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6 tips to find the perfect home repair contractor

post3Construction work is very critical as it has legal and safety aspects. It is costly and can be time consuming if you make any mistake doing the work. So, it is important to find a good builder. You need to hire someone who knows his work and can offer services at a competitive rate. Here are some tips on how to find the perfect home repair contractor.

  • Ask for references. Call some of them up and see if the builders have done the works properly. Ask them to tell you how the builder has been throughout the period of the project.
  • Ask about the builder’s training, education and years of experience. The more training and experience he/she has the better.
  • Check whether the builder has any insurance. This will protect you from damage if something goes wrong. This will also keep the builder alerted and make him work using all the safety measures.
  • Ask for the detailed quote and not the estimate. Check if materials, service charge, other contingency and hidden charges are included or not.
  • Decide on phases of work and payment schedules. Make sure these estimates are practical.
  • Bring a council inspector in to check whether the works you are going to do meets building regulations. If you don’t do so that you might end up paying a good sum of money for your wrong doing.

If you follow these guidelines then you will definitely be able to find a good contractor for your home. A good contractor can only make your home look more beautiful and so making it more livable.

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5 easy ways to improve your home

post2Housing prices are increasing. This is the best time to invest in home so that the value of your home increases. Here are some of the improvements you can make to your house in order to increase its value:

#1 Create space

Break the wall that is not needed in the middle or get rid of the kitchen island. Do anything that opens space. For only few hundred dollars you will be able to transform your house. Wide open floor plan is the key.

#2 Improve landscape

Organize your garden. Prune trees to make your surroundings look clean. Also, remove or cut any bushes that might obscure views of your house. Unwanted trees and branches also make the interior dark. Contact a landscaper and give your garden and surroundings a good shape.

#3 Allow lot of light in your house

You should light up your house. Use lights of all types, from dimmer to sun tubes. This enhances the look of the house. You can also fix your broken panes, keep windows open. High voltage lights usually make small spaces look larger and soft lighting makes the home warm.

#4 Do maintenance works

Before thinking of remodeling your kitchen you must do the repairing and plumbing works. Inspect the septic tank and the furnace. Only couple of hundreds dollar of maintenance can increase the value of your house.

#5 Go green

You can install solar panels on top of your roof, replace energy saving windows, etc. to make your house green. With all the green campaigns going on, buyers will be attracted to your house.

All the home improvements mentioned above requires very little expenditure, but can boost the value of your home. Apply all or some of these methods to transform into a better looking house and making it attractive for the buyers.

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Here are the 5 most common home remodeling jobs

With more people wanting to renovate their house and the continuous need for home improvement, lots of home remodeling jobs are available.

Construction Technician

The person will be responsible for field works related to inspecting and monitoring new installs. He/she will also be responsible for checking whether the products and services meet company standards. The person will be working with the installation team to improve the present installed jobs. He/she will be responsible for keeping equipment safe and in good condition.

Supervising Carpenter

The person will be able to manage multiple projects, assign works to team members, do performance evaluations, etc. He/she will be responsible for monitoring completed work, work on remodels, collaborate with design and engineering departments, and coordinate work schedules. It’s the responsibility of the supervising carpenter to make sure the equipment and materials are available, analyze the cost and prepare time estimates.

Project Coordinator

The person is responsible for completing multiple projects on time and within budget. He/she is also responsible for finalizing the payment terms. Regular coordination with customers and reviewing project progress is also part of their job description.

Construction Manager

The person must have extensive knowledge on the construction industry. He/she must ensure that project goals are met within the prescribed budget and time.


The person is responsible for painting, repairing and protection of interior and exterior surfaces. He/she is also responsible for preparing order materials and written estimates. Furnishing furniture may also be part of his/her job responsibility.

All these jobs are very demanding. They are offered good salary and career progress. All these positions expect candidates to be well spoken, polite and provide excellent customer service to its customers. They must be hard working and be able to take the challenge. They also must be proactive in every work they do.

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What Goes Up, Can Only Go Up? Is A Real Estate Bubble To Blame For Portland’s Soaring Prices?

The argument about Portland, Oregon’s continuing rise in real estate prices takes two paths. More than that, there are the people who own real estate, and those who do not.

Some had arrived before Portland became a shining gem to the rest of the U.S. At some point people from all over moved there because they liked the quirkiness and the music and art scene, and the small city charm.

Are Loose Lips To Blame?
Did people talk too much about how great it is? Is that why it became over-run with soaring real estate prices and little to no affordable rentals?  If so, then the argument would stand at simply supply and demand. Portland did not have soaring housing prices and rental rates in 1999, when the population was swelling.

Enter Irrational Exuberance?
Take the people who bought low, multiple financed houses, and kept renovating and flipping. House flipping, favorable borrowing rates, and irrational exuberance following the tech bust may have contributed to the state Portland is in the right now. It’s happening in a lot of places, and no, house flippers, do not get defensive.

It seems the flippers who made it through the late aughts became even more aggressive in snapping up properties to rent and flip. Or, maybe you hoard houses because you watched Carlton Sheets advertising “Buy real estate no money down!” in the wee hours of your youth circa 1980-something. In those advertorials, every “real” testimonial walked from closing with checks for $25,000 or $65,000 and then turn the house into a tenement, er, an apartment.

Don’t Hate The Players, Hate The Game
The saying is true. It’s not necessarily the flippers who you should blame (no matter how guiltily they quickly change the topic when asked.) Yes, the housing market is manipulated by people who use a basic necessity to build their wealth. It robs others of a place to live.

They would otherwise be with the rest of the population, who are barely holding onto jobs. In a country where 40 to 60% are doing gig work (read paid less than an hourly wage, work-for-hire, have no benefits, etc.) it causes havoc. And, flippers and tenement landlords profit off the backs of people making slave wages.

In all fairness, people in Portland may be shacking up to pay the high rents as some claim too few places to live. Then that means, we have found the common truth. The population may have exceeded capacity. It does not justify overcharging in rent, though. It’s the housing of your fellow community members, not just a business. Even New York City, which has long had a huge population always asserts that it takes all socioeconomic levels to make society run. It is why they invest in public housing. Only, you would not be able to discern its public housing from private. They house their citizens humanely, Portland.

Does Anywhere Else Exist? Move Elsewhere
It is worth noting that Portland is not the only place to live in the area. At some point, people will make their enclaves in the outskirts of town, as they work at Nike, Columbia Sportswear, Visualize Legal – Trial Technology or the gig jobs. It’s what people did before cities were safe. They just visited during the daytime. People keep coming to the city, even if they live on the streets in tents.

Policy Changes
If policy changes were brought into effect like the ones for foreign investors in London and Vancouver in British Columbia did, it would put pressure on the opportunists who are manipulating the markets. Tacking on taxes for capital gains or even the purchase of their fifth home might change the math for flippers and hoarders even as domestic buyers go.

The big question is why people are still flocking to Portland now that it has such a sizable homeless population. Surely that alone will decimate the housing prices. And then no one will be claiming that the city is out of space to build, or that they are forced to charge extremely high rents. Honestly, — take heed investors — nothing like a social scourge to send people out of town to sink housing prices and rental rates. Those tent cities, those are your next renters, folks. Good work.

Let’s Bring Up The Past: Cities In America
Do you remember that well through the 1980’s, people avoided cities? They did not live in them, at least not in the rest of America. They became a plight. Sure, back then it had been partly racial, and partly just people who had grown up crammed into tenements wanting the space that suburbia promised. If you have an over-run city, people will eventually spread out again.

It turns out that Portland, Oregon has hit a tipping point. We could imagine all day long why the prices are soaring. Then we look at the surging homeless population and wonder when the tipping point occurs.

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Important Information For Homeowners About Water Damage Restoration

Water damage can be one of the most costly and devastating problems faced by homeowners. Whether dealing with damage from a broken pipe or overflowing sink or facing the aftermath of a flood, it is important to act quickly to minimize the amount of damage to your property. The following information will help you make smart decisions regarding water damage on your property so you can get it cleaned up as quickly as possible.

1. Stop the flow of water as soon as you can. If you are dealing with a leak or a broken pipe, shut off the water at the water supply valve. If, on the other hand, you are dealing with a flood or natural disaster, you have little choice but to wait for the water to subside.

2. Begin drying out your property as quickly as you can. The longer water sits, the more damage it can do. Over time, mold and mildew can start to grow, both of which can make cleanup that much more difficult. Start by removing any puddles or pools of standing water. Usually, a good wet/dry shop vac is adequate for this purpose. Next, rent heavy-duty fans or heaters to dry out the area as quickly as possible.

3. Be aware of what you can and can’t handle on your own. Certain types of cleanup are best left to the water restoration professionals. If you are dealing with flood water or with a backed up sewer, you should not try to clean the mess up yourself. This type of water can be filled with bacteria, viruses, and other potentially harmful contaminants. Because of that, it is always best to leave the cleanup to the pros. They have the necessary tools and equipment to do the job safely.

Likewise, if you are dealing with significant water damage or if a large area of your home has been affected, professional help is most likely needed. Otherwise, you may not be able to remove the water and dry the area out on your own quickly enough to prevent mold. Finally, if the moisture is located in your ceiling, behind walls, under your carpeting or in any other areas that may be challenging to reach, you should consider calling in a professional company to help.

It is far better to err on the side of caution. The peace of mind that you get from knowing that the job has been done right is well worth the extra expense. The last thing you want is to miss an area of moisture while trying to do the cleanup on your own only to find yourself facing a major mold issue further down the road.

4. Notify your insurance company as soon as possible after the damage is incurred. Additionally, track any expenses related to the cleanup process. Be sure to keep your receipts to turn over to the insurance company at a later date. By doing so, you can improve your chances of being fairly compensated for the money you spent on cleanup. If you have any questions regarding what is and isn’t covered by your policy, you should contact your agent to find out.

Dealing with water damage is every homeowner’s worst nightmare. The tips and information contained in this article should help you make more informed decisions about how best to proceed after your home has been affected by water. Quick action on your part can help minimize the amount of damage that is done to your property. As a result, it will be far faster and easier to restore your home back to its original state.