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Must Learn To Use Payroll Service In Your Company

Small Businesses Relying on Online Payroll Services

Today, online payroll software is the payroll system of choice for small business owners. It’s affordable, easy-to-use, and can grow with your business.

Accurately Pay Employees and Deduct Payroll Taxes With Online Payroll

The first and most important advantage of online payroll is being able to accurately pay your employees. Both employees and employers can enter hours into the software. You provide payroll information about each employee – like their wage, salary, overtime rate, and other unique data. Then, the software calculates payroll taxes and deducts those from the paycheck.

Payroll taxes vary from state to state and payroll software is guaranteed to be accurate no matter where you are (and yes, payroll software is available in many countries outside the United States as well).

 

How to process payroll with a payroll service:

Just like with the DIY option above, you need to have all your employees complete a Form W-4 and find or register for Employer Identification Numbers.

From there:

Step 1: Choose a full-service payroll provider. If you’re not sure how to do payroll yourself, use payroll software that reduces the risk of errors or fines. Many payroll processing services, like Square Payroll, handle your payroll taxes, filings, new hire reporting for you, and allow you to complete payroll online. Sign up takes minutes — so you can quickly start doing your own payroll the same day you sign up.

Step 2: Add your employees. You need to set up your employees before you process their payroll. Adding employees you’re paying for the first time is generally quicker; if you’re switching to a new payroll provider, then you also need to add your current employees’ year-to-date payroll information. Either way, you generally need to enter employee names, addresses, Social Security numbers, and tax withholding information. If you’re using Square Payroll and would like to pay employees using direct deposit, you can just enter your employees’ names and email addresses so they can enter their personal information themselves.

Step 3: Track hours worked and import them. The U.S. Department of Labor requires employers to keep track of wage records such as timecards for up to two years. Certain states may have longer retention requirements; be sure to check the specific requirements in your state. You can track time using your Square Point of Sale and import the timecards to payroll.

 

Manually do calculations

When you manually run payroll, you have full control over your payroll. You know when and how your payroll is completed. But doing payroll yourself likely means you don’t have someone to check your calculations. Doing payroll manually has an increased chance of errors—and errors are often followed by fines.

Doing payroll by hand also takes a lot of time. You have to do all the calculations, distribute wages, and file taxes. You could spend a lot of time working on payroll instead of working on your business.

There are many steps to follow for manual payroll:

  1. Gather information
    1. Find all business information related to payroll, such as your EIN and tax rates.
    2. Collect employee information, such as pay rate and withholding information (e.g., Form W-4).
  2. Track time
    1. Use an attendance management method to track employee time. Or, you could have employees track their own time.
  3. Calculate payroll
    1. At the end of each pay period, use employee time cards and the rate of pay to calculate wages.
    2. Make sure you include all types of compensation, including any tips and overtime for the pay period.
  4. Subtract deductions
    1. Begin by subtracting pre-tax deductions.
    2. Then, deduct employment taxes.
    3. Finally, withhold post-tax deductions.
  5. Pay employees
    1. Distribute paychecks to employees using your designated method. You can pay employees with checks, direct deposits, or pay cards.
  6. Pay taxes
    1. You will periodically have to file and remit employment taxes. How often you do this depends on your depositing schedule and form due dates.

 

The 5 Best Payroll Options for Small Businesses

Did you know that 1 in every 3 small business owners gets penalized by the IRS for payroll errors?

Those fees and fines add up. When you add on the extra time and energy of figuring out the complicated payroll system, it suddenly doesn’t seem like a great place to cut costs. That’s why many small business owners choose to pay for a payroll service instead. That way, you won’t need to worry about legal mistakes, clerical errors, or wasted time.

Here are five of the best payroll options for small businesses:

  1. Intuit Payroll

Looking for the barebones when it comes to payroll services? Or do you want a fully-automated, everything-but-the-kitchen-sink payroll service instead? No matter where you fall on that spectrum, Intuit Payroll has an option for you.

Intuit Basic, for $20/month plus $2 per employee/month, will run your payroll instantly and calculate your taxes (but won’t go as far as filing those taxes for you). Their most popular package is called Enhanced, $31.20/month, which adds tax form completion, filing, and payment on top of that. And finally, their Full Service option will run payroll entirely, transfer data from other payroll services, and guarantee its accuracy — for just $79/month.

  1. OnPay

OnPay doesn’t have all the tools and add-ons that Intuit offers, but in exchange, it provides a simple pricing model with the straightforward payroll necessities that especially small small businesses need.

For $47.95 per month, you get up to 10 employees’ worth of unlimited pay runs, tax filings and deposits in one state (with additional states running you extra), and check printing. It’s an easy, quick, mobile-friendly system that doesn’t require a steep learning curve.

  1. Gusto

Gusto, previously known as ZenPayroll, is an intuitive payroll service for any sort of small business. PC Magazine named Gusto its payroll service of choice for a reason: after its one-month free trial ends, Gusto costs only $39/month, plus $6 per month per employee. That includes benefits planning, direct deposit and check services, and more.

  1. Namely

While it has an undisclosed price, Namely offers a full suite of payroll and HR tools to help you cut down on wasted time. It will automatically carry out benefits deductions, pay and file all of your payroll taxes, handle year-end reporting and time-tracking, ensure your small business is compliant with regulations, and give employees access to their paycheck histories.

  1. Sage

Like Intuit, Sage also offers different payroll packages depending on how big your small business is. If 10 or fewer employees, Sage Payroll Essentials comes in at the low price of $49.95/month. (For comparison, Intuit’s Enhanced plan would run you around the same price with fewer features.)

 

10 Steps to Setting Up a Payroll System        

Here are 10 steps to help you set up a payroll system for your small business.

  1. Obtain an Employer Identification Number (EIN)

Before hiring employees, you need to get an employment identification number (EIN) from the IRS. The EIN is often referred to as an Employer Tax ID or as Form SS-4. The EIN is necessary for reporting taxes and other documents to the IRS. In addition, the EIN is necessary when reporting information about your employees to state agencies. You can apply for an EIN online or contact the IRS directly.

  1. Check Whether You Need State/Local IDs

Some state/local governments require businesses to obtain ID numbers in order to process taxes.

  1. Independent Contractor or Employee

Know the Difference. Be clear on the distinction between an independent contractor and an employee. In legal terms, the line between the two is not always clear and it affects how you withhold income taxes, withhold and pay Social Security and Medicare taxes, and pay unemployment taxes.

  1. Take Care of Employee Paperwork

New employees must fill out Federal Income Tax Withholding Form W-4. Your employee must complete the form and return it to you so that you can withhold the correct federal income tax from their pay.

  1. Decide on a Pay Period

You may already have a manual process for this, but setting up a pay-period (whether monthly or bi-monthly) is sometimes determined by state law with most favoring bi-monthly payments. The IRS also requires that you withhold income tax for that time period even if your employee does not work the full period.

  1. Carefully Document Your Employee Compensation Terms

As you set up payroll, you’ll also want to consider how you handle paid time off (not a legal requirement, but offered by most businesses), how you track employee hours, if and how you pay overtime, and other business variables. Don’t forget that other employee compensation and business deductibles such as health plan premiums and retirement contributions will also need to be deducted from employee paychecks and paid to the appropriate organizations.

  1. Choosing a Payroll System

Payroll administration requires an acute attention to detail and accuracy, so it’s worth doing some research to understand your options. Start by asking fellow business owners which method they use and if they have any tips for setting up and administering payroll. Typically, your options for managing payroll include in-house or outsourced options. However, regardless of the option you choose, you – as the employer – are responsible for the reporting and paying of all payroll taxes.

  1. Running Payroll

Once you have all your forms and information collated, you can start running payroll. Depending on which payroll system you choose, you’ll either enter it yourself or give the information to your accountant.

  1. Get Record Keeping Savvy

Federal and some state laws require that employers keep certain records for specified periods of time. For example, W-4 forms (on which employees indicate their tax withholding status) must be kept on file for all active employees and for three years after an employee is terminated. You also need to keep W-2s, copies of filed tax forms, and dates and amounts of all tax deposits.

  1. Report Payroll Taxes

There are several payroll tax reports that you are required to submit to the appropriate authorities on either a quarterly or annual basis. To get more information, visit the IRS’s Employer’s Tax Guide, which provides clear guidance on all federal tax filing requirements. Visit your state tax agency for specific tax filing requirements for employers.

Choose The Best Wedding Videographer To Make Good Memory

TIPS FOR PICKING YOUR PERFECT WEDDING VIDEOGRAPHER

Understand what’s included in your package.

As wedding films have increased in popularity, so have the package options and the terminology. Understanding everything that comes in your package will help ensure you aren’t disappointed later. When your filmmaker sends you examples of what comes in your package (Instagram teaser, trailer, full edit, etc.) make sure to really watch each example and be sure it’s the type and amount of coverage you want!

Don’t be afraid to search beyond your city.

Certain wedding vendors, like florists or caterers, make more sense to hire local. However, don’t be constrained by location when choosing your videographer. While filmmakers do need a certain amount of equipment, it’s usually not more than they can take with them on a plane or in a car. Love Stories TV team member and bride-to-be Vanessa is getting married in Baltimore but found and hired a filmmaker based in Colorado! Every filmmaker has a different policy on travel but if you find someone you love who isn’t from your area, you should still reach out!

Find someone who matches your wedding video style preference.

Once you’ve made a short list of filmmakers who shoot in your area and are within your budget, watch A LOT of sample films. Wedding films vary a ton. Some are mostly scenes of getting ready and staged bride and groom moments, while some have a lot of candid coverage of dancing and the reception. Some only include music, while others include vows, speeches and toasts. Some even feature interviews with the bride and groom, filmed either on the wedding day or sometimes well in advance. The videographer you choose should have several videos you love. Prior to the wedding, send them examples of your favorites from their own portfolio. Be specific with your examples: what did you love about each?

Find a filmmaker who is comfortable with your venue type.

Found a filmmaker you love but notice that all of their films take place outdoors and you’re getting married in a ballroom? Raise the question to the filmmaker before you hire them and make sure they’re comfortable shooting in your wedding setting. Request sample films to watch and show them an example of a film you like from your venue (or a similar) and confirm they’re comfortable shooting in similar circumstances.

Hire friendly photographers and videographers.

There is a lot to capture on your wedding day in a short amount of time. Both your photographer and videographer will film the same key scenes: getting ready, first look, ceremony, speeches, reception, etc. Coordination is important, so try to hire a photographer and videographer who have worked together before. This way, they will likely have systems in place to make sure each captures those special moments. Ask your wedding planner for recommendations or have your photographer to suggest a videographer (or the other way around) for a seamless day-of experience.

 

How to Find the Perfect Wedding Videographer

Sign on the dotted line

If there ever was a time to put your English teacher’s’ advice to good use, it’s now. Read your contract—well. Be sure you understand exactly how much you’ll pay and when it’s due. Know how many hours of your videographer’s time you’ll get and when you should expect to have your wedding video in-hand. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, either! If there’s something in the contract that you didn’t discuss beforehand, or any wording that confuses you. Have your partner read the contract as well, and don’t be afraid to shoot the contract over to a friend or your parents for a third and fourth pair of eyes. This is a big purchase and you don’t want any surprises.

Go with your gut

When you’ve found the one, you’ll be tempted to blurt it out during your first meeting, but trust us, resist if you can. Let the videographer know how much you appreciated their time, but tell them know you’ll need to discuss with others who might be helping you plan the wedding and follow up with them later.

Prepare for an in-person meet n’ greet

Once you’ve received responses from your top videographer picks you’ll be able to further narrow your list. Some might not be available for your wedding date or may not be in your price range. Focus on the two or three who do meet the criteria and plan to schedule an informal sit-down. They’ll want to meet you and your SO to learn more about you and your wedding vision, while you’ll want to see how comfortable you feel around them and whether or not there’s a connection. You’ll be spending a lot of time with this person on your wedding day, and it won’t do if there isn’t a mutual sense of goodwill and comfort.

Make some dates

While you wouldn’t dream of seeing anyone but your honey, when it comes to booking a wedding videographer it’s actually preferable to date around a little. Take your list of top picks and reach out to each of them to set up that all-important first date. A lot of videographers will have a form page on their website for you to fill out, but it’s always nice to write a personal note as well. If you’re stuck on what to say, this short template should help you get started.

Narrowing down the list

Once you dip your toe into the wild world of wedding videography, you’ll realize just how vast and deep the pool can get, but at this stage it’s time to reign it in. With the help of social media, reviews and your network, you’ve probably come across dozens of different videographers, which is way too many to actually contact for a meet up. Strike off anyone who doesn’t do weddings in the location where yours will be hosted. Eliminate videographers whose work you enjoyed, but didn’t absolutely thrill you—your wedding isn’t the time to just be satisfied, you want to be nothing short of delighted with the results. With your shortened list, re-watch some of their videos and try to select your very, very favorites, or just about three to five. These are the folks you’ll bring to the next step.

 

Tips for Choosing Your Wedding Videographer

Be sure that you jive with the videographer

When you bring a videographer on, you’re going to have to tango with them from the moment you sign the contract until months after your wedding during their editing process. You’re going to want to make sure that before you sign anything, you’re tangoing to the same beat.

Be sure you like the way their previous films tell stories

A bride once told me “There has yet to be a wedding video you’ve created that has not made me cry.” Whenever I get feedback like that, it feels awesome because it tells me I am doing my job. I am storytelling.

Make sure they have assistants to help split the tasks at your big day

I used to shoot weddings solo and I would not recommend it to my worst enemy. There is just too much gear, too many balls in the air, too little time, and too many places to be at once for it to go smoothly. Choose someone who will send at least two people out on your wedding day.

Don’t be afraid to budget for a videographer- quality often depends upon what you pay

A lot of brides still consider video a luxury item to add to their wedding if budget allows. I would say that with that mind set, you may not want to get a video at all because you could end up paying for something you don’t love.

 

TOP TIPS FOR CHOOSING YOUR PERFECT WEDDING VIDEOGRAPHER

WHAT WEDDING FILM STYLE ARE YOU LOOKING FOR?

Before you engage on what could be a long-winded search for your perfect videographer, it’s advisable to decide on the style of film you’re wanting because this will narrow down your search criteria.

WHAT’S YOUR BUDGET?

Your budget will be determined by many factors and may also depend on how much you value your wedding film. In most cases the more you spend the better the result.

WHAT EQUIPMENT WILL BE USED?

This might not seem important at first but could make all the difference if you’re wanting your videographer to ‘blend in’ to your wedding. Video cameras are usually larger, with DSLR set-ups being far less intrusive.  While most cameras are high definition it is worth asking the question. And are you looking for 4K? Most videographers are still working on broadcast quality HD.

WHO WILL BE FILMING AND EDITING YOUR WEDDING?

It’s becoming increasingly popular for videography companies to outsource not one but both filming and editing. Some couples may be comfortable with that scenario but it can mean that the films you’ve viewed on the videographers websites may be of a higher quality than you receive. It’s always best to ask this question when you chat to any videographer about their services.

DOES YOUR VIDEOGRAPHY COMPANY WORK CLOSELY WITH VICARS, CELEBRANTS AND OTHER SUPPLIERS?

Check the videographer will talk to all of these important people before the wedding day to make sure they’re across the logistics and permissions required for the day.

 

WAYS TO GET YOUR WEDDING VIDEOGRAPHY RIGHT

Quality worth paying for

“The price of a videographer’s work reflects their quality. Filming a wedding day for nearly 12 hours, editing it, and so on, is time consuming. If you are happy to pay £2,000 for a dress, why not pay a videographer to capture you in that wedding dress?”

Keep it for the professionals

“Wedding videography is a bit more than just pointing a camera, it involves experience, skill and time. It involves as much, if not more work, than a photographer, so asking someone to film a video for nothing is a risky venture.”

Legalities

“If you’re planning a church wedding, it is essential to get the permission of the Vicar and of the minister who is conducting the service, as some churches have a policy against recording in order to preserve their image for copyright reasons.”

Variety of videography

“There are so many different styles of videography to choose from, from nostalgic 8mm to contemporary and cinematic. Take your time to find a style that suits you, and think about how it may age over the next few decades! Many fads from the 80s and 90s are now cringeworthy and the same thing could be true of current trends.”

Stick to your style

“Different videographers have different styles, so it’s really important that you do your own research first, find the style that you like, and then find a videographer who can do it for you.”

The Best Tips To Make Mold Remediation

Nearby Mold Removal in Your Area

What is The Mold Removal Process?

Please refer to the EPA for the full process. Here is the 9-step mold removal process you can expect:

  • Fix the issue that caused the flooding or the leak.
  • Section off or quarantine the mold damaged rooms. This could involve covering the doors and windows with plastic sheets.
  • Mist the damaged areas for dust to prevent it from going airborne during the next phases.
  • Remove and throw away all mold-covered materials in 6-mil plastic bags. There is a list with the EPA on what exact materials need to be removed for proper risk mitigation.
  • Clean all surfaces with a wire brush, disposable wipes and then a follow up with several applications of a bleach solution with rags and a mop.
  • All disposable wipes should be sealed in plastic bags. Throughout the process some of bags will need to be double wrapped. The bags can be thrown away into regular trash once sealed.
  • Clean the room with a HEPA vacuum.
  • Dry the area with a large industrial fan.
  • Double check for moisture or any remaining mold. The removed pieces of wall, window frames, etc. can now be rebuilt using fresh materials.

 

HOW TO CHOOSE A MOLD REMOVAL COMPANY

For example, mold is often the result of untreated water damage or leaks, or a secondary complication of the water that was required to put out a fire. Mold doesn’t just appear on its own. The conditions have to be right for mold to grow and are often the result of other property damage first.

Regardless of how or why the mold appears, it is important to have it removed, properly cleaned and remediated in order to restore a clean, safe, healthy environment for the property’s inhabitants.

In order to do this, if the area contaminated by the mold is larger than 3 feet by 3 feet, you will need to hire a professional mold removal company to eliminate the mold and remediate the area so no new mold colonies grow.

In this article, we will provide you with information on everything you need to know about mold, including how it grows and why it can be a health threat, as well as how to choose a mold removal company to help you restore your property.

 

Mold Remediation: Basics, Process, and Possible Scams

The Basics of Mold Within the Home

Mold is a familiar condition in many homes. Wetter areas of the country have moldier homes, and even homes in dry areas have certain rooms and spaces that are more prone to developing mold. Where there is moisture in a home, there is undoubtedly mold. The most familiar example of mold is the type that develops in the grout between ceramic tiles. A simple form of homeowner-driven mold remediation happens each time you spray that mold down with a bleach-based cleaner and wipe it off. More critical mold, either from a health or aesthetic standpoint, happens elsewhere.

Areas of the Home That Develop Mold

All places where water is found can develop mold. An excessive amount of humidity in a house can condense and cause mold. Ironically, newer homes can often experience more mold growth than older homes because they are more tightly insulated. Fiberglass insulation provides fertile ground for mold growth and makes it difficult to eradicate and remove.

The Process of Mold Remediation

The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) notes that any moldy areas less than 10 square feet (about 3 feet by 3 feet) can be remediated by the homeowner. Beyond that, you may want to talk to a mold remediation contractor. In most cases, it is better to have a mold remediation contractor do the work than a general contractor.

Not All Mold is Toxic Mold

According to the Centers for Disease Control: “While certain molds are toxigenic, meaning they can produce toxins (specifically mycotoxins), the molds themselves are not toxic, or poisonous.” And while it is possible for toxigenic molds to produce rare health conditions such as pulmonary hemorrhage or memory loss, this only rarely happens.

 

MOLD REMOVAL & HOW TO KILL MOLD

WHEN SHOULD YOU HIRE A PROFESSIONAL REMEDIATION COMPANY TO REMOVE MOLD?

If you read the section above, you know that I am a proponent of leaving mold remediation to the professionals. At the very least, get a consultation and see what they have to say. There are a LOT of companies out there so make sure you read reviews and ask them a lot of questions. If you aren’t comfortable with their responses, remediation plan, or pricing, then keep interviewing companies until you find one that is a good fit for your situation and budget. You don’t want to take too long to hire a company however. Time if of the essence with mold.

TYPES OF MOLD CLEANING PRODUCTS

Do an internet search for products that remove mold, mold cleaning products, or any variation of those two and you will get an endless list of products guaranteed to kill mold. Here’s the deal. You don’t want to clean mold. You don’t want to just kill mold. You want to remove mold and remediate the entire home and everything in it. Typically that means you need to remove whatever the mold is growing on be that a wall, flooring, window frame, etc… There are some instances where there is a little surface mold that can be “cleaned” but most mold events require some sort of removal process followed by remediation.

WHAT HOUSEHOLD ITEMS AND FURNITURE CAN BE CLEANED AND WHAT SHOULD YOU THROW AWAY?

Cleaning and saving items exposed to mold is a very touchy subject. The memories associated with various possessions are often more difficult to throw out than the item itself. In addition, financial limitation may make it seem impossible to get rid of many household items.

POROUS ITEMS THAT *MIGHT” BE SAFE

Porous items in general are able to absorb contaminates around them. Mold spores and mycotoxins can either take up permanent residence in these items OR use them as food. While this list of porous items has the potential to be properly cleaned and kept, there is a risk involved especially if anyone is experiencing health issues.

HAZARDOUS POROUS ITEMS

Unfortunately, there are a lot of items that are too hazardous and cannot be cleaned under any circumstance. They should not be given away or sold either. These items must be disposed of safely.

 

How to Find a Good Mold Remediation Company

Ensure Certification

When you are thinking about employing a mold removal company you should ensure that they are certified. Due to the attention of the media, consumers are extremely sensitive to mold growth and often panic at the first sight of it. Unscrupulous persons who prey on people’s fears have cropped up offering mold services. Before you accept a consultation or pay anyone, ensure that they are certified to remove mold.

Go with Experience

Experience in the field is also something that is important. You want to hire a company that has seen, tested and treated all types of mold growth. This knowledge and experience mean that you are more likely to get the job done right the first time. The last thing you want is for your time or your money to be wasted.

Equipment, Techniques, and Communication

In addition to using the latest techniques and equipment to remove mold any company you use should communicate with you effectively. You need to know the progress being made at all times so that you can have peace of mind. Choose a company that not only has the best removal techniques and equipment but also great communication skills.

Final Thoughts on Finding the Best Mold Remediation Company

Finding a good mold remediation company is a must when dealing with mold removal. Mold growth can get out of hand quickly and you need a company that can act fast and uses the right techniques.

Tips To Make The Best Flat Roof

Your Flat Roof Problems Solved

FLAT roofs, which are usually built up with layers of roofing felt and asphalt or coal tar, should be recoated every two to four years, unless they are covered by a layer of gravel or other stone chips. About two times a year, the roofs should also be inspected for blisters, cracks and other flaws that can lead to leaks.

Coating waterproofs and protects the original roofing. It is available in five-gallon containers as a black or metallic liquid. The material is thicker than paint, but not as thick as tar. It is applied with a long-handled brush resembling a small push broom.

Both types of coating contain asphalt, which seals the roof against moisture. Metallic coating also contains aluminum, which reflects sunlight, protecting the asphalt from ultraviolet radiation and deterioration. In addition, aluminum reflects heat that can weaken roofing materials and increase cooling costs.

High-quality aluminized roof coating is a better product than coating of equal quality without aluminum. But poor-quality aluminized coating is not as good as high-quality coating containing just asphalt.

 

3 Types of Flat Roofs

  1. Built-Up Roof (BUR)

The traditional hot-tar-and-gravel roof is built from three or more plies of waterproof material alternated with hot tar and ballasted by a layer of smooth river stone. Once made of tar paper, these types of roofs gradually are using more-advanced materials such as fiberglass membranes.

  1. Modified Bitumen

A single-ply rolled roof similar to ice-and-water shield, but impregnated with a mineral-based wear surface. Torch-down systems involve heating the adhesive as the material is unrolled. Newer peel-and-stick systems are safer and easier.

  1. Rubber Membrane

EPDM (short for ethylene propylene diene monomer) is a true rubber. The durable material resembles an inner tube, but it’s engineered to resist damage from sunlight. EPDM can be mechanically anchored with fasteners, ballasted with stone, or glued.

 

Here are 7 flat roof problems to look out for:

  1. Ponding

As the name suggests, a pond of water on your roof is a very bad sign. Long standing water will always find a means of escape and that often means through the roof.

  1. Watermarks

Water may have escaped into the roof or evaporated after a long period of ponding. Either way it will often leave the tell tail signs of patches of a lighter or darker colour depending on the surface you are looking at.

  1. Vegetation

Moss, fungus, lichen and weeds are all signs that there has been a build-up of water.

  1. Cracking or stretching at joints or corners

With age, the flexible materials that make up the waterproof layers of your roof can crack (due to drying out or stretching), rip or just wear away. This is most common with roofs made of rubber or EPDM (Ethylene-Propylene-Diene-Monomer).

  1. Blistering

This is when you see a bubble appear in the roof membrane. One day it might burst giving water direct access into your home.

  1. Movement

All properties suffer from some degree of movement but in most cases it’s minuscule. However, subsidence and land heave can often cause significant movement to a building’s structure. A moving wall will stretch the roof which will often lead to tears and cracks in the waterproof membrane.

 

What are common flat roofing problems, and how do you fix them?

The solution to ponding water

The best way to combat ponding water is to be proactive and keep the roof well maintained. It’s important to ensure your gutters and drains are maintained, and any blockages cleared as quickly as possible to prevent ponding water. Additionally, ensuring the person installing your roof is experienced and professional can help to remove any potential for ponding water.

Placing patches over a small ponding area can be a simple and quick fix to prevent further build up of water. Dry the water out using rags or towels and leave to dry. Cut a 12 inch circle of rolled asphalt, spread roofing cement to the bottom of the patch, and place onto ponding area. Then cut more circles out, each time increasing the circle size by 4 inches, until you have 10 circles. Each time place the patch on top of the previous one, using roofing cement. When complete, apply a thick rubber or elastomeric coating to seal, and once dry test it by adding water on top of it.

If there are numerous pools of water, or it is a large area of pooling, it may be the case that the whole roof membrane needs to be replaced

The solution to blistering

Generally, as long as they stay intact you don’t need to worry too much about the blistering. Keep a close eye on them, and if they pop you can then replace or repair them. To repair blisters, cut away the blistered material up to the point that it is attached tightly to the roof still. Then reapply new membrane material, extending it at least 6 inches over the edge of the blister to prevent leakage.

It’s important to keep your roof well maintained and cleaned regularly – any build up of moss or algae can contribute to trapped moisture or water that may cause blistering.

 Alligatoring

Alligatoring is the term used to describe the cracking of a coating or surfacing bitumen on a flat roof, which causes a pattern similar to the hide of an alligator.  This can be caused due to water, debris or long term exposure to the sun. The cracking will eventually split and develop further if left unrepaired, meaning that water can get into the roofing and cause leaking, moisture and more damage.

The solution to alligatoring

To fix alligatoring, one solution is to apply a new coating to the roof. First, clean the roof thoroughly, removing all dust, dirt and anything else that is loose. Then apply a primer, and once the primer has dried apply the coating.

Thermal movement

Temperature changes can cause the roofing material to expand and contract, which is relatively normal. However, you must keep an eye on your roof for evidence of this, as continual expansion and contraction can weaken the roof and potentially cause leaks. This thermal movement can also occur on the flashing, resulting in it pulling away from the edges of your roof over time – this leaves room for leakage and moisture entry into your roof.

The solution to thermal movement

Ensure you use good quality flashing and roofing materials, and that they are installed properly, with regular maintenance. If you notice some flashing pulling away from the edges of the roof or house, its best to replace the flashing.

 

How to Prevent Problems with Flat Roofs

Rainwater can be a pretty serious threat to a low-sloped or flat roof. Unlike a steeply pitched roof, these surfaces don’t always have the power of gravity working with them to carry runoff down to the ground. Drainage systems on a flat roof can be overwhelmed quickly by falling debris—and anytime there is standing water on a roof, issues will abound. The water weighs your roof down, which can cause it to collapse. Additionally, standing water provides an opportunity for leaks to occur, especially in hairline cracks that may form over time from constant water exposure. Here’s how to protect your roof—and help it live its best life yet.

  • Inspect and Clean Gutters Frequently—Even if You Have Leaf Guards
  • Sweep Leaves and Dirt Off the Roof Regularly
  • Replace Your Roof Every Ten Years
  • Have Your Roof Sealed with a Waterproof Coating
  • Have Your Roof Inspected Frequently
  • Take Care of Cracks as Soon as Possible

How To Find The Best Dermatologist

How Do I Find the Best Dermatologist?

When looking for the right dermatologist for your needs, Olbricht recommends starting by determining whether the doctor you’re considering is a board-certified dermatologist. “Board-certified dermatologists went to college and then went to medical or osteopathy school followed by an internship and then three years of dermatology residency. So, this is training that’s only in dermatology.” To achieve board-certification status, these doctors must also pass a rigorous exam, and to remain certified, they must continue their education and take additional examinations every 10 years.

Mowad agrees that board certification is important. “Lots of health care providers offer some dermatological care, but as board-certified dermatologists, we feel we have the additional education and training that specializes us in the care of the skin.” If you can’t be seen directly by a certified dermatologist, she recommends looking for a practice that’s under the direction of a board-certified dermatologist. In those cases, you may see a nurse practitioner or a physician assistant who works closely with a board-certified dermatologist and can call on their expertise as needed.

 

How to Choose the Right Dermatologist for You

Determine if your dermatology needs are medical, surgical, or cosmetic

Chances are you have a concern you want to solve, but not every dermatologist is suitable. Dermatologic care, like any other type of medical care, must be specific to your needs as a patient. This is a transactional service after all.

If applicable, identify dermatologists who treat people of color

Your natural skin color affects your dermatology needs.Dr. Saya Obayan, a board-certified clinical dermatologist who specializes in the care of skin, hair, and nail diseases, says, “If you are a person of color, the first thing to do would be to find someone who has experience treating skin of color.”

Plan out how you will be paying

Will your current health insurance plan cover your dermatology costs or will you be paying out of pocket? The answer, which depends a lot on your reason for seeing a dermatologist, may significantly influence who you choose.

Verify the dermatologist’s credentials

This is crucial when seeing any medical professional for the first time. Don’t overlook it. Typically doctors will list their certification and credentials on their website. You can also verify a doctor’s board certification (which means they’ve been trained extensively and exclusively in dermatology) with the American Academy of Dermatology or the American Board of Dermatology.

Scour reviews with a grain of salt

By this point, you already know this person is professionally qualified. Now you need to know if they’re right for you. Most doctors’ offices are searchable online and offer Google and Yelp reviews, as well as reviews on websites like HealthGrades.com, Vitals.com, and RateMDs.com, by former clients. But while credentials are a good way to verify qualifications, you ultimately want a practitioner who makes you feel good about being you.

 

What are The Tips to find the Best Dermatologist?

Get referrals

You should start with a referral list of dermatologists out of your primary care health doctor. Also ask own family, buddies, and different health care providers for tips. With a listing of some names, call every dermatologist’s office to peer if he or she is accepting new patients. Ask the receptionist for a consult appointment to meet and interview the dermatologist.

Consider the dermatologist’s experience

Experience matters when you are facing skin, hair or nail issues. The extra revel in a dermatologist has with a condition or procedure, the higher your effects are likely to be. Ask how many of the procedures the health doctors has accomplished and discover about rates—complications the doctor has encountered in addition to your personal chance of complications.

Evaluate the communication style with the doctor

Try to choose the best dermatologist  with whom you are comfortable talking  and also supports your information needs.

 

Signs of a Great Dermatologist

After-hours care. You should never feel left in the dark. Whether you’re experiencing an allergic reaction following a treatment or you have a pressing question about it, there should be a way for you to reach the dermatologist during evenings and on weekends. “A good dermatologist will have on-call service for emergencies after hours,” says Bank. Some may have answering services that relay messages, while others may leave an urgent contact number on the office’s answering machine. Rather than finding yourself out of luck after weekdays at 5 pm, find a dermatologist who will be there for you.

A generous sampling policy. An office chock-full of mini tubes of various products shows that a dermatologist genuinely wants patients to find the best — and not just any — solution to a given skin problem, and that he or she is conscious of budgets and prescription copay amounts. “If your dermatologist wants you to try a product to make sure it’s right for you before you commit to buying a prescription, it’s a great sign,” says Bank. And don’t be shy; speak up and ask if samples are available, as doctors often have to trash loads of expired samples.

No sales pitching. It’s a doctor’s office — not a home shopping television show. The dermatologist and the office staff should never aggressively push products, treatments, or other remedies that don’t specifically address your personal concerns. “If you feel that a dermatologist is selling you, he or she may be more interested in your money than in helping you,” says Dr. Bank.

Unrushed appointments. Exceptional dermatologists don’t look at the clock; they look at your chart and are completely focused on your personal story and your questions. “Your dermatologist should take the time to explain things, address your concerns, and explain treatment plans, as well as any tests you may have to undergo,” says David Bank, MD, president of the New York State Society for Dermatology and Dermatologic Surgery. If a dermatologist dismisses your thoughts, is difficult to follow up with, or rushes you through an appointment, it’s time to find someone who values you more as a patient.

The best credentials. Report cards matter. Any doctor with a medical degree can start a dermatology practice, but certified physicians boast additional years of supervised study and have passed rigorous exams. Do a free online search to ensure that a prospective dermatologist is board certified by the American Board of Dermatology, which is the gold standard for the industry, says Wendy Lewis, the author of America’s Cosmetic Doctors and a cosmetic surgery consultant. She warns, “Many doctors call themselves dermatologists but may be internists, general practitioners, or something else.”

 

How to Choose a Dermatologist

Ask the right questions. You want someone who does the procedures you’re seeking all the time. At least three to five cases a day is good; more is even better. For lasers, ask if the practice owns or rents the devices. If they rent, they aren’t lasering as much. Also be sure to ask who is doing the lasering. Some doctors will say they “supervise” the treatment a nurse or technician performs, but I don’t think that’s enough. The doctor should be hands-on.

Listen up. When you meet a cosmetic dermatologist for the first time, I think it’s best to give a vague sense of why you’re there and then let her talk. Mention that you’re bothered by the lines on your face or noticeable leg veins, but don’t go into all the remedies you’ve researched online. Listen to how she’d address those issues. Her opinion will give you a sense of her aesthetic philosophy, including how aggressive she is.

Go for a consult. Schedule your first appointment for a Monday or Tuesday. These are usually the busiest days. Take advantage of the full waiting room and ask your fellow patients about their experiences. It’s a good sign if you have to wait several weeks for a consultation; the doctor is in demand. Most doctors charge for a consultation, but often that fee is put toward the cost of a procedure.

Check their bios. Doctors usually have one on their practice’s website. Look for board certification from the American Academy of Dermatology—you don’t want to get Botox from someone certified as an OB-GYN. A website is also a good place to see whether the doctor’s focus is general or cosmetic and if she specializes further. Someone who names laser treatments, or Botox and fillers, will be more experienced than a doctor who insists she does them all equally well.

Know the types. A general dermatologist will treat rashes, acne, and rosacea; they do skin exams to check for questionable moles; and they can help with issues such as thinning hair. They are a good starting place for anti-aging prescriptions such as Retin-A or hydroquinone for wrinkles and brown spots. Deeply etched wrinkles, scars, or persistent discoloration—anything that requires a peel, injection, or laser—are best treated by a cosmetic dermatologist.

Use Dog Bite Lawyer To Protect You

How to Choose a Dog Bite Lawyer

Works on a Contingency Basis

After you’ve narrowed down your options to a handful of lawyers, you should look at how they charge their clients. Most quality dog bite attorneys work on a contingency basis. They start with a free consultation, and during that meeting, they give you a sense of how your case is likely to progress. If your case is strong, the lawyer typically agrees to work on a contingency basis, which means there’s no charge to you unless there is a recovery.

Well-Rated by Professional Organizations

There are a lot of lawyers out there, and to ensure you’re hiring the best dog bite attorney, you should look for lawyers who are involved with professional groups and who receive high ratings from third-party organizations. Ideally, the lawyer you hire should be part of the state bar association and county bar associations. They should also be members of state organizations such as the Massachusetts Academy of Trial Attorneys and federal groups such as the American Association for Justice.

Experienced with Dog Bite Cases

In addition to ensuring your lawyer has experience in your state, you should also ensure that they are experienced with dog bite cases in particular. Armed with experience, a lawyer knows how to fight common defenses from the dog owner’s attorneys. They also have a network of quality expert witnesses they can call on, and those witnesses can be essential for linking your injuries to the dog attack and for establishing the pain and suffering you’re likely to experience due to certain injuries.

Understands Your State Laws

Dog bite laws vary a lot from state to state. Many states, are strict liability states, meaning that the owner is almost always liable when their dog attacks. But in other states, liability can be harder to prove. To ensure you get the best settlement for your case, you need a lawyer who is experienced handling cases in your state.

 

HOW TO CHOOSE A DEDICATED AND EXPERIENCED DOG BITE ATTORNEY

Contact Power Legal Group

Power Legal Group has the resources, experience, time and patience to handle your dog bite claim. Call us now for a free initial consultation on dog bite injuries.

Call for a Consultation

The single most effective way to choose a lawyer you will feel comfortable hiring is through a consultation. This is your chance to sit down with the attorney face to face, ask questions, get feedback and make important decisions about the direction of your case. You should come out of this meeting with a good idea of whether or not to hire a particular lawyer.

Consider Access to Resources

When hiring a dog bite lawyer, you are in actuality hiring a whole team of people who will be contributing to your case. This group may be comprised of a lead attorney, a paralegal who does all the research, and investigators who will help collect evidence for your case. If you ever wonder if you should handle the case on your own, just remember that it takes an entire team of experts to successfully handle your case. Your lawyer brings many years of experience to the table and can move the process along seamlessly. You can seriously compromise the stability of your case if you decide to proceed on your own.

Look at Experience

It’s not enough to hire a great personal injury lawyer. There are several subsets of personal injury law. An attorney known for auto accident injury law may not be the best fit for your dog bite case. Look for those who focus on dog bites for the best chance of a successful outcome. Targeted expertise: this is what you want when selecting dog bite attorneys. They know the effects of dog bite injuries, the associated costs, and the ongoing medical needs these types of injuries present.

Conduct an Internal Search

This is one of the biggest factors you should consider when searching for a personal injury lawyer. When conducting your research, stick to your local area to find the lawyer with the most targeted expertise in LA. Ask for recommendations from people you know and take a look at various lawyers’ websites to determine how they have handled dog bite cases in the past.

 

Choosing a Dog Bite Attorney

In the state of Connecticut, if you are bitten by a dog then the owner of that dog is liable for your injuries. Victims’ injuries should be covered by the dog owner’s homeowners or renters insurance. You will often want an experienced Connecticut dog bite attorney on your side, who is familiar with the laws in New Haven and the entire state.

Choosing the right dog bite attorneys to represent you is critical to recovering compensation. You want to make sure you are choosing the right attorney for your case.

 

Most Useful Tips To Choose The Best Dog Bite Lawyer

You should make it a point to check whether the professional you are choosing is registered and licensed. You should check service areas of the professional you are choosing. In addition to that whether he is accredited by the state and is permitted to work in your area. Remember, choosing a local lawyer is advised as he has knowledge about the local laws pertaining to animal bites and personal injury cases.

Read reviews and testimonials of previous clients and customers of the dog bite lawyer you are choosing. You should check whether they are satisfied with the services of the professional. Check whether the professional provides equal importance to every case and negotiates for the maximum amount of compensation. You should check case-studies of the professional you are choosing. This will help you to get an idea of the types of cases handled by him. Check whether he has handled cases similar to yours before.

You should ask for quotes from two or three attorneys. Choose an attorney who quotes the most reasonable rates. You should also compare the reputation of the professional you are choosing. Make sure to choose a lawyer who asks for contingency payments. In this form of payment, you need to pay a lawyer only if you win the case. Choose a professional who offers free consultation services. Remember, lawyers of repute generally have higher fees than less experienced ones. However, it is advised that you choose an experienced one as only he can bring the maximum amount of compensation for you.

 

Choosing the Right Lawyer After a Dog Bite or Animal Attack

Dog Bite Laws Vary from State to State

Some states follow a basic negligence standard, holding dog owners liable when their negligent behavior allows their dog to bite to another. Other states have adopted a strict liability standard, holding owners liable any time their pet bites another person, without any consideration of negligence and regardless of whether the owner was exercising care in keeping or handling the animal at the time or not. Still another popular approach only holds owners liable if they previously knew that their animal had a dangerous or vicious propensity to bite or attack. This doctrine is often called the “one free bite” rule, because an owner may not be liable the first time their animal attacks a person, but after that incident they are on notice and responsible for future attacks.

The Right Animal Attack Attorney Can Help

Dog bites can cause serious injuries, including compound fractures, facial lacerations and puncture wounds, internal injuries, nerve damage, scarring and disfigurement, rabies, and emotional trauma. Victims sometimes come away from a vicious animal attack with permanent physical disabilities as well as depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, or a lifelong fear of dogs or open places. Death from an animal attack is a very real possibility as well, especially when the victim is a small child.

Tips To Choose The Best Kitchen Sink

Kitchen Sinks – More Choices than Just Stainless Steel Sinks

When you’re remodeling your kitchen, you have numerous alternatives in almost every design detail. This really is true despite your choice of kitchen sink. You’re no longer limited by double bowled, stainless steel or enameled cast metal sinks.

Kitchen sinks could be just as much of a design function in a brand new kitchen while the units, counters, and backsplashes. Your choice of a sink will make a record in your kitchen while the focal stage, or it can be hidden, allowing one other features of one’s kitchen take the spotlight. The decision is yours.

The traditional stainless steel, double bowl drain is the standard destroy workhorse because of its easy look, easy preservation, and low cost. That drain will fit with any kitchen fashion, because of its easy lines and glossy look. A deeper bowl degree and larger wall construction provides you with greater application and last a long time.

 

Appearance Stainless Steel  vs  Porcelain Sink

While many porcelain sinks have a stainless steel interior, the two types of sinks couldn’t look more different from one another. True stainless steel sinks are made of steel that is either pressed into the shape of a sink or folded and welded into the shape of a sink. They can be very contemporary with clean lines and edges or they may have a more transitional appearance with rounded edges and a slightly rounded bottom. They come in several thicknesses, with thicker sinks having a more substantial look than thinner sinks. The steel may have a very bright, polished finish or they may have a wired brushed finish that can help hide scratches and water spots.

Porcelain sinks are much heavier and more substantial looking, because they’re made of either thick gauge cast iron or steel that has been coated in a baked-on porcelain enamel. This enamel can be very smooth or it may have a slightly undulating appearance to it. Porcelain sinks are most commonly white or cream in color, but you can special order them in a range of other colors as well to complement your home.

Both types of sinks come in several shapes and sizes, as well as in different configurations. Both can be drop in or undermounted, and both can be found in farmhouse or apron front styles as well. Overall, porcelain sinks have a more traditional appearance while stainless steel sinks have a more modern look, and work best in contemporary settings. Porcelain sinks can work in some modern settings, while they work best in traditional looks.

 

WHY STAINLESS STEEL SINKS?

Stainless steel sinks by Just have many advantages and possess qualities that make them an excellent choice for most environments.

  • Affordability– From high-end to very affordable, there are stainless models suitable for every need.
  • Improved– New technology allows stainless steel sinks to continue to be improved and upgraded. The newer 16- and 18-gauge sinks are thicker and much less noisy than their less-expensive predecessors.
  • Durable– Stainless steel is extremely long-lasting! Stainless steel is perfect for sinks and other applications as it won’t chip, crack, fade, or stain.
  • Bigger Bowl Capacity– Stainless steel’s relatively light yet strong properties allow it to be formed into larger and deeper bowls than cast iron or any other materials.
  • Easy to Take Care of– Stainless steel is easy to take care of and unaffected by household chemicals. It retains the original luster when cleaned with household cleanser and soft towel. Thus making it the ideal surface for sinks in the kitchen, bathroom sinks, laundry sinks, and any other design and residential application.
  • Will Not Rust– The metal imparts a rich glow and boosts natural corrosion resistance. Available stainless steel finishes range from a mirror-like shine to a satin luster.
  • Absorbs Shock– Stainless steel actually “gives” on impact to help cushion crystal, fine china, everyday glassware, and ceramic dishes against accidental breakage.
  • Accents the Detail– Interior designers know that stainless steel sinks and appliances can accent a room’s unique architectural details and eye-catching finishes. Its clean lines and cool textures reflect the surrounding colors and patterns. The timeless look of stainless steel will complement your décor long after trendy colors go out of style.
  • Longevity– Stainless steel is the very best choice for years of optimal performance and continued high-quality good looks.
  • Recyclability and Eco Friendly “Green”– Stainless steel is a recyclable material. Stainless steel doesn’t degrade or lose any of its properties in the recycling process making stainless steel sinks a good green option. With a strong commitment to Green Awareness, Just Manufacturing utilizes salvaged, raw stainless steel in our Made in USA production processes.

 

What are the Differences between Cheap and Expensive Stainless Steel Sinks?

  • The quality of the stainless steel used – better quality means more expensive
  • The gauge or thickness of the stainless steel – thicker means more expensive but with a caveat
  • Cheaper stainless steel sinks offer less resistance to discoloration and corrosion
  • More expensive sinks may be more resistant to scratches and dents & restore better
  • Expensive stainless steel sinks are more durable
  • Better quality sinks have noise reducing materials added
  • The overall size and type of sink – double bowl or single bowl and single or double drainers

 

Kitchen Sink Materials

Stainless Steel Kitchen Sinks – Stainless steel sinks are among the most popular on the market. According to leading sink manufacturer Franke, 70% of all sinks are made using stainless steel.

Granite Composite Kitchen Sinks – Composite sinks are made by combining crushed granite or quartz with a resin filler. The mixture varies depending on the product and manufacturer, but it’s usually around 80% stone and 20% resin.

Copper Kitchen Sinks- Copper kitchen sinks are largely handmade by craftsman. This gives them a charming handcrafted look, but also means there can be a wider range of quality on the market than you’ll find with other types of kitchen sinks. Common problems include size variation (larger or smaller than stated specs) and improper drainage. This is why it’s important to do your homework and make sure the manufacturer stands behind their product with an uncomplicated lifetime warranty.

Cast Iron Kitchen Sinks- Cast iron is one of the oldest materials used for kitchen sinks and is still very popular today. The bright, glossy enamel finish appeals to many homeowners and can easily last for decades. Like the name implies, cast iron sinks are made by casting iron. Since bare iron is extremely prone to rusting, cast iron sinks receive a heavy porcelain enamel finish. If you were to strip the enamel off of a cast iron sink, it would have the same rough texture as a cast iron skillet.

Fireclay – Fireclay sinks are made by molding a ceramic clay into the shape of the sink and allowing it to dry at a high temperature for a period of up to 40 hours. Once the clay has dried, the porcelain enamel is applied and the sink is places in a tunnel kiln at an extremely high temperature (in some cases higher than 2000⁰F) for a period of around 20 hours.

The Best Thing To Do In Local Moving

How to Prepare for a Local Move

Getting ready to move to a new home? Wondering how to prepare for a move?

Even if you’re not moving very far away from your current home, preparing for a move is incredibly stressful. Time will move fast, and it can be easy to forget essential things you need to manage for your move to go as smoothly as possible.

Luckily, we’re here to help. Below we’ll give you a few tips for successfully planning and preparing for your move.

 

Prepare Your New Home When You Move

Make your new place feel like home from day one by checking these items off your list before you move.

Clean, paint, and insure your new home

It’s much easier to clean and paint before your home is full, so make sure it’s in tip-top shape before move-in day. Take the extra step to protect your personal belongings with renters insurance or homeowners insurance and take out a home warranty for your appliances.

Set up trash removal and recycling for your new home

Moving can be messy, so make sure you’ve contacted local trash and recycling removal companies for your new home (if needed). Someone has to cart away all those boxes!

Shop for your items for your new home

A new home means new furniture! Be sure that you have everything you need to live comfortably after you move. Now is the perfect time to upgrade your furniture, replace items that don’t fit your new space, and invest in a new mattress. Love your new home but can’t stand the floors? Choosing new hardwood, for example, is much easier to install before you move in. If you can, shop around and have it installed before move-in day.

Along with these larger purchases, you should also pick up any essentials for your new home (dish soap, paper towel etc.). You don’t want your first shower to be curtainless.

 

Tips To Plan, Prepare, And Pack For A Move

The following moving tips are meant to help you stay focused, organized and have a stress-free and seamless move to your new home!

  • Keep A Notebook Dedicated To The MoveUse a notebook for a moving journal to plan out and organize your move
  • Calculate Your Moving CostsAdd up your total estimated moving costs to make a budget for the move
  • Change Your Address Before You MoveDon’t forget to change your address with everyone important!
  • Get Free Packing & Moving SuppliesDon’t spend unnecessary money on moving supplies you can get for free.
  • How To Hire A Moving CompanyHiring movers will save you a ton of stress and labor if you have the money.

 

 

Moving company

Trustworthy movers offer a guarantee for a fast and professional local moving job.

For local moves, most reputable local movers offer services which you pay for by the hour. In reality, this may be a great option in your case – you can pack all or part of your household items on your own and then hire a moving company to help with the loading and transportation. Check out this useful moving distance calculator to get a better idea of how much your local move will cost you.

Also, your mover will offer adequate insurance against unpleasant incidents, short-term storage for your items (if you need any) and a guarantee for a fast and professional moving job. Don’t forget to request an in-house written estimate from the chosen moving company, be sure to understand fully the clauses of each document before you sign it, ask you mover about additional charges that may apply and voice any concerns you may have regarding the move.

 

Your checklist for moving into a new home

1 week before you move

You’re down to the last seven days. From collecting all your keys to packing a 24-hour moving kit, your goal is to have everything ready for moving day.

  1. Disassemble big furniture items.
  2. Begin cleaning empty rooms. Even if you’re not working toward getting a security deposit back, you can make the place more attractive to prospective buyers.
  3. Pack your suitcases. Get everyone in the family a suitcase they can live out of for a few days. Pack essential items like pajamas, clean socks, and swimsuits for the hotel pool.
  4. Collect all keys and garage door openers. You’ll need to hand these over to the real estate agent, new owner, or next tenants when you move out.
  5. Schedule a final walk-through of your new home. Make sure you know how to find things like the water heater, circuit breakers, and water shut-off valves.
  6. Pack a 24-hour moving kit with other essentials besides your clothes. It’s a great idea to include some healthy snacks, flashlights, and phone chargers.
  7. Take pictures or video of your empty home. You want to be able to prove your house was in good condition when you moved out.
  8. Get cash. Have enough money on hand to tip your movers and deal with unexpected needs or emergencies.
  9. Clean your new home before moving in. It’ll save time and the hassle of working around boxes and furniture.
  10. Identify unpacking priorities. It’s pretty tough to unpack everything in a single day, so we recommend planning out how to tackle the project in chunks.
  11. Finish packing before moving day. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to try and do your packing on loading day. Make sure everything is ready before your movers or rental truck arrive.

Tips To Make A Carpet Cleaning

The Benefits Of Carpet Cleaning

You are probably like most people and had carpet installed in your home because of its comfort and appearance. While carpet is an excellent choice for flooring, it is extremely important that you properly care for the carpet with routine maintenance. Along with regular vacuuming and spot cleaning, it is equally important to have the carpet in your home professionally cleaned. Not only will professional cleaning help to extend the life of your carpet, but here are just a few of the other benefits you can expect from having your carpet cleaned.

Installing carpet in your home can be quite an investment, so it is important to protect your investment by properly caring for it. Daily maintenance and routine cleanings will help to ensure that your carpet, as well as your home, is fresh, clean and healthy.

 

What are the benefits?

Eliminating dust mites

Although invisible to the human eye, dust mites most certainly exist and are commonly found in the home. The body pieces and faeces of dust mites are allergens which can cause people to suffer from nasty allergies if not removed. Steam cleaning carpets kills dust mites that are often embedded in the carpet by blasting them at high temperatures and proves an extremely effective way to remove them once and for all!

Removing trapped pollutants

Pollutants can take many forms, some that become trapped in your carpet can include insect allergens, pet dander (flecks of skin shed from animals), everyday dust and dirt, and even traces of lead!  Everyday activities such as vacuuming or even just walking across the carpet can release toxic airborne gases, contaminating your home. If these toxic gases enter your body, you could experience a deterioration in your health. Professional carpet cleaners use specialist shampooing formulas to remove the trapped pollutants, regardless of how deep they may be trapped.

Prevent mould growth

Commonly found in homes with high humidity levels, standing water will soak into carpet fibres and encourage the growth of mould which can lead to health risks such as respiratory problems. A professional carpet clean includes a drying element which removes any moisture left behind, removing any mould that was there previously and helping prevent any new growths from appearing.

 

How does deep carpet cleaning work?

There are a few different methods for deep carpet cleaning, and the method used will depend on the type (or types) of issue. Your carpet cleaners might use:

  • Spot cleaning – The really old or really tough stains might need some extra elbow grease. In these cases, spot cleaning prior to a whole carpet clean better reduces the appearance of stains.
  • Steam cleaning – this method uses high-pressure hot water to remove dirt from carpet fibres. It will typically involve using a cleansing agent on the carpet, which is then agitated (by brushes/bristles) to release the trapped dirt. The carpet will then be thoroughly rinsed and left to dry at room temperature.
  • Encapsulation – this is the new and improved version of traditional carpet shampooing. It uses synthetic foam detergents that turn to powder as they dry. Particles of dirt are trapped in the powder, which is brushed or vacuumed off. This method uses less water and has less drying time than carpet shampooing, so has become a more popular option. 
  • Dry carpet cleaning – also known as compound cleaning, dry carpet cleaning uses dry chemical cleaning treatments. This means no sticky soaps or detergents, a lot less water and a very short drying time. Traditional carpet cleaning requires thorough ventilation to allow the carpet to dry, in order to prevent mildew and mould growth. Dry carpet cleaning eliminates this hassle.

 

FREQUENCY IS KING

Before even considering whether or not you should hire a professional to clean your carpets or simply do it youself, you should consider how frequently you should be cleaning your carpets.

Cleaning frequency is the most important factor when it comes to maintaining a carpet like the day it was bought.

 

Advantages of Carpet Cleaning

  1. Extends the life of your carpet
  2. Contributes to a healthier environment
  3. Complete removal of dirt and bacteria
  4. Eliminates Carpet Stains
  5. No Residues
  6. Reduces Traffic Lane Effects
  7. Enhances overall appearance of the room

While one may not notice it at first, over time the room can look dirty and outdated just by the carpet’s condition. carpet cleaning can keep not only the fibers looking new but improve the aesthetics of the room.

Doing Home Renovation For A Better Home

Tips to Renovate your House Beautifully yet Economically

Divide and Conquer

As mentioned earlier effective planning is the key to effective renovation. If you are renovating yourself then you need to focus on both the bigger picture and the smaller parts. You might have heard the phrase “whole is greater than the sum of its parts”, you can apply the same strategy to your home renovation project and devise a renovation plan for each area in your house. If you hire an architect for renovation, he will assess your requirements and then renovate accordingly. In this case since you’re in charge, you will brainstorm your requirements, write your end goal for each space in the house and decide the overall goal, and then move on to.

Budgeting

Since you want to renovate your house economically it is important for you to decide the total expenditure requirements/limit. It is important to remember in budgeting that you cannot overestimate your budget, keep your budget underestimated and then move on to researching for things you need.

Research

You will be surprised at the number of options you have once you start your research. The beautiful lamp that you liked at a high end store can be purchased at a lower price from elsewhere as well. So, when renovating your house on budget please remember that if you research to find the furniture you like, paint you want or the decorations you would like in your house, you are likely to find most of the supplies at an inexpensive price. Take advantage of online shopping, thrift stores and second hand furniture shops and see how far you will go. For step by step instructions on how you can decorate your house beautifully yet economically please read below.

Paint Affects Lighting

As mentioned earlier painting affects lighting and when renovating your house you might opt for a new paint. In that case if you are already on a budget purchasing different colored pallets might seem counterintuitive. If you are on a tight budget then opt for a black and white palette, it will give your house a modern sophisticated look and you will have the guarantee that you can never go wrong with white or black.

Small Rooms don’t have to Look Small

If you are renovating to make a small house look bigger than an inexpensive and beautiful way of achieving that goal is to use mirrors. It’s an inexpensive technique but it’s used by one of the most famous architects of his time, Sir John Soane, who used mirrors in the breakfast room of his London house.

 

Tips for Planning a Successful House Remodel

Know Your End Goal

Before you decide how extensively to renovate, you need to know what your end goal is for your home. Are you renovating to raise the resale value of your home, or will you be staying put for years to come? Consider the condition of your neighborhood before you begin, and know which renovations are a good return on investment, and which will be considered overdoing it for the area. Having a specific plan in place for your future will help you decide how deep to go with your project.

Have a Budget

Knowing your budget—and sticking to it—is one of the most important parts of renovation planning. Remember to add in a contingency fund for any unexpected costs—and expect to use it—as well as incidental costs like the cost of eating out for a kitchen reno, or even taking a hotel for a night or two. It can be easy to want a top-of-the-line renovation, but perhaps all you need are some cheap upgrades which will make your house look more expensive. Do your research and plan your budget before ever lifting a hammer.

Consult the Calendar

If you’re hoping for a brand new home for a particular event or holiday, make sure you look at your end date and work your way backward. Be sure to pencil in a few weeks to a month at the end for wiggle-room in case there are delays on the way to avoid disappointment.

Do Your Research

Take the time to chat with friends, family, and neighbors about the renovation work they have done, and the challenges they have faced during the process. Having a wealth of information from homeowners who have been in your shoes can be invaluable in the planning process, and this information may alter your end plan.

Know Your Limits

DIY renos are a great way to save money, have a sense of accomplishment, and involve the entire family, but they can turn disastrous if you don’t know what you’re doing. Know which tasks you can safely tackle, and which should be handled like the pros, like a potentially load-bearing wall, asbestos or lead paint.

 

Tips for a Successful Remodeling Project

Plan Ahead

Making product selections early can prevent delays later. Proper planning can also help keep you on budget. “You’ll end up making the same decisions, but you’ll know what they’re going to be and what they’re going to cost ahead of time,” explains Ridley Wills, founder of The Wills Co., a design-build firm in Nashville.

Remember the Big Picture

Long-term-maintenance, energy-loss, and repair expenses can add up quickly. Make sure you include them in your calculations when comparing prices.

Find Good Help

Hire remodelers who have more than three years of experience, membership in the National Association of the Remodeling Industry (NARI), a good record with the Better Business Bureau, and positive customer references. Most important, select a remodeler you trust.

Visit a Job Site

When evaluating remodelers, make sure you visit their current job sites. The best remodelers maintain clean and organized work sites, take precautionary measures to ensure safety, and know how to keep a low profile in a neighborhood.

Be a Good Boss

The most important thing you can do during a remodeling project, other than write checks, is treat your remodeler well. “The perfect clients are easy to get along with, honest, and have an appreciation for what we do,” says Anthony Wilder, founder of Anthony Wilder Design/Build in Bethesda, Maryland.

 

the Biggest Design Mistakes New Homeowners Make

Starting renovations too soon

If possible, live in your house for a while before making any plans to overhaul. “Learn its flow, where the groceries land, where the laundry wants to go, how the sun hits it, where the choke points are, which way the rain slants, even get a sense of its soul,” says Bruce Irving, an independent renovation consultant and real estate agent from Cambridge, Massachusetts. “All of this will inform your choices when you make your plans to change things.”

Underestimating costs

Most jobs will cost more and take longer than you expect, so always add 20 percent to what you think a project will total when budgeting “If you don’t have the funds,” cautions Irving, “cut the job back. If you happen to beat these projections, then your surprises are happy ones.”

Expecting everything to go according to plan

Work on older buildings can yield a lot of unforeseen events. Who knows what’s behind that wall you’re opening up? New construction is more controlled, but that doesn’t always mean smooth sailing. Be prepared for the unexpected. “It’s a human failing,” says Irving. “We all hope and pray everything goes according to plan.” Trust us: Nothing will.

Not hiring a designer from the start

“You are about to spend more than you ever thought possible,” says Irving. “It might as well be for a correctly-designed thing.” Interiors designers and architects typically either charge by the hour or take a percentage of the overall job (say, 10 percent)—a small sum compared your total payout.

Going for the lowest bid

“Good professional help is worth the money,” says Irving. “That means design as well as construction.” Be willing to pay for a good contractor, and be wary of the one who’s cheap and available right away.

 

Creative home renovation tips for a family with a tight budget

Install some new lighting

Lighting is another factor that contributes a lot to the ambiance of a room. Lucky for you, lighting is also a very affordable factor to change. You can opt for a brighter or dimmer setting depending on how you want the room to feel.

Colour is another option when it comes to changing the lighting in a room. Small colour accents can help give a room a cooler or warmer feel depending on the shade.

Add minimalist storage ideas

Storage is an issue in most households. Not only do you have too many things to store, but storing them in a nice way is important as well. This is when investing in some minimalistic storage is a good idea. Small cubby holes and hanging racks are a few great ideas to make storing clothing and other smaller things a breeze. These storage devices can be added to closets and empty spaces throughout the house.

Hang up homemade art or photos

Many homeowners scratch their heads when considering what to do with a large area of empty wall. Instead of investing in expensive mirrors or other accessories, consider hanging some of your own work. This could come in the form of a personal painting or photograph. It’s a great way to make your rooms feel more personalised while also saving money in the long run.

Replace cheaper household accessories

When considering a remodel, our attention typically turns towards the bigger ticket items. However, even swapping out smaller household accessories can help to shake things up. For example, pillows are littered throughout most homes on couches, beds, and chairs. Changing the smaller accessories throughout your home is a great way to renovate with a tight budget.

Rearrange your furniture

While furniture contributes a lot to the overall feel of a room, it also tends to cost a lot of money. Most of the time, a tight budget won’t allow for the purchase of a new couch or dresser. For this reason, it is important to utilise the power of rearrangement. A room can feel completely different even with the same furniture when it has been moved around to different spots. You can do this with furniture from other rooms as well. This essentially costs nothing, yet can bring the feel of a complete remodel.

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