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New-Build Vs 14-Week-Build Home Renovation

How do you pay for home renovations?

Maybe you’re tired of staring at the aging cabinetry and outdated countertops that adorn your kitchen. Or maybe you’re worried that your deck really will cave in the next time you attempt to eat outdoors. There are plenty of good reasons to invest in home improvements, whether your goal is to increase your property’s resale value, enhance your quality of life, or both. But renovations cost money, so you’ll need to consider the best way to pay for yours. Here are some options to think about.

Tap your savings

If you have money in a savings account you can use to fund your home improvements, then withdrawing that cash is your best bet. That way, you won’t incur interest charges in the course of renovating your property, and you’ll gain peace of mind by not taking on debt and having additional monthly payments hanging over your head.

That said, don’t deplete your emergency fund to pay for work that’s being done on your home. In fact, don’t even make a tiny withdrawal from that account. Your emergency fund should be saved for unplanned expenses only, and if you raid yours to fund renovations, you’ll risk coming up short when an unavoidable bill pops up later on.

Get Rid of Your Private Mortgage Insurance

With home values rising again in many real estate markets, it’s possible your home value is now high enough to allow you to cancel your private mortgage insurance. Most mortgage banks let you drop your policy once you have 20% equity (for example, your home value is $100,000 and your mortgage is $80,000, leaving you with $20,000 in equity).

File an Amended Return

File an amended return for a home-related tax deduction or credit you failed to take. It’s easy to make a common home owner tax mistake, such as not taking a deduction when you modify your home for medical reasons or when your home was damaged in a disaster. It’s quick and easy to amend your return and get a refund to help fund your renovation.

Use your credit cards

Let’s be clear: Charging home renovations on a credit card isn’t the best idea, as you’ll risk paying a ton of interest on that debt. But if you’re desperate to get that work done (say, you have a bathroom that’s basically unusable in its current state), and you can’t borrow against your home or qualify for a personal loan, then credit cards may be your only option. If that’s the case, proceed with caution, and keep your renovation costs as low as possible.

Of course, if you have enough money in savings to pay for your renovations, but are also able to charge them on a credit card without incurring added costs (some contractors or companies charge extra for credit card usage), then it pays to do so. That way, you can rack up some reward points, and then pay your balance in full before interest starts accruing.

Your goal in funding a home renovation project should be to walk away with as little debt as possible. If you’re not in a position to pay for your home improvements outright, it could make sense to put off that work for another year or two, boost your savings, and then cover your renovations with cash. That way, you won’t risk taking on debt that you’ll struggle to keep up with after the fact.

Mortgage refinancing

While it may seem like the most daunting option, refinancing your mortgage can ultimately be the most cost-effective way to fund a home renovation project if interest rates are lower than the existing interest rate on your mortgage.

Personal loans

If you have a fixed amount for your home renovation budget, and it’s relatively small, you might instead want to consider a personal loan.

Personal loans are also quick to secure and require relatively little paperwork. Personal loans offer you flexibility when it comes to deciding exactly what you want to do with your loan. If you’ve started pricing your renovation and predict that the dollar figure could increase over your initial estimates, skipping both the personal loan and credit card options. Once project costs increase, tapping your home equity may become advantageous due to the low interest rate.

Home equity

If you have enough equity in your home, you’ll have the option to borrow against it to fund your renovations. You can do this in two ways — with a home equity loan, or a home equity line of credit (HELOC). With the former, you borrow a preset amount of money up front, and then repay it over time. With the latter, you’re given access to a certain amount of money, and you can make withdrawals against that line of credit as you need to.

Qualifying for a home equity loan or HELOC is fairly easy, because your property is used as collateral. If you don’t make payments on your loan, your lender can seize your home (which is a bad thing for you, but protection for your lender). As such, you might snag a pretty favorable interest rate on a home equity loan or HELOC. But only borrow what you can easily afford to pay back, because you really don’t want to risk losing your home.

Before You Start Home Renovations…

First, make sure your improvements are suitable for your home and your neighborhood. Doing a top of the line remodel with high-end finishes might price you out of your area. Also, before you dive into a project, consider how long you plan to live in your home. If you plan to be in your home for several years, think about projects in which you’ll get enjoyment.

There is no sense in sinking thousands into a new gourmet kitchen if you don’t cook. Or doing a complete remodel of a guest bathroom rarely used. If you plan to move soon, think about resale. Will you be able to recoup the costs of the renovations? Are the finishes neutral enough to appeal to most buyers? Are the upgrades what one would expect in your neighborhood?

Things You Should Consider When Looking For A Car Accident Lawyer

How do you win a car accident lawsuit?

If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident, you are unlikely to ever forget the crash. For some victims, the emotional impact is as devastating as the physical injuries. Moreover, many victims suffer financial hardship on top of the physical and emotional injuries. If another party was at fault in the collision, you may be entitled to compensation for all of your injuries.

Hiring an experienced  traffic crash attorney is the first step toward recovering damages for your injuries; however, additional steps you can take other steps to improve your chances for compensation:

  • Seek medical treatment immediately.  Have a medical examination immediately following any collision, even if you think you were not injured. First, this helps ensures that all injuries, including any internal injuries, are diagnosed properly. Second, it provides a clear relationship between the accident and any injuries for which you seek compensation down the road.
  • Document the collision. Keep records of hospital bills, time missed from work, car repairs and prescription medication costs. Also, keep a pain journal to document your daily pain level as well as the accident’s mental and emotional effects.
  • Follow through.  Keep all doctor appointments and follow the prescribed course of treatment.
  • Do not communicate with anyone. Once you hire an attorney, let your attorney speak for you. This includes commenting on social media websites such as Facebook or Twitter. Remember, your comments could be used against you or misconstrued down the road.
  • Negotiate with your head, not your heart. When it comes time to consider an out-of-court settlement, listen to your attorney’s advice and discuss your options. All victims feel their case is worth a large amount of money.  Your attorney, however, will be able to give you a good idea of what a jury would say.

Scenarios Leading to Car Accident Lawsuits

What you must prove to win your car accident lawsuit depends, at least in part, on how the accident happened. Even the process of proving a claim for damages can vary depending on the circumstances. Some common scenarios that lead to someone having legal liability for a car accident include:

  • Another driver violates traffic laws.
  • Another driver operates a vehicle under the influence of drugs and alcohol.
  • A medical emergency resulting from medical malpractice leads to a car accident.
  • A poorly maintained road with potholes, sinkholes, or another hazard leads to an accident.
  • Malfunctioning traffic signals or train crossing signals lead to an accident.
  • A defective motor vehicle or motor vehicle part causes an accident.

Improving Profitability for Plaintiff’s Attorneys

Because most plaintiff’s attorneys get paid through a contingency fee agreement, the sooner a case settles, the sooner the plaintiff’s attorney gets paid. All else being equal, a quicker settlement payment is more profitable for the plaintiff’s attorney. This is because the longer a case goes on, the more time and work the plaintiff’s attorney must put into the case, with no guarantee of an increased settlement offer.

While settlement offers often rise as the lawsuit goes on, that’s not always the case. Even if a settlement offer goes up over the course of the lawsuit, there’s no guarantee the increase will rise in proportion to the additional work the plaintiff’s attorney must put in. Then there’s always the risk that if the plaintiff refuses a settlement and the case goes to trial, the plaintiff loses and the plaintiff’s attorney gets nothing.

How You Can Increase the Chances of A Successful Outcome

You can take several steps to support your claim in a personal injury lawsuit after a car accident.   First, collect any evidence of the accident.  This may include paperwork such as a police accident report, insurance and contact information for the other driver,  hospital and ambulance records, and photos of the accident scene.  Any documentation that supports your version of how the accident occurred will be helpful to your attorneys.

Second, write down as much as you can remember about the accident.  This could be a description of what happened and the times that events occurred (such as when the police and/or ambulance arrived).  It’s best to make notes of this information as soon as possible after the accident, while your memory is fresh; the longer you wait to chronicle the accident, the more likely it is that you may forget crucial details, such as whether the other driver made a statement to you about the accident.  Third, make a list of potential witnesses along with their contact information. This may involve listing each person riding in the car with you or the other driver,  anyone who saw what happened, and the police, firefighters or medical personnel who responded to the scene.  These people may help your attorney put together your claim for damages. Fourth — and most importantly — do not speak to the other driver or their insurance representative about the accident.  If they want to speak to you, you can simply tell them that you are considering filing a lawsuit and that they can talk to your attorney. Allowing your lawyer to handle conversations with insurance adjusters and other parties will help to ensure that you obtain the best possible outcome for your case.  Of course, if you have been seriously injured in a car accident, you may not be able to take these steps; these are only suggestions for anyone who is capable of gathering this information.

These innocent errors can affect a car accident lawsuit

There are many ways an unsuspecting auto accident victim’s case can be harmed – even when you’re trying to do the right thing. Here are 18 mistakes identified by our car accident lawyers that unfortunately, play a crucial role in hurting good people with legitimate car accident lawsuits.

Lying about injuries in a car accident in Michigan

Lying about injuries in a car accident is easy to avoid with your Michigan car accident lawsuit but the consequences can be disastrous for those who don’t. Providing false information on an insurance application can be used to VOID PERSONAL INJURY CLAIMS you may have, such as for uninsured motorist coverage.

Mistakes on your No-Fault forms

Paperwork involved in No-Fault claims include the submission of forms for replacement services (household services) and attendant care (nursing care) claims. These forms are required for you to receive reimbursement/payment for the services provided. But the accuracy of these submissions is critical to your car accident lawsuit. In the Michigan Court of Appeals opinion in Bahri v IDS Property, the court held that inaccurate submissions can result in a person losing all No-Fault benefits. In summary, the court stated the Plaintiff committed fraud because her replacement service claim was 19 days before the accident occurred and defense surveillance showed her doing things on certain days by herself, which her replacement services submissions claimed other people were doing for her. So please ensure your No-Fault submissions are accurate. Mistakes – even innocent mistakes – can get any accident victim labeled a “fraud” under this new case and result in the termination of all of your No-Fault insurance benefits.

Surveillance

Expect that your insurance company and the at-fault driver’s insurance company will conduct surveillance and hire investigators to take photos and videos of you at some time during your car accident lawsuit. If you have tried to do a task, admit you’ve tried it. Most people will understand if you had a good day, and attempted to do something. But no one understands when an auto accident victim denies something that is later caught on surveillance video.

Do not talk about your case

Insurance adjusters, defense lawyers, and sometimes jurors may try to contact you about your car accident lawsuit. Do NOT talk about your case with ANYONE hired by the at-fault driver or insurance company. If an adjuster wants to ask about your case, have her call your car accident lawyer.

Facebook, Twitter & other social media sites

Insurance adjusters and defense attorneys will investigate your Facebook, Twitter and related social media accounts, blogs or web pages – even when set as ‘private’ – and look for things that can help them avoid taking full responsibility for the harms they’ve caused. The purpose of this Internet research is to attempt to show that you are not as injured as you claim. Please be very careful about postings and photos of your activities. Avoid posting new items.

Get Auto Repair When Needed And Extend The Life Of Your Vehicle

Good Reasons to Buy an Auto Repair Business

Auto Repair Produces a Good Income

Information from a database which tracks financial information on small business sales, shows that auto repair shops enjoy a median cash flow of over 20% of revenues.  This means that if a shop has $750,000 in revenue it can generate an owner’s cash flow over $150,000.   This is also a business which can thrive in any economic climate.  During strong economies, auto repair shops can cater to both new and used car owners by offering standard maintenance and repairs for much better prices than those charged at auto dealerships.  During tough markets, consumers are more likely to hang onto their cars longer, considering it more economical to pay for car repairs than to buy a new car.

ower than Average Purchase Price

It’s not uncommon for franchises or businesses in a variety of industries to carry price tags of 2 to 3 times the amount of the owner’s cash flow.  According this is not true with auto repair shops which have an average cost of only 1.69 times the owner’s cash flow.  This means that, on the average, an auto repair business generating $150,000 in owner’s cash flow sells for about $254,000.  This makes buying an auto repair shop a much more affordable option for a business buyer.

Limited Cash Outlay

While operating an auto shop requires a certain amount of equipment and tools, owners do not have to worry about having their cash tied up in accounts receivable and extensive inventory.  Auto repair shops operate on a pay-at-the-time-of-service basis and very few stock large inventories of parts.  In most areas, parts can be obtained quickly from parts stores as the need arises.

Strong Industry Outlook

There are several trends which show that the outlook for independent auto repair shops is excellent.  For one thing, the number of cars on the road continues to grow.  It is estimated that there are over 247,000,000 vehicles registered in the United States and that number increases annually.  With just a few exceptions, the number of cars has increased over 3.5 million each year since 1960, and there is nothing to indicate that this trend will change

Positive Competitive Landscape

Unlike many brick and mortar businesses, auto repair shops have not been replaced by internet businesses. This industry also faces little consolidation.  While major auto dealers offer repairs, their market share has been shrinking.  One reason for this is that auto dealers charge significantly more for auto repair work than do small car repair shops, and a Consumer Report survey found that customers who go to independent auto repair shops report a higher satisfaction level than those who visit an auto dealer for repairs.  The independent market is highly fragmented and the typical auto repair shop may have just two to five employees.

ENGINE REPAIR

As the temperatures plunge, certain types of engine oil may not flow as easily as they did when it was warmer.  Makes sense, doesn’t it? Just like molasses gets thicker as the temperature goes down, engine oil does the same thing. So, maybe you’re wondering if you have to change your oil as the seasons change so it’s just the right thickness to lubricate your engine parts.

How well engine oil flows is called its viscosity. There are different types of oil—some that have just one viscosity and others called “multigrade” oils.  Here’s the difference.

A single viscosity oil will flow better when it’s hot but not as well when it’s cold.  A multigrade oil is engineered so that its flow properties at cold temperatures are different than they are at warm temperatures.  In other words, a multigrade oil can start out in colder temperatures acting like a thinner oil and then behave like a thicker oil when it’s warm.  That’s a pretty cool trick and it’s why multigrade engine oil is used in nearly all vehicles.  Your vehicle’s manufacturer has the correct viscosity of oil for your particular model included in the owner’s manual.

Another choice you have to make when it comes to engine oil is whether you use conventional oil, synthetic oil or a blend of the two.  Synthetic oils have some advantages over conventional, such as resisting breakdown better and withstanding higher temperatures.

Check with your service advisor to see which viscosity and type of oil is recommended for your vehicle.  It’s important that in cold weather, the oil flows through your engine at the right thickness so that parts are being properly lubricated.  That will make sure you’ll get good fuel economy and performance, no matter what the temperature is.

Things to Consider When Choosing a Mechanic

One of the best ways to choose your maintenance and repair mechanic? Word of mouth! Online sites like Yelp are good, but a great referral is golden!

Q: Is there a Master Technician on the premises?

A: You want to make sure that a factory-trained Master Technician is on site who provides oversight on all diagnostics, maintenance and repair jobs. One who is knowledgeable about the particular needs of older and newer models. All of the mechanics here have been mentored and trained under myself, a factory-trained Master Technician.

Q: Does the shop offer competitive prices?

A: At provide personalized attention, quality parts, convenience, efficiency, decades of experience, and prompt service all provided under great management at prices well below the dealerships. know you have a choice, but as your Lexus and Toyota auto mechanics, confident that boutique treatment and competitive pricing will steer you in direction where your needs never get lost in the shuffle.

Q: Does use genuine factory parts?

A: Quality shops use genuine factory parts. They last significantly longer and perform better. The parts at after-market stores, such as Pep Boys, may appear to be the same as those used at reputable independent shops, yet they are not! Those after-market parts are of a much lower  quality than genuine factory parts that we purchase directly from the dealerships ourselves to meet the highest quality standard the business has to offer for your vehicle.

Q: Does the shop offer a warranty on labor and parts and is the shop licensed and insured?

A: stand behind work. This means will diagnose issues with your Lexus, Toyota, or other Japanese model vehicle, discuss your options, and make appropriate repairs. will never make repairs that have not been approved in advance by you. In the event something is not right, you have a full year to bring it back for adjustments to the original repair at no additional cost to you. are licensed and insured, so  your vehicle is protected against any unforeseen incidents.

Auto Diagnosis

Diagnostic Services

Electronic Diagnosis

Computer Diagnosis

Experienced ASE Certified auto mechanic

Ford Factory training

Honda/Acura Factory training

certified staff help you.We’ll diagnose your check engine light, repair the problem, and get your car back to you in no time. are equipped to handle all  auto repairs. devote our time to specialty training every month so are prepared to handle any vehicle that hows up on door step. Trust in expertise to repair your vehicle properly, the first time. Don’t be fooled by imitators, a lot of repair shops around us claim to be certified and attend regular training, but have no certificates on their walls. proudly display in the show room to show our commitment to excellent service.

Transmission Repair

Automatic Transmission Check

A vehicle with typical automatic trans have 4 and up to 5 forward gear-ratios, a Neutral, a Reverse and Park gear. With automatic trans, the shifting of gears happens automatically after the vehicle is in Drive and unlike a “stick shift” or Manual Trans and there’s no demand for a clutch or shift. Automatic transmission repair is advanced and complex work based on all the parts that it’s comprised of. Be sure to have any auto transmission problems correctly evaluated by a professional auto mechanic.

Check the Clutche

There are various kinds of clutches, in both manual & automatic trans cars. A clutch helps your vehicle start & shift gears smoothly. The clutch in your car can sometimes wear out.

“4” wheel Drive Transmission

A 4-wheel (4×4) driving vehicle does have specific gears, with both back & front axles, including an entire transfer case. Vehicles with 4 wheel drive require maintenance services on the front differentials, rear differentials, transfer case, and trans fluids

THE LIFE OF A CAR MECHANIC

Being a Car Mechanic is a great job, especially if you love cars. Being able to check out lots of cool cars and see their insides, how they are created and what features they offer is very interesting and exciting at the same time. There’s always something nice to be had when it comes to being a mechanic. Because you can learn something new, sharpen your skills and all these things are super interesting and fun.

What do you do as a Mechanic?

A Car Mechanic can do a whole lot of things. You can opt for an oil change car service, you can diagnose check engine lights, replace head or taillight bulbs, check the engine, make sure that the dashboard works, check the electrical system and so on. The Car Mechanic will basically handle all kinds of auto maintenance and auto repair tasks. That’s why more and more auto shops want to keep their Car Mechanics or at least hire new ones. It’s important and it really helps them make sure that results are great and the experience will be worth it.

What is the average pay for a mechanic?

The average pay for a mechanic will differ, but the median salary in the US is around $39000-$40000 per year or something around those lines. Of course this will differ on the city

How long does it take to become a car mechanic?

Some would say that becoming a car mechanic is an ongoing and sometimes taxing job. But on the other hand it’s a very fulfilling one too. If you want to be a repair technician, you might have to study up to 3 years. Part specialists, service consultants or collision damage estimators will have to study for around 2 years. So yes, 2 years would be the average because that’s how much it takes to get certified. Yet you always improve yourself and learn new things as you go along.

The life of a Car Mechanic is always challenging because you never know what parts you will be working with or what you can expect. It’s certainly something distinct and unique, and it can bring in front great results all the time. It’s all about understanding the huge pressure that can appear and what challenges can arise, but at the same time you also have to adapt and learn new things. And once you do that it will be worth it!

Water Testing Methods: Measuring PH Levels In Water/Fluids

What is the best way to test the purity of a water sample?

Assuming that you are talking about quality of drinking water, It is not quite possible to check microbiological and chemical quality of water at home. You can check the pH of water at home using pH strips or pH indicator which you can get from a chemical store. The ideal pH of drinking water is 7.0 to 8.5

For checking the Total dissolved solids in water, you can use TDS meter, which you should be able to find in a laboratory store. Or you can take a particular volume of water sample in a pre-weighed dish and boil the water to complete evaporation, cool the dish and weigh it again and calculate the mg of solids left behind per litre. This will give you TDS of your water. A good quality water should have TDS of 30–300 ppm in my opinion.

For determining the mineral content like Ca, Mg, Sulphate Chloride etc, you need lab equipment and particular chemicals. If you can get access to those, you can follow methods given by BIS which you can find online

If you don’t have access to a laboratory, you can contact a NABL accredited lab in or near your city and send around 8 litres of water sample (or as advised by lab officials depending upon which parameters of water quality you are interested in. The NABL accredited labs are where all the food industries send their samples to, to get them tested, so you can rely upon their results. These labs can do testing of your sample for all the microbiological and chemical parameters of concern and send you the reports.

What type of home mold test should I use?

Home mold tests are cheap, easy to use, available at most hardware stores, and almost entirely useless. So the answer is none. You should use none of them.

A standard home mold test typically consists of a petri dish that you allow to sit in your home, along with a substance to create mold growth inside (usually something called potato dextrose). You leave the test out for a specified amount of time, and then you cap the petri dish and let it incubate for a specified amount of time. These times vary by brand, so follow the manufacturer’s guidelines. If mold grows, you have mold. If it doesn’t—well, you get the point.

Spoiler alert: there is mold in your air. Mold spores are in the air just about anywhere you could go, including inside your home. Testing for the presence of mold is like testing for the presence of air. It is there, we promise.

There are two critical questions to answer regarding mold in your home, and whether or not it is there at all is not one of them. The first is whether the amount of airborne mold spores found in your home is excessive. Since there is no official guideline from the EPA on how much mold is too much, this is usually done by comparing the concentration of mold spores floating in your home to the concentration of mold spores floating outside. It’s also a task for a professional.

You should schedule one of these tests if you believe for any reason you may have a mold issue but aren’t sure since you haven’t seen any. Often times, there is a musty smell that is the calling card of larger than average amounts of mold. If you find that you’re coughing or sneezing more than usual, that may be a sign of high mold concentration in your home as well.

What is Water Pollution?

The water they say is life, and indeed they were right. About 70% of the earth is water, which has undeniably become one of our greatest resources. When we were young, we learned about the various ways to conserve water because water is used in almost every important human chores and processes. Water is an essential element in both domestic as well as industrial purposes.

However, a closer inspection of our water resources today gives us a terrible shock. Water is now infested with various wastes ranging from floating plastic bags to chemical waste, converting our water bodies into a pool of poison.

Water pollution is an appalling problem, powerful enough to lead the world on a path of destruction. Water is a natural solvent, enabling most pollutants to dissolve in it easily and contaminate it.

The effect of water pollution is directly suffered by the organisms and vegetation that survive in water, including amphibians. On a human level, several people die each day due to the consumption of polluted and infected water

How to Test for Bacteria on Kitchen Counters

Some nasty bugs may lurk on your kitchen counters, in your kitchen drains and even inside your refrigerator. E. Coli and salmonella, two common types of bacteria found in beef and chicken, cause intense gastrointestinal discomfort, and even death if left untreated. Finding out if these unwelcome guests have taken up residence in your kitchen is the first step to being rid of them. Home testing for bacteria is simple and affordable, and doesn’t require advanced scientific knowledge.

Step 1

Prepare a small sample of agar in the petri dish as directed on its package. Agar is a gelatinous substance used in cooking that also serves as a growth medium suitable for science experiments. Refrigerate your sample upside down for the specified amount of time.

Step 2

Use a sterile swab to take your samples.

Rub a sterile swab over the areas of your counter most prone to collecting bacteria. Check a variety of different areas, focusing on where you most often handle your food. For example, you can collect samples from the edges of the sink, as well as the back of your spice rack and the bottom of your knife block. Use a light touch, but make full contact with the surface.

Step 3

Rub the swab containing your sample onto the prepared agar and close the petri dish.

Step 4

Place your petri dishes in an out-of-the way spot, out of direct light. It will take three to seven days for growth to appear.

Step 5

Examine your petri dishes as growth begins to appear. While determining the types of fungi and bacteria found must be left to the professionals, you can easily identify bacteria as small white and yellow spots that multiply quickly, and fungi as larger, colorful, furry areas. The more spots, the higher your bacterial count.

Physical parameters of water quality /Physical characteristic of water

These are some physical aspects of water quality that helps to determine whether water is polluted or not.

1. Color:

  • Pure water is colorless. Therefore any types of color appearance in water indicates water pollution.
  • Natural water system is often colored by foreign material. If color is due to suspended material, it is called as apparent color. Color given by dissolved material that remains even after removal of suspended material is called true color or real color.
  • The guideline value (maximum acceptable level) for color of drinking water is 15 TCU (True color unit).

2. Turbidity:

  • Pure water is clear and do not absorb light. Therefore if turbidity appears in water, it indicates water pollution.
  • Turbidity in water is given by various materials like suspended solid, dissolved materials and microbial loads. In general turbidity increases with increases in quantity of these materials in water. However different materials differ in their light absorption capacity.
  • Some materials that give turbidity may be toxic to consumers. Therefore turbid water is not suitable for drinking purposes. Furthermore turbidity decrease efficiency of disinfection process.
  • Materials that give turbidity provide attachment site for toxic chemicals.
  • Turbidity prevents penetration of light into deeper layer of natural water system that directly affects photosynthetic organism in bottom.
  • Drinking water should have turbidity less than 5 NTU (Naphthalometric turbidity unit)

3. Taste and odor:

  • Pure water is always tasteless and odorless. Therefore if any types of taste and odor is present, it indicates water pollution.
  • Water taste and odor may develops due to natural or artificial regions.
  • Artificial region for taste and odor in water is due to disinfection process (chlorination). Some natural impurities dissolved in water can also give taste and odor.
  • Inorganic salts such as NaCl, KCl etc dissolve in water give taste whereas compounds like H2S can give both taste and odor.
  • Compounds giving taste and odor to water may be toxic to consumer, so drinking water should be taste less and odor less.

4. Temperature:

  • Temperature is not directly used to evaluate whether water is potable (drinkable) or not.
  • In natural water system like lake and river, temperature is very important physical factor that determines water quality. If temperature increase, solubility of Oxygen in water decreases.
  • Furthermore rise in temperature increases the growth rate of aquatic microorganism, so they consume dissolved O2 faster and level of dissolved O2 decreases.
  • Similarly, temperature affects disinfection process because efficiency of disinfection is lower at lower temperature.

5. Foam:

  • Foam in water id due to foaming substances like detergents, soaps etc dissolve in water. Foam is regarded as dangerous in natural water system because it creates anaerobic condition.
  • Some foaming substance is toxic to consumers. Therefore water with foam is not suitable for drinking purposes.

6. Conductivity:

  • Conductivity of water is mainly due to presence of ionizable inorganic compounds.
  • Pure water has very low conductance. For example 1µ mho for distilled water. Therefore conductivity measurement indicates amount of ionizable inorganic compounds in water.

7. Total dissolved solid:

  • If water is filtered to remove suspended solid, the remaining solid in water indicates total dissolved solid.
  • Dissolved solid may be organic (animal or plants waste) or inorganic compounds (carbonate, sulfate, bicarbonate etc). These compounds give variety of effects like hardness, taste, odor etc depending on nature of dissolved solid.
  • If the dissolved solid in water exceeds 300 mg/ltr, it adversely affects living organisms as well as industrial products.

How To Control Bed Bugs

What Scent Keeps Bed Bugs Away?

Many bugs are repelled by certain smells, such as peppermint, tea tree oil, and lavender. As such, it makes sense that bed bugs too, would be repelled by certain smells. While bed bugs do try to avoid certain scents, there’s a lot of misinformation out there about what those smells are. So, what’s the truth?

One known scent that repels bed bugs is the pheromones secreted by the nymphs, or baby bed bugs. These are meant to keep male bed bugs away from the nymphs, so they don’t attempt to mate with them. These pheromones, though, only work on male bed bugs, and will do nothing to dissuade females from invading a space. It is still however, sold in many products on the market today. While using these products could be better than nothing, they won’t likely eliminate the problem completely.

Many people use essential oils to repel bed bugs, as well. The United States Department of Agriculture even conducted a study to determine if essential oils were effective in keeping bed bugs away. The results of the study were interesting. While bed bugs didn’t appear to be repelled by the smell of the oils, they did seem to have an effect on the bed bug’s body..

While not overly effective, the most useful essential oils for deterring bed bugs appear to be blood orange oil, paraffin oil, silicone oil, and spearmint oil. However, the effectiveness of these oils is extremely limited.

Kill the bedbugs

Home cleaning methods

You can first try to remove bedbugs without chemicals. These bugs are pretty easy to kill with high heat, 115°F (46°C), or intense cold , 32°F(less than 0°C

Here are a few ways to treat bedbugs using these methods:

  • Wash bedding and clothes in hot water for 30 minutes. Then put them in a dryer on the highest heat setting for 30 minutes.
  • Use a steamer on mattresses, couches, and other places where bedbugs hide.
  • Pack up infested items in black bags and leave them outside on a hot day (95 degrees) or in a closed car. In cooler temperatures, it can take two to five months to kill sealed-up bugs.
  • Put bags containing bedbugs in the freezer at 0°F (-17°C). Use a thermometer to check the temperature. Leave them in there for at least four days.

Once you’ve cleaned all visible bedbugs, make the area inhospitable for their friends. Place bedbug-proof covers over your mattress and box spring. Zip these covers up all the way. Bugs that are trapped inside will die, and new bugs won’t be able to get in.

If these methods don’t wipe out all the bugs, you may need to try an insecticide.

Non-chemical and chemical treatments

Insecticides can help rid your home of bedbugs. Look for products that are EPA-registered, and specifically marked for “bedbugs.”

Here are a few types of insecticides you can try:

  • Pyrethrins and pyrethroids are the most common chemicals used to kill bedbugs. Yet some bedbugs have become resistant to them.
  • Pyrroles like chlorfenapyr kill bedbugs by disrupting their cells.
  • Neonicotinoids are man-made versions of nicotine. They damage the bugs’ nervous system. This type of chemical works on bedbugs that have become resistant to other pesticides.
  • Dessicants are substances that destroy the bugs’ protective outer coating. Without this coating, the bugs dry out and die. Two examples of dessicants are silica aerogel (Tri-Die and CimeXa) and diatomaceous earth. The advantage to dessicants is that bedbugs can’t become resistant to them, but they work slowly. These products can take a few months to kill off all the bugs.
  • Foggers or bug bombs kill bedbugs, but they can’t get into cracks and crevices where these bugs hide. They can also be toxic to humans if you use them incorrectly. Read the label carefully. Leave the room before you set off a fogger.
  • Plant oil-based products like EcoRaider and Bed Bug Patrolare less toxic than chemical insecticides, and they work well against bedbugs.

How to Use a Spray to Kill Bed Bugs on Mattresses

When you use a spray to kill bed bugs, you have to apply it directly to them. This is easier said than done because they’ll do anything they can to avoid you or get away from you. So, how can you effectively kill them with a spray? Here’s how.

  • Get prepared. Purchase or make your spray, and have it ready with you. Tidy the room before you begin by picking up anything off the floor, and bagging all of your clothes in preparation to wash them. Seal the bags and leave them outside for the time being.
  • Get started by flipping the mattress. Start spraying immediately, taking care to hit any bed bug that’s scurrying away. Pay special attention to the piping of the mattress, spraying it all the way around to kill any bed bugs or their eggs hiding there.
  • Wipe down the main area of infestation with a damp cloth, and bag it before you leave the room. Wiping the area down will get rid of any lingering smell. If you didn’t know, bed bugs find their home by searching out its smell.
  • Repeat this process with nearby furniture, or anywhere else they might be hiding (bar electrical outlets, since it’s best not to spray those.)
  • Once you’re done, wash the clothes that you bagged. Put the bag itself into the washing machine before you open it, and dump the clothes directly inside. Wash for at least half an hour at a high temperature to guarantee that you kill both the bed bugs and their eggs.

It’s important to repeat this entire process, too. Sprays like these will not be able to kill all bed bugs in just one pass. You have to keep at it, and basically, make their lives hell.

As the study on EcoRaider above shows, bed bugs will remain for at least 12 weeks after just one spray. So, perhaps after six weeks, you could spray again to hasten the process.

What To Do If You Have Bed Bugs

There’s no question that bed bugs are exceptionally hardy creatures.  But what does this mean for infestation victims?

This probably isn’t the news you wanted to hear, but unfortunately, the fact of the matter is that you simply cannot afford to wait your bed bugs out.  Not only will the infestation fail to clear up on its own — it will spread and intensify with each passing day. Studies show that bed bugs can live up to one year without feeding, and even longer given certain environmental circumstances.  Given that female bed bugs can lay between two to five eggs per day, an ignored or mismanaged infestation can quickly turn into an unbearable and expensive situation.

Remember, bed bugs have entered your space for one reason only: to feed on you.  As long as you remain in your home or apartment, your bed bugs have no reason to travel elsewhere.  Why would they, when they can easily feed on your blood night after night as you sleep?  Bed bugs will not abandon a stable, readily accessible food supply — unless you give them a reason to.

The longer you wait to contact a licensed and certified pest control professional, the more bed bugs you will have.  The more bed bugs you have (and the longer you have them), the greater your risk of exposure to serious illnesses like Chagas Disease and hepatitis B becomes.  Finally, prolonged infestations are more difficult to eradicate successfully, which simply means greater expense and inconvenience to you.

On the other hand, you can minimize the risk of sustaining serious injuries or property damage by intervening during the early stages of infestation.  The sooner you contact a licensed pest control company, the easier it will be to exterminate the bed bugs and return to your normal life.  If you are a renter, talk to your landlord before contacting a pest control company yourself.  Depending on the provisions of the municipal code applicable to your city or county, it’s possible that your landlord is responsible for bed bug treatments.  Expenses related to eradication may not necessarily have to come out of your pocket.

Do I Have To Treat My Whole House If I Get Bed Bugs?

Recently, it has been found that bed bug infestations are on the rise. This is mainly due to increased travel. Generally said to have not originated in the United States, after their arrival bed bugs spread like wildfire. The good news is that bed bugs are not known to spread any disease or pathogens. The bad news is that they are known to be one of the hardest pests to get rid of! Should you find a bed bug infestation, you should immediately seek out professional help.

Bed bugs come from a number of places and taking steps to prevent them is always in your best interest. Your daily routine can put you into contact with bed bugs a number of times and though hard to avoid entirely, you can use these prevention tips to help.

  • Keep personal belongings off the floor/ground. Often times when you set your belongings on the ground in places that have high human traffic such as mass transit, hotels, motels, and even retail stores, you can pick up bed bugs without even knowing it. Whether it be a coat, purse, or suitcase, try and keep items off of the floor.
  • When cleaning, make sure to vacuum thoroughly. Always focus on creases and stitching of upholstery. Making sure to vacuum around things like buttons and folds. Bed bugs are tiny and can hide in very discreet locations.
  • Inspect. When entering a room where you do have to set belongings down, like in hotels or at homes you might be a guest at, always inspect it first. Focus on places like on and under bedding as well as under rugs. If you find bed bugs, leave the room immediately.
  • Check bed bugs at the door. If returning from somewhere in which you brought luggage to, try and unpack it outside of your home. Make sure to wash all clothing you had brought with you, even if unused.
  • Keep items stored properly. When traveling, always store items inside of your luggage in separate sealable bags. Try and keep unused items left unopened.

Taxi Truck Courier Loading Services

MOVING LABOR

Professional Moving Labor Services

Moving labor is a popular service for residential and commercial moving. As part of labor only moving services can simply load or unload all or part of your household items during your move.  The loading process can be very time consuming, and it is impressive how much experts can safely accomplish in a short amount of time!  DIY loading and labor that may take 6-8 hours is easily done in a fraction of the time.   By choosing to hire professional movers to make sure everything is loaded or unloaded properly in your moving truck or POD, you will reduce damage and potential issues during your move.  Opt to have load everything in your move, or choose to have help with furniture, appliances and other large items.

Hiring Moving Labor to Load or Unload Your Moving Truck

labor services are very popular for the do-it-yourself mover who needs a helping hand with labor-intensive moves. If you have already rented a truck and need a few extra hands, then Moving Ahead Services has you covered. certified movers will quickly and safely transport your items to your moving truck or POD, allowing you to concentrate on other aspects of your move.

Benefits of hiring our moving labor services

Not relying on friends and family

Save your energy for other aspects of moving

Stay in control of packing your items and organization

Safe and reliable loading to ensure nothing breaks in transit

Correct load balance for easy, safe driving

Great way to keep costs efficient

During the planning phases of your move experts will help you decide and plan for moving services that fit your needs and budget.  In addition to moving labor, pros provide packing services, full-service moving arrangements, cleaning services, storage, supplies and other essentials to ensure a smooth transition.

WHEN YOU BECOME A MOVING

CHOOSE WHEN YOU WORK

Stay in control of the hours and days you want to work. Whether you want to make this a full time or part-time career, you can be your own boss. Use your online account to select which days and times you’re available to help customers. Start your business today and help people move near you!

GIVE YOU THE CUSTOMERS

You give us your availability and hard work and give you the customers. Hundreds of customers need your help every day. When you sign up as a Moving Help Service Provider, your business will be listed on to allow customers to find and use your services for their move. After they book your business through one of these sites will notify you when the job needs to get done.

NO COST TO JOIN

No start up costs or monthly fees when you become a Moving Help Service Provider. movers provide their own rates and Moving Help charges a flat 15% marketplace fee when a transaction is completed. You get paid when the job is done and the customer is completely satisfied.

COLLEGE STUDENTS

When you work as a Moving Help Service Provider, you get to set your own schedule and work as many hours as you’d like each week. That’s why being a Moving Help Service Provider is perfect for the college students who may have to work around class schedules and homework.

PART-TIME WORK

Many Moving Help Service Providers work part-time outside of their career to make extra money on the side. What’s even better is you are your own boss – so work the jobs that you want and the hours that work best for you!

The Ultimate Guide to Moving Checklist

Whether you’re looking for moving tips for an apartment in the city or a house on the beach, you’re in the right place. You’re probably feeling disoriented and stressed as you’re trying to figure out how to prepare for the move, but we understand! We’ve moved a thing or two, and it is a mountainous job!

Find a New Place

If you’re here, you most likely have already accomplished this but we’re going to say it anyway — if you haven’t signed a contract for a new house or apartment, this is a great first thing to do. It’ll usually give you a concrete deadline for when your home should be packed and ready to move.

Make a Packing & Moving Timeline

Once you know when and where you’re going, grab a calendar. Take a long realistic look at how many days you have to pack, update addresses, inform doctor offices, break the news to friends, etc. Being realistic is key! Obviously take into account all current life commitments, but also make sure you make room for spontaneous happy hours, movie nights, or whatever else you’re into. Unless you have to move ASAP, giving yourself wiggle room will keep your brain from scrambling into a fistful of packing peanuts.

to plan for packing, be honest with yourself and know how much packing-per-day you can manage. Here are a couple packing plans we’ve come up with:

The “Short Spurt High Intensity” packing plan. This works best if you can pack for 1-2 hours every day leading up to the day you move. Those with short attention spans benefit the most from packing in short but daily intervals. It’s also great for people that have jam-packed schedules and can’t afford full packing days. Depending on how much you have to move, you need to start several weeks or even months before it’s time to move, especially if you want to allow for “off” days.

The “Classic” packing plan. If you prefer a ripping-off-the-bandaid method, set aside several days and estimate each room will take about 3-5 hours to pack. That’s a very general time frame though. How long it actually takes depends on how many drawers, cabinets, nooks and crannies you have accumulated stuff in. Do this a weekend or two before you have to move just in case you run out of steam and leave yourself with a half-packed home.

Moving Boxes

Surprise! You need cardboard boxes. These are quite expensive when you buy them brand new, so save yourself some money here because, if you haven’t noticed, moving is expensive! You can get free used boxes from places like Target, book stores, friends that recently moved, and basically any location that is accommodating to customers.

Small Moves

Moving is never easy. There are a lot of complications involved with a change of address

What qualifies as a small move?

For example, you may have a piano that weighs 600lbs and that’s the only item you will be moving or you have 1,500lbs of moving boxes packed with some furniture. That’s perfect! try hardest to accommodate and customize your move the way you want it.

As small move experts, can offer two distinct advantages:

1. Lower cost! When you share space on a van with others, you are “sharing the cost” as well as decreasing your cost of moving. Sharing a whole truckload with other customers saves you money.

2. are trained, professional movers. You receive door to door inside delivery with full blanket service, the same as if you had a large load.

Advantages of using small moves services

Save money with low weight minimum. Most other moving companies look to move large 5,000-15,000 loads and have a 2,000 minimum. does not require high minimum poundage for small moves. In fact, low required minimum is approximately 400. For example, if you have 500 or 800 to move, will only charge you for the exact amount of pounds. This differs from most moving companies, who will charge you for the full 2,000. save you money.

Protect your furniture. Small moves are specialty. are experts at it. Each piece of furniture is wrapped in blankets and placed in vans to ensure its safe delivery to you. You will not be charged “extra” for protecting your items in blankets or using tape. Upon delivery, will place your items exactly where you want them in your home.

xamples of small moves are:

A college student’s dormitory room

An estate sale or “estate distribution” where the owner of a home is sending furniture to other family members in different parts of the country

A piano going from Los Angeles to New York

A dining table, six chairs and a buffet going from say,

A two-room apartment

Moving FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions When You Plan a Move

It is sometimes said that moving is life’s third greatest source of stress, behind only divorce or the death of a loved one. That’s a pretty weighted undertaking. When you plan a move with Moving Company, you will find this doesn’t have to be the case.

Why should I hire a professional mover?

Hiring a professional mover delivers exceptional value on a day that can otherwise be very stressful. Moving can be both emotionally and physically draining, and handling delicate or bulky items with care requires specific moving skills. highly recommend turning to professionals for this, as you would for many of your households needs, such as plumbing and electricity.

How much will my local or long distance move cost?

base an estimate for a local move on an hourly rate, which includes the drive time for each leg of the move:

from the moving company to your original home,

then to your destination, and

back again to the moving company.

Pricing for a long distance move is based on a flat rate, fixed price. Once have taken an inventory of your furniture and other belongings, and identified a timeframe for delivery, are happy to provide a binding price for your move. If you prefer, can also price a long distance move by weight.

Is moving labor the only moving expense I should expect?

Moving labor represents the majority of the moving expense. However, you should also budget for packing supplies, such as moving boxes and tape, and for additional valuation (moving insurance) as needed. takes special precautions with delicate or oversized items, such as flat screen televisions and chandeliers. These items often require a custom wooden crate, which will incur an additional fee.

Income Tax Planning For Large Estates

Ways to Avoid a Tax Audit

Staying on the right side of the IRS

While audits are rare, most Americans would probably like to avoid them altogether. The percentage of people who actually are audited is extremely small, according to the Internal Revenue Service, but the number has risen slowly since 2008. If the IRS does decide to audit you, there is little you may do to stop it. You may, however, reduce the odds that you will be singled out for that extra attention in the first place.

Check your figures

One of the most common red flags for auditors – erroneous data entry – is also one of the most preventable. It seems simple enough to follow the advice to “double-check your return,” but surprisingly, people are often too careless regarding their taxes. In some cases, taxpayers make avoidable mistakes by forgetting about income or related forms they’ve received when filing.

A good practice is to wait for all your income reports, bank and investment statements and other applicable financial paperwork to arrive before starting your tax return. Correctly reporting dependents and exemptions, as well as ensuring that the numbers match, is also important. The IRS’s automated system will easily detect discrepancies, and it won’t be obvious whether or not a discrepancy is accidental or on purpose.

TurboTax helps to make sure your tax return is correct by completing thousands of error checks before you file, so you can be sure it’s accurate. It also features an Audit Risk Meter™ that checks your tax return for common audit triggers and shows you whether your risk is high or low. Learn more about how TurboTax helps you reduce your audit risk.

Honesty is the best policy

Perhaps it’s common sense, but being 100% truthful on your tax return is an absolute must to reduce the chances of an audit. Realistically and accurately reporting income, deductions, credits and other figures can help keep an audit at bay.

In general, you should be prepared to look an auditor in the eye and support any number you claimed on your return.

Self-employed filers, for example, should have receipts for every business deduction they claim.

Go vanilla

The largest pool of filers – which consists of individuals or joint filers who earned less than $200,000 but more than the lowest earners – tends to avoid overt scrutiny.

You’re more likely to be audited if you make more than $1 million a year or you’re in a very low income tax bracket. Both categories historically are fertile grounds for fraud and – because of the greater complexity – mistakes in data entry.

E-filing helps

On Jan. 24, 1986, the IRS received its first electronically filed tax return from a preparer. By 1990, taxpayers throughout the country who expected a refund could file electronically. Out of over 154 million individual tax returns received by the IRS in 2017, 135 million were e-filed. The IRS maintains that filing returns electronically can prevent mistakes and lower the odds of an audit.

The error rate for a paper return is 21%.

The error rate for returns filed electronically is 0.5%.

The most common tax problems for 2020

Here are some of the common tax problems of 2020 that we should all be aware of.

1. The individual mandate penalty

Demonstrators outside the Supreme Court in advance of the court’s rulling that the ACA was constitutionalAlmost all of the Tax Code changes stemming from the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act went into effect during 2018. However, a few didn’t become active until this year. The change to the shared responsibility payment is one of these.

The shared responsibility payment, which is commonly referred to as the individual mandate penalty, was previously introduced under the Affordable Care Act. It essentially required people to have some form of health insurance (Obamacare, private or otherwise). If a taxpayer couldn’t prove they had health insurance, they owed a penalty with their taxes.

Starting with the 2020 tax season (fiscal year 2019), there’s no longer a federal penalty. However — and this is where the confusion exists — there are still some state-based penalties. For example, New Jersey, Massachusetts and Washington, D.C., all still have some form of penalty in place. Taxpayers will need to be cautious in this regard and do their research.

2. Changes to retirement contribution limits

Starting with this year, taxpayers are able to stash away more money in tax-advantaged retirement accounts, which could allow individuals to lower their tax burden. Here’s a breakdown of the changes:

The 401(k) base contribution is up to $19,000 (it was $18,500 in 2018);

The 401(k) catch-up contribution remains unchanged at $6,000;

The IRA base contribution (whether Roth or traditional) is up to $6,000 (it was $5,500 in 2018); and,

The IRA catch-up contribution remains unchanged at $1,000.

While these may not seem like major increases, they’re important. The $500 increase in IRA contribution limits is especially noteworthy, as these limits hadn’t budged since 2013.

3. Changes to HSA contribution limits

hsa.jpgIn addition to increasing the amount of money taxpayers can contribute to qualifying retirement plans, health savings accounts are also getting a tiny boost this year. For those with high-deductible policies that qualify under HSA guidelines, the changes are as follows:

Self-only coverage: now $3,500 (up from $3,450 in 2018); and,

Family coverage: now $7,000 (up from $6,900 in 2018).

Again, these slight adjustments won’t make anyone rich, but they are worth noting and could cause some confusion come April 2020.

4. The medical expense deduction threshold

p1910cvfmemac4vv1b76klp1lqd8.jpgThere’s been a lot of back and forth regarding the threshold for deductible medical and dental expenses over the past decade. In 2010, the Affordable Care Act raised the number from 7.5 percent to 10 percent of adjusted gross income. This made it a lot more difficult for people to qualify.

Then came the Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which brought the threshold back down to 7.5 percent in 2017 and 2018. Unfortunately, it’s returning to 10 percent this year.

What does all of this mean? Basically, if a taxpayer plans on itemizing in 2019, their unreimbursed medical and dental expenses need to exceed 10 percent of their adjusted gross income in order to qualify as a deduction.

Tips for investors

  • Keep these points in mind when you invest You have very little time to study investment options in detail. So don’t go for investments that require a multi-year commitment.
  • Don’t invest a large sum in equitylinked options such as mutual funds and Ulips at one go. Such investments are best made through monthly SIPs.
  • If you don’t have time, go for the safest bet: Bank fi xed deposits and NSCs. Returns are low because the in ..
  • Don’t wait till the last day to invest in PPF and Sukanya scheme. Give a margin of 2-3 days for cheque to be credited to the account.

File electronically to avoid most common errors

Filing electronically and choosing direct deposit remains the fastest and safest way to file an accurate income tax return and receive a refund. Filing electronically reduces tax return errors as the tax software does the calculations, flags common errors and prompts taxpayers for missing information.

An inaccurate tax return can delay a refund.

Some common errors to avoid include:

  • Missing or inaccurate Social Security numbers. Enter each name and SSN exactly as printed on the Social Security card.
  • Incorrect filing status. The Interactive Tax Assistant on IRS.gov can help taxpayers choose the correct status. Tax software also helps prevent these mistakes.
  • Math errors. Tax preparation software does all the math automatically. Math errors are common on paper returns.
  • Figuring credits or deductions incorrectly. Taxpayers should follow the instructions carefully, and double check the information they enter when filing electronically. The IRS Interactive Tax Assistant can help determine if a taxpayer is eligible for certain tax credits.
  • Unsigned returns. Both spouses must sign if filing jointly. Taxpayers can avoid this error by filing their return electronically and digitally signing it. Exceptions may apply for military families if a spouse is serving overseas.
  • Filing with an expired individual taxpayer identification number.

In most cases, tax software helps to reduce or eliminate these. Find complete details on all the benefits of filing electronically, including IRS Free File, commercial tax prep software or an authorized e-file provider from the File page on IRS.gov.

Reasons to Stop Doing Your Own Taxes

Doing your own taxes really isn’t like changing your own oil.

Even if you enjoy such tasks, getting either one of them wrong as a do-it-yourselfer can be expensive. But as complicated as a car engine may be for a relative novice, an encounter with the tax code offers so many more costly ways for things to go spectacularly awry.

This tax season, consider the danger of human error: namely, your own.

Here are situations that may persuade you to turn the task over to a pro.

1. Small errors lead to expensive tax bills.

Tax software — or the old-fashioned paper forms and calculators — won’t help much when the numbers that human beings use in the first place are flawed.

Finding and entering tax information often isn’t always easy. “That part of the process requires reading comprehension and critical thinking skills, made more complicated by a specialized vocabulary

And mistakes are possible when you do it all yourself. A new client of Minnie Lau, a San Francisco accountant, recently made a misfire in declaring the cost basis of some employer-issued stock, thanks to a fumble involving the interplay between tax software and a brokerage statement. Ms. Lau fixed the return, and the client got $14,000 back.

2. Software can take you on a path of aimless numbers.

Many tax returns are an annual reckoning of elemental life choices: whom, if anyone, you marry; who depends on you; where and how you work; what you’re stashing away for later; the causes that move you.

Talking regularly about all these things with a human being is healthy, especially if anything has changed. And while some tax software makes one-off communication with a pro possible, it isn’t the same as establishing a relationship.

Professionals who truly know you (and prod you) can prevent the errors that may arise when a computer leads you on a mad dash through contextless figures. Scrambling on April 14 to figure out what counts as a donation isn’t ideal.

3. When a family member dies, why add taxes to the burden?

In the year after the death of a life partner, grief alone — the sheer weight of it — could be reason enough to hand the tax task off to a professional.

These include how to treat income before and after the date of death, which tax return any income belongs on, deciphering the tax implications of the will (if any), figuring out what value to set for the cost of inherited assets, and on and on.

4. That word, ‘divorce,’ now applies to you.

Filing taxes after a divorce can get contentious for any number of reasons, not the least of which is that your ex-spouse may get a new accountant with sharp red pencils ready to “correct” your past tax return handiwork.

You could defend that work yourself, to try to head off a demand that the two of you refile all the returns. Or you could hire your own ace to smooth things over and return to your favorite software next year.

Make Your Office More Professional With Affordable Ceiling

THE BEST CEILING PAINT PRODUCTS FOR YOUR HOME

Ceiling paint products come in a variety of formulations and finishes. From latex, oil-based, matt and sheen products, there are a wealth of paints to choose from. But how can you make sure to choose the best one? And what characteristics should you consider?

A good ceiling paint must have a good viscosity to allow an easy application. Then, evaluate the environment. A living room ceiling paint may not be appropriate in a kitchen or bathroom.

POPULAR CEILING COLOUR PALETTES

The ceiling is usually painted in light colours to visually enlarge the environment, but this isn’t necessarily a rule. While dark shades reduce the perception of space in a room, they are an ideal choice in a house with high ceilings.

Choosing a colour for this surface is a delicate matter. Your preference counts, but only up to a point. Trends pass and tastes change which is why it is important to choose a matching or complementary hue that does justice to the room. In a small environment, light colours add brightness. But white is not your only option. Cream and beiges or pastel hues of blue, green, yellow, and pink are alternative choices that add a contemporary look to your home décor.

In a generous room, a ceiling painted in a bold colour adds personality. Purple, dark green and even black offer sophistication and opulence. Another great idea is to match the colour of the ceiling with that of the floor. This creates a unity between the surfaces, especially when the walls are painted in a dramatic shade.

Decorative Painting Techniques for Creative Ceilings

Decorative painting techniques are a great way to turn any interior home painting project into a masterpiece. So if you love decorating with paint but ran out of wall space, just look up – your ceiling is also a perfect canvas for many creative faux and decorative paint finishes!

In painting and decorating, ceilings are usually not given much thought and often overlooked – they are painted the same standard, boring white color by default and look identical from room to room, from house to house.

But did you know that in the most gorgeous and luxurious homes, professional interior designers devote as much attention to the ceilings as they do to the walls?

The result of those efforts really pays off: the ceiling design then ties all the other elements of the decor together, and crowns the room for a very impressive and finished effect.

Dome and tray ceilings look especially fabulous when decorated with faux finishes – it’s almost like they were meant to be adorned that way, and if you are leaving yours white, you are not doing justice to that beautiful architectural feature.

How to Clean Your Walls and Ceilings

Light, routine cleaning of your walls and ceilings will keep them looking fresh and delay the need for a major cleaning. Generally, walls and ceilings are painted with either latex or alkyd paint. Latex, a water-base paint, is easy to wash after it has “cured” or set for a period of time. Alkyd, or oil-base paint, is durable and washable. Both types come in four finishes: flat (for walls and ceilings), satin (for doors and trim), semigloss (for walls), and gloss (for kitchen and bathroom walls and woodwork). You can clean painted walls with all-purpose cleaners.

Ceilings

Most painted ceiling surfaces are washable, but some ceilings, especially the acoustic type, need special treatment. Remove cobwebs from all ceilings monthly, or as needed, with a vacuum brush attachment or a long-handle mop. Wash or clean ceilings first if you are cleaning the whole room. Do not allow drips to run down walls. Protect furniture and floors with drop cloths or newspaper while you clean. Use a sponge mop to clean ceilings so you won’t need a ladder.

Acoustic Finish

This rough sound-absorbing finish is often used in new construction and remodeling. While it is relatively cheap and quick to apply, spray-on acoustic finishes cannot be cleaned. When the ceiling becomes dirty, the best thing to do is to vacuum it using a brush attachment, and then respray it.

Ceiling Tile

Vinyl-coated ceiling tile can be cleaned with an all-purpose cleaning solution. Nonwashable tiles can be spot-cleaned with special products available at hardware stores. When an overall cleaning is needed, the tiles may be painted. There’s no need for special paint.

Plaster

Decorative plaster ceilings — as opposed to flat, painted plaster ceilings — are really not cleanable because of the unpainted surface and deep texture. When a plaster ceiling becomes dirty, the best treatment is to vacuum it carefully, using a brush attachment.

Mural

A mural is any piece of artwork painted or applied directly on a wall, ceiling or other permanent surfaces. A distinguishing characteristic of mural painting is that the architectural elements of the given space are harmoniously incorporated into the picture.

Murals of sorts date to Upper Paleolithic times such as the cave paintings in the Lubang Jeriji Saléh cave in Borneo (40,000-52,000 BP), Chauvet Cave in Ardèche department of southern France (around 32,000 BP). Many ancient murals have been found within ancient Egyptian tombs (around 3150 BC)

the Minoan palaces (Middle period III of the Neopalatial period, 1700–1600 BC), the Oxtotitlán cave and Juxtlahuaca in Mexico (around 1200-900 BC) and in Pompeii (around 100 BC – AD 79).

During the Middle Ages murals were usually executed on dry plaster (secco). The huge collection of Kerala mural painting dating from the 14th century are examples of fresco secco

In Italy, circa 1300, the technique of painting of frescos on wet plaster was reintroduced and led to a significant increase in the quality of mural painting

Top Best Ceiling Paint

Use the best ceiling paint, it will make your work A LOT easier. We took a fresh look at all the ceiling paint and here is our review for 2020. Save time and money: only do one coat. This requires an excellent quality ceiling paint. Working and looking up is the hardest thing a painter does on a daily basis. Here’s how to just do one coat.

There are two things you might not know about how ceiling paint works. The best ceiling paint has stain blocking power that wall paint does not have.

Benjamin Moore is still the champ of ceiling white paint, but I’ve added a runner up below. You save time and money if you choose a long-lasting one-coat paint that you won’t need to repaint for a long time. The best ceiling paints hold their color (or whiteness) longer.

If you want to save money in the long run, you don’t want to be buying paint every 5 or even 10 years: you want your paint job to last. The paint you see shown here is a high-quality, ultra-flat latex ceiling white paint that does not yellow, and that covers the old paint in one coat.

costs a little more but it’s designed to cover in one. It will hide and cover most yellowing, aging, and the stray puck mark from when you were playing hockey inside. (Well, puck marks need 2 coats!) How to paint a ceiling with many marks? Spot prime with the best primer for this type of work.

Start A Successful Window Cleaning Business

Top Window Cleaning tips for clean, shiny and beautiful windows all the time

There is nothing as tedious as the chore of window cleaning especially when carrying out general cleanliness of the house. The fact that this type of cleaning is usually rarely effective coupled with the difficulty of balancing on ladders while cleaning are simply some of the things which make it such a tedious task. Good news is, at the moment there are a couple of cleaning options all of which serve as a guarantee to have your windows sparkling without necessarily stressing so much. These options are:-

  -Hiring a professional window cleaner

  -Installing the new revolutionary self cleaning glass widows

  -Cleaning the windows by yourself

Keep in mind, regardless of the options which you choose, the best approach to window cleaning and always looking steak is to make sure that they are cleaned on a regular basis. However, in case you choose to clean the widow by yourself then the following tips might help make your work easier.

How to clean the outside of windows after construction

window cleaning services in newton maCleaning the inside of windows after construction can be challenging enough; cleaning the outside of those windows can be even more difficult! Renting a power washer can be the best choice for removing thick construction dust on the outside of new windows, and especially windows on second stories, as trying to clean up after construction while balancing yourself on a ladder can be very dangerous, if not downright deadly.

When cleaning the outside of windows after construction, be sure to start with the lowest pressure on your power washer, so that you don’t scratch or even outright shatter a window. Start by cleaning the roof eaves and areas above the windows, to remove dust and other debris that might otherwise settle onto the window glass.

As with inside windows, get the outside glass very wet with the power washer and continue to move the wand back and forth as you do, to wash away as much dust and remnants of paint and adhesive as possible. Once you’ve done that, you might add some glass cleaner to the water of your pressure washer, to finish the job and get the windows sparkling clean.

You might also use a telescoping handle on a window squeegee, which allows you to use that squeegee on upper story windows, to remove all traces of dust and dirt and to give the windows an extra polish. This also keeps you safe on the ground while you clean those windows!

Cleaning the Inside of Windows

  • Fill a bucket or large pot with clean, cool water and add a few drops of liquid dish soap.
  • Place a large bath towel beneath the window to catch any spills.
  • Use a clean microfiber cloth or sponge to go over the surface of the window, starting at the top and working down to the bottom. Don’t forget to wipe down the frame as well, both inside and out.
  • Spray the window thoroughly with the vinegar and water solution, or if you prefer, a commercial window cleaning product (such as Zep or Windex, both available on Amazon, or any of the other best glass cleaners we recommend). Another option is mixing one capful of ammonia with two gallons of water.
  • Using a clean, lint-free towel (or the black-and-white pages of a newspaper), dry the window completely using a Z-shaped motion. You also can use clean paper towels to dry the windows, if you prefer.
  • If dirt or streaks remain, spray and dry again. (Dirty windows typically require two rounds of spraying and drying.)

Grab a Mop to Clean Your Windows

Try this recipe for getting glass sparkling clean:

  • Mix one part water to one part vinegar in a small bucket.
  • Dip a clean microfiber cloth or mop head into the solution, and attach to the mop handle.
  • Scrub your exterior windows with the mop.

Once most of the crud is gone, move on to the next step.

  • Spray a streak-free window cleaner onto the glass or on a clean microfiber cloth and wipe.
  • Wait for the window to dry.
  • Wipe the dried glass with newspaper for a streak-free shine. If your hands don’t reach the window, you can skip this step.

And most important, don’t be a daredevil. For example, never climb out onto a window ledge or dodgy fire escape to clean your windows.

Going Pro

If you’re hiring a window-cleaning crew, make sure they are insured and bonded and have good reviews. Dorn recommends checking to see how long the service has been in business. “I would go with a legitimate outfit and not just somebody working out of the back of their truck.

These people are going to be in your home. “You want someone you can feel comfortable with, and someone you can ask questions of, like, ‘What should I expect?’ Your cleaning service should be able to walk you through that process.

It’s also important to find out how many people they will be sending over for the job. If It’s just a team of one or two, it’s going to take a lot longer than a team of four. So consider those kinds of things. How long do you want those folks to be in your home?

Use A Flat Roof Storage Shed For A Durable Storage Option

Flat Roofing Contractor Publishes Helpful Information on Flat Roof Maintenance

As a result, the company suggests that all flat roofs be inspected on a yearly basis, even if no obvious problems are evident. If there is even a small leak that has been noticed, the company goes on to say that the owner should call in a professional to assess the situation as soon as possible. as this can help mitigate the potential cost of a major leak occurring

a leak is tackled at an earlier stage it can sometimes be addressed for less than a thousand dollars, depending on the problem. The average lifespan of a flat roof is in the neighborhood of ten to fifteen years

“One of the things that we take very seriously is that we will never leave a business or homeowner in any sort of danger. We don’t recommend repair if a roof needs replacing, and we don’t recommend replacing a roof necessarily just because of a leak.”

indicate a problem with the roof and these include: water stains on the underside of the roof deck, mold or mildew in an attic, visible cracks in the attic, or bowing or creasing of the roof material. Small puddles of water on the roof are another major thing to watch out for.

Home/building owners and manages should also watch out for damage to the flashing on a roof, as that can actually create or indicate leaks. “Flashing” is the proper term for the metal strips around things like chimneys and air conditioners.

Flat Roof Replacement Cost

Want to know how much a flat roof replacement or repair will cost? In this article we look at the prices of different roof replacements and repairs per square metre, including the cost of materials and labour. This makes it easy for anyone to calculate how much replacing a roof will cost them.

Constructing a flat roof is quicker and cheaper than a traditional pitched roof, flat roofs require fewer materials which they cost much less to install. they are also much simpler so are a better choice for DIY enthusiasts

But the big disadvantage of a flat roof is the potential for water and other debris to gather which over time will cause the roofing material to degrade and eventually leak, even though they are in fact built with a slight incline. This means that flat roofs also need a lot more maintenance than a pitched roof to keep them leak free and in good condition, but even with all the maintenance, they only last around 10 to 15 years.

To be watertight flat roofs need to be covered with roll asphalt, EDPM, uPVC, ethylene, TPO, fibreglass, modified bitumen membrane or flat-seamed metal. Although repairing or replacing a flat roof could fall within the scope of an experienced DIY enthusiast, most of us will need to hire a tradesman to do the work for us.

Things to consider

With flat roofs, you really need to get a roofer out to inspect the roof before giving a quote, as it can be difficult to assess the condition of the timber underneath the felt, without getting up on the roof and physically checking it. Though some roofing contractors will be happy to give you a separate quote to replace the wooden decking over the phone so you know how much it could cost in the worst place scenario. If the wood under the felt is in good condition, then this is obviously good news as it will reduce the costs of replacing the roof. But if the wood is rotten and sagging, then fitting new felt onto a rotten base is obviously not a good idea. Another point to consider is that flat roofs should have a slight slope so that rainwater will run off the roof and into the gutter.

Flat Roof Maintenance Services

You won’t believe how much dirt and debris can build up over the years. If left unattended for long enough, the potential for real damage greatly increases and the cost of repairing a commercial flat roof is much higher than a simple cleaning.

Flat Roof Maintenance Programs

One of the most cost effective and helpful things that you can do for your flat roof is scheduling a maintenance program to increase the overall lifespan of your flat roof by up to 15 years! With our maintenance plan, you will receive care to your flat roof that will directly eliminate the ongoing deterioration that takes place each and every day.

Our proven plan will maximize the performance of your rooftop and can save you thousands of dollars down the road. We respect your business and work place as if it were our own.

Your Roofing Guarantee – some things for architects to consider

Roofing guarantees are designed to offer peace of mind in case things go wrong, but in reality getting the right cover can be a minefield.  All too often, it’s only when they are needed that any shortcomings in the guarantees come to light. Then, rather than making a claim that will swiftly resolve the issue for you and your client, you may find yourself in a situation where no one will accept liability, or where one of the key parties involved in the roofing contract is no longer trading

What do you want cover for?

Some roofing guarantees are for product/materials, others for workmanship, installation or design. When you specify be clear what you want – if you are after latent defects cover or insolvency, for example, make sure you ask for it specifically – never assume it’s included. Always carry out due diligence on a guarantee up front to find out exactly what cover is being offered.

What’s the right insurance?

Increasingly, clients and specifiers request insurance backed guarantees as a way of reducing the risk. However this alone is not enough: you need to see the wording of the manufacturer’s and/or contractor’s guarantee and the detail of the policy behind it to assess if the cover is appropriate. All too often, specifiers and clients don’t really know exactly what is being covered because it isn’t clearly defined, and they haven’t asked enough questions to find out. Types of cover range from product guarantees to latent defects insurance (see right), but wordings vary depending on the insurance company.

Ask a professional about your roofing guarantee

Don’t rely solely on the manufacturer’s advice. Always seek additional information on the insurance being offered from an independent adviser who is Financial Conduct Authority regulated. Talk to them to better understand what the various insurance policies that could apply actually cover. Consider possible scenarios that you might need cover for, including worst case.

Do the due diligence on your roofing guarantee

Carry out financial due diligence on the stability and credibility of the manufacturer, designer or installer – how long have they been trading? Do they have a good reputation within the industry? Some companies offering guarantees for roofing may not be financially stable enough to sustain lengthy insurances, which could be on their balance sheets for 10 or even 20 years, and some policies may cease if the company stops trading. A lot of guarantees appear to have insurance backing but make no mention of any insurer or the Financial Conduct Authority, which regulates the sale of insurance products. These will invariably be guarantees backed by the manufacturer only, which is of no value if they cease trading. Always read the small print. Also be aware if some manufacturers are actually agencies importing other products, which might simply fold if claimed against.

Essential Tips For Maintaining A Flat Roof

Regular inspections are an important part of maintaining any roof, regardless of its style. The maintenance requirements for flat roofs, however, are slightly different than the requirements for roofs that are more steeply pitched. When it comes to maintenance-related expenses, the money that you spend on upkeep is worthwhile since it helps extend the life of your roof. Sticking to a regular maintenance schedule also allows any problems to be addressed early on while they are still easy and affordable to fix.

Frequently Inspect The Roof

The best way to catch problems is by inspecting your roof on a regular basis. That is a lot easier on a flat roof than on a pitched roof since walking on a flat surface requires far less balance. During your inspection, look for cracking, rusty areas, pooled water, raised seams, and bubbles or blisters. If you spot any potential problems, reach out to a qualified roofing company in Albany for help making any necessary repairs. Along with doing your own inspections, you should also have your roof professionally inspected on a biannual basis.

Keep The Roof Clean

Loose debris like dirt, leaves, and branches are more likely to accumulate on flat roofs than on steeper roofs. Objects like these can trap moisture, which can not only cause mold and algae to grow but can also damage the surface of your roof, increasing the likelihood of leaks.

Prune Back Any Vegetation

If any branches from nearby trees are hanging over or coming in contact with your roof, you should trim them back. Leaving an adequate distance between the surrounding trees and your roof helps minimize the amount of debris that accumulates on the surface. Consider seeking professional help when trimming branches that overhang your roof so that you don’t inadvertently damage the surface.

Identify And Correct Any Drainage Issues

Water is far more likely to pool on flat roofs than it is on angled roofs. Areas where water tends to collect may need to be leveled so that the water properly drains. You should also have your gutters and other drainage system components periodically inspected by a professional roofer to make sure hidden clogs aren’t interfering with the flow of water.