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What You Need to Know When House Hunting

Make things easier with a checklist. Whether you are looking at bungalows in a subdivision in Bulacan or a townhouse in Quezon City, narrowing your options when choosing your next abode will make the selection process easier and quicker.

When house hunting, buyers often focus on the exterior and interior design rather than the functionality of the structure. Others prioritize the price of the house and lot because of the economic and financial aspects. Having a checklist will help balance what’s important and what is necessary.

It’s easy to get swept by the newest trends in architecture and real estate. House agents and brokers can be very persuasive. With a checklist in hand, you can stay right on track. Below are few pointers to guide you in completing the list.

 

Source of electricity

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Electricity and gas should be the first thing on your list. Some important questions to answer are:

  • How many sockets are in each room? Are there conveniently positioned?
  • Do all electrical sockets work?
  • Are there any interferences to electricity sources?
  • What alternative sources can you use in case the main power goes off?

If all of these are answered clearly by the seller or agent then it’s worth to consider the house. But other than the central electricity source, it’s worth noting how gas can be utilized in the space. Where can you store the gas cylinder? Does the house rely on LPG or petroleum to run the central heating? Is the heating system working properly? These things are equally important as they can also save your wallet.

 

Water source and plumbing

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When you are planning to move to an area with a limited supply of water, ask where the water came.

Live in a place that is comfortable, not worry about water rotations and rationing. Do some research and survey the area if their supply is stable. It may not be an issue now, but it can be in the future. Look years ahead before settling in a location.

As soon as you find no interruption with water supply, check the plumbing. Inspect the fixtures and pipes for noises, leaks and weak spots. Rusty pipes and fixtures are more likely to appear in aged houses, so pry the previous homeowner of the house’s history. Consulting a professional plumber for a second opinion is also advisable.

Hot water and bathtubs are additional features in Filipino homes, but newly-built houses often have these. Make sure the water heater still works properly and is connected to all water lines. The bathtub shouldn’t be clogged and the bathroom should be well-ventilated. It better to have a bathroom with a window. If that isn’t the case, choose one with an exhaust fan.

 

Lot and Surrounding Area

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Take into consideration the land area of your property – yard and side gutter included. The house might check everything on the list but if the gutters and drains are clogged, just forget it. It may cost you more because you did not consider the water damages caused by the blocked waterways.

If you’re on the scrimping side, consider the spread of the yard and the garden work. The lot may have a landscape that is high maintenance. The yard may have expensive turf that needs water more than your family does. Do you really need those? Think about it.

When scouring the exteriors, watch out for signs of decay and rot in woodwork.

Consequently, the surrounding area and neighborhood play a huge part in your everyday life. Living close to the places you frequent (school and work place) and facilities like hospitals, banks, and retail stores make life easier.

Communities accessible through different modes of transportation are much ideal than places exclusive for private vehicles. Best of all, choose a location that fits you and your family’s lifestyle.

Remember, a safe community is always a priority.

If you’ve been to a couple of houses visits, take note of the details that fit the details listed above. The next time you view a house, bring the list and compare if they have the potential to be your new home. Buying a property is a decision that should be hastened, so come with an open mind, inspect the structure thoroughly and compare your notes. Do not hesitate to ask questions about the house. Most of all, trust your judgment on deciding the perfect home.

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Four Common Household Pests and How to Get Rid of Them

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Without a doubt, one of the most infuriating things a homeowner has to deal with in their home is having it invaded by any type of creepy crawlies. These unwelcome critters would be a homeowner’s nightmare as they bring with them a myriad of health complications and diseases should they not be immediately exterminated and eliminated. Fortunately, there are a lot of effective methods to get rid of your uninvited guests when they have started an infestation in their homes. Furthermore, there are also ways which would prevent and discourage them from seeing your home as a potential hosting site or at least avoid the worsening of it. Although none of these methods involve spraying them with toxic chemicals, they are nonetheless efficient in getting rid of them. Apart from that, these alternative methods are proven to be better as artificial pest repellants, sprays, baits, and poisons can be potentially dangerous or even lethal if they are accidentally touched or ingested.

If you have been looking for safe alternative methods to getting rid of the pests or an effective prevention method from a pest invasion (whether that may be a condo in Manila or a flat elsewhere), here are some of the environmentally-friendly and healthy ways to be rid of them (depending on what kind of pest they are):

1.) Ants

Ants are common pests in homes—especially when you have food lying around anywhere. Their dwelling is mostly constrained to soil next to or under buildings, along sidewalks or near various trees and plants. But they also love warm and damp locations, so be sure there are none of these in your home. To be rid of them, simply store your food right away and immediately clean up any spills—and make sure that no crumbs are left. To further deter ants from entering your homes, sprinkle natural ant repellents such as coffee grinds, paprika, chili pepper or pure cinnamon at entrances where ants make their entry.

2.) Bed Bugs

They are kind of like fleas—only that they are on your bed and can be incredibly annoying when you are trying to sleep. As their moniker suggests, these critters love to call beds their homes as it allows their flat bodies to easily hide in between seams of the mattresses, headboards, behind wallpaper, bed frames and the like. While bed bugs are not exactly considered as a public health hazard, they can be a nuisance as they prevent you from getting enough sleep at night as caused by the itching. In severe cases, they can even trigger an allergic reaction. To get rid of them, wash and soak potential dwelling areas (sheets, pillows, etc.) in hot water. Have it dried in the hottest possible setting for at least thirty minutes. Then thoroughly clean the mattress by scrubbing and vacuuming it. Lastly, cover your mattress with a bed bug cover. However, if the infestation is beyond your control, it might be time to get rid of it.

3.) Rats and mice

Rodents may look cute, but they are anything but. Among the pests identified in this list, rats and mice are considered the most dangerous as they bring with them some potential diseases such as Leptospirosis for example. Typically, people who do not dispose of their garbage properly are the ones usually plagued with rats and mice, but these pests would also thrive in sheltered indoor and outdoor locations such as basements, tool sheds, and attics. To get rid of them, you must control your environment Do this by sealing holes between the outdoors and your indoors. Practice proper garbage disposal and seal food in tight containers.

4.) Cockroaches

Cockroaches love warm, humid areas such as heating pipes and drains, but bathrooms and kitchens are also fair game to them. These critters must immediately be exterminated as they can transmit bacteria such as Salmonella and E.coli which can cause a myriad of diseases. Prevent an infestation from happening in your home by making sure your counters are spotless (wipe them with white vinegar), drain your sinks regularly and store food properly.

 

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Top 4 Decorating Mistakes Homeowners Are Still Doing This 2017

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Decorating your home is one of the things that excite us the most. Although there are times home decorating can also be challenging and frustrating, but the end results would pay it off. Of course, that if you are doing the right home decorating techniques. However, there are just some homeowners who just didn’t realize that they are repeating the same home decorating mistakes all over again. And mind you, this is not a good habit to start with.

 
Whether you are a tenant in a Makati condo for rent or any other properties in the Philippines, there is no reason for you to commit the same mistakes again. And if you are one of those homeowners who doesn’t have any idea what mistakes they are making, then below are some common decorating mistakes most homeowners are still doing.

1. Having more than one focal point

Having a central point at home is used to feel more inviting and offer a more comfortable place to stay. This feature can be your picture, mirror, or dramatic piece of furniture that catches every person’s eyes. But there’s a caveat though; a good focal point can only do once. If you tend to have more than one focal point at home, this might not be a good idea, since it can make the room feel disjointed and leaves a person’s eye without any rest.

 
For you to be comfortable, you have to choose one focal point that would complement the place. Don’t be overwhelmed with the spaces you have at home and just choose one to make a good and satisfying focal point.

2. No considering your lifestyle

Just because the interior or exterior home design is a trend, that doesn’t mean it is also good for you. Nope, not all! Obviously, you are not going to do some renovations to your home if you don’t even need it, right? But if you still continue to follow the trend without any knowledge on whether or not it fits into your home, then you might regret your decision later on.

3. Too many throw pillows

Throw pillows are one thing that gives beauty to our home. Apparently, it doesn’t just add beauty; it also provides us with the feeling of comfort whenever we want to relax at home. Throw pillows can also give a homey feeling or ambiance on the place. However, having too many throw pillows at home is also not nice to look at. Instead of giving us the comfort that we want, it provides us with the feeling of annoyance since we don’t know where to seat already.

 
When it comes to adding throw pillows on the couch, you have to make sure that there will be a space where you can still seat. Perhaps, 2-3 pillows on a couch are enough.

4. Not testing your paint color

Colors are important. The color of your home doesn’t just add beauty, but it can also create a mood or ambiance at home. And if you are not careful enough when choosing the right color paint for your walls, then you might not like the result of the interior and exterior design. Before anything else, you should not forget to test the color before choosing and buying a particular paint. If you think that the color of the paint is a little bit dry to look at on your walls, then it is better for you to find another paint that would match or complete the design of your home.

 

Moreover, you also have to make sure that the paint is durable enough to last longer than any other paints. Yes, some paints can easily be torn off especially when it rains. So, you have to choose the right color paint for you home.

 

Following the trend when it comes to home design is not a bad thing at all. In fact, it is one of the many things you can upgrade your home design into something new. However, before deciding to follow such design, you also have to think again and again if you need it, or if it is worth it. Think and then decide. With that, you will know what and what not to do when it comes to the design of your home. Of course, this will also prevent you from committing costly mistakes all over again.

 

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Home Inspection 101: Things To Inspect During Your 5 Years of Owning a Home

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Ok, let’s just admit! Not all of us here would like to expect something that isn’t happening yet, right? That is why most of them do panic whenever something they don’t expect. However, if you know that something such happens, then you know what and what’s not to do when it comes to fixing your home. And whether you like it or not, repairs at home is also inevitable whether you are living in Solstice or any other properties in the Philippines.

 
Well, if you are one of those homeowners who are curious about on what to expect, then below are some of the things that might help you get ready especially when it comes to home repairs.

Leaky faucets, running toilets

You might not want to experience repairing such leaky faucets and running toilets, right? And not all of us here know how to fix those damages. I know, fixing these stuff is annoying since you have to deal with dirty and smelly water and all. That is why you already have to know on what and what you should not do when you experience this. Of course, you don’t want to do more damage. Right?

For you to successfully repair such, you have to know the basics. Or if not, you better hire someone or a professional who knows better when it comes to the repairs and all.

Jammed disposal

It is a must in your community or even as a homeowner that disposal of your garbage should be in a proper way or method. Of course, this is to prevent any troubles when it comes to your wastes. Moreover, most communities are strict in that particular policy since they know that if garbage is not properly disposed of, it is not good for the environment and the community.

However, if the disposal of your garbage is jammed or clogged, you might be fixing it on your own or call some help to the people who knows better. Or even hire a professional for you to fix it. Again, don’t do things on your own if you don’t know anything about it at all, it will only cost you. Better save it and hire someone. With that, it makes the work easier and faster.

Peeling cracked paint and siding

Of course, this, if you are not keen about what paint you used when you first paint your home, you also have to expect a peeling, cracked paint and siding. Well, if you notice that the paint of your home is already peeling, then you better find quality paint. Make sure that you apply the paint correctly for as not to have some peelings on your walls.

If you don’t know anything about how to paint properly, then you better find or hire a professional to do the work to make sure that you will have a good and satisfying outcome. Do not do things on your own especially if you don’t know anything about it at all. It will only cost you a lot more.

Concrete cracks

Cracks on walls are dangerous especially when there are earthquakes. A little shake on your home might cause more damages to your home if not taken care of immediately. Of course, if you want to be safe while living, then don’t wait for the cracks to widen. You should always think safe at all times.

Nail pops

This is dangerous if you don’t notice it on your home. This can be the reason of your injuries or a serious wound. Before you let your kids roam around the house, make sure that there will be no nail pops around the corner. It is dangerous. When you find one, make sure to get it or simply punch to drive the nail deeper. With that, it will be safe for you kids.

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For Homeowners: Things To Avoid When Decorating Their Living Room

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Living room is one of the important areas we have at home. Of course, it is in the living where we usually gather and have good moments together with our family and friends, and it is also where we spend our spare time to entertain ourselves. Well, it doesn’t matter where you live. Whether you live in condo Cebu or any other condo units in the Philippines, you can still have your living room.

Well, if you are one of those homeowners who don’t have any idea at all when it comes to the arrangements of their furniture, then you better stop and read these tips below for you to know what makes your living room look bad. Of course, avoid these things.

Following trends

There is actually no wrong if you follow home décor trends. But there will also be danger when you tend to follow different trends – it might not look good on your living room. Just because it is a trend, it doesn’t mean it also good for the living room. No, not all. As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to know your living room and the kind of ambiance your home has by heart. With that, it is easier for you to determine what design would you like to have for your living room. Give some personal touch to it, not just simply following the trend. This is also one of the many ways to give your home a homey feeling.

The wrong paint color

This is one of the most common mistakes a homeowner can do. They Paint their home with the wrong choice of color. Remember, the color of your home plays a big role when it comes to beautifications. When you have the wrong color, you will most likely have a hard time finding the right furniture or interior design that would match the color that you choose. Moreover, you might not want that particular color which leads to not having the enthusiast to make some decorations at all in your home.

Bulky overhead lighting

For some homes, having a bulky overhead lighting might not be a good idea for them. Unless you want your home to look heavy and your ceilings to appear lower than they really are, then going big might not be for you. Moreover, if you want to have a sense of light and roominess, you better not choose the heavy fixtures for your room – it doesn’t look good. Well, you better look and choose light fixtures with open designs, slim lines, and try something with crystals on it if you want to go stylish and to reflect some light on it.

Uncomfortable furniture

One of the most common misconceptions of most homeowners is that, whenever they see something that looks great, they include it in the arrangements. Just because they look good it doesn’t mean that it is also fine to include it in your living room. Remember, the things found in your living room are mostly useful. And if you think that that particular thing is not useful at all, then you better find other furniture that can be of use. It is better to find another one than filling your living room with useless things.

Some of us here don’t realize that they have been arranging their furniture in a way where it ruins the style and beauty of their living room. Yes, not all of the arrangements are stylish and good enough for the area. Of course, before you decide what you should do with the furniture you have for the living room, you also have think about whether or not the things you want to include would fit perfectly with the other furniture.

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Housekeeping 101: Five Steps to Eliminate Clutter in Any Room

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“Have nothing in your houses that you do not know to be useful or believe to be beautiful.” –William Morris

As the minimalist lifestyle has been making waves, it is only natural for us to eliminate all the unnecessary clutter we have lying around our houses. Over time, accumulating stuff becomes inevitable and without a doubt, they could be one of the reasons for our stress. Clutter in any part of the home is not only an eyesore, but it would take up valuable space as well—space that you could have used for something else. Apart from the routine cleaning you would do weekly or monthly, do a bit of de-cluttering as well. Give your homes that much needed breather whether you are living in a condominium unit in Sedona Parc or a residential home anywhere else with these easy steps.

1.) Set an overall goal

Know what you want to accomplish by the end of your endeavor. This is the most crucial step as it would assist you in having a vision of what you want to achieve in your mind. Be specific when enumerating what your goals are such as saying: I will declutter and organize the kitchen downstairs so that cooking would be a more eventful affair; I am going to organize my books by title so as to make it easier for me to read books which I have not read. It is imperative that you state your goal and your reason for doing it and similarly, you should write it down to give you a little nudge for whenever you do not feel like doing it. Put it in an easily visible place. Do not forget to take pictures before you start to give you that dramatic effect of a before and after scenario.

2.) Gather your tools

You might be under the mistaken impression that eliminating clutter would not take a lot of tools, but on the contrary, a successful decluttering would involve four kinds of essentials tools which are containers. These containers should be categorized into Trash, Storage, Give Away/Sell or Put Away. Containers can be anything from bins, laundry baskets, excess baskets or trash bags—whatever you have access to.

3.) Pick a room or area

When you are looking to declutter your entire home, it would be better if you focused on one area first before proceeding to the next. In this way, your focus would not be diverted and in the same way, you would actually see some visible progress. If you are up for the task, choose the biggest challenge, but you may need to break it into little chunks as you go. However, if you have never been particularly successful with decluttering, it would be best if you selected a smaller area so that you would not have a much more difficult time. Suppose you are decluttering the kitchen for this week, start with the utensil drawers on Monday, have Tuesday for the cabinets and so on. Keep going until you have successfully completed the project.

4.) Plan a time

Inevitably, you are going to have to find an appropriate time to schedule your decluttering. WE are all busy, but that does not mean you should neglect to do this altogether. If you are setting aside time for cleaning, consider the schedules of those around you as well. Having kids run around when you are cleaning can prove to be a hassle, so schedule it around your tots nap time. If finding time proves to be difficult, find a fifteen-minute block a day to do what you can. Do this little by little until you finally make some progress.

5.) Dump the leftover clutter

Your goal is to eliminate clutter as much as you can so it is only natural that you deal with the pile quickly before it starts accumulating again. Take the trash, bag it all up and get it out. Similarly, take the items you need to give away and deliver them where they need to go. Do not wait as this will only encourage or tempt you to keep them or worse; these items will start to mix which would be a waste of all your sorting work.

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Apartment Living: Five Tips In Keeping Your House Plants Alive

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Plants are a good alternative to having pets in a condo unit or apartment.

More often than not landlords or some certain condominium policies keep us from having any four-legged company in our homes, but having plants in the apartment is a great alternative. It may not do tricks for you, play fetch or needlessly ask for attention but it gives your living space that truly lived-in feel. Additionally, plants can be a good alternative to people who are allergic to pet dander or fur and for people who do want something to take care of but cannot commit to doing some because of their perpetually busy schedule.

Unfortunately, some of these plants never make it. The fact is a plant’s growth being stifled inside a pot is vastly different than having a plant grow in soil. But this is not to say that is impossible either. More often than not, the survival of a plant in your apartment needs a little more dedication and commitment on your part. There are ways of providing your plant the kind of environment it ought to have for it to thrive regardless of whether you are billeted in a condo or in an apartment. Read below for a few of these tips so that even if you are living in a Davao apartment or a condo in bgc, your plant will survive.

 

1.)    Assess your humidity levels

Indoor plants are different from outdoor plants when it comes to humidity. Indoor plants need to have the right consistency in order for them to thrive. Considering the Philippines is a tropical country, your plants are likely to require more humidity. One thing you can do is to place gravel at the bottom of your plant’s container and place the planter in a dish with water. Spritz your plants with water from time to time as well to keep them hydrated.

2.)    Drainage and overwatering

Watering plants whether indoor or outdoor is essential. But keep in mind that anything more than just adequate is bad for your plants. Your plant’s roots will rot if they are overwatered or improperly drained. Make sure your plant has drainage products that would help it keep the balance between wet and dry. Apart from keeping the soil moist, it should also be allowed to dry a bit between watering sessions as this will help your plants stay alive longer.

3.)    Let the light in

Water is vital to plant survival, but so is light. Survey your condominium unit or your apartment. If you have observed that you do not have a lot of natural light, then indoor plants may not just be an option for you as they will die faster without any natural light to aid them with their lifespan. Conduct the appropriate research and know what kind of light your plant requires whether it is direct sunlight, partial or is best left in the shade.

4.)    Choose your plants wisely

Some plants thrive as an indoor house plant while others do not last too long.  So, choose your plants wisely. If you cannot be committed to care for your plants as much as you want or as much as they need, opt for plants with more resiliency. Snake plants, aloe, African violets are low-maintenance plants that do not require a strict watering schedule and would not need meticulous care.

5.)    Do not move plants too much

Rearranging your furniture might constrain you to move your indoor plants as well but you may want to reconsider. Your plants, just like pets would like to stay put in one place. If a plant is thriving is a particular space in your residence, it would cause it to go in a state of shock if you moved it around. Once you have found the ideal place for you plant wherein it can get the right amount of sunlight, let it stay put and do not move it around.

 

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