Merits and Demerits of Equity Finance

Equity finance means the owner, own funds and finance. Usually small scale business such as partnerships and sole proprietorships are operated by their owner trough their own finance. Joint stock companies operate on the basis of equity shares, but their management is different from share holders and investors.

Merits of Equity Finance:

Following are the merits of equity finance:

(i) Permanent in Nature: Equity finance is permanent in nature. There is no need to repay it unless liquidation occur. Shares once sold remain in the market. If any share holder wants to sell those shares he can do so in the stock exchange where company is listed. However, this will not pose any liquidity problem for the company.

(ii) Solvency: Equity finance increases the solvency of the business. It also helps in increasing the financial standing. In times of need the share capital can be increased by inviting offers from the general public to subscribe for new shares. This will enable the company to successfully face the financial crisis.

(iii) Credit Worthiness: High equity finance increases credit worthiness. A business in which equity finance has high proportion can easily take loan from banks. In contrast to those companies which are under serious debt burden, no longer remain attractive for investors. Higher proportion of equity finance means that less money will be needed for payment of interest on loans and financial expenses, so much of the profit will be distributed among share holders.

(iv) No Interest: No interest is paid to any outsider in case of equity finance. This increases the net income of the business which can be used to expand the scale of operations.

(v) Motivation: As in equity finance all the profit remain with the owner, so it gives him motivation to work more hard. The sense of inspiration and care is greater in a business which is financed by owner’s own money. This keeps the businessman conscious and active to seek opportunities and earn profit.

(vi) No Danger of Insolvency: As there is no borrowed capital so no repayment have to be made in any strict lime schedule. This makes the entrepreneur free from financial worries and there is no danger of insolvency.

(vii) Liquidation: In case of winding up or liquidation there is no outsiders charge on the assets of the business. All the assets remain with the owner.

(viii) Increasing Capital: Joint Stock companies can increases both the issued and authorized capital after fulfilling certain legal requirements. So in times of need finance can be raised by selling extra shares.

(ix) Macro Level Advantages: Equity finance produces many social and macro level advantages. First it reduces the elements of interest in the economy. This makes people Tree of financial worries and panic. Secondly the growth of joint stock companies allows a great number of people to share in its profit without taking active part in its management. Thus people can use their savings to earn monetary rewards over a long time.

Demerits of Equity Finance:

Following are the demerits of equity finance:

(i) Decrease in Working Capital: If majority of funds of business are invested in fixed assets then business may feel shortage of working capital. This problem is common in small scale businesses. The owner has a fixed amount of capital to start with and major proportion of it is consumed by fixed assets. So less is left to meet current expenses of the business. In large scale business, financial mismanagement can also lead to similar problems.

(ii) Difficulties in Making Regular Payments: In case of equity finance the businessman may feel problems in making payments of regular and recurring nature. Sales revenues sometimes may fall due to seasonal factors. If sufficient funds are not available then there would be difficulties in meeting short term liabilities.

(iii) Higher Taxes: As no interest has to be paid to any outsider so taxable income of the business is greater. This results in higher incidence of taxes. Further there is double taxation in certain cases. In case of joint stock company the whole income is taxed prior to any appropriation. When dividends are paid then they are again taxed from the income of recipients.

(iv) Limited Expansion: Due to equity finance the businessman is not able to increase the scale of operations. Expansion of the business needs huge finance for establishing new plant and capturing more markets. Small scales businesses also do not have any professional guidance available to them to extend their market. There is a general tendency that owners try to keep their business in such a limit so that they can keep affective control over it. As business is financed by the owner himself so he is very much obsessed with chances of fraud and embezzlement. These factors hinder the expansion of business.

(v) Lack of Research and Development: In a business which is run solely on equity finance, there is lack of research and development. Research activities take a long time and huge finance is needed to reach a new product or design. These research activities are no doubt costly but eventually when their outcome is launched in market, huge revenues are gained. But problem arises that if owner uses his own capital to finance such long term research projects then he will be facing problem in meeting short term liabilities. This factor discourages investment in research projects in a business financed by equity.

(vi) Delay in Replacement: Businesses that run on equity finance, face problems at the time of modernization or replacement of the capital equipments when it wears out. The owner tries to use the current equipments as long as possible. Sometimes he may even ignore the deteriorating quality of the production and keeps on running old equipment.

How the Foreclosure Cleanup Industry Has Changed: A New Property Preservation Model

The field services industry, which is commonly referred to as the “property preservation”, “foreclosure cleanup” or “REO trashout” industry, has changed considerably over the years.

When the mortgage crisis and eventual housing fiasco first seized the real estate industry, a great number of smaller foreclosure contractors entered the market. Many of these micro companies performed assorted mortgage field services tasks for lenders, banks, financial institutions, REO conglomerates and asset management companies in hamlets and diverse regions across the United States of America.

A ton of larger, national entities were also part of the landscape that was fast becoming a burgeoning property preservation industry.

A great many of the larger entities such as those of Pemco, Sentinel, Cyprexx, Safeguard, Chronos Solutions (previously known as Matt Martin Real Estate Management), and a great number of similar companies, were direct, first hand components of HUD (“The United States Department of Housing and Urban Development”).

These larger companies hired smaller debris removal, cleaning and trash out services as subcontractors to handle duties such as lawn maintenance, property securing (boarding doors/windows), property inspecting, trash/debris removal, winterization and de-winterization jobs, repairs, lock changes, home maintenance, painting, carpet removal, gutter cleaning, pressure washing, tree removal and many similar property upkeep and maintenance duties.

Services were often performed on vacant houses, many of which mortgagees had walked away from after getting foreclosure letters from their mortgage companies.

Multiple Subbing Opportunities, Jobs and Contracts for REO Service Vendors

Contracts and work order requests were received in numbers, and many small companies had to rush to hire subcontractors to assist with the overflow.

As a result, these smaller contractors made a ton of money in the property preservation and foreclosure cleaning industry at the height of the mortgage crisis.

A Changing Property Preservation Industry

However, fast-forward five to seven years, and its evident the industry has changed, exponentially.

The New Trashout Business, Foreclosure Cleaning Services and REO Property Preservation Model

In recent years, foreclosure cleanup and trash-out services have not only begun to target new key customers and client bases, but they have also added a number of new very profitable mortgage and field services and inked new necessary policies and procedures that work specifically for their own services and businesses — regardless of who their companies may be aligned with or who they may be servicing as vendors and subcontractors and working for, whether it be on a local, national or regional level.

Concertina Doors – What Are They and How Do They Work?

Concertina doors are a general name used, in the UK and Australia particularly, for a type of door that does not open outwards or inwards by way of a hinge but rather folds vertically in one or more places, giving the appearance of a concertina, hence the name. Incidentally, this type of door is referred to as ‘harmonica doors’ in the US and elsewhere, which has mostly to do with what the musical instrument is known by in those countries.

A concertina door can be divided up into any number of vertical subdivisions, depending on the width of the door and the application. But a typical interior concertina door of standard width would have 7-10 vertical sections, although they can have as few as two. These are attached by some kind of pivot so that they fold (or ‘stack’) alternately inwards and outwards, much the same as if you took a piece of paper and folded it into strips, alternating first one way then the other, until you had, well, a concertina shape! Concertina doors are usually fixed at one end, and this fixed vertical strip is actually the only one which rotates out from the doorframe as a regular door would. The vertical section at the other end is the one which comes into contact with the other side of the doorframe and typically has some kind of catch or lock which allows it to be closed fully and stay put.

There also has to be some kind of mechanism for the doors to be able to slide easily open or closed – if you think about it, each section actually needs to slide freely left or right, as the ‘concertina’ is ‘squeezed’ open or closed. This part of the door can be the most crucial, as a cheap, poor mechanism will not open or close properly, and the door will constantly stick when used. Though this may seem trivial, it can become an intense irritation whereas a smoothly sliding mechanism will be a pleasure to use. If you see concertina doors for sale cheaply, be aware that this may be exactly where they have cut costs, and you may end up regretting having tried to save a few pennies.

Starting a Mobile Locksmith Business

One of the best decisions I ever made in my 62 years of life on this planet was to become my own boss in a field that is never dull, always challenging, and intrinsically interesting. It was not an early decision. In fact it did not occur to me to enter this field until after I’d already spent ten years as a professional photographer. It came about in an odd way, as many serendipitous things do. But regardless of how it came to be, I consider that decision the one that paved the way for me to spend the rest of my working life in comfort and with a good measure of security.

I’ve since discovered that many people follow a similar course, turning to locksmithing only after finding themselves unhappy in other jobs. I’m not sure how or why so many discover this particular business when looking for an interesting career. In my case it was a natural progression from a rather unique part-time career I had fashioned for myself: That of installing simple door viewers and doing this door to door. Many times my customers would ask if I could install deadbolts for them while I was at it, and after turning down money a dozen or so times I finally got wise and visited a local locksmith supplier who sold me an install kit and a book of instructions. From what I can tell, others come across this idea by doing Internet searches for home businesses, because ultimately this qualifies as such if you, like I do, run it out of your home and structure it as a Sole Proprietorship. In any case, it is obvious that locksmithing has become a popular choice for a chance at self-employment.

After tiring of door to door selling (which didn’t take long to do) I hit upon the idea of cold calling. I was still thinking too small, but at the time I didn’t know it. Lesson Number One: Don’t do this. I was doing it back in 1981 or so when the stigma attached to such endeavors wasn’t quite so strong. I’m afraid that calling people out of the phone book and asking if they’d like to have deadbolts installed just would not fly in the present era of terrorism and business rip-offs.

Still, I owe to this period of hard knocks a good deal. I became efficient at installing locks, rekeying locks, and duplicating keys. It was during this one year period that I scrounged together enough money to purchase a small key duplicator and also a lock rekeying kit. I carried these items in the trunk of my car and carried them into my customer’s home when needed. I also purchased several boxes of the most common domestic key blanks and by the time I’d accumulated all this stuff my car’s trunk was crammed and I was wishing for more room. Also, and most important, I came to realize that driving around in an unmarked car and working out of the trunk was not lending itself well to my credibility.

Lesson Number Two: Start out with credibility. Purchase a small work van, or a large one if you can afford it. Buy signs or have signs painted on it. Use whatever lending power you have, may it be with banks or with family, to locate a used vehicle and have signage made up, even if this is in the form of magnetic signs. Of course all this suggests you start out as a legitimate business, and this is just my point. Create a name for your business (think long and hard about this, as you’ll lose any credibility you might initially gain if you keep changing it), have signs and forms and letterheads made up, and dive in.

There is, too, the question of legality. This is a hard subject to field, because the legality of doing business from one jurisdiction to another can differ widely, and even wildly. It is incumbent upon you to do the research and determine whether or not your jurisdiction requires a locksmith be certified, bonded, and/or licensed. You’ll almost certainly discover that licensing is the fundamental hurdle, and that is usually taken care of with the signing of a few forms and the payment of a small annual fee. Certification is something else. Not all jurisdictions require this. In my case I found that the state in which I was then living — Utah — did not require it. Nor was I required to be bonded, though I chose to do so for the added protection (it is widely and incorrectly thought that bonding protects the locksmith’s customer, whereas in fact it is the locksmith that is protected by the bond).

Lesson Number Three: Do the homework required to determine if acquiring a business license is all that is needed to establish your locksmith service. One phone call to your state’s Attorney General office will likely answer that question.

Once you have lined up an affordable vehicle and put a reasonably professional sign on it, you must begin outfitting it. This should, and must, be done before you begin advertising your services because if you are like I was at this point you know next to nothing about the business and not much more about the work. We will endeavor at this point to educate ourselves. Locksmithing is in point of fact one of the few professions left in this world in which a formal education is absolutely UNnecessary. I have spoken to very few professionals during my career who got to be that way through going to a ‘locksmith school’ or a college. This is certainly not to say that a formal education isn’t desirable. If you can afford it, if you have the means, then by all means take that route. This article is for those of you who can’t.

The vehicle you purchase will in large part determine how it is to be equipped. I’ve always preferred a full-size van (I’ve owned Ford, Chevy and GMC models during my career), but there are many locksmiths who just love the Astro Van or Safari Van made by GM. These minivans are popular with many different professions and are ubiquitous. You can undoubtedly find one in your price range. Either way, the first order of business is to erect a work bench that will give you as much space as possible. Best to have the bench on one side of the van and leave the opposite side for shelves or storage bins. Make it sturdy! There is nothing worse than a wobbly bench when you’re trying to rekey locks. Make it level for the same reason.

You’ll need a power source. It is excusable to string extension cords until you can afford something better, but bear in mind that this detracts from your professionalism. The ultimate is probably having a RediLine Generator that runs off your van’s 12V power. This is not a power inverter, it is actually a generator and it kicks out 110-115V power. They are wonderful sources of AC power and you can even run a bank of fluorescent lamps off one of these for your interior shop lighting. There are several models to choose from with varying outputs, but they are expensive. If you can locate a rebuilt, so much the better. A good inverter might do the trick if you can’t afford a RediLine, but be careful. Some key machines (and you’re going to have to have one) will not run with an inverter.

Power now available, you need to start out with at least a key duplicator on your bench and preferably, as well, a good code cutting machine. The latter is desirable but not necessary in the beginning unless you plan to launch directly into automotive locksmithing, in which case you’ll find it hard to get along without one. We’ll touch on that in a moment. Key machines are almost impossible to find used. You’ll likely end up buying a small HPC Speedex because they’re pretty much the least expensive good key duplicator around. Expect to pay around $500. Best if you include this in your initial loan. A key duplicator is bread and butter for any locksmith, mobile or otherwise, so don’t even think about starting up until you have one.

Equip yourself with a good rekeying kit. I’ve always preferred ‘universal’ kits because they do the work of dozens of other keyway-specific kits and they are easy to use. LAB makes the best of these, hands down. If you have the space, try to get a metal Classic Kit. If you don’t, you can start out with one of LAB’s Mini-Durex kits or, better, the miniature version of the Universal Kit (LMK-005 or LMK-003). You simply can’t rekey locks without one, and if you get a Universal you won’t be confined to keying up one or two brands . . . you’ll be able to handle them all. Don’t know how to rekey locks? Pick up an instruction manual on the Internet or at Amazon.com. They are available and this is one of the quickest locksmith skills to pick up. While you’re at it, buy at least one plug follower, a pair of pin tweezers, and ideally a pair of TruArc pliers. Over time you’ll accumulate more rekeying tools but these fundamentals are nearly essential.

Even before I was making money rekeying locks, I was being called to open cars. If you intend to advertise yourself as an emergency service, you’re going to have to take in this kind of lucrative work. Let me tell you now, this will be the easiest money you’ve ever made. It is well worth learning the skills required to open vehicles even if it means spending a couple of hundred dollars on tools and a good manual. Lockouts, at least in my case, virtually supported me for years. If you live in a medium to large city, count on getting lockout calls day and night even if you have only a tiny ad somewhere (a subject for later). There are many good lockout kits available online, to suit any budget, and the same goes for lockout manuals. Do a Google search for ‘car opening tools’ or ‘lockout tools’ and you’ll have no trouble finding suppliers. Are they legal where you live? Again . . . this is up to you to determine. The supplier cannot and will not endeavor to police this aspect of marketing, as it is simply not possible. I’m not advocating the purchase of anything that is not legal where you reside!

House and business lockouts are likewise lucrative sources of income for the locksmith, but these require different skills, different tools. Here is where it becomes necessary to learn the skill of lock picking — probably the most fundamental skill of the trade. It is not as easy to learn as car opening and lock rekeying, but it is by no means difficult, either. It requires practice and patience, and it requires good tools. Do not get stingy here. There are lots of cheap lock picking tools for sale. You’ll find them in automotive magazines, even. Stick with tools from the established firms like HPC, SouthOrd, Lockmasters, etc. Purchase a beginner’s set with a few picks and one or two tension tools for start, unless you have a big budget, then go for a set that will last you a while. Choice of spring steel or stainless steel is largely a matter of personal choice. Whichever one you start out with will likely be the kind you’ll stay with, because you’ll form an attachment to that type and you’ll train yourself to make the best of it. More important is the concept of practice. Buy Practice Locks. Once you’ve picked all the locks in your home you’re going to need more challenges, and now that Practice Locks are an accepted training aid in this field you’d do well to pick up a few of them. Practice until you can repeatedly pick the most challenging of your Practice Locks and then practice some more.

Did I mention that servicing lockouts will likely be the single most lucrative service you offer your customers? I thought so. Good!

There are other aspects to providing a locksmith service and among these is the ability to install locksets on homes and businesses. Primarily you’ll be asked to install deadbolts, but later on, as your business gets bigger, you’ll want to offer commercial business and real estate companies the option of replacing all their old lock hardware for newer more secure hardware. Again, practice is called for and you should be prepared to install a few unnecessary deadbolts and knobsets on doors in your own home that don’t need them. After doing this a dozen or so times, it will be easy to go to that first installation with confidence. You’ll need to add a few essential tools to your toolbox, such as a 1/2 inch drill, a couple of hole saws (2-1/8 inch and 1-inch), a 1/2 inch boring bit, and a good wood chisel. With these tools, you can install deadbolts in metal or wood doors. Complete installation kits are available and are the best choice if you can work them into your budget. Need instruction? Books galore available on Amazon.com or at any large scale bookstore in your city.

Once you’ve accumulated vehicle and the tools, and some knowledge gleaned from practice and reading, you can start thinking about getting your feet wet. The best way to start is the old fashioned way and that is to appeal to family and friends for work and for referrals. Network. Talk to everyone you know and let them know you’re serious about this and that you are available. Step two is to advertise and this is absolutely necessary, even if you start out only as a listing in the Yellow Pages. This is where 99% of the people who need a locksmith will look. Newspaper ads, flyers (Yucchhh!), direct mail and radio ads don’t work for locksmiths unless you have one enormous budget. Try to justify a small one-eight or one-quarter page Yellow Page ad if at all possible. Even in the face of huge competition, you will get calls and over time your name will be spread around, if you do a good job. Well, it will get spread around if you don’t, as well, but you’d do well to avoid that.

That’s how I did it. That’s how thousands of others have done it, give or take a detail or two. Be sure to cover the legal bases, because if you jump into it and find later that you’re acting outside the law, don’t come to me! This is part of your research. It is not that difficult to acquire a certification and satisfy local laws that may pertain to this business. If you keep the business small, and maintain yourself as a sole owner, you’re going to be profiting right off the bat because overhead with a mobile service is nil.

It’s within your reach whether you’re 18 or 58.

Sexiest Tattoo Designs For Men & Women – Uncover Countless Attractive & Sexy Tattoo Designs!

Tattoos are becoming one of the major ways people decide to express themselves by. Nothing compares, when trying to put forward a message about something, to having a message or symbol permanently printed onto your skin. One of the main other reasons people decide to get a tattoo rendered, is simply because so many men and women find tattoos sexy on the opposite gender. There are no rules set in stone when picking which sexy tattoo to get, but to ensure you do not end up regretting this tattoo in particular, I advise that you sign up for a good online tattoo gallery, so you can properly weigh up all of your options before making a decision.

The top two sexiest tattoo designs, in no particular order, tend to be:

Tribal Tattoos

Since tattoos are thought of as a valid way for someone to express artistic opinion, the tribal tattoo will always be considered sexy. It shows that you have put some thought into the tattoo, and generally, because most tribal signs and symbols have meanings, also shows that you are not scared to print yourself with something meaningful. Tribal tattoos are more popular on men than on women, but a lot of female tattoo enthusiasts are now jumping onto the tribal tattoo bandwagon.

Heart Tattoos

Tattoos printed as heart shapes are incredibly popular these days and are only growing moreso. A heart is obviously a symbol of love, peace and togetherness. These meanings can be incredibly sexy when printed onto the right person. On a man, heart tattoos express that he is not scared to show his sensitive side, which is incredibly sexy in the eyes of a lot of females. I guarantee that heart shapes and symbols will continue to be a common sight in tattoo art for many years down the line.

Getting a tattoo is such a huge decision that you should spend as long as possible looking at various different tattoo designs and artwork. Generic tattoos are boring since everyone already has them, I advise looking online for a tattoo gallery that has many different types of artwork,

After using the majority of tattoo galleries, I have only found three galleries that have so far been worth my time.

Canada’s Romantic Hotels

There is romance to be found in the great north. Canada is a country full of majestic scenery in its many lakes, and rivers, mountains and forests, and wonderful cosmopolitan areas. There are many hotels that stand out either for their history and beautiful surroundings, or for their luxurious accommodations and amenities in the midst urban sophistication. Either of these scenarios make these hotels a perfect setting for a romantic interlude to not be forgotten.

The Wedgewood Hotel and Spa, Vancouver, British Columbia

The Wedgewood Hotel and Spa, located on Vancouver’s chic Robson Square, is a romantic European boutique-style hotel. Privately owned and operated, it is smaller and more intimate than some other local hotels. All of the 83 luxurious rooms at the Wedgewood feature private balconies and beautifully crafted plush furnishings. You can relax at the spa and fitness centre, which carries the renowned Epicuren cosmetic line. The Award-winning restaurant Bacchus offers outstanding dining with live entertainment nightly and is known for its exceptional weekend brunches and afternoon tea. The Wedgewood Hotel is close to many attractions in Vancouver, and there is no shortage of activities to choose from. Suites and romance packages are available.

Chateau Lake Louise, Lake Louise, Alberta

Discovery Travel voted Chateau Lake Louise as one of the ”World’s Top 10 Honeymoon Hot Spots” and did so for a very good reason. The scenery is breathtaking and the hotel is grandiose. Chateau Lake Louise is surrounded with snow-frosted Rocky Mountain peaks and secluded next to a legendary lake. The Fairmont Chateau Lake Louise has a full range of newly renovated rooms and elegant suites featuring either a mountain or lake view, with facilities befitting one of the world’s finest mountain resorts: award-winning cuisine in eight restaurants and lounges, and a gallery of unique boutiques to shop at. Your adventure starts right outside the Chateau’s doors. You can go hiking, canoeing, mountain biking, fly fishing, horseback riding, skiing and snowshoeing (depending on the season of course!). Or you can kick back and relax in the spa, indoor pool or hot tub.

Windsor Arms, Toronto, Ontario

Step through the Gothic inspired doorways and you will find a luxurious, two-storey lounge, richly panelled in dark oak and offering 26 suites and two luxury rooms across four floors of this deluxe boutique hotel. Located centrally in Toronto in the upscale Yorkville area, this discreet small luxury hotel offers guests Toronto’s only caviar and champagne lounge, a dance and live entertainment club, a luxury spa and an indoor pool, complete with poolside fireplace and gourmet restaurant. Traditional tea is served at 1:30pm and 3:30pm daily. Shopping and entertainment are only steps away.

The Marriot Niagra Falls Fallsview and Spa, Niagra Falls, Ontario

We all know that Niagra Falls is one of the honeymoon capitals of the world. Something about those majestic falls inspires the romantic side in couples. A room with a view is a must in this location and this new luxury property boasts that it’s the closest hotel to Niagara Falls. The hotel has 427 Fallsview guestrooms overlooking Niagara Falls. The Deluxe Fallsview Fireplace and Whirlpool Suite is an intimate Suite featuring a King sized bed, a large 2-person Whirlpool and a fireplace. This suite is located on one of the hotel’s higher floors, and offers an extraordinary view of both the Canadian and American Falls.

Chateau Montebello, Montebello, Quebec

Nestled in the midst of a private 65000 acre estate, Le Chateau Montebello is located on the shores of the Outaouais River, halfway between Ottawa and Montreal and is a great place to get away from it all. This resort opened in 1930 as a private club and became a hotel in 1971. A legendary log chateau, being the largest log-cabin in the world, the hotel is an idyllic four-season resort offering a wide range of indoor and outdoor activities including: curling, cross country skiing, skating, dog-sledding, snow-shoeing, and sleigh rides in the winter and boating, fishing, jet-skiing, lawn games, outdoor swimming, tennis, and an 18 hole golf course. Jacuzzi suites and romance packages are available.

Chateau Frontenac, Quebec City, Quebec

This is a magnificent castle-like structure with copper turrets and stone towers, Fairmont Le Chateau Frontenac is over 100 years old and a historic landmark of Quebec City. Situated on top of the Cap Diamant Cliffs in the heart of the old walled-in city, Le Chateau Frontenac overlooks the St. Lawrence River and provides some great views. Romance packages are available for any of the beautifully furnished 618 guestrooms and suites. There are exquisite restaurants, an elegant, beautiful bar and a more casual veranda bar. The Chateau also has many upscale boutique shops, art galleries, a florist and hair salon. There is also an on-site indoor pool and fitness center. When do venture out, a stay at the Chateau Frontenac permits you easy walking access to all of the wonderful sites and romantic experiences that Old Quebec has to offer.

The Casino Nova Scotia, Halifax, Nova Scotia

The Casino Nova Scotia is the only hotel located directly on the waterfront, in the heart of downtown Halifax. Guests enjoy convenient access via the walkway to Casino Nova Scotia, many boutiques, shops, restaurants, banks and entertainment hot spots. Casino Nova Scotia is located next door to the Hotel and offers you gaming, entertainment and restaurants. The hotel has two popular restaurants, with outdoor patios featuring a spectacular view of Halifax Harbour, offering an eclectic menu, two lounges, and an indoor heated swimming pool with a large modern fitness facility and full spa services. The rooms offer spectacular views of Halifax Harbour, Historic Properties, the city, or of the courtyard. . The Casino Nova Scotia offers full Concierge services, where sightseeing tours, Harbour boat ours, whale watching, deep-sea fishing, golf and other activities can be arranged. One-bedroom suites or Luxury suites are available.

How to Control Earwigs Naturally

They do feed at night and do seek out dark, cool, moist places to hang out during the day. Some common hiding places are under organic matter such as mulch, pine straw, leaf litter, and other debris, loose wood chip mulches, decaying matter, rotten fruit on the ground, wood, boards or tree branches that are on the ground, under dense growth of vines or thick cover and flower pots, any thing moist that will shade and protect them from the sun. As well as hiding in piles of firewood you didn’t use last year and let us not forget hanging out inside that small wooded shed you have out back that you haven’t been gone inside in years. While Earwigs are scavengers, eating dead insects, decomposing plant materials they can also eat live plants and damage your vegetables and feed on the flowers of plants, including marigolds, petunias, hibiscus, and many other plants. Earwigs leave many small holes in plant leaves and flowers.

Seedlings and most flowering plants can be severely damaged or even killed when you have a large earwig population (coffee grinds will protect). Earwigs can produce large populations rather quickly and can become a major problem for the homeowner over night! They are attracted to lights so they will come in at night attracted to any lights that are on; as well as to any lights that you have on during the day which will cause them to hang out there esp if it is a cool area. Earwigs can be found in most homes and can get in through entry points like doors and windows, going up through the broken walls and any cracked openings, broken screens. They do have a beneficial role in the landscape and have been shown to be important predators of aphids, mites, most insect eggs, and most soft bodied insects such as white flies. They do have a very disagreeable odor when crushed.

Some Natural Controls

Hint: earwigs are attracted to moisture

Control water around the outside of the house. Repair any leaks. Convert to drip system to keep water below ground. Regularly control weeds and clean up dead debris. Eliminate high moisture areas around walls, in mulch, under stones, boards, etc. Control damp moist conditions in crawl spaces, faucets, along the foundations. Change landscaping by creating a dry border immediately around the house walls. Gravel or flat stones can make an attractive barrier against earwigs and other pest invaders. Rain gutters should direct water away from the house. Caulk or use weather stripping at all possible entry points such as doors, windows, pipes, repair screens and doors and windows. Where earwigs are a problem, eliminate hiding places that have high moisture levels. Initiate a regular daily trapping program. Removing earwig habitats is very important to the control of all insects, including earwigs. As they are attracted to lights, stop lighting outside at night. Remove the white light and install yellow LED ones instead.

Inside the Home

Indoors earwigs should be vacuumed up daily; be sure to kill them and dispose of them by dumping into a plastic bag and tying and throw into trash, promptly so they will not re-invade. If earwigs are a regular problem in a building, inspect the area to see how they are getting in the house and seal and chaulk up cracks and all entry points. Repair all broken screens.

Natural Sprays

Essential Oil spray

You can make a natural spray that will keep them from coming into the house. Use 1/2 oz per gallon water of any of the following essential oils available

1. citronella oil

2. cinnamon oil

3. pennyroyal oil

4. clove oil

5. lavender oil

6. citrus

7. basil

8. any natural essential oil can be use the above are just a few. Try your own.

Citrus Spray Use OTKO a Natural Citrus Cleaner. Spray straight through a mister. Will kill earwigs and most of insects on contact. Soap Spray Use any natural castile soap like Dr Bronners soaps. They make peppermint, lavender, almond, tea tree and lot of other natural sources. Use 1oz per gallon water. Will kill earwigs when sprayed.

DE SPRAY Gadren Grade DE can be added to water and sprayed. Best way is to put some DE into a panty hose and suspend in gallon water. Allow to sit, pour into a gallon sprayer and spray. when dried the de will act as a barrier and kill and earwigs that crawl over it. You can use just dust the areas with it.

Check List

Vacuum, vacuum ad vacuum…

Vacuum up any earwigs inside your house. Vacuum very thoroughly and as often as needed. Throw away the bags in the trash.

Natural Dust

Garden Grade DE can be used as a dust around the house as well as under the house and the attic. Dust lighly and allow to sit.

Boric Acid can be used as a dust in cracks and other areas between the house walls.

Reducing Populations:

Traps inside the house is one ongoing way of you managing earwigs in the home on a regular long term bases.

Various Traps

Ultimate Flea Trap is by far the best insect trap on the market. This one uses no chemicals and only a small light with a sticky mat that get the insects trapped that are attracted by the light. Place one in every room that has earwigs. It also works on fleas ( thus the name) as well as on spiders, cockroaches and most other insects.

Outside the house

Remove materials outside the perimeter of the building that could provide as a hiding place, such as ivy, plant debris, leaves in gutters, old wood piles, old leaf litter, piles of newspapers, or other organic material. Caulk and repair cracks, crevices, and other openings around the foundation or around the outside of the house. Manage moisture around the building by repairing or replacing leaky faucets, leaky air conditioners, leaky drains, control water going into the foundation after it rains, and provide crawl spaces to allow for entrance. Repair or change the conditions to promote a drier environment. Caulk and weatherstrip around doors. windows. bathrooms water outlets as well electrical outlets.

Go through any areas inside that is dark and they can hide in. Cardboard boxes will make a great host place for them to hang out inside the house. Remove any other debris such as old unused firewood. Always keep moisture away from your home by repairing any defective rain spouts, keeping the grading in an area so water drains away from the home, and by keeping proper ventilation in crawl spaces to allow area to dry out.

Earwigs are attracted to outdoor lights, so replace them with Yellow LED lights, which are less attractive to earwigs. Treatment should be done outside with natural applications of garden grade DE around the building foundation, flower beds, mulch areas and turf within a couple of yards of the building, as well as in the crawl space areas of the home. Treat in a two foot band around the building adjacent to the foundation to limit earwigs from getting inside. Establish dry border right around the base of the houses for great control.

Traps outside the house

Newspaper: A rolled-up wet newspaper held together with a rubber band.

Cardboard Box: Punch pencil-size holes along bottom edge of cardboard box.

Old Garden Hose: 12-24 inch pieces of garden hose

Used cat food can. Add 1/2 inch any type beer or wine.

Tupperware: Use a tupperware like plastic container. Punch holes along the top edge of the tub, add 2 inches any cheap wine and cover with top and sink into ground.

Finch Bird House can be used as a housing unit where you can place a 8 oz plastic cup 1/2 filled with beer or wine. I would try one of each and see which attracts the most.

Trapping is an effective, easy approach to reducing earwig populations.

One of the key element of a natural earwig management program is a daily active trapping system. Just before dark, place the bird finch traps throughout the yard in out of sight places. In the morning, shake them out the traps over a pail of Dr Bronners Soap / water or any natural soap n water. Keep trapping until you do not catch any more earwigs. Traps can be hidden near shrubbery and ground cover plantings, or against the house. For fruit trees, keep weeds, brush, and the suckers (always prune) away from the base of trees throughout the year because they provide refuge for earwigs, snails and other creatures. Monitor populations by counting amounts of earwigs caught in the traps.

Eliminate Their Habitat:

Altering the habitat around your garden will reduce earwig population and damage. Get rid of their hiding places: boards, weeds, wood piles, plant debris, leaf litter, and any other objects that create dark, moist hiding places. Do not plant dense ground covers, such as ivy, mint, herbs,, next to vegetable or flower gardens. Raise vulnerable seedlings indoors until they are able to withstand some munching. Or start them outdoors on a table with legs protected by sticky barriers.

Some folks advise against the use of organic mulch because they say it provides harborage to pests such as earwigs and spiders. I have the opposing view that organic mulch offers earwigs a diverse hunting area that will save your plants as well as provide for the earth’s needs. Mulch can easily be kept clean of earwigs by dusting with garden grade several times per year or by dust just before and after every time you apply a new layer of mulch. Spraying the mulch with any natural soap will also control them too.

Andy Lopez

The Invisible Gardener

Haller Park Nature Trail: Greatest Rehabilitation Success Story

The Haller Park Nature Trail is probably one of the world’s greatest rehabilitation success stories. Located south of the Bamburi Cement factory along the Mombasa Malindi highway, the project was an effort to rehabilitate the wasteland that the area had become after years of mining. With the backing of the Bamburi Portland Cement Company, Rene Haller (who the park is named after) got to work on the seemingly impossible task in 1971.

First order of business was to find some form… any form of plant that could grow on the barren land. After a long search on the vast quarry, he managed to find the Casuarina equisetifolia which could survive the limestone desert that lacked humus and the intense tropical heat. From months of trial and error, and the successful growth of the species, Haller then introduced tree saplings in a reforestation project.

He completed the Forest Ecosystem by introducing mushrooms as well as termites and ants. The termites fed on the deadwood while the ants made a feast of the mealy bug and the aphids that were attacking the vegetation.

Not one to stop there, Haller had ponds dug out using bulldozers and introduced Tilapia fish. Following its successful survival, other species of fish were incorporated into the ecosystem. The result was a lush spread of absolute beauty.

But like all other things, challenges arise from all projects. With time, it was discovered that the fish were not doing so good. After research and consultations, Haller learnt that a hippo would solve this problem. You see, a hippo will disperse their droppings and urine in the ponds which would restore the nutrients in the water for the plankton to flourish. This will in turn mean more food for the fish. With the hippo walking, playing and paddling, the pond sediments are in constant motion thus preventing the buildup of toxic gases.

That is how famous “Sally” the hippo came to live in the park. She was later joined by “Potty” a male hippo. There was also the ‘Baobab Farm’ that had sheep, goats, chicken and cattle. With the growing population of animals and plants, there grew a need for ‘garbage collectors’ so to speak. That’s how crocodiles were introduced in the park since they were fed on waste from the fish pond and carcasses from the ‘Baobab Farm’.

Over time, there was introduction of different species of plants and animals. A walk through the nature trail will show you the Tortoises with some as old as 100 years old, Giraffes, Buffaloes, Elands, Oryx, Monkeys, an array of about 160 species of birds among others.

Haller park is the home of the famous Owen and Mzee. It all begun when Owen a hippo was orphaned during the 2004 Tsunami. He was rescued and taken to Haller Park where he was adopted by Mzee, a 130 year old tortoise. They developed a bond so tight, it took the world by storm. It has spawned a series of children’s books, a website and a blog.

The nature trail also leads to the butterfly pavilion which was started in 1998. It is a part of the rehabilitation process to save the butterflies being displaced by the forest destruction. The pavilion boasts 16 different species of butterflies and a butterfly breeding house. Every animal in the park has a role to play in this thriving ecosystem.

Get a chance to enjoy delicacies from the Baobab Farm and the crocodile farm, which can range from steaks from crocodiles, antelopes or ostrich and Bamburi Tilapia. The Haller Park Nature Trail is perfect place for the whole family for bonding and educational reasons.

The green spread of vegetation and trees create and aura of peace and tranquility. A trip to Mombasa would not be complete without a visit to this spectacular sanctuary. This Nature trail will not only leave you awestruck and relaxed while enjoying the scenery and animals, it will also remind you that all is not lost for our planet. That we should not give up on saving mother earth and this park is proof of that.

If You Expand Your Current Concrete Driveway, Will New Concrete Fade to Match?

You may be looking to turn a single car driveway into a double, or perhaps adding room for more car storage or a place for an RV. But you’re concerned with whether or not the new concrete portion of the driveway will match the older concrete. This article will discuss your options.

Yes, all concrete fades as it dries and cures, and certainly after years of sun and weather exposure it fades more. However, if you are hoping a new concrete addition to your old concrete driveway will match, most contractors will tell you the answer is no. Simply put, the lifetime of the original concrete driveway cannot be matched without the same amount of aging. Your younger brother will always be your younger brother, the same goes with concrete. But that doesn’t mean the new addition to the driveway will not look good.

A first-rate concrete contractor is not going to stick you with a patch-worked, mismatched driveway addition. There is an art to the craft, and a contractor will evaluate the layout of the area, taking into account the older driveway, and find a way to make the addition work in harmony with what you already have.

Create Patterns

One option includes creating a border around the older portion of the driveway to tie it in with the new. Or, room permitting, adding an equal amount of concrete on both sides of the original, making a unique pattern. There are many variations that will allow for a professionally designed look.

Textures

Textures can also add an interesting difference between old and new concrete areas that will compliment one another. If you already have brushed concrete, for example, elect to have the new area be sandblasted. That way you are avoiding any attempt to make the newly laid concrete match.

Color or Stain

Concrete need not just be a grey slab, and if you’re worried about an exact match to your current driveway, why not go the complete opposite with color? While mostly associated with parks or public places, contractors offer colors like buff, yellow, red, green, blue, brown or black for home driveways as well.

Stamps

Stamps, more than just texture, stamps laid in the concrete create the look of stones, bricks, pebbles, wood, seashells and other designs that add beauty and can compliment the driveway you already have.

Walkways

If you don’t already have a decorative walkway connecting to your driveway, or perhaps the new addition requires the walkway to be expanded as well, this can also be an area used to create a harmonious look between the old driveway and the new addition.

Hopefully now you have ideas so you don’t need to worry about your property having a mismatched driveway if you opt for an addition. The best first step is to talk with a concrete driveway contractor near you for professional suggestions.

Building a Hexagonal Gazebo – Easy Plan To Craft A Gazebo On Your Own

Building a hexagonal gazebo is not as complicated a process as one would think. Gazebos provide a place to spend some happy times with family and friends. Building a gazebo also gives the owner a sense of pride and achievement. Gazebos that are made from wood are considered to be sturdiest and most beautiful. You can use redwood, rosewood or cedar to make a wooden gazebo.

You can chose from a variety of styles to suit your taste that will make your gazebo stand out from the rest of them. There are a few basic techniques of building a gazebo which you need to follow.

Let’s have a look at those steps which will guide you through its construction.

Choose the location: Clean the area and level it by pouring layers of gravel. Set up four batter boards by aligning them perfectly to have a square from where you can design the hexagon. Mark and pin the square center and hold it to a semi-circle. Then mark and pin the other sides to have the hexagonal extremities done.

Erecting the Main Posts: Find the right angle for the posts towards the inside deck. Then draw a perpendicular line at 90 degrees on the outer foot to position the posts correctly. Secure metal braces to the bolts that are sticking out and screw in the posts. Find the vertical plumb to keep the post in line with temporary braces.

Decking: Building a hexagonal gazebo requires you to build the floor frame and mark posts at 15″ and 21″ from the ground. Cut the inside of the posts between the mark trim off the wood to take in the beams. The beams need to be cut at 60 degrees angle at both ends with a saw. The beams will now form a 360 degrees round angle fitting in to the hexagon shape and secure them with nails.

Assemble the joists: Screw the metal joists hangers to the beams at half way and make them sit into the joist hanger next to them. Now attach the beams with both sides at 30 degrees to form a 60 degree angle on the pier and they will form a 360 angle. The boards need to be cut from the perimeter towards the centre with the joists screwed on each side. Apply wood putty to level the depressions which will give it a neat look.

Stair for the main entrance: Stairs are a better option to the main entrance for easy access. Dig the ground 6″ in front and level it by adding 1″ gravel and sand. Shape two beams with a miter saw to match the pitch of the stair and secure them with metal braces. Now screw up the two horizontal ledger boards on both beams and nail the wooden step on the corner.

Roofing: Assemble a round hexagonal perimeter and cross beams to mimic the railings followed by spanning double ceiling joists from all sides. Cut four joists with half the length at one end at 90 degrees to slot into the beam at the opposite ends in such a way that they will form a 360 degree angle. The final step in building a hexagonal gazebo is to cut the rafters, brace and secure them at the desired span and surface the roof.

Pros and Cons of Modern Bathroom Vanity Tops

When it comes to choosing a bathroom vanity top you want to choose a material that is resistant to water, toothpaste, makeup, acetone based liquids, and of course soap. Most of the new bathroom vanity tops are made out of the following materials: Tempered Glass, Solid Porcelain, and Cultured Marble.

It is very important that you pick a bathroom vanity top that will match your personal needs. To help you decide which of these options is right for you, we have put together a summary guide of the pros and cons for each countertop material.

1. Tempered Glass

Pros: In either clear or frosted finish tempered glass offers a unique, sleek and modern look that will set your bathroom vanity apart. It is one of the easiest surfaces to clean and has very good tolerance to heat, it won’t burn or melt if you ever forget to turn off that curling iron! Tempered glass is also a non-porous surface which means bacteria and germs have no place to grow making it very hygienic and stain resistant. Another advantage of tempered glass is that you don’t have to worry about matching it with your toilet or tub color, since it is a different material, any color fixtures (white or bone) will match. Lastly, to add more drama to your bathroom remodeling project install surface light underneath the tempered glass top.

Cons: Even though tempered glass has been heat treated to increase its strength, it can scratch or chip depending on how is handled. Also, if not cleaned properly it can show finger prints and water spots (especially clear glass).

2. Solid Porcelain

Pros: Porcelain offers a contemporary look and matches beautifully with other fixtures in the bathroom. It has an extra smooth surface that prevents debris from sticking. It requires very little upkeep to make it look clean and shiny all the time. It is also very strong, doesn’t chip easily, and wont melt if exposed to high temperatures.

Cons: It can crack or chip depending on the abuse.

3. Cultured Marble

Pros: Made from the mix of natural marble chips and acrylic resin, cultured marble offers the classic and shiny look of natural marble and granite without the expensive price tag. This strong surface is very durable, stain resistant and requires minimum maintenance.

Cons: Heavy falling objects and extreme heat (not too much of a threat in bathrooms) can cause this surface to chip, scratch or melt.

Building Types and Styles of Kenya

As the construction industry embraces modern architecture and builders experiment with new styles and plans, there is a growing difference between building types and styles used today than those built even a few decades ago.

Certain styles of buildings are widespread in Kenya and seen as the de facto standard. As a result, most buildings have similar designs and forms that contribute to building limitations in terms of flexibility and ease of use.

Traditional styles of building in Kenya

Until recently, buildings in Kenya have had common characteristics in their construction that are determined by

  • Skills of the labor force
  • Accessibility and affordability of building materials

Developers are beginning to work outside their comfort zones to use varied building plans and construction materials resulting in innovative architectural looks and forms.

Buildings in rural Kenya

Temporary and semi-permanent structures

The building types and styles in rural Kenya are significantly influenced by the region and traditional culture of the people living in a specific rural area. For instance:

  • The Maasai and Samburu tribes construct temporary huts called ‘Manyattas’ to match their pastoralist lifestyle. These are made from twigs tied together by dried tree-bark or strings to make walls with thatched roofs.
  • The Kalenjin tribe construct semi-permanent huts using twigs and posts joined together using nails. Mud or clay is plastered on the twigs to make walls and the floor while the roof is made of long grass or reeds.
  • Coastal people such as the Mijikenda make houses from coconut leaves popularly known as Makuti houses
  • The Kikuyu, on the other hand, use timber for the walls and iron sheets for the roof.

Permanent structures

Temporary structures are dying off and being replaced by permanent houses made of stones and mortar.

For those who cannot afford stones and mortar, bricks are made by mixing clay with sand, straw, stone, concrete and lime, and then shaped into blocks that are either air-dried with fire or dried in a kiln. The bricks are used for walls and pavements.

Interestingly, bricks are finding their way into urban areas as developers seek to construct affordable housing for urban dwellers.

The few permanent buildings in rural areas have similar styles owing to the construction materials used and lack of sufficient skills by local workforce. Most of these homes have:

  • L, T, U and I shaped designs
  • Several bedrooms and a living room (sitting room)
  • Bathrooms and kitchen often built in separate locations from the main house

Commercial buildings are simply built as plain empty halls with no design and style taken into account.

Customary styles and types of building in urban Kenya

The styles, designs, architecture and types of buildings in urban Kenya are more expressive with most built using stones and mortar for walls, cemented or tiled floors and iron sheets or roofing tiles for roof covering.

1. Flats and apartments

They are the most common building type among urban dwellers.

  • Accommodate high numbers of tenants and are relatively affordable
  • Less sophisticated in terms of design and style
  • Range from single rooms, bedsitters and self-contained one-bed houses to self-contained two and three-bed houses.

It is rare to find apartments and flats with more than 3 bedrooms.

2. Maisonettes

More sophisticated in design and based on the personal style of the owner, there is growing demand for maisonettes in Kenya to accommodate the increasing middle class. As a result, companies are developing large-scale projects of maisonettes in a bid to capitalize on the new housing market.

3. Bungalows

  • Mostly built by upper middle class and class A and AB
  • Highly sophisticated in terms of design, style and type

Commercial complexes

They are the most versatile in terms of design, type and space, and materials used range from glass and metal to stones and mortar, plastic, bricks and combination of timber and stones, etc.

  • They include sky scrapers and storied buildings
  • Their designs and use of space is determined by the function of the building with shopping malls and entertainment spots being more open in terms of architecture and design.

Advantages of CCDP Certification

Cisco Certified Designed Professional is the acronym of CCDP. This certification validates the principles as well as advanced knowledge of network design concepts. With the help of CCDP certification, it determines to design and also to create advanced routing and addressing, network management, security, data center, Multicast complex in IP which is multilayered architectures including wireless applications/domains as well as private networking. The curriculum of CCDA certification includes building up of multilayered switched networking, building up of internetworks that are scalable and network architecture designing.

In order to obtain this CCDP certification, candidate must hold their CCNA as well as CCDA certification. This is the main eligibility for appearing to CCDP examination. If a candidate is holding the main eligibility, then the candidate can attend this CCDP certification examination.

CCDA certification examination:

CCDA certification examination shall be classified in to 2 routes. One is two exams route and the other route is three exams. Candidate can choose any one route to obtain the certification.

Route 1:

1) BSCI (Building up of scalable Cisco Internetworks) or 642-901 BSCI which is of 90 minutes duration.

2) BCMSN (Building up of Cisco multilayer Switched networks) or 642-812 BCMSN which is of 90 minutes duration.

3) ARCH (designing of Cisco networking service architectures) or 642-871 ARCH which is 90 minutes duration with approximately 65 questions.

Route 2:

1) BSCI (Building up of scalable Cisco Internetworks) and BCMSN (Building up of Cisco multilayer Switched networks) or 642-892 composite- combined examination in 2 hours duration.

2) ARCH (designing of Cisco networking service architectures) or 642-871 ARCH which is 90 minutes duration with approximately 65 questions.

The only difference between the two routes exams is one combined examination in route 2. The exam pattern will be of multiple choice questions, simulations as well as drag and drop etc. Candidate can take their exam in any of the Pearson VUE test center or prometric test center.

Certification validity is up to 3 years. After this validity period, recertification exam has to be taken by passing any current CCIE exam or any 642 professional level examinations. Examination fee is charged to the candidates for appearing the examination.

Construction Site Management – Material Storage

A construction site has many materials at any one point. Most of these are usually in their raw state, meaning that they will undergo some process before they can be input into the building to form a part of the building. They come in different forms and can be categorized as below;

· Factory Goods: These are mostly off the shelf items, they are unique in the fact that they can easily be resold and are therefore easy targets for pilferage. They are also delicate in the fact that they have unique storage requirements. Examples here include;

o Cement: The most important attribute to consider in the storage of cement is the fact that it reacts chemically when in contact with moisture. For this reason, it should be kept under shade and on a platform, away from excessive moisture.

o Ceramics: These include water closets, wash basins, Tiles and the like. They are extremely delicate and will easily break. This attribute is also shared with glasses. They should therefore be properly packaged in padded cartons and away from areas of much activity, usually under lock and key.

o Ironmongery: These include locks, hinges, handles and the like. Owing to their small sizes, they are prone to pilfering. These should also be kept well locked and only issued under strict accountability.

· Raw materials: This category belongs to the main items like stone, ballast and sand. These are not prone to the previous problems like weather and pilferage. However, they have one attribute that is being bulky. They consume a lot of space on site and require a generous allocation of storage space. These are best stored in bays and contained using things like stones, in the case of sand.

· Workshop finished items: This category also includes semi-finished items, for example in the case of timber. Items here are usually ready for installing in the works and are mostly purpose made. Some may have been imported from overseas and in their exact measurements. This means that damage or loss of such will lead to a very expensive work of replacement. Examples here include Fixtures, timber, roofing materials et cetera.

Material storage is a very important part of site management. How materials are delivered and dispatched determines how easily things flow. In almost all cases, site space is usually restricted and as such, material storage should be very well thought out. One thing to consider is that only the important and requisite materials and items per time should be stored on site to minimize on the risks mentioned above. Records should be kept very in good accuracy of all materials required, ordered, delivered, accepted, stored, dispatched, put to the works and any deficits. Good material storage ensures the following benefits on site.

· Easy movement around site

· Reduction in waste and damages

· Reduction of loss by theft or otherwise

Build a Storage Shed With Steel Framing

Build your own storage shed! The price of them has gone out of my price range, so I built my own. If you want one made of steel framing, there are some things you must consider. First, you will need a method to cut the steel studs and track. I used a Chop Saw that is made for cutting steel. If you are using a lighter gauge steel, you can cut it with a good pair of aviation snips. Next, you must have a place to put your building that is out of the way. You should have some idea of how big a shed it will take to satisfy your needs. You should sit down and draw out a rough picture of what you want. It doesn’t have to be a blueprint. A simple drawing will do. The reason for that is so you can figure out how much material to buy to build one. A basic knowledge of framing is required, but you can find books about that subject at those big retail Building Supply stores. It’s pretty simple, though.

Next, you must decide what kind of roof you would like to have. If you want a plywood covered roof with shingles, you’ll have to make the walls a little sturdier, because that kind of roof is heavier. If you go with a steel panel roof, there is less of a load on the walls and they can be built with a thinner gauge steel product(cheaper). Next, you must choose a door style. I built mine with only one opening. The door was wide and the shed was fairly small, so it works for me. You’re not building a house, so don’t go overboard here. The last thing to consider is what kind of floor you would like in the building. There are two main options. Many people like a solid concrete pad to build on. I made an above ground floor system in mine. If you are going to store something like an ATV or other heavy rolling object like a garden tractor, you should probably use the concrete slab. If you choose an above ground system, put it on blocks or some other way to support the floor. I poured concrete corner pads to hold up my building. OK, let’s get started.

Build your floor support system, first. If you want a concrete pad, pour it now. When it has set up at least one full day, you can start to build on it. When I poured the corner pads of my building, I had to build a floor system on top of it. Simple, really. Steel framing comes it two basic styles. Metal studs are the vertical pieces and metal track is the horizontal part that the metal studs fit into. I made a framework of studs and track that was the size of the floor of the shed. I placed studs every 24 inches in the track. Because it was a floor system, I put double studs in, back to back. this increased the strength of the floor system. Next, I covered them with 3/4 inch plywood to make a solid floor. At this point, you will be at the same place that the person who chose a concrete slab is.

Now that you have a floor, it’s time to build the walls. It’s a good idea to lay out the walls on your floor. Draw the metal stud wall thickness around the edge of the floor, keeping in mind where your door will go. Then draw that on the wall outline. Your door opening should be a rough opening size and not the finished size of your door. For a basic, four wall building, two of the walls should be the whole length of your building. the other two will be inside the marks you made on the floor. Once you have these dimensions, you are ready to start construction of the walls. Start with a wall that doesn’t have the door. Place one of the horizontal track pieces on the marks you made for the wall. If it’s longer than the floor, cut it to the right length. Now cut another the same size. these are the upper and lower pieces of the wall. Put them side by side and make a mark every 24 inches starting from the end of the track on both pieces. These are the locations of the vertical stud placements. Take your studs, the vertical pieces, and insert them in the two track pieces to complete the wall section. Now take the fastener screws and secure the studs in position on both sides of the track. It’s easier if you do one side first, then turn it over and do the other side.

When complete, take a scrap piece of metal or wood, anything that can be used as a brace, and attach it to one of the vertical studs about two feet down from the top of the wall. This will be used to brace the wall section when you stand it up. If you have a wooden floor, it’s easy to screw the wall to the floor system. If you use a concrete slab floor, you’ll need a method to attach the wall to the concrete. You can shoot it down with a powder actuated tool, drive a nail in with an impact tool and hammer or you can pre-drill holes and use a masonry screw like the “Tapcom” system. Whatever method you use, go ahead and stand the wall section up and brace it well. You will begin to feel a sense of accomplishment for all your work when you see a wall standing. Use that excitement to help you finish the other three walls. When you come to the wall section that has the door, place the studs on either side of the rough opening and put a horizontal header piece of track over the rough opening hole. Measure the remaining distance to the top track and install the cut-down stud pieces over the door hole in the door header track. Maintain the same 24 inch spacing as the rest of the studs in the wall. At this point, you should have the four walls standing and are ready for the next step. Before we go on, I must mention the importance of keeping every thing level , square, straight and plumb. It’s best to check these things as you go along. Another thing to remember is to always wear safety glasses when working with any power tools, not just these. It’s also helpful to wear gloves when handling steel studs and track. There are many sharp edges to watch out for, so use caution.

The roof is the next step. Get yourself a ladder and make layout marks on the top of the wall track pieces. If your plan calls for a roof with no overhangs, things will go faster. The pieces of stud you have made into trusses will be attached to the track where you made the marks. Once again, 24 inches on center will be adequate. These trusses are made by you to fit your roof design. However you design it, it should have at least one foot of rise to every four feet of run. This means that if your shed was eight feet wide, the height at the peak of the roof will be at least one foot high. A sixteen foot wide building would be two feet, and so on. This is so that if it snows in your area, your roof will let it fall off before it gets too thick and collapses your building. Now let’s discuss making the trusses. On your work table, lay out a piece of stud that will span from wall to wall. this is the bottom of the truss. Find the center and put an upright piece there that will give you the ratio I discussed earlier. You will screw it to the bottom piece at the center mark you made. Now, from the top of it, measure the distance to the end of the stud. It should be the same for both sides. Cut those pieces of stud and attach them.

When you’re finished, you should have a triangular framework with an upright piece in the middle. Unless you are making a long span, this structure will be enough to handle the roof load for your shed. Make one of these for every mark you made on top of the top track of your walls. These trusses will be screwed to the top track every 24 inches. It will be easier to put up the first one in the front and the last one in the back. This will allow you to stretch a string across at the peak of the trusses. Use this to align the other trusses into a straight line. When you have to screw down the ends of the trusses to the top of the wall track, cut a scrap of either stud or track into a 90 degree angle piece that you can screw to the side of the truss and the top of the wall track to hold it in place. once you have the trusses screwed in place, you should put a scrap of stud or track across the trusses and screw it down temporarily. This holds the tops of the trusses in place while you put the permanent cross pieces in place. I used a 7/8 inch hat channel to cross the trusses. Hat channel is called that because it looks like a hat in cross section. The two flat sides (The brim of the hat) are screwed to the truss every 24 inches down from the peak of the truss. The top of the hat has a flat spot where you will screw the roof panel down onto the hat channel.

Now, in review, you will have a hat channel screwed down to every truss and down from the peak of the trusses every 24 inches. That way, when you lay a roof panel down on this framework, you will be able to screw it down every 24 inches, making a very strong steel roof that’s not too heavy. At this point, after you complete the installation of the roof panels, it will become obvious that you need something to cover the ridge at the top of your roof. This will be a product called a ridge cap. It is screwed down over the join area between the roof panels. At this point you should have a shedding roof over your building. There are some details to discuss here. If you want an overhanging roof, calculate how far out you want it to go and measure up to the peak of your trusses. That measurement will be how long to cut your panels. Put the cut part of your panel at the top. It will be hidden by the ridge cap. If you want a flush roof, the measurement will be from the edge of the truss at the top of the wall to the peak of the roof. If you want a flush roof, be sure to calculate the thickness of a hat channel and the steel panel that covers it for the wall covering. Your roof should extend at least 1/4 inch past that point.

Now we’re ready to start covering the walls. Mark off a 24 inch mark from the top of your wall to the bottom on all four corners. Use that mark to install a hat channel horizontally 24 inches apart all around your building. If you have planned carefully, a 26 inch wide steel panel will wrap around the corner of your building. Put half on one side and wrap the other side around the corner. I did mine this way because I couldn’t find a dealer that had any corner trim pieces. None-the-less, it works well and when you wrap the panels around the corner, there are no drafty corners. When you install the panels, screw them to the hat channels installed every 24 inches. This increases the strength of the walls. Continue to wrap the panels around until you reach the door. There you can cut the panel to fit and lap over the other panel to complete the wrap of the building. The basic structure is complete. The only things left to do are to install your door and a few trim pieces around your new building. There is a 3 inch trim piece made for flashing a roof. that will work well for closing the gap between the wall panels and the roof panels.

To install them, undo the bottom screw of your roof panels on the side that you’re trimming out. Slide the trim piece under the roof panel and over the wall panel. Re-install the screws you removed. When you wrap it all around the building, your building will shed rain and you are ready to drive in the tractor.

A final thought and some info. Please don’t work alone. You could be injured easily if a wall section broke loose and fell on you. Besides, it’s easier when you have someone to help hold things. The other thing was that you will need some specific tools to do this job. It can be done without most of them but they make the job easier. First, you need a good screwgun or a drill with a screwdriving tip. Go for the magnetic bit holder that holds screws well. I have had many evil thoughts after dropping lots of screws. You’ll also find one or two of those Vise-Grip type C-clamps handy. Use them to hold the stud and track together on your mark when you screw them together. For special cuts, I used a mini-grinder to make the angle cuts of the roof trusses. You’ll need a good level and a framing sized square. And one more thing. When you purchase screws for the framing, get the kind that have a drill point on the tip. It saves a lot of pushing. Always keep safety in mind and then go brag to your neighbors!