11 June 2019

How to Make Your Small Home Feel Larger

We all want the best of both worlds: a living space that is large and accommodating and something small enough to clean easily. Settling for a smaller living space makes a lot of economic sense. Here are four tricks to make your small home appear larger than it is.

Mirror, Mirror on the Wall
Image via Flickr by Bellafaye Garden

Mirrors are great decorating props that have multiple purposes. People have been using mirrors to create illusions in decorating for centuries. Not only can mirrors make a dark room appear brighter, but they can also make the room appear larger. Strategically placed mirrors can add depth to a room and make it seem more spacious. If you can't afford a large floor-to-ceiling mirror, you can invest in several smaller mirrors and group them together. It will not only produce the desired effect but add an artistic looking focal point to the room. 

Color is Everything
One of the biggest decorating mistakes people make in their home is choosing dark colors because they are fashionable. Dark colors will only make small rooms appear even smaller. If you really are determined to use dark colors, use them on the ceiling. The dark colors will give depth to the room and make the room appear taller. Painting the walls of your home in light colors, such as white or light beige, will help create the illusion of space while the light reflecting off the walls will make the room seem brighter.

Remodeling for Maximum Space
Sometimes you need to call in the professionals to help you reclaim some space. If you're living in an older home, you might want to consider consulting with a plumber who can assess your plumbing. Many times, they can replace the larger pipes with smaller, more cost-effective pipes. 

As a homeowner, this is a win-win for you. You get newly updated plumbing in an older home and an opportunity to reclaim some unutilized area in your home. This might seem like a drastic move, but it is one of the few ways to add actual square footage to your home rather than mimicking the appearance of it.

Clever Storage Ideas
You know the old saying, “necessity is the mother of invention,” and there is no end to the number of clever storage ideas that people have come up with. The first place to start is with multi-functioning furniture. Purchasing pieces of furniture that have hidden storage will save you space and fulfill a purpose. 

Bookshelves are great space makers. Even small bookshelves can add to the amount of area you can utilize. An ingenious trick is to place them closer to the ceiling to make the room seem taller. There are lots of gadgets you can buy that allow you to use the backs of cabinets, closets, or room doors for storage for things like shoes, hair appliances, and cooking utensils. 

It can be a challenge to make a small home go from feeling cramped to feeling cozy. With some ingenuity and using some of these tips, you can makes your home feel bigger than it actually is. 

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4 Reasons Why You Should Upgrade to a Ductless AC System

If you're looking for a better way to cool your home, a ductless air conditioning system may be the answer. This efficient system offers an innovative alternative to the more traditional duct-based central air conditioner that many homeowners are used to. Consider some of the following prime benefits to moving to a ductless system either for supplemental cooling or for a whole-home comfort solution.

Add Custom Cooling Where You Need It

A ductless AC system provides customized cooling for your home. You can connect a single outdoor unit to multiple indoor units and place these interior installations where you need the added air most. Do you have a finicky family member who wants more cooling in a bedroom? Perhaps your kitchen is perpetually warm, or perhaps your finished basement doesn't get the efficient temperature management that you'd like. You can position ductless units in any room, and customize the height and location of their placement within that space, to direct air exactly where you want it.

Installing a ductless AC system is quick and simple, requiring no more than a small hole in the wall between the interior and exterior units. This quick and easy installation adds zoned temperature control to your home without the need to install zoning within your ductwork.

Trim Your Utility Bills
According to the U.S. Department of Energy, 25 to 40 percent of the air in a duct-based system is lost through leaky ductwork. A ductless system naturally eliminates this loss by pulling air directly into the home from outside. This directional pattern can help you dramatically reduce your energy bills. While you may choose to continue using your duct-based central cooling system for the height of the summer heat, you can transition to working with ductless units only during the shoulder seasons and use ductless systems for efficient supplemental cooling.

Improve Your Indoor Air Quality
Your ductwork can harbor a number of allergens and irritants including dust, dander, and pollen. A ductless system eliminates this problem for you. As fresh air comes into the home through your ductless unit, it passes through an ionizer field which removes potentially hazardous particles and helps keep the air clean and healthy. 

Create a Greener Home
Duct-based cooling systems can be hard on the environment. The air losses mentioned above translate to an unnecessary use of energy. Running independent units with a ductless system will help you eliminate excess energy use in a variety of ways. You won't have to use electricity to cool unoccupied rooms with a ductless system: You can simply turn off the units that are located in those areas. This versatility helps shrink your carbon footprint and ultimately provides you with a greener, more environmentally friendly living space.

If you're interested in trimming your bills and customizing your comfort, a ductless AC system may offer the smart, affordable answer that you seek. Installation is simple, whether you have an existing duct-based system or not. Start exploring your options for more innovative and affordable home cooling with your local HVAC contractor.

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25 May 2019

The Downfalls Of DIY Plumbing Projects & Why You Need A Professional

There is a lot of content online for people to consume, most of which has empowered individuals to be able to handle some tasks by themselves. This has also contributed to a rise in more Do It Yourself (DIY) projects. Some of the very common DIY projects that people undertake revolve around plumbing.

It’s important to state that it is absolutely okay for anyone to carry out DIY projects and there is a lot of benefit to it. In plumbing, for instance, there are simple tasks that you can easily do by yourself such as unclogging a drain. Undertaking such DIY projects serves as a good learning experience and an avenue to acquire new skills.

With that said, however, there are many things that could, and in most cases do go wrong when people undertake DIY plumbing projects. Plumbing problems differ. Some are really easy to handle while some are extremely complex and require a high level of expertise to do.

There is a big difference between what you see online on DIY videos where people walk you through how to handle a certain plumbing project versus you taking up the project and doing it by yourself. It’s not always simple and straightforward as they portray it to be.

Even though the project may be the same, the issue at hand may differ from one project to another. Your plumbing project is unique in its own way. Some plumbing projects also require you to have a license showing that you are fully certified to be able to undertake them.

Some other downfalls of performing DIY projects include:

1. You being uninformed Of Some Of The Dangers Involved 
DIY plumbing projects can be somewhat risky to undertake. You could easily get hurt if you are not aware of the potential dangers at hand. A simple project could turn disastrous if you are not cautious enough or are oblivious of the hazard at hand.

2. Things Could Get Worse Than They Already Are 
While your intention of undertaking a DIY plumbing project is to build or to restore and make things better, you could end up damaging things, leaving the entire thing worse than you found it. The cost implication after this is high as you may be required to replace broken parts.

3. Inability To Correctly Assess The Problem 
You may be willing and ready to undertake a DIY plumbing project but lack the essential knowledge of assessing the problem at hand and formulating a viable solution for it. This sets you up for disaster because the problem at hand may not be solved.

Why You Need To Hire A Professional 
Hiring a plumbing professional is more beneficial. Here are a few reasons why:
1. The professional has the knowledge and skill set needed to be able to accurately assess and identify the main problem at hand.
2. He holds a license along with insurance that allows him to work without violating the set legal rules and regulations.
 3. He will minimize the risks involved such as unnecessary accidents because he is fully aware of the safety hazards at hand.

Why struggle to Do It Yourself when you can hire a professional? Get one today. Our recommendation of a company with excellent plumbing professionals ready to serve you is Wheaton-based Ferrari Plumbing. Check them out today.

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23 May 2019

6 Tips for Reducing Home Allergens

Do you sniffle, cough, and sneeze when you spend time in your home? You may be one of the more than 50 million Americans that suffer from allergies. There are simple things you can do to help yourself feel better. Try these easy ideas to reduce allergens in your home all year long.

Try a Dehumidifier 
Ample rain and humid weather add moisture to the air, creating a breeding ground for mold, mildew, and dust mites. If you see beads of moisture on your windows and doors, take action before harmful pathogens aggravate your family's allergies. Ask a professional to install a dehumidifier to reduce the amount of water in the air. You can set a dehumidifier to run until a certain humidity level is reached to keep the air dry and comfortable.

Dust and Vacuum at Least Weekly

Image via Flickr

Mites can live in dust and trigger allergy symptoms. Using dry dusting cloths can spread dust and pet dander through the air. Instead, use a treated or damp cloth to help trap the dust in the fabric, and change or clean your dust rags after each use.

HEPA filters also help remove dust mites, animal hair and dander, dirt, and other allergens from the air. Clean your carpets regularly using a vacuum with a HEPA filter. You can also alleviate allergies by running an air purifier that includes a HEPA filter. Trapping allergens in a HEPA filter will help stop your heating and cooling system from circulating contaminated air.

Clean Vents and Change Filters 
Help your HVAC system work more efficiently by changing air intake filters and cleaning the vents throughout the home. When dirt and dust get trapped in the filters and vents, the system has to work harder to keep conditioned air circulating through each room. Don't forget to clean the dryer lint trap and exhaust hose as well.

Wash Bedding and Bath Linens 
Fabrics in your home create a comfy spot for allergens to live. Make sure to wash your bed linens and towels in hot water often to kill dust mites. You can also choose allergen-resistant pillowcases and sheets. Wash your throw rugs and bathroom mats each week as well.

Choose Green Cleaning Products 
When you clean, you may be adding allergens to the air. Cleaning solutions that include harsh chemicals can leave residue and odors in the air that trigger allergic reactions. If you're affected by traditional soap and cleansers, try organic options.

Going green doesn't have to be expensive, though. You can make organic cleaning solutions with household staples like vinegar and lemons.

Keep Pollen Outside 
You love the smell of fresh air throughout your home. Be mindful of when you open your windows if you're allergic to pollen, however. Pollen comes in on the wind, especially in the early morning hours. Keep the windows closed during this time. In addition, use your clothes dryer instead of handing your clothes outside to dry.

Take these simple steps to reduce allergens in your home year-round. Keeping the air and surfaces in your home free of dust, dirt, and pet dander can help alleviate allergy symptoms.

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4 Reasons Why It's Worth Considering Installing Geothermal Energy

Geothermal energy is heat from the earth being used to heat or cool homes. In the winter, the home is heated by pumping water through long loops of underground pipes to a section of the ground much warmer than the Earth's surface. The hot water is then returned for use in the home. In the summer, the process is reversed. Cool water is used in the home to absorb heat and then disperses it into the ground. There are a number of benefits to homeowners who install a geothermal HVAC in their home.

Environmentally Friendly

Image via Flickr by Christian Collins

Geothermal energy is environmentally friendly. Geothermal energy heats your home by moving heat that already exists below the Earth's surface, rather than using energy to create heat. There is no combustion in the process of heating or cooling your home, and it produces little to no greenhouse gasses. It has the smallest carbon footprint of any of the available heating and cooling options for homeowners.

For homeowners concerned about the appearance or space requirements of the geothermal system in the yard, much of the system is underground. Because the geothermal HVAC system is dependent on pumping water, there's no need for a loud fan to move air through compressor coils. Your yard stays quiet and clear of machinery. Geothermal energy is also a completely renewable resource. Earth continuously generates heat below the surface; it seems as though there will continue to be geothermal energy for as long as the Earth exists.

Energy Efficient 
Geothermal energy is very efficient, ranging up to 400 percent efficiency. Even the best furnaces average about 90 percent efficiency. Because of its high efficiency, a geothermal HVAC system will start saving you money from the very first time you use it. While the initial investment might be costly, a geothermal HVAC system can reduce the monthly costs of heating your home by half, and reduce cooling costs by almost the same.

Geothermal units can be put inside the home, away from the exposure to the elements, leading to longer lifespans. The components of the system kept inside the home often come with 10-year warranties but can last over 25 years. The components of the geothermal energy system that are below ground can last over 50 years. Because the system also has fewer moving parts overall, there are fewer components to break down or need repair.

Unlike other natural power sources like wind or solar energy, geothermal energy is not dependent on the weather. Geothermal HVAC systems can be relied upon regardless of the season or day-to-day weather. Because there is no fuel to purchase, the costs associated with operating your geothermal HVAC remain roughly the same. The fluctuation of fuel costs frustrating other homeowners has no impact on the cost of operating a geothermal HVAC system.

A geothermal HVAC system offers these benefits to almost any home. Wondering about installing a geothermal HVAC in your home? A professional HVAC technician can visit your home and evaluate for an installation.

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22 May 2019

Three Easy Steps to Find a Reliable Service Provider

How strong is your “adulting” game? If you’re like most women, you might still struggle with certain aspects of running a household, raising a family — and remaining calm, cool, and collected all at the same time! It isn’t easy to juggle the demands of parenting, working either part- or full-time, keeping your relationship healthy, and devoting the occasional hour to self care.

One of the least fun aspects of being a grown-up is having to deal with things like plumbing problems, HVAC maintenance, or pest control. However, they are part and parcel of adulthood. You can at least make things a little easier on yourself by reading our quick guide to finding a reliable service provider!

Get Recommendations from Friends 
The best way to find a provider of just about any service — whether it’s related to home maintenance or on a more personal scale, like a stylist or massage therapist — is to ask your friends and family. After all, you trust their opinion, and they won’t steer you wrong.

If you work outside the home, your coworkers are another good resource. And if you are looking for someone to perform tasks around your home, like landscaping or painting, consider asking your neighbors. They might have the scoop on local providers.

“We get most of our business through word-of-mouth advertising, as old fashioned as that may seem,” explains Shenae Barnes of Fix-It Right Plumbing in Melbourne. “So we’re tickled pink when a satisfied customer tells their friends about us.”

These folks can tell you which companies or individuals they’ve hired in the past and give you an idea of the costs or fees. They can also tell you if there are any particular providers to avoid like the plague — and sometimes that’s more valuable information than a glowing review for someone good!

Turn to the Internet 
Once you have gathered a few names, you’ll probably fire up your laptop or smartphone to check these providers out online. In addition to visiting their website and/or social media profiles, head over to review sites like Yelp, Angie’s List, and Google to read others customers’ or clients’ reviews.

Are online reviews really reliable? Experts say that they can be — but also that they should be taken with the proverbial grain of salt. Fake reviews are still fairly commonplace. And it’s possible for the business owner to delete negative reviews. Forewarned is forearmed, however, and when you know what to look for, it’s not hard to suss out which reviews are for-real and which are as fake as a Real Housewife’s breasts.

Even more important than the reviews themselves, according to savvy shoppers, are the responses to those reviews from the company in question. You can tell a lot about a business from its customer service, especially when tht customer service is front and center in a very public forum. Any responses should always address reviewers with respect and offer to rectify any problems. They should never be argumentative, point fingers at or blame the customer, or otherwise air their dirty laundry.

Contacting the Company Directly 
Checking out the online reviews will likely help you narrow down the list of choices. Now it’s time to contact them directly and see for yourself how professional they are.

If you use an online contact form to get in touch, they should get back to you quickly — within 24 hours. The same goes for emailing and leaving a voice message. If you call them and get connected to a rep immediately, that person should be considerate, polite, professional, and helpful.

In the event that you get a rude or less-than-helpful response, it’s perfectly OK to cross that company off your list and move on. Of course, you may wish to give them a second chance — everyone has an off day — but the service provider’s communication skills should reflect the pride they take in their work.

Throughout the experience, from first contact to completion of the job, you deserve to be treated with respect and consideration. That’s just good business!

Final Thoughts 
When you find a good mechanic, plumber, landscaper, roofer, HVAC tech, or any other type of service provider, hang on to them! They are worth their weight in gold, and who knows, maybe one day soon someone will ask you for a recommendation!

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20 May 2019

5 Things to Know About Sports Nutrition

If you are really serious about any form of sports, you need to ensure that your body has everything it needs to undertake the involved activities, lest you find yourself having broken down. Remember that you consume more energy and perhaps, need a higher level of endurance as compared to people who don’t participate in sports. Therefore, your diet should be different from an ordinary person’s and for diet supplementation, sport dietary supplements like Wilson Supplements can be of great help. On that note, here are five things you need to know about sports nutrition.

The right supplements can put you ahead of the competition 
If you are determined to gain a serious edge over your sports competitors, you can take top-quality sports supplements such as Wilson Supplements, in addition to taking a nutritious diet, to improve the strength and metabolism body and/or increase your muscle mass. However, you should ensure that you buy the right supplement according to your sports goals and buy from reputable sources to avoid falling for fakes.

Enough fruit and vegetable intake improves food breakdown 
Your body has microorganisms which not only protect you from germs but also break down food to release energy. Sufficient intake of fruits and vegetables goes a long way to keeping these bacteria alive and in their optimal performance. On the other hand, if you don’t take enough fruits and veggies, the effectiveness of the microorganisms will reduce and some of them will even die. Therefore, ensure that you include at least a piece of fruit and some vegetables in each of your three daily meals. Also, eating vegetables low- fiber vegetables like tomatoes or fresh fruits like melons or any other fruit that’s friendly to your body one to two hours before exercise will boost your energy and endurance capability during for better performance in your sports activity.

You can’t perform well on an empty stomach 
A car can’t function without fuel. Similarly, you should expect to perform well in any sport if you are doing it when your stomach is empty. In case you haven’t eaten anything within two hours before the exercise, you should eat something light, preferably an easy to-digest fruit like bananas or take an electrolyte drink to maintain healthy blood sugar levels.

Proper hydration is an essential 
Dehydration is a threat to the well-being of any person. Although anyone can be dehydrated if he/she doesn’t take enough water, sportspeople are more vulnerable because of their higher body fluid discharge through sweating. When you engage in sports with a dehydrated body, you’re likely to experience performance and even worse, you might collapse and die if the dehydration is severe. Therefore, it is important that you drink plenty of fluids (preferably sports drinks or water) prior, in the course and after a sports exercise to ensure that you’re well hydrated.

There is no perfect food 
No food contains all the nutrients that your body needs. In as much as your favorite food is tasty and is seemingly well-balanced, eating is over and over without introducing something else in your diet can put you at nutritional risk. The best way to maintain healthy nutrition is to ensure that you eat an array of foods, with each meal having a distinct set of protein, carbs and vitamin foods.

As a sportsperson, your diet can make or break you. Observe proper nutrition to see your performance improve tremendously and extend your lifespan.

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18 May 2019

How to Become Pre-Approved for Your First Mortgage

The spring season is one of the most popular times to buy a house. If you are thinking about making your first home purchase, one of your initial steps will be to contact a mortgage lender to get pre-approved for a loan. To get ready for the process, gather some information and make some calculations.

Calculate Your Income 
Before contacting a mortgage lender, get together at least two weeks worth of pay stubs or income information. The figure you need to work with is your gross monthly income, the figure before taxes are deducted. If you are self-employed or work as a contractor, you will need the returns from your last two years' tax filing.

Determine Your Debt Load 
The less debt you have, the larger mortgage you can afford. Add up your recurring monthly payments to determine the amount you owe and divide it by your income. If this ratio is under fifty percent, you should qualify for a loan, but the lower the ratio the better. If it is over fifty percent, consider paying off some of your debts before looking into home financing.

Examine Your Credit Score 
Another important number in these calculations is your credit score. Contact one of the credit reporting companies to get a credit history and a report of your score. Carefully check over the credit history to determine if there are any errors or problems that may need to be fixed before you apply for a home loan. Next, look at your credit score. If it is 700 or above, you should have no trouble getting pre-approved for a mortgage. If it is under 600, you can still get home financing, but you will need to apply to a special program like FHA. The experienced professionals at Sun West Mortgage Company can help you find a lender for special circumstances.

Figure Out Your Down Payment 
A down payment on a home is typically ten to twenty percent of the sale price. It is a good idea to make a larger down payment on a less expensive home than a smaller down payment on a more expensive home in case the real estate market goes down instead of up.

Decide What You Are Looking For 
Your final decision is how much house you can afford. When you calculate your monthly mortgage payment, include taxes and insurance in the figure. These can add up and leave you strapped for cash if you don't take them into initial consideration.

 Starting the mortgage approval process can be scary, but it is your first step to owning your very own home. Finding a professional you can trust will set your mind at ease.

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27 April 2019

The Health Benefits of a Decluttered Space and Home

If you are dealing with clutter in your home or business, you know just how difficult it can be to stay organized and get work done. The downsides of clutter don’t stop there. Recent research suggests that clutter can have negative impacts on our moods, our memory, and our overall cognitive performance. Inversely, decluttering can help improve health and well-being for people of all ages.

Clutter: What Is It and Where Does It Come From? 

Loosely defined, clutter is a collection of things that take up an inordinate amount of space. Clutter can be compromised of all types of items, and it doesn’t necessarily have to be dirty. The main characteristic of clutter is that it gets in the way. Clutter often occurs due to an excess of possessions and a reluctance to sort and store them properly.

For many, clutter may seem like a just a mild inconvenience. Over time, however, this space-consuming phenomenon is more than just a nuisance. It’s a risk to productivity, physical health, and mental well-being. By reducing clutter in your life, you can improve your health and reap benefits in the home and the workplace.

Clutter: A Subtle and Insidious Health Hazard 
It’s no secret that clutter is a bad thing—but just how bad is it? In a 2017 article for Psychology Today, Professor Emerita of Psychological and Brain Sciences at the University of Massachusetts Amherst Dr. Susan Krauss Whitbourne enumerates the many negative impacts clutter can have on human health. Whitbourne cites several studies that show sobering data on clutter’s effects on visual processing, stress levels, memory performance, mood and more. Put simply: clutter drastically affects the brain’s ability to perform. The solution? Decluttering.

Decluttering Health Benefit #1: Improved Self-Confidence and Efficacy
Where Dr. Whitbourne outlines the negative health effects of clutter, Dr. Alice Borne enumerates the many ways that eliminating clutter can improve. In her 2018 article for Psychology Today, “6 Benefits of Uncluttered Space,” Dr. Borne starts the list with the benefit of improved self-confidence and efficacy. Less clutter means greater self-confidence. Just as importantly, the act of getting rid of clutter feels empowering, which gives us confidence in our productivity and our decision-making skills.

Decluttering Health Benefit #2: Reduced Anxiety 
Anxiety is one of the most common mental health conditions. In addition to making an individual feel unpleasant and worried, anxiety can make it incredibly difficult to focus and be productive. As both Whitbourne and Borne show, clutter can contribute to anxiety, even if we don’t realize it. Getting rid of clutter can lift the weight of anxiety and generalized stress off an individual’s shoulders, leading to an increase in overall happiness.

Decluttering Health Benefit #3: Increased Energy 
This benefit applies more to the act of decluttering rather than a clutter-free space effect on the body. As Borne asserts, the very act of removing clutter puts us in a “getting things done mode,” which can increase energy and productivity. However, the benefits don’t stop there. When decluttering is finished, a decluttered space leaves the mind and the body free to address other things with ample energy no longer drained from lingering clutter.

Decluttering Health Benefit #4: Mind Wandering and Physical Activity 
Both the process of decluttering and the environment created in a clutter-free space are conducive to healthy mind-wandering and beneficial physical activity. Decluttering itself gets the body moving and the brain thinking about topics of its choosing, both which can improve cognitive performance and lead to what Borne calls “lightbulb” moments. Likewise, a clutter-free environment can help clear the mind and literally clear space for stretching out, exercising, and moving.

Decluttering Health Benefit #5: Reduced Relationship Tension 
Clutter creates stress for both individuals and groups. Families fight about mess. Spare rooms become disorganized storage units; garages no longer fit cars. Coworkers collectively struggle to stay productive in cluttered work environments. Documents get lost amidst piles of paper; delegation of tasks becomes difficult when no one navigate a disorganized space. This can put a strain on relationships in both the home and the workplace. By reducing clutter, you can reduce relationship tension and help everyone get along.

Decluttering Health Benefit #6: Improved Mental Organization 
Everybody knows that clutter is antithetical to organization. Items get lost, papers misplaced, and some things just seem to disappear. However, this disorganization doesn’t stop there. As Whitborne and Borne both show, clutter can actually cause us to become disorganized mentally. A study performed by University of Toronto's Lynn Hasher (cited by Whitborne) found evidence linking physical clutter to mental clutter. Where there is one, the other is typically not far off. The correlation adds up intuitively: just as we have trouble locating things among physical clutter, we have trouble “locating things” (remembering, or problem solving) among mental clutter.

With the benefits of decluttering now clear, the next step is to take care of the clutter in your home or business. One of the best ways to declutter is to move a portion of your possessions into offsite self-storage, where they’ll be securely stored away from your working or living space. Once you’ve decluttered your space, you’ll feel how your overall health and wellbeing increase.

5 Reasons to Clear the Clutter out of Your Life. Susan Krauss Whitbourne, Ph.D. (2017). Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/fulfillment-any-age/201705/5-reasons-clear-the-clutter-out-your-life 
6 Benefits of Uncluttered Space. Alice Borne, Ph.D. (2018). Psychology Today. https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/in-practice/201802/6-benefits-uncluttered-space

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17 April 2019

The Benefits of Customizing Your Home

If you have ever watched the HGTV channel, you know the pressure to buy, purchase or create a dream home. From shows like Love It or List It to House Hunters, sometimes the quest for your perfect home isn’t in your budget or in your geographical comfort zone. Fortunately, you can still manage your expectations and desires but adding a little DIY and creative purchasing to your schedule. Rather than investing in a pre-fab look, you can create your own dreamscape with some clever customization. There are many benefits to designing or re-designing your own space.

You increase your home equity
Over time and as the housing marketing grows stronger, your original purchase price should build equity. Whether it be from increased demand for the location or upgrades to the home itself, any improvements you make should increase the selling price of your home. Some changes, such as additions or a new roof, will bring instant equity. Other alterations might be more subtle, such as customized window treatments from Next Day Blinds, but yet increased aesthetic appeal and one-of-kind construction brings additional increase to your home’s value.

Before tackling a creative new project, have a reasonable expectation concerning your equity increase. Check with a local realtor or appraiser to find comparable homes in the areas and their selling price. You shouldn’t sink money into a home where the surrounding market won’t do it justice. Small changes are always beneficial, but significant construction moves might not bring back the return on investment.

You design a warm and welcoming space
If you aren’t a fan of your current layout, don’t give up hope. Whether small or large, you can create a warm space that brings peace and ambiance to your evening dinners or relaxing weekends. Rather than going out and buying accessories, furniture, appliances and making them work, consider the option of customizing. The common misconception of designing your own items lies with the price. The affordability of window treatments at the Next Day Blinds Company is comparable to those of big box retail stores. However, their choices are much more diverse.

 With the use of do-it-yourself sites like Pinterest and the DIY Network, you can find the information needed to how-to that great idea yourself. You can design a color pattern that is unique to your personality or use materials and textures that reflect your desire for tranquility or eco-friendly vibes. Your space becomes uniquely you.

You learn a few things about yourself and the world around you
If you are looking to customize areas within your home, you might have to push the boundaries on your comfort zone. Perhaps your budget will only take your project part of the way when you rely on professional help. Is there something you could tackle yourself? Have you ever used a circular saw? Do you know how to paint or trim out a room? If you want that special space, branch out and find ways to make it happen.

Take a class at a local hardware store and meet others who need more help with their DIY skills. Meet with a contractor and confidently discuss your design ideas and work cooperatively to make it happen. Changing your space into something custom and unique might actually change your outlook on life! You can gain confidence and new skills.

Working to customize your home can involve a number of decisions. Some of these you might be able to do yourself, while others might require the assistance of a professional. Always keep safety first and remember any electrical, plumbing or construction work might require a permit. After that, don’t be afraid to get creative!

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