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Tinley Park, IL

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Residential and Commercial plumbers and plumbing contractors available in Orland Park, Tinley Park, Oak Lawn, Palos Heights, Midlothian, Oak Forest, Homer Glen, Mokena, Frankfort, and the surrounding Chicago South Suburbs. 24 Hour Emergency plumbers.

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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.

**We are moving our old blog to our new and improved website. Too see all our posts visit kevinszabojrplumbing.blogspot.com

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How to Make Your Bathroom Look Expensive

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How to Make Your Bathroom Look Expensive

 

Your decorating budget doesn't have to be big to create a luxurious bathroom. If you know how to match and contrast colours, if you are the master of accessories and you know how lighting can bring the best out of existing features, you can spice things up without breaking the bank. Here are the most effective ideas.

Inexpensive luxuries

Although not many bathrooms feature specialised seating, having one is indispensable for larger families. Instead of perching on the side of the bath, bring in a classy stool that you and your partner can both use, while a pair of upcycled garden chairs can prevent kids from fighting at the sink when the toothbrush time comes. Swapping boring bath mats with Persian rugs, or custom linoleum patchwork doesn’t cost much, especially since it saves you from having to replace the old tile floor.

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Nature indoors

If you couldn’t make those luscious ferns and philodendrons take root in the dry, air-conditioned environment of your home, keep in mind that they will thrive in the bathroom. Tropical plants trailing down from windowsills can spruce up the element of luxury in any bathroom, while bundles of eucalyptus branches, exposed to shower steam, release the plant's natural therapeutic oils. If you're aiming for a clean and classic hotel finish, consider potted orchids, which also thrive in humid, low-light conditions. Even a few well-placed succulents like aloe can bring a sense of vitality to your bath space.

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Mirrors and lights

Have you ever wondered why everyone looks better in hotel bathroom mirrors? It all boils down to lighting. If you illuminate mirrors evenly on both sides, you can eliminate shadows. You can use rather rectangular wall lamps or hanging brass bulbs. If you have a penchant for glowy, low-lit, spaces swap simple bulbs for recessed LED lights hidden in alcoves or behind opaque bath panels. Although at the end of a stressful day nothing really beats a relaxing bath under candle lights but instead of a modern mood lighting considers soft, dimmable floor spotlights.

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Black and white

Reinvent your bathroom with a classical and striking noir palette by choosing black and white elements, accessories and fixtures. Classy black soap dispensers, tumblers, and dishes are a great inexpensive way to accent your décor. Even bathroom appliances can help you with this décor idea since manufacturers of best washing machines today offer their front and top loaders in black or white colour schemes. If you don’t know where to start, chose a remarkable black or white centrepiece such as a freestanding stone bath with a contemporary curving design.

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Neutral wainscoting

Even a simple change like painting the wainscoting a neutral colour other than white can change the mood of your bathroom completely, from nursing white to luxurious. Nowhere does it say that wainscoting and beadboard must be white. For such a painting project, first, you'll want to sample the new colours. Use a piece of wainscoting or trim to try out the colours, so you can move it around the bathroom to get a look at different lighting angles.

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Scents and essences

Use essential oils, scented soaps, and multi-layered shampoos to replicate the feeling of being pampered and relaxed while staying in a luxury hotel spa. Transform the boring shower routine into a multi-sensory experience. Give your hair a full spa treatment using products made of natural ingredients, like rosemary, cucumber or green tea. This way, every shower will have the additional benefit of improving your mood.

The bathroom is often cited as the most expensive room in the house to renovate, second perhaps only to the kitchen. However, you don't have to gut everything to make your baths space feel expensive. Most of the ideas listed here are budget-friendly and easy to restore, which makes them ideal for homeowners who are renting.

Guest Contributor, Diana Smith

 

 A Plumber's Guide: What Your Address Says About Your Business

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homewood plumbers

 A Plumber's Guide: What Your Address Says About Your Business

The plumbing industry is booming. Some reports have found that in the United States, the number of working plumbers has increased by 1.7% over the past five years, which has resulted in $110 billion in revenue. Even greater news is that the plumbing industry is expected to continue to perform well through 2026, with an expected 16% potential growth. 

But, as with any booming and growing industry, competition is fierce and reports estimate that no individual plumbing company accounts for more than 1% of the entire industry’s revenue. In order to stand out from the competition, you need to make sure that you have a strong business strategy in place. 

This strategy should include elements such as knowing your niche, specializing in certain types of properties, marketing your services correctly, having a logo, having a business card, actively engage on social media, and have a clear lead generation and sales process in place. For the purpose of this guide, we will focus on what your address says about your plumbing business and how the right address can significantly improve your marketing and sales efforts. 

The Importance of a Business Address

In business, as in life, first impressions matter. In today’s digitally connected world, your first impression is your online presence, which should provide potential clients with all the relevant information about your business.

If your business address is not listed, it’s listed in a residential area, or it’s somewhere people aren’t familiar with,  potential clients might question the legitimacy of your company. Potential clients could think that your plumbing services are a side gig, therefore that you’re not a professional, or they might be skeptical about sharing their private information (such as home address and phone number) if all they find is a name and an address in a neighborhood they’re unfamiliar with. 

This is why having a professional business address is key to plumbing business success. 

But a Business Address is Expensive…

Yes. But it doesn’t have to be. A virtual office for plumbers could enable you to have access to a renowned business address, as well as a place to meet with clients, workspace, access to business tools and resources (printing, faxing, copying, secretarial support, customer service support, etc.). The great news? Virtual offices come at a fraction of the cost, which means you can significantly reduce your overhead costs and instead use the funds to buy equipment, invest in marketing, create your website, etc. 

Not only can a virtual office help you with the above, but it can also come in handy when you’re applying for a plumbing license, contractor license, and plumbing permit. Keep in mind that oftentimes, these certifications require specific documentation, including a business address. While some organizations accept residential addresses or P.O. Box addresses, some don’t.

Your Business Address and Marketing + Sales

To be successful today, it’s imperative that you have an online presence. This doesn’t just mean having active social media profiles, but making sure that your plumbing business shows up at the top of the page when people search for plumbing services in Google. 

One way to improve your chances of being ranked higher is by registering your business in Google My Business. What Google My Business does is that it puts your company on Google Maps, and it’s especially useful for local searches. If someone in your town or city searches for a plumber, 

Ranking higher on search engine searches means that more people are likely to visit your website, which can translate into more leads and, therefore, more sales.

More than that, a renowned business address can go a long way in establishing trust and a sense of legitimacy with potential and existing clients. It also adds some privacy to your life, as you won’t be receiving any business mail in your home address, but rather through a virtual office. 

Conclusion

There’s a lot of potential and opportunities for growth in the plumbing industry. As you’re setting up or growing your plumbing business, try to take advantage of the available tools and resources you can leverage to reduce expenses, increase your exposure, and make a good impression. 

Plumbers need to have a professional and positive image if they want to attract new clients. Keep in mind that clients are inviting you into their homes or offices, and they want to make sure that whomever they’re hiring is legitimate and trustworthy. 

If you want to make a good impression from the get go, have a professional business address in an area people are familiar with. So, what can your address say about your plumbing business? It can say that you’re running a  legitimate and trustworthy operation, or it can say the exact opposite. 

Guest Contributor, Mat Calica

6 Common Culprits Behind an Unexpected Energy Bill

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Crestwood Plumbers

6 Common Culprits Behind an Unexpected Energy Bill

If you recently opened your electric bill only to see an astronomical figure, chances are, once you picked your jaw up off the floor, you asked, "Why is this so high?" Multiple factors can impact your overall bill. Aging appliances, several devices left plugged in constantly and leaky windows and doors can result in you paying much more.

The good news? You can reduce your electric bill by following the six tips below. Stemming the flow does require you to be a bit more conscientious about your behavior, but it will save you money and reduce your carbon footprint. Here's what to look out for and how to solve each issue.

1. Have You Recently Bought New Electronics?

Many people leave electronic devices plugged in and turned on all the time, even when these items are not in use. If you live in a four-person household where everyone has a laptop and tablet, that's a lot of devices!

Save money by powering down devices when they're not in use. If you need the ability to hop on a laptop in seconds for work or school, at least put them in sleep mode. Better yet, power them down and shut them off altogether, especially at night. Doing so saves energy and helps protect devices from hackers who need sophisticated tools to power devices on remotely.

2. Your Fridge Gasket Is on the Fritz

Did your mama ever tell you, "Stop standing there with the refrigerator door open! What, are you trying to cool the whole neighborhood?" While she was right — holding open the fridge trying to decide what to eat does waste energy — another culprit may lurk behind your astronomical electric bill.

Your refrigerator gasket refers to the springy plastic material that seals when you close the door. If this seal breaks down with age, you'll lose a ton of cooling out the cracks. Luckily, you can replace your fridge gasket quite easily, and all you need is a screwdriver, an Allen wrench and some petroleum jelly (plus the gasket itself, which costs about $75 at most hardware stores).

3. Your Appliances Are Aging Poorly

If your appliances are older overall, you may need to replace them to save energy. Today, every appliance comes with an ENERGY STAR® rating that gives crucial information about how much electricity the appliance consumes. As a result, engineers now design appliances double or more the efficiency of earlier models.

Are you a renter whose landlord refuses to upgrade? You can still save money and energy. Simply invest in a countertop microwave and toaster oven, and hand wash dishes instead of using the dishwasher (except for with large loads, like Thanksgiving dinner cleanup).

4. Your Air Filters Are Filthy

Be honest: How often do you change your air filters? Experts recommend changing them once per month, less often in the summer if you have a heating-only system. If you have pets or smokers in the residence, you should change them monthly year-round.

Filters cost less than $10 at many grocery and hardware stores. If your filters become clogged, the reduced air flow through your heating and cooling system can cause your heat exchanger to overheat and shut off too quickly. This issue will cost you approximately $175 to repair, and in the meantime, your house won't feel warm even as your electric bill soars.

5. Air is Leaking out Windows and Doors

Take a look at your front door (go ahead, do it now!). Do you see light leaking through cracks between the frame and the outdoors? You're bleeding heat and AC right out to your neighbors if you do. Unless you have a vested interest in keeping your front porch squirrel visitors happy all winter, invest in some inexpensive weather stripping to save significantly.

Do you feel hot or cold when you're sitting near a sunny window? If so, you may need to upgrade your windows. Renter? Instead of improving your landlord's property (they get enough of your hard-earned money), invest in some blackout curtains. These curtains can reduce the amount of heat transferred by your windows by as much as 24%, and as an added bonus, they reduce noise from outside, so urban dwellers rejoice!

6. You Need to Call an Electrician

Finally, if you've unplugged and checked the items above, you may need to call in a pro. An unusually high electric bill can indicate a problem with the meter or a short somewhere in the house. Since electric work carries a fire hazard, let a licensed professional do the work. This requirement is one area where renting has advantages — structural issues such as electric shorts are the landlord's problem to deal with.

Cutting Your Electricity Costs

There's no need to pay astronomical electric bills to feel comfortable in your home. By identifying the culprits sucking your energy like vampires, you can save money and protect the planets' resources.

Guest Contributor, Holly Welles

Holly Welles is a home improvement writer who believes anyone can make the most of their space. You can find more of her work on her blog, The Estate Update.

 

5 Top Traits That Mark a Reliable Plumbing Contractor

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5 Top Traits That Mark a Reliable Plumbing Contractor

Whether you have a leaky faucet or want to renovate your bathroom fixtures, your best option is to hire a professional plumber. But among the available plumbing contractors in your area, which one should you choose? 

There are certain characteristics that make some plumbers exceptional at providing their professional services. These people are passionate about the job and will go out of their way to provide excellent customer service. So if you are looking at getting the services of a plumber, you need to look for these five characteristics that mark a reliable plumbing contractor.

1. Certified

Plumbing is a regulated profession, which means almost all U.S. states require them to have a license to practice in their respective states. Requirements vary across states, but in general, a plumber can obtain the certification if they possess the necessary knowledge and skills to pass a state-approved exam. 

Having a license is a good indication of the expertise of a plumber, so if you are planning to hire one, ask if they have a license to work in the state. Most states have a website where you can verify their license number. Not having a license is a huge red flag and you should think twice before hiring them. 

2. Provides a clear estimate

Before getting the job started, one of the first steps of the process involves the plumber examining your plumbing system and providing a quote. This is an opportunity for you to judge the reliability of a plumber. You can tell that the plumber is an expert by the estimate that they provide. 

The job quote should be clear and detailed and should include a breakdown of the cost estimate of the materials needed. It should also include labor costs. Finally, the plumber should also specify how they want to be paid and how they will address extra time or materials needed. 

3. Puts emphasis on safety

As with all home improvement and repair projects, plumbing jobs pose a risk of injury not just to the contractor but to other parties as well. Reliable plumbers will always prioritize safety and will strictly follow safety procedures. They will follow safety guidelines to the letter to prevent damage to life and property. They will also have the right tools and equipment to do the job safely.

In addition, reliable plumbers carry two types of insurance—liability and worker’s compensation. The former protects the contractor in case something is damaged or someone is injured as a result of the job, while the latter provides medical benefits to the contractor in case of injuries. 

4. Punctual

A professional plumber provides a precise time of arrival and sticks to it. They respect the time that you have and will call immediately in case they are running late or coming in early. When they arrive, they will apologize for their tardiness, even if it is just by a few minutes. Punctuality is a reflection of their work attitude and ethic, so if the plumber you are planning to hire arrives on time for the appointment, it’s a sign they value your time and your work. 

5. Willing to fix issues

Not everyone is perfect and even the best plumbers make mistakes. There may still be issues with your plumbing after the plumbing contractor has done their job. If you notice some problems with the plumber’s work, feel free to ask the plumber about them. A reliable plumber will be able to explain what looks to be an issue, and if it is indeed a problem, they will also be willing to rectify the mistake. 

Your home is your most significant investment. It makes sense that you want repairs and renovations handled by a true professional. Look out for these top five qualities of reliable plumbers to have peace of mind when having your next plumbing job done. 


Guest Contributor, Aki Merced

About the Author:

Aki Merced is the Content Manager at Handle, where they build software that helps contractors, subcontractors, and material suppliers secure their lien rights and get paid faster by automating the collection process for unpaid construction invoices.

Benefits Of Installing Granite Sinks

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Benefits Of Installing Granite Sinks

The one place in the house that holds a lot of importance in our life is the kitchen. We have to make sure that has an outstanding kitchen so that we can enhance the overall look of our house. Hence one such way of enhancing the kitchen of our house is installing granite sinks. These are quite a trend in these days and can bring about a great change in our kitchen. Granite is material that is found naturally on the surface of earth and has many good properties which makes it the perfect choice for our kitchen sinks.

Not only kitchen sinks but we also find granite as tabletops in our kitchen and also as counters. Therefore, you can understand that having granite in kitchen has become customary. A good amount of money is involved so it is better advised to take help from a professional.

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Let Us Now Have A Look At Some Of The Benefits That We Get From Installing Granite Sinks.

Durability

One of the major reasons why we find most homeowner installing granite sinks in their kitchens is that they are extremely durable. This means that you can easily take a break in the kitchen and sit on the counter tops without having to worry about breaking them. This also is great as the kitchen is the place in the house which is more exposed to a lot of wear and tear. Having a durable countertop and sink may actually work in our benefit. This is also a great advantage in the face of heavy usage in the kitchen. We also find that granite is the perfect material for our sinks as granite sinks can also withstand heat and different chips and dents. Now you know why they are the best option for our usage.

Fashionable

As said previously the look of our kitchen may make or break the interiors of our house. Hence you shouldn’t be surprised to see that that people are willing to go extreme lengths to have the perfect kitchen look to match with the interiors of the house. Having granite sinks may actually work in our favor in this respect. This way we can also select the best one for our kitchen without compromising anywhere. We can also get the granite sinks in many shapes and sizes which also add to the benefit of customizing it according to the needs of our kitchen and house.

Maintenance

Despite all talk about fashionable stuff and good looks the one main ingredient that has to be present in the kitchen is something which is easy to clean. We have to ensure that we find only materials that are extremely easy to clean off without much trouble. It should not surprise you that one of the most easy to maintain materials is granite. The granite sinks are very easy to clean and hence this makes them the perfect choice for our kitchens.

Affordability

We should also not forget the fact that granite sinks are very cheap and are affordable in their rates. This is a low expense way of making sure that we have good looking kitchen. A great benefit that we get from having installed granite sinks in our kitchen makes us feel that the purchase was worth the money.

These are some of the important benefits that we get from installing granite sinks in our kitchen. Hence this is a major advantage that we get from installing granite sinks in our kitchen.

Guest Contributor, Lara Buck

Eco-Friendly Roofing Options

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As increasing studies suggest the deteriorating state of the planet, it triggers strong convictions among environmentalists to protect the environment. These encourage them to find sustainable solutions and change lifestyles to impact the environment positively.

The materials used for built structures such as homes also play a vital role in becoming environmentally friendly. An unexpected aspect of going green is the type of roof you have. Every home’s roof provides protection from the harsh elements like sunlight, rain, snow, and hail.

Roofs have limited lifespans and will need replacing after some time. When looking for roofing material, most people go for those that are durable and affordable roofing materials. There’s nothing wrong with focusing on these things since they do matter.

However, it might be wise to consider alternative roofing material like a selection of eco-friendly materials before changing your roof. Eco-friendly roofs have been gaining popularity for many homeowners as they consider environmentally friendly options. While eco-friendly roofs can be more expensive than your average materials, the benefits would favor you as well as the environment.

Through efficient energy use, an eco-friendly roof would produce fewer carbon emissions. It also keeps trash out of landfills while reducing the impact on the world’s finite resources.

Besides reducing the environmental footprint of the household or the impact on resource use and pollution, an eco-friendly roof is becoming an attractive option for homeowners. It also lowers the energy bills which homeowners are seeking ways for.

However, there are plenty of eco-friendly roof options readily available to the environmentally friendly homeowner. This infographic by Fahey Roofing Contractors lists a few eco-friendly solutions that will not only help the environment but help you in the long run as well. 

Guest Contributor, Fahey Roofing Contractors

How To Get Powder Makeup Out Of Carpet?

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Plumbers in Crestwood IL

How To Get Powder Makeup Out Of Carpet?

Dropping makeup on your carpet is an eventuality you cannot avoid. However, once you do end up getting some onto your expensive rug, it is important to act quickly and smartly to ensure that the powder does not set on the carpet fur nor does it spread out thanks to people stepping on it. Here are the best ways you can get powder make up from your carpet from our best house cleaning Dayton Ohio.

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Things To Be Wary Of

First, you need to be calm before grabbing the next tissue and start attacking the affected area. It will not help remove the stain and, more likely, will just spread the mess and make a permanent stain on your carpet. Furthermore, once you do start cleaning up the mess, it is important to be gentle with your application and to ensure that you do not damage your carpet fibers from harsh wipe downs or leave permanent marks due to the make-up powder.

Using a lot of force during the cleanup process is sure to work the makeup into the fibers of the carpet and make your problem a lot worse than it was. If you work the makeup deeper into the carpet fibers, you will have a much harder time removing it and getting rid of the stain that comes with it. Finally, grinding is absolutely forbidden as it will leave a stain permanently on your carpet and if it can be cleaned, you will need expensive chemical products to clean it off. Therefore, be gentle and act calmly when trying to remove makeup powder from your carpet.

You can deal with spilled makeup in two main ways. The first method involves the use of a soap and water solution to gently blot and remove and the second method goes straight for some makeup remover instead. Let’s look into how both of these methods work.

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Removing Powder Using A Water And Soap Solution

If you drop some of your precious powder on the carpet, you will need several things at hand before you can get into the process of removing it. First off, go find yourself a blunt butter knife or spoon so that you can easily scoop off some of the excess powder that has not made its way into the carpet fibers. It is important to do this as quickly as possible as it will prevent the powder from digger deeper and causing a more annoying stain.

Next, you need to draw up a concoction of some dishwashing liquid and water. Mix a few drops of dishwashing liquid with some cold water and grab a paper towel. However, if you have microfiber cloths, they will serve you even better, but a paper towel should be just fine.

Your next task is to lightly dab and blots the affected area using the paper towel dipped in the dishwashing liquid and water mixture. Be very careful, as excessive force will work the makeup into the carpet and due to the dampness, make it much harder to remove later. Another point to note is that you should be working into the patch, from the outside. This makes sure that you do not make the mess spread further than it already has, and keeps it within appreciable bounds.

Until you see that there is little to no powder left on your carpet, keep blotting around the powder and use new paper towels when required. Eventually, you should see that most of it is gone. From there, you have let the carpet dry out for a bit before grabbing the vacuum and doing the final stage of cleaning.

For the final step, start the vacuum up and clean up the remaining traces of powder from your carpet. After all your efforts, you will be left with a clean and stainless carpet.

Removing Powder Using Makeup Remover

Similar to the previous methods, you should be careful when using makeup remover on your carpet. It is quite easy to spread the mess and very likely that you will end up using too much of the liquid makeup remover and end up moistening the carpet a little too much. In order to avoid these catastrophes, be sure to get yourself a piece of cloth or paper towels.

On the paper towel, add a few drops of the makeup remover and blot the affected area repeatedly until only traces of the powder makeup remain. From there, grab a fresh dry paper towel and dab away on the area while it dries.

In some cases, using the soap and water solution might not be enough to get rid of the entire spill, and this is when the makeup remover comes in handy. However, it is important to remember that you should be extra careful when using the makeup remover, as allowing any of it to seep into your carpet backing can cause some damage to the carpet.

A Friendly Reminder

The solution you use to remove makeup powder from your carpet is up to you and how careful you can be with the solution. Exercising caution is the most important thing when it comes to removing stains from your carpet. Remember to be gentle and slow, and always work into the stain, not outwards. Working outwards will spread the stain more and ruin your carpet even further. Moreover, never use a lot of pressure when dabbing the damp cloth. Working makeup powder into your carpet fibers will lead you down the road of a more expensive cleaning procedure where you will need to hire carpet-cleaning professionals to come down and give your carpet a thorough treatment.

If you want to prevent getting makeup on your carpet, you can always try to lay down an old sheet or a towel under your mirror or your dressing area, and allow that to catch any makeup spills instead of letting your poor carpet handle the mess. This saves you the hassle of cleaning up your carpet if you get some on, and if you end up staining your carpet by any chance, you will not have to pay for extensive cleaning costs, which might be expensive in some cases.

Guest Contributor, Lara Buck

Contemporary Home Office: Design Essentials

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Crestwood plumbers

Contemporary Home Office: Design Essentials

 

Working from home sounds like the best thing in the world, and that’s usually not far from the truth. However, most people don’t realize that working from home is still working, and you need to do your job. In order to be productive, you need your own space, which is why setting up a home office is vital. If you’re thinking about doing that as well, here are a few design essentials you have to look into.

Find the right spot

Even if you’re working from home, not just any home office will do. It needs to be motivating, creative, and visually appealing, and that’s not always easy to achieve. That’s why picking the right location is so important. While some people can work in their bedroom or kitchen, others need separate space – quiet and isolated. Choosing the right location could take some time and energy, but you’ll surely be able to do it.

Make it big

Before you find the perfect spot for your home office, you need to take size into consideration. No matter what you do and how old you are, you need an office that won’t make you feel claustrophobic. It needs to be big enough for your desk and chair, but it needs some maneuvering space as well. This is particularly true if you’re planning on holding meetings in there and welcoming clients. That’s why turning a spare bedroom into a home office is the ideal solution, and you’ll always have enough space.

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Impress your clients

Despite working from home, some people have to work with a number of clients they need to see regularly. That’s why their home office needs to be specious, equipped with some comfortable furniture, and properly decorated. This may not sound like the most important thing in the world, but it’s the best way to impress your clients. That’s why you should explore professional office interiors that are visually appealing and help you make a great first impression. This way, you’ll send the right message and make your home office more functional and remarkable than ever.

Think about the storage

All working professionals need proper storage space, even those who work from home. Luckily, being the boss of your own space allows you to do whatever you want. Most people get one of those wall-to-wall and floor-to-ceiling bookcases that give them enough space for their possessions. Others prefer smaller filing cabinets and shelves that are easier to organize. Whatever you opt for, try to keep your things in order and always close by.

Natural air and sunlight

This is another perk of working from home – you can keep your window open as much as you want. Fresh air and sunlight do wonders for your productivity, and insisting on these things is more important than people realize. That’s why installing bigger windows that let lots of air and sunlight in your home office goes a long way. Moreover, this will minimize your need for artificial lights and make your office more sustainable at the same time.

Organize your equipment

Every home office needs a computer, a printer, a wireless router, and a million other things as well. While most people don’t a problem with the mess, you need to get these things as tidy as possible. Instead of being knee-deep in cables, you should organize them and keep them under control. This will make your office look nicer and feel less cluttered, and that’s something we all need.

Designing your home office is easier than it looks, but only if you put your mind to it. Define its purpose, figure out what you’re trying to achieve, and insist on things that will help you reach your goals.

Guest Contributor, Lillian Connors

Guide To Keeping Pests Out Of Your Kitchen

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Plumbing companies in crestwood il

Guide to Keeping Pests Out of Your Kitchen

There are few things as horrifying as seeing a line of ants march across your kitchen countertops or feeling the dread of seeing fruit flies swarming your bananas. Pests can destroy your enjoyment of a good meal faster than almost anything. However, the last thing you want is to use poisons where you prepare food for your family and friends.

The wet spring and summer in most of the United States is spurring on pest infestations this year. While they won't all be kitchen pests, the environment is ripe for more than ever before. Even in drier regions, ants, cockroaches and flies will move indoors in search of food and water. Fortunately, there are some steps you can take to remove them quickly and safely.

1. Seal All Food

Pests such as ants, gnats and roaches are attracted by food. One of the first steps you should take when you notice an infestation is sealing all food sources. Put cereal in airtight containers, place open cracker sleeves in a sealed plastic bag and move fruit to the refrigerator.

Even if you don't yet notice any bugs, it's a smart move to seal anything dry in your kitchen and pantry. Pests often start as a small problem and grow into a larger one. Prevent them from taking hold in the first place.

2. Fix Cracks and Openings

If you're having an issue with ants or mice, these creatures are getting into your home from somewhere. Inspect the outside of your house for gaps and cracks in the foundation. Plug up any holes where mice might enter. Track down where ants are marching into formation. Fill any open spaces and remove the easy entrance to your home. Of course, very small pests such as ants will likely find a way inside anyway, but you don't have to make it easy on them.

3. Remove Infested Food

It might seem obvious, but if you notice even one pest in your cereal or flour, remove the food entirely. Where there is one bug, there are almost always more. Getting rid of the food source may also remove much of the temptation to the creatures invading your home. Seal new items the minute you bring them into your home.

4. Call an Exterminator

If the infestation doesn't seem to get better, don't be afraid to call an exterminator for help. A professional can identify the species of bug and give you steps to remove the problem, as well as prevent it in the future. Yes, you will pay for the services, but you'll avoid months of aggravation and living in unsanitary conditions.

5. Use Natural Repellents

There are some natural things you can use that bugs simply don't like. Natural solutions are typically safe for your family and pets and much less costly than commercial solutions for getting rid of pests. Mosquitoes and flies don't like basil, so plant some and hang the dried herb in doorways. Peppermint drives away spiders. Use the same method of planting around the outside of your house or bringing dried peppermint into your home.

You could also try using essential oils. Fleas and moths dislike lavender and cockroaches hate catnip.

6. Sweep and Mop Regularly

Invaders such as ants are known as spilled food pests. They love to find debris and feast on it. Sweep and mop your floor regularly to keep food pieces to a minimum and remove the temptation for them to enter your home. Mop up spills the minute they occur and clean out cupboards and drawers regularly. The cleaner your kitchen is, the less chance these pests will find something to survive on.

7. Eat Your Fruits

Eating plenty of produce is healthy for you, so many people leave a fruit basket out on the table or counter. The problem arrives when you don't eat your fruit quickly enough and it begins to decay. Rotting fruit is nirvana to fruit flies, who will enter your home and lay eggs so fast you'll have dozens of them before you know it. Remove any spoiled produce and put out a small amount of red wine in a tall glass to trap the flies already in your kitchen.

Be the Food Police

Since food is the top culprit that attracts kitchen pests, make sure everyone eats in designated areas, cleans up after themselves and puts everything away in the refrigerator or a sealed container. Over time, you'll get rid of any pest problems you have and avoid finding new ones.

Guest Contributor, Holly Welles

Holly Welles is a home improvement writer who believes anyone can make the most of their space. You can find more of her work on her blog, The Estate Update.

Principal Plumbing Considerations for Commercial Buildings

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Principal Plumbing Considerations for Commercial Buildings

When building any sort of building, commercial being no exception, you will need to pay attention to plumbing before you finish the entire project. Having a well-thought-out plumbing system in place is extremely important, especially for commercial buildings, where the supply of clean water and disposal of wastewater need to be constant and seamless.

Therefore, if you’re building your commercial space, aside from the architects and other contractors you’ll need to find, you’ll also need to search for a reliable expert plumber who will take care of this job for you. With that in mind, here are some considerations you’ll need to address.

Know the requirements

First of all, it’s important to mention that different types of commercial properties all have different water requirements. Establishments, such as hospitals, restaurants, hotels and high-rise buildings all have different water requirements and require a specific plumbing grid. The engineer you decide to hire for this project will have to know what type of commercial property you’re building so that they can accurately plan out the type of plumbing grid you’ll need. For instance, if you’re aiming at building a high-rise building, the plumbing system will need to be equipped with booster pumps and gravity storage tanks so that the topmost floors receive the same amount of water as the lowest ones.

Do the calculations right

Additionally, in order to calculate the average water flow your plumbing system will need to be able to handle, you need to know how much people – on average – will be occupying the space on a daily basis. For a commercial property that’s not in the hospitality industry the grid can be significantly smaller than the one that is a part of this industry. Simply put, if you’re building a hotel, your grid will have to be significantly more advanced and complex than if you’re building a regular office building.

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Rely on expert advice

Since plumbing is one of the crucial aspects of a building’s infrastructure it needs to be addressed as early in the process as possible. That’s why it’s important to run this by the commercial construction company that you’ve hired to get the job done. Simply put, if you pair an expert plumbing team with a trusted commercial construction company you can rest assured that the entire project will be done as efficiently and as responsibly as possible. Of course, make sure that both teams are true experts in their field and pay close attention to what they’re saying and advising you to do.

Conduct regular maintenance

Finally, once your project is done and you start using your commercial space, that doesn’t quite mean that your job is done. Rather, your job as a building owner has just begun. What this means is that now you’ll need to take care of the plumbing system you have in place. Again, depending on the type of your commercial building, you’ll need to schedule regular maintenance. Sure, in a hotel or a hospital, the maintenance will have to be conducted more regularly than in ordinary office buildings. Regular and preventive maintenance is crucial as not only can it save you huge amounts of money in the long run, but it can also put your mind at ease.

If you’re thinking about building a commercial property and you’re struggling to come up with an optimal plumbing design for the space, have your construction company work closely with your plumbing experts to create a layout that will work best for everyone. Also, make sure that you vocalize any questions and concerns you might have during the process to ensure that everything goes smoothly and that you’re happy with the final result.

Guest Contributor, Lillian Connors