Building A New Home And How To Do It Right

Often people ask ‘Why would we use a Building Broker?’ There are many benefits when using a Building Broker and the following options below go through the pro’s and con’s of home building using tried and true established methods of home building and the newest way of designing and building a new home in Perth, Western Australia.

The Old Fashioned Way – Go directly to a display home builder

This is probably the most common way of building a new home and has become an established method throughout Australia and also made popular by luxury home builders in Melbourne, because of the aggressive marketing used by builders who align themselves with land developers by creating display villages.

Another thing to consider is the building inspection report, if you are having your dream home built from scratch. When constructing a new home, it is best to have as many backups and insurances in place, to ensure you get what you are paying for. One of the things builders are good at, regardless of their experience and expertise, is covering up their mistakes.

An independent building inspector, will cover your future dwelling with the skillful eyes of an expert and uncover any hidden gotchas, that may come up only after the builders warranty has expired. So spending a few hundred dollars on a New Building Inspector in Melbourne, just could save you many thousands of dollars if they discover something quite out of the ordinary.

A lot of buyers find building confusing and overwhelming as there are just so many variables to consider. Things like;

Where do we begin?

What can I get for my money/how much will the completed building cost?
What will my house look like?
Project builders answer these questions by having their own broker (New Home Sales Consultants) in the display home 4 days a week. You’ll receive guidance on the home building costs, what happens next and you’re able to wander through the finished display home and get an feel for the home as if you were living in it. This is the exact representation of what every ‘project builder’ does and they do well. They reinvent old house designs year after year and build hundreds of replicas. Often if you were to take a short cruise in your car you would find that very display home multiple times in the new subdivisions.

Pro’s

You can physically see what your home will be like when completed, before you even get started building on site

Con’s

You’re unable to compare apples with apples by getting a second price due to copyright.
You’ll live in a ‘one size fits all’ home. Which is OK if you’re just like everyone else.
There will be barely any consideration to your block and the angle or aspect – which means you may have very poor solar passive design principles included in your home if your block faces a different direction to the display home.
You probably won’t be able to make many changes. If you are allowed they will more than likely be priced at a higher than standard margin.
Hidden costs are added to the price of the house. Items like site costs, local government costs and concrete pumps are examples of this.
The building broker in the display (New Home Sales Consultant) will provide you with biased advice after all, they are looking after the interests of the builder.
You need to trust the builder is honest in all dealings and that the work on the building site is acceptable, especially if you have no way of checking it yourself.
Use an architect

Generally buyers won’t discuss building with an architect unless the expected building price is going to be over $500,000. That might be too low for some architects who are well known for exceeding the buyers budgets with their inefficient house designs.

Pro’s

To gain qualifications an architect must study for seven years and be employed for two years under another practising architect before they can receive their certification. That means they’re experts in home building right?

Con’s

The exorbitant upfront costs mean this avenue is the most restrictive of all, and rarely does the finished building justify such large fees.
Generally architects design both commercial and residential construction – which means you’re not getting a specialised house designer. The architect you employ may be more familiar with commercial construction, which is a different industry using different building methods and costings.
Most if not all architects won’t be aligned with a building company which means they don’t keep up to date with building methods and materials. This generally results in designs exceeding the buyers building budget.
Be an Owner Builder

Surely you could build your new home yourself and achieve the greatest outcome! This is probably true for most things in life right? If you can do it on your own surely you will be able to save some money. There are numerous people that think they should perform their own car service instead of using a mechanic because the mechanic is going to rip them off right? But the simple truth is that the mechanic is experienced and can complete the work in half the time and knows where to get the parts immediately and guarantees the job. It is very much the same as building. I was reminded of this when a friend of my wife’s came over last week and was discussing her Kitchen renovations. She’d been having a difficult time searching for a decent cabinetmaker, so I gave her two names on a small piece of paper for her to ring. Today, my wife’s friend visited and handed me a lovely bottle of wine and thanked me for referring her to a terrific cabinetmaker. When you’re considering building a new home, you’re entering into a process that involves so many different variables that if one isn’t right, may have a huge impact on the entire process. I’ve personally spent 20 years qualifying home builders, building suppliers and quality tradesmen. I have my own little black book full of names of great people that will deliver what they say they will. However, if I chose to I’m sure that I could fill many other books with names of people that don’t.

Pro’s

Unless you’re a builder, or in the home building industry, I really don’t see any pro’s. Most may think of the one main factor of ‘savings’ however that is just a false assumption. A poorly designed house can be $30,000 more than a well designed house even though they look very similar. If you lack the understanding in building, you will be doing yourself a disservice by attempting this yourself.
Con’s

You’ve got to be extremely lucky to get the best design, best interior design, best energy efficiency, best engineer, best builder, best surveyor, best price, best timeframe…
If you’re thinking of home building you should be using a building broker. You will save time, money and stress and you will get the best building result because building brokers are industry trained experts in all areas of home building.

Steve Fitzpatrick is the Managing Director of Your Building Broker in Perth Western Australia and has over 20 years experience in the residential construction and building industry and over the last 15 years has worked almost exclusively as a custom home builder of fine homes.

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Loft Conversions – Could You Benefit From Having More Space In Your Home?

Loft conversions have become the next big thing with homeowners and it’s no wonder when you consider all of the potential uses for this space. If you don’t want to build an add-on to your home that would encroach on precious garden spaces, a loft conversion is the way to go. Do you need an extra bedroom, a home office or a playroom? A loft makes the perfect sanctuary. Do you crave a home entertainment suite, a creative studio or a home gym? A loft conversions Sydney can make those dreams come true, as well. Place your bed under a sloped ceiling in loft conversions to make the most of the space. If the windows in your extension aren’t large, keep the decor pale to maximise light.

Most homeowners want a full loft conversion; complete with a new staircase to access the new room. Others just want an area suitable for occasional use or need extra storage. A basic conversion will not add to the value of your home in the same way a full conversion will, but may still be the perfect solution for your needs at this time. In either case, a reputable loft conversion specialist can help you to decide, draw up plans and carry out the work to your exact specifications.

In fact, whatever your needs; whatever you can imagine for your underused loft can be achieved with a loft conversion. And loft spaces turn out to be surprisingly bright and cheerful.

In today’s uncertain housing market, moving to a larger home is not always the best option. On top of the expenses incurred just to gain one or two extra rooms, there is also the hassle and stress of moving to be considered.

There are many reasons homeowners may need extra space. Perhaps you have a growing family; a new baby or a teenager who craves more privacy. Maybe you’re considering moving an aging parent in to live with you or you could use the extra space for a home office.

Whatever your needs or wants, a loft conversion is one of the most cost effective and efficient ways to add to your living space without actually moving.

How much unused space do you have above you? An extra bedroom or study will fit easily into the loft of most homes and bungalows. In a two-bedroom terraced house, the loft space will usually have room for a third bedroom with en-suite.

Compared to the cost of moving house, a full loft conversion might not be as costly as you may think and it will increase the value of your home by 20-30%. The amount of work needed varies, depending on the structure of the roof and the design of the conversion but the whole project can take as little as 6-7 weeks from design to completion.

Feasibility

This type of home renovation involves a complex structural alteration. It can be undertaken as a DIY project but is more easily done by a group of qualified professionals. Make sure to hire a loft conversion specialist who employs only the best skilled tradesmen in the field.

Several factors must be considered before undertaking a loft conversion. An inspection will be made to ensure that there is enough space in the loft to make a conversion feasible and that the area under the roof bridge allows for adequate headroom. There must also be enough space for the access stairs.

The roof will be checked for any signs of leaks. If there is a problem with leaks in the roof, repairs can be carried out either before or during the conversion.

Next, a decision is made about the type of conversion you would like and this, of course, is based on your requirements and budget. Talk to your loft conversion specialist about your needs and have them advise you about all of the possibilities available to you.

During the preliminary free consultation, the company will take measurements and, at the next meeting, present you with a design showing the position of the stairs and the size and shape of the loft room. At this point, you should receive a carefully detailed quote for the work needed to complete your loft conversion.

Once you have decided to accept the loft design company’s proposal, they will begin the process of obtaining planning permission, if required, a certificate of lawful development and building regulation approval. Where appropriate, they prepare and submit detailed structural engineering calculations to your local building control department for approval. Most companies handle all of the paperwork associated with your conversion.

Once permissions are received work can begin on your new loft conversion at a time convenient to you. A reputable loft conversion company handles everything, right up to the time when your new loft is ready to be decorated. Contract managers work alongside each construction team and should always be available to answer your questions and deal with any problems that may come up. Their job is to keep you informed from start to finish.

Complete Lofts are a family run specialist loft conversions company with over 15 years experience employing only the best skilled tradesmen in the field.

Our aim is to work closely with you and give our undivided attention throughout the entire project thus enabling you to enjoy many different loft conversion types.

We provide our unique service to all inside the M25 London Area

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/James_Luke_Williams/1072392

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Sweet Corn & BBQ Festival

Shawnee on Delaware, PA – Nothing says summer in the Pocono Mountains like the taste of freshly harvested sweet corn and finger licking BBQ. Shawnee Mountain invites young and old to come eat, drink, dance and play at the Sweet Corn & BBQ Festival Saturday and Sunday August 12 & 13, from 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. Join this BBQ events to experience and observe the taste of the food being served.

Vendors will surround the festival grounds offering mouthwatering items such as roasted or steamed sweet corn with multiple toppings along with a variety of beef, pork and chicken BBQ served-up in Memphis, Carolina, Texas & Kansas City styles. An awesome line-up of local and award winning BBQ vendors will present festival-goers with a tasty assortment of sweet, spicy, dry rub, smoked and “smothered in sauce” BBQ. Plus tons of other festival treats!

The festival will feature nonstop live entertainment all with a western theme! The Brian Dean Moore Band will perform on the main stage both days. Country line dancing demonstrations and instructions will also be provided in front of the main stage. Local favorite the Liz Nordstrom Trio will perform both afternoons in the air-conditioned EZ Bumps Saloon.

The Country Kids area will provide staged magic and juggling shows and summer picnic games.

Under the Educational & Demo Tent will be a Close Encounters with Birds of Prey show with Bill Streeter from the Delaware Valley Raptor Center. The show will include six live raptors and provide viewers with a greater knowledge and appreciation of the raptors of the Northeast.

Finally guests are encouraged to bring a shopping bag as fresh locally grown corn and other produce will be available for sale at Sue’s Produce tent.

The event will be held rain or shine. Advanced Festival Admission Tickets, Adults $9 and Children ages 5–12 $7.50, age 4 and under FREE, are now on sale. Plenty of FREE onsite parking is provided. For more Sweet Corn & BBQ Festival information, vendor applications, and online ticket sales visit www.shawneemt.com.

Home Renovations – Tips Before You Begin

If you have decided to make some renovations to your home or investment property there are a few steps I would suggest, even prior to calling a contractor:

Define Scope

Firstly, renovations have a way of getting out of control once they have started, so it is imperative that you layout the scope of the work to be completed. If a bathroom renovation is your plan, ensure you list all areas that are to affected – new toilet and wall tiles or a complete over-hall including: plumbing, fixtures, lighting, cabinets, tub and flooring.

Just a quick note based on my experience; once one area of a room has been newly renovated it will make the other areas appear more “tired” than they had previously looked. Consider doing as much renovation in one room as your budget will allow. This approach will be less expensive and less time-consuming than having to return to re-renovate the same room several times.

Floor Plan

Take the time to create a drawing of your new floor plan. This does not have to be a professional illustration, just a sketch showing your basic ideas. For example, if you are finishing your basement, show the location of interior walls, appliances, fireplaces, lighting, bar, shelving or furniture built-ins, bathrooms and closets.

If you have decided to include a bathroom, kitchenette or wet bar consider the location of the plumbing rough-ins. It can be very time-consuming and expensive if you decide to put your toilet across the room from where the builder has placed the sewer access.

This floor plan may take a little time; however, it will definitely make things easier when it’s time to explain to your contractors what your plan is.

Create Budget

You must set a budget and try to work within it. I have heard the old phrase “money is no object” a few times in my 25 years in the renovation business, however, nine times out of ten; it is an object – and a big object.

Only you can decide what budget you are comfortable with. Having said that, after speaking to several contractors you may find that what you want and what your budget allows for, are miles apart. So, your budget may not be flexible but your plans will need to be flexible.

Set Time Frame

The time frame, in some people’s opinion, is the most important aspect. When setting a time frame for your renovation work to be completed, keep in mind that unless you are hiring one of the T.V. renovation teams that could build the Taj Mahal in 3 days with a crew of 500 workers; you may have to be a little more realistic.

After you meet with several contractors be sure to ask each of them how long they think the job should take and when they would have the time to focus on your project. It is my experience you should increase this estimate by 30%.

If this is a large renovation it may be necessary to make living arrangements elsewhere. Regardless, you should still ensure the contractors are given exclusive use of the area and services that they will need. There is nothing more frustrating than a plumber trying to install a new kitchen sink while you are making your family breakfast. Give the professionals room to work.

Now that you have a defined the scope, sketched a floor plan and set a budget, it is now time to get a few estimates. I recommend that you avoid uninsured renovation companies for obvious reasons. There are many reputable renovation companies out there and there are many ways to find them, today the most popular ways are: internet web sites, yellow pages, trade magazines and of course personal referrals/word of mouth.

When meeting with a renovator be sure to show them your drawing of the floor plan and discuss in detail what you want done, do a walk through with the renovator of the area to be renovated and don’t forget to ask about the time frame. I would suggest that you not mention your budget at this time. You should first get yourself 3 estimates.

When a renovator is pricing an estimate they have many variables to deal with such as material quality and it turn material prices and hardware and fixture prices, for example a set of sink taps can vary from $30.00 up to $3,000.00 the same rule applies to all material, hardware and fixtures. So in my professional opinion ask the renovator to price the estimate using basic builder grade material and fixture costs. Asking for an estimate based solely on base price materials will help you adjust pricing for items you wish to upgrade and hopefully still stay within your budget.

Summary

If you have followed the above suggestions: outlined your project scope, sketched a floor plan, set a budget, considered a time frame and contacted several (3-5) contractors for estimates and referrals then you should now be in a position to comfortably make your decision and get started on your renovation.

Martin Power:

After working as a real estate agent and home renovation company owner, for over 20 tears, Martin became a full-time web developer and marketing expert/author for the real estate and home renovation industry. Check out further articles and educational materials at [http://www.buyrealestatehelper.com].

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Getting A Durable Concrete Driveway

Whether you’re interested in a durable concrete driveway, a decorative brick one or a utilitarian access road topped with asphalt or gravel, the materials you need represent only part of the cost of installation. Cutting and paving a driveway is a labor-intensive job that is virtually impossible without heavy machinery, and the cost of a contractor often surpasses the cost of materials. Get several labor estimates, and remember that compatibility between you and the contractor you choose trumps bargain prices. The cost of new driveway Perth depends on the space of your driveway.

Your cost estimate begins with an accurate measurement of the width and length of the proposed driveway, using a surveyor’s tape. Don’t forget to take into account the garage pad — if it’s part of the project — and any width variations. After multiplying the width and length to find the area to be covered, multiply that by the thickness of the proposed covering, in feet. This gives you the volume of the material you need, in cubic feet.

Multiply this number by .037 to convert to cubic yards, which is the unit most used by materials suppliers.

For example, a standard concrete driveway is usually 4 inches — 0.33 feet — thick. If the driveway is 100 feet long and 6 feet wide, you need 200 cubic feet of material. That’s 7.4 cubic yards.

Before laying concrete, you need to lay a 1- to 2-inch layer of drain rock, and an asphalt coating requires a 4- to 6-inch bed of compacted rock, depending on the terrain and drainage characteristics. Don’t forget to include those costs in your estimate.

Bricks and Pavers — Bricks and pavers come in predetermined thicknesses, so you don’t need to quote a volume when ordering them — just the area of your driveway. Calculate the number of bricks or pavers you need by dividing the dimensions of a single unit into the area of the driveway and adding a 5 percent overage. Driveway Edging — You may want to create a border, using bricks, pavers or rocks — this is recommended for gravel driveways because it prevents material from draining or being thrown off the roadway. Measure the length of the driveway, multiply by 2 and add a 10 percent overage to be sure you have enough edging material. Other Features — If you live in a cold climate, you may want to consider installing a heated concrete driveway.

This involves the installation of pipes under the roadway and a boiler to heat the water. You’ll also need extra materials and labor if you want to stain or stamp the concrete.

When it comes to estimating labor, there’s no single method that works for everyone. Much depends on the availability of qualified contractors with the necessary equipment in your area as well as on the topography of your property. Expect complications, such as large tree roots and the need for culverts or drainage ditches, to add to the labor costs. Get at least three estimates.

Of course, you can always go it alone by renting the excavation equipment you need, which may be the best option if you live in a sparsely populated, rural setting. Don’t forget to include the cost of delivery and pick-up of the equipment in the rental costs.

It’s possible to get a rough idea of the cost of your new driveway by consulting online sources, such as Home Advisor. The best way to use calculations performed by using information from such a site is to present it to a contractor as a benchmark. Even though there’s no such thing as a standard driveway, having a rough cost estimate in hand provides the basis for negotiation.

Smart Move To Choose A Home Builders

Enjoy products and services at special NAHB prices. Understand how your association does business – with decisions made at the grassroots and pushed up – through NAHB committees and councils. Hire the best home builders Sydney at Lavishliving.com.au, their portfolio are promising in terms of the design that they built.

NAHB serves the home building, development and remodeling industry by promoting policies that encourage the production of quality housing that meets the needs of families across the economic spectrum. We stand for a safe workplace, cost-effective rules and regulations and sustainable construction practices.

All the information you need to buy, build, finance, remodel or maintain your home.

Find builders, remodelers, award programs, meetings and events, NAHB committee members and professional designation holders.

NAHB economists track economic trends, forecasts and indices for you so you can plan for company’s future. Our legal staff promote better business for our industry through their efforts in the courts, educational seminars, and ordinance review.

NAHB educational courses and designation programs expand your knowledge and enhance your position in the market.

See how NAHB mobilizes its grassroots on key issues, builds successful coalitions, educates national leaders and uses its political action committee to support pro-housing candidates.

Custom homes stand out from the crowd. They are one-of-a-kind, upscale creations that come with luxury upgrades and unique architectural design.

In addition to flexibility in home design and architecture, buyers typically choose their ideal location and environment. As a result, custom home design often incorporates elements of the local landscape, whether that is a view of the ocean, a natural stream, or the distinct colors and plants of a desert landscape.

While production builders build communities by restricting design to a group of preselected home types on lots they have picked and purchased themselves, custom builders tend to build on land owned by the customer and start fresh with each design.

Production builders typically construct a large number of homes throughout the year; these may offer a variety of options, but production builders generally do not use construction plans other than the ones selected by the building firm. Custom builders spend more time on each project and often work on fewer than 10 homes a year.

Architect Joel Turkel of Turkel Design and the building team at My House Design created the Gambier Island House, using a design from Lindal Cedar Homes. Perched on a hill overlooking the waterfront in British Columbia’s Gulf Islands, the custom builders used careful planning to integrate the home with its lush forest atmosphere. The home’s sleek design, use of green building techniques and connection to nature earned the home a spot as a finalist in the 2012 Best in American Living Awards.

Concern for the environment is growing among U.S. households—and so are energy costs. Because of this, many custom builders are embracing green building techniques. Features like solar panels, water-saving appliances, insulation to improve heating efficiency and the use of renewable or recycled building materials are all popular techniques to improve a home’s efficiency. Custom builders allow buyers to include a wide range of green products and give them the opportunity to weigh each cost and benefit to create a home that is stylish, comfortable, but also eco-friendly.

Today, home owners like to see features that will improve their lifestyle through health, entertainment or comfort. In this way, custom homes really set themselves apart from the competition. Yoga studios, resistance pools and fitness rooms can be added to encourage healthy living; game rooms, theaters and even a bowling alley can be added for fun; and for comfort, breezy, screened-in porches or warm hearths can make your home feel cozy and welcoming.

Custom amenities are also taking a turn to the world of tech. In a world where there’s an app for everything, buyers are beginning to expect a custom home to do more and be “smarter.” Nowadays you can control many features in your home using a phone, including energy usage, security systems, lighting and even the music playing in each room.

Whether it’s aging parents moving in with their adult children or young adults living back with mom and dad, multigenerational households have specific needs when it comes to a home.

Custom builders are seeing an increasing need to tailor homes to this lifestyle. A recent Pew Research Center study shows that 39% of adults ages 18 to 34 have had to move in with their parents. In the same year, the U.S. Census reported that 4.3 out of 76 million households were made up of at least three generations.

Multigenerational families often build homes that include the traditional mother-in-law suite or even feature a locked-off living space within the home. These apartment-style spaces can have their own kitchenette, full bathroom and living areas to provide a sense of privacy and independence.

As the country grows older and many baby boomers look to retirement, Universal Design (UD) features are an ever-growing priority for many custom buyers and builders. UD is used to ensure that features like wider doors, lower countertops and fewer stairs are used to create a home that everyone can enjoy comfortably. An accessible home allows owners to age in place, prolonging their ability to stay in the house independently and can also increase value by opening the market to any future buyer, despite age, stature or ability.

TheAtkinson Residencein Berlin, Md. won a silver award in the 2012 Best in American Living Awards for its use of layered balconies and porches that make the most of the home’s spectacular view of the water. This nook is an example of the unique architectural details often included in custom homes.

Success With These Home Improvement Tips!

A lot of people feel intimidated when it comes to doing home project by themselves. With a few tools and the right information, you can do just about any project with the help of a few tools. Use the tips shared here to make your next project you have been putting off! The area in our home that we always spend time in preparing our food must be design and well organize. Nouvelle.com.au is an expert in small kitchen design and they will make sure that your kitchen appliances is properly in place.

Even modest home improvement projects can increase in your home’s value. If you are putting your house on the market, make some small improvements. One example might be a new splash of paint you home inside and outside. This simple and can increase the value of your home.

If you are seriously considering buying a home, be sure to get a professional inspection. A third party professional who offers a completely objective and can keep the process civil.

Repainting a porch may be necessary in your home improvement efforts.You should use a high quality meant for the outdoors.

It can be very expensive to buy new furniture. You can add some pizzazz to your rooms with nice furniture by shopping local thrift stores and garage sale or similar location. You can find some great deals among the used furniture items. Some may need a lot of work, but if you put in the time, you could end up with a treasured item in your home.

Do some research on your own if you can’t afford a designer. You may find the future of your entire home improvement project in a single magazine layout. You can also find information about cheaper do-it-yourself projects that are less expensive.

The right lighting can greatly impact a room. A bright room will always appear warmer and inviting. You can also brighten a room by having an additional light to create more brightness. Adding light in dark spaces can

Your outdoor chair cushions flatten over time.A good way to restore such cushions is to place them in the sun. The sun returns the bounce by evaporating moisture in the fill. Be aware that fabric color is subject to fading in the sun, because the colors of the fabric can fade in the sun.

Use your old luggage rack to make a living room side table.Use it to hold a lamp or some books.

Purchase high-quality supplies and tools for an home improvement project. You might pay more to begin with, but you’ll save money down the road.Tools can be expensive and the last thing you want to have to replace them regularly.

Wooden floors are classic and last considerably longer than most plush carpets.

Consider “age-in-place” philosophy when you can make. Age-in-place is something that designers use to account how your house will change with your age needs over time. No matter how long you plan on staying in your house, these types of design decisions can enhance the value and utility of your house.

If you are about to undertake major renovations to your bathroom, think about making your rooms accessible for handicapped individuals. It is not necessary to completely convert the facilities right away, but you should get ready because it may save you a lot of time and effort. If you put your home on the market, these additions will give your home more value when it goes on the market.

Soundproofing rooms is a very wise investment. It would be luxurious to soundproof every wall, but there are areas that you could concentrate on. The important rooms to soundproof are bathrooms, bathrooms and equipment rooms. The kitchen is another place that could also use some soundproofing if it’s fairly enclosed.

Stain your basement floors for a better look. Staining a less expensive way to greatly improve the look of your concrete floors. Staining the floor will also increase its durability and easy for you to clean. Look for a stain that will add shine and lustre. Your floor will look more pricy than they really are.

Before you start home improvement you may wish to speak with the neighbors about it. It can be irritating to live next someone doing home improvements. Your neighbors will be very appreciative if you tell them how long your disturbance will last.

The details can always be worked on after you are already living there.

Always turn the main water if you are working in the bathroom or kitchen. This can help you leave it running.

If you have cabinets that need to be redone and you do not have a lot of money, have them re-faced instead. Replacing your entire set of kitchen cabinetry can cost a fortune. You can reface your cabinets for a little money. You will have a whole new look with lots of style and spend very little.

You can even share tips with your neighbor.

If it soaks it up, it needs an application of water repellent. Be sure that your deck gets sealed before winter in order to keep it from getting long-term damage.

When you get together with your contractor to arrange the payment terms for your home improvement project, tie payments to the percentage of work completed, not on a general time line. This allows you the ability to fire the contractor if he isn’t completing the work you had hired him to do.

You might have thought it might be hard to do home improvements on your own. However, if you absorbed the information from this article, you can give yourself the necessary skills to help you handle some projects on your own.

Washing Your Car In Cold Weather

During the winter months, or if you live in a particularly cold climate, washing your car can prove to be a difficult task as well being an unpleasant one. Water and shampoo solution can quickly freeze onto the surface of the vehicle, literally making it impossible to wash properly. Not only shampoo, but polish, wax and any other cleaning products can easily be affected by cold weather and not perform properly meaning that every part of the car cleaning process can be adversely affected. Detailcentral.com.au car care products supplies professional cleaning and detailing products for the automobile service industry.

During washing, water can also freeze around the car and cause a dangerous area of slippery ice that can be hazardous to yourself and passers by, and generally it can be very unpleasant trying to wash in freezing temperatures as your hands can quickly become numb and prevent you from performing cleaning and detailing tasks properly.

It is important however, to try and regularly wash your car especially in cold weather because there tends to an excess of dirt, grime and salt on the roads that if left sitting on the surface of your car can lead to damage and corrosion. Thankfully, there are a number of different things that can be done to help the car washing process in cold conditions.

To start with you should obviously ensure that you are correctly clothed and properly wrapped up to help conserve body heat and prevent your extremities from getting too cold and wet. Waterproof shoes or boots are a sensible idea to prevent feet from getting wet then subsequently very cold. Thick, lined trousers, a warm waterproof coat and a good hat are all essentials and even though you will need your hands free for the washing, some form of thin latex gloves worn during the washing process will noticeably help to take the edge off the cold and keep your fingers functioning.

Next, it is advisable to try and wash your car during the middle of the day when temperatures are most mild and when the sun is at its highest point in the sky. If the sun is out, even if you cannot noticeably feel any heat from it, it helps to try and position your car in the sunlight as this will help to prevent water from freezing on the surface, as, even if it is just reflected sunlight from a window etc you will be surprised at the effect it can have on the surface temperature of the vehicle.

If possible, you should take your car for a quick run prior to washing, or at least leave it running for a while with the window/mirror heaters and hot blowers turned on as this will, after a little while, help to raise the temperature of the exterior as well as heat from the engine and exhaust adding warmth into the body panels. It is logical to do this as you are preparing your equipment and filling the wash buckets so that by the time you come to put water on the car, surface temperatures will have increased a little. Your wash buckets should be filled with hot water which will further help to raise the surface temperature of the panels as they are being washed as well as keep your hands warm and supple.

It is the pre rinse and rinsing stages of the car washing process that can be the most difficult in cold conditions. Most people will use an outside cold water tap for this which greatly increases the likely hood of surface freezing occurring. The ideal solution to this really is either the use of a hot water pressure washer which can be adjusted to heat the temperature of the water being output accordingly, or by connecting your hosepipe to an interior or exterior converted hot water pipe/tap. These options though, can be expensive or time consuming to implement, so even though they are the best way to deal with cold weather washing, we will assume for the sake of argument that you will simply be using cold water from an outside tap for the rinsing parts of the process and so will focus on the other things that can be done to aid the process.

When washing, the wheels should be cleaned first (using a separate wash bucket) before moving onto the body as this will help to minimize the amount of time water is left sitting on the cold body panels. If the ground temperature is freezing then it would be a sensible ideal to lay down some rock salt prior to wetting the car to prevent your work area from quickly turning into an ice rink. When washing, it may be wise to work a little quicker that you would in more mild conditions to both try and keep your body temperature up and keep standing water sitting on the surface for a minimum amount of time, although, you should ensure that you still wash in a thorough and methodical manner.

If it is excessively cold and temperatures are sub zero then sometimes even all of these methods combined may still not be sufficient enough to prevent water from freezing on the car and the ground and so in these cases it is advisable to not attempt to wash and to wait for slightly milder conditions.

If you know that you are going to be attempting to wash your car in cold weather or during the winter months it is a good idea to properly prepare the exterior of your car before the cold weather sets in. If your car has been properly polished and thoroughly protected with a good quality, durable wax or sealant product then it will make it much easier to wash, meaning it will take less time and also that the surface is protected from road salts and winter grime, and so if you cannot wash for extended periods of time due to extreme cold you at least know your vehicle is protected and that the dirt and road salt cannot bond to and corrode the surface of your car.

If your vehicle is kept garaged you you will have the option of using a waterless wash product or detailing spray on the car while it is in the relative warmth of the garage to maintain it and keep it clean after an initial thorough wash, to prevent it from getting too dirty which means that you will have to rely less on washing outside with water.

If you have no choice other than to wash outside in cold weather then all the techniques mentioned here will help to prevent water from freezing on and around the car and to make the process a little easier and more bearable for you. However, they are not a complete guarantee against the onslaught of excessively cold weather and so if conditions are extremely cold and temperatures are sub zero it is sensible idea to simply hold off washing with water until temperatures pick up and conditions become a little more preferable.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/6519320

Top Tips About Hvac That Anyone Can Follow

Your home can be made much more comfortable with a HVAC system. While an HVAC system may already be in place, they do sometimes have to be added on or replaced after some time has passed. Knowing what you need when it comes to an HVAC system is a great way to get the right one. Air conditioning Sydney check regularly to ensure your air conditioner is working at top efficiency and can extend its lifespan.

Know what type of your HVAC system you currently have before looking for a repair person. This will enable you can give your new contractor all the information they might need.

Know what you want done before you select an HVAC contractor. It will be hard for a contractor to provide you with an estimate over the phone without knowing what your current setup is. It will be more hard if you over the phone without the information readily available.

Clean your fan blades and coils come spring. Clean off any leaves or debris from your external condenser unit regularly.

Be sure to regularly clean external condenser units. Debris can pile up at rates that increase during rainy or windy weather, bringing potential damage with it. It can cause your system by overheating.

Turn the power off first so nothing moves. Then, pop off its grills, pull the blades out, and gently clean them as well as the unit itself.

Your outdoor HVAC units might suffer when trees lose leaves. Make sure you clean out your fan grill often during the fall. The fan needs unobstructed air flow, and if it becomes blocked, it could cause your system to break down.

Lubricate your condenser once a year. You will see rubber or metal cap covering the ports. Use a lightweight, and put 10 drops or fewer in each port, putting 10 drops in each port.

Turn off any outdoor condenser units when weather gets cold. This means that you should turn it off to prevent damage if the temperature drops below 60ºF to avoid damage. This simple tip will help keep your system running efficiently for many years and save you a lot on repairs.

It is always a good idea to swap out single pane windows with ones that have double panes. This same effect also helps keep it warm air in the winter months.

A programmable thermostat can help you save money on air conditioning costs. Some of these thermostats can even be controlled from a PC or other device.

During this service visit, professionals can help by inspecting the system’s motor, oil the moving parts and check the freon levels in the system. These things will help your system running at peak performance.

Do not let your house to get extremely hot.Air conditioners really can only cool down unreasonably high temps. If your house’s interior temperature hits 100 degrees Fahrenheit, then you will only be able to reasonably cool to around 80. This won’t be a safe and comfortable temperature for you to sleep in.

Ask friends and relations for their HVAC contractor recommendations. People that have had quality work done are often happy to share this information. This can also provide you learn the names of those companies that you should avoid.

Check the ducts to find any leaks if you you feel your unit seems to not be working efficiently. When you get leaks repaired, you’ll see that the tests paid for themselves.

If you HVAC unit is making a clicking sound, immediately check for any type of obstruction. Sometimes there is debris interferes with the cooling system fans. Check it out before you waste time contacting a professional.

Measure the area you wish to cool before buying a unit. You generally need about 20 BTU for each square foot of room space. If more than one room needs AC service, sum their areas.

Ask any potential contractor about their experience prior to hiring them. You need to verify they have done the sort of work you require.

There are contractors out there that will overcharge you. Having a signed contract will help you avoid issues like that.

Cover your condenser in the weather becomes less than optimal. This will make sure the condenser operating longer when not in use.Use the fan instead to avoid straining the condenser unit.

Always follow up on any references provided to you receive for an HVAC contractor.

This calculation will ascertain what the BTU your home.

Consider have a programmable thermostat. This can save you a great deal on your bills because your settings to ensure optimal performance.

Look for an HVAC contractor that uses Energy Star equipment and equipment. This rating means that the EPA standards for efficiency. This helps save you reduce your expenses throughout the year.

The condenser unit needs protection in cold weather. This can easily be done by putting a cover on the condenser unit.

Keep the owner’s manual for your unit nearby at all times whenever you while you’re working with your unit. The information contained within this manual is going to give you quite a few things to learn about the unit you have and will be very useful.

Consider an HVAC unit an investment. Investing in the right unit will save money, while the wrong one can wind up costing a lot. When it is finally time for you to select a replacement, remember these tips and they should make the process easier. You will make better choices and have a great system.

Helpful Hints For HVAC Novices And Pros

HVAC service and contracting is something too many people know a lot about. This fact can pose a problem when it breaks down. The air conditioning Perth will keep your home cool and damp-free using our dehumidifiers & fans.

Know what you want done before you hire a contractor. It will be difficult for an HVAC contractor to provide you a price estimate over the phone without knowing what your current system. It will be way more hard if you don’t know what’s wrong.

Clean your condenser’s fan and coils come spring. Clean off any leaves or debris from your condenser unit regularly.

Lubricate your condenser at least once each year. You can find these ports covered with rubber or metal cap covering them. Use a lightweight, and put 10 drops or fewer in each port, but make sure to avoid overfilling them.

Put outdoor unit in places with shade.

Have your HVAC system serviced at least yearly. This should be done in the fall and malfunctions.

Turn off your outdoor condensers you have when the weather gets cold. This means that you should be done when the temperature drops below 60ºF to avoid damage. This simple tip will help keep the life of your unit.

It is always a good idea to replace single-paned windows with ones that have double pane ones. This will also helps keep it warm in heat when it gets cold.

A programmable thermostat is a simple way to help you save money on air conditioning bill. Some programmable thermostats can even be controlled from a PC or computer.

During the service check, the system motor will be inspected, oil the different moving parts as well as check the system’s freon levels. These simple tasks will keep your HVAC system running at peak performance.

Air conditioners sometimes ice up at times. The drain line might also freeze up.If this is something that’s happening to you, disable the compressor by turning your thermostat to the fan only setting. You should call a pro to fix this problem, but switching to the fan will make the ice melt.

There are different sites out there that let customers talk about how they were treated by services. This can help you find a top notch professional.

Contractors are responsible for their own charges and fees, so make sure that you acquire multiple estimates. You have the potential to save tons of money by asking for many quotes. Call around 5 contractors so that you can get the best rates.

Do you want to buy a new HVAC unit? There are a number of things you must consider first. Systems have ratings according to the total area they effectively cool and heat. You are better off purchasing a bigger unit rather than a bit too small.

Figure out the direction your home is facing so your HVAC system more efficient. The less amount of heat inside of your home, the easier time the air conditioner in your home will have.

Measure the area you wish to cool before going air conditioning. You can figure out the unit you need 20 BTU for each square foot of room space. If you need to cool multiple rooms, get their square footage added together.

Replace the air filter to keep your HVAC system every month. This is the simplest thing that you can do to keep your system working well.

If you have to put the unit in a corner, make certain that the air does not point towards a wall.

Always make sure to get references from a HVAC contractor.

Some contractors attempt to add charges on material fees and other charges. Having a good written contract will let you avoid issues like this.

Always check any references that are given to you by an HVAC contractor.

You may be surprised to discover that as much as 66% of households have ducts that are leaky. These leaky ducts can lead to as much as a quarter of your total utility costs. Sealing the ducts is something you can do easily and cheaply, and it may reduce energy costs greatly in the future.

Clean your HVAC’s heating ducts on a regular basis to boost efficiency.Look at the ducts to make sure they are in good shape. Damaged ones raise your energy bill.

Keep your condenser protected in cold weather. A thick cover will help protect the condenser from coming in.

Make sure the owner’ manual in handy when you use the unit. The manual is going to give you quite a few things to learn about the unit you have and will be very useful.

Be sure you get an estimate that’s written HVAC estimates. It is important to get your agreement in writing and not a verbal estimate. There are many jobs that you have to get written estimates for to see what needs to be purchased. This procedure helps you get great service. Compare various elements of the deals that you receive.

Most people who own homes are not happy when something happens to their heat or air conditioning. However, if they become well-informed on the topic, the process can be smoother. By using the advice here and keeping it at your side, you can be sure that you’ll know what to do to take care of your issues.

The Professionals Share Their HVAC Secrets Here

Many homeowners have no idea what to do when the HVAC system collapses. To prevent the situation from becoming disastrous, knowledge is power. The tips listed here can assist homeowners in getting the help they require. Our air conditioning Melbourne ensures that the air in your home will be refreshingly cool, clean, and comfortable.

Know what type of system you currently have before looking for a repair person. This will ensure that you to give your chosen contractor any information they might need.

If your HVAC is giving you problems, check things out yourself prior to calling in a technician. This will help the repairman determine where the problem is and how to fix it.

Know what you want done before you select an HVAC contractor. It will be hard for a contractor to provide you with an estimate over the phone if they have not seen your current setup is. It will be more hard if you can’t figure out what they need to do.

Turn the power off first so nothing moves. Then, pop off its grills, pull the blades out, and gently clean them as well as the unit itself.

Put your outdoor units in places with shade.

It is a good idea to replace single-paned windows for double panes. This will also help you keep the warm air inside.

During the visit, they will inspect the motor of the system, oil the unit’s moving parts and ensure the unit has proper freon levels. These easy to do things are going to allow your HVAC system to run its best.

Do not let your house to get dangerously hot. Air conditioners only cool a home down unreasonably high temps. If your house’s interior temperature hits 100 degrees Fahrenheit, cooling it will only drop the temperature to 80 degrees F. This won’t be a safe and comfortable temperature for you to sleep in.

Air conditioners sometimes ice up at times. The drain line might also freeze up.If you see this happen, put your thermostat over to fan.You should leave the repair to a professional, but switching to the fan will make the ice melt.

Companies that are around awhile have a better record than those that can help you decide if they’re worth your money and time. Hiring a contractor can be risky.

Think about getting a radiant barrier in your attic so support the efficient functioning of your HVAC system. It ensures that your home cool when it’s hot outside. You may even use the attic as part of your living space if it is done right.

Are you looking into getting a HVAC system? You could keep a few important things. Systems have a rating based on how effectively they can cool and heat an area. You are better off purchasing a bigger unit that is slightly too large for your needs than purchasing one that is a smaller one.

Check for duct leaks if your existing system is not be working efficiently. When the leaks are repaired, the tests will pay for themselves.

Make certain they are tightly sealed so air inside. You can also hire someone to test them all for you and often this testing is free.

Measure the living area that requires air conditioner shopping. You generally need about 20 BTU for each square footage of room space. If more than one room needs AC service, add together their square footage to reach this calculation.

Replace the air filter in your HVAC system working well.This is an easy thing that you can do and it will keep your HVAC system running in tip top shape.

Always make sure to get references when you are considering a HVAC contractor.

Any HVAC contractor you hire should have an emergency hotline. They need to be able to come to a home when needed, even if when the weather gets to be extreme.

Cover your condenser when the winter. This simple tip will extend the life of your condenser last longer when not being used. Use the fan instead to avoid putting strain on the unit.

This information is used to determine the BTU your system requires to keep the environment of your home comfortable.

Consider have a programmable thermostat. This will help you a lot of money in terms of energy because it allows your system some downtime while you are warm in your bed.

These units are energy products that meet the strict efficiency guidelines. These are put in place by the United State Environmental Protection Agency. They are in charge of protecting the EPA for short.Taking time to fully research various units may help you save a significant amount of money.

Keep your HVAC system running efficiently by cleaning the heating ducts. Look at the ducts to make sure they are in good shape. Damaged ducts increase the energy bill to rise.

Make sure your condenser unit is protected. Try putting a thick cover on it that will help it to stay warm.

Keep the owner’s manual close to you are working with your unit. The information contained within this manual is going to give you quite a few things to learn about the unit you have and will be very useful.

No one can deny that it is disastrous to face life with a broken air conditioner in the heat of summer or a failed heating system in the cold of winter. But, if they get the right kind of information before they get started with this, it won’t be so bad. The tips found above can assist any homeowner in making smart HVAC decisions.