Monthly Archives: June 2016

Get a Solution to Pack A Moving Truck

You’ve decided to forego professional local movers and save some money on your move by doing it yourself. You’ve rented a moving truck and packed your belongings, now it’s time to load the truck. You are not as experienced as professional movers in packing a rental truck, so it is advisable that your truck is large enough to accommodate 10-15% more than what you own. With moving, it is common to have more truck space than you anticipated. Make sure you have enough moving blankets on hand to wrap furniture for protection. Blankets are usually available for rent at the truck rental location. Whether it is a local move or a cross country move, everything has to be tight and secured in the truck. Remember that successful loading will make the unloading easier, and it will ensure the safety of your furniture and valuable items during drive time.

Always start loading at the front of the truck and work toward the back. Stock items from floor to ceiling just like you’re playing a tetris game. Load the largest and heaviest items first on the floor against the front wall of the truck. This also includes appliances such as the washers, dryers, refrigerators and freezers. Sofas may be placed vertically on their ends to achieve a tightly loaded truck. Do not place any item in the truck upside down or on its side. Make sure to keep the balance by placing heavy objects on both sides of the truck.

Remove drawers before moving dressers and cabinets. Once these items are on the truck, replace the drawers back, so they aren’t damaged while the truck is in transit. You don’t need to empty the drawers, but you should pack all fragile items. Use bagged pillows, towels and sofa cushions to fill all gaps and spaces around fragile items for extra protection.

If you have a piano or other extremely large items, use a four-wheel dolly or hand truck. Don’t place them in the middle of the truck, those items must be tied to the side wall of the truck.

Next load your largest and heaviest boxes on top of the appliances and furniture. Make sure that you pack them tightly, and then continue to load the truck with lighter boxes, ending with the fragile boxes on very top, ensuring that they will not move during transit.

Place box springs, mattresses, long mirrors, headboards, sofas and table-tops against the longest walls of the truck which will keep them upright and will save space. Slide mirrors, glass table tops and large pictures in between mattresses.

To ensure safer transportation, it may be necessary to disassemble some furniture, such as removing legs from tables, taking apart press wood and particle board furniture. You may also want to disassemble bed frames and remove glass shelves from bookcases.

Drain all gasoline and oil from lawnmowers, weed eaters, chain saws and other motor equipment. Disconnect all batteries. Empty propane tanks from barbeque grill. If for some reason you do not have a full truck load, secure the back of your shipment with straps or ropes to keep the load from sliding.

Tips to Sell Your Home Quickly

aaxWhen you’ve decided it is time to move and don’t have the time to prepare your home for that quick sale, consider home staging. This does not mean a total redesign, it does however, require a serious plan to make your home inviting and desirable to prospective buyers.

So, where do we begin?

The first step to successful staging is to clean out and declutter. Remove all piles of newspaper, magazines, third class mail. Put all folders back into your office space. Clear off dressers and bathroom vanities. Clean up the laundry room. Rid the space of extra baskets and move extra bottles of soap into cabinets or down in the lower level on shelves. Neatly organize all closets, especially the master closet and main coat closet. Give prospective buyers the opportunity to visualize their belongings in large, clean spaces.

Depersonalize! Remove all family photos from tabletops and bookcases. Take a look at your fridge. Is it plastered with soccer schedules and coupons? Get rid of those too. Sort your child’s artwork into folders and store in bins that are out of sight. Sort your children’s shoes and donate outgrown hockey skates and soccer shoes.

Take a walk through your home and remove large pieces of furniture. The idea is to showcase the home, not your inherited, oversized coffee table. Make the spaces in your home appear to be more spacious. Purchase new throw pillows and remove heavy draperies. Let as much natural light in as possible. If you have a fireplace, clean the bricks and remove any accumulations of ashes. Neatly place a few logs in a large basket nearby.

Think about painting. Paint your rooms a soothing, warm, neutral color. Choose a shade that will appeal to most buyers. So, if you have a wall in your great room painted red, neutralize it. Repaint your master bedroom in a soft color and then paint the master bath two shades deeper. Buy a new duvet in white or ivory and keep patterns limited. Have your carpeting cleaned and wash any throw rugs… or just get rid of them. If your dining room is formal, set the table with your finest china. Your prospective buyers will want to see if they can entertain here. Remove large pieces of artwork too, so the new owners can imagine their artwork on your walls.

To sell your home quickly and get your asking price, you need to prepare. A few days staging will pay off in the end. The day of your first open house, purchase fresh flowers for the dining room and another bunch for the coffee table. A large basket of apples or lemons should be placed on the kitchen countertop. Remember to make your home smell inviting, crumble chocolate in a glass dish and place in a very low oven. The take away here is appeal to all the senses. Put on a classic CD, make away plans for your kids and yourself. Hand your home over to your real estate agent, and relax. With any luck, you will quickly hear the word… SOLD!

Review Water Heaters

A hot water heater is a unit that converts energy to heat and transfers that warmth to water. It’s connected to a cold water supply pipe, and has an outgoing hot water pipe, or system of pipes, that supplies heated water to the taps and appliances in your home.

Conventional vs. Tankless
A conventional water heater stores heated water in its tank. Tankless water heaters bypass the tank and route heated water straight to taps or appliances instead. Most water heaters are fueled by natural gas, although propane and electric water heaters are not unusual. Where natural gas is available, it is by far the most efficient fuel for heating the water in your home.

How Tankless Water Heaters Work
Tankless water heaters circulate water through a series of burners or electric coils when a hot water faucet or appliance is turned on. Because the hot water heater doesn’t store hot water, it costs less to operate and doesn’t run out of hot water unless the flow exceeds its heating ability. If two people take separate showers at the same time, a tankless unit may not be able to handle the flow. However, a discerning homeowner, aware of how tankless water heaters work, can save big money on water heating bills by carefully regulating the flow of hot water through the home. If you are unsure whether your hot water needs are compatible with a tankless model, it’s well worth it to talk to a plumber or hot water heater supplier about costs and whether a tankless unit can meet your needs.

Water Heater Maintenance and Tips
Regardless of whether you go with a traditional tank unit, or shift to a tankless model, you can take certain steps to optimize your hot water usage and save money. Lower the thermostat on the water heater to 120 degrees to save on heating costs and to prevent scalding. If you have children in the home, your water heater should never exceed the 120 degree limit to prevent serious injury. Small children don’t understand the difference between hot and cold dials on tubs and sinks, so taking this important precaution can easily fend off trips to the emergency room if the unthinkable should happen.

An alternative solution to this potential scalding problem is to install special cut-off valves in your showers and tubs that automatically cut the flow of water when there is a sudden increase in temperature beyond a reasonable amount.

Schedule Regular Maintenance Checkups
Finally, bring in a technician to perform a regular inspection on your hot water heater. Besides water temperature, it’s very important that your hot water operates as efficiently as possible. Inefficient hot water heaters are a prime source of carbon dioxide poisoning, which can lead to illness and death. And if you’ve got the means, think about upgrading your hot water heater if it is at all possible. New Energy Star rated hot water heaters, tankless or otherwise, pay for themselves over time in energy savings, and are an easy way to help reduce energy consumption if you’re concerned about your impact on the environment.