Monday, 16 January 2017

7 Things To Consider Before Refurbishing Your Home

With so many DIY (Do-It-Yourself) websites, tricks, lists, ideas…etc., refurbishing one’s home has never been as popular as it is today. From small, trivial details to the large, important ones, renovating and redesigning a home, (or a part particular part of it) has in some way become a fun activity. However, since people often tend to get carried away, here is a short list of things to take into consideration before starting with the renovation process.

1. Plan It ALL: In order to dive into the refurbishing process with a steady mind and heart, it is important to plan everything out in advance; to the last, smallest, tiniest detail possible. Not just because the expert advice says that have to go detail-crazy over everything, but because when you get into the real heat of things, you’ll want to remind yourself that there is a plan you’re meant to follow, and that therefore no, you should not decide on last minute alterations that could otherwise prove destructive.

2. Budget: Once the plan is drawn up, the time comes for you make the decision regarding the scope of your budget. If you manage to get everything you wanted without having to budget cut, that’s great. However, if you do decide to follow a budget, remember to follow the plan you set up, and that sometimes you actually can allow yourself to splurge on the tiny things.

3. Get (at least some) Help: While many of the DIY projects have clear, long and thorough instructions, plans, and in some cases even visual illustrations, there are still certain situations in which it would simply be smarter to seek professional help. Small DIY projects (involving one particular part of the house, for example) can and often do turn out to be fun and easy. Larger projects though, ones which might involve renovating the entire house, would require knowledge of processes such as installing electrical switches, and would simply be better executed with the help of professionals – like that offered by ABB.

4. Be Realistic: Before you start, try to understand that the renovation will most likely take longer than you’ve expected and/or planned. That means that depending on how big the renovation is, you might be required to move to smaller spaces in your house while your rooms are being worked on. So be realistic! Remind yourself that some things take more time than others, and that, by the end of it, you’ll be living in great, colourful, and newly renovated rooms.

5. Organization is key: After you plan everything out, and you develop the understanding of how long the renovation might take, try to keep yourself as organized as you possibly can. There’s no better feeling than being able to avert messy situations because you’ve properly organized yourself beforehand. Remember to keep a spare key somewhere outside the house in case a worker forgets his/hers; wrap all the delicate objects, and store them somewhere outside the house; and, most importantly, keep a schedule of what’s going on in the house!

6. Keep some of it: Just because you’re renovating, that doesn’t mean it has to follow a “go big or go home” philosophy. Firstly because you’re going home regardless, and secondly because not all budgets can afford to throw everything away. Also, there are lots of DIY projects that focus on refurbishing old pieces; take full advantage of these! Keep the pieces that look good; try and renovate around certain furniture, and don’t worry if you can’t see the final picture because your old couch is in the middle of it!

7. Have FUN: Refurbishing a home may become stressful, and when you go 3 weeks over the original end date, things might even start seeming hopeless. But do not fret! Always remember that it’s not the end of the world, and that you’re doing many things on your own. The room/house/lamp will look awesome, you will be able to throw away all the plastic sheets covering the floors, and the end result will be worth all the effort you’ve put in.

Refurbishing a home is fun, but it shouldn’t be perceived solely as a fun activity. It requires significant dedication, persistence, planning, patience, and with some aspects help from professionals. The final result will look great and will remind you of why you started the renovation in the first place. So, don’t stress over the little things, stay focused and remember to have fun!

Sunday, 15 January 2017

Watching Your Borrowing #Loans

With our big push this year of clearing our debts, sometimes it isn't all that clear what different types of finance is available to you so I thought I would quickly note down each type of lending with a few examples of how I would see me ever needing to use them.

Quick Loans - These types of loans are typically higher interest loans but usually available within minutes! I would use this in times of immediate issues, such as your wages not being paid into your bank on time (The employer after all should be liable for any costs incurred in my opinion) or an emergency bill that needs settling such as Car repairs.

Loans - Unsecured loans available over longer periods, usually takes a few days to arrange dependent on your credit score. I have used these for things such as purchasing windows or a car.

Credit Card - Can take up to ten days to go through. I have used credit card deals to my advantage over the years, using the introductory balance transfer offer to switch to zero percent interest for several months to years. Lately I have found that by doing this and fixing a payment amount to a figure above the minimum payment you will find the balance quickly nets down.

Store Credit - Like credit cards you can get some good deals the first time around. I have used store credit for things like Laptops or a sofa!

Mortgage - Secured loan over very long periods. Once you have a mortgage it is imperative that you keep on top of when your latest deal is up, in order to ensure you keep your monthly costs down and of course focus on paying more capital than interest. One thing I would suggest is that if you do make a saving on the new deal, keep the payments set at the old amount, meaning your mortgage will net down much quicker!

Friday, 13 January 2017

Wanting to find my own look #diy #interiordesign

I have always said when it comes to finishing our house after the main work and finishes have been applied we should be left with each room looking the same with regards flooring and wall colouring.

Now to some this might sound very plain and boring, in truth it is, to ensure the house lives up to our desires I think it is important we try and find some way of making each room have its own bespoke feature, we already planned to have the normal feature wall in our main living room but now I am thinking of something different entirely, something with a bit more bite when it comes to the execution, something that will give me some more skills in the DIY department.

My thoughts are with the finishing off of our dining room, the room itself is a fair size and has a chimney breast in it which will leave under utilised space either side of it, I have always thought that and addition of shelving for this space would be idea, but I don't want normal everyday wooden shelving but instead I quite fancy making my own bespoke shelving out of sheet metal!

Of course I would need the right tools for the job, but I have previously discussed my lack of equipment and I really feel the need to increase the variety that I keep, I am still proud of my nail gun and compressor after all!

For me the most important part of the process is to ensure that each shelf looks exactly the same, which I know will be a task in itself as most of the jobs I have done in the house so far and needed multiple measurements as its an old house and none of the walls are truly square! Unbelievably the Mrs is actually on board with me progressing this project!

That is one step better than me trying my hand at plastering! (That was a firm NO! from the Mrs)