The Hidden Cost of Remodeling: What You Don’t Know Could Cost You a Fortune

No matter how simple your project might seem, every remodeling project involves decisions that you as the homeowner must make — either by choice or by default. Making informed decisions could save your budget, your sanity and possibly your home. As the knight in the “Indiana Jones” movie says; “You must choose wisely”. This article contains information that can help you do just that.

You can’t get where you’re goin’, if you don’t know where you’re at

It can be a challenge for even the most experienced professional to find everything that’s behind the walls, under the floor or above the ceiling. A thorough inspection of the site will often reveal certain conditions that must be dealt with one way or the other. Knowing what these conditions are and what your options are for dealing with them can make a huge difference, both in terms of time and money. Discovering a problem in the middle of the project can often result in substantial delays and additional costs.

By having an accurate set of “as-built” drawings, many potentially budget-busting problems can be dealt with during the design process. Sometimes a simple change to the design can avoid the problem altogether. In fact, these changes can often result in a better design for less money.

But what if you can’t (or don’t want to) design around the problem? Well at least you’ll know what the problem is and what it will cost to resolve it. Perhaps you can reallocate money from another part of the project by reducing the scope or choosing a less expensive finish. Perhaps you could simply add the cost to your budget. Either way, you can eliminate many surprises and be able to make intelligent, informed decisions if you are armed with the knowledge that only a thorough site reconnaissance and accurate as-built drawing can offer.

Fail to plan? Plan to fail!

Some projects need to be designed before you can figure out how to do it and what it will cost. Kitchens, room additions, basement finishes and other large scale projects almost invariably need to be designed first. Smaller projects such as a simple bath remodel, painting the exterior or replacing windows are simple enough that all it takes is a material takeoff and a budget for labor.

Regardless of whether a project needs to be designed, it certainly requires a project plan. Jumping into a project without considering all the ramifications will almost invariably cost more and take more time. A detailed plan that is well thought out is essential to the success of any project – particularly if it requires that you move furnishings, empty out cabinets or have to arrange for a safe place to store your vintage 1956 Thunderbird while the work is being done.

Make sure your contractor has a plan that includes your requirements so as not to be surprised when the cabinets are delivered and the Thunderbird is buried behind a wall of boxes in the garage.

Comparing apples to oranges to pears to bananas

Conventional wisdom says that soliciting multiple quotes for your remodeling project is the best way to select a contractor. On the surface, it would appear to make sense. But it can be quite confusing when it comes time to sit down and compare the quotes. This is because every contractor has their own way of determining your requirements, assembling the scope of work and calculating the cost. It’s easy enough to compare the bottom line. It’s much more difficult to figure out what’s included. (Talk about hidden costs!) But there is a better way.

First, let’s distinguish between large scale projects and “one-dimensional” projects. Large scale projects, such as kitchens, master baths, room additions and basement finishes typically require a design. One-dimensional projects, such as flooring, painting and roofing only require material selection. Either way, selecting the right contractor is the key to getting the job done right. If your main focus is on the bottom line, you are certain to attract contractors that use poor quality materials and questionable business practices to keep the price down. Better you should focus on the criteria that really matters – trust, experience, reputation and compatibility. Let’s drill down a bit.

Trust — There are plenty of ways to gauge a contractor’s trustworthiness, particularly in the age of the Internet. Go to your browser, type in the name of the company and see what comes up. Don’t be put off by a bad review here or there. No one gets along with everybody every time. But if there’s a lot of negative information, you’ll want to move on.

Then take a look at their affiliations. Do they belong to any professional organizations such as the National Kitchen and Bath Association or the National Association for the Remodeling Industry? Are they members of the Better Business Bureau?

Finally, make sure they have the proper insurance coverage. They should have liability insurance of at least 2 million dollars and workers compensation coverage on all of their direct employees. For sub-contractors, the general contractor should be named as “additional insured” on the sub’s insurance certificate. Without the proper insurance coverage, your contractor will be exposing you the most devastating of all the hidden costs, one that could very well cost you everything you own.

Experience – While experience is certainly important, be careful with this one. Being in business for 20 years says nothing about the contractor’s ability to deliver a quality project on time and within budget. The best way to look at this one is by asking for references. Here’s a good tip. Ask for nine references – three from projects they completed several years ago, three from projects that were completed in the last year and three that they’re working on right now. You don’t have to contact them all, but you’ll get a more complete picture if you talk to at least one in each category.

Reputation – Good or bad, a contractor’s reputation is a direct reflection of the way they choose to do business. It’s important to emphasize the word “choose” since this speaks volumes for the character and integrity of the organization. Reputable contractors engage in fair business and pricing practices. Their integrity shows up when they have the opportunity to take advantage of a situation and choose not to. For example, let’s say that an asbestos coated duct is found in a wall that is to be taken out. Obviously, this has to be dealt with on a change order. The opportunity to take advantage is certainly there, but a reputable contractor would choose not to.

Compatibility – After you’ve determined that a contractor has the trust, experience and reputation to do the job, your next step should be to interview the key players in an effort to size up your compatibility with them. Depending on the size and scope of the project, you may wish to meet with the owner of the company, the designer and the project manager. These may be all the same person or different members of a team. Remember, you’ve already determined that the contractor has the ability to do the job, so the interviews should focus on how you feel about each member of the team and how they communicate with you and each other. Let’s look at each role as it pertains to your project.

Meeting the owner of the company – regardless of whether he or she will be directly involved in your project – will tell you all you need to know about the culture of the organization. If you feel good about the owner, chances are you’ll feel good about the company. If the owner rubs you the wrong way, the best advice is to move on.

For obvious reasons, the relationship between you and your designer is critical to the successful outcome of the project. A good designer will listen, interpret and produce a design that reflects what you want, not what they think you should have. They should be ready, willing and able to offer expert guidance and advice, but they should also recognize that you will be the one who will be living in the space. Sizing up the designer is simply a matter of listening to their ideas – not just in terms of whether you like their ideas, but also in terms of how they are presented. If you’re not comfortable with their style, you’ll need to keep looking.

Finally, there’s the project manager. The skill set required to effectively manage a remodeling project can only be obtained through lots of experience. The technical skills required to complete the work are similar to other residential construction projects, but in the remodeling business, everyone is working in a fish bowl. There’s no way to insulate you from the inconvenience associated with a remodeling project, but a skilled project manager knows how to orchestrate everything such that the impact on your home life is minimized. Aside from having a strong working knowledge of every trade, diplomacy, tact and an even temper are the things to look for in the one who will ultimately be responsible for delivering the end result.

In the final analysis, selecting the right team to take on your project is the most important decision you’ll make. In the process of evaluating contractors, remember this simple formula: Quality + Service = Price. High quality and excellent service only cost more on the front end. As long as your contractor delivers both, the price will be a bargain in the long run.

We’ll need a #4 sky hook for that

Of all the things that effect your remodeling budget, the greatest impact can be found in the design itself. Basically, a valid design needs to be functional, aesthetically pleasing and be practical to build.

The National Kitchen and Bath Association (NKBA) publishes and maintains two sets of guidelines – one for kitchens and one for baths – that when adhered to, will result in a perfectly functioning kitchen or bath. If the design doesn’t work, you’re going to hate it no matter what it looks like. The worst part is, a dysfunctional kitchen is usually discovered after the fact, as a result of the day to day use of the space.

Once the requirements for functionality are met, the aesthetic requirements can be applied. For example, the cabinet layout and appliance locations are a product of functionality. The cabinet door style and the color of the appliances are design decisions that only affect the look. To be sure, the aesthetics can drive the budget up. Lots of molding costs lots of money. Applying matching panels to the refrigerator and dishwasher can be surprisingly expensive since the door is the most expensive part of the cabinet.

If the design meets the first two requirements, the next thing is to determine the degree of difficulty in bringing it to life. A good designer anticipates the practicality of moving a bearing wall for instance. But is there a more practical, less expensive alternative? Not all designers are prepared to gauge the impact that their design decisions have on the budget.

In the worst case, a flaw in the design is discovered in the middle of the project. For example, it’s discovered that a wall that was to be moved can’t be moved at all. Of course, a total recon of the site as suggested in the first part of this report should insure that the design can be built. But it won’t necessarily insure that the design could have been done without moving the wall.

The message here is to make sure that the validity of the design is field verified before any materials are ordered. You do this by making sure the designer and the project manager have done a thorough review of the design early on so as to anticipate any problems in building it out.

Cheap doesn’t always mean less expensive

No matter how much money they have, everybody loves a bargain. It can be hard to resist a great deal, even if you’re not in the market at the time. But when you think about it, there are really only three reasons that price and value get out of sync; the seller doesn’t know what it’s worth, the seller doesn’t care what it’s worth, or the seller is desperate. Other than that, cheap probably means low quality, which is no bargain at all.

When it comes to remodeling, consider whether you would want a contractor to work on your house if they don’t know what the work is worth. If the job is under sold, it usually means something was missed. That’s not exactly the kind of attention to detail that you’d like to see. Then again, if there’s not enough money to do the job right, your contractor may have to cut corners.

Now consider the contractor that doesn’t care what the job is worth. Perhaps the competition for work is fierce and he just needs to sell something to stay busy. So he cuts his margin to the bone and basically works for free. Will he be able to pay his suppliers or will he need the money for himself? Contractors that operate on a razor thin budget will eventually go out of business, leaving you with no recourse if something goes wrong down the road.

Finally, there’s the contractor that’s just plain desperate. In this day and age, there are plenty of folks in this category. Imagine handing a check over to someone who has to turn around and get their tools out of hock. Worse yet, imagine handing a check to someone you’ll never see again. It happens more often than you might think.

Aside from the quality of the contractor you select, the quality of the products that go into your remodel is every bit as important. That shiny new faucet might look great when it goes in, but what will it cost you to have it replaced when it breaks in a year or so? Particularly if it leaks all over your hardwood floor. Does your contractor offer a warranty? Is he going to be around to honor it?

The lesson here is, quality may cost a little more to begin with, but it will pay off in the long run. Your best bet is to find a contractor that has the experience, the credentials, and the ability to deliver a quality result for a fair price. What more could you ask for? What more would you want?

Smith? Party of four?

Obviously if you’re going to remodel your kitchen, you’re going to have to find alternative eating arrangements. Even if you’re not remodeling the kitchen, the dust and disruption which is inevitable with many projects may cause you to eat out more often.

In the extreme, you may even want to move out during the construction phase. In this case, the associated costs could include moving your furniture into your temporary digs or a storage facility, the cost of rent added to your ongoing mortgage payments and moving your furnishings back in when the project is complete. If you’re financing the project, you can add the interest to the list of items you’ll have to deal with while you’re waiting to move back in.

Since most people are aware of these additional costs, one might not think of them as hidden costs. You’ll know in advance that you have to budget for these items. The question is, for how long?

Delays are to be expected in the remodeling business, particularly with large scale projects. It’s almost inevitable that something will show up damaged and have to be reordered. If all of the materials are in hand before the work begins, you’ll be ahead of the curve on this one. Unfortunately, accidents happen and the materials could be damaged during the construction process. Other causes for delays include the weather, building inspections, scheduling conflicts, and unexpected conditions such as mold behind the sink cabinet. The point is you need to plan for the delays and hope that you won’t have any. Therefore, the target date for completion should be worst case…unless it’s not.

Regardless of the type of project you’ve got going, the chances are you have some sort of per diem cost associated with the construction phase. As hard as it may be to understand, it’s not uncommon to hear stories about projects that take weeks or even months longer than anticipated. In these cases, the cost can be measured in more than just dollars and cents. The associated stress can become a serious health issue.

The best way to insure that you will not have to deal with an extended timeline is to select a contractor with a demonstrated history of bringing projects in on time – or at least within reason, all circumstances taken into consideration.

For information on Derby bathrooms click here.

The 5 Key Steps to Receiving a Massage That Will Help You to Feel Better

1. You are always right and should get exactly what you want. Many massage consumers assume that you are going to a professional massage therapist and therefore whatever they say goes. The old adage that the consumer is always right also applies to the massage therapy industry. Of course, you want to work with a “trusted expert”, but that does not mean that if you think you need more focus on a particular area or altered pressure that you should not receive exactly that.

A “trusted expert” will listen to exactly what you want and apply the techniques that are going to help you achieve that goal. When you go out to buy something that you have already decided to purchase you are not going to let a salesperson sell you on something different than what you had in mind (although this happens all too frequently in the marketplace). The same is true for your massage therapy experience. If you are not sure what you need but have a specific complaint, your massage therapist should listen to your chief complaints and provide a solution that helps you achieve your desired outcome (more on this later).

If you sense that the massage therapist you are working with is not listening to your needs, it is perfectly alright for you to end the massage session. This may seem a bit harsh, but wasting your time and money on ineffective treatments is not an acceptable option.

For information on Plano massage click here.

2. What you should expect from your massage therapy treatment. The massage therapy treatment should specifically fulfill your desired result. You should expect that you are going to work with a skilled massage therapist that is going to listen to your issues and help you receive a massage that is very satisfying for you. From the moment you call in to schedule your massage treatment you should have a sense that you are going to work with a therapist that is going to treat you as an individual and respect your individual needs. It is appropriate to ask for the massage therapist’s credentials and experience.

You may also want to speak with an existing client to ensure that they have had a pleasant experience an existing client that they work with that has had a pleasant experience with the practitioner you are about to have a massage with. You can ask to come by and see the facility where you will be receiving your massage. Does it look clean, relaxing, and therapeutic? What does the energy of the facility feel like? Does it align with your energy and feel like a place that you will be comfortable with? It is also appropriate to ask to meet with the therapist who is will potentially be working with you prior to the massage treatment so you can be assured that you will be comfortable with the massage therapist.

When you have set up your massage treatment and arrive for your massage you will be asked to fill out some paperwork. Allow for enough time to fill out the paperwork so it does not interfere with your massage time. After all, if you are seeing a massage expert, chances are they are very busy and they have clients before and after you.

When you arrive at the establishment you should be warmly greeted and offered water while you fill out the paperwork and wait to meet your therapist (if you did not meet them prior). Your therapist should introduce themselves to you and welcome you and direct you back to the massage room. The therapist should then ask you about your specific goals for the session and listen to you before proceeding. You should feel that the therapist cares deeply about your goals for the session and is interested in helping you achieve them. The treatment room should be relaxing and comforting. The massage therapist should explain that you can disrobe to your level of comfort.

Note: For some people their level of comfort may be to keep all of their clothes on. This is perfectly fine. I have worked with clients who started with me working with me fully clothed and as their comfort level increased they began to remove some clothing so I could massage directly to their skin. The fact is that massage therapy feels better when it is applied directly to the skin. The other fact is that a skilled massage therapist can work with you with all your clothes on and still provide a great massage.

You should be covered or draped with sheets properly during your massage. This is not only a law, but is intended for your comfort. This means that only the area of your body that is being massaged will be exposed. The rest of your body will be covered by a sheet and when you are cold a blanket as well.

Note: I have had massage at establishments that have used very little towels to cover my naked body. I am very comfortable with my body, but in one session in particular (at a San Diego establishment) I was very cold during the session and the draft made the massage very uncomfortable. I have come to find out that this particular establishment may not be a legitimate massage practice but a front for prostitution. You would never know this as it is marketed as a day spa, so be wary of where you set up your appointment. I can guarantee that if I would have implemented these 5 steps I would have known that this establishment was not legitimate and I would have saved myself the uncomfortable experience and the waste of my time and money.

The practitioner will leave the room once they explain where you should place your clothes and they will indicate that they will be back in a while to start your massage.

Note: We implemented a “relaxation switch” in our clinics that when pressed by the client turns on a light outside to know you are ready. I have had numerous experiences of opening the door on clients who were not comfortably under the sheets. If the establishment does not have the “relaxation switch” make sure that you are quick to get on the table to avoid any uncomfortable racing to the table scenarios.

Once you are on the table you should not have to wait too long for the therapist to come and start the massage. The therapist should enter the room and ask you how you feel on the table. How is the temperature of the room? How does the table feel? How do the pillows or bolsters feel?

Before therapist begins doing the massage they should tell you that if at any time during the massage you would like more or less pressure to just let them know and they will accommodate you. If you are getting the massage for general relaxation the massage therapist should not talk with you during the session. This is one of the chief complaints I hear from massage consumers across the country when they tell me about their massage experiences. I have heard of therapists who will tell the client about all their personal problems while the client is “held hostage” and is paying good money to council these therapists on their personal issues.

Remember the first step, You are always right and should get exactly what you want, so tell the therapist that you prefer to just listen to the music or zone out during your massage. If your therapist is a massage expert you will find that they will have listened to you describe your goal of relaxation and therefore they would be quiet during your massage session.

NoteIf you are receiving a massage for a goal of reliving pain or a specific injury then your massage therapist will need to discuss your history with you and explain what they are doing. You also may be asked to move around on the table from face down, side lying to on your back.

After the massage your therapists should thank you for the session and discuss their assessment of your muscular health. Your therapist will explain what they recommend for a treatment plan for you to achieve your goal. It may be as simple as you needing to receive massage once a month to keep stress levels low enough to help you to better manage your life; or it may require that you come in as often as 2X a week for 6 weeks to aggressively treat a specific issue you are dealing with.

Whatever the case is, the therapist you work with should give you a plan that will help you achieve your massage goals. It may be that massage therapy will not be the best method for helping decrease your pain. In this instance, your therapist should refer you to the appropriate group or therapy that will help you achieve this.

3. Why massage modalities are a thing of the past and what a massage modality is. If you are new to massage you will peruse the massage menu and wonder what all these treatments are. A massage modality is a massage technique that has a specific purpose for the massage receiver. There are literally hundreds of massage modalities and they can seem daunting to someone who has never received a massage before. There is also misrepresentation of massage modalities by therapists who are not adequately trained in the modality they offer. This is due to the third point I discussed in the potential problems massage consumers can experience when receiving massage.

The fact is that the only people that know what a shiatsu, reiki treatment, deep tissue massage or Swedish massage are massage practitioners. As the massage consumer you care about one thing: that you will receive a massage that will help you achieve your specific goal for that particular session. Whether that is stress management, sports performance, injury prevention, injury rehabilitation, pain relief, or just overall wellness, the modality that is used to achieve these goals is not of importance to you. Most of the time you do not even know what the modality is. So, if you are faced with having to choose between a Swedish, deep tissue, shiatsu, thai massage or trager, then you know that you may want to look elsewhere to get your massage treatment. You want to work with a massage expert that will listen to your needs and integrate a variety of modalities that fulfills that outcome.

4. How to effectively communicate with your massage therapist. As you recall from the first step you are always right and you should always get what you expect from your massage treatment. Before, during and after your massage treatment you should have an open communication line with your massage therapist. If at any time during the session you would like more or less pressure you should only have to say a little less pressure and your therapist should immediately respond to your requests.

If for any reason you feel uncomfortable during the session you should be able to state it and have the therapist validate your feelings by making the necessary changes. So, it’s as easy as just speaking up. Unfortunately, I have heard from too many massage consumers who have received a massage that they were uncomfortable, but they did not speak up because they did not want to upset the therapist.

Here’s the deal, if your therapist responds in a defensive manner to your feedback, you can end the session right at that moment. You should not have to pay for the treatment. When you work with a massage expert they will be able to sense what you are feeling and address your concern before you have a chance to express them. I have trained our therapists to watch body language and listen for any cues to change the direction of treatments with clients. If you do not experience this, I urge you to politely end the massage session and seek out an expert to help you with your massage needs.

5. You may be able to get massage for Free (that’s right, I said it, for free)

I know I don’t mind paying for something when I get exactly what I ask for. I usually buy things based on a problem I would like to solve (a pain I would like to avoid). Massage therapy is exactly the same.

If you are stressed and your stress is relieved, your head is clearer, and you are able to enjoy a more relaxed life, then you are happy to pay for the service. How about if you could get the service that relieves your pain or stress and get it for free? Sound too good to be true? Well, some massage establishments have referral incentive programs where they will give you a massage or money towards a massage when you refer a friend, family or colleague. At the clinics I own we offer $35 for every referral that our wonderful clients honor us with. We have some clients that get a couple of free massages a month because they enjoy the service and they encourage their friends, family and colleagues to come in to our clinic and get a massage. The end result is that you end up getting massage for free.

Of course if the massage establishment you go to does not produce a massage that meets or exceeds your expectations then you would get more massage that is basically worthless. There are options out in the marketplace. Use this reference to help you receive a massage that meets your expectations.

Adult Day Care: 5 Reasons It’s a Preferred Alternative to a Nursing Home

Adult day care centers are a preferred alternative to nursing home or institutional care, providing activities, opportunities for socialization, convenience, and independence all while providing expert health care dedicated to helping clients improve daily functioning or delay worsening of conditions. There are many reasons to consider adult day care, including the following benefits.

1. Prolonged Independence and Improved Daily Functioning

Medical adult day care centers promote their clients’ ability to remain independent by supplementing the assistance they receive from family caregivers with a program of health care services and activities custom-tailored to each individual’s needs and interests.

By taking part in these activities, clients receive cognitive and physical stimulation that helps to enhance well-being while delaying or preventing a decline in health that would ultimately lead to placement in an assisted living facility or nursing home. In addition, many offer on-site specialists to provide physical therapy, speech therapy, and occupational therapy. These therapists work with clients to improve daily functioning by developing strength, range of motion, balance and cognitive abilities.

2. Nutrition and Medication Management is a Priority

Ensuring that clients receive proper nutrition and medication each day in the absence of their family caregivers is an important factor in fulfilling the commitment of helping clients maintain the best possible quality of life and well-being.

Caregivers can be assured that nutrition is a top priority. Adult day care centers provide appetizing, wholesome meals and snacks that are approved by a dietician. Meals served at centers typically include provisions for diabetics, vegetarians, sodium-restricted or low-cholesterol diets and other special dietary needs.

Additionally, the staff can administer medications and injections as prescribed, monitoring the effectiveness of the treatment and relaying this information to the client’s physician, caregivers and case manager.

3. A Cost-Effective Alternative to Nursing Homes or Institutions

Adult day care centers offer the most cost-effective long-term care option. While costs differ based on care level and geographic region, nationwide averages show that the annual costs for medical adult day care services are significantly less than those for other long-term care options.

In many cases, services may be paid in part or in full by Medicaid, the Veterans Administration, or private long-term care insurance, although coverage varies by state and policy. Additionally, out-of-pocket expenditures may qualify as a tax-deductible medical expense.

4. The Convenience of Door-to-Door Transportation

Some adult day care centers provide flexible, door-to-door transportation for their clients within a convenient radius of the center.

In addition to transportation to and from centers, many also escort their clients to medical appointments when needed. This service is particularly helpful for caregivers who maintain full- or part-time employment outside the home, as it decreases disruption of and distraction from their work day.

5. Effective Management of Chronic Conditions

When clients come to an adult day care center, they typically receive a customized care plan that incorporates cognitive and physical activities as appropriate in order to help them remain active and intellectually stimulated throughout the day while maintaining or improving their present level of independence and functioning.

Adult day care centers typically staff skilled RNs, LPNs, personal care assistants, activities staff, and therapists who play an important role in helping their clients address the challenges of chronic conditions. The staff is able to help by assisting with daily personal care and hygiene, nutrition and medication management, blood pressure and blood sugar monitoring, tracheotomy care and tube feeding, and offering on-site physical, speech and occupational therapy. Additionally, many centers will work with families in the implementation of these health management and therapeutic techniques, so they can take an active role in the client’s care and treatment at home.

Adult day care centers provide many benefits for both caregivers and their loved ones. The convenience, health assurance, socialization, and cost all contribute to the many reasons that adult day care is becoming a preferred choice for caregivers. The decision for what type if care is best for your loved one can be difficult. Before making the decision, consider if adult day care may be the right choice for these reasons, and many more.

For information on senior day programs click here.

Benefits of Debt Consolidation Loan – Get the Most Out of It

It is rightly said, “A sick man sleeps, but not a debtor”. Debts may become burden for debtors if they fail to repay them on time. Creditors keep on troubling them from time-to-time asking for the due payments.

You too may have taken number of loans, be it a car loan, business loan, credit cards, store cards, bank overdraft or a student loan. The reason for taking loans could have been unexpected financial difficulties, illness, overspending or any other personal purpose. Don’t you want to get rid of all debts and the hassles involved in dealing with the creditors? Certainly, everyone wants to stay debt free. Debt consolidation loans can bring the normality back in your life.

Consolidating all the debts with a debt consolidation loan helps borrowers to manage their debts effectively. By taking a debt consolidation loan, the borrower becomes liable to only one loan provider who offers the debt consolidation loan.

Debt consolidation loan helps to take the stress out off the borrower’s mind. At times, it becomes very difficult for borrowers to keep track of the various payments, when they’re due, how much they’ll be and whether or not he or she will have enough amount to cover them. This may lead to frequently missing payments and incurring further late fees, in the form of interest. Debt consolidation loans will give liberty to the borrower from these troubles that may have been bothering him for a long time.

A borrower can either take a secured or an unsecured debt consolidation loan. A secured debt consolidation loan is secured by the borrower’s property namely a house, a car, bonds or savings account. Lenders charge a low rate of interest for secured debt consolidation loan as the loan is secured against the borrower’s property.

An unsecured debt consolidation loan is not secured against the borrower’s property. Thus, it carries a comparatively higher rate of interest than secured debt consolidation loans. By taking an unsecured debt consolidation loan the borrower is on the safer side, as his property is not at risk. Tenants who wish to consolidate their debts will have to do with an unsecured debt consolidation loan. Homeowners have the freedom to borrow either of the two loans. Loan providers will provide homeowners on account of unsecured debt consolidation loans because home lends extra faith.

Debt consolidation loan by consolidating borrower’s debt helps in reducing monthly payments. Reduced monthly payments can help in improving borrower’s cash flow. A borrower can easily pay small monthly payments from his income and it will not pinch his pocket. It can help save a considerable amount each month, which he had been paying in the form of interest. Debt consolidation loan saves borrower’s time, as he has to deal with only one loan provider.

Repayment term of a debt consolidation loan can be longer than individual debts, offering you a longer time to pay back the borrowed money. However, to get the most out of a debt consolidation loan, pay off your loans as soon as you receive the money. This will help the borrower to improve his credit score by paying the old debts. It will be easier for the borrower to pay one monthly payment at a time to one loan provider. Finally, focus on paying off the debt consolidation loan by making extra payment, if the lender allows so. It will help borrower to save on interest charges and he can get out of debt sooner.

Debt consolidation loan can surely be beneficial. The key to success with a debt consolidation loan is discipline. Once a borrower has consolidated his debts, he should maintain the discipline; he should avoid overspending or spending with credit. If they can’t, they will end up in a deeper debt than before.

A debt consolidation loan consolidates all the debts of the borrower into one manageable debt. Debt consolidation loan can greatly improve the payment history of the borrower and can put him or her on the path to a debt free future. Change your life with a debt consolidation loan.

Is Spending on Fabric Protection Worth It?

Fabrics like silk and leather are renowned for their impressive look and quality. They are expensive to purchase and liable to getting damaged with permanent stains. In order to safeguard your precious fabrics from such damages you need to opt for some proper Fabric Protection.

You will find the market to be loaded with many promising products that can be used in order to give your fabrics a protective coating. However this is one experiment that can go ugly. In that case you will not even be left with a fabric worth protecting. Rather than putting your precious fabrics at risk for saving a few dollars you should go for professional Fabric Protection services instead.

Think about it, if you are after that classy look of fabrics that you get in hotels then you will most definitely not be able to get that by yourself. Add to that the fact that you need to have adequate knowledge of how to deal with soft and delicate fabrics so that they are not damaged. In this case you will find Carpet Steam Cleaning companies to be the ideal alternative.

Not many people are fully aware of what exactly fabric protection services are. Fabric Protection is not the same as Upholstery Cleaning. Nor is it some kind of magic treatment that will make your fabrics immune to picking up soil and dirt. Rather what Fabric Protection does is that it makes it impossible for stains to permanently remain on your fabric. This means that irrespective of whether you spill grease, oil or any other nasty liquid on your fabric, it will not transform into a permanent stain. Dirt and soil can be handled but it is the permanent stains that you need to guard against in order give your fabrics a long life.

For information on fabric protector click here.

With the benefits of Fabric Protection outlined you need to make sure you find a high standard service provider in order to make sure you get what you pay for. Professional cleaning companies have an entire range of processes that they treat the fabrics with. Furthermore they have in depth knowledge of how to treat different fabrics and the products to use with each kind of fabric.

As with any cleaning procedure the first step is conducting a detailed analysis of the fabrics that need protection. The analysis will enable the company to outline the products to be used and the methodology to be employed. Next up the company will sign a written proposal with the clientele that will inform him of the charges, the time frame and all other legal information. Once signed the trained team of technicians will be sent over to your home in order to start off with the job. Certain cleaning companies cover you in case of damages and provide a money back guarantee on their services.

Inflatable Bounce House For Boys’ Parties

For parties, where sipping tea in frilly dresses and sharing little presents and eating dainty cake is going to be a nightmare of boredom, many parents are finding that an inflatable bounce house is exactly the route to go. A large group of boys is much more difficult to entertain and control than a large group of girls.

However, if boys can jump and burn off their excess energy, they will feel as if the party was a success. There are some parents who believe having bought or rented bounce house inflatables for their son’s birthday was the best thing they had done despite the higher cost then anticipated.

Castle Bounce House, Moon Bounce or Inflatable Water Slide?

In order to decide what style and what design of bounce house you want to order for the party you will first need to know how many guests you will invite and about how much everyone will weigh (general) and then think about the space you have available and finally what theme you want.

If you have children of different ages, including toddlers and older children and they will all attend the same party, it may be wise to have a small baby bouncer for the toddlers and a larger bounce house for the 8 or 10 year-olds.

Bounce House Thirst

Ensure you ask the parents to help supervise. You can’t leave children to bounce without an adult being nearby to monitor the activity. Children tend to get crazy inside bouncers. Also, time and space the bouncing of groups so that everyone can have a chance to bounce and make sure that each child drinks enough fluids between bounce sessions because bouncing is exercise and they will need water or juice.

Soda is the worst. It will make the bouncing inside even crazier as they may become hyperactive. Serve water and juice in abundance. It’s a bounce party it needn’t be a soda and cake party.

For information on OC jumper rentals click here.

Which Of These Bird Feeder Plans Should I Use?

Why is this a difficult question? Because, there are as many bird feeders plans in existence as there are birds! Ok, maybe that was a bit of an exaggeration, but not much of one.

So here is the situation, you found some free bird feeder plans, and you’re not sure which ones to use…stop right now and answer this question…what species of bird are you trying to attract? Haven’t considered that question? I don’t care how beautiful your project turns out, you simply will not attract hummingbirds if your birdfeeders hold seed!

Different species of birds have distinct feeding habits, and in order to attract a particular species you must select birdfeeder plans with those habits in mind. Have no doubt that whatever design you use you will attract birds…but don’t be disappointed if your wild bird feeders attract a less desirable flock than you originally anticipated.

For information on squirrel proof bird feeders click here.

As anyone who has ever hung a birdfeeder will tell you, if you’re going to feed birds…you’re also going to feed squirrels! Squirrel proof birdfeeder plans exist, but apparently nobody bothered to inform the squirrels of this point. Some designs do seem to slow them down a bit, but I have not yet found the 100% squirrel proof bird feeder. I’m fairly certain that if you hung a feeder on the North Pole, by 6:00 a.m. the next morning there would be a squirrel sorting through it for the choicest morsels. Save yourself the torment, and learn to enjoy their company!

Walk into any store that sells it, and sitting next to the bird seed you will find a dizzying array of manufactured birdfeeders. Call me old fashioned, but it just seems that wooden bird feeders fit in better with the ecosystem, and the general ideology of feeding birds, than some mass produced piece of colorful plastic.

So, decide which species of bird you’d like to see more of, grab an appropriate set of homemade bird feeder plans, and build a wooden birdfeeder that both you and the birds will enjoy for many years to come.

How To Sell Your House Fast And Avoid Foreclosure

Everyone can face Financial Difficulties at some point of their lives. Financial difficulties can be the result due to various reasons. Some of them could be:

  • Health problems
  • Market changes
  • Family member death
  • Rising Mortgage payments
  • Job loss
  • Divorce
  • Medical bills

You name it, it can be anything. But when financial difficulties arise, the thought of losing a home is unbearable and we find ourselves stressed and under pressure. Most of us would soon lose our cool and start panicking. Life is not always easy or fair. But the good news is that you do have a solution.

For information on Milwaukee Cash Home Buyer click here.

Do not get nervous yet, you do have options to stop or avoid Foreclosure like real estate investors who buy houses fast, mortgage refinancing, loan modification, to name just few.

You need to understand what Foreclosure is and what to expect.

When you purchased your home, most likely you took out a home loan. Two parties are involved in the buying home side: you (the mortgagor) and the lender (the mortgagee). You own the home, and the mortgagee holds a lien on the property until the mortgage is paid off. In the event that you cannot make your mortgage payments, this security interest (i.e. a lien on the property) gives your lender the right to foreclose and auction off your house and keep the proceeds in order to recover its investment and assume ownership of the property. The process by which the lender assumes ownership is called Foreclosure. In case your property cannot be sold for what is owed, a deficiency judgment could be pursued against you. Both a foreclosure and a deficiency judgment could seriously affect your ability to qualify for credit in the future.

Some states use a deed of trust, and that serves the same purpose as a mortgage but actually involves more parties: you, the lender, and a third party who holds the temporary title on the home until the full balance is paid. In this foreclosure process, the trustee – the third party – will be selling your home when you become delinquent. The difference between deeds of trust and the mortgages is that if there is a mortgage, the foreclosure has to be processed through the court system and with a deed of trust, the foreclosure will be done through a court system, but mainly with the help of a third party – the trustee.

In Georgia, the Foreclosure process begins when the homeowner fails to make payments of the money due on the mortgage at the appointed time. This may be due to any of the reasons mentioned in How to Stop Foreclosure section and more. This is a way to enforce payment of the debt secured by a mortgage and take and sell the estate. The goal for you, borrowers, and lenders is to seek a compromise – for you to keep the home, the lender to keep receiving mortgage payments. But you do not need go through this process, you can sell your house in several days (this is true, you just need to find investor who can buy fast) and be worry-free.

Foreclosure process typically starts with a formal demand for payment which is usually a letter issued from the lender. This letter of notice is known as a Notice of Default (NOD). Usually the lender will issue this notice when the homeowner has been 3 months delinquent on the mortgage payments. This notice is a threat to sell your property, terminate all your rights in that property and evict you from the premises. Generally, after the court announces a foreclosure, your home will be auctioned off to the highest bidder.

However, you may redeem the property by paying the purchase price (including interest), the foreclosure costs, and the purchaser’s expenses in maintaining and operating the property within 180 days after the house is sold. You have to file a notice no less than two days and not more than thirty with the sheriff to redeem your house.

Finding Real Deal Graphic Design Services

These days there are a lot of Graphic Designers offering services online. Perhaps too many. This article covers some useful need-to-knows about Graphic Designers and what to look for when ordering a logo design, brochure design or any of the countless reasons to order a graphic design service for your company or organization’s imaging needs.

For information on a graphic designer in Long Island click here.

Graphic design services these days (like any services these days) have been on a downward slide for some time now (in this Designer’s opinion). Take logos for example. I can’t tell you how many logos I see out there featuring a swoosh or swipe looking graphic that shoots out as though orbiting the text that makes up the logo. I would like to tell you that the Designers who created the thousands of swoosh logos out there, utilized this staple of design because it was the best solution for their client. I can just hear them stating how this simple element is really a complex and developed “less is more” approach to their client’s design and worth every drop of the hundreds of dollars they are charging for it. I would like to tell you that but unfortunately that is just not the case.

I’m not saying that if you have a swoosh in your logo then you got scammed by a false Graphic Designer looking to make a quick buck on a simple design that catches your eye. In fact I have even used a swoosh or two in my designs (though usually at my client’s request and certainly not as the only element in the design). What I am saying is that when you look at how many logos out there feature this graphic swoosh element it becomes quite obvious that a great deal of graphic design sources these days are just trying to get their orders filled as quickly as possible without actually putting thought into the purpose of the design and the needs of the client. It is sad but true that most companies of any kind in this day and age are focusing more on looking like a company rather than actually being a company. How many times have you ordered something only to find out later it was just a gimmick designed to get the sale.

So how do you know if you are hiring a real Graphic Designer focused on doing real design work and not just one of the many impostors out there trying to look like they are putting the time and thought into your design that you are paying them good money for? A good place to start is the facts.

When you are online looking for a Graphic Designer, do a little reading. They should have an About Page, a resume or some form of credentials available on their website. If they don’t then its time to leave that website. I do not recommend testimonials because these days there is no way to verify where these wonderful comments came from. Stick to the facts and information that can be verified if need be. If you are paying hundreds of dollars or more for design services then you had better see some years of experience on that Designer’s resume. Where did they get their education and did they actually even major in Graphic Design? What does their job history look like. Have they really been a Graphic Designer at every job in their resume? It is worth it to do a little research because chances are you are going to need more design work done in the future and wouldn’t it be great to have a Designer you can depend on?

Next take a good look at their design portfolio. Do the designs look similar to each other? Maybe the elements of the designs look different (because they are for different companies) but are they all arranged about the same with the same kind of type used? Are they just putting swooshes on everything? If so then you are most likely at the site of one of the impostors who uses visual gimmicks to wow their clients and get the sale.

Beware those graphic design websites offering promises that are too good to be true (if something sounds too good to be true… ). If you are paying only $50 for a logo then your are most likely getting a pre-made graphic or clip art with your company name stamped on it to make the sale. If they say that countless designers will be working on your project then chances are you will never speak directly with those designers, or you will be paying for countless designers, or they are just using visual gimmicks to get the design sold so they can move on to the next client as quickly as possible.