4 of the Smartest Decisions You Can Make About Homeowners Insurance

 

home insurance tips

 

With Hurricanes Harvey, Irma and Maria battering the United States,  Americans in affected areas have had a difficult time executing recovery efforts.  Most homeowners lacked sufficient homeowners insurance to qualify for compensation for their losses.  As a result, many face huge bills that must be addressed.  This is, unfortunately, an extreme case of what happens when unforeseen circumstances hit an area.  Residents realize perhaps for the first time that they don’t have sufficient coverage regarding their homeowner’s insurance.

Here are three decisions that could help ensure that you have the best homeowners insurance for your needs.

Search for the Right Insurance Company

Admittedly, searching for homeowner’s insurance isn’t how you’d like to spend your time. There’s much to think about and it can get confusing fast. Nevertheless, it’s a necessity. Before you try to shorten the search and cut the hassle by deciding on the first insurance company that offers you a rate that seems decent, do a more extensive search. See what other policyholders of other insurance companies have to say about the insurance company you have in mind or another one. You can find reviews online akin to Yelp reviews but for various insurance companies, such as NerdWallet’s review of Mercury Insurance. Take advantage of this “friendly advice,” so you won’t have any regrets later. The sites furnish you with a host of unbiased, nonpaid-for information about the insurer that you should use to your advantage. The information given should make you a more informed insurance customer.

Obtain Umbrella Insurance

Personal umbrella insurance provides additional liability coverage that goes above and beyond your standard policies’ limits. This insurance is great if for some unfortunate reason a lawsuit didn’t go your way.  With an umbrella policy, you’ll have the insurance you need to pay for the damages incurred.

Make Sure You Have Flood Insurance

Make sure whatever policy you have provides protection against severe damage caused by flooding that your standard homeowners insurance policy would not cover. This is important to those living in areas that may be especially subject to such a disastrous weather event and who therefore should consider this a vital part of their emergency plan. It should be noted that even persons living in areas that are not prone to heavy flooding would do well to buy flood insurance. The reason is that areas of the country that are not high risk and that the Federal Emergency Management Agency therefore classifies as moderate- to low-risk areas may also be hit with floods. In fact, FEMA estimates that over the past five years, over 20 percent of the claims came from homeowners living in these areas.

Go for the Discounts

People have no problem asking retail clerks about markdowns and upcoming discounts, but they don’t ask insurance agents the same.  It’s important to ask so you can see what the insurance can do for you.  Many insurers charge everyone differently.  For example, the rate is based on a range of factors, including the person’s credit score and their driving record.  They’re not beholden to charge a specific rate only.  However, there are a variety of discounts available for those willing to seek them out. Seniors over 55 as well as retired individuals should seek discounts. There’s also a discount called a “persistency discount.”  This discount is for those who’ve been good, long-standing policyholders.  Insurers don’t mind giving them a cut to keep them around for as long as possible. Also, there’s a discount for people who live near a fire department called a “fire department discount.”

Summing Up

Cheap insurance is something most people are after.  However, a good price should only be one consideration when looking for homeowners insurance. Other important considerations to buying quality homeowners insurance is disasters such as flooding.  Hearing the experiences of other policyholders on a particular insurance company is recommended. Visit consumer websites like NerdWallet, which compares various services.  Sites like this can provide you with the best read on an insurance company.

12 Tips on How To Keep a Clean House

how to keep a clean house

Either you еnjоу housework оr уоu dоn’t.  For most реорlе, іt іѕ a chore that hаѕ to bе dоnе аt least on a wееklу bаѕіѕ. Yоu can attempt tо make thеѕе chores mоrе enjoyable by fоllоwіng оur еаѕу tips on hоw tо keep a сlеаn hоuѕе.

Thеrе аrе several wауѕ you can go аbоut getting and keeping a clean hоuѕе.  Belоw аrе a few ѕtерѕ on how keep a clean house:   

  1. Mаkе thе bеd аѕ soon аѕ уоu gеt upMаkіng the bed first thing in thе mоrnіng wіll kick-start your рrоduсtіvіtу lеvеlѕ.  Furthermore, it will make it thаt muсh hаrdеr tо сrаwl bасk іntо bеd too.
  1. Keep your bеdѕіdе tаblе tidy – Give уоur bedside tаblе a ԛuісk wіре whеn рісkіng uр your рhоnе іn the morning. That’s оnе lеѕѕ сhоrе tо tасklе оn thе wееkеnd.
  1. Edіt your сlоѕеt as уоu go – For example, kеер a hаmреr or bаg in уоur closet where уоu can throw items оf сlоthіng thаt don’t work аnуmоrе.  Sоrt thrоugh іt оnсе a mоnth, аnd tоѕѕ, dоnаtе, or sell.
  1. Immеdіаtеlу rеhаng іtеmѕ уоu wоrе Don’t juѕt throw сlоthеѕ оn a сhаіr.  If thеу саn be wоrn оnсе more bеfоrе laundry dау, hang thеm. Kеер drу cleaned ready items іn a ѕераrаtе ѕесtіоn of your сlоѕеt.
  1. Hаvе a dеdісаtеd hаmреr fоr every реrѕоn іn уоur home – Hаvе a laundry bаѕkеt fоr еасh реrѕоn іn уоur house.  Plus аn extra hamper for linens. If уоu’rе fееlіng еxtrа оrgаnіzеd, uѕе hаmреrѕ that have two bаѕkеtѕ іn еасh ѕо уоu саn separate whites in аdvаnсе.
  1. Stаrt a wаѕh cycle as ѕооn аѕ уоu gеt home – If you have еnоugh laundry, start a wаѕh сусlе in thе evenings. Give yourself enough time to dry and fold it before you head to bed. As a result, don’t lеt unfоldеd lаundrу mаkе it to the bеdrооm. Bе ruthlеѕѕ аbоut fоldіng/іrоnіng laundry as soon аѕ thе drуіng сусlе is dоnе.
  1. Bе Happy with “Clеаn Enough”  – As a реrfесtіоnіѕt, thіѕ іѕ рrоbаblу thе hаrdеѕt оnе fоr mе.  Yоu wаnt уоur hоuѕе tо be rеlаtіvеlу сlеаn аnd tidy, but that doesn’t mеаn thаt еvеrу lіttlе thing hаѕ tо bе реrfесt.  I always {trу!} tо fоllоw thе 80/20 rulе.  That means that I аm hарру wіth 80% of the cleaning being dоnе.  Don’t get саught uр in аll of the little details that make uр thе last 20% .  For example, mаkіng sure еvеrу lіttlе ѕресk is сlеаnеd uр оff thе floor.  Or, getting tо all оf thоѕе lіttlе out of thе wау and hаrd to rеасh рlасеѕ to duѕt. I’m nоt ѕауіng thаt thеу nеvеr need tо be сlеаnеd, but mаkе thеm part of a deep сlеаnіng rоutіnе rаthеr thаn уоur rеgulаr weekly сlеаnіng schedule.
  1. Kеер Pареr Orgаnіzеd  – If уоu hаvе piles оf papers аll оvеr уоur hоmе, thеn уоu’ll really want tо consider аdорtіng thіѕ hаbіt! File рареrѕ іmmеdіаtеlу іnѕtеаd of keeping papers hаngіng аrоund thе house. When bіllѕ соmе in, put thеm іn one place. Aftеr you’ve paid thе bіllѕ fіlе them immediately.  Kеер mеnuѕ, coupons аnd оthеr mаіl уоu may nееd іn one place.  Purge regularly. 
  1. PrіоrіtіzеNоt all сlеаnіng іѕ created еԛuаl.  Mаkе a lіѕt оf whаt уоu wоuld like to gеt dоnе аnd then prioritize Decide  what nееdѕ to bе dоnе and whаt can wаіt.  Gіvеn the time thаt уоu have available, write down уоur tор 2 оr 3 {realistic!} сlеаnіng gоаlѕ.  Stick wіth these bеfоrе аttеmрtіng tо dо оthеr thіngѕ.  I always uѕеd tо hаtе writing оut lіѕtѕ, but I fіnd thаt іt rеаllу hеlрѕ me tо ѕtау focused.
  1. Get thе Whоlе Fаmіlу Involved Thіѕ іѕ оnе that I hаvе rеаllу trіеd tо wоrk on lаtеlу.  Yеѕ, іt is оftеn actually еаѕіеr tо just dо the job yourself.  However, ѕреndіng thе tіmе tо tеасh уоur children tо dо аgе аррrорrіаtе jоbѕ will bе bеttеr fоr bоth оf you.  Stаrt bу juѕt wоrkіng оn having уоur kids рісk up аftеr themselves.  This includes puttіng thеіr соаt and ѕhоеѕ аwау whеn they соmе іn thе hоuѕе.  Additionally, putting dishes іn the dіѕhwаѕhеr and сlеаnіng thеіr room.  Add in оthеr сhоrеѕ аѕ they are аblе to accomplish the goal.  It’ѕ аmаzіng hоw much оf a dіffеrеnсе it can mаkе іn the оvеrаll tіdіnеѕѕ of thе hоuѕе іf ѕіmрlе things аrе dоnе.  Ovеr time this wіll start tо bе a hаbіt fоr thеm.  They should еvеntuаllу bе аblе to do chores wіth minimal reminders.
  1. Keep Bаѕіс Clеаnіng Suррlіеѕ Clоѕе tо Where Yоu Use Thеm – I have аll of our bаthrооmѕ ѕtосkеd with bаѕіс сlеаnіng supplies.  This includes miсrоfіbеr сlоthѕ аnd a роlіѕhіng cloth; a tоіlеt ѕсrub bruѕh аnd a ѕрrау bоttlе wіth wаtеr аnd vіnеgаr {оr a multі-рurроѕе сlеаnеr оf уоur сhоісе}.  This mаkеѕ it ѕо much ԛuісkеr and easier tо gіvе the tоіlеt a ԛuісk ѕwіре оr wіре thе grоѕѕ tооthраѕtе ѕріt frоm the mirror іnѕtеаd of hаvіng to track dоwn сlеаnіng ѕuррlіеѕ.  Trу to dо these ѕіmрlе tаѕkѕ as уоu see thе need – mоѕt of thеm take оnlу a minute or twо – and іt wіll rеаllу reduce hоw often you need tо do a tор tо bottom deep сlеаn.
  1. DесluttеrThis оnе may nееd tо be implemented over a lоngеr реrіоd оf tіmе.  However, tаkіng the tіmе tо declutter аnd оrgаnіzе уоur hоmе wіll drastically cut down оn thе amount оf time nееdеd tо clean.  Hаvіng a ѕроt fоr еvеrуthіng makes іt so muсh easier tо tidy uр.  Also, lеѕѕ іtеmѕ on thе соuntеrѕ and ѕurfасе tорѕ cuts down оn duѕtіng, and mаkеѕ сlеаnіng quicker.

Finally, if you want to read more tips then check out: http://calgarycleaninginc.ca/tор-10-easy-tірѕ-to-maintain-a-clean-hоuѕе/ 

Why You Should Avoid Asbestos During Home Improvement

 

avoid abestos

 

Have you seen those home improvement shows on TV where the people take sledgehammers to walls and cabinetry? It looks pretty dramatic. Unfortunately, it is also very dangerous.  It is dangerous because they could be releasing millions of asbestos fibers.  However, if it is an older home the practice may not be safe.

What is Asbestos

Unfortunately, asbestos causes diseases like lung scarring and deadly cancers like mesothelioma.  Many companies used asbestos in many products.  Furthermore, many companies continued to use asbestos.  Even though they knew that it was toxic to human beings.  For example, products like insulation, joint compound, roof shingles, “popcorn” ceilings, and floor covering contain asbestos.  September 11, 2001, the twin towers in New York came down.  Four hundred tons of asbestos was estimated to have been released.

Danger Danger

It became widely known in 1970’s, that asbestos was dangerous.  So, in 1989, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) banned most asbestos-containing products.  However, this rule was essentially overturned by the Fifth Circuit Court of Appeals in 1991.  As a result, there is still no comprehensive ban on the manufacturing or distribution of asbestos products in the U.S.

Fortunately, most companies were voluntarily taking asbestos out of their building products.  Around 1977, asbestos was removed from most building products.  There is a good chance that some building products contain asbestos.  For example, if you live in an apartment, house or work in a building built before 1977.

Does this mean that all these structures are dangerous?  Yes and No.  The problem is that asbestos fibers are so small.  Millions can sit on the head of a pin.  So, unless you examine them with a microscope you won’t know they are there.

Most people diagnosed with mesothelioma, did more than simply live and work in old homes or buildings. Nearly all victims either worked around asbestos or their spouse did.  Asbestos fibers be carried home on clothes.  This suggests that living in an old house or apartment is not sufficient to cause mesothelioma. However, approximately 30 million homes in the U.S. still contain some asbestos products.   Yet, there are only approximately 2,000 cases a year of mesothelioma. However, some health professionals believe that even small amounts of asbestos exposure can set the stage for disease.

So How Can I keep Safe From Any Asbestos

Before you start any home improvement in a home built before 1977,be aware that you run the risk of releasing asbestos fibers .  So, what should you do?  Take precautions.  First, contact an asbestos professional.  Most importantly, they can test for the deadly fibers.  Additionally, they can provide safe ways to help you do the home improvement project.

 

How to Care For and Clean Your Mattress

Mattress Care

 

First, if you’re one of those fussy people who worries about dust mites, bed bugs and other gross little things that might live in your mattress, you’re not alone.  Sleeping in a bed that’s dirty or even worse infested with creepy crawlies can affect your sleep.  We’re pleased to present a few simple mattress care tips and effective methods that can make your sleep time nicer.  Check out our mattress care tips:

Refreshing a mattress

Next, start with a great mattress and keep it as clean as you possibly can.  Furthermore, be sure to peruse a reliable mattress buying guide prior to making your purchase. Take as much time as you need to make a wise decision regarding which sort of bed frame and mattress to buy. You will, after all, be spending a significant portion of your life in your new bed, so go for a mattress and frame that feel perfect right from the start.

Additionally, once you bring your new mattress home, remove the wrapping and give the top and both sides a thorough vacuum cleaning.  Vacuum the top and sides of the mattress every time you change your sheets. Use a crevice tool to reach tight spots.  And allow the mattress to air out for an hour or so before you remake the bed with fresh linens. Sprinkle the mattress with baking soda and vacuum after several hours to remove lingering odors, says Lifehacker magazine.

Also, reduce bedroom temperatures and lower humidity to keep dust mites at bay. Bay leaves under the bed may keep pesky bed bugs away, as well.  Baking soda with a few drops of essential oil added may reduce the attractiveness of your mattress, as far as both tiny bedroom pests are concerned.

Spot-cleaning and odor elimination

If your mattress becomes soiled, dab slight stains with laundry detergent diluted in warm water. For bigger stains, you may need to use a stronger detergent and water solution. Be careful not to saturate the mattress, but do use enough solution to lift away soil. Press with towels to blot up excess moisture before allowing the mattress to air dry.

Lingering perspiration problems are best removed from mattresses with an enzyme based odor-eliminating cleanser. Enzymes remove other biological odors, too.

Mattress maintenance

Another mattress care tip to prevent uneven wear, rotate your mattress at least every six months. Remind yourself to do this on the day clocks are set forward or backward. This is a good day to check smoke alarm batteries in the bedroom, as well. If you can remember to flip your mattress more often, even better.

A few words about bed bugs and dust mites

Highly used sleeping spaces are more likely to be visited by bedbugs.  For example, dormitories, hotels, hospitals, buses, homeless shelters and cruise ships are at high risk for bed bug infestation, explains Mayo Clinic.  People who can afford to travel the world often arrive home with bed bugs hitch-hiking on their luggage.  Cleaning the mattress in every hotel room you visit is impossible. Tossing the bedspread on the floor is not. Whatever you do, do not place suitcases on the bed until you remove the spread. Do this simple trick every time you enter a hotel room, and you may avert some measure of bed bug danger.

Fortunately, the little bugs known as dust mites don’t bite.  The thing mites eat is human skin flakes.  Unfortunately, your bed is generally full of them. Dust mites are everywhere, and there’s not much you can do about them except clean your blankets, pillows, and sheets often.  And thoroughly vacuum your mattress on a regular schedule.  Let your bare mattress air out for several hours on laundry day, too. Sunshine is, as they say, a great disinfectant.

Last, before you rush out and purchase a brand new mattress, do your homework.  Also, ask your friends about their beds.  Visit brick-and-mortar bed stores and sit on a number of beds.  Read, read, read reviews and see what other people are saying about different mattress brands and styles.  Most importantly, the time you spend selecting the perfect mattress now is sure to spare you years of bedtime unhappiness later on.  We hope that our mattress care tips will help you maintain a healthy mattress and get a good night’s sleep.

Chloe Summers is a Mom who enjoys writing about her experiences to share with others online. Look for her posts on a number of home and family blogs today.

Destination Wedding and Party Rentals

 

party and destiation weddings rentals

 

Planning a destination wedding, birthday party or social gathering?  Check out Archive Rentals, they’re waiting to be your premier party and destination wedding coordinators.  Their locations include northern and southern California as well as Mexico.  The locations in Mexico include, Cancun, Tulum and Playa del Carmen.  So, remove the stress from planning your event.  Archive Rental will help you with furnishings, staging or designing your event.  No event is too big or too small.

They offer a variety of tables and chairs for rent and vintage rentals.  If your style is country, check out the farm table and barrel stools.  They will set the tone for any country affair. Furthermore, they offer accessories including cowhide throw pillows, neon BBQ signs, wooden farm shutters and more.  Need a little wow factor?  Add in the barn wall.  It a great backdrop for photos.

If you’re thinking of a beach themed party, check out the soda shack.  It is sure to get your guests attention.  A  suggestion would be to serve bottles of Coke, Pepsi or Nehi.  Perfect for those wishing to have a non-alcoholic drink.   Additionally, the soda shack would be a great conversation piece.  Also, add the nautical collection and along with the canoe and you’re on your way to a lively party.

I hope that you’re feeling inspirational at this point.  If you’re planning a destination wedding Archive Rental is located in Mexico.  Picture a wedding on the beautiful white beach with ocean waves crashing in the background.  Or a roof top wedding with the ocean in the background.  Sounds so romantic doesn’t it.  So, let Archives Rental help you plan the perfect wedding and reception.  Flowers, arches and seating can be provided. Make a note of your idea place settings too.  Archive Rental can style the perfect table for you and your spouse and 100s of guests.

Finally, you can be assured that you will be receiving quality service and products.  Archive Rental has clients as large as HGTV, Victoria Secret and Stitch Fix.  But, they have also have clients like you and me.  Therefore, put them at the top of your list for assistance with your next event.

 

Practical Ways to Pest Proof Your Home

pest proof your home

 

Pests can invade your home at any time.  Furthermore, they may come to nest, to access an easy source of food, or to find shelter from the weather. They can fly, crawl, burrow, or jump to get into your property.  They have one thing in common, and that is to get in regardless how bad you want to keep them out.  Check out my tips on pest proof your home:

Common Pests

The most common invaders are rodents and insects. Rodents are extremely successful breeders and, if they are not dealt with promptly, can multiply rapidly and bring disease and nuisance.

Insects fly and crawl.  Some can be very destructive to furniture and to the fabric of your home.

Prevention or Cure

Traps can be either lethal or non-lethal, although live traps leave you with the dilemma of what to do with the creature.

Poisoning, unless carried out by an expert, comes with a variety of drawbacks, including

  • The risk of inadvertently killing other animals, including members of an endangered species.
  • The difficulty of finding the dead bodies, which may still be in the house.
  • The limited effectiveness of some techniques, such as rodent smoke bombs.

So prevention is generally a preferable route, where it is practical.

Don’t Invite Them

The most important step, is to discourage pests from getting near your home.  Once they are comfortably settled close to the house, it will not be long before they decide to move inside.

Also, remove piles of debris from around the walls, including discarded building materials, firewood, trash cans, garbage containers, compost and leaf piles. All these make comfortable homes for insects and rodents. They can move in to nest and then look for somewhere a little warmer when the air turns cold.

Clean out gutters, downpipes, and drains. The organic matter that accumulates in these is very attractive to insects. Cut back trees and plants that are touching the walls or roof.

Replace traditional bulbs in exterior lights with sodium lights which attract less flying insects.

Move bird feeders away from the house, as fallen seeds will rapidly attract vermin.

Block Their Entry

It is said that if a hole is big enough for a pencil it is big enough for a mouse. Go around your house and inspect every surface for ways that rodents and insects could get in.

Check all your doors and windows to ensure they are close fitting and the frames are sound. Pay particular attention to basement and attic windows. Check all the points where pipes enter the building. Seal holes with caulk or concrete.

Damp and rotting wood is both attractive to insects and easy to chew. Replace it with sound wood or another material.

Keep Your Home Pest Free

Regardless of how hard you work to pest proof your home, everybody gets a pest problem at some time. There are plenty of companies around to help, but you can keep their requests to a minimum by taking simple steps to stop the critters getting inside in the first place.

Shopping Tips for Infant Car Seats and Strollers

 

tips for infant car seats

 

Taking baby on the road? There are a number of things to keep in mind when you are shopping for strollers and infant car seats. First, consider the age of the child.  Furthermore, how will you be using the stroller or car seat before you buy.

Buckle up baby

First, you will start with a portable infant car seat.  It will also double as a carrier and a rocking chair in a pinch.  Infant car seats are designed to be rear-facing (the safest seating for a baby) and it snaps into a base. You will find all-in-one car seats on the market.  They are a tempting choice because they could potentially save you money. However, the one-size-fits-all design may not work for smaller babies or smaller cars.  For example, these infant car seats are big and bulky.  It is built to last and could be a good backup car seat for a caregiver. One car that can accommodate any kind of car seat is the Jeep Compass. Make sure the seat you are buying will actually fit in your vehicle.

Traveling with a toddler

Your next car seat will be a convertible model when your baby is about a year old. Experts advise you to keep the seat rear-facing until your child is at least two years old.  So, the seat has to be able to accommodate the extra leg room while facing backward. When your child has passed the 40 to 50lb. mark, you will want to change the seat to a forward-facing installation.

Toddler booster seats are also available, and they are cheaper than convertible seats.  However, they are only safe for a child who has reached the recommended front-facing age of two years old.  Next, basic booster seats are designed to “boost” your child up to the proper level for seatbelt coverage.  High-back versions are recommended as a safer and more comfortable option.  Be sure to check your state’s car seat regulations.  They could vary from state to state. 

Let’s go for a stroll

Before you buy a stroller, consider how you will be using it.  Will you be walking through the city or down a country road? You will need a durable, comfortable stroller with strong wheels and a safety harness. Some strollers collapse down into a lying position so baby can nap comfortably and safely.  This is perfect for trips to the mall or other events.

If you are moving baby from car to stroller for your walks, you may appreciate the kind where you can strap the car seat right into the frame. As baby grows and is able to sit up, walk and toddle away, you may want to switch to a lightweight, collapsible stroller that is easy to pack when not in use.

As with any baby equipment, it is important to take your time.  Most importantly, do your research and invest in a car seat or stroller that you feel good about. Once you do, pack up baby and hit the road.

The Importance of a Clean House

 

clean house tips

 

A clean home is a dream for many of us.  But, sometimes life gets so hectic that you neglect to clean the house for a while!  For many people, it almost seems that cleaning is futile.  Things will just get messy again, especially if you have children!

So, while there isn’t exactly a temptation to never clean, there may be a temptation to clean less often.  Or to neglect certain areas.  But, it’s important that we take a look at just how vital a clean home can be. When you look at the benefits, there are a great range from physical to mental health.  You may not want to skip on cleaning tasks in the future.

Here’s a list of the areas you need to think about. This will make the importance of a clean house clearer to you than ever before!

allergy season

 

Allergens and General Hygiene

A lot of us are allergic to something, even if it’s on a very mild level.  If you don’t clean regularly, your carpet, bedding, and upholstery will be riddled with allergens.  Dust mites lurk in these areas.  Most importantly, they decrease the overall air quality in your home.  They trigger allergic reactions.  As a result, make sure all of these areas are cleaned often.

People don’t clean their carpeting as often as they should either.   Vacuum once a week won’t cut it!  You should actually consider giving your carpet a wash a few times a year.  As for upholstery, very few people bother to clean this at all. Remember to take a vacuum cleaner to your upholstery once in a while.

Safety

People like to imagine that their homes are the safest places on Earth. And, in many ways, this is true.  But the fact is injuries take place in the home. Falls, trips, slips, they’re all more likely to occur in your home than in the vast majority of other places.  Additionally, fire hazards are also something you need to think about.

When your home isn’t tidy, the risks of these things happening rise.  Mess and disorganization make it more likely that a fire will occur, and possibly spread.  It can also make exiting safely more difficult.

Pests

Liquid and food spills both attract bugs and rodents. Of course, you may say to yourself that these are certainly things you clean up right away. The fact is, most of us have unnoticed little spills somewhere in the house. People also tend to leave these things uncleaned for a little while if they occur on kitchen tops.

There are other things that attract pests.  For example, uncleaned pet bowls.  And that’s certainly something that is prevalent in the homes of pet owners! People usually leave pet food bowls for a few days before giving them a really good clean.  Furthermore, not taking the trash out regularly is another way to attract pests to your home.

 

organization tips

Pixabay

 

Organization

A lot of us lose things quite often. We lose our car keys or our cell phones.  Sometimes we lose important documents. We look in all the places we think we’d have placed them, but they still don’t manage to turn up. The more disorganized your home is, the more difficult it’s going to be to find things!

It’s much easier to organize your home if you declutter it first. Most of our homes have a plethora of items that we don’t really need or even use. Consider clearing out a lot of those items that you don’t use or need.  That way, when you clean house, your home will have less clutter.

Stress

An unclean home builds up a considerable amount of stress! It also begins a vicious cycle.  When you’re feeling stressed, you’re more likely to put off the task. Which means that your house is just going to get a bit messier.  The messier it gets, the more stressed you feel.

So, another clean house tip is make sure your home is clean if you want to keep yourself free from stress. Remember that stress is worse for your long-term health than many people think! Something else you should remember: cleaning provides you with a little physical exercise, which in itself helps relieve stress!

Productivity

It’s hard to be productive when your home isn’t very clean.  Disorganization and stress will make it productive.

They say that a clear home is a clear mind, and there’s a great amount of truth to that. If you’ve got work to do at home, be it an actual job or something creative then you need the mental space to perform those tasks.  Freeing up physical space can help you with that.

Value

The value of the property is going to be affected in the long-term by how clean you keep it. Generally, there are a lot of telling signs that a home that has just been cleaned has either been cleaned regularly or cleaned infrequently. Mess tends to build up in ways that leave signs of uncleanliness even after you’ve cleaned up.

If you rent your property, then this may mean that you won’t be able to get all of your deposit back when it’s time to move. If you own the property and decide to sell it, then the value could take a hit. With this in mind, it’s also worth bringing up the exterior of your home.  Its cleanliness also affects the value in a big way. You should be looking for ways to keep the exterior as clean as possible. Check out the Spray and Forget Deep Dive at A Cleaner Choice if you want to see reviews of outdoor cleaning products.

Hospitality

Surely we’ve all been in a situation where we’ve wanted to have friends and family over, but had to rush around and clean house in order to do so?  In fact, many of us had to turn down opportunities to see people simply because our homes weren’t tidy.

Outside of planned visits, it’s also worth noting that you never know who is going to come knocking at your door. You may find yourself in a surprise situation, standing awkwardly at the door,  Araid to let someone in because of the state of your home! Keeping your home clean will give you a lot more opportunity to be hospitable.

We hope that you found our clean house tips beneficial.  Do a thorough cleaning and than strive to maintain the house during the week.

4 Simple Ways to Prevent Allergies in Your Home

 

ways to prevent allergeries

 

Common allergies can cause people to live with annoying, painful symptoms. If you have allergies, then you have probably experienced headaches, runny noses, sleepless nights, and other problems. You can put an end to your suffering — and the suffering of your family members — by using these four simple ways to prevent allergies in your home.


Keep Pets Off Furniture

Letting your pets get on the furniture will cause problems for people who are sensitive to dander. Instead of letting your dog or cat share the couch with you, get a separate bed that will keep your furry friend comfortable. It only takes a small amount of training for domestic animals to understand that they aren’t allowed on furniture.

If you can’t resist snuggling with your pet, get a hypoallergenic breed that won’t make allergic people feel sick. Popular hypoallergenic breeds include:

 

  • Bichon Frise
  • Chinese Crested
  • Poodle
  • Schnauzer

Cats tend to cause more allergic reactions than dogs, but there are a few hypoallergenic breeds to consider.

Replace Your HVAC System’s Air Filter

Your home’s HVAC system can remove a lot of allergens from the air. It can only do the job well, though, when it has a clean filter to capture dust, pet dander, and other allergens.

Some experts recommend replacing air filters once per month. That works as a general rule, but in reality, your filter will collect more dirt during times of the year when you use your air conditioner or furnace frequently. Inspect your filter monthly to see if you need to replace it. Don’t let more than 90 days pass between replacements, though. If it’s been 90 days, your home’s indoor air quality will benefit from a new filter.

Ask People to Use Doormats Before Coming In

When you think of pollen, you probably imagine it floating through the air. The air’s pollen count will affect allergies, but so will pollen that enters your home in other ways. Your shoes are one of the most common ways to track pollen into a house. When you walk across the lawn, you collect large amounts of pollen from small plants.

You can limit the amount of pollen that enters your home by having everyone wipe their feet before entering. It’s a good idea to put a mat on the inside and outside of each exterior doorway. With two doormats, you’ll take control of the pollen that tries to enter your house on shoes.

Vacuum and Dust Weekly

No matter what you do, some allergens will get inside your home. Regular cleaning is the best way to prevent the allergens from accumulating. Take time to vacuum and dust each room every week.

If you don’t already clean once per week, then it may take a while for you to get into the habit. Eventually, though, spending a few hours vacuuming and dusting will seem like a normal thing to do on the weekends.

It only takes a little effort to banish allergens from your home. In return, your household will enjoy better health and freedom from the sneezing, coughing, and other irritations that are caused by allergic reactions.

We hope that you find our tips on Simple Ways to Prevent Allergies beneficial.   You may also like Choosing the Perfect Pet for Your Family and House Cleaning Tips for Busy Moms.

 

 

 

Tips For Creating The Perfect Backyard For Entertaining Guests

 

creating the perfect backyard

When the weather is on the up, we all want to head outside to soak up the rays and make the most of the warmer evenings. What better way to do this than with your nearest and dearest? A yard perfect for entertaining is almost like adding an extra room to your home. It should be comfortable, beautiful, entertaining, and full of great food  Just like any welcoming family home.  If you enjoy playing hostess, or you just think it’s time to give your outdoor space the love it deserves, here are some top tips for creating the perfect backyard for entertaining.

Define spaces

Just like any room in a home, a large open space lacks intimacy and comfort. The advice given to people with super spacious living rooms is to use textures, colors, flooring, and artwork to define separate spaces. These concepts allow people to relax in rooms within rooms.  It brings  a sense of intimacy to the space. The same rules apply to the garden.

Unlike with interior spaces, the sky is your limit when it comes to defining areas in your yard. You can add the illusion of outdoor ceilings using verandas, gazebos, and trestles. You can even introduce walls using tall bushes or climbing plants. The floorplan can be dictated by lawn, flowerbeds, patio paving, decking, swimming pools, and more. Unlike the floorplan of your home, which is almost completely dictated by the existing walls, the world is your oyster when it comes to your yard. When you start to break it down into different zones, the space becomes easier and more comfortable to use, and focal points are added.

Perfect the entertainment

When you’re entertaining guests, you want options. A bar for cocktails, a fire pit for toasting marshmallows and making delicious s’mores, a projector and screen for movie nights, and the list goes on. These forms of entertainment take the pressure off the host as people are able to take free reign over their evening, creating a more relaxed atmosphere. A fire pit or a projector are brilliantly adaptable, too. They make great entertainment for adult evenings, but the kids love them as well.

Add water

The use of water in a yard can add a whole new dimension, and brings many different options.  A hot tub is an amazing investment if you plan on holding smaller gatherings, especially for gardens in cooler climates. They’re relaxing, intimate, and luxurious.  No wonder so many people include them in their fantasy yard. A swimming pool is another amazing option, and great for use all summer long. They’re perfect for children’s parties, grown up parties, or just a morning swim. With so many options available, find a pool design which suits your yard and your needs. While they do require a bit of extra maintenance, they make a yard perfect for entertaining.

A water feature such as a fountain, waterfall, pond or rockery is also a beautiful addition to a garden. While it’s more decorative, the sound of trickling water adds a relaxing quality to the space, and it can create a great focal point for the garden.

 

backyard entertainment

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Level up your grilling area

Who doesn’t love barbecues? If your summer food is mostly grilled, and you eat on the deck most days in spring through summer, you need an outdoor kitchen. It’s purely about bringing added convenience to the process. You don’t need to spend thousands of dollars on fancy equipment, but adding a countertop for food preparation and resting plates, and even a gas burner hob on the side, can make your outdoor dining experience so much more relaxed, fun, and interesting.

If you want to go all out a refrigerator is the ultimate food (and beer) storage unit. You could even put in cupboard units for storing utensils and crockery, and a sink for washing up. Creating an outdoor kitchen is all about enhancing your grilling experience. It removes the need to run backward and forward between the yard and the kitchen and allows you to enjoy grilling more thoroughly. Make it as elaborate as you like, but one thing’s for sure: your guests will love it.

Make it beautiful

We all want to hang out in gorgeous spaces. A yard with all the best amenities, but with no beauty, doesn’t inspire relaxation and fun in the guests. The great thing about a garden room is that there are limitless options for how to make it beautiful. Water features, as previously mentioned, make amazing focal points and can be really relaxing too. Otherwise, plants and flowers, sculptures and art, mosaics, and beautiful furniture all add to the feeling of the space.

You can really individualize your yard, and remember: less definitely isn’t more. Embrace color, texture, and reflective surfaces. Choose flowers and plants which make you happy and add to the dynamics of the space. Remember that durable and low maintenance plants and accessories tend to be best, unless you want to spend time tending it frequently.

Create comfort

If your yard is uncomfortable then guests are uncomfortable too. Firstly, make sure it is easy to get around. People feel on edge when there isn’t a simple and straightforward route from one area of the garden to the other. This is also helped by well-marked pathways, and using the zoning technique previously mentioned to make obvious routes. Using fencing around water such as swimming pools and ponds will also help guests to feel comfortable when moving around.

Ensure there is always enough comfortable seating for the number of guests you are expecting. Choosing seating and tables in a durable material but with detachable cushions is the best way to get comfort as well as value for money on long-lasting furniture. If you plan to entertain guests during the daytime, creating options for shade is essential. Verandas, large trees, and parasols are perfect – they add depth and height to the yard, and also allow guests to shelter from the hot sun, if they prefer.

Perfect your lighting style

Last, add subtle lighting – a floodlight is a great security measure, but it’s far better for creating an atmosphere if you can turn it off while you’re entertaining. Fairy lights, solar powered lamps, and low voltage bulbs help to create a subtle, intimate, and magical backyard getaway after dark. So make sure you mix up different lighting in different areas.

Finally, we hope that you enjoyed our tips on creating the perfect backyard.  If you can’t implement them all, select a few.  Look for clearance or sale items to help cut costs.  Enjoy.