How to Transform Your Guest Bedroom

You hope to impress your guests when they decide to visit your house. If family members are arriving, you only want the best for them. If it’s their turn to host you, they will most likely do the same. Here are some tips to prepare the guest bedroom before their arrival.

Use the most comfortable bed

Don’t offer your guest old and saggy mattresses. They deserve only the best. Instead, take out a quality mattress or buy one if your bedroom doesn’t have any. They will only be there for a few days, and you want them to have the best experience.

Upgrade your bedding and linens

Check the sheets in your closet. Not all of them are useful. Buy new covers if necessary. Again, comfort must be a priority, and these sheets provide such benefits. Make sure they’re of top quality. You may also keep extra linens on a shelf if your guests want to replace the used items.

Improve the guest bathroom

If the guest room has a separate bathroom, you must also elevate its appearance. Install a shower cabin for a more comfortable bath. You want your guests to have privacy while they bathe. Buy new accessories to spruce up its appearance.

Make sure there’s a home office

Your guests might also need to work during some days. Make sure you have a table and chair for them to work on. Check if the internet works well in the guest room. Write a note that contains the password for easy access.

Include a mirror

If the guest room doesn’t have a mirror yet, you should buy one. It helps create an illusion of space and make the room seem larger than it is. Your guests will also use the mirror. They want to look great before leaving the bedroom.

Clean the closet

Clear your closet and take everything you no longer need. Useful items must be in a temporary storage location while your guests are around. Give them space to keep their clothes, especially if they will be with you for the next several days.

Repaint the bedroom

You can give the bedroom a new look by repainting the walls. Choose neutral colours since your guests might have different preferences. If you decide to repaint, make sure you do it several weeks before their arrival. You don’t want the room to smell like paint and suffocate your guests.

Repair the damages

If the bedroom has damages that need immediate attention, you must ask someone to come over. You don’t want injuries at your house because of these repair issues. You’re also responsible for the health and safety of the guests while they’re around.

Brighten the room

Replace the curtains and use something brighter. You intentionally used dark tones when no one was using the guest room. However, since someone will be there, the area must be sunny and relaxing.

With these improvements, you will feel proud about welcoming your guests to come over. They will also be grateful for your kindness and hospitality.

Top Ways to Look After Your Home This Spring

Throughout the course of the winter months, your home can take a bit of a hit when it comes to maintenance. Depending on where you live, it may not be possible as a result of the weather for you to take care of all the tasks that you would have liked. If this is the case, it is important to waste no time in getting things back up to a good standard as soon as the weather begins to warm.

Springtime is one of the best times to get a handle on all of the home maintenance jobs that slipped through the cracks during winter for this very reason. The weather is warmer and generally less wet, and the days tend to be longer as well. This will provide you with more natural light in the day for you to take care of your home’s exteriors and any issues with your yard.

With so many things on your to-do list, though, you might not know just what to prioritize as soon as spring has sprung. Here are some of the best ways in which you can look after your home once winter begins to thaw.

Have the Roof Inspected

One of the most crucial things that you can do for your home at the start of spring is to have your roof inspected. This is because the wet and often freezing conditions of winter can cause some serious damage to the integrity of your roof.

If left unchecked, damage to your roof can result in internal water damage and even a critter infestation. You will want to have some Michigan roofing experts on-site in order to thoroughly inspect your roof and make any minor repairs right away before they develop into bigger issues.

Clean the Gutters

Another way in which you might end up with serious water damage within your home can be the result of gutters that haven’t been cleaned in a while. Throughout the winter months, leaves, dirt, and debris can all collect in your home’s gutters and result in pooling water either on your roof or at the base of your home.

In order to avoid serious issues with water damage, take the time to clean out your gutters as soon as the winter snows have melted. You can either do this yourself in the afternoon or have a professional come and take care of it for you.

Seed the Lawn

Nothing says spring quite like a full, green lawn. However, this isn’t something that will simply occur overnight. Once the weather warms enough, you should spend a day seeding your lawn and getting everything in top shape for spring.

Not only does a fuller lawn simply look better, but it can also help you to avoid problems with drainage as well as shifting earth in your yard. You might need to aerate the ground first, but in the end, you will end up with a healthy, bright lawn that is ready for spring.

 

Is Hiring a Foundation Repair Contractor Covered by Homeowners Insurance?

If you have recently discovered that you need to hire a foundation repair contractor in Baton Rouge for your home, then you might be wondering if it’s covered by homeowners insurance and if it is, what exactly is covered. It’s important to look into your homeowner’s insurance to see what exactly is included. You might be surprised at what specific things are not handled by homeowners’ insurance.

Look into what is commonly thought to be covered, but actually isn’t. Either way, homeowner’s insurance is important and you should look deep into what is covered and what you have to pay out of pocket. Let’s go over what exactly is covered by homeowners insurance and if foundation repairs are included.

What Foundation Repairs Are Covered By Homeowners Insurance?

First off, your homeowner’s policy might be different from what’s listed here, but this is a basic list of what is usually included. Remember to always contact your policy plan agent to see what exactly they pay for and what you’re responsible for. This should get you started on what to expect. You will usually find the foundation coverage under the “dwelling” portion of your policy.

Typically, homeowners insurance includes usual disasters and issues that may cause damage to your home. These disasters are specific and this is what your insurance policy defines. For example, your insurance policy won’t necessarily cover just “water damage” but instead it will cover “water damage caused by plumbing or HVAC.” These specifics are important to pay attention to when looking at your policy.

Here’s a list of damage that your homeowner’s insurance policy will most likely cover :

  • Lightning or fire
  • Explosions
  • Damage caused by vehicles
  • Collapse due to weight of snow, ice, rain, or sleet
  • Riots or civil disturbances
  • Windstorms
  • Fallen trees
  • Water damage from plumbing or HVAC
  • Vandalism
  • Damage caused by aircrafts

This is a list of damages caused by certain events that should be handled by your homeowner’s insurance policy. Remember to always double-check or set up a meeting with your insurance provider to make sure.

What Foundation Repairs Are Not Covered By Homeowners Insurance?

Typically, homeowners insurance won’t cover certain damage caused by specific events. One of these is normal wear and tear to your home. Sometimes people assume that the “easier repairs” such as normal deterioration or something that happens gradually over time, but unfortunately that is actually not covered by most homeowners insurance providers. The most common foundation issues are, unfortunately, not covered by homeowners insurance.

Here is a list of damage that your homeowner’s insurance typically will not pay for:

  • Natural settling, shrinking, building, expanding, or cracking of the foundation
  • Wear and tear, marring, or deterioration
  • Earthquakes
  • Flooding
  • Tree root pressure
  • Sinkholes
  • Rodents, insects, and vermin
  • Faulty design or construction

These are typically not paid for by an insurance company. Of course, again, always contact your insurance agent to see what exactly is written into your custom policy. Also, be sure to be accurate with what caused the damage to your home, because you may think that it is one of these, but it might’ve been something else entirely that is included.

How Do You Know What Your Homeowners Insurance Covers?

To find out what is covered by your homeowner’s insurance you can contact their office and ask or you can double-check your insurance policy by reading it yourself and it will give you all the information you’re looking for. It’s also important that when you get your homeowner’s insurance policy that you look in-depth at what is written in. This will help save you later on.

It’s important to note that typically when you get the homeowners insurance that they allow for add ons. These add ons can consist of some of the instances that we mentioned above that are not typically covered. It might be a smart decision to get certain add ons for the insurance policy if you live in areas where the damage might be common.

For example, if you live in an area where earthquakes are quite common or you are worried about the damage done from recurring shaking and shifting, then you should maybe consider adding that to your policy. This will help give you peace of mind when it comes to natural disasters and the unforeseen damage done by them.

What Can You Do If You’re Not Covered By Homeowners Insurance?

If you aren’t covered by homeowners insurance then you might be very disappointed and probably quite stressed. However, it’s important that you still contact the homeowner’s insurance company just to be sure. Remember that when filing a claim with your insurance agency that you need to truly find the root of your problem.

For example, you might have flooding that has damaged your home and if you file the claim just under “flooding” then you will not be covered. But, if you look more into it and find out that a fallen tree is actually what busted a pipe and caused flooding, then you can have the service paid for, likely after investing a small amount to pay the deductible. Always find out what exactly caused the damage to find out if you are covered. If you still are denied your claim and you feel that the damage should be covered, then you can file a dispute.

Let a Foundation Repair Contractor in Baton Rouge Assist You with Your Homeowner’s Insurance Claim Today!

Homeowners insurance is very important and is required, so it’s important to know exactly what is covered by it. Foundation repairs are covered by insurance policies, but it is very situation-specific. Homeowners insurance unfortunately doesn’t cover a lot of very common damages done to the home, but rather covers specific cases of damage. Always look into your policy to see exactly what has been included for you. You shouldn’t stress about hiring a foundation repair contractor to fix your foundation issues, either. A reputable one will help walk you through your insurance policy and even file a claim on your behalf.

Also, note that foundation issues are very important and so they need to be repaired as soon as possible so that it does not cause any extensive damage that may be harder to repair. There are other options on how to pay for getting damages fixed that you’re not covered by. You should keep up with maintenance and inspections on your home’s foundation to ensure that you are up to date and it will save you money and time when it comes to foundation repairs.

 

The Durability of Stamped Concrete (Contractors Explain)

Concrete, by definition, is very durable, but can still crack or chip over time. This article explains the durability of stamped concrete and offers tips to increase its lifespan and improve its appearance. Find out what factors affect the lifespan of stamped concrete and how to care for it so it lasts as long as possible!

The following information is provided by our stamped concrete contractors Chicago. Trusted professionals in the field. Interested in learning more? Check out our company’s website or call Chicago Stamped Concrete Pros.

How Long Does Stamped Concrete Last?

Although it’s not as permanent as other paving options, stamped concrete is one of the most durable options you can choose for your next outdoor renovation project. Not only does it look great, but its low-maintenance nature makes it perfect for families with pets or anyone who wants to spend less time maintaining their home and more time enjoying it.

When it comes to outdoor renovations, you want your investment to last as long as possible. Thankfully, stamped concrete is one of the most durable types of paving materials available today. Not only is it low-maintenance and easy to clean, but its beautiful appearance means you can enjoy your home without worrying about keeping up with frequent repairs or replacements. When choosing stamped concrete for your next project, you’ll want to use professional services that will ensure that your new driveway or patio will stay strong for years to come.

In fact, you’ll want to choose a team that has plenty of experience in creating stamped concrete surfaces, because they know how to make them last. With a combination of experience and expertise in outdoor remodeling, you can trust that your stamped concrete will last for years without losing its appearance or strength. On top of that, a stamping company can also help with other exterior features such as flower beds and edging.

Does Stamped Concrete Crack Easily?

Stamped concrete is often thought to be brittle, or easily broken. However, many contractors know that stamped concrete requires very little upkeep and can last for decades if cared for properly. Here are some tips on how to make your stamped concrete last as long as possible!

  • For one, you must use a high-quality material that doesn’t crack easily. A cracked or weak foundation will cause further cracks and damage on top of it! Also, pay attention to how you clean and maintain your stamped concrete! Ensure a solid foundation because it’s especially important for patios or other cement areas subject to pressure from above.
  • Make sure your stamped concrete was properly cured and dried after installation; you can’t rush things in construction! After your material is installed, give it time to dry fully before using. Your concrete is most vulnerable when it’s new, so remember: Avoid stepping on wet concrete if possible! If you accidentally do, try to wash off any oil-based substances as soon as possible before they harden and damage your freshly laid concrete slab.

According to Home Advisor the average cost for stamped concrete is between $2,706 to $6,234. With an investment like that, you’ll want to make sure it’s properly installed and maintained to avoid cracks. Your contractor can help you with your stamped concrete project by answering any questions you have, so don’t be afraid to ask! They will also explain what kind of care your new patio or sidewalk needs in order to keep looking good for years to come.

Stamped Concrete Maintenance: What to Expect

Many people think stamped concrete is expensive and hard to maintain, but it’s really not. A properly installed and maintained stamped concrete driveway, patio or walkway can last for more than 20 years with minimal care. While that may surprise some homeowners, it’s no secret among contractors who work with stamped concrete every day.

If you’re thinking about getting stamped concrete installed, consider asking your contractor how to keep it looking good for years to come. Many contractors offer free maintenance tips; others might offer special promotions if you sign up for their service plan. Either way, they should be able to help you understand what needs to be done and why. Remember that like all surfaces, not all stamps are created equal; if possible, look at samples of different patterns before deciding on a pattern that will last for years without fading or flaking.

The key to keeping your stamped concrete looking great is keeping it clean. Sweep or power wash it at least once a week, and use a mild detergent when you mop. Avoid bleaches, harsh cleaners and anything with too much chlorine. If you have large stains or spills on your walkway or patio, call in a professional. To keep it looking sharp over time, use an acid-based sealer every few years to replenish shine and color.

What are the Disadvantages of Stamped Concrete?

Most people choose stamped concrete for its durability and low cost compared to other flooring options. However, there are some disadvantages that go along with it as well. It’s porous, so any liquids absorbed into it may leave marks or damage your floors over time. Also, unless you seal your floors, stains will be harder to remove than on sealed surfaces. You’ll need to keep an eye out for cracks which can cause even more problems down the road.

On a more positive note, sealed stamped concrete is hard to stain or damage with liquids. You can easily clean it with soap and water, though you may need a small amount of mildew remover from time to time. In addition, your floors will be easy to maintain if you seal them properly. The easiest way to do that is by spraying a clear sealer on top before applying a regular coat of paint or varnish—just make sure to let it dry fully before moving furniture back onto it.

Sealing your floors isn’t always necessary, but you should definitely do it if you plan to use them as a regular entryway. It can be tough to remove stains from concrete floors, and having them covered with paint will make it easier to wipe up anything that happens to spill on them. You may also want to seal and varnish over your floor if you live in an area with high humidity or strong rain.

 

How to Keep Enjoying Your Home

Making your home a wonderful place to live is just as important as adding value, curb appeal, and having your neighbors swoon with jealousy. In recent times, it would seem that a lot of online chatter and reading and advice are primarily about how to increase value in your home. Yes, this is important, but for those who have no immediate need or intention to sell, it is more important to improve livability and the enjoyment value of the home for its current occupants. The improvements below are those that will serve to make your home a better place to live.

Fencing and security

Regardless of where you live, a good fence will offer both privacy and security. Being able to spend time in the garden with family in private or keeping pets safe from street traffic are just two of the positive aspects of a good fence or hedge. If there is an existing fence, then simply have professional fence repair to leave it in a condition that says you care and improves both privacy and security. Being able to be in the backyard and feel safe with friends or family is one of the main benefits of suburban living, and a great fence will allow for this.

Lawned areas

If you have a garden space with a lawn, ensure that it is indeed lawn and not simply a collection of various grasses (unless you’re actually going for a wild meadow look). Lawns must also be well-manicured and require frequent cutting in the growing season. The flat usable spaces such as this add a lifestyle component to the garden and will serve to increase the amount of time you can spend together as a family. The outdoor time is beneficial for your health, and a well-kept lawn will get you out there. Having a vegetable garden or a few fruit trees would be the cherry on top.

Paving and driveways

The hard landscaping areas of the exterior of your home are a straightforward way to add value and panache to the entrance of your home. More importantly, a professionally reworked and renovated driveway and paving will make coming home a pleasure, clearing snow easier in winter, and should fit in with the overall look of the home. Often the existing drive and paving simply need a serious clean and may not actually need replacing.

The porch

The general preference of backyards over front porches has arguably led to a general reduction in community spirit and neighborliness. While time in the backyard is great, a welcoming and well-maintained front porch with seats and perhaps some cover from the prevailing wind makes for a fantastic way to bring back a bit of befriending and interaction with neighbors. The front porch is back as a design feature, and we should be using it as a way to create community spirit and friendliness.

The tips mentioned in this article are all quite simple to implement and will all go a long way to allow you to enjoy where you live a little more.

 

4 Ways to Increase Your Property’s Value

It’s always great to make some updates to your home, but some projects will be more worthwhile than others. Not only can larger home improvement projects create a more comfortable living space for you, but they could also add value to your property, helping you to make a sizeable project when and if you did choose to sell your home. If you would like to make your property more valuable, here are 4 ways you can do it.

Fix or Replace the Roof

Out of sight, out of mind – this is usually why your roof gets neglected. However, you must keep your roof in good shape, as it is a major structural element to any property. Damaged shingles or gaps in your roof can lead to leaks, mold, dampness, and even allow pests to come in and nest. If you have noticed that your roof is damaged or you believe it is worn out and could use replacing, this is a project worth investing in. Always contact a professional roofing company such as this one that works on commercial and domestic gable roof repair so you can have peace of mind the work is completed properly.

Extend the Property

Another way to make your property more valuable is by making it a bigger living space. Extensions can be costly but if you have enough space on your land to do this, it could be worthwhile. Whether you want to make a kitchen bigger, add a bathroom suite, an extra bedroom, or a home office, there are a lot of options you can choose from when it comes to extending your property. Just make sure that you have the right permits in place before you break ground on this project.

Attic Conversion

If you don’t want to extend your property but would still like to add a room to your home, an attic conversion might be the better choice for you. Usually, these areas of the home are used for storage, but if your attic is bare or you don’t use all of it for this purpose, then converting it into a guest bedroom, study, or even a bathroom could be an excellent way to add value to your home. You could also consider converting your basement into a useable room if this is preferable.

Remodel the Garden

Gardens are very desirable features in homes, and if you want to sell your property for a profit, you should make the effort with your outdoor spaces. While gorgeous and vibrant landscaped gardens are breathtaking, you can still opt for simpler designs that are just as effective if you’re not a keen gardener. If you think your garden could use some attention, this is a project worth investing in.

When it comes to making home improvements, it’s worth saving up to invest in larger projects that will increase your property’s value. Updating the décor is always a great way to introduce quick changes when you need it, but larger projects like the ones listed above will be a more lucrative investment and create a better living environment for you, too.

 

The Top 3 Methods for Effective Basement Waterproofing

Are you looking for an efficient way to waterproof your basement? Do you have leaks that show up occasionally? Standing water in your basement can be a really frustrating problem to deal with. If you’re looking for a home improvement project you can mostly handle on your own, waterproofing your basement is a great option.

Basement waterproofing in Indianapolis doesn’t have to be expensive. There are many options out there and you will still keep your wallet in one piece with most of them. A lot of these solutions are also very friendly to those who love DIY projects. These solutions will also help improve the overall value of your home.

1. Waterproofing The Outside Of The Basement

Waterproofing the outside of your basement can be done in a variety of ways. The way you choose depends on any particularly problematic spots surrounding the area around your basement. These options will vary in cost but are financially better than trying to drain an already flooded basement. It will also help with protecting the structural integrity of the walls.

The most popular method of exterior waterproofing is a waterproof epoxy that covers the outside of the wall. This epoxy will prevent any water or moisture from seeping through into the walls of your basement. Most epoxies are designed to be flexible, in order to prevent cracking when your basement walls expand and contract.

This method will likely need to be done during construction, as it would require excavation in order to apply it later down the line. The epoxy also cannot be applied to already painted walls or walls with white mineral deposits on them. Unless you have a lot of time on your hands, this method may not be best for a DIY project.

Another method you can use is to slope the ground around the basement. This will allow better flow away from the walls and help prevent leaks from building up. You should also keep shrubs and other plants away from the walls so that the water they collect will not seep into the walls. Digging little trenches down the slopes will also help in this regard.

2. Waterproofing The Inside Of Your Basement

Waterproofing the inside of your basement is a more available solution to the average DIYer. Some of these methods will be similar to a few of the exterior waterproofing methods. Overall waterproofing the inside of your basement will be more affordable than trying to waterproof the outside.

According to the Bob Vila website, interior sealants can cost between $3 to $9 per square foot. You can find these types of sealants at your local hardware stores or supercenters. You can also find many great options from your favorite online retailers.

One great type of sealant option is a waterproof concrete sealant. This type of sealant is very similar to cement and is extremely thick. It will become permanent when dry, so be careful where you apply it. This sealant can not be applied over paint so you may have to strip your walls first.

Another indoor sealant option is a silicate sealant. These are designed to penetrate the walls and mix with the chemicals in concrete to create a permanent seal. These also cannot be applied to walls that are already painted. However, some sealants of this kind can be painted over once dried, so make sure you pay attention to which type you buy before you begin your project.

Waterproof paint is also an easy DIY application. These acrylic formulas are very similar to normal paint and can also be applied over existing paint on your walls. Just be aware that this type of paint will need to be applied with a thicker coat than you might be used to. This method also covers fewer square feet than other options like silicate sealants.

Although these methods are cheaper for DIY, they shouldn’t be heavily relied on. They will assist in protecting the structure, but over time they will degrade. You may have to repeat this step several times over the course of owning your home. It’s more of a preventative step than a final solution to your waterproofing efforts.

3. Sump Pumps And Other Drain Options

A very reliable way of keeping water out is a sump pump. Sump pump systems pump the water out from low points in your basement and move the water outside. Effective setups can also use trenches around the interior walls to help keep water out.

One way you can aid a sump pump in doing a proper job is by putting plastic sheeting on the walls. The plastic sheeting will help keep any water leakage closer to the wall, causing it to trickle down to the trenches you’ve already built. From there, the water will be gradually pumped out.

It’s recommended that you have a drain installed as well. This way, the water has a place to go while the sump pump does its job. The drains will also help in keeping water off the floor, protecting any furniture or other valuables you might have in your basement.

The best time to get the drains installed is during the installation of the sump pump both for ease and cost purposes. It’s cheaper to get it all done at once instead of trying to do this step later on down the line.

Just be aware that sump pumps, while extremely effective, are also the most expensive waterproofing method. They can run between $5,000 to $20,000 depending on your contractor and the materials used. To keep overall costs as low as possible, it’s best to apply any indoor sealant at the same time you’re having your sump pump installed.

Final Thoughts

As you can see, there are various ways you can go about waterproofing a basement. For those who DIY, you easily have plenty of options. From sealants to yard modifications, there are plenty of options you’ll be able to handle all on your own. If a project becomes too overwhelming there are also a wide variety of professionals ready to step in and take over where you left off.

From something as simple as painting to something more complicated like sump pumps, there’s plenty you can do for your basement. With any of these methods, you’ll still be able to keep your furniture dry and your basement free of water damage. Using some of these options in tandem offers even more protection, ensuring you’re one happy homeowner after it’s all finished.

How to Hire the Best Shreveport Foundation Repair Specialists | Homeowner’s Guide

Your home’s foundation is literally holding your house up. So it’s important that any problems with the foundation are taken care of right away by a professional contractor who specializes in this type of work. Neglecting your home’s foundation can lead to an increasing number of problems, including severe structural damage, plumbing issues, and even pest infestation. The longer foundation problems linger, the worse they become, and the more expensive repairs will cost.

This all means that you don’t want to trust your home’s foundation repair to just anyone. There are a lot of shady contractors out there who are happy to take your money and don’t care about your house. The following is a list of questions put together by the authorities in foundation repair from Shreveport Foundation Repair Specialists to ask when hiring a foundation repair specialist.

What Kind Of Guarantee/Warranty Do They Offer?

Any foundation repair work should come with a guarantee and warranty. If your home’s foundation crumbles two months after it was repaired, you shouldn’t be on the hook for paying for more repair work. Ask the contractor what kind of guarantee they offer. A good warranty will cover both materials and labor. Make sure you know the specifics of the guarantee/warranty before signing a repair contract.

Are They Licensed and Insured?

The state of Louisiana does not have a specific license for foundation repair. However, anyone working on your home’s foundation should be licensed with the Louisiana State Board of Contractors. And while not required, the company you hire to do your foundation work should also have a structural engineer on staff or one they contract with. Depending on how damaged your foundation is, a structural engineer may be needed to ensure repairs are done correctly.

Your contractor must also have general liability insurance. This will protect you from many claims that can arise from having work done on your house. They must have builder’s risk insurance (also known as course of construction insurance). It will protect the property under construction, in addition to materials, supplies, and equipment.

Finally, the state of Louisiana requires a license bond. Basically, the bond ensures contractors comply with local and state laws and building codes. A license bond is required in most municipalities to obtain a building permit.

What’s In Your Repair Contract?

Read over the repair contract carefully before signing it or handing over any money. One of the most essential parts of the agreement is securing the required permits. Most jurisdictions require by law a structural permit for any work on a house’s foundation because the engineering is critical to the home’s safety.

A big reason why some contractors are reluctant to get permits is that they’re unable to repair your foundation using sound engineering standards. If the contract doesn’t say anything about permits, or that permits are optional, it’s probably a good idea to look for a new contractor.

There are a lot of risks associated with not filing for a structural permit for foundation repair work. These risks include everything from the safety and integrity of the foundation to having to disclose unpermitted work to potential buyers.

Also, the contract should lay out the payment schedule. Depending on the estimated cost of the repair, it’s not unusual to make a deposit before work begins, with the balance due once repairs are completed. Be wary of any contractor requiring full payment upfront.

The contract must also include a lien waiver. This means if the person doing your foundation repair work doesn’t pay their suppliers and any subcontractors, those suppliers and subcontractors cannot file a lien against your property to force payment. Lien waivers are often overlooked, but having one will ensure you’re not on the hook for your contractor’s financial mismanagement.

Finally, who is going to pay for any repairs to the house’s siding or other structures if damaged during the course of the foundation repair? If it’s not in the contract that the contractor is responsible for those costs, then that’s a red flag. Legitimate foundation repair contractors who care about their professional reputation will cover those costs should an accident happen.

Check Customer Reviews And Ask For References

Anyone can put up a website and use slick marketing materials for advertising their business. But this doesn’t guarantee the contractor will do quality work. This means you want to read as many customer reviews as you can about the contractor. You can find reviews on their Facebook business page, Yelp, Google My Business Results, and so forth. Don’t always rely on reviews the contractor publishes on their website since these can be easily faked.

Further, it’s important to ask for references. These will be former customers that can give you their experience working with the contractor. It’s a good idea to ask your references the following questions:

  • Did the contractor complete the foundation repair job on time?
  • Was the project completed on budget?
  • Would you recommend this contractor to friends/family? Why or why not?
  • Were there any surprises?
  • Did you have any problems while working with this contractor?

This is your chance to find out what it’s like working with the foundation repair contractor before signing a contract or handing over any money.

Take Your Time Finding The Right Contractor

Finally, it’s okay to get price quotes from several foundation repair contractors. Just don’t forget that cheaper isn’t always better, especially when it comes to the structural integrity of your house. And don’t let a contractor try to rush you into hiring them to repair your foundation. Trust your instincts. If something seems off about a contractor, they’re probably not someone you want to hire.

5 Innovative Ideas For Your Spare Room

Whether you live in a house or an apartment, space is a valuable asset. So if you have a spare room in your home, make sure you make the most of it. Allowing an unused bedroom to gather dust is wasteful, especially when you can easily transform it into a practical space to enjoy. Here are a few innovative ideas to help you revamp your spare bedroom.

Do it Up and Rent it Out

A lot of people deck their spare bedroom out in basic furniture and use it to host visiting friends and family, which is a great use of a room if you actually host visitors on the regular. If you don’t, then this is an incredible waste of space. Luckily, with simply a bed in the room, you can earn an extra income and rent it out. This is ideal for people living in a populated area where a room is hot property. If you decide to go down this route of offering a room for rent, it is a good idea to refresh the décor and furnish the room with a wardrobe and a desk. These small touches can help increase the value of your room. However, you would also benefit from reaching out to services that can help get your room noticed by potential tenants.

Turn it Into a Pet Palace

A faithful pet offers unconditional love, and they are there for you through thick and thin. There is a special connection between a pet and its owner. In fact, studies suggest that over 90 percent of pet owners regard their dogs and cats as part of the family. If you share this sentiment, then it is only right to dedicate your spare room to your fur-baby. Create a pet palace by filling the room with plump cushions, cozy blankets, and their favorite toys. Give it a cute, personal twist by adding a fun dog house or an elaborate scratching post. Don’t forget to add a water bowl so that they can stay hydrated while you sleep in the next room.

Use it to Zen Out

Everyone needs a little R and R sometimes, and a dedicated chill-out area can help you zen out. Create a relaxation retreat by emptying the room of clutter, painting the walls a mellow tone, and adding comfortable furniture. Scented candles, or an essential oil diffuser, can help make the room feel extra chill. This space can be used for any activity that calms you, such as reading, meditation, or yoga practice.

Convert it Into a Home Workout Studio

If you prefer hitting the gym to practicing yoga poses, then transform your spare space into a home workout studio instead. Portable fitness equipment, such as kettlebells, dumbbells, and exercise balls, are a great addition, while a suspension training system will enable you to work out your entire body. Suspension trainers take up very little room and can help you achieve an effective workout. Make sure you have padding to protect your floor if you decide to install heavy-duty equipment.

Walk-In Closet

A walk-in closet is the best use of a spare room if you are an avid fashionista. The use of a walk-in can stop your closet from overflowing, which can help keep your bedroom tidy and clothes off the floor. This leaves your bedroom just for sleeping, which for some people is the ultimate idea of relaxation.

5 Ways to Add Elegance to Your Dining Room

Are you known as the host in your circle of friends and family? Are you always offering your home as the place to gather, share good times, serve people a fabulous meal, and just make people feel welcomed? If you are, it’s nice to have the kind of home that is perfect for entertaining, with a touch of sophistication and style mixed in. In this article, we’ve got five ways that you can add elegance to your dining room which will elevate the meals you serve in the space. Let’s take a look.

Make a Statement with the Lighting

If you only want to make a couple of small changes to your dining room, a new light fixture should be top of the list. The dining room is typically a great space for a statement piece like a chandelier. Don’t be afraid to go big and bold as long as it fits with the rest of the decor. You can also add candles to the table, which does wonders for the ambiance.

Is It Time for New Dining Room Furniture?

The main pieces in your dining room will of course be the table and chairs. Without these, you can’t host a meal. But your furniture is so much more than just a functional item in the space. It also helps to set a statement, bring the décor and style together and add a touch of elegance. Be sure to shop for classic, streamlined and simple pieces if elegance is your top priority. This is the kind of dining room furniture you can find at Kettle River.

A few other tips to keep in mind when shopping for a new table and chairs include the space you have available, what shape table would work best, how many chairs you’d like, the finish and the material. Wood tends to be the most classic and elegant option, and the darker the finish, the more elegant it looks.

Choose a Fresh Color Palette

Changing up the color palette is another trick that the experts suggest. There are some colors that just feel richer, more sophisticated, timeless and elegant. Some of the best colors include gold, dove grey, silver grey, navy, taupe, white and even black. And you don’t have to be restricted to just paint, as you can create a statement wall by using something like wallpaper.

The Table Settings Have to Pop

Of course one of the most attractive features to add to your dining room is an elegant place setting that pops. This can include such things as:

  • Gold or silver flatware
  • China dishes
  • Cut crystal glasses
  • Real linens for napkins
  • A linen tablecloth
  • Chargers under the plates
  • Napkin rings

Just be sure the table setting works with your color palette and the style you’ve chosen.

Artwork Adds Flair and Personality

After making all of the typical design changes and updates, the room may still feel like it’s missing something and that something could be artwork. Artwork can complete the space and give it a truly customized look.

These design updates will allow you to create a dining room that oozes elegance that you can’t wait to show off to your guests.