What Type Of Cleaner Are You? Your Small Screen Inspirations

Despite being in the 21st century, no one seems to have invented a house that cleans itself. Okay, so I assume it's important that we save the planet and find a replacement way of powering cars, probably. Yet you'd think the greatest minds would have set themselves to fix something that actually matters, jeesh... anyway. Houses don't clean themselves, and that means we have to give some of our precious time over to doing it.
Everyone has different methods, which is both a blessing and a curse. From a vast amount of research (i.e. I asked my friends), I have discovered there are four different types of cleaner profiles. All can be compared to a TV character. Which one do you fit - and how can you make it more efficient?
The Monica
Named for TV's most famous cleaning-obsessive, Monica Gellar from Friends. You're ruthless. Dirt is the enemy, mess is to be obliterated and any bug that crawls across your home is to be slaughtered. You have actually morphed from finding cleaning a chore to something you actively want to do. Your home always looks like the example in a show home brochure.
How to make it more efficient? Lady, you know you don't need my advice for that. You've got this nailed. You're probably cleaning your computer while reading this, aren't you?
The Carrie
Ah, Carrie Bradshaw: so many questions asked throughout Sex and The City, yet never once seen holding a duster. Perhaps wearing something resembling one, but not actually holding one. Carrie types don't clean, because they don't create mess. Who needs to wash up when you eat out all the time? Ovens are for storage, not cooking!
How to make it more efficient? You're rubbing against the grain here. Choose everything to be low-maintenance, choosing surfaces that need minimal effort to maintain. If you’re really committed to a life of leisure, hire someone like RJ’s Cleaning to do it for you
The Claire
For Modern Family's matriarch, you're a busy woman always juggling seventy-things at once. You don't like cleaning, and nothing ever looks exactly perfect. Other people are always messing up what you have cleaned, and you spend as much time thinking "that'll do" as "that's done".
How to make it more efficient? Break everything up into small chunks. You've not got a lot of time on your hands, so don't try and tackle everything at once. Go for little bursts in specific areas, then sit down with a glass of wine to have a rest for once.
The Lynette
You're not dissimilar to the Claire, but there's one key difference - you don't always get things done. Your house is messy, and not in a Bohemian I-like-it-that-way kind of style. Whether you have kids like the eponymous Lynette Scavo of Desperate Housewives or are just a tad lazy, you're always chasing to keep up. You never quite manage it. You're close to giving up on trying.
How to make it more efficient? Clean as you go. Don't let things build up, because that means accepting you'll never truly get it done. When you cook, wash things up as you gone. Rather than dedicating time to cleaning, get into the habit of always being in the process of doing so.

Beating The Heat: Life Hacks To Keep You Cool In A Heatwave

Summer may be nearing its seasonal end, but we are still experiencing some remarkably humid weather world over. Many people believe this is down to global warming. Whether you agree or not, one thing is for sure - hot, sticky weather sure can be uncomfortable. High levels of moisture in the atmosphere are what lead to high levels of humidity. It is for that reason that during a humid spell, the sun can be shining one minute and the next we're in the middle of a downpour. Therefore, this unpredictable weather can throw us into some unexpected situations. But by being more prepared for this kind of climate, you can live more comfortably.

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Defend against insects

Unfortunately for us, bugs and insects thrive in humid weather. Even if you do not usually experience many insects around your neighbourhood, humidity can bring in creatures from other states or even from overseas. This is because insects that thrive in humid conditions are looking for other places to breed. If a spell of humidity mirrors their home climate, they will move there to take advantage of it. Mosquitos are a common example of this kind of behavior. There's nothing worse than a summer of being relentlessly bitten, or finding creepy crawlies in your shower. To prevent a whole host of flying insects making themselves at home in your property, invest in fly screen doors. These doors are generally equipped with a thin mesh that allows your house to breath in hot weather but bars the way for insects.

Don't open windows during the day

Trying to get a good night's sleep in hot, humid weather can be exceptionally difficult. Most of us want to avoid opening our windows to avoid the aforementioned insect problem. However, for many people, the heat is so unbearable it just has to be done. Do try to keep your windows shut during the day though, and draw any curtains or blinds. Sunshine coming through glass will only make your home hotter, as it acts like a greenhouse. Opening your windows at night is less of a problem, as it will be dark and the air will have cooled by then. A popular hack these days is to place a fan near your open window, so that the fan actually blows any hot air back outside rather than circulating it around your room.

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Make ice your best friend

During hot weather, you are likely to become pretty well- acquainted with your freezer. Putting a cloth in there and then holding it on your wrists will cool down your boiling blood and bring your total body temperature down. If you're really struggling to sleep at night, try putting your bedsheets in the freezer for a few minutes before bed. Or alternatively, turn your hot water bottle into a cold water bottle by filling it with freezing liquid.

Wear sensible clothes

It can be tempting to simply wear as little as possible during a heatwave. If you are in your own home, by all means go ahead! But if you're planning on leaving the house, you might want to dress a little more modestly. Heavy duty fabrics like denim and polyester are going to do you no favours here.  Instead, stick to light cotton, which will let you skin breathe whilst still protecting you from the sun's rays. Also consider switching up your makeup routine, as wearing things like foundation and mascara may simply sweat off.

Becoming The Owner Of Your Dream Home

Everybody will have a different image in their head when picturing their dream home. Some will picture a huge mansion. Some will picture a simple detached 4 bedroom home. Others may have their eye on a quirky little apartment, or even a hobbit house! No two people’s idea of their dream home will be the same. You can become the owner of your dream home, but there are a number of different ways to go about it. Whether you’re buying your first home or this is somewhere you’re going to be moving to from another place, this post will give you lots of useful information.

Speak To Your Local Estate Agent

When on the hunt for your dream home, it’s a good idea to chat with your local estate agent beforehand. Some homes are sold before being even put up on the market, so you’ll find a much better selection here than you would if you were to search solely online. If you let it be known that you’re a serious buyer and you’re friendly with them, they might even be willing to give you a heads up when something in your price range and preference becomes available. They could even give you more inside information, such as how many people you’re up against.

Search Online

Searching online for your dream home is important too. You’ll find a bunch of different types of homes because of the different platforms you’re searching on. Make sure you’re using platforms that you like, and can easily compare different homes in your area with. You should ask yourself questions as you browse. Do these homes hang around for a while, or do people snatch the sellers hand off to own them? Bear in mind that asking prices are usually the seller being optimistic, so there’s room to haggle them down and get a better deal. Just be sure you’re not about to insult anybody!

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Before Making An Offer, Check Out The Neighborhood

Before you even think about putting in an offer for your supposed dream home, check out the neighborhood. This might be your dream home, but the neighborhood might be a nightmare. You just don’t know what’s going on at all hours of the day, what your neighbors are like, or what the other houses look like. It’s so important that you check this out before you have your heart set on a place. Not only should you check out the houses in the area, but the shops, restaurants, and other amenities too. Really explore so you can get an idea of what kind of area this is.

Research What’s Planned In That Area

Do your research on what’s planned in the area you’re thinking of buying. After all, you’d be devastated if the house and neighborhood were perfect for you in every way, only to realize there’s an eyesore being built right across from you. You don’t want to see that every time you look out of your window, do you?

Research The Risks

Are there any risks in the area? For example, some areas are more prone to flooding than others. You might think that this isn’t too serious, but you can find many people out there who deeply regret buying a property in an area with a flood risk. There are a number of free sites you can use to gauge how at risk your property is. Bear in mind that if you do buy, this is going to have a significant increase on your home insurance premiums.

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Ask The Right Questions To Sellers

When you’re thinking of buying a property, you really need to get as much information from the sellers as you can. You need to know as much as possible so you’re better equipped for buying the right property for you. Being armed with the right questions will help you to do this. Make sure you write down the answers. If you ask any serious questions, you might like to get the answer in writing from the seller, too. Here are some of the most important questions that you should ask:
  • Has anything bad ever happened here?
  • How long has the seller lived here?
  • How old is the boiler?
  • What renovations have been made to this property?
  • How long is the lease?
  • Are there any problems with the neighbours?
  • How many viewings has the property had?
  • How many offers has it had?

There are more you may like to ask, so make sure you go in armed with them so as not to forget.

Don’t Be Afraid To Take Pictures When Viewing

When viewing a property, don’t be afraid to take pictures. Looking at the pictures the seller has taken is all well and good, but they aren’t going to highlight things you may need to fix, repair, or redecorate. Taking pictures of things you like and don’t like will help you to better compare different properties later on, and make sure you don’t forget anything. If you fail to do this, it’s easy for all of the properties to blur as one in your head. It’s polite to ask the seller/estate agent first, but they should agree.

Be Aware Of Any Deal Breakers

There are some things that you should consider deal breakers, no matter how much you like the property in question. If a neighbours property isn’t up to scratch, for example, you need to remember that their problems can become your problems fast. You should also check for things like:
  • Damp ceilings
  • Chips and cracks
  • Missing tiles
  • Signal on your mobile
  • Working locks
  • Functioning plumbing

Speak To Your Potential Neighbours

There’s nothing wrong with speaking to your potential neighbors before going out and putting your money down on a property. You can see if they are friendly, or if they can give you any good advice on the neighborhood/property before you buy. They could help you to make a better decision.

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Are You Willing To Make Sacrifices?

In some cases, you may have your eye on your dream home, but be unable to afford what you need to pay. In cases such as this, you may need to make sacrifices. Perhaps you could downgrade your TV package. Maybe you could trade in your car for a more cost effective model. Where can you cut back to help you become the owner of your dream home? Of course you still want to be able to live a comfortable life, but making a few small changes could mean you live in the home of your dreams.

Be Smart With Your Real Estate Choices

If you don’t have a lot of money to your name right now, it’s still possible to become the owner of your dream home. However, you must take your time and be patient. It could be a case of buying a cheaper home for below market value, then adding value to it. When you sell that home at the right time, you should have even more money than you had to start with. If you continue to save money in the meantime too, you will be able to upgrade your property. Eventually, you should find yourself in your dream home. It may take years and years to get to where you want to be, but looking to the future when it comes to real estate is key.

Get Pre Approved

Getting preapproved for a home loan is the best way to go about hunting for your dream home. This way, sellers will see you as more serious buyers. Work on getting preapproved before you start house hunting so that sellers are inclined to take you more seriously. Speaking to places like SMBIA brokers before you begin your search will help you to make more progress.

Be Flexible

OK, so you may not be accepted for the offer on your dream home. This is why being flexible is so important. You have to remember that there are many other houses out there that you could happily live in. Staying detached from the outcome and believing there will be a better property for you out there is important.

You can become the owner of your dream home if you are smart. Saving up as much as you can and getting pre approved will help you before you search. When you begin searching, looking at homes in your budget will help you to be realistic, even if you plan on selling for more and upgrading later on. Getting advice from your local estate agent will help to keep you in the loop and up to date with the newest homes in your area before anybody else. Asking the right questions and being smart as you search will stop you from buying a property that isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. Becoming the owner of your dream home can take time, but it’s entirely possible! If you have any information you’d like to share, leave a comment below!

How You Can Make Your Property Show-Home Worthy

There are many reasons you might have for wanting to make your property show-home worthy. You could be attempting to sell it, or, it might just be important to you that it looks as great as possible. Whatever your reasons, these are some tips that should help you achieve the ultimate show-home. Improve the way your property looks just by using these simple suggestions.
Get Rid of Mess
The key to crafting a successful and smart show-home starts inside. You’ve got to make sure you get rid of any mess and keep the home clean and tidy. If you want to attract people to buy the property, it needs to be clutter free. Try to have the minimum amount of clutter possible in each room. If you can ace this, you should have no problems making the home perfect.
Tend to the Outside
It’s also important to take a look at the outside of the property and the surrounding area. Make sure it is litter free and remove unwanted graffiti. The idea is to make the place look as presentable as possible to strangers. This is a really important thing to make sure you get right. And you need to focus on making the property look smart and appealing.

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Do it Up
You might want to do work on the home just to get it looking a bit better. This might mean coming tidying up and fixing parts of the home that require your attention. Doing it up and keeping it looking as great as possible is crucial if you want to keep the quality levels up. The defining factors that make up a quality show-home are that it is spotless and in great condition.
Extend
If you have the money nowadays then you need to think about extending. This is one of the best things you can do your property. Extensions can make the home much more appealing, not to mention practical. If you want to attract attention to the property and increase interest from buyers then extending is a great place to start. Of course, you may need to look at planning permission to see if you can extend. But, if you can try to make sure you do some work towards it this year.
Change the Colour
It’s really amazing how much of a difference a change of colour can have on a home. Your property might look really great as it currently is. But, it could look even better if you took the time to change the colour. Think about repainting the interior and exterior of the home, and going for a different colour scheme. This will result in you adding some vibrancy and character to the place. People will take notice, and you’ll be more likely to gain positive attention.
Making your property worthy of being show-home quality is something you’ll need to work on. If you put in the time and effort, it is something that's definitely achievable. You can really improve the quality of the home with just a few simple procedures.

Boost Your Home Security with These Ideas

Your home is probably the most important material possession you have. And not only that; it also contains all of your other possessions. So, if you want to boost your home’s security, here’s what you should do.

Hide Cameras Above the Door

One of the ways in which burglars can gain access to your home is by knocking on it. This causes you to open the door, and that’s when you can be pushed aside. It happens, but it can be better avoided. If there is a small camera hidden above the door, you can hook this up to your phone and see what’s going on outside. That way, you can be aware of any suspicious activity going on outside the door before you open it. You can decide not to open the door if you think that something bad could be happening. It’s a small precaution, but it puts your mind at easy when the door is knocked late at night.

Install New Fencing

Having reliable fencing not only make your premises more difficult to breach but also makes it appear more secure. A large part of making your home more secure is all about adding the perception of security. So, if people see tall fences surrounding your home, they will assume that you’re someone who takes security seriously. This means that they won’t see your home as an easy target, and that can only be a good thing for you. So, you should install new fencing and make it as strong and secure as possible. There are plenty of fencing contractors out there that will be able to help you.

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Fit the Strongest Locks on Each Entry Point

There are so many ways that people can get into your home if the entry points are not secure. Start with the external  gate to begin with. If everyone is at home, and you’re expecting no guests, it can be a good idea to lock the gate. This will mean that people can’t simply approach your home during the night. This gate and your fencing should always offer the first line of defence. You should then upgrade the locking systems on any of the exterior doors, windows or skylights. Every door or window offers a potential way into the home, so it makes sense to secure all of them.

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Don’t Hide Keys

Many people leave a set of keys outside the home. This allows you to get in even if you lose your key. It can seem like a pretty good idea, but it rarely is. In reality, it just makes it easier for people to gain access to your home. And because they have a key, they won’t even have to go to the lengths of breaking down doors or smashing glass. So, don’t hide keys under the doormat or the plant pot. It’s the kind of action that makes it look like you’re asking for trouble. You don’t want to make the task of the burglar any easier than it has to be, so keep this in mind.

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Inspired Garden Ideas To Ensure You Enjoy The Outdoors

No matter what time of the year it is, we should always try and make more use of our outside spaces and gardens. It’s a great way to spend time with the family or relax our mind after a busy day. Fresh air is good for you. We all know that. But yet, many of us don’t spend enough time in our gardens. So I thought I would share with you some inspired ideas to encourage you to enjoy your outdoor areas more frequently.

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A decked area to enjoy

A decked area of the garden is a great addition. It can offer you a versatile space for any activity. Mostly people tend to have some garden furniture up there and use it as a place to sit and relax. There Is nothing quite like enjoying the evening sun with your favorite drink. It’s also an excellent way of adding value to your home as it becomes more of an extension of the interior space. If this is something you want to add to your garden, then consider a professional timber supplier to provide you with the best supplies to create it.

Solar lighting to make more use of the garden at night

As the sun fades away so does our time in the garden. But it doesn’t have to be that way. Now with solar lighting, you can light up your garden area and continue using it into the night. It’s great for entertaining. As they are powered by the solar energy, they don’t cost you a thing to run. It’s a lovely way of making your garden look pretty and inviting on a dark evening.

An alfresco dining and cooking area for socialising

One of the best ways to utilise your outdoor space is through cooking and eating. Most people love a BBQ, but some have taken it one step further and added outdoor kitchens and pizza ovens to their outdoor space. Making it a much more user orientated way to eat outside. Of course, if you have the supplies you may as well have the space to enjoy the food outside. Decks or patios are great al fresco dining areas.

Ideal storage space to keep it looking tidy

One of the things that can put people off being outside is the clutter a garden can develop. Families can have toys lying around, or you may even keep unused furniture and garden tools out. Make sure you invest in a great storage options like a shed to hide it all away. It will make your garden much more pleasing on the eye.

Designed flower beds and well kept lawn to make it feel like an exterior room

Finally, don’t forget to add a few quirky features to your garden. A designed flowerbed with beautiful flowers and well kept lawn makes your garden feel more part of your home. The best way to treat your outside space is an exterior room or an addition to your home. Doing that will ensure you spend much more tie out there.

I hope this has inspired you to be outside in your garden more.