There are certain areas in every home where it is definitely worth it to splurge. Some things you can buy from the floor in bulk and it will not make a difference, but certain aspects of a home are worth investing a little more time and money in. Quality is important for both resale value and for performance purposes in your home. The three areas, which we think are the most important to invest in are your entry door, closets, and countertops.

Entry Doors

Your entry door (is one of the first things someone will see upon arrival to your house. The entry door is the first impression of your home, which someone experiences while waiting for you to come to the door. It is important to have an entry door that will both protect the inside from the outside and perform its job. There are several different types of materials used to design a custom entry door (http://www.thompsoncreek.com/doors/custom-entry-doors-and-front-doors) that you get to design the door to your liking. When designing your entry door it is important to find a door that will protect your home from the outdoor elements and keep your home safe from any intruders. It is also important to find a door that will not require a lot of maintenance since that can become quite costly.

Counter Tops

Custom counter tops are definitely something worth splurging on in your home, especially in your kitchen. Custom counter tops can definitely be a good selling point if you’re looking to sell your home at some point. Nothing makes a kitchen look more finished than nice counter tops. There are several different types of counter tops for your kitchen ranging from granite to marble to glass. The kitchen is one of the most commonly used rooms in your home, making it pertinent that it is in the best condition.

Closets

Custom closets are another area of the home worth investing in. Custom closets today are made so efficient that they will solve all of your organizational issues. Whether you have a really small closet or a really …

There are many people that relooking into moving into a new home, but they are undecided as to whether they should rent a home or buy one. Some FortuneBuilders are afraid of the housing market crash a few years ago and so they are reluctant to purchase a home, while others are simply tired of renting, and they would rather spend money every month on something that they can call their own. Although there may not be a clear cut answer on which is better there are some things to take into consideration.

When buying a house there are many things to consider. The first thing that a person should consider is how financially stable are they? Do they have a good job? Is their credit score high enough to get a good deal on a mortgage? All of these questions should be thought about, at length, before just jumping into buying a home. Purchasing one is a long-term commitment. Many people are attracted to that since it gives them a sense of security in knowing that they don’t have to live under the reign of a landlord, they can change the layout of the house, and they are responsible for all of the repairs.

Renting a house for some people seems as if it is a better option. They like the idea of having someone else responsible for the property maintenance. They also like the fact that they are only locked into, typically, a one year lease. This is a good choice for people that are unsure on if they are going to stay in the area or not. Typically, changing the layout, or performing any major renovation, on a rented house is not advisable. This is because the renter will have to spend their money for the materials and the labor for the renovation, and the landlord may not reimburse the renter for it, so they will have to take the monetary hit for the renovation.

In conclusion, depending on a person’s lifestyle, their financial status, and their plans for the future deciding to rent or buy a …

Today there are a lot of options when it comes to closets, making closet design much more intricate than it used to be. This can be both beneficial and alarming. It is beneficial in the sense that there is a plethora of options to choose from today when it comes to organizing your wardrobe, but it is also alarming in the sense that sometimes you just don’t know where to begin.

One of the best tips I have ever learned is to think about your own personal style and go from there. Once you truly assess your clothing habits and what you wear most, the rest will fall into place. It is important to organize according to your lifestyle; if the majority of your clothes are hanging items and more formal, than you will need more space for hanging items. Accessibility is important as well, if you live in t-shirts and sweaters on a daily basis than organize them on shelves or in drawers that are easily accessible. If you love shoes than make sure that you have enough shoe shelves to fit your needs. High heels need taller shoe shelves than flat shoes if you are a woman, which is important to keep in mind. Planning your closet design can be chaotic, but it is also reassuring since there is a custom solution to fit your closet needs.

As fashion icon, Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and The City says, “I like my money right where I can see it… hanging in my closet.”

Whether you live in a 300-square foot walk-up in New York City or a mansion in Connecticut it is important to make use of every inch of your closet space. This is especially important if you have minimal space. When you use custom closet design services they truly utilize every nook and cranny from the ceiling to the floor, which gives you the full bang for your buck.…

For ages now, children’s games at festivals still reign supreme. Many, if not all, of the children’s games at festivals have been around for 100s of years, and children along with their parents, still enjoy the excitement and fun that come with these games.

With that said, the following are popular children’s festival games, that may likely will remain popular for some time to come. They may even remain popular when young children of today will become old and grey:

1. Cake Walk

With this game, numbered squares are set up in a ring. The squares would be large enough for one person standing on it. Also, the number of squares should be the same as the players. The players will walk on the squares while the music is playing. Once the music stops, all players must stand still. Then the game operator will draw a number randomly, and the person standing on the number wins.

2. Ring Toss

Ring toss is definitely a classic festival/carnival game. Poles will be set up, and players will attempt to throw hooks on the rings, so they will hook around the rings.

3. Penny Pitch

With the penny pitch, a table is set up with various colored dots of different sizes. Players must exchange their tickets for pennies for throwing. The goal is for players to land pennies on colored dots to win prizes. Otherwise, different sized cups can be used for the penny throwing, instead of using colored dots.

4. Quarter Drop

Used many times to raise money for charities, a few ledges of different sizes are set in a fish tank. The fish tank must be filled with water, and then people must be allowed to try dropping a quart on one of those ledges. Winning occurs when they succeed.

5. Musical Chairs

This is another classic for indoors and outdoors. With this game, there is one more chair than there are players, and there is also music playing. The players must walk around the chairs while the music is playing. However, when the music is turned off, everyone must find …

My house never seems to be warm enough and our heat bills seem to be increasing each month. We haven’t increased the number of times we shower a day or the amount that we use our gas stove to cook. What we seem to be adjusting each month or even each day is the temperature on our thermostat. I couldn’t take it anymore, both the cold breeze in our home and the rising prices on our monthly gas bill.

It turns out that our crawl space was the root of the problem and the cause of the cold air in our old colonial style brick home. We had specialists come out and take a look at our crawl space and we quickly learned that it was filthy since it was unprotected and had several unfinished surfaces. The dirt in our crawl space led to moisture, which was the cause of growing mold.

The air from our crawl space was leaking into the walls of our home, which was why it has been so chilly in our home the past couple of months. We are lucky that thankfully the air wasn’t too contaminated and did not cause anyone to get sick or anything.

We later learned that when you have a dirty crawl space with a lot of moisture it is an environment that insects, pests and wildlife gravitate towards. Our crawl space was clear of any wildlife or pests, which was truly a miracle.

The solution we chose to eliminate our crawl space issues was to install the CleanSpace Crawl Space Encapsulation System. The CleanSpace system essentially created a bubble in our crawl space, which works to keep the moisture out and locks in the heating and air conditioning. This bubble was installed on the floors and walls of our crawl space.

The system ensures that no moisture or toxic air is leaking through the walls into your home. Since we have installed the CleanSpace system we have watched our heat bills reduce by 20% a month, which definitely is nice to see. Now we can keep our thermostat at …

There are many people that are reviewing Yelp and FortuneBuilders not sure whether if they should buy a move in ready home or a fixer upper. Although, there are no easy answers to this question there are things to weigh when it comes to choosing what style of home that a person should purchase. A person should seriously weigh the pros and the cons for each option so that they can make an informed decision prior to being locked into a commitment to buy.
First, a “move in ready home” is just that; move in ready. There is very little work, if any, that needs to be completed in order for a family to move into it. There may be a little bit of painting or decorating that needs to be done, but that would be about it. There should be more major issues with the house that will need attention, and the price will reflect that. People that are not mechanically inclined should opt for this type of house since they would have to pay a contractor to do the work if they were to choose a “fixer upper”.
Next, a “fixer upper” home is a house that may need a substantial amount of work in order to make it habitable. Typically, it may need work done on the roof, plumbing, heating, electrical, or flooring and drywall. This is a great option for people that are looking to save money on their initial investment, and for those that are handy and know how to complete the work in order to make the house habitable. Many of these types of homes can be purchased for a lot less than a “move in ready” home; however, there may be a lot of work to be done on it. While some of the minor work can be done when a person is moved in, such as painting or minor plumbing work, the big jobs such as roofing, installing flooring, and re-wiring the house should be completed prior to moving in.
In conclusion, it is really up to the mechanical aptitude of the …

From readingeagle.com:

Baby-teeth jewelry and postpartum corsets were among the top parenting trends reported last year. Take a look at what moms are buzzing about this year on BabyCenter.com.

The crowdfunded baby

Parents are starting Kickstarter or GoFundMe accounts for everything from first birthday parties to Christmas presents. “Two out of three moms are worried about having enough money to raise their kids – an 11 percent increase since 2013,” said Rebecca Michals, director of BabyCenter’s global community. “Crowdfunding may be moms’ way of trying to make it all work.”

Parents smoking pot

With the legalization of marijuana in several states, will more parents be indulging and, if so, what are the implications for families? “There are already several active BabyCenter groups about marijuana with nearly 1,500 members combined, and in 2014, conversations on this topic increased compared to the year before,” Michals said. “Many parents don’t think twice about having a glass or two of wine regularly to unwind, but we’re waiting to see if they will make the transition to marijuana.”

Germophobic parents

Some parents are changing the game when it comes to daily interactions with their children.Germophobic parents won’t allow their children to interact with anyone who’s not vaccinated, and they go above and beyond to keep their babies shielded from germs in general, usually by keeping them indoors and preventing friends and family from hugging or kissing their children.

– See more at: http://readingeagle.com/life/article/parenting-trends-to-watch-in-2015#sthash.orBw1FkU.dpuf…

Cenergistic, formerly known as Energy Education, has done it again. They serve clients such as those in the health care industry, school districts, colleges, universities and churches. They help these organizations save energy so they can invest back into the lives they save.

This energy company has been able to create a module that will allow current structures to function better and save energy whether with the electric, gas or water. The company comes in does an evaluation on your spending in the areas of electricity, gas and water. Then it develops a plan that will allow that particular structure to use their module to save money over a series of years. They fee comes out as a percentage of the money saved.

One such structure that this module is being used for is the Mobile County school district. They are said to save over 75 million dollars over a 10 year span. If they can help this district save this much money, think of what they can do for you. With this module Cenergistic will be able to help this and other school districts be able to use the money they save on energy bills to develop educational programs to help their students succeed in their academic career.

Another area that Cenergistic is helping to lessen the amount paid in utilities is in the universities and colleges. These educational buildings have several buildings and campuses that need to be run. Some examples have been Hinds Community College and Jones Community College in Mississippi and Washington and Lee University in Virginia.

Health care facilities are another area that Cenergistic is revamping the utility cost. The University of Oklahoma has put this to use campus wise and has been able to reduce costs tremendously. The Presbyterian Communities and Service in Dallas Texas put this module into effect and showed results almost from the start

Churches use this module as well. They have been able to reduce costs that allow them to reinvest in their church to produce programs for parishioners and their congregation. Some examples are the Preston wood Baptist …

I used to think it was hard to find storage for all of my stuff, which is ironic since at the time I was only accountable for one person. Now having three kids and a husband, I have to organize not only all of my stuff, but the rest of my families as well. Storage seems to be the one limited feature in our home. When we moved into our new house two years ago, I was so excited to be in a bigger home, I didn’t care what our closets looked like. The longer we live here and the more stuff we seem to collect, the more space we seem to need.

We have decided to re-do a couple of the closets in our home in order to accommodate our somewhat chaotic lifestyle. Closet design is the perfect time to think about the needs of your family and what the best storage solutions are.

After assessing what areas of our home need the most organization, we narrowed it down to the mudroom and the master bedroom closet.

Currently in our mudroom we have one small closet, which has all of our coats jammed together, sports equipment and shoes all thrown along the floor. My vision for our new mudroom closet is to have individual spaces for each of my three kids, my husband and myself. These five cubbies will hopefully equate to the organization of my family. Each of the cubbies will have custom shelving for our shoes, coats, and hooks for more coats. My children will have baskets for their sports equipment, which will keep things far more organized than they are now.

As far as our master bedroom closet goes, there are so many intricate touches you can add to a walk-in closet today. I know that we for sure need hanging rods on both sides for our hanging clothes, shelving for sweaters and casual tops, and I wouldn’t mid shoe shelves. Actually that’s an understatement- I would be ecstatic to have shoe shelves in my closet where I can display all of my shoes. My husband …

As a mom of three children, five if you’re including my husband and our Golden Retriever Winston, simplicity is the key to my heart. Living in the East Coast definitely entails cold winters, rainy springs and unpredictable summers, but this fall and winter we just couldn’t seem to get our home warm enough.

After hearing my children constantly complain about how cold our home was and then seeing my husband walk around the kitchen with a scarf on, I decided to take matters into my own hands. From the beginning of October to the beginning of December our utilities bill was through the roof since our heat never seemed to be warm enough. A friend of mine suggested that I check our front door since she had a similar issue in her home, which resulted in the front door having cracks all along the sides of it.

I had a repair man come out and take a look and it turns out that my friend was right! Our main entry door had cracks all along its sides, which equated to the cool temperatures in my home. After researching the issue, I learned that front doors are one of the main places for air leakage in the home.

The solution to our issue was a storm door, which would create both a seal and protect the main entry door of our home. Main entry doors are very expensive to both repair and replace, but a storm door would provide this extra protection in addition to our main entry door.

Storm doors are made out of the highest quality materials, which can endure both time and weather conditions. Storm doors keep elements from outside from coming inside, which is exactly what I need.

I can’t begin to tell you the difference our storm door has made in our home. Now we have lower utility bills, less complaining, and a warmer atmosphere.…