Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Home Improvement: When Should You Do It Yourself?

A do-it-yourself project can be an empowering way to save money, provided you know what you're doing. But making even one simple mistake could put a strain on your back or your bank account. Often, it's best to put safety first by planning ahead, taking extra precautions, or when needed calling a professional.

Here are four types of home improvement projects that are best left to the experts.

1. Plumbing or electrical projects
There's a reason these are skilled trades. Both systems are complex, no matter how straightforward a repair may initially appear. Even small leaks can cause serious water damage, and faulty electrical wiring can lead to a house fire. Don't risk flooding or electric shock. Call a plumber or hire an electrician to make sure these jobs are done right the first time.

2. Renovations with possible code violations

Structural changes require a licensed contractor. Not only can shoddy craftsmanship severely affect your home's value, but it can also put your family in danger. Accidentally removing a load-bearing wall, for example, could cause an entire room to collapse. Why take the risk?

3. Repairs involving heights

More than 130,000 ladder-related injuries are treated in emergency rooms each year. Whether you're looking at a roof repair or trimming a tree, consider calling a professional before attempting to complete the job yourself.

4. Time-sensitive projects

Weigh your work and family commitments before embarking on a home improvement project. Even if you're confident in your abilities, the added pressure of a tight deadline can lead to unnecessary and often dangerous mistakes.

Remember, just because a DIY project looks simple doesn't necessarily mean it's safe. When in doubt err on the side of caution, plan ahead, and when when needed call a professional.

Want to find a home improvement project that is truly DIY friendly? Try one of these wallet-friendly and easy weekend projects for a new look, added home value, or just the sprucing up you've been looking for.

Here are four types of do it yourself home improvement projects that can be done safely with a little planning and knowledge.  


1. Save the popcorn for the movies

What's on your ceiling? Few structural elements date a house more than popcorn ceilings. So dedicate a weekend to ditching the dated look and adding dollar signs to the value of your home. This is a project you can tackle yourself. First, visit your local hardware store for a solution to soften the texture, EZ Strip Popcorn Ceiling Remover is the number one DIY friendly remover on our list find it here then simply scrape the popcorn away. Removing a popcorn ceiling may not seem like a big change but one of the keys for adding value to your home is to repair, replace or remove anything that could turn buyers away.

Here's a quick how to with EZ Strip! 

2. Refinish your flooring 

Installing a new hardwood floor can take longer than a weekend and require a professional. So refinish existing hardwood for a less time/cost-consuming project. No matter whether you decide to strip or sand your floors refinishing will always be more DIY friendly over replacing! Larger floor sanders can be rented from your local hardware store or if you chose to strip off that old tired finish be sure to use a safe stripper the number one DIY friendly remover on our list is EZ Strip Paint & Varnish Remover find it here once your old finish is off pick a new fresh color to give your home a high value upgrade!

Here's a quick how to with EZ Strip! 

3. Cleanliness counts

Make the interior of you home shine from the moment someone walks through the door. Sometimes a top-to-bottom scrubbing is all your home really needs to change the look and feel of any room. Even if you clean your home regularly, there are nooks and crannies that you may miss or overlook. Do a room by room scan and tackle tough removal jobs like dried paint drips/permanent marker mistakes/stickers or tape glue residues/and more with safe cleaners that pack a punch, top on our DIY friendly remover list is EZ Strip All Purpose Remover to really make your home sparkle.Find it here

Here's a quick how to with EZ Strip!

4. Paint, paint, paint

One of the simplest, most cost-effective DIY home improvements of all is paint! Freshly painted rooms look clean and updated — and that spells value. When selecting paint colors, the world is your oyster get that fresh new look with a DIY friendly paint project! On average, a gallon of paint costs around $25, leaving you plenty of money to buy rollers, painter's tape, drop cloths and brushes. So buy a few gallons and get busy!

First impressions matter. Easy weekend DIY fixes can dramatically change the look or value of your home with a lot less cost but always plan ahead to make sure the project you take on is safe and truly DIY friendly!

Friday, September 8, 2017

GRAFFITI: How It Hurts & How You Can Help!

Graffiti is any writing, drawing or symbol applied to any surface without the consent of the property owner or their agent. It's a problem that if left unchecked can seriously damage the reputation of a community and adversely effect the economy and quality of life enjoyed by the residents. 

Removal of graffiti is a fact of life for commercial property owners in cities large and small. Many find their buildings spray painted and spend between hundreds and thousands of dollars to have the graffiti removed – using methods ranging from power-washing to repainting – only to be tagged again days later.

In major cities owners are required by law to remove illegal markings. Failure to do so often results in fines or action to remove the graffiti by city workers; the cost is then typically billed back to building owners in the form of property tax surcharges. These requirements leave many commercial property owners feeling doubly victimize.

Common Targets

Graffiti Crime can occur anywhere the opportunity exists. Some of the more popular targets include: 

Public and private buildings
Parks and recreation facilities
Public transit vehicles, stations and shelters
Public telephone booths
Railway cars
Bridges and overpasses 

Why should you care?

Graffiti crime can effect your community in many ways, including:

Higher taxes for clean-up
Lower property values
Heightened fear of crime 
Cancellation or reduction of education and recreation program

Removal is Important

Graffiti that is not removed indicates that no one cares about the state of the community. A clear message must be sent to those responsible that this type of activity will not be tolerated. The most effective method of deterring Graffiti Crime is removal within 24 hours. 

Immediate Removal

Timely graffiti removal will help stop the spread and re-occurrence of graffiti. Graffiti writers will not waste their time or materials and are unlikely to return to locations that do not offer a good return for their efforts. 

The challenge isn't lost on city officials who attempt to balance the need for quick removal of graffiti with an understanding of the huge repeated costs for building owners. It's why the approach to managing vandalism across the country is changing. Many say it's having a positive impact on both incident reduction and community building efforts.

Cities are starting to introduce comprehensive graffiti management plans, which combine graffiti removal a central tactic in the plan because vandals are far less likely to hit a wall multiple times if they know their work will be promptly deleted with prevention, largely through youth and community outreach programs.

How You Can Help

Community clean up days have become a popular way for people to get together and help clean up the graffiti in their area. Teaming up with your friends and neighbors, a few local businesses, and if possible a company that sells safe removal options like EZ Strip you can clean up a whole community in a few hours for a few dollars! 

Here's how we did it!