Posts

Closet Systems Save Space

November 29, 2010 4:24 pm

For a lot of people, the bedroom closet is said to be one of the most unorganized areas in a home. Having either a small or big closet is not an issue, the mess grows with it. Keeping the closet clean and well kept is just one of the troubles that people face but having an organized closet do a lot of good for a person. Arranging and putting your closet in order is not a difficult thing to do. There are lots of closet organizers and storage systems available on the market that is available in different forms and styles.

Almost all closet systems hold a large amount of pants, shirts, jackets, shoes and etc. These closet systems help to get things from the floor to the closet to give all belongings a specific place to make everything easy and accessible. Closet organizing is not just to help you get rid of that untidy mess of your clothes but it helps you feel good when you are wearing the dress. Closets are made to protect the clothes. It also prevents you from spending a lot of time and effort on arranging and ironing your crumpled clothes. Every time we wanted to dress up and find that our clothes are crumpled inside, it irritates us. Closet systems can greatly do a lot of help to your bedroom since if one part of a room is organized and well kept this will make the room more habitable.

For those people who are looking for a closet storage system, one has also the option to have a customized closet system built and installed by professionals. The customized built systems are built exactly the same shape and space of your entire closet. A customized one is more preferable since it will fit perfectly and will use up every space in the closet to get the maximum amount of space possible. The closet systems are designed and installed by a professional storage system manufacturer. The closet system is designed with your input and preferences in mind so that it will give you exactly what you want.

These closet system companies can be found online and once contacted they can meet with you and gives you an estimate like any contractor would do. Having a customized closet system built for you based on your needs is the best option to do. This is true when it comes to a large closet that needs a professional with a good designing experience and some factories may also make closet systems that may not exactly fit right to the space provided. If you will be able to look for a company that can do this and will assure you of a good work, you will be able to see all the advantages of having a closet system in your bedroom. The custom closet systems are just not limited to a bedroom closet. A lot of people have experienced all the benefits of having a closet system in the kitchen, bathroom and even the laundry room.

Beautiful, Yet Cheap Countertops

4:22 pm

If one starts to be frightened just by the idea of paying more than $10,000 on countertops just to have a good kitchen. According to experts, it is important to consider on having a laminated countertop with the best known brand which are Formica countertops. Laminated countertops have been praised for its resistance on heat and stains as well as the wide range of colors and patterns available. But what makes it best is that laminates are affordable and very easy to maintain.

Laminate is made by merging paper and resin under heat and pressure. The lower layer is made out of kraft paper which is the same paper used in making grocery bags. The middle layer has patterns and colors on it and the top layer is a clear layer.

Laminate countertops are nonporous which means that they do not need to be sealed. These countertops are resistant to damage from lemon juice and other kinds of acidic solutions. This type of countertop is durable but not up to the point that it is indestructible. Some manufacturers warn that scratches on a laminated countertop seem impossible to be fixed and the plastics used are an issue for environmentalists. The laminates may melt or become discolored if hot items are placed on it.

Laminate countertops come in different designs and patterns that will surely create confusion on the part of the buyer. That is why a lot of people would advice you not to make a decision when you are in a store because you will surely cram on what will you buy and some would end up buying the wrong ones. Before buying a laminated countertop, make sure that you have done research and look for the top three countertops that you would want to have. Find one that will go well with your appliances, sinks and the design of the kitchen as well. Some manufacturers offer customization where one can choose the paint to match the kitchen. If one wants to have the best countertop, try looking for kitchen countertop manufacturers online.

Laminated countertops also come in different edge treatments. The most common type is where the top is shaped by a piece of laminate. Since this is made from just a single piece, there are no corners and seams which make it easier to clean and avoid dirt from thriving on the edges. Some manufacturers also offer countertops with an elevated edge in avoiding spills from running.

But most consumers today, agrees that Formica and other brands of laminated countertops are less stylish and attractive compared to the other types of countertop which is granite, concrete and quartz. The seams of the Formica countertop are visible and are impossible to blend with other colors and designs. But for some, elegance and attractiveness may not be important for them. These countertops are great for those having a tight or limited budget. Formica countertops cost three times less that the stone surfaces and a lot would definitely agree that it is easy to maintain.

My Thoughts on Hardie Siding for your Home or Rental Property

November 9, 2009 9:44 pm

What should you consider when purchasing exterior siding for your home? You should consider price, durability and appearance. Hardie board siding is a great choice for exterior application. Hardie board is a fiber cement composite which means that it will resist many elements which wood siding cannot. One advantage of Hardie board siding is that it does not absorb water which means it does not rot. Although slightly heavier than wood siding it is more economical because it won’t face damage from termites and other insects. Because of its dense construction it is able to absorb impact from debris during serious storms. Most Hardie board siding comes with a fabricated woodgrain that gives it more appeal and a natural look, it also comes in other textures like brick. A cheaper option for exterior siding is vinyl siding, however vinyl siding is known to sag and is not as attractive or natural looking as Hardie board.

Sheets or Planks?

Hardie board siding comes in many different sizes, you can purchase it in sheets and planks, also sheets and planks come in various sizes. The most common sizes of sheets are 3 x 5, 4 x 8 and 4 x 4. The easiest form of Hardie board siding to install would be the sheets however planks give it a much more appealing look. A disadvantage of installing planks is there usually long and heavy making them awkward to install. If living in a Southern or coastal region Hardie board siding will be an excellent choice because mold and mildew will not easily gather on it.

Most Hardie board siding comes pre-primed you can also get them prepainted as well. If you choose to paint the siding yourself it will absorb primer and paint and will maintain the paints beauty through the years. You would be able to find cheaper siding but not one more economical and more durable. Most hardiplank manufacturers offer a 30 year to 50 year warranty. Most Hardie board installation is “do-it-yourself” but you can hire crews to do it for you as well. A three-person crew with scaffolds and nail guns should be able to install siding on a two-story home in about a weeks time.

The most time-consuming process of installing new Hardie board siding would be the pull down of old siding but if putting Hardie board on a new home the time required should be cut in half. In summary Hardie in board siding is a practical, economical and attractive way to side your exterior home. More and more people are looking into installing Hardie board on their homes because of its resilientness to unpredictable weather, insects, mold and other factors that will destroy your home’s beauty over time. It sustains paint for the life expectancy of the paint and won’t deteriorate for several decades. Hardie board is relatively easy to install and won’t take long for your home to be looking new. So when the time comes for you to purchase siding for your home consider Hardie board as your best choice.

Time for a Kitchen Remodel

October 1, 2009 12:02 am

remodeling kitchen1If there is one thing that I love and hate at the same time, I would have to be remodeling work. The work itself can be so physically demanding and take such a long time, however the payoff in the end is almost always worth the effort. This last month I undertook the daunting task of remodeling the kitchen in my home that was built in the 1940s.

It is actually quite amazing to me to look at the craftsmanship of manual labor workers from 70 years ago, and compare it to the craftsmanship and work that you get in today’s society. Cabinets are actually made from real wood, and each nail was driven by hand as opposed to a pneumatic airgun. Not to say that there is anything wrong with modern tools, but you can tell that a person appreciate their work much more when they were finished back then as opposed to how they feel about their work now.

First things first, was to pull down a hideous light fixture in the kitchen along with all the upper and lower cabinets. This task alone took me about 2 1/2 days to get everything toward out and put into a dumpster that I had rented. After everything was off the walls, I proceeded to tear up the linoleum floor that had been down for the last 15 or 20 years. It was easy to pull up along the edges, but in the center of the kitchen and along all the walkways, it was extremely difficult to get off the floor.

While I had everything out of the kitchen, I hired a plumber and electrician to come in and make sure all my plumbing and electrical work was up to code. For the most part, the plumbing was okay except for a couple of lines, while the electrician opted to completely rewire my kitchen all went back to the main breaker box. This was expensive, however was nice because now all the plugs and outlets in my kitchen are now three prong with a ground as opposed to just the older style two prong plugs.

I ordered premade cabinets about two weeks before I started my demolition of my kitchen, to ensure that they would be in and ready to install when I was ready for them. Basic cabinet installation is very easy, the only part that I can stress make sure you get correct is, finding a good stud to screw them to, and making sure that they are square and level. I used plastic shims to hold up any corners that needed to be raised, and when the tile is install around them you’ll never see the shims.

Speaking of tile, after the cabinets were in, it was time to install the 18 x 18 porcelain tiles. One word of advice is, if you happen to have a smaller kitchen, I advised to stay away from the larger tiles. For some reason, they actually made my kitchen looks smaller. I did a little research and found that many people had the same complaint about using a large tile in a small room.

After the tile was installed in crowded, my wife and I went to Home Depot and browse their selection of Formica countertops. For some reason, choosing the formica countertops was one of the most stressful parts of the whole job. When you get to choose a neutral color that would tie in the cabinets to the floor and to the wall color we chose. After much debate, we went with a grayish tan stone look. They came out quite nice and was well worth the headache.

After all was said and done, including the kitchen sink, we finished out our kitchen remodel for a little under $8500. Most of that cost was the price of the cabinets and having to pay a plumber and electrician. If I had been more skilled in the electrical and plumbing department I would have tried to accomplish that part of the job myself. All in all, I have to say that I’m very happy and pleased with the end results, I know that money spent on remodeling kitchens and bathrooms is some of the best way that you can spend money on your home. The kitchen and bathroom improve the resell value of your home more than any other room in the home. Just something you might want to keep in mind if you are considering doing any kind of remodeling to your home in the near future.

Determine Costs Upfront

September 23, 2009 11:46 pm

When I look at a home, whether it is a home I own all ready or a house I am looking to buy, it is vital as a business man that I get as close to an accurate estimate on cost for remodeling as possible. Not all homes I buy need immediate attention and are often ready to rent out as soon as I close. This is my attempt to explain how I make money renting property, such as homes and duplexes.

I really feel that curb appeal has the best chance at getting a renter into a new rental property I may buy. So I always make sure that the lawn is presentable and that the sidewalks and driveway are pressure washed and clean. I may also take the extra time to pressure wash the house itself and touch up any paint that may be chipping and replace any siding that may be rotten, chipped or broken.

I usually buy older homes that were built in the 40’s 50’s and 60’s. These homes are usually covered with either brick, stone, or cedar shingles. In most cases I can use some kind of hardiplank material to replace the broken or damaged pieces. The siding or exterior covering is very important in helping maintain a homes value over the coming years. Before replacing any siding I will always have an estimate drawn up that will give me a good idea of what the siding cost are going to be before anything is physically done. Moving along to other aspects of the exterior, is the roof.

Roofing is extremely vital and probably the most important part of a home, as it protects everything inside. A typical shingle roof will last about 15 to 20 years. If your roof is showing any signs that it needs to be replaced, replace it. Do not wait! Living in areas where tornadoes, earthquakes or hurricanes occur often, a good roof is extremely important.

Always have a home inspected. If possible use an inspector that you either know and trust or that comes highly recommended. Have every aspect of a potential home or rental be inspected, inside and out. This will include structural inspection along with plumbing and electrical.

Never buy the worst house or the nicest house on the street. If you buy the worst house, your taxes will still be high, and if you buy the nicest house, you will never be able to sell it for what its worth.

Does your potential rental have a garage? A garage is a big bonus for a potential renter and can make a person lean towards renting your property over someone elses. Washer and dryer hookups are a bonus as well. If your rental does not have the arrangements for a washer and dryer, can you find the space to make it happen? This little commodity will allow you to add at least an extra 20-25 dollars per month onto your rental fees.

Furnished or unfurnished? This is a big question you will face when becoming a land lord. You must evaluate your rental situation and the houses location, size, rental fees and renters. I have rented both furnished and unfurnished homes. True furnished homes bring in more money, but the stress factor goes up in the process. By furnished, I do not mean everything. Furnished in most cases simply means, refrigerator and stove. I have had renters leave in the middle of their lease and take the fridge and stove with them.

These are some of the simple basics of owning a rental property. Overall renting is low stress, but can become a nightmare when things go wrong or you have a horrible renter. Feel each applicant out and never be afraid to run a background check on even the most seemingly nicest people, they are the ones you usually have to watch out for.

Hope this article helps you make better rental property decisions in the future and allows you to become a successful land lord and property owner.

Football Season…Woot Woot!

August 17, 2009 11:24 pm

So pre season has started up and oh man is this going to be a good season! Got my new 48″ plasma set up in the living room on an entertainment center that I built out of maple wood. Came out looking sharp and only cost me about 75 dollars to make. Cheaper than buying one in house, or even on the internet.

Gotta admit that I am a huge cowboys fan and kinda hated to see Terrell Owens go, but at the same time I know its a big relief for Tony Romo and the coaching staff of the Cowboys. Im curious to see how he will do with the Bills this year. I hate his reality show, but cannot deny the fact that he is a great football player, I can only take so much “me” talk.

My kids peewee league team has started practicing as well and its funny watching a bunch of 8 year olds playing football. Got him some nice striped tube socks that go up to his knees and the whole nine yards. My wife doesnt really like the fact that they tackle each other, but she is getting used to it.

I also joined a fantasy football league this season again. This is my second season to play and I hope I can do as well as I did last year. As a rookie I won the super bowl and it was sweet! It was just a friendly league involving no money, one thing I am not is a gambler! Too addicting and its easy to loose a whole pay check! For all those playing this year, have fun and dont spend too much time with it!

Dressed to Impress

10:28 pm

Well hardly! Im not really a dressy kinda guy, Im more of a flip flops, Hawaiian shirt and board shorts kinda guy. My wife, on the other hand likes to dress to impress. Cant seem to go anywhere without looking her absolute best. I cannot complain though, cause it is nice.

Give me some reef flip flops and Ill go anywhere. She likes to where dress shoes or professional shoes. Even if we are just going to head out to the beach or camping on the river, she likes to have something nice on like birkenstock sandals or dansko sandals. They are ok in my opinion, but I’m simple. Always have been, always will be.

So shopping online for her is how we have come to save hundreds of dollars every year. As mentioned in posts before, finding things online is a great way to save on tax, and if you find items with free shipping, that is always a nice little bonus. I mentioned before also that I like to find used things, well when it comes to clothes, Ill usually aim a bit higher and go for the brand new stuff!! LOL.

Growing up, I allways had hand-me-downs. Not that there is anything wrong with that, but when you start making your own money and can spend it how you please, thats when I decided new clothes for me! I dont really even remember where this post was going, I kinda zoned out there for a minute…sorry to whoever is reading this.

So long story short, there is nothing wrong with dressing nice, or just being yourself and dressing down like I do. Women always like to look their best, and most men dont care. Regardless of how you dress, a little time searching online will save you money and a trip to your local retail shops.

Bought so I could Build

8:08 pm

Hello all and welcome to my personal blog about pretty much anything and everything. I am very big on building something before Ill buy it. However I realize that in order to build something, proper tools are a must.

This does not mean however that I buy the biggest or the baddest tools around. I am a frugal shopper and always looking for a good deal. I like to go garage sale shopping and will even turn a quick buck by reselling items if I get them at a good enough deal.

If you are like me and like to build you may want to check out a few places online that sell good quality used and new items. I recently sided my home and knew before I started that I needed to get ahold of a few tools I was lacking, so I did a search and found some used table saws at a great price and ordered a dewalt. I actually got free shipping cause I bought 2 extra blades and a stand with it.

The used table saw worked great for cutting plywood and really made quick work of it. However I tried to cut some hardie plank and quickly realized that I need a better suited tool for the job. What did I buy next you ask? I jumped back online and searched again for used siding tools. I found some listings and was able to pick up a pear of hardie shears for under a hundred bucks. Thats about 1/2 what you would pay for them new.

So I waited a few days for them to come UPS and when they did I got right back to working on my siding. Finished my entire house in about 4 days with the help of a couple friends and my wife. I had never done it before and really overall it was quite easy once I got started. I start new projects all the time, and often buy tools and what not that I need to complete the task at hand. My wife does alot of online shopping as well and it really can save you a lot of money as apposed to shopping locally. Usually no tax and we find deals with free shipping on most of the items we buy.