Category: Home Improvement

Owning A Home Is Risky Business

Are you a first time homeowner? Or are you someone who has been on the property ladder for more years than they care to count? Whoever you are, or however long you’ve spent owning your own home, you should know by now that owning a home is actually risky business. When you think about it, you’ve invested hundreds and thousands of pounds into a property that could easily be ruined if you weren’t careful enough. There’s just so many risks that can affect a property, not only the things that could damage it but wider issues that homeowner faces. That’s what we’re going to explore today. The issues all homeowners seem to face, and how you can make sure you’re keeping yourself and your home as safe and as happy as possible.


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Outside Dangers


There are so many outside dangers that your home could face that we would potentially be here for days writing about them. So for now, we’re just going to pick out some of the most common outside dangers and how they could potentially affect your household. By outside dangers, we mean the external factors that could seriously affect the way a house is ran, or the integrity of a house altogether. First on the list is the people who might want to get in your home so badly, whether you’re there or not. We’re talking about thieves, and we have good reason to. The number of homes that are being broken into all over the world, not just in the US is appalling. More and more people are being subjected to the absolute turmoil that is created when someone chooses their house to steal from. There’s not much you can do in the way of stopping it, apart from taking some preventive measures to try and warn off potential thieves. The first thing you can do is install security cameras at the front and back of your home. Usually this is enough to scare away thieves, but if not, it can at least help you in your quest to make sure they’re caught. If getting security cameras installed is too expensive for you, you can always get fake cameras that look like the real thing, and will have the same effect when scaring them off. Finally, make sure you have contents insurance for your home to make sure that you can at least get some money back if something as terrible as this does happen. Making sure you’ve got the strongest locks for your doors is also recommended.


The second external factor that we need to talk about is pests or dangerous animals. Living in the US, you’re going to be prone to this whether you like it or not. A lot of home in Florida for example is surrounded by lakes, swamps, or rivers that are home to many alligators and snakes. As worrying as this might be, all of those homes are protected by a mesh cover at the back meaning not much can get through. But snakes can be pests, and they often do find their ways into pools or houses without the owners realizing until it is too late. Other parts of the US are just as susceptible to things like this, if not worse. What you need to do is check out this company, and have them on standby if something like this ever does happen. There’s just not a lot you can do to prevent it, but at least you could get the problem solved asap. If you’ve got children involved, the matter becomes a lot more pressing, especially if they’re young and curious. To them, a snake might look like a friendly new toy that they want to play with. Pest companies can also help you deal with the more minor issues that you might be having such as ants or cockroaches. These find their way into homes easier as they’re attracted to the sweet scent of sticky sweets or drinks that might have accidentally been spilt. All of the sudden you could have an army of ants in your home, it can be super scary!


Self Inflicted Dangers


Us homeowners just don’t help ourselves sometimes. We can often be the cause of danger without even realising it. So, how many of you reading this will admit you leave the house without turning off all the plugs, and making sure all of the lights are switched off. We guarantee nearly all of you will say that you don’t turn them off. Whilst it might seem innocent to a lot of you, there’s still a fair bit of power running through those plugs into your electrical items, whether the items themselves are turned on or not. This current can easily spark a freak fire which then threatens to ruin your whole home. If you’re not in when this happens, then without a doubt the majority of your home will be ruined. Think smart about what you’re doing around the home, and make sure you’re making the best decisions to keep it safe. A lot of people are also terrible for not having an alarm nowadays, or even forgetting to lock the door. If you have an alarm set and it goes off whilst your out, most alarm companies now give you a courtesy call asking you if you’re home and if it was you that caused it, if the answer is no the police are contacted and any potential thieves can be caught. If you have no alarm set, they’re left to run round your home freely! Always make sure you have a working home alarm, and always make sure you’re keeping it activated when going outside. As for forgetting to lock the door, this is just a habit that some people have, and often it is just an accident. Try and get it in your head to triple check the door is locked before leaving to go out. At least then you’ll have the piece of mind that your home is protected whilst you’re not there.


So, now you see that owning a home isn’t actually as easy as it may seem, and it definitely does have its risks. But at least you’re now going to be protected against the major risks you might face.

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The Unsung Hero Of Your Home: Creating A Study Room



If you’re looking for a way to add a sense of character to your home, a study room is one of those simple additions that can maximize a lot of aspects in your own house. It can add value to your home, but it can also prove to be a handy respite from the general thoroughfare, especially if you’ve got a big family. In setting up a study room, what do you need to consider?


Choosing your room

Most people tend to choose a small room for a study as it’s a luxury lots of us can’t afford to have. Picking your room involves finding a space that is far away from the rest of the house. In addition to this, you also need to think about the purpose for your study. For example, if you need to do lots of reading, you need somewhere that is for the peace and quiet, likewise, if you need to do a lot of work, such as if you work from home, it should be somewhere away from the rest of the home.


Choose your accessories

If you require a lot of different items for the room, such as bookshelves, desks, and chairs, it depends on the overall aesthetic you are going for. If you are looking for standard office setups, there are plenty of suppliers around to help you realize your vision. Montgomery’s Furniture is one of the many furniture suppliers that provides office furniture, but also, if you have the room to set up a little couch for dozing, this can help too!


Making it a relaxing space

Sometimes, the study space needs to double up as a place for relaxing. If that is the case, then you need to create a subtle blend between an environment that makes you want to work, but somewhere that can prove to be equally as relaxing. This is down to you, especially if you work from home, but, it’s best to split the room into two. One half can be for working, and the other half can be for relaxing.


Are you going to use it just for work?

If you are going to use it for work, then the appropriate furniture, such as desks and sturdy office furniture needs to be in place. If space is an issue, and you need an environment that is solely for the purpose of working, a standing desk is one of those items of furniture that can be very useful nowadays. Also, in terms of making it an efficient study space, it needs to be an inspiring one. This means having plenty of materials to hand, from books, to posters, to art.


Creating a study in your home is one of those lovely passion projects that can help you to reinvigorate your home. It’s a great way to add a sense of character, without it detracting from the rest of the home. Making a study space is also one of those rooms that proves useful for every member of the house. Whether they want to get away for a little bit, or if they want to have some peace and quiet to do life admin, so consider it a key arsenal in your home.

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What Is Your Home Doing For Your Stress Levels?

Stress is for many a daily issue, and something which can seem practically endless. This is a normal part of modern living for too many people, and anything which we can do to try and combat it is definitely going to be a wise move. As it happens, one of the first places we should look in that quest is the home, as the home can actually cause you a great deal of stress without you even being aware of it. At the same time, if you know what you are doing, the home can also be used as a way of reducing stress, so that’s why it is clearly worth looking into. What is your home currently doing for your stress levels, and what can you do to improve the situation?

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The more comfortable a home is, the more easily the occupants can relax and unwind, which in turn will mean far less stress in your life. But if you look around your home, you might find that there are many things which are not actually adding to the comfort levels, and those are the kinds of things you will need to focus on first in order to improve the comfortability in the home. It’s a good idea to start with the living room, as this is where most people will try to unwind after a hard day at work. You should aim to have a variety of comfortable items in the living room, as it is having different kind of comfort which really seals the deal here. Be sure that everyone is likely to find the space comfortable, and you will be doing wonders for everyone’s stress levels.


The bedroom is another important place for ensuring comfort, and actually maybe even more so, for if you are not getting much sleep it is unlikely that you will be able to handle stress very well. If you are honest, how comfortable is your bed at the moment? If you think you could probably do with it being a little more comfortable, then you should consider investing in some new bedding, maybe even a new mattress if it comes down to it. You should also make sure that the light levels, sound levels and temperature are at good levels in the bedroom so that sleep is much more likely to come. As long as you are comfortable and getting sleep, you will b much less stressed, and your home will b such a nicer place to live in.

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One of the more subtle things which affect your stress levels is temperature. If you fail to be able to control the temperature, or it is routinely too hot or too cold, then it will have an effect on how you feel. One of the quickest ways to stress anyone out is to make them too warm without a way of solving the situation, so if you are always finding this happening in your home then you should try to find a way to be able to control the temperature better. Thankfully, modern homes with central heating often make this pretty simple, but you might want to go for something even more specific to each room if it is a particular problem for you. And in warm climates, it is definitely a good idea to try and install some decent air conditioning, especially in communal areas and bedrooms, so that everyone can keep cool when necessary. The temperature can have a surprisingly profound effect on your stress levels, so it’s a good idea to try and get to the bottom of this as early as you can.


Air Quality


What’s in the air you breathe? It’s no great surprise that what is in your hair at home could be affecting your stress levels, for it is likely that it is also having a larger effect on your overall health. What’s more, this is never going to be one of the first things you think about, simply for the fact that you can’t see it, and it can be hard to fully appreciate what the air quality is actually doing to you. But it’s [pretty simple once you look into it: the less pure and clear the air is, the more toxins you are breathing in, and the more stress you are likely to be experiencing while you are in the home trying to relax.


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So the question is: what can you do about air which is not clean and pure? The answer is so simple that it’s amazing more people don’t know about it. You can easily get hold of air purifiers, which work to remove any impurities and dust and other things from the air, leaving you with fresher, easier-breathing air every day. These are easy to come by, more to the point, and you can usually find a great review of the GermGuardian AC4825 or similar to get you started, so that you know you are going for the right model. With an air purifier in your home, you will be able to breathe more easily, and your stress will absolutely reduce significantly – and fast.



There is mounting evidence that using screens for too often each day has a direct effect on your stress levels. Certain websites in particular might even cause more anxiety and stress, in particular social media such as Twitter and Facebook. But what this means in your home is that you should try to reduce the amount of screens you have around the place. Most homes will have at least one television, maybe even more, and a number of computers, tablets and smartphones. If you can keep this number to a bare minimum, you will find it reduces the amount of stress you feel every day of your life. It will be an effective way to make your home much more peaceful and less stressful, and it will enable you to feel happier with your home life on the whole. It’s definitely worth reducing your screens.

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Looking for Guaranteed Ways to Add Value to Your Home?

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There are lots of blog posts online about increasing the value of your home. However, a lot of these posts continue tips that may boost the appearance of your property, yet do they really add to the value? The last thing you want to do is spend your money on an improvement that is not going to make you any more money in the long run. With that in mind, read on to discover some of the improvements that are guaranteed to add value to your home, ensuring your money is well spent.

Replace the windows – The first improvement you should consider for your home is replacing the windows. Double glazed PVCu windows are considered an essential today, so if your home is not fitted with these, now is the time to call in the contractors. Not only do PVCu windows improve the energy efficiency of your home, but they require little maintenance too. However, if you have a property of a high value, the aesthetics of your windows are just as critical. You need to make sure the windows you choose enhance the appearance of your property, rather than letting it down.

Fix all superficial defects – When it comes to increasing the value of your property, it can be easy to overlook all of the superficial defects because you are so concerned with the big improvements that are going to add lots of value. However, you are only going to be holding your home back if you do not deal with the superficial defects. Here are some of the common defects that can be easy to fix and will put off potential buyers if you do not deal with them: lifting flooring, cracks to plasterwork and ceilings, squeaky stairs and floors, damaged and broken windows, sewer smells, loose tiles, dripping taps, mouldy sealants in the bathroom and kitchen, door latches that do not work, sticking or squeaky windows and doors, and peeling paint.

Update your central heating system – Adding central heating to your property or updating your current system is always going to add more value to your property than it would cost. This is considered an essential for mortgage valuers and buyers. If you have a period house, though, your heating system may be outdated. You can expect to add several thousand to the asking price by looking into this. There are other steps you can take to improve the energy efficiency of your home as well. This includes adding insulation to the loft space and sealing any drafts around your windows and doors.

Fix structural problems – The next step you need to take is to fix any structural problems your home has. Cosmetic solutions may hide any issues, but when a professional property inspection is carried out, these problems will be unearthed, and the buyer can then use them as a bargaining chip to reduce the value of your home. This is the last thing you want, which is why it is a good idea to fix structural defects now. Common structural defects include the likes of a collapsed floor, an unstable chimney stack, broken or missing roof tiles, insect infestation, rotten roof timbers or joists, bowing walls, structural cracks to the walls, rising damp, and a leaking or sagging roof.

Make your property the pick of the bunch – Depending on where you live, there is likely to be numerous properties for sale that are similar to yours. This is why you need to make sure that your house is the pick of the bunch. You can do this by styling with flowers, accessories, lamps, and furniture, as well as stripping woodwork and create storage. Other steps to take include sanding floorboards, making over your bathroom and kitchen, cleaning windows, upgrading light bulbs, getting rid of all of your clutter, reopening fireplaces, repainting the house in neutral shades, and adding wooden flooring.

Add more storage space – Creating storage is a point that deserves further attention. Storage can be a real selling point, and a lot of homes lack good storage today, which puts potential buyers off. Before you sell your house, it is wise to look for ways to add more storage space. But, where? You should look for unused wall space for wall mounted cupboards, space above sinks, space beneath the bathtub, space in the attic or cellar that can be upgraded, under stairs space, space in the eaves, dead space at the end of corridors or either side of chimney breasts, and concealed nooks in corridors.

Add a carport – One of easiest ways to add value to your home is with a carport. You can find out more about this here. A carport is the perfect way to protect a car, caravan, bike or boat. Today, security is becoming more and more important, and this is definitely something that buyers are looking for. Not only this, but it makes sure that your investments are protected from the elements too. This is something that buyers will be willing to pay more for. After all, not only will it protect their vehicle and reduce the likelihood of vandalism and theft, but also this will reduce their vehicle insurance expenses while also giving them more storage space. These are all important factors for most buyers today, so you are going to be ticking many boxes.

So there you have it: some of the improvements you can make to your home that are guaranteed to add value. No matter whether you are looking to sell your property now or in the future, you can expect to get more when the time comes to sell if you make one or a few of the improvements that have been suggested.

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One-Fix Wonders That Could Transform Your Home

Home improvements are expensive, and when you’ve got a family to feed and bills to pay – making those upgrades to your home can slip to the bottom of your priorities list.

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If your home is looking a bit tired and in need of a facelift, there are some things you can do that will improve the appearance of your home without breaking the back.


Check out these one-fix wonders that could transform your home.

Add a fresh coat of paint

A fresh coat of paint can work wonders for your home, making things look new and fresh without having to make any major improvements. While you could stick to your existing color, you might want to think about doing something new  – and this year’s top paint trends could provide you with the inspiration you need. If you’re stuck, neutrals and white with an accent wall is a popular choice to help you bring a dash of color into your home.

Replace your flooring

Replacing your flooring might seem like an expensive option, but there are ways you can make it more affordable. Carrying out the work yourself or installing vinyl flooring is a good way to cut the costs while still giving you a great new floor for your home. Check out Yeager Flooring for some affordable options that will give your home a lift. If you’ve got children or pets at home, this could be your chance to invest in some durable flooring that will be easy to maintain – saving you money in the long run.

Decorate your walls

Some homes can lack character or personality, particularly if you haven’t been there for very long. Invest in some affordable photo frames and fill them with family photos or artwork to make your house feel more homely. There are even some fantastic ways you can reuse picture frames within your home to make the most of items that you already have lying around.


If your home has too much clutter, it can feel scruffy and unattractive, while also making spaces look smaller than they really are. A good decluttering session could help you to refresh your home and ensure that everything has its own place. Go through each room and be ruthless over what should stay and what you should keep – making sure that the things you keep are all put away. Your home will feel brand new with all the new space you have, and it will be much easier to keep clean and tidy now that everything has its own home.


Home improvements don’t have to cost the earth to be effective. Get creative by thinking of simple ideas that will make a huge difference without having to call in builders or invest in some expensive items. Pinterest is a great place to find new ideas, and many home improvements can be made using things you already have in your home. Sometimes it’s the smallest things that can make the most difference, so have fun thinking of your own one-fix wonders to transform your home.

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