149 articles Articles posted in Home

Fun Ideas for Renovating Your Child’s Bedroom

Traditionally, kids’ bedrooms have been decorated blue for a boy and pink for a girl. But what if you want to move away from gender stereotypes and go for more adventurous décor inyour child’s bedroom? This opens up a world of opportunity to create something unique and magical.

Here’s some fresh ideas to get the creative juices flowing.

Go for bright, invigorating colours

Bright colours are generally frowned upon in adults’bedrooms, but with kids’ rooms the rules are more relaxed. It’s easy to paint the walls in exciting colours but what aboutadding colour to the ceiling or floor? They’re usually kept in neutral colours, but they don’t have to be.

Paint the ceiling with a starry or cloudy sky or go bold with one vibrant colour.  You’ll need a step ladder and long armed roller to make it easier to paint, but other than that it’s fairly cost effective to do.

Modern vinyl flooring has created the opportunity to addbright colour to the floor, with lots of child-friendly options. For this idea there’ll be vinyl flooring fitting costs, but it shouldn’t be any more expensive that fitting a new carpet.

Use pattern and shapes

The use of pattern and shapes in children’s bedrooms can be particularly effective in creating a new bold style.  Try painting large squares, circles and triangles across the four walls, or thick stripes that stretch the length of the room.  All you’ll need to achieve this look is some contrasting paint colours and a few rolls of masking tape. 

You can easily complement this with stripey or geometric bedding and curtains.

Create a theme from scratch

Creating a theme in a child’s bedroom needn’t be difficult.  You don’t necessarily need to buy a whole set of matching items from a shop to create a theme.  

For example, to create a pirate theme you could paint the room sea blue, hang a large Jolly Roger flag on the wall and paint a toy chest to look like a treasure chest.

Add a playful feature

Kids’ bedrooms are not just a place to sleep, they are often used as a space to play and learn. So why not add a playful feature to enrich your child’s room?

Go big with a bed that looks like a treehouse or install a mini-climbing wall. Or keep it simple with a play-tent, swinging chair or chalkboard wall. Don’t be afraid to think outside the box!

How to Make a Small Room Look Bigger

As much as we would all love to have huge mansions, with enormous rooms, it’s not necessarily the reality for most of us, and oftentimes, the rooms in our home can end up looking even smaller than they actually are, due to some of our own decorating mistakes. Here is how you can make a small room look bigger.

Let the Light In

Natural light is a really great way to make a room look bigger, but of course, besides creating a new window, there isn’t much you can do if there isn’t much natural light. That said, artificial light is the next best thing and if you invest in some good G9 LED bulbs, add more lamps, and reassess the light fixtures to ensure you are getting the most amount of light for the space, you will notice things really start to open up.

Declutter

Having too much stuff in a room can really make it feel closed in and small. You can go the KonMari method and get rid of anything that doesn’t spark joy, or you can get creative with storage solutions to really make the most of the space that you do have, and hide any mess and clutter away, seamlessly.

Think of Your Colours

Although dark colours and dark wood can create a really cosy feel in large spaces, if it’s not used right in a smaller space, you will notice that it’s starting to feel cramped and a little claustrophobic. Opt for lighter colours to open up the space and make it feel airy, but don’t feel as though you have to stick with white or grey – look for a soft blue or green to keep some personality while adding space. When it comes to the colour of your furniture or your accessories, stick to small prints or plain colours. If you keep things in a unified pallet, it can expand a room visually.

Use Glass

If you are able to use glass for things like tabletops, you will notice that it gives the illusion of having more space. Another example of this is using a clear frameless shower enclosure, rather than a frosted version, which will allow you to feel as though there is more room in the space. Another way in which glass is fantastic is if it is in the form of a mirror. A large mirror on the wall can open out the space and make it look so much larger, as well as providing more reflected light and a practical piece of decor too.

As you can see, you don’t need an extension to make a room seem larger, just a few subtle changes in decor and accessories along with a few tricks of the eye can make the world of difference to a cramped room. So until we can afford that enormous mansion, these tricks and tips will have to do.

5 Christmas Gifts for New Renters or Homeowners

I know that 2020 has been a bit of a weird year and it’s definitely caused problems for people who were planning to move to a new home, but for many newlyweds new, uni students and anyone else who managed to actually get their own property this year, they’d definitely appreciate some swanky homewares for their Christmas gift.

One thing that I’d strongly recommend is that you make sure you check to see if there is a voucher code for the website before you buy anything at full price. With that in mind, I’ve put together a little gift guide to show you some of the things that I think any new-nesters would love:

Lifewit Clothes Storage Bag Organiser

 Lifewit Large Capacity Clothes Storage Bag Organizer with Reinforced Handle Thick Fabric for Comforters, Blankets, Bedding, Foldable with Sturdy Zipper, Clear Window, 3 Pack, 90L, Grey Something I’ve noticed about more modern properties is that they don’t always have an airing cupboard, unlike older houses which needed somewhere to store the bulky water tank. This means that people struggle for places to store things like bed linen and towels which can take up quite a lot of space. That’s why these storage bags make a great gift for someone who’s just moved into a new place – they look great and are the perfect place to store linens, coats and other stuff you don’t need every day.

Lifewit Laundry Basket

Lifewit 72L Freestanding Laundry Hamper Collapsible Large Clothes Basket with Easy Carry Extended Handles for Clothes Toys, Grey A laundry basket is often one of those things that people forget to buy when they move into their own place and end up keeping their dirty clothes in an old IKEA bag or something similar! This laundry hamper is not only practical but also looks really nice and would be the perfect thing for any home.

 

Luncia Casserole Carrier

LUNCIA Double Decker Insulated Casserole Carrier for Hot or Cold Food, Lasagna Holder Tote for Potluck Parties/Picnic/Cookouts, Fits 9There’s nothing better than receiving something warm and homemade for dinner that a kind friend or family member has made for you when you first move into your own home – and what better to deliver it in than a gorgeous thermal food carrier?! This casserole carrier looks great and is perfect for anyone who loves cooking or does a lot of potluck dinners with friends and family!

Sunavo Double Infrared Burner

SUNAVO Hot Plates for Cooking, 1800W Electric Double Burner with Handles, 6 Power Levels Stainless Steel Hot Plate for Kitchen Camping RV (Ceramic) Not every kitchen has fitted appliances and purchasing all of your white goods plus a cooker for a new place can cost an absolute fortune. That’s why this double infrared hot plate would be brilliant for a couple, single person or even a student who doesn’t have their own kitchen (check their Halls of Residence rules though, as some don’t allow hot plates). It’s got two rings for cooking and performs just as well as a fitted hob.

Wolfwise Telescopic Ladder

WolfWise Aluminum Telescopic Extension Multi-Purpose Ladder, 12.5FT, 330lbs Capacity This may seem like an odd one, but you’d be really surprised at the amount of people who don’t own a decent ladder. When you move into a new place, a ladder is essential if you want to get into the loft, put up light shades and hang pictures, cleaning gutters or anything else that requires a lift! This telescopic ladder is great because it folds up super small and doesn’t take up a lot of space.

 

4 Qualities to Look for In a Moving Company

If you are moving into a new house, you wouldn’t be able to move all your stuff without hiring a moving company. Movers exist so that you can transfer all your belongings from your old place to the new one safely and without any inconvenience. A good moving company wouldn’t let your stress about anything and will take over the moving process so that you can sit back and focus on more important things. However, when it comes to hiring a moving company, the process is a bit tricky. There are plenty of movers out there, and choosing the one that is best suitable for the job can be complicated. That is why it is highly recommended that you do plenty of research before hiring a moving company. In this article, I have mentioned a few qualities one must look for in a mover before hiring them. Let’s take a look:

Excellent Reviews

The first thing you should look for in a moving company is good reviews. If the company is rated well by its customers and people have shared their good experiences openly, then you shouldn’t hesitate to give it a try. Luckily, we live in a modern world where you can access reviews for any business online. To read the reviews about companies you have shortlisted, you can simply go to their website or check their social media pages. Also, you must not just check the overall rating; you should also read the detailed reviews to get an idea of the kinds of services they provide. If the majority of the reviews are positive, then you can move on to the next step.

Experience

This is something most people don’t even pay attention to when they are hiring a mover, but that is not how it should be. A good moving company also has plenty of experience in the field and are experts at what they do. A mover that has been active for several years would have definitely learned a lot from their mistakes and would have improved their services over time. They know what things to avoid and how to handle tricky situations when they are faced with one. Your belongings are always safer with an experienced mover compared to a moving company that is just getting started.

Licensed and Insured

Another important thing you must keep in mind before hiring a moving company is whether they are licensed or not. A company that is not licensed is not legally allowed to move your possessions from one place to another. They might be cheaper than the other moving companies, but all they will do is cause trouble for you. Make sure that the company you are hiring is licensed but the relevant authorities and has a trained team of staff working for them. Apart from that, a good mover also has excellent insurance coverage, which can pay for the damages in case of an accident. You must never go for a company that doesn’t have insurance coverage because if anything gets damaged during the process, you won’t get any compensation.

No Hidden Rates

Another quality of a great moving company is that they have no hidden rates and will tell you upfront how much they charge. There are plenty of movers out there who only tell you about the hourly rate they charge, and when it comes to billing, they will add all sorts of extra charges in the receipt. So, it is highly recommended that you go for a company who are upfront about their extra charges and are not fooling you in any way.

Modern Renovation Ideas To Instantly Transform Your Home

Modern Renovation Ideas To Instantly Transform Your HomeWhen it comes to renovating your home, your main goal is likely to revive an outdated interior. While there are near endless options to consider as interior design is an exceptionally vast industry packed with ideas, you may not want to completely makeover your home. Therefore, if your goal is to make modern changes that will have a massive impact, you should consider these modern renovation ideas that will instantly transform your home. Sometimes, changing only one aspect of your home is enough to add vibrance and an entirely new atmosphere.

Install An Ethanol Fireplace

Ethanol fireplace options are the perfect alternative to traditional fireplace designs. If your budget doesn’t allow you to make drastic modifications required to install a traditional fireplace, you will be pleasantly surprised to discover that ethanol fireplaces are better solutions in various ways. While your choice of fireplace design should be determined according to aesthetics to ensure the home addition will serve as both a functional installation as well as a design element, this type of fireplace is also incredibly eco-friendly. Ethanol alternatives do not release harmful toxins in the home, rendering them significantly safer when compared to their traditional counterparts. There are tons of modern designs to consider, and the investment will be worth it in terms of comfort, visual design, and of course, functionality.

Luxury Wooden Flooring

If you are after a renovation idea that will instantly breathe new life into your home, replacing the flooring is a top option. There’s no doubt that old breading carpets are not doing any good for the value of your home, nor are they adding to your comfort. It’s time to finally rip out any outdated carpets and flooring and replace with luxury wooden flooring. By installing quality wooden flooring throughout your home, you will be able to enjoy the pleasant visuals of a uniform home that will enable you to decorate your home in a way that each rooms decor elements flow to the next. The impact the flooring of your home has on the overall look of your home will surprise you.

Accent Wall Designs

You may have never considered having an accent wall in your home, or the overall vibrance it can add to your living area. Creating an accent wall with elegant wallpaper, or even a bold coat of paint that varies from the other walls is also exceptionally affordable. However, it is best to avoid going overboard when it comes to adding an accent wall during renovation; the best locations are generally the living room area or the kitchen and dining area of a home.

Lighting Choices That Stand Out

Suppose your home’s lighting choices showcase ordinary and bland bulbs or regular fittings that are almost unnoticeable. In that case, you may be pleasantly surprised to discover how much impact lighting choice can have to the look and atmosphere of a home. Rather than holding onto bland lighting designs, you should consider accent lighting fixtures such as charming chrome pendant lights that immediately draw glamorous attention to a room. There are tons of accent lighting fixtures to consider, so you may find it beneficial to scour lighting fixture retailers to find suitable complementary pieces to add to your home.

Engineered Wood Flooring – Why You Should Choose It

Engineered Wood FlooringWhen people talk about creating their dream home, wooden flooring is often at the top of the list of things they want. There’s no denying the fact that wooden flooring makes a home look great, but have you ever considered opting for engineered wood instead? Many people make the mistake of thinking that engineered wood is a fancy way of saying “laminate flooring” but it’s actually a really versatile flooring which is a great substitute for solid wood. Here are five reasons for you to consider it:

Same Look, Lower Price

It takes a pretty professional eye to notice the difference between solid wood and engineered wood flooring, which is all the more impressive when you consider the fact that it costs so much less. It also comes in pre-made designs and can look like parquet or other patterned flooring, giving it a unique, expensive appearance. If you have a large area to cover, the avings will really add up.

Easy to Fit

Fitting solid wood flooring is a real art form, especially if you want a parquet style like herringbone or swallowtail. By comparison, fitting an engineered wood floor is an absolute doddle. It’s very flexible in terms that it can be fitted many ways and even floating over the uneven subfloor and underfloor heating system.

It’s Durable

Damaging a hard wood floor can be a very expensive mistake, and many types of flooring also need regular maintenance over the years to keep it looking it’s best. Engineered wood is very daage-resistant and replacing a board or two needn’t be expensive. Many people don’t know that the surface of refinished wood can be sanded and refinished, which means that you can totally change the look if you get bored!

Lots of Choice

With engineered wood, can choose between a wide variety of species, colours, patterns and textures. In general, almost all of the wood species used for manufacturing solid wood floors are also available for engineered wood floors. In addition, engineered wood can also be purchased prefinished and unfinished, which means that you have the freedom to customise your own floor with your very own bespoke colour and texture.

Easy to Clean

Cleaning a hardwood floor isn’t always easy, because using the wrong products can leave it dehydrated and damaged beyond repair. Engineered wood can be cleaned daily by sweeping or even vacuuming the area, and most brands will also be compatible with mopping, although make sure you check your manufacturer’s recommended cleanser.

Do you have an engineered wood floor in your home? What do you love about it? Leave me a comment below!

Guide For Buying a Home For Your Family

If the time has come for you to purchase that next family home then you may be slightly overwhelmed at just how much there is to consider here. It is for this reason that we want to offer you some tips on exactly what you should be looking for with regards to that next property. We have recently spoken with the brilliant real estate guru Frank Carioti, check him out here http://frankcarioti.com.au/, to bring you some of the finest tips on how you can ensure that you get this property choice just right.

The Need For Right Now 

When it comes to invest in property you have to think about the future of you and your family’s needs. With this being said however the most important aspect to consider is the right now, and this is where the majority of the focus should be. Thinking about what the life of your family looks like in the now will include the following questions with regards to where you should be looking for a property.

How far from your job?

Where is the high quality nearest school?

What are the transport options like?

Where is the nearest grocery store?

Can my children play nearby?

These are key questions which will impact your daily lives and the answers will certainly help you to whittle down which places are possible choices.

The Bigger Picture

One thing which many people fail to look at is the big picture of where you live and this is one of the most important considerations to make. What everyone wants to find is a property that is in a safe place and one which can become more than just a house or apartment to live in, but also a community. Make sure that you do your research around crime rates, community groups in the area and the demographics of the place that you are thinking about living.

Planning For The Future

Ultimately those kids of yours will grow up and get jobs, advance their education and look to enjoy a vibrant social life. You as parents will also move on with your careers and your personal life and it will be important that you are able to find a property which can fit with your potential future needs. This will be a big factor when considering what size property to buy and what extras you would like it to have. You may have twins sharing a room right now but in the future they’ll want their own space, consider factors like this to help you in your decision to buy a property which you can stay in long term.

Budget

The budget will be a huge factor here and more often than not it will be the deciding factor between location or property type. The reason why so many people live in suburbs is because they wanted more bang for their buck and they were happy to travel if it meant a sizable property. This is usually the decision of those who are looking for a family property too, that they want the space more than they want to live in a hot location. The key will be balancing these two and in order to do that you have to work hard on the budget. Even if you are borrowing, it is important that you don’t go too big that you will feel under pressure to pay the mortgage every month, but also not to be too conservative and end up with a property which isn’t fit for all of your needs. Be smart, decide on a healthy budget and stick to it.

Take your time, consider all options and use a process of elimination to get the property which you want.

 

My Neighbour Has Japanese Knotweed – What Can I Do?

Japanese knotweedJapanese knotweed is an invasive plant species that grows rapidly and dies hard. While the law does not require you to take action if you find Japanese knotweed in your garden, you will get into trouble if you allow the plant to spread into the wild; for this reason, if you do have knotweed growing on your property, it’s a good idea to contact a qualified Japanese knotweed removal specialist who can get it under control.

But what if it’s your next-door neighbour who has a Japanese knotweed problem? We’d suggest referring them to Willow Park tree services experts who will know exactly how to solve the problem.

Well, ideally, your neighbour will act quickly and make sure the plant doesn’t spread onto your property. Unfortunately, not everyone is that proactive, so a certain amount of vigilance may be necessary on your part too.

Here are some tips to bear in mind if your neighbour has Japanese knotweed:

Start by talking to your neighbour. They may not be aware of the invasive weed that’s lurking in their garden—they may not even know what Japanese knotweed is, so be patient and politely suggest that they get in touch with a specialist contractor. It’s always better to resolve issues like this amicably if possible.

Remember, your neighbour is not breaking the law by having Japanese knotweed on their own property. UK law does not even require them to remove or treat the knotweed—only to prevent it from spreading elsewhere.

If your neighbour refuses to take action or acknowledge the issue, you should take the initiative and contact a qualified Japanese knotweed specialist yourself. They will be able to confirm the plant’s presence and can send your neighbour an official letter notifying them of their legal obligation to ensure that the knotweed does not encroach on your property.

Monitor the situation closely to see how it develops. Photographic evidence and regular reports from your knotweed expert will help you to demonstrate (if necessary) that your neighbour did not take sufficient action to prevent their Japanese knotweed from crossing the property boundary.

Japanese knotweed can have a significant impact on your property’s value and may even cause damage to the property itself, so it’s imperative to make sure you’re covered. A neighbour who has permitted Japanese knotweed to spread from their property to yours is legally liable, and you may be able to claim compensation—but only if you can prove what happened. This will be far easier if you have an expert witness to back you up (ideally a qualified professional who specialises in Japanese knotweed control and who has been monitoring the situation from the beginning).

Cutting Costs On Owning Your Home

If you’re someone who owns your own home, and you’ve recently been able to afford a mortgage and find the perfect place to settle into, now’s the time to ensure you’re cutting as much of the costs as you possibly can. Because home ownership and management is one of the most expensive things in life, and being able to save as much as you can is integral to living happily and healthy in your new home. So, without further ado, here are some of the most legitimate and effective ways to cut down the costs of owning your own home. 

Owning your own home

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Know Your Mortgage Rates

How much are you putting towards the mortgage, on a monthly basis? Because it might not be the best deal for you! Tracker rates are often much better than standard variable rates, and knowing the difference between the two, before you settle into a mortgage (and for switching afterwards) is key to saving money on your own home. 

So, your mortgage rates might be off the charts right now, and that’s not fair to you, and it’s not very productive for your household. Make sure you know about what you’re paying, whether it can change, and how much money you could save because of this change. 

Get the Right Insurance

Insurance is key to saving money on your home, especially if something breaks, goes missing, or there’s a security risk. And in the modern day and age, these are all big concerns, so you’re definitely going to need a good policy or two to keep you on track. 

Property insurance, car insurance, contents insurance, etc., are all viable types you’re going to want to look into. But, if you want to properly get to know the kinds of insurance you’re going to need, be sure to click here for more information. Maybe it’s time to change your policy, or get a better rate, or take out your first line of insurance before something goes wrong. 

Get to Grips with DIY

How do you feel about your DIY skills? Because you’re going to need them to save money on managing your new home! Overall, DIY is always going to be useful to a homeowner. You’ve got a lot of maintenance and repairs to keep up with, and when you’re paying upwards of £700 per year to keep your house in good shape, you should think about learning how to carry out basic skilled jobs yourself. Indeed, there are plenty of projects you could be getting on with right now, and each of them save a bit of money. At the end of the day, the pennies really do add up. 

Cutting costs on owning your own home doesn’t have to be hard. You just need to do a little research, make some preparations, and don’t be afraid to ask questions! Switch when you need to, push for better rates, and make sure you’ve got a tool belt to make some good use of. 

How to Choose the Best Home Theater Speakers

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Whether you like watching blockbuster movies in your free time, jamming to your favorite playlist, or playing video games; a quality home theater system is what will take the experience to the next level. Luckily, there are plenty of audio systems in the market for you to choose from.

But picking the best out of so many options is no walk in the park. There are different types, different layouts, and different features to look out for. We haven’t even considered the many brands selling these speakers. 

Not to worry, the guide below will explain to you how to choose the best home theater system!

Choosing the Best Home Theater System

The following factors need to be considered when shopping for the ideal home audio system:

Size of the Room

Before buying the speaker, you have to ensure that they’ll fit inside the room you want them installed. If you’re going for a powerful system, the room has to be large enough to prevent there being sound overkill. In the same way, a smaller room will be better suited to less powerful speakers.

Furthermore, the characteristics of the room will also influence the placement of speakers you’re going to get. For some living rooms, a soundbar is all you need to get the difference you need while others will be okay with shelf speakers or even floor standing speakers

Type of Speaker 

A home theater audio system comes with all the speakers that are needed to give your space a full surround set up. There are different speaker layouts you’ll have to choose from and this will mainly be guided by your preferences as a buyer.

A 5.1 speaker system comprises right and left front speakers, a center speaker, two surround speakers, as well as a subwoofer. On the other hand, a 7.1 speaker system features an extra pair of surround speakers that you can install at the back of the living room.

Depending on the size of your space and the amount of sound you see fit, this is an important choice that will affect the overall quality of sound. 

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Testing

When shopping for an audio system in stores, most people make the mistake of listening to new material, usually a demo DVD or CD that the store provides for customers. This robs you of the chance to scrutinize the sound quality effectively and tell whether it is the right product for you.

Ideally, you should bring along a CD from home that you’ve had an opportunity to listen to over and over. This way, you’ll be able to notice any difference between the speaker systems tested and choose the stand out for you!

Accessories and Aesthetics

Some speaker systems come with special features that are not common for all brands. For instance, things like Bluetooth and Wi-Fi compatibility are considered to be crucial features that will improve the overall functionality of the speaker. However, these can only be found in a select number of models.

Another thing you might be interested in is the general aesthetics of the audio system. This will include things like color, build, and even shape. If you are the one to care about the outlook of your space, you can get a speaker system that enhances the décor of your living room.

Brand

Before choosing a speaker to buy, remember to look at the brand you’re choosing from. There are numerous manufacturers in the market but not all offer the same kind of quality. If you’re not very sure about the best speaker features, you can look at the manufacturer’s brand for guidance.

Make sure that the company has a good reputation in the market and if possible, go to the internet and see what previous customers have to say about the brand. This will also be a nice time to check whether the manufacturer offers a warranty and the duration before it expires. 

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Conclusion

A good home theater system can greatly enhance the entertainment value of your home. It might just be the new reason why everyone in the family is always looking forward to “movie nights”.

However, you have to play your cards right to get the perfect device for your space. The above factors are just some of the essential considerations you should make when searching for the perfect home theater speaker system!