Green Homes are Good Homes

An increasing number of people are taking environmental concerns into account as they look at homes to buy or build. Whether you’re looking to make your current home a little greener, buy a home that’s more environmentally friendly, or build something eco-conscious from the ground up, there are many things to consider. 

Active Design Elements

When you think of a green home, you probably imagine solar shingles New Jersey or more traditional solar panels installed on an existing roof, these provide active environmentally friendly alternatives. If you’re interested in incorporating these into your design or adding them to your existing home, they can provide environmental benefits for years to come. It’s well worth consulting an expert about costs and constraints.

Passive Design Elements

However, these high-tech options aren’t the only options available. The design and construction of a home can massively reduce your impact on the environment. The more airtight and better insulated your home is, the less of an impact you make on the environment. Window placement, insulation, and even paint colors can have an impact on your carbon footprint. 

Construction Methods

Changing passive design elements can mean heavy construction, and construction itself is another important consideration. Building a whole new home is always going to create an environmental impact through carbon emissions or construction runoff. Sustainable sourcing is great, but if it’s coming from the other side of the world, you’re still generating a hefty carbon footprint through shipping and handling.

Greener homes aren’t just for the rich in sunny places where solar panels pay off quickly; it’s also for those who are renovating or buying, at whatever income bracket. Your home doesn’t need to be new and the eco-friendly improvements you make don’t need to be obvious from the outside in order to have a positive impact all around the world. 

Three Things To Do in Your Rental Property Between Tenants

As a responsible landlord, your tenants look to you to provide a rental property that is clean and safe to live in. The lease agreement between you and potential renters is you affirming that you will not only provide shelter, but that you’ll do so in a way that is attentive, equitable and responsive. Your responsibilities as a property owner aren’t contingent on whether you have occupants. Here are some things to see to when you’re in between leases.

Providing a Deep Clean

Your tenants will expect to move into an apartment or house that has been thoroughly cleaned. Through regular use of your home, dirt and other buildup will accumulate, even if your tenant cleans on a regular basis. Spend a little money to have a professional provider give your unit a deep clean. These professionals will focus their attention beyond surface-level cleansing, making your space feel brand new. A well-cleaned place speaks to your commitment to provide great care to your tenants.

Providing Pest Control

Renters don’t want to live in a place that is infested with bugs or other rodents. Both you and occupants share a responsibility to practice habits that help keep the property from being overrun with pests. When you’re between tenants, you have a great opportunity to hire a provider of pest control services, including gas-tight tent fumigation. The property will be free of occupants and items for an ideal approach.

Providing Upgrades

An empty unit also gives you an opportunity to make upgrades. This could be something as simple as replacing incandescent bulbs with low-heat, energy-efficient LED options, or something more complex like replacing an old HVAC system. Look for making changes that can result in utility savings and improved livability for your tenants such as installing smart thermostats that help regulate the effort of your heating and cooling.

Being a great landlord means tending to your property needs whether it’s occupied or not. Your tenants expect you to be attentive in exchange for paying rent on time. A proactive approach which is preferred, means addressing unit issues between leases.

How to Beautify Your Front Yard

If you dream of getting a neighborhood “yard of the month” sign in your yard, the time is now to start beautifying your front yard. Even if you never get the award, you can enjoy the oasis that you’ve created.

Green the Lawn

The first step to a really gorgeous front yard is to make sure your grass is lush and healthy. Start by removing all weeds. Aerate the lawn with a push aerator and reseed the patchy spots. Treat the soil by choosing a fertilizer designed to work in your climate zone and with your type of grass. Keep the grass watered especially when it’s working so hard to get established. Finally, mow your lawn in a timely fashion.

Highlight the Beauty

If you have some especially nice areas of your lawn already, don’t be afraid to highlight them. A stately tree could look even more stunning with a bed of colorful flowers around its base or some holiday-themed landscape lighting St Louis MO focused on its branches. If your front stoop is attractive, add some potted plants to either side of your front door to help transition visitors from the outside to the inside.

Improve Your Walk

A concrete sidewalk is utilitarian, but the path to your front door could be so much more. Consider installing brick or stone pavers edged with small shrubs to take visitors from the curb to your porch. There are few straight lines in nature, so add a slight meander to keep the walkway organic.

Natural Wonders

Find a place in your yard to add flowers or flowering shrubs that attract butterflies and bumblebees. Milkweed is a butterfly favorite, but also consider colorful zinnias, delicate lantana, sweet honeysuckle  and exuberant Mexican sunflower to entice your winged friends.

A beautiful front yard is a joy to both the homeowners and the neighbors. Make yours a standout with a few simple steps.

2 Times To Use Specialized Construction Companies

Specialized construction companies are often rarer than many would like them to be. There are specialized businesses for dozens, or even hundreds, of types of buildings, and these companies typically provide the best quality services for their specific focus. Here are two specialized types of construction companies you should be aware of.

1. Gas Stations

Gas stations need to be constructed properly. If there are defects that involve gas leaks or anything that could be hazardous if exposed to gasoline, lives could be lost. For this reason, it is imperative that companies build gas stations as safely as possible. Gas station builders not only need to be aware of how they construct the gas stations but also how those gas stations affect the surrounding area. They need to work closely with city officials and others who know how the general populace will react and be affected by this new structure.

2. Schools

Schools are unique in the community they exist within. There are seldom buildings that look similar for schools, and for good reason. Schools need to be constructed to serve a variety of purposes because of the variety of classes that take place within them. Companies that specialize in designing and building schools realize this and realize that these buildings also need to be designed in such a way that hundreds of young people can navigate them easily. People will likely continue to consistently use schools for decades, so they must be able to withstand constant overuse.

While there are companies that will construct almost any type of building, you will typically receive better value for your money when you use a specialized company. If you can work it into your budget, use specialized companies as much as possible to ensure that the people using the facility will be as safe as possible.

Your Guide to Different Types of Carpet

If you’re in the market for some new carpet, then you’ve likely encountered the huge selection of different carpet types that are out there. While it’s important to make sure you find the right carpet and flooring company Seal Beach CA, it’s just as important to make sure you select the right carpet type for your project. Here is a breakdown of what to look for when sifting through the many types of carpet out there.

Styles of Carpet

With carpet being so inexpensive and easy to install, with so many varieties available, it’s no wonder that it accounts for more sales in the US than any other flooring type. That being said, there are some new challenges that come with having so much variety. One of the first things to understand when trying to find the right carpet for you is that there are two main types of carpet construction – cut pile and loop pile.

Cut pile carpets are unique in that they cut the yarn tips so that they are softer and denser than loop pile. Cut pile styles include cable, textured, saxony, frieze and plush.

Loop pile carpets are ones that have the fibers bent into small loops. This type of carpet is very durable and stain-resistant but it’s always the most comfortable due to a limited profile. Within this family of carpet fibers, you’ll find multi-level loops where the loops vary in height to give more texture, as well as level loop (Berber) that has short loops and is meant for high traffic areas of the building.

There are also some carpets that employ both cut and loop pile fibers.  This style encompasses the best qualities from both styles and does a great job of hiding stains.

Types of Carpet Fibers

The last thing to consider is that of carpet fiber. You can find carpets in both natural fibers and synthetic fibers that include options such as acrylic, olefin, wool and nylon.