The Absolute Importance Of A Home Inspection

A home inspection is one of the last steps in the home-buying process

A home inspection can help you choose the next steps in buying a home. You may decide you want to close, negotiate the price, request repairs by the seller, or back out and find another place.

You aren’t required to schedule a home inspection, but doing so can save you from major problems down the line. An inspection can alert you to any problems, and you may even realize you don’t want to buy the home after all.

What is a home inspection?

An inspector visits the home to assess the condition and put together a detailed report. They won’t tell you the value of the home, but they will reveal problems or potential problems that could affect the value.

You don’t have to attend the inspection, but you can. Walking through with the inspector gives you the chance to ask any questions and see problems for yourself. If you don’t have time to attend the entire inspection, ask the inspector if they can give you a quick walk-through once they’re done.

Don’t be alarmed if the inspector finds minor problems — if an inspection comes back with zero issues, then your inspector probably wasn’t very thorough. Pay attention to bigger problems that could cost you big bucks or jeopardize your safety.

Home Inspections are Essential in Making Informed Decisions

That house you’re considering buying consists of a collection of complex structures, systems, and components. A home inspection examines, evaluates, and objectively details the true condition of each element. As a result, you’ll more fully understand the home you’re buying, which enables you to make informed decisions. And that goes a long way toward eliminating the stress of buying a home.

Clear, complete and convenient home inspections you can trust.

At this point, you’re well aware how hectic and utterly confusing buying a home can be it doesn’t have to be. We’ll provide you with a comprehensive, unbiased opinion of the property’s condition and spend time to walk you through it, so you can have peace of mind that you’re making the most informed decision on the most important purchase of your lifetime.

point home inspection eliminates surprises

Irrigation systems*

Structural components

Heating and air conditioning systems

Plumbing system including water heater

Siding, trim, and exterior windows and doors

Foundations and footings

Gutter and downspouts

Walls, floors, ceilings, interior windows & doors

Electrical system

Kitchen appliances

Roof, chimney and flashings

Driveways, patios, decks and porches

Stairways

Attic and insulation

Home Inspection

Hire a good home inspector

Do your homework: While many homebuyers hire a home inspector recommended by their real estate agent, you can hire your own, but be sure to check them out. Ask to see proof of state certification or proof of membership in the National Associations of Certified Home Inspectors (NACHI), National Association of Home Inspectors (NAHI) or the American Society of Home Inspectors (ASHI).

Look for experience: Both NAHI and ASHI require a minimum of 250 inspections, however most experienced professionals will say it’s better to find someone who’s performed at least 1,000 inspections and has at least three-to-five years of full-time experience.

Ask for licensing and insurance: Ask to see proof of licensing if your state requires home inspectors to be licensed, and inquire about proof of general liability insurance as well as and errors and omission (E&O) insurance.

Consider average cost: Home inspections generally cost between $300 and $450, and typically take three to four hours. The cost of an inspection will vary depending on such factors as the age and size of a home.

There are a number of things homeowners should do and know before getting a home inspection:

Get involved with your home inspection: While it’s not required that you attend the inspection, you should be there with your home inspector to discuss expectations and findings.

Demand a detailed inspection: Home inspectors should look for structural problems; roof damage; fire hazards, such as improperly vented chimney flues; electrical safety issues, including old wiring; and problems with plumbing and major appliances, like the HVAC system and hot water heater. Inspectors should physically crawl the attic and crawl space, if possible, rather than just taking a quick look around from the opening or doorway.

Read the inspector’s report: Many inspectors provide the report the same day as the inspection. The report should be thorough and easy to understand and should include narrative accounts of the inspector’s findings that are specific to your house, along with pictures and diagrams. Many inspectors will also include photographs with their reports. Keep in mind that few houses are perfect, so you should expect some issues to be found. Don’t hesitate to question your inspector about the report.

Are home inspections necessary for new homes? Newer homes can have just as many problems as an older home. And, if you are building a home, inspections at key points during construction should be a part of the process.

Home inspection report can impact sales price: A home inspection report reveals problems that need to be fixed. You might use this information to renegotiate the price that you originally offered or you may be prepared to adjust your selling price. Keep in mind, sellers aren’t required to fix anything, no matter how egregious the situation.

Common Problems Found During Home Inspections

Buying a house is serious business. Whether a recently built estate or a modest fixer-upper, getting the lowdown on your potential home is of tantamount importance. A qualified home inspector is always your best bet for a thorough home evaluation, but it’s a good idea to have a general understanding of what to look out for.

Grade sloping (or draining) back toward the home. This could lead to damp or wet crawlspaces, foundation movement, cracking or settlement. Water wicking up the foundation could lead to rot in the walls, framing members and mold. Some indications of foundation movement include windows that are out of square; interior doors that have large, uneven gaps at the top when the door is closed; or floors visibly out of level. If you see this, know that the cost to correct this problem could add up quickly.

Stucco issues. Homes with stucco exterior surfaces, when applied correctly, will last a lifetime. However, a major flaw we see in the field could add up to water in the living space and big bucks out of your pocket. At the base of exterior walls, where the foundation and the bottom plate (sill plate) meet, a component of a stucco-surfaced wall called a weep screed is applied.

We know water can enter stucco through cracks, around unsealed light fixtures, outlets and the like. The water then hits the house wrap and sheds down to the weep screed and out the building. This is brilliant, but when concrete patios, stoops or sidewalks have been poured too high and the weep screed is buried, the system cannot work and water may enter the walls and living space. When you are walking around a house and you see the weep screed disappear into the concrete, this may one day lead to water intrusion and damage

Roofing materials. As homes age, so does the material covering the roof. This is the component of the house that keeps us and the internal workings of the house dry. As the roofing material ages, it lends itself to water intrusion and can lead to expensive repairs or even replacement. If roofing material is improperly installed, it can lead to premature aging. There are many types of roofing materials used to protect us from the elements. The most common, starting with the most economical, are asphalt shingles, wood shakes/shingles, terra cotta tile, concrete tiles and slate, just to name a few.

Home Inspection

You should expect quality and integrity in a home inspection. You can do better than accept “opinions” in place of evaluations. You can expect a home inspector to give you a thorough assessment of every single part of any home and help you understand what it means. You deserve to make an informed decision about buying, selling or maintaining your home.

Essential Home Inspection

This is the pre-purchase inspection that will help you make the right decision about buying a home. Checklist items include Roof Inspection, Interior Finish Assessment, Heating & Ventilation Review, Electrical Inspection, Plumbing Review, Structural Assessment and a Foundation Inspection. Each assessment is comprehensive, giving you as a homeowner, the knowledge you need to buy the right home for you. That means PEACE OF MIND.

Extended Home Inspection

This house inspection includes all checklist items from an Essential Home inspection plus a Thermal Imaging Assessment. Using industry approved technology and equipment

Premium Inspection

This includes all checklist items from an Extended Home inspection plus air quality testing to check for abnormal indoor mold growth. Mold overgrowth can trigger respiratory ailments, sensitivities and allergies. The home inspector will go through your house and take indoor air quality samples. You can also book a standalone mold test here.

Home Inspectors Checklist

Roof, Shingles, Flashings, Chimneys & Vents

Gutters, Downspouts, Soffits & Fascia

Exterior Drainage, Lot, Landscaping, Decks & Porches

Foundation, Exterior Structure

Siding, Windows & Doors

Attic, Roof Structure

Plumbing, HVAC & Electrical Systems

Interior Structure

Unwanted Pest Intrusion

Poor Construction Practices

Income Tax Preparation Courses

Pros And Cons: Filing Your Own Taxes Vs. Hiring A Professional

With the tax filing deadline of April 18 looming, are you still trying to decide whether to file your own taxes or hire a professional?

In this post we’re breaking down the good and bad of hiring a tax preparer, plus the perks of filing taxes on your own. Get comfy!

Pros

#1) Confidence your tax return is filed correctly. We all want to avoid problems with the Internal Revenue Service (IRS). A mistake on your tax return can lead to penalties, interest on your balance or even an audit. Not fun.

An advantage of working with a qualified tax professional is the peace of mind that what you’re filing is void of any major errors.

#2) Getting one-on-one advice on deductions and credits. Your goal is to take as many deductions and credits that you qualify for to reduce your tax bill.

Researching the rules for tax deductions and credits on the IRS website is enough to give anyone a headache—including me. This is where an expert comes in handy.

Guidance is particularly helpful for anyone who’s self-employed. Reporting self-employed income, business expenses, health care coverage and other items can be challenging. You may find it helpful to work with an advisor, at least the first year you file to learn the ropes.

#3) Tax advisor fees may be tax deductible. Tax preparer fees are a miscellaneous expense. Depending on how many other miscellaneous expenses you have annually you may be able to write off tax preparer fees.

Examples of other miscellaneous expenses are costs that help you bring in income like courses for work and unreimbursed business expenses from your job.

Your miscellaneous expenses in total (including tax preparer fees) have to equal over 2% of your adjusted gross income to take this deduction. If you meet this requirement, the write-off is another incentive to pay a little more for a tax advisor.

Cons

 #1)  Fraud is rampant. When you work with an expert that offers a service for less than the going rate, there’s a greater risk of identity theft or errors in your tax return. You need to invest in someone with the right credentials and stellar testimonials to make sure they’re legitimate.

Extra Tip: If you do taxes on your own, use a shredder to get rid of documents you don’t need in order to avoid fraud. If you don’t have a shredder, head to your local office supply store to do bulk shredding. I’ve found a deal just for you: At Office Depot and OfficeMax retail locations, you can get a coupon for five pounds of free bulk bin shredding now through April 23. Check out Office Depot’s 2015 taxes guide for your free coupon.

#2) Tax preparers make mistakes, too. You can’t sit back and assume your tax preparer will do everything correctly.

Just last year, someone I know trusted a tax preparer for the first time. In January, she got a letter from the IRS stating her tax return for 2014 was never actually filed. Even if you pay a preparer, you must review your final tax return and request confirmation that your return is filed.

What Are The Pros And Cons Of Using Tax Preparation Service?

There are various software, websites, and applications programmed to assist people in preparing and filing their taxes. A software developed by a U.S.-based company. While there are advantages of using such a tax prep service, there are disadvantages as well.

Pros:

  • Easier and Smoother Tax Preparation and Filing
  • Various Features for Various Tax Needs
  • Updated with the Most Recent Tax Laws
  • Ability to Save Files/Reports from Previous Fiscal Years
  • Costs Less than a Professional Tax Accountant

Cons:

  • Might not Efficiently Address Complicated Situations
  • The Output is as Good as What you Input
  • You Won’t Know the Bill Until You’ve Finalized Everything
  • Improper Usage of Software Might Lead to Unwanted Audits/Penalties

Here are some of the pros and cons of being a tax preparer.

 PROS

  • Suitable for people who likes to follow routines
  • Suitable for people who values relationships between co-workers and customers and wants to work in a friendly non-competitive environment
  • This career is perfect for people who love to work indoors.
  • It is not too difficult to get into this career. Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for this career.

CONS

  • Not suitable for people who likes to work with designs
  • Salary is below average
  • Long working hours (More than 40 hours per week)

Reasons to Hire a Professional Tax Preparer

Asking the right questions can help ensure you get a good one

For taxpayers who are still wading through tax records and fretting about filing their income tax return, there’s hope. You don’t have to go it alone.

The National Society of Accountants (NSA) has made a Letterman-style top ten list of the reasons why people should hire a professional tax preparer:

  • It takes the hassle out of doing it yourself.
  • You don’t have to keep up with the many tax law changes or understand complicated tax law.
  • Making mistakes can be very costly.
  • Your time is worth money – add up the hours you would spend doing it yourself and calculate what that’s    worth.
  • A tax program in a box cannot represent you in an audit.
  • A tax professional can answer your questions to help you make smarter tax-saving decisions.
  • A tax professional can help you plan all year and for future years.
  • A tax professional can recommend ways to save on taxes
  • It gives you peace of mind knowing that a professional is taking care of it.
  • It can save you money – if your tax preparer finds even one significant deduction or tax credit you may have missed, it can easily exceed the average $246 fee it costs to have a professional prepare your return.

Requirements To Be Pediatric Nurse

Becoming a Pediatric Physical Therapist: 5 Things You Need to Know

What is pediatric physical therapy?

Pediatric physical therapist work with a variety of children ranging from babies with torticollis or delay, orthopedic sports injuries, and children with delays due to diagnoses such as cerebral palsy and autism. Pediatric PTs help to improve gross motor skills, walking pattern, strength, balance, coordination, and motor planning through a variety of interventions that incorporate functional play.

Pediatric physical therapists focus each session on improving the child’s quality of movement and/or facilitating a gain in gross motor milestones.  These gross motor skills typically follow a pattern such as gaining head control, tolerating prone (tummy) positions, rolling, sitting independently, crawling on stomach, creeping on hands and knees, pulling to stand, standing without support, walking with hand held assist, walking without assist, jumping and running.

Within Kids Place, we not only assess if a child can perform a certain skill, but we assess the quality of movement to make sure that they participate in gross motor skills safely, effectively and efficiently.  Pediatric physical therapists are focused on making sure the child is safe to move around their environment and perform games/sports with the peers.

How to Become a Pediatric Physical Therapist

I often reflect on the journey I took from deciding I wanted to become a pediatric physical therapist when I was in high school, to my first day of PT graduate school, to today as a pediatric PT at NAPA Center Boston. What advice, tools, and tricks would I give my high school self to better prepare for what is ahead? If you are thinking about becoming a pediatric physical therapist yourself, or are a parent of a child working with a physical therapist and are curious how we ended up in this field, here are 5 things you need to know about becoming a pediatric physical therapist.

1. Be committed

Most physical therapy programs in the country are a 3-year graduate program, in which you will become a Doctor of Physical Therapy (DPT) following graduation. This requires an undergraduate degree, pre-requisite courses, and many logged hours of observation.

Whichever program you choose, know this: it is not easy.

You will learn A LOT in those 3 years. A lot of PT programs wait until you have learned all the foundational knowledge before even touching on pediatrics in year 3. If you have an interest in working with kids even prior to starting PT school, contact local pediatric outpatient clinics, early intervention agencies, school therapists, or even local pediatric hospitals— many clinics (including NAPA!) love having volunteers. It allows you to observe the therapists in action to log your shadowing hours and also gives the therapists an extra set of hands!

If you discover your interest in working with kids during PT school, talk to the clinical coordinator for your school’s program about completing a pediatric clinical rotation. PT students typically have 4-6 clinical rotations throughout the 3-year program and it is important to capitalize on any pediatric experience you are able to complete. It is even helpful to babysit or work as a summer camp counselor to find out if you enjoy working with kids!

2. Learn, learn, and learn more!

Even after graduating and becoming a PT, you will never stop learning. There is always new research being published, new colleagues with different experiences to learn from, and kids with unique diagnoses walking through the doors who you have not worked with previously. Specifically in pediatrics, it is crucial to learn from other disciplines, such as occupational and speech therapy, so you can aid in treating the whole child. Seek out these learning opportunities as often as possible, collaborate with your team members, and never fear asking questions!

3. Build your professional network

You will find that the world of PT, specifically pediatrics, is very small. Reach out to and stay in contact with any PTs you have shadowed in the past, your professors and classmates, clinical instructors, past colleagues, and peers you meet at conferences and continuing education courses. This will allow you to make connections and take advantage of any opportunities for your career that may arise in a variety of settings! 

4. One size does not fit all

Every child and family you work with is different. Even if multiple children have the same diagnosis, each will present uniquely and with his or her own personality. What works with one child may look completely different with another child. It is crucial to try, adjust, be creative, try again a different way, and be ok if something does not go as planned. And don’t be afraid to ask for help! Brainstorming ideas and problem solving with colleagues is the best way to help your kiddos meet their goals.

5. Your family will grow by hundreds of children (and their families!)

Working with children as they develop, grow, and meet new milestones allows you the honor to become an important addition to their family. The most exciting part about being a pediatric PT is teaching and empowering parents, siblings, and extended family members to help their child meet his or her goals.

How is pediatric sports physical therapy different from general therapy?

Bringing your youth athlete to a Children’s sports physical therapist means you’re working with a team of highly qualified, skilled and experienced pediatric and adolescent sports medicine experts. They know sports injuries, and they know the special needs of children and teens. And while physical therapists who see adults can treat pediatric patients, children and teens may make up a small percentage of their practice. Pediatric PTs, on the other hand, are specialists in kids and teens, dedicating their careers to treating them..

Children’s bones, muscles and joints require special care. Growth plates—–the areas at the end of the long bones in the arms and legs responsible for making new bone tissue—–are still open in children and teenagers. If these growth plates become injured , and are not diagnosed or treated properly, it can lead to damage that may leave youth athletes permanently sidelined from their favorite activities. Pediatric sports PTs are trained to recognize, identify and treat these types of injuries specifically.

How Can Sports Physical Therapy Be More Youth Friendly?

Pediatric sports PTs can translate your child’s or teen’s therapeutic goals into exercises that seem more like a training session than therapy, making rehabilitation both challenging and fun—that can mean better compliance and a faster recovery.

Pediatric sports PTs bring a special understanding about children and teens:

  • Young athletes need special attention.
  • Teens need individualized treatment too—they are still growing and are not young adults.
  • Children need hands-on cuing, and teens benefit from this too.
  • They need close supervision to perform exercises with proper technique.

Sports Physical Therapists Share a Passion for Children and Sports

A pediatric approach to sports physical therapy offers passion, atmosphere and experience to your child’s treatment. We have a passion for young athletes and will bring that passion into our work. After all, many pediatric sports PTs were youth athletes themselves; they come to your family with a personal understanding of what your child may be going through.

For children and teens, that passion results in good feelings about their treatment:

  • They feel understood and heard.
  • There’s a mutual understanding that fosters respect.
  • It translates into more effective therapy.

The role of the pediatric physical therapist for children on the autism spectrum

The role of pediatric physical therapy is to help children who have difficulty with functional movement, poor balance, and challenges moving through their environment successfully. Some children on the autism spectrum have low muscle tone, some have poor balance, others may not be well-coordinated, and still others may have a combination of all of the above. These are all areas that a physical therapist can address. After an assessment, the physical therapist will design and implement a program that will help to improve the individual child’s areas of need and increase overall function and participation.

(Many children or adults who have an accident and hurt themselves can benefit from physical therapy, whether they are diagnosed with ASD or not. This article does not address this type of rehabilitative therapy.)

Physical Therapy Areas of Intervention

Gross Motor Skills – using large muscles for sitting, standing, walking, running, etc.

Balance/Coordination Skills – involves the brain, bones, and muscles in a coordinated effort for smooth movement; for example, as in climbing stairs, jumping, etc.

Strengthening – building muscle for support and endurance; for example, to walk for a distance without becoming tired.

Functional Mobility/Motor Planning – moving through space, day to day, for independence and efficiency; for example, to climb onto the rocking chair and make it rock back and forth.

The Importance of Motor Skills

Gross motor skills enable children to explore and learn from their environment. Young babies’ neck muscles develop, allowing them to hold their head up and see things from an upright position. Trunk muscles strengthen, enabling children to sit and soon after crawl and begin to explore their surroundings on their own. Toddlers learn to walk, climb, and eventually run. As children become adults, motor skills continue to be important for independence.

What is the Goal of Physical Therapy for a Child on the Autism Spectrum?

Every child on the autism spectrum is unique. Not every child on the spectrum will need physical therapy. If physical therapy is found to be medically necessary and the child could benefit from physical therapy services, a program will specifically be designed for his or her needs.

Give Yourself A Break From Housework With Professional Move In Cleaning Services

Move-in / Move-out Cleaning

Pre-move and Post-move Services:

During the weeks before the move our friendly and efficient staff can provide advance help to the entire family. Working closely with adults, children, and teens, we help plan and prepare for the move, ensuring that no clutter will follow you to your new place. We will carefully help with packing your most cherished items while sorting out unwanted items for donations and hand-me-downs. After the move, we are available to assist with unpacking, organizing, and even decorating the new space.

Move-out Cleaning Services:

provide two levels of cleaning for your needs:

Basic cleaning service targets apartments that will be renovated in the future and need to be handed to owners / management in a broom-cleaned condition for a sale-closing or inspection. This service includes dusting and washing of all surfaces, wiping the outside of kitchen appliances & cabinets, basic cleaning of the bathrooms, and vacuuming & mopping of all floors.

Deep cleaning service targets apartments in which the new residents will move in without replacing the appliances or doing major renovations. This service includes cleaning the inside of kitchen cabinets & appliances, thorough cleaning of the bathrooms, and detailed cleaning of fixtures, window sills, closets and floors.

Move-in Cleaning Services (tailored to customer request):

Throughout the home or apartment: Dust / wipe / vacuum doors, baseboards and moldings, windowsills & window frames. Vacuum & mop floors.

Closets: Dust shelves and lay liners, clean the doors and the floors. Detailed closet-organizing services available upon request.

Bathroom cleaning: Including tiles, tubs, sinks, toilets, shower areas & doors, as well as inside medicine cabinets, light fixtures, cabinets & floors.

Kitchen: Clean & sanitize insides and outsides of all appliances. Scrub and wash cabinets. Put liners on shelves. Wash and polish all surfaces and clean the floors. Carefully clean all stainless steel, marble, tiles, upholstery, wood, and stone surfaces according to specification.

The Ultimate Moving Guide For An Easy Move

Move In Cleaning Services

When it’s time to move you have so much stuff! The only way to make moving out a little more comfortable is to plan it carefully and embrace the following tips and hacks

Cook In Advance

Before the move you should be preparing some meals in advance, because no one is going to have time to cook while moving, nor while unpacking in the new house. The best way to ensure you won’t be living on fast food for the next weeks is cooking crockpot meals in advance. To do this, just prepare bags with all the ingredients needed for a crockpot meal and freeze them. When you don’t have time to cook, let the crockpot do its job, after tossing everything inside.

Set Up The Utilities

No one wants to move into a new home without utilities. Unfortunately, many people end up doing just that. Don’t be one of them and call the utilities companies in advance, making the arrangements needed to set up everything in the new house. Also, print a file with all the utilities numbers, in case you will need to contact them during the move.

Save Money On The Move

Don’t settle for the first moving company you find; keep looking and, more important, keep playing with the moving dates. Moving services are expensive, but you can save a lot of money by paying attention to the deals. For example, most companies offer discounts for moving during weekdays. The time of the month is also important: most people move at the end/beginning of the month, so companies offer discounts for middle-month movers.

Keep All The Receipts

Some moving costs are deductible, so keep all the receipts from the move.

Move Management – Moving House Cleaning Plan

A question we often get when people are looking to move is “How clean is a seller or tenant required to leave a house or unit once moving out?” As you load the last of your belonging into the moving truck, unfortunately your hard work isn’t done yet. Before any relocation is complete, it is essential to thoroughly clean your house or apartment to pass the all important final inspection with either your landlord and or the new owners of your home.

When there is an absence of any legal requirement to clean the house before moving out, most sellers will take special steps of their own to present the home in an acceptable condition, for the buyers or for handing back to the landlord or leasing agent. It’s understandable that after moving all day, sellers or renters will often be too tired to spend a lot of time cleaning but unfortunately that’s no excuse to not get it done.

For this reason, having a “moving house cleaning plan” set in place is an important way to stay organised and clean efficiently after any relocation. Your first step in home cleaning before you move house as previously mentioned is to adhere to any specific cleaning regulations set in place by your body corporate, landlord, or real estate agent.

Depending on what was stipulated in your lease, you may be required to steam clean the carpets, clean your oven, or even hire a professional cleaning service to do the work and show receipts as proof of work done.

How to clean a house you just sold or are vacating?

We have all been there; the temptation to opt out on those last few cleaning chores is a force to be reckoned with! But don’t give in. How dirty you leave your home isn’t just about etiquette—it could also cause problems with the sale of your home if you are selling.

Post-move cleaning tips

You put everything in its place and start to relax. Then you figure out that you need to do additional cleaning. At that point, you might need all the post-move cleaning tips that you can get. And that is exactly the meat and potatoes of this article

Post-move cleaning tips – what you should know?

To be really effective with cleaning, you need to do one room at a time. The best place to start is the bathroom, of course, but here is a nifty list:

Bathroom

Bedroom

Kitchen

The Rest Of Your Home

Clean your bathroom first

To start things off, we will begin in the bathroom, as any of the respectable moving companies will tell you. The reason for this is simple. You want to do tackle the worst when you have the most energy and motivation. You want your bathroom to shine and you do not want to be tired. Start off by removing all of the stuff that you can, so you can approach most of the room. After that, start cleaning!

Post-move cleaning tips – the bedroom!

The next room that we are going to devote our attention to is the bedroom. While you may ask why won’t we save this room for last, it is because we want to be able to sleep in a nice bed if we feel too tired and wish to continue our work tomorrow. How’s that for one of the post-move cleaning tips?! However, even if that does not happen, having our bedroom clean is always a good thing! Make sure to remove all of the dust in the room because dust can cause allergies.

Clean kitchen thoroughly

The third room will be the kitchen. Again, same as the bathroom, you will want to move everything so you can approach corners and difficult places. This is especially true for spaces behind the fridge, stove and any other “fixed” kitchen element. If you have some elements that you can not move, then you might need some professional cleaning products. It is a wonder what we can get nowadays. Basically, if you think that you have a problem, you can bet that someone else also had that problem and that someone made something that will solve it. Just google your problem and you can order a nifty thing that will make that problem disappear

Tips for Cleaning Your New Home Before You Move In

The last thing you want to do is clean. You just packed your entire life in boxes and loaded them unto a truck. And you still must drive the distance, unload and unpack. Just the thought of going back in your old place and picking up the mess you left is daunting to say the least. However, you do want your security back don’t you? If so, quickly replace the thought of a cleaning rag in your hand with a wad of cash, and you are almost guaranteed to get the burst of energy you need to clean.

This brief guide will give you some quick and efficient cleaning tips to help you tidy up your old place so you can move on with your new life. Just remember, the cleaner the apartment, the quicker your security will end up right back where it belongs–in your hands.

Cleaning Supplies and Getting Started

Ideally, you took pictures when you first moved in as to document any damage the former tenant made. With said photos, you will have a reference point of what the place looked like when you handed over your security. Your goal now is to get your digs back in the same shape so your money will be fairly returned.

After taking pictures, the next thing you will want to do is stock up on cleaning supplies. The basic materials you will want to have handy are a vacuum, dry and damp cleaning rags, sponges, paper towels, Windex, Pledge, Scrubbing Bubbles, Easy Off Oven Cleaner, Lysol Toilet Bowl Cleaner, Fantastik, Comet, Resolve Carpet Cleaner, Mr. Clean, toilet brush, mop, gloves, air freshener and garbage bags

Clean Little Before Big

Obviously the easiest way to clean your apartment is to start in the room furthest from the front door and eventually end up at the entrance. Cleaning this way assures you will not track dirt back and forth. However, before you start tackling the rooms, take care of the tedious tasks first.

The Best Way To Get Rid Of Raccoon

Educational guide will help you to resolve your problem with a raccoon

Remember, raccoons are wild animals, and although they are not interested in attacking a person, and they very rarely transmit disease, please take proper safety precautions. Raccoons are basically urban animals, and they love to eat out of garbage cans or dumpsters or pet food dishes, and they frequently set up a den or a nest inside human dwellings, including in the walls or attic. They are very strong and have dexterous hands. You will find that the best way to get rid of raccoons is often with simple and free habitat modifications.

WARNING: In most cases, a raccoon in an attic is a female with a litter of babies.

STEP 1 – Inspect the exterior of the house, and find the raccoon entry hole.

STEP 2 – Climb into the attic space, and intimidate the mother. She may move out.

STEP 3 – That failing, spread raccoon eviction fluid in the attic and around the entry hole.

STEP 4 – If that didn’t work, attempt bright lights and loud radio in the attic for a week.

DECISION – If the female doesn’t move herself and the babies out, decide if you want them out now, or if you are willing to wait 8-10 months for them to grow and move out on their own.

STEP 5 – If you want them out, go in the attic and remove the litter of young by hand.

STEP 6a – You can either wait for the female to leave, and then seal the entry hole shut,

STEP 6b – Or you can use the young as “live bait” to lure her into a trap with them.

STEP 7 – Relocate them all together (this is a delicate process so read more about it).

STEP 8 – Seal the entry hole, and all vulnerable areas, with professional grade repairs.

STEP 9 – Clean the raccoon droppings and disinfect the attic space.

It can be a fairly simple and easy process, or it can be very complex, depending on the behavior of the raccoon. For more detail on each of the above steps

PREVENTION IS KEY – In most cases, you can solve the problem by taking away the attraction. You do not need to trap and remove the raccoon – that’s just a temporary fix anyway.

GARBAGE CANS – If possible, keep garbage indoors, and put it out for the garbage men in the morning. If not, you can drill holes in the side of the can and lid, and then use standard bungee cords to strap the lids on tight. Note, this isn’t a guarantee – it has to be very secure to work.

BIRD FEEDER – You can install a large squirrel baffle, which will also work for raccoons. You can also temporarily leave the feeder empty until the raccoon stops associating with a food source, then re-fill it.

PET FOOD – This is a no-brainer. If you leave pet food outdoors, it’s an open invitation to raccoons, opossums, skunks, stray cats, and more. Bring it inside if you don’t want wildlife eating it!

KILLING GOLDFISH – If you have a decorative pond with goldfish, simply buy some chicken wire at a hardware store, and either anchor it down, or make it into a ball that the goldfish can hide in.

RAIDING GARDEN – Raccoons are strong, and excellent climbers. So the usual trick of a fence around the garden won’t cut it, unless it’s a really good fence, with razor wire around the top.

IN THE YARD – If you think a raccoon is digging in your lawn, it’s quite possibly a different animal. Regardless, if you simply want to get rid of raccoons in your yard, your best bet is to find out whatever is attracting them, and modify it: remove it, or raccoon-proof it.

WARNING: In most cases, a raccoon in a wall or chimney is a female with a litter of babies.

IN THE WALL – If the raccoon is or climbing up and down the wall (or in a tight ceiling area), follow the above instructions for raccoon in the attic. The only extra challenge is accessing them. You may need to drill a hole near the warm spot (don’t drill into baby raccoons!) and install the raccoon eviction fluid there. You may need to cut a hole in the wall if it comes to removing baby raccoons by hand.

IN A CHIMNEY – Follow similar instructions as removing them from an attic. You have the negative of inaccessibility to deal with, but the positive of such a small space, in which eviction fluid works well. Never start a fire! That is the worst thing you can do. Read more detailed instructions: raccoons in chimney. After they are out, be sure to secure the open flu with a steel chimney cap.

STUCK IN A DUMPSTER – This is fairly simple, just stick a 2×4 plank of wood, or a thick branch into the dumpster, so they can climb out. Prevent future occurrences by moving dumpsters away from walls or fences that raccoons can easily climb, or better yet, leave the lids shut.

STUCK DOWN A WINDOW WELL – Same thing. Drop in something that will allow them to climb out, and then leave the area and wait. Window well guards will prevent it from happening again.

INSIDE THE HOME – If a raccoon somehow got stuck in your bedroom, kitchen, or living room, the best bet is to just open all doors, go elsewhere, and wait. It’ll find its way out. No brooms necessary. Same goes for the basement or cellar, if one gets stuck down there.

POOPING IN THE SWIMMING POOL – Raccoons like to wash their food in water, if possible (procyon lotor means “washes with hands”), and they like to defecate in water. They will often enter the swimming pool via the shallow front step and do their business. To stop this, you can install a board with nails sticking up on the front step, or just put unstable chicken wire over the area.

ENTERING HOUSE THROUGH PET DOOR – They often enter in search of pet food! So either keep the pet food locked in another room, or lock the pet door for a period of time until the raccoon quits. Or get a magnetic pet door that responds only to the collar of your dog or cat.

KILLING CHICKENS IN A COOP – Not much to say here except that you need a sturdier chicken coop. That goes for future raccoons, increasingly common urban foxes and coyotes, etc.

ROLLING UP SOD – They sometimes roll up fresh sod to look for worms/grubs. Some people have had success with motion-sensor water sprayers at keeping them away. If that doesn’t work, this is a tough case, and one of the few in which you may have to resort to inhumane cage trapping and euthanization if you can’t stand sod destruction.

UNDER THE HOUSE, PORCH, OR SHED – Find out how they got in. In many cases, the entire perimeter of the structure is open, and that’s an invitation to raccoons, skunks, stray cats, everything. If you don’t want animals under there, install a strong steel mesh exclusion barrier. Bolt it into the structure, and bury the bottom at least 8″ underground, with the mesh sloping outward. To get them out, you can use the newspaper trick or a one-way door.

Raccoon

Raccoons are “well-rounded,” often plump, with reddish brown to grey fur. Adults weigh an average of 15 pounds, and are readily identified by alternating rings on the tail and characteristic black “mask.” Raccoons are important furbearers, providing income and recreation to hunters and trappers. Many people enjoy watching or photographing raccoons. Some people feed them, but this is unnecessary and unwise. Keeping raccoons as pets may be harmful to both humans and raccoons, and is illegal.

Distribution and Habitat

Raccoons are among the most widespread mammals. The adaptable raccoon can be found everywhere, from the most remote forest to the crowded inner city. Raccoon populations often are more dense in large cities than in the wild, but abundance varies widely in different types of habitat and different parts of the state.

Behavior

Raccoons feed mainly at night. They eat fruit, nuts, berries, small animals, and insects and also will feed on pet food, garbage, and garden crops. Female raccoons look for den sites in late winter. Litters of one to seven young are born in April and May. Young raccoons open their eyes about three weeks after birth, and often announce their presence with mewing, twittering, or crying sounds. They nurse for about six weeks, then leave the den to follow the mother until September or early October when they disperse and establish their own territories.

Mortality and Disease Factors

Canine Distemper

Canine distemper is a common disease and is usually fatal. Raccoons with distemper act tame or confused, and eventually lose coordination, become unconscious, and die. Distemper cannot be transmitted to humans or immunized pets.

Raccoon Rabies

Raccoon rabies reached in 1990 and has become widespread. Rabies is a viral disease with symptoms similar to distemper. Rabid raccoons may behave aggressively, salivate heavily, or have paralyzed hind legs. Rabies can be transmitted to humans and other animals by the bite of an infected animal. If you suspect a raccoon is rabid, avoid or destroy the animal and contact local health officials.

Roundworm

Roundworm infects most raccoons at some time in their lives. The roundworm rarely causes the raccoon any problems, but the animals pass large numbers of eggs to the environment. Eggs ingested by another animal may hatch and cause nerve damage.

Management

Raccoons are protected by law. No one may possess a raccoon without a license, and licenses are not issued for pet wildlife. Hunting or trapping raccoons requires a license. The law allows unlicensed homeowners and farmers to destroy raccoons that damage property. However, property owners should try eliminating food and shelter before killing the animal.

Nuisance Wildlife

One of the most common wildlife problems face is garden raiding. The culprits are usually rabbits, groundhogs and deer, but occasionally a raccoon or bear will drop in for things like sweet corn and berries. Inexpensive solutions include using scarecrows, hanging pie tins and spraying peppery liquids on plants. Many home gardeners also place fences around their gardens.

Live-traps come in a variety of sizes and are of a cage-with-closing-door design. These traps are ideal for residential areas because if you catch the neighbor’s pet by mistake, all you have to do is open the door to release the dog or cat from the trap. Troublesome rabbits and squirrels can be relocated to another area. However, anyone who sets one of these traps must recognize it has the potential to catch something other than he or she may have ever expected; namely a skunk. The problem, of course, is what to do with the skunk. It’s liable to spray just about anyone who comes near the trap, even if the person is just trying to set it free.

Since skunks – as well as raccoons, bats, groundhogs, foxes and coyotes – are rabies vector species, they should not be relocated like other wildlife. Homeowners who set traps and catch these species face the choice of killing the animal or releasing it. Releasing a skunk or a raccoon can be a risky situation. There’s a chance that you could be sprayed by the skunk, or bitten or scratched. What follows promises to be unpleasant. You’ll either have to be deodorized or anxiously await test results on the trapped animal’s brain tissue to determine if it’s rabid.

Before you set a trap to resolve a wildlife conflict, ask yourself these questions:

Are you prepared to kill the trapped animal?

Do you know how to properly dispose of an animal carcass?

Do you know how to release a trapped animal?

Do you know what bait should be used to ensure you catch the targeted species?

Do you know how frequently you must check a trap set to capture wildlife?

If you can answer “yes” to the aforementioned questions then you should know what you’re getting into when you set a trap. Landowners and homeowners may not trap beavers, bobcats, migratory birds, big game, threatened species or endangered species. Landowners should contact the region office that serves the county where they are located before trapping nuisance wildlife. Also, once traps are set, they must be checked daily.

Get Rid of Raccoons

Why Get Rid of Raccoons?

Despite their innocent looking, cute little faces, raccoons actually have quite a reputation for being mischievous and destructive. Raccoons often knock down trash cans and uproot gardens and sod in search of a meal. Raccoons may also carry and transmit diseases such as rabies or roundworm. Raccoons are capable of becoming aggressive and biting humans or other animals when they are rabid or feel threatened.

There are Steps to getting rid of raccoon pests.  When it comes to getting rid of raccoons, there is no magic spray or repellent. These chemicals and other products like sound devices are really just gimmicks. The only proven way to get rid of a raccoon is through preventing access, limiting food sources, and trapping and removal.

Prevent Access

It is a little known fact that adult raccoons can fit through an opening as small as 3″ to 4″ in diameter. To prevent access, you should inspect the home or structure for all possible openings, and then seal them off. The most common entrance to a home for raccoons is down the chimney, or else through a window by way of the roof. Methods of preventing access include:

Trim trees and other shrubbery away from the house and roof

Secure a cap of sheet metal over the chimney outlet

Repair openings or holes in the home with heavy wire cloth or wood secured into solid substrate with screws

Electric fences may keep raccoons out of lawn and garden

Important Note: If you suspect a female raccoon or her litter may still be trapped inside your home, seal all entry points but one. This one existing opening will serve as an exit through which you can wait for the raccoon or raccoons to leave the structure before sealing it off. If you seal off ALL openings while a raccoon still exists inside, it may become trapped where you are unable to get to it and proceed to starve to death, resulting in a foul-smelling carcass. If there is a litter trapped inside and you seal the mother out, the litter will die and the mother will be inhumanely kept from her young. Be sure there are no raccoons left inside the structure before sealing off the last opening.

Limit Food Sources

Raccoons are not going to stick around long or make your home their home unless there are enough food sources to sustain them. To limit or eliminate food sources:

Keep all trash in metal cans or bins with tight fitting lids

Regularly splash the outer sides and lids of metals cans with ammonia, since raccoons are repelled by this scent and it also covers up food smells

Weight trash can lids with something heavy like a brick to keep raccoons from removing the lid

When throwing away meat or other foods with a strong odor, double-bag them to reduce smells

Elminate as many sources of water as possible in your hard and near your home

Regularly clean up fallen fruit such as berries in your garden

If possible, cover garden crops with a cage of wire netting.

Don’t leave pet food out at night

Problems with raccoons

Raccoons are living under my house (or in my attic). How can I get them to leave?

Your number one objective is to keep mothers and babies together. If you follow these steps, you should be successful. During nesting season (springtime and summer) patience is a virtue. It’s best to do nothing and wait until the young are big enough to leave on their own. If the mother is removed from the property, the now orphaned babies will soon begin to starve.

After you’ve determined that all of the raccoons – mother and babies – have moved out, you can prevent the situation from happening again by sealing the opening of the den. If you need to hasten the process, the best thing to do is to encourage the raccoons to leave by using mild repellants. To make the den inhospitable, we recommend the following combination of repellants done at night when raccoons are most active.

Place rags soaked in cider vinegar in an open container and place the container near the opening of the den.

Place a drop light or flashlight near the opening of the den.

Place a blaring radio tuned to an all-talk station near the den opening; not so loud that it keeps you or your neighbors awake.

How can I protect my garden from raccoons?

Plant squash around your beds to deter raccoons; they don’t like walking on the prickly squash vines.

Install motion sensor lights around your garden. Raccoons are nocturnal and bright lights often deter them from an area.

Grind up garlic, mix it with an equal portion of chili powder, and spread it around the garden, or sprinkle cayenne powder around the garden.

Have a dog. Even when dogs are inside during the night, the barking will often deter the raccoons.

Install a motion detector sprinkler system that is activated at night.

Raccoons keep getting into the garbage, what should do I do?

If there is no food and shelter to support them, most wild animals will go away and thrive off the natural environment. An abundance of food left out will only attract wild animals.

Do not feed raccoons.

Eliminate all food sources such as pet foods, birdseed, etc.

If your pets must be fed outside, remove all food at night.

Use heavy trash containers and fasten the lids securely with bungee cords or rope.

Harvest all ripe fruit from trees and shrubs and remove fallen fruit from the ground.

Keep pets inside and close off all pet doors so raccoons can’t enter through the door.

Keep BBQ grills clean or stored in a secure place.

Light the area with motion sensor lights.

Wrap metal around trees to prevent raccoons from climbing.

Discourage neighbors from leaving pet food dishes out at night or feeding the raccoons.

How To Choose The Right Truck Tires For 4×4 Truck

Ply rating or load range: what to look for when choosing tires for hauling

When it comes to ply rating, load range and choosing tires for hauling, things can get a little confusing. These numbers (or letters) are branded on the side of a tire’s sidewall and they identify how much load the tire can safely carry at a specified inflation pressure.

Here’s why it can be confusing: A modern tire with a 10-ply rating doesn’t necessarily have 10 actual plies in it. This goes back to the days when tires were made of cotton. Back then, the ply rating referred to how many layers of cotton had been used in the tire’s construction. The number of plies was used to determine the relative strength of the tire (i.e. the more plies, the more heavy-duty the tire).

These days, ply rating has become a redundant term because most radial passenger tires have just one or two body plies. Light truck tires, including those with heavy-duty ratings (10 ply and above), generally have only two or three plies.

In other words, ply rating is merely a reflection of how strong a tire is in terms of withstanding higher inflation pressures and carrying heavier loads.

The Adoption of Load Ranges

Modern technology has allowed manufacturers to create tires with fewer plies, which caused the industry to adopt load range designations over ply ratings. The information is presented in a slightly different manner depending on the type of tire you’re using. This information can be found on the sidewall of your tire.

Passenger Tires feature specific categories, with most falling in the ‘standard load’ range.

Light Load (branded as LL on the sidewall) has a maximum load pressure of 35 PSI

Standard Load (SL or no branding) also has a maximum load pressure of 35 PSI

Extra Load (XL) has a maximum load pressure of 41 PSI

Light Truck Tires (LT) designate ranges in ascending alphabetical order, with load range ‘B’ representing a 4-ply rating at 35 PSI; C representing a 6-ply rating at 50 PSI, and so on. As you can see, the further down the alphabet you go, the strong the tire will be.

Special Trailer Service Tires

Similar to light truck tires, special trailer (ST) tires are usually available in multiple load ranges and follow the same alphabetical rating system as LT tires.

It’s important to note that load range varies by tire size and inflation pressure. For example, a larger tire with a ‘D’ rating will hold more air and can be rated for a higher load than a smaller tire with the same ‘D’ rating. Also, a given tire size at a higher air pressure results in a higher rated load.

Considering Load Index

Regardless of whether you’re changing tire sizes or switching the type of tire you’re using, it’s essential to ensure the load index listed on the new tire’s sidewall is either equal to, or greater than, the load index of the tire you’re replacing.

ST Tire Blowouts:

When I talk about ST tire blowouts I am not referring to what we just discussed referencing the defective Chinese tires. In a nutshell most trailer tire blowouts are not a result of ‘bad or inferior’ tires, they are a result of one or more of the following conditions.

  • Overloaded tires. Every tire manufactured has a load rating based on the tire’s inflation pressure. A tire’s maximum load is the most weight the tire is designed to support at the inflated pressure. ST tires have some of the highest load ratings. This is one of the reasons they are designated for use on trailers. Truck and automobile tires do not have to withstand the weight and stress that is put on trailer tires. The only way to know if a tire is overloaded is to weigh the trailer by individual wheel position. It is quite possible to weigh an axle and be within the axle weight rating, but when the tire positions on each axle end are weighed separately a tire rating can be overloaded.
  • Over & under-inflated tires. Another culprit for tire blowouts is over & under-inflated tires. Failure to maintain the correct tire pressure for the load can result in fast tread wear, uneven wear and poor handling which can all lead to tire failure. Remember, the load rating for a tire is only accurate if the tire is properly inflated for the load. Under-inflated tires cause extreme heat buildup that leads to tire failure. Tire manufacturers publish tire load and inflation tables with information on the correct tire inflation pressure for the load. A big reason tires fail is they are not properly inflated for the load. The appearance of the tire can look normal on the outside, but the internal damage is not visible. Tires with internal damage caused by under- inflation can fail catastrophically without warning. One thought is to inflate the tires to the maximum ‘cold’ pressure found on the tires sidewall if you don’t know the exact load on the tires, or the exact weight of the trailer. This should not however serve as an excuse to not weigh the trailer.
  • Improper weight distribution. When a manufacturer builds an RV weight distribution is critical. The weight from front- to-back and side-to-side must be carefully considered to avoid having too much tongue weight, too little tongue weight and/or too much weight placed on the trailer’s tires. The manufacturer did its job distributing the weight when the unit was built, now the RV owner must do their job by properly distributing any weight added to the trailer. Some tire overload conditions can be corrected by distributing the weight in the RV, but you still need to weigh the RV by individual wheel position to make sure there is not an overload condition.

What’s the difference between LT and P tires?

‘LT’ are Light Truck Tires which usually are 8 or 10 ply – having 8–10 layers of steel belt (or thicker gauge belts which are of equal strength to said number of layers). This creates a more robust tire which is capable of handling heavier loads on rough terrain.

‘P’ are tires which are more or less designed to operate predominantly on Streets and even terrain. While originally this was intended only for ‘Passenger’ cars – P-Metric tires can be used on Light/Medium Duty Trucks and SUVs. Typically you will see them more widely used in more urbanized locations – where the vehicle spend more time on paved streets then on gravel or off road.

Is a lt and a st tire comparable for 5th wheel

Yes, both special trailer (ST) and light truck (LT) tires can be used on a 5th wheel trailer. They are actually the only two types of tires rated for this use. The reason for this is that tires on a trailer will be subjected to much harsher conditions that require a stiffer sidewall. A condition in which passenger (P) tires are not equipped to handle. Please note there are two different light truck (LT) tires, ones with the LT designation after the wheel diameter (ex. 7.50-16LT) and ones with the LT designation before the aspect ratio (ex. LT275/80-16). The ones with the LT designation after the wheel diameter are the ones that can be used on trailers.

If you are in between a special trailer and light truck tire then try to think of it this way. The light truck tires are made for just that, light trucks but can also be used on trailers due to their sidewall capacity whereas special trailer tires are made specifically for trailers. They will perform better than a light truck tire in my opinion. The only real benefit I see of using a light truck tire is more tread patterns available which won’t really matter when traveling down the open road. They are also more attainable locally.

Bathroom Remodeling Ideas

A Guide to Bathroom Design

While not every bath can be the statement-making bath made popular in the ornate 1980s, every bath can benefit from the flow of great new ideas entering the market. Even baths that can’t be enlarged are looking and feeling much better these days, thanks to inventive fixtures, attractive personal touches, appealing color schemes, and intelligent design.

Creating a better bath isn’t just an indulgence; it’s a smart idea. One of the best home improvement investments you can make is adding a second full bath to a one-bath house or remodeling an existing bath.

Even if you don’t plan to sell your house soon, a new or remodeled bath can make a huge improvement in your family’s quality of life, day in and day out. A new bath can relieve squabbles over morning congestion, and a remodeled one can add a whole new dimension of comfort.

Personalizing Your Bathroom Design

So you’ve decided to design your bathroom? Aside from painting it your favorite shade of blue, you should know how configure the space as well. Jump into the world of bathroom remodeling, and get tips on how to personalize your bathroom design.

New Construction vs. Remodeling Your Bathroom

How you design a bathroom is intricately tied to and influences by whether you’re starting from scratch with a newly constructed bathroom or remodeling an existing one. Learn more about the differences and how to deal with them.

Master Bath Remodel Guide

Remodeling a master bathroom is an exciting (and sometimes stressful) project. But planning your remodel ahead of time can help save you heartache down the road. Talk to a professional bathroom remodeler to find out what options will look best for your space.

Ideas for Master Bathroom Remodeling

Gather your remodeling inspiration from several sources as you start to plan your project. Look at the work from reputable pros to get ideas for your own home. When planning your remodel:

Decide on a style – modern, traditional or something entirely different.

When using tile in your shower, consider using the same style and color of tile on the floor. This will help the room to flow better.

Create a consistent theme for your bathroom that will bring all of your fixtures, appliances and design choices together.

If you have a dull bathroom, experiment with fun tile patterns, paint colors and designs to brighten things up.

Use water and energy-efficient appliances to save money down the road.

Consider your budget with each decision you make.

Utilize Pictures of Master Bathroom Designs & Layouts

If you don’t have much experience drawing or visualizing a new layout, try using pictures for inspiration. Search for:

Pictures taken in homes that match the general layout and flow of your own.

Materials and fixtures in different styles.

The cost of different bathroom materials.

Small Master Bath

A complete tear out and replacement of this space runs from $5,000 to $15,000. For simple surface-level upgrades, like new paint, fresh fixtures and lights, expect to pay about $1,000 to $3,500.

Large Master Bath

A larger remodeling project could run you $12,000 or more depending on how extravagant the project is. The larger your square footage, the higher the cost of your bathroom remodel. This project typically runs around $125 per square foot.

THE COMPLETE BATHROOM RENOVATION GUIDE

Renovating a bathroom is no easy task, especially if you take on the job yourself. Even if you choose to hire tilers, plumbers and electricians to do the bulk of the work, you still need to manage the project and know how to conduct a bathroom renovation to ensure you have everything organised and that your tradies come in at the right time to ensure they are not working on top of another.

This all takes a lot of time and money. Therefore, you must be organised and realistic about the budget and timeframe for competition. I cannot stress enough how important it is to plan your complete bathroom renovation before you start.

Before You Start

Before you even start thinking about your bathroom renovation, there are many things you need to give consideration to and decide on.

Reason to renovation

Firstly, think about why you want to renovate your bathroom. Is your bathroom outdated and you’re simply looking to renovate it to make it modern? Is your bathroom poorly designed or not meeting your requirements? Are you looking to sell your home and know that a new bathroom will add value?

Set a budget

The biggest pitfall in starting a bathroom renovation is going into it without a set budget. As my example above shows, additional costs can pile up very easily. Therefore, it’s very important to set a realistic budget for your renovation

A Guide to Different Types of Bathroom Renovations

You’re looking at your bathroom and thinking “I wanna do something about this.” You’re not exactly sure what, though. Does it just need a few updates? An entire add-on? A whole change in floor plan?

There are several types of bathroom renovations you can choose to have done. Depending on what your bathroom is already like, you might be able to make a few changes and be satisfied with your bathroom. Or, you could require more of a remodel. Whatever you need, it’s best to be completely clear of it before you start, so you don’t get halfway through and realize you wanted something else all along.

Cosmetic Remodels “Tear & Replace”

These remodels are usually the most simple, because you’re not getting into the nitty-gritty with a change in the floor plan, or with plumbing or electricity in most cases. Cosmetic remodels can breathe new life into your bathroom in a big way, and can make an old bathroom that’s falling apart look brand new.

Floor Plan Remodel “The Redesign”

It might be that your bathroom is just not working for you. You’ve added some family members or roommates, and the flow isn’t what it once used to be. You’re looking at a floor plan redesign. There are endless combinations of floor plans to consider when you redesign your bathroom floor plan. There are also a few standard floor plans that you can use as a guideline when thinking about what you want in a bathroom. These include ideas for full or master bathrooms, three-quarter bathrooms, half bathrooms and so on.

Aging-in-Place

When you decide you’re going to stay in the current home you’re in, you’ll eventually need to remodel your bathroom for aging in place. At its simplest level, you might think about getting a shower seat, adjusting the height of your toilet seat, and/or adding grab bars to the space. There are many considerations when it comes to an aging-in-place design, regardless of whether you decide on a pull and replace bathroom remodel or a more substantial full bathroom redesign.

Bathroom Remodeling Guide

Bathroom remodels are rated among the best home improvement projects in terms of return on investment. Careful planning, and these tips from our project advisors, will help you get the most out of your remodel. Learn how to make smart choices — and avoid common pitfalls — so you can create a space you’ll enjoy for years to come.

1) Establish a budget

Calculate labor and material costs, then add a 10% cushion for unforeseen expenses. Things like damaged or outdated plumbing, electrical, or subfloor often aren’t apparent until the project is underway.

2) Narrow down your style and color palette

Find design ideas in home magazines, blogs, or subscribe to our catalog. Our Shop by Look page is another great source of inspiration. Create your own lists for an easy way to keep your ideas organized.

3) Purchase products and materials

Waiting for a single item can derail your project timeline. Order large items, like your bathtub, about a month in advance, and allow extra time for made-to-order items.

4) Remove old fixtures and flooring

Some homeowners do their own demolition to save money, but it is messy, time-consuming, and potentially dangerous work. Novice DIYers can even cost themselves money by inadvertently damaging plumbing, electrical, flooring, or walls. If you have any doubts about your skills, it’s best to leave demo to the pros.

5) Replace or repair subfloor as needed

A solid, smooth surface is necessary for a perfectly finished floor. Imperfections in the subfloor can ruin the look and cause tiles to crack.

6) Update electrical if needed and add or move receptacles

A bathroom remodel is a great opportunity to add light fixtures and outlets. Consult your local building codes and hire a professional electrician to complete the work.

7) Install bathtub and shower pan or shower enclosure

Shower floors and bathtubs, with the exception of clawfoot-style tubs, should be installed before the flooring.

8) Install new drywall or patch as needed

Make sure to use materials intended for wet or damp locations.

9) Prime and paint walls and ceiling

Satin finish paints are more durable than eggshell finishes and are a good choice for bathrooms. Kilz Tribute is paint and primer in one, and large peel-and-stick samples are available to make it simple to choose the perfect color.

10) Install flooring and baseboards

Furniture-style vanities that are raised up on legs or feet should be installed after the  baseboards. Cabinet-style vanities that sit directly on the floor should be installed before the baseboards.

11) Install shower walls, fixtures, and shower doors

Tiled shower walls require special backer board designed for wet locations.

12) Install the vanity

Think of the vanity as a piece of furniture. Look for one with a cabinet finish, top, and design details to match your decorating style. Vanities add storage space to the bathroom, and some include specialty organizers and integrated power strips.

13) Install the toilet, sinks, and faucets

Use Build.com’s sorting tools to quickly find styles that match your decor and features to make life easier.

Proper Maintenance Of Your Garbage Disposal

WORST THINGS TO PUT DOWN YOUR DISPOSAL

If you spend a lot of time in your kitchen, you know how your garbage disposal can be your best friend. However, that relationship can quickly turn sour when harmful materials are dumped down your drain

Bones

Because the blades in your garbage disposal are not angled, thy are not equipped to grind extremely hard items like bones. If these bones make it past your disposal, they certainly won’t make it down the drain pipes. As a result, you could be facing expensive plumbing repairs down the road.

Egg Shells

Although there has been some debate over this one, it made our list due to the sticky membrane lining of egg shells. While the actual shell can arguably sharpen your disposal blades, there is the risk of the membrane lining sticking to the sides of the disposal, wrapping around the shredder. Therefore, we recommend playing it safe and keeping egg shells away from your disposal.

Fruit Pits

Another major no-no is putting fruit pits down your garbage disposal. This includes the smallest cherry pits to the larger peach, avocado, or nectarine pits. Simply put, if you cannot cut these pits with your sharpest kitchen knife, you can assume your disposal blades certainly won’t be able to, either

Fats and Grease

Just like your shower or sink drains, your kitchen sink drain should be a grease-free zone. Because fats and greasy substances tend to adhere to your pipes and lead to clogs, you should keep them out of your disposal. If you do accidentally pour grease or fat down your disposal, try running hot water down the line.

Is your kitchen-sink disposal environmentally friendly?

If you’re trying to be more eco-friendly at home, should you use your kitchen garbage disposal? It depends. “Keep in mind that when food is added to the wastewater system, it must be further treated,” says

She suggests learning about your local water infrastructure first. For starters, the most eco-friendly option for food waste is to create less of it. For unavoidable food waste, consider donating it or composting. Beyond that, wastewater and environment experts agree that the environmental value of kitchen disposal systems depends on the wastewater system of a given locality. Disposals make sense if your wastewater system is set up to convert food waste into energy, as is the case in a growing number of big cities.

“Any food that is sent down the disposal will be filtered and captured at a wastewater treatment facility. The debris captured are typically sent off to a landfill, incinerator or to an anaerobic digestion facility (for conversion into energy) if one is close by,”

disposals are used in more than 50 percent of U.S. homes and in countless food-service operations. He argues that in addition to convenience, disposals are ecologically beneficial because they divert food waste from landfills.

environmental impact of food waste by sending the processed food particles — from meat, bones, even banana peels — through a home’s plumbing system to facilities equipped to handle them, rather than sitting in landfills and contributing to excess methane,” he says. “A growing number of wastewater facilities are installing equipment that allows them to turn food waste into renewable energy.

What Not to Put Down a Garbage Disposal

A clogged garbage disposal can jam up hours of your day.

The handy kitchen garbage disposal is useful for getting rid of a variety of food scraps and waste that might otherwise create unpleasant smells in the kitchen. However, many foods can actually damage your disposal or render it useless.

A common misunderstanding about garbage disposals is that the device includes “blades,” when in actuality it contains a ring of teeth-like shredders that grind the food and force it down the drain. While there’s no real way to sharpen these shredders (which are still often referred to as blades), keeping them clean is key to an efficient garbage disposal.

Fibrous foods

The strings of celery, artichokes, asparagus, lettuce, corn husks, carrots, onion skins and potato peels can wrap around the grinding teeth, preventing proper operation of the motor. If you feel you must put fibrous foods into your disposal, do so in very small quantities, and run cold water before, during and after operating the unit.

Grease, fats and oils

Greasy foods will distribute a film over the shredding teeth, diminishing their effectiveness. Eventually, the grease will begin to decay, causing an unpleasant odor in the kitchen. Pouring grease into a garbage disposal can result in clogged drains when the grease solidifies (regardless of how much hot water you use).

Egg shells

Some people claim that egg shells sharpen the blades of the unit, but this is not true. The shells’ stringy membrane layers can wrap around the shredder ring, and the shell itself will be ground to a sand-like consistency capable of clogging pipes.

Things You Should Never Put Down the Garbage Disposal

Garbage disposals are a handy convenience. We throw our food particles into the great abyss and flip a switch so that they disappear forever. But we become so accustomed to a working garbage disposal that we may forget its intended use.

Never Put Grease in the Garbage Disposal

I still have vivid memories of my mom yelling at us about dumping grease. Perhaps grease seems like an obvious “no-no”. But absent-minded moments can cause a random dump of a greasy frying pan down the garbage disposal.

The purpose of the disposal is to break down foods and liquid into small particles. The particles then travel down the drain and into the pipes. Grease cannot be broken down and quickly builds up. It can coat and clog your pipes.

Bones are a No-No in Disposal

Bone fragments should be dumped in the trash, or used in compost piles. Whether you dump chicken wings or turkey wishbones down your garbage disposal, they will not break down enough to flow through your pipes.

Coffee Grounds & Dirt

If you dump wet or dry coffee grounds down the garbage disposal, they will seemingly disappear. However, these pesky particles stick to the sides of the disposal unit and don’t make it to the pipes. Over time, the grounds will build up.

Things That Will Destroy Your Garbage Disposal

You may have a garbage disposal for kitchen waste. This doesn’t mean your garbage disposal is a catch-all for anything that fits. If you’ve ever spent time trying to plunge a garbage disposal full of potato peelings, then you understand what we are talking about. You can’t put just anything down your garbage disposal.

Grease and fats are no good for your garbage disposal because they can harden once they cool off. While the hot grease may go down your garbage disposal easily, it can collect in the disposal and build up

Fibrous foods, such as vegetable peelings, aren’t good for your garbage disposal either. The fiber can get caught up in the garbage disposal blades, causing the disposal to stop working. Do not reach your hand into the garbage disposal to remove vegetable peel fibers. You can do serious damage to your hand if the disposal suddenly starts running again.

Eggshells are also a problem for your garbage disposal. While you may have been told that the shells will actually clean your blades, the membrane within the egg can clog the disposal.

Other foods that will hurt your garbage disposal include:

celery because of the long fibers

pasta because it expands in water

coffee grounds because they sit at the bottom of the drains

If you are in doubt about an item, throw your food item in the trash instead. If you have bones and you are worried about the carcass of an animal smelling up your kitchen, put the remains in a tight plastic bag and throw them away instead. Save your garbage disposal from getting destroyed.

Installing A Metal Tile Roof

The Importance Of Tile Roof Maintenance

omes are ever-changing, building designs, materials used in the construction of homes, and the types of roofs. While some tried and tested roofing materials of the past, such as wood shingles and metal roofing, have remained popular, concrete tile roofing has become the known ‘best’ type of roofing material, for many reasons.

Mainly, it is because of the hardy nature of concrete compared to any other material used for roofing, and, the fact that concrete Terracotta tiles will not catch fire, that home owners are flocking to re-roof their homes with it. Another reason is that these roof tiles require minimum maintenance, when compared to other roofing materials.

While nothing lasts forever, the maintenance of concrete roof tiles can make sure that your home is preserved for decades to come.

Roof Tile Maintenance and Preservation of Your Home

A long-lasting home is only possible with a solid, well maintained roof. And, there is no better roofing material that can preserve your home as long as concrete tile roofs can. Under perfect conditions roofs should last for decades, however, life seems to consistently surprise property owners and the chore of maintaining a house is needed, some years more than others.

Concrete roofing tiles, as hardy as these are, can become damaged and pose a risk to your home, specifically when it rains as water can find its way under the roof and cause damage to your home. How can concrete roof tiles become damaged? Well, the main cause of roof tile damage is by trees and tree branches falling on them. Also, people mounting roofs with ladders, and then walking about on them damage roof tiles, this is because most people are unfamiliar with roof construction and don’t know where to step safely.

Basically, cracked or loosened roof tiles is a serious problem, especially if living in areas where it is humid or rains often, as every time water reaches the roof potential water damage can occur. That is why roof tile maintenance and preservation of your home work together. So, to make sure your roof is in good shape it is recommended to have it inspected regularly, as recommended by roofing professionals.

Concrete Tiles Weaknesses

One of the biggest problems we see with concrete roof tiles is the shady roofers who fit them. Since concrete tiles are heavier than their counterparts, they require stronger structures to support them. When owners decide to change the roof from shingles to roof tiles, many roofers neglect to reinforce the roof structure which causes entire sections of the roof to collapse.

The main reason concrete tiles fail is due to the weather. While concrete tiles have a high resistance to wind, they are not completely resistant to high winds, and with the hurricanes, we experience in Florida, the tiles can easily be blown away. Concrete tiles also have a porous texture. This means there are a lot of small holes on the surface of the concrete, which water can get trapped in after it rains. The heating and cooling of stone tiles due to sunshine and rain can also lead to tile cracking. Furthermore, these pockets of water allow moss and mildew to thrive and grow, which can discolor and stain your roof.

Strategies To Concrete Tile Roof Repair

Knowing when your concrete tile roof needs repair is the most important part. Once you have identified what needs to be repaired, you can find a service to suit your needs. Should your roof be stained or growing moss, it can be killed by scrubbing the roof clean with chemical solutions like chlorine bleach. A trend that has seen a lot of growth is pressure washing your roof to remove stains. Pressure washers use a combination of high-pressure water, heat, and an optional soap to clean your roof, however, it is recommended that you have a professional roof cleaning service to do this for you as high-pressure water jets are dangerous and can cause bodily harm if not used properly. They can also cause permanent erosion and damage to your roof tiles if used on too high a pressure for too long.

The more difficult repairs come when roof tiles are cracked or have fallen out which leads to large leaks. When a roof tile has cracked enough that it has caused a leak, there is only one real solution – replace the damaged tile. While this may sound simple, it can become a larger job depending on where in the roof tile is. Since roof tiles are designed to interlock with one another and are held in place with mortar, it is often required that several roof tiles around the damaged tile be removed carefully, while breaking and removing the mortar holding the tiles without breaking any other tiles. Once the tile is replaced, mortar is replaced as needed to match the style of the rest of the house. A similar approach is taken when roof tiles become loose or fall out completely.

Tile Roof Maintenance: Have You Inspected Your Roof Lately?

Home ownership brings great joy to many, but with it, comes the dreaded word – home maintenance.  However, home maintenance doesn’t have to be a burden if you set time aside each year to prevent tomorrow’s problems. This means giving equal importance to both the interior and exterior. Take your roof for instance. Roofs get more abuse from the elements than any other part of your home, and preventative maintenance is a key component to providing a longer service life.

Whether it’s a commercial or residential roof, all roofing systems require some sort of maintenance throughout the year. Concrete tile roofs, under normal conditions, require minimal upkeep. Semi-annual inspections should be done to identify and solve problems as they occur.  An ideal time to perform these inspections would be at the end of winter, as well as towards the end of the summer season.

When inspecting your roof and the surrounding areas be sure to:

  • Check downspout exits to ensure they haven’t been crushed or crumpled, which can restrict drainage.
  • Inspect and clear debris from rooftop gutters and header boxes.
  • Remove leaves and debris from the rooftop.
  • Do not try to remove the debris with a hose because that may cause downspouts to clog.
  • Take note on whether the roof appears unusually sunken or if water is ponding anywhere.
  • Clean before visually inspecting the roof for signs of weathering.
  • Check the property surrounding the building for tall trees with dead limbs.
  • Trim trees and bushes away from your home to minimize mold and algae growth.
  • Inside your home, check interior walls and ceilings for water damage.

Cleaning is Necessary

There are many benefits to regular cleaning of your tile roof.  Whether your tiles are composed of clay or concrete, a regular cleaning will prevent the buildup of dirt and debris from affecting the tiles. It will also prevent the growth of moss and mildew. Left unchecked, an excess of unwanted organic matter on your roof will hold and collect moisture which can eventually block your gutters and cause your roofing system to support unnecessary weight.

Unfortunately, for many homeowners it is more beneficial to leave the unsightly moss and algae on the roof. Regular pressure washing can do more harm than good on a tile roof. Along with washing away the dirt, it can also cause pitting and damage to the tiles, making them susceptible to damage and even more moss and algae growth. If the person cleaning your roof isn’t a professional roofer, they may be unfamiliar with the nuances of working with clay or concrete tiles.

Tiles can be sensitive and foot traffic will often cause them to crack. Make sure you have someone up there who knows what they are doing and can fix a problem if it occurs. Aside from the dirt and debris, there may be other issues with your tile roof: faulty underlayment, missing top flashing, and other problems that a professional roofer can identify before they become a serious problem.

Leave it to the Professionals

A well-maintained roof can be essential for the security and safety of those living in your house. A solid roof will keep your house structurally sound, helping prevent damage to the living spaces. This is because without cracks, your roof will stop any water from leaking in, preventing water damage, rot, and mould. Without leaks and moisture, your dry wall will remain intact, your walls will stay clean, and your electrical system will continue to function safely and properly.

A strong, solid roof will also prevent snakes and other pests from entering your home. It is therefore evident that a strong roof is necessary to keep you safe and prevent dangerous hazards from negatively affecting your living condition.

Some people prefer to look for cracks and damage themselves, instead of hiring South Cross Roofing’s professionals. But the wear and tear may not always be as clear and visible as cracks or holes. Our experienced team knows the hidden signs to look for, what to fix, and how to fix it before the issue worsens.

Additionally, professional roofers have experience working on potentially dangerous roofs; they know the right techniques for remaining safe.  Your roof may seem structurally sound, but this may not always be the case. Our roofers can expertly identify weak points to avoid and prevent injury and further damage to the structure – and to yourself.

How To Hire Interior Commercial Painting Contractors

A–Z of painting terms

Painting is the easiest way to transform your home. Knowing the terms associated with painting will help you get the right products and tools to give you professional results. Here’s our A–Z guide for many of the terms you’re likely to come across during your painting projects.

Acrylic

Acrylic paint is a water-based paint that is water resistant.

Adhesion primer

A primer used on hard-to-paint surfaces such as tiles, laminates and glossy finishes.

Architrave

The moulding that goes around windows and doorways to cover the join between the frame and the wall finish.

Arcs

See Architrave.

Bagging

A rough sand and cement finish applied to brick or blockwork.

Binder

An oil based undercoat used to bind powdery or chalky paint.

Blistering

When bubbles form on a finished paint job. Caused by moisture or other contamination of the surface that paint is applied to. It can also be caused by painting over a previous coat before it has dried thoroughly.

Blocking

Occurs when two painted surfaces, such as a door and jamb, come together and stick. More likely to occur when using acrylic paints rather than enamel.

Brush

Brushes come in different sizes and bristle types to suit various tasks. A good quality brush will give you a better finish and be less likely to lose bristles, which will spoil the job.

Brush marks

These are visible lines or ridges left by the bristles of a brush in a dried paint job.

Bulkhead

A box type structure built to hide wiring, pipes and other fittings or to fill the space between the top of your cabinets and the ceiling.

Caulking

Waterproofing the gaps around or between building materials using a flexible filler.

Ceiling white

A paint specifically designed for ceilings. A flat finish helps hide defects and it has a low spatter formula, so it’s less messy when painting overhead.

Cornice

A profiled plaster moulding placed at the junction between the wall and ceiling.

Cut in

Using a brush to paint around the edges of a surface that are too difficult to reach with a roller.

Design paints

Paints with surface effects that go beyond simply adding colour. Suited to feature walls or design elements.

Dipping

A method of painting where an object is dipped in paint rather than having paint applied to it with a brush or roller.

Drop sheet

The cover placed over a surface to prevent paint drops or spatter from landing on it.

Drying time

The time it takes for paint to dry. Touch dry is when paint is dry to touch while recoat time is when paint has hardened sufficiently to be painted over.

Enamel

A paint type that produces a smooth and hard finish. Typically used on trim and woodwork such as windows and doors.

Epoxy enamel

A paint for metal surfaces that does not require a primer. It protects against rust and has a very durable finish.

Etch primer

A primer for very smooth metal that etches the surface while coating it, providing good adhesion for top coats.

Important Factors That Go Into Interior Painting

When you are looking to paint the interior of your home, you should be well prepared for the painting work ahead. There’s just so much to be done that it’s worth having more information on your side to help you get the job done well.

The Dimensions Of The Space Being Painted

It may seem pretty obvious that you should know the dimensions of the space being painted, but it may not be quite so clear why you are meant to know it.

The Color Paint You Want

Another major factor you should take into consideration is the color paint you are going to want to paint. Though this may seem straightforward, the color paint you ultimately choose is a complicated matter and depends on a number of factors including what the purpose of the room is, what kind of furniture you keep in the room, as well as what kind of personality you are going to want the room to have.

The Finish Of The Paint

Paint finish can really make a difference in a painted room, between making the walls have one kind of look to having an entirely different look, even though they may have the exact same color. The finish can range from the absolute flattest to the most glossy, with the glossiest paints having a sort of shine to them and the flat paints having, well, none.

What To Do With The Furniture

Your furniture should ideally not be in the room with you when you are painting it, so if it’s at all possible, you should try to remove the paint from the room entirely.

Starting a Commercial & Industrial Painting Contractors Business

Opening a commercial and industrial painting contractors business is your ticket to owning a good, stable business but it’s important to plan out the business in detail before you start. We offer nuts-and-bolts information that may be key to your ultimate success.

Commercial and Industrial Painting

You may already be familiar with residential painting companies, where project prices range from $2,000 to $5,000. Commercial and industrial painting is a move up the painting contractors food chain, giving access to much larger projects, albeit more complex projects.

Commercial painting projects involve painting things like hospitals, business interiors and business exteriors. Typical pricing for a commercial painting project might be in the $20,000 to $100,000 range. Industrial projects, in contrast, involve painting much larger structures that may have specialized coating needs. This includes structures in the oil and gas industry, as well as giant manufacturing and processing facilities. For industrial painting contractors, contracts can range from $75,000 to $2,000,000 per project.

Location is obviously key for commercial and industrial painting companies. You need to be located in an area that has a lot of paintable structures, such as office complexes, manufacturing companies and the like. Needless to say, you won’t be able to launch a successful commercial/industrial painting business in a rural area that is mostly corn fields.

Creating a First-Rate Commercial & Industrial Painting Contractors Company Business Plan

A business plan isn’t just another startup formality. It’s a core business document that will guide your commercial and industrial painting contractors business’s decisions and activities on a go-forward basis.

PAINTING CONTRACTOR

Topics blogged about below include many Painting Tips and articles from our expert contractors, resources, specials, news and other updates

HOW TO CHOOSE A WOOD STAIN COLOR

If you’re about to hire a painting contractor to stain either your siding, deck, or both, it means you have to make a choice about the stain. Homeowners tend to forget the wood they select is only part of the job; the stain is what really alters and enhances the look.

The stain doesn’t just magnify the beauty of your wood and wood grain, it helps protect the wood surfaces from the elements. That’s why it’s so important to do this every few years or so, depending on the amount of wear and tear that’s endured.

Best Stain for Your Home

Whether you’re reconditioning wood siding and decks or staining on brand new materials, there are decisions to be made. Wood is a beautiful material, but it needs to be preserved with a finish.

It all starts with opacity or transparency. This is from lightly pigmented to complete coverage. Lighter opacity enables the wood grain to still be visible while the darker it gets; wood grain visibility may disappear completely.

Stain colors let the natural color and grain show through, or enhance and complement them by adding more of a hue. The color you select can also help hide blemishes if that’s applicable.

There are pre-mixed colors or you can create your own, much like paint colors.

For better protection, you’ll want to consider the semi-solid or solid end of the transparency spectrum. This is especially true for wood that is older and more vulnerable.

Don’t worry, stain colors are not limited to variances in just the brown family. These days you have exciting choices ranging from traditional to trendy hues like Avocado; reds, blues, greens, nothing is off limits.

Painting

You must have a licence before you do any residential building work in NSW, including painting, valued at more than $5000 (incl GST) in labour and materials. Painting means applying a clear, resin based or pigmented product in liquid form which, when put on a surface by brush, roller or spray gun, forms a dry, adherent film.

Paint may be applied for decorative or protective reasons, and to any appropriate surface on any structure, fixture, fitting or apparatus. In licensing, painting includes:

applying textured coatings by brush, roller or spray gun

preparing and doing minor repairs to (but not renewing or replacing) surfaces before painting them.

Licence types

Painting is Trade Work.

There are different types of licences available in NSW depending on whether you want to contract for another party or supervise work. A contractor licence allows you to contract and advertise to do work. You can only do the types of work described on your licence card. Contractor licences can be issued to individuals and to companies and partnerships.

A qualified supervisor certificate allows you to supervise and do the work described on your certificate. Qualified supervisor certificates are only issued to individuals. A qualified supervisor certificate does not allow you to contract for work.

An endorsed contractor licence is issued to individuals who apply for a contractor licence and who also have the qualifications and experience needed to be a qualified supervisor.