Category Archives: DIY

How To Choose the Right Plumber

If you need a plumber, time is usually of the essence. You do not really want to endure days upon days with plugging that does not work or water that leaks in the most inopportune of places. While many homeowners try to do the job on their own, this is not usually the prudent way to go about it, as more harm than good can be done. For this reason alone, it is best to contact a professional Atlanta plumber to come in and save the day. That being said, there are some factors to consider when choosing the best plumbing for you and your situation.

Expect Great Customer Service

You can learn a great deal about a plumber by the way his or her office treats you when you contact them. You should expect great customer service, as this will speak to how you will be treated should you select them to perform the needed repairs at your home. This means that your plumber should be courteous and respectful when you contact them on the phone. You should also expect a swift response to any emails that you have, especially if you have asked a question or voiced a concern.

Timeliness of the Response

You should know what to expect your plumber and they should honor that commitment to you. It is quite possible that you have taken off work to be at home when the plumber arrives. Your time is valuable, and a professional plumber should understand that. If your plumber keeps changing the time of arrival on you, or they do not show up altogether, it might be time to consider someone else.

Professionalism Matters

Plumbing is a profession. Sure, you plumber is not going to show up at your home or office in a suit and tie, nor would you want them to. At the same time, they should conduct themselves with professionalism at all times. You should expect them to clean up after they are finished, speak to respectfully in your home at all times, and in general just to respect the sanctity of your home. A professional plumber is one who will treat your home like theirs with each and every service call that they make.

Plumbers can truly save the day if they are good and experienced. This is what you are looking for. You will want to take some time and conduct your own research before deciding on the individual that you ultimately choose to invite into your own home. This will help you in the long run, and it could lead to a long and prosperous relationship for the both of you in the end.

Tips for getting back in your home after unforeseen damage

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Whether you’ve experienced the devastation of a home fire, water damage, storm damage, or you need fast mold remediation to keep your family safe, choosing a company with the expertise to get the job done quickly and professionally is extremely important. In fact, for those times when help just can’t wait, 24 hour emergency services are essential. There are times when waiting can cause additional damage, so having a reputable contractor to call, even if it’s in the middle of the night, is essential.

A Reputable Restoration Company

Water damage can leave your home vulnerable to continued deterioration if not handled quickly and professionally. It’s important to choose a company that has a proven track record of handling this type of home restoration. Whether your home has water damage as the result of faulty plumbing or accidental flooding, extracting as much water as possible is the first step, then a reputable company like DKI will develop a comprehensive plan for drying your property.

It is important to remove as much moisture and humidity as possible. This needs to be done quickly in order to prevent the growth of mold and mildew. Your restoration contractor will also evaluate other risks, such as the type of water that caused the damage. Water is classified into 3 different categories; generally sanitary, significantly contaminated, and grossly contaminated. The classification of the water will determine the methods used for cleanup and restoration.

Services Offered

A leading restoration contractor will offer a number of services designed to get your home back into good condition. These services typically range from water damage restoration to mold remediation, and even fire and smoke restoration services. Professional remediation and restoration will help ensure that the job is done right, so you can rest assured that there won’t be any further problems.

Fast Response for Emergency Situations

A leading water damage mitigation contractor will provide fast response in emergency situations. There are times when waiting until normal business hours is simply not possible. Fortunately, 24 hour emergency response by a reputable restoration company can help minimize damage while working to get your home restored as quickly as possible. The faster water is extracted and the drying process is implemented, the less chance there will be for additional problems.

When your home is at stake, it’s imperative that you choose a contractor with experience in handling home restoration problems. With fast action and a knowledgeable contractor, you’ll be able to minimize the amount of damage and get your home back to its original condition as quickly as possible.

How to Create the Perfect Outdoor Hot Tub Space

It used to be common place that your hot tub would sit in a sheltered area of your garden, perhaps on a patio or decking. Add a couple of garden lights and you were ready to indulge in a dip. However, garden design trends have come on leaps and bounds and people are wanting to create an experience around their hot tub.

The outdoor room is a popular trend that enhances the area around your hot tub to create the perfect area for relaxation and entertainment. If you want to find out how to create a hot tub haven to escape to, keep on reading.

Let’s Get Started

The process of creating your perfect hot tub space can be broke down into manageable chunks. Initially, you will want to determine the best place to create the space; you will need a solid foundation and safe electrical connections.

Next, if you haven’t received your hot tub yet, have a look online to get its measurements. You will want to make sure the tub fits in the desired place. When measuring a prospective area for your hot tub and outdoor room, remember to take into account any design features you want to include.

Once the previous steps have been achieved, you can get to work on your dream space! However, if you don’t have the time to be erecting different out door room features, there are a number of pre-made garden buildings on the market to house or partially cover your hot tub. You can then add lights and furnishings to make the outdoor space your own.

Simple Outdoor Options

If you have your heart set on creating your outdoor space from scratch, there are a number of simple design options that can pack a punch. Laying down new decking or paving can completely transform your hot tub’s outdoor space. Alternatively, you could paint your fence a vibrant colour, or encourage climbing plants to grow up walls and trellises around your tub. Simply adding some comfy chairs, fairy lights, and a chimenea around your hot tub can create a wonderful effect. You could also turn your outdoor space into an entertainment area, with a BBQ and bar!

Things to Remember

If you have the money, it can be worthwhile utilising the expertise of a landscape gardener if you want to create drastic changes for your outdoor room. However, you will need to be very specific about the work you want done, so that it reflects your personal style.

Whether you want a Moroccan themed space, a nautical themed space, or minimalist Swedish look, make sure your plans reflect your style. Below are five design tips to remember when planning your outdoor room and hot tub area:

  1. Accessories are a must when it comes to giving your outdoor space the right ambience. If it will be a quiet space just for the family, a barbeque, minifridge, and solar powered lights will add a cosy feel. Plan on entertaining? Pop in bar, with obligatory stools, and an outdoor stereo system. Perhaps even some disco lights!
  2. You will definitely need a solid foundation for your outdoor room, especially considering the positioning of a hot tub. Paving and decking are both great options, but there is no reason why one side cannot be edged by a lawn if it fits in with your design plans.
  3. Like any room, lighting can make or break a space. Fairy lights, softer bulbs, and subdued lighting can create an intimate and tranquil outdoor room. Colourful, bold, and bright lights are fantastic for entertaining. You can always have a mix of both, that can be turned on and off as your desire.
  4. Many assume that you need bricks and mortar to create a room, but this isn’t true. Many outdoor rooms and hot tub spaces are created using screens, gazebos, hanging plants, hedges, and trellises. You just need to think outside the box.
  5. Always ensure that the furnishings you choose for your outdoor room reflect the look and style you are going for. When choosing materials, make sure they are waterproof. Or, in the case of chair covers for example, that they can be removed and stored somewhere dry easily.

Stylish décor tips for a family-friendly home

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The arrival of children means that changes will inevitably happen in your home, but having a family does not mean that you have to compromise on style in your interior space.

For many parents, having a stylish and welcoming home is a point of pride that allows them to welcome in new family friends without ever feeling embarrassed by their surroundings.

While kids are well known for causing chaos in a home, following a few simple tips can help keep spaces looking current and contemporary while remaining practical for family life.

Choose family friendly floors

When there are 2.4 children and perhaps a pet dog running in and out all day, the floors of your home can really bear the brunt. So, families who want to stay stylish with little effort should consider their floor coverings very carefully. High-traffic areas such as hallways will benefit from the addition of hard flooring such a wood, tile or laminate, as muddy boot stains can be easily washed away at the end of the day. Adding rugs and runners that can be thrown in the wash provides colour as well as improves grip to help prevent toddler tumbles.

Stylish window safety

Windows are a key feature of an interior room, and they are also a factor that parents should consider carefully once the kids come along. Why not replace dangerous corded blinds with a set of stylish window shutters that will offer the family privacy as well as allow for the flow of natural light? Shutters also provide an additional barrier between little ones and glass panes, which not only can be a bonus in terms of safety but also means that there are less greasy fingerprints to wipe away!

Do use the dining room

The dining room is one of the most important areas that parents can create in the home, as family meals have been proven to be beneficial to relationships within a household. Make sure that this room is a space where everyone will want to be by creating a welcoming interior with energising colours and great lighting.

What about a wet room?

If your bathroom looks like a war zone after wash time, then you might want to consider remodelling it with a more family-friendly style. One popular choice of bathroom for parents is the wet room, where there is a single floor covering and drain, meaning that splashes and spills are a lot less of a problem. A wet room simply allows excess water to flow away down the drain at the end of the day.

Use that utility and repurpose the porch

If your home benefits from a utility space at the back door or front porch, then this can easily be repurposed by parents to serve as a stylish and functional cloak room for the family. Adding coat hooks and boot racks will encourage family members to leave wet and muddy outer clothes here before heading on into your home. Labelling pegs and baskets can help children stow away their own accessories at the end of each day, making it much easier to locate all that is needed the next time you are looking to leave.

Space under the stairs

In many homes, the space under the main staircase is not used to its full advantage, so it is up to you how to best design and designate the space to suit your own family’s style. Some parents with older homes opt to turn this area into a second bathroom to prevent children from traipsing up and down stairs when they need to go. For others, it becomes an invaluable area for storing the necessities of all the activities that the offspring engage in, and adding custom storage can help hide away the detritus of daily life so that the hall area is uncluttered when guests arrive. Other parents find that this space is a great place to add a mini office, allowing children access to the Internet for homework tasks while they remain under the watchful eye of the rest of the household.

Think fresh and functional

Whatever changes you are looking to make, the key to creating a stylish and family-friendly home is to focus on function and keep maintenance in mind. Choosing surfaces that will wipe clean, looking at the ways that a space can work and making it easy to disguise any disorder will allow parents to have their home quickly looking its best again when it is time to welcome visitors.

6 Simple Tips for Improving Your Home’s Exterior in Winter

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No matter what climate you may live in, winter can leave your exterior looking a little drab. But the winter season doesn’t mean that the outside of your home should look barren or empty. The following are simple tips to brighten your curb appeal.

Remove Dead Plants and Leaves

Many homeowners find winter projects to do to give their home’s interior appearance a lift. When the leaves have fallen, and your yard appears barren, your exterior may also need some additional TLC to improve its look. You can begin by trimming back plants and flowers that are no longer blooming. Leaves that have fallen for the season should be raked or mulched. Trees and bushes should also be trimmed back. If you have planters on the porch, remove the dead flowers and replace with winter greens. Lovely displays filled with evergreens, holly berries and pine cones can bring a welcome burst of color to your exterior. You could also select a bouquet of faux flowers and greenery for your outdoor pots.

Home Maintenance

Chipping paint, missing shingles and old siding can make your home look unkempt, especially in the winter. You can improve the look of your structure by painting the trim a neutral color to match your home. If you’ve experienced blistered siding, hail damage or dry rot, new siding for your home can do wonders. You may also want to consider updating your siding if you’ve added a new addition or your siding color is outdated. Another way to boost your home’s aesthetics is by replacing missing roof shingles immediately after a storm.

Paint or Replace Front Door

If the sun is less visible in your region during the winter, you may need to find other ways to lighten up the look of your exterior. For a front door that has seen better days, you can replace it with a sturdy wood version. You could also repaint your current outside door in a bold color such as red.

Install a Memorable Mail Box

Your mailbox does more than play host to your cards, letters and advertisements. It can also add character to your home. Although old fashion post boxes are sturdy and serve its purpose, look for something to match your home. If you have a Victorian house, look for a design with ornate architecture. If your house is modern, a colorful box with sleek lines can liven up your outdoor curb appeal. You could also paint your mailbox in a color that complements your dwelling.

Increase Lighting

The days become shorter and darker during the winter months. If it’s difficult to see outside your home at night, you want to increase your exterior brightness with good lighting. If you have walkways and a driveway, add lights to the front porch and rear of your house. You can also install motion detector lighting on your garage that will activate when it senses movement. You could also install post lighting near the end of your driveway. When visitors or the pizza delivery driver is looking for your house, the post will act as a beacon to your guests.

Invite Nature

Inviting nature to your home with an array of bird feeders can have a huge positive impact on your home’s curb appeal. Feeders are designed to attract a variety of species in various colors such as cardinals and blue jays.

With the onset of darkness early on during the winter months, your home may look less than appealing. But by using the above simple tips, you can spice up your curb appeal and make your home look inviting and unique.

Decorative Wall Hooks for the Sophisticated Renter

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When it comes to decorating an apartment, the little things count just as much as the big ones. Of course, it is important to choose the right color scheme for your living space and to decide where to place all the furniture. However, the picture frames, throw pillows, wall hooks and other stuff that are easy to ignore can truly bring out the attitude in a room.

The Perfect Blend of Practicality and Style

Decorative wall hooks are very useful items to have around the home. Depending on their size and style, they can be used to hang coats, photographs or just about anything light. In the Philippine real estate space, these hooks are also perfect for hanging little reminders on – about what to get from the shops, for instance, or whose birthday is coming up. These hooks are such everyday items that they are often overlooked when you are decorating your apartment. However, taking time to choose some beautiful hooks for your wall will truly lift your apartment aesthetic.

Ideas for Decorative Wall Hooks

Once you start browsing through decorative wall hooks, you will see that there are items on the market to suit everyone’s style. Whether you are seeking to create a traditional, rustic feel in your home, or whether you want something quirky and cute for a kids’ bedroom, you can be certain that you will find the perfect hook design for you. Many decorative wall hooks come in stencil style shapes, such as brightly-colored animal designs or symbols, like hearts and stars. These are perfect for helping your children keep their coats neat and tidy! Even design masters such as Charles Eames ventured into this wall decor business with his colourful Eames Hang-it-all hooks. Delve further into the inspiring world of decorative coat hooks and you will find some hooks very unique shapes – such as knives or hammers embedded in the wall or plastic hands reaching out to ‘grab’ your coat or scarf.

Ditch Store-Bought Hooks for DIY

If you want to be a little more adventurous, you can always try and make your own coat hooks with reclaimed materials, carving wooden pegs, or by stenciling designs onto plastic and cutting them out. The possibilities are endless.

With many decorative coat hooks, all that you need to do is to screw or hammer them into the wall and they are ready to use. Some hooks simply come with very strong adhesive tabs, too, which is great if your landlord does not allow you to drill holes in the wall. That way, you can be a responsible renter and still have fun with decorative coat hooks! However, if you want to make a permanent change, why not invest and look for more condos for sale on Zipmatch? Maybe you’d see that perfect unit that would accommodate even your wildest interior desires.

Upgrading Your Bathroom from Drab To Fab!

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It seems in recent months many people have been thinking about doing up their houses – whether it’s kitchens, living spaces or bathrooms. Bathrooms are perhaps one of the most important rooms in the home, one which is often overlooked when it comes to sprucing things up. Depending on individual style and preference, bathrooms can either take on a homey, almost lived in feel with knick knacks and fun décor or they can be filled with beautiful, classy fixtures that provide and air of elegance and luxury. Read ahead for more information on creating the flashiest, most luxurious bathroom you can imagine.

Tiles

One of the best ways to introduce some class and style to a bathroom is to upgrade your tiles. Tiles these days come in not just a multitude of colours, patterns, sizes and styles but also in finishes as well as material. Some have marble finishes, some are specifically made to be uneven such as slate tile which is meant to have a “natural, just taken from nature” type look. The tiles you choose for your bathroom can add a huge amount of sophistication and classic luxury to the space. The plus side is you can use tiles like these finishes to upgrade your kitchen as well as other places in the home such as the bathroom. Check out these bathroom floor tiles from Gul Group for more tile options to consider.

Fixtures and Key Pieces

One of the best shower heads on the market these days are the large “rain shower” shower heads, which simulate a heavier rain shower over you. These not only are fantastic for general showering but are perfect to help you unwind after a long day at work. The rain shower effect helps relax you while providing a good water flow for showering, so you can have the best of both worlds. Additionally the style of the day seems to be styling these showers against a full wall in the bathroom, and tiling the entire area to create a huge showering area, without needing to purchase a separate whole shower unit. This gives the bathroom a classy, elegant look, and also allows you more space without needing big bulky shower units, as a simple glass wall will protect from the water seeping out.

Glass isn’t just for windows, and other finishing touches

As mentioned, glass partitions in bathrooms can add a huge amount of class to any bathroom, and also helps keep that pesky shower water in its place. Other finishing touches for bathrooms can also include getting things such as towel racks, hangers, mirrors and the like all lined with or made out of the same material – such as steel or silver coloured finishes, which keeps the classiness of the room together. If you have the space you can additionally add medicine cabinets, cabinets under stand alone sinks, or even add a potted palm type plant to give that tropical vibe.

However you decide to do up your bathroom, rest assured that with the huge amount of choice and selection out there these days that you won’t have to look far for the perfect pieces to suit your space, style and yourself.

DIY – The Dangers Of Asbestos Exposure

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Everyone knows that doing in home do-it-yourself is always the better option for people, especially for those people who want to do up their homes while saving money. The cost of labour can run hundreds of pounds per day – especially if multiple people are required for the job and so in recent years more and more people have started taking on the task of DIY themselves, regardless of the type of work needing to be done. Things such as Mesothelioma and the related mesothelioma compensation are becoming more and more commonplace as more people try to save money on their home projects.

Mesothelioma

The credit crunch and economic downturn of 2009 has meant that more people than ever are pinching pennies, but this can come with a whole host of its own problems relating to DIY – such as health issues that can lead to severe illnesses later in life. Mesothelioma is a big issue for people who have worked in buildings or live in homes that predate the banning of asbestos. Mesothelioma is a cancer that develops following the exposure of a person to asbestos material and forms on the outer side of many internal organs. A cancer which has a low rate of survival, many people who contract this particular cancer succumb to the disease within five to ten years from diagnosis, even with treatment.

Causes

There are a number of causes of Mesothelioma, many of which include being exposed to it through the environment, through your occupation or through no fault of your own if you happen to be in the vicinity where work is being carried out that kicks it up into the air. These such possibilities for exposure can be controlled, such as by avoiding areas where roadworks in asbestos carrying rock are being carried out, where mining operations occur, or where houses/buildings with known asbestos are being renovated. Asbestos exposure can also occur when people who work with or around it come home with dusty asbestos laden clothing – so having a locker at work to keep your clothes in and changing into something clean to come and go from home can help mitigate the risk for your family. The correct use of specialised masks and protective equipment is likewise a huge priority for those who are working with asbestos, and it’s in both yours and your family’s best interests to follow regulations accordingly. If doing DIY at home and your home is full of asbestos, it may be useful to live elsewhere while the work is being carried out to keep you and your family away from exposure as much as possible.

Options

Of course, early detection is key with any cancer but with Mesothelioma it’s especially important in order to begin necessary treatment as soon as possible. Once diagnosis is given the patient can usually help trace where the exposure occurred which can help in pinning down compensation which can be huge amounts, especially where quality and length of life are compromised. Hiring a qualified and experienced lawyer who has knowledge of compensation claims for Mesothelioma can help attain the highest possible claim for you and your family, so you know they will be taken care of through your treatment and beyond.

So in all, Mesothelioma is a horrible, incurable disease which affects thousands of people annually and can develop through exposure to asbestos. Mitigating the risk though can help ensure that you and your family remain healthy for years to come, long after any DIY has been completed.

A Home Full of Joy: Decorating Everywhere

In certain things in life there is an accepted way, a common wisdom that most people accept and absorb and follow more or less unconsciously, instinctively if you will. You see this in the way people dress, act, and most importantly for today’s discussion, the way we design and decorate.

To an extent, this is a good thing. Society wouldn’t function if everyone was an iconoclast all the time, inventing new ways to make coffee in the morning. Language in itself would not exist at all, being working example of acceptance of community definitions in entirety. Sometimes, though, it’s necessary to choose your own path and make things totally, 100% personal. Decorating your home is one of those times.

The Traditional Way

Decorating your home usually involves a few simple principles, which are all sound:

  • Select a colour palette
  • Choose a basic style
  • Find flooring and furniture that fit your look
  • Paint the walls
  • Add wall art like canvas prints and other items to complement everything.

And that’s fine for specific rooms around your house. But this room-centric approach often leads to different visual experiences in each room, which can make them feel like islands of isolated design work, disconnected from each other and the rest of the house. This feeling can be exacerbated if the rooms are redecorated at different times.

Applying Design Everywhere

A way to conquer this problem is to forget some of the ‘rules’ of traditional home design and start thinking in terms of decorating everywhere. Don’t think of your rooms as isolated spots within the house, think of them as interconnected areas that flow into each other. In other words, consider the journey guests take through your home: From the entryway, they go to the living room for cocktails. Then to the dining room for dinner. They’ll visit the bathroom and the kitchen, and finish the evening in the lounge or family room, possibly even spending the night in the spare bedroom.

Then, look for opportunities to design and add decoration in less-than obvious places. The entryway is a good start – some canvas art or other design elements can turn a perfunctory space for shedding jackets and umbrellas into a pleasing first experience for guests.

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Image Source: TheCanvasFactory.com.au

Staircase landings are another spot often forgotten when you design room by room, and an ideal place for a vibrant print or other art.

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Image Source: Better Homes and Gardens

Another unusual place where a bit of wall art or other design can have a real moment of impact? Wardrobes, especially walk-in-robes, actually, are places where design usually goes to die, becoming congested with clothes and clutter. Think twice and open them up with something pleasant to look at – on the wall, the door, even the floor!

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Image Source: LifeStyle Australia

Finally, when painting your newly-designed home, consider your rooms as a whole and think about transitions. When stepping out of one room to go to another, the hall should pick up the colour palette of both and serve as a visual link between them – you could even use a gradient plan to slowly go from one shade outside of one area to another outside the next.

Whatever you decide to do to open up your home’s design, never stop thinking of new ways to have some fun with it. Once you start thinking beyond rooms the possibilities – just like the forgotten areas – are endless.

4 DIY Home Improvement Ideas for You This Winter

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During the cold winter months your social calendar starts to slow down. Aside from the obvious Christmas peak period, darker nights and undesirable weather means you start to spend more time inside, freeing up a lot of your time. This give you ample opportunity to tackle some of those niggling tasks that you’ve just been too busy to tackle. As a result, the end of summer brings the time for change and not just in the physical season.

With more spare time, people want to spruce up their homes just in time for Christmas and also to match the colours of the Autumn and Winter months. When tackling those DIY jobs, it often refers to those little niggly improvements such as fixing broken lights, adding some new storage space or redecorating. The best bit about DIY improvements is that they don’t cost an arm and a leg to do as you obviously do it all yourself. So, to give you a helping hand we’ve listed 4 top tips to help you improve your home this winter.

  1. Give Your Social Spaces a Facelift

Now you have the time, take the opportunity to give your social spaces a makeover. You may be thinking, this is hardly a top tip but this is a simple step that offers the most benefit to you from a personal and cosmetic standpoint. Your interior can rejuvenate your home and create that haven a long, stressful day so you shouldn’t underestimate it as a DIY step. Refreshing the walls, adding new accent colours, introducing new furniture and even ornaments are all ways you can quickly give your space a facelift.

This winter interior trend is to invest in calmer, more relaxing shades to create a more peaceful setting to live in. After a dull day, there’s nothing worse than coming home to a dull home so treat yourself! You deserve to own a haven that you’re proud to show off so stop putting it off!

  1. Go Green

Unless you’ve been living underground for the last decade, you should know that more than ever do more and more people need to be now looking go green. Something that we’re all guilty of not fully getting on board with, now is the time to take an active step to improve our green footprint. By going eco-friendlier you will as a result see a multitude of long term benefits especially from a financial point of view. Whether you invest in recycle bins, upgrade your insulation or donate your old belongings rather than dumping them, it all helps! You will not only be helping your wallets health but you will be taking a great step towards benefiting our environment.

  1. Reinsulate Your Home

A home that is well insulated can help you out in many ways. Investing some money and time into insulating your home will not only help you enjoy a warmer winter, but it will also help you lower your utility bills to ensure your wages aren’t being eaten up by the central heating. There’s now even now electronic thermostats you can implement into your home that manage your heating around your home needs and lifestyle in a cost effective way.

  1. The Patio Party

A lot of people seem to think the garden is just for the summer, however this is no longer the case. When socialising with friends late into the night, there is no better place to enjoy it then around a fire pit in the garden. There are millions of rattan garden furniture ranges out there now that incorporate a fire pit in the centre of the seating. If you add an umbrella or canapé structure to the top of this to cover you from the rain, you can sit out, be warm and enjoy the night!

A great DIY project is to create an enclosure seating area that will house your social antics. Once you getting the seat in there, you can build walls of plants and flowers surrounding it to shelter you from the weather. Invest in some cute solar lights and a BBQ and your winter wonderland nights are solved. This is especially good for those of you who are limited in space inside of their homes -plus it’s another place to escape from the kids!