Home Maintenance: Jobs People Need To Consider Before They Sell

Most people are aware of home maintenance jobs like fixing the roof when tiles break during a storm. However, there are some things that almost every homeowner overlooks. Families that plan to relocate in the new future should do their buyers a favour by making sure they complete the tasks outlined in this article. Failure to do that could mean the new owners end up facing a lot of hassle when they first move into the property. Nobody deserves that at a time when they have to unpack and try to make the place feel like home. So, lend them a helping hand before the contracts get signed.


Replacing water pumps

In most instances, homeowners would benefit from replacing their water pumps every ten years. The issue is that most people are unaware of that fact, and so they never perform the job. If families want to sell the property soon, it’s wise to invest in the best solutions on the market. Grundfos pumps are often the product of choice for most professionals. So, it makes sense that homeowners should also use that brand. However, there are many others on the market, and some offer excellent performance. With a bit of luck, that’s a task individuals can perform without specialist assistance. Those who struggle just need to:

  • Search for instructional videos on YouTube
  • Read “how to” guides online


Servicing the air conditioner

In most instances, it’s wise for people to have their air conditioner serviced every twelve months. Again, many folks don’t do that because they forget. However, it isn’t fair to sell a home to a new family and then for them to discover they can’t control the temperature. That is especially the case when Smart Temp thermostats aren’t going to break the bank. So, search online for servicing companies and get in touch with a few different businesses. Let them know the serial number of the unit, and the professionals should provide a quote. There is always room for negotiation, and so it’s sensible to use those figures to drive down the quotes from other firms. Typical air conditioner issues include:

  • Frozen coils
  • Blocked ductwork
  • Electrical control failures
  • Leaks


Maintaining the boiler or furnace

For much the same reason people need to consider their air conditioner, homeowners will also have to think about their boiler or furnace. Both of those devices require annual maintenance and checks to ensure they perform as expected. If families haven’t managed to keep up with that schedule, they should always contact the experts before they plan to relocate and sell the property to a buyer. That way, those individuals will provide their buyers with a property that’s fit for human habitation. Conventional boiler and furnace problems include:

  • No heat or hot water
  • Leaking or dripping
  • Strange banging and other noises
  • Thermostat issues

Readers who remember to perform those maintenance tasks before placing their homes on the market might secure a quicker sale than those who don’t. However, at the very least, families can relax, safe in the knowledge they did everything possible to ensure the home is suitable for new owners. Of course, there are many other things sellers will need to think about, and so it’s wise to use some common sense throughout the entire process.

Summer Activities That Can Still Be Done In Autumn

Autumn gets colder as it goes on and the ground gets crunchier the more we spend time outside. Leaf diving, chestnut collecting, and getting mud stains on your shoes just walking through a park are pretty standard these days. However, just because summer has rolled away from us again doesn’t mean we can’t still celebrate in a sunny way. If you have a garden, and some time to spare, what you get up to can still have a summery feel. Below are a few ideas on the activities that can still be done with autumn weather and the busy schedules both children and adults alike have once again.

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Have a Backyard BBQ

During the early autumn, you can have a bbq if you want. With the weather getting cooler and cooler, it’s nice to have a sprinkling of summer wafting towards you in the form of food. If you don’t fancy using your own bbq parts because of possible rain damage, or you have none left over from the summer, you can always pick up some bbq spare parts. This saves you worrying and lets the grill live another day.

Go Bug Hunting

Summer means a lot of bugs are coming out of their warm hidey holes, with crickets covering the local parks and bees all over the sunflowers. However, a lot of bugs are out at this time of the year as well, you’ve just got to check the leaf piles and fallen logs. This is a great family activity, and is hugely educational as well.

So many interesting bugs can come out at the sign of cooler weather, including ones you won’t see in the summer. Creatures such as the gypsy moth have plenty of eggs to find laid on tree trunks during these upcoming months. You might even be able to spot a praying mantis depending on the climate you’re in!

Have Some Outside Sports

Before the winter activities of ice hockey or even a spot of curling kick in, there’s some more traditional sports that can still be played these days. A good kickabout is still possible, and having a few leaves floating along with a ball as it goes just makes it more fun.

You can even go canoeing on calm waters. Autumn is the time we think of reflection on blue rivers with the mountainside shining on them. Well take this image to the extreme with a calm ride down a winding river. If your wanderlust isn’t sated by this idea, then you can explore some caves. With plant life more likely to go into hibernation, it’s easier to find cave entrances. Just make sure you know what you’re headed into and have at least a little bit of common sense when it comes to it.

There’s plenty of things to be done in autumn that mean you won’t be cooped up inside. Let your kids run wild and join them in their efforts. There’s plenty to discover outside this season.

Using Luxury Home Touches To Add An Element Of Class


When it comes to decorating your home, you may find yourself being pulled in a range of different directions. It’s easy to find inspiration. With the likes of Pinterest and the many home magazines that we all browse through on a regular basis, it’s all there for the taking. But sometimes, it’s just too much. So much so that you find yourself overwhelmed when it comes to creating a look that you love. But when this happens, you need to forget the clutter and stick to something that counts - class. And to create an air of class in your home, you’re going to want to add the right luxury touches.

Choose A Theme

The first way that you’re going to want to do this is working with a set theme. Now, this can often be the hardest part of all. But if you want to go with class, you need to choose a design that’s going to form the perfect base. Colors can help you here. Metallics always give off a luxury touch, and you’ll also find that neutrals are great too. If you really want to ensure that your decor screams luxury, then you may even want to go with something French in style.

Start Small

When you’ve picked out the perfect design theme, you’re then going to need to add in some decorative touches. And for this, you’re going to want to spend smart. Because if you pick out the right pieces, they will say all that you need them too. You can often ensure that you’re creating the right look with smaller pieces like candlesticks, vases, and pictures. But you have to make sure that you place them well to achieve the right look.

Invest In Key Pieces

Although spending smart is going to help you during the decorating process, it’s also worthwhile noting that you can invest your way to the right look too. Because sometimes, key luxury touches are going to be actual luxury touches too. So take a look into some of the luxury decor brands such as Fendi Casa that you can style into your home. You will find that one or two things will really set your space of with style.

Don’t Be Afraid To Shop Vintage

However, you should also realize that wanting to create a luxury look for your home doesn’t have to mean you buy everything brand new. Sometimes doing so can create a look that you really don’t want. So instead, don’t be afraid to buy vintage pieces to mix in with what you already have and have just bought, to achieve a classic look.

Be Basic

But remember to keep your background as basic as possible. Although each luxury touch is important, you have to make sure that you keep them minimal, and that each piece you bring in has a purpose. With too much clutter, you won’t be able to find that air of class that you’re looking for. But with a more minimal look, your home with scream sass.

The Path To Happiness Starts With Healthiness



The concept of a healthy lifestyle is one that often invites many groans and protests. This isn’t to say that people don’t want to be healthy but simply that they believe they’re too busy to be healthy. Perhaps you share that mentality because it’s one that commonly believed by people. We live in a sedentary age so this myth is understandable. We sit down in cars or public to transport to get to work where we continue to sit down for hours on end. Not only is exercise non-compulsory but there’s seemingly no time for it. We buy ready meals because we don’t have time to cook proper homemade meals. Every excuse comes down to a lack of time.


This is all a misconception, of course. There was a time before gyms and fitness classes when exercise was a natural part of daily life. People didn’t think about how many hours they’d spent lifting weights or running around their local park. The point here is that you don’t actually need to overthink exercise, eating well, or looking after your health in general. It’s all a matter of moderation and simply ensuring that you keep activity and variety in your lifestyle. If you want to be happier and more motivated to live healthily then the secret is to start living more healthily. It’s a self-serving cycle but here are some tips to get you started.


A healthier appearance.
Being healthy is about more than looking after your body on the inside, of course. Often, when sometimes is wrong with your lifestyle, the effects start to show on the outside. You might notice blemishes or acne on your skin, for example. This can be the sign of many things. You might want to start drinking more water because hydration can help to improve the appearance of your skin as well as having numerous positive effects for your body and brain. With regards to the brain, working on your mental issues such as stress, anxiety, and depression can help to reduce acne and other skin problems. We’ll talk more about the mind later in this article.


Of course, your skin might be the least of your worries. Concealer and other medical advancements mean that blemishes are often things that you can keep hidden from the rest of the world (though it does help to solve the root cause of the problem). You might be more concerned with the state of your teeth, however. Learning to brush and floss well will help with this. Not only will you reduce staining and plaque buildup if you look after them better but you’ll also reduce the risk of gum disease and losing teeth. Once again, the paths to being healthy and happy overlap. You might even want to consider Invisalign braces if your teeth have always looked a little uneven. For self-conscious people, invisible brace treatment could be the perfect solution to maintain your current appearance and still manage to improve your dental appearance over time. Nobody has to know.


A healthier mind and body.
Perhaps the most important point to take on board when you’re looking for a way to be healthier and happier is to work towards a healthier mind. You shouldn’t force a strict exercise regime or brutal eating pattern for the sake of doing what you think you’re supposed to be doing. Forget crash diets because they do your body more harm than good, and forget the gym if you hate that type of exercise.


Focus on your brain and what makes your happy because mental health is just as important as physical health. You need to practice techniques such as meditation and mindfulness to help re-center your thoughts when you lose focus in life. You should be working towards a lifestyle which makes you happy. If you love to walk then go on long walks to get your daily dose of exercise. Twenty minutes of brisk walking is more effective than five minutes of half-hearted jogging on a treadmill at the gym.

And remember to eat well too. Don’t deny yourself certain foods and then bounce back to your bad diet when celery and carrots just aren’t cutting it. Everything should be eaten in moderation, as mentioned earlier. You can eat chocolate in small parts as long as you’re eating sources of protein, such as meat or Quorn, and sources or iron, such as peas or spinach, along with many other foods that give you all the nutrients you need. A varied diet that includes treats such as a few biscuits or some chocolate is better for you than a diet purely consisting of fruit and vegetables.

First Year Home Upgrades: Where Should Your Priorities Lie For Fast Improvements?

When moving into a new property, it’s never going to be 100% to your requirements. In truth, it will probably take years to truly stamp your tastes and preferences on the new home. However, you can go a long way to making it feel like yours in those opening 12 months simply by getting your priorities in order.   
 
Focusing on the right upgrades doesn’t only bring the most significant change in the fastest time. It also enables you to speed up the process of the overall transformation by utilising your budget in the best manner. Here are six goals you should focus on straight away.

House, Keys, Key, The Door, Castle, The Background
 
Security: A safe home is a happy home, and you’ll never acquire true contentment until protection is at the desired level. Home CCTV and surveillance equipment is more affordable and accessible than ever. When combined with secure doors and windows, the whole property will feel better. Automated gates and garden systems can be used to further enhance those feelings. Either way, this should be top of the agenda.
 
Eco-Friendliness: We all have a responsibility to embrace green living. Regarding the home, though, those improvements can be financially rewarding too. Start the transformation with these top 5 tips on where to start when considering solar for your home! The running costs associated with the property will rapidly decrease while the home’s value may increase too. The fact you’ll be helping the environment is only a bonus.   
 
Space: No matter how big or small your new home is, utilising the available space is vital. There’s nothing worse than an overcrowded and claustrophobic house. Moving is a perfect time to declutter while you should ensure that every room serves its purpose too. Give the garden a sense of function too, and it’ll instantly bring a new dimension to the home. Besides, when the home feels as though it has been adapted to your needs, your relationship with it will thrive.

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Lighting: Creating the perception of space is one thing, but injecting light is what will bring a positive atmosphere. There are many ways to achieve this, including lighter wall colours and the strategic use of mirrors. Meanwhile, this list of top 5 lighting solutions will transform the home’s vibe too. Get this aspect right, and every room will feel bigger and better. Moreover, the impact it can have on your general sense of positivity can be truly life-changing.
 
Bedroom Comfort: Every room will eventually need to feel comfortable. Right now, though, bedrooms should be the priority. Failure to get a good night’s sleep will take its toll on your relationship with the home. Find a comfortable bed and thick curtains while boosting the HVAC facilities. Meanwhile, a TV or radio can go a long way to resisting the urge to use your smartphone before bed. Seriously, the impact that this can have on your general happiness is monumental.   
 

Getting those elements won’t complete the home transformation. But they will generate a far happier general atmosphere. As a new homeowner, that’s all you can really ask for.

Lets get Physical, Physical with activewear from Lyst

If you are looking for activewear that sets you apart from the rest of the gym bunnies, then look no further than  Lyst  . They have over 11,000 designer labels available and super fast shipping so you can be rocking your new gym threads in no time at all.

I am partial to activewear that works well with a few pieces, I like to look put together and I like my gear to coordinate and mix well with other pieces, I like easy to wear pieces that are well made and I am partial to a little label loving too.

Here are my top picks for a capsule activewear wardrobe from Lyst

Sweatshirt
H&M Sweatshirt $12
The perfect sweatshirt to throw on over a singlet after a workout, classic styling and polished.

Heathered Knit Joggers
Forever 21 Heathered knit jogger $13
Knit Joggers are both stylish and functional activewear, perfect for a trip to the gym and then running errands in after.

Caslon Tie Sleeve Sweatshirt
Caslon Tie Sleeve Sweatshirt $15
A lovely lightweight sweatshirt to throw over a crop top and tights for Saturday morning coffee and yoga with the girls.

Active Heathered Hoodie
Forever 21 Active Heathered Hoodie $15
Stylish and showy top, a great top to show off all that hard work at the gym, perfect for layering.

Aero Logo Jogger Sweatpants
Aeropostale Aero logo sweatpants $18
Pretty sweatpants to wear with a lovely crisp white tee and sneakers.

3/4-length Sports Tights
H&M 3/4 length sports tights
The must have tights, perfect for every workout and holding everything in.

Have you popped over to Lyst and had a look around? Grab some gorgeous gear and get active!


Spend Less on Life's Essentials

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We all have essentials in life; things like food and electricity that must be budgeted for before we can think about spending our hard-earned cash on the fun things in life like clothes, holidays and trips to the cinema. If we can find a way to spend less on these essentials, then we can spend more money on the fun stuff, and more importantly, save more money for the future.

There are countless ways that you may be able to spend less on life’s essentials, but here are some of the easiest and most effective to get you started:

Buy Food in Bulk

If you’re able to buy your food in bulk, doing so could see you make significant savings in the months and years to come. You can buy pulses, rice, pasta and even meat (which you can freeze) in bulk from places like Affordable Wholefoods and then you just need to work on creating a meal plan that will allow you to use your bulk produce up effectively before it expires.

Cut Down on Meat

If you eat meat, you might enjoy it, but you have to admit that it can be pretty expensive, and really most of us don’t need to eat so much of it. So, if you can try to cut your meat consumption by 30-50 percent, replacing it with more affordable beans and legumes, which are also packed with protein, and you’ll see your grocery budget dwindle.

Install Solar Panels

Having solar panels installed by Essential Solar might require you to make a not insignificant investment upfront, but if you can afford it, it’s a great way to cut your monthly power costs by a whole lot. We’re lucky where we live that we get an almost constant supply of sun, so it seems silly that we pay over the odds for electricity when we could be generating our own! Once you have solar panels in place, they will, in just a few short years, pay for themselves, so it’s a no-brainer.

Ditch the Second Car

If you’re a two car family, and it seems like most families do have at least two vehicles these days, try to see if ditching one of the cars would be feasible. If it is, and if you’re able to share the car successfully, you’ll save money on gas, insurance, tax, repairs - you could literally save thousands.

Rent or Swap Clothes

Obviously, buying used from the op shop is the best way to save money on your clothing needs, but if you have a passion for fashion or there really aren’t many good used options in your area, you could consider swapping clothes with friends, family and neighbours to ensure your wardrobe always remains interesting. For those

Renegotiate Bills

There are many bills like your cell bill and insurance policies which are necessary, and which you can’t cancel, but which you may well be paying over the odds for. A good way to spend less on these essentials is by calling up the companies involved and simply asking them for a better deal. You’d be shocked how often, in order to retain your business, they’ll offer to put you on a better plan. In the case of insurance, if your circumstances have changed, you may be able to get a better deal, and if not, using a comparison site to switch could see you paying a fraction of what you are now.

Just because things are essential, really doesn’t mean they have to be expensive!

Is Your Energy Bill Running Away With Itself? The Tips To Save You Some Money

Our energy bills can be one of the things that can end up costing us more than it should do, without us even realising it. Think about it. You may switch on your heating in the winter without a care in the world. Pop on the air conditioning in the summer without a moment's consideration to the bill. Lights will be switched on, even left on when you aren’t there. There are many ways that the bill rises, and often, we pay a similar debit each month and will be none the wiser to our usage until we speak with the energy company. Many of us can then be left with huge bills and debts to either add on to our repayments or pay off in full.

However, energy, just like your food bill, can be controlled ins some way by yourself. After all, it is only what you use in your home and how you use it, that has a major effect on your bill. So I thought I would share with you some of the ways you can reduce your energy bill within you home. Perhaps even enabling you to lower those monthly payments once and for all.

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Change provider

Many of us are quite happy to let our energy bill be debited each month without another thought. Of course, that is until you realise your payments aren’t covering the amount of energy you are using in your home. But that’s another story. What we can all fail to realise is that our energy providers can offer better deals at better rates for new customers, which often means that you are paying more than somebody else using the same amount as you. So why don’t you become a new customer somewhere else? Switching energy providers can often save you a fair bit on your monthly payments. You can do this as often as you want just bear in mind that any outstanding balances will need to be paid. So it may be worth ensuring you are paying out enough in the first instance. But this could be a great way to slash the bill in the future.

Look at alternative ways to keep your home cool in the summer

Keeping your home cool can often be a dramatic task to encounter. The heat outside can be unbearable at times, and you want you home to be a cool, safe haven. So why not look at alternative ways to keep your home cool rather than just cranking up the air conditioning, which can be quite costly. First up, you could consider window tinting to help keep the solar glare out of your home. This is a great way to keep the house cool, but it can also help to keep your heat inside during the winter months, so there is a double benefit. You could also think about how you use your home. Ensuring all blinds and curtains are drawn shut, close off doors of rooms you are not using to avoid heat circulating. You could even take advantage of the morning and even cool air and open up the windows before the sun rises and after it sets. Allowing the cool air to circulate and freshen up your home.  

Be smart with your heating

It can be so tempting to switch on the heating at any opportunity and crank it up to its highest point to heat your home faster. But the sudden surge of energy required to do this can be costly in the long-term. Instead, try and consider using the heating and leaving it at a more consistent temperature all the time. This way your home always feels warm, but the keeping a consistent temperature is far more cost-effective.

Switch appliances off

Leaving a TV on standby, letting appliances remain plugged in with the switch on, these are all things we can be guilty of doing on a day to day basis. Instead, be proactive and switch things off at the mains. Even though you think they are off on standby, they are still using some form of energy to keep that red light on, or even sending little surges of energy through the wires from the plug. This may be a small change with a small benefit, but combining it with other methods could help to reduce your bill.

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Be conscious of the lights in your home

How many of us enter a room, switch the light on, walk out of it and forget to switch the light off? Many of us are guilty of this, children especially who have no concept on how much energy and cost there is involved. Switch those lights off. Also, you may want to consider switching the bulbs to energy savings ones, this can reduce your bill quite heavily. Lastly, when it comes to lights, a lamp will always be more cost-effective than the main light in a room.

Avoid using a dryer when doing laundry

We all have to wash clothes, and while it isn't convenient to go back decades and hand wash them, we can be a little savvier with how we do it. For convenience, many of us will choose to put the wet clothes in a dryer, but these can be a real sap on your energy bill. Try hanging washing outside on warm days, or using a clothes hanger in your home. Save the dryer for emergency use.

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Have you thought of solar energy?

Finally, many people are considering the switch from the main energy source to solar power, and are finding that this will significantly reduce your energy outgoings. Solar panels are fitted easily to the roof of your property at the most prominent position for the sun. They can then utilise the solar rays and turn it into energy that will heat your home, heat your water and allow you to use appliances in your home just as you would normally. Thankfully, there is plenty of information online if you are considering this option.

I hope these tips help to save you money on your energy bills.

Don’t Forget These Hidden Costs When Moving Home

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Moving home is an expensive process. Many people can get so caught up saving for a deposit or down payment on their new property that they forget to budget or all the extra details. Here are some of the hidden costs and how to make them less pricy.

Using an agent

If you’re selling a property through an agent, they will generally want an agency fee and some commission. It’s possible to advertise your property without an agent, but it will be more difficult as you’ll have to find buyers yourself and be around to give viewings.

Some agents may also sneakily charge a buying fee. You should try to ask about this first before committing to a purchase as many agents will only warn you about at the last minute and it could be a lot. If you’re looking for a place to rent and going through a tenancy agency, they will also generally charge a fee. In some cases you may be able to negotiate an agency fee.

Checking for future costs

It’s worth hiring a surveyor if you’re buying a property to check that there aren’t any expensive hidden repair costs around the corner. A surveyor will be able to check for any cracks in walls or subsidence that could cause a future problem. This could cost a few hundred dollars, but could save you thousands in the future.

Getting it legally approved

When buying a new property, it’s important that the legal paperwork is transferred over to you. This is a complex process that’s best handled by a solicitor often known as a conveyancer. You can usually negotiate conveyancer fees – like a surveyor, their services are likely to cost a couple hundred dollars.

Moving your possessions

It’s possible to hire a van and move your own possessions. This is a cheap solution if you haven’t got too many belongings to transport, however for those with a lot stuff, it could work out more expensive due to making multiple journeys – or at the very least it could end up causing more stress. A removals company will be able to shift your stuff quickly and efficiently. For a long distance move, a specialist removalist may be required. Costs can vary widely depending on how much stuff you hope to take and how far you plan to move it.

Cleaning your old property

Once all the possessions are out of your old home, you’ll need to clean it for the next owner. Some agents will be able to provide this service for you, whilst others will leave it up to you. This can be gruelling work and so it could be worth hiring a professional cleaning company to completely deep clean the property. The cost will depend on the size of your property and how unclean it is. Shop around for multiple quotes to find the cheapest.