5 ways to make your older home feel new

(NC) Dreaming of improving your home, but a major remodel isn't necessarily in the budget? It may seem basic, but a fresh coat of paint is an easy trick to give your home a new look. Try some of these simple, inexpensive paint projects that make for quick updates and keep the old-home charm. Paint kitchen cabinets. This is an economical way to transform an outdated kitchen into something timeless. Select a primer that is recommended for the type of surface you have, then remove the cabinet doors and hardware and label them for easier reassembly. Use painter's tape to protect the wall or backsplash tile and cover the countertop with plastic or poly-sheeting. Instead of the typical two-step process to apply poly-sheeting, try using Painter's Mate double-sided poly-hanging tape to make prep time a breeze. Revamp drawer pulls and door handles. Give your home a small but impactful refresh by updating worn door handles, drawer knobs and pulls. Instead of replacing everything, try…

5 tips for a DIY home garden

(NC) Spring may have sprung a little late this year, but here are some tips for a successful garden that will have you growing in no time: 1. Choose your garden space wisely. Since most garden plants need ample sunlight to grow, make sure that your garden is given every opportunity to succeed by being strategic with the growing conditions. Ensure you pick an area with direct sunlight for plants that need it. If you're growing a vegetable garden, start small. Some vegetables keep providing throughout the season, so you may not need as many plants as you think. 2. Build up your soil. Create a mound of organically rich soil in your garden before you plant. This will encourage a larger yield and an improved root system during growing season because there is less competition for nutrients compared to regular earth. 3. Be smart about spacing. Receive better yields from each plant by paying close attention to how you arrange them. Avoid planting in square patterns or rows. Instead, stagger…

Tips to protect your home from water damage

(NC) Did you know that water is the leading cause of home damage in most provinces? Just this past May, communities across the country had to cope with flooding as heavy rainfalls hit various regions over many days. What can you do to protect your home? Here, Marc Barbeau, property claims manager of Intact Insurance shares his top four tips: 1. Water-resistant d├ęcor. The next time you're renovating your home, explore installing cement board instead of drywall in your basement. It's typically used in showers and tubs and is less likely to absorb water. Cement boards are extremely moisture resistant and dry quickly when wet. For base moulding, consider a formed, paintable plastic material instead of wood. This way, even if water gets in, your home may be able to withstand excess water and mould damage. 2. Install backflow valves and sump pumps. A sump pump may help keep your basement safe and dry by collecting and disposing the water from your home. Already have a sump pump? Thin…

Prevent flood damage with this one essential tool

Home » Basement renovation advice & information » Prevent flood damage with this one essential tool Prevent flood damage with this one essential tool Published - May 12, 2017 Learn how to protect your home against flood damage, with a high-water alarm system. Plus, enter to win a Tulsar Sentry Z Control high-water alarm. With the recent heavy rainfall drenching parts of Ontario, Quebec, and the Maritimes, reports of flooding and residential water damage have been on the rise.  Ottawa and Quebec have been particularly hard hit, with hundreds of residents being forced to evacuate their homes. When they return, they will likely be faced with costly flood damage to repair.  “All this rain has come at a time when the ground was already saturated from previous downpours, limiting its ability to absorb further rainfall. As a result, conservation authorities across the south of the province [Ontario] issued flood watches or warnings. Making things even more difficult was t…

Is mould affecting your home and health?

Is mould affecting your home and health? By: Scott McGillivray(NC) 

All homes can be susceptible to mould growth. In fact, mould could be present without you even realizing it. Exposure can cause an array of health issues from coughing, wheezing, headache and nausea to nasal stuffiness, sore throat, skin irritation, fatigue and more. Virtually anywhere can be a breeding ground for mould, as long as there's air, moisture, organic material (a food source) and adequate temperatures––between 40˚F (5˚C) and 104˚F (40˚C). It's most commonly found in areas where moisture levels tend to be higher, like basements, kitchens, bathrooms or near water leaks in roofs, attics, walls, and pipes. Identifying a mould problem can be a challenge, because mold can grow in hidden areas such as behind walls. Signs include discoloration of indoor surfaces, dark spots or patches. Musty odours can also be an indication that harmful mould is present. Swift action is necessary to ensure your health and …

Simple ways to brighten your home

(NC) Small adjustments to everyday items you rarely think about can create a big impact. Try these easy, chic ideas the next time you're looking for a weekend project. Fresh furniture. Use white or light-coloured furniture to open up any space. Think cream couches and white dressers or side tables. Design experts are loving acrylic furniture right now, so if you're feeling fashion forward, try it in a coffee table or shelving unit. Seamless window treatments. Sleek and streamlined window treatments allow sunlight to stream through without glare. A sheer shade in a natural material like linen is key, which you can find in the Pirouette line from Hunter Douglas. The shadings feature soft fabric vanes attached to a sheer backing that appears to be floating, drawing natural light into your room. Magic mirrors. Fake extra square footage with strategic use of mirrors. A cramped entryway with mirrored closets will double in size, while a decorative mirror in a dark corner will make you…

Is Replacing Carpet With Hardwood Always Worth It?

Home Improvement Is Replacing Carpet With Hardwood Always Worth It?By  | Dec 24, 2014 DigiStu/iStock Thinking about replacing your floors? Especially if you have carpet, the choice seems clear: Hardwood floors are preferred by home buyers and renters across the United States. But consider carefully whether hardwood floors are the right choice for every room in your home—and what type you might want to install for the best resale value.

Avoiding Moisture Damage

Avoiding Moisture Damage Courtsey: Today's energy-efficient homes are built tightly to seal out the cold weather in winter and seal in the air conditioning in summer. Because of this it is possible that a new home can be severely damaged by lack of ventilation or excess moisture. It is important to remember that moisture damage to your home caused by the improper or inadequate use of your home ventilation system, or other kinds of preventative maintenance, is not covered by the new home warranty. What causes moisture damage?
Your home can be damaged when weather-related water is allowed to enter and remain in the structure. Water from leaking pipes or fixtures that is not immediately cleaned up, and indoor humidity levels that are not properly controlled, can have serious consequences. Sometimes this damage is easily seen; at other times the damage is hidden inside wall and roof spaces. Regardless of where it occurs, moistu…

Getting ready for the growing season

Your spring garden guide: Getting ready for the growing season Can you feel it? Spring is in the air! Which means, it’s also time to get your green thumb ready. Whether you’re growing seasonal flowers or fresh fruits and vegetables, having a prepared garden means you’ll have an earlier harvest and a beautiful blooming garden faster than you can say “spring”! So, here you have it, your complete “spring garden guide” to help you get ready for the growing season: Start as soon as possible First things first, the most important rule of gardening is to start as early as you can. This will give your garden enough time to get itself ready to flourish once springtime hits. As soon as the warm weather comes, we recommend you grab your gardening tools and head outside – you (and your garden) will thank you later. Clean your tools There’s nothing better than buying a new set of gardening tools, but we both know, this can’t happen every season. However, it’s no secret that you can feel just as g…