Category Archives: Home improvement

Tips for Working From Home

Working from home allows you more flexibility and freedom, but it also comes with some challenges. Your home likely has more distractions than a typical office, so you may find that you’re having a hard time staying motivated and getting your work done. Here are a few things you can do to make working from home a little more manageable. 

Photo by XPS on Unsplash

Make Space

While working on your couch may seem like a good idea, you may find yourself getting distracted a lot or even dozing off at times. Instead, consider creating a home office. Look online for the best place to buy office furniture in your area, and get the necessities, such as a desk and chair. Set up your office in an area of your house that is quiet and away from distractions. 

Have a Schedule

You may have set hours from your boss, but if not, you should consider choosing them for yourself. You’re more likely to procrastinate if you don’t have a set schedule. You’ll want to include a morning routine, factor in breaks and be sure to make time for lunch. Remember that it’s ok to take sick or personal days even when you’re working from home. 

Socialize

Working from home can be isolating, so it’s important to remember to socialize. Collaborating with colleagues is an important part of most jobs, and although you can’t be together face to face, you can still chat on the phone or have video meetings. You’ll, of course, still want to make sure you’re focusing on work during work hours, but you can always get together for virtual happy hour as well. 

Sticking to these tips can help you to be more productive. You may even find that you end up getting your work done faster, which can allow you to have a better work-life balance. 

How Much Snow Is Too Much for Your Roof?

If you live in an area that gets significant snow during the winter months, you might have cause to wonder about the snow load on roof. The weight of snow that a roof can handle is called the snow load. Several factors affect a roof’s ability to handle snow including the pitch, the amount of bracing in the roof and the distribution of the load.

Photo by Nadine Wuchenauer from Pexels

Pitch

The steeper the pitch, the less likely the roof is to collapse under the weight because the snow slides off quickly. Areas that get a lot of snow have steeply pitched roofs, although porch roofs and additions are sometimes flatter. This can be a problem when snow gives way higher up and falls onto a shallower roof, especially if the rafters are not braced.

Bracing

Properly constructed roof trusses have collar ties that go across the face of one rafter to another. Unfortunately, homeowners or inexperienced contractors sometimes remove the collar ties to get more headroom into an attic space. This weakens the roof structure and lessens the snow load on the roof.

Load Distribution

With all of those problems, why don’t more roofs collapse during a heavy snowfall? Three factors work together to protect a roof. The first is that rafters have a certain amount of give to them, which allows them to bend under a load. Bending doesn’t sound good, but when combined with the roof sheathing, the load is distributed over a larger area. Finally, the snow doesn’t stay there for very long. The wind blows it off the roof, it melts or it is removed before the roof is in danger.

Removal

A tool called a roof rake is very helpful for clearing piled up snow from a roof. It looks like a shovel with a bent handle and sections can be added to allow you to remove the snow without going onto the roof.

Don’t take chances with your roof. Make sure it is well-constructed and safe.

Top 3 Reasons To Consider Refinancing Your Home

If you are a homeowner, you may be able to improve your personal financial situation by refinancing your home. Refinancing could allow you to lower your mortgage payments, consolidate debt, or use your equity to fund home improvement projects.

Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

1. Reduce Your Mortgage Payments

The interest rate of your mortgage has a significant effect on the cost of your monthly mortgage payments. Because interest rates can change often, you may be able to refinance your home to take advantage of a low rate. A Top Mortgage Lender can give you information on the details and potential benefits of refinancing.

2. Pay Down Debt

If you have debt, especially unsecured loans such as credit card balances, refinancing could allow you to reduce the financial burden of debt payments. In some cases, you may be able to consolidate all your debt into a refinanced home loan. This can reduce the number of payments you make every month. Additionally, paying off high-interest balances can improve your overall financial situation.

3. Update Your Home

If you have a large amount of equity in your home, refinancing can allow you to turn that equity into cash for home improvement projects. A lender such as Sun West Mortgage can help you understand the value of your equity and provide guidance on smart ways to invest that money back into your home.

Refinancing your home can provide several unique benefits and opportunities. It can help you reduce credit card debt, lower your monthly payments, or use your equity to improve your home.