My Home Just Got Burgled – Why You Need A Home Alarm System

Posted on Posted in Property Security

Life happens. You hear that a lot these days. But after what happened to me, I think it is said
by people who dont have much to lose, if anything. I happen to be one of those people who had a lot to lose and lost most of it. Our home was
recently burgled; and took things that have a lot of monetary value my grandmothers ring
last appraised at $48,500. Then there are the things that have far more personal value than
the morons who robbed my house. Someone said that being the victim of a robbery is more
of a personal violation than a financial one. They rummage through drawers of underwear
and places you could use to hide things.

But I was just one of several people whose home was robbed in an apparently planned
operation, according to police. Our neighborhood is relatively quiet, and has a low crime rate. I had a monitored home alarm
system installed when I first bought my home, but discontinued its service because the
neighborhood seemed safe. Neighbors were visible, but for the most part kept to themselves.
The police said people noticed a car that was driving through routinely, but did not stop at any
specific location. The would-be thieves were monitoring the daily movements of everyone in
the neighborhood. Both me and my husband worked regular 9 to 5 jobs.

Let me say that my husband and I work really hard for our money, and for some invader to
steal not only what we bought, but what has been given to us by others as heirlooms and gifts
makes me want to consider more severe penalties for robbing a home. Life happens? Its only
stuff? Let it happen to you and you will change your mind fast. The real problem though is that we were complacent. We relaxed, and thought because our
area was safe, the people were nice, and we were happy, there wasnt much to worry about.
Thieves care less about your happiness, and disconnecting the home alarm system was a huge mistake. I end this story by sharing some personal perspectives on
having your home burgled.

We take too many things for granted. The longer you work, the longer you own your home,
the more you accumulate, the more you need a home alarm system. Why risk all your hard
work because you dont see the need? Making the excuse that it is too expensive is nonsense
because it is likely that the value of your property is worth far more than the annual cost of a
home security system. The wireless systems can be fairly sophisticated, so you have a
number of options.

Beyond the fact that what happened to me also happened to some of my neighbors angers
me as well. Maybe my alarm going off would have alerted someone. Maybe the thieves
would have moved on to another neighborhood. Yes, those are a couple of maybes but what
is certain is that my home was robbed and the value of some of what was stolen can never
be replaced.

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Tips On How To Remodel Your Kitchen For Under One Thousand Dollars

Posted on Posted in Home DIY

Do you want to remodel your kitchen, but have a limited budget? Don’t worry the following information will teach you how to update your kitchen for less than $1,000. The following four tips not only apply to your kitchen but can also be used for any part of your home that you want to update.

Concentrate on the Most Important Things During Your Remodel

You do not need to complete remodel a room to dramatically transform the space. Instead, determine which items in your home that devalue your home or you hate and change these items. The other parts of your home that you feel neutral about can be left alone. For example, if you do not like your kitchen cabinets or countertops, you can paint your cabinets, install new cabinet hardware and opt for new countertop rather than tearing out your cabinets and starting from scratch.

Do The Work Yourself

Doing the work yourself can save you a ton of money. If you do not know how to complete your project, visit your local home improvement store or watch videos online to learn how to complete them. There are numerous videos on how to install tile, build an interior wall, install pull out shelves, finish drywall and lay new flooring on the internet. In addition to saving you money, you will feel a sense of pride once your project is completed. Enlist the aid of friends or family if these jobs appear to be daunting, and remember to payback the favor when they need assistance with their property.

Simple Things Can Have a Big Impact

It is the little things that can dramatically change the look and feel of your home. For example, a few plants can add color and liven up your room. New lighting fixtures can bring freshness to your space. New artwork can breath fresh life into your room. Other ideas that can transform your space include a fresh coat of paint, a new faucet or new cabinet hardware.

Do it in Phases

Remodeling a room can quickly become overwhelming. If the project takes a long time, you can become discouraged and frustrated. Completing your project in phases can help avoid this. It will also allow you to reach a goal, which can bolster your spirit. Finally, doing a remodel in phases allows you to budget better. You can finish one phase and save up for the next phase without going in debt.

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Giving The Pool The Once Over

Posted on Posted in General

Cleaning leaves out of the pool is an easy job. You can fish them out with a net or let them drift into a leaf basket. This is a routine every other day sort of job, and it might just mean you empty the skimmer basket, or spend 2 mins picking out leaves. If you have no vegetation near the pool, it might never be an issue.

But regardless you have to give the floor the once over every now and then, depending on how frequently the pool is used and how many people use it. Contaminants also travel by air and they can make their way into your pool or get dropped by birds and transported by pets, even if you dont own any.

You can use either a manual pool vacuum for the job or get an automatic cleaner. There are a few choices when it comes to pool vacs of the auto kind. There are suction and pressure side cleaners. Suction side cleaners are generally the cheapest. They use the filtration system built into your pool. But this can easily get damaged if the automatic cleaner sucks up a rock or a piece of hard debris.

Pressure side cleaners run using the return water line and capture the debris they collect in an attached bag. You then manually empty it by hand. But you can put the cleaner to work by itself after you attach it to the return waterline jet.

Some pressure side and suction side cleaners need a booster pump. When you are getting to that sort of expense it would nearly be wiser to look into the next and most effective type of pool cleaner.

Robotic cleaners are the best at cleaning all types of pool and rely on their own components (attached to electricity) to collect all the rubbish your pool has to offer. Naturally they are more expensive, but freedom has a price.

Manual pool vacs are the lowest price. You can check up on a pool cleaner comparison website to see comprehensive reviews on current models being sold. You operate a manual pool vac just like a household vacuum cleaner. Just run it over the areas of the pool and rework places that are really dirty.

You can usually attach these cleaners onto the end of a telepole. This will give you the extra reach so you can safely vacuum the pool from the pool deck. You also have to attach a hose to the pump that comes with the cleaner. All in a days work for the pursuit of leisure.

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Tips For Creating Miniature Gardens

Posted on Posted in Gardening

A popular gardening trend is the creation of fairy gardens and miniature gardens in small containers to mimic the beauty and atmosphere of a realistic, traditional landscape. Fairy gardens and miniature garden designs invoke peace and tranquility by capturing details with this beautiful art form.

Fairy gardens are small spaces, which contain decorative accessories, flowers, and plants, and they are arranged in an attractive display. Large flowerpots, raised garden beds, or various small containers or spaces that are distinctive for the rest of the yard can be used to grow a fairy garden. By watching this video tutorial, you will learn the basics of creating a fairy garden within a terracotta pot. The tutorial also informs you on ways to decorate the pot to enhance its attractiveness, and how to best prepare the soil for your fairy garden. You will also learn ways to choose plants and arrange them to create a visually intriguing display.

Creating miniature gardens is one way to integrate various creative garden designs into your outdoor space. The options for creativity are truly endless. There are many small and large planters that can work for any outdoor space and they can be combined with a range of themes to complement your garden.

When planning a miniature garden, keep the details in scale. Typically, miniature gardens are made so they can be viewed from any angle, but with thought and care, they can be adequately viewed from a single angle with carefully placed shorter and taller plants. The ideal garden container for fairy gardens and miniature landscapes is one with a large, open area that can accommodate numerous decorations and plants in the same space. Among the various options for your container include wicker baskets, wooden wagons and wheelbarrows, terracotta planters, wooden boxes, tin buckets, concrete bowls, and even baby bathtubs.

Options for a fairy garden do not end with your plant selection. Part of the enchantment is choosing the decorations, which allows your imagination to run wild. You can add a miniature fence, ground cover, stones, or even fairy figurines. Another benefit to creating a fairy garden is they can be grown indoors and year-round.

For proper drainage of your fairy garden, include pea gravel at the bottom of the container and several drainage holes. This will allow your plants to grow healthy and lush, while avoiding root rot. You can adorn your garden with miniature furniture, childrenÕs toys/figurines, or small rocks.

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Increasing Vacation Rentals By Installing A Pool Heater

Posted on Posted in General

Not only is a swimming pool heater a nice commodity, especially when the weather is not hot, they can add extra value to your in-ground pool area. This is especially true if you rent for vacations and there may be potential users who will not dare to use the pool unless the water is heated. If you are considering adding a pool heater but not yet sure it it is a good idea, here are a few questions you can ask yourself.

1. What Months Is The Pool Used Most Often?

Especially if living in a location in the Snowbelt, a pool heater will extend the amount of time in which that pool can be used, it will probably add around at least a month at the beginning and another month at the end of summer. Pools in the sunbelt areas naturally have warmer water for a more extended time frame, however vacationers may also appreciate having a pool heater to take the bite out of the water during their stay.

2. During the Day, Does Your Pool Receive Full Sunlight?

If the answer is yes you may not necessarily need the pool heater or perhaps a solar pool heater will do the trick. That being said remember that everyone is different, the water temperatures that one person may tolerate could be intolerable to the next. If you have a house for vacation rentals you really have no idea who will prefer what so having a pool heater may make vacations more enticing for those who are more comfortable taking a dip in warmer temperatures. It can also get your home more bookings.

3. Will the Pool Even be Used Without a Pool Heater?

Many times there are pool owners whose pools are not getting used much, even when rentals are booked. This may be because they have no form of pool heating. The amount of money it takes to install your own pool is quite large, if it is not being used you can potentially be losing out on rentals due having no pool heater which is a waste of a very pricey investment.

Especially just before and after the summer season, people will know what the temperatures are like in your state, especially if its not in the sunbelt. This may cause them to make the judgement call that your house is nice because it has a pool, but its a waste of their money as the water will be too cold without a heater.

If you believe that you can increase your vacation rentals by installing a pool heater then do not wait any longer. Have a professional assess your personal pool area and set up and advise you on the best type of pool heater for you. This is something that you want done properly so you can really make the most of it and increase your vacation rentals.

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Its Safer For Constructions Experts To Survey Your Land Before Building A Pool

Posted on Posted in General

There are many ways in which a pool can be quite an investment. Not only is there a need to obviously invest cash, you will also have to invest property space, time and energy. When designing a pool there is a lot to take into consideration including legal requirements. In this article we will discuss some things you should consider when designing your pool.

1. Backyard Condition

The conditions of your yard should be taken into consideration when designing your pool. Not only are the dimensions important, you should also consider the slope of your yard, the soil type as well as how accessible it will be for the needed construction equipment to access the area. Although modern day equipment no longer requires that the ground be completely level to install a pool, time and expenses could be a factor if it were.

A building and pool construction agent will survey your land for you and tell you what the options are. This service is offered here: http://actionconstructions.com/bespoke-pool-design-heater-installation. Keep in mind there are lots of building, electrical and plumbing regulations specific to your area. A construction company can green light your project a lot faster than anyone else and make sure it meets all legal requirements.

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The last thing you would want to have to do is tear your new swimming pool up or not be able to sell your home as youve breached health and safety regulations. Not only are there building regulations, but also plumbing, electrical and gas regulations all come into play with a pool. Its always best to consult with established experts in this field who are used to doing this.

2. Size

The size of a pool is mainly a personal preference and choice, there are people who prefer a yard in the pool area while others like to completely eliminate the grass and have a pool and patio kind of setting. It is important to make sure that you abide by all the zoning obligations such as barriers, fencing, the pool depth requirements if you were to install a diving board proximity to utility lines, set-backs etc. It is important that your contractor be up to date on these subjects so they can properly handle the process as well as keep you informed.

3. Safety

The number one concern for anyone designing a pool should of course be safety of its users. Not only is consistent supervision at all times an absolute must in order to ensure the safety of children but also proper enclosures which will prevent children, pets and even wildlife from wandering too close to the pool.

There are many specialty products which are easily available on the market such as high-tech laser technologies, water alarms, safety covers and an array of personal safety accessories such as pool floats, life jackets etc. Take your family or those who will be using the pool into consideration while designing your pool.

4. Insurance

The insurance coverage for swimming pools should be included in your homeowners insurance. There are insurance companies who will raise the premiums for those who own a swimming pool and others who will not. Prior to designing your pool make sure you discuss this subject with your insurance agent. Find out if your building contractor has the necessary insurance should your job got disastrously wrong. You dont want to be out a small fortune if your pool or heaven forbid your house collapses. Heard of sink holes?

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How To Find Out More About Swimming Pool Care

Posted on Posted in General

If you have recently purchased a swimming pool, you may have questions about how to take care of it. There are many different things you need to do in order to make sure your pool stays in the best shape that it can. Here you will learn where you can get more information about swimming pool care.

Look online for information about swimming pool care. Subscribe to pool care blogs and look for pool care websites. These are places that you can get lots of information about how to care for your pool.

Join pool owner forums online. Simply search for pool care and forums and you will get several results. This is a great way to contact and ask other pool owners their opinions about pool care. You will also be able to get advice from people that have owned pools for a long time. Don’t hesitate to ask for advice and ask questions about pool care.

Look on Facebook for pool owner groups. This is a great way to get real time updates and information from other pool owners. These groups are great for sharing advice and asking questions. You will quickly get your questions answered when you ask on Facebook.

Ask people you know that own pools. Many times, these people are also experienced and can give you pool care tips and advice. These people can tell you what has worked for them and what hasn’t. Ask them all the questions you have about owning a pool and taking care of it. Depending on how long they have owned the pool, they may have tips and tricks that can keep your pool running smoothly. They may also be able to recommend forums and websites that you can look at so you can stay updated with the latest in pool care and what is available.

Sites like Pamper Yourself Spa have lots of info on how to look after your pool. Expect everything from winterizing your pool to choosing the right type of heater. Plus if you dont see anything specific to your pool you can put something in the comments, as Dion the guy who runs the site is pretty responsive.

Owning a pool is a large responsibility and a large expense. In order to keep your pool running in tip top shape, the right swimming pool care is necessary. You can get advice and tips from experienced pool owners in several different places and these are just a few of the places you can look for advice. Give this advice a try and see what you learn about taking care of your pool. Your pool will run smoothly and last for years when properly taken care of.

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Making Large Scale Online Maps Available To Developers

Posted on Posted in General

When developers need access to maps it is more than just to look at the grounds with the potential for what to build. There are many aspects to consider when looking at potential sites and the buildings that may provide opportunities to developers.

At one time, developers had to hire aerial photographers, industrial drafting professionals, artists, and even surveyors to measure up the landscape on every potential site. These days, much of that same information is available within seconds of calling it up online. Fortunately, Google Maps unveiled its products in 2005 with the eventual development of ground and satellite images as well as map views that highlight roads and railways. It was a huge development when compared to the other map sites, such as MapQuest, which only showed one small area at a time. To create a whole image it took many renderings of a map to get a full picture. It was a good starting point, but not sufficiently robust for developers whose needs called for topography, photography, and artistry.

These days, Google Maps is able to provide much of what was once laborious and time-consuming efforts to create a full picture of an area. This means that different maps and views can pinpoint areas of opportunity for a development project within seconds. Meanwhile, the cloud-based nature of most programs means that the maps can be shared within an organization around the world, and across devices. View maps from a desktop, tablet, Smartphone, and other devices easily and quickly as needed.

For one, large-scale online maps for developers give a full picture of the surrounding area. This is important for the purposes of understanding topography and how the site is relational to the area that surrounds it. Are there mountains that would seem understated or fully ignored on maps from 20 years ago? Ordnance Survey have produced sets of maps that show the whole of the UK in a variety of different scales, this can be particularly useful for developers who wish to apply for planning permission.

Look at the area from the aspects of historical maps, 3D maps, aerial and even with height information as well. Those are all great tools, and it is useful for organizations to assess their level of need and the sheer volume of maps they typically need to create on a quarterly basis.

The reason is simple. It is best to start with the lowest hanging fruit that provides freely. Google Maps is free so long as the user does not call on for more than 25,000 per day over a 90-day period. In such cases where there is high-volume usage, the other map companies may provide better tools. Though, for the most part, companies are able to use Google Maps to an extent. The paid-for sites primarily use Ordnance Survey maps for which they are licensed to provide these copyrighted maps. Most planning departments require plans to be shown on OS maps at a specific scale and this is why it is advisable to use the services of such a company to provide you with large scale online maps.

The difference is in how the information is able to be presented. Some allow colorizing of a map and special icons, as well as custom pop-ups as well. These are all important when considering that many companies require professional presentations of the information either for clients or for non-technically minded individuals within a company.

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The Work of an Interior Architect

Posted on Posted in Architecture & Interior Design

Many people still do not understand how architecture and interior design synchronize. Architects stick to the measurements while designers throw the measurements out. Architects focus on the exterior while the designers focus on the inside.

In theory, architects and interior designers are highly trained professionals with comprehensive knowledge of architectural principles. Historically speaking, these two groups study different disciplines. Architecture is a highly regulated field. Above anything else, architects must design homes that are safe for the occupants. Because architects work with the main structure of a home, they are authorized to make changes to it. Interior Designers are allowed to change the parts of a home that do not interfere with its actual structure.

Generally speaking, architects:

  • Design the whole structure of a home (its exterior and interior structure)
  • Include electrical and plumbing requirements in each plan
  • Focus on the home’s exterior design elements, and also its interior architecture, trim, millwork and ceiling finishes
  • In certain cases, select the tile, flooring and lighting (fixtures and placement)

Generally speaking, interior designers:

  • Design the look/style of a home’s interiors (usually all rooms)
  • Include a lighting plan for each room
  • Design backsplashes, choose all tile, flooring and lighting (fixtures and placement)

Focus on selecting interior materials, finishes, hardware, furnishings, textiles, drapery/window treatments, paint color, wallpaper and accents.

Sourced from: http://chicagohome.donatellibuilders.com/Design-to-build/bid/374642/What-s-the-Difference-between-Architects-and-Interior-Designers

As much as it is clear for one to see that the two fields complement each other beautifully, there is a school of thought that argues that interior design is under architectural jurisdiction. This however is still under debate though interior design has curved a wonderful niche for itself.

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Architects continue to argue that the design of interior space falls under their jurisdiction; that the architect is qualified by education and experience to design the interior; and that they’ve always had this responsibility. So this doesn’t need to change. But things have changed. Increased complexity in the design of interior environments has demanded a more focused expertise and skill set related to sustainable interior materials, ergonomics, design for multiple populations, ADA compliance, workplace design, facilities management, interior lighting and other aspects of the built environment focused at the interior scale. This is clearly evidenced by the growth of the separate, parallel career track in interior design. Architectural education, given its inherent breadth, has failed to provide the focused experience at the interior scale needed to support an evolving and high level interior design practice. Thus, many talented college-bound students have chosen to pursue an interior design education more directly aligned with their passions and interests, even if this might ultimately place them at a disadvantage in the professional and licensing arenas.

Sourced from: http://www.di.net/articles/interior-design-and-architecture/

There is more to interior designing than just aesthetics. Interior architects also deal with functionality and safety. They take into account use of color and light plus the durability and strength of a structure.

Interior architects specialize in designing and building interiors for safety, functionality and aesthetics. It is important that interior architects not only understand the durability and strength of building materials, but also be skilled in the use of light, color and textures in a space.

Interior architects draft plans to create or refinish spaces in private homes or commercial buildings with their clients’ tastes in mind. Each job may require interaction with different clients, additional architects or designers, construction teams and inspectors. In creating plans for a space, they take into account interior construction, lighting and furnishings. Interior architects must also be aware of federal, state and local building regulations so their designs are up-to-code.

Sourced from: http://study.com/articles/Interior_Architect_Job_Description_Duties_and_Requirements.html

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