Exploring Relationships – Why Do People Cheat?

Back in the old days, cheating simply means being dishonest, deceitful and untruthful. Flashback to today, people have somehow come up with thousands of complex definitions of cheating, especially when it comes to relationships. From simple kisses to dirty dancing in a nightclub, almost anything that involves physical contact is considered cheating.

Unfortunately, cheating has been around forever; Diane Lane did it in Unfaithful, former President Clinton has been controversial because of it; even the bible has several accounts of adultery. And it does not end there. More and more men and women are jumping in the sack with someone other than their partners. Even television shows and gossip mags seem to center on cheating. But until today, we are far from cracking the mystery behind cheating. Why do people really cheat?

We can list a lot of reasons why people cheat: they do it for fun, to boost their ego, or simply because they are bored with their current relationship. All these reasons will end up in just one plate: unhappiness. Why do we love, in the first place? Because it makes us happy. Relationships are basically built on love, and when that love is neglected or lost, people become unhappy and start searching for someone who can give them the love they lost.

In fact, even miscommunication can cause unhappiness. When couples get too busy with their careers and lives, even the simple act of asking about each other's day can lead to missed opportunities to communicate their love and worries. And when one of them feels unloved or unappreciated, that's when they begin looking for comfort outside of their relationship. So, if you feel jealous of your husband spending more time at work than at home, tell him. Address the issue at once and upfront; that way, you can keep cheating out of your relationship.

Revenge is another reason for infidelity. Perhaps you caught your husband with another woman in the past, or you've had suspicious for his unfaithfulness for sometime now. This can be a huge factor to drive you to commit infidelity. Once the opportunity is there and the urge is great, you can easily jump into the situation and argue that you're simply doing it to get even. But remember that revenge will get you nowhere; it'll only take you farther and farther away from your partner. So, if you are angry at your partner, do not hide it. If there's no way to forgive him, get out of the relationship. Do not stay so just you can cheat.

In the end, it's usually the heart that matters, not the sexual desire. It may be hard for you to detect an affair at first; but, if you want to protect your relationship, do not just focus on catching your partner on his / her affair. Instead, build good communication lines with them. Tell them what you feel and persuade them to do the same. And try to always look at the big picture. There might be a bigger problem at hand causing them to use infidelity as a quick answer to the problem. And, keep working on igniting the spark between you and your partner; and never give them a reason to wander away.

Three Thanksgiving Foods to Enjoy All Year

Some foods and ingredients do not show up on our tables from one Thanksgiving to the next. We never even think of serving them on an ordinary day – and that's too bad, because these foods are a good idea all year round.

I'm not saying you should cook a turkey dinner every week. But here are three items that are worth remembering when Thanksgiving is over.

1. Stuffing – remember those Stove Top stuffing mix ads from the 70s, where husbands shocked their wives by saying they'd like to have stuffing for dinner instead of potatoes? (If you do not – well, you did not miss anything important.) They did have a point. Stuffing can stand in for potatoes, pasta, rice, or bread, and it makes an interesting change. It also does not need any sauce or gravy. If you add cooked meat or fish, all you need is vegetables to round out the meal. Pick up a few boxes of instant stuffing mix when they're on sale, or make your own out of stale bread.

2. Pumpkin pie spice can go into cookies , muffins, and other desserts. Try it in butterscotch pudding (the cooked kind). It's good for making a spicier version of cinnamon sugar. I've even sneaked it into the pot roast gravy. You do not have to leave it on the shelf till next Thanksgiving, when it'll be past its best.

3. Cranberries protect you from infections and provide plenty of fiber and vitamin C. And the taste can be a welcome break in an oversweetened diet. You can use them in cakes and muffins – if you think they're just too sour, chop them in the food processor to cut the impact of the sourness. They're a nice contrast to chocolate and other sweet ingredients. Try cranberry juice, too. But remember, dried cranberries are heavily sugared .

Keep these in mind and put a little Thanksgiving into the rest of your year.

Real Types of Work at Home Jobs

With all the scams that have come about from the internet and people trying to sell you work at home programs that do not work. It is difficult to believe that there are real types of work at home job people can do to make a decent income. Real types of work at home jobs are things like telephone operators, virtual secretaries, freelance writers, freelance web design, freelance editing, data entry and transcription.

Some of the major companies actually hire some internet services to find telephone operators and virtual secretaries for them. Many people actually work from their own homes doing this type real work at home job. All that is required is a High-speed DSL connection to the internet and a separate phone line to receive inbound calls.

Another real type of work at home job is freelance writing, editing, and web design. This involves writing articles, short stories, and blogs, and reports, reviews, editing web content for mistakes, and designing web pages for pay. Depending upon your typing skills you can make a nice income typing. The faster you are at typing the better.

Many sites offer services to connect the freelancers and the business or companies and individuals in need of the work to be done. These sites usually charge a small fee or percent of the wages the freelancers, and business, companies or individuals provide.

Transcription is another real type of work at home job that pays a nice income. This involves listening to tape or digitally recorded messages and typing or converting them into transcripts or paper files or notes. However you must have your own transcription equipment to be able to do this type of real work at home job. In addition, this equipment varies in types and functions as well as price ranges.

The real types of work at home jobs are becoming much more profitable now. This is due to the unstable economy people work from home instead of commuting to an office. Moreover, many companies are fearful of hiring more employees because of the economy. This makes hiring people to work from home cost the companies less they would have to pay for office space, utilities, office supplies, equipment, benefits, and insurance. It is far cheaper for the companies to contract out the labor than to pay all these expenses.

The Advantages and Disadvantages of Plastic Furniture

Let’s face it. Plastic has taken over the world! There isn’t anything today that can’t be found in plastic. Everything that was at some time made of natural fibre or material can be found in a plastic version. It can be found in every industry today including the medicine industry, the agriculture industry, the horticulture industry etc. From footwear to kitchen accessories you find adaptations of the same. Yes, it does have its disadvantages, but who can deny its many advantages?

Every household has at least one plastic furniture piece or a related accessory. It may be a chair, or a pen stand, but you will find at least one plastic item there. The frequency of finding this furniture is higher in middle class to lower class homes.

• What attracts people to purchasing plastic furniture is the cost aspect. It is relatively inexpensive. Plastic can be made into a lovely and comfortable chair which will cost only a fraction of what it takes to buy a regular chair. If you have a tight budget and yet want to get as many items of furniture as possible, plastic is the answer!

• It is light weight and can be easily moved around. One does not require much help while moving plastic furniture while rearranging the room. It is extremely convenient to have a chair that can be pulled around without having to call for help or using much effort.

• It is practically unbreakable. It used to make furniture is of a good grade and hence is extremely study. It does not break or shatter if dropped. It also does not react with the environment and crack or swell due to the moisture as in the case of wood. It does not catch fungus or require constant polishing. It does not rust or house termites. Hence it can be safely said that plastic requires low or rather practically no maintenance.

• Plastic can be recycled. Also the use of plastic stalls the cutting of trees and destroying forests. Wooden furniture requires wood to be extracted from the barks of trees. It leads to deforestation and ecological problems.

• Plastic furniture is bright and happy. It can change the mood of the room. It can be taken outdoors for picnics and brought back with ease. Plastic furniture is available in more colours than any other material. Plastic furniture is versatile. It is easier to mould and create shapes using plastic. Chiselling and carving is easily achieved on plastic surfaces than on wood or metal.

• It is great for children who have butter fingers and tend to drop things often.

• Plastic furniture can be left out in the rain without worrying about it getting spoilt.

Plastic furniture is forever growing industry. Plastic furniture is a growing trend and is quite fashionable. Even though plastic in some cases lacks the class and sophistication that come with conventional wooden furniture, it is a small price to pay for the numerous advantages and conveniences that plastic brings!

Lightweight Stone Panels – An Ideal Choice

Today, home improvement projects are greatly exposed to natural stones. Architects and home builders are choosing natural stones to accentuate home and give new definition to the modern trend. They are using natural stones from kitchens, living rooms, backyards, patios to bathrooms. In fact, ceiling and flooring has being embellished with natural stone. On the other hand, homeowners also enjoy the aided beauty and luxury of these stones. Today, it is easy to observe the prudent use of marble, limestone and granite stones in both commercial and residential purposes. No modern home is untouched by the radiance and elegance of marble, granite and limestone. In fact, you can see lightweight stone panels in different residential and commercial projects.

These lightweight stone panels are used in different forms from fiberglass honeycomb panels to honeycomb marble panels. These are the frequently used components by home builders. They utilize distinctive and attractive looking honeycomb panels for external and internal applications. Use of such panels in both exteriors and interiors offers unmatched strength, beauty, reliability and durability.

Lightweight Stone Panel

These are made from reinforced granite, marble or limestone. These are manufactured in factories having specialized machines. These are perfectly lightweight and give ideal look to the place where it is installed. Today, more and more number of people is adopting stone panels because of its unparalleled advantages. The basic fact is that it is far more superior to any other natural stone and gives exclusive look when installed in exteriors. You can get numerous colors, styles and textures from the market as per your home theme.

Advantages and Usage of Lightweight Stone Panel

In fact, it is widely used in industrial applications because of its strength, anti-decay property and durability. It is considered as the perfect component for industrial purposes. It is widely used in construction industry to give never-compromising appeal to modern homes. These are ideally safer, economical and the best alternative to any other natural stone. For more attention to detail people use Honeycomb granite and marble panels.

The basic advantage of lightweight panels is that it is very easy to install and maintain. The prefabricated panels can be purchased and installed at any place in homes of offices. Being affordable and non-fragile in nature, it is the favorite choice of manufacturing, building, development, equipment factories and other industries.

Due to its inspiring attributes, it is good for home’s interiors and exteriors. It significantly provides awesome elegance and attractive looks.

Middle Or Georgian Period Architecture and Decoration

As the wealth of the Colonies increased, there was a gradual introduction of articles of additional comfort, if not those of some luxury, and the architecture reflects these conditions in the construction of more pretentious houses with larger rooms. We also notice crude attempts at introducing architectural moldings and ornamentation, with the occasional use of some color enrichment.

As the products of the printing press brought drawings and descriptions of the works of the well known English architects, such as Sir Christopher Wren, Chambers and others to America, an important and rather sudden advancement was made in the refinement of architectural detail, both on the interior as well as the exterior of houses, and the influence of

Classical art becomes strongly felt. The fireplace now becomes smaller, but great interest is centered about its decoration and the use of academic forms such as pilasters, columns, glass corner protectors, and entablatures, become common, and often unusual and interesting forms were introduced by the local carpenters who often constructed these features from memory.

The plank walls were superseded at first by an informal arrangement of paneling, which in turn gave place to the symmetrical compositions of wall treatment that were typical of Georgian England. The practice of covering the interior partitions with the woodwork, allowing the inside of the exterior walls of the house to be covered in plaster, persisted for many years, and the introduction of wallpaper was a convenient method of enriching the plaster surfaces.

The wood paneling was treated in light colored paints. This unbalanced treatment of the different sides of the same room lasted until the beginning of the nineteenth century. The wide plank floors of the early type of room eventually gave place to oak flooring in strip and parquet patterns. Elements besides English were found in other portions of the country.

Flemish and Dutch features were often prominent in buildings in Southern New York, Long Island and New Jersey, and we find French elements of interior decoration copied in many localities of the South. Due to the greater wealth of the South, attempts at formal architecture are found much earlier than in the North. Along the river banks of Virginia and the Carolinas, the social life developed to a point that was nearly equal of that of the old country. The diaries of visitors from foreign lands gave witness to the manner in which they were entertained by the leading families of these sections.

During the first quarter of the eighteenth century, we find the introduction of new types of furniture and door toppers as well as a change in the design of the earlier details. Copies were made of the English William and Mary, Queen Anne and pre-Chippendale forms. The rush seat chairs, having either a splat or banister-back, became exceedingly popular and were made in great quantities.

The banister-back had a split baluster used as a rail, usually with a flat side toward the front. Rocking chairs and upholstered wing arm chairs were first introduced about 1725. The Windsor chair of England was first made in this country about 1735 and received a much greater development here than it did in England. A great number of forms of the Windsor chair were produced, the principal ones being the loop, hoop, fan, comb and low-back. Windsor rockers were not introduced until the Revolutionary period.

The principal difference between the chairs of this type and those of similar type made in England was in the kinds of wood used and the additional splay given to the legs. The majority of American Windsors were painted and none of the early ones were made in mahogany. Colors of used were The Often vivid is greens and reds or blacks 's , Often made to match ornamental pediment .

There were four types of bed design and they are characterized today by the terms four-poster, low-poster, tent and sleigh, the last named being introduced during the first quarter of the nineteenth century. The use of high-boys, low-boys and chests-on-chests closely followed their introduction in England.

Philadelphia seemed to have been the main center of manufacture of this type of furniture, although a local form, known as the "block front," was developed in New England by John Goddard of Newport, Rhode Island. The influence of Chippendale eventually became supreme and mahogany, which some authorities claim pre-dated its use in England, was employed by the cabinet makers for all types of furniture. The first use of veneered and inlayed finishes occurred at the beginning of the eighteenth century.

Selling Your Art – Part 2

Some sellers, notably galleries and dealers, will conduct public relations to one degree or another for artists that they represent. A gallery may recommend a certain kind of exposure or publicity as part of the campaign to sell your art.

Artists as individuals may seek and receive advice on how to present themselves to the public. This may include, for better or worse, adopting some of the prevailing conventions for dress, public appearances, rehearsed mini-speeches on various topics related to art, etc.

I am reminded of various artists who will bring their pet dog to an opening, as Andy Warhol and others have done. Which provides a foil for direct attentiveness between artist and others. I have noticed
these dogs are usually small and cute, and respond conveniently to attention or the lack thereof. Many artists affect some inscrutable, eccentric facade as an ambiguous defense.

Interviewers, buyers, and sellers may purposefully ask provocative questions and the results of these questions and your answers may be good and bad, depending on the effects in various areas of your career or the public.

As you work your way through these various situations you will find out which methods and activities are more to your liking. Hopefully, you can cultivate so many opportunities that you get the more pleasant task of choosing which opportunities you want to select or reject. Some artists have a steadily changing array of opportunities, other artists find a niche and stay within those boundaries.

And there has to be some comfort level in the balance between creating and selling your art. When you ask yourself why you are making art one of the answers is probably that you want to sell it. And that you are comfortable generally with that position.

Some artists, the particularly idealistic – or posing as the particularly idealistic – may say or act as though selling is beneath them. They may point to the nobility and idealism that they do not want to sell. This
artist might go on to explain that they were sought out by some infatuated collectors or galleries who
pleaded with them so eloquently that they could not refuse.

Now as a result, this "idealistic" artist had allowed some of the better mortals to sell his / her works to one another, and they had set the prices, determined what must be said about the artist and art, made necessary arrangements, etc . This plays well mostly with the uneducated and naive. Asking this same
artist for a freebie or discount might relegate you eternally to the "Twilight Zone."

There is no question that art can be nobly created for the best reasons or purest of impulses. But to suggest that nobility is rarely known in others, and seldom recognized by mortals is ridiculous and dumbly arrogant. But wherever there is an audience, there will finally appear the performer.

Whatever compromises you find yourself making please avoid this one. Other help can be read at:

  • Art Now
  • What TN Home Buyers Need to Know About THDA Loans

    Some of the best loan programs in TN are right under our noses, and THDA loans (TN Housing Development Agency) are one of them. A few reasons why there isn’t a ton of press about these great loans is because 1) not all TN lenders can do them, 2) THDA loans tend to be smaller loan sizes (on average) and coupled with the limitation on allowable fees, many loan officers who could do them choose not to, and 3) many loan officers do not offer them because they believe that THDA loans are a lot harder to get closed, which is not true at all as long as they know the program guidelines. For brevity’s sake, this article will provide an overview for the THDA program rather than detail each of the 3 loans THDA offers (Great Rate, Great Advantage, and Great Start).

    The THDA loan programs were designed to offer help to low to moderate income buyers in TN seeking to purchase an affordable home. Here are the main things to know about THDA loans:

    • these loans can be used only for primary residences in TN from one to four units
    • the loans are always 30 year terms with fixed rates.
    • the borrower must qualify for an FHA, USDA Rural Development, or VA loan program before the loan can “become” a THDA subsidized loan program. The vast majority of THDA loans are FHA, since FHA loans have the broadest in eligibility requirements. Minimum credit score for any THDA loan is 620 as of right now.
    • THDA loans can effectively make FHA loans near-100% or 100% financing when combined with available THDA grant money, a “community” 2nd mortgage program like The Housing Fund, or THDA’s “Stimulus” 2nd mortgage program.
    • THDA loans are made generally to first time buyers (including people who haven’t owned a home in 3 years); the exception to this rule is when a buyer is purchasing in a “targeted” county; for example, middle TN “targeted” counties include Cannon, Clay, Dekalb, Franklin, Giles, Grundy, Hickman, Houston, Jackson, Lawrence, Lincoln, Macon, Marion, Maury, Stewart, Trousdale, Van Buren, Wayne, and White.
    • THDA essentially sets its own subsidized or below-market rates, which are dependent on how much grant assistance one might need. There are 3 basic loan types: Great Rate (0% assistance), Great Advantage (2% assistance), and Great Start ( 4% assistance)
    • since THDA loans are intended for “modest” homes, properties must meet eligibility requirements; for example, the sales price cannot exceed the county’s limit. There are only 2 limits in the whole state of TN- either $226,100 or $200,160 (these limits are actually fairly liberal by TN’s standards). The counties which have the higher limit are the following counties: Cannon, Cheatham, Davidson, Dickson, Hickman, Macon, Robertson, Rutherford, Smith, Sumner, Trousdale, Williamson, and Wilson. All other counties in TN fall under the lower limit.
    • the household income of the borrower(s) cannot exceed the median income limit for the county, based on the number of persons in the household; for example, in Davidson County (Nashville), for a 1-2 person household, the total household income limit is $64,900 right now. For a 3+ person household, the limit is $74,635. The lowest limit in TN is $54,500 for 1-2 persons and $62,675 for a 3+ person household.
    • THDA loans limit origination fees to 1% and discount points to.25%, which simply protects the buyer from getting overcharged. And since all THDA rates are the same regardless of the lender used, the main things a borrower needs to do is to make sure they feel the loan officer knows this program well, and that they feel comfortable working with that person.
    • a homebuyer education class is strongly encouraged on the Great Rate program, and required for the Great Advantage and Great Start programs; this class (if applicable) must be completed prior to the purchase, and must be done in-person. It only makes sense for these subsidized loan programs that borrowers know what they are getting into, how to budget, etc. The last thing THDA wants is for a borrower to lose their home.
    • all THDA loans are subject to a federal recapture tax provision if the purchased home is sold within the first 9 years. This tax sounds much worse than it is, though. A very small percentage of people have to worry about this, and even if they do, it’s typically because their income or home value have gone up a good bit since the purchase. That’s certainly not a bad thing!

    THDA loans are a great way for first time buyers in TN in get into a home with little to nothing down, with a low interest rate and reasonable payment. Just knowing some of the basics of the program will hopefully help you know if you might be a good candidate for a THDA loan before you even speak with a lender.

    When to See a Doctor For a Sinus Infection

    Visit your doctor when you feel pain or pressure in your upper face together with nasal congestion or discharge, postnasal drip or ongoing bad breath unrelated to dental problems.

    Simple congestion and a low-grade fever is probably a cold, and special medication or antibiotics are not required. But together with facial pain or headaches, it may well be a sinus infection.

    Rare but possible sinus infection complications

    The following symptoms require immediate hospital treatment:

    • Headache, fever and soft tissue swelling over the frontal sinus, especially for children, may be due to an infection of the frontal bone.
    • Infection in the eye socket due to ethmoid sinusitis causes swelling followed by drooping of the eyelid. This leads to impaired eye movement, with pressure on the optic nerve possibly resulting in blindness.
    • Due to ethmoid or frontal sinusitis, blood clots can form in the sinus area. In addition to the symptoms of orbital infection above, the pupil may be fixed and dilated. Symptoms usually begin on one side of the head and spread to the other.
    • The most dangerous complication of sinusitis is the spreading of infection from frontal and sphenoid sinuses to the brain, either through the bones or blood vessels. Mild personality changes, headache, altered consciousness, visual problems or seizures occur. If not treated, coma and even death may result.

    Examination and how a sinus infection is diagnosed

    Sinusitus must be distinguished from a simple upper respiratory infection, common cold or migraine.

    After going through your history, your doctor would examine your throat, nose and sinuses. He would peer in your nose for signs of polyps, shine a light against the sinus for signs of inflammation and tap over a sinus area looking for infection.

    If he finds red swollen nasal passages, pus-like drainage from the nasal passages, tenderness when he taps your cheeks or forehead, and swelling around the eyes and cheeks, he would most likely diagnose you with a sinus infection.

    If it fails to respond to treatment, you may be referred to an ear, nose and throat (ENT) specialist who specializes in sinusitis. Because regular x-rays of the sinuses are unreliable for diagnosing sinusitis, more in-depth, expensive tests may be required.

    • sinus CT scan
    • MRI
    • Ultrasound
    • Rhinoscopy
    • Sometimes the affected sinus is drained and tested for organisms.

    If your sinus disease is chronic or does not improve after several rounds of antibiotics, laboratory tests may be carried out:

    • Blood tests to rule out other conditions, such as immune deficiency disorder.
    • A sweat or blood test to rule out cystic fibrosis.
    • Biopsy of the linings of the nose or sinuses to ensure they are healthy. In more serious types of fungal sinus disease, a bone biopsy determines if the fungus has penetrated nearby bone and again, is done by inserting flexible instruments through the nose.

    What 'Location, Location, Location' Means in Commercial Real Estate

    People often say there are three things that determine the desirability of a property: location, location and location. For residential properties, good location means quiet area (away from busy streets), good school district, high income areas, etc. Is it the same for commercial properties? Location is also an important factor in commercial real estate investment. For retail properties, location is the key as a lousy business will be successful at a good location. When a commercial property is at a good location, it will attract tenants to the property and retain them there. It will also attract the customers of your tenants to the property. As a result, you as the owner of the property can demand the higher rent & price for the property. So how do you as an investor determine if the property you would like to invest is at a good location? Look at the property and see if the property has these features:

    1. Near major roads and freeways: This provides easy access to the property so the customers of the tenants can quickly and conveniently drive to the property. When the property is on a major artery, it's easy for customers to find the location and have a sense about the distance and how long it would take them to get there.

    2. On busy street with high traffic volume : Commercial listings often mention the traffic volume in term of Cars Per Day (CPD). More traffic means more exposure of your tenants businesses to more potential customers. This is free advertising to your tenants. The traffic could also be foot traffic. For example retail stores at Pier 39 in San Francisco benefit from the high volume foot traffic from the tourists.

    3. Near anchored tenants: Big retail stores like Wal-Mart Supercenter, Target, Costco, Home Depot instantly bring lots of customers to their stores. So if your commercial property is near an anchored tenant, it will benefit from the high volume traffic.

    4. Good visibility: all units from the property should be visible from and close to the main road without any buildings in front of it blocking its view. So the customers can easily find the tenants in the property.

    5. On a major intersection: This will give the property more visibility as it has more frontage on both streets. If the property is located at a signalized corner then it's even better. As cars stop at the traffic light, people in the cars will notice the stores in your property. The traffic light is also an indication the intersection has more traffic volume.

    6. Near local amenities: Stadium, college , big shopping malls and hospitals will bring more traffic to the shopping center. Doctors always like the medical building near the local hospital as it is convenient for them to go back and forth between the hospital and their office.

    7. Ease of ingress and egress: The property should be easy to come and leave. Ideally it should have multiple accesses for ingress and egress if possible. If it's hard to make left turns, some shoppers will less likely come to the shopping centers. And thus it makes the property less desirable to the tenants. Starbucks likes to be on the way to work side versus on the way home. People like to buy coffee on the way to work without having to make any left turns so they can get back to their commute quickly.

    8. Plenty of parking spaces: People do not like to go to a place where they have trouble finding parking spaces. Retail centers must have at least 4 parking space per 1000 square foot of leasable space. It's more desirable to have 6 parking spaces or more per 1000 SF. Fast food restaurants tend to have 10-15 parking spaces per 1000 SF. The width of parking space is also important. Who wants a ding on the door after a shopping trip or trouble parking their SUVs?

    9. Good signage: Signage is an important part of a commercial property. Customers often look for the name of the business rather than the street address. A large and tall monument sign in front of the property with the names of the businesses in the property is always desirable.

    10. High barriers to entry: You want a property in an area with high startup costs and various obstacles to prevent competitions. This is often an area with:

    • Strict zoning or with a master plan so supplies of commercial properties are limited. Rents are more likely to go up in this area.
    • Little vacant developable land left so your tenants can not go anywhere.
    • Strict regulations for permits and licensing. For example, it's much harder to get a permit to open a medical office building in states that require certificate of need.

    11. Able to attract and retain tenants: Your tenants will look for a building and neighborhood that are appealing to them and their customers to determine if they should sign or renew the leases. So quality of construction, property condition, landscaping, the appearance of the building and surrounding areas are all important factors to keep the property 100% leased.

    12. Strong demographics: You want to invest in an area where population has increased. Review the demographic data in the property brochure to see

    • The population growth in the last 5-15 years. In a growing area, tenants will need to retail spaces to serve the customers. This in turns increase the demand for commercial properties.
    • Population size. You want to think twice about invest in a small city with less than 30,000 residents within 3 miles ring. In a small town, there is always abundant of vacant land so the tenants can easily move to a new building nearby. This is a property that is easy to buy and hard to sell later on when it's older and less attractive. In addition, it's also very difficult to obtain financing for this property.
    • The median / average income in the area is within 1-5 miles radius from the property. You want average household income higher than $ 55,000 as this is the national average. However, $ 55,000 in the San Francisco area is not the same as $ 55,000 in Houston as the cost of living index in San Francisco is 170 and Houston 95. In general, you want to avoid a property in a low income area as it's often a high crime area and tends to have more graffiti and vandalism. The costs of removing graffiti will increase the maintenance costs of the property and burden your tenants. On the other hand, if you want to invest in a fast food restaurant, you do not want to buy a property in an affluent area, eg AHI of $ 120,000 / year. High income dinners prefer to have their meals in sit-down restaurants. And so Burger Kings sand McDonald's struggle to make a profit in high income areas due to the lack of customers.

    Basix Certificate Requirements, Thermal Comfort and Window Placement Considerations

    Basix Certificates are required to ensure a level of energy efficiency is standard across all new and renovated dwellings. It can be overwhelming knowing where to start when planning your home with your Basix Assessment in Mind. Windows are a major consideration and using the information in this article, your task should become easier and ensure energy efficiency guidelines are easily met.

    The positioning of the windows in your home is of crucial importance for a multitude of reasons. Firstly from an aesthetic point of view the overall look of your home is very important, from a resale perspective and to create a pleasing streetscape.

    Once upon a time homeowners felt that large windows were needed to complete an attractive facade to their dwelling, but as the impact that glass has on the thermal properties of a house has come to light, building designers and architects have devised new and attractive ways to add windows to the house without the burden of too much heat penetration and expense.

    Different shaped windows, clusters of smaller attractive shaped windows and well shaded windows have taken the place of great expanses of glass. Not all blocks of land are fortunate enough to have a North / south aspect so some houses have had to deal with the front or facade of their home facing in a westerly direction.

    This places a huge amount of pressure on the dwellings ability to either remain cool or cool down at the end of the day. For this reason designers have planned ways to cut down on glazing to the facade of homes and instead place smaller, more shaded quantities of glass to most used areas of the home. Performance glazing is also now becoming widely used as a method of increasing the thermal comfort of a home.

    Be sure to request your designer keeps these things in mind when drawing up plans for your new home or major renovations, and your basix & thermal comfort assessments should be hassle free for everyone involved.

    Emotional Effects of War on Soldiers – It Can Be a Real Battle

    Although being in a war is a very difficult experience for anyone to go through, there is one aspect of war which people who were not involved often do not understand. For many, the emotional effects of war on soldiers do not end when they come home. In fact, for many, returning home is only the beginning.

    Many men and women in all branches of the military return home with Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD). This means that the extreme situations they witnessed or were a part of were beyond the normal range of one's ability to cope, and the trauma of these experiences stayed with them.

    While each individual's range and severity of symptoms vary, the emotional effects of war on soldiers in terms of PTSD make the transition back to their home lives and personal relationships very difficult. They usually experience some degree of anxiety, depression, intrusive thoughts or flashbacks, and nightmares, as the most common symptoms. Fear and anger are also common.

    If the disorder is not recognized and treated, the results can range from interference in the person's everyday life to the possibility of suicide. In the past, not enough was known about the emotional effects of war on soldiers, and there were few resources available to help them. Fortunately, for today's soldiers there is much more knowledge about this subject, and many more available resources for help.

    The person who has returned from war can seek assistance from mental health counseling. Many also find it useful to meet with others in veterans' organizations, because they are able to openly talk about their experiences with other people who have had similar experiences.

    Other treatments include:

    1. Cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) – your therapist helps you change how you think about your trauma. Your goal is to understand how thoughts about your trauma cause you stress and make your symptoms worse.

    2. Exposure therapy – In this type of therapy you are encouraged to talk about your trauma repeatedly. The patient learns how to get control of their thoughts and feelings about the trauma. They also learn that they do not have to be afraid of memories.

    3. Medication – Serotonin, a type of antidepressant, can help you feel less sad and worried. And, it can help you to sleep better.

    The emotional aspect of war on soldiers affects the people in their daily lives. In order for them to have the best chance of recovering from the trauma of war, it is essential that their families and friends are cooperative in encouraging them to get the help they need to recover and rebuild their lives.

    How to Make Stained Glass

    Stained glasses add a special charm to the building. The beautiful colorations on them reflect lighting in a unique way making them a spectacular treat to watch. Stained window glasses are a common feature in many European countries.

    Did you know that you could make stained glasses at home? All you need are some basic materials and loads of creativity. Invest in some useful tools like a glasscutter with tungsten, a carbide wheel, lathekin, soldering iron, work board, a glass marker, push pins, etc.

    Buy protective clothing like eyeglasses, gloves etc. There are high chances of glass chipping and hitting your eyes and skin. There are 3 main categories of glass: Cathedral, Opalescent and finally Sheet Antique Glass. After selecting the type of glass you want, draw a pattern of your choice. Make sure you make a duplicate copy as well. Now cut the patterns. Place them on the glass and trace them with a glass marker.

    Next, use a glasscutter to cut the glass into different pieces of patterns. Separate each glass pattern with glass pliers. You can use your hand also. Arrange them on your work board. Use pushpins to make them stay in place. Carve the edges if necessary. Make sure all the pieces fit perfectly with the other. Now, foil each glass pattern. Smoothen the foil and polish with lathekin. Assemble different pieces together. Then brush flux all over the foil. Melt solder on top of the foil with a soldering iron. Flip the soldered glass over, and then solder the other side too. Thereafter, clean the glass with a glass cleaner. Your stained glass is ready!

    The Great Voyage

    It was a calm sunny Sunday at the end of May 2012 when we arrived on our yacht, Cape Farewell, in Rogoznica Marina, just north of Split in central Croatia. We had been berthed there for four years, exploring the beautiful Croatian coast and offshore Islands each summer, but now it was time to move on. The previous November I had booked a berth in the new Cesme Marina near Izmir and now we had assembled a strong crew for 740 mile voyage there.

    Our crew was my wife Andrea and me as skipper, with an old seafaring friend, Malcolm McKeag. Then we had recruited Andrea's sister Marilyn with her partner Patrice, a French Consultant Haematologist, who were due to fly in and join us that evening from Paris. We went to bed having readied the boat and eaten early but were awakened by a call from Marilyn at Split airport to tell us she could not find Josco our regular driver. Eventually they found him and arrived on board around midnight.

    During the night the wind increased and the rain poured down on our cabin roof. We were snug enough with our stern to the concrete jetty and larger yachts on either side, but we had been told that we had to take Cape Farewell five miles north west to Kremik the following day to clear customs and police so that we could depart from croatia.

    We bade fond good-byes to the girls of Marina Frapa's reception whom we knew so well. Then we sailed out into the storm, with south-easterly winds of about 40 knots. Fortunately the wind was on our stern and the seas were fairly small inside the islands so the trip was not too rough. Kremik sent a boat out to guide us in to the customs berth just outside marina reception. Kremik Marina is in a sort of Croatian fiord and the wind funnels in through the surrounding hills, covered with ancient stone walls delineating long past family grape, wine and olive growing areas. Three chaps jumped aboard, and a large man took over the helm and engine controls from me. He was an expert and berthed Cape Farewell very neatly in an awkward spot with a big, gusty cross-wind. A lovely, competent team.

    Less lovely were the police and customs. The latter did not turn up and the former would not complete the process if we were not sailing that day, in spite of our being stormbound. We certainly could not go for ten hours south-east into the teeth of a 40-knot gale. That evening we staggered the few yards to the marina restaurant and managed to have a serious dinner with bottles of Primosten wine to wash it down. Walking back to the boat in the dark, the wind had dropped and a light rain was falling. On the saloon table was laid out a nearly empty bottle of Balvenie single malt whisky and a nearly full bottle of Hine brandy. A classical CD was found in a drawer and put on the ship's stereo.

    "This is MacRaminof's piano concerto number three in C." opined Malcolm.

    Tuesday 22nd May dawned cloudy, light rain but mercifully calm. At 0800 sharp a young, friendly policemen arrived, complete with gun in holster. He fiddled about with a growing heap of papers and the five passports, all of which he had checked the day before. The Harbour Master arrived and inspected our insurance policy and my qualifications as captain. He seemed well satisfied, wished us a pleasant voyage in excellent English and departed. Then a smartly-uniformed customs man arrived in a rather battered little car. He had an air-force blue uniform, a crew cut and tinted, gold-rimmed glasses. Much stamping and signing of papers and further passport inspections and then the policeman stamped them with our exit stamps. Finally both the policeman and the customs man walked down the dock to Cape Farewell to inspect the removed parts in their box that we had to export from Croatia. These consisted, as per the signed list, of three condensers, a nearly new alternator belt and the box itself. They would not stop for coffee and pronounced us free to sail for Corfu, having officially cleared out from Croatia. Ten minutes later we sailed. The sea was still lumpy but there was only a small following wind about the same velocity as the ship as we steamed south-east. Gradually the wind dropped and the sky cleared and it became flat calm, warm and sunny. We arrived at Korcula fuel berth at three thirty and took 230 gallons of diesel in half an hour. With over 500 gallons in the tanks we had plenty of fuel for the long overnighter to Corfu.

    Entirely against all regulations we pulled into the little isolated bay of Prozura on the remote island of Mljet, where there was an excellent restaurant with a free berth and electricity. Dinner ashore; a huge fish and a grilled crayfish for me, several brandies and so to bed.

    Wednesday May 23rd dawned sunny and calm. We trouped ashore for omelettes, washed down with squeezed orange juice and strong, black coffee. Marilyn wandered around the adjoining garden and announced that she had found some 'marijuana poppies' which rather puzzled the rest of us who thought opium came from poppies. Marilyn assured us it was not so however.

    We sailed south-east along the coast until we cleared the land and could set course for the turning point at Vliore, Albania. It was a calm, cool day with frequent patches of sunshine. After an hour's successful running while Andrea made tea, coffee and hot cuppa-soup to nourish the crew, the generator would not start in the evening. It was cold food from then on, as we're an all-electric boat. Otherwise the weather remained light and visibility good. We split into watches for the night and left Patrice and Marilyn on for the eight to twelve, with Malcolm and Andrea for the middle watch and me for the morning watch and the arrival.

    I was awoken by the sensation that we were now heading into what had been a force three, following wind. I got dressed and went up to the wheelhouse to find all was confusion. Marilyn and Patrice had tried to move the plug-in auto-pilot from the flying bridge to the wheelhouse "because we were getting cold up there!" They had both become disorientated in the process with the result that we were now 180 degrees off course. I grabbed the wheel and steered by hand until we were back on course again and the motion had eased. Not best pleased, I stayed up on the flying bridge with them for another hour or so.

    "What happens if it rains?" asked Marilyn plaintively.

    "Then you get bloody wet!" I told her, "You'll keep a much better look-out from up here. I remember a captain at sea when I was a young apprentice who said that you never keep a proper watch at night through glass, so he sent me out on the bridge wing to face the sleet and biting wind. Then the steward came up with hot tea and buttered toast for the captain and the officer of the watch which they consumed in the warm while I had to remain outside.

    The weather stayed calm as we closed the Albanian coast, heading for the mile-wide gap between Corfu and Albania. The dawn revealed small Albanian towns huddling under the huge and forbidding-looking mountains, full of square, concrete apartment blocks. There were some brightly painted ones, but the place did not look attractive. We berthed at Corfu Marina at 0815 after a run of 225 miles. Then the paper chase began! Marilyn and I went to the marina office to pay for two nights berthing. Then we found a friendly taxi driver, Kostas, to take us to immigration. They would not accept Marilyn's Australian passport as she was not an EU citizen. So we drove off to the ferry immigration terminal. There Kostas shouldered aside a group of Spanish and Japanese tourists and marched straight through security to an office where a chap with four stripes on his epaulettes and his, heavily pregnant wife were situated. Marilyn got her passport stamped and we proceeded to customs who waved us away after a cursory look at the ship's papers. Then back to the marina to have a ship's Greek Passage Log made up. There was a long queue. We got to the head of it, and showed the solitary young man our papers.

    "You need to pay in the marina office and get me a receipt first," he explained. Marilyn went off to do that.

    "We could fill in all the details on the Passage Log while she's away," I suggested as the queue was lengthening.

    "First the receipt," he replied, turning on the TV to look at the Greek news. Back came Marilyn with the receipt for 88 euro-cents and twenty minutes later the official had filled in the Passage Log and entered every detail by hand in two, separate, grubby account books. We departed for a drink in the bar next door. Past us came the man who had been next in the queue.

    "Had to pay and get a receipt before he'd issue the Passage Log," he explained as he trotted back, "he might have mentioned that while I was waiting for you to finish!"

    That afternoon Angelo the engineer arrived to fix the generator which turned out to have a faulty solenoid valve. He ordered a new one up for delivery Saturday ..

    Friday 25th dawned fine and clear. The crew went ashore for a tour with Kostas, while Malcolm and I stayed on board. It was a hot, sultry day. Malcolm varnished out the bare bits of the wheelhouse and saloon while I cleaned the old oil and cigarette butts out of the engine room bilges, left there by the Croatian engineers. In the evening we got the electric barbecue out and Patrice grilled five little fishes he had bought, wrapped in silver paper. The menfolk sat up a little late and finished the Hine Brandy before going to bed.

    Saturday May 26th dawned cloudy, calm and sultry although it became sunny later. We tried to get our Passage Log stamped but that involved producing the registration certificate, passports, skipper's qualifications and the insurance policy in Greek, all of which were inspected by the same people yesterday.

    "I thought there was free passage in the EU for citizens and their boats," I queried the lady in charge.

    "All the visiting English say that," she replied, "It's not us, it's the government rules we have to obey."

    Angelo came aboard with the solenoid for the generator and soon had it going. The generator worked on load so all was well so we moved to the fuel berth to top up the tanks. Then we sailed on the 65 miles to Levkas on the little canal separating the Peloponnese from the rest of Greece.

    We arrived at a quarter to eight in the evening and entered the northern end of the canal. We waited only five minutes for the floating bridge to open and then to Levkas Marina where we spent the night. We had a simple dinner ashore in the excellent, cheap, marina restaurant and went to bed, all dog-tired.

    The next morning, we enjoyed a good breakfast at the same café. At breakfast we discovered that we had been under the impression that Greece was in the same time zone as Croatia. Not so. We were an hour behind local time. Malcolm took off the wheelhouse clock and adjusted it, as did Andrea with all the other clocks on board. Meanwhile I went to the reception to pay the berth fee. No stamps, no papers, just a credit card and the girl gave me the ship's registration certificate back and we sailed.

    We sailed down the Levkas canal and around the little islands. We passed under the long Riou bridge at four thirty pm and then on to an abandoned marina at Trizona Island where we planned to berth for the night. There was a strong north-westerly wind and we slid in to a very tight berth between two yachts on the inside of the outer breakwater. The forward one was a large sailing yacht with an anxious skipper on its stern. The other was the home of Wendy and David, recent live-aboards on their aluminium sailing boat 'Stromhella'. They helped us to fender off the rough concrete jetty as we berthed and we invited them to dinner in the little village square. Wendy had previously been married to (and later divorced from) a Dutch Jesuit priest. It was a boozy, pleasant evening with a Thai-Greek waitress who was very beautiful. Andrea ended the dinner a trifle over-served with wine and loved everyone. We helped her back to the boat muttering.

    At around four in the morning there was the sound of an educated English voice aft and the noise of a boat engine. I got up in my pyjamas and moved swiftly to the darkened end of the saloon to see what was happening. David and Wendy were trying to motor, bow-first, off the dock, into the wind. They would have made it except that our passerelle had been left sticking out to make room for our stern line. As it was he just managed to push his boat clear, with Wendy on the helm gunning the engine ,. With a polite apology coming across from the darkened harbour, Stromhella's navigation lights gradually vanished into the distance.

    We left shortly after the big yacht berthed ahead for the western entrance to the Corinth Canal and arrived off the canal entrance at 1220 calling them on VHF. We had to wait an hour steaming up and down. It was a delightful, sunny run through the high banks of the Corinth Canal, three and a half miles long. We stopped to fill out the inevitable sheaves of paperwork and pay the canal authorities at the eastern end, then off to the Olympic Marina at Piraeus, where we arrived after a calm and sunny 33 miles among numerous anchored ships waiting for cargoes. The girls went ashore to reconnoitre and I to the marina office to deal with the inevitable blizzard of paperwork and pay for two nights alongside. The marina presented us with a bottle of Greek brandy, another of Ouzo and some yachting magazines, all in a neat basket to welcome us. Meanwhile the shore party reported squalor with graffiti, rubbish blowing about and a lot of small, crude shelters full of what appeared to be Rumanian Gypsies. We decided to eat on board and Marilyn cooked up scrambled eggs, fried chunks of ham and new potatoes with a tomato and feta cheese salad on the side.

    Tuesday May 29th dawned grey and cool. After fixing the engine room bilge pump I was ready and we all went ashore. We got the security man to call two taxies and visited the Acropolis and the Parthenon. In spite of the state of the Greek economy there is a lot of restoration work going on. Then to lunch at a family restaurant with an undecipherable name. We had sardines, calamari, grilled prawns, salad and some beautiful little white fish fillets in a mixture of olive oil and lemon, all washed down with good, Greek wine and their home-made liqueur. Marilyn and Patrice, being of a cultural bent, went off to the museum; the rest of us back to the boat.

    A quiet afternoon on board, Malcolm varnishing and me writing up the log and having an hour's sleep. Early to bed, although a slightly disturbed night with loud rap music from car boom-boxes and much revving of motor bikes outside the perimeter fence until 0300 in the morning.

    The next day dawned fine and cloudless with light breezes from the west. The police, who were due to appear at eight had not turned up to stamp our papers by ten to nine, so we dispensed with their assistance and sailed for Batsi in Andros Island.

    The wind stayed light, the sun stayed out and we arrived in Batsi at three pm after an uneventful voyage. We had to lay out an anchor ahead which was a bit unexpected and when we berthed on the smart, new breakwater we discovered that there was plenty of fresh water but the electric sockets were not working due to a very bad storm they had a few months ago. On went the trusty generator. An old chap in a fluorescent jacket seemed to be in charge and issued numerous orders. He muttered something about giving him money, so I gave him twenty Euros and won a friend for life. All went ashore for shopping (girls), internet (Patrice) and a drink (Malcolm and me).

    The next two boats were manned by professors of philosophy, theology and archaeology and their students from the University of San Diego. They had commandeered the five hire cars in the village to visit an archaeological dig about thirty kilometres away. We had dinner ashore at a restaurant run by an American / Greek lady who had moved back from New Jersey twenty-three years before. Calamari followed by special roast lamb cooked in aluminium foil. All was at peace in the little bay with lights twinkling from the houses on the surrounding hills.

    The next morning started slowly; hot and sunny with light winds. Marilyn and Andrea collected some extra provisions, Patrice went off to the Wi-Fi café to continue his work on marketing medical products and Malcolm and I launched the RIB and gave it a run. Andrea and Marilyn went off in a pre-arranged taxi to visit Andros Town and at eleven am the fuel tanker turned up and gave us a quick three hundred litres in each tank. Malcolm and I went off for a long lunch of a shared Caesar salad followed by a shared pizza and copious glasses of local, red wine. We came back to Cape Farewell in a mellow mood ready for an afternoon sleep to be faced by a very hesitant Andrea reporting that Marilyn had, yet again blocked the guest head. Malcolm and I fixed it, showered and had a slightly belated afternoon sleep. That evening Malcolm took the girls out for a long tour of the bay and coastline of Batsi and then we hoisted the RIB.

    We left Batsi at seven the next day for the 100-mile run to Mandraki. It was flat clam and sunny without a cloud in the sky, and twice we were accompanied by pods of dolphins. We were approaching the harbour on the south side of Mandraki Island when some discoloured water with a green fishing buoy in the middle appeared ahead and the echo sounder indicated rapidly shoaling water. I slowed down and turned ninety degrees to port, and worked our way around what was obviously a very shallow patch. When we were safely round and on course again we discovered that the shoal was shown on the Imray chart, but only as a very small mark on the plotter when on a very large scale. Lesson learned – always consult the paper chart as well as the plotter.

    The abandoned marina at Mandraki was disappointing. We berthed and were greeted by a young policeman instructing us to bring all our papers to his office up the road by the maritime college sometime after six that evening. We discovered that there was neither electricity nor water available on the dock; as they say in the RN, ' Fitted for but not with.' The policeman redeemed himself by giving me a lift on his scooter to his office which must have been an interesting sight for the bystanders.

    The town was run-down, dusty and fly-blown with some graffiti and weeds growing between the concrete slabs. The marina had been started but not finished. There was no charge for the night's berthing but we were back to running the generator for long periods. We ate ashore in an open-sided dining space, surrounded by thin, hopeful cats. The proprietor was kind and attentive although a serial, roll-your-own smoker. Various shabby middle-aged locals plus the host's wife and daughter sat around sipping coffee and smoking. The food was roast lamb chopped up into splintery ribs plus calamari and salad.

    The next day we sailed the twelve miles to Cesme Marina without properly clearing out of Greece. It was a public holiday and I had visions of being asked to wait for a couple of days until a customs man came back on duty. We were soon in Turkish waters and hoisted our red Turkish courtesy ensign replacing Greek one. We berthed alongside at ten fifteen in our reserved berth. Then the paper chase began. First to pay the balance of the annual berth fee and then to the harbour master to get the transit log filled out. Then to the doctor to get the stamp assuring the world that we were free of plague, then we all had to troop up to the port police and customs to get entered officially into Turkey and get our visas and passports stamped.

    That evening the marina held a barbecue on the terrace to celebrate its second birthday. Our crew all dressed up and socialised. The food and wine were excellent and there was a continual procession of smartly dressed, happily chattering people, young and old, through the very stylish shops and restaurants that fringed the marina. The pontoon lights shone violet, white and red and all the shop windows were lit up. The harbour was full of yachts, big and small and it looked more like Nice or Antibes than an outpost of Asia. It made an interesting contrast with the clapped-out and destitute Greek port that we had left only that morning and which was just twelve miles to the north.

    $200 Per Hour Opening Cars — How To Become A Lockout Specialist

    If you haven’t yet locked your keys inside your car, you will someday. The odds are heavily against you, because this is one of the most common slip-ups to haunt the civilized world. Personally I’ve done it no less than ten times myself over a period of, say, twenty years…and I’m a Locksmith!

    Now, how can you turn this into a benefit?

    If you happen to be looking for a high profit, super interesting career you could do a lot worse than to consider becoming a Lockout Specialist. I know whereof I speak, because as a working Locksmith since 1983 I’ve opened (literally) countless vehicles and I’ve had many instances where I made upwards of $200 per hour over several hours at a time. I can recall one incredible day in which I serviced twenty-three lockouts, at an average price of $40 and an average labor time of 10 minutes per vehicle — for most of a day. This was near Christmas in 1995, in Salt Lake City, Utah. I was self-employed and doing very well as a full service Locksmith, but the bulk of my business during Holidays has always been in the form of lockouts.

    It is important to make a distinction here, to avoid confusion. I am not proposing that you will make that kind of money day after day. There will be average days, and there will be busy days. But if you set up a business, in a fairly large city or base yourself at least near one, you stand to make unconscionably easy money once you get settled in and your business becomes visible. Opening locked cars is as easy a profession as ever has been conceived. It takes some skill, of course, and you will have to do some studying before you break out the lockout tools and advertise yourself — but compared to many other professions it just can’t be beat for simplicity. You will also have to do some homework with respect to legality. Some states require Lockout Specialists to be registered Locksmiths, but most do not! This is something you have to determine before you take another step.

    If you find that you are living in a jurisdiction that requires registering, it is not that difficult to do. You will have to gain a wider knowledge of Locksmithing, but this certainly is not a detriment as it will likely lead to a fantastic career that goes well beyond opening locked mini-vans. If on the other hand you are fortunate enough to be living in an area in which Lockout Specialists can be licensed without having to be full-fledged Locksmiths, the path to a cushy career sprawls before you.

    I started my business in Salt Lake City when I was 37 years of age. Up until then I had never so much as dreamt of being involved with locks, car openings or keys. I was in dire straights, having just lost most everything I owned through a business failure that occurred as collateral damage from a divorce. Someone suggested I go door to door and sell “door viewers” — those little peepholes people put in their front doors. This actually worked well, but only because at that time I had no bills (everything got disposed of). After a while I was being asked to install locks. I started doing that and was buying deadbolts at a local Locksmith shop one day when the guy behind the counter, who by then had gotten to know me, suggested I start a Locksmith business. I thought he was kidding me, seriously. But he told me that Locksmiths make incredible profit from most everything they do, especially doing lockouts. He sold me a few tools — which in Utah is perfectly legal (or was at that time at least) — and also a small book on opening cars.

    That was a turning point in my life. I went on, within six months, to taking on small Locksmith jobs and teaching myself. I put a small ad in the Yellow Pages, hoping against hope I wouldn’t go bust in the first few months because those ads can’t be canceled, and I soon realized there was enough business out there that I was opening cars almost every day. I got better at it the more I did it (there were nightmare jobs in which it took me hours to open a single car, but that was in the very early days). Eventually the calls started coming in quite regularly and I started making good money, doing something I enjoyed. The feeling of helping others who really need your specialized service is a great one, and knowing you are working for yourself and no one else is beyond description.

    I had to do all this without a road map. There was nothing available to beginners in those days, not like there is today. The explosion of information that is the Internet has made all the difference. I wish back in 1983 I’d had the advantages available to career seekers today. There are many self-help manuals and DVD courses now that can teach you to set up a Lockout Specialist business, or a full-fledged Locksmith business. The prices are surprisingly affordable, and the information in at least some of them is staggering. In many cases, you can actually earn certification by purchasing one of these courses.

    It is worth considering if you like the idea of working for ten minutes, assisting a motorist in need, and putting up to $50 or $60 dollars in your pocket for your trouble.