renovation - Smith Monitoring
:::: MENU ::::
Smith Monitoring

Interested in home security?  Get 2 months FREE! Learn More »

877-543-4888 FREE Activation FREE Installation

Posts Tagged / renovation

  • May 30 / 2013
  • 0
Home Improvement, Smith Home Security Blog

Renovating Your Home With A New Set Of Windows And Doors

The exterior of a home is as important as its interiors. While it is true that going by appearances is not a good idea, most of us still, in fact lend a lot of credibility to exteriors. Think of the last time you went to visit a friend’s house for the first time or some travelling stay home. We always end up measuring the people who live in a house based on how their home looks from a distance.

For all we know a house might look just plain awful from outside and look like a king’s palace on the inside. That is not going to cut. It is important that the outside looks the best it can look. We are not suggesting that you make your home look like a hotel from the outside and ignore the insides. The idea we are trying to propagate is that there should be an equal amount of time spent on home improvement of your exteriors as well as interiors.

Windows And Doors

When it comes to exteriors, it comes down to the garden, garden furniture, the walls, windows and doors. Gardens are something that need and receive maintenance almost every day or on a weekly basis. If you don’t do this, the garden is going to die and no one wants that. The walls, once constructed, rarely need any maintenance, though you may have to readjust the paint every once in a while.

That brings us to the main topic of discussion, the windows and doors. On a practical note, it is not possible to change the way your walls look, unless you rebuild the entire house. However, what is possible is that windows and doors can be changed and replaced as and when you desire.

There are two reasons when you will think of replacing these two. Either they are too old, or, they have simply gone out of fashion and you want to do some home improvement to get your home styling up to speed. There is also a secret, third reason why you may wish to replace your windows and doors. Sometimes it so happens that when you moved in, your budget did not allow for a grand set of windows and doors. Now, times are better and you are swimming in more money. Hence, there is now enough room in your budget to get a better set of windows and doors.

When discussing windows and doors, they are usually treated as the same. The way we see it, a window is mostly a shortened door as it is. So the designs and mechanisms available in doors are usually available in windows and vice versa.

Current Designs

Essentially, you are looking for some current designs in windows and doors.

Currently, there are four types of window designs that are considered trendy – casement windows, tilt & turn windows, sash windows and timber based windows. Each of these styles bring with them a modern feel about them while ensuring that all the practical benefits of windows – energy efficiency, safety etc. are in place.

Our personal favorite among all these window designs is the casement type of windows. There are some things about this type of window which makes it endearing for large and small homes alike. All casement windows come with double glazing and this means enhanced protection from a security perspective and a weather perspective. You get added security from an intruder, which is a critical necessity, and you get extra protection from weather elements. Of course, the casement windows look ravishing from a distance with their wide length appearance and how they blend in with your house walls.

Door Varieties

Moving on to the doors, the currently trending doors are patio doors, French doors, sentry doors and residential doors. If you have taken our advice about going with the casement windows, then the perfect partner for that design has to be the French doors. In many ways, French doors almost look like elongated versions of casement windows. They have the same appearance, which helps you maintain a consistent theme across your windows and doors.

As with most doors that are sold today from reputed vendors, French doors are certified against intrusion. Keeping in line with this understanding, they come with the best, easy to use locking mechanisms. Thanks to its popularity, you can find different kind of locks that can be installed along with the French doors, just in case you are not happy with the default set of locks that come with the design.

  • 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 18 / 2013
  • 0
Smith Home Security Blog

Home Improvement 101: Polished Concrete Floors in Your Home

If you think that polished concrete floors are used in commercial facilities only, consider yourself wrong! Believe or not, they could be the perfect solution if you’re wondering how to upgrade your residential property. Your floor will look as it’s made of expensive flooring materials but you actually won’t invest much money at all. The polished concrete gives a beautiful finish and also has few key benefits that you can’t ignore.

Economical

What you have to know first is that the installation of the polished concrete floor is cheaper than the other surfaces. You don’t need the expensive traditional floor covering materials and all the labor that goes along with them. To polish the floors, the professionals use methods of flattening and leveling the concrete. This reduces your costs for maintenance over time. The smooth surface of the polished concrete is also non-abrasive which is another advantage.

Durability

The everyday use of the floor wears out its surface over time. It’s already proven that the polished floors are more durable than most surfaces like wood. They’re not as vulnerable to damage. Don’t worry if you drop something heavy on it! It won’t break or alter the smooth image. The polished concrete floors are fire resistant and protected from the bad influence of the UV lights. The polished concrete will be your long term flooring solution.

Easy Cleaning

Concrete floors are easier to clean and they continually maintain their modern and elegant look. You’ll never need to polish it again or use a wax. The polished floors eliminate dust mites, mold and pet dander that gather and live in carpet fibers. Your family will be protected from all kinds of germs and allergens from this solution.

It’s NOT slippery!

Maybe you think that when a surface is described as “polished”, this makes it slippery. Well, this is not the case. Step with confidence because it’s safe! Treat the floor with anti-slip conditioners that make better traction in the cases of wet concrete. When you choose who to make your floor, check if this company meets the requirements of the OSHA standards for floors.

These floors will improve the style and looks of your home. Polished concrete floors will impart a high-gloss shine on your floor, making your home have a luxurious feel. Although it’s not a marble, it looks very similar to it! There are many color and style themes available.

Now that you know the basics and benefits of polished concrete floors, you can choose your level of sheen depending on your aesthetic requirements and maintenance abilities. You can also choose between dry or wet polishing. Options are best discussed with the experts.

Get SMART+ HOME Learn »