Home owners will often be put off from engaging in home improvement projects because it most of the time is a very expensive and cumbersome task. What if we told you that it doesn’t have to be so? You can actually be able to comfortably engage in your home improvement project with a very minimal budget.
In this article, we will share with you 3 simple ideas on how to maximize on your small home improvement budget.
1 Start by first knowing what needs fixing
Before you engage in any home improvement activity in your home be it a large scale construction job or just some subtle improvements, you must be able to determine whether the task at hand is for utility or aesthetic value. As a rule of thumb, aesthetics must never come before utility. Therefore, you have to first thoroughly inspect your home so that you can ascertain what needs fixing. If you can focus on these, first, you are likely to stay on budget.
2 It doesn’t hurt to consult a professional
There are many creative ways you can get a professional to advise you on what needs improving in your home without having to spend much. For instance, with just about $100, it’s possible to get a realtor to give your home a quick look and later give you some ideas on things you can do to improve your home within the budget you have in place.
3 Invest in a good paint job
As far as home improvement is concerned, nothing gives a home a new and fresh appeal like a fresh coat of paint. As long as you don’t have major underlying repairs that are needed, home improvement can be as simple as a good paint job and you are good to go.
All in all, when it comes to your home, the best way to keep your improvement costs down is always doing repairs the moment there’s a need and not waiting for the situation to get worse. It’s much cheaper to repair a 3 inch crack than it is to repair a 3 meter crack.
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In any construction site conflicts will be inevitable. There could be conflicts between you and your contractor or between the contractor and his/her team. It’s therefore a good idea for you to prep on conflict resolution to ensure that when such issues emerge they don’t end up disrupting the work and the timelines therefore causing a delay in the project delivery.
In this article we will share with you 4 tips on how to resolve conflicts with your contractor.
Tip 1: Ensure the issue is clearly defined
The very first part of resolving a conflict is being able to clearly define what the issue is. In many occasions, conflicts will usually escalate due to miscommunication between the parties involved in the conflict as they don’t take time to clearly understand what the issue is. It’s therefore very important to for the conflicting parties to lay down the facts so that the matter can be addressed.
Tip 2: Let a neutral party mediate
The only way conflicting parties can be willing to openly resolve their issues, is if the person mediating is neutral and there is no indication that they are likely to take sides. That why it’s very important to bring in a person who is perceived to be neutral by both parties to play the role of mediator. It’s only such a person who will be able to create a conducive environment for the resolution of the conflict because both parties will be willing to open up to them.
Tip 3: Only focus on the facts
During conflict resolution, you must ensure that people’s opinions are kept out of the discussion and it’s only the facts about the conflict that are discussed. This is because in many cases, conflicts tend to escalate because the conflicting parties put more focus on airing out their opinions as opposed to focusing on the facts.
Tip 4: Listen listen listen
During conflict resolution, the best way to ensure a win-win solution is by ensuring that the parties involved in the conflict feel as though they are being listened to. If they get the feeling that the mediator or the other party is not listening then they are likely to shut down and this is a sure guarantee that the conflict will not be resolved. The beauty about listening is that the parties may even discover that there’s no real reason why they should have been in conflict in the first place.
If you put the above tips into your own context anytime you find yourself in a conflict situation with your contractor, you will realize that any emerging issues will always get sorted out very quickly.
Although buying a house can be an exciting endeavour, it can take time to make it a home. However, this isn’t to say that there aren’t some shortcuts that can be taken to ensure that there is a warm atmosphere in the home.
The following are some tips that can keep you warm during the winter months, as well as giving the home some much-needed ambience during the darker nights.
Lag Your Piping
The art of pip lagging may be one that is somewhat aged when compared to other approaches, but it’s one that works, and it’s cheap to do.
Lagging is essentially putting foam around your water pipe to ensure that there is no loss of heart, and what’s more, no tools are required.
Although there may be other things you need to do to ensure heat isn’t lost, lagging the hot water pipes can be the ideal starting point.
Consider Wall insulation
Although its common knowledge that wall insulation can help save on fuel bills and retain heat, there are still many people who haven’t enjoyed the benefits.
Although wall insulation comes at a cost, the money will often be recouped in what you save on fuel moving forward. What’s more, wall insulation ensures that your home retains as much as heat as possible, which is vital for the colder seasons.
Use Your Curtains Properly
It’s not unusual for the weather to be sporadic, so it’s a good idea to make use of the sun when it's available. Opening the curtains when the suns out ensure you’re making using of natural heat in the day, allowing you to conserve energy for nightfall.
The sun will often heat the home substantially in the day if the curtains are open, and eve
Not only is this more cost-effective, but you can ensure that you don’t have to ration your energy as much.
Draught Excluders Are Still Useful
Given all the technology that is put our way, it’s to dismiss simple and cost-effective ways of keeping the home warm. Although basic in their approach, draught excluders do a sterling job of keeping heat in the room.
Even if all the rooms need some form of draught exclusion, the process is generally quite cheap.
Bleed Your Radiators (If Necessary)
For the most part, radiators carry out the duties without a hitch, but there can be times when we need to intervene to ensure that they’re working at the best. Air bubbles present in the radiator could mean that the radiator isn’t creating as much heat as it could.
[caption id="attachment_447" align="alignnone" width="500"] Happy young family using a tablet pc at home by a fireplace in warm and cozy living room on winter day[/caption]
Arrange a Boiler Service
It’s not only problematic radiators that can restrict hear in the home, as boilers play their part too. Although we can take them for granted, it’s a good idea to get your boiler serviced before the cold month's strike. If you’re unfortunate enough to have your boiler break down at the wrong time, then there could be some discomfort until a repair can be arranged.
Fortunately, the method to rectify this is simple and merely requires you to bleed the radiators. You will need to use a radiator key, which can be purchased from any DIY store, and simply twist the valve until the hissing stops and water appear. Once this happens simply close the valve.
More information on arranging boiler service check out - https://www.britishgas.co.uk/home-services/guides/annual-boiler-service-article.html
Invest in Some Rugs
Wooden floors can look great around the home, but they can also leave rooms feeling cold. Although there are alternatives, such as heated flooring, those looking for a cheaper solution can simply invest in some rugs.
Whether you decide to use one large rug or a series of smaller rugs will depend on the layout of the home, but either approach can be more cost-effective than modern alternatives, while still adding character to the home.
Find the Right Temperature for You
It’s understandable that some people are concerned about having the heating on too high, as they will waste money. However, having it too cold can cause some discomfort.
Finding the perfect temperature for you ensures that you can time your boiler accordingly, meaning that you’re not wasting energy when not at home.
Those looking for something they can control when out and about may want to invest in a smart option, which allows you to amend settings from an app.
Soft Lighting Creates Ambiance
As well as ensuring your home has heat flowing through it without escaping, you can also create a warm abidance that contributes towards the cosiness of your home.
Harsh bright lighting can make it hard to relax, regardless of how much heat you’re conserving. Swapping your bright lighting for something a little softer doesn’t have to be expensive, as a few lamps can be just as effective as opposed to spending hundreds on electrical work
What’s more, this can be done throughout the house, and you can even combine with modern technology to streamline the operation. For example, those who can’t afford smart lighting may find a Bluetooth-enable light bulb just as effective.
Display Your Proud Moments
Given the advancements of technology, you’re more likely to see photographs on someone’s social network as opposed to their wall, but this doesn’t mean that memories and achievements don’t look amazing and create a homelier feel overall.
The frames you use can be tailored to your décor. For example, those with a modern abode may decide to use clip frames, whereas those with more rustic surroundings may decide a wooden frame is best.
The possibilities are endless and framing photographs, certificates and diplomas are a great way of adding warmth and charm to the home.
Some of us can struggle when it comes to making a house feel more comfortable, especially if you’ve only just moved in. However, some simple approaches can ensure that your home is prepared for the winter and inviting to friends and family.