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The Pros and Cons of Home Renovations

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Renovating your home is undoubtedly a huge project to take on. If you choose to go ahead with it, you’ll be making huge and lasting changes to the most important asset you have and the place where you spend most of your time. The stakes are high, so should you go ahead with these changes? It’s a tough question and one only you can answer.

To help you make your final decision on whether or not a big home renovation is right for you, we’re going to have a look at some of the key pros and cons that you should factor into your decision-making process. Read on to start learning more.


Functionality Can be Maximised

The way in which you use your home is, of course, the most important thing of all. You want it to be accommodating to all of your needs because if it isn’t, you’ll never feel quite at home there. One of the major upsides of choosing a big home renovation is that it can maximise your space and have it offer you and your family more each and every day.

Your Space Can be Opened Up

Offering yourself more space is an obvious aim when you’re renovating your home. By opening things up and making your living spaces more open plan, you can make the whole home feel bigger. This is what many people try to do when they’re undertaking big changes like these, and there’s no reason why you can’t do the same. It’ll completely change how you experience your home.

The Benefits of Your Location Will be Retained

Many people who choose to make renovations to their home do so because their home isn’t working for them but they don’t want to move out because they like their current location. It’s pretty obvious and it makes sense. It’s hard to get a perfect location and a perfect home, but maybe these renovations could help you get that balance just right.

You Don’t Need to Go it Alone

There are plenty of people who can help you out if you don’t have the skills required to do the renovation work by yourself. It’s up to you to find the right renovation builders for your project. If you make the right choice, you’ll find that the process is smooth and easy, which is exactly what you want. There’s no need to go it alone and suffer everything that comes with that.

kitchen with wooden floors and benchtops


The Inevitable Disruption

There is going to be disruption for you and everyone else in your home to deal with when the renovation work is being completed. Sadly, there’s not much you can do to get around that. Good companies will keep it to a minimum, but there will still be noise, mess and maybe some other hassles that you’ll have to put up with for a little while.

The Task of Keeping Costs Under Your Control

Keeping the costs of this whole project under your control is not always easy. There are so many different things that need to be paid for, and before you do that, you should plan things out and make sure that you know how much you can afford to spend before you actually get the work underway. And from there, don’t let those costs spiral.

Bureaucratic Challenges

If you’re extending your home or having big renovations carried out, you might need to ask for planning permission from the local authorities. And you should never start work until you’ve ticked all of those bureaucratic boxes. On top of that, you should take into account the status of your building. Some older listed buildings can’t be altered, and you’ll get into trouble if you ignore that.

Taking Time on Planning

You’ll have to spend quite a lot of time planning your renovations before you get started. Otherwise, you could end up doing the wrong things and making mistakes, which is not what you want. That will waste your cash or cause you no end of hassle. So don’t underestimate just how much of your spare time you will have to spend on planning these changes.

man with hammer

When all’s said and done, whether to push ahead with your renovation plans will be entirely down to you. It could be exactly what your home needs, or it could be better to look at the alternatives. Just make sure you weigh up all of the pros and cons, and then measure them against your own personal circumstances and finances.

Easy Ways to Destroy Everything You’ve Ever Worked For

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Your house is easily one of the biggest investments that you are ever going to make, so if you want to make sure that you are able to sell it for a profit then there are a couple of things that you need to avoid.

Over Personalising Your Space

You want to make your house your own, but it helps to step away from the lime green paint now and again. Think to yourself, and think it through, because there aren’t many buyers who can see past a space that has been overly personalised. Realtors often advise homeowners to paint over anything bright and this includes white or even beige. You may also be tempted to use a quirky wallpaper and there isn’t anything wrong with this, but do make sure that you can take it down easily when the time does come for you to sell your space. After all, when a buyer walks into your home, the first impression that they have will have a huge impact on what they think of the space in general. If they are trying to work out if they can afford the house while contemplating why you have pink flamingo wallpaper then this can make things even more difficult. It also means that it will cost them much more to decorate the house as well, and if they are on a tight budget then this could mean that they are not able to put in the offer that you need.

grey studio apartment bedroom

Converting the Garage

There is a difference between changing your garage into a gaming room and turning it into a gaming room on a permanent basis. When you have a temporary room, it is very easy for you to move things to one side so that you can park your car. A lot of people have tried to change their garages into another bedroom, a suite and so much more. The problem here is that they don’t consider the long-lasting effects of this and all of this can make it much more difficult for you to sell your home in the future. Buyers often enter a transaction with some level of expectation and when they are looking at a certain house at a certain price then there is a high chance that they will be expecting a garage. If your garage does not meet their model idea then this can really cause problems for you and it can even cause you to discount the house more than you’d like.

wall of spanners

Ripping down Walls

This rule does not apply to all, and in some instances there are walls that need to come out. If you want to knock down some walls without compromising the integrity of the home then you have to make sure that you talk with an architect before you go ahead with this. If you are going to rip out walls that are going to compromise the number of bedrooms that you have then this can cause you serious issues and you may even find that it knocks a ton of value off your house as well. A house that has three bedrooms is more likely to appeal to a family who have older children, but the same square footage with two bedrooms may appeal to younger kids. The problem here is that those who have younger children often have a reduced budget and this can make it very difficult for you to make a profit on your home.


There are two different types of DIYers. Those who have trade experience, and those who don’t. If you don’t actually have any DIY experience stay clear. The main reason for this is because it doesn’t matter how much Tommy Walsh you watch on YouTube, you’ll never be able to do the job as good as a professional and this can cause you a number of problems if you are not careful. This especially applies to things like cutting down trees. If you ever want to do anything like this then it helps to hire someone, such as the Sydney Tree Company. They will be able to get the job done easier, faster and more efficiently, not to mention that you won’t be compromising the value of your home as a result.

So there are plenty of ways that you can throw away everything that you have ever worked for, but you would be surprised at how easy it is for you to really turn things around as well. After all, it’s decisions like these that can either make or break your investment.

Killer Ways To Relieve Stress At Home In Five Minutes

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doing yoga

The kids need to get to school on time, you have to run a thousand errands, and there just isn’t enough time in the day. Are you feeling stressed? Quite simply, you should be because life isn’t easy, especially when other people need your attention. The thing is because there aren’t enough hours in a day, it feels as if there is no time to relax. Even a Netflix binge at the end of a tough 24-hour is out of the question.

So, those things that other do to relieve stress aren’t going to be on your to-do list. Well, exercising or going for a massage might make the top ten, but you won’t tick them off anytime soon. No, what you need is to eradicate tension without leaving the confines of your home. Yep, it is the dream, and yes, it is possible.

Here are the six ways to make it happen. For a bonus, the following should work in five minutes or less.

Cook A Meal

As stressful as it sounds, preparing food is very relaxing once the heavy lifting is out of the way. In fact, lots of people find chopping onions and sautéing vegetables pretty cathartic. The trick is to turn up the volume on the radio, pour a glass of vino, and take your time. Yes, the dish has to be on the table when the kids get home from school, but you can leave it to simmer for hours if need be. Actually, slow cooking a piece of meat in a gravy sauce is as delicious as it is relaxing. All you have to do is use up the leftovers and throw them in a pan with some stock. Then, turn the heat down low and check on it every couple of hours to make sure. Voila! Does that sound like a tense day in the kitchen?

Grab A Quick Burst Of Energy

Sometimes, waiting for a meal to cook is too long. After all, a factor in the build-up of stress is a lack of energy. When the muscles and the brain don’t have enough fuel, cortisol begins to form. Once these levels reach a certain limit, it can feel as if your head is about to explode. Thankfully, some foods are readymade and contain the nutrients the vital organs need to work efficiently. You’re going to love this – chocolate is a prime example. Yep, the brown stuff you only like to eat sparingly is a nerve calmer. According to reports, it regulates the metabolism as well as the stress hormone we have previously mentioned. Always go for dark chocolate with over 70% cocoa for health reasons.

pouring green tea

Drink Tea

But not just any old rubbish. No, only the best will do for those of you who need to calm down within the next 300 minutes. There is a reason the poms drink it like it’s going out of fashion! That motivation is called L-Theanine, a chemical which does something remarkable. Studies prove this element helps to relieve anger and reduce the possibility of mood swings. So, instead of going purple with rage, you can go green with relaxation instead. Sure, it’s not the colour of stress relief – what is? – but L-Theanine is found in green tea and herbal remedies. Therefore, a cup of this emerald coloured goodness should make you feel at ease instantly. If you use a teabag, leave it in the mug so that the chemicals continue to absorb into the water. Herbal drinkers should pour out the bits before taking a sip.

Play An Instrument

Letting your fingers tickle the ivories or strum a set of guitar strings is incredibly relaxing. As soon as the tones begin to sound from the instrument, the mind drifts off into another world. Plus, experienced players can jam on autopilot so there is no need to concentrate. All you have to do is let the equipment do the work and follow the notes on a musical journey. If that’s too pretentious, just let your hands do as they please and see it where it takes you! For the people who are saying “but I can’t play”, you can learn. Guitar lessons are very affordable these days, as are most musical lessons, and the instructor will come to your home. Remember the immortal words of fake Jim Morrison in Wayne’s World 2: “Book them, and they will come.”

Go Outside

Okay, so you may not be inside all of the time, but you’ll still be on the property! Wandering out into the garden is a great way to gain perspective for many reasons. Firstly, staying inside all day can encourage negative thoughts because you’re cooped up and feel suffocated. So, getting some fresh air feels like a form of relief. Secondly, stress usually builds up when the brain harbours negative thoughts. Going out into the Great Outdoors helps to reverse the process as there is a lot of natural light. Without light, it’s easy to feel down in the dumps and depressed.

Work Out

There’s no need to hit the gym to release tension when you can do it from the comfort of your bedroom. In truth, you can do it from any room in the house as long as there is plenty of space. Please don’t fall into the trap of thinking you have to flog your body to feel the benefit. Often, the best form of exercise is the low-intensity form because it targets excess fat. Running, for example, as opposed to walking, burns carbs. If you don’t know where to begin, there are plenty of home workout routines online. Or, you can build up a sweat by scaling the stairs throughout the day. Anyone that wants a less active method should consider meditation. By sitting down and focusing on nothing in particular, you can forget about the rigours of life. Yoga is an excellent way to mix both exercise and meditation.

stretching yoga

What do you think? Are you willing to give them a try?

Common Excuses for Not Working Out

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lacing up running shoes

Do you find yourself making an excuse whenever the time comes to workout? You are not alone. We all suffer from a lack of motivation from time-to-time, and we all convince ourselves that there is a valid reason behind it. Of course, there may be an acceptable reason for not working out once or twice, but if you never seem to find the time to exercise, it’s likely that your excuses are simply designed to make you feel better. With that being said, let’s put these excuses to bed once and for all. Read on to discover some of the common excuses people make for not working out, and why they aren’t valid excuses at all – or, in nicer terms, what you can do to stop these issues from getting in the way of you working out.

“I don’t like to workout around the opposite sex” – One reason why a lot of people do not like to workout is because they are self-conscious. They do not want to go for a run or to the gym because they are scared that the opposite sex will see them. They don’t want to be spotted sweating and struggling. This is understandable, yet there are plenty of ways around it. Firstly, you shouldn’t care what other people think! But that is unlikely to provide much help, so why not enrol in gym classes that are gender-specific? Or, you could workout from the comfort of your own home? There is such a wide selection of fitness DVDs to choose from today. Close the curtains and lock the doors and you will never have to worry about anyone seeing you.

“I’m a busy parent, I don’t have the time” – This is an understandable reason for struggling to workout, yet it does not mean that you don’t have the time to exercise at all. Yes, children can be incredibly time-consuming, but your workouts do not have to be. There are plenty of time saving workouts for busy mums. These are exercises that are designed to help you achieve more in a shorter space of time. Another option is to exercise with your children. Not only will you keep them busy and spend more time with them, but you will probably wear them out too, which means you might get some time to relax after the workout – it’s a win-win!

“I am bored of working out” – This is another common excuse people make. They are bored of the workout. This is probably true, but it is also probably true that you have not exhausted all of your exercise options. If you don’t want to hit the same exercise classes again or workout on the treadmill for an hour, you don’t have to. Find a different way to workout. There are so many options, from yoga and dancing to cycling and tennis.

“I am too uncoordinated or fat or old to exercise” – Yes, you may not be an Olympic athlete! But everyone has to start somewhere. You don’t need to start out with workouts that are incredibly hard. Take baby steps and you will achieve more and more with every session. This will also motivate you. You are probably struggling to do your workout sessions because they seem so scary and unachievable that you are putting yourself off. Don’t worry about what anyone else is doing. Just worry about yourself and what you need to do.

“I don’t like to workout alone” – Working out alone is always difficult because you need to be your own source of motivation. The best thing to do is get in touch with your friends and see if anyone would be willing to workout with you. If you do not have any friends that are into fitness, you still have a few options. The first is to join an exercise class or group. The second is to book a session with a personal trainer. And the third is to use an app to meet people that are interested in working out. You can find tennis partners and job buddies – it’s like Tinder but for exercising!

“I can’t afford to go to the gym” – Money is often a common reason used when people explain why they do not workout. Yes, it is true that many different exercise options cost money. If you go to the gym, you are going to need to pay a membership fee. If you take up a certain sport, such as tennis, you are going to need the correct equipment. However, not all forms of exercising cost money. There are many different ways you can workout for free. You can go for a run or a power walk. Or, why not use some of the workout videos that are available for free on YouTube?

“I am way too tired to exercise” – Last but not least, do you feel like you can’t exercise because you are too tired? This is not uncommon considering the hustle and bustle of everyday life. Well, did you know that exercise is probably the best way to snap out of this tired feeling and revitalise yourself? Set yourself positive notifications on your phone that will motivate you to exercise.

Hopefully, you now have some great suggestions that can help you whenever you next come to workout and you find yourself making an excuse. You’re a busy mum who doesn’t have the time? Use time saving exercises! You don’t have the money to go to the gym? You don’t have to! There is always a way around it.

Alternative Ways To Run Your Home

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Running a home is no easy mission. Running a home with children involved is a whole new ballgame to tackle. One thing that it most definitely is is expensive. The more your brood grows, the more you seem to be spending your money as fast at it comes into your bank. So by now you should be looking for alternative ways to run your home. Ways that are going to make things so much easier for you in terms of both time and money. If you’re struggling for ideas, here are our favourite ways that you can alternatively run your home.

home magnify glass


Air con and heating are the two most draining bills that your home will face. With children involved it only gets more expensive. But there are alternative methods that you can use that might save you a bit of money. For example, you can now get electric heating for your fireplaces. Fireplaces burn a lot of gas if they’re gas powered, but electricity takes away a lot of the money issues. It hardly uses anything to power, and they really do look amazing. There are some modern designs that can so easily transform your living room. Plus, if the whole family is having a family night in the living room, you can spare a bit of money on heating for the rest of the house whilst you’re all cuddled up in front of your new fire. As for air con, it’s a necessary evil that most of us are stuck with. The summers are just so hot that it would be near enough inhumane without it. The best thing you can do is try to let a fresh breeze flow through as much as possible during the day. Only use the air con during the hottest parts of the day to keep your family cool. If you have all the windows open and a fan blowing, you should create enough airflow to keep it cool for the rest of the day.


Electricity and families don’t seem to mix. It’s purely down to the fact younger children don’t understand the concept of how much electricity costs. The best alternative method you can use to try and cut back a little is using a smart meter. It helps you to monitor closely exactly what is being used in terms of both electricity and water. You could use it as a little education tool for your children as well. Show them that the higher the number goes, the more money mommy and daddy would have to pay each month. Teaching them how to save on electricity from a young age is also useful. Things such as keeping lights switched off during the day, as well as keeping plugs off rather than electronics on standby


The best way to save on your shopping is simply to A lot of people prefer to prowl the supermarkets, but the best deals can always be found online. You’ll find yourself saving big dollars by the end of the month if you look into alternative shopping methods.

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