DIY Home Improvement Tips: Good Habits In Your Habitat!

Everyone you know is doing their best to be friendlier to the environment, which is great. It’s about time that we started initiatives to make this planet a lot better. The great thing about promoting ways to improve our planet is that it starts from us, at home. Not only does that place the onus back on us to make the environment better instead of relying on councils, but it also helps to make our bills cheaper, which is an excellent by-product of looking after your home. In fact, there are some really simple things you can do to benefit the environment that doesn’t involve going to the recycling plant every few days, let alone get out of your bed! Okay, that’s not necessarily true, but you don’t need to leave the house!

Electricity is a big one that we all need to cut back on. The amount of energy that we waste in leaving appliances on is a big cause of our collective carbon footprint, not to mention wasted money. We use lights every day, so instead of the normal light bulbs, use a Compact Fluorescent one. It can save you up to 66% on your energy bills. Another few hints to cut back on your electricity bill includes not looking in the fridge! It sounds crazy, but by looking around the fridge to decide on your meal for the evening can cost you between $12 and $24 a year, and if you use colder water in your washing machine or set it to a lower temperature, this will save 40% less energy on your output. Also, it’s very simple, just unplug your appliances at night, and although you need to charge your phone, put it on airplane mode.

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Going around the home itself, there are many home comforts that we can either cut corners on or just make little tweaks to improve our environment overall. For example, by adding more houseplants, we are increasing the amount of oxygen around the home, and by getting into the habit of planting in your garden, this is a good way to increase oxygen everywhere. Another one to get on board with is adding solar panels to your roof. There are many homes that have gone for this in a bid to cut back on unnecessary expenditure, and by going solar, you are placing less reliance on fossil fuels for energy and utilizing one of the greatest sources of energy in the universe, the sun! In fact, you can save 10% on your heating bill just by opening the blinds to let the sunlight in!

Chemicals are another source of problems for our environment, and they turn up everywhere, from our cleaning products to our hand creams! Instead of buying expensive cleaning sprays that can give you allergies, buy some bicarbonate of soda and vinegar or apple cider vinegar to apply to mold and dirt walls and surfaces. The acidity of the vinegar will clean it right up and the soda will give you a shiny finish on taps and silverware!  

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Don’t Try This At Home! Top 3 Jobs to Leave to the Professionals

For as much as our generation loves to spend and impulse buy, we are also living in a very thrifty and frugal time. It’s the biggest juxtaposition of them all; even those who have the money to be able to get by easily in life are wanting to take the time to do things for themselves in order to save it.

This has led to an increase in DIY jobs and the learning of new trades in order for people to be able to get the job done quickly, efficiently and with little cost. But while some are taking the necessary steps towards getting qualified and knowledgeable, others are relying on online tutorials or information on forums to get the job done properly.

Here are the top three things that need to be left to the professionals to save incurring any further financial expenditure…

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White Goods

If one of your white goods is on the blink, do not attempt to fix it yourself. Whether your fridge, freezer, washing machine, dishwasher or tumble dryer is having a bad day, you do not need to make it any worse – either for the gadget or for yourself. Most of these appliances are hooked up to both electricity and water; a literally lethal combination if you don’t know what you’re doing. Search online for a reliable tradesman to come out, such as on City Appliance Repair, and make sure that you leave it all to them. Even if it looks like you haven’t done anything wrong, you could have accidentally voided the warranty by removing or touching something that you shouldn’t have. It’s a minefield.

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Painting

Everybody loves to try and give redecorating a go at least once in their lives, but if you’re not the steadiest with a brush and are known for being a tad clumsy then step away from the paint! There are people out there who do this day in, day out, and will get the job done for you neatly and quickly. The last thing you want to be doing is paying out more for materials as you have to wipe up spilt paint, or spend longer on a project than you realistically have time for. Plus, if anything goes wrong, it’s not your fault – but if you hire a professional, the chances of this happening are very slim.

Brown Mouse Inside Mouse Trap during Daytime

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Pest Control

This could end up getting majorly out of hand if you don’t know the ins and outs and what you are doing extremely well. Most people leave it up to the experts, but the few who don’t either get it one of two things – right or wrong. There are a list of preventative steps that you can take in order to keep things under control, and if these are adhered to then it’s bad luck should you reach a situation where you need to bring out and pay for pest control. If you have children this is also a reason for leaving it to a professional; poison, guns and traps are all things that should not be near a child.

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Reasons You Think You Can’t Change Your Home Decor and Design – And Why You’re Wrong

Coming around to the decision to give your home a makeover is an easy one.

Of course, the reasons in the pro column are long and substantial. Who doesn’t want their home to look better? Give everything a refresh; change things around so that it all feels like new again? Perhaps your eye has been caught by a new decorating trend, and you can’t wait to try it out for yourself. Or perhaps you’re just the kind of person who tends to need a project.

You find yourself imagining the changed decor; the fresh paint; the new levels of comfort that you can explore. Then, with a screech of brakes, your mind remembers all the reasons you shouldn’t do it.

Sometimes, though, you just have to seize the moment and go for it. If there’s something you want to change about your home, then it’s time to banish the concerns to one side. I’m going to go through all of the usual objections and show why they’re not anything that should stand in your way. Just call me your home decor and renovation enabler!

“I can’t afford it.”

Fall, Hurricane, Money, Finance, Currency, Crisis

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Of course, this one is pretty difficult to argue on the surface of it. If you don’t have the money, then what can you do? You can’t magic it up from thin air and progress on developing a money tree is still limited, so you’ll just have to wait until you can afford it.

The best option in this scenario is to look at a way to change something up without breaking the bank. Rather than a full-scale kitchen remodel, for example, why not go for a facelift? You could change the cupboard doors rather than fitting entirely new cupboards.

The same philosophy applies throughout the house. Craving a new bed to snuggle down into? Maybe that’s outside the budget, but memory foam mattress toppers can give a boost of comfort without the same price tag. Does the carpet really need replacing, or will a deep clean and brush be enough to bring it back up to standard?

“I don’t have the time.”

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Realistically, you probably don’t have the time for most things you do. We get it; life is busy, it’s stressful, and you’re struggling to do the basics. Why should you make your workload easier?

Because you don’t have the time! It’s that simple; the same thing arguing against the scenario is the thing that makes it a necessity. Unless you have a huge chunk of holiday time coming up that you know you can dedicate to DIY, where is it going to come from? You’re going to have to fit it in somewhere. There’s no time like the present, or so the old saying goes.

Putting something off to some fantastical period when you’re going to magically have “more time” isn’t going to work. You can break it down into chunks. Do a little as often as you possibly can to make it less draining.

“It’s a lot of disruption.”

Yes, of course, it is. You have to shop, make decisions, then implement them. Depending on the scale of your project, that might involve a builder being involved or transferring items into new furniture. It will be disruptive – but it’s always going to be. It’s the same as the point about time. Unless you can foresee sometime in the future when you will be able to do these things unencumbered, there’s no point holding back.

“It’s a lot of mess.”

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Even the most basic things do cause a mess, but so does life. I’m going to imagine your house tends to require cleaning anyway. So, given the potential end result, what’s the harm in a little extra?

“It’s not a good time.”

There’s a chance this is a legitimate concern and I don’t discount that. If you’re particularly busy, going through a stressful situation or have health concerns – you’re right. It’s probably not a good time and you should wait until it’s more something you can cope with. There’s also seasonal considerations; it’s little use deciding to renovate the garden in winter, for example.

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Only you can know if the problem is just where you’re at in your life – you know if this is a genuine reason or not. Often, this argument might be masking a concern about one of the above, so check your thinking to see if that’s the case. If it is, then see if there’s something you can do about progress. If not, and it really is a bad time, consider yourself un-enabled for now!

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Persistent Household Problems And How To Stamp Them Out

Owning your own home doesn’t come without its challenges. One of those is keeping on top of home maintenance. Sometimes it seems as though there’s a never ending to-do list of repairs. It’s not surprising then that we put off those niggling minor tasks that are so annoying.

  1. Excess Moisture

Excess moisture presents itself as steamed-up windows, rotting wood, damp and mold. If the problem is severe you may even find that you feel clammy. In order to fix this, there are a few steps you can take.

Basin, Sink, Kitchen Sink, Tap, Drain, Faucet

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Ventilate by installing fans and ventilation systems in problem areas. This is particularly important in the kitchen and bathroom. Open the windows to allow air in and moisture to escape. Don’t forget to do this after a long hot shower. Check that ventilation fans are working properly and are not clogged with dust.

Install a dehumidifier to collect excess moisture. There are lots of systems on the market, so ensure you choose wisely by reading reviews like dehumidifierweb.com.

  1. Smelly Kitchen Sink

If you notice nasty odors emanating from the kitchen sink, it’s likely to be due to a buildup of food and grease. The first step is to fill your sink with hot water and detergent. Turn on the garbage disposal and let the water drain through. For minor problems, this will do the trick. If the problem persists run ice cubes and rock salt through the unit to clean the blades. Follow by a few lemon peels for freshness.

If you don’t have a garbage disposal unit, boiling water may be all that’s needed to clear the nasty smells. In fact, pouring boiling water down the sink regularly will help you avoid this problem from reoccurring. If boiling water isn’t enough, pour down a cup of baking powder following by two cups of vinegar. There’s usually no need for harsh chemicals. Household products are enough.

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  1. Small Scratches On Wooden Furniture

If you’re sick of seeing scratches on your wooden furniture, there’s a simple way to restore it. All you need is a walnut. Yep! Just a simple walnut. Rub the nut over the scratch and watch as the oils darken the area. It works like magic with the minimum of fuss.

  1. Smears On The Windows

Each time the sun streams through the windows, it reveals just how grimy they are. A simple solution to this is to add a little white vinegar to a spritzer and spray it over the glass. Remove with a microfiber cloth to avoid streaks. It also works on water stains on the outside of the glass. The smears and dirt will be gone in no time, and you can enjoy the sunshine.

  1. Squeaky Door Hinges

That squeaking closet door is so annoying, especially when your partner is still sleeping. It can be resolved quickly and easily by a little WD40 on the hinges. It’s as quick and simple as that.

  1. Stained Bathtub

If your bath is looking a bit dingy, apply this tried and tested formula. Make a paste with lemon juice and baking soda and apply to the affected areas. Leave for half an hour and then scrub away. The tub will look as good as new in no time.

Most problems have a quick and simple solution. Don’t let them get you down and don’t let them escalate. Stamp them out so you can enjoy your home again.

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