11.24.2017

Accident Prevention: Out And About With Your Baby


When you have a new baby, you will do everything in your power to keep it safe and sound. However, though, there are some times when you can’t completely control your surroundings or the things that could cause harm to your young infant. This is always the case when you leave the house. There are various risks to you and your baby when you are out and about, but that’s no reason to stay at home and wrap your child in cotton wool. Quite the opposite! Read on to find out how you can prevent any accidents from happening when you are out with your baby.

Invest In A Good Stroller

You will need a stroller for your newborn so that you can take them with you whenever you need to go anywhere. It’s a really wise move to invest in a top-quality one that comes with plenty of suspension and storage space. If you aren’t entirely sure which stroller is the best for you, it’s a good idea to take a look at https://wholovesbabies.com/britax-b-agile-b-safe-travel-system-review/ and other review websites for some ideas. You should also take a look at different strollers in your nearest baby store so that you can get a feel for each of them.  

Dress Them For The Weather

Babies can’t regulate their own body heat too well for the first months of their lives, so it’s really important that they are dressed well for the weather when you take them out. During cold weather, they should have plenty of layers on as well as a hat and mittens. You should also cover them with a blanket in their stroller. Make sure your baby only wears one layer of thin clothing during the summer months. Tight clothes could result in them sweating too much and suffering from a heat rash. Babies can easily develop skin conditions in hot weather, so it’s useful to check https://www.webmd.com/a-to-z-guides/diaper-rash-treatment to find out about all the different treatments.

Get A Car Seat

No matter how short your car journey is, your baby should always be strapped into a car seat. It’s not safe for someone to hold them or for them to sit unaided in a car. In fact, this is a legal offence and you could end up being fined or prosecuted for this. You can buy car seats for babies in most car stores and baby shops. Make sure you buy one that is the correct size for your baby.

Never Let Them Out Of Your Sight

These days, the risk of stranger danger is higher than ever before. I’m sure you have heard about many high profile abduction cases, such as that of Madeleine McCann. It’s a parent’s worst nightmare. For this reason, you should never let your child out of your sight and only leave them with friends and relatives who you completely trust and who you are sure will look after them properly.

Make sure you never forget about your child’s safety!

Your health could put your finances in critical condition

Can poor health make you poor? With all the debate that’s been raging around healthcare as of late, it has a lot of us thinking. Even if you’re lucky enough to have never had a serious accident, illness, or a family member who does, you have to recognize that the risk is always there. As it stands, can your finances handle the strain that poor health can bring to it? Here, we’re going to look at some of the very real concerns facing all of us and what we might be able to do about it.

Bad habits cost
It’s not the most major concern, but there’s no denying that some of the blame has to fall on us. We get into habits as a measure of fighting stress or because we’ve been influenced through the years or simply because we want to. However, beyond the costs of the treatment against the potential health issues they bring, our worst habits tend to be some of our most expensive. Nowadays, for instance, the myth that healthy eating has to cost more than junk food has been turned on its head. Alcohol isn’t cheap either. However, the biggest offender by far is a smoking habit, which can often cost up to $2,292 a year. Of course, there are going to be some that smoke more and pay more as a result.
Stress makes us bad with money
We mentioned stress and how it feeds into unhealthy habits, but stress also feeds into some unhealthy financial choices. This stress can come from many places, like raising a child, our job, or even money stress. Studies have shown that stress is a lot more likely to unnecessary expenditures as well as a lack of insight into some of the more sensible uses of one’s money, such as budgeting and setting aside savings. That’s not to say, of course, that we’re entirely out of control when we’re stressed, but it can make it harder to see sense when you’re constantly on edge.

Better health, better earnings
There’s also growing evidence to suggest that healthy people make more. As if they weren’t lucky enough already. There’s a lot of reasons that may be the case, as well. A lack of sick days accounts for some of it, but not as much as you might think. With exercise and a healthy diet limiting carb intake, we feel much more energetic throughout the day and in much more positive a frame of mental health. That enables the motivation and confidence to not only be more productive but to have a better estimate of one’s worth. Confident, happy people tend to negotiate a better salary or benefits package than those who aren’t as fully engaged in their job or have as much self-esteem.
Left footing the bill
We’ve looked at some of the general trends in health that can impact both our balance of expenses, as well as something of a psychological profile as to why mental and physical health can lead to better financial choices. However, now it’s time to look at the real ways in which health can suddenly and destructively impact your finances. Having to pay your own medical bills when you shouldn’t, as well as the time off work, is time and again one of the most common causes of serious debt and bankruptcy. We can all be taken out of work by illness or injury at any time. We need to have precautions such as disability insurance at the ready. This is even truer if we have a family that we’re providing the sole support for. Making room for an emergency fund in the budget might be a wise move, as well. We can’t anticipate that we’re always going to be able to work. If you have the opportunity, make sure that some coverage from your employer is one of your key points when negotiating a benefits package. By ensuring yourself some entitlement to paid sick leave and paid maternity, you can make sure that time off work isn’t going to be the end of the world.

Managing the costs of healthcare
Doctors’ visits and prescription drug prices are becoming unmanageable for a growing number of people in the country. While many of the prices will fundamentally be decided by the regulations in place and the practices of the businesses behind them, we can take some steps to curb them. For instance, by shopping around for insurance and making sure we’re not over-insured or, if you’re on Medicare, using Medigap to make sure you’re not paying significantly more for the treatments not covered by the plan you’re on. We can cut the cost of prescription drugs by buying generic instead of branded, by asking for OTC painkillers or medications when we don’t necessarily need prescriptions, or even by being more careful about when we ask for antibiotics. Finally, make sure you always check your medical bills and that they’re fully itemized. Learn to read them and learn to spot the ubiquitous errors that can end up forcing you to spend more.
Know when help is on offer
You may be entitled to some of the help that’s out there, as well. For instance, if you’re disabled and unable to work, beyond covering yourself with disability insurance, see if you’re entitled to social security payments. You can improve your chances of a successful application by providing as much detail and evidence as to your condition as possible or hiring a disability lawyer. There are grants and funds on local, state, and federal levels to help people undergoing health trouble meet their financial needs, as well. For instance, the Percy Bilton charity, which provides funding for older people and people with mental health difficulties. Asking for help can be hard, but it beats dealing with the increasing difficulty and financial stress that comes with it.
It's a complex question, but it does seem clear that accident, injury, and illness are some of the leading causes of financial stress today. Without preparing for them, you could be the next amongst those whose finances they’ve ruined.

Your Passport to the World's Best Coffee



"I never laugh until I've had my coffee." – Clark Gable
Coffee is one of the most beloved beverages in the world, so much so that the annual global consumption of 60kg bags of coffee is more than 15 million. Still, not all coffees are made the same and aside from different bean types, there are also different ways of grinding and preparation that result in different taste and aroma, and only true coffee lovers will feel that difference. While coffee roots can be traced to Ethiopia, there are many other countries that excel in coffee quality.

Italy

Let us begin with the most obvious choice. Italy is famous for its small, yet strong cup of pure coffee capable of waking you up instantly. You’re right, we’re talking about espresso. A true Italian espresso is best when it is consumed without milk, syrups and other things that could compromise its strength and bitter taste. In Italy, it is usually consumed quickly, while standing at the bar.

Morocco

The coffee culture in Morocco is reminiscent of the one in Europe, especially France. Unlike Italians, Moroccans like to sip their coffee slowly while sitting in the café and savoring the taste. That’s why their best coffee includes a half-half mixture of coffee and milk – nous nous. Nous nous is usually prepared with Arabica beans, which means the taste is softer and sweeter than that of Robusta beans.


Turkey

Turks have a long tradition of drinking their coffee black and strong. It’s also typically unfiltered so there is an undrinkable sludge at the bottom of the coffee cup after you are done drinking. This may sound weird, but Turkish coffee (kahve) is oddly delicious.

Nicaragua

Nicaragua has only recently joined the race for the best coffee in the world, but its blends of ground coffee beans have a lot to offer. What particularly stands out are notes of fruity (mostly berries) and chocolate flavors. During the mornings, Nicaraguans drink their coffee with milk, and for the rest of the day, they need a stronger dose of black coffee and sugar.

Australia

Whether you prefer whole coffee beans or freshly ground coffee, in Australia you will definitely find something that suits your taste. The beans types are very diverse and the ways of preparation vary even more. Still, the best way to drink coffee Down Under is to go to a café and order a flat white coffee which is famous for creaminess and a lot of thin foam.

Colombia

Colombia is one of the quintessential coffee countries and one of the greatest coffee growing nations. Since Colombia has many different microclimates, there are many distinct coffee bean flavors, even coming from two farms next to each other. A typical cup of coffee for Colombians (café con leche) contain strong coffee, milk and sugarcane juice.

Malaysia

Although Malaysia produces both Robusta and Arabica beans, it is the most famous for growing Liberica varietal which accounts for only two percent of the total global coffee production. Because Liberica generally has inferior flavor to two more popular types of beans, Malaysians have come up a great way to intensify its taste and texture – the Ipoh white coffee. This style includes roasting the coffee beans on palm oil margarine.

India

The region of Southern India is renowned for growing its own coffee and preparing it in a unique and delicious manner. After the coffee is roasted and ground it is the percolated and topped with frothed milk. Such beverage is later pulled between two metal containers (cup and saucer) resulting in cooled mixed coffee.

Vietnam

Vietnam is not only the second largest exporter of coffee in the world, it is also the country of origin of one of the most unique ways of preparing this beloved drink. Ca phe sua da or Vietnamese iced coffee is prepared by pouring hot water into a mini percolator of dark grains on top of a glass. That liquid is later dripped through the percolator and into sweet condensed milk. The final touch comes in the form of ice cubes.

Ethiopia

Finally, it is important to mention Ethiopian coffee, since it is the birthplace of this beverage. It also delivers great quality and fantastic coffee types such as Yirgacheffe (floral notes and sweet aroma) and Harrar (fruity, exotic). The method of preparation and drinking is a long ceremony: roasting, grinding and brewing three cups by reusing the beans (strongest, weaker and weakest cup).


These coffee beans and types are bound to put a smile on your face. Depending on what you like, you may find your favorite morning kickstarter on this list.




11.23.2017

5 ways to stamp out stress


They say stress is the biggest killer. Indeed, chronic stress has been linked to the six leading causes of death: heart disease, cancer, lung ailments, liver cirrhosis, many fatal accidents and suicide.

All animals feel stress – the release of the stress hormone cortisol triggers our survival mechanism, making our body tense and our mind more alert. This can be useful in the short run, but draining over a sustained period and eventually fatal. Unfortunately, human beings have evolved to feel stress in situations that aren’t life-threatening ranging from work to family issues. Where possible you should try to fix the source of the stress whether it’s taking on less work or getting relationship counselling or simply getting supports from friends and close relations. If this isn’t possible right now, there are still ways of counteracting stress. Here are just five ways that you can relieve some of the stress and feel more relaxed.

Take a hot bath

Taking time out of your evening to relax in a hot bath can combat stress symptoms. There’s science behind it. When stressed we contract all of our muscles (as if preparing to fight or take flight). A hot bath loosens up all these muscles. When stressed our blood pressure also rises. A hot bath has been shown to lower our blood pressure. Both looser muscles and lower blood pressure can help to combat a lot of physical pain, which can also be a cause of stress.


Meditate

Meditation is an easy stress reliever that can be carried out at almost any time. It has been shown to have many health benefits including lowering risks of cardiovascular disease as the result of stress. There are many disciplined forms of meditation including Yoga and Angelic messages that could help some people to learn to meditate. When done correctly, it can reverse almost all the symptoms of stress by telling your brain and then your body to relax.

Exercise

Physical activity can also reduce stress. When we exercise, our body releases endorphins, which are our feelgood chemicals (they’re also natural painkillers). Exercise can also improve sleep quality, further helping to combat stress. Any form of voluntary exercise that raises your heart rate can be a good stress relief.

Eat the right foods

Certain foods can fight stress. Unhealthy comfort foods aside, some of the snacks that can improve your mental wellbeing include avocado, blueberries, dark chocolate, turkey breast, pistachios and salmon. Sites like Happy Body Formula offer more information on what makes each of these foods so good for combating stress.  Try incorporating some of these into your diet throughout your day and see if you notice the results.


Listen to music

Listening to your favourite music can also be a good stress relief. Calming music in particular can help to regulate your blood pressure and prevent the mind wandering, make it harder for stress to take hold. Music can also be a great accompaniment for meditating to. 

Food Trends Around the World



What’s the up-and-coming avocado toast of the hipster foodie community? And how has the slow food revolution affected restaurants and chefs around the globe? We’ve all grown tired of the pre-packed, pre-made, processed meals, and we yearn for the good old days of yore, that smell of freshly baked bread and the feast ritual. Without further ado, here’s what the world has in the pantry for us!

Bite-sized sweets
Yum. That’s how they look, taste, crunch under your teeth and feel when you bask in their sumptuous flavor. I’ve always been a fan of mini cupcakes, and the macaroon craze had me at hello, but this is a whole new take on the healthy food that meets emotional meaning. 

A perfect example? Ben Shewry’s storytelling tarts, served in the suburbs of Melbourne, in the Attica restaurant. These three-per-serving tarts are crafted with local people, and local ingredients in mind. And as such, they reverberate to the tales of the area’s history, all neatly wrapped in tasty, fine-crafted bites.


The rise of the spirits
A hop across the globe takes us straight to the birthplace of the manliest drink ever created, the Scottish whisky and its infamous sibling, gin, but this time with a modern, urban twist. Newly-opened distilleries in cities such as Edinburgh and Glasgow aim for the lovers of artisan spirits that were locally made, with unusual flavors. 
But they are not alone – a single look at our own spirits-loving hood, and you’ll see craft spirits shops and distilleries popping up as we speak all over Australia and the US.


Artisan butchery
If you’re still having doubts about the slow food revolution, and the mega-market craze (ironically) slowly passing into oblivion, then the renewed love for artisan butcheries will eliminate all your suspicions. They are everywhere, they are unique, creative, and they are here to stay. 

As someone who loves meatless Mondays, I’m a benevolent carnivore with a deep appreciation for meaty meals, with access locally-produced quality meats from the best butcher in Sydney delivered to my doorstep. And the trend is omnipresent over the world, as people want to know the origin of their meat, its quality, and they once again prefer ethical production.

Brunch over dinner
Bring out your inner hipster and don’t take him out to dinner – take him out to brunch instead. This midday meal has become an absolute favorite among many Sydneysiders, and I’d take an educated guess by saying that Europe and the US aren’t too far behind. 

Take, for instance, the majestic Faro in Brooklyn where handmade pasta reign, and their brunch menu is the epitome of comfort food. Many restaurants also choose lunch specials to give their midday menu more versatility, and people are gladly taking that afternoon break from the typical nine-to-five hustle.


Sugar and flour alternatives
Ah, the two main ingredients of all the sweet goodness we’ve ever tasted, from muffins to good old cookies, traditional sugar and flour have gone through a remake of sorts, to be replaced with healthier, nutrient-dense alternatives. 

Coconut sugar, stevia as a sugar substitute, almond-meal, spelt, and the like, are all finding their special spot in every chef’s kitchen. Luckily, it’s also a trend that’s permeating the home cooking sphere, as in this delicious almond loaf cake, so those who prefer to stay in no longer have the excuse not to choose the healthier, nutrient-richer variety.

Everything spicy
Plain popcorn? No, thank you. What about chocolate ice cream? Still not good enough. It’s time to bring out the big guns in the world of flavors, and mix and match even those that seem the least likely of all. This is where India, China and other corners of the Orient have started infusing the rest of the world with their imaginative aromas. 

Turmeric has become an absolute, all-time favorite in breakfast omelets, while a visit to California-based McConnell’s Fine Ice Cream shop can give you a taste of cardamom-enriched scoops, but you can also go for the more daring tastes of whisky, or the Thanksgiving-inspired pumpkin pie. 



11.22.2017

Cost effective ideas to jazz up your home


Every house becomes a little neglected and worn-out over time. It’s only natural that you’ll start to let standards slip in terms of household maintenance once you have a family, work, and other adult responsibilities on which you need to focus. Before you know it, your home stops feeling quite so homely; things break, the aesthetic looks outdated, and the clutter has piled up. Of course, time and money are things that are hard to come by. Are there easy ways to renovate on a budget? Yes. Here are some cost-effective ideas to help you jazz up your home.

The kitchen.
As the most important room in the house, you should definitely focus on the kitchen when you’re trying to jazz up your home. You spend most of your time cooking and relaxing with the family here; it might not be the room you’d immediately call the most important in the house but there’s no denying it forms a warm and inviting center of your humble abode (or, at least, it should). You should really utilize the potential of the space in this room. Rollout drawers within cabinets can provide an easy and organized way to store crockery but this could also be used to store your trash can (you could avoid leaving it out for display on the kitchen floor).

You could also put up shelving units on the walls as additional storage space; the goal is to make your kitchen look as minimal and spacious as possible so that it feels like a larger and more inviting space. The colors you use can also achieve this effect. You could repaint the walls in a neutral color such as white so as to naturally brighten the room; neutral colors will naturally reflect the sunlight pouring in through the windows. Mirrors, shiny surfaces, and other “bright” furnishings can help to make your room feel more open and spacious. None of these improvements have to cost you very much at all if you opt for the DIY approach.

The space.
As we discussed above, minimalism and spaciousness can really help to open your kitchen in order to make it feel a little more inviting and welcoming. Of course, there’s no reason as to why this method should be reserved for the kitchen. If you really want to jazz up your home then you should be striving to make the entire home look more contemporary, modern, and minimalistic. Clutter should be left at the door. If you’re worried that you won’t be able to afford modern furnishings that you’ve love to have in your home then start to think about ways in which you can raise funds through getting rid of your old stuff. Decluttering can be a huge money-maker if you find valuable things that you no longer want. Those profits can be used to afford newer and sleeker furnishings to replace the old ones. That’s how you lessen the cost of a renovation project.

The coziness.
Another effective way to jazz up your home is to make it feel… well, like a home. And the best way to do that is to improve the cozy factor. This doesn’t have to be costly. In fact, it can be more cost-effective. Temperature is a big factor in the coziness of your household. As the winter months approach, the last thing you want is to feel cold in your own home. You should think of smarter ways to heat up your humble abode than turning up the heating and sending your energy bills through the roof.

Insulating your walls and getting thicker glazing on your windows are two ways of better trapping heat in your home and reducing your energy bills. You can make your house warmer and spend less money in the long run. You should also look into central heating options if you’re currently using a space heater because this will help to reduce heating cost you face every month. At the end of the day, you’re looking for ways to spend less money and make your home feel more comfortable. That’s a win-win situation.


The garden.
Your property’s exterior is just as important as its interior if you want to jazz up your home. First impressions really count. Of course, the thought of constantly maintaining your garden to keep it looking neat and vibrant sounds both time-consuming and costly. That’s why you should be striving to turn this outdoor space into a low-maintenance area. Fake grass can look just as trim and sleek as real grass and it saves you all that time and hassle of constantly mowing the lawn in order to keep it looking neat. In addition, you should get plants which require very little care; cacti essentially look after themselves. You don’t want to be worrying about forever replacing dead plants that are ruining the aesthetic of your garden.

Creating a beautiful low maintenance garden: 4 tricks

If you want a stunning garden to make people go, ‘wow!’ but you don’t want to spend hours each week taking care of it, you’ve come to the right place. Gardening is a joy and can even help to reduce stress levels, but it may not be something you want to spend all of your time doing.

Here, we’re going to discuss creating a beautiful low maintenance garden with 7 of the best tricks you’ll find. See what you can create with them!


Low Maintenance Plants Only
If you want your garden to look beautiful but be low maintenance at the same time, it only makes sense to select low maintenance plants only. Some say you should get rid of plants altogether, but this doesn’t make sense if you want a truly beautiful garden. Stick to one type if you want super low maintenance.

It’s a good idea to avoid annuals and tender plants, bedding plants, vegetables and sowing of seeds. Plants which need staking should also be avoided - delphiniums are the most common offenders. Make sure you know which plants act as slug or rabbit food, as your garden won’t look great. Hostas are the worst for this.

So, what can you include? Shrubs, preferably evergreen like daphne, lavender, holly and euonymus. Lavender is great because it’ll come back year after year. For a low maintenance garden with variety, stick to between 5-10 plants depending on how much time you have. It also makes sense to choose plants that are suited to your garden’s soil type, aspect, climate and size.

In some cases, beds of mulch or crushed stones can be better than soil to care for.

The Right Fence Panels
Having the right fence panels will add a certain aesthetic to your garden, as well as cut down on the time it takes you to care for your garden. Avoid wooden panels, and go for composite fence panels instead. They are far more eco friendly and low maintenance, plus they have a great aesthetic.

Fake Grass
There are a few things you can do when it comes to your grass. If you want the grass look but you don’t want to care for it, invest in fake grass instead. The maintenance required is minimal and it can look very real.

Some argue that it isn’t good for the environment to get rid of your grass, but others disagree. Natural grass can't support much wildlife, and when you take into account the energy used in mowing for petrol/electricity it begins to make more sense. Plus, consider the pesticides, water, fertilizer, and other products used to keep grass looking great.

However, it’s understandable if you want to keep your grass simply for garden games, picnicking opportunities, and the feel of real grass on bear feet. If you want to keep it, make it a simple shape so that it takes less time and energy to mow.

Chill Out
Once you have your ideal low maintenance garden, just relax. Accept that sometimes a few weeds may poke through, or that your grass may get a little long. Enjoy it!

11.21.2017

A home which is built to last

When you buy something as expensive as a home, you will expect it to last for a very long time. This investment will take a large part of your life to drum up, and a lot of people will want to get the most they can out of it, gaining something which will stay with their family for generations to come. Of course, though, achieving this dream will take some very dedicated efforts. To help you out with this, this post will be exploring some of the different ways you can do this, without having to break the bank.


        The Building Itself

A building can be a very delicate thing. From the foundations supporting it to the roof keeping out the elements, there are loads of different areas which can go wrong with a home. Unfortunately, when this happens, it will often cost a small fortune to get it put back together again. To avoid this altogether, having a well-built home will make sure that it never suffers the drawbacks of something lower quality.

  • The Bought: When you buy a house, you put a huge amount of responsibility into the hands of the people who have built it, relying on their skills to make sure it lasts. To make sure this works out for you, it is always a good idea to research a building business before buying their work. Even with companies like this, you can often find reviews and testimonials to make sure that they are legitimate.

  • The Built: If you decide to build your house yourself, you have loads more freedom in dictating the quality of it. The materials, construction company, and even the research you do will all be very important in this. To help you out, there are loads of business out there which dedicate themselves to helping individuals to build their own projects. This can make life a lot easier for you.

Living and dining room with black and white furniture facing patio with plants and furniture

        The Inside

Once you’ve got the main building sorted out, you can start to move your hunt to the inside of the house. While it doesn’t support the home or keep it standing, this element is crucial for those who want a home which will last. Even if this means simply choosing a style which won’t go out of date, the inside of your home should be perfect to get you started.

  • Materials: To begin, you should always think about the materials you use as the first area. Wood, stone, and metal can all vary in quality by a huge amount from product to product. To avoid the lower quality options, you should always be working hard to make sure that you read reviews and guides to find the best of the bunch. Even a slightly thicker beam here or there can make a huge difference in this sort of area.

  • Manufacturers: Along with materials, the people making the goods you buy can also make a huge difference to the quality of your home. A company like ikea, for example, is easy to understand when it comes to how long their furniture will last, as it coincides with the price you pay for it. Researching a company like this should be an easy task, as long as you have access to the Internet.

  • The Money You Spend: A lot of people are very skeptical about the prices of the products they see on the market. Huge price differences are found where it doesn’t make sense for loads of products. When it comes to a home, though, you will almost always get what you pay for, and this means that spending more will yield better results. A simple look at wealthy homes adds a lot of weight to this idea.

  • The Right People: Designing and building your kitchen won’t be a job which can be done overnight. Companies like International Granite and Stone can help you with large parts of your work, offering support in loads of different areas. To make sure you’re choosing the right people here, it will be well worth reading plenty of reviews before you get started. Without this, it will be very hard to tell how good your new workers really are.

A couch with throw pillows and blankets and a table with an aquarium filled with pinecones on top of it

        Keeping It Quality

Making sure that your home is high quality will always take a lot of work. Most people don’t realize how much dedication it will take to run a house, and it can be a shock to the system when the work begins. To help you out with this, you can find some examples of the work you’ll have to do, along with the support you can get, below.

  • General Care: With a careless attitude in the air, no house will keep itself intact for very long at all. Unfortunately, this part of life is something you always have to be working on. Taking shoes off inside, keeping hands off of walls, and making sure messes are tidied are all a big part of this, making it hard for families to achieve this sort of dream. To help you out with this, there are loads of handy guides around the web which are designed to make housekeeping a lot easier.

  • Regular Maintenance: Of course, you won’t be able to keep yourself going on cleaning alone, as a lot of the biggest parts of your home are mechanical. Like a living creature, a machine has to be looked after if you want it to last for a long time. Regular boiler services, electrical testing, and other maintenance are all a part of this. This sort of work will almost always have a positive impact on your home.

Hopefully, this post will inspire you to start working harder on the time you put into your home’s quality. Not a lot of people consider this building to have vulnerable points or weak spots. But, in reality, your home is very fragile, and you have to work hard to make sure that it stays in good shape. A large part of this work will be done before you even move in or choose the home. Along with this, though, you will always have to work to make your house perfect.

Give The Front Of Your Home A Facelift


Whether you want to up the value of your property or simply make guests feel more welcome, it could be worth making a few improvements to the exterior of your home. Here are just a few ways that you can increase your property’s curb appeal.

Apply some new paint

A new lick of paint could help to make your home stand out its neighbours. Over time, existing paint may have become discoloured due to exhaust fumes from cars and weathering. If this is the case, consider getting it a top up. It’s possible to paint your home’s exterior yourself, although bear in mind you will have to climb a ladder. It could be safer to hire a professional to paint your exterior for you. Be wary of painting your home with a bright colour if you’re looking to up the value – something too bright may put certain buyers off. That said, you can usually make a statement with a brightly coloured door.

Repair your roof

It can often be worth considering a roof replacement when selling as loose tiles can out many buyers off, even if you aren’t getting any leaks. A roof replacement is best done by a professional, especially when it comes to flat roofs and shingles. You could even consider adding insulation to your roof whilst you’re at it if your loft is currently uninsulated.


Make use of your front lawn

If you’re lucky enough to have a front lawn, don’t abandon this space. Keeping it neat and tidy will help to add value to your home. You could use it as a place to show off some of your gardening planting various flowers or sculpting hedges. You could alternatively create a garden path leading to the door and perhaps even add a gate, giving your home a more inviting feel. If you don’t want the hassle of maintaining a lawn, you could convert it into a more practical space such as a driveway. You could even pave it over and turn it into a social area with a table and chairs.

Light the way

It could be worth adding some lighting to the exterior of your property. When getting back late at night, lighting could help you to find your keys in the dark. Motion sensing lighting is a good solution for conserving power. Alternatively, you could install some solar lighting – this can look great places around a garden path.

Spruce up with flowers

Flowers are great for cheering up the front of your home. Even if you don’t have a front lawn, you can still embrace flowers in many ways. You could add some hanging baskets either side of the front door. Alternatively, you could put some flower boxes on a windowsill. You could even grow a creeping plant such as ivy up the front of your home. Make sure to regularly keep these flowers maintained and watered as dead flowers won’t do much for your curb appeal.  

Add some ornaments

There may be ornaments that you can add to the outside of your home to give it some extra character. These could be statuettes such as animals or garden gnomes. You could consider hanging something on the door such as a sign or a wreath. You don’t want to leave ornaments that are valuable outside as they could get stolen. Similarly, be careful of light ornaments that could get picked up in the wind.

Provide shelter

If you don’t have some kind of awning over your front door, it could be worth getting one installed. This will give you and your guests shelter in the rain. You may even have enough room to construct a porch area. If your home opens straight onto the pavement you may want to check with your local planning committee first before building an awning over the door – there may be restrictions as to how far it can protrude over the pavement.

Name your home

Giving your home a name could be a charming touch that is likely to up the value of your home. This could be displayed on the front of your home on a sign along with your house number. There are many companies that can create home signs for you.

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