Home Improvement Tips on a Budget

wall paint

Our home is the place we live in, and it’s where we spend most of our time. That’s why it’s essential to make improvements around our home in any way we can. A comfortable and organised home can drastically improve the quality of our life. Many people assume that you’ll need to have a large amount of money to revamp your space. However, there are other ways that you can still make improvements even on a tight budget. Here’s how you can make improvements around your home on a budget.

Bedrooms

To change up the bedrooms, you don’t always have to spend big. There are small improvements that you can start applying right now. These minor improvements can make a huge difference in the overall look of a bedroom. It includes changing the curtains, rug, décor and the bedding. Buying new furniture may be too expensive, so if you have some outdated furniture, there’s always a way to make it work. For example, you can repaint the furniture or simply reorganise them around the room.

kitchen

Kitchen

Improving our kitchen may look like a big job and can be costly too, but it’s not always the case as there are alternatives that won’t break the bank. For instance, instead of shopping for new appliances, why not look for cheaper deals in a second-hand shop, car boot or online platforms like eBay or Gumtree. Changing the colours of your kitchen can transform the whole atmosphere of your kitchen. You can repaint your kitchen cupboards to a different colour to obtain a new look.

Living Room

The living room is an essential area in our home as this is where we spend most of our time in. It’s also a simple room to redecorate. A lighter room will make the space more relaxing and spacious. So if you have a darker wallpaper, it’s time to replace it with a lighter wall to lighten up the room. Adding a framed décor of your chosen art or image can liven up the room.

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Smart Home Improvement Tips

solar panel

Home improvements are essential for any homeowners who wish to improve their space or make their home a little bit more comfortable. If you’re one of the many owners thinking of upgrading your home, we’ve provided some tips below.

Solar power

Electricity is essential for many things in a household, and they can also affect the cost of your bills at the end of the month. So if you’re looking to budget more and make an investment, it’s worth switching to a solar power system. This type of electric power will help produce your electricity from absorbing the heat and energy from the sun. They are perfect during the summertime where you can save on electric.

Garden 

Improving your outdoor space will be useful during summer. You can make use of the garden space for different events such as parties and barbecues. It’s also reasonably affordable to decorate your space by just adding a few garden furniture, ornaments, lights or plants. It will also be ideal to maintain the grass on the garden to prevent overgrowing. Alternatively, you may want to convert the grass into a floor cement to provide more floor space in your outdoor area.

Fresh paint

Changing the colour paint on your wall can make a huge difference in a room. For example, if the place feels dark and cluttered, you may want to consider using a lighter colour like ivory or beige. Or if you simply want a change, why not try a different tone?

Garage

The garage is an extra space that could be turned into another room. They also add value to your property in the long run. Keep in mind. There will be a cost involved when converting a garage into an extra room. If you don’t have the full budget to turn a garage, DIY is a cheaper option. When doing a DIY, it’s important to be careful and cautious to prevent damages and hazards.

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Home Renovations – Illegal tasks to do by yourself

demolition

Although homeowners are allowed to do some renovations on their own, there are still some other jobs that they cannot perform as some jobs are against the law. Apart from the law, there are also many other reasons why you cannot perform a particular job. For instance, the job may require a special training, license or equipment. Some examples include heat replacement, plumbing, water replacement and many others. Ideally, it’s important that homeowners are aware of these to prevent any issues in the future.

Wall Removal

If you’re looking to make more space in your room, don’t think that you can easily use a sledgehammer and start taking down the walls. It’s an extremely dangerous job to do by yourself. You should always contact a professional company who can perform this task for you. Before hiring a professional, an official building permit will be required to whether you can go ahead with the job or not. If you do not have an approved permit, then you won’t be allowed to make the changes.

Lead Paint Removal

For houses that were built before 1980 are most likely to have lead painted on their walls. Lead is extremely toxic, deadly and cannot be handled all by yourself. You will need to hire a professional who is knowledgeable, skilled and licensed to do the job for you.

Heating Replacement

Trying to fix or replace your water heating can be dangerous if not done correctly. It involves a lot of risk factors that can be fatal if handled in the wrong way. We advise that you always hire a professional when it comes to replacing your water heating as professionals are fully trained and licensed in their job.

Replacement of gas/electric stove

Changing your fuel type to gas involves handling gas lines and electrical work which are only allowed to be performed by people who are trained and licensed in this field of work.  

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Choosing the right company for boiler installation and repairs

radiator

Is your gas bill unexpectedly high? If so, it may be a sign that you need to change or repair your boiler. If your boiler is more than 10 years old, or if it becomes defective, it can drive up your gas bills. Having an old boiler is also unsafe. You should look into getting a new boiler installed immediately.

Whether you want to install a new boiler or repair your old one, you should call up an expert for the job. Boiler installation and repair is a very technical job. Qualified gas engineers must pass rigorous training and exams to ensure that they have the sufficient knowledge and know all the legal safety requirements.

We recently spoke with Andrew, a qualified Gas Safe engineer at Gasteam, a boiler installation & repairs company in Milton Keynes; he helped us to compile this list of important things to consider when choosing a company to service your boiler.

Know the legal requirements

There are legal requirements for installing a boiler in the UK. First of all, if you want to install a new boiler, you require approval from Building Regulations to ensure you comply with energy efficiency regulations and safety laws. Second, you must hire a qualified installer and they must be registered under an approved scheme, ‘gas safe’ for gas boilers and ‘competent person scheme’ for oil and solid fuel fired boilers. This membership ensures that the installer is qualified and his works need not be checked by the local building inspectors. After the completion of work the installer must give you a commissioning certificate and inform the local governments building control department or competent person scheme as appropriate. You will then be issued with a building regulations completion certificate.

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Renovate or Rebuild?

renovation

For many homeowners who want to start fresh, they either have the option to renovate or rebuild their house. It can be a tricky decision to make as there are many risks and factors involved in the process. So before you make a decision, it’s ideal to weigh your options and see which will work out better for you regarding your financial situation and other factors. To help you, we’ve gathered some factors below that can affect your decision.

Costs

The first step is to check your budget and see if it’s aligned more with renovation or rebuilding. Keep in mind that renovation is much cheaper to start with, however, if your house needs further renovating or if any issues arise, you may end up spending more in the end.

Decide if your house needs a lot of work or less work and see which option will be more cost-effective. For example, if your home doesn’t require much work, you will be better off with renovating.

Location

For homeowners who are more in favour of rebuilding their house must check if their area is located in a prime location. As rebuilding in popular areas will more likely increase your property value in the long run.

Condition

What is the condition of your house? If your house needs a lot of work internally and externally then your best option would be to rebuild it from scratch. Otherwise, if you are only looking to improve a particular area in your house, then renovation is an obvious option.

Age

What’s the age of your house? Is it relatively new or do you have an older home? For houses who are pretty old, a renovation would still be ideal especially if you want to keep the old features. Some old houses are built with high-quality materials.

However, if your old house is falling apart, then it would be ideal for your to rebuild and start a new.  

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Are Column Radiators Ideal For Your Property?

Radiators are an important selling point in most homes, primarily because they provide an important function in any room by providing a source of heat, but also because they can look extremely attractive when done right. There are a few considerations when choosing a style, but column radiators tend to work well in almost all situations.

Vertical column radiators are taller than they are wide, so they only have a few columns but each one is extended. These are ideal for narrow wall spaces, and can even be fitted with full-length mirrors to make twice as much use of the available space. Alternatively, horizontal column radiators have a greater number of connected columns to make them short and wide overall. These are more suitable if you want to place them under a window or other fittings higher on the wall.

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How to Go About When Rebuilding and Redecorating After Flooding

Flood can wreck havoc in your home. After it’s over, it’s natural that you will need to embark on a significant cleanup exercise. Rebuilding and redecorating after flooding is never an easy task as it entails many factors and steps, some of which are complicated.

But before you commence the cleanup, it’s of paramount importance that you find out if it’s indeed safe to move back to your property. You can talk with your local council or insurance company for advice on whether or not it’s safe to return to the property. Also, you can get in touch with your insurers to find out if they can help organise cleaners who will clean up the home.

You should also check your electrical connections just to ensure that the power has been switched off from the mains. If you are standing in a pool of floodwater, of course you shouldn’t touch a source of electricity. If any of your electrical appliances have come into contact with water, you should ask a qualified electrical technician to check them and see if they can be used safely or not.

Your safety should be your major concern when cleaning up after floods. To guarantee this, you can wear protective clothing. In some instances, the flood water may be contaminated with chemicals and human wastes among others. This makes it essential that you disinfect anything that it comes into contact with. Also, ensure that any wound you have is covered so as to protect you from potential infections.

Although it’s important to get moving as soon as possible with your decorating and building work, your health ranks supreme when rebuilding and redecorating after flooding. You will most likely come into contact with raw sewage, chemicals and a wide range of other wastes, so if you get sick, it’s highly advisable that you talk with your doctor. Any contaminated clothing will need to be washed at hot temperatures.

You can start removing the water from the inside of your premises when the water level outside is lower than inside the rooms. You can use a generator or a pump to complete this task, although in most cases this should all be dealt with by the council or your insurers. You can then wipe the surfaces clean before applying a disinfectant. Turn on the central heating unit and open the doors and windows for free flow of air. This can reduce the drying time, therefore allowing for the commencement of decorative works. You can do your decorative work after the rooms have been certified to be dry.

You can seek help from professional painters and decorators who can deliver to your expectations, and it will almost certainly be necessary to draft in some extra help since a flood will have probably left damage to a bigger area than you would ever take on yourself in normal circumstances. Again there may be help available for this depending on your insurance and how much your local council and charities are able to get involved.

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Renovate Your Kitchen For Under £200

Even if you don’t have the money to completely upgrade your kitchen, £200 is enough to give your kitchen a new, modern look. It is not necessary to change all the kitchen equipment; just a new coat of paint along with some minor changes is enough to breathe new life into your kitchen. You can do the following things to renovate your kitchen:

1. IMPROVE THE HARDWARE: Even if you can’t afford to change the entire kitchen cabinets, at least change the knobs and the handles. They can be purchased online and you can fit them yourself with the help of an electric drill.

2. PAINT YOUR CABINETS: A new coat of paint on the cabinets can do wonders to your kitchen. It can completely transform the look and you don’t even have to spend much. A light coloured paint is preferable on the kitchen cabinets.

3. PAINT THE WALLS OF YOUR KITCHEN: Since there is a lot of movement involved in the kitchen, there might be lots of marks on the walls. Hence, it will be better to go for a deep colour; a deep blue will be great if you’re going for something bold.

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Choosing The Right Contractor

If you’ve made it as far as deciding what to do with your home, then that’s great progress! Sometimes it’s hard to choose whether to keep your home as it is and make the best of it, sell it and look elsewhere, do some building work to improve it or even tear it down entirely and start all over again. If you’ve chosen one of the latter options, you’re going to need to select a contractor or building firm to work with on your home, which may be easier said than done. To get you started, here are just some of the top building firms in the UK from our own experience:

Square Foot Solutions, a London building company specialising in property renovation and refurbishment

Acorn Scaffolding for professional scaffolding hire in Somerset, Taunton, and Bridgwater

CJ Fullwood from Derbyshire, who specialise in conservatory conversions

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A New Generation Of Renovations

It’s been a major talking point for decades now, but the decision that weighs on many people’s minds when considering renovations to their home is a simple one: is it going to be worth the cost and effort? Adding an extension of some form to your home tends to be massive project to take on, and it can be difficult having major work going on while trying to get on with your family life, not to mention working. That’s why conversions and extensions aren’t really dealt with in the same way now as there were a few years ago, and we’re seeing new trends emerge when it comes to high-end building work.

So what are the benefits of having work done on your property? Well, firstly you’re likely to be adding value to your home. If, for example, you decided to undergo a loft conversion on your house, you can create an entire additional floor on a small plot of land, adding tens of thousands to the value of your property. This is especially beneficial if you live in London or another highly sought after location, where the same level of investment in building work is going to result in a higher proportionate increase in your property’s overall market value. Aside from this, you also have the obvious up-side of your home being tailored to your exact requirements, and your quality of life can be improved with the additional space and facilities created by an extension or conversion. If you’re in need of fresh ideas, try visiting home improvement pages in Pinterest or design portfolios on corporate websites, a loft conversion and extension company in London.

Turning wasted space into storage, bedrooms, bathrooms, entertaining areas or whatever else you desire can be an excellent way to get more out of your home for you and your family. However, some years ago when this fashion was just catching on, things tended to be done a certain way. If you were having a conversion done on your attic you would probably have a basic off-the-shelf solution that pretty much looked like an advert for traditional Velux windows. Due to the expense involved people tended to focus on getting the job done and worrying about what the space looked like later. It’s also tempting not to mess with your roof or existing rooms too much, although this can be quite limiting in terms of design.

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