Modern Living

Modern Living

Home and real estate topics discussed in detail

How to Get Year-Round Use Out of your Patio

During the summer, your patio area is one of the most frequented places in your home. It’s relaxing and allows your family to enjoy being outdoors in the warm weather. However, as soon the temperatures begin to drop, you may naturally turn indoors and abandon your patio space. Many homeowners do this, but the reality is you don’t have to. In fact, there are many ways you can upgrade your patio so that you can get more use out of it during the entire year! Get inspired by these different approaches to make your outdoor space enjoyable no matter the season. The below upgrades can be implemented for both screened-in and non-screened-in patios.

Combat the Cold with a Heat Source

One of the first things to add to your patio space is some source of heat. You could add a few electric outdoor heaters to position around your seating. These will produce a great amount of heat that will keep everyone comfortable while hanging out on the patio. Another option is to build a firepit. This heat source will only work in open patios for obvious reasons! Fire pits offer great ambience and can be built or bought depending on your budget and size of your patio.

Enhance the Comfort Level with Blankets

Bring even more comfort to your patio by adding a few blankets that can keep everyone warm and cozy on cold evenings. These can be stored in waterproof outdoor bins or kept in your home until you’re ready to use them. Paired with a few cups of hot cocoa or tea, your patio will continue to be a favorite area of your home. Not only will it be ideal for your family, but guests will love chatting on your patio too.

Install Additional Lighting

During the fall and winter, the amount of daylight you have to work with decreases. Because of this, you’ll need to add more lighting options to your patio space. Otherwise, you’ll be sitting in the dark! There are tons of ways you can go about this, allowing you to get as creative as you’d like. If your space is enclosed, you can add overhead lighting and even lamps. For non-enclosed potions, you can use railing or string lights to hang up on taller fixtures nearby. You can also use path lights all around your patio for more light and great ambience. If you choose to add a firepit, this will naturally help as well.

Add a Wind Block

There’s nothing worse than shivering in your coat as piercing winds blow. This is the kind of thing that will drive you to get inside where it’s warm! Wind blocks can instantly make your outdoor patio more comfortable to be on for extended amounts of time. You can build one of these by adding outdoor curtains or screens, which will divert the wind from your space. If you enjoy growing and caring for plants, consider adding a few winter plants around your patio. Large, thick plant life can help cut down on winds and will add to the overall appearance of your back yard.

Consider Enclosing the Space If Not Already

If your patio isn’t already enclosed, it might be something to consider. Adding a structure over your patio offers a plethora of benefits, including protection from the elements and better privacy. You won’t need to watch the weather for snow or create defenses against cold winds. It’s much easier to heat enclosed spaces and will be a safe location for the kids and pets that will allow them to enjoy the feeling of being outside.

Don’t Let the Patio Become Stifling

If you have an open patio, this isn’t a concern for you. However, for those with enclosed patios, your heat source can make the area feel quite hot over time. It’s a good idea to install sliding screen doors for your enclosure’s glass doors to regulate the temperate inside. It’s easy to find custom patio screen doors that will perfectly fit your door opening measures and match the colors of your enclosure. When you’re feeling a little too warm, simply slide open your primary door and pull the screen door closed in its place. This way, you can allow the enclosed area to cool down without leaving an open gap for children or pets to slip through.

With these useful ways to make your patio a more inhabitable space during the whole year, you can easily add to the value of your home by carrying out one or more of the above. You and your family will be able to get that escape from indoors that we all sometimes need during the colder months.


How to Improve the Air Quality in Your Home

We live in a world that is becoming increasingly contaminated. From traffic to industries that release a lot of pollutants into our air, there are too many sources of pollution to think about. However, one thing a lot of people do not think about is the quality of the air in their home. Air pollution in your home is just as bad as outdoor pollution, which is why it is so important to put measures in place to ensure that the air quality inside your house is adequate. Here’s how you can do exactly that.

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Keep Your House Clean

Cleaning your house regularly helps remove two of the most common air pollutants – dust and dander. This is especially important if you have pets, small kids or are allergic to these allergens. Keeping your home clean is often as simple as vacuuming the carpets and rugs a couple of times a week using a vacuum cleaner that has a HEPA filter.

Also, regularly washing your bedding, drapes and similar items that attract allergens can help reduce air pollutants. Lastly, do not forget to dust hard to reach areas. These include under the bed and furniture as well as windowsills and door frames.

Change Your AC Filter

Your air conditioning system is always working to keep the temperature inside your home comfortable. While cycling through air, your AC also filters it and removes the most common house pollutants. Eventually, the filters in your AC system will get too dirty to keep filtering air effectively. This decreased filtration efficiency will lead to an increase in the amount of air pollutants in your home.

To ensure that the quality of your indoor air quality remains at an optimum level, you should put a plan in place to change the air filters in your AC system regularly. The one thing you should be careful about is getting the right filter for the type of AC system you have as well as the area in which you live. You can always source different types of filters on which sells affordable air filters of different sizes so you can find one that fits your AC unit correctly.

Check Your Air Ducts

Air ducts distribute air to different parts of your home. Because of this, they should be cleaned and checked often. Cleaning helps reduce the accumulation of dust and allergens while regular checks ensure that the ducts are not circulating contaminated air from one area of the house to another.

Keep an Eye on Humidity Levels

High humidity levels and moisture lead to the growth of mildew and mold, both of which are allergens and can cause respiratory illnesses. If you live in a humid area, using humidifiers is a great option. Also, if you have too many house plants, it is a good idea to think about moving some of them to the outdoors to reduce humidity levels.

Keeping the air in your home can reduce instances of respiratory conditions and illnesses. Doing so requires diligence, regular checks, and maintenance.

Outdoor Home Projects worth Doing This Spring

While it is still the middle of winter, the days do feel like they’re getting longer. We’ve reached the point where the sun lasts a little longer each day before getting dark, and there is that hope in the air that spring isn’t that far off. What this means is that it’s the perfect time to start planning your outdoor spring project to-do list. There are always going to be the typical items on the list, but this year you may wish to make some changes, upgrades, and renovations that will add to your enjoyment of your outdoor space.

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Here’s a look at some outdoor home projects that can be worth tackling this spring.

Build a Deck or Patio

If you don’t yet have a deck or patio in your yard, this spring may be the perfect time to remedy that situation. A deck or patio can act as the perfect area for relaxing and entertaining. You have plenty of decking materials to choose from, designs, and styles giving you the freedom to choose something that works for your lifestyle and budget.

Getting this project done in early spring means you’ll have plenty of time to enjoy it this year.

Invest in New Outdoor Furniture

One of the best ways to enjoy the outdoors is with comfortable outdoor furniture. There’s no reason you have to go with the standard table and chairs if that’s not your style; nowadays you can find all kinds of trendy, stylish, and versatile options. Take, for example, an sectional outdoor couch that expands your seating and yet provides all the comfort of an indoor couch.

Make the Switch to Seamless Gutters

Here’s a project that is absolutely perfect for the spring, allowing you to improve the aesthetics and functionality of the gutters. If your home has the traditional sectional gutters then you have probably noticed such issues as seams that don’t match up or look clean, debris that builds up in the joints, issues with the color matching perfectly between sections, water leaks at the joints, and more.

Installing seamless gutters will address all these issues and more, as they have very minimal maintenance, are easy to install, can reduce the price of repairs, and are incredibly long-lasting.

Plant a Vegetable and Herb Garden

With so many people spending more time than usual at home in 2020 there was a whole new appreciation for gardening, in particular vegetable and herb gardens. There’s no reason that has to end, as you may want a more permanent garden that is dedicated to your vegetable and herb crop.

If you’re looking for low maintenance relatively easy-to-grow vegetables you can try green beans, bell peppers, spinach, carrots, tomatoes, lettuce, and cucumbers. As for herbs, beginner-friendly ones include sage, mint, oregano, rosemary, basil, fennel, chives, and parsley.

It’s Time to Get Your List Made

Whether you choose one or all of the projects mentioned here, this is the perfect time to start working on your to-do list so you can plan how to best use your time once the weather starts getting better.

Professional Repair For Your KitchenAid Home Appliances

KitchenAid appliances are known for being reliable and they require very little maintenance. However, all appliances experience wear and tear. It is important to remember to keep a close eye on your home appliances so that you are able to identify any problems promptly. Below you will find some of the most common concerns.

Fridge repair

Your KitchenAid fridge should work well for years without giving you any trouble. Regular cleaning is essential and, while cleaning your fridge, you can inspect it from top to bottom. Take a look at such common problem areas as the door gaskets, drainage pipe and clean the back of the fridge too.

Stove repair

Whether you have a gas or electric stove, it’s important to make sure that repairs are always performed by a trained professional. Some of the most common problems that can occur include one or more burners failing as well as igniter issues. If you notice that one burner is faulty, it could be isolated to that particular part. However, if no burners are working, it could be something as simple as a power outage (for electric stoves) or interrupted gas supply (for gas stoves).

Oven repair

Like your stove, a KitchenAid oven needs to be cleaned and checked on a regular basis. The door gasket may experience wear over the years and this can allow heat to escape. Which is why it should be cleaned and inspected frequently. Different functions like grill and convection can fail due to connection issues and other basic wear and tear. No matter the cause of the fault, a technician will be able to diagnose and repair the issue promptly.

Dishwasher repair

If you hear a strange noise coming from your dishwasher, a leak, shudder or any other problems, it’s best to avoid using this appliance and call a professional first. Continued use of a faulty dishwasher can result in more significant and more expensive repairs. Leaks can occur due to hose issues. Before you call a technician, you can inspect them yourself. If the hoses are not worn, broken or loose, it is most likely that there is another problem causing water to pool under the appliance. It’s also important to note that, while your dishwasher is responsible for cleaning dishes, it is not necessarily a self-cleaning appliance. Food particles can build up and cause clogs. This is why regular cleaning is essential.

When looking for appliance repair KitchenAid professionals, it’s important to make sure that your technician has the training and experience needed. They should also be willing to back their work with a satisfaction guarantee as well as a warranty on the repairs performed.

How to choose the best locksmith for any emergency

Whether you are faced with a residential, commercial or auto locksmith emergency, you need and deserve the best team in your corner. The question many people ask is how they know who they can trust with something as important as the security of their property? Here’s what you need to look for in a local locksmith.

Local professionals

The first step to finding the right locksmith is to make sure that they are available in your area and able to offer you assistance without delay. Your local locksmith Scarborough should be able to reach you within 20 minutes. If they are not able to commit to speedy service, it is best to call somebody closer.

Trained technicians

Locksmiths are professionals that undergo extensive training. Not all locks are the same and there are also several types of tools that such a professional will need to master. New locks are constantly being developed too. Which means that a locksmith will not complete their training but rather further their training on a regular basis in order to be able to offer assistance with the latest locks and technology. Make sure that the locksmith you hire is certified and experienced.

Licensed and Insured

Given the nature of this line of business, locksmiths need to be licensed and insured. Not only does this ensure the protection of the locksmith technicians, but it also sets your mind at ease. Your locksmith should have no trouble providing you with their credentials.

Security ensured

All professional locksmiths should take the necessary measures to ensure the safety and security of each customer. This is done by thoroughly authenticating the ownership of any property prior to performing any lock repairs or replacements.

Quality hardware

A locksmith’s work is only as good as the hardware that they install. Even if a locksmith is highly trained, a cheap or inferior-quality lock will not last long with regular use. Apart from being trained in how to repair and install various types of locks, a t

Satisfaction guarantee

Another red flag to watch out for is when a locksmith is not willing to back their work with any sort of guarantee. In most cases, lock manufacturers will back their products with a warranty provided they are installed by a trained and certified professional. A DIY installation may void this warranty.

If your locksmith checks all the boxes mentioned above, the only thing you will need to do is determine their rate as well as the cost of any replacement parts required. Some locks are cheaper than others but, as mentioned, quality varies too.