2016-08-05_9-38-22Upgrading your kitchen?  Remodeling a bathroom?  Finishing your basement?  Regardless of the project, home remodeling can be a stressful time for the entire family.  You’ve still got the kids to watch, a job to do, and routines to keep up. Hiring a contractor for your project is usually a better solution but even outsourcing the work can bring some additional stresses.

Depending on the scope of the project, your contractor and their workers will be in your home for days, perhaps weeks.  In order to make the experience as stress-free as possible, here are some simple tips to follow before embarking on your home remodeling project from our friends at House Logic.  (Just click the picture below to see the full article)

And, if you need recommendations for local contractors for projects ranging from cabinet refinishing to roof repairs, from landscaping to painting, or for just about anything you’re considering to get your home ready to market, give us a call!

 

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Click above for full article from House Logic

 

 

Here’s a great, easy-to-read article from Popular Mechanics about different ways you can winterize your home and save money at the same time.  Did you know that up to 30% of your home energy bill can be attributed to drafts around doors and windows?  Do you know what to do about it?  Click the thumbnail picture below to visit the original publication and see all 19 home winterizing tips.

Click to visit full article from Popular Mechanics

Tip Number 12: Wear a sweater!

While old man winter’s footsteps seem like they’re just down the hall, it’s not too late to look exerpt-roofaround the house for some “winterizing opportunities.”  Like the one described in the snippet on the right.  Over the next few weeks, we’ll highlight what we think are worthwhile articles, stories, and perhaps some local businesses that we recommend.  Meanwhile, click the thumbnail below for a link to the full article by widely respected blogger Sommer Poquette.  And, thanks for dropping by!

click for full article

 

 

Yes, it’s still summer, but it’s not too soon to start planning your fall garden.  And it’s not too late to start planting seeds for some delicious cool weather crops. Using space left vacant by spring crops with summer-sown vegetables will keep your garden productive well into fall, and even winter.  Fall gardens can grow the best cabbage, broccoli, and cauliflower you’ve ever tasted. And, it’s a great time to sow carrots, rutabagas, and turnips to harvest in the fall. But don’t take our word for it — just click the picture below to scan this excellent article in Mother Earth News by Barbara Pleasant.  We think you’ll be glad you did!

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Now’s the time to start your fall garden!

Q. What do fruit juice, red wine, blood, pet odors, and ground-in dirt have in common?

A. They’re all potential show-stoppers when it comes to preparing to show your house to potential buyers.

In many cases, you can save the cost of a professional cleaner (as well as adverse impacts on the environment) by following these simple suggestions.  Using everyday ingredients you probably already have, and following the steps outlined in this article by Sommer Poquette, you can tackle four of the most common (and unsightly) carpet stains.

carpetcleantips

 

The squeaky hinge. The leaky faucet. The disorganized, cluttered desk. Hardwood floors that have long lost their shine. The burned out bulbs in the laundry room that make reaching for bleach or fabric softener a game of chances.
Those are all household “tolerations.” Tolerations are those things we, well, tolerate. Looking at it a different way, they are the things that we allow ourselves to live with despite our disapproval of them. We put up with them. We ignore them. We promise to take care of them next week.
I know it sounds weird to speak ill of tolerance, the very concept that allows us to coexist with those who have cultural or political differences than we do. But tolerations are slightly different. There is a dark side to our willingness to put up with these annoyances. These minor nuisances add up and cause low-level, chronic stress. Chronic stress raises cortisol levels, which in turn increases weight gain, inhibits our immune system, and leads to memory loss and impairment.
These tolerations also take away from the comfort of being at home; they detract from that feeling that makes a house into a home. When you tune out the wobbly ceiling fan or the creaky floors, what you’re also doing is putting up a barrier between yourself and your home. You lose the mindfulness that allows you to relax with family after a long day at work. It sounds strange to say that something as minor as peeling wallpaper could make one feel out of place in their own home, but tolerations pile up, and when they do, the serenity of the home is threatened.
The good news is this: You can fix it. And better yet, it’s not that hard to do.  There are 3 simple steps to diagnosing and eliminating tolerations.

1) AWARENESS

First you must become aware of what your tolerations around the house are. This is not easy to do, as we train ourselves to ignore them (that’s how they became tolerations in the first place). So from now on, whenever you feel a tic, whether it be from a dusty ceiling fan or perpetually bunched-up carpet, make a note of it.Jot it down and move on. Compile these notes into a list. That’s all you have to do… For now.

2) COMMITMENT

Make a resolution to fix these tolerances. The new year presents you with a fantastic opportunity to make a resolution that has proven health benefits and can help restore the relaxing atmosphere of you home. So, take out your list of tolerations from Step 1 as well as a calendar. Jot down 4 tolerations to tackle each weekend until the list is exhausted. Four is a manageable number and you avoid “burn out” from failing to accomplish all of the goals you laid out for yourself. Chances are, you’ll find yourself doing more than 4, but it’s a good place to start.

Spring Pond Rd - Sam Rees Atoka - laundry room copy3) ACTION

Now the fun part.
Look up solutions to your tolerations. You’ll be surprised to find that for less than $5 and 15 minutes of your time you can complete most tasks. If you are having trouble finding quick fixes, here is a useful database of common problems and simple solutions.
By eliminating these tolerations, you free up your energy and attention to be spent on those things that really matter. Why waste quality time over a loose hinge or humming refrigerator? Don’t wait any longer; putting these off will only make it harder to get started.