Picking a Home Alarm System

Picking a Home Alarm SystemWhile a home alarm system cannot actually prevent someone from entering a home illegally, it can notify the owners, the authorities and half of the city block that there is an intruder. Home alarm systems are designed to give homeowners peace of mind and a sense of security. An alarm system can be extremely elaborate or it can deceptively simple depending on the level of security needed.

Benefits of Having a Home Alarm System

Home alarm systems offer several benefits including:

Of all the benefits associated with having a home alarm system installed, insurance discounts are probably the most cost effective. Insurance companies like homeowners who go the extra mile to pay for and install an alarm system with an offsite monitoring subscription. With the home continually being monitored, there is little risk of loss due to breakins or fire.

Third party monitoring systems give homeowners the benefit of immediate reaction to an incident, no matter what it is. If a situation occurs, the dispatcher at the monitoring site will immediately call the authorities and direct them to the property. They also notify the homeowner if they are away on vacation or out for the evening.

Choosing the Right Alarm System

Choosing the Right Alarm SystemIn order to choose the right alarm system, the homeowner needs to determine out level of security they need. Individuals who live in quiet neighborhoods may only need a minimum amount of protection. A smaller system that notifies the homeowner if windows or doors are opened can be beneficial if a young children are in the home that may tend to try and wander off. This type of system is normally only effective when the homeowner is at the residence.

The more elaborate third party monitoring systems are designed to protect the home at all times. Special sensors are placed throughout the home and are able to detect smoke and other dangerous gases. Along with the sensors placed on windows and doors, the system is able to notify the dispatcher at the offsite monitoring facility if anything is amiss in the home or closeby outside.

When a homeowner begins to consider what type of system is best for them, along with the level of security, cost must be a factor as well. While high tech systems sometimes afford the homeowner the benefit of reduced rates on insurance, the can be extremely expensive. The cost of the system is reasonable for the most part, but the expense comes in with the continued monthly payments to keep the subscription to the service active.

Another consideration when buying an alarm system is the ease with which it can be used. Constantly setting off a touchy alarm system can be annoying and frustrating for all involved, especially if the authroities are notified each time. Find a system that is easy to operate so that everyone understands the basics of how to turn it on and off and how to report problems if and when they occur.

Having the right alarm system saves money and time in the face of an emergency. Knowing exactly what is needed will help in determining which type of system is required for the homeowner to receive the maximum benefit for the money.

Transform Your Garage Into a Classic Car Workshop

A person with a passion for classic cars can tinker for hours restoring an old clunker and turning it into a mechanical masterpiece. Classic cars are slightly different from newer cars (including insurance needed). Classic cars from the 50′s, 60′s and 70′s had carbureted motors, not fuel injectors. Their entire engine and transmission set up was different than what is found in most cars made today.

classic car workshopSpace

To work on any type of car efficiently, there must be plenty of room and a way to get underneath the car easily. Most garages are fairly wide open to start with, but it might be a good idea to have some sort of mechanical lift installed that will raise the vehicle without the use of hydraulic jacks. Hydraulic jacks can fail if not placed correctly, damaging the car and possibly injuring the mechanic in the process.

Restoring classic cars can mean fabricating hard to find replacement parts. It’s a good idea to have a space set aside where fenders, bumpers and other large pieces can be removed from the vehicle to be worked on. This enables the mechanic to do whatever is needed to restore the car and make it as close to original as possible.

Tools

toolsCarbureted engines and manual transmissions are rarely made with to be worked on with metric tools. An entire set of standard tools will be needed, as well as several other tools including gear pullers, spring setters and piston clamps. Wrenches, screw drivers, allen wrenches, as well as specialty tools will need to be organized and stored within easy reach of the work area. A well lit work bench will be also be needed. Carburetors and other components have extremely small parts. Using a work bench when making repairs is extremely important if one expects to keep track of all the little parts.

Car Manuals

No matter what make of car is preferred, it is a good idea to have several different car manuals on hand. If people know someone close by specializes in working on classic or “muscle” cars, they will more than likely pay them a visit if they have questions or need help. Although it isn’t a good idea to loan books out, they can still be used as reference materials

There are also manuals written for different types of engines. For example, Chevrolet’s big block series included the 396, 427 and 454 all were designed to produce maximum horsepower quickly and efficiently. Manuals were produced to help big block users rebuild their motors to increase power by replacing stock parts with high performance parts that increased power and improved overall performance.

Decor

clockLast but not least, if a garage is being designed exclusively for classic cars, having classic, muscle car memorabilia is a must. Old signage, lights, vintage calendars and photos of pin up girls can create the perfect atmosphere for any classic car enthusiast. If one can be located, an old-style pop machine will add the retro flair and give the garage an added touch of nostalgia.

Most garages are already set up as the perfect car workshop. A few small changes can turn it into the perfect workshop where old classics can be refurbished and turned into beautiful, fine tuned vehicles that remind us of a bygone era where cars were unique and built to stand the test of time.

 

 

How to Convert Your Spare Bedroom Into A Makeup Studio

How to Convert Your Spare Bedroom Into A Makeup StudioConverting a spare bedroom into a makeup studio is extremely easy. As long as you have the electrical outlets you need and excellent lighting sources available, it can be accomplished rather quickly. The first step is to measure the room and determine where to put the main makeup table. Once the main table is in place, adding other elements will go smoothly.

Designing the Room

If you want to start a makeup business at home or online, you need to make sure your room is bright and full of light. Pastel colored walls with white accents and trim would work well for this type of environment. A low nap carpet or hardwood floors are preferable in case something is dropped or spills accidentally. If there is a window in the room, use sheer curtains to allow the maximum amount of light to shine.

When creating the room’s layout, always remember to put the makeup table in an area where there will be plenty of room to work. Side tables and chairs can be put across the room or off to the side. The room should be open with few decorations or obstacles to distract or hinder anyone’s movements.

What Will Be Needed

The main makeup table is the most important piece of furniture in the room. It should be well built and have a mirror/light setup that offers an excellent view of the subject from a variety of angles.

  • At least one adjustable height chair
  • Shelves
  • A well built closet organizer
  • Two or three extra tables (medium to small)
  • Two additional chairs
  • Several different lighting sources

A closet organizer allows for all tools and supplies to be hidden and out of the way when not in use. This also helps to keep things handy. Everything will have its own unique place and can be found rather quickly when in a rush.

Lighting Sources

studio lightingMakeup tables come with two or three mirrored panels that have lights already attached. This is fine for the most part, but in some cases when additional lighting is needed, it is good to have other sources on hand. Small makeup mirrors are available that can be used for extremely close up details and modifications. Light bars can be purchased that are attached to stands and can be placed around the subject’s chair to give ample lighting to the back, in addition to what is put out by the makeup table.

Overhead lighting should be subtle and, if possible, able to be dimmed to prevent shadows from forming. If there is enough closet space left, the additional lights can be stored when not in use. Always make sure that windows are easily accessible for times when natural light is needed.

A spare bedroom can be effectively used as a makeup studio with just a few quick changes. New paint, polished floors, the right lighting and a little creativity and the conversion is complete. Makeup is all about creativity and self-expression. The right room can give a person the space they need to be creative and successful.

This person did a great job!

 

5 Steps to Picking the Perfect Garage Lights

For someone who uses their garage frequently and for a variety of purposes, the right type of lighting is essential. A garage can be designed to do so much more than just be a safe haven for your automobiles. Storage, work areas and even grilling on cold or rainy days are all things garages are known for. The right types of lights can accent each area giving you the visibility you need to grill the perfect steak, create a woodworking masterpiece or change your car’s oil.

When picking lights for your garage, the following steps can be helpful.

1. Design the layout of the garage. Make sure workbenches or grilling areas are easily defined. This will give you a good idea as to where lights should be placed that will provide you with the best visibility possible.

2. Work with each area and determine what type of light is best suited for the area’s purpose. In most cases, overhead lighting will be adequate. The decision will be in whether to have a light mounted that is flush with the ceiling for headroom or one that hangs down to provide light closer to where you will be working.

3. Know what type of wiring was used in the construction of your home. If you need to run more electrical wire, you should call an electrician to help you lay out the diagram and have the wiring properly installed. This ensures your lights will meet construction codes for your area as well as supply sufficient power for the number of type and number of lights you may be adding.

4. If you are choosing fluorescent or bar lighting, you will need to take measurements to make sure they will fit within the area you have set aside for them. The same is true for recessed lights. You will need to make sure there is nothing above the ceiling that will hinder their placement. If so, you will have to adjust your light placement so they will fit without fear of damaging the ceiling or walls.

5. Choose the type of light fixture you want to use. LED and fluorescent bulbs both provide sufficient amounts of light. The key is how to get the light where you want it. Recessed lights and those that mount flush to the ceiling are great for general lighting purposes. If you need direct lighting, however, two of your best options are pendant lights and wall mounts.

Pendant lights can hang directly over an area such as a workbench or grill and can often be hung so they can be raised or lowered as needed. Wall mount lights are effective for areas of a work bench where you must have light as close to the work as possible, but stationary and out of the way.

Best Ways to Prepare Your Guest Bedroom

The Best Ways to Prepare Your Guest BedroomEvery once in a while, we would invite guests into our home – family members visiting for the holidays, an old friend coming to town or one of your kids pals might need to stay the night. For this reason, it is always a good idea to add a guestroom to your home so your loved ones won’t have to book their stays at a hotel  or crash in the couch. And for those who enjoy entertaining guests and love it when they always come back to visit, you’ll want to create a guest room that makes people feel right at home. Below are some splendid ideas to help you achieve that goal (here are some additional ideas from Better Homes and Garden).

  • You might not have played host for quite some time now, and your guest bedroom might be looking a little outdated – dull paint, damaged wallpaper and all. So why not give it a new paint job? Repainting your walls gives you a chance to create a new look that feels more welcoming. Pick out neutral tones for your walls as these create a warm and inviting atmosphere. Cleaning or changing your flooring using colors that complement your walls also does the trick.
  • When it comes to interior decorating, color is essential. Make sure that, prior to renovating your bedroom, you’ve already planned your color scheme carefully. And once you’ve established your color scheme, you’ll want to coordinate your window treatment, drapes, sheets and other dscorative pieces so that their colors go well with the room and the overall look you’re trying to achieve with the room. It also makes a space look more elegant and livable.
  • If you’re that fond of having guests over and don’t really care how long they’ll be staying for, then it’s important to incorporate  a lot of storage space into the room. With that said, avoid placing your personal belongings in your guest bedroom. Clear out the closet and drawers and make sure you provide some clean towels and a few toilet essentials in case they forgot something. Your guests will surely appreciate that you put a lot of thought into their stay. For longterm guests it’s also very important to give them a comfortable bed – after all we don’t want to send them off to a pain management specialist the minute they leave!
  • They may just be guests in your home, but they could also use a little privacy. If you haven’t got a guest bedroom but are planning on building one, then make sure you provide visitors with a convenient access to the bathroom. If you can afford to give the room its own bathroom, then great. If not, then try placing the room near the bathroom instead, so that your guests don’t have to walk down the hallway. And remember, see to it that the bathroom is spotless.
  • Finally, add some finishing touches to your guest bedroom. Depending on your budget, you might want to add details such as a TV, a phone, a clock and a reading lamp. Also, accents such as fresh flowers can help make your guestroom less of a hotel room and more of a comfortable living space. Just think about those things you wish you had when you away from home. If you want to be a good host, then you should at least try to give your guests five star treatment.

Steps to Designing a Handicap Ramp for Your Side Door

Physically challenged, disabled, and handicapped are just some of the common terms used when referring to a person who is physically incapacitated. It is very common to see these people on wheelchairs, making use of canes and crutches or other devices.  In some people require a live in CNA.  In the past, it’s quite common for people to have not so good impression about them because of the belief they are not much of a help to the society due to their condition.

Time is changing and so are the attitudes of people.  Nowadays, people with physical disabilities are already accepted in society. In fact, some of them even have important roles to play, while others are active in their own advocates. In spite of their contribution to the society, there are times when they are still not being treated well and don’t receive all the privileges they deserve. One of which is their right to be given a pathway where they can use their wheelchairs.

Common Areas in Need of a Handicapped Ramp

In the United States, the Americans’ with Disabilities Act is being implemented in order to protect people with disabilities. This particular law requires businesses to give priority to disabled people through some facilities that can make their everyday lives easier. Some of these important facilities are:

  1. Hospitals – Some people with physical disabilities also have other diseases for treatment. In such situation, hospital facilities are needed during check up and medical procedures.  With such, it is very important for hospitals to put up a handicap ramp to make it accessible for them. Normally, this ramp can be seen at the lobby and at the Emergency entrance.
  2. Schools – These people have the right to education, so it’s normal to see them in school. However, climbing stairs would be very challenging, so schools are required have a handicap ramp.
  3. Shopping Centers or Malls – When going to a shopping center, it’s quite troublesome to move around without the right facilities for handicaps. To assist them, it is best to put a ramp at the entrance or at some common areas like supermarket exit.

How to Design Handicap Ramp for Your Side Door

Aside from those areas, it is also best to put one at home for a disabled family member.  While the front door is not wide enough, a ramp can be located on a side door.  It is practical and convenient for them person to pass through the side door since it is more spacious. To help you, here are some tips on how to conceptualize it:

  1. It is best to consider the measurement of the area. Make sure that it’s wide enough to fit 1-2 persons in addition to the wheelchair size.
  2. Measure the ramp slope. Prevent it from being too steep or too low in order to avoid accidents.
  3.  Carefully measure the length of the ramp. It is mandated that a slope can’t be lowered for more than an inch for every foot long. In simple terms, the ramp should be at least a foot or more in length.
  4. Decide on the specific layout to use since there are different designs to choose from. Regardless of the appearance, components such as ramp rise, slope and size, width, spindles and handrails and the materials to use are all considerations.

Depending on the need, you also need to decide whether you want one made of concrete, wood, steel or aluminum.

The video below may give you some good ideas if you plan on building a ramp:

Best DIY Protects to Add Value to Your Home

Selling your home isn’’t as easy as you think, even if you hire a good real estate agent. Before putting your home in the market, make sure that you would be able to get good value for it. To achieve such a feat, continued maintenance is key. See to it that everything in your home is still intact, from overall structure to plumbing, roofing and so on. It would also be a good idea if you can do a few touch-ups. Now you may think it’s quite expensive, but there is a way to cut down on cost. Instead of hiring professionals to help you, you can always do it yourself. And if you want to know which DIY projects are worth investing in, here are several projects that would surely add value to your home.

painting

  • Fresh paint – The best way to start your DIY renovations is to adorn your walls with a fresh coat of paint. Apply a new color, but be careful of the colors you pick out. Make sure that the paint you choose isn’t too dull, too dark, too tacky or too bright. Neutrals would be best as those never turn people off. Add in crown moldings, as well, as they have a way of making homes look more elegant.
  • Flooring – Another sure-win project is new flooring. Although carpeting would also be nice, it would be better if interested parties see what’s underneath. I suggest using eco-friendly flooring, such as bamboo or reclaimed wood. For outdoor flooring, you can also use recycled clay and tiles or even do a mosaic.
  • Kitchen redo – To a lot families, the kitchen is the heart of the home. It is where people eat their meals, hang out and engage in random conversations, so it make sense to make it more appealing. You can incorporate a backsplash, if you don’t already have them, using peel-and-stick tiles that are cheaper and time-consuming. You can also choose to put in new kitchen appliances and light fixtures.
  • New storage spaces – When people walk into your home, they expect it to be beautiful, inviting and organized, so what you need to do is to de-clutter. Throw away everything you no longer use or need, or build new storage spaces. A lot of people are drawn to well-thought-of storage systems, especially those found in bedroom closets, the garage and the basement.
  • Landscaping – If your property comes with a front yard, a backyard or even a small garden, it is important to redo that part of the home as well. Gorgeous landscaping creates a more inviting home. Your front lawn will be the first thing potential buyers see as they near your home, so it is important to make a good impression.

Bath update – Updating your bathrooms is probably wise as these are one of the most important rooms in anyone’s house. Consider replacing old fitting, then once that’s done, replace bigger items such as your sinks and vanity units.

3 Mobile Home Maintenance Tips

First and foremost congratulations on your mobile home purchase. Now that you have set up your home, you are undoubtedly enjoying the décor, and all the special features inside. Your investment plan has paid off well. However, you want to make sure, that your newly manufactured home continues to keep you and your family safe, and financially secure.

mobile-homes

The first step to protecting your investment is to check for any potential problems. After a hard rain spell or a natural weather disaster, you should check your inch of your mobile home, for possible damage. Once water settles into certain areas, it can cause considerable damage, if the problem is not found and corrected. Prevention is the key to saving thousands of dollars on unnecessary repairs.

How can you accomplish this, by saving money on repairs, and replacement parts? Preventative maintenance can help you protect your investment, for years to come.

Single wide and double wide homes require regular maintenance service. Manufacturers recommend following a maintenance schedule, which is designed to increase the longevity of double wide mobile homes.

Here are 3 basic and profound tips for maintaining modular homes.

  • Check your home’s foundation systems. Your roof and ground foundation keeps your home standing, year after year. You want to ensure that the roofing system is not damaged, and that there are no leakages or drainages around the foundation. Check the soil around the foundation. Check the crawl space, the ventilation system, and the levitation of the home.
  • Check the doors and windows. These two items usually lets you know, if you are experiencing a foundation problem. These items will shift slightly to the left of the right. Check the trim for finish failure of both the doors and the windows, check for weather stripping damage. Check the caulking around the doors and windows and the joints. Lubricate the windows if necessary; check glazed areas for loose putty.
  • Check the roof. Loose shingles and damaged tiles open the way for moisture and water damage. Your gutters, hangers, splash blocks, strainers and down sprouts should be checked regularly for damage. The chimney, flashing and vents, and their caps should also be checked for cracks or debris build-up. Seams, joint, plastics and the composites that hold them together become loosen over time. These areas should be checked often, and replaced at the first indication of trouble.

You should also check any outdoor items that you may have including fire pits, grills, patios and decks for general wear and tear.  More tips can be found here.

Don’t forget to check the interior of the home such as tile, hardwood floors, cabinets and drywall.  Tile tips can be found at this website as well.

Prevention Costs Less than Intervention

Your investment will last you a lifetime, if you take care of the small problems now. Preventative maintenance costs far less, than intervention. Performing preventative services allows you to catch small or potential problems, before they escalate to major problems. Having an observant eye and watching for signs of normal wear and tear are the first steps to securing your investment.

It is difficult, but not impossible to correct minor or major problems, after considerable damage has already been done. However, be prepared to spend your time and more money, getting your investment home, back it is original state of being. Other areas you will want to check are the electrical system, the plumbing system, and the heating and cooling systems. These areas should be checked, and even the smallest problem should be handled immediately.

Steps to Makeover Your Closet On a Budget

Closets can be one of the most unorganized areas of your home. Figuring out how to utilize as much of the space as possible and using organizational skills to compartmentalize items are two of the best ways to unclutter and revamp your closet without spending a lot of cash. Inexpensive closet organizers can be found that will help you sort and store your clothing and accessories without breaking your bank account.

Closet Makeover

Divide and Conquer

The first thing to do is to go through and begin to divide everything into specific clothing groups, such as formal wear, casual wear, jeans, T-shirts, belts ties, etc. As you sort through each item, decide whether or not you want to keep it. If it doesn’t fit, is out of style or you haven’t worn it in over a year, toss it into a Good Will pile that can be donated to a local charity. Once you have everything sorted, determine how much space is going to be needed for each group and begin to plan accordingly.

Everything Has Its Place

Always remember, everything has a place. Scarves, ties and belts can be hung on a piece of pegboard that is attached to the closet door or a wall within the closet. They will be neatly hung out of the way and won’t get lost or damaged from being shuffled around on the floor. Make sure to keep all like items in close proximity to one another. For example, on the floor of the closet, sections can be made for different types of footwear. One section for boots, another for high heels and so on. Whenever you finish laundry and put clothes away, make sure to take the time to put them where they belong. It prevents you from having a mess and makes things much easier to find if you are in a hurry.

Leave Room for Formal Wear

Evening gowns and other types of formal wear need ample space to keep them from becoming wrinkled or catching on other garments. One of the best ways to accommodate formal clothing is to section off a portion of the closet from ceiling to floor. This gives longer items, like evening gowns a chance to hang freely without dragging on the ground. It is also imperative to have the right kind of hangers. For slacks and trousers, use the hangers that attach to the cuff and allow them to hang straight down. This eliminates creases and wrinkles as well.

A closet makeover doesn’t mean you to have to break your budget by performing extensive renovations. With a little organization you can take a mountain of clothing clutter and turn it into an easily accessible storage area for all of your favorite clothes and footwear. If there is extra space available when you are done organizing everything, you may have enough room left over to store other items like linens or family keepsakes. Taking the time to explore your options will allow you to come up with just the right design to fit your needs.

The video below may give you some good ideas as well:

Top Five Lawn Seeding Tips

If you have just bought a lawn seed and are preparing to grow them from scratch, it is important to prepare the ground properly before positioning and arranging the lawn seed. There are basic tips to consider ensuring that your lawn seed has the best opportunity to grow. Lawn seed is necessary for those homeowners who are planning to grow a new lawn. But, it is also important to be aware of the things that impact on the growing capacity of lawn seed.

There are satisfactions which can come from growing lawns from scratch and by following few basic preparation tips; you are able to ensure that your lawn seed has the likelihood of thriving. The first thing to do is to be certain that the ground you are spreading has been clear of any fragments and debris that is likely to hinder the growth of your lawn seeds.

5 Steps for Planting Grass Seed

Seeding or planting a lawn is not difficult and can be done successfully by anyone. However, there are top 5 simple steps to get the best results.

grass seed

Step 1 – Purchase Only the Best Grass Seed

A great lawn can be grown from great grass seeds. To find a specially selected grass seed, look for a package that has an NTEP. NTEP means the National Turf Evaluation Program and defined as a program independently rated and evaluated by the authorities. The NTEP rating means you are buying grass seeds that have been purposely bred for disease and insect resistance, superior green grass color, and drought tolerance.

Step 2 – Prepare the Soil

  • Loosen the top two to three inches of soil.
  • Remove debris (stones, sticks, etc.) from the area.
  • Break up soil clumps bigger than a half dollar.
  • Level the vicinities where excess water accumulates.
  • Avoid fine soil, the small clumps is satisfactory.
  • With a starter fertilizer, fertilize after seeding
  • Take note: Do not use weed killers before and after planting seed.

Step 3 – Plant Grass Seed

  • Evenly spread the seed by hand in small areas.
  • Use a lawn spreader, hand or mechanical seeders in bigger or wider areas.
  • Apply only 16 seeds per square inch. Too much seeds cause seedlings to battle for nutrients. Grass may become thin or weak in these areas.

Step 4 – Cover Seeds

  • Drag the grass seed bed lightly, therefore no more than one fourth inch of soil covers the grass seed.
  • Always cover the grass seed bed with seed accelerators to hold the seeds in place and keep moisture.

Step 5 – Frequency of Water

  • Keep the grass seed bed moist to boost germination.
  • Water should be light (do not saturate), and frequently (once daily), until the new grass is 2 inches high.
  • To keep the roots moist, water the new grass regularly.

When to Plant Grass Seed

Grass seed can be planted in the fall and spring with good results. Do not apply weed control products to the grass, if you plan to plant spring planting of grass seed. Postponed the weed control application until the grass seed has sprouted and you have mowed the grass at least thrice.

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