the options. See what resonates with your sensibilities. Make a choice and go with it.

 

Make It Colorful

Color is making a new claim for your kitchen. Colorful accents or big areas of color are equally making a play for your attention.

Colorful appliances are an effective way to bring color into your kitchen. They can be very bold statements but perhaps the commitment is too much for you.

What if the trend is a short-lived one. You are stuck with very colorful and expensive to replace appliances. Paint a wall or the ceiling a strong color and you can change it later to a less colorful statement relatively cheaply.

 

Make It White

While color is on-trend, so is white. White is unlikely to be a decor faux pas because it’s so forgiving. It works with natural materials and hi-tech alike.

White can be a great backdrop to a bold color experiment with splashbacks. It can equally show off more muted and subtle touches because it’s not competing for attention.

 

Marble

Natural materials that exude quality are in. Marble is a classic example. Choose marble with strong veining and use it to provide a color theme for the rest of your kitchen.

Some strange materials have found their way into kitchens recently. Leather and brass have made a play for stardom and there might be more unconventional materials so come. It’s easy to get it wrong with this type of approach but marble is never out of place.

 

A Full Larder

A larder or at least a stand-alone piece of furniture designed to store your essential dry-goods and jars of foodstuffs is making a joyful return. It can be a delightful piece of period furniture.

More than that, it’s an opportunity to stock up on pickles, pulses, and pasta. You never know when you might need to rely on them.

 

Handmade

There’s something wonderful about knowing that part of your kitchen was handmade. There’s so much excellent factory-made kitchen equipment and appliances that you might rarely appreciate the joy of hand-made things.

The uniqueness of handmade things is what makes them so enjoyable. When you spot an imperfection, it tells you that human creativity is alive and kicking. Consider hand-made floor tiles, a table, and chairs.

 

Reclaimed and Upcycled

The environment is a relevant consideration whenever you are improving your home. Feel better about your remodel and do some real good too by incorporating some reclaimed or upcycled terracotta tiles.

Dish racks are on-trend for 2020 but try to find an old one and incorporate it into your new kitchen design. It will have character and reduce CO2 emissions and possibly save a beautiful thing from the landfill site.

 

Wallpaper

Wallpaper is seeing a resurgence of popularity in the kitchen. It’s a quick and easy way to introduce color and pattern. Try wallpapering a feature wall rather than the whole kitchen.

Make sure you use a wallpaper that can stand up to the unique conditions of a kitchen. Moisture, changes in temperature and heavier than normal traffic can make a life for your wallpaper tough. Choose wisely.

 

Match Not

If you have a vision of your kitchen with matching fittings, themes, and coordination, think again. You can free yourself from those constraints. Matching isn’t always a good thing.

It’s okay to have non-matching metals throughout your kitchen. A chrome faucet, brass light fittings, and white knobs might be the new way of thinking.

If it doesn’t work for you that’s fine but try it out first. You might feel liberated.

 

Simplify

Simplification is not the same as minimalism. Simplification is in and can be bold and forthright in a way that minimalism is not. It can be a way of focusing on a single design idea.

For example, if you wish to make a feature of the quality and character of the natural wood in your cabinets, don’t make it compete for attention. Keep everything else simple. The wood will have the center stage and everything else will be the supporting actors.

 

Hide It

Stainless steel kitchen appliances can detract from your kitchen decor. In some contexts, they can look ugly. For 2020, hide the appliances behind cabinet doors.

A French country kitchen is a wonderful place to cook, eat and live. Its rustic charm can be undermined by modern chrome appliances. This style of kitchen benefits from discrete appliances hidden behind the cabinetry.

 

Look Up

How often do you look at your kitchen ceiling? Perhaps you hardly notice it. Making more of it is very much the thing to do in 2020.

Use bright colors or beadboards. Add eye-catching light fittings. You might raise your eyes more often.

 

Your 2020 Kitchen

The most exciting kitchen trend for 2020 is to follow your heart. Express yourself rather than following the crowd. Explore these 2020 kitchen design trends, be inspired, but, above all, make it your own.

Browse through a few more of our blog posts for more great home decor ideas.

 

How to Save Money on Air Conditioning: 5 Ways to Lower Your Bill

Are you trying to find out how to save money on air conditioning? If yes, you should check out some of our best tips here for lowering your bill.

Every month, Americans normally pay around $111 on average for their electricity bill.

If you are trying to save some money in your budget, cutting your electricity bill can help.

Are you trying to find out how to save money on air conditioning? If yes, you should check out some of our best tips here for lowering your bill.

 

  1. Reduce Sunlight

One helpful thing to do is try and reduce the amount of sunlight that enters your home. If you have too much sunlight, it can raise the temperature of your home.

When you block out the sunlight, you can help reduce how warm your house gets, which means that the AC won’t have to kick on as much.

To help with this, you can plant some trees to provide shade outside your house or get sun-blocking curtains.

 

  1. Replace Your Windows

You could also try replacing your windows.

If your windows are old, they probably aren’t as energy-efficient as other windows are today.

Replacing your windows can be expensive, so you want to make sure that you weigh the cost versus the benefit of it.

 

  1. Use a Programmable Thermostat

Using a programmable thermostat can also be helpful and save you money and energy.

This will let you program what temperature you want your house to be throughout all hours of the day, even when you’re not there.

While you’re not there, you can have the temperature be higher, but set it to go on an hour before you get home so that you don’t have to walk into a sauna.

There are lots of great companies and models, so make sure you do your research before getting one.

 

  1. Take Care of Your Cooling System

Installing a programmable thermostat and keeping sunlight out of your house won’t be enough if you don’t make sure that you maintain your AC system.

If you don’t take proper care of it, your costs won’t decrease. A dirty air filter will block airflow which will make the unit have to work harder.

You should make sure that you clean or replace the filters at least once a month because this can really help reduce your costs.

To discover more about AC maintenance, you can learn more here.

 

  1. Use a Fan

You should also try using a fan in a room so that you don’t have to constantly turn on the AC.

A fan can make your room feel up to seven degrees cooler because of the wind-chill effect. The fan doesn’t normally cool the room, but it helps cool down the people who are sitting in it.

 

Learn More About How to Save Money on Air Conditioning

Figuring out how to save money on air conditioning is fairly easy, and it can help save you a few dollars each month.

Just make sure that you perform regular maintenance on your AC unit so that it doesn’t break and cost you even more money.

If you enjoyed this article, make sure you check out our website for others just like it!

 

How to Clean out Your Late Parent’s House

Cleaning out a loved one’s home after their death can be physically and emotionally draining. Learn how to clean out parents house after death here.

While the death of a loved one is considered life’s number one most stressful event, it can be even tougher to get through if the deceased is a parent who left a home behind. Cleaning out a parent’s home to prepare it for sale can be heart-wrenching as nearly everything in is a reminder of your relationship.

Having a list of everything that needs to be done will at least make the process a little smoother. Here’s how to clean out a parent’s house after death.

 

Secure the Property

Unless you know for certain who had access to the home and who has spare keys you can collect, it’s a good idea to have the locks changed. You’ll also want to make sure all doors and windows and locked when you’re not physically in the home to begin sorting through possessions.

 

Have the Mail Forwarded and Cancel Subscriptions

Piled up mail and newspapers in the driveway or doorstep advertises to the world that the home is vacant and makes it attractive to robbers. Have the mail forwarded to your or a sibling’s address and cancel any subscriptions or services your parent had.

It’s important to keep paying the bills, particularly if you want utilities to continue such as electricity, heat, and water.

 

Sort Through Possessions

This is the most daunting step for many people, as your parent’s belongings are certain to dredge up memories. You may also have a hard time letting go of some items. Your best bet is to sort possessions into one of three categories: items to keep, items to sell or donate, and items to throw away.

Tackle this step one room at a time. You and any siblings will need to agree to which possessions each person is taking, such as jewelry, collectibles, and other items, if it wasn’t already discussed before your parent’s death.

Hire a trash removal service if needed to haul away any large unwanted items or debris. Check over here for same-day trash removal options.

 

Collect Any Legal Documents and Money You Find

As you begin going through drawers shelves, set aside any legal documents you find into a folder. Papers you will need to settle an estate include a physical will, bank and brokerage account statements, stocks, bonds, and homeowner insurance policy.

If your parent left behind credit card debt, contact the three major credit reporting agencies so they can list the cardholder as deceased. This will prevent new charges from going on the card.

You may come across cash tucked away in unlikely places. Shred any sensitive documents that are no longer needed.

 

Get the Home Market Ready

Once you’ve removed all personal belongings from the home, it’s time to prepare it for listing. Give every room a good cleaning from ceiling to floor and freshen up worn walls with a new coat of paint. Toss outdated window coverings and get rid of old furniture that can’t be sold.

Make any minor repairs and spruce up the yard by raking away debris, getting rid of junk, and mowing the lawn.

 

Know How to Clean Out a Parent’s House After Death

Knowing how to clean out a parent’s house after death will prepare you for when the day arrives and make the job a little less stressful for you.

Check out our latest real estate posts for more tips on preparing a home to sell it.

 

Get Approved for Your Apartment With This Apartment Rental Checklist

People don’t typically like to stay in one place for too long. In fact, the average American will move 11 times in their life. If you’re about to embark on one of your 11, you’ll need to make sure everything is in order first.

Keep reading for an apartment rental checklist covering everything you need before moving.

 

Rental History, References

Most landlords want to make sure you’re not a liability for their complex. They’ll ask you for a history of your previous rentals. This includes your prior property manager’s number, why you left, and how much your rent was.

They’ll also want external references to vouch for you. You can pick anyone as a reference, but you should choose someone who’s reliable. Consider your boss or a workmate.

 

Paystubs, Bank Statements

Your new landlord will want to see either your bank statements or pay stubs. These prove that you’re employed and able to pay the monthly rent. They don’t want to take any risks on tenants who might not pay the rent.

Typically, they’ll ask for between two to four months worth of statements or stubs. You can usually print these off straight from your online banking account. If not, you’ll have to take a trip to the bank.

If you’re looking for a paystub generator free of charge, click here.

 

Proof of Residency, SSN

Whether it’s a passport, driver’s license, or green card, you need to show your new landlord that you’re a legal resident. The landlord wants to make sure you are who you claim to be. Some may even ask for two or three pieces of ID, so bring a couple of pieces when you’re apartment hunting.

Your social security number is another important document to bring. Without it, your landlord can’t run a credit or background check on you.

If the landlord asks you to provide your own credit check, you might not need to show your SSN. But you should bring it with you just in case.

 

Checkbook

The last thing you want is someone swooping in and taking your new apartment right from under your nose. Always bring your checkbook just in case you’re ready to strike a deal.

There will likely be a set fee you can pay to take the apartment off the market until you sign the lease. This will ensure your apartment is safe from vultures.

 

Other Items to Consider

If you’re planning on getting a parking spot at your place, bring a driver’s license and vehicle reg. You might also need your most recent tax return forms, and an employment letter. This should be on company letterhead.

If you’re using a guarantor, bring their paperwork as well.

 

Always Follow an Apartment Rental Checklist

It’s important to follow an apartment rental checklist so you’re not caught empty-handed when you find the perfect place. It’ll make your move much faster and easier. Follow the checklist above and prepare for the smoothest move of your life.

For more on moving and urban life, check out the rest of our blog.

5 Reasons a Calgary Home Isn’t Selling Fast

Many homeowners in Calgary are dismayed about their homes, not selling fast.  According to real estate experts, there is good demand for homes in Calgary, and the selling to listing price ratio is around 99%.  Here we look at possible reasons a Calgary home isn’t selling fast. As a buyer, too, you should look for these points during your home search.

 

  1. The Price Is Too High

If there are more houses for sale in Calgary and only a few buyers, you need to consider revising the price.  In most cases, it is not the condition but the price which is preventing the sale of your home.  It is tough to determine the fair value of your home, and several factors need to be considered.

Home sellers can also browse local listings in their area and see if they have priced higher than comparable properties.

In Calgary, there has been a 2.2% downward trend in the home prices during the period (Feb 29 to Mar 28). The most significant price drop was for large homes.  The average sale price of 6-bed houses dropped by 16%, while the average sale price of 2-bed homes dropped by 3%.

 

  1. Home Does Not Fit the Mold

According to the latest Calgary real estate market data, the median days on the market for a home are 39 days. However, this is not a standard value and the median days on market changes as per home type and market conditions.  Some homes have unique properties that take a little longer to match a buyer.

For example, your home might be very big or expensive, or it is in particular areas in Calgary like Vanier or Heron having high crime rates and overcrowded communities. In such cases, you need to have some patience and take steps to showcase unusual features of your home in good light to attract buyers.

 

  1. The Staging Is Bad

Home staging refers to the preparation of private residences for sale. The primary objective of home staging is to make your home appealing to more buyers.  Typically, a well-staged home not only sells for more money, but it also sells fast.

With vacant homes, prospective buyers are not able to envision the space potential. Hence, you should allow the photographer to shoot pictures with your stuff there.

 

  1. The Listing Photos Paint a Bad Picture

A picture speaks a thousand words, and it holds true with the listings of houses for sale in Calgary. If photos are not of professional quality, it will put off many prospective buyers. If a listing photo doesn’t show how great your home is, no buyer is going to visit it.

 

  1. The Curb Appeal Is Not Good

According to a Michigan State University study, an excellent curb appeal can increase the perceived value of a home by 5 to 11%. It also has a vital role in a faster sale of the home.

The average price of a home in Calgary is around $469K, while the median price is $445K.  If the curb appeal is not right, you need to get a few things done to improve its curb appeal, which will not only fetch a higher price but also help you sell a home in Calgary faster.

 

The Importance of Keeping Your Swimming Pool Clean Throughout The Year

Deck chair and swimming pool with reflection of palm trees at the resort.

Having a swimming pool at home can be very functional and brings your yard to a whole new level. Swimming regularly can also help you lead a healthier and better lifestyle in the long run. At the same time, it can also serve as entertainment when you throw barbeque nights or pool parties. However, with great benefits come great responsibilities, and you need to keep your pool well-maintained. Here are some reasons why it’s important to keep your swimming pool clean throughout the year.

 

  1. Prevent Growth of Algae

Water that is left in swimming pools for a long time will lead to the growth of algae. Once you start seeing some green pigments in your pool. That’s already algae. And when you start swimming in a pool that has algae, it will be bad for your health.

There are many products that you can use to either remove or even prevent algae from forming in the first place. However, if you don’t want to do the cleaning, you can always hire a pool cleaning service provider to make sure that your pool is clean.

 

  1. Increases Longevity of Pool and Pool Equipment

Such as any asset, your pool also has its own useful lifespan. By regularly cleaning your pool and doing regular maintenance, you can prolong the life of your swimming pool. Your pool equipment and machinery may break down due to a leak or large debris getting caught up in the motor. By cleaning, you can prevent large debris from entering your pool equipment and machinery.

Whenever you do regular cleaning, you also get to check your equipment before the problems become beyond repair. Before it’s too late, you’ll be able to make the necessary repairs if you regularly clean your pool. This is also why you need to keep your pool clean throughout the year.

 

  1. Avoid Risking Your Health and Wellbeing

When you don’t clean your pool regularly, dust and molds will start building up in the pool. Moreover, the pool can also be a site where mosquitoes with dengue can lay their eggs. If dengue mosquitoes multiply in your home, that might lead to one of your family members getting dengue. Dengue is very harmful and can possibly be fatal since it attacks your organs.

In addition to that, when you don’t clean your pool, it will also cause the water to have the wrong pH. Swimming in water with the wrong pH will be hazardous to your health. An unbalanced pH in the water will cause your eyes to become sore if your eyes are open underwater for a bit while. The recommendation is to keep a neutral pH balance in the water to be safe, which is around a 7.4pH level.

Bacteria build-up in the water might also result in some skin diseases and respiratory complications. It might lead to rashes, wound infections, eye infections, or lung problems. So, it’s best that you keep your pool very clean.

 

  1. Prevent Clogging of Drains

Pools that aren’t cleaned regularly tend to accumulate all sorts of dirt, dust, and particles. Most pools have a filter for these things. But, even though you have a filter, you still need to do regular cleaning because the dirt, dust, and other particles that build up will eventually cause your drains and motors to clog. Once your drains and motors are clogged, it will cost you a lot to repair. Regularly cleaning your pool will prevent this from happening.

 

  1. Better Aesthetics

No one wants to see a dirty pool or much more swim in it. If you have guests over and they see dirt in your pool, no one will be swimming anymore. Moreover, it also ruins the overall appearance and aesthetics of your house if your pool is dirty.

Happy attractive young friends in sunglasses are having fun in swimming pool on an inflatable mattress and smiling while making selfie.

There are also times when your pool liners might get stained. This usually happens when swimmers leave residues of oil, soap, sunscreen, suntan lotion, or hair gel in the pool. The residue will build up on the walls and leave markings. Regular cleaning will prevent stains from staying in the linings of your pool walls.

 

 

Conclusion

Your pool can offer so many benefits for you from relaxation, recreation and exercise. To be able to do all this, you need to be able to keep your pool clean. I hope the reasons above were enough to let you see the importance of cleaning your pool and convince you to clean your pool regularly. This will not only benefit yourself, but it will also do good for your family’s health and well-being.

 

6 Eye Opening Tips for People Buying Homes During COVID-19 Crisis

We are in times of uncertainties because of COVID-19 crisis. Here are six tips to help you learn whether is now a good time to buy a house.

Are you thinking about buying a home during the coronavirus crisis? Are you wondering how the process will work if we’re supposed to be social distancing? Is now a good time to buy a house, even?

While buying a home with all the coronavirus restrictions obviously isn’t ideal, it certainly is possible. However, before you start the process, there are some things you should know.

Check out this guide to discover the top tips for buying a home during COVID-19.

 

  1. Make Sure You Have Enough Money Saved 

While you obviously need to have a decent amount of money saved for buying a home in any circumstance, it’s especially important that you have ample money set aside during this time.

It’s no secret that people are losing their jobs left and right, and the number of people filing for unemployment is at an all-time high. Although your job may be safe now, you never know what your situation is going to be in a few months.

Therefore, it’s very important to make sure that you have enough money saved to afford a house. While down payments usually range from 3% to 25%, during this time, we suggest having at least 20% saved for the downpayment.

Additionally, you should also have 4 to 6% saved for closing costs, as well as enough money set aside to cover 3 to 6 months of living expenses in case your situation changes.

 

  1. Understand That Mortgage Rates are Fluctuating

Before buying a home, it’s also important to understand that mortgage rates are changing frequently due to the coronavirus.

The Federal Reserve has twice lowered its rates since 2020, which has caused interest rates to drop on everything from savings accounts to credit cards. So, this means mortgage rates should be lower too, right?

While there’s often correlation, the federal fund rates on mortgages aren’t as cut and dry. Rather, mortgage rates rely heavily on demand. For example, in early March, mortgage rates were low and lenders were flooded with refinancing applications.

Generally speaking, when the economy is struggling, mortgage rates tend to fall. However, we’re currently experiencing an unprecedented situation, and because of this, rates are constantly changing due to a volatile market.

So, while rates are increasing one day, they may be decreasing by the next.

 

  1. Start the Process as Early as Possible 

During this time, the home buying journey is taking longer than normal. If you don’t get a jump-start, you could end up waiting around for a while.

In addition to lenders being overwhelmed with refinancing applications, many companies’ employees are now working from home, which can affect the ability for things to move along quickly.

Due to social distancing, things are being slowed down every step of the way. Take, for example, the appraisal. In order to perform an appraisal, the appraiser physically needs to go to the house.

If the home they’re requested to go to is in quarantine, this could vastly slow down the process. If you’re hoping to buy and move into a home by a certain date, we recommend contacting a lender and a real estate agent as early as possible so you can get the ball rolling.

 

  1. Request Virtual Tours and Videos 

In order to prevent the spread of the infection, the majority of companies have canceled open houses and private showings. Thankfully, you don’t just have to rely on online photos to decide if a home is for you.

Thanks to technology, you can now take digital tours and even virtual reality tours. Your agent can hop on the tour with you and do a live chat, which essentially allows you to get a walkthrough of the home just as you would in-person.

This type of technology has been in place for a few years, and it’s becoming more and more reliable as time goes on. Therefore, you can rest easy knowing you’re getting a good idea of what the home actually looks like before seeing it in person.

 

  1. Find a Broker Who Takes the Coronavirus Seriously

If you’ve been keeping up with the news, then you know that there are still people out there who are not taking the coronavirus seriously, despite what medical experts are saying.

You shouldn’t put your health at risk for the sake of buying a home, and therefore, it’s very important to find a real estate broker who is taking the coronavirus seriously. Ideally, you want to find a broker who is equipped to provide you with digital and virtual tours of the home.

Additionally, before hiring a broker, you want to make sure to ask them what precautions they’re taking in their workplace to prevent the spread of the virus. Hopefully, they’ll inform you that all agents are working from home and that the homes they show in person have been thoroughly cleaned ahead of time.

 

  1. You Can Still Hire Movers 

Many people looking to buy a home during this time are concerned about how they’re going to get their possessions from their old home to their new home.

Well, we’ve got good news for you – moving companies are still open for business during this time. However, make sure you diligently vet several moving companies before hiring one. And, just as you should with your real estate agent, make sure to ask companies before hiring what extra measures they’re taking to stop the spread of the virus.

In addition to moving companies still being open, house closings are also still getting the green light. But, rest assured that extra precautions are being taken and you won’t need to bunch up in a conference room to close the deal.

Additionally, home building companies, such as Builders Gympie, are still open at this time.

 

Is Now a Good Time to Buy a House? Buying a House During COVID-19

So, is now a good time to buy a house? As you can see, the timing definitely isn’t ideal and there are some extra hurdles you’ll need to jump through in order to make things happen.

However, if you need to move, then buying a new home is still definitely possible during this time.

Be sure to check back in with our blog for more home buying news and tips.

 

Cheap Home Improvement Ideas That Will Boost the Value of Your Home

Are you getting ready to sell your beloved home soon? Use these cheap home improvement ideas to help boost the value of your home first.

Did you know that the U.S. housing market was worth over $33.3 trillion in 2018?

If you’re interested in collecting a piece of that pie, adding on to your home’s value can help you close a higher sale.

Do you want to learn how you can make your home more appealing without breaking the bank? Keep reading to learn about 6 cheap home improvement ideas that can make a big impact.

 

  1. Add a Fresh Coat of Paint

It may not sound like much, but adding a fresh coat of paint to the interior or exterior of your home can lead to a substantial increase in value. Pops of color can help your home look cleaner and more vibrant.

 

  1. Upgrade Your Fixtures

One of the most brilliant home improvement ideas is to upgrade your fixtures to give your home a more modern feel. These fixtures could include doorknobs, cabinet handles, faucets, and even fans. Since these replacements are less expensive than remodeling the whole room, you can make your house look much fancier while sticking to a tight budget.

 

  1. Curb Appeal Can Boost Your Improvement Value

Investing in your curb appeal will wow potential buyers and encourage them to come inside. Starting a garden, buying calming decorations like a birdbath, and setting up a sitting area on your porch will make your house look cozy. If gardening and decorating sound like too much work, you always have the option to work with Cream City Home Buyers who can buy your home as-is.

 

  1. Add More Mirrors, Shelving, and Indoor Plants

The longer you live in a home, the more belongings you accumulate. If you have a hard time saying goodbye to things, you should at least consider storing your clutter in hidden areas like underneath the bed or even inside of a storage unit. To make your house feel much bigger, you should add lots of mirrors, shelving, and indoor plants to each room.

 

  1. Switch to Energy-Efficient Appliances

As the world moves toward green energy, it pays to bring your home into the future with energy-efficient appliances. If large appliances like washers and refrigerators are out of the question, making the switch to LED lights or a smart thermostat can impress potential buyers.

 

  1. Replace or Clean Your Carpets

One of the most important repairs to make before selling a house is replacing your old, stained carpets. Not only are they unattractive, but old carpets can also trap dust and other harmful particles that can decrease the indoor air quality. If replacing your carpets costs too much money, it’s worth hiring a professional cleaning service so they can get a deep steam.

 

You’ll Be Amazed by the Value of These Cheap Home Improvement Ideas

If you implement any of these cheap home improvement ideas, you’ll see impressive returns when you’re ready to sell your house.

Do you want to learn other ways you can transform your house into your dream home? Explore our site to find more helpful tips and guides.

 

How Technology Is Shaping The Business World

Source

In the modern world, we see businesses moving from traditional means to new and more technologically grounded methods. The days of maintaining thick ledgers are out, modern businesses have made their place in society, and they are probably going to hold it there for a while. The revolution began somewhere in the late ’80s, where people discovered that computers could be much more helpful than faxes and handwritten documents.

Moreover, the easy access and availability of computers meant that they could be in just about any office and ready for anyone to take advantage of. It is important to note the methods which were used before we had technology in our businesses. The method where human beings had the final input, and that’s how things would run. Bookkeeping is done by a group of people who would sit down together and tally the numbers to make sure the books balance. Operations were managed by a team, or the owner themselves, marketing was done by simply putting flyers and banners around the place, hoping that people would see them and then come to the business. Though these times may have gone now, they still hold a place in our minds as the foundation for the modern replacements which we have today.

Here we are going to talk about some ways in which technology has shaped and is shaping the business world today. 

It’s easier to get quick cash

As a business, one thing which you cannot have enough of is money. We don’t mean tied up stock and long terms valuable assets, but we mean money, which you can withdraw straight from the bank. You can’t offer a long term asset when the sudden need for money comes up now, can you? Sometimes you need cash and you need it fast.
With technology working with the utmost efficiency, we have come to see several benefits to business activity. Since humans don’t have to deal with processing and interpreting data, computers can have things processed in half the time. For example, companies processing loans can have your money ready in as little as a day. You can get some of the best small business loans quicker than you ever imagined. All you need to do is fill out the online forms and then watch as your working capital bank account surges in the next 24 hours. 

Duplication of efforts is removed

It may be a subject that is hard to swallow for some people, but for the business owner, it is extremely beneficial. The reason why people may have a problem with it is that it involves people losing their jobs. Now as heartbreaking as that is for just about everyone, it’s hard for the business owner to justify paying two people for the same job. In some cases, both people can be made redundant and technology can fill in the jobs which they were doing.
Duplication of efforts can be a major drain on a business. It can cost the business a ton of money which you could reinvest elsewhere. For any business owner, it is hard to come to terms with the fact that they have to lay people off. However, at the end of the day, they need to ensure that their business is running smoothly and efficiently. 

Giving investors incentive to invest

A technology-driven company just seems fresher, more lively, and safer than one, which is still using more traditional means of management. With cloud-based software, you can be sure that there is a lot more safety as well as ease of access for all the stakeholders involved. With that said, you also have a sense of security in the fact that the company can be managed by much more efficient means and is free from human error. Investors may see this as an opportunity to invest in the company as they see a safe place to keep their money and a place to harvest their returns. A company that falls prey to error from time to time is costing time and money not only for the owner but the investors who have poured money into the business expecting returns. They want to see the business running like a well-oiled machine, the only way that is going to happen is if the business keeps up with the times.

Securing business information

As a business, there is going to be very sensitive information that you need to keep safe at all costs. Inside business details need to be safe to ensure that the business runs smoothly and is not sabotaged in any way. With modern technology coming as far as it has, you may find the solution to security issues. IT management companies can give you the password-protected cloud storage, which you need to keep your information safe. Moreover, as we mentioned before, it can be easily available to all the business stakeholders whenever the need arises. Therefore, you can rest assured, know that your business information is safe and sound at all times and that no one is going to get their hands on the sensitive information which is precious to you.

Therefore, we see several ways in which technology has benefitted business activity as a whole. We see businesses running much smoother than before. There have been much less reported cases of error and mismanagement ever since modern technology took over. You see, with you aligning yourself with more strategic management like technology, you are ensuring that there is a system of checks and balances in the business. Accountability is a little more obvious, and delegation makes a lot more sense in this case.

CONCLUSION

Though business owners who have been operating for more than three decades may see it difficult to get with the times, there is no denying that technology as it is today has a lot to give to the business world. With society evolving with technology, there is a lot more potential for growth than in previous decades. In the time we live in, the possibility of growth is now sky-high.

Major Reasons Why you Need to Buy a House in 2020

There are numerous effective reasons why you should purchase a home right now, particularly if you are a paying rent. But, if you already own a home for a perfect house plan or if you have been thinking about shopping for a condo property now is the time for that as well. If you have a reliable long job, and you have saved your money, & you prefer to stay in the area, it’s a splendid time to purchase a home & this is why!

Reason #1 

Buying a home us a brilliant funding as actual property has tested to be one of the quickest & most secure methods to create wealth. As I proceed you will get to know why actual property has helped so many human beings grow to be millionaires.

Reason #2 

The economic system is robust & it appears as if matters may additionally continue to be this way, at least for a little while. In most parts of the world of home fees proceed to upward shove so you may also be in a role to construct some exceptional equity. Over a 30-year time duration you can count on the price of your home to more than double.

Reason #3 

Owing a home is an awful lot higher than lease – As a renter, you will most possibly pay over a 1/2 a million bucks in lease over a 30 year time duration & in the end, have nothing to exhibit for it. If you had been to purchase a home, even a smaller older home, after 30 years, you would most probably have it paid off which ability you can stay the relaxation of your existence hire free. What would you do? Where would you travel? What would you buy? Life would be a lot easier. For some the fairness constructed over 30 years is so much massive they are in a position to promote their home, pay money for something smaller & retire. Owning is higher than renting. 

Reason #4 

Your personal loan will remain the same for 30 years whilst lease will proceed to rise. On common hire will amplify whole year at somewhere from 2-5%. 30 years from now, you’re lease will double.

Reason #5

Tax write offs. By proudly owning a home, you will get hold of some fairly great tax deductions which in flip make proudly owning a domestic much less high priced than what your month-to-month personal loan declaration says. In most states, you have to be in a position to write off your loan interest, property taxes, & loan insurance plan premiums, saving you hundreds of bucks per year.

Reason #6

Apartment buildings, townhome & rental communities infamously have an excessive move-in & move-out rates. That makes it challenging to construct lifelong friendships.

Reason #7

Many of us are making extra cash than we have been a year or two in the past & that style will most possibly proceed over time. Within a few quick years, your profits must proceed to extend while your loan stays the equal making it less complicated & less difficult to make that month-to-month payment. Find a residence that suits inside your budget & if matters are going proceed to get higher for you financially, you can constantly promote that domestic & go up to something greater & better.

Everything I have mentioned to this factor has to make you experience like you NEED to purchase a domestic & the quicker the better. Obviously, I’m a massive proponent of homeownership, however none of the motives listed above are better than this…

Reason #8 is the cause you need to purchase a home right now, if you can! I stated this quickly above. I am talking about these loopy low personal loan rates. Because costs are so low, a personal loan is regularly less expensive than rent. Now, many of you can definitely have enough money to purchase a home, OR you may also now have the potential to purchase a domestic that used to be beforehand out of your fee range. 

Elon Musk’s House in Bel Air Photo Tour of the Mega Mansions that he Calls Home

Usually, people are either rich or famous but Elon Musk has been able to turn his wealth into clever investments to explore space. The young and seemingly nerdy tech entrepreneur has an interesting lifestyle that has recently attracted the media. In this post, we are going to review how the powerful celebrity lives but first let’s explore exactly how he got this point of fame and wealth.

There are so many unique aspects of this business mogul, but we will just focus on the most important aspects of his life thus far that have informed his aesthetic style. Elon Musk was part of the revolutionary creation of the digital currency company that we know as PayPal. He later went on to create Space X to reduce the risks of human extinction. He is also known for his early investment in Tesla.

His existence on Earth started on June 28th of 1971 (making him 32 at the time of this article) also making him a Cancer sign. The Cancer sign is symbolized as a crab. Just like Mr. Crabs from the childhood cartoon tv show Spongebob Elon Musk has a mysterious public image that revolves around the idea of being a boss / CEO type that is always concerned with gaining a financial advantage. I want to make clear that this is not a character flaw and should be admired.

He is currently in love with a musician and digital artist Claire Elise Boucher, stage name Grimes and they are expecting a robotic alien baby soon, just kidding, but they are expecting a child! Azealia Banks was supposed to collaborate with Grimes but was angry (when isn’t she?) in a long video diary that escalated into an explosive rant accusing Elon’s of taking advantage of hundreds of Africans as he was born in South Africa and moved to Canada to study industrial engineering. According to Azealia Banks Grimes ditched her after she traveled to LA to collaborate on some beats. Hopefully, she can direct her anger into a future song with Grimes!

Musk purchased a spectacular family-oriented estate for him and his 5 children for $17 million in 2013. The house boasts 20,248 square feet and is located in the fancy area of Los Angeles’ Bel Air. 7 Bedroom, giant theater, pool, and a tennis court to keep him and his family entertained.

I am sure that the interior has changed since this image of the house in 2013.

In 2013 he also purchased the house across the street (what a boss move) for 6.75 million.

Elon Musk has definitely reverse aged!

 

Fun Crafts to Do When You’re Bored in Your Home – 5 Ideas

Stuck at home for a while? Don’t just sit around bored in your apartment. Why not try a fun, new art project instead. Here are five fresh craft ideas for you.

Free time is the best. You can relax and have some fun! 

But what if you are stuck at home alone? Or bored in your apartment without the resources or the ability to go out?

You could waste the day away, falling into the vortex of funny, entertaining — and sometimes scary — videos on Youtube. Or you can scroll through social media (again), but that can only entertain you for so long.

There’s plenty that you can do that is fun and productive. Letting out some creative energy will make you feel less anxious and stop the walls of your apartment from closing in.

This list compiles many craft ideas that you can use to pass the time and have something tangible to show for it afterward. 

Candle Making

Before the invention of electricity, candle making was much more of a necessity than a craft. Now, you can make candles for the pure fun of it. 

Does this sound like something you would like to try? 

Here’s how:

Supplies

To make candles, you will need a few things. Gather your supplies to start making a craft to light up the room. 

  • Wax- Paraffin is the wax of choice because it is very versatile and cheap. 
  • Fragrances- You can buy blocks of scents to add to the boiler or add drops of your choice of essential oil to the wax as it melts. 
  • Colors- Add this to the wax as it melts to change the color to your liking. 
  • Container- You can use molds if you want the candle to be free as a finished product or old glass containers as a container for your candle. 
  • Wick- You can make your own wick with a bottom or buy them premade.
  • Double boiler- This is the best method to use to melt the wax before pouring into your container of choice. 

How to Make Candles

Making candles is easier than you think. All you need is the above supplies. Add your wax, scents, and color to a double boiler and stir until it melts completely.

Get your container ready with the wick in place and pour in the wax. Set it aside in a safe place to dry and wait. Isn’t that easy?

Get Creative

You can make your candles unique by using a little creativity and innovation. 

You can add textures to your candle by adding some embellishments to the exterior of your candle or use a textured mold to make your candle.

You can even play with the design by pouring different colors in each layer. You can also use a toothpick to swirl the coloring you add to the wax and make a marbled candle. 

This tutorial will teach you to make beautiful rose petal candle holders

Sharpie Art

Sharpies used to be for marking your territory so no one would steal it. They have since made themselves useful for many different arts and crafts. 

Glassware

You can make colorful drinkware by drawing on your favorite glass with a sharpie. You can even write your favorite quote on coffee mugs to inspire you in the morning. 

Coasters

You can make some neat coasters with alcohol and leftover tiles. Simply draw on your tiles with the colors of your choice and use a dropper to add the rubbing alcohol.

It will create a blended color effect. You need to let them dry for a couple of hours, but be careful not to touch them until you’ve coated them with a coat of clear polyurethane to seal the color in. 

Tea Towels

You can use sharpies to add graphic designs to plain white tea towels and personalize them to match your kitchen decor.

But more fun would be to write puns on your tea towels and bring some personality to your kitchen. A few cute ideas are, “Olive me loves olive you,” “If you don’t love tacos, I’m nacho type,” and “It’s my kitchen, and I’ll fry if I want to.”

Colorful Phone Case

You can make a quick five-minute craft by buying a cheap white phone case and doodling on it with sharpies. When you get tired of the pattern, you can just make another. 

After you’ve created a few, you can match your phone cases to your outfit!

Mosaics

Mosaics have been around since the ancient Mesopotamians. Why not partake in a 4000-year-old artistic tradition?

Supplies

If you want to create a mosaic craft, there are a few things you need. 

  • Tiles- These come in all shapes, colors, and sizes. Use the ones that fit your needs. 
  • Grout- You can get grout in different colors, but the traditional is white. 
  • Glue- You glue the tiles to your surface before grouting. You will want an adhesive that is strong but doesn’t dry too quickly.
  • Surface- Whatever working surface you choose needs to be clean and dry. 

How to Apply Mosaic to a Surface

Apply glue to each mosaic individually and apply the tile pieces to your surface in a pattern that you like. 

Once the glue is dry, apply your grout to the entire surface. You want to fill every crack between your tiles. Allow it to dry for a few hours then use a wet rag to wash the excess grout off your mosaic. 

Mosaic Tabletop

You can take a plain table and turn it into a work of art by applying a mosaic pattern to the top of your tabletop. 

Mirror or Picture Frame

You can jazz up a boring picture frame or mirror by transforming the parameter into a mosaic work of art. 

Gazing Ball

Bring some color into your garden by adding a mosaic gazing ball. Take a large circular ornament or plastic ball and apply your mosaic tiles to it. This will bring in some color to your garden and attract pollinators as well as admirers. 

Jewelry Making

Instead of buying jewelry, use your free time to make your own. At least then you can make them match your favorite shirt or skirt!

Supplies

  • Beads- You can buy seed beads, glass beads, or make your own.
  • Cord- You can use strong string, tiger tail, or leather string. 
  • Clasps- There are different clasps for bracelets, necklaces, and earrings. 
  • Tools- You might need a needle nose plier for your jewelry pieces. 

How to Make Jewelry

It’s very simple to make jewelry. You just need to attach the clasp to the cord of your choice and string the wire with beads.

You add the other end of the clasp to the opposite end of the cord, and you have your completed jewelry piece. 

Use Recycled Material

If you don’t have any beads, don’t fret. You can make jewelry out of several common things around the house.

For instance, try using pop tabs, buttons, or fabric as beads for your jewelry project. You can also use wire and string to make some awesome hoop earrings. 

Beach Crafts

Summertime is beach time. When you visit the beach, bring home some materials for your next craft.

Supplies

  • Driftwood

  • Beach glass
  • Shells
  • Glue

Sailboat with Driftwood and Glass

You can bring a nautical theme into your home by making these cute sailboats using this tutorial and adjusting it to use strung beach glass as the sail. 

Fishermans’ Mason Jars 

Mason jar crafts are all the rage now. Why not make an ocean-inspired mason jar craft of your own?

Beach Art

You can use your ocean keepsakes to make lots of different crafts to decorate your apartment.

In no time, you could throw together a natural seashell and beach glass garland. Or delight the ears by using your beach supplies to make a charming wind chime. 

Conclusion

These activities can be a creative outlet and help you do more than just binge-watch a show on Netflix. Creating things can help you feel accomplished and stimulate your senses. 

If you want to keep your brain sharp, try one of these fun arts and crafts ideas and see if you can give Martha Stewart a run for her money!

Ryan Sundling is a Group Marketing Manager at Cardinal Group Management. He has over ten years of experience in the student housing industry and works with The Union at Auburn on a daily basis to help them with their marketing efforts.

 

5 Architecture Design Trends That Are Changing the Way the World Looks

Architecture is evolving faster than nearly any other industry on Earth. Architects and engineers need to keep up with the accelerating pace of culture. Architects need to work smart and fast, however. 

Architects are clearly weathering the storm. The architecture sector sees an annual increase of 2.2%. Architects are learning to work quickly as well as thoroughly using powerful technological tools. 

 

Here are a few of the architecture design trends that are re-shaping the architecture industry, and the world we’re living in. 

  1. Sustainability 

Environmentalism is playing an important role in how we construct buildings. Architects are learning how to make their projects as low-impact as possible, following recent developments in sustainability. 

Expect to see more recycle materials being integrated into building projects. Also keep an eye out for buildings that match their native habitat, leaving as little of an ecological footprint as possible. 

  1. Virtual Reality

One of the main tools of increasing architect’s productivity is virtual reality. Virtual reality allows for rapid prototyping so no time, money, or resources are wasted. 

Virtual reality helps prevent mistakes before they happen. They also give customers a chance to see what they’re getting before breaking ground. Exterior rendering lets them visualize in perfect detail what they’re getting, so they’re bound to be satisfied. 

  1. Smaller Spaces

We’ve been experiencing a micro revolution in the construction industry in recent years. Tiny houses have been all the rage as homeowners question what they actually need to be happy. 

This means things like convertible furniture will be an important architecture design trend in the coming years, as well. 

  1. Building Upwards

Vertical construction is an important component of urban design. It’s one of the most essential parts of avoiding gridlocked traffic and urban sprawl. As populations continue to move into urban centers for work or connection, we’re going to need more tall buildings. 

Clever designers are figuring out ways to make those vertical spaces more sustainable as well. Rooftop gardens have been a popular design trend for several years and don’t show any sign of slowing. It also illustrates how architecture can help tackle some of the other problems that society faces. 

  1. Connectivity

Smart technology has completely rewired what we expect out of our living spaces. The Internet of Things continues to expand with each passing year. It’s becoming integrated into how we live our day-to-day lives. 

Architects need to keep networks in mind when building spaces. Architects, engineers, and software designers are going to have to work closely together to meet the expectations and demands of a tech-savvy population. 

Architecture is only going to keep evolving more quickly as society continues to accelerate. It’s truly an exciting time to be an architect, designer, or engineer. We’re starting to build the cities of the future. 

Looking For More Architecture Design Trends?

It’s an exciting time to be an architecture lover. We’re seeing some of the most inspiring buildings ever imagined being constructed. There’s exciting news every single day when you look. 

Now that you know more about today’s architecture design trends, browse the rest of our architecture articles today for even more inspiration. 

Tips When Designing Your Next Onsite Building

Tips When Designing Your Next Onsite Building

The important elements to add when designing an onsite building includes topography, vegetation, weather, culture, existing buildings, and infrastructure. A thorough onsite analysis is crucial so that the proposed and current conditions will be properly presented. So how do you design an onsite building?

In this post, you’ll learn some helpful designing tips for your next onsite building.

 

What Is Onsite Building?

The onsite building is also called onsite construction. It’s a process consisting of a chain of various tasks and responsibilities followed with great accuracy and precision for the project to go as planned. 

Standardize Communication Process

The onsite building is made possible with the strong connection between the office and the job site using a standardized approach to ensure faster communication. In this way, trust between all parties will be established in order to manage onsite activities more effectively and efficiently. 

Here are the crucial steps to standardized the process of both engineering and onsite construction:

  • Define Your Systems: Carefully defining your processes from the very start is very important even before implementing digital solutions. You can start small and eventually expand as you improve your workflow. For instance, compare and determine the benefits of using steel vs wood before making a final decision as to the best material for your next onsite project.
  • Continuous Monitoring: Once all the processes are in place, observe how your project develops. Closely monitor everything that is happening on the field, making changes as needed.
  • Clear Communication: Transparent reporting is imperative for your onsite building project to run according to plan. It will also avoid serious and expensive mistakes.
  • Unity in the Team: It’s easier to manage the challenges that come along your way if you have an agile team, coming up with effective, fast decisions to avoid delays. 

Know What to Include in the Property Plan 

On the site plan, it’s essential to know the important elements to include after completing site analysis. One important element is property lines to set your design stage to avoid encroaching on another owner’s property and facing a lawsuit. 

Here are the other things that should be included on a property plan:

  • Distance Between Property Lines and Buildings: Aside from minding your property line, also check the surrounding buildings and infrastructures. These things play a vital role in creating your onsite building design. Include all dimensions, such as the height of the building, building usage, zoning, and fire hazards.
  • Proposed and Current Conditions: It’s important to present proposed and current conditions to plan reviewers and city officials to get a full scope of the project design. Utility lines and fence lines are important in assessing the conditions. By doing so, you’ll know if inspectors or other city officials need to be available or present during the entire duration of your building construction. 
  • Easements: It’s needed every time you need to maintain or cross an element of your project design existing on an adjacent property to avoid any legal issues. Easements can be presented graphically or in text.
  • Construction Limits: It shows the property areas wherein construction will takes place and delineate the area near or located on the site for construction-related supplies, building materials, equipment parking, partial assembly, and storage takes place.
  • Parking and Driveways: Determine the code requirements required by the government to access your site. Include all dimensions and know all the rules. Also, careful planning is important when determining the ample parking space, so include parking diagrams, including the dimensions, accessible parking spaces, flow of traffic, and signage on the design plan.
  • Others: It’s also important to include ground sign locations, surrounding streets, fire hydrants, and landscaped areas on your site development plan for your next onsite building project. 

 

Leverage Via Digitization 

With the use of onsite construction software, communication and data collection are made easier. There are many benefits using this advanced technology in the onsite building, including being able to use intuitive dashboards, getting automatic daily reports, and removing or reducing the administrative burden using one tool.  

Here are the benefits of using onsite construction software when creating a design and the actual construction process:

  • It captures planning issues onsite execution.
  • It streamlines all key processes for the most important tasks with effortless collaboration and communication on the latest activities and gathering of documents. 
  • It boosts productivity because of the project’s visual representation. 

Conclusion

When designing your next onsite building, it’s important to include all important elements such as the dimensions, usage or purposes, materials, construction limits, easements, and property lines. Also, having a standardized communication process will greatly help improve workflow and avoid construction delays.

Realistically Speaking, How Much Does It Cost to Build a Pool?

Building an inground swimming pool — not to mention maintaining it — can cost a lot. Is it worth it, though? How much does it cost to build a pool? Read more.

With millions of private and public swimming pools across the US, you might be ready to get your own. Having your own pool means you get to control the environment and have as many or as few people in the pool as you like.

If you’re asking, “How much does it cost to build a pool?” and trying to figure out if it is in your budget or not, we’re here to help. Continue reading this article to learn more about how much money you’ll have to put into building a pool.

 

Decide What Type of Pool You Want

Before you can figure out the cost of a pool, you have to figure out what type of pool you want. Asking the cost of an inground pool or above ground pool is similar to asking the cost of a house. It depends on the size, design, materials, and more.

 

Above-Ground Pools

Pools above the ground are easier to price than inground pools. You can buy simple kits for them and have your pool up in no time. If you’re going to do the job DIY style, you might start out looking at $1,700 and the bigger you go with the pool, and if you all professional installation, it could be as much as $4,000

 

Inground Pools

Inground pools are pricier, but they also last longer than their above-ground counterparts. Since they are sturdier and they usually look fancier, they are going to come with a higher price tag.

Even if you just get a small plunge pool in your yard, you might be looking at $20,000. If you get an average inground pool, you’re looking at $30,000 to $50,000 out of your pocket.

 

What Am I Paying For?

You might be wondering what is taking the biggest bite out of your wallet. Here are the biggest things you’re paying for when it comes to your swimming pool.

  • Excavation
  • Pool Materials
  • Installation
  • Landscaping

Most of the time, these expenses come out in the above order, from the most expenses to the least expensive. While you could save money by not having the landscape done nicely after the pool is in the ground, the extra touch makes the whole yard look so much better.

 

Becoming a Pool Owner on a Budget

If you want to be a pool owner, but you don’t want to break the bank, you need to remember that size adds dollar signs. The smaller you can comfortably make your pool and still enjoy using it, the less money it will cost you. Plunge pools are becoming a popular option because they are so much less expensive larger pools.

The less complicated you can make your pool design, the more money you’ll be able to save on man-hours and service fees as well.

 

Preparing for Your New Pool

Before you call the pool construction company, you need to prepare yourself for your new pool. Learning about how to take care of your pool should be part of the preparation process. If you don’t know how to take care of your pool, this can put a real downer on your pool time.

You might have a clear and clean pool on week one, but if you don’t know how to take care of your pool — when week two rolls around, you’re likely to find yourself with a cloudy and debris ridden pool.

 

Learning Chemicals

To keep your pool looking bright and clear, you need to learn what chemicals your pool needs. One of the best ways to learn about your pool’s specific needs for your area is to go to the local pool supply store. You can ask them what you need to buy and how to use it properly.

Keep in mind when you’re using these chemicals, you should always wear gloves. If chemicals get on your hands, you should immediately wash your hands with warm water and soap.

 

Getting Algaecide Ready

Algaecide is your friend since it helps you keep the millions of little organisms from growing in your pool. If you don’t use algaecide, the algae in your pool can take over, and you’ll feel like you’re swimming in a swamp.

 

Readying a Pool Vacuum

Skimming your pool with a skimmer isn’t going to do the job long-term. You need a pool vacuum to get the debris you can’t reach off the bottom of your pool. You can find different types of pool vacuums that will allow for different levels of ease of use.

 

Learning to Backwash

Another important part of being a pool owner is learning how to backwash the pool filter. Backwashing the pool filter is when you reverse the water in the pool and push everything out of the pool filter.

If you have a lot of debris that makes it to the pool filter, these things can get stuck and cause problems. Every 4 to 6 weeks is a good schedule to backwash your pool and make sure everything is cleared out.

 

How Much Does It Cost to Build a Pool?

Now you have the answer to your question, “How much does it cost to build a pool?” You can start saving toward your new addition, or you might even look into a loan to get your pool right away.

Do you want to learn more about designing your home’s landscape and other things? Our site is full of articles to help you as you’re working on improving your home.

Before you go, browse our site to find more articles to help with your projects.

 

How Much Does It Cost to Sell a House by Owner?

Many homeowners opt to sell their home by owner to avoid realtor fees, but is it the right way to go? Learn how much does it cost to sell a house by owner here.

It seems pretty simple on the surface. You want to sell your home on your own to avoid paying real estate agent commissions.

It may seem like a smart thing to do, but there are pros and cons to that decision. You have to know the ins and outs of selling a home and the costs involved.

How much does it cost to sell a house by owner?

Keep reading to find out the costs to sell a home and tips that you can use to sell your home fast.

 

Costs Involved in Selling a Home

Selling a home isn’t as easy as placing a classified ad online and showing the home. There are many steps along the way that you need to consider to get the best purchase price of your home. These are the most common steps involved.

 

Home Pricing

You may have seen a few TV shows where they price the home according to “comps” in a certain neighborhood. You could price your home according to that information.

This is the place where many home sellers make a mistake. They believe that the home is worth way more than it is, so they price it accordingly.

What usually happens is that the home is priced so high, it doesn’t sell. When a home sits on the market for a long time, buyers think that there’s something wrong with it. You also have to continue to pay for the mortgage and utilities.

The best way to price your home is to get a professional appraisal and then use the comps to come up with a good sales price.

 

Home Staging Costs

Home staging and curb appeal have a real impact on the sales price of the home, too. People will have a first impression of the property when they drive up.

If the outside looks like a field of weeds, you’re going to give buyers the wrong impression. It’s the same inside the home. A cluttered home full of personal items won’t give buyers the opportunity to see themselves living in the home.

Professional home staging is worth it because it can add 1-4% to the sales price of your home. A professional home staging company averages $400.

Landscaping the yard will also add some costs to the sales price. The final cost of landscaping will depend on the condition of your yard.

 

Repairs and Maintenance

Before you put the home on the market, you need to take care of the repairs and maintenance of the home. If you put this off, buyers will want a lower sales price.

Some projects you can take care of yourself. Others will require a professional. It’s best to go through your home and make a list of all of the potential issues.

You can then work to remedy these issues or be willing to adjust your sales price. The cost of repairs will depend on the condition of the home.

 

Marketing the Home

You have to let people know that your home is for sale. You can’t rely on a For Sale By Owner sign on the property.

There are sites that will allow you to post your home for free, you may want to list your home on the multiple listing service (MLS). There’s usually a fee involved, which will vary from MLS to MLS.

This is usually the area where real estate agents earn their money. Agents have a wide network to other agents who are representing buyers.

 

Showing the Home

Once you have interest in the home, you have to show the home to prospective buyers. This takes time and effort to explain the features of the home and answer any questions.

You have to make sure that you can find a home buyer that won’t complicate the sale and prolong it.

 

Contracts

You’re going to get an offer on the home. Can you decipher what the contract says? What if you want to negotiate the sales price?

You’re not an attorney, so you have to be very careful about the real estate contract. You want to make sure that you have a real estate attorney working on your behalf to get the contracts right.

You’ll also have to have outstanding negotiation skills to get the price that you want. A good attorney will cost about $200 an hour.

 

Inspections

A mortgage lender will want to have the home inspected before they approve any offer. They may find items that need repair that you disagree with.

You’re going to need to pay for your own home inspector to agree or offer another opinion. That could cost anywhere between $200 – $500.

 

Closing Costs

There will be closing costs for the home. You will need to have an attorney present to review the documents and handle the money.

In some cases, a seller will pay for the closing costs. In others, buyers will pay or they agree to split the costs.

 

How Much Does It Cost to Sell a House By Owner?

As you can see, there are many steps to sell a home, whether it’s done by a real estate agent or by owner. Each step can have costs attached.

When you add everything up, expect to pay at least $2500 for the appraisal, staging, advertising, and attorney fees. There are still costs for repairs that would depend on the condition of the property.

That doesn’t include the time and energy to prepare the home for sale, advertise it, and show it. You have to ask yourself if it’s worth it or if you’re better off hiring a real estate agent.

 

Selling Your Home

Selling your home is quite a long process. It can also cost a lot of money. How much does it cost to sell a house by owner?

It depends. There are a lot of costs involved, such as advertising, time, home inspections, staging, and landscaping. Plus, there’s still no guarantee that you can get the most value for the home.

Do you want more real estate tips? Be sure to visit this site often.

 

Master Bedroom Interior Design Ideas

Regardless of the size of your master bedroom, with casual or formal decoration, new trends, or classics, your master bedroom should remain a favorite space in your home. Unlike other bedrooms, the master bedroom is more than a place to lay your head and rest. It should provide a safe space to dream, reflect, and experience some peace.

For those well versed with interior design, the master bedroom reflects an individual’s taste and personal interest. From color schemes, furniture sets, lighting schemes to accent walls, below are some interesting master bedroom design ideas you should consider.

 

1. Improve Bedroom Mood with Lighting

The majority of homeowners think that lighting is a trick that suits bathrooms and kitchens only. Bedroom lights are often ignored with a simple dismissal switch-controlled ceiling light or an improved lamp placed on a nightstand. However, the best way to change your bedroom mood is by finding alternative light sources for your bedroom.

You can start by trying a ceiling light, have the old shade, or an eye-catching shade. You can as well advance and grace your bedroom with a chandelier. You can also consider rewiring the wall behind your master bed to have space-saving sconces, which are best for reading while relaxing at the bed. Contemporary bedrooms appear fantastic with retro track lighting as well. They are flexible, allowing homeowners to slide the lights fixtures to any position in the track or swivel them to different positions.

 

2. Improve Personality with Character Touches

As mentioned before, your master bedroom should have some character. Even though well-themed bedrooms are for children, installing a nuanced personality in your bedroom is not only impressive but also turns the basic sleeping space into a destination. An easy way to create a tropical bedroom is by having a canopy bed with a well matching mattress, installing bamboo window shades, and a good-looking ceiling fan.

For a more sophisticated look, extras such as plants and pillow accents can come to play. You can as well try other bedroom styles, including the Tuscan, Hollywood, Contemporary, Regency, and the Shabby Chic. Fortunately, bedroom installations are cheap and easy to install, unlike bathrooms and kitchens with pricey materials.

 

3. Enhance Comfort with Flooring Designs

Your master bedroom flooring should communicate safety, warmth, and coziness in a big way. Opting for hard flooring options, such as vinyl planks, are best for areas with high humidity and moisture. Soft floors, such as wall-to-wall carpets or rugs, are friendly for those who like walking bare feet.

For additional comfort, you can install engineered wood flooring, which is a hybrid of stable plywood and hardwood veneer, with underneath feet-soothing heat coils. The best flooring options for master bedrooms that add both warmth and comfort include wall-to-wall carpets, laminate flooring with rugs, and cork flooring.

 

4. Improve Bedroom Color with Paint Scheme

Experts in interior design attest to the fact that color trends will work magic, not only for bedrooms but also for other rooms in your home. As a homeowner, it can be frustrating to follow color trends, especially if they don’t include your favorite colors. If you recently purchased a home or living in a house that you don’t intend to sell, play some tricks with your master bedroom interior colors.

Generally, if you don’t fancy color trends, go for darker and more relaxing colors for a large master bedroom. For small bedrooms, have space-making light color schemes with grays or neutrals. You can opt for dark sleep-inducing schemes or light and soothing designs.

However, if you are redesigning a house for an upcoming sale, check out for the latest color trends that suit master bedrooms. Most options are easy and low costing but increase the final resale value.

 

5. Have a Seating Area

Including a seating area is a good master bedroom interior design idea that applies equally to large bedrooms and studio apartments. For this, select a loveseat at the end of the bed or have a comfortable armchair paired with a small table at any position. You can use the seating area for relaxing, reading, chatting, or working on anything that requires the peace and ambiance of your bedroom. As you find a perfect chair and table combination, mind your color choice, ensuring that it pairs with the interior color scheme of your bedroom.

Since the master bedroom is the most important part of your home, you should make it look so. The décor and overall interior design should bring forth a place that you long to walk into at night after a stressful day and awaken in the morning with great energy. A perfect blend of various color schemes, bedroom furniture sets, lighting schemes, and accent walls are the basic makeover designs.