Bathroom Home Improvement and Kitchen Repair 101 – A Comprehensive Guideline

Bathroom home improvement and kitchen repair are two of the most essential upgrades you can focus on in enhancing the look of your homes. Kitchen and bath are the two hardest working rooms in the house and remodeling them into something that pleases you is all about searching for individual elements that makes your daily chores fairly pleasurable through fine-tunes and tweaks incorporated into your kitchen and bath design.

Here is bathroom home improvement and kitchen repair that will help you work smarter in order to achieve the results you’re hankering to pull off:

Bathroom improvement

o Make your bathroom a real room – Lining fixtures against the wall is a no-no. Since you’re dealing with minimum legroom, you need to apportion just enough space to move around. So instead of lining your bathroom fixtures, organize different functional areas around a central space and give that said space a room-like touch and atmosphere.

o Keep it in proper proportion – Always remember that the design response must be proportional to your main bathroom concern. Your bathroom space shouldn’t be bigger than your bedroom. Although you may enjoy being in it for quite a long period of time, it shouldn’t be a place where you stay all day as the rest of the house is so depressing by comparison.

Kitchen repair

o Lighting needs – With a lot of activities taking place in this side of the house at all hours of the day, it is a must that the right lights are lit in your kitchen. Remember, only by spreading furnishings throughout your kitchen area and organizing them in layers can you ensure enough light to keep your kitchen a pleasant and functional place.

o Functional kitchen with useful cabinets – Aesthetic beauty may be important but functionality plays a bigger role. So if you’re going to remodel your kitchen, make certain that you go for cabinets that entail both splendor and expediency.

Grants For Home Repairs – Tips to Avail Federal Grants For Home Improvement, Repairs and Remodeling

All the homeowners can now get grant for home improvement repair and remodeling by the federal government who are lacking with the funds to do the same. These grants for repair of dwellings are only available for those people who do not have sufficient capital on the spot but really wish to improve the same. Home improvement grants are available only for those people who have crossed the age of 62.

Home Repair Grants offered by Federal Government can be used for the following purposes:

· Repairing and fixing roofs

· Fixing windows

· Insulation

· Fixing electrical and heating systems

· Water and plumbing fittings

· Grants for home repair can also be used for remodeling the dwelling to bring it to a level from low to high. This may include changing the interiors, white wash and proper furnishing etc.

Here are some useful tips to avail federal grants for home improvement, repair and remodeling:

1. First, find out what type of repair grant programs are available by the federal for the improvement in house and then choose one from your side that you think will be maximum benefit for you. Call up USDA for the same.

2. You nay also need to present a letter detailing how much funds you actually need for your home improvement, repair and modeling from a home improvement. Do not be in this impression that as these grants do not need to be refunded back you can get any amount as you wish. The maximum amount offered is $7500 and for availing the same you need to show that you actually need this much of funding.

3. These grants for improvement in residential dwellings are not refundable. Government will first verify all the things and you will get the money only if you are satisfied. So make sure that your house is actually in a bad condition before you apply for the loan. Unnecessary applying for the grant is going to be of no use.

4. Fill up the application form now with complete details that needs to be mentioned. You must be ready with all the information like pay stubs, income tax returns, bank statement, property papers etc before you apply for the grant. Federal government would need all this information for approving your grant application.

Health Hazards in Your Home Furnishings

The EPA has found that the air quality inside most condos and houses is three times as bad as the air quality outside in terms of pollution and harmful fumes and gasses. Most home and condo owners aren’t aware of this fact, but they are probably aware of the way this type of pollution makes them feel in terms of health. Everything from breathing problems, allergies, headaches, nausea and even in some cases the possibility of increased risk of cancer can result from being exposed to certain chemicals commonly found in the home and in home furnishings and finishes. To improve both your health and quality of life, not to mention the environment, you need to know what items could pose a potential threat, especially if you’re buying an older condo or house and want to renovate or remodel it yourself.

Pressed wood products are one of the most serious offenders when it comes to toxic emissions in the home. Pressed wood can include such building materials as particle board, paneling and some types of insulation. The problem stems from the glue that is used to hold the pressed wood products together. The idea of using wood scraps that would have otherwise been landfill is great in theory and still is, but the older glue gave off formaldehyde, which is highly irritating at the least and can cause allergic reactions, respiratory illness and possibly some forms of cancer.

Though there are a lot more regulations now days to control the levels of formaldehyde in wood glue, you need to be aware of any pressed wood products that may be in older condos or houses that you purchase or move into. Wood paneling, kitchen or bath cabinets or even particle boards used in construction can still pose health problems. One bright spot is that the older the pressed wood product is, the less formaldehyde it gives off. Humid air and smaller condo rooms or houses make the problem worse. So the best thing is to try and find out how old the house or condo is you live in or are buying and if any pressed wood is present. Paneling and cabinets can be replaced and might be the best idea in the long run.

Because of raised awareness about these potentially dangerous substances and the growing trend in green building, most new construction condos like these have fewer hazardous materials than older homes. You can even go a few steps further and check out the eco-friendly Chicago real estate developments that have LEED certification.

Another big culprit of indoor pollution is the VOCs or volatile organic compounds that new carpeting emits or off-gasses. Again it is the glue and dye in the carpeting that contains chemicals that can irritate people. The highest amount of VOCs will be off-gassed right after laying new carpeting. One way to avoid this is stay out of your condo or house for a couple of days after new carpeting is installed and air the rooms out before coming back for good. You can also shop for carpeting that has lower levels of VOCs in the materials.

Probably most people have heard of the dangers of lead paint. Unless your condo or home was painted before 1978 you most likely don’t have anything to worry about. Today paint in the United States contains no lead. But if you do believe and the paint is flaking or you need to scrape it or sand it to repaint, then there is a serious danger of tiny lead particles being thrown into the air and inhaled.

Even in small doses lead can cause major health problems for adults and especially for children and pregnant women. Everything from damage to brain cells and your nervous system can result from exposure, and if children pick up the paint chips and eat them it can be even more harmful. If you’ve bought an older condo with the intention of remodeling and suspect there is lead paint present, then you should hire a professional to remove it in a safe way.

Another source of potential health problems is the chemicals used in making such items as draperies, furniture coverings, mattresses, televisions, computers and even some pajamas resistant to fire. Flame retardants are probably a necessary evil and can slow fires giving a homeowner a chance to escape and survive. But they contain PBDEs or polybrominated diphenyl ethers, which are given off into the air and inhaled or even ingested. When inside your body, they stay there and can possibly impair your memory, cause learning problems in children, decrease fertility and cause thyroid problems. Cancer is even a possibility. Some forms of PBEDs have been discontinued since 2004, but the old products that contained them are still present in some homes and the one type that is still in use is suspected of causing similar health issues.

By familiarizing yourself with potential hazardous building materials and chemicals in furnishings you can reduce your exposure and improve the quality of your indoor air and life. Both your body and the environment will thank you for it.