Category: House and Home

5 Reasons Your Home Needs a Regular Pest Inspection

home pest inspection

You keep your home squeaky clean and spotless, so you might expect that pests wouldn’t be an issue.

What you may not realize is that pests in the home can be a problem even for a well-kept house. Because pests can find their way into your home for all sorts of reasons, you need a home pest inspection to assess your home and address any possible pest problems.

Pest infestations may not be obvious, but this doesn’t mean they’re not there. Read on to learn five reasons you should have your home inspected for pests regularly.

1. Home Treatments May Not Cut It

Though it’s tempting to buy pest control treatments and equipment and try to tackle the job on your own, you could be missing more than you’re hitting. Most of the time, treatments purchased from the store or home remedies can only treat what you can see. This can lead you to believe you have eliminated the problem when the source and bulk of the pest infestation is hidden.

Because many pests have vast colonies or extensive nests in places you can’t easily see, it’s necessary to have a home pest inspection done by a professional. They’ll know where to look and what signs indicate pest invasion.

2. Pests Can Damage Your Property

Most pests end up in your home because they are seeking a food source. When their food source happens to be your belongings and property, massive amounts of damage can be done.

Various termites and carpenter ants are notorious for damaging a home’s structure, as they love wood and sheetrock paper. These pests hide inside walls, causing a lot of costly damage well before you ever know they’re there.

Other bugs, such as silverfish and carpet beetles, are drawn to organic fibers. This makes them especially attracted to upholstered furniture, clothing items, towels, blankets, and sheets.

These are only a few pests that can move in and destroy your home and belongings.

3. Health Risks from Pest Exposure

The general population enjoys a clean, healthy life because of improved healthcare, sanitary conditions, and good pest control.

Many pests are capable of carrying detrimental diseases. A few examples of these diseases are:

  • Lyme disease carried by ticks
  • West Nile Virus and Zika by mosquitoes
  • Hantavirus by rodents

A home pest inspection can ensure that you’re not living with pests that could spread a serious disease to you.

4. Food Safety

Food can make your home very attractive for pests such as:

Even if your kitchen is clean, these pests can make their way in, spoiling your food. Home gardens are affected also. Garden pests such as aphids can hinder the growth of fruit and vegetables.

5. Prevention is Key

Pest inspections are all about finding pests before they become a problem. If there aren’t visible pests, an inspector will be able to tell if you’ve got unwanted guests hiding out in your house.

Pest control is a must, no matter where you live. For a pest free home, look for:

  • Local pest control businesses
  • Pest control Tampa for the Tampa area
  • Pest control with many years of experience
  • Pest control that offers an inspection

Prevent damage and infestation before they become an expensive problem.

Get a Home Pest Inspection Regularly

Having your home checked on a regular basis could mean the difference between a well-maintained, damage-free home and one that is falling apart and crawling with pests.

For more great information and helpful tips, please explore our other posts.

5 Tips on Finding the Best Deals on Home Repair

home repair

Are you tired of overpaying for home repair projects?

If you have ever had a bad experience with a contractor or overspent on materials, then you know what we’re talking about.

Lucky for you, we’ve put together 5 ways you can save on your next home project. Keep reading to learn more.

1. Do Your Research

If you’re looking to save a few dollars on your next home repair project, you need to be sure you do your research.

Depending on the type of repair, you will have to search for a certified professional to do the job.

Make sure you don’t go into it blind. Research how much the repair typically costs, how long it takes to get it done, and if there are any permits you should acquire.

2. Get Multiple Estimates

The last thing you want to do is overpay a contractor. Ensure you get multiple estimates before you commit to one of them.

Don’t just look at the dollar sign when you see an estimate. Look at what they’re offering you and how long it will take to get the home repair done. Ask them if they have insurance and their licenses are up to date.

You also don’t want to pay for a contractor to give you an estimate. Southeastern Foundation & Crawlspace Repair offers you free estimates.

3. Read the Contract Carefully

Once you pick the right person for the job, make sure you get a contract stating all of the terms of the repair.

Make sure the contract states the job that will be done, all of the materials the contractor is expected to use, and the price breakdown.

The contract should also state the terms of what would happen if one of the parties defaults on the terms.

4. Consider DIY Repairs

Although you might not want to get your hands dirty, sometimes you need to do it yourself in order to save on repairs.

If the repair is simple enough and doesn’t require a licensed professional, it’s possible to do it yourself.

Buying the material at a home improvement store might also be more economical than going through a contractor.

5. Look Into Government Rebates & Tax Credits

If you didn’t save as much money as you would like on home repairs, not all is lost. You can still get a great deal on your home repairs if you seek government rebates.

The government gives tax breaks for qualifying home improvements that increase your home’s energy efficiency.

Some of the home improvements include:

  • Insulation, doors windows, and roofs
  • Water heater
  • heater and air conditioning systems
  • Solar energy

Keep in mind you might get more tax credits for some repairs over others.

Save on Your Next Home Repair Project

It’s possible to find the best deal on your home repairs if you do your research, try some DIY, and you get some tax credits.

If you enjoyed these tips, we have more where these came from. To read about 10 Affordable Remodeling Ideas for Your Home, click here.

7 Simple DIY Woodworking Projects for Your Home

woodworking projectsWe all get Pinterest envy from time to time. You scroll through picture after picture of beautifully decorated and furnished rooms. It doesn’t take long before you start wondering how to make your own home look Pinterest-perfect.

But then you start shopping and you realize how expensive it all is. Fortunately, taking on some DIY projects for the home can give you the style you want, 100% customized, for much less.

One area in which DIY can be especially beneficial is in furniture. Woodworking projects can give you customized, stylish, and often sturdier furniture for less. As an added bonus, home woodworking is a more eco-friendly living choice.

If you’re on the hunt for some ideas, check out these options:

Beginner Woodworking Projects for the Home

For the homeowner who wants to make DIY furniture but hasn’t reached the status of woodworking master, here are a few projects to get you started:

Standing Bookshelf

A bookshelf is a great starter woodworking project. It’s rather simple, but it teaches you a lot about stability, angles, and basic skills.

If you’re living in a home that lacks storage and/or abundant space, a bookshelf is also a very usable project. You can design it to fit into even the smallest or most awkwardly-sized spaces. And if you need storage for items that aren’t books, simple baskets fit the look perfectly.

A word to the wise: think about the flooring when you’re designing your bookshelf. If the shelf will be on a high-pile carpet or rug, it will need extra stability compared to a hard floor.

Want to step up the difficulty? If you have small pets, install a cushion on top of the shelf to give them a cozy new bed.

Medicine Cabinet

Really any wall-mounted cabinet will be made similarly, but a small one like a medicine cabinet is an easier place for beginners to start.

In fact, a cabinet is a great next step after your bookshelf. You’re essentially just building a bookshelf and adding doors.

Here’s a pro tip: before you start, measure some of the items you want to store in the cabinet. Many store-bought medicine cabinets don’t quite fit items like contact solution and other large bottles. But when you’re making your own cabinet, you can specifically plan it all your favorites.

As with all woodworking projects, you can choose how complex you want your cabinet to be, from a minimalistic design to a more ornate DIY medicine cabinet.

Shadow Box

If you’re not familiar, shadow boxes are glass-fronted wooden boxes designed to display memorabilia. They can be wall-mounted or placed on a tabletop. They’re fantastic projects for parents who want to display their kids’ awards.

A shadow box is a great project because you can customize it to fit the specific items you want to include. It’s also a fantastic way to learn how to use glass in your woodworking projects.

Bench

A bench might be the most stereotypical beginner woodworking project, but hear me out.

Like bookshelves, it can be a real challenge to find a bench that fits your unique space. They’re also great pieces of multitasking furniture because you can include storage to them as well.

It’s important to make your bench with your specific location in mind. Outdoor benches and indoor benches have very different considerations, like weather protection.

And of course, benches can be as simple or as challenging as you want them to be. Whether you’re a beginner or an old pro, you can find a bench-making design to fit your skill level and your style.

Storage Box

Boxes and storage containers are some of the most multifunctional items you can buy (or in this case, make) for your home. They can turn even the most basic shelf into an organized masterpiece.

Small storage boxes are also wonderful gift add-ons. If you’re giving someone jewelry another small yet treasurable item, forget the cardboard box and make your own personal gift box.

Depending on the design you use, boxes are great woodworking projects for learning corner joints and varying styles of lids.

Mudroom Organization

Without a doubt, one of the hardest rooms to keep organized in any house is the mudroom or entryway. That goes double for homes with kids.

Store-bought mudroom furniture can be very expensive, especially if you want a fixture that maximizes space with shelving across most of the wall. DIY mudroom furniture, on the other hand, gives you cost-effective customizability.

When you’re custom-building furniture for this type of space, it’s all about what complexity you want. For a genuine beginner’s project, a simple mounted board with hooks for coats and book bags can go a long way.

But if you want a more comprehensively organized area, a full wall unit can provide space for shoes, coats, book bags, hats, and much more. You can even give each family member their own cubby to make for quicker, less chaotic mornings.

Lawn Furniture

One of the most popular trends in home design today is using your outdoor space. Homeowners are decorating, furnishing, and designing their outdoor areas to make them so functional that they’re just another room of the house.

A key to having usable outdoor space is having comfortable furniture. But have you looked at prices for outdoor furniture lately? Manufacturers know this is a higher priority for homeowners, and they’re taking full advantage with hefty price tags.

Fortunately, outdoor furniture items make for great woodworking projects. Adirondack chairs are particularly popular today, with no cushions needed. You can even create an entire “room” of furniture in this same style.

Basic Tips for Beginner Woodworkers

Woodworking is an entire skill set to learn, and it takes time, but here are some tips for your first projects:

Have the Right Equipment from the Start

Woodworking has the potential to be dangerous, messy, and difficult if you don’t have the right equipment. Before your first project, buy or borrow all the essentials you need like safety goggles, dropcloth and dust collector bags.

Read All Instructions Before You Start

In some woodworking projects, you need precise timing between one step and another. Before you start, read all the instructions and practice some of the new skills you may need.

It’s also a good idea to buy all the supplies you need for the full project before you begin. In some cases, substituting one piece or fixture for another can change the process, and you want to know this from the start.

Read Up on Safety Protocol

You say it to your kids all the time: safety first! Research how to stay safe before you hammer in your first nail.

Find a Project and Start Saving

Woodworking projects are just one way to save money on your home. For more, check out my frugal living tips for moms.

What are the Benefits of Owning a Fireplace?

fireplace

There’s something so calming and wonderful about sitting by a fire. The warmth, the happiness, the soft glow of the orange embers as they flicker.

If the above sounds like your idea of heaven, you’ll want to make sure to read this article. Here are a few reasons why you should invest in a home with a fireplace.

It Cuts Down on Energy Costs

Did you know that the average person spends up to $100 each month on heating their living space? That means you could be spending up to $1,200 per year to stay warm!

But imagine cozying up to a warm fire. Not only is it relaxing, but it’ll keep you warm while cutting down on your heating expenses.

If you’re looking to get really thrifty, you can even use a fire to cut down on energy costs, as well. Give the electricity a rest and surround yourself with the warm glow of a fireplace. You’ll feel warmer and have more money to spend, to boot!

They Look Great in Any House

If you’re reading this article but feel like your home couldn’t use a furnace, we have some great news for you. There are plenty of different aesthetics for homes of all sizes.

You can choose a style that fits your home’s look, no matter what the age.

Want something more modern and green? Consider investing in an eco-friendly furnace (more on these in a bit).

Considering something with a more rustic charm? Consider these awesome Georgian fireplace antiques from Westland London to accentuate your home.

Make Great Memories

When people think about sitting around a fire, it immediately brings back warm memories. Maybe you spent time camping as a kid. Or maybe it’s just something you’d like to do in the future.

Whatever the case, sitting around the fire is a great way to bond with family and create cherished memories. We’re all so busy these days that we often fail to stop and appreciate what we have, but family life is so important.

Set aside a night, grab some s’mores ingredients and create new memories with your family that is sure to last a lifetime.

They Increase the Resale Value of Your Home

If you’re considering flipping or selling your home, a fire area is a great addition to boost your house’s property value. In fact, they can add up to $12,000 in property value for owners looking to sell!

They’re Environmentally Friendly

Finally, if you’re a regular on our green living section, you know how important it is to leave a smaller carbon footprint. Aside from providing warmth and aesthetic, a fire pit burns carbon-neutral wood, so you can feel good about your home’s heating.

Is a Fireplace Right For You?

As you can see, there are tons of great reasons to own a fireplace. The real question is, why don’t you own one already?

Be sure to follow Thrifty Momma Ramblings for all things chic and cheap. And don’t forget to leave a comment below letting us know what you think!

The 10 Best Affordable Air Purifiers of 2018

affordable air purifier

Are you looking for an affordable air purifier?

An air purifier has become necessary in many households. Americans spend around 90 percent of the time inside, including at home.

Every day, you’re exposed to air pollutants that can impact your health. An air purifier has been proven to help people breathe easier and have a higher quality of life.

Read on to learn why you need this device and how to chose one.

Why Air Purifiers Are a Must-Have

There are several reasons why you want to have an air purifier at home.

First of all, it can help reduce pet dander in the air. Pet dander happens no matter how often you groom your pet because it’s made from skin particles that get in the air.

If you or anyone in the home has allergies or asthma, pet dander can aggravate their symptoms. That can make it hard to breathe in the house.

An air purifier equipped with a filter made for pet dander can trap those skin particles, making it easier for you to enjoy your home.

Clean air is also important for the most vulnerable: kids and the elderly.

Buying an affordable air purifier can minimize the exposure to air pollutants and flu-causing germs. Cold and flu symptoms can turn into bigger health issues for the elderly and kids because they have weaker immune systems.

You’ll want to make sure that the filter you use can kill flu bacteria in the air.

Did you know that there’s a correlation between air pollution and school grades? Even a moderate exposure to air pollutants can lower school grades.

Since kids spend more time indoors more than they ever have, an air purifier can reduce the air pollutants they’re exposed to.

If you want to know more, check out A Fresher Home. It’s a good place to find out more about air purifiers and how they impact your health.

Affordable Air Purifiers for Your Home

Now that you know why you need an affordable purifier, this list shows you what the top 10 purifiers you need to consider before buying.

1. Holmes Tower Room HEPA Air Purifier

You can get a quality tower air purifier for only $75. This model from Holmes has three speeds, so it can handle most air pollutants.

It also comes with an optional ionizer, which keeps your air fresh and clean. This model works well against smoke too.

2. Hamiton Beach TruAir Room HEPA Air Purifier

This is a great option for rooms up to 160 square feet, such as bedrooms and home offices. Since it’s compact and portable, you can take it from room to room.

It also features a permanent filter that you can wash and reuse. That makes this model very affordable since you don’t have the added costs to replace the filter.

3. Home Labs 3 in 1 Ionic Air Purifiers

Ionic purifiers work differently than standard purifiers. Instead of sucking air in and trapping particles in a filter, they use a negative charge to neutralize the air.

This model is good for personal spaces as it only works in 20 square feet.

4. Germ Guardian AC4100

Germ Guardian is a well-known brand, and this model has an excellent reputation. The AC 4100 is an affordable air purifier that offers a HEPA and charcoal system to clean the air.

It also has a UV light to kill bacteria.

5. Holmes Desktop Air Purifier

Holmes makes this list again with its desktop air purifier. With a purifier that can easily fit on a desk or table, you can have clean air wherever you are in the house.

This device makes it easier to get rid of smoke, odors, pet dander, mold spores, and more.

6. Envion Therapure Room HEPA Purifier

Envion’s Therapure purifier retails for $150, making it one of the more pricey models on this list.

However, it’s worth the cost. This model can work in medium to large sized rooms, making this a good choice for families.

It’s rated well for pollen, dust, and smoke removal.

7. HomeImage Room True HEPA Air Purifier

Do you need to cover a large space with your air purifier? The Room True HEPA purifier from HomeImage has you covered.

It can handle rooms as big as 200 square feet, which is another great option for families. This model comes with a remote control and is programmable, so the air is clean before you enter the room.

8. Levoit LV-H132

The Levoit LV-H132 is only good for only 89 square feet, but it’s very silent. The quiet motor and its price point are the reasons why this is on the list.

This air purifier also has a modern design, which makes it a great fit for most office spaces.

9. Germ Guardian AC 4825

Germ Guardian is on this list for another model – the AC 4825. While the 4100 is a small model that’s good for small spaces, the AC 4825 can clean the air in rooms up to 155 square feet.

The HEPA filter traps pollutants such as smoke, dust, mold, pet dander, and odors. This device is also equipped with UV light, which can kill bacteria to protect you from cold and flu viruses.

10. Gideon Electronic Plug-in

The last affordable air purifier on this list is the most portable. It’s good for small spaces, so you’ll want to consider this for bathrooms and pet areas.

This model uses only eight watts of energy and is hardly noticeable because it’s so quiet.

Ready to Buy an Affordable Air Purifier?

A home air purifier can have a great impact on your home and your health. It can remove impurities, smoke, and pet dander.

It can also improve the quality of life for you, your kids, and the elderly. With the right filter, air purifiers can help you breathe easier.

Are you ready to breathe in fresh air?

To make your purchase even more affordable, check out our site for giveaways, coupons, and hot deals!

Your Guide to Choosing the Best Affordable Kitchen Cabinets

kitchen cabinetsWhen it comes to kitchen cabinets, the smartest way to find the best choice for your kitchen is to merge form with function. If you don’t like the way they look, you’ll be less likely to appreciate and use your kitchen properly.

Yet, if the cabinets can’t function like you need them to, you’ll run into the same problem. But since kitchen cabinets make up about half of the entire budget for your kitchen, you need to create a system to find affordable ones.

Which is why we’ve developed this guide to help you buy affordable kitchen cabinets. Keep reading to learn more.

Determine Your Kitchen Needs

Everyone uses their kitchen in a different way. Some people think of themselves as amateur chefs and utilize every single inch of their kitchen.

Others are on a first name basis with the staff at their local restaurants. They barely even notice they have a kitchen. Most of us are somewhere in between.

Figure out how often you use your kitchen. Then determine how you use your kitchen. Take a week to use your kitchen normally and take notes.

Notice what you don’t like about your current kitchen. Write down what you feel it’s lacking. Next, write down exactly what you love about your kitchen.

This will help you find affordable kitchen cabinets that will ensure you have the exact amount of space you need.

Don’t forget to consider how much storage space you’ll need. For a person living alone who tends to order out delivery, there’s usually not much of a need for storage space.

For a family of five with three active teenagers, their needs for storage will be much greater. Find kitchen cabinets that make the most out of the space you have.

Pick a Style You Like

While function is hugely important, style is too. No one likes walking into a kitchen to see ugly kitchen cabinets staring back at them. If you’re going to invest in affordable kitchen cabinets, you might as well like what you bought.

However, when it comes to affordable kitchen cabinets, you might not always get to merge form with function perfectly. Choose which one is most important to you if your budget won’t allow for both.

If aesthetics are more important, choose the style. If the function is, choose form. If you do choose a style, here are a few choices.

Eco-Friendly

Many people are becoming aware that wood is a natural resource that isn’t easy to replace. They’re also concerned with their health and the safety of their families.

There are many options today for affordable kitchen cabinets to be made using eco-friendly materials. From glass to bronze and wood like bamboo, the choices are seemingly endless.

You can also rest easy knowing that your cabinets are free from toxic chemicals like VOC’s and formaldehyde. Ask a kitchen cabinet expert like those found at RTA Depot to help you find the best eco-friendly choices for your home.

Choose a Wood

When you choose a wood, you’re really choosing form and function once again. Not all wood is the same. Some of it is cheaper and prone to swelling if you live in a particularly humid area. Some of it comes from a more durable wood which will last longer.

Choosing the right one depends on your needs, timeline, and of course, your budget.

Most cabinets are from a hardwood tree. Oak, maple, cherry, and birch are all popular choices. Keep in mind that today, to keep costs lower, most affordable kitchen cabinets are plywood that has a hardwood veneer.

Choose a Finish for Your Wood

Of course, the next step is to choose the best type of finish for your wood. You can choose the exact grain, color, and construction of your affordable kitchen cabinets.

Veneers will give you a better grain-matching wood quality than solid wood cabinets. As for color, you don’t have to go with the wood’s natural color. A good stain can give you the color of maple on a birch base.

Select a Budget

Choosing a budget is a very important element of selecting the best and most affordable kitchen cabinets. Create a budget so that you can find the best options at your price point.

Cabinets fall into three categories. There are stock cabinets which start at a $70 per linear foot price point. A typical kitchen has 25-30 linear feet of cabinets. There are fewer styles and sizes available at this price point.

Semi-custom cabinets range from $150-$250 per linear foot. They fit your kitchen more precisely because they come in more configurations.

Meanwhile, custom cabinets will cost $500 or more per linear foot. That’s because they’re crafted to your exact specs. They also usually include many personalized features.

A Few Ways to Save Even More on Your Affordable Kitchen Cabinets

If your budget is too low to even consider investing in stock cabinets, have no fear. There are still some options to choose from.

You can reface your kitchen cabinets. Refacing means re-skinning them with new wood or a laminate veneer and replacing their doors. This option is less expensive and will take less time than replacing the existing cabinets.

You can also opt for replacing your doors and hinges. That will create a new look and style to the existing cabinets. It can be done at a fraction of the cost that replacing them entirely will.

Lastly, you can just replace your knobs and pulls with new ones. These are all great options especially if you’re just tired of looking at the same cabinets but there’s nothing technically wrong with them.

Look Where You Can Save Money

It’s important that you’re happy with the end result of your kitchen cabinets. But they shouldn’t break your bank.

Don’t be afraid to ask which materials are the most affordable. Ask how you can save as much money as possible.

Lastly, visit other sources to learn as much as you can about kitchen cabinets. We love sharing tips on how to get more with less money. After your kitchen renovation, come back to visit us for some tasty recipes.

Tips for Buying an All Power Generator at a Great Price

all power generator

During line maintenance, hurricanes or just downright bad weather, when the power goes out, we’re stuck.

It’s times like these when we think about buying an all power generator.

For many of us who work remotely from home or run our own business, a power cut is not just an inconvenience, it’s a barrier to getting our work done.

Or maybe we’re just worried about all the food thawing in the freezer!

Choosing the Best Generator For You

Are you ready to buy an all power generator, but not sure how to find what you need?

Check out this guide for some practical tips on how to find the best generator to fit your specific needs.

But can it be done on a budget? Keep reading to find out!

Buying an All Power Generator on a Budget

Generators can cost from $400 to $6000 depending on how powerful you need the generator to be.

So its something that you might have to save up for. But how do we get good quality for a good price? Keep reading.

Step 1

Determine how much power is essential. Make a list of things that you require if the power goes out and then figure out the needed power wattage.

You don’t want to waste money on buying a generator that is either too weak to fulfill your needs, or that is unnecessarily powerful and will not be used to its full potential.

If you need enough power for your entire house during a blackout, a standby generator will fulfill your requirements. But if you only want to power a few electrical appliances, a portable generator may be the most convenient solution.

Step 2

Find out which features are a must-have.

It’s said that there are 8 features that count when buying a generator. Including an electric start button, alternative fuel option, wheels, fuel gauge, low-oil shut off, inverter technology and multiple outlets.

If you can find a generator with these features, you’ll be getting a solid generator that will stand the test of time.

Step 3

Don’t settle for the cheapest option. Check out the brand — does it have a good reputation? Make sure it has a high standard warranty and a legitimate support helpline.

If you buy a generator that’s poorly manufactured, it could break quickly and be a total waste of your money. It could also be dangerous, and in some cases, fatal.

The dangers can include carbon monoxide poisoning, electric shocks, and fire hazards. Make sure to do your research.

Safety is more important than saving a few bucks.

Step 4

Choose the right moment. Don’t wait until you see an impending hurricane announced on the news! Plan ahead!

You could end up getting something random that appears to be up to the task but later leaves you disappointed.

Plus, the prices are bound to rise due to increased demand.

Candles Out, Generators In

We don’t want bad weather to make our life come to a standstill.

Buying an all power generator is the best way to keep your life on track without sitting in the dark with just a flickering candle to keep you company!

Please contact us if you have any questions or comments!