Are You Shopping Around Enough For Your Mortgage?

Are you getting the best deal for your mortgage?

If you’re like most home buyers, especially new ones, you’re probably not.  When shopping for a mortgage (if you can call it that), most people make their first stop at the local bank where they have their checking and savings accounts.  At this point, most people end their search.

What a shame, you probably could have saved thousands in interest and closing fees if you shopped around just a little but more.

There are thousands of banks, mortgage companies and lending institutions that would love the opportunity to lend you money to buy a home.  Rates can vary wildly between lenders and the difference in closing cost fees can be in the tens of thousands.

Even if you have fair or poor credit, there are still lots of companies more than willing to give you a fair shake.  You can get rejected by 20 companies and then land a mortgage at a competitive rate on the 21st try.  While there are certain criteria most lending institutions use to qualify someone for a mortgage, many of the aspects are subjective.  It really comes down to finding the right company and person that believes in you.

If you’re shopping for a new tv, you may spend dozens of hours combing through the internet to find the best deal, which is usually the difference of a few bucks.  For a mortgage?, over two-thirds of homeowners feel like they didn’t get the best deal……mostly because they didn’t spend the time to try.

Getting a mortgage can be a confusing and nerve-racking experience.  Strangers comb through your personal finances and make judgments about you, or at least that’s what it feels like.  If you want to find the best deal, you have to get over it and act like a top salesperson who’s bulletproof when it comes to rejection and taking things personally.  Jeffrey Hristovski of, a mortgage broker in Toronto, says that spending the extra time to evaluate all of your options can save you tens of thousands of dollars over the life of a mortgage.

Whether you go with your local bank, a mortgage broker or an online lending institution, make sure you know all of the options available to you before making a decision.  You’re not locked into a relationship when you get a quote, don’t let anyone pressure you into doing business with them because they gave you a quote.  If it doesn’t feel right, it probably isn’t.

If you have a real estate agent and not sure about your mortgage options, they can usually provide some high quality mortgage referrals as they work with banks and mortgage agents all the time.  Our real estate agent in Vaughan, Lisa Sinopili, helped us find our mortgage broker and we were very happy with the results.

Take a look at this infographic from that gives some good statistics to show you what poor mortgage shoppers we really are.

Mortgage inforgraphic Toronto

Remortgaging a Home: A Step by Step Guide

When a homeowner has come to the decision to remortgage their home, one of the most important aspects of the procedure is to enlist the assistance of a conveyancing solicitor in Portsmouth to represent the interests of both the client and the lender.

Many people choose to remortgage for a great variety of reasons. Often it is to move to a lower interest rate, which will save them money, or it could be because they have other commitments that need immediate attention.

This is why after the decision has been made, time is of the essence for all parties to make sure that these lower interest rates are still available or that these other attentions can be immediately seen to.

By taking into account the advantages and disadvantages of remortgaging a home and discussing these with a solicitor, clients can have a full understanding of what it is they are committing to and whether it is the right decision at the end of the day.

Explaining the stages one step at a time

It can certainly be a confusing time, so it is important to take each step as it comes and to follow the guidance of the solicitor that has been employed to assist in all matters concerning the remortgage.

The initial step is undertaken once a request for title deeds and a redemption statement from the client’s lender to understand how much is still owed on the property is received. A knowledgeable professional will check the title documents and make sure that the information seems correct.

An offer will then be received. It may be necessary to carry out searches against the property as any special conditions from the lender are checked. Input from the client is needed during this time to sign all documents and to agree on a completion date.

Completion is arranged together with balance payments and other considerations. On the day of completion, the client will pay off their existing mortgage and settle everything with their previous lender. They will then register the new mortgage with the new terms that have been agreed to.

It should be said that all clients should keep hold of all the documents that are given throughout this procedure for safe keeping. There are further copies elsewhere, but for their own peace of mind and for reference at a later date, clients should have their copy on hand.

No question is ever a stupid one and it is critical that clients understand all of the jargon that is within their mortgage contract. Professionals are trained to understand what people are agreeing to and it is the solicitor’s job to ensure that their client is in full understanding of their own personal situation.

A remortgage can be a great way of slashing costs and saving money. By taking advantage of new offers, or using some of the money that is tied up in their house on other things in their lives that they deem to be important, people are able to take control of their lives and have a sense of purpose and freedom that everyone desires.

How to Make Money with your Old Cell Phone

sell phones online

Having a cell phone is fun but modern phones are expensive.  Add the fact that most people replace their phone every 1-2 years and you will see how expensive owning a phone can be.

Owning a cell phone is a must for everyone these days.  Effective communication with your loved ones despite the distance can be achieved easily. Entertainment is also possible when you have a cell phone. This includes video-streaming, playing mobile and online games, and capturing some moments that you’ll surely reminisce for the rest of your lives. With hundreds of models and brands releasing their timely upgrades and new models, you mostly switch to a new one. Due to the endless expectations of the customers like you, you always seek for the better one. But what if your old phone is still working and in good condition? Will you throw it away? Do you know people can earn money from it? How?

Your old cell phones are not only meant for the trash. It still has a place and can make someone’s life better by selling it online. With different online stores and platforms, you can easily promote and sell your old cell phone to make money out of it. Here are some of the ideas that you can consider when selling your cell phone online.

Search for an Online Store

If you are not fond of selling it on yourself, you can try referring it to online stores. This way, a lot of potential buyers can view your cell phone and purchase it. With hundreds of online stores, it isn’t impossible to sell your cell phone.  When it comes to selling my used phone online, I personally love, a portion of all proceeds is donated to charity to help animals.

When choosing an online store, make sure that it has the license and proof of service. This way, you can avoid scam or robbery of your cell phone. Taking a look at the customer’s feedback, as well as the service, can be a basis for you to trust an online store.


Trading your cell phone to other customers or sellers can be a great choice. Here you can swap your cell phone with other items that correspond to the price of it. You can trade it with your friend, or workmate that might have an interest in your cell phone. Just make sure that the deal is true and there is no backing out. That way, you can avoid being fooled by your trader.

Make use of Social Media Sites

Another effective way of selling your old cell phone is through making social media sites including Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and other else. Using this can increase the potentiality of your cell phone to be sold to a buyer. With millions of social media users, you can catch the interest and attention of a potential buyer. Promotion using social media sites can be applied with creativity, such as sales talk. Make sure to include the product information and other essential data to attract a potential buyer fully.  Other creative methods can also be used as long as it is meant for promoting your old cell phone.

Make Sure to Provide the Product information

In selling your cell phone online, you must include the product information, as well as other essential inclusion of it such as the earphones, charger, and box. The product information is used to inform the buyer about your cell phone, so you mustn’t forget about it. If you don’t have the chance or time to talk about the information about the cell phone, the manual and other information describing the product can be used by the buyer to know how to use it. Make sure to provide the complete set of the product, including the charger and earphones. You can also add some notes and promo showing gratitude to the buyer for buying your cell phone.

Considering this information, as mentioned earlier regarding selling your cell phone online can make it purchased easily. Make money from your old cell phone!

Exterior Home Painting Nightmares to Avoid

A new coat of paint can transform your house from old and dated house to a modern looking home.

Preparation, superior workmanship, and superior long-lasting paints are key to successful paintwork. However, even with the right preparation and skill, several painting problems can occur.

Here are six exterior painting problems that could arise after a new paint job and how you can resolve such problems:

  1. Blistering

Blisters look like bubble bumps on the outer part of the paint film. The blisters can occur immediately after applying the paint or in one to three days after painting the exterior of home.

Some of the possible causes of blisters include applying an oil-based paint over a damp area or painting on a warm surface in direct sunlight.

When paint is applied on a warm exterior the outer paint dries quicker than the innermost part. Consequently, the dry paint prevents vapor from the inner part of the paint from escaping thus blisters are formed.

Likewise, moisture blisters can form on paint if water or any other liquid substance leaks onto the wall from the inner part of the wall.

You can remove blisters by scrapping the surface, applying a primer coat and then repainting the external part. Also, repairing any leaking pipes, taps and other moisture sources will remedy moisture blisters.


  1.  Cracking

Cracking can take place if dense paint coatings are applied on a wall. The problem is quite common in houses that have been painted severally in the past. If the new coat of paint is not able to attach to the old paint cracking takes place.

To prevent cracking, do not paint acrylic paint in windy conditions as it may dry too fast, prime the wood before painting, and avoid over-thinning the paint.

Correct any cracking that affects the substrate by scrubbing the cracked paint, priming the surface and repainting.

If the cracking has affected the substrate, brush all the paint, apply a primer and coat with a superior acrylic paint.

  1.  Chalking

If you touch the exterior surface of the wall and your hand gets a white substance, then your paint is chalking.

Chalking can occur if you paint highly pigmented paint, use low-quality paint or if interior paint is painted on the exterior part of the house.

There are several solutions that can resolve the problem of chalking. First, scrub the surface with a brush and clean the paint thoroughly. After cleaning touch the scrubbed portion to see if the problem has been resolved.

If the problem is still persist, apply acrylic or an oil-based primer and repaint the exterior with a high-quality exterior paint.


  1. Peeling

If the last layer of paint is unable to bond with the primer or earlier coat of paint peeling can occur.

In most cases, paint peeling is caused by moisture related issues. Peeling takes place if there are leaks from the rooftop. It can also occur if the walls are retaining water on their surface for prolonged periods of time.

If the affected part is quite extensive, brush off all the peeling paint, scrub the edges, apply a primer, and repaint the affected part of the wall.

  1. Sagging or running.

Sagging paint has a hanging or sopping appearance.

It comes about if the coat of paint applied is too heavy, if the paint was applied on a very humid day, too thin, and if the surface was not scrubbed or primed before application of a new layer.

Running paint can be rectified while still wet by reordering the sagging paint using a roller. If the paint has dried out already, scrub the uneven parts and reapply the paint.


  1.  Efflorescence

When water dissolves into the salts in the brick or concrete structure, it causes the salts to leach onto the surface of the walls. The hard white salt deposits, on the paint film, are referred to as efflorescence.

Cracks on the wall can allow water to penetrate into the walls causing efflorescence. Other causes of efflorescence include groundwater penetration onto the basement, poor removal of prior efflorescence, moisture in the inner part of the home escaping through the exterior part of the home, or the paint was painted before the concrete dried.

Efflorescence can be fixed by scrubbing the salt deposits, priming and repainting the affected surface.



Derek Worchel as a realtor and general contractor in Bellingham Washington.  When not working hands-on with the client or a home project he enjoys writing and hiking.  With over 15 years of experience he has seen just about everything.


8 Tips To Make House Painting Faster And Easier

One of the most popular DIY projects that people participate in is painting the interior of your home. It is a very affordable way to improve and beautify your home with a fresh layer of color. Painting is not a very difficult task, although, it can be very frustrating if done incorrectly. All you require is practice, patience and a reasonable amount of tips and your paint job will turn out just fine.

Tip 1: Paint the house the same color or a darker shade

Yes, you want more beautiful colors, you want variety, you want fresh, but the truth is, you would only end up creating more work for yourself if you decide to change the color. Deciding to go even lighter even further makes the entire work more tedious for you. If you make up your mind to go for a one-coat painting, the old color might end up showing through the new layer in some areas. If you want to change the color of your home, then choose a color that is darker than the present one. This makes it easier to lay down a single coat.


Tip 2: Wash off the walls very quickly

Most walls need a wash down prior to painting. This is to remove the dust and grey soot that might have accumulated over a long period of time. Washing down the house is a recommended process, no matter what. Try to make the wash down as quick and painless as possible.


Tip 3: Use TSP for a fast clean

It cannot be overemphasized, that a clean surface is very important for paints to adhere to a previously painted wall or woodwork. TSP is Trisodium Phosphate and it cleans very fast and doesn’t require so much scrubbing. It is useful to remove grease, hairsprays and even fingerprints.


Tip 4: Keep your prep time to a minimum

Wherever possible, please try to keep the preparations to a minimum. Do your best to keep the prep time to a minimum because sometimes you can end up spending more time preparing than on the painting itself. Also, extensive preparation in the form of covering and taping can sometimes kill the enthusiasm that took you a while to build up.


Tip 5: Try scraping just a bare minimum

While scraping isn’t a time waster by itself, it usually leads to more work. The problem with scraping is that, when you scrape off just a little portion of the old paint, it sometimes leads to more and more paint falling off and you have to keep scraping until you scrape past your envisioned target. So, if the edges of the old paint stay down, don’t bother scraping it, the new paint will seal the edges and prevent it from flaking off.


Tip 6: Roll flat surfaces

Use a roller and a pole to cover large expanses of flat siding in as short a time as possible. The paint would go down very thick and the process would not require as much time as using a brush.  Furthermore, if you use a brush on large surfaces verse rolling you’ll find yourself with unsightly brush marks.


Tip 7: Cover the paint to keep it fresh

Paints dry out very fast; whether in the container or in the roller tray. It is in your best interest to cover the bucket of paint with the lid if you ever need to take a break. Using aluminium foil to cover the roller tray also serves the same function. If you leave the paint out too long, the film that forms on the surface of the paint might end up on the wall being painted.


Tip 8: Minimize the Washing of Brushes and Covers

The trick is to buy moderately priced roller covers and dispose of them at the end of each painting session. For paint smears and touch-ups, get nylon brushes or foam brushes, all of which are inexpensive and toss them after use. Make sure to use a paint brush comb and water to clean your good brushes. This way, clean up time is reduced to the barest minimum.

The following tips, if practiced, should make painting the inside of your house as fast and as easy as can be without it becoming a nightmare. To get started on this inexpensive home-improvement go pick your colors, buy your supplies, and get to work.


6 Things Worth Noting Before Investing in Home Security Screens

Owning a home comes with a lot of responsibilities and security is at the top of the list.

Facts: On average, over 2 000 000 robberies are reported in the US yearly. Furthermore, almost 66% of these break-ins are in residential properties. Alarming, right? That’s why it comes as no surprise how taking measures to ensure your home is protected is non-negotiable.

We get it: With the rise in technology and software, all sorts of nifty and sophisticated security devices are constantly being introduced. However, security doors & windows—though a traditional approach—are effective features where safety and security is concerned. They’re basic…but they work.

They act as a direct physical barrier to keep intruders out. Is this what you need?

Factors to Consider

Looking for the right screen for your home might sound pretty basic but that’s not always the case. With endless options at your disposal, the process can be quite daunting as you figure out which screen is right for you.

That’s why we came up with a few pointers to help make your search that much easier. Before investing in these security screens, it’s in your best interests to ask yourself the following questions. This way you get value for your money.

Does it Fit?

Naturally, the first thing to consider is whether they fit your window or door. They’re definitely not a one size fits all phenomenon. To avoid disappointment, make sure you measure the size of the frame before you go shopping. It’s even best to leave the job to the professionals.

What is it Made Of?

It goes without saying: The material used in the construction of the screen is extremely important.  Firstly, it greatly influences its sturdiness. After all, the whole point is to get something that’s strong enough to keep the burglars out right?

While you’ll get varying types of material the one made of high-grade stainless steel is the one you want. Here’s why: It’s well known for its tough exterior and resilient properties which guarantee longevity.

This is the kind of investment you only want to make once so it must be built to last. For this reason it’s in your best interests to buy a screen which has the following:

  • Corrosion resistant: One that’s coated with abrasion and corrosion resistant additives to preserve the screen is best. This way the life span of the product greatly increases.
  • Weatherproof & waterproof: It’s no secret the different weather conditions these screens will have to endure. It ranges from rain to sunlight. Purchasing screens with both weatherproof properties is always a good idea so they don’t prematurely wear out.
  • Cleaning process: The material used in the construction of the screen will make the difference between a hassle-free cleaning process or a hectic one. This particularly refers to the design. While some designs seem quite attractive, they are a nightmare to clean. Case in point: Imagine trying to wipe a screen made with grooves? If you can get a strong but smooth screen it would be ideal.

How Thick Are These Screens?

While on construction you have to consider just how thick the bars on the screens are. Naturally the thicker the bars, the better as you’re guaranteed of the following:

  • The heaviest or sharpest objects won’t cut through it
  • No bashing in your windows. A flimsy screen will just be kicked in easily leaving your home at risk
  • Benefits over a long period. Thinner bars will inevitably wear down much quicker than their thicker counterparts.

Safety over Aesthetics?

Sure, the main reason for purchasing these screens is to protect your home right? But that doesn’t mean you must install unsightly screens that will make your home resemble a prison. On the contrary modern screens—whether for doors or windows—now feature stylish designs.

All you need to do is pick one with a color or look that matches your interior. With a little imagination, you’ll be surprised how the right set will instantly transform your space into a classy area.

You don’t have to compromise safety over aesthetics. You can certainly have both.

Will Your Screen Still Allow You to View Outside?

Yes they’re supposed to protect you from any intruders. However, this doesn’t mean you have to feel trapped inside your home.

Simply pick a screen that allows you a clear view of the exterior while still providing you with the necessary protection. A popular favorite which ensures visibility without compromising safety is a mesh screen.

Does Your Screen Allow Enough Ventilation?

Not only is seeing what’s happening on the outside important but it must allow for adequate ventilation. This means you can still open your windows to allow that cool breeze and still remain protected.

Your best bet would be to pick a security screen that allows a high level of airflow. This also ensures those unwanted insects are kept out even with your window wide open.

Final Thoughts

All the above facts are worth considering so you get the best screen for your home. Make sure you pick the best long term solution.

Of course, your budget also matters, but we advise you rather spend more than being too stingy. By paying a little extra you can get a high-end quality screen with everything you want from modern home features.

You can get style and security: Hopefully, this information helps you to get the right screen so you and your family can enjoy a good night’s rest from now on.

5 Home Decorating Ideas on a Budget

Sprucing up the home decor from time to time is a good way to keep your home looking like new. On the other hand, these decorating ideas can be rather expensive. Most people tend to leave home decor alone until they have a larger budget, but you don’t have to do that. If you’re smart about the decorating ideas, you can easily give your home a mini-makeover while ensuring that you stay within the given budget.

By being thrifty and thinking out of the box, you can swap the expensive decor with the expensive-looking yet budget friendly decor. Usually, paint is cheaper than wallpaper, but not when you’re considering changing the decor from time to time. One smart thing you can do is try and get wallpapers online in Australia.

Apart from this, the following are a few more home decorating ideas that you can try when you are on a budget.

1. Make an Accent Wall

An accent wall can be a crucial piece for any room. It creates a focal point and adds a new dimension to a room. While you can opt for a graffiti wall, the best option is to use brick wallpaper or marble wallpaper. This gives you an accent wall, and you don’t have to worry about it becoming a permanent fixture. If you are not a fan of brick wallpaper or marble, you don’t have to opt for it.


You can easily explore more options for wallpapers online in Australia. Additionally, it allows you to have an accent wall that is flexible. You can change it up as needed whenever you feel like it. This flexibility makes wallpaper a better choice than paint. Depending on the kind of paint, you also tend to spend more time to remove it, prep the surface and reapply. Wallpaper is better at covering up imperfections in the walls, is more resilient than paint and doesn’t always need a primer for a good finish.

2. Spruce Up Your Countertops

A good way to make your kitchen look amazing is by having new countertops, but this can be an expensive endeavour. A good, budget friendly option is to use marble texture wallpaper, cut it to size and adhere it to your countertops. The end result is amazing since it will look just like a regular, marble countertop. The best part is that you can even use this method for your kitchen table, coffee table or other pieces of furniture.


For a more realistic look, you can opt for marble wallpaper that has a sheen as its finish. This mimics the natural shiny nature of a marble top counter. An added bonus here is that you can easily find the best marble wallpapers online in Australia. You can pick and choose from different colours, marble patterns and also stay within your given budget.

3. Freshen Up the Room

It’s a good idea to freshen up the room by adding or removing decor pieces in order to change the way the room looks and feels. If your sofas are too bare, consider adding a throw on top. Wash or change the curtains and add accessories that complement the walls or the sofas. Also, pay attention to the decor pieces you are using in the room. These can incorporate a colour theme or complement the walls.

This is very important when you’re adding an accent wall with brick effect wallpaper or marble wallpaper. Pick the colours or the type of decor items that complement the accent wall. This ensures that the accent wall blends in more seamlessly into the room and doesn’t turn into an eyesore. With the help of the decor, you can make any room look like it has a theme or is artfully decorated. From the cushions to the countertops, curtains, tables and more, you can make any room look more cohesive.

4. Plants Add Colour

Always make sure that you add a few indoor house plants. These add some much-needed colour, and if you are using brick wallpaper or marble wallpaper, plants can add some contrast. In fact, if chosen properly, you can add a very light and airy look in your home. When you’re adding plants, make sure you pay attention to the pots and holders you are using. While clay pots are practical, they can be rather ugly to look at.


A very helpful option here is to use leftover marble or brick wallpaper to cover the pots. In this way, you get to add them to the theme of the room, make their pots look lovely and also turn them into pieces of decor for your house. Additionally, if you have no pieces leftover, don’t worry. You can easily order some more wallpaper online in Australia. This will still be more budget friendly than buying a marble pot for your plants.

5. Refurbish Some Old Furniture

Sometimes, the furniture might be the one contributing to the old or dated look of the room. While many people tend to throw it out and replace it later, it is a better option to refurbish it. Refurbish your old coffee table and make it look just as new. You can also add some marble or brick wallpaper, top it up with some varnish and sand it a bit to give it a fine and refined finish with ease.

This is more budget friendly, and also gives you a great piece of furniture for your home. The best part is that you have a lot of options for wallpaper online in Australia. These options are not only diverse in looks and applications but are also perfect for any given budget. Additionally, you can also buy old furniture from others and refurbish it to make it look as good as new.

With the help of these 5 home decor ideas, you can easily spruce up your home and have it looking as good as new while staying within your budget.


Closet Design for a Healthy Home and Mind

One of the first things we do in the morning is wake up and get ready for the day. A big part of our daily routine has to do with what we are going to wear. For work, you might wear a suit or dress, for working out you’ll probably choose a pair of tennis shoes or some stretchy yoga pants, and just before you hit the hay, you’ll want to grab your nighties.

With so many activities between you, your partner and maybe even your kids, closets can get messy and disorganized throughout the day becoming just another home headache. But what if you could optimize your closet design for easy and consistent organization?

Sometimes all it takes is a couple of nuts, bolts, shelves, and framing to do just that. For those with bigger budgets, a custom closet designer can help you make any vision come to life. Either way, every home benefits significantly from increased organizational capacity.

We use our closets multiple times throughout the day, and keeping this highly utilized space organized can lead to a happier and overall healthier home and mind; here’s how:


Clutter Control

Work on decluttering your wardrobe, if you create a space and place for everything in your closet, you’ll find the things you need much easier, and maybe get rid of all the inessential parts of your wardrobe gathering dust in the back corner.

Clutter can be stressful and unnecessary. Choosing the right closet design for your lifestyle means more time to relax or focus on other problem areas in the home! Ever been stressed out by having toys scattered about every room? You can even design a custom kids’ closet to give them a natural place for all their things. Every household has something to gain by reimagining the storage.


The Mess & the Stress

For most of us, work is already stressful enough; no one wants to leave work to come home to a place full of unfinished projects and clutter.

Research shows that a messy home can lead to depression, mood swings, unstable relationships, and even unhealthy lifestyle choices.  So invest in yourself by choosing to organize and design the space that is most important to your home’s overall organization. Before you know it, other areas of your life and home will begin to transform for the better.


Rest & Relaxation

The home should be a haven for you and your family to relax, unwind, and spend quality time. After you’ve redesigned your closet space and organized it, you’ll start to realize how much time you have freed up just by knowing where everything is the moment that you start your day.

You may even find comfort in decluttering and cleaning other areas of the home. This can lead to better relationships, healthier eating habits, and possibly new found motivation for all those hobbies you and your family have been wanting to make time for. Before you know it, you’ll be able to pencil in new things like exercise, date nights, or a good book into your daily routine. Hey, you might even find yourself reaching for an apple instead of last night’s leftover pizza.

Staying organized can be a daily struggle, but when you invest in the right design for your closet, you take the first step towards a better home, body, and mind. So remember to take it one step at a time, and before you know it your new closet design will have contributed to a healthier home and mind!

5 Signs That You Need Outdoor Blinds

Blinds and other window furnishings are an obvious design consideration when decorating your home. However, many homeowners only consider the impact of interior blinds for aesthetic appeal and sun protection. But did you know that outdoor blinds can be just as important for maintaining the health and appearance of your home?

That’s right, outdoor window furnishings do exist, and they have been rising in popularity within Australia in recent years. There are many varieties of outdoor blinds  available, including cafe blinds, awnings, retractable blinds, verandah blinds and more. Each one can be customised in any colour or material of your choosing to suit your home when you source them from with the right window furnishing provider.

If you are unsure whether you should purchase new outdoor blinds, there are certain considerations to keep in mind. The following five factors are reasons why you may benefit from this addition to your home.

  • You are Lacking Privacy: Some houses in Australia have fences or hedges surrounding the property to keep out wandering eyes, but many do not. In this case, outdoor blinds can be a useful way to maintain privacy for you and your family. Some types of blinds allow light to enter the home and even let you see outside while still blocking strangers from seeing in.
  • Your Home Heats Up Quickly and Never Cools Down: Blinds are meant to deflect the sun and heat, but far too many are ineffective at doing so. When too much light enters your home, your interior fixtures are at risk of sun damage and you are at risk of discomfort in your living environment. Outdoor blinds are a great way to add an extra layer of protection from the sun’s harmful rays, especially during peak hours.
  • You Have an Excessively High Energy Bill: In reducing the amount of heat that enters your home, exterior blinds may also help slash your home cooling costs. Outdoor window coverings are an environmentally-friendly and cost-effective alternative to blasting the air conditioning all summer long. They can also be opened and closed as needed for maximum control over your home’s interior temperature.
  • You Are Looking to Sell Your Home: If you want to put your house on the market it must be appealing to these potential buyers. One way to increase intrigue and make a lasting first impression is by adding stylish additions to your home such as outdoor blinds or awnings. They can provide a pop of colour to your house’s exterior and capture the attention of passersby. The likelihood of decreased utility bills should also cater to the senses of budget-conscious buyers or renters.
  • Your Windows Are Susceptible to Weather Damage: Some parts of Australia experience quite extreme weather conditions, including intense storms, rain, ice or wind. While changing weather is unavoidable, associated window deterioration can be. Outdoor blinds provide a shield from the elements, which can limit your need for window restoration or repair. If your window coverings extend from your home over your yard or patio, they can also protect you and your belongings from exposure to harsh weather.


For those experiencing any of the above issues, outdoor blinds may provide the solution you need.

Loft Conversion Worth Cost? Increase in Home’s Value?

Converting a loft in your home might be beneficial for some homeowners. If you plan on selling your home in the near future, the right work to the loft area can increase the home’s value. Or, if you simply plan on enjoying the space as a family and aren’t considering resale value at the time if the space is properly utilised you can enjoy it for years to come.

Cost of converting the loft –
First off, you have to consider the costs associated with converting a loft space. Initially, the cost of labour per day you’ll pay to a licensed tradesperson will run between £200-300. This is in addition to the cost of materials which can exceed £1000 depending on what you’re doing to the space. A loft which is approximately 100-200 sq meters in space can typically be completed in a week’s time.

How much value will it add –
Think of it this way; if you convert the loft into a bedroom or guest room, this can greatly add value to the home. If you have a 2-bedroom home, the new loft will give you a third bedroom. In some areas, this can increase the value of your home by £5000 or more when you resell. So, the £1500-£2500 you spend to convert it, is obviously worth it.

The converted loft can also double up as a game room, a place for the kids to do homework or even a home theater to enjoy time with the family. So, even if you don’t plan on selling the home soon you can utilise the space and make the most of it with family/friends.

For the most part, loft conversions aren’t too costly considering the returns unless you plan on purchasing lavish décor and spending a great deal of money on furnishings. Otherwise, it might well be worth converting the space, adding more livable space and having a spare room for different activities whether you plan on enjoying it or plan on reselling the home in the near future.

Account for delays/setback –
It is obviously a good idea to expect the best but plan for the worst. In the event new lighting, wiring, plumbing or other work has to be done this can add to the cost and time. So, you can budget accordingly and set aside an additional £500-1500 for these additional expenses. Even if you incur them, the returns during the selling process is typically worth the time and cost of getting the conversion done.

Loft conversions can be used in so many ways. Whether you plan on enjoying the space yourself or simply plan on converting to increase resale value, it is beneficial to do in most homes. If you are contemplating whether or not to make the upgrade then I would contact a few licensed tradespeople. Get some written quotes and compare the prices they offer to ensure you find the best price, guarantees and most qualified to do the conversion of the loft space in your home.