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Housing Demand Spike Will be Temporary, Says Zoopla

The housing demand jump experienced once the housing market reopened will be short-lived, according to Zoopla.

The property website expects the jump in demand to be temporary, and that projections for a significant economic decline and rising unemployment will moderate further growth. 

Housing demand hit its highest level since before lockdown after the government reopened the market two weeks ago, and Zoopla says it expects sale volumes to increase further in the short-term.

But the rate of house price growth will stagger during the summer months, once the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the housing market becomes evident.

Richard Donnell, director of research and insight at Zoopla, said: “The scale of the rebound in demand for housing is welcome news for estate agents and developers, but it is also surprising given projections for a sharp rise in unemployment and a major decline in economic growth.

“The economic impacts of Covid-19 will grow in the coming months and uncertainty is building. The majority of would-be movers plan to continue their search, encouraged by low mortgage rates and continued government support for the economy. 

“However, we expect the latest rebound in demand to moderate in the coming weeks as buyers and sellers start to exert greater caution. Further support from the government can’t be discounted and would help limit the scale of the downside risks.”

(MORE: £82bn Worth of House Sales Suspended Due to Lockdown, Zoopla Reports)

What Happens Now?

Zoopla says there are two salient aspects to consider when predicting housing patterns for the rest of the year. 

Firstly, having calculated that 373,000 sales were suspended during lockdown, Zoopla says it is unclear how many of these sales will make it to completion. 

Around 40% of prospective buyers put their plans on hold during lockdown, citing deterrents such as market uncertainty, loss of income and reduced confidence in future finances.

Secondly, will the pent-up demand post-lockdown actually convert into new sales? Zoopla said a return of pent-up demand was to be expected, but the pace will likely drop given “the typical two-month lag between new demand entering the market and sales being agreed”.

Moreover, while buyer demand spiked by 88% across England once the housing market reopened, not all demand will be met if available supply does not increase.

Donnell added: “Many households are likely to have re-evaluated what they want from their home. This could well explain the scale of the demand returning to the market. We need to see more supply come to the market to satisfy this demand.”

The housing market is yet to reopen in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. 

(MOREAnnual House Price Growth Increases by 3.7% in April, Nationwide Reveals)

This post first appeared on https://www.homebuilding.co.uk

How to develop a post-covid-19 digital marketing strategy

Covid-19 has changed how we operate our businesses. With physical distancing and other health and safety measures, home services and renovation companies have had to adjust. Reinventing how we do things to serve customers is essential for public health, but it is important to remember that how we market our businesses needs to adjust too.

The digital landscape is different than it was pre-pandemic. In case you didn’t know, online traffic has surged since the start of the pandemic, In fact, web traffic to RenovationFind.com has doubled since Covid-19 arrived and it continues to go up daily. We are seeing record numbers in web users. Consumers have changed how they interact with businesses and it is predicted that these behaviours and online patterns could be permanent.

Having a digital marketing strategy is no longer a take-it-or-leave-it option. To survive in the ‘new normal’ it is a must-have. You may have developed a marketing plan for 2020, but if it was done prior to Covid-19 it will need major adjusting.

Even with restrictions lifting across the country, no one can predict when or if things will ever be back to business as usual. ‘Business as usual’ will be very different than what it was pre-Covid. It’s vital for your business to plan and execute digital marketing strategies and campaigns that will set you up for success in this ‘new normal’. We are still operating with uncertainty, but digital marketing efforts will help you survive and thrive as we learn this new way of doing things.

Here is some advice for developing a post-COVID-19 digital marketing strategy:

Stay the course and don’t freeze digital marketing spending

Business is struggling in all industries, including the home services industry. Things will not be so bleak forever and business leaders and consumers will all learn how to adjust. Now is not the time to cut back your digital marketing efforts. Because of stay-at-home recommendations and social distancing, your customers are online now more than ever. They use the internet for all their shopping, entertainment, news, and social interaction. You want your business to be a part of that too.

Plus, it’s likely that some of your competitors have frozen marketing spending to make up for lost revenue. This gives you a competitive edge for your demographic’s attention online. It will also mean that you can end up spending less on digital advertising since fewer competitors are after your target audience.

Instead of cutting out digital marketing, think about how you can become memorable to your current and potential customers online. If you have the financial resources, invest it in expanding your online brand image. You can grow, extend your reach, expand your social media followers, and gain new customers. Keep in mind that your marketing campaigns need to have a purpose and enhance customer experience while delivering your brand image.

Be current and appropriate with your messaging

If you have been scheduling your social media posts far into the future, its time to stop doing that. Things are constantly changing, including restrictions on how you are able to run your business. Something you’ve scheduled two weeks from today can be totally inappropriate by the time it is published.

You can do a little pre-planning, but only a few days at a time. You don’t want to be posting content if it’s irrelevant. Changes to restrictions, public health recommendations, a potential second wave of coronavirus outbreaks, and other factors can change in a day. Be prepared to align your social media activity with the most current events.

Instead, learn how to publish content on the fly. That might mean checking newsfeeds on a daily basis and creating content that is relevant to that day. We can’t guess what will happen and we can’t assume what content our audience will want from one week to the next. Your digital content needs to be as current as possible, showing empathy to the most current updates in the pandemic and afterward.


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Have a plan for the stages of economic re-launch

Remember that things are constantly evolving as businesses adjust to the various levels of government re-launch plans. The federal and provincial governments have laid out their plans for re-opening the economy, although some dates have not been set. That means you have an idea of what they have planned (keeping in mind it could change or be disrupted in a moment’s notice) and can create a campaign calendar accordingly. As restrictions are removed, your marketing strategy can change to accommodate the new recommendations.

Create and share compelling content

With everyone spending more time online, they are also spending more time-consuming content. While it is likely that many of your competitors have cut spending on digital marketing due to financial constraints, your content will still have to compete.

We have seen a lot of organizations do a great job of adjusting their content to meet people where they are at in this unprecedented situation. For example, restaurants promoted gift cards for take-out and delivery. Fitness studios offered online classes and brick-and-mortar stores have started selling online. When things do return to normal, their customers will remember them. These strategies change as businesses start to open to the public again, little by little. What can you promote online that is relevant to your business during and post-COVID-19?

Make known your commitment to public health and safety

Everyone has a different stance regarding restrictions on business and different tolerance to risk. Some customers might be okay with you entering their home to offer a service, while others will feel very vulnerable and stressed about it regardless of meeting the current health guidelines. Either way, it’s important to make clear your commitment to health and safety in all your communication. That includes the health and safety of your customers and your employees. You should have this message on your website and periodically through content posted on social media and sent in email campaigns.

You might have created and released an official pandemic response when the crisis first emerged. With restrictions lifting and people heading back to work, it’s time to adjust that response. Share on your website, social media, and other digital streams what your company is doing to meet or even exceed public health requirements. Put your customer’s minds at ease, so they can be certain that you’re considering their health and safety as well as your own, as we enter a post-COVID world.

Ensure your website design is updated

Your digital marketing strategy’s aim is to increase traffic to your website and improve search engine optimization for your website. Is your website up to date? Now is the time to ensure your website is modern and that users can easily find the information they’re looking for. What is the point in investing time and money in social advertising, content, and digital marketing if leads are dropped as soon as they reach a bad website?

If you’re savvy on the computer, use a DIY website builder like WordPress. If you are not confident in your skills, hire a web development company to create an eye-catching, easy-to-use, website for your company. Recommended companies include Funnel Edge Marketing.

Keep your web content current

If your website design is professional and attractive, but the content itself is dated, you will lose converting those hard-earned visits into customers. You need to have a response to the Covid-19 pandemic visible on your website, so customers know what you are doing to ensure public health. It will also inform them of how you’ve adjusted the way of doing business because of the pandemic. As the economy relaunches phases by phase, you should update your web content to inform customers how this will impact the way you do business and offer your products and services.

Even if you weren’t trying to run a business during and after a global health emergency, you should still commit to updating your web content periodically. Go through every page and make sure information on your company, team, services, and contact pages are current. Investing money in a digital marketing strategy will have a higher return on investment if people are getting the correct information after reaching your website.

Review all your online profiles and listings

When you Google your company name, what is coming up? All online profiles, including the Google business listing, social media profiles, review site profiles, and other listings should be updated. Review each one and make sure the right contact information and your web address are on there. Remember, the more links you have back to your website the better. While you’re at it, read your company descriptions and make sure they’re still accurate and search engine friendly. For those listings that allow photo uploads, be sure to upload a recent logo and a few photos relevant to your business.

Having complete profiles and listings online can help with search engine optimization. They can also give potential customers a good first impression if they stumble upon your business online.


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Use Pay-Per-Click advertising  

As mentioned before, Pay Per Click (PPC) online advertising is most affordable than it was before Covid-19.  Because online ads function as auctions, and many businesses have pulled away from marketing spending during the pandemic, winning those bids is less expensive. Not only are ads cheaper to run, converting those online users into leads and eventually customers are cheaper too.

While advertising on platforms like Facebook and Google is less expensive and less competitive, that could change. Keep in mind that the entire landscape is unpredictable because of the pandemic. Thankfully, digital advertising comes with a huge amount of data in real-time, so you can make adjustments as things change. This makes online advertising flexible, affordable, and the results are easy to track. PPC ads are easy to keep on top of. You can adjust your ads and their targets for the best ROI.

Find a Customer Relationship Management System that offers marketing automation

There are many tools available that can help you plan, execute, and better manage your customer relations and digital marketing strategy. Customer Relationship Management (CRM) can help you organize leads, conversions, and other essential customer relationship activities. Having a good CRM in place will make sure a lead or customer request never gets lost. You can track everything from one dashboard.

Plus, most CRMs come with marketing automation features. If you’re looking for a CRM for the first time, do some research on what marketing features would work best for your company. You can use their content management systems to create, plan, and schedule your digital content. There is good feedback from companies that have used CRM software like Pipedrive and Hubspot.

Start using your email list

If you already have a CRM in place or have a contact list that is compliant with the Canadian Anti-Spam Legislation (CASL), start utilizing it! Email marketing is a great way to connect with your customer base and it can cost nothing. It is an effective way to keep communication open with your contact list. With email marketing, you can send campaigns to your valuable customers and reach existing leads that are not customers quite yet. Send that compelling content you’ve created, share special offers, information on your response to Covid-19, and show empathy to your leads and customers.

There is online email automation software that can help with this. Most will offer free accounts if your contact list is under their minimum amount. Some email marketing software companies are even offering price relief to help businesses navigate these challenging times. Most email tools are user-friendly and provide templates and visual email builders to help you create professional, visually appealing email campaigns. Recommendations include MailChimp and Constant Contact.

Utilize web analytic tools and search engine optimization

If you are serious about a successful digital marketing strategy, you need to invest in web analytics and search engine optimization (SEO) tools. These tools show you how your marketing efforts are performing, so you can understand how users are consuming your content, how leads are coming in, and adjust for the best return on investment possible. SEO can be a time-consuming task for a business owner. If you have the resources, hiring a third-party company to help you attract the right audience using SEO and web analytics is worth the cost.

If you haven’t done so already, set up your website with Google Analytics. This will allow you to see and track web visits, traffic sources, user behaviour, conversions, and provide more useful data. Knowing how your digital marketing efforts are performing can help you evaluate and adjust, as necessary. Learn how to set up Google Analytics.

In conclusion

Businesses have been through a very challenging time, and challenges will remain post-COVID-19. Your first priority should be the health and safety of yourself, employees, and customers. When that’s taken care of, utilize some of these ideas to effectively market your business through these uncertain times.

RenovationFind is an established digital marketing company that specializes in marketing trades, home services, and home renovation companies. Companies that are on our website benefit from our professional and original content, brand awareness, lead generation, and search engine optimization efforts.  If you haven’t already started executing or boosting your digital marketing efforts, we can help you adapt and navigate in the new way of doing things. Please connect with us.

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Another Helpful Article is >>> 3 WAYS CUSTOMER REFERRALS WILL CHANGE POST-COVID (FOR HOME SERVICE BUSINESSES)

This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

Hire a general contractor for your home renovation

When you hire a general contractor for your renovation, it saves a lot of time and stress. But what about before the work begins, when you’re still planning everything? With all the details, it can be a little overwhelming, but a general contractor can help with more than just construction.

Home Revival by JC Inc. in Calgary is professional home renovations experts. They share the benefits of hiring their general contractors to help with the design phase of renovations:

They’ll help narrow down to the essentials

It’s all too easy to place everything on your list as top priority additions, even when they may not be. When you hire a general contractor right from the start, they’ll help with that elimination process. They also help with finding alternatives to certain materials or ideas that are more budget-friendly or practical for your lifestyle. Instead of real hardwood floors, for example, luxury vinyl plank is just as beautiful, but at much less cost. Or, if you plan to replace your countertops, quartz is the perfect alternative to a marble countertop.

By relying on your general contractor’s years of experience and skill, you will ensure your renovation is an investment. If you plan to sell, your home will be a top market contender. Plus, contractors will know and suggest details that buyers do or don’t want to have.

They will notice things you may miss

It may be a matter of the design of the room not working, or that another material is a better choice. Whatever the case, there are some things that a general contractor will notice, thanks to many years of design experience. The right lighting layout, for example, is crucial in any room, but it will also vary by room. The kitchen may benefit from bright white lighting, but you don’t want the same in your bedroom. Overall room layout is another factor where having a second, and professional opinion will help. If you want to change the layout of your bathroom, that doesn’t have to mean knocking down walls or moving the plumbing. Your general contractor can help with planning a new design that works within the space, while still transforming it. Ultimately, a general contractor will help you avoid becoming trapped in a tunnel vision scenario.

You’ll save time by jumpstarting the process

When you hire a general contractor, they handle all the building permits and requirements. If you plan to build an addition or turn your basement into a suite, they will already know the various building codes. So, having a general contractor present during the design phase means a jumpstart to that process. Any permits that need to be applied for, such as electrical, plumbing, or development, will be done before you even reach the construction phase. Likewise, any materials that need to be ordered will be done so ahead of time.

That way, once it’s time to plan a schedule and start renovating, there won’t be any unexpected delays. Your general contractor will readily have a quality team of trade workers, and the work will begin. Not only will you save time, but it’ll save some major headaches trying to handle this all yourself!

General Contractors in Calgary

Home Revival by JC Inc. prides itself on transforming homes into truly unique, beautiful new spaces. Their general contractors ensure only the highest quality of service and care when you work with them. They offer home renovations, siding repairs, and kitchen remodels.

Contact Home Revival by JC for quality work!

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This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

Registration Now Open for the Virtual Homebuilding Show in July

Registration is now open to attend the Virtual Homebuilding & Renovating Summer Show in July.

This free-to-attend two-day event on 24-25 July will provide self builders and renovators with all the advice they need to continue their projects — all without leaving home.

We are launching this show because the Covid-19 pandemic has temporarily suspended mass events. This means that the upcoming spring and summer Homebuilding & Renovating Shows at the NEC, Glasgow and Surrey have been postponed until next year – find out the new dates here.

Homebuilding continues, however, and with lockdown restrictions starting to ease we are now seeing builders going back to work and builders’ merchants reopening their stores.

The Virtual Homebuilding & Renovating Show is designed to provide self builders and renovators with the advice and product ideas they need.

What is the Virtual Homebuilding & Renovating Show?

The Virtual Homebuilding & Renovating Show is a free online experience to help keep you connected with our exhibitors and allow you to keep your project going. 

You’ll be able to gain insight and knowledge over two days from our experts, exhibitors, seminars and masterclasses in this 3D virtual event.

This is what you’ll see virtually at the show: 

  • Exhibition Hall – ask questions, download brochures and arrange meetings with a range of exhibitors – from window suppliers to timber frame manufacturers 
  • The Land Hub – discover everything you need to know about finding and buying a building plot in these bite size sessions
  • Seminar Theatre – listen to panel discussions and inspiring presentations, from a beginner’s guide to building your own home to kitchen and bathroom design masterclasses
  • Masterclass Theatre – in-depth demonstrations and seminars on a range of topics, from heating, interiors and renewable energy
  • Expert Panel – listen to our expert panel of planners, architects and Homebuilding & Renovating magazine experts.

What if I Registered for a Homebuilding & Renovating Show?

If you registered for one of our spring or summer events this year, you will already have a place secured, you’ll just need to re-register in our virtual portal and you will be sent a link to the virtual event.  

If you have tickets to a postponed show, you will receive an email stating that your tickets will roll forward to the rescheduled date. 

This post first appeared on https://www.homebuilding.co.uk

12 Landscaping Trends & Ideas

Landscaping can turn a regular yard into a beautiful, functional outdoor living space. Not only will it make your property more enjoyable, it can boost curb appeal and increase resale value.

When it comes to landscape design, you have plenty of options. You can install retaining walls, planters and garden beds. Create and divide spaces with paverstone patios and walkways. Homeowners will enjoy spending time in their new landscape and the way their property looks each time they return home.

Always start with a landscape design plan.

Like any large-scale project, you’ll have better results with a carefully plotted design plan. Enlisting the help of a professional landscape designer is critical if you’re planning a backyard overhaul. Without a grand design for the entire property, your landscape can end up looking disjointed, lacking flow and function.

A landscape designer will meet with you to review your space and listen to your dreams for the yard. They’ll consider all the things you need for your customized landscape. You might want a fireplace area for weekend evenings around the campfire. Or perhaps you’re a gardener and you want to fill your space with raised flower beds. They’ll take your must-haves and add other features, so it all comes together.

DIY landscaping or hire a pro?

DIY landscaping can be done but you shouldn’t start any project without a well-laid plan. The most common mistake homeowners make is taking the piece-meal approach to landscaping. They’ll work on one area of the yard at a time, without knowing how it will all flow together when it’s done. Bad DIY landscaping projects can have a negative affect on your home’s resale. Make sure you’re confident in your skills and time commitment before attempting to DIY.

If you want to tackle this job yourself, still have a design drafted by a professional landscape designer. They can help you create the plan for the yard and even break down all the details for you. You’ll know exactly what materials you need, what features you need to install and how everything will look at the end. You might decide to do some of the work yourself and hire a landscaper to take care of the more complex installations. This plan will help you stay organized, stay on budget and have a realistic idea about the project before you start.

Still can’t decide? Read this article: “Should I hire a pro or do my own landscape work?

You know you want to overhaul your yard, but you’re not sure where to start. We’ve provided some ideas and inspiration to help you make the most of your property this summer. The most popular landscape installations are intended to create functional outdoor living spaces you and your loved ones will enjoy together.

Landscape trends & IDEAS

Landscape trends & IDEAS

1. Multiple outdoor living areas.

Creating an outdoor living area will improve the function of your property and give you a space to enjoy. Outdoor living spaces are also very popular with buyers and are a great selling feature if you decide to list your home for sale.

Homeowners that have the space are choosing to install more than one outdoor living space. This might mean building a higher deck addition off the house for dining, with a lower paverstone patio meant for lounging or conversing. Sometimes an additional seating area will be on the other end of the yard, beside a flower garden or water feature. Landscapers can define these areas with retaining walls, walkways, plant beds and even structures like gazebos or pergolas.

2. A campfire area.

Campfires have been trending for as long as we’ve known how to make fire! Still, building an outdoor fire pit area continues to be a major trend in landscape design. This feature provides a comfortable space for relaxing outdoors earlier in the spring or later in the fall than other outdoor living spaces. Many firepits are installed on a patio, or in a space that has been defined by retaining walls or other hardscape features. You can choose a classic fire pit, or a gas burning outdoor fireplace.

3. Waterfalls, streams and ponds.

Water features are a popular landscape installation this year. If you are spending time outdoors, you’ll feel relaxed and rejuvenated listening to the gentle trickling of water. When it comes to water features, you have a wide range of options and price points. For smaller yards, a pond-less waterfall or simple fountain will work. For larger properties, homeowners are installing full ponds complete with koi fish and small waterfalls or streams. If you want a water feature, get it installed by a professional. Improper installation can give you issues down the road.

4. Creating ambiance with landscape lighting.

Homeowners want to enhance their landscape design in the evening with thoughtful lighting. Main living spaces, like the patio or deck, might have soft ambient lighting so they can be used at night. Landscapers are also installing landscape lighting to highlight certain features of a landscape design, like along a path, near a water feature or certain plant beds.

Landscape lighting can also provide security for your property. Having motion sensor lights near your home, or at the entrance of your yard can help deter intruders. It can also improve safe illumination for you and your family as you approach your home or navigate your yard at night.

Solar powered lights are a popular choice. Small solar panels absorb the sun’s energy during the day, and the lights come on automatically when it gets dark. These lights are usually not bright enough to serve as task lighting, but can create whimsical ambiance for your walkways, fences and other landscape features when the sun goes down.

5. Xeriscaping for a low-maintenance yard.

Xeriscaping is landscaping that reduces or eliminates the need of supplemental watering from sprinklers or an irrigation system. For this type of landscape, homeowners choose drought-resistant plants and shrubs that require very little water.

Instead of grass, xeriscapes would have more areas filled with mulch or sometimes gravel. You can use organic mulch to cover the surface of the soil around plants and to create pathways throughout your yard. Mulch allows both oxygen and water to pass through to the plant roots, while providing a layer of insulation. That layer reduces the evaporation of water, so more water gets absorbed by the plants. It also reduces weed growth, reduces erosion and moderates the temperature of the soil.

More homeowners are interested in energy efficiency and consuming less. Xeriscapes can reduce water use by 60% or more compared to conventional landscapes. They are also very low maintenance, since you won’t have to worry about watering or maintaining that much lawn, if any. For the same reason, you’ll save money on lawn maintenance. Xeriscapes use less fertilizer and equipment to maintain, saving you both time and money.

6. Installing a rain collection system.

Following the same lines as xeriscaping, a popular sustainable landscaping trend is rainwater collection. The simplest way to harvest rainwater is with a rain barrel, but there are more advanced collection systems that can be integrated into an irrigation system. Some can even harvest water and feed it into your household plumbing system.

Because the rain barrel method is the easiest and the cheapest, it’s also the most popular. Installing a rain barrel will catch rainwater so it can be used for watering your lawn, trees and other plants in your landscape.

7. Switching to artificial grass.

Want a green lawn all year long without any maintenance? So do many homeowners! Artificial turf is becoming increasingly popular in landscape design. Manufacturing and installing of artificial turf have come a long way over the years. It has texture, multiple shades, blade lengths and thicknesses and looks and feels just like the real thing.

You won’t have to worry about watering, cutting, fertilizing or weed control. To maintain an artificial lawn, simply blow out debris with a leave blower periodically. It’s the easiest way to get a beautiful, lush, green lawn but it’s certainly not the cheapest. Artificial turf is pricey, but a good option if you need a low maintenance landscape.

8. Plant native plants.

Plants that are native to your climate zone will thrive. Plus, restoring a native plant habitat in urban spaces can help preserve local biodiversity. This is something that is becoming more important to many people. Your own landscape can contribute to a healthy, living ecosystem for birds, bees and other critters that are critical to healthy biodiversity.

Homeowners and landscapers will benefit birds and bugs by choosing native plants for their landscaping project. If you want plants that do well, instead of exotic plants that struggle to stay alive, and you like the idea of more birds in the yard – choose native plants. Search for native plants for your region.

9. Arbors and pergolas.

People often get arbors and pergolas confused, but both are popular design trends. These structures can help define entrances, walkways or living spaces and create dramatic focal points in landscape design.

An arbor is a structure in a landscape that signifies and entrance to a separate area or a pathway. Arbors are usually free-standing, arch-like and designed to support climbing vines and other plants.

Garden Near Stone House

Pergolas are often built over a deck or patio to create shade over a sitting area. They are built like arbors, using a simple post and beam design. Sometimes pergolas are attached to the house but can be a separate structure in any part of the yard. The top of the pergola can be open beams, covered with shade lattice or have a full roof covering it. Many pergolas are built to support climbing vines and plants.

10. Outdoor kitchens.

The backyard chef has taken things to a whole new level. Outdoor kitchens are popular but are much more than just a backyard barbeque. Imagine an attractive and fully functional kitchen, built seamlessly in a beautifully landscaped yard. At home chefs are personalizing these spaces, installing things like pizza ovens, multiple grills and smokers to make a space perfect for culinary creations in the great outdoors.

Just like indoor kitchens, outdoor kitchens can be a hub for entertaining and socializing. Serve guests cocktails at an outdoor bar while preparing dinner on a custom grilling system. The space can be shaded by a pergola, completely covered or not, whatever you choose.

11. Planting a kitchen garden.

While sustainability becomes more important to society, it also becomes more important in landscape design. Homeowners want to do more than just compost kitchen scraps and so, they’re planting vegetable gardens to supplement their grocery list.

Outdoor kitchen gardens can provide you and your family with fresh vegetables, herbs and berries all summer long. You’ll love the fresh food coming out of the yard, but you’ll also enjoy the act of growing it. Gardening is a great way to connect with nature. It helps us to relax, reduces stress and is good for kids too. If you’re not sure about what vegetables to grow, as your landscape company what grows best for your climate zone.

12. Enhancing with potted plants.

When you walk through a garden centre, a huge part of the display is made up of beautiful garden pots. Potted plants have always been popular in landscape design and nothing has changed.

Potted plants can be a life saver for homeowners with limited space. Putting a few beautiful flowerpots on your condo porch or apartment balcony can add a splash of colour to even the smallest outdoor space. Regardless of the property, potted plants are also used to decorate sitting areas, line pathways and improve curb appeal. They’re also portable, so you can change up plants in certain areas of your landscape without having to replant something new.

What’s the value of landscaping?

Landscaping can increase the value of your home. While you won’t recoup 100% of the cost, certain landscape installations can yield higher resale value if you want to sell your home. Real estate trends show that home buyers are most interested in landscape features that can add to lifestyle, more than just aesthetics. They want to purchase a home that have functional, comfortable and convenient features. Buyers are also looking for landscapes that don’t require expensive upkeep.

If you’re selling your home, curb appeal matters. Beautiful landscaping can help you achieve good curb appeal. That will attract buyers and command a higher price for your property. One of the most cost-effective ways you can improve curb appeal is with lawn care. Maintaining your lawn, weeding your garden and trimming your trees and shrubs will give your home the polished look that buyers are most attracted to. You can see well over 100% of your investment paid back at resale by investing in regular lawn care.

Creating outdoor living spaces can also increase resale value. Patios and deck additions have a good return on investment. A simple wood deck addition can recover almost 76% of it’s cost at resale, according to this cost vs. value report.

You should also consider the value of your improved lifestyle and personal enjoyment of your new landscape. Spend money on landscaping and enjoy using it. If you decide to sell in the future, you’ll make a little extra money as an added bonus.

Find a RenovationFind Certified landscaping company in your city!

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This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

Self Build Suppliers Reopen Their Doors As Lockdown Restrictions Ease

Self builders and renovators have faced numerous challenges in recent months, but suppliers are now beginning to reopen and this means home improvers are better equipped to access resources needed for their projects.

It’s too soon to claim a semblance of normality is returning, but there are positive signs that the homebuilding industry is embracing the easing of Covid-19 lockdown measures.

The construction industry has returned to work, the housing market has reopened, and several major builders’ merchants have reopened their stores in some capacity.

And now, with showrooms reopening and virtual consultations enabling more effective communication with suppliers and tradespeople, those working on self build or renovation projects can afford to feel more confident about their builds.

(MORE: How to Maximise the Efficiency of Your Project During Lockdown)

Showrooms Reopen

This week, bifold and sliding doors specialist Kloeber announced that it will be reopening its showrooms on Tuesday 26 May, albeit with strict new procedures in place. 

The showrooms will be operating an appointment-only basis, with reduced opening hours, and will include gel stations throughout.

This is a positive announcement for self builders, with Kloeber offering a bespoke self build service designed to make life easier when working on your project. Kloeber’s announcement could yet coincide with more showrooms opening up. 

ID Systems, meanwhile, has launched a virtual showroom to help self builders browse glazing products.

Virtual Consultations

Many companies have been offering virtual consultations during lockdown to help customers plan their projects from the comfort of their home. These include: 

(MORE: Companies Offering Special Services During Lockdown)

Who Else is Open?

For oak frame house advice and services, Oakwrights remains fully operational (in accordance with government guidelines on social distancing), while for timber frames, Mercers Timber Frame is also providing services as normal.

It’s business as usual at Bricoflor with the exception of polyflor products, and Firepits UK remains open for those looking to make an addition to their garden this summer.

Keep following our live blog for updates on lockdown, builders’ merchants, self build suppliers and much more to find out how Covid-19 could yet affect your project.

Register here for the Virtual Homebuilding & Renovating Show in July, a free online experience to help keep you connected with our exhibitors and allow you to keep your self build or home improvement project going.

This post first appeared on https://www.homebuilding.co.uk

Common lighting mistakes to know and avoid

Adding lights to a room may seem like a simple task, but there’s actually plenty of room for mistakes. Too much or too little lighting can affect both the room’s layout and overall mood. That’s why it’s important to recognize those common mistakes so you can avoid them in your home.

4-Star Electric in Calgary is a residential, full-service electrical company. They share some common lighting mistakes to avoid in your home:

One light fits all

Having a single overhead light may work for smaller spaces, but don’t rely on this for all rooms. In general, the best lighting rule is to have layers of lights for different purposes. Not only will this help evenly brighten the room, but it gives more options to do so. With lights, plan to have an ambient, accent, and task light source.

Ambient lighting is a general overhead light and is ideal for brightening the whole room. Accent lights highlight specific pieces, such as art, walls, or objects like a fireplace. The final style, task lighting, is a table lamp in your bedroom or under-cabinet lighting. It provides just enough light to work under or near, without needing to light the entire room.

Room size doesn’t affect fixtures

When it comes to light fixtures, match the size and style to the overall room. You can still have a chandelier in your kitchen, but don’t pick a full-sized one. If the fixtures don’t fit the room, it will throw the proportions of the room off balance. A good guideline is to measure the height and width of a room, then add the numbers and convert them to inches. This number will tell you the right diameter for your new light fixture. If it’s above a table or countertop, measure the width of the table and then subtract one foot for the right size.

Any bulb will work

Different types of bulbs will provide different colours and intensity of light. These colours play just as much a role in mood as does the brightness of a room. Choose the intensity and colour of the bulb depending on each room. Kitchens, for example, benefit from bright white lights. This helps not only with the right lighting for prepping food, but it adds more vibrancy to the room. Bedrooms or living rooms, though, will benefit from a gentle and warm light. You want to provide a cozy, warm feeling, and not a bright, high-energy one. Different bulbs will also provide better energy savings over others and help save money in the long run. LEDs and compact fluorescent bulbs, for example, are both highly efficient and have longer lifespans.

Electricians in Calgary

4-Star Electric strives to provide the best quality of customer service and work for every project. Excellence and customer satisfaction are their number one goals, which they are proud to provide. Whether commercial or residential, they provide a full range of services for all electrical needs. So whatever electrical work your home needs, 4-Star Electric is ready to help.

Call 4-Star Electric now for quality electrical services!

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More than an online directory, we are Western Canada’s fastest growing marketing platform for promoting and connecting the best trades, service, and home improvement companies to homeowners.

This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

5 Tips for Decorating and Furnishing a Timeless Kid’s Bedroom

Decorating a child’s room can be a daunting task. They grow quickly and their attention is often drawn to whatever is new and shiny, making it difficult for you to design a room that they can grow with. Families now also look to get the most value of the home they live in, as home prices increase in many urban areas, and people are opting to stay longer in an apartment, townhouse or rather than upgrading to a larger house. This means maximizing how you use the space in every room and evolving its function over time.

Luckily, with just a few simple tips, it is possible for you to design a timeless children’s room that will still allow your child to express their personality while being able to adapt to them their grow older.

  1. Keep your wall colours neutral

One of the most tedious parts of any home decor project is painting – covering all the furniture, taping off baseboards and windows, cleaning up the inevitable drips on the floor. Avoid having to repaint every time your child’s change by choosing a neutral tone that can grow with your child from infancy to empty nest. Avoid colour themes or wallpapers from your child’s favourite TV shows or movies because as much as your child loves Paw Patrol right now, that won’t last for long and you will be the one responsible for peeling off all that wallpaper!

  1. Display pops of colours and textures with fabrics

A child’s rooms should still be bright and fun! Use bed spreads, curtains, pillows and rugs to create those colour focal points. These will be easier for you to update as your child grows and their tastes change. Just avoid having too many different patterns throughout the room to keep the room from feeling too busy. We suggest having no more than 3 contrasting patterns.

  1. Let the child express themselves with fun accessories

Don’t forget that this will be your child’s room, the one place in the house where their personalities can be reflected. Let them display their airplane collection, their works of art or the shells they picked up during your family beach vacation. Set up an art station with gallery frames to allow your child to constantly create their own art for their room. You can let them display their artwork on a corkboard or hang pieces from a string, as recommended in this HGTV article.

  1. Choose classic furniture that can grow with your child

From coming home from the hospital to a crib, to leaving home with their double bed, your child will go through many different pieces of furniture. Search for classically designed furniture which can grow with your child. This will save you from needing to buy a new piece at each life stage. Instead of a designated change table which you will only need for the first few years of your child’s life, buy a standard dresser and use a foam changing pad which can be attached to the top of the dresser and removed when no longer needed. Finding versatile pieces which can work throughout your child’s life will save you time and money when it comes to decorating a timeless room.

  1. Utilize built-in storage

While those bright pastel coloured shelving units for children are fun and eye-catching for storing children’s toys, they will not last and when your child gets older, they won’t want to have such “kiddie” looking furniture in their rooms. Install some custom built-in shelves in white or natural wood instead. When your children are young, you can store their toys on the lower shelves in colourful baskets so they are in easy reach. When they grow older, toys can make way for books, collections and pictures.

Take our 5 tips for decorating a timeless kids room and engage your child’s imagination and creativity to make a space they will feel comfortable in as their own. And most importantly, have fun with it! Engage your inner child and enjoy working on the room with a fresh enthusiasm.

Zoocasa is a full-service brokerage that offers advanced online search tools to empower Canadians with the data and expertise they need to make more successful real estate decisions. View home listings at zoocasa.com or download our free iOS app.

This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

Rest and Relax: The Top 5 Colors for Painting a Bedroom

If there is one thing that you want your bedroom to be, it’s relaxing.

Your environment is an essential factor in helping you get a good night’s sleep.

One of the ways that you can make your environment more relaxing is to paint your walls in calming colors.

But which are the best bedroom colors to create a serene atmosphere?

If you’re painting in Oakville, here are the top five colors to paint a bedroom.

1. Deep Blue

Blues are some of the best colors for relaxation. It is a color that stimulates clear thought, aids concentration, and helps to calm you.

Deep blue is one of the best bedroom paint colors. It is a rich color that brings with it a sense of wisdom while being calming.

This shade of blue can be a little intense at times, so you may choose to pair it with another color to help neutralize it.

2. Soft Blue

If deep blue is too intense for you, why not go for a paler shade of blue?

Soft blues will make you think of the sky on a clear day. It is a color that naturally lowers your heart rate and is said to help reduce your blood pressure.

If you are after a strong sense of tranquillity from your bedroom, then pale blues are the way to go.

3. Light Grey

A slight hint of grey in the paint that you use for your bedroom walls will be calming. You will need to keep the shade of grey that you choose as subtle as possible, as greys can be quite cold and unnatural.

One of the best things about painting your bedroom walls using a soft light shade of grey is that it will work alongside anything else in the room.

This means that you don’t need to get new curtains or furniture if you don’t want to, as they will work with your wall paint.

4. Pale Green

Since green is the color most associated with nature, having your room painted in a light green will provide a calming feeling that connects you with the earth beneath your feet.

With elements that are both cool and warm, pale green is subtle and soothing and will help you find that natural sense of calm.

5. Lavender

Lavender is the perfect color for a bedroom. It is subtle, and it never overwhelms.

Purple is a regal color, and the pale lavender tones still hold onto their sense of class.

The scent of real lavender can also help you relax. Sprinkling lavender powder around your bed, or vaporizing lavender essential oil in your bedroom will help you drift off to sleep quickly at night.

Bedroom Painting in Oakville?

When painting your bedroom, hiring professional decorators will take the stress out of the process. You’ll get a great finish, and you won’t need to get your hands dirty.

If you need a bedroom painting in Oakville, get in touch for a quote from Platinum Pro Painters.

This post first appeared on https://blog.renovationfind.com

Sump Pump Repair: Cost, Maintenance, and Spring Checklist

The best way to avoid a costly sump pump repair is by taking preventative measures to reduce the odds of it happening. Since sump pumps work on an automatic system, you may not realize if a unit is going out before it’s too late.

Between melting snow and frequent raining due to the fluctuating temperatures, sump pumps are most relied on during the springtime, also known as “sump season.” A sump pump is responsible for removing and moving water away from your home, and since it’s been estimated that 98% of all basements in the United States will experience water damage at some point, saving yourself from an expensive hassle with a little bit of extra work is well worth it.

How to Avoid a Sump Pump Repair

No one wants to go through a sump pump repair, so the best thing you can do is preventative maintenance checks starting in March to reduce your chances of it happening. If you can, it’s even better to run through this checklist at least two times per year. 

If you’ve never done this type of annual check, or you are unsure of where to begin, not to worry. Our sump pump maintenance checklist has you covered.

Sump Pump Maintenance Checklist

  1. Check for Debris – Simply start by examing the area around your sump pump. It’s not uncommon for the sump pump pit to accidentally come in contact with small items that may interfere with the float mechanism. 
  2. Examine the “Check” Valve – Where is the arrow pointed? An arrow pointed toward the pump indicates that it’s installed incorrectly, which will result in water flowing back into the sump pump while turned off.
  3. Watch the Weep Hole – If possible, every three to four months you should clean the weep hole with a tiny object. Just be careful not to break off anything inside of it.
  4. Inspect the Impeller – This small filter should be bolted to your sump pump. If your pump has been making a whining noise or even stops running, the impeller may be clogged.
  5. Smell Check – There’s always going to be a small amount of water in the trap, but if there is a persistent odor it might be a sign of it sitting too long. Adding some water mixed with a cleaning agent, such as bleach, to the basic should cause the sump pump to engage and cycle the water.
  6. Power and Backup Source – When is the last time you checked to ensure the power is connected to your sump pump? Don’t be caught in the middle of a large rainstorm only to find your pump is malfunctioning. Installing a backup power source, like a generator, will give you some peace at mind in case you are left without electricity.  

We Can Help! Connect with Handyman Connection Today.

Handyman Connection has decades of experience serving and assisting customers with all of their home maintenance needs. If you have any questions about sump pumps or want a free estimate, reach out today! 

The post Sump Pump Repair: Cost, Maintenance, and Spring Checklist appeared first on Handyman Connection.

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