Sunday, October 22, 2017

Tips for Installing High Quality Composite Decking

Jack Louis is here to share his ideas on composite decking. I would have chosen composite decking hands down had I known the upkeep on wood decks. Maintenance free from staining and heat? Love it. Thanks for the tips Jack.

Installing high quality composite decking is not as hard as it sounds. In fact, you don’t need professionals to do the installation of composite decking, if you know the process, you can do it yourself. Some custom made installation procedures make it easy for you to install your high quality composite decking. So, whether it is a normal decking, composite decking, or even decking your swimming pool, you can do it yourself, by following a few simple tips. Most people prefer installing composite decking at their homes and offices, as they feel that they can bring the classy wood finish like look without investing a fortune in installing original wooden structures.

Tips for Installing High-Quality Composite Decking:

  • To install your high-quality composite decking right, first you must decide on how you will use your new deck. Are you going to use it as a permanent structure or a temporary one for events? Take your decision.

  • What will be the location of your composite deck? It is advisable to keep your deck close to the house so that you can easily wire it when required.

  • Decide on the cost. How much are you willing to spend? Do not forget to consider the maintenance cost. When installing high-quality composite decking, they do require maintenance from time to time.

  • If you are looking for a specific design layout while installing high quality composite decking, take help of a professional. Only if you feel that the construction cost would escalate to a great extent if you used a professional carpenter for the installation, you may install it yourself, provided you keep the design simple enough to implement.

  • Ensure that your installation is well planned till the last detail, even if it is a simple staircase installation that you are planning.

There are many advantages and disadvantages of installing high quality composite decking.

Let first see what are the Advantages of Installing High-Quality Composite Decking:

  • Easy to install
  • Low on maintenance
  • Affordable- Are cheaper in comparison to original woodwork
  • Looks great and can be modified to match the look of the walls and other interiors of the house or office
  • Are long lasting
  • They can be installed from a wide range of colors
  • These installations generally do not attract insects and termites like original wood
  • The installations require minimum repair
  • The boards burn at temperatures much higher than wood and so won’t catch fire easily
  • Some products come with lifetime warranty
  • Are mostly made with recycled elements

Disadvantages of Installing High-Quality Composite Decking:

  • The initial cost of installations is high
  • The board can get scratched easily by claws of pets or by movement of furniture
  • The actual wood feel may be missing as it appears more plastic than wood, even though it is cheaper than the latter
  • The board can heat faster, especially if it is exposed to direct sunlight
  • The stain marks of food, paint, etc. may remain and refuse to go away

Equal parts of wood fiber and plastic go into the creation of high quality composite decking. Preservatives and colorants prevent these decking materials from fading away easily with time. The width of the boards is generally 12” and the thickness varies from 1” to 5”.

At times, installing high-quality composite decking is completed with a plastic coating, which enhances its durability and reduces its chances of fading away fast. However, even if the costs are slightly high, it is advisable to go in for a higher quality for extended durability. Keeping these little things in mind can help you in making an informed decision and ensure longevity too. Thus, it reduces financial burdens.

Thursday, October 19, 2017

Learn About Awnings and All the Benefits

Zac Ferry is here to chat about the correct kind of awning to choose and all the benefits. If your outdoor space is your "place" to be, read for some helpful hints.


An awning or overhang is an additional covering, which is attached to the exterior of the wall. It is typically composed of canvas, cotton or polyesters, or vinyl laminated that is stretched over aluminum or iron rods. Awnings have a lot of benefits ranging from aesthetics to weather protection. Here is a list of some of the benefits of awnings:

Provides Us with Weather Protection

Awnings are generally placed on top of our doors or windows hence they make sure that our door or windows are not spoiled by the rain water. They also help in preventing the rainwater to seep in. During winters, also awnings come in very handy. They make sure that snow is not accumulated in our patio or back yard hence making the cleaning process easier. While in summers they provide us protection from the harmful UV rays of the sun.

Increases Energy Savings

Awnings not only protect us from bad weather conditions but is also massive in energy savings. In a typical home, most energy is transferred through doors and windows. In fact, on a hot day most energy comes through glass doors and windows. The awnings also make sure that minimum heat enters our house therefore reducing costs on cooling or heating. Benefits of awnings include providing a great deal of shade to protect us from UV rays.

Increased Living Space

Awnings have a lot of benefits one of which includes creating more living space. Having several awnings allows to put more furniture in the back yard or patio thereby creating a suitable sitting place outside the house and protecting us from the elements of nature. We can also add several more furniture to the house in this process. The awnings make sure that the furniture is intact and no harm is caused to it due to weather conditions. By putting up a large awning in the backyard we create a large sitting for our guests and for our enjoyment on family days to enjoy the weather. Awnings are also extremely affordable making them budget friendly for home d├ęcor.

Aesthetically Pleasing and Adds Value to The House

Apart from weather protection and energy savings, awnings also add to the architectural maneuver of the house. The awnings make our house look aesthetically pleasing, comfortable, approachable, beautiful etc. Since awnings come in different shapes, sizes and designs finding the right awning for our house is never a difficult job. We could also have our awning custom made, which again adds to the uniqueness of our house.
Apart from being aesthetically pleasing the awnings also add value to the house. The benefits of awnings for the estate price of our house as they provide immense protection against bad weather and create a safe environment for the kids in the house there by increasing the chances of the house to brought when put out for sale.

Protects the Environment

As we know, awnings help in reducing energy costs by keeping out the UV rays of the sun from the house. They also help in reducing the usage of heaters by keeping the house warm. With these benefits, comes the benefit of reduced global warming. With low usage of heaters and Air-conditioners the greenhouse effect is reduced in the environment, which thereby helps in protecting the environment from the harmful effects of global warming.

Therefore, it can be said that benefits of awnings give a great deal at a very low cost. The benefit of awnings cannot be lost on us. In a nut shell, awnings for homes are a great solution for enjoying the outdoors and very reasonable to enjoy.

Monday, October 16, 2017

How Beneficial Is It to Become a Housing Architect?

Lara Buck is here to share some ideas on becoming a housing architect. If this is in your interest, check out these ideas.

The housing architects are well qualified in the designing of homes and residential areas. The architects consult with their clients to establish the much required spatial and purposeful elements of the home or the residential area which will be the project. Entire planning including consultations, making blue prints, analyzing the work and more critical things are done by these proficient people. Once the contracts have been laid out, the architects will be monitoring the development and advancement of the work in progress. The assigning of the work by the architects will be done to build and develop the residential project and the building structure.
C:\Users\DELL\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\INetCache\Content.Word\Housing Architect.jpg
Housing Architect

Here are some ways that you can dedicate your life to becoming a perfect architect. You must work hard and smart to build yourself as a smart and purposeful housing architect.

  • Get an architecture degree
  • Join internships to gather experience
  • Do freelancing to gain experience; it will also enhance your resume.
  • Apply for various jobs. No matter how small the project seems, make sure you take it.
  • No job is small. Everything needs to be started small before you can make it big. So, take up the job offers that come in your way.
  • Keep interacting with various workshops and seminars and conferences to build your contacts. Show your plans and ideas to important people and share your opinion with them so that they realize that you have a mind of your own and you have the guts to challenge the great minds.
  • Make sure your neighbors know of your good work and such fame (no matter how small), it will help you get projects of your own.

Why you should become a housing architect?

A housing architect has lucrative job hours. However, with every hour that comes free, you need to make sure that you have worked hard enough for the next twenty-four hours. There are many advantages of becoming an architect. Some of them are mentioned below:
C:\Users\DELL\AppData\Local\Microsoft\Windows\INetCache\Content.Word\Housing Architect..jpg
Housing Architect

  • Develop a personal relationship with clientele: Not many jobs have interesting job description like an architect does. Most of the employees have either dull job with a mandatory factor to stare at the computer screen all day for eight hours straight. While the architects have the option to get out of office and meet with the clients. The clients are the best part about being an architect. Meeting them and helping them build their dreams is the most exciting part. Residential homes are not profit based; they are built out of love and desire. Therefore, the housing architects can explore with their imagination and go flexible as per the client’s desires.
  • Learning in the process: No man can learn his job in a one day. Being an architect, you can only learn from your mistakes. Unlike a data analyst whose job is to gather data and enlist it in the computer, a housing architect’s job is to enlist the data into their minds. With each day, you can learn and recreate your imagination and develop various modern techniques to build and rebuild the structures.
  • Get Published: With your new techniques and unique ideas you can publish your ideas in a magazine where you will not only get the much-required exposure but also get many projects because of your intelligence. Architects have the priority to make a building of brick and cement home. This is why you must make your research properly before taking up projects well. You are not just creating a project; you are making someone’s dreams come true.

Friday, October 13, 2017

Your Small Acts of Kindness Can Change the World

Tracey Clayton is guest hosting today to share some acts of kindness and how it can change the world. Great post Tracey, you are always a welcome guest.


Sometimes, it’s difficult to take a look at the world around us and see it for what it is. We think evil lies in governments, in monstrous acts, in some distant, alien individuals whose minds are incomprehensible and beyond our reach. Seldom do we ever really look around us, too scared to admit that maybe evil isn’t in anything grand, but petty, small-minded jealous acts that surround us from all sides. Change doesn’t come from moving mountains, it comes from everyday efforts and acts of kindness that all of us can do. If you want to make the world a better place, then here are some things that you can do.

Learn to listen

Want to build a good relationship with people? Then learn how to listen to them. We are often too self-centred to really consider what other people have to say, so we end up unaware when our loved ones are hurting, and we unintentionally ignore cries for help. Listening can make a world of difference, because it’s a very basic skill related to emotional intelligence that can end up making you more perceptive. Also, sometimes we just need someone who’s ready to listen without judgement and provide a kind word of support.

Help those in need

A lot of people tend to ignore or avoid those that are less fortunate, because facing them is unpleasant. The severely disabled and the old are often forgotten, thought of as burden and pushed to the side because they remind us of just how frail the human life can be. But doing charity, or even finding a profession where you can help these kinds of people can be incredibly rewarding. There are plenty of government funded courses that are easy to apply for, and can help you get a certificate and find work that involves helping others. Even if you don’t want a profession that involves this, simple volunteering is amazing and can help save lives and brighten the days of people who need it most.

Become self-aware

The worst kind of people in the world are probably those who blame everyone else but themselves for their own problems. To even begin to understand the importance of kindness, you must first look inward and accept that you have flaws, then work on changing them. Becoming a better person isn’t about giving away money, it’s about understanding yourself, your own limitations, and understanding that other people are separate beings that have their own worries and problems. This is where the essence of kindness begins, in realizing our own weaknesses.

Care for the environment

Caring about the environment is more than just caring for the trees and the oceans. It means caring about the people, and the future we leave for our children. Reducing your carbon footprint, recycling, planting trees and, most importantly, working on controlling the effects of global warming, are all excellent ways to make our surroundings a lot more safe and pleasant. And you can easily involve the whole family in it, and teach your children some good, environmentally healthy habits.

Donate when you can

Do you really need that old pair of jeans that’s been sitting in your closet for years? Our guess is no, so why not reduce the clutter in your home and do a good deed in the process? Clothes, toys, old electronics and books can be donated, and it requires very little sacrifice on your part, so there’s really no reason not to do it. It doesn’t have to be money that you give away, it can be your time and effort as you volunteer at an animal shelter and take care of the strays. You can even donate makeup to women’s shelters and help those ladies have an easier time feeling like themselves again after years of abuse, and help them find a job and become self-sufficient.
One small act of kindness a day might not take much effort on your part, but it can mean the world to someone else. From tiny things, like leaving some extra change at the vending machine, to helping out at nursing home, there’s plenty we can do and all we need to do it is our willpower and the desire to make a change.

About author:

Tracey Clayton is a full time mom of three girls. She feels she knows a thing or two about raising happy, healthy and confident kids, and offers helpful advice in hers parenting articles. She’s also passionate about fashion and healthy living. Her motto is: “Live the life you love, love the life you live.”

Monday, October 9, 2017

5 Home Makeover Ideas

Thanks today to Diana Smith who is guest hosting and sharing 5 of her home makeover ideas. As the holidays and fall are upon us, it is time to move inside and makeover our homes. Check out these great tips from Diana.

Every home needs a bit of sprucing up from time to time. It doesn’t have to cost a fortune - you just need to add a touch of freshness to your property. This is usually achieved with interesting details which should emphasize only the best features of your home.
Most of these don’t require professional assistance - a reasonably handy person could do them in a single afternoon. However, it’s probably best not to do the whole house at once because small fix-ups could accumulate and create quite a mess.
Your front door is the first thing people see when they come to visit, which means that it plays a crucial role in forming the first impression about your home. That’s why your doors should always be clean and neat. A fresh coat of paint every year or two, depending on the weather, will be enough to keep your door looking nice.
Painting the door in a bright and vibrant color such red or dark orange is also a good idea; it makes the door noticeable and brings out the quality of the wood. Don’t forget to keep your door knobs in order and don’t shy away from making them pop as well.

This may seem like a bit of over-the-top move, but if it’s done tastefully and only in a few rooms it could really change the way your home looks and feels. Choose one room that you want to de-electrify and install a chandelier that could hold a dozen candles.
A dining room with a large chandelier will look great but you need to measure carefully how many candles would it take to keep the room bright, without having problems with mounting the chandelier on the ceiling.

Dramatic light
The importance of proper lighting is usually overlooked. Just by making the lights a bit more dramatic and interesting, you can completely change the look of any room. Add some black shades on your lamps and see how different and sophisticated the room will feel.
You should also change your light bulbs. Switching to LED lights will save you money in the long run and it’s also an environmentally sound thing to do in terms of cutting down on energy waste.

A well-designed patio can become your favorite part of the house. It can be used to entertain guests or just relax after a long day. However, it is subjected to all kinds of weather and it needs to be maintained regularly if you want it to look good. By using a couple of layers of epoxy flooring your patio will not only look fresh but it will be protected from the elements as well.
When it comes to design, it’s good to mix things up a bit and add a touch of luxury and comfort that’s usually reserved for the indoors to your backyard. Nice cushy chairs and a lot of soft light will do the trick.

In the end, one of the ways you can add a breath of fresh air to your home is to add some new wall art and display your interests and preferences for your guests to see and enjoy.  There are no rules as to what art to put up; you just need to try to make it fit in with the overall design.
It’s also more than fine to mix some of your own artwork with those from the artists you like, if you have the courage to do so. Have in mind that adding task lights might also be necessary to display the art in the most flattering way.
Try to give your home a makeover every couple of years. That way, your home will always look fresh and it won’t take that much time or money.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

How to Remove Household Odors

Samantha Olivier is here today to help with something that I bet bothers everyone. How to remove odors from your home. I have been there before and it drove me crazy. Check out these tips to keep yourself from guessing..What stinks?

Odors in your home are much more than a slight inconvenience. They trigger our sense of smell due to the presence of a single chemical or a whole mixture of them. Thus, unpleasant smells can actually indicate bigger problems that lurk in your environment. From the health standpoint, it is best to embrace a zero tolerance policy when it comes to these pesky odors. They have no place in your home, which should be a safe and comfortable shelter for all its residents.  

Uncovering the menace

It is surprising how the issue of odors flies under people’s radar. Believe it or not, the air inside your home tends to be 2 to 100 times more polluted than the air outside your doorsteps. The tricky part is that sometimes, smell provides little clue as to how much we are exposed. Uncloaked or not, things like air pollution are a serious problem that negatively impacts health as well as children’s academic skills.
So, we have no other option than to address the root of the problem. Odors do not come into existence “out of thin air”. They thrive in certain types of indoor climates and seek favorable conditions for growth. Mildew, for example, is the culprit more often than not. Likewise, mold is not just a nuisance, as it can contain dangerous toxins. Places that are damp, such as basements, are the worst in this regard.
It pays off to take action sooner rather than later, even if the odor does not seem overly strong. Depending on the scope of the situation, it is possible to make a real difference with using a dehumidifier. The natural version is always the first you should try: you just need to spray a few drops of tea-tree oil and alcohol over the musty spots.

All systems go

Next, we will seek the protection of Mother Nature. Her children, plants, are a must-have in any household. There is no better way to summon the pristine cleansing power of nature and banish annoying odors. At the same time, strive to improve the ventilation around your home. Keep a close eye on high-moisture areas like the bathroom, kitchen, and basement. Finally, utilize the internet to conduct a research and find the best air purifier for you and your home.
Bigger threats may call for measures such as whole-house humidification systems or the re-caulking of plumbing fixtures. Furthermore, you must make sure all crucial systems are running like clockwork, which includes electrical installations as well. In case electrical components emit fishy smells, you have to take a closer look. Search for outlets and pieces of electrical equipment that look burnt or slowly melting.

Testing the waters

As for plumbing, pay special attention to sewage. Namely, the P-traps and air blocks could make noxious gases rise up and plague your home. Those who lack the necessary skills can seek the aid of professionals. So, feel free to call an HVAC, plumbing, and electric company to investigate the situation and come up with a solution. If the smelly plight does not go away, you should contact your local health department.
Finally, what you can do is take action against vile places like plastic cans that are the birthplace of foul smells. Aside from removing the trash, especially the rotting food remains, you can also add 1 tablespoon of coffee and 1 tablespoon of baking soda, together with a few cloves to your trash can. This homemade mixture makes short work of any unpleasant odors. Baking soda also comes in handy when you want to carry out routine maintenance in the fridge, where funky fumes may try to run the show.
This is not all, because in combination with 1 cup of salt and 1 cup of borax, the soda mixture is effective in doing away with nasty toilet smells. One can also turn this abrasive scrub into a scented substance by simply adding essential oils. Bear in mind that persistent bowl stains may require extra work in the form of scrubbing. Regardless of the odors you face, always do your homework and try to discover a natural alternative to common cleaning items.

Keep peril at bay

Prevention is the best medicine, so deny odors the benefits of a moldy and polluted environment. Create a perfect storm to combat a variety of elusive risks. You do not want to add fuel to the fire with harmful chemicals. Stick to your natural allies and employ green cleaning methods. Come hell or high water, you want to transform your home into a sanctuary of freshness and cleanliness.