Writing a Rental Ad: 10 Mistakes to Avoid

It is quite hard to face the fact that your rental property has recently become vacant, and you again have to go through the hassle of advertising it. Indeed, advertising a property can be a daunting task. That said, tenants come and go, and putting out ads for your recently vacant property is a part of the whole rental business. Having an informative, visually appealing, and accurate rental ad can increase your chances of attracting interested tenants. Unfortunately, there are certain mistakes that owners make while advertising their property.

1) A boring headline

To begin with, the advertisement must contain a short yet catchy headline that uniquely describes your property and makes it stand out from the crowd. It is the first thing that a potential tenant notices. Your ad gets more views when it has an interesting headline.

2) Insufficient information

When writing a rental ad, one should always make sure to include all the necessary details of the property in the advertisement. Whether it is about the furnishings or appliances the property has – each and every detail, however small, will make your ad more informative and eye-catching.

3) Targeting a very specific audience

Focusing on the physical characteristics of tenants or picking them on the basis of their family status would not get you a good tenant at all. Stereotypes and discriminatory behavior are a clear red flag for many and will not do you any favors as the owner of the property.

4) One source of advertising

Trends among renters change very often. Just because you found your last tenant through a certain app does not mean you will be successful in finding your next one at the same place. Relying on one specific application or medium to find tenants can make you miss out on several good options. Hence, advertise wherever you find a good opportunity to.

5) Outdated content

Using the same old, boring way of writing the rental advertisement for your property may not attract many customers. Moreover, details in the listing should be updated from time to time. Make sure to include high-quality content for the ad to reach maximum people.

6) Ignoring feedback

Customer reviews on the listing are very important. Whether the feedback you get is positive or negative, both opinions should be considered valuable. Ignoring users’ feedback can have a negative effect on prospective tenants. For the same reason, it is advised to address the reviews, however negative they may be, and try mitigating the situation. You can always ask for tips to improve your service from customers who give negative reviews under your listing. Also, you can ask them to contact you for detailed feedback, which will help you in crafting the ad as per users’ requirements.

7) Not using social media

Nothing compares to the reach that social media provides. With billions of people using social media applications, it serves as the perfect platform to advertise your rental ad on. You can connect with thousands of interested customers in a hassle-free way if you simply utilize the advancements of social media. Most people, especially the younger generation, rely heavily on social media apps for everything. They prefer house hunting on social media platforms too. So, listing your ad on Facebook and Instagram among other social media channels can make your ad reach a much wider audience. 

8) Not using proper vocabulary

To resonate with the target audience, one needs to use the right words in their advertisement. You can use specific keywords or USPs of your property to appear higher in search results. When you use the proper vocabulary, it helps the target audience to understand what you are advertising better. Stay away from ignorant, crude language, slang terms, or potentially offensive vocabulary so that your ad looks trustworthy and professional.

9) No pictures/Poor quality pictures

An advertisement with no pictures attached is good for nothing. No potential tenant would want to approach the owner of any blank rental advertisement for any queries. Apart from it being an incomplete ad, it also shows one’s unprofessionalism and lack of effort. Having clear, abundant, detailed, and high-resolution property pictures attracts customers and provides them with the convenience to see the flat without actually visiting it. 

10) Using abbreviations

You should avoid using abbreviations in your advertisement. Not only does it come across as informal, but also makes your ad difficult for a lot of people to understand. Poor rental descriptions can result in people skipping your ads and moving onto the ones that articulate the content in an easy-to-understand manner. 

It is nothing short of a harrowing task to properly advertise a property. It can become all the more difficult if you do not know how to go about it. However, if you look out for these mistakes and follow our tips, your renting business will change for good, and you will get a plethora of responses from interested tenants who will be eager to finalize the deal in no time!

Author’s bio. Jessica Fender is a professional marketer and a content writer. If you ever wondered, “I wish someone would write my essay for me”, she is one of those professional academic level writers that will save you time and your degree. She enjoys the beach, martial arts, and literature.

9 Clever Tricks to Make Your House Look Bigger

If you are living in a small space, then you know how it feels like to look cramped and restricted in your square footage.

When you try to cram everything in a tiny space, it will feel claustrophobic and anything but restful. The struggle is real.

Fortunately, you can reinvent your space so that it will turn out to be a spacious, well-designed home. Here are nin home design tricks that will make your small living space look bigger in no time:

1. Use enough amount of lighting

A room will look larger if it is well-lit, either with natural or artificial lighting.

Remove heavy draperies and open up your windows more to let the light from the outdoors enter your space. Brightly lit rooms will feel more open, eliminating shadows that can make space look smaller.

If you can, place your most used pieces of furniture, such as your favorite sofa, near the window so that you will have a view of the outdoors.

If there is minimal light, you can install track lighting. These flexible track heads and bright light can act as a substitute for direct light.

2. Opt for larger decorations

Using small knick-knacks make a space look cluttered and a lot smaller.

Utilize the triangle rule and symmetry when styling vignettes on coffee tables, dining tables, nightstands, and so on. Limit the groupings of your decor items into 3 to 5, as well.

Remember that you do not need to place accents on every surface of your room. Allow space to “breathe” instead of filling it with unnecessary clutter.

Heavy, weighty pieces of furniture tend to take too much space. For instance, a sleek sofa chair will provide you with as much sitting room as its overstuffed counterpart.

If you want to add a huge statement piece, such as a piece of art, then hang it on the wall. Do not use up valuable living space by placing it on the floor.

3. Choose monochromatic colors

Another classic decor tip is to use lighter hues when painting a relatively small space.

Painting the walls and the trim of the room with the same color tends to draw the eye up, highlighting the ceiling, as well as the entire room.

Both cool and delicate warm color tones on most surfaces will give the room a more open look, because you’re creating contrast, building depth and illusion of a much bigger space.

4. Hang mirrors in your home

Want to instantly create large, open spaces? Well, that starts with careful placement of your mirrors.

By placing them across windows and doorframes, you will be able to catch a glimpse outdoors and other rooms in the house, making space look larger.

A small space should include mirrors to make a greater sense of openness. Not only do they tend to reflect the light, but they also reflect the view, tricking the eye to perceive more space than it has.

5. Use patterns and stripes

Decorating a small room can be challenging. But another trick here is to decorate it with stripes and patterns so that it will appear larger.

Stripes could trick the eye to thinking that a room is taller and bigger than it is. For instance, if you have a narrow hallway, throwing in a horizontal rug will make it look wider. Similarly, a striped carpet can make a room look longer.

Moreover, a lot of people think that they can only use small patterns when decorating a room, but the opposite is true. You can utilize bold prints on the farthest corner of the room to draw in the eyes, creating an illusion of a much bigger, larger room.

6. Choose parallel or diagonal flooring

The way your flooring is installed can also make a space larger. As a general rule, installing flooring like boards running parallel with the longest wall of the room instantly makes it look more spacious.

Another flooring trick is to install boards or tiles diagonally. Although it is not the standard thing to do, the eyes will be deceived that space is vaster.

7. Invest in transparent furniture

A piece of furniture that creates an illusion of space are the ones that are made of glass. Using clear or see-through furniture will make space look more open.

If you want a space to look more spacious, yet you have to bring in more furniture, then go for the ones that have a glass top or have glass on the sides.

8. Get rid of unnecessary items

When designing your space, pick items that have simple lines and shapes. Remove the visual clutter by buying larger furniture pieces instead of several smaller items.

You do not have to stick with the usual sofa and loveseat arrangement, either. You can pair a smaller couch with one or two chairs.

You can also get rid of any excess items, including accessories that help contribute to the visual clutter of a room. Try to stay away from smaller artwork and decor, large statement pieces can also make a room appear larger and create an accent.

9. Use Multifunctional furniture

You can take the minimalist approach to make your space appear spacious.

Start investing in multi-functional furniture. In other words, pick things that serve a dual-purpose, such as a sofa that has a pull-out storage space, or an ottoman that you can also be doubled for extra storage.

Identify which furniture you want to downsize so that you can free-up that extra space. For instance, you can replace your traditional bed with a pull-out sofa or a daybed that can also double as a sofa.

Having limited space, places a lot of restrictions on so many things. So, if you are having problems with having a small home space, you can always look for creative ways to try to bring out that extra space in a room or at least create an illusion of a much bigger space.

About the Author:

Jacky Xu is the Chief Operating Officer at Maid Sailors Maid Service Austin. Maid Sailors takes pride in providing unparalleled cleaning services at affordable prices and will help transform your house into a home.

How to Find Cheap Houses for Sale in UK

Using the internet is probably the most obvious thing to do when looking for a house or property to buy. It’s simple enough and rapid, so there won’t be any feet dragging before getting started. Off-plan property purchasing is popular among people to its discount pricing. There are thousands of websites dedicated to selling properties throughout the country, so start hunting around today.

How To Find Cheap Houses For Sale In UK

Guide Prices

The ‘guide price’ of a property or house tells you how much other people have been willing to pay for it so far – this can be extremely useful when looking for cheap houses for sale in the UK because it gives you an insight into what they are worth. Many sites list properties with guide prices.

Auctioneers & Estate Agents

Auctioneers often specialize in selling less expensive properties, so if you have a low budget, then this is what they are perfect for! They can be very effective ways to find cheap houses for sale in the UK because it means that you don’t have to haggle with anyone – just bid higher than everyone else at auction and win the house.

The Downsides Of Buying Properties Through An Auctioneer or Estate Agent

The only downside is that sometimes an estate agent will come up with a ridiculous asking price to create interest, but having said that, they would not get any sales if they did not, so it may still be a better idea than buying privately.

Private Sellers

If you are looking for cheap houses for sale in the UK, consider getting in touch with private sellers – this is another method that gives you an excellent insight into how good (or bad) the price of a particular property can be.

Be extra careful when dealing with someone who wants to sell their house or flat entirely independently. You could save hundreds if you buy from an estate agent! The fee they charge is a percentage of the final sale price – so bear this in mind before you decide.

Avoid Buying New-Builds

It may seem counter-intuitive to avoid buying new houses for sale in the UK, but if you’re looking for cheap houses, then it’s something that needs to be considered. When builders build new houses, they know exactly how much materials will cost them and can therefore build houses that maximize their profit, and who gets hit with the bill? The buyer! If you want to save money on properties, in the long run, avoid buying newer builds.

You Can Still Buy Properties Which Have Been Built

 Go for properties that have been built within the last five years, and you will save a lot of money! You need to go back more than five years because recently built houses will still be subject to the same inflated prices as the newer builds, so it doesn’t make much of a difference.

Consider Buying A Plot Of Land

If you are considering buying cheap houses for sale in the UK, then it’s worth looking at plots of land – perhaps this would make a good investment instead? You could hire an expert to survey the land, or if it’s not particularly big, consider investing in some equipment yourself. It might take up your time, but learning the basics of surveying will be worth it – you will learn some fascinating stuff too!

Buy Properties Which Need Repairing

If you’re not afraid to get your hands dirty, why not consider buying cheap houses for sale in the UK that needs renovation? Although you have to put a certain amount of money into it before they are habitable, once this is done, you can charge more rent – meaning that after a few months or years, your investment will have paid off!

Wrapping Up!

You can still buy new houses built recently, but you should go for older ones for the best value. Keep in mind that properties with guide prices will be cheaper than those without, so use this to your advantage when looking for cheap houses for sale in the UK if you want to see how much money you can save by buying a second-hand property instead of a new one.

Author: Bella Roy

Tips For Writing Real Estate Descriptions Buyers Love

It is easy to criticize a real estate description than to write one. Few people can write masterful descriptions yet they are responsible for sales. They bring images and videos to life, enticing buyers to make the decision. Writing ‘2 beds and 4 baths’ will not sell your property.

The good news is that real estate descriptions are the easiest to write. It is about choosing the right words that can speak to the heart of the buyer. It is also about positive vibes and knowing when to call to action. Here are excellent tips that will turn you into the next real estate mega-seller.

Start with a strong headline

The exterior is the most important selling point. It gives an idea about the neighborhood. Notice that people can always change the interior but can only do so little about the outside. The picture of the exterior is strengthened by a captivating headline.

A headline like “A Beautiful 4-bedroom bungalow in a Fenced Compound at Brooklyn Drive” says almost everything a person would want to know about a house. The buyer will now want to know about the available space and price. The headline will capture the attention of anyone looking for a 4-bedroom house. It also promises a beautiful house. The mention of fenced compound points at security. These are factors that push the reader to now ask for the price.

Be specific and accurate

It is exciting to search for a home. However, flipping through tens and hundreds of them can be tiring and time-consuming. Whenever you leave important information, your description raises a red flag. The buyers move on very fast in search of more serious sellers.

Include the details of what people look for when buying houses. Capture the number of bedrooms, bathrooms, square footage, and the location. You can take it further to include the type of wood used on the floor, the washers, and dryers installed, and ovens. While you provide information on installed appliances, avoid those that are old and would require replacement. More and accurate information lets you pass as genuine.

Say what’s unique

Houses come with minor and attractive elements that would be of interest to buyers. Most of these details are invisible in photos. However, they hold the potential when selling your house. It could be an electric fireplace in the living room or shelving in the closet. Give such features the prominence they deserve.

The rise of smart homes offers an opportunity to showcase more. People are looking for better space utilization and the infusion of technology. Talk about smart locks, lights, cameras, and doorbells. Such minor but unique details make a huge difference in your sales.

Talk about your neighbors

What can people see in the neighborhood? Are there schools, malls, dams, or parks? Such amenities give an idea of the lifestyle the buyer can expect to live.

The best real estate description is one that causes the potential buyer to imagine living his dream life. It offers enough details to arouse curiosity. Provide a call-to-action and wait for inquiries on the other end.

Author Bio

Adrian is an expert digital marketing writer, having worked in the industry for more than 5 years now. He also offers US essay writing services online to guarantee the best college experience for students. Flex is passionate about digital presence for businesses and will help you to keep your brand on top.

How to Fix Your House Problems with No Money

As a homeowner, you need to know that the property and the structure require maintenance and repair over time. There are unusual and strange events that could damage your home, yet they are not covered by the insurance.

Maintenance is predictable, but massive repair issues such as a non-functional septic tank and a falling roof could be troublesome if funds are limited. Read on to understand how you can fix your house problems with no money. 

Home remodel loan

Home remodel loans are unsecured loans offered by financial institutions such as credit unions and banks and online lenders. Since these loans are normally unsecured, you are not required to use your home as security to qualify. The interest on a home remodel loan is based on your credit score as established by the lender. After agreeing to the terms, the lender will quickly deposit the funds into your account.  

Home remodel and repair loans have lower fees and short repayment timelines compared to HELOCs and home equity loans. They are suitable for medium-size and small home repair projects such as window replacement, reinstalling a broken fireplace, and a bathroom makeover. However, because they are unsecured, these loans attract a higher interest than HELOCs and home equity loans, especially if your credit rating is low. 

Some loans attract application processing fees, prepayments, and late repayment charges, so you need to be careful when choosing this financing option. 

Before applying, compare the different loan lenders to identify the one with competitive fees, lower interest rates, quick payouts, and friendly terms of repayment.

Use a cash-out option to refinance

Some home repairs such as mold remediation, roof replacement, and ponding, and grading issues require urgent attention but are quite costly. You may consider the cash-out option to get the money fast and lower the interest on your home loan. Refinancing is all about swapping a loan with another loan, especially under the mortgage agreement. A cash-out option is ideal for financing a costly home repair and can act as a way of securing a new and better mortgage. You can use the additional mortgage money to cover the repairs. 

With the cash-out refinancing option, you will have to pay for origination fees, appraisal fees, taxes, and related costs. Refinancing translates to extending the loan repayment period, so this option is only ideal for securing a lower rate of interest. To illustrate the refinancing option, if the outstanding amount on your mortgage is $200,000, you can take out a $250,000 loan. The initial $200,000 will replace the previous balance and the difference ($50,000) is available in cash. Interest is payable on the entire amount, but it is easier to access funds on demand. 

Find community aid or government assistance

If the home damage is caused by a natural disaster, you may qualify for financial help under the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Otherwise, you may check your eligibility for a community aid program in your area. Some local agencies and states offer grants and loans to homeowners for home repairs, although you must adhere to income requirements to qualify. Research your options through the Urban development and the U.S. department and understand their terms and conditions.

Being stuck with expensive home repairs may be overwhelming and stressful but exploring options may help you to avoid swiping your credit card. A credit card interest is higher than interest on HELOC, community loan, government loan, and home equity loan.

Leverage home equity

The portion of the home that you own is an excellent option for paying for emergency home repairs. 20% equity can qualify you for either a home equity line of credit (HELOC) or a home equity loan. With the equity line of credit, interest on the loan is payable only to the extent of the repair cost. For instance, if you borrow $30,000 HELOC and the home repair costs $26,000, the interest on the remaining $4,000 will not apply since this is not part of the loan. However, with a home equity loan, you borrow some amount and pay interest on the sum.  

HELOCs and home equity loans are simple to qualify for, and their interest is lower than that attached to other types of loans. These options are a great first resort, especially if you are having difficulties financing a repair. Other financing options such as the home tap could enhance access to a loan in cash in exchange for sharing your home’s appreciation. The lender will make money as your property appreciates and shares the loss if the property value declines. Either way, monthly payments are not required as in the case of the ordinary home equity loan. 

Credit cards

Credit cards are ideal financing options for doing minor repairs such as installing a closet system or upgrading your bathroom. Some cards attract no interest in the first few months, which is a good reward for someone struggling to raise repair funds. With an introductory interest-free card, you may finance the home improvements free of interest. Other cards come with cashback rewards depending on the amount spent on renovation- spending more on renovation could earn you more cash back.

Using a credit card to finance major repairs is not advisable because of the need to pay the balance before the expiry of the introductory offer. Otherwise, it could attract a high-interest rate compared to what applies to other home remodeling loan options. Additionally, using a regular credit card means that you must pay the whole amount within thirty days. The interest rates vary, and the amount payable as interest may go up with the shift in market conditions. 

Conclusion

The choice of financing options when doing home repairs depends on the extent of damage, credit rating, and the terms and conditions of the financier. With the above financing options, it is easier to fix your home even when you have no money. Do some research before seeking financing because different financiers have varying terms and conditions. Do the repairs as soon as the damage occurs since waiting for too long could be more expensive. 

Author Bio:

Leon Collier

Leon Collier works for a well-known UK-based dissertation service where he is a blogger and academic. He takes up every new topic as a challenge and goes the extra mile to make the paper satisfactory. Other than writing, his interest is in reading books and playing tabletop games with his friends. You can reach him via Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Tierra Mallorca on Unsplash

How To Estimate Your Rental Property’s Operating Costs

Owning a rental property can be a quite lucrative investment. You are essentially able to build your assets, while having someone else foot the bill and cover the costs. But it’s important to get a full picture of what all of those costs may be, so you aren’t caught off guard and left in the red at the end of each month.

There are both regular monthly expenses that you’ll have to cover, as well as variable costs that can be recurring and anticipated or that can be unexpected. It’s important to plan ahead, especially when it comes to unexpected costs. Let’s take a look at what to expect from month to month.

Fixed Monthly Costs

Of course, you’ll have your mortgage costs to cover each month but what else should you anticipate paying out on a regular and ongoing basis?

Utilities

You’re going to have utility costs no matter what. But, depending on how your property is set up and where it’s located, those costs can vary quite significantly. When looking to invest in a rental property, remember to factor in the type of utilities you’ll be paying for and how that may change how much you set the rent at. Another big factor can be your tenants themselves, if they make use of their heat, hydro and water flippantly and without restraint.

Property Taxes

The good thing about property taxes is that you generally know what you’ll be paying out each year at the beginning of the year, making it easier to plan ahead. Property taxes can fluctuate greatly based on where you are located, so be sure to get this information before you close the deal on your rental purchase.

Insurance

While your renters can take care of their own renter’s insurance to cover their personal property, as the homeowner you will want to have your own insurance to cover the home itself. Your location will determine what type of coverage you may want to consider, based on what you may be prone to experiencing, such as earthquakes.

Variable And Unexpected Costs

You never know what the next month may bring, so it’s essential to plan ahead and keep a portion of the monthly rent collected aside for the unexpected. Here are just a few of the variable and hidden costs that you may be surprised with unexpectedly.

Gaps In Tenancy

While you have typically got anywhere from one to two month’s notice to replace a tenant, depending on your rental agreement, you may find yourself in the situation where that still isn’t enough time to find a suitable replacement to occupy your rental. If this is the case, you’ll be left to cover 100% of the costs until someone moves in. Before you purchase a rental property, realistically look at whether you can cover the costs of this if it sits vacant for any length of time.

Regular Maintenance

Landscaping, snow removal and routine clean up have got to get done. You can either take these tasks on yourself or you can outsource the work to someone else. Keeping up with your regular maintenance helps keep the value of your asset growing and prevents the property from falling into a dilapidated state.

Appliance Repair

Regular maintenance of appliances can help prevent a major repair, but as with anything, they are almost certain to break down at some point. Being prepared to either repair or replace a broken appliance expediently is important in maintaining a good tenant-landlord relationship, and in preventing your tenants from moving out if they aren’t provided with proper working appliances.

Emergencies

The unexpected always seems to happen at the worst possible time; Furnace decides to stop working at the first cold snap or the air conditioning breaks down in the middle of a heatwave. Having some of each month’s rent set aside in an emergency fund means, even though you may not be expecting an emergency to pop up, you’ll have the funds readily available to take care of things.

Planning ahead for your monthly rental property expenses can make becoming a landlord a very profitable endeavor. Remember that your rental property is a long-term investment that you will have to maintain properly in order to preserve its value and help it grow as an asset.

About the author

Emily Henry writes about property maintenance for EssayRoo and Buy Essay Online, as well as contributing as a tutor at BigAssignments.

Image by Michal Jarmoluk on Pixabay 

How to Reinstall a Broken Fireplace in 7 Steps

Whether gas or wood-burning, fireplaces are a cozy feature representing an epitome of the home for many homeowners. Yet, the masonry joints and brick may start to crack at some point, and this is an early sign that the fireplace is going to ruin. Repairing these cracks in the fireplace can help you save thousands of dollars in future repairs and ensure your family’s safety, as it reduces the possibility of a fire outbreak through the chimney. 

Leaving those small cracks unattended during the summer may lead to very large cracks when spring comes knocking, and it becomes more complicated. Letting these large cracks in your outer brick will allow rain, ice, and snow to get inside. The water finds its way through the flashing and the outer brick and may even go farther into the flue, and this causes far more damage. 

You can prevent this large damage by repairing the fireplace as soon as you notice it has broken with the following seven steps.

  1. Tuckpoint the brick mortar

Bricks are held together by mortar, but smooth and solid mortar may become battered due to other elements, and it starts crumbling. Mortar always deteriorates first because brick is harder. Tuckpointing or repointing allows you to scrape out the crumbly part and replace it with new mortar. 

You need a joint raker to scrap the weak and loose mortar and leave the good one in place. Then, use a garden hose to spray the brick down and leave it for 30 minutes and allow the roof to dry before continuing work. 

Mix up another batch of mortar till it has enough consistency and use a pointing trowel to press it into the cracks to match the existing mortar’s look. Finally, use a tuckpointing tool to smooth the joints down. 

  • Caulk around the crown and the flue

One way water can enter and cause damage in your home is the point that joins the crown and the chimney flue. Typically, it takes a while for gaps in this area to form, and water that gets to this point flows down through the flue’s sides. 

Clean out the debris, such as loose mortar and moss using a wire brush, and fill the gap with a complete caulk bead using a high-heat mortar tube and a caulk gun.

  • Patch cracks around the large crown

The crown is the sloping cap at the top of the fireplace. It’s there to protect the masonry and prevent water from staying over the top. When the crown starts to crack, this may give you more problems than those at the vertical section because water, snow, and ice quickly gather inside. 

If you have large cracks with a diameter between 1/8 and 1 inch around the crown, you can repair them using a pre-mixed mortar or cement patch. Use a squeeze bottle to inject the crack with your repair mix, or you can use a putty knife to force the repair mix in. Typically, it takes between four and six hours for it to cure, but wider cracks may require a longer time. 

  • Use a sealant to patch hairline cracks.

Hairline cracks, also known as spider cracks, are not treated the same way as large cracks because the mineral particles inside the mortar or patch are too large, so they can’t fit into the narrow space of the hairline crack. The solution to this problem lies in using a masonry sealer with a highly liquid consistency capable of penetrating through the hairline cracks. 

A bonus point is that this product seals up other porous parts of the crown and prevents additional hairline cracks. Scrape off loose particles with the corner of your putty knife but be careful not to enlarge the cracks. Then use a brush to apply the sealer. 

  • Repair cracked bricks

A caulk gun and high-heat mortar may repair chimney bricks with one or two small cracks. First, use a screwdriver or the edge of the putty knife to clean the crack. Then use a wire brush to sweep clean the crack. Next, squeeze high-heat mortar as far as you can into the crack.

Generally, unless it is a large crack, the mortar is unlikely to extend very far. So, with a glove on your finger, clean the mortar off the crack, and clean the areas surrounding the crack with a rag.  

If the cracks on the brick are clean hairline cracks, you can close them up using a masonry sealer and a brush.

  • Replace cracked bricks

If the bricks are severely damaged, you should remove and replace them. You can do this carefully without affecting the adjacent bricks. Use a flat-head screwdriver or masonry chisel to chip off the mortar from the bricks slowly. Boreholes through the mortar, with a masonry bit and a drill, speed up this process and reach farther back.

After you loosen the brick, pull it out with your hand and chip off the residual mortar from adjacent bricks with your hand to smoothen it. Butter all the sides of your replacement brick with a small trowel (except the back or front). Then gently push your replacement brick into place. Center it in a way that all the seams have equal width. Take off excess mortar and use a tuckpointing tool to smoothen the joints. 

  • Check the draught 

You can do this by lighting a candle and holding it in front of the fireplace opening. It should draw smoke and flame up the chimney. Otherwise, it means the chimney is not well capped off or blocked.

Conclusion 

You may not need all of these steps for all fireplace repair projects. It may just be cursory work for minor damage. However, you must examine the fireplace entirely and carefully to determine the full extent of any damage.

Author Bio

Leon Collier
Leon Collier

Leon Collier is a blogger and academic writer from the UK who works with essay help online as one of the dissertation writers. He likes trying new subjects and is always focused on proving his worth in new and challenging writing areas. His hobbies are reading books and playing pen and paper games with his friends. You can reach him via Twitter @LeonCollier12. 

Photo by Stéphane Juban on Unsplash

How to Prevent Making a Mistake as a First Time Home Buyer

Purchasing a house is a complicated, tiring process. Since there are lots of things to worry about, first time home buyers often make several mistakes. Before you do anything, take time to learn about the factors involved. If you want to have a great experience, follow these useful steps.

Preparation: Being Able to Afford a House

Buying  a house can be much easier when you’re prepared. Failing to prepare is one of the common mistakes made by home buyers. Establishing a budget, applying for a mortgage, and having money for a down payment are the three steps that will allow you to be ready.

  1. Budget

Houses on the market are currently set at higher prices today. Due to the skyrocketing costs, it is a challenge to find affordable options. Having a budget that works for you is crucial. If you happen to be purchasing with a partner, discuss a budget that works for both of you. When you know exactly what pricepoint of home you can afford, looking for a house is far less complicated.

  • Mortgage

Not everybody is able to apply for a mortgage. Without a mortgage, you can’t purchase a house. Before you shop, get preapproved for a mortgage. Not only will sellers be more likely to let you purchase, but being pre approved confirms you are able to do so. As long as you and whoever may also be involved has a positive credit score, then getting approved should be simple.

  • Down Payment

Another step forgotten by many is having money ready for a down payment. Even if you are approved for a mortgage, you need to pay the down payment before having ownership over the house. Down payments typically cost about 6% of your loan amount. Keeping your budget in mind, calculate what the down payment would be for you. You should have saved up for the extra costs in advance, but if not it’s time to start. Along with the down payment, there are other closing costs such as taxes. If you want to be fully prepared, save more than enough for a downpayment.

If you are able to complete those three steps, then you can afford to purchase a home. Don’t be unaware of your money situation, because that can lead to unwanted news, or embarrassment in front of sellers. When buyers have their money situation covered, they can then start to look at houses.

House Shopping: Selecting the Right Home

Finding the right house is a long journey. You have to know exactly what you want. It is a dangerous idea to settle for a house you don’t particularly like, this is because it will lead to huge regrets. Take the time to find your perfect home.

  • Ask Questions

Realtors are meant to inform you about anything related to the home they are showing you. If you have questions, ask them! Remember, you are the one looking to purchase a home. Become aware of what houses include, so you can quickly decide if they are potential options. Overall, questions save you time because you’ll immediately know if a particular home is meant for you.

  • Know Your Desired Features

When homes you’ve viewed are missing features you desire, then that’s a sign to keep searching. Knowing your desired features helps you avoid settling for a home you truly don’t love. If you want a home with a huge backyard, then don’t purchase one with a small backyard. Fulfilling every single feature you want is tricky, but you should make a list of what you want most in a home.

  • Keeping Budget in Mind

Don’t waste your time looking at homes that are way over your budget. Find houses you are interested in within your budget to make home shopping easier. Buyers who forget their budget often are disappointed if they can’t afford homes they’ve looked at.

Purchasing Your Home

Purchasing a home isn’t a race. It takes months, or even a couple of years for some. Eventually, you’ll be able to find your affordable dream home. As long as you are prepared and aware of what goes into purchasing a home, you are set!

Social media strategist Chrisitina Lee works at Custom essay, and State of writing. Chirsitina also writes about marketing topics on Order college paper and other sites.

Image by Rudy and Peter Skitterians on Pixabay 

3 Tips for Choosing Cheap Houses

Getting our own house is what we wish for throughout our lives, and finding the one that suits our needs and is on a budget is like a dream come true. When buying a residential property, we seek help from brokers or real estate companies in Dubai to get our work done. At times, it might not be possible to find a home in your favorite neighborhood; however, you can find one in another area that will fit your demands. Here are three excellent tips that can help you find a home in lesser price:

Do a Survey:

As tiring as it may sound, but this is the crucial part of finding the right house. Seeing a lot of places help you decide what type of house you should expect for your budget. Doing a survey will help you redefine and readjust your demands and expectations according to your budget. Also, you will learn to differentiate if the amount the owner is asking for a house is justified or not.

Seeing too many cheap houses will help you find out the best of all. Visiting different neighborhoods will enable you to discover near areas within your city, which might be even better than the places where you wanted to live. Make sure you have seen a lot of houses before you make a final decision.

Consider Looking Outside the City:

 Truth to be told, the farther you move away from the metropolitan city, the lesser house prices you will find. This does not mean that you should consider buying a far-in middle of nowhere; instead, you should consider looking into housing societies developing in the outskirts of the city.

Although they might be far from your workplace and the central city, you can get a tremendous and even newly built house at a really low price. Considering the rapid urbanization and increasing population, there are great chances of cities to expand to their outskirts which means that the value of your property will surely rise in the upcoming years. Make sure to choose wisely!

Negotiate:

Never assume that the prices listed on a website or demanded by the owner are the final price. Always negotiate strongly as per your budget. Many sellers out there have already asked way more than the actual worth of the house to get to the accurate price when the buyer negotiates.

Do not let the fear of losing the deal make you purchase a house out of your budget. You will get the place you want within the price range you have; all you need is to be patient, look for many options, make a lot of offers, and finally end up locking a deal suitable for you. Negotiating with the seller is still the best-known way of getting a house at a lower price.

The Bottom Line:

You do not need to settle for an expensive house out of your fear of not getting a place at all. Buying a home is a tricky and lengthy process, particularly if you want to buy cheap houses. Look for newly developed societies. Talk to one or more brokers to ensure that you do not miss out on any great deal. Be consistent, keep searching; your dream house must be just a few days or months away from you!

Author: Jamie Roy

5 Best Ways to Implement a Backyard Pool

Have you always dreamed of having your own pool? This might be especially true for those who are living in areas where heat is more frequent than in other places. However, as the climate is changing, heatwaves have become increasingly common, which makes having a pool a necessity for many people. No matter if you want a pool to swim in or just to cool off, sometimes the space in your backyard is limited.

And it may also happen that you are simply unable to fit the pool in the space you have, even though you want it so much. Well, people can get a little bit creative and add pools in their backyards, even when the space is limited. There are many pool ideas and shapes to choose from, and they will transform your backyard instantly.

Depending on your budget, you can also choose from custom-made pools or inflatable ones, from comfortable variants to more affordable. Thankfully, there is a wide array of choices to make and think about, so we want to lend you some help. Here are the five best ways to implement a backyard pool.

1. Long and Narrow Pools

When you want to implement a pool in your backyard, there are many things you need to consider. But the major impediment is the space you have available. Many people think they do not have enough space for installing a pool; this could be due to the fact that most of them are used to seeing big and large pools, usually the ones that hotels have.

Well, you would need a lot of space to implement a big backyard pool, so you need to adapt to the conditions you have. Pools are customizable, so you only need to identify the spot where you want to add them.

Choosing a long and narrow pool could be one of the best ways to have it in your backyard. Many people think that the pool has to be separated from the house and the architecture of the garden, but in many cases, it can be beautifully incorporated. It can highlight the shapes and colors of the house, blending in with the entire architecture.

2. Secret Garden

If you have a secret garden or place in your backyard with lush and lump vegetation, this could be the place you will transform. Adding a pool can make the entire secret garden more welcoming and attractive. At the same time, it does not have to be the biggest pool you have seen.

It can be a small, intimate, and romantic one, a pool that does not destroy your garden but enhances its beauty. You can build your own private paradise; you only need to find the perfect spot for your backyard pool. You can also add stones to make it more rustic, but also plant the right trees such as banana trees, ferns, and many others of that sort. It is up to you what vibe you choose to have.

3. Replacing Blue Tiles

The great majority of pools have blue tiles that give you the feeling you are swimming in a blue ocean. However, this is very common for most pools, and if you have a small backyard, you would want to maximize the space as best as you can. By installing a pool, you take up a lot of your space, so you might feel yourself visually cramped. As if the trim of the pool occupies more space than it really does. You can replace those blue tiles with other colors that could blend in more naturally to the setting. The water will reflect the sky and the surroundings, making your backyard look bigger. And you will have more space to relax and cool off in your backyard pool.

4. Combine It with a Pergola

How you decorate your garden is up to you, but if you want to implement a backyard pool, things might get challenging. It will be challenging especially if you do not have so much space available and do not want to do extensive garden landscaping. Well, you can merge many garden landscaping features and make both the pool and the garden combine harmoniously.

If you have or build a pergola, you could add climbing plants that will make the atmosphere more intimate. At the same time, they will provide some shade during hot days. Near the pergola, you could add a small pool. Like this, you can stay near your pool in your pergola and then just take a step and enjoy the water of your pool.

5. Raised Pool

Another best way to implement a backyard pool is to consider building or buying a raised pool. Many people dream about those huge and deep pools, but sometimes you do not have the financial and spatial possibilities to implement a pool like this.

Well, a raised pool makes implementing it easier, because you do not have to dig so much for installing it, as most of the pool is raised. It may sound odd, but a raised pool can make the entire backyard more welcoming and modern. And if you want and have the necessary means, you could also make the pool a water feature, adding a drop of relaxation and making it an oasis.

Ending Note

Many people are dreaming about having their own pool to cool off in, but the majority of them think they do not have the necessary space to implement a backyard pool. Well, even when you do not have the space you need and want, you can think about creative ideas to do what you are yearning for.

There are many pool models, shapes, and depths, you can choose from. Depending on the space you have available, you can combine the pool with the entire house architecture so that it highlights some of its most beautiful features. A modern approach will help you have a nice pool to relax in that will also enhance your garden landscaping and make your backyard that peaceful place you always wanted.

Leon Collier

Bio lines: Leon Collier is a blogger and academic writer from the UK who works with an essay writing service and dissertation writing services. He likes trying new subjects and is always focused on proving his worth as a writer in new and challenging writing areas. His hobbies are reading books and playing tabletop games with his friends. You can reach him via Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Larry Tseng on Unsplash