4 Key Things to Consider When Hiring a Concrete Contractor

Your house is one of the biggest purchases you will ever make, so caring for the property and keeping things in great shape helps protect your significant investment. Once you have purchased a home, you quickly learn that there are always repairs and home improvement projects that need your attention. Sometimes the upgrade or repair is small and can be done quickly at little cost. Other times, you may be embarking on a major improvement that can cost thousands and add tremendous value to your home.

Savvy homeowners are finding that decorative or stamped concrete can add a beautiful designer element to your property and home. Instead of the traditional gray concrete driveway, imagine coming home to a custom driveway that reflects elegance and class. You can also create amazing concrete patios and pool decks that can have custom looks like flagstone.

Once you decide to embark on a custom concrete project, you will want to make sure you take the proper steps to select a highly qualified contractor like Elite Concrete Henderson.

How Many Years Have They Been in Business?

When it comes to quality concrete work, experience matters. Contractors can come and go, so you want a contractor that has been in business for at least 10 years and has a proven track record. Successful concrete contractors have the knowledge and experience to know exactly what prep work is needed and how to do the best job possible for their clients.

Check on Contractor Licensing

Before you select a specific contractor, it’s very important to connect with the State Contractor’s Board to make sure that their license is valid and is current. An unlicensed contractor has not agreed to follow the state’s laws and may not do the job in accordance with local codes. When you check with the Contractor’s Board you may also be able to see it there are any complaints or adverse findings or actions against your contractor.

Find Out if They Have General Liability and Worker’s Compensation Insurance

As part of your due diligence on your contractor you will want to get proof that they have both general liability and worker’s compensation insurance. In the event there were damages to your property the liability insurance would be there to cover the costs of repairs. Worker’s compensation insurance is critical because it covers injuries to employees who are working on your job. If that insurance is not carried by the contractor then you could be liable for costs associated with an injured employee.

Be Sure to Check References

Before you finalize selection of your concrete contractor you should carefully check their references. You will want to ask questions about the type of projects the contractor did for the client and how satisfied they were with the quality of the work and the supervisor and crew that did the job. It’s also important to check out online reviews.

If you want to be sure that your concrete contractor is right for your job it’s important to take the time to do your research and due diligence. By making sure everything checks out, you can be assured that your project is in good hands.


Why Location Matters When Choosing Off Campus Student Housing

Today’s university students have great options when it comes to selecting the right housing for their college years. While you can still choose to live in a dorm, many students are finding that the small, cramped rooms, community bathrooms and overly expensive meal plans no longer suit their needs.

Instead, college students are increasingly deciding to live in off campus student housing. These apartment complexes offer each person a private bedroom and private bathroom. In addition, there is a full kitchen with dining area and a living room for relaxing and spending time with your roommates or friends. A washer and dryer comes standard in each housing unit which makes laundry chores a breeze.

When you are researching and reviewing the best off campus apartments, remember the age-old real estate adage “location, location, location”.

Get to Your Classes on Time

If you want to make your daily life easier, choose an off campus apartment that is close to your college or university. It’s wonderful when you can easily walk to your classes in just a few minutes time. There’s no need for a car to get to the college so you’ll save big on automobile expenses and campus parking permits too.

Enjoy Campus Events and Gatherings

A lot of great events occur on campus, from football and basketball games to concerts to great speakers and more. Living in a student housing apartment just minutes from campus lets you take in all the activities and events the university has to offer. It’s great to be able to easily walk to events and not have to fight the traffic getting there.

Walk to Shopping

When you are looking for the right off campus complex for you, it’s important to see how close you are to groceries and other places you will need to shop. If you select a place to live that has great stores nearby, you’ll be able to walk and pick up the groceries easily. There’s no need for a car or paying for an expensive Uber ride just to get the food and supplies you need.

Walk to Restaurants, Bars and Coffee Shops

When you live in a dorm there are limited options for food, entertainment and fun places to meet friends. One of the nicest perks of off campus living is that you are much closer to affordable places to eat, great coffee shops and fun neighborhood bars. If you choose an off campus apartment that is centrally located near all the places you love to hang out, you’ll be able to walk everywhere you need to go.

As you consider your options for student housing be sure to check out the advantages of off campus apartments. You get a lot of amenities that really matter to college students, including private bedrooms and bathrooms, full kitchens and in unit washers and dryers. By choosing the right location you will also be a short walk away from campus, shopping, restaurants and bars.

The Benefits of Green Cleaning for the Home

Today’s consumers are increasingly joining the natural products bandwagon. From organic food and free range or grass-fed meat to cutting back on one use plastics and Styrofoam, concern for our health and the environment continues to grow. Businesses have noted this trend and are increasingly offering products and services that qualify as green.

One area where this trend has made its mark is with household cleaning products. Many people have grown wary of the harsh and dangerous chemicals that are often found in the typical items we have used for years to clean our home. Instead, they seek out cleaning solutions that are green certified or contain more natural ingredients. Some consumers have even started making their own solutions using basic items that your great grandmother would have used.

The rising demand for green house cleaning has also helped shape the home cleaning service industry. Savvy companies understand the consumer desire for safer, more natural cleaning options and are increasingly offering green alternatives that meet the customer’s needs.

Living in a Healthier Home

A traditional cleaning company using harsh solutions and chemicals can affect the overall health of your home. The cleaning process unleashes sprays and puts the chemical products into the air where it is circulated to all your rooms by the HVAC system. With green products you are only introducing natural elements into the home. Many people notice a decrease in respiratory conditions and asthma when they switch to a green cleaning service.

Protecting the Environment

When you use products with harsh chemicals and ingredients that are not good for the environment, you are often not aware of the environmental ripple effect. The cleaning product is made in a manufacturing plant that likely releases part of the chemicals into the air and soil. Within the home, caustic products for cleaning toilets and tubs are soon washed down the drain where they enter the water supply. With green products you help assure that the effect on the environment is minimal.

Safer Products for Safer Use

Some household cleaning products come with some pretty strong warning labels. Chemicals that are contained in window cleaners and drain and bowl cleaners can cause serious health problems. Sometimes even a product that seems harmless may contain ingredients that are not good for you. For example, scented air fresheners typically contain phthalates, which disrupt our health and bypass our skin to go directly to our internal organs.

Vacuuming Matters Too

Vacuums without good filters often kick up an incredible amount of dirt and dust around the home. When selecting a green cleaning service, it’s best to look for one that uses vacuums that are listed on the Carpet and Rug Institute’s Green Label Program. These vacuums are great at removing asthma triggers in addition to cleaning up all the dust and dirt.

By hiring a green cleaning service, you are protecting your family’s health and helping assure that your live in a safe home environment. Green cleaning products do a great job and protect the environment and your health and safety at the same time.

5 ways lighting can transform a bedroom

It can be difficult to decide what to do with your bedroom, so it’s often worth looking into different techniques to make it look like it’s just had a brand new design.

Once you’ve nailed the decor, picked out a statement storage bed to reduce clutter from the likes of Divan Beds Centre and accessorised with throws and cushions it’s time to look upwards. The right light fitting can transform your room into a beautiful haven, whether you’ve opted for a minimalist theme or if you’ve filled the room with highly decorative items. Here are just a few ways in which lighting can transform a room.

  • It can create a statement

Low-hanging, oversized lighting can make all the difference to a minimalistic room, particularly if it’s hanging directly over a bed with neutral covers. Statement lighting is an incredible centrepiece for any room. Elle Decor describes it as a way to trick the eye into thinking the space is larger than it is.

  • It can highlight different areas of the room

One of the best ways to transform your home is to use layered lighting. Not only will you have a statement fixture overhead, but you’ll have a number of different displays surrounding it. A brightly-lit room will always make it look better and more modern, so adding lights to make the corners of your room brighter is going to turn your room into a glamorous haven.

  • It can fill your room with colour

If you’ve opted for a monochrome room or if minimalism is your style, you may still be wondering what’s missing from your room. What you need could be a pop of colour with your lighting. Perhaps look into some unusual lighting and transform it into your centrepiece, you’ll be surprised at what a difference it makes to your living room. Ylighting encourages people to look into a copper pendant light for a modern look – it can completely transform the room, with little effort.

  • It can be adjusted to suit your mood

An adjustable lamp is one of the easiest ways to transform your room easily, whether you’re shining light through the entire space or just in a single seating area, it can make all the difference. A large adjustable lamp can be beneficial for both day and night, with additional room lighting throughout the day, while transforming your room into a cosy haven in the evening.

  • It can be used to complement a theme

Whether you’re turning your room into a classy interior with a glass chandelier or if you’re bringing lanterns inside to make it a coastal retreat, lights can make all the difference. There are many options for indoor lighting, whether you’re opting for rustic or something a little more classic, you’ll get the ideal look.

There are countless ways to transform your home, but lighting can definitely make all the difference. Browse through your favourite style and see what works best for you – you’ll soon find yourself filling your home with new light fixtures.


Remodel Over Rebuild: Why It is the Better Option to Fix Your House

Your house is the place where you can cherish countless memories with your family. It’s a testament to your happy years and the challenges you faced. However, no matter how much you want to keep everything the way they are, any house comes to the point of deterioration.

With the changing times, you may want to incorporate upgrades such as smart gadgets inside your house. Alternatively, you may want to improve energy efficiency by upgrading the house’s wiring and lighting. You may also think of increasing the functionality by changing the house’s layout and maximizing the available space. Or you may want to improve the overall aesthetics.

Remodeling or rebuilding may not be a bad idea. However, you’re left with the decision to choose which is best for your beloved property. You have weighed down your options and decided to go for a remodel.

To make you even more confident with your decision, the following are the reasons why remodeling is better than rebuilding the house.

Cheaper Costs

Home remodeling costs are way cheaper compared to the costs of rebuilding your house from scratch. On average, the cost of building a new house is roughly $200,000 to $300,000 while the cost of an overall remodeling project is just at $40,000 – $60,000 — a glaring difference.

The home remodeling costs can further go down when you don’t need to remodel your whole house. To give an idea, these are some rough estimates for partial remodeling costs (In 2019):

  • Attic Remodel: $9,500 to $15,000
  • Kitchen Remodel: $6,500 to $18,000
  • Bathroom Remodel: $5,000 to $14,000
  • Siding: $6,500 to $13,000
  • Roofing: $4,500 to $8,500
  • Central Airconditioning: $4,000 to 5,000
  • Interior Painting: $2,000 to $4,500

If you want specific values, you can visit the link for your customized home remodeling costs quote.

Faster Turnover of Your House

Building a house from scratch will take time. Custom-built homes take around 10-16 months according to this 2016 Survey of Construction by the United States Census Bureau.

With remodeling, the turnover of your new home will be relatively faster. For one, they will work on the current foundation and layout of the whole house. Additionally, if you will do partial remodeling, the work that needs to be done will be significantly lesser than starting from scratch.

No Unforeseen Rental Costs

Speaking of turnover, where will you stay while your house is under construction?

If you don’t have another house to stay in, you will incur additional rental costs on top of your construction costs for around that 10-16-month period.

With remodeling, you will save this rental cost.

Livable During Construction

When you need to remodel some areas of your house, you still have access to other parts. Unlike when rebuilding, you can’t stay there while everything is being constructed.

With remodeling, your house is still livable under construction.

Remodeling is not always the answer to everything. There is still the other option, which is to rebuild. The question is: when should you restore or rebuild your house?

You rebuild when your house has severe problems such as foundation problems or when you want additional installations that can’t be incorporated with the current design of your home. Ultimately, the choice is yours!


There’s more to slate roofing than just natural beauty

Homeowners with tiled roofs often spend some time considering the visual splendour of slate. It has that classic, timeless appeal, looks great in any weather and adds character to a property when in place. However, there’s also much more to slate than how it looks, as well as many misconceptions about how effective it is as a long-lasting, robust roofing material. Here’s everything you need to know about this exceptional material in the roofing trade.

It lasts longer than you think

The lifespan of even the thin sheets of slate that become roofing tiles is exceptional. A hard slate roof can last up to 200 years, while even soft slate can last as much as a century. A slate roof will no doubt require some professional attention over time – but, even though it looks brittle and feels weak to touch, when sat firmly atop the home, there’s little else that lasts as long in the entire roofing trade.

It’s actually an eco-friendly material

Just because it’s been pulled from the ground and manufactured doesn’t mean slate is harmful to the environment. As a natural material, it doesn’t pollute rainwater or produce large volumes of harmful gases while being turned into tiles. Also, slate tiles are often reclaimed, either when you are installing an entire new roof or taking care of small repairs along the way – so, you’re also recycling used materials regularly.

It can add value to a property

Going briefly back to the title of this article, the natural beauty of slate is admired, desired and sought after. Therefore, even if you decide to move away well before the end of your slate roof’s lifespan, you may find that having the natural material installed becomes a plus point for potential buyers.

On the other hand, if you’re thinking about switching from a damaged slate roof to a new, modern system, do consider what the new material could do to not just the visual appeal of the property but its resale value, too.


Yes, unfortunately, like all good things in life, slate roofs tend to come with a however. Slate roofing, at least initially, is relatively expensive and absolutely has to be installed by a professional roofing contractor in all cases.

Although you’re likely to save money over the lifespan of your home, it’s worth doing a little research into the contractor you choose beforehand. Go for a team with a proven portfolio of slate work, like Findley roofers in Chester-le-Street, and keep in touch with them for any future repair work you need completing.

Slate is also a naturally heavy material, which is why it’s synonymous with older buildings made from stone, as opposed to brick. New build properties are not usually designed to withstand anything other than a modern, lightweight roof. Slate roofs weigh in at 800 to 1500 lbs per 100 square feet, so make sure you know what your home was built to handle before switching to a slate roof. This is actually another good reason to contact a reputable roofing company, which will be able to give the advice that you and your property need.



A First-timer’s Guide to Getting a Maid Service Chicago for Your Home

One of the best feelings is coming home to a pristine-looking home. Everything is in order. The windows, floor, and tables are clean. No unwashed and dirty dishes are lying all over the kitchen sink.

But not everyone has the time to do some home cleaning. Sure, you can keep it clean, but not as flawless as when you’ve spent hours on cleaning.

That’s why a maid service in Chicago is a common choice. It helps Chicagoan homeowners keep their homes in order.

What is a Maid Service and How Much Does It Cost?

Maid service is also known as a cleaning service. As the name suggests, it’s an outsourced help where you hire people from a company to clean your home. You can choose from one-time services to recurring types.

A maid service Chicago can have varying rates. Some charge hourly rates while others have a fixed price depending on the services that will be rendered.

The average hourly rate for a maid cleaning service is $25 to $90 per individual. It is based on the national rate. The same average rate is also applicable in Chicago.

However, rates are slightly lower when you choose recurring services.

The size of your home can significantly affect the rates. A small house will be more comfortable and faster to clean than a large home. That said, you will have to spend less if you have a two-bedroom bungalow than a four-bedroom type.

Additionally, the conditions of your home at that point in time as well as the services that will be rendered are also considered. Most maid cleaning services offer upholstery and carpet cleaning as well.

You can get a free consultation from most companies. Their team will visit your home before your chosen date. From there, they’ll inspect what is needed to be done and will estimate the final costs.

Do You Have to Tip?

If you’re hiring maids from a company, it’s unnecessary to tip them. Also, they won’t be expecting some extra gratitude from their clients.

However, it’s not against the rule. You can certainly give them any amount. But, it’s best to add it along with your payment. Various companies pool the tips so that they can distribute it equitably among all their workers.

Tipping is also one good way of letting your housemaid help know you like their services. It creates a mutual understanding and is the right ways of helping your household help get through their daily needs. Though an excellent initiative, it is not required.

Do You Have to Be Present When They’re Working?

It is entirely up to you. The people you hire will work regardless of whether you’re in or you’re not. You can leave a spare key for them if you feel like they’re trustworthy enough.

But for most people, they try to be present during the first cleaning sessions. It can give you an insight on how reliable they are. Plus, you can provide them with instructions when needed.

Before hiring a particular company, it’s essential to know what others are saying about them. Be sure they are reliable, and there is nothing but praise for their work.



Tips on Making Your Bedroom Livable After Moving In

It’s challenging for you to finish decorating your new home if you recently moved in. You spent a lot of time packing your bags and finding a new home. You don’t want to spend the next few days dealing with home decoration.

The problem is that you don’t have any other pace to live. You need to make the most of the current space that you have. Over time, you can decorate the place, but for now, it needs to be livable. These tips could help you.

several throw pillows set on top of bed inside room

Rent a storage facility

It’s a terrible idea to transfer all your boxes to the new house. It will immediately feel full and you will have a hard time moving around. When you rent a storage facility, you can gradually take things out until you’re ready to decorate the new home. The place won’t look cluttered because you have a separate location for all the things from your old home.

Prioritize the bed

Even if you have a messy house right now, you can still be comfortable if you have a wonderful bed. It’s easier for you to rest at night. It doesn’t matter if you are yet to finish decorating the room. A soft and cozy bed will be good enough. You can purchase bedroom sets queen size of top quality at a reasonable price online.

Take out the things you need 

You don’t have to unbox all the things from your old house. You can start with the things you need and gradually continue until you finish decorating your place. Right now, comfort isn’t the priority, but practicality.

Don’t forget your personal favorites 

Even if you’re in a terrible environment, you will still feel relaxed if there’s one thing with you. It could be a stuffed toy or your favorite blanket. If there’s something you can’t sleep without, you need to take it with you. Ask your kids to choose one or two favorites first while you finish unboxing.

Check the air conditioning unit

It’s easier for you to sleep when your room has a low temperature. It will only happen if your air conditioning unit is in excellent condition. If not, even if you already turned it to full blast, it still won’t make the temperature low enough. Therefore, you need to ask a service provider to check the unit first. Your new place might be an old house and the air conditioning unit might be too old. You have to consider a replacement if necessary.

Create a plan

For now, you still can’t have the bedroom you desire. Eventually, you can transform your bedroom into a comfortable place. You need to determine how to get to your goal. Create a plan that outlines the tasks and specific dates.

You have to be patient for a while since you’re still busy with other things. After moving in, home decoration isn’t necessarily a top priority. You also have to explain it to your kids.


Getting Your Home Prepared For Overnight Guests

Having overnight guests to your home is an event to look forward to, especially if they’re people who you don’t get to see or interact with that often. It’ll be some hard work on your part at first, but once it’s all done, you’ll be able to sit back, relax, and enjoy the visit with them.

There are a few important matters you’ll want to take care of in advance so that you feel prepared to welcome visitors into your home. If you’re not someone who entertains often then it’s important to start getting ready as soon as you know they’ll be coming for a stay. Working ahead will help to take some stress and pressure off of you as you look forward to their arrival.

Arrange the Guest Room

A good place to start when preparing for overnight guests is to arrange the room they’ll be staying in and confirm it’s how you want it to look. This is a good time to ensure there are fresh sheets on the bed and plenty of storage room for their belongings. You also want to make sure that the temperature of the room is comfortable for them to sleep and not too hot or cold. If you notice any issues with your heating system, then it’s a good time to look into ‘furnace repair near me’ and get it fixed right away. The last situation you want is for your space to be cold and uncomfortable when you have visitors coming into your home.

You want your guest room to look presentable and feel welcoming when your visitors enter their sleeping quarters. Therefore, you might want to think about putting out fresh flowers or adding a plant or two to make it feel more lively and homey. Furthermore, make their bed ahead of time, place out fresh towels, and take time to remove any clutter that’s in their room, so they have plenty of space to spread out and move around.

Perform A Deep Clean

The most important part about having visitors to your house is that they have a clean home to stay in. Start early and perform a deep clean on your home before your guests arrive. Pay special attention to areas of the home where you know you’ll be spending a lot of time, such as in the kitchen and family room. In addition, wipe down the bathrooms and make sure the one they’ll be using to get ready each day is especially clean and tidy.

You may even want to consider getting your carpets cleaned and wiping down your appliances to add that extra special touch for them. Additionally, think about preparing areas such as your backyard or finished basement if you know that’s where you’ll be gathering to hang out as a group. Use this as an opportunity to get those hard to reach areas and spaces in your home that you tend to skip over or ignore during your weekly cleaning routine.

Stock up the Fridge & Pantry

You’re also going to want to think about feeding your guests and ideas for what they’ll be eating during their stay. Get your home prepared for overnight guests by stocking up the fridge and pantry with a lot of different goodies, snacks, and drinks. You might also want to consider putting out a coffee and liquor bar for your guests so they can help themselves throughout their stay as they please.

Think about what you want to cook for meals in advance and go grocery shopping, so you have all you need handy and don’t need to always be running out when your guests are at your house. You might also want to think about planning a dinner or two out at a restaurant away from the house, so you can give yourself a break from cooking and cleaning up.


Having overnight guests at your house will be a much more enjoyable experience when you’re fully prepared to welcome them into your home. Use this advice to help you properly get ready and feel excited instead of worried to have people over to your house for an extended period of time. Remember that you can always take notes and make adjustments for next time based on how the visit goes for you. Try your best and let that be enough and then make sure you commit to being a good host and are fully engaged in the moment, so your guests feel comfortable and at ease in your presence.


Advantages of Hiring Property Management Companies

Property management means ownership and governance of private property, machinery, or physical property.

Property management term refers most frequently to renting an estate in which a property supervisor manages the maintenance and everyday operations of the estate.

This would include finding occupants in lease buildings and flats and receiving periodic lease payments.

Real Estate and Real Estate Property Management

Real estate is any property connected to a piece of land, including the estate itself, and any houses located on the estate. Property management concerns the supervision of estate rental, including flats, buildings, and commercial buildings.

  • A Northern Virginia property management company acts on behalf of the property owner to ensure that the property is looked after, repaired, and rented to bring the owner profit.
  • The real control of the estate can also involve the supervision of natural resources on properties, such as petroleum, gas, and wood.
  • Property directors in many countries must be authorized real estate brokers to register properties, receive leases, and undertake other actual estate-related duties.

What You Can Get from Property Management Companies

When you hire a skilled real estate broker, you can add importance to your property investment.

Therefore, so many specialized property developers agree that it is best to work with a successful leadership business. In Northern Virginia property management, companies take good care of landlords, tenants, and properties.

These are some of the most significant advantages for landlords who collaborate with real estate management firms:

  • One of the most significant benefits is that they can manage all tenant testing. Some landlords do not perform loan or background controls because they have no time or understand where the accounts should be received.
  • Renting individuals out of consideration for their criminal record and their economic history is a sure way for issue owners to end up with.
  • Property management businesses handle the entire testing method so that property owners receive temporary residents who pay and look after their properties more efficiently than those without screening.
  • Property management companies deal with all legal elements related to tenant leadership and asset maintenance. The regulations of landlords differ by country and city, so it is essential to understand how to deal with issue owners and other lease problems correctly.
  • Property executives deal with evictions, checks of an asset, rental talks, rental terminations, and tenant rental collection. A property management company can assist shorten vacancy cycles that cost the landlord cash.

Without a property management company, a landlord can take several months to arrange a house for lease, determine how much to pay and sell it to prospective landlords.

Professional estate executives can decrease the time it requires for these duties to be performed. Once a tenant leases a property, an ownership firm can also enhance tenant retention.

If the handling of tasks becomes too much, it’s best to hire a reliable property management company. That way, you will be able to do your assignments without mistakes. You will also be able to manage tasks better with reliable assistance.