Operation Security: Safeguarding Your Home During An Open House

While an open house is a great way to actually meet the perfect buyer for your property, it is also a great opportunity for people with bad motives to do their rude moves. More than allowing your house to actually accommodate good buyers, you might also be accommodating bad people. So how are you are exactly going to do the open house while securing your home? Here are some tips.

Keep away important documents containing pertinent information such as Social Security numbers and bank accounts. These digits of numbers can actually be the key towards investigating crimes using your identity.

Remove jewelries, antiques, and other items of high values. These are eye candies and can easily attract robbers and thieves. Electronic gadgets like tablets, laptops, and smartphones should also be secured. Your personal and some confidential information can be leaked once these gadgets are taken away from your possession.

Photos of family members are advised to be hidden. You don't know how criminal minds think. Your family members, even with just their photos can be easy targets of crimes, especially children.

Never leave keys of your house, car, or rooms – even if they are just duplicates. These things are small and can be easily grabbed. When possessed by bad persons, these keys can be used to enter your property.

Never hide anything of value in your rooms and other likely places. Rooms within your house especially those that are locked up during the open house can imply that there are valuable things in there. Though they are locked up, it is still advised never to leave things of high value in those rooms. Some curious and naughty persons might be unnoticed sneaking in those rooms to peep on those things and plan something bad afterwards.

Have a logbook of guests joining the open house. This is a helpful record to see who came to visit the house. Make sure that the arrival and departure times are recorded too.

Take photos or videos of the rooms and other parts of the house before the open house in its staged state. After the open house, review the photos or videos to see if there are some alterations on how things are placed and ordered.

Remember that an open house should be an opportunity to meet buyers, or even meet new connections and friends. It should not be an opportunity or an invitation to persons with bad intentions. However, we won't know bad people until they have done wrong. So better stay safe and secured than be sorry later on!

Types of House Foundations for Home Construction

A slab foundation is simply a poured slab of concrete that a house is built upon. A Slab foundation usually sits upon a footing that has been been constructed below the frost line. The concrete slab is typically 4 to 8 inches in thickness with embedded steel rods known as "rebar" to prevent cracking and faulting. The house foundation is built directly on the soil with no basement or crawlspace. All water lines and waistlines are installed prior to the concrete being poured.

SLAB FOUNDATION ADVANTAGES

One of the main reasons slab foundations are popular is the cost factor. Slab foundations are the least expensive and the quickest to install. Slab foundations reduce the cost of the entire building simply because the houses built directly on the slab. That saves the cost of floor joists that would normally support the building. Slab foundation homes are easier to heat because there is no airspace under the house affecting the interior temperatures.

SLAB FOUNDATION DISADVANTAGES

Because there's no basement or crawlspace all ventilation duct-work must be channeled through the attic and through spaces in the walls. There is no additional space for utilities and no storage, the entire home is basically sitting on a large platform of solid concrete. Although slab foundations are the least expensive house foundations to construct, they're the most expensive to repair. All the plumbing for the home is basically under the concrete slab making it impossible to repair without tearing up concrete floor which is now part of the interior of your home. Leaks are difficult to detect because they're under the slab and in many cases go undetected for years. An unusually high water bill is the first indication that you may have an underground leak.

THE SECOND OF THE THREE TYPES OF HOUSE FOUNDATIONS-CRAWLSPACE

Crawlspace foundation consists of a perimeter concrete wall and concrete columns that will support the floor joists of your home. The distance between the soil and the first floor of your home is known as the crawlspace.this foundation is either built the ground level or over shallow excavation depth from 3 to 4 feet. The exterior foundation walls will support the building load and several concrete Piers will be constructed in the crawlspace for extra support. Crawlspace foundations in the past have been built using the original soil as the floor, and recent changes in building codes are now insisting on at least a two inch cement flooring to be used to help control any moisture problems.

CRAWLSPACE ADVANTAGES

A Crawlspace foundation raises the home 3 to 4 feet above the ground level. This has many advantages, all the plumbing and wiring and ventilation ducts can easily be maintained and serviced. In addition to providing access under the home crawlspaces allow airflow under the home. This will assist in cooling in the summer, crawlspaces are usually cool when properly ventilated.

Crawlspace House Foundations in Flood Areas

If you live in an area that is prone to flood, having a crawlspace foundation is a blessing. By installing flood vents into the foundation you can reduce the possibility of structural damage to your foundation. Flood vents when properly installed will allow the flow of water under the home which reduces the amount of pressure that a normal foundation would experience in a flood. Flood vents are designed to let the water flow in and let the water flow out without damaging the foundation. Flood vents are so important that the Federal Emergency Management Association (FEMA) has made the installation of flood vents mandatory type A flood areas.

CRAWLSPACE DISADVANTAGES

The cooling effect that the house experiences during summer can freeze the house in the winter. The floor joists in the crawlspace must be heavily insulated which will raise the cost of construction. Water can collect under your home and provide an ideal insect nesting area. The most concerning disadvantage occurs only if these foundations are not properly maintained or are built without proper ventilation. Fortunately flood and air vent technology has eliminated many of the dampness and mold concerns of the past.

THE THIRD TYPE OF HOUSE FOUNDATIONS- BASEMENT

The basement is a typical house foundation which includes an entire living space under the first floor of your home. Aside from providing additional living space the basement provides easy access to all the utilities of the home. The basement foundation begins with a footing below the frost line and then concrete walls are erected approximately 8 feet above the footing, a concrete slab is used for the basement flooring. Basement foundations have the advantage of providing excellent storage space, and clean dry space for all utilities. Many times full basements have been converted to apartments that can be rented and provide the homeowner with additional income. Whenever a basement is converted into an apartment at least one egress window must be provided.

Disadvantages of Basement House Foundations

The primary disadvantage of the basement is that because a good part of it is beneath ground level they are susceptible to leaking and mold formation. In areas with a high water table is sub pump may be installed to combat flooding. Basement house foundations are the most expensive to construct due to all the extra material needed and time to build it. However this additional expense during construction will make your home easier to maintain. A home with a full basement typically has a higher resale value than either of the previous types of house foundations mentioned.

Diagnose and Repair Water Heaters in Your Home

If you experience problems with a water heater, you know how difficult this is. There are many things that cause problems with water heaters, they are the water that is produced is too hot or too cold, the tank is leaking, the water is changing color, and there are some strange sounds from the heating machine. Don’t worry if they come to you because all those problems can be solved by the water heater repairman from maintenance services in dubai easily. There are many maintenance service companies that provide water heater repairmen, it is highly recommended to work with them if you are not willing to replace the water heater with a new one.

Before you hire the services of a water heater repairman, make sure you know the cause of the damage. Who knows, actually the damage is mild and can be repaired by yourself. Most water heater problems are easily diagnosed and can be overcome if you understand what is causing the problem and how your water tank operates. The most important thing to note is that if your water tank no longer produces hot water and you smell gas near the tank, this could have a gas leak. If you contact a maintenance service company like maintenance services in dubai they will send trained technicians to diagnose and correct the problem.

Cleanliness of the storage tank is also often a source of problems with the water heating system in your home. Water that enters the water heater tank must be clean and healthy, it means they do not cause odor and are not turbid. In addition, water must also be free from small particles such as: lime, rocks, and sand that can clog waterways so that it can damage the water heater device. To overcome this, a filter should be installed in the drain before entering the heating tank. This tool is useful for filtering out particles which can clog and damage waterways. This problem can usually be solved by the home owner, but it is recommended to find detailed instructions before proceeding.

It is advisable to check several water heating devices approximately every three months. Some devices need to be checked such as electricity, valves, and tank cleaning. Electric water heater tanks that use electricity are cleaned in a number of ways such as draining all water, cleaning the outer parts of the unit and the components inside so that they are free from mineral deposits. Remember, the checking and cleaning process is carried out by experienced technicians.

You can find experienced technicians to check and repair water heaters on the internet. They can certainly help you diagnose and fix many of the most common problems that may be encountered on water heaters.

How to Use Rugs on Furniture

Rugs are not just useful for the floor – they can be used on furniture as well. There are many different types of area rugs available for sale and they can be used in more than one way. You can use them as a covering for old tables as well as on furniture. Area rugs that are artistic are sometimes too pretty to be walked on. Using rugs as a material for upholstery on furniture is an easy project and can turn an old piece of furniture into a new showpiece.

Using rugs to cover old tables – If you have old tables in your home, you can cover them using rugs. Rugs are thick enough that they can give a whole new look to the furniture and stylish enough to make a decorative impact.

In order to use rugs as a covering on old tables to turn them into an upholstered piece, you can use a staple gun to fasten the rug to the table. Because rugs are thicker than regular material, you will not need to put padding between the table and the rug for the upholstery job. Using a staple gun is easy as is pulling the rug tight so that it can cover the old table.

Using rugs to cover upholstered furniture – If you have upholstered furniture in your home that needs to be reupholstered, one way to do so is to use a rug. Because rugs are so thick, you can use them as upholstery material without having to use foam padding. You can use either upholstery nails or a staple gun to affix the rug to the upholstered furniture. If you want to do it quickly, use the staple gun and then use furniture upholstery nails as a decorative finish. The staples should never show.

How to cut rugs- You will need to use a rug cutter in order to work with rugs when you are using them to decorate furniture. The thicker the rug, the more difficult it can be to cut. If you need an intricate cut, you can also use a jigsaw blade.

How to affix rugs- Use a staple gun with long, commercial grade staples to affix the rug to furniture. rue upholstery uses upholstery nails or tacks, although this can be difficult for a first timer. If you use a staple gun, you can affix the rug. You can always go back along the work with upholstery nails and then replace the staples.

If you have a thin area rug, you can also use it as a throw for an old sofa or chair. There are many uses for area rugs in the home, including the use in upholstery. When you are decorating your home, look to the products that you already have to see how you can make them better. While upholstery may seem like a difficult job, it is not difficult when you use rugs. Because of their density and weight, they are easy to work with when it comes to upholstery projects.

Things to Consider Before Buying Your Furniture

When you decorate your home you will have lots of energy and perfectionist tendencies. The formal living room furniture areas vs. the informal areas will have a tendency to be designated. In the informal areas of the home, low-maintenance becomes more important because the feeling is more casual and relaxed.

People want furniture they can enjoy without too much fuss and minimal work and maintenance. The focus on furnishing your home should be on creating an environment of comfortable elegance. Comfort is more than just how something feels to sit on. It is also the mind set of knowing your furniture is made to last, is durable, and is resistant to the daily rigors of life. It is not fun to live in a space in which you are constantly worried about whether something will get stained or spotted. You want to be able to put your feet up on the coffee table and eat on the sofa and not worry about it. When you are purchasing a bedroom furniture set, you want it to be beautiful, but functional. Furniture manufacturers such as Aspen furniture are addressing that need with finishes and materials that are sturdy without sacrificing beauty.

There are many things to consider before buying furniture. You want to make the right choices so that you don’t end up with buyer’s remorse or the hassle of returning your delivered purchase.

The first step is to determine exactly what your needs are and how much space you have. Can certain pieces serve a dual purpose? Whether you are purchasing living room furniture or a bedroom set, you need to consider what scale do the pieces need to be to accommodate the size of the room? You want to be sure that you don’t purchase furniture that is either too small or too large for the space that it will be utilized in.

Secondly, consider what the space is used for. Is it a space where the family gathers and watches TV or is it a more formal area? If it is a family gathering area, you want to make sure the furnishings are more durable and have the functionality for a comfortable environment. You may want to utilize fabric protection if your family likes to snack while watching TV. Your furniture should enhance and compliment your lifestyle and not serve as a maintenance nightmare.

Another consideration when choosing furniture is whether or not you have existing home accessories in the room such as rugs or artwork that need to be considered in order to establish a cohesive look and feel. When you are blending existing furnishings you want to end with a unified feeling and not a mix and match of items that look great individually but not as a grouping. Decide which item is going to serve as the focal point and then decorate around that.

Wooden Furniture Care – Painting Furniture Made of Wood

Wooden furniture is a great way to spruce up and add to the identity of the home. However, as time goes by, the furniture loses its sheen and polish, and there are many amongst us who will discard good quality furniture because they do not know that it is actually very simple to add some new life to their old furniture with a simple coat of paint. Painting wooden furniture is quite simple, and it is actually a pretty happening DIY project if you have a weekend to yourself with your family. What you will need? To paint wooden furniture, you will need some easy to get ingredients, like:

1. Painters’ Drop Cloth

2. Gloves

3. Foam Brushes about two or three inches in size and length

4. Sandpaper

5. Tackrag

6. Small rags

7. Wood Putty

8. Putty Knife

9. Water Based Latex Paint

10. Water Based Wood Varnish.

Setting up the Furniture: Once you have these objects at hand, you should make the atmosphere ready for your work. Make sure that you have a fan on and windows open, so that you have ventilation in your work area. After you have done this, the first step is removing any dents or nail holes in your furniture. If your furniture is so old that it requires a coat of paint, it is bound to have dents and other wear and tear. Look for these, and apply wood putty to the dents and nail holes using the putty knife. Do not put a very large amount of putty, as it will make the furniture look very bad. Once you are done applying the putty, level it with the putty knife, to such an extent that it is in line with the furniture itself. Wooden furniture requires a grainy surface for the paint to catch the wood. The best way to do this is to rub the area that we want to paint with sandpaper. Once you are done with the sandpaper part, take one of your rags and wipe out any saw dust particles that may remain on your furniture. This is very important, as these saw dust particles will come out strikingly when the painting is done. After this, lightly brush every area of the furniture that you want to paint with the tack rag. You are ready to Paint!

Painting Wooden Furniture: Dip the foam brush up to half of the brush in the latex paint, and pain the wooden surface in a large, consistent hand with the paint brush. While painting, remember to overlap your painting hand, so that enough colours reach the furniture area. Allow the paint to dry for a good three or four hours. Your painted furniture is ready!

The Best Way To Choose Area Rugs For Your Home

Whenever someone is thinking of decorating or redecorating their home, their mind will turn at some point to area rugs. Too many times, however, they wind up getting rugs that are too small or a rug that does not go with anything else in the room or they just find that it is too difficult to care for. Before jumping into a situation that you may wind up regretting, take the time for a little homework before purchasing any rug for your home.

Measure, Measure, Measure

Take a good look at the room in which you want to place any area rugs. Visualize its placement in your head, and incorporate it with the furniture that will also go into this room. While additional rugs should never be allowed to “free float”, or stand alone, unanchored by furniture, some people prefer to do so, especially in big spaces where there is little furniture. For safety purposes, you should always anchor rugs so that there is little danger of tripping over an edge.

Once you have that picture in your head, it is time to measure out the available space for the rug. Write these dimensions down: width, length, and shape. It might also help to take a few pictures of the furniture you want the rug to coordinate with, in media that you can take with you, so color does not become an obstacle later on. Take the measurements a second time. Sounds silly, but you want to be certain of the available space that you have to put a rug into before buying one.

Considerations for Purchase

Now that you are ready to start looking for your rug of choice, take a moment while looking at rugs to check out the manufacturer’s label, usually located on the back of each sample. This label will tell you a lot of things about the rug you are about to purchase: what material it is made out of, the exact dimensions, and cleaning specifications. The last item can be a deal breaker, especially if you have no intention of spending your weekend on your hands and knees scrubbing your new purchase clean.

If you are looking to purchase a rug for a known high traffic area, you would be better off getting a rug that is relatively easy to clean, especially if budget is a consideration for you. There are plenty of “like” models out there for the money conscious: Persian rug like, Oriental rug like, Mediterranean rug like, etc. Just because they are cheaper than the original, it does not necessarily mean that they lose anything in the translation. They are of just as high a quality as the original, cost less, and entail a lot less maintenance than the more expensive type.

Uses for New Rugs

Adding a new rug to a room can completely change the look of it. If there is furniture in the room, you want a piece that will accentuate the style of the furniture, coordinate with the other pieces, and not completely draw the eye away from them. If you have hardwood floors, be sure to center the new rug in the room, and then group the furniture around it. Buy a dark rug to show off light furniture and a light rug for dark furniture.

Area rugs can also be used to define a space. For example, say that you have a better than average foyer entrance to your home. The rug you place there should be the central focal point, and define the style that your guests will see throughout the rest of the home. If your furniture is of a particular type, then that rug should represent that type as the continual theme of the home. Most interior decorating schemes either move the eye from the bottom up, or from ceiling to floor. Go with what you like, and what expresses your personal style the best.

Cozy Pool Seating Areas

If you are fortunate enough to have a swimming pool in your backyard, you will want to maximize on the design of that space with a cozy pool seating area. You may have a lot of space available near your pool or just a small spot of concrete, but either way, creating a pool seating area will be a great way to both socialize with your guests while keeping careful watch over the swimmers in your pool.

Sitting Around the Pool
Sitting around the pool is a tranquil experience that you can enjoy whether or not you will actually slip into the pool on any given day. There are so many different types of pool seating experiences that you can create with different types of casual furniture. One of the most popular types of pool seating furniture is wicker furniture. Classic in design and classy in style, this will make a great addition to any outdoor patio furniture area.

Other great ideas to consider include wrought iron furniture. Properly treated wrought iron will not be affected by the moisture of your pool and will create a fabulous image for your pool seating area. Other types of outdoor pool furniture, like teak furniture, can also help to create distinctive styles.

For more casual pool seating areas, consider simply dragging your kitchen furniture outside to gain a few extra chairs when a large number of guests are expected. Patio and pool furniture need not be pretentious; you can add on to the fun of any gathering with just a few extra chairs. Lawn furniture such as folding chairs are ideal when you need extra seats as well.

Sitting In the Pool
Perhaps you would like to enjoy the great outdoors – from inside of your pool You don’t have to master floating on water for long periods of time – just invest in floating pool chairs. What a better opportunity – surrounded by calm and relaxing water but yet not getting wet unless you want to. Swimming pool chairs can come in hard or soft designs. Deck furniture can also be placed in extremely shallow areas of your pool – those six inch deep splash areas – to combine the comfort of water with the luxury of fresh air.

Adding On With Accessories
There are many pool accessories that you can consider when designing your pool seating areas. Your outdoor wicker furniture will thank you when you buy covers for it. Although sturdy, the constant battering of wind and rain can deteriorate this type of furniture and so covering when not in use will help to extend its lifetime. No matter what type of furniture you have chosen for your pool seating area, you can find appropriate covers to preserve.

Keep in mind pool supplies when choosing your outdoor furniture. You can often find tables or other accessorizing pieces of furniture that can handily hide away your swimming pool supplies so they are close at hand and yet hidden away from being in constant view. Do you have a lot of bottles and containers for cleaning your pool? Stash them inside an end table and they’re ready when you need them but aren’t destroying the design of your patio.

Your Adirondack chair could benefit from the addition of outdoor furniture cushions. Not only will the wooden chair become more comfortable, but these cushions can also be used to change the entire design of your pool seating area from season to season. Outdoor furniture cushions are amazingly cost effective and come in a wide variety of designs and colors so no matter what your whim, you’ll be able to design your pool seating area accordingly.

Boring Outside Patio Furniture Area – How About an Outdoor TV to Liven Things Up!

I have a lovely outside patio furniture set, but it looks so dull. What can I do to cheer up the area and create a wonderful outdoor room? A friend of mine suggested that accessorizing would be the way to go. Have you looked at what’s available for outdoor spaces these days – where to start first? Okay then jumping right in!

Starting at the beginning, I have a nice teak wood patio furniture set and some cushions would help to make it more comfortable as well as provide some color. They are also easy to change if I get bored of them! I did look at the colors and styles available and one of the things that struck me was to consider whether I need them to be waterproof or not. The waterproof outdoor patio furniture cushions are made from plastic and aren’t very comfortable, so I decided to buy outdoor patio furniture covers to keep everything nice. That also means that I can have the soft comfy cushions on the outside chairs without worrying about bringing them in every night, one. Step one done!

My friend said that an umbrella has one of the biggest impacts on a patio area as it is so eye catching when up. So did I need an umbrella? Well I could look at other options to provide some shade such as a shade cloth over the area, but I thought I would like to see the winter sun without a cover – I can always put the umbrella away in winter. So I found an umbrella in a matching shade to my cushions and was set.

Thinking about winter led me on to heating. If I can heat my patio area we will be able to use it for much more of the year. Did you know there are a variety of different ways to heat the outdoor space, from space heaters to chimeras and Roman fire tables. I had a look at chimeras, they come in many styles and can be used to heat and cook on (especially marshmallows).

Along with heating comes lighting-we could add some lighting to make the patio area a real outdoor room. If we used fairy lights we may not even have to add extra outdoor Christmas lights. Fairy lights twinkling add such a lovely atmosphere to a summer evening outside. We could also add candles or solar lighting, which has a nice effect when it comes on by its self as it gets dark.

There are many other accessories that can be added to your outside living space, such as sound system and outdoor splash proof TV to watch all the great sports and games, hammocks, rugs, insect repellants, plants and planter boxes.

Right now I think I’ll just add a drink trolley and get myself a lovely cool drink and sit down in my outdoor patio area to watch the game!