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.


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.

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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

5 Ways to Invest in the Property Market without using Your Own Funds

Although it is definitely a nice head start on the property market with some capital, it is a commonly believed myth that you have to have a chunk of pre-existing money just sitting in your bank account to get a foot on the property ladder. If you want to get started on the property market and you don’t have a lot of free capital (or if you just want to be creative), buying a property with ‘no money down’ might be for you! There are options available which require a little bit of upfront finance, and others where you utilise other people’s money or non-traditional loan structures. Lets take a look at your options for getting started on the property market.

1: House Hacking or Renting Out

For young and upcoming members of the property market, this can be a great way to get their foot on the ladder. Although this is not technically purchasing a new property, it can be a great way to start out being a landlord and making some extra money on the side. Buying a multi-unit residence, and renting out sections, rooms, or flats in that residence can sometimes even eliminate your bills or mortgage payment if you’re bringing in enough rent from your tenants. House hacking can be a great way to start out and continue building capital to potentially invest in another property later down the line.

2: Use a Property as Leverage for a Home Equity Loan

This one is only for those of us who have a high credit score and own another property. If you are in possession of a property which holds equity and you have a good credit rating, you can put your existing property ‘on the line’ to get a home equity loan. This type of non-traditional financing allows you to obtain a loan of up to 80% of your property’s equity. Although this is a great option, it can be risky to put it all on the line with your existing residence.

3: Try out Seller Financing

This is probably the most non-traditional you can get with financing; and you have to find the right sellers in order to make this work. The basic principle of seller financing is that the owner of a property create a finance agreement between themselves and the buyer, rather than the typical buyer and bank agreement on a normal mortgage. This is a great idea if you know or trust the sellers; but can get tricky in the future if there are any issues with the agreement.

4: Obtain a ‘Hard Money’ Loan

Hard money loans are the most often used alternative finance option behind regular bank loans. For example, a flip property or a fixer-upper might require a hard money loan due to bank assessments on the property not matching the property price. With a hard money loan, you can obtain a loan for not only the property price, but a loan based on the future value of a property after renovations or a fix-up.

5: Finding an Investment Partner

One of the most well-known ways to get a foot on the property ladder is to find an investment partner. This is a great idea for people who want to do-up a house and an investor who wants to make money off of their money but doesn’t want to get their hands dirty. If you do have money to invest, it can be a great way to obtain a bigger property and make more money off of your investment in joining your capital with someone else’s. It is important to find an investment partner you trust in either scenario.

Getting your foot on the property ladder is no easy task, especially as a young person and during the 21st century. However, the idea that it is impossible unless you have an abundance of old family money handed down to you is a complete lie. There are even more ways than we have gone into today to be able to get money to put your foot on the ladder; but these are the most common and trustworthy ways to obtain that bit of start up for your property project.

About the Author:

George J. Newton is a business development manager and content writer for Essay Writing Services and Cheap Coursework. He has a very patient wife of over ten years, who is his biggest supporter. He also contributes his work to websites such as Thesis Writing Service.

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7 Ways to Deal with Extensive Heat in Your House

Most American households spend a lot of money trying to keep their houses cool. Depending on the state, the average household in America spends between $300 to $600 on cooling every year. Apart from installing a new and efficient air conditioner, there are several simple ways of dealing with extensive heat in your house. And most of these solutions do not require huge investments. When you are looking for solutions to deal with extensive heat in your house, you should consider the demands posed by your property, loved ones, and the climate. If it’s the daytime or summer heat that you want to beat, don’t invest huge amounts of money without learning about these simple ways to deal with heat.

1.      Check your vents

When organizing furniture in your house, you need to look at your vents. In most households, furniture is usually bulky and cumbersome to move around. However, investing in light quality furniture will minimize the space used and make it easier for you to access the vents. Apart from furniture, you should avoid blocking your vents with decoration or design items that restrict or prevent airflow. Once you’ve ensured that everything is out of the way, form the habit of cleaning them regularly to improve the movement of air. Heating and cooling systems have air filters that need to be changed regularly. Heating and cooling your home can be quite expensive. But you can easily deal with extensive heat in your house by cleaning the vents.

2.      Invest in darkened windows

To save money and deal with excessive heat in your house, you need to make small improvements that reduce heat transfer without requiring more energy. For instance, dark tinted windows block the sun’s rays. While the sun and heat can be beneficial in other seasons, ultraviolet light can cause sunburns and harm peoples’ lives. Darkened windows help in blocking a significant amount of heat while allowing the homeowner to enjoy the view. Some of these windows have a darkened film and a scratch-resistant coat. Manufacturers include a set of additives on these windows to absorb the harmful rays of the sun. Others use ceramics to reflect light. Window films come in different colors and shapes ranging from clear to opaque. Sometimes, they have a metallic look like bronze or stainless steel. Tinted windows are not only energy-efficient but also offer more privacy to your home.

3.      Form good habits

Small simple changes can go a long way in making all the difference in your home. When it’s cold in the morning, you should open the curtains to let heat and natural light in. As temperatures rise gradually, you should keep your curtains closed to prevent rooms from heating up too much. You can also consider upgrading your interior by investing in two different curtain sets. The ones with a thicker fabric should be used in the winter. During the summer, switch them to lightweight material.

You can keep the energy bills in line by adjusting the thermostat by a few degrees. Increasing the temperatures by a single degree in the summer and lowering it with the same amount in the winter will help you save on your energy bills. You can use space heaters and fans to enhance temperature in specific areas of your home.

4.      Invest in outdoor coverings

The southern side usually warms up quickly in the summer in most areas in America. One of the best ways to cool your home is by using a canopy or awning in these areas. Whether it’s a gazebo on the patio or carports for parking, covering up sections that face the southern side is one of the best ways to lower air conditioning costs. Roller blinds and retractable outdoor awnings will transform your external area by protecting it against shine or rain all while increasing your home’s value. A retractable roof can help in ventilating and insulating your home. You can also consider planting more trees around your house to shade it during the summer. The sun will still shine through the branches to warm up your home. Ensure that you plant trees near the air conditioner to save more costs.

5.      Upgrade key fixtures in your house

If you want to go green and reduce your energy bills, you need to implement some conservation arrangements on energy. The difference in temperature between the inside and outside of your house determines the rate of heat loss. It is also influenced by the construction materials. Heat loss occurs when cold air from the outside moves in and warm air from the inside moves out. Most homes lose heat through poorly insulated ceilings and walls, poorly sealed doors, and incorrect heating systems. You need to upgrade your home by correcting as many issues as you can. If your house is poorly sealed, you can end up wasting a lot of money on your automatic conditioner.

6.      Avoid cooking indoors

When it’s too hot, you should consider pre-planning your meals so that you are not forced to use the oven in the middle of the day. If you must use the oven, consider cooking your meal after the heat of the day or before noon to avoid excess heat in your house.

7.      Invest in ceiling fans

Ceiling fans can be of great help when it comes to dealing with extensive heat in the house. And there is a right way of using your fans. During the hot months, you should blow the fan forward in a counter-clockwise direction to force air down and make you feel cool. During the cold months, you should blow the fans in a clockwise direction for the air to circulate throughout the house. Ceiling fans will work well in sealed houses. Therefore, form the habit of constantly upgrading fixtures in your house.


Dealing with excess heat in the house has never been this easy. Thanks to the rapid advancement of technology, you can easily find the tools that you need to keep your house cool. With these tips, you shouldn’t have a problem achieving this goal.

Author Bio:

Leon Collier

Leon Collier is a blogger and academic writer from the UK who works with essay writing service UK and paper writing service. 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 David Veksler on Unsplash

Top 5 Tips for Building Your Own Home in Portugal

When you are planning to build your own home in Portugal, you need to be aware of the documents and procedures that you need to undertake. The following will help you understand what documents you will need for construction permits to build your own home in Portugal.

There may be some cases where an application for construction permits is not required, such as when building with temporary materials or when reconstructing existing buildings.

1. Find the right location

Portugal is a small country and it may be more difficult to find a suitable location than you imagine. if you are thinking to be building your own home in Portugal you may already have a nice region in mind that you like most. But don’t overlook the hidden jems Portugal has to offer.

There are some regions that are more affordable than others, some are actually not far from the beach and mountains.

2. Apply for a planning permission

This is absolutely mandatory and will save you from potential problems later on. But don’t worry there is offices out there who are specialized in helping you in this process, such as an architectural office. Hiring an architect in Portugal is not as expensive as you might think. Depending on the size of your project it can cost you as little as 10 € per square metre.

3. Find and hire an architect

It might seem like an unnecessary expense, but it will make your life much easier in the long run by ensuring that everything gets done correctly, within budget and on time. Also, the architect in Portugal can design your home in a way that will actually save you money, in the end you probably pay the same that you would have without an architect.

4. Consider buying land

If you are only looking to build a home for yourself in Portugal, then make sure you look in the area that is right for you and have everything nearby that you will need. Also, it is important to check if the land is suitable for construction. If you buy a land in Portugal that is located in an estate make sure to check the estate rules – sometimes there are rules regarding colours of the house or windows or the roof needs to have a certain colour and angle… etc.

5. Speak to a solicitor

Better safe than sorry. Getting legal advice will help you to understand the procedure involved and be aware of potential pitfalls.

Conclusion: Building Your Own Home in Portugal

With these few simple steps you can be building your own home in Portugal and invest in the healthy and growing housing market of sunny Portugal.

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7 Benefits Of Investing In Properties Near Universities

Property investment can be a secure source of income, depending on the neighborhood and city you choose. One of the most interesting and successful areas for property investors are university towns. Not only is there high demand for rental properties, but you can also rely on stable rental prices and even see an increase in the value of your property. Here are seven benefits to investing in a property near a university.

1. High Demand And Many Prospective Tenants

By purchasing a property near a university, you will not have to worry about ensuring a steady rental demand. With universities attracting thousands of new students each year, there is usually an increase in the local population, which also increases the demand for accommodation. As such, there will always be a large pool of prospective tenants waiting to move in, even leading to a waiting list.

2. Reliable And Constant Rent Payments

Many landlords fear renting a property to students. This is mainly based upon a misconception that students’ rental payments are always late or missed altogether. Yet, in reality, much student accommodation is actually paid for by students’ parents. The result is often timely and reliable rental payments.

3. Stable Rental Prices

One of the biggest benefits of purchasing a property near a university is that the rent prices tend to remain largely stable and constant. Providing that the university stays in business, there will be a demand for accommodation from students.

“Typically, rent prices in university areas tend to remain stable or even grow. As such, you’ll be able to charge a consistent rental price and perhaps even become cash flow positive,” says Joanna Lockman, a real estate blogger at Boomessays and Essayroo.

4. Reduced Vacancy Time

As with all rental properties, there will inevitably be tenant turnover. Yet, whilst this turnover may be higher than usual with students, the upside is that you’re unlikely to face long vacancy periods. Each new academic year will bring a fresh set of students, all requiring accommodation. This will ensure that you are able collect consistent and reliable rent from your property.

5. Attractive And Vibrant Areas

Areas with universities and students have a tendency to attract larger numbers of local amenities. With young and energetic students, keen to explore the local night life, you’ll often find many of the most highly sought-after bars and recreational facilities located around universities.

From restaurants and bistros, to gyms, shops and entertainment venues, the area around a university campus tends to be more vibrant and livelier. Not only is this more appealing to students looking for accommodation, but it also makes the area more attractive to other types of residents, thereby helping to increase the value of, and interest in, your property.

6. Attract The Wider Workforce, As Well As Students

Despite being located near a university, students are not the only types of tenants you can expect to attract. There may be a wider workforce who also require accommodation, including university staff, such as professors or support staff. People who work in the local area, including in the hospitality sector, in retail or nearby offices, will also be attracted to a property situated nearby.

7. Increased Property Value

It’s common for the value of properties located near universities to increase over time. In part, this is driven by a limited inventory of properties surrounding university campuses, thereby increasing the demand and value of existing properties.

“As universities become more ingrained in the local economy, there tends to be an increase in businesses starting up in the area, which in turn attracts more people to the area,” explains Michael Williams, a writer at Liahelp and State Of Writing. “Additionally, many people stay on in the city after completing their degrees. The result of this self-sustaining economic cycle is increased property value.”


There are many benefits to buying a property near a university, including secure and consistent rental payments, a large and constant pool of interested tenants, increased property value and reduced vacancy times. Although there are some potential disadvantages, such as property damage, higher tenant turnover and low interest during summer months, these can be compensated for with forward planning and higher security deposits. You’ll soon find that your property is a worthwhile investment and a reliable source of income.

Lauren Groff is an experienced real estate writer at Academized and UK Writings. She is passionate about helping her readers to better understand the world of real estate and the options available to them. Lauren is also a successful editor at OX Essays. When not writing, Lauren enjoys spending time reading and exploring different cities and neighborhoods.

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Things To Know Before Moving From the City to the Country

Moving to the country from the city has tons of benefits from more space, cheaper living expenses, and fresher air. Many people enjoy the peace and quiet that country living can give them while others enjoy being able to see the stars at night. 

However, before you pack your bags and change your entire lifestyle, there are some things you need to know. Here’s what you should know about moving to the country. 

It’s Quiet… Really Quiet

If you’re used to the hustle and bustle of the city, the quiet of the country may cause you some discomfort at first. If you’ve lived in an apartment, you know that city life can be noisy no matter what time of day or night it is. The country offers you quiet all day long so that you can enjoy simpler things. However, if you’re someone who enjoys the city noise (and many folks do), you might not be prepared for just how quiet things can get in the country. 

Your Income Will Change

A job in the city pays more than a job in the country. Before you start stomping your feet, though, remember that your cost of living will also change. Your New York City rent for your 350 square foot apartment with no bedroom costs more than your mortgage payment will, depending on where you move.

While the same job will pay less in the city, your lifestyle won’t have to change much because you’ll still be able to buy your favorite things on Amazon with all of the money you’ll be saving with a mortgage in the country. 

There Are Fewer Job Opportunities

Moving your home is easy, but finding a job is difficult no matter where you live. This is especially true when you move to the country. While a city has tons of jobs available, the country may not, which means you’ll have to drive longer to get to work once you find a job. 

You’ll Be Driving Every Single Day

Speaking of driving, you’ll have to do it when you move to the country. There is no corner shop that you can walk to. Depending on where you move, the nearest grocery store might be 30 miles away. If you’ve lived in the city your whole life or you’ve let your license expire, it’s time to start practicing how to drive again because a car is an absolute necessity in the country. 

Utilities Might Not Always Be Available or Reliable 

Moving to the country means that you’ll have fewer choices when it comes to utilities like electricity and water. Your electricity might not even be reliable. 

While you might not always have access to the internet, you’ll always have access to tons of land and a beautiful night sky to look at, along with peace and quiet, so you can finally catch up on that book you’ve been reading for the last five years. 

Weather Will Affect You

Many people have experienced a bad storm that took out their electricity for a few hours, but in the country, you’re at the mercy of Mother Nature. If you get heavy rain or snowfall, it might be hours or even days before the road is cleared. Roads will not be plowed as quickly as they are in cities because there are fewer cars driving on them in the country. 

If you know of an impending storm, you may need to travel to the local store to pick up provisions like food, water, and other essentials. 

You Might Feel Isolated

People who like to be alone love the country because they have fewer (if any) neighbors, and people are less likely to visit them the farther away they are. If you’re someone who enjoys nightlife and spending time with people, the country might not be for you. Of course, no matter where you live, there might be a city or even a town nearby where you can meet people and spend your time when you’re not relaxing under the night sky. 

You’ll See More Wildlife

When was the last time you saw grass? If you live in a city, you likely rarely see everything nature has to offer. When you move to the country, you’ll get to rekindle your affair with nature again with tons of plants and wildlife. 

Make sure you do your research about the countryside you want to move to before you purchase a house. You’ll need to know what types of animals live in the area so that you can stay safe. For example, you might not want to purchase a cabin in the woods where you know there are bears. 

If you’re afraid of snakes, you might always why away from living in Tennessee, known for its large snake population. 

It’s important that you respect nature because you’re in its territory now. Treat your environment well so that you can see plants and animals thrive. 

Take Out Options Are Limited

If you’re like most city-dwellers, you either don’t have a kitchen or don’t use it. Take-out is fast and means you won’t have to wash the dishes. In the country, however, you might be miles away from the nearest restaurant, and they likely won’t deliver to you if you live too far out. If that’s the case, it’s time to learn how to cook and buy some pots and pans to do so. 

Your Neighbors Won’t Have the Same Personalities 

As we mentioned, you might have very few neighbors. However, you’ll want to form a good relationship with the neighbors that you do have. People who live in the country do so by choice. They likely enjoy the peace and quiet, unlike your neighbors in the city who used to scream and bang doors at 4 AM. 

Treat these neighbors differently than you would your city neighbors and try to be respectful. Don’t play your music too loud or throw parties late at night. 

You Might Realize You Hate the City

After you’ve spent some time in the country, you might realize that you never actually enjoyed city life but instead tolerated it because everything you needed was a block or two away. Country life allows you to slow down and focus on the things that really matter, no longer worrying about being stuck in traffic before a big business meeting. Enjoy each and every minute you have in the quiet country. 

Matt Casadona

Matt Casadona has a Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, with a concentration in Marketing and a minor in Psychology. He is currently a contributing editor for 365 Business Tips. Matt is passionate about marketing and business strategy and enjoys the San Diego life, traveling and music. 

How can I get a house for 100k or less?

You may be surprised to learn that you don’t need to be rich in order to buy a house. In fact, there are many ways you can save money and still get a house under 100k.

Houses are a big investment and one that should not be taken lightly. That is why it is important to find the perfect house for you, in the best location and for a price that fits your budget.

Average house prices

According to the survey, the average amount people are spending on a house now is around $400,000. So, it would take a lot of research and work to find a house that’s cheaper than 100k.

There are many ways you can get a house for close to 100k or even less than that. It just takes some time and work on your end.

Find the best value for your money

It’s not always easy to find cheap homes in the marketplace. There are many aspects that affect the value of a home. The general rule of thumb, however, is to buy close to the city centre if you want better value.

Some people say that it might be easier to find a cheap home by looking at area listings, or by looking at other more affordable areas outside of the city centre. However, this might not be possible for everyone who wants to live in an urban setting.

Be more creative in your search

So, what should you do? Get creative with your search and don’t limit yourself too much by just looking at one area when there are so many others out there for you to explore!

Saving up for a down payment is the first big step in achieving this goal. You can save the down payment by living with your parents or by renting an apartment in an inexpensive location and then saving up more money over time.

A lot of people want to purchase a home but they don’t have the money. It’s not uncommon for people to spend their life savings on a house – which is why many people end up living in their parents’ basement. That’s actually not a bad idea if it helps you to save up for your own home at the same time.

There are certainly ways to get houses for 100k or less if you have patience and know where to look.

Be more specific in your search

Buying a house is one of the biggest purchases that you will ever make. That said, if you are looking for a cheap home, it’s best to be more specific in your online search and don’t just rely on general words like ‘cheap home’ or ‘good deal’.

Be flexible when it comes to DIY

If you are up for DIY, you can get a fixer-upper home at a lower price. All you need is to take some time off and do the renovation work yourself. Not only will it make your home look better, but it will also help in saving money on labour costs.

Fixer Upper Homes: Fixer-upper homes are properties that have not been renovated or updated for a long time. Even if the property doesn’t have any major structural damage, they may need new paint and flooring, as well as other cosmetic improvements.

Investors are starting to pay attention to the potential in fixer-upper homes. With a low purchase price and a lower mortgage, it is easier than ever to buy a fixer-upper house.

The process of fixing up a home can be very rewarding; you have the opportunity to make your house uniquely yours. It also has the potential to be profitable, too. Fixing up your home can increase its value by hundreds of thousands of dollars if you do it right!


Now, you’ve seen the best ways to buy a house for 100k or less. So, what are you waiting for? Start scrolling and find your dream home today!


Our Property under 20k team are the founders of and with the goal to search the cheapest real estate in the world and make it easy for others to find. The team is made up of landlords, real estate investors, architects and builders from several different countries.  We just love to have a good strong cup of coffee while we write our experiences in this blog.

Image by Siggy Nowak on Pixabay 

5 Summer Exterior Decorating Ideas

Summer is the season that offers you the most opportunities of spending time in nature with your friends. It is the season you spend in plain air. You may be gardening, preparing a barbeque, reading in the shadow of a tree, drinking a cocktail, and enjoying the sunny weather. If you have a house, you have probably thought about arranging your patio so that it is a welcoming and enjoyable place to spend your summer in. Have you already started looking for those exterior decorating ideas to make your patio or garden the best place to spend both your summer days and nights?

We have collected five of them, the ones that can help you transform your exterior however you want. Moreover, these ideas will help you create that vibe you want to feel when you spend your time there. It will be a place that will replenish your energy levels, help you relax and unwind. So, what are the best five summer exterior decorating ideas? You can find out below.

1. Area Rugs

If you are yearning for a place where you can walk with your bare feet and not hurt them, your exterior can be that place. Of course, it depends on how your house and the porch are built, but for sure you will find a place to decorate and make it look more pleasant. So, having a rug to cover all your exterior area will change its look completely. These places are usually very rustic made, with a lot of wood. To cover it a little bit and give your exterior a different, more welcoming feeling, you can put an area rug.

There are many rugs you can choose from. The shape and the model can also be diverse, depending on how you imagine the entire place to be. But if you want a summer feeling, you can choose rugs that have bright colors or beautiful hue combinations. You can go for something white and blue, but also bolder colors. If you have a rug, then if space allows, you can arrange an outdoor dining area as well. And you will enjoy your dinners in a new setting.

2. Add Plants

Plants are the thing that transforms any place. Moreover, having both indoor and outdoor plants is linked to improved wellbeing. Plants help you relieve your stress and replenish your energy levels. Besides this, they can alleviate the symptoms of anxiety and depression and can help you relax. There are many plants you can choose from and that can be kept outdoors, especially during summer. Of course, it depends on the local climate conditions and how your garden or patio is lighted by the sun. But you can choose from a beautiful mix of decorative and perennials. Moreover, you can arrange a small garden where you grow your own vegetables.

3. Summer Pillows and Blankets

No matter how much you love summer and sunny days, some summer nights are chillier than others. And to enjoy a good night or evening outdoors, you need things that help you get comfortable and keep warm. There are pillows you can buy and add outdoors, some that have summer models and can make you feel the warmth of the season.

Palms, cocktails, and flamingos are among the elements that are added to many summer outdoors accessories. On top of this, you can have some fluffy blankets to keep you warm during the night. Even though you will feel chilly, that blanket will help you enjoy the summer nights at peace and in comfort.

4. Coolers

Summer nights are chilly, but the days are hot. And you will surely want something cold to drink, to cool yourself off. So, why not add some coolers to your outdoor place? There are many ideas you can choose from or you can unleash your creativity and invent something yourself. These coolers, besides their obvious benefit, will help you create a festive appearance to the place too. You can take a bucket and some ice cubes to keep your beverages cold. A brighter solution would be to fill some balloons with water and freeze them. Colorful balloons will give your bucket a summer look, which will increase your comfort.

5. Garden Stools

No garden or outdoors relaxing place is complete without some garden stools. They can make the place look bright and nice, while also filling the empty space. On top of this, they also have a functional benefit. They can be used as places to keep your drinks on. Besides, they can be filled with towels in case you have a pool. Garden stools can be used in a wide variety of ways and they come in many forms and colors. You can easily match the colors and theme with the whole place and create a bright, colorful, and summery place to spend your summer at.

Ending Note

Your garden, patio, or outdoor space is the best place you can arrange to spend your summer. During hot summer days, you will need a shadowy place. But on chilly summer nights, you will need something to keep you warm. Summer is the season when you can do a lot of activities, but also spend time with your friends in the comforts of your patio. Make sure you arrange your outdoor space to be a comfortable, cozy, and welcoming place.

A cooler will help you keep your beverages cold and enjoy the hot day. A garden stool would be a great accessory that helps you store things you need, like towels or blankets. It is also a great thing to keep your glasses on. Apart from these, an area rug would make the place more welcoming and enjoyable, especially if you like to be there barefoot.

Summer pillows and blankets would make the place more comfortable and cozier, while also keeping you warm. And plants? Plants will help you relax and unwind. They will give you that jungle feeling that will relieve your stress levels, help you to escape from the tensions and enjoy your time in your garden.

Leon Collier
Leon Collier

Bio Lines: Leon Collier is a blogger and academic writer from Edinburgh who has vast experience working with college paper writing service and essay writers UK. He loves to take on every challenge thrown at him and has the ability to deliver outstanding work regularly. When he’s not busy writing, he loves reading books and playing tabletop games with his friends. Follow him on Twitter @LeonCollier12.

Photo by Randy Fath on Unsplash