Monday, 30 September 2013

Home Remodeling for the Elderly

Creating an elder friendly home environment is a choice many homeowners are using as against moving to the impersonal surroundings of assisted living. Many elders prefer to stay in their familiar surroundings at home as home renovations for seniors are designed to increase comfort and safety. Due to age related limitations seniors should have the ease to move around and use their home facilities without risk of falling or injury in their day-to-day life.

Remodeling and renovating homes to accommodate the elderly should be carefully thought out and executed according to the needs of the senior residents. Construction companies have now improved methods and designs due to the increased demand for elder related remodeling work. Families that have elder family members moving in with them choose home improvements that focus on the health and comfort of seniors.

These renovations can provide certain degree of independence, help avoid injuries and make the surroundings more accessible and improve the quality of life for the elderly.

Senior Residences
Ideally seniors should reside at ground level but if their homes are situated at a higher floor the elevators, hallways and lifts should be well lit, accessible, with handrails provided. Flooring should be made from slip resistant material, and closets and storage should be easy to use and access.

Seniors require brighter lights but minus the glare so adding sufficient lighting including areas such as the stairs with additional flashlights provided during power cuts should be provided. Switches should be placed at lower levels and operate easily.

Bathrooms are among risk prone areas for slipping and falling so should ensure safety for the elderly. Faucets should be lever controlled; there should be thermostats for controlling water temperatures to prevent scalding, commodes should be at low levels and sinks and curbless showers or tubs should be easily accessible without any floor level differences. Grab bars should be provided and hand held showers should be installed. Flooring should be level and slip resistant and handrails should be installed at regular intervals.

Kitchen renovations for seniors should include modifications that make appliances, countertops, sinks, and cabinets easy to use and access. Cupboards should be easy to open and close or reach.

Home improvement for senior friendly residences should include easy maintaining vinyl materials for sidings and the deck and entry should be on the same level or just about half an inch lower. Landscape should have low maintenance plants and the access pathway should be even. Front door should have space for keeping packages and equipped with sensor lights, peepholes and no steps.

Windows and Doors
Senior friendly homes should be equipped with hardware and locking systems that are secure but easy to operate. The sills should be placed at a lower level and the windows should allow plenty of light during daytime. As dexterity decreases in the elderly and as some have painful arthritis it is worthwhile to change doorknobs and handles with lever types that are easier to handle and operate.

There are many additional ways to manage safety and comfort of senior living that can be included such as alarms, security switches to alert help for ambulance or police and so on. Including energy efficient methods in home renovations can also improve the health and comfort of the elderly and increase property value.

Home Improvements - Getting Financed

Renovations plans may make you feel good about how your home will look and feel after the work is complete but, can mean a lot of stress when you consider the expenses. But there is light at the end of the tunnel because of the many financing choices that homeowners have to manage home improvement projects. However, it is important to stay within your budget and not exceed the plan as a practical and sensible method of ensuring all round success for home remodeling.

There may be many areas of your home that need remodeling and if you don’t have enough funds there are options for financing your project. You should carefully research and consider finance options and realistically assess all aspects of borrowing funds before you dive into it. The aim should be not to exceed the interest expenses that you have to pay back over a specific time period and to remember that you will need to pay back your loan. The main benefit of home improvement financing is that you don’t have to spend the entire sum at once and you can have the surroundings you planned and dreamed about to make your home comfortable and beautiful.

Evaluate Plans
The first step in any home remodeling is to evaluate and consider all the options. This can mean:
  • Actual plans for changes in your house
  • Costs including labor and materials and extras
  • Estimates of borrowing amount, monthly payments, time frame to pay back loan,
and interest rates
  • How much do you earn
  • Compare loan options
  • Your credit history will be taken into account
  • Equity or value of property
  • Longer repayment periods mean higher interest rates
There are many choices for financing home improvement plans.
When you hire reliable contracting companies for your refurbishing work, they provide options for financing the project. But it is wise to read the fine print and make sure there are no surprises later on through hidden fees.

Online Lenders
There are online lending companies that offer loans if borrowers meet their criteria to qualify for credit. They have specially designed loans that can be paid off according to your budget through monthly payment and interest rates.

Credit Card Payment
If the total amount is approximately hundreds or a few thousand dollars, homeowners can pay with their credit cards but should be aware that they should be able to pay the amount and interest rate in the stipulated time frame.

Homeowners can use one loan to refinance their mortgage and conduct repair or renovation work according to the FHA203(k) loan and this has a fixed rate or can be adjusted rates. This financing option works through hiring a contractor. It may be possible to take a higher amount than your current principal but there are surcharges and associated fees and you will have to pay out your mortgage from the start so you need to be careful about this type of loan.

Home Equity Line of Credit
The equity or value of your property is gauged by appraisal of your home and how much mortgage is paid off.  The actual amount you can borrow varies with each lender and their regulations.

Loans can be paid with smaller amounts over a longer period but it’s important to remember that your interest rates will be higher. If you are taking contractor loans ensure there they are not getting extra from lending agency which you will be paying. You can also apply for loans through credit unions, banks, or mortgage companies but the basic rule is adhering to your budget, to avoid problems and ensure financial safety.

Thursday, 12 September 2013

What is a 3-season Sunroom

If you build a sunroom you can enjoy the pleasure of outdoors without snow or rain and annoying insects crawling around. Sunshine is filtered through high performance glass into a beautiful enclosed space that you can relax in and bond with your family members. Among the choices in design for sunrooms 3-season enclosures are chosen by many homeowners based on geographical location, budget considerations and the amount of sunlight that is received.

Features of 3-season Sunrooms

Typically 3-season sunrooms as the name signifies are used during the warmer months from early spring to late autumn. These enclosures are an economical method of expanding your living space without eating into your heating or cooling bills. Heating and cooling systems are not connected to these rooms as it depends on natural light.

3-season sunrooms are versatile additions to your home and can be constructed with removable windows to convert the enclosure to a screen room during warmer months. These types of sunrooms can be built over an existing deck, slab or patio and can include single pane glass.

Location Based
These sunrooms are ideal if you live in a geographical location that enjoys moderate climate during most of the year. During the warmer months you have the choice of adding a window air conditioning unit to cool this enclosed room and add to its comfort. In the cold months portable heaters can be used as an economical method of heating.

Closing off the patio for use during the warmer months can keep the bugs out and provide a beautiful room for rest and relaxation for the entire family. If top grade material is used to build this enclosure you and family have a cozy retreat for lounging and enjoying. You can add lightweight furniture and enjoy the outdoor view from this versatile addition to your home.

These sunrooms are economical additions to your home where you can shelter from the strong sunlight and enjoy the outdoors without oppressive heat, rainy weather or bugs. The rooms can be an activity area where you can read, rest, eat, or play indoor games with family in relaxed surroundings.

3-season sunrooms can be built with high grade materials and tempered glass which can be custom designed to fit the home’s plan and requirements. Knee walls are measured and cut to specifications and can be installed easily. The materials are available in colors that match the home and blend in well with its construction design. The frames are available in different styles and shapes to suit individual home needs. Double or single pane glass can be used for these patio enclosures which have top rated insulating properties.

Sliding doors and windows can be included in 3 season sunrooms which allow ventilation and fresh air during pleasant weather. Some designs use removable window systems that can be stored and convert the patio to an open space. 

Building a 3 season sunroom is an economical and customized way of expanding your living space. Top rated doors and windows manufacturing and installation companies can be used for building your deck to include this type of enclosure, unless you are DIY expert and want to undertake the labor by yourself. Make sure that the materials are of the best quality to get value for your investment.