Is Your Family Secure in Your Home? Why a Deadbolt is the Most Essential Step to Securing Your Home

You might not realize it, but the door locks you have installed are perhaps the most important pieces of home security you have. Of these locks, the most common and most essential one will be the deadbolt lock set. This will help to reduce the chances of unwanted entry into your home, while giving your family the peace of mind that they need at night. When installed properly, an individual who is looking to get in will need to have a key to open this door to gain access into your home. To get a better idea of how they are useful, you need to take a look at how the deadbolt works. This is essentially a lock on the door that has a piece of steel that is located in the central portion that is known as the bolt. This is what goes through the lock and the door, where it finally rests in the doorjamb. When you have locked the deadbolt, it will remain in place until the lock it turned in the opposite direction. Along with this, the inside of the deadbolt has security measures that make it near impossible to shim the bolt back or force entry into the home, especially when installed properly by a residential locksmith. In addition to this, you need to understand that there are multiple styles to this mechanism. Perhaps the most common is the horizontal design. This is the style that many homes use as it helps to protect you from an intruder forcing open your door. The second style you will sometimes find is called a two cylinder dead bolt. When a person uses this method, they will require that two keys are entered and turned at the same time. While it might be a safer route to go, it can also be a very complicated one to deal with and many people will become frustrated with it. Of course, if you prefer this method, you might want to contact your residential locksmith to help you install it properly. Your sense of security shouldn’t end at your neighborhood being considered safe either. While you might feel safe sleeping with your door open at night, it will only take one occurrence of someone wanting to get into your home to bring harm to your family. To offset this, the deadbolt lock offers good protection. For the relatively low price they cost, they will ensure that your family is protected from some of the dangers that can easily enter your home. If you aren’t sure how to install one of these units successfully, take a moment to contact your local locksmith. This is because they will only be effective in cases when the lock has been properly set and there isn’t any give to the door when it is shut. Therefore, the trained specialist will be able to help you install this item properly and effectively. When it comes to the protection of your family, this will certainly be of the utmost importance to you. Published at:

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How To Work At Home And Manage Your Home Based Business And The Family Successfully

Most moms and dads who stay at home for some reason or other dislike the idea of idling at home. They would like to keep themselves profitably occupied by doing something that could bring them an income such as running a home based business. It certainly sounds good but with kids around and with houshold chores to attend to, how does one go about managing your home based business and your family? To be successful your first priority should be your Home Office. You should organize a suitable and convenient place anywhere in your house so that you can sit down peacefully and concentrate on your work without any interruption. If you have little kids, then it will be wise to arrange for someone to take care of the kids while you are at work. It could be your spouse, the grandparents or a nanny. It is only when you know that the kids are in safe hands, you will be able to devote full attention to your home based business. One of the main problems faced when you work at home is the tendency to get distracted from your work due to interference by members of your family, neighbors and of course telephone calls. This problem can be minimized but cannot be eliminated completely. To ensure that you are on track, you should prepare a daily work schedule and stick to it. With this plan in place you will be able to manage whatever disruption you might encounter from time to time. It is important that you commence work daily at a particular time and stop work at a specified time. This is extremely important for two reasons. The first is that your customers will know that they will be able to contact you during this time and the second is that your spouse and kids will know for sure that you are available for them after your specified working hours. One of the main reasons why people want to work at home is to spend more time with the family. When there is work to be done you certainly must spend more time at your work place but this should not be at the expense of a happy family life. Your spouse and the kids should never get the feeling that they are being neglected and their happiness and enjoyment is being sacrificed at the alter of your home based business. You should judiciously plan your work in such a manner that you will spend some time with the family everyday. When you work at home the main advantage is that your family will be able to reap the rewards of your close physical presence. In the case of an emergency you are available to them the very next minute and what a great morale booster this can be to all concerned. If you plan your work schedule wisely you could transport your children to school and back or take them out to partake in outdoor activities after school. The kids will certainly love this and support you in your business activities. To grow your home business you will need some extra assistance from time to time such as help in doing household chores and in running your business. Once your family members become supportive of your home based business you can rely on their help whenever the need arises. The support of your family members is very critical for the growth and success of your business. This support and encouragement from them will even be greater if the goals and successes you achieve in your home based business are celebrated with them. Looking after the family and to work at home, can indeed test your patience and will power. The ability to blend these two tasks successfully can give you tremendous joy, happiness and a sense of achievement. Published at:

Home Organization – How To Organize A Disorganized Family Member At Home

Does your spouse keep his magazines and newspapers spread across the floors of your home? Is he constantly asking you if you’ve seen his keys or eyeglasses? Are you tripping over your child’s toys? Is his or her disorganization driving you mad? You can stop the chaotic madness in your home. Heed this simple home organization advice to get your home or family member in order. ASK WHY Why do you want this family member to be more organized? Is this person’s disorganization affecting you in a way that you can literally describe? For instance, perhaps you’re tripping over your spouse’s shoes. That’s a safety hazard. Or maybe you have to drive your children to school a few days too many because they miss the school bus—because they can’t find their report, clothes, lunch, etc. in a timely manner. That affects your schedule (and your gas tank!). Or maybe your husband (or wife) buys duplicate items because they forgot where they put (or that they already owned) the last one. That affects your family budget. Those are all valid and good reasons to help a family member to be more organized around your home. And there are plenty more examples that you can add to that list. But if your reason to organize your spouse, kids, parents or even roommate is because YOU think it will help them function better in life or YOU think they’ll appreciate having a more organized room (because you always do), you’re just complicating your life. And home organization is about simplifying your life, not complicating it. Make sure you’re helping someone to get organized at home because it helps them in some way THAT THEY WANT or because it helps you both with a shared goal that you express to them (e.g. You don’t break your neck tripping over your husband’s shoes in the future or you can find the shared car keys when you’re ready to go to your appointment.) NOW WHAT In order to organize a function or task of a disorganized family member, you have to think like them. So that means you have to keep an open mind. For instance, you know your spouse or kids come in every day and automatically flip their shoes off the first moment they get. They’re not doing this to annoy you. It’s just them. Maybe their feet are hot! So make organization convenient for them. Put a shoe bench near the foyer. They can still immediately take their shoes off but they can put them right away there in the shoe bench. A shoe bench is cool because it’s a piece of furniture that’s part of your home decor. Yet you can’t see the dirty shoes (You might want to throw a stick-on odor eater in the shoe compartment too.). The same goes for items like keys, notebooks, backpacks, sunglasses, etc. Set up baskets, bins, tins, containers, etc. in convenient places where family members have a habit of laying things. It’s convenient for them. Your home looks neater (and you can blend these organizational helpers into the decor). Everyone knows where these items are located when they need them because these items now have an official home (and a convenient home). Or let’s say a family member has a hobby or collection of different items they use regularly. You often find these items on the floor. You know this person well so you know they’ll never replace these items neatly in closed bins and put them back on that one assigned closet shelf (like you would). That’ll never work for him or her. Instead, think like that person. What that person needs is open bins or baskets (no lids) on an open vertical shelving system. That way they can see exactly what is where at a glance without dumping everything onto the floor. And they can easily (even haphazardly) throw items back into the bins. And that’s because there are no lids on them—the contents are viewable at a glance–and this is an organizational system for a person who wants to use their stuff not an organized person who wants their stuff to all look pretty. See the difference. Think like the end user to create home organizational systems for your disorganized family members. You devise or buy organizational bins, baskets and shelving systems that are pretty and neat for your home while also buying ones that are functional for the intended user of the organizational item. THE REST OF YOUR HOME If you have less organized family members who can’t or aren’t going to follow your detailed organization system, keep making it easy on them throughout your entire home. Give them something they can handle like a basket or container system. They don’t have to organize and sort their toys, dirty laundry or other items. They just have to keep each set of different items in its designated container when not in use. It’s up to them to dig through the stack in each container if they need something. No alphabetizing. No categorizing the items in each container. No color coding. Just put each group of items in a different basket, bin or container. A contained stack is much neater and still more organized than having things spread around the floor or counter. If it bothers you, put a lid on it, literally. And if you still find the occasional item on the floor when you’re vacuuming, just toss it in the container (don’t straighten it, fold it or try to put it just so in the container—just toss it in and move on). Try these tips with Mr. or Ms. Messy in your home and watch your home organization plan take shape quicker than you ever thought possible. And remember, you cannot transform a disorganized person into an organized person. But you can work their habits and personality into your home organization scheme with a little creative thinking and compromise (by both parties) as suggested in this home organization article. Published at:

7 Home Security Tips To Protect Your Home And Family During The Holiday Season

The holiday season is ripe with festivities, goodwill and goodies. The season also comes with criminals and scam artists who want to enjoy and celebrate the holidays too. But they want to do it with your stuff and money. And it only takes you letting down your home security and holiday safety defenses one time for this type of scrooge to strike your home or family successfully. Just one time! Don’t get so giddy with goodwill toward all mankind this season that you overlook sensible home security precautions and holiday safety tips. Here are seven home security tips to help you and your home stay safe and secure year-round but particularly during the holidays. Read these home security tips and see how many you practice 1.) Lock doors and windows when you leave your home (upstairs too)–no matter the length of time you’ll be gone. Do this even if you’re only going next door for a minute. It only takes a minute for someone watching your departure to enter your home and swipe your gifts or other belongings in easy reach and sight (like your holiday gifts under the tree). 2.) Everybody loves to see a pile of gifts under the Christmas tree, including potential burglars. Don’t leave piles of gifts in clear view of glass doors and windows with open blinds, especially when you go out. Your gifts may not be there when you return. In their place may be shattered glass. 3.) Find out who is at the door before you open it. Be wary of couriers you don’t know delivering unexpected items or door-to-door solicitors asking for your money. Ask for identification. Ask questions. Don’t make hasty decisions when it comes to donating your money. And don’t invite these strangers into your home or entryway. You step outside to speak with them. If it’s after dark and you’re alone, don’t feel obligated to open the door at all. In fact, you don’t even need to open your door to deliveries after dark. Most couriers are allowed by their companies to leave packages under a certain value at your doorstep (in typically low crime neighborhoods) without requesting your signature and they will do so. Or you can call to make arrangements to pick up packages yourself at the delivery center. 4.) When you’re planning to be away on extended visits to relatives and friends, ask neighbors who will be home to collect your newspapers and mail. If you don’t want to do that, ask your carriers to hold or stop the deliveries. They will. Also, some home security experts recommend that you utilize automatic timers to work your indoor and outdoor lighting, radio and televisions to give the appearance that someone is home. But they suggest you try to change the pattern of when and where these items turn on and off so someone watching your home doesn’t see this pattern (a clear indication that no one is really home). 5.) If you’re having a holiday party, move and secure your valuables in the common areas of your home. While you may know who you’ve invited to your home for a party, you may not know their date or friend very well. If guests have to walk through your bedroom to get to a bathroom, don’t leave tempting items like expensive (or even sentimental) jewelry in plain sight. 6.) Don’t leave extra house keys under flower pots, loose bricks, fake rocks or on or attached under the rims of your doors and windows. Don’t leave spare house keys in your automobiles not secured in garages. Also, don’t buy those awful “labeled” container gadgets in the store to “hide-a-key”. If you can’t give your spare key to a “trusted” relative and you must leave one outside for whatever reason when you’re away from your home, try to be a bit more creative with its hiding spot. And make sure nobody is watching when you hide the key. 7.) Do a home security checkup. Put on your black hat and walk through your home, inside and out, with the eye of criminal. How would you break into your home if you had to do so and how long would it take you to do so? That’s how long it will take a thief. An experienced thief with the right tools may take less time. You may want to have every member of your family do this home security walk-through including the children. Multiple minds will come up with more ideas. And what a perfect opportunity to talk about home security tips with your children. The holiday season is a good time to decide which places and items in your home can be more secure and then how to make them more secure for you and your family. Treat yourself this holiday season to the gift of home security and holiday safety by checking out some of the many home security products available to the average person like home safes, house alarm systems, doorway monitors or intercom systems and more. These days everyone likes electronic gadgets–not just James Bond types. Shop for fun electronic gadgets that can help secure your home and possessions in various ways as well as for the less glamorous but effective items like deadbolts and window pins. You’ve got everything to gain by doing so and everything to lose by not practicing home security tips year-round and holiday safety tips as needed at these special times of the year. Published at:

Find Your Family’s Home Away From Home With A Florida Oceanfront Vacation Home

Have you been looking for a Florida oceanfront condo or Florida oceanfront home for your family? Have you always wanted a property that would be yours – a place where you could watch the sunrise from the beach every morning or, better yet, from your own balcony or back porch? Are you looking for Florida oceanfront homes that will allow you to have a place to connect with your family, a home away from home that you can return to year after year? One way to ensure that you choose the right Florida oceanfront home for your family is to consider your needs. Are you looking for a free-standing, oceanfront cottage where your family can relax and unwind? Or are your needs more simple: would a Florida oceanfront condo be enough for you? For those looking to invest in a Florida oceanfront home, there are a number of options. The Cottages at Ponce Inlet will give you both privacy and beach access. This oceanfront vacation home would allow your family to explore the beach, visit the Ponce Inlet Lighthouse and take advantage of a number of great restaurants. Perhaps more importantly, however, these Florida oceanfront homes will give your family more than just the comfort and privacy that you are looking for. While you are away, you will be able to rest assured that your vacation home will benefit from the conveniences of exterior care and lawn maintenance. The same is true for those who choose a Florida oceanfront home at the Abacos at Salt Run in historic St. Augustine, Florida. From sunrise to sunset, the Island Cottages at the Abacos at Salt Run will allow you to take in spectacular ocean views. Of course, if you are looking at Florida oceanfront condos for your vacation home needs, you too may find what you are looking for at the Abacos at Salt Run. Choose a townhouse or even a penthouse flat condo; your family will still find that you have plenty of room to spread out and relax as well as all of the luxury that you would want your home away from home to have. If, instead, you are looking for a Florida oceanfront condo in an area where the whole family can play together, look no further than the NorthShore Oceanside Condominiums in Jacksonville Beach. There you’ll be able to spend time at the beach and take advantage of a variety of community activities – movies under the stars, concerts and music festivals – and family favorite destinations like Adventure Landing. Whatever location you choose, whether you choose a Florida oceanfront home or oceanfront condo, you’ll find that your family will be able to relax, unwind and even play together. Purchasing a Florida oceanfront vacation home is not just about an investment in oceanfront property; it’s also about making an investment in your family. Owning a Florida oceanfront home will allow you to get away from it all and to get back to one another. It’s a chance to create a home away from home. Published at:

Convert Your Single Family Home Into A Legal Multi Family Home

Will it really be legal? It can’t be done legally! I’ve heard it literally hundreds of times, yet in my concrete cutting business, one that is crucial in the conversion process, I have seen it done hundreds of times. How you may ask? It’s actually not any more difficult than most major home renovations. And if you ask what are the benefits? That is a simple one: it can increase the value of your home by 50% and sometimes double. It also allows you to legally rent your new apartment(s) out to cut your personal living expenses. Still sound impossible? Well, if you call your local building department and ask if it can be done, you may get laughed at but depending on your city or town’s local by-laws you may be surprised to find out that it isn’t at all uncommon. However, there are several conditions that must be in place before a building inspector would even consider handing you an application for a building permit. You may or may not already meet the criteria for this undertaking, but if you don’t, you may be able to easily make the necessary changes. These conditions in most cases are/but not limited to: * Ample parking for each unit – usually two parking spaces for each unit are necessary depending on the amount of bedrooms. If space permits, parking can easily be increased on your property with some excavating and/or by adding concrete retaining walls. * Ceiling height – If the basement or attic is to be converted to an apartment there are limits to how low the ceiling can be. Lowering a concrete basement floor can be accomplished, in most cases, by cutting and removing the existing concrete, digging the dirt out and pouring a new concrete slab. * Egress – This is the ability to enter and exit the new unit. There must be a set amount of windows and doors of certain widths and lengths. This is where our expertise comes in to play. We are a professional concrete cutting service. We cut egress windows and doors into concrete foundations and openings for the installation of basement stairs and bulkheads. * Each unit must have a bathroom and kitchen in order to be considered legal. We once cut in some egress windows for a woman in Revere, MA who already had an “illegal” in-law apartment that she easily converted it to a “legal” apartment. She had been asking $259,000 for her single family home but couldn’t sell it. After seeing her neighbor convert her home into a two family she did the same. She completed the conversion and ended up selling her property for $379,000. I remember doing a job for a man in the prestigious community of Brookline, MA in Boston. He owned a condominium in a six unit building which each came with a storage unit that was one sixth of the basement of the building. He told the other five-condo owners that he needed additional storage and that he was willing to pay them to purchase their storage units. He ended up buying the other five storage areas for $15,000 each, 1,200 sq feet of prime real estate for a total of $75,000. We ended up cutting and removing the concrete slab and cutting in a doorway in the foundation for him. He lowered the basement floor and converted it into a beautiful condo and sold it for over $1,000,000. These examples are evidence that anything is possible. By checking with your local building department and doing your homework, you too may be able to convert your single family into a multi-unit property. Published at: