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Posts Tagged / diy

  • May 23 / 2013
  • 0
Home Improvement, Smith Home Security Blog

Add Value To Your Home Without Breaking The Bank

Add Value To Your Home Without Breaking The Bank

The time has come to sell your home but how can you ensure you get the most out of the sale without it costing the earth?

Here are some simple and cost-effective ways to save yourself the pennies while adding more value to your home, making the final outcome a profitable one.

1. Increase The Amount of Light In Your Property

If you lack light in your home, whether it to be due to lack of windows or dark décor, you should consider making a few changes. A dark property no matter how large it is will not hold as much value as a light and airy one. This doesn’t have to mean replacing windows, though if you had the funds to spare, you could consider installing a skylight which would allow more natural light into the property. Make sure the windows are clean and pristine and consider installing brighter lights, particularly if you are trying to sell your home in the winter months. Blinds could make an excellent alternative to curtains and can be purchased relatively inexpensively which would help to let more light in.

2. Maintain Your Carpets And Flooring

A prospective buyer could easily be put off by a dirty carpet, no matter how clean the rest of the house is and may be equally deterred by the idea of having to replace the carpet of flooring if they move in. Having your carpets professionally cleaned can be pricey, but there is a number of home carpet cleaning kits and even steam cleaners that can be bought that can help to make your carpet look as good as new. Wooden flooring can be varnished and polished.

3. Don’t Overlook The Roof

Don’t think buyers won’t notice if you have major structural damage to your roof, it will also dramatically reduce the value of your home. Even down to cleaning the gutters and drains and fixing the odd loose tile will make all the difference in the overall appearance and value of your property.

4. Make Your Home Look Inviting

Having buyers enter your home to discover you’ve not even bothered to put the hoover round and the sink is piled high with washing up is a sure-fire way to make them have second thoughts. A quick tidy up before someone comes to view at least gives the impression that the home is well maintained and cared for. If you haven’t got one; Invest in a bread maker, a reasonable one will cost less than £50. It’s a well-documented fact that the smell of freshly baked bread makes buyers more interested in buying your home.

5. Make Sure You Install Power points In Convenient Places

It may not be something that you have even thought about, but lack of wall sockets around the home is albeit quite a minor problem, but it’s one that can be rather annoying particularly as we are so reliant on electrical appliances for our everyday living. It probably won’t add a lot of value to the asking price but it could certainly be one of those small things that could sway someone into signing on the dotted line.

By following a few of these simple steps, you can easily boost the value of your home without spending a fortune.

  • Mar 27 / 2013
  • 0
Home Improvement, Smith Home Security Blog

The Most Common DIY Jobs For A New Homeowner

The home buying process can be an exciting experience, especially if this is your first time buying a property. When you have signed the final paperwork and picked up the front door keys, a new adventure begins. Of course, home ownership can also be a daunting experience since you are now responsible for the upkeep of your house, from the curb to the backyard fence and all points in-between. What are some essential do-it-yourself (DIY) tasks that a new homeowner needs to know how to do?

Mowing and Edging Your Lawn

Even if you eventually decide to hire a professional lawn service, knowing how to mow your grass and whack down weeds will prove to be valuable as you evaluate how the hired hands are doing. If you want to save a few hundred dollars every month, learn how to mow and edge your lawn. If you don’t have lawn equipment, it’s not uncommon for neighbors or friends to let you borrow theirs (just so long as they get it back!).

Cleaning and Maintaining Flowerbeds

This simple task can make a world of difference in how your house looks from the street. All this amounts to is pulling weeds, trimming bushes, removing old mulch, going to the landscape store to buy fresh mulch, and spreading it out over your flowerbeds. If you want to get adventurous, consider buying some flowers while you are at the store, and plant them 9-12 inches apart in your flowerbeds.

Change Out Air Filters

This simple task can greatly improve the atmosphere of your new home. Air conditioning experts recommend that homeowners change their air filters every three months. Why? Air filters collect dust, pollen and other airborne particles as air is sucked into your AC system. If the filters become too coated with “junk,” the flow of air is restricted throughout your house, the pollens stay in the air, and your health may suffer. Air filter locations vary depending on your house. Sometimes they are located near your main air intake, other times they are located next to the air conditioning unit. Filters can be purchased at most grocery stores and home improvement warehouses.

How to Paint Walls and Install Wallpaper

Not every house comes “move-in ready,” and most new homeowners are set on owning their dream home. Learning a few simple tasks like painting walls and working with wallpaper can really help you transform your new living space. Local hardware stores are a great place to ask questions, and even take a class or two.

Caulk Doors, Windows and Kitchen Surfaces

Learning this simple skill might save you hundreds of dollars each year on your utility bills and water damage repairs. Caulk is a pliable paste that is easily applied to the joints around your windows, kitchen countertops and sinks, and anyplace else there is a thin gap that air or water might sneak through. Don’t start off life in your new house with insanely high utility bills. Be sure to check each joint to see if caulking is needed.

How to Winterize Your House

It’s a wonderful feeling to stay warm inside your house during the winter but is your house also staying warm? A few simple preventative tasks can help your house survive sub-freezing temperatures, such as covering your outside faucets with foam covers. Ice and pipes don’t get along and every winter someone is affected by flooding caused by burst pipes. So cover your outside faucets and make sure any exposed pipes are insulated.

Dennis Gray is a home improvement blogger. His most recent home rennovation project began with enlisting the help of Texas Fence Co. to build a quality fence.

  • Feb 07 / 2013
  • 0
Smith Home Security Blog

Luxury Bathroom on a Budget

We all need a little luxury in our lives! Of course due to various economic and social reasons this concept has different meanings to different people.

From an occasional latte splurge to an incredible year- end vacation as a reward for a great year of work and progress, people have their own definition of luxury.

Parents of small children may find luxury in the form of a babysitter and night out on the town, while a busy executive may enjoy the luxury of hiring an assistant to help take on some of the burden of a stressful job.

Although there are a many small and large options for indulgence in our daily lives, it can be surprisingly easy to overlook an area where luxury is an absolute must: our bathrooms.

You treat yourself well while out and about but home is where the heart is, and having a relaxing, comfortable bathroom can truly improve your quality of life. A space to rejuvenate and restore is essential not only for pleasure but for productivity.

And, while you may not normally equate the idea of a luxury bathroom with the important things to do with your home like security and other improvement factors, there are ways to make your space lavish and elegant without breaking the bank.

Make the Room Flow

First off, you’ll need to determine if you’re making proper use of your space. Is your bathroom effortless to move around in or is the incorrect placement of furniture and fixtures getting in the way? A well-designed floor plan is a great first step in creating a luxury bathroom.

Find out the location of your plumbing fixtures and draw up a floor plan of your space. Determine whether you’d like to (and can) move any fixtures. A bit of open space can go a long way in providing you with a more comfortable bathroom experience.

Focus on what you have

Not every bathroom can have a Jacuzzi or lavish step in shower, but that doesn’t mean you can’t replace and update your existing fixtures. Spruce up your shower by replacing it with a thermostatic shower valve and luxurious showerhead. Both are wonderful options for having a relaxing bathing space.

Swap out a cracked or moldy sink with an economical and attractive new option. Many bathroom furniture retailers now offer less expensive versions of elegant pedestal, wall hung and even countertop bathroom sinks.

You can also replace your toilet with a low-cost, water-saving alternative. Just having fixtures that are efficient and function perfectly can make an enormous difference. 

Go Cheap where you can

Choice of wall color and window treatments are just two areas where you can use inexpensive finishes to achieve a luxury feel for your space. Choose a clean paint color like deep slate gray or relaxing light blue, and simple but elegant curtains.

Feature Luxury Accents

Add life to a simple but chic space with elegant chrome bathroom accessories such a faucet for your sink and thermostatic shower, and luxurious additions like high quality towels and scented candles.

You can also opt for a rich-looking wall hanging or elegant vase to decorate your bathroom.

About the Author: Sonia Moran is a design consultant and mother of two. She enjoys spending her free time experiencing the great outdoors with her two active boys. She is also a writer for Bathroom Heaven, where you’ll find a range of thermostatic showers and other elements for creating a luxury bathroom. 

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