Pro Tips


Pro-Tips – Information to make your day-home life easier!

How to Move From an Apartment to a House

Jun 16, 2015

Change is inevitable. For example, at some point or another, you may move to a new home. The reasons are numerous: a need to cut expenses, a new job in a new city, a desire for a better lifestyle, a need for a change of scenery, the breakup of a relationship.

Any move can be strenuous, regardless of whether it’s by choice or by necessity. And in the case of a move from a house to an apartment, it can be more difficult because of the challenges of adapting to a smaller living space. But the whole process can be manageable if adequate planning and logical thinking are employed well in advance.

Choose Wisely to Soften the Blow
One of the most things you’ll be giving up in downsizing to an apartment is the relative privacy and seclusion afforded by a house. Careful selection of your apartment can make the transition easier. For example, a second-floor apartment in the middle of a building—wedged between the first and third floors and between other units—surely will cut down on privacy; after all, it’s surrounded by neighbors who are just a wall or floor away. Picking a place on the top floor or at the end of the building will help create a privacy buffer.

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After Seeing These Clever Moving Hacks, I Realize I’ve Been Moving The Hard Way My Whole Life

Jun 9, 2015
By Lighter Side Staff
MOVING! Just the sound of that word can bring up a subtle clinch in the gut, as well as thoughts of wear and tear, losing items, barely making it out of the old home in time, and visits to the chiropractor later. For most of us, this experience is probably unavoidable. But we have good news for you! Transitioning from house to house can be made much easier with just a little innovation. In this video, youtuber DaveHax shows you how to creatively minimize some of the challenges of moving. It amazes me how simple some of these tips are, how well they work, and why I never thought of them. Even if you’re the real estate agent helping someone sell their home, sharing these moving tips help you make a new friend or even a client for life!

3 things to stop buying at Lowe’s RIGHT NOW!

Jun 2, 2015

Home improvement stores are great because they allow even the most novice of homeowners to make their own repairs. Likewise, home improvement stores are horrible because they allow even the most novice of homeowners to make their own repairs. Home inspectors are taught that water and moisture are the number one enemy to homes. Experienced home inspectors know that this isn’t true; homeowners are the number one enemy to their home. Inspection after inspection, we find defects that are the result of the homeowner attempting a repair. Some of the blame can be shifted to the home improvement stores for selling inappropriate materials to homeowners. Here are 3 things you need to stop buying from Lowe’s right now.

1. Double Keyed Deadbolts-Although these are advertised to be used when added security is desired, they are a real safety hazard. We haven’t thought of any practical use for these double keyed deadbolts, also known as double cylinder deadbolts. There are other ways to protect to your family, while keeping them safe.

2. Screened Dryer Vents– It worries us that these are still being sold. Lint is flammable and when screens are installed on the dryer vent, it creates a hazard. Building codes are clear on the issue, and no screens are allowed on the dryer vent termination. If you have one on your home, have a qualified contractor replace it immediately.

3. Plastic dryer Vents–Dryer vent safety is not something we take lightly. The CPSC estimates that over 15,000 dryer fires are started every year. A plastic dryer vent will quickly melt and allow the flame to spread. Although metal dryer vents can’t stop the fire from spreading, they do allow more time to detect, vacate the home, and have the fire extinguished. The plastic dryer vents serve no purpose in a home. Some argue they are applicable for bathroom vents or other mechanical ventilation systems. We believe you are better off spending the extra money for more durable materials.

6 causes of window seal failure

Jan 26, 2015

Having an effective window seal is necessary to reduce the escape of heat from your home as well as the occurrence of drafts. Understanding the cause is the first step in knowing how to rectify it in order to keep your windows properly sealed.

1. Age
There are not many types of window seal that come with a lifetime guarantee, and this will especially be the case when it comes to older windows. You are likely to find that the older the method of weather protection, the more likely it is to fail. By updating the weather stripping on your windows as and when it is required, you can ensure that it continues to work effectively.

2. Elements
Though window seals are designed to withstand whatever the elements can throw at them, there is a limit to what they can take! For example, where certain types of seal are deluged with a large volume of rain on a regular basis, the water can seep behind it and cause it to lift. This can make the failure even worse as the seal will not be flush with the window frame and will allow water and cold air to pass through. Where water comes into contact with metal parts of some types of weather stripping, rust can result which will eventually cause corrosion if it is not rectified as soon as it is noticed.

3. Mold
If your window regularly suffers condensation which is not wiped away, the window seal can often be affected by mold. This can destroy the effectiveness of the seal, especially when it is made from materials such as rubber. If you notice any mold or discoloration, ensure that you clean it immediately with an alcohol-based cleaner to kill the spores, or with vinegar, if you want to use a more natural cleaning substance.

4. Temperature
The proximity of window seals to the external facade of your home means that it can be subject to extremes of temperature. As well as prolonged exposure to extremes of heat or cold, sudden changes to the temperature can cause some types of window seal to crack shrink or sag which will make the weather protection less effective if it does not negate it completely.

5. Movement
If the window seal has not been fitted correctly or has become dislodged over time, it will not work well as a weatherization method as the weather stripping needs to be fitted in a particular place depending on the variety used and the type of window. All the correct tools and fasteners should be used to fit all weather stripping and replacements must be made when it is necessary.

6. Maintenance
The instructions that come with most types of weather stripping will often outline what needs to be done in order to maintain it and keep it at its best. Though this will usually mean nothing more than wiping it to keep it dry and clean, it may also outline particular cleaning substances that can be used. Make sure that you undertake the work required to maintain the stripping in line with the material it is made from.