Improving Your Homes Exterior Aesthetic

The exterior of your home has a huge impact on the overall aesthetic of your property, and there are many simple things that you can do to improve its look. Having a drab outside space, whether it’s the front or back of your home, can make it feel tired and run down, no matter how much effort you put into your interior design. So, if you would like to find out more, then read on to uncover some of the best top tips and tricks that you can make the most of now! 

Revamp Your Garden 

One of the best things that you can do to transform your home’s exterior is to revamp your garden. Letting your garden run wild will make your property look extremely unkempt and untidy, and it doesn’t take much to get it back under control with very little effort. Start off by digging out a lawn mower or some grass clippers that can be used to trim down overgrown plants, and try to create an open, level green space. If you have a cement or gravel driveway in your garden, brush away dirt and debris and use a power wash device or an outdoor hose to rinse away any leftover grime. For any areas which can be utilised as flower bed or planting space, source some high quality fertiliser and a few seeds or bulbs. Having flowers, herbs or any other plant life can bring wonderful smells and colours to your homes exterior and add a few eye catching features too! 

Walls & Windows 

Your property’s exterior walls and windows have a huge impact on the general aesthetic of your home, so it’s essential that you can take part in regular maintenance and upgrades to keep things looking fresh. Painting exterior walls is far easier than you may believe, as there are many tutorials online that can offer a step by step guide. A quick top coat can totally refresh the look of your property, and it can be an affordable way to change the theme or style too. Cleaning bricks can be a tricky task, so you may need a professional to complete this job for you to avoid causing any damage if your home is a little older. If your home contains simple single glazed windows, it’s a good idea to upgrade to double glazing. Not only will your property’s aesthetic improve, your energy bills will reduce too, so it’s a win-win situation. Even something as basic as regular window cleaning can add an extra shine to your home’s exterior, as grubby glass is not an attractive sight. 

Improving your homes exterior aesthetic has never been so simple when you are able to make the most of the top tips and tricks that have been detailed above! Start off by spending some time revamping your garden, trimming overgrown grass and adding a few colourful flowers or herbs, then move onto your windows and walls to finish off the perfect outside space! 

5 Tips for a More Functional Outdoor Space

The majority of the time, when you think about decorating or remodeling, the first area you’ll think of is indoors. After all, that’s where you’ll spend most of your time, right? It makes a lot of sense, but that doesn’t mean that your outdoor space should be ignored. Indeed, you may be spending less time in your backyard or garden, but that could well be because you haven’t put in much effort to make it functional. So, check out these five tips on what to do with your outdoor space to encourage you to hang out there.

Create Pathways

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Don’t just leave your outdoor area bare, with no boundaries for direction. No matter the size, it will be better if the outdoor space has established traffic patterns so that the area has a more organized look. You can incorporate a driveway or walkways using trees or scrubs as boundaries, especially if you have a garden. There are a variety of plants with different heights that’ll make perfect walls for the separation. Also, make sure your walkways are the right dimensions so that it’s easier to pass through.

Make it Accessible

One other reason why you may not spend too much time in your back garden is that it might not be easily accessible. You usually would have to leave the most comfortable parts of the house to get to that area. One way you can fix this is to connect the outdoors to the indoors, through the living room or the kitchen. That way, you’ll always be reminded of your outdoor space and, therefore, use it more often. Top-tier deck installations or patios are a great way to easily transition from indoors to awkward outdoor spaces, making them much more welcoming and accessible.

Create Zones

Zoning your outdoor space involves sectioning smaller areas within the larger area. It gives you more to look at within your space, and you can do different things there. For example, have a space for plants, one for hosting dinner, and another for relaxation. You can incorporate different textures and colors to each zone, to make it more diverse and attractive. You are less likely to use the space if you’re limited to what activities go on there.

Brighten Up the Area

Lighting is just as vital outdoors as it is indoors, and there is so much to gain from having a well-lit space outside. Design your roofing or planting such that you can still get the sun peeking through during the day. You can also use artificial lighting, including bulbs or even lanterns, to achieve a more visually pleasing aesthetic. The area will be more welcoming, and you’ll enjoy the time you spend there more and more.

Add Some Seating

If you’re going to be spending time in an area, then there should be an element of comfort. Outdoor seating is one way to make sure you’re relaxed whenever you visit that space. It’ll encourage you to visit the area, as it’ll also serve as a nice change in the environment and scenery. There are so many outdoor seating options available from benches to swings, and there’s a design that will fit your space perfectly.

There is more to your home than just the inside, and so you should consider exploring and making the most of every part of it. No matter the size, you can bring some life and charm and get some more use out of your outdoor area without doing too much.

Home Emergencies: How Prepared Are You?

It’s not a nice thing to talk about, is it? Emergencies are something we would all rather avoid if we could. Particularly ones that affect the people that we love. Unfortunately, we can’t control everything that happens to us. What we can do is be prepared for most of the emergencies that come our way. 

Our homes are important, aren’t they? Yet we often take them for granted. There are so many aspects of the house that we don’t understand, and we assume it will always function and then when it fails everything crumbles. This is especially true when it comes to our boilers. Heating and hot water can make a house a home. If you have ever tried to live in your house without them, you will understand what a difference to your life it creates. When your house is cold, nothing feels the same. You don’t feel cosy when you sit in your living room. Your toes are like ice in the bedroom. Without hot water, you can’t have a shower in the morning, the washing piles up on the sink and you can feel dirty. It is one of the most horrible experiences, and if you don’t have a plan, you could end up stuck like this for weeks waiting for a repair or replacement.

It’s imperative when you have your boiler installed, or when you move into your new home that you speak to a boiler engineer and ask them to run through your system. If you have vital knowledge such as how to restart the system or how to bleed air from the lines, this could help you solve simple issues. Speak to your specialist about how to avoid frozen pipes, which is a common reason for the heating system to break down.

Servicing your boiler is as important as servicing your car, so you should make sure you have this done once a year. A regularly maintained heating system will run more efficiently, and you will be able to identify any wear and tear before something goes wrong. 

In the event of a breakdown, make sure you have the details of an excellent local heating expert to hand. You could also keep some electric heaters and a few electric blankets on standby in your shed or your loft. This will ensure you can keep the family warm while you wait for repairs and parts. 

The plumbing of your home is essential too. With water coming into your house via the mains, you need to ensure you know where your stopcock is. If anything goes wrong and you spring a leak then learning how to switch off the mains water supply will save you a fortune in flood damage and it will also save you a major headache when it comes to cleaning. It’s essential to know a good plumber and to find someone who can offer a fast turnaround. Companies like AJ Alberts: Plumber also provide financing, which could be really handy if you have an emergency that you weren’t prepared for. 

You don’t have to be an expert to get to know all the vital plumbing components in your home. Where are your pipes laid? Where do they feed? Information like this can help you locate the source of a leak quickly so you can help your plumber before he gets to the job. If you can describe where the issue is and see where the water is coming from, he may be able to help you diagnose this over the phone, and that could speed up any parts he needs to order. 

Personal emergencies in your home are the worst. Whether it’s your children bashing their knees in the garden or something more severe like cutting your finger in the kitchen, you need to make sure you are prepared for a number of scenarios. 

It’s always sensible, especially when you have children, to take a first aid course and update yourself regularly on any advice. Would you know what to do if your partner started to choke? What if you burnt yourself badly, how would you react? 

Reaction times in an emergency are crucial. So you must have a comprehensive first aid kit at home. It can help to have a couple: one upstairs and one downstairs. You’d be surprised how many secondary injuries occur when someone is running downstairs in a panic to find the first aid kit. If you know you have everything you need and how to access it, you can save precious time and will be able to keep a level head. 

In any major emergency, you need to contact 911 as soon as you can. You should ensure that the person you are caring for is stable or in the recovery position. If they have cut a major artery, then understanding how to stop or slow the bleed will buy them crucial time. Applying pressure to a wound is correct in some cases but not all. If you can, dial 911 and put your phone next to you on the loudspeaker. If there are other people in your home, then ask them to unlock the door so that the paramedics can walk straight in.

Stay calm and use your head. If you have learnt first aid, then take a breath and run through the basics. The most important thing is to ensure the patient is in the right position and to try to keep them awake. 

Making sure you are prepared will help ease any emergency. The key to getting through life’s sudden crises is to be calm and collected and have a plan already in your mind. If you have already run through what you would do in every scenario, then you can recall the information and deal with it step by step. Don’t panic; make sure you have a list of people you can call when things go wrong and know the basics of every aspect of your home. 

The Ultimate Checklist for Renters Who Are Moving to a New Property

Moving into a new apartment can be both an exciting and stressful time as there is no way of telling how things will go or if you’ll actually enjoy your new space. You could also have to deal with unpleasant surprises once you get there.

Then there’s all the planning involved in a move, which can be a major headache if you haven’t prepared carefully. This is why you should have a clear plan in place before you leave if you want to ensure that the whole process runs as smoothly as possible. Here’s a checklist for renters who are moving to a new property.

Take Measurements of Your New Apartment

One of the most important things that you should do – and that is often overlooked – is taking measurements of every room in the house before you move in. This will allow you to plan how you lay out your furniture. In some cases, you might find out that some pieces will simply not fit in, so you might have to sell, give away, or store a few things before the move.

Another very important thing is measuring the entryways in the front and the back of the apartment. This is because some furniture, like some couch sets for instance, won’t be able to fit through certain doors. This is important if you want to know if your current furniture will fit, or if you intend to buy new furniture.

Check Everything is Working Properly

One of the first things you should do is make sure that there aren’t any plumbing issues when you get to your new apartment. One of the simplest ways that you can do this is to make sure you have access to your water meter. You should check the meter from the minute you get in the apartment, wait for 2 hours while making sure no one uses the water, then check it again – the readings should be the same. If they aren’t, then it could mean that you have a leak. Also, while you are there, replace the toilet seats for sanitary reasons.

Another thing you should check immediately is your HVAC system, especially the filters. Chances are these haven’t been changed in a while, and you don’t want to have to wait on your landlord to replace air filters for you. If you’re looking for a great source for filters, you can find air filters here. FilterBuy has all sorts of filters available, and you should have no trouble finding one for your system. Their order form is also very easy to use, so you’ll have no problem finding the exact model that you need with your preferred level of filtration.

Look for the Circuit Breaker and Shut off Valves

These are two components that will be very important and you have to locate them as soon as you can. You should also ask the landlord how to operate them if you don’t already. These will be

important if something goes wrong and you need to cut the water source. For instance, knowing where the shut off valve is could avoid a disaster if your toilet starts overflowing.

The circuit breaker is another thing you’ll need to be familiar with. There will be times when you might have to reset a circuit breaker or replace a fuse. The circuit box should be easy to reach, and you have to know what areas each breaker controls.

Make Copies of Your Keys

This is another very important step that a lot of people strangely overlook. We’ve all been locked out of our house at least once, and making copies could be a lifesaver. Make sure that you make multiple copies, then give them to people you trust and know you’ll be able to reach if anything happens.

Check the Smoke Detectors

This step is very important as well. You want to make sure that all the smoke detectors are in good condition and are working. Replace the batteries with new ones. Check if they respond to smoke by lighting a match underneath, and see if they react to heat by lighting a lighter. If they don’t respond to your satisfaction, ask the landlord for a new one or get one yourself. While it should be the landlord’s responsibility, you don’t want to stay in a home that isn’t safe, so you could buy it yourself and try to strike a deal with them to take it off your rent.

If you follow the items on this checklist, you should be able to avoid a lot of issues once you move into your new home and feel comfortable as soon as possible. Always plan your move well in advance, and make sure that you and your landlord are on the same page.

It’s Time To Start Cooking, If You’re Not Already!

There are many benefits of cooking. Whether you love to cook now or you have just started and want some encouragement, cooking is a great way to keep yourself and your family healthy. 

  • It Gives You A Reward At The End – You have created something to eat that tastes delicious! 
  • The Creativity Is Positive For Your Mind – Looking at creating new dishes and exploring with new tastes and ingredients is going to be good for the mind. 
  • It Improves Your Quality of Life – It is good to eat well, it will improve your overall health, much more so than eating takeout pizzas will every day.
  • It Gets You Into The “Flow” – It will give you a little routine and allow you to feel in control of things. 
  • It Saves Money – You can cook on a budget and not have to spend a lot and it saves you from spending money on take away meals and restaurant food. 
  • You’re Helping Your Brain Stay Healthy – Your brain works too when you’re cooking and it is a good way to keep it healthy! 

Tools You Need

Having a good workable kitchen space is important if you’re wanting to cook but it’s not vital. As long as you have some space. You need the best equipment that will make your cooking life easy and so investing in some choice pieces will be a great addition. Look at a review to see what cookware brand will suit you the most. 


Some Quick Tips

Adding some delicious herbs will add flavour and colour to all types of meals! They are also rich in health-protective phyto-oestrogens which means that they can make your cooking healthier. Adding the seasoning is the fun part of cooking because it is what makes it so delicious in the outcome.  Things to note:

  • Herbs are delicately flavoured, so add them to your cooking in the last few minutes to get full benefit.
  • Dried herbs are more strongly flavoured than fresh and you won’t need any more than a teaspoon. 
  • Apart from boosting meat dishes, herbs can be added to soups, bread, chicken dishes etc.
  • Steam, bake, grill, braise, boil or microwave your foods, this will retain the vitamins.

  • Modify any recipes that include butter or too much salt and look for healthier alternatives. 
  • Avoid added oils and butter; use non-stick cookware instead. 
  • Remove any chicken skin or any fats from meats to get the most benefit and less of the unhealthy fats.
  • Add lots of vegetables and incorporate fruit into your desserts. This is a great way to get the kids to eat more too! 

Eating healthy doesn’t have to be difficult but with the right know-how, you can be whizzing things up the kitchen every single day and exploring with new tastes. It’s vital to stay healthy during this time and so you must ensure that you take the time to prepare things for yourself and your family and you will see a difference in your mood and your body. 

The Unbeatable Benefits Of Having A Standby Generator At Home

Electricity is an essential part of everyday life. Hardly anything runs without electricity nowadays and ensuring that you have a dependable source of power can be profitable for your home. The national grid, especially when under maintenance, can at times make you go through a dark phase in life, literally. It might also be a result of poor weather conditions that affect electric poles and other electricity infrastructures.

Power surges can be straining and costly in whatever weather conditions. But they can take a toll on you during cold weather conditions. The last thing anyone would want is to be stuck in a house on a cold winter night without heating. While there exist various alternatives to electricity, there’s something about standby generators that make them a worthwhile investment. They’re made to take over in the case of a sudden electrical outage and serve your needs just as well as a connection to the national grid would. 

Let’s get right to it, shall we? Below are the unbeatable benefits of having a standby generator at home.

1. They Are Reliable

When you install a standby generator that turns on automatically in the event of a blackout, you continue to enjoy the luxuries you’d get when your house runs on electricity. If you are living in a high-risk neighborhood, you’ll want to ensure that your security lights are always juiced up come sunshine or high waters. A blackout will leave your alarms and anti-burglary security system off. This means investing in a reliable standby generator that has the qualities to match its reputation. In line with expert technicians at Ablesales.com.au, it’s important to check on the generator’s power output as this can have an impact on the types of utilities used in case of a power outage. Among other factors that you’ll need to consider when investing in the right standby generator include: 

  • The basic sizing of the engine
  • Ease of use
  • Quality
  • Clean energy production
  • Ease of installation
  • Warranty

If you invest in a modern up to date standby generator, you won’t have to worry about refueling it over and over. This is especially the case when using a gas-powered generator that can easily be hooked up to your gas lines, saving you the time it takes to refuel, and providing you with the peace of mind you deserve. 

2. Uninterrupted Power Supply to Your Basic Utilities

Standby generators can provide power for almost all your house needs from the AC to your refrigeration depending on the generator’s size and the output capacity. This will help to ensure that your comfort is not in any way compromised while at the same time, ensuring that the crucial utilities in your house are running. Standby generators can go for days powering your house, whatever your power consumption needs are. But then again, it all depends on the type of generator you choose to invest in. 

Below are different types of standby power generators for home use. They include: 

  • Gas standby generators – Gas-powered standby generators run solely on natural gas or propane gas. This means that they’ll not need to be refilled from time to time. In addition to this, they run smoothly, are more efficient, and are safer for the environment. 
  • Bi-fuel generators – These can use different sources of fuel and by using the best of both worlds, it means that you’ll never run out of options when it comes to fuel. 
  • Diesel generators – These are the types that you’ll find being used in most industries. As the name suggests, they run solely on diesel. While they might be efficient and all, they typically require refills from time to time. This is not cost-effective and it also wastes time. The emissions from diesel generators are not what you would call safe to the environment. They are also expensive to maintain and the reason why most people would consider generators that utilize alternative fuels. 

3. Modern Standby Generators Are Much Safer

Whenever there is a power outage, standby generators create a smooth power transition from the grid and protect your home from dangerous voltage fluctuations. They also protect against power surges after a blackout ensuring that you keep your electronics running until a stable amount of voltage is achieved. This is good at keeping your electronics from being fried.

Whether it’s during disasters or emergencies, a standby generator’s output will not be hindered. You can continue using one when you need it the most. Depending on the type of generator, you may not need extension cords connected to your generator. Modern generators will stay connected to your main power source meters. This is key in ensuring that there are no mishaps with wrong connections and this will ultimately prevent the risks of having naked wires lying around which can be dangerous.

4. Cost Saving

While it may cost you in installing one, the long-term benefits cannot be quantified. Standby generators will ensure that you’ll never have to endure the long hours of blackout. You’ll no longer have to rent a motel or hotel after a power outage, meaning that you’ll rest in your familiar surroundings. This will in the long run save you a lot of money. You’ll also save on appliance replacement costs seeing that having one will protect your appliances from damage during extended blackouts. 

5. They Keep You on Your Toes

With a standby generator, you can keep working on your projects no matter the time of day or night. This is true in every sense in an age where most people are working remotely. A standby generator will also be useful to patients who require power for support using various health support gadgets. This will make it easier to administer treatment even in the event of a power surge

As you can see, you cannot deny the importance of having a backup generator installed at your house. Nonetheless, you need to ensure that the installation is performed by a reputable, licensed, insured, and credible contractor. You don’t want your generator to fail you when you need it the most. 

How To Prepare For A House Move

Preparing to move home can be a chaotic time, there’s so much to get done and only so many hours in the day. To help you ease the chaos and enjoy the process, it’s vital to get yourself organized.

1 . Out with the old

When you’re preparing to move home, you should get rid of all the old items that you no longer need. The last thing you want to do is clutter up your new house with old junk! Tackle your clutter room by room, and put all the items you don’t want to one side. It’s a great idea to donate these to your local charity store. This way you’ll be helping a good cause and ensuring that these materials are not wasted. If you have large items, you might want to use a house clearance company to help you dispose of these in an eco-friendly way. If you have old electronic items, you’ll need to give these to a registered e-waste recycling service.

2. Pack up early 

It’s best to start packing early, to ensure you aren’t stressed out and in a rush. Start with the rooms that you don’t use as often, and leave your frequently used items until the last minute. It’s also a good idea to pack early so you can let your moving company know how many items you have to move. Doing so will help you to get an accurate quote and budget this with the rest of your moving costs. When you’re doing your packing and cleaning, apps like Toddy can help you to organize your tasks.

3. Write an inventory

Write up an inventory of all of your items; this will help you to keep track of everything and ensure that nothing gets lost in the process. It’s best to check if your moving company has an insurance policy or if you’ll need to get one to cover your belongings.

4. Organise your bills

Now is the time to organize your bills, you will need to inform your internet company, water company and gas company that you are moving house. You might take the opportunity to search for a new provider to save money on your bills. If you are happy with your current companies and tariffs, you might choose to take these same providers to your new property. You should also inform your banks and any other services of your new address.

5. Choose a removal company

Research moving companies before you commit to a service. It’s best to look for a company with lots of experience and great reviews. Write down any questions that you have to ask your removal company, whether about insurance, packing, or duration. It’s handy to have a budget in mind before you start looking for moving companies.

Lastly, remember to pre-order the new things you’ll need for your new house. Whether it’s new curtains or carpets, you’ll want to make your house more homely as soon as you can!

In 2020 Homes Are Coming To Life, Literally

We all know and acknowledge that home automation is an inevitable path the world is set on. For many years, the interior design world has been concerned with style. It believes that it decides which direction the modern home will go in. However, it turns out, the tech sector has more of a say in this than it bargained for. Now, people are more concerned with practicality. It seems like in 2020, function over form is set to rise to new heights. An incredible array of automation technology is splurging out onto the scene. Technology is set to make our lives so much easier, more fun and comfortable, in ways that we didn’t even imagine before. Just 10 years ago, who would have thought that voice-controlled lighting would become the norm? It’s time to look ahead and realize homes are coming to life!

The central nerve system

Mark these words, in 2020, you’ll see an end to home assistant ecosystems. It’s unfortunate, but many companies are creating home assistants that you can only use, with their apps. For example, Amazon Alexa can only be used with the Amazon Smart Home Hub. The same goes for Apple, Google and Samsung devices. This creates an ecosystem that unintentionally, locks the mainstream consumer out. Why do you have to buy products that connect only with each other? That’s why Wink Hub 2 and products like it, are going to become the mainstream’s most popular central nerve system of the contemporary home.

Wink Hub 2, not only connects your at-home smart assistant device but also your lights, locks and sound systems; to name a few. Using the Wink Hub 2 app and your voice, you can change multiple things in your home without ever having to get up. Change the room temperature to be cooler, dim the lights and play some music, all while sitting on your couch. No matter what kind of smart devices you have, they should be compatible with a central hub, and guess what? The more you limit consumers from choosing their own ways of harmoniously connecting all their smart devices, the more you push them away. 2020, is the year in which this will all change.

The most powerful change

There are a plethora of home automation products. Everything in your home can be changed, altered and utilized, however you wish. But, the most powerful change in the home automation space, is the blinds. Now hold on a second, don’t think this is a mere exaggeration. Think about what this means. You can control when and how much natural light enters into your home. The sun itself can be blocked without ever having to move from a sitting or lying down position. In fact, you can make your home into a living thing by fitting such a device to your home.

Somfy is the leading brand in this part of the market. Their boast that child safety is enhanced because there are no hanging loose cords that could entrap and possibly strangle toddlers. It connects to your Wi-Fi and can be operated via your smartphone. You can set your prefered blind angle, so if you would like to have a subtle or acute angle as standard when the blinds are open, it will ‘remember’ this. Since the blinds don’t ever touch each other or rather, lay on top of each other, your blinds will look better for longer. No bending, no scratch marks and no losing of their shape. The blinds are able to be set to a timer. Much like you would set your smartphone to automatically activate a blue light filter at a certain time of day, your Somfy blinds work in exactly the same way.

Security and comfort

Comfort and security, in many respects, are synonymous. You wouldn’t feel comfortable living in an unsafe home and no home that is unsafe is ever comfortable. That’s why systems like the Nest by Google are so important to the world of home automation. This technology takes into account how modern door lock systems don’t always provide a great degree of security. They are able to be practically fooled. Skilled burglars will use forged keys, credit cards and lock picks to enter into homes. But with a professional Nest Installation, you receive a doorbell and door lock. 

When someone uses the doorbell, you can use the doorbell’s camera to see who it is. You can move the camera around to look up, down and side to side. Giving you an educated look at what’s going on and who’s outside, you’re less likely to be fooled into opening the door for someone who means you harm. The door lock is digital, and you set a number code to lock and unlock the door. It will lock the door automatically after a set period of time after you’ve shut the door. 

 

However, you’re also getting a thermostat as well as smoke and carbon dioxide detectors. Using the app on your smartphone, set the temperature for your home. Each room is able to be set to its own temperature, giving every member in your household climate control. 

A secret defense

Someway, somehow, an uninvited guest has entered into your home. What can you do to protect yourself? With a Wyze Cam of course. This device turns on and records footage it’s surroundings when it hears sound or detects motion. It live streams the 1080p footage straight to your smartphone. To your delight and annoyance, you can watch a burglar inside your home. This gives you the homeowner more leverage with your home insurance company. We all know home insurance companies will haggle with you and drag their feet when it comes to using their services to replace or receive a lump sum. With footage of things being stolen or damaged, you’re much more likely to be compensated as you have undeniable evidence.

Total control

We’ve spoken about how ecosystems are negative because they limit consumer options. But what if you had a brand that encompassed everything? That’s what Control4 is, it makes absolutely everything in the way of mainstream home automation options.

Control4 OS 3 is an ecosystem but at least it incorporates all the major solutions that homeowners want. Yes, it’s unique to the OS platform and that means Android systems are left out of the loop. But you get a list of products that all fall under the Control4 OS 3 Smart Home.

  • Smart lighting
  • Home security
  • Intercom anywhere
  • Home theater
  • Voice control
  • Multi-room audio
  • Universal remote

These products provide a lot of automation for various parts of the home. You control your entertainment systems from one remote. You can control any of the devices with just your voice. You can speak with anyone in the household using the intercom system, but do so anywhere i.e. using your smartphone as the microphone. On top of this, the home security system makes use of HD cameras which you can set up in and around the home. The smart lighting allows you to control the ambient lighting in each room with just a few swipes. If you’re going to jump into a home automation ecosystem, you better bring your trunks and dive all the way.

The best sound system

There are sound system products like Amazon’s Alexa, but let’s be honest. They aren’t specialized products and you can’t expect brilliant sound quality from products that have been designed to be small and portable. The Sennheiser Ambeo Soundbar, on the other hand, is a product from a dedicated sound system company. Many believe Sennheiser to be the best sound system manufacturer in the world. Many DJs, music artists and moviemakers in Hollywood, use this brand.

The Ambeo Soundbar is voice-activated and provides 3-D sound for the entire home. It can also be wall-mounted if you’re like to create a home cinema with 360-degree sound. Bear in mind, this system is not designed to be portable but you do get jaw-droppingly good sound quality. With a deep 30Hz bass, 13 high-end drivers and a 5.1.4. sound experience, it offers the most immersive advanced sound on the market right now. It is a little pricey, standing at over $2,400, but you can count on its reliability no matter how loud you bump your music.

Some kind of product for home automation had been on everyone’s wish list for last year. However, the market was smaller than one would hope and not too many affordable options were out there. In 2020, this is set to change as smaller companies are trying hard to break the monopoly that big brands like Google, Samsung and Amazon enjoy. The main home automation areas that you should be concerned about are your lighting, both natural and artificial and home security. Once you get used to having better, more fluid door locks and cameras, as well as lighting styles in the home, you will find it easier to venture out into more things like entertainment. Smart blinds and table lamps are easy to understand and use, start there!

 

Pest Prevention: How To Keep Unwanted Visitors Away

Hearing scrabbling noises and spotting droppings can be frustrating for homeowners, especially if you thought you were rid of pests for good. The problem with pests is that they are resilient and they multiply rapidly. If you’re keen to keep unwanted visitors away, here are some preventative measures to take now.

 

Declutter

Spring is always a good time of the year to declutter and clean your home. Decluttering is a way to tidy up and free up space, but it’s also an effective means of reducing the risk of pests. Many animals like to take shelter in secluded, comfortable spaces, and if you’ve got piles of stuff mounting high, your home could become a sought-after spot for rodents and insects. Work through each room methodically, separating out items you want to keep, donate or throw away. Once you’ve removed the piles of stuff you don’t want anymore, find a home for your remaining belongings. Investing in storage boxes, crates and baskets and fitting wall-mounted shelves and units can help to prevent clutter in the future.

Clear your garden

Pests can appear in both your home and your garden. Outside, there are steps you can take to reduce the risk of intruders in your backyard. If you’ve knocked down trees in the past, or you have trees that are not in good health, it’s a good idea to look for a tree stump removal expert to lower the risk of termites creating nests close to your property. It’s also wise to clear out sheds and summer houses and to keep an eye out for swarms of bees and other flying insects. 

Don’t offer up delicious meals and snacks

One of the driving forces of pest infestations is access to food. If you leave bits of food lying around the kitchen counters, you don’t brush the floor on a regular basis, or you’ve got trash bags lying out in the driveway, you may well find that a hungry visitor sniffs out your home. Make sure you store leftovers in sealed containers, throw away anything you don’t want to keep immediately and wipe down your surfaces and floors daily. Tie trash bags securely and keep them in a sealed bin or a locked bin store. 

Look out for early warning signs

Pest problems can escalate quickly, so it’s always beneficial to be vigilant. If you start to hear scratching noises, you see droppings on your floor, or you notice damage to wooden structures in your garden, seek expert advice. Tackling the problem early can help to prevent the situation getting worse, maximize the chances of getting rid of pests in the long-term and save money. 

 

Pests are a common issue for homeowners. Our homes make heavenly havens for unwanted visitors, but there are steps you can take to make them less inviting and appealing. Keep your eyes peeled for warning signs, declutter and keep your home clean and tidy and clear your garden. If you do have any problems, it’s best to contact local pest control experts. 

Help Your Home Feel More Homely

During this time of international difficulty, many of us are becoming more familiar with our homes than ever. This can be both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because it gives us the time to approach our daily tasks and the responsibilities that need to get done. It’s also a curse because odds are you also have an infinite amount of tasks that seem never-ending, and even when all is said and done, sitting down and taking a break can feel difficult for those who are used to being productive all day long.

But why only focus on the chores? Why not spend time designing something that you love, something that helps your home feel more… well, homely? This can help the space feel invigorated and refreshed, which is warm comfort when we’re having to spend so much time indoors. With that in mind, we would definitely recommend that you apply some of the following logic to your situation. You never know just what incredible results you may come to:

Excellent Lighting

Excellent lighting allows you to arrange the atmosphere and ambiance of your room in a way that you might not have otherwise. For instance, Lepro LED strip lights can help you illuminate your child’s bedroom with beautiful new colors, or help add an ethereal and atmospheric environment in your media room or behind your living room television. Additionally, beautifully placed warm lamps that help your room take on a comforting and dim tone can help you relax late at night, or feel comforted during the winter months. If something feels off in your room, it’s not uncommon for lighting to be the issue.

Make The Room Less Busy

When rooms feel busy, they are quite hard to deal with. After all, we all know that caring for our home space is something we wish for, and we can continually add more and more and more to this environment in search of perfection. But too many decorations or stored items, too much wall art, a hard-to-navigate space with endless furniture or simply being unkempt and untidy can leave us feeling unable to relax or feel content in the space – simply because there’s so much going on. When you make the room less busy, you’re more likely to feel contentment.

Cater To Your Indulgences

Your indulgences are a part of you, and so celebrating them rather than suppressing them can be a great idea. If you’re an avid reader, creating the best ‘reading corner’ you can muster within your living room can be an amazing activity, replete with a beautiful vintage armchair, comfortable cushions, a place for your biscuits and tea and maybe even a place to plug in your foot massage and spa at the same time. Who has to say you need to live by the rules? A room is better for the personality you apply to it, and sometimes, a family-wide indulgence can be a great thing to use as your starting point.

With this advice, we hope you can help you feel even more loved and secure within your home.