How to Prepare a House to Sell

By properly preparing your house to sell you could potentially add thousands of dollars to the end sale price of your house. As well as increasing your profit you will also likely speed up the process of selling your house. Most buyers looking for a house are driven by emotion in their quest to buy a house. Even most investors will buy a property based on the way the feel about the property rather than the actual numbers involved.

With this is mind, selling your house can be a simple, easy process provided that you present your house in the best possible light. There are several factors that will have a large impact on the saleability of your house such as price and general market conditions, but let's focus on the main areas that you can work on and around your house that will improve the saleability of your house.

Prepare a House to Sell:

House to Sell Tip # 1: General Clean Up
– Wash down the outside of the house
– Wash windows
– Mow lawns
– Pressure clean paths and driveways
– Cut back trees and hedges

– Reduce clutter in all rooms (put unnecessary items in the garage)
– Wash down walls and ceiling
– Remove cobwebs
– Wipe dust from shelves and cabinets
– Vacuum / Dry clean carpets
– Clean flooring (tiles, lino, timber etc)
– Clean kitchen cupboards, bench top and splashback
– Clean windows & wash curtains
– Re-organize layout of furniture to a more open-plan
– Clean light fittings and ceiling fans
– Add colorful pot plants in each room
– Allow light to enter each room easily
– Repair any damage to internal walls or ceiling

House to Sell Tip # 2: Cost Effective, Easy Ways to Improve the Outside of Your Home:
– Plant new trees and / or small plants or flowers (add color)
– Repair & paint fence
– Repaint the property or pressure-clean brick houses
– Repaint guttering
– Repaint window frames
– Repaint carports and garages
– Replace old garden furniture
– Add 'borders' to garden beds using rocks etc
– Install a new letterbox
– Create an entertaining area using paving and planter boxes

House to Sell Tip # 3: Cost Effective, Easy Ways to Improve the Inside of Your Home:
– Update light fittings
– Re-polish floors / replace carpet, lino, tiles
– Re-paint walls, ceiling, skirting and architraves
– Replace curtains, blinds etc
– Have pot puree in each room to improve the smell of the house
– Hang new wall prints in each room
– Install a new front door
– Repaint all internal doors
– Replace door handles through the house
– Replace furniture (cheap furniture from Ikea can be used to improve the presentation immensely)

Most of the tips listed above can be done even on a modest budget and can be completed in a weekend or two. Even spending $ 500 can bring you an extra five or ten thousand dollars at sale time. Once you've made some small changes, you'll be amazed at the difference they make!

How Many Stair Stringers Do I Use?

I get asked this question a lot, how many stair stringers do I use when building a set of stairs? These questions are actually easy to answer and with a little bit of common sense and the ability to read a tape measure effectively, I should be able to give you a clear explanation that will provide you with the answers that you are looking for.

It’s common in the construction industry for roof rafters and floor joist to be 16 inches on center and we can also use this measurement while building a new set of stairs and figuring out how many stringers we actually need to use.

If you have a stairway that’s 48 inches wide and you divide your 16 inch on center measurement into 48 inches, you will find that you need to use for stair stringers. If you’re stairway is between 30 and 36 inches you will need three stair stringers.

How many stair stringers you actually need will also be determined by the thickness of your stair treads. If you’re going to use a 4 x 12 stair tread, there’s a good chance that you would only need one stair stringer at each end of the stairs, if you’re stairway is less than 40 inches wide.

If you’re going to use 2 x 12 stair treads, you could space your stringers 24 inches on center. The thickness of the stair tread will affect the amount of stair stringers you actually need, but you can’t go wrong with the original 16 inch on center measurement, unless you’re going to be using stair treads that are less than 1 inch thick.

Always check with a building professional first, before building your stairway to verify the amount of stair stringers you will actually need. This article is only meant to give someone a general idea but cannot be used in every situation effectively.

Stairways And Feng Shui

If you are looking for a new home, you may be thinking of the usual aspects of feng shui when evaluating potential homes – the shape of the home, where the various rooms are located, the prominence of your front door and entryway etc. However, one element that people often overlook is the stairway.

What does a stairway have to do with feng shui? Well, stairways are conduits of energy – that is, the energy you have created inside your living space travels along stairways. You will want to try to avoid homes with a couple of different stairway scenarios:

First, try to avoid homes that have stairways opposite the front door. In this scenario, the positive energy within your home will be flowing right out your front door, which can create a draining feeling in your home.

Second, a home with a spiral staircase can create energy challenges in a home. Energy moves along a spiral staircase in corkscrew fashion – this translates to a feeling of chaos in your living space.

However, if you find a home you like that has either of these features, all is not lost. There are ways that you can deal with either of these situations. If you have a staircase opposite a front door, you can place a mirror on the inside of your front door – a bagua mirror (an octagonal mirror with a painted frame) works especially well for this. A mirror will help to reflect the energy and keep it from flowing out of your home. You can also hang a crystal at the top of the stairs, which will help to retain the positive energy and keep it from flowing down the stairway.

If you are looking at a home with a spiral staircase, you can also use a hanging crystal to help calm the energy in this space. Also, try placing potted plants underneath the staircase – this will bring in the grounding element of earth and help to make the energy in that area more peaceful.

So while you do not have to let a challenging stairway situation keep you from buying a particular home, it is a good idea to keep feng shui solutions for this in mind while you are shopping for your next home, so that you will be able to deal with a stairway challenge if you find that a home is otherwise perfect for you.

FEEL FREE TO USE THIS ARTICLE! And, if you do, include this statement:

Many Kinds of Scaffolding

If you're ready to do some construction or repair work in high places, then you will need to purchase something that will get and keep you there safely. Scaffolding is what you most likely will need. There are many different kinds of scaffolds and, before you buy, you should take a look at what's out there for you.

Scaffolds are made to support you and your workers, along with building and repair materials, while you are doing your work. Frames and planks are connected together with couplers to make up a scaffold. There are many different types of frameworks that can be designed, depending on what you need.

Scaffolds need to be set up so that they are safe. It is mandatory that if you or your workers will be working up high – more than 12 feet – then adequate training and certification must be done. Scaffolds can be dangerous if certain safety procedures are not followed. They need to be constructed correctly, away from power lines, so that they do not collapse from too much weight or from objects falling on them from above.

One advantage of using a scaffold for high construction work is that they can be built to adhere to your building's contours. A scaffold can be designed in almost any shape desired if specifications are provided ahead of time. There are basically five different types of scaffolds that are used today: Independent (birdcage), single pole, cantilever, hanging bracket and swingstage. Each has its own unique features.

An independent scaffold has several vertical poles (standards) that are connected together by ledgers. It is generally used for work on one level only. A single pole scaffold has only one row of poles and its support depends on the structure that it is placed up against. Cantilever scaffolds are supported by the adjacent structure and attached at one end only. A hanging bracket scaffold has a complex framework with horizontal components supported by the floors inside the adjacent building. Finally, a swingstage scaffolding has a platform that is suspended and can be raised and lowered. These are the most common types of scaffolds and other designs can be customized per your specifications.

Laminate Tile Flooring

Laminate tile flooring is one of the best methods of flooring. It is innovative, easy and cost effective. The idea of laminate tile flooring was popularized in Europe. They are available in different varieties and are inexpensive, attractive and durable. They are scratch resistant and do not cost much to maintain. Laminate tile floors are used in both commercial and household applications.

Laminate tiles are very easy to install. The panels simply click together. They usually rest on top of a floating installation. All laminate floors are made the same way. The top wear layer consists of cellulose paper mixed with clear melamine resins. Below this lies the design layer. This design layer is a photo or pattern printed on paper and strengthened with resins. The core is usually made of durable fiberboard.

Laminate flooring is the most popular flooring being sold today. Laminate floors are durable and come in attractive designs. Laminate tiles usually mimic other kinds of flooring, such as ceramic tiles, wood or stone flooring. They can be either individual squares or larger squares with imitation grout joints. Like planks, they’re fitted tongue-to-groove.

Most laminates come in tiles 7″ to 8″ wide and approximately 4′ long. Due to the nature of the tiles, manufacturers have focused their styling to reflect the shape of the tile. These include grout lines in some cases. Laminate floors are sold in packages of 15 to 36, but are typically retailed by square foot pricing. Most laminate tile floorings have warranties ranging form 10 to 25 years but new products are starting to introduce lifetime warranties. Several products on the market are also offering water or moisture warranties. Laminate tiles can be installed with or without glue. This depends upon the variety that is chosen. A buyer can either do it himself or hire the services of a professional.

The Fascination of Japanese Lacquer Inro and Boxes

Antique Japanese lacquer inro and boxes are such incredibly beautiful works of art, particularly, pieces from the late 18th and early 19th century. I consider many of them to rate very highly, among the finest treasures of the World!

Without I hope being too technical, my intention is to use and to explain the terms and names, that are most commonly in use. This way readers who might be tempted to look at sale catalogs, will be more able to appreciate and understand the descriptions.

Inro Fashion
With the introduction of the kimono, the inro became one of the most important and essential fashion accessories used to carry on ones person such items as ink seals and medicines.

The kimono had no pockets so the inro was a clever container, consisting of a number of interlocking small separate sections, all held together on a silk cord and worn hanging from the sash tied at the waist. Soon it evolved from a purely functional item to one of very high fashion, and the designs and decoration gradually became richer, finer and even more lavish.

Netsuke, Ojime and Inro
A bead known as an 'Ojime' kept the various sections closed tight together. A toggle normally a small wood or ivory carving known as a 'Netsuke' would also be threaded on to the silk cord. The netsuke (these are such superb little sculptures) would have been pushed up under the sash (known as the 'Obi') that was tied round the waist, and would thus hold the inro hanging below.

The silk cord would have had to be about 56 inches long, and was threaded in such a way, that about 3 to 4 inches of the cord would show below the 'Obi' to the 'Ojime' and 'Inro'. Are you still with me? Under the inro a many-looped special bow was formed, with normally six loops all of the same size. There would only be one knot and this would be hidden in the larger of the two cord holes, within the Japanese netsuke. No loose ends would be visible.

Sometimes a 'Manju' would be used instead of the netsuke. These are rather like a thick pocket watch shaped carving, comprising two sections that open up. The lower piece has a central hole, and an eyelet for the cord is fixed inside the upper section. Once attached to the cord, the knot would remain hidden inside but unlike the netsuke, the carving or decoration of a manju is only two-dimensional.

The earliest 'Ojime' were simply a drilled bead, often of coral, as they had faith in a superstition that coral would disintegrate if near to poison. Quite valuable to them, if only it had been true, as they carried and took some very strange medicines. Later semiprecious stones and ivory were used, some of them are beautifully carved, and there are also many very fine metal ojime. Today collectors even specialize in just ojime and they have become quite valuable. I do think it is rather a shame that so many of these items are now grouped separately, when they really all belong together.

For many years there have been Japanese netsuke collectors, and I can appreciate why, as they are complete artwork, as well as being wonderful handling pieces. Anyway, so many netsuke collectors given time find they are temped by inro too! I always considered myself to be rather a specialist collector, but I would not be happy to own inro, without an ojime or netsuke, as they would seem so incomplete! I could not imagine being satisfied with only collecting the ojime, as beautiful as some of them are. Obviously these high prices have been the main reason for such specialization!

Keeping Lacquer
Great care needs to be taken when handling lacquer, as it can so easily be damaged by knocks. The most common cause occurs when the inro is picked up, for if the netsuke is allowed to swing and bump into the inro, the lacquer will dent and chip.

One should always try to hold the silk cord when inspecting inro, rather than finger the lacquer, as there is something in our perspiration that dulls the shine in time.

All lacquer is best kept in a reasonably humid atmosphere avoiding sudden changes of temperature. This is not so difficult to arrange in this country, it is simply a matter of keeping a bowl of water in the same cabinet and avoiding the use of any hot spot lights.

Lacquer Boxes
Most of the early 'Boxes' or 'Kogo' were made to keep things in, such as Suzuribako, these were fully fitted writing boxes that contained the ink block, water dropper, all the brushes and tools. Some were fitted with all the requirements for pastimes such as the Incense Game or the Shell Game, while others were designed as Picnic Sets.

A lot of Japanese lacquer boxes were used as a means of packaging, for deliveries of documents, or sweet cakes and gifts.

The practice used to be that once filled with gifts, they were then simply wrapped in a material that was formed into a sack. This was then transported, over the shoulder, by the messenger and delivered. The recipient would later have all the boxes returned, usually with a note and something little in them, as a gift to say Thank you, and so these boxes would be used over and over again.

They are all beautifully decorated and it is surprising to us that these boxes were not, in those days, considered more valuable.

The Designs
Nearly all the designs were taken from early classical literature, paintings or woodblocks. Printed picture books had become very popular in the 17th century. They hardly ever had any text, but many of the illustrations were copied and used by lacquer artists, in the same way as other craftsmen had done, such as enamellers, potters and metal workers. This is why we find various popular scenes recording in inro, such as the young herdsman playing the flute next to his resting ox, and Rosei's dream is another subject frequently found.

The photograph (To see the photographs please click on the link at the end of this article) of an inro depicting Rosei's dream is a very fine example: it shows him partly hidden by his fan that that is inlaid with a very thin piece of iridescent shell . At certain angles of light his face can clearly be seen. On the reverse, in superbly fine gold work, is the subject of his dream. He is dreaming of his ride in a fairly court procession. This inro is Signed Komo Kyuhaku.

Together with this inro is a lacquer Ojime, and a wood netsuke, carved as a kneeling man with a dagger. This intriguing netsuke is signed Minko. By pulling gently on the sheath, the steel blade comes into view, creating quite an effective illusion.

I must apologise, as the silk cord is not tied in the correct fashion in both of the inro photographed – one day I will have to put this right!

Compositions in general favored nature, animals, flowers, birds, insects, Mount Fuji, every day life, myths and legends. The first western visitors also fascinated the Japanese. The Portuguese were the first to arrive in 1542, followed soon by the Dutch, and all the arts were greatly influenced from the mid 16th century onwards. Dutchmen in particular are featured quite frequently in a wide range of Oriental art.

Amazing Skills
Many of the new Japanese techniques and most of the superb designs were originally to be found on the 14th and 15th century boxes. The skills and control in decoration that were developed in the 18th and early 19th century, were based both on these earlier techniques and designs, but this was a period where new peaks were reached and breathtakingly beautiful lacquer works have been created.

Several craftsmen were involved in the making of an inro. First the very thin wood base would have been painstakingly made, with carefully selected wood, where all the knots had to be avoided. Conifers were preferred as this wood contained very little resin.

It would then have been handed to the next craftsman, a specialist at applying the numerous base layers of lacquer. Each layer would be extremely thin, and gradually finer and finer quality lacquer was used, at least 30 layers were applied, so that no trace of the wood inside could any longer be visible. Only at this stage would the lacquer artist responsible to design and create the many layers of decoration begin.

What does seem amazing to me, when one considers how the wood base was made, was the fact that they would have had to make allowances for the thickness of all these layers. Yet the Inro sections fit and slot into each other so perfectly, that one can hardly see any of the dividing lines once closed.

The Decoration
Often two artists would collaborate to decorate an inro, one lacquer artist, the other could be a metal worker or even a netsuke carver, providing wonderfully worked items, that would be inlaid in the lacquer. Various materials have been used in this way such as precious metals, pottery, ivory, shell, horn and many others. Incidentally, there had to be very close collaboration, for each time an inlay in the design overlapped more than one section, it had to be made in two pieces to allow the inro to open. Such inro often have two signatures as both of the artists would sign.

The superb gold inro photographed is decorated with exquisitely applied metal work, the scene being of an outside stage with two actors. One is an archer, about to fire his bow at the other on the reverse, who is crouching down protecting a monkey.

The face of the archer, although mostly viewed in profile, surprisingly, has his full-face details if viewed from the side.

The remarkable metal work extends over three of the Inro sections. In this particular case, both the Lacquer and the metal work were by the same artist and it is signed Noriyuki. (See the photograph by using the link at the end of this article).

This inro has an attractive metal Ojime, and a good Ivory Netsuke, of two musicians. The Netsuke is signed Harumin.

The Artists
Signatures however, are not always a sure way of knowing who did the work. Often the signature was placed in honor, not as a forgery, of a great artist who brought the design such as the top early artists Ritsuo and Korin. Many very fine lacquer works were not signed at all. Pieces that were commissioned by the Shogun or Daimyo, where only the highest standards were acceptable, would not normally be signed, no matter how important the artist.

In 1868 the Meiji restoration meant the loss of such patrons, and Japan had opened up to the west. This meant that artists had to try to appeal to new clients, with an unknown Western taste. Thank goodness, they were not prepared however, to give up certain of their traditional designs and techniques.

Family names passed down from one generation to another; the name of a particularly accredited artist would be signed by all the following generations. They would also have non related students, who would be encouraged to use the same name, on work of a high enough standard, that is, until they were sufficiently proficient to become independent. One such family name was Koma, where the later very famous 19th century artist, Shibata Zeshin was taught.

There is a wonderful display of Japanese inro by Zeshin at the V & A Museum, of a collection based on the twelve months of the year, which is well worth a visit. Each piece is superb, and a large variety of techniques can be seen all in one place!

The Great Schools
The finest artists were all talented members of schools, often under the supervision of a master, such as Koma and Kajikawa, and these two schools produced high quality Lacquer for over two hundred years. Other schools have become known for their special techniques. One is Somada that specialized in very fine Shell inlay; another is Shibayama who worked with more thickly encrusted materials such as shell, ivory, soapstone, pottery and many other materials. There was also Tsuishu Yosei who brilliantly carved red lacquer, but the Shiomi Masanari School favored the most difficult technique of all, known as Togadashi where the surface is kept perfectly flat.

Superb quality Lacquer work was not restricted to Inro, but there are also some magnificent boxes that were used, such as 'Bunko' for documents, 'Fubako' for letters and 'Kogo' incense boxes, originally used for cosmetics. Some of these boxes also have a fitted tray, and sometimes a set of smaller boxes, that all fit perfectly inside. Many of these items including the already described writing, games and picnic boxes as well as pieces of furniture, can all be found just as finely decorated as inro.

The little kogo photographed is signed Kosentie and so beautifully decorated on the cover and sides, with continuous scenes of bamboo growing coupled a running stream. The fitted tray has a similar scene and every other part is covered in tiny gold pieces, each placed by hand individually. So much richer a finish is achieved, than the more usual 'Nashiji', where fine gold is carefully sprinkled on! (See the photograph by using the link at the end of this article).

If you have a good eye for composition the appreciation of lacquer work is hard to resist. On inro they have very ingenious methods of design to make one wish to see the other side, such as the use of a rope that mysteriously disappears round the side, or a scroll that flows round the inro.

When we began collecting, we were simply only buying pieces that we instinctively liked, and we have had no regrets. There is so much to learn however, once one becomes interested, especially these days when modern inro are being manufactured to a very high standard. Having seen the work of Unryuan, a very good artist born in 1952, his inro command nearly as much as the antique works. So many inro these days have been very cleverly repaired and now that so much money is involved a lot of care when buying is needed.

I do hope that there will always be private collections and that lacquer will not be confined to Museums, as it is such a fascinating hobby!

An Energy Efficient Air Conditioner Makes Cents

If you're in the market for a high efficiency air conditioner, you need to know a little bit about the rating scale for energy efficiency to help you discern a good investment from a disaster one. The efficiency rating for air conditioners is known as the SEER rating. SEER stands for Seasonal Energy Efficiency Ratio and it's the ratio of cooling produced to energy used. A high SEER score means a highly efficient AC unit.

A new AC unit can have SEER ratings anywhere from 13 to 23, while older models generally have a SEER rating of 10 or under. If you invest in a new air conditioning system, you can save anywhere from 10 to 70% on your utility bill. So, should you splurge on a top of the line AC unit or settle for a cheaper model?

Climate, home size and seasonal duration all have a major impact on the air conditioner that's right for you. If you live in Hawaii, where the weather is perfect year round and trade winds keep homes from getting stuffy, investing in a top of the line SEER rated unit may not get the return on investment you're hiring for. On the other hand, if you live in the south, where much of the year the weather is hot and humid, paying a higher price up front for your AC unit will be well worth it.

Obviously, when you're choosing an air conditioner, the higher the SEER rating, the higher the price tag will be. The SEER rating is usually shown on an EnergyGuide sticker attached to the unit. If you're struggling with whether or not you should splurge initially or save money up front on a unit with a lower SEER rating, consider this. A high efficiency air conditioner will pay for itself several times over in utility savings during its lifetime.

Just how much money can you save by upgrading your air conditioner? Let's say you owned a 1970's era air conditioning system with a SEER rating of 8. If you upgrade to a new, efficient model with a SEER rating of 16, you'll cut your energy bill in half each month. Even if you live in an area with short and mild summers, upgrading your old air conditioner can pay for itself.

If you're in the market for a new air conditioner, or you're sick of setting aside a chunk of each paycheck to the utility company, consider investing in an energy efficient AC unit. You'll end up saving money each month by cooling your home more efficiently, keeping you and your wallet comfortable this summer.

10 Proven Ways to Make Money With Your Own Blog

A number of people own blogs but they do not know how to make money out of them. This is mainly because they do not realize how to create attention and attraction for prospective clients to fund their blogs. A well planned and managed blog can actually offer you freedom and control over your financial future. With an effective follow-up of promises of certain blogs and following ‘how-to’ manuals, you can actually smile all the way to the bank. On that note, in the following discussion, we are going to look at 10 proven ways to make money with your own blog.

1. Google AdSense

Google AdSense is a very significant tool that was designed with blog and website publishers in mind. Google AdSense works with Cost Per Click (CPC) and Earning Per Click (EPC). Blog publishers will basically get paid for clicks on Ads that appear on their sites. Anyone who has created, and maintains his blogs, can essentially take advantage of this fantastic opportunity. If you really know how to use the tool to your advantage, you can generate a great deal of revenue.

2. Amazon Associates

Amazon associates is majorly an affiliate system of a program primarily involving an agreement between the advertiser (you) and the retailer (Amazon). The advertiser markets the involved and he is paid by the retailer based on an agreement. More importantly, the amazon associate will get some commission when an interested buyer clicks on a given link online and makes a purchase. If you can manage to market as many products links as possible in your blog and sell some Amazon products then it’s possible that you can indeed make good money on your blog.

3. eBooks

eBooks are basically books that are in a soft copy format and can be downloaded on an internet connection. There are a number of ways through which eBooks can be created. You can employ writers, write them yourself or even use a public domain content. There are always numerous ready buyers to buy your eBooks, regardless of your area of concentration. With your blog, you can actually be selling your eBooks and get money or you can opt to sell the eBooks for other writers and they will pay at a commission.

4. Sponsored Content

Sponsored content is generally a native advertising method through which brand-sponsored videos and articles appear on social media platforms and sites of influence and also publishers. When you have sponsored content, there are usually a number of things you need to keep in mind as you market it. Firstly, do a perfect timing for your content, tie the content with your targets audience, use high-quality content such images to add value to the content and keep the tone relatable and authentic. You can always find brand-sponsored articles from big brands and advertise it on your blog and through that, you can indeed raise a significant amount of money.

5. Contextual Ads

This is essentially a form of targeted advertising that features adverts that appear on websites, such as the content displayed on mobile devices’ browsers. In a nutshell, in contextual ads, the system displays ads that are closely related to the content of your site depending on the keyword targeting. With contextual ads, you are normally paid per number of clicks. If you can get a significant number of contextual ads displaying on your blog then you can actually earn relatively good money depending on the number of clicks.

6. Banner Ads

This is an advertisement that appears on a webpage in the form of a column, bar or box. The major function of a banner ad is to promote a brand or, even more importantly get visitors from the host site to advertise on its advertiser’s website. The major function of a banner is to add traffic to your site and through that, you can seal your marketing deal. The more the traffic to your blog, the better. High traffic means high income.

7. Online Courses

When talking about an online course it’s essentially a method of selling what you know. It can be your skill, or any form of art, such as teaching people how to play guitar, how to bake bread or how to use a specific software. With your blog, you can sell your online course very easily. The course can be learned by many people across the globe increasing traffic to your website. Through this, you are able to make a lot of money on your blog.

8. Promote Paid Webinar or Live Event

Promotion of paid webinar basically refers to promoting a web conference, online meeting or a presentation that is held online. Live events are always advantageous to both the attendees and presenters. One consideration when it comes to promoting live events is the target audience. Through the promotion of webinar paid events, you generate traffic to your blog hence ending up being paid by your advertiser.

9. Get Paid to Write Reviews

A number of brands hire people to write reviews about them and their products. In addition to that, you always have to be honest in proving both the positive and negative reviews. Importantly, through other freelancing platforms, you can also get jobs of writing reviews for different brands. This can actually earn you good money if you are consistent in your work. All you need is to equip yourself with the proper tips.

10. Consulting Service

Consulting services basically refer to professional practices that offer expert advice within a particular field. There are many areas where you can specialize and offer advice in as much as your blog is concerned. Making money through consultancy services starts by first inventing your experience and skills. With your skill and experience, you can always earn money per project basis. Use your blog to advertise you’re services and you will earn good money through consultancy.


With the above-discussed ways, it’s undoubtedly obvious to see ways that will earn good money from your blog. All you need is to manage, maintain and, take advantage of various opportunities to generate money from your blog.

Carpet Or Tile?

Keeping a home clean can at times be a major challenge. There is the dust to clean, furniture to clean, and the floor to vacuum. All of this can add up to hours of wasted time. But what if you could trim the time you spent cleaning your home by up to half? Think that notice is a bit farfetched? With tile flooring, it's not. Many homeowners are quickly discovering that tile flooring is the ideal alternative to carpet floors. Tile, unlike carpet, does not cling to hair, dirt, and other deposits left by family members or guests. This can make maintenance a breeze and provide you with plenty piece of mind, considering that you will not have to worry about people coming in and out with shoes in your home. Below we will be exploring some of the additional perks tile flooring has to offer over carpet flooring.

Allergies can be a troublesome problem when one has a carpeted home. Pollutants including pollen and dust make home in carpet fibers, where they can begin to wreak havoc on your allergies. Tile does not bond to pollutants like carpet does. This, in return can keep your allergies from acting up.

By going the tile route, homeowners can save a significant amount of money. Although tile might initially cost more, it will save you a significant amount of money in the long run. Tile, unlike carpeting, does not require constant vacuuming or steam cleaning. On a further note, tile does not need to be replaced every several years. It can last forever given that it's properly maintained.

Although tile does have a large number of perks, it does have its disadvantages. For one, family members may be uncomfortable walking barefoot over the cold surface. This can be remedied by having a tile heating system installed. Tile also has a tendency to make stains more appearance. Thus, whenever you encounter a fresh stain, be sure to quickly clean it.

Tile is a very ideal alternative to carpet flooring. In terms of maintenance, health, and finances, tile could not make any more sense.

How to Choose the Right Place to Live

Choosing a place to live is one of the most important decisions any individual, couple, or family will make in their lifetime. Choosing where to live may decide who ones spouse might or may choose which educational opportunities are available. Choosing where to live will dictate so many parts of ones life it is almost overwhelming. Here are some guidelines to help decide the perfect place for any wandering heart.

The first thing one must decide is big or small town. Both come with there benefits and costs. In a big city there are more jobs. Jobs are critical to choosing where to live. Outside of the city there are fewer jobs and usually those jobs do not pay very much. In the big city there are things to do for entertainment. Rock concerts tour large cities. Professional and college sports are often preformed in big cities. Fine arts are part of larger cities usually. Shopping centers and theme parks are closer to or are part of large cities. On the other side, small towns have a very cozy homey feel to them. Neighbors know each other and the community usually concerns much more. The pace is slower and the world does not always seem so fast moving. Property is a little cheaper and the standard of living is not as expensive.

The second thing one must debate between what kind of weather one wants to enjoy and suffer through. In Gilbert Arizona the winters are perfect. They are cool, comfortable and almost energizing. The summers are terrifyingly hot. The summers bake everything into a hot pulp. Granted there is air conditioning but there is little sitting on the back porch and enjoying the outdoors. In Salt Lake City Utah, just one state north, the summers are beautiful. They are cool at night and just right during the day. In the winter, they often have inversions that can last weeks blocking out the sun and causing some to have depression.

Next, each state is rated different for its education. Education is huge especially when it comes to those with families and have children that are going to be attending the public school system. Doing research on schools is pretty easy given technology and the internet.

Each location offers its own form of recreation. Gilbert Arizona has quick access to a huge dessert ideal for off-roading and four wheeling. Utah has a ton of reservoirs that are ideal for water skiing. California has coast line. These are all stereo types but the physical geography of each location plays a large role in what kind of freedom one might have access to.

Do not forget politics. In east Texas, any neighbor can talk to the next neighbor about hunting, fishing, guns, camping, conservatism, patriotism, and any other sort of rough and rugged redneck ideal. In Eugene, Oregon, that same patriot would not be so appreciated and find that the local politics do not seem to be too tolerant of their beliefs. Sometimes the local politics get discounted but in America, different regions have vastly different policies and can cause a sense of comfort or a sense of grief.

Learn How To Organize Your Garage With These Simple To Follow Tips

Has your garage turned into a glorified storage shed? Do you have it jam packed to the rafters with boxes and bins full of garage sale stuff, Holiday decorations, beach toys? Is it now out of the question to get a rake or shovel or maybe a edger when it's needed? Are your tools everywhere but where they should be?

Do you need to shove away unwanted junk just to get to the lawn mower? Do you dream of the day when you can once again park your car in the garage? If you answered yes to one of these questions, it's a good possibility you need to organize your garage.

Just think, if your garage was cleaned and organized you could actually park your car in it. You can go from your car to the house and stay dry in bad weather. You could do projects in your garage, you'll be able to find a tool when you need one. You can use your garage for what it was for, not just a large storage unit. Listed below are a few tips to help you reclaim your garage and make the most of it once again.

First, what do you plan on using the garage for? Is it to park your car / motorcycle or do plan on having a workshop? Do you need space for storing boxes, hobby stuff, exercise equipment. Do you need to store your lawn mower and garden tools, bikes, strollers, scooters, ride-on toys, sports equipment?

It's very helpful to write down the things you plan on using your garage for and the items you need to store there. Next, determine what area of ​​the garage should be used for that purpose as well as what types of items you want stored in the garage. Make a list of the tools and material you'll need. Such as, purchasing shelving, storage containers, bike racks, tool organizers, peg boards, hooks, etc.

You should completely empty your garage and sort through everything. By doing this, you'll see just how much stuff you have, what you want to keep and what you want to get rid of. Remember anything you no longer wants is something for a garage sale for some extra cash in your pocket. After you remove everything you should sweep it real good. You need a good completely clean area to work with.

Be sure to keep in mind the available space you have when you start organizing your garage. The walls and ceiling are great for hanging bikes and other sporting equipment, yard tools .. rakes, shovels, brooms etc. There are numerous varieties of shelving you could use from free standing to floating, organization grids, cabinet systems, hanging bin systems and hanging bike racks.

You should store your children's toys down low so it's easy to get them and to put them back. It can also be useful to put smaller items in system drawers. Another good idea is to put nuts, bolts, washers, screws, nails etc. in jars with labels. You can use buckets for loose tools and other small items.

If you can follow these simple tips you'll have a new place to park your car, you'll know where everything is, and one of the best parts is you'll have a garage sale and put some cash in your pocket. Oh yeah, I'll bet you're going to feel a total sense of accomplishment and pride each time you walk through your clean and organized garage.

How To Choose The Right Golf Putter

In golf, your putter is your power. After you’ve driven your golf ball as far as you can off the tee and chip it onto the green, it’s time to pull out the putter. This is where the feel for the club becomes so important, because you need to have a deft touch to caress the ball into the hole. Putters typically feature a very flat striking face, a bent shaft and non-circular grips that play a key role in getting the ball to the hole with confidence.

Since the putter is used during what can be considered the most important moments of a golf game, it is very important to choose the one that is going to give you the right swing. You’ll be using most often out of all of the clubs in your golf bag, so make sure to make your decision count. Here are the things you should look for when trying to find the right golf putter:

Design of the Head:

The head design you prefer is highly influenced by your signature stroke. There are three types of putter head design: blade, peripheral-weighted and mallet. If you have more of a straight putting stroke and consider yourself a precise player, a blade putter is your best choice. If you have intermediate skills, the peripheral-weighted putter features longer, thinner blades as well as additional weight in the heel to allow for a greater level of forgiveness for your stroke. If you are new to the game, a mallet putter contains a lot of alignment aids that assists with improving performance.

Balance Type:

If you have a straight-back-straight-through putting stroke, a face-balance putter is ideal for you due to its face that looks upward. If you have an arc in your putting stroke, a toe-balanced putting is the best choice for you.

Putter Face:

There are three types of putter faces: metal-faced, insert-faced and groove-faced. Metal-faced putters are best for players looking for a controlled feel. Insert-faced putters re-distribute the weight of the putter, allowing more forgiveness on the stroke.


The length of the putter plays a key role in determining the quality of consistency in your stroke. The minimum required length is 18 inches. Ideally, your arms should hang naturally when you are about to putt so that there is no strain. There are two legal shaft lengths: traditional and long. The most commonly used is traditional, which ranges from 32-26 inches in length. If you have the tendency of breaking your wrists through the stroke, an arm-lock putter is best for you.


The grip is the part of the putter that you touch, so it is important that it is comfortable for you. Putter grips can vary in thickness, shape, weight, length and materials. Firmer grips lessen the impact creating more feedback, while softer grips enhance rhythm and provide less feedback. A longer grip allows you more range of where you prefer to hold the putter, allowing you to distribute your weight according to what’s comfortable for your swing. Thicker grips, which are extremely popular, eliminating the influence of your finger and wrist which provides opportunity for a larger margin of error.

Brick Home – Understanding Its Advantages and Disadvantages

The most common dilemma that people are facing is choosing between investing in a wood house or a house made from bricks. The decision of the people will basically be based on their economic standing. However, sometimes people will miss looking at the many advantages of investing in a brick house because they are so consumed with their desire to cut down their expenses.

The advantages one can get from owning a brick house will also depend on there location. If you live in cold places, then a brick home can be best for you. The properties of the bricks absorb heat and retain it for a long time. More so if your house is placed where it can directly absorb the heat of the sun. And because heat travels slow in bricks, your house will remain warm even until night. Another good thing about this type of home is that you can be assured that you are well protected from storm. This can be a better option for people who live in areas where storm is a great threat. However, for those who are living in remote areas where there is a risk of erosion that can damage the bricks and there is a wide supply of wood, wood can be a more practical option.

Bricks can be a worthwhile investment. Its value does not depreciate and it can be sold at a much higher cost than the actual expense of building it. Thus you can sell the house at a much higher cost with less effort. But one disadvantage of using bricks for your house is that your options for renovation are very minimal. You can not just simply change the structure if you wish to because the bricks. Thus, a brick house will not be a very good idea if want you want is a semi permanent house. Also, for eco-friendly people woods can be more appealing. More so, wood is more affordable. Bricks can last fro almost two life times if installed properly. On the other hand, properly seasoned woods are also durable, though it is not termite free like bricks are.

Although bricks are really durable, but low quality bricks can also give you a lot of headaches. Bricks that are not properly made or those made from low quality materials may chip off or break easily. If you are unlucky to may have used this kind of bricks, you may be faced with a real headache. Another disadvantage of using bricks is it can be prone to molds especially if you are living in a humid climate.

You see, your location greatly affects the durability of the materials that you will use to build your home. Thus, it will be much better if you weigh the advantages and disadvantages of using bricks for your home fairly. Of course, you need to put in to consideration your geographical location in deciding. This will spare you from facing a lot of problems in the future.

How to Fix a Fascia Board to Roof Rafter

Fascia boards are located on the eaves. They are fixed on the edge of the roof structure at the lowest end. The eaves commences from the fascia to the building wall. The boards are usually made of timber but other materials like steel sheets, gypsum, glass or plastic are also used. he size of the board is from four inches to twelve inches wide. The thickness is one inch. The boards are chamfered at the bottom and cut straight at the top.

The fascia boards are fixed below the roof covers like tiles or iron sheets. Wrought timber is used for making fascia boards. The finishing is usually of gloss or oil paint in at least three coats. On multi story homes or buildings, it is important to fix them before laying the roof covers. This is to ensure that they are correctly aligned. The boards are used to carry the rain water gutters that are placed on the roof structure.

The fixing of fascia boards resignation after the roof structure is ready. A string is tied from the first rafter to the last for straightness. Since the rafters are pitched they are cut along the string line at ninety degrees. This ensures that the boards are fixed perpendicular to the wall and at ninety degrees upright. This also avoids the use of wedges behind the boards for alignment purposes. A forty five degree cut is made on the boards for jointing.

The fascia board is fixed to the rafters by nailing. The nails are done half way into the rafter. The boards are the adjusted for straightness and plumbness before finally hammering them all in. At the corners where a sloping verge board on a gable side and the fascia meets, the sloped board is cut at an angle of the pitched roof. This allows a smooth joint. When the boards are in place then the roof covers are done. Finishing is done using gloss paint.

Super Sensitive Clarity Spectrum Rosin For Violin and Viola – A Review

Violin rosin has been used to draw sound from the violin since the first instruments were carved from wood hundreds of years ago. Historically, rosin has been made from pine resin, a natural substance found in trees. Many different companies manufacture rosin, and each variety tends to have different characteristics that affect the sound – shading the tone towards bright or dark, and adding varying degrees of "grittiness" to the feel and sound. Further, choosing the "right" rosin is a large matter of personal preference. Although it functions well most of the time, pine resin does have some limitations – it can crystallize in the cold, damage the varnish on the violin if left to sit, and often cracks or even shatters rather easily. Also, pine resin is an allergen for some, and can cause sneezing and watery eyes during playing in susceptible people.

Supersensitive Clarity Rosin for Violin and Viola is the first synthetic rosin I have seen that is a viable replacement for pine resin. Formulated to by hypo-allergenic, it does not damage varnish. Further, it is not affected by humidity nor does it absorb moisture, which helps it keep its tackiness without cracking in all seasons. But, most importantly, this rosin actually works nicely – and, when played, seems indistinguishable from ordinary rosin (although its characteristics must be evaluated by the individual player). Using my setup, this rosin produced a smooth tone without much grit and nice clarity. However, every player has different preferences in feel and sound of rosin so no single brand is likely to suit every taste.

As a teacher, I have noticed that many of my youngger students enjoy handling and applying rosin to the bow, and so the fact that clarity rosin comes in colors (pink, red, blue, green, and purple) gives it a modern look that is especially appealing to youngsters. Also, young students are more likely to over-apply rosin and also not to wipe the instrument clean as frequently as necessary to prevent ordinary rosin from damaging the finish. Thus, this colorful rosin can also help extend the life of the instrument.

Although I have not found a synthetic substitute for horse hair (or for my wood violins for that matter) that functions as well as the original, this rosin does appear to be a viable substitute for pine resin, and one that adds a little fun and color into the mix as well.