Three Outdoor Hobbies That Won’t Blow Your Budget

Are you in the mood to try a new hobby, but limited due to a tight budget? You can still enrich your life while keeping finances in check. Here are three budget friendly hobbies to consider.

1.) Take a Hike

Spending time in nature is great for your overall health and it doesn’t cost much, aside from the basics you’ll need to start. Get a feel for hiking trails offered in your area and start there, or try a weekend destination hike with a group of friends. Just remember to be objective and honest… don’t bite off more you can chew. You’ll work up to the longer and more challenging hikes the more you do it and you’ll find yourself becoming healthier, too.

2.) Head to the Range

If you’re looking for a hobby that is great for mental clarity and stress relief, gun ownership might be for you. And while new firearms can be pricey, you do have less expensive options that are just as good. Checking out used guns for sale Charlotte would be a good place to start, getting you out to the shooting range in no time. Purchasing secondhand is a good way to get familiar with the sport and outfit yourself, while opening the door to more items better suited to your budget.

3.) Plant a Garden

There’s nothing like fresh vegetables, still warm from the sun. If that sounds good to you, it might be time to test out your green thumb. Raised beds and container gardens are great options that are easy on the wallet and can be very satisfying. Plus, there’s always something to do — weeding or watering or harvesting… and isn’t that what hobbies are all about?

Experiencing enjoyment in life is so important for health and happiness. Go find yours!

Prepare Your House for Summer Parties With These 3 Tips

The summer creates a great opportunity for more parties and social events than other seasons. However, you will need to prepare your household before you can celebrate. Get ready to welcome the new season by following these tips.

Perform Basic Maintenance

Basic house maintenance tasks may be the least fun part of the summer, but it does prevent any potential incidents or disappointments when guests come over. Besides obvious tasks like scheduling air conditioning repair gainesville when necessary, you will need to check numerous features throughout the building.

  • Hoses and outdoor fixtures
  • Lawn equipment
  • Fire pits and outdoor grills
  • Water heater

Most of these devices can malfunction during winter and you would not notice until summer. Even though spring is the ideal time to check and repair them, you can still perform maintenance as soon as possible.

Dress Up Your Outdoor Space

Summer encourages spending more time outdoors through backyard parties and outside cooking. However, the winter season may have messed up your lawn. Pick up trash, mow the grass and do your best to clean the area. Spice up the patio by choosing the right garden furniture and create a comfortable outdoor living room. Set up a table and dining chairs near the grill or fire pit to create a refreshing dining area.

Stock Up on Party Items

While you might already know the importance of stocking up during the weekly grocery run, you will need to increase numbers if you are preparing for summer parties. First, purchase as much food, drinks and snacks as possible, since running out is a worse scenario than having extra. Then, invest in a few outdoor games for guests and their children. Finally, get some sunblock and bug spray to deal with excessive sunlight and annoying insects.

Your household will likely see more social activities during the summer. These preparations can help you take advantage of anything the season has to offer.…

How To Make Your Home Feel Like Home

Home is a place where friends and family can gather. As a homeowner, you want the place you live in to be as welcoming and likable as possible. Whether you have just moved in or are looking for some new decorating tips, here are two things you can do to make your home feel just the way you want it too.

Choose a Design

The first step is to choose what you want. What colors appeal to you? How much decoration fits your style? By choosing a certain type of design, you can stick with the same parameters for the whole house. This decreases the choices you need to make. Here are a few popular designs that may fit your style:

  • Traditional
  • Modern
  • Bohemian
  • Urban
  • Asian

Depending on your style, you can choose custom furniture Toronto and accessories that match the style. The consistency of decoration will help your home to feel whole and complete.

Add Personality

Past trips, family history and other unique factors can help make your home unique. Find distinctive ways to incorporate these features into your home. This can be done by displaying souvenirs or pictures that are special to you. These types of decorations can be done throughout the years, each vacation can add a little more character to your house.

Hanging art on your walls is another way to show some spunk. Because artistic taste differs for everyone, you can show your personality through the art you choose. If you’re an artist, don’t hesitate to showcase some of your work. Whether you like pottery, paintings or photography, a touch of creativity can go a long way.

A home is a special place, and you can portray this through thoughtful decoration. Find things that you like and feel free to play with lighting, colors and different designs. Home can feel like a happy place with a little work and effort.…

Home Maintenance Top to Bottom

When spring comes around, many people think about spring cleaning, tidying up the house and planting a garden of vegetables or flowers. Even more important however, is performing an annual home maintenance routine. Consider these guidelines when planning out your next steps.

Start at the Bottom

Check out the area beneath your home. If you have a basement, check to make sure all windows are sealed against the weather. It may be necessary to waterproof the concrete or to fill some cracks in the foundation. If you have no basement, it is likely that you have a crawlspace. It should be checked for moisture, mold and insect or pest invasion. You may need to call the experts in crawl space repair Tulsa OK residents rely on for a proper inspection.

Main and Upper Floors

Check the facing of the home, whether that be brick, stucco, shakes or siding and make sure that any splits or cracks are sealed and that there are not any loose components and fasten things if needed. Check the seals around all of the windows, scraping where necessary and caulking to secure against the weather. Repeat for all exterior doorways. Power-wash the exterior to remove any collected dirt or debris from weather or insects. Spray insecticide around the perimeter to deter spiders and under the eaves for hornets or wasps.

The Roof

Check the roof for any leaks or loose or missing materials that need to be fastened or replaced. Hammer down any nails that may have worked their way up over the winter. Check all flashings and seal around them with a waterproof material, such as a liquid rubber or tar made for such tasks.

Spring cleaning is not just for the inside of the home, and it may be perhaps more critical on the outside. An annual going over in the spring can leave you free to enjoy your family, vacations and gardening with less worry all summer long.…

Building Your Home

Building a home is a great way to make sure your house is done right. You can choose the builders and engineers to design and make your building. There are things that should be considered long term though. Families rarely stay the same, and you want maintenance to be easy while you live there. Here are a few things to think about while during construction.

Systems

When you have a large investment like a home, you want to take care of it. Adding something like flood prevention systems can give you peace of mind. This can save you from large claims with insurance companies if you every were faced with bad storms and flooding in your area. Also, you may want to consider installing security cameras to help you keep a better watch over your home. Keeping your family safe should be one of the most important parts of the home.

Flexibility

If you are a young family and are thinking of having children, adding extra rooms and bathrooms may be a smart thing to do. If you spend all your time and money building a house, you want to have it for a long time. Many people decide to move into new houses because they outgrow their old ones. You might be able to avoid those problems by planning ahead.

Quality

The materials that you put into building your home will determine its value and longevity. Your home is a place you will spend a lot of time at, so you should look to put quality appliances and items in it. Spending a few extra dollars on better products will pay off in the end. The last thing you want to do is to replace things in a new home.

Building your own home can be an exciting, but stressful time. Planning everything out is very important to make sure everything goes smoothly.…

What You Need To Know About Flood Elevation Certificates

The National Flood Insurance Program (NFIP), administered by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) requires an Elevation Certificate (EC) for buildings in high-risk areas to help determine flood risk and cost of insurance.  You may need an EC to assure compliance with local ordinances or to support your efforts for an amendment in the event the building is not in a floodplain. If you are seeking flood insurance, it is essential to know how to get an EC and when they are required.

How to get an Elevation Certificate

First, contact your local government or floodplain manager to see if elevation information or a certificate is already available for your building. You could also talk to the seller, developer, or builder if they have the certificate or know where it can be found. If no certificate is currently available, you look for a flood elevation certificate surveyor near me and remember; it is crucial to find a properly certified surveyor

When to get an Elevation Certificate

In general, an EC is required if your loan is financed or insured by an entity that is federally regulated. It may also be needed if your flood insurance is backed by NFIP or if  FEMA determines that your building is in a Special Flood Hazard Area (100-year floodplain). If your lender requires flood insurance, but you believe your building is not in a high-risk area, an EC could help eliminate the need for flood insurance.

Flood insurance is essential when it is relevant, and an EC, conducted by a properly certified surveyor, can help with that determination.  Knowing how and when to get an EC can make the process go more smoothly.  If a flood occurs and your building is affected because the EC helped determine the relevance of flood insurance, you can have protection.…

3 Low-Cost Home Improvement Ideas

Looking to enhance your home’s appearance without breaking the bank? Here are three great home improvement ideas that will increase your home’s curb appeal without a huge financial investment.

1. Make Necessary Exterior Repairs

Every homeowner has some minor repairs that are on the to-do list, but just seem to never get done. Fix or replace all damaged gutters and downspouts. You’ll also want to be sure all windows are in excellent condition. Hire a professional window repair West Palm Beach FL company to replace any broken panes or damaged screens. When your windows look good, the overall appearance of your home gets a big lift.

2. Refinish Your Garage Door

Updating your garage door is a great project for boosting curb appeal. If you have a wood garage door, apply a fresh coat of stain and sealer. If you have a metal or vinyl garage door, give it a fresh look by installing a new vinyl wrap. Vinyl wraps can give your existing door the appearance of a new wood door. Color can be adjusted to match the paint color of your home’s exterior. This is an easy, non-permanent way to turn a garage door from an eyesore to a great design feature.

3. Upgrade Your House Numbers

Swapping out your old house numbers for new ones is a cheap and easy fix that will modernize the appearance of your home. When choosing new numbers, pick a font style that matches with the overall style of your home. To give your numbers even more visual interest, backlight them with LED lights or use a spotlight to light them from the front.

It doesn’t take much to improve your home’s curb appeal and give your property an updated look. By following these tips, your home will be looking its best in no time!…