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Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing Blog

Kevin Szabo Jr Plumbing is Tinley Park, Orland Park, Oak Forest, Midlothian, Orland Hill, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, Crestwood, Palos Heights, Oak Lawn, local plumber. Read our blog for advice, tips, a good laugh, and basic home improvement.

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Filtering by Tag: Home Remodeling

5 Hidden Perks of Home Automation

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5 Hidden Perks of Home Automation

The main reason why people turn to home automation is to make their lives easier and boost the comfort within their own home. After all, wouldn’t it be great to control your home’s security, lights and heating system through your smartphone and make all the necessary adjustments without ever having to leave the sofa? On the other hand, this is just one of the many advantages of home automation. The reason why it is the only one that most people talk about is that people are so passionate when it comes to their own comfort. On paper, however, home automation has five hidden perks that appear to be even more impressive.

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Greater security

We mentioned that home automation directly leads to a boost in home security, however, not having to walk to the monitor in order to check the cameras is just the tip of the iceberg. Through your smartphone, you can not only check your locks but also lock and unlock your front door, which can be quite reliable. Think about it, how many times has it happened that you’ve forgotten to take your keyring with you? Now, think about the odds of doing the same without your phone.

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Utility bill frugality

The next thing with home automation is the fact that it immensely reduces your monthly expense list. For instance, your Wi-Fi sprinkler system can drastically reduce the cost of your water bill, while the installation of a smart thermostat does the same with power. These savings aren’t just made by you no longer being lazy to turn off the light in the hallway. With a home automation system, you have the ability to make a frugal scheme that functions independently of your actions. In this way, you stand to make your money-saving efforts more reliable.

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Simpler maintenance

One of the things that a lot of people overlook is the issue of home maintenance. With some automated household systems, like those offered by CBus installers, you can have your home enhanced with a reliable energy metering system. This may sound as yet another budget perk but it goes even further than that. You see, if you watch your home’s energy consumption closely, day after day, you will inevitably notice when something goes wrong. In that situation, you have the ability to make your household maintenance efforts more reactive and more efficient.

Greater control

Not having to stand up in order to set up your thermometer is not nearly the most important function of remote control. Imagine a scenario of walking into a cold home, in the middle of the winter, because you didn’t want to leave thermometer on in order to heat an empty home while you’re at work. With home automation fully implemented into your household, this will become a matter of the past. This kind of control can be displayed in virtually every aspect of your household management.


Finally, acquiring a peace of mind is something that it hard to quantify, yet it has to find its place on the list as one of the greatest perks of home automation. Think about going on a holiday without knowing that you’ve turned off the stove with 100 percent certainty. What do you do? Do you call it all off and cut your holiday short or worry for two weeks straight? With home automation on your side, this doesn’t have to be a problem anymore. For people who have kids, being able to check on the babysitter through your smartphone surveillance while you’re at work is a priceless idea.

As you can see, the benefits of home automation are numerous and each one of them would on its own be a reason enough to go for it. Luckily, you don’t actually have to choose, seeing as how you are bound to receive the entire package either way. Nonetheless, there are certain degrees in your home’s automation and you can still feel free to choose which of the processes you aim to enhance with smart technology and which of them you are about to leave as they are.

Guest Contributor, Diana Smith



Home Renovation Projects Worth The Investment

RH Business Marketing Solutions

Home Renovation Projects Worth The Investment

Home Renovation Projects Worth The Investment

Just as you deserve to live in a comfortable home, so does your home deserve a worthy makeover from time to time. When done properly, renovation projects can significantly increase the value of your property and make it more pleasant to live in, all in one stroke.

While certain investments focus on maximizing cosiness, others aim to improve appearance. More practical renovation projects even go as far as raising your level of security and reducing your energy losses.

Depending on your budget and ideas, there are always plenty of options available. Here are only some of the top home renovation projects that will take your home to the next level!

1. Upgrade Your Plumbing System

If you’re focused on staying in your home for good, upgrading an old or faulty plumbing system is highly advised. A fair number of homes experience leaks that result in dozens of gallons of water losses per day.

After investing in a new plumbing system, however, leaks and drainage blockages will be history. The new set of pipes will also ensure that you’re receiving a clean water supply, free of hazardous substances.

If you want to increase the safety and value of your home even further, you can also consider investing in monitoring devices that are remotely controlled and ensure that your plumbing system is operating at its max potential at all times.

For those trying to increase the value of their home before selling it, redoing the plumbing fixtures also pays off. As most potential buyers are looking forward to moving into a functional home that requires minimal adjustments, a faulty plumbing system can definitely be a deal breaker.

2. Exterior Cladding

If you're looking forward to giving your home a fresh and cozy look while enhancing its functionality, coating the exteriors of your house with timber cladding is a great solution.

Timber cladding is a popular construction method from the Middle Ages. With this eco-friendly technique, pieces of timber are installed over the interior or exterior walls.

While the solution is relatively cost-effective and quick to implement, it also comes with a set of numerous other benefits that might interest you or potential buyers.

It provides your home with outstanding thermal insulation, resulting in reduced use of energy for cooling or heating your home. Furthermore, your home will be protected by durable wood that provides an entirely new look.

3. Install a Porch

We all need to relax from time to time, and a porch happens to be the ideal place for that. Whether you intend to use it to host BBQ parties, sit under the sun, or simply increase the market value of your home, building a porch in your back or front yard can only benefit you.

If you already have one and aren’t sure what to do with it, consider repainting it and repairing any damaged sections. You are also advised to weather-proof your porch by installing an orangery and bi-folding doors. This will allow you to use the space at any time of the year.

4. Remodel Your Kitchen

Kitchen renovations come with a high return on investment for a good reason. Most people spend a fair amount of time in their kitchen; therefore they want it to be practical, modern, and good-looking.

Smaller kitchen renovation projects include painting the cabinets, replacing cabinet knobs, decorating the walls with moulding, and replacing curtains.

If you want to take on a kitchen renovation project of a higher scale, however, consider replacing out-dated appliances, cabinets, floors, and most importantly, the countertops, as well as the pipes.

5. Install a Surveillance System

In a world where crime is nothing out of the ordinary, making sure that your home is secure is crucial to your well-being. You can never be too safe.

As it happens, CCTV is one of the best ways to keep unwanted guests at bay. CCTV surveillance systems come in various shapes and provide different features that homeowners can use to make the most out of their security system. One such feature that most cameras offer is remote monitoring, which allows the user to see what’s going on inside or outside their house at any given time. An even better option would be to go for remote monitored CCTV that is hooked up to a control centre, where someone else will do the monitoring when you are not home.

Make sure to set cameras in locations that cover a lot of ground and represent primary points of entry. Some examples include balconies, backdoor, garage, and front door. Furthermore, to increase the efficiency of your security system, consider removing any vegetation around your house that is blocking the view of your cameras.

Final Words

Certain home renovation projects are bound to increase your comfort and add to the value of your home when done correctly. Before taking on any major quest, make sure to take your budget and needs into consideration. It is up to you to decide whether you want to increase the level of your security, make sure your plumbing is done right, or give your house an entirely new look. Hopefully, the solutions mentioned in this post will give you an idea of what you should do next and inspire you to step into action!

Guest Contributor, Kevin Jefferson

Remodel Smart: How To Save Money On Remodeling

Rona Regan

Remodel Smart: How to Save Money on Remodeling

Even if they consider every little detail, people still usually spend about 20 percent more money on remodeling than they originally planned. Remodeling can be full of little surprises, misunderstandings and a lot of stress, and it’s next to impossible to stay on the budget. Still, there are some ways you can save money and spare your budget by simply being smart, resourceful and unafraid to get your hands dirty.

DIY - Demolish It Yourself

If you feel like you can demolish your front porch or pool deck yourself we say go for it, but leave the interior of the house to the professionals. You can unintentionally knock down the bearing wall, or even hit a live wire or plumbing. Still, you can do some of the demolishing yourself and save up to a thousand dollars you can later spend on remodeling. But remember, safety first!

Think Long-Term

When remodeling, don’t look at the price tag that’s on the item, but think about its price at the end of the project. Sometimes it’s cheaper to get a finished product that you can simply install, then to start from scratch. It might seem cheaper to DIY something, but when you add up all the costs, it ends up being more expensive, plus you wasted your time. Also, think about installing energy-efficient appliances and lighting, insulate your doors and windows, and you will save money in the long run.

Get a Trailer

Don’t pay companies to bring materials to you when you want to do a DIY project, but pick them up yourself. Use a pickup truck or get a used single-axle utility trailer for about 300-400 bucks. If you repeat the trip 5-6 times, the trailer will pay for itself. Plus you get to keep or resell the trailer. 

Get Supplies at Auctions

At auctions, you can find all sorts of things, but don’t get distracted and focus on supplies. You can find many good scores like custom items someone didn’t like, concrete building blocks, overstock supplies, scratched and dented items and so on.  The amount of money you will save here depends on the other bidders, but it’s usually not an insignificant sum. Think good and hard whether you can find a use for an item you’re bidding for. If the answer is no, stop bidding - otherwise you’re wasting money.

Do it Off Season

It is best to save up money, and wait for winter to do your remodel. The thing is that people are usually short on money in this period because of holidays, so the demand for various contractors is significantly lower. If you want to do a roof restoration however, the best time is during spring. During winter, the demand for this type of service is huge, and so are the prices. Then again, if you plan everything right, you can save a significant sum.

Know What to Keep

If it is possible in any way, try not to change the position of your bathroom or windows. Depending on where you plumbing is costs can vary a lot. When it comes to windows, try to keep them the same size as well. Also, think about insulating your windows to save money on your electricity bill and reduce sound pollution.

If you follow these smart remodeling tips, you will not end up with a drained budget half way into your project. You just need to make some strategic moves and remember that every dollar counts. Remember, if you do things right, you might even save up enough money for a nice vacation.

Guest Contributor, Diana Smith

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