Monthly Archives: April 2017

Creative Way of Using Old Gutters for Gardening

gutter with leavesYour roof takes a significant amount of abuse in Utah’s harsh climate, and rain gutter repairers might recommend replacement. While you can always buy new gutters, consider the best way of disposing of the damaged ones. Sending them to the landfill is the obvious solution, but there is a better way. Have you ever considered reusing your gutters differently? For a start, here is how to do a hanging garden.

What You Need

Apart from your old gutters, other things needed are:
•    Soil
•    Handsaw
•    Your preferred plants
•    Drill

Remember that the gutters should preferably come with their supports and end caps.

Choose Location

With the materials ready, it is time to choose where to set up the garden. Most people in Utah prefer porch railings, walls and fences, but you can be as creative as you want. As long as the location is in a warm and well-lit area, you are ready to go.

Ready the Plants

As you choose which plants to grow, you need to remember that gutters have weight limitations. Avoid large plants because they will subject the gutters to strain. Ornamental plants perfect for display include chillies, lettuces, flowers and herbs. Gutters from the 60s or 70s may have lead coating, so you need to either dispose them or ask for expert analysis to ascertain safety.

Hang the Gutters

This is one of the easiest projects in the home. You can use an old wooden rack or construct a new one. Hang the gutters on the rack, add the soil, and then plant. With the frame design, you can carry your garden anytime you wish.

Projects out of old reusable gutters can be fun and cost-effective. All you need are basic tools, some soil and time to tend the garden. Reduce wastage you have to replace your rain gutters by putting old ones to alternative use.

4 Tips to Get Firmer Skin

Woman with Good SkinMany people today are bothered by sagging skin, premature aging and cellulite. What’s good to know is that there are simple, easy ways to keep the bad news away. Here are 4 of them:

1. Try contouring or firming products.

You can try some body contouring gels on those problem areas like your buttocks, abdomen, and thighs. These formulated products deeply hydrate your skin. If you use it regularly, the gel helps reduce the appearance of cellulite and even varicose veins.

2. Don’t forget the sunscreen.

The earlier you start using sunscreen, the sooner you can protect your skin from sun damage and premature aging. While you can always wear a hat and take cover when it’s sunny outside, putting on sunscreen gives you better sun protection even when it’s cloudy and downcast outside. Just because you can’t see the sun doesn’t mean it’s not there causing havoc on your skin.

3. Try some natural remedies.

If you’re trying to go green, try some DIY home remedies such as egg whites, lemons, aloe vera, and cucumbers. You’ll find that there are a lot of DIY face masks you can do on a budget and best of all, you probably have most of these ingredients at home anyway. It’s great to reduce the appearance of sagging skin, wrinkles and cellulite.

4. Get active.

Of course, exercise is one of the best ways to improve your overall health, well-being, and physical appearance. Regular exercise increases blood circulation which then keeps your skin toned and firmer. If you’re on a budget, forget the expensive gym membership. Just do some simple home exercises. Do it right, do it regularly and you’ll soon reap the great benefits.

5. Keep Your Youthful-Looking Skin.

The fountain of youth is simpler than you think. With the right nutrition, regular exercise, positive outlook and help from advanced skin technologies, you can protect your skin from premature aging and other signs of damage.

The Art of Keeping Your Car Looking Like New

Car WaxingThere are those who would buy a car and just keep driving it until it needs some serious servicing. It may be hard to believe, but there are luxury car owners who would go a year without washing their car. Imagine doing that to your Civic or Golf, too. Keeping your car clean has several benefits, including the following:

  • It stays looking like new for a much longer time.
  • The resale value is higher on properly cared-for cars.
  • It’s easier to spot blemishes on the paintwork before they get any worse.
  • It saves you from thousands you might otherwise spend on repainting or restoring your vehicle to its former glory.
  • Car thieves are less likely to victimise clean cars, as people who take good care of their cars are much more likely to spend money on advanced security features like pricey alarms, immobilisers and GPS tracking.
  • Bragging rights. You simply feel great when you drive a shiny car.

With all that in mind, here’s how to keep your vehicle looking like new:

Mind where you park it.

Wherever you live, if you keep parking your car in an area where it’s exposed to the elements, you will soon find it looking old and dull. If you have a garage, use it. If you don’t have one, think about building one. You have no choice if your office doesn’t have a basement or roofed parking, but where you leave your car elsewhere is under your control. Parking it outside for a long time exposes it to UV rays, rain, snow, hail, bird droppings, tree sap, small wild animals, and vandals.

Have dents repaired professionally.

Ever seen a car dent repaired by its owner? It’s worse. Find South Auckland panelbeaters to take care of any dents and dings on your car. The sooner you take care of those unsightly spots, the better you’ll feel about keeping your car clean. The safer you’ll be too.

Wash your car regularly.

Once a week is a good schedule for washing your car. Avoid going to an automatic carwash and don’t use dish soap to wash your car. Use the right tools: a garden hose (a power washer if you have it), automotive soap that’s safe for your car’s clear coat, a microfibre wash mitt, microfibre drying towels, and a good wax or paint sealant. Seal or wax at least every four to six months, depending on your area’s weather. Use the two-bucket system when washing your vehicle.

These tips are easy enough to follow and they can keep your car looking like new for a longer time.

Car Accessories That Will Make Your Life Easier

carsIn this day and age, there is always room for improvement, especially when it comes  to cars. Auckland car owners know the importance of getting as much as possible from their cars. Whether you have an old or new model, Acker Bilt Ltd presents four car parts that will make your life easier.

Roof Rack for Extra Space

Installing roof racks that can be purchased from stores in Auckland is easy, thanks to the numerous providers and rack choices. These racks provide additional space for storing extra-large items like bicycles, furniture, and extra tires for your car. If you’re the type who loves to drive long distances, then a roof rack would be able to store all your stuff while maintaining room for the passengers.

Blind Spot Mirrors Offer a 360-Degree View

Cheap and wonderfully effective, blind spot mirrors are just small mirror additions that can be added to your rearview mirrors. They can offer an excellent view of the blind spots so that you’ll never have to worry when making those critical turns and reversals.

Cold Air Intake Helps Improve Fuel Efficiency

Upgrade to a cold air intake and watch as you get more mileage per litre. Cold air intake makes the air denser so that when mixed with the fuel, you can get so much more power compared to heated air. Not to mention that it helps keep your car running smoothly at an even temperature, no matter how many hours you have been driving. It is a very simple car part addition that can be done by your mechanic in one simple session but can save you money.

Engine Control Unit Can Open Up New Doors with Car Use

The Engine Control Unit (ECU) that comes with your car is good, but it’s not exactly the best. Basic ECU is programmed for minimum capacity in handling the fuel-air mixture. Once you upgrade your ECU however, it can be tweaked to match the actual fuel-air capacity of your car, therefore boosting fuel efficiency.

Of course, those are just some car parts that can help boost your car usage. It all depends on what you need for your vehicle.

It’s Within You: Developing a Productive Workspace

A conference room Employees these days demand a lot from their workspaces, including flexibility, hospitality, personality and privacy. You want play areas, napping areas, standing desks and sitting desks, besides cluster desks for your office furniture.

You expect so much from your work area that you tend to forget its initial function, which is to produce productive work. So, how can you design a work area where real work happens?

1. Surround yourself with productivity clues.

Develop your workspace the way you develop yourself. The way you dress yourself up and what you carry with you speak wonders about the workspace you require. This includes your accessories, such as that Moleskin notebook you carry filled with your daily to-do lists.

Transfer this into your workspace by getting a huge white board on your wall. If you’re inclined to wearing comfortable outfits, like a classic shift dress or an unconstructed sports coat, then your work area should offer ease of movement.

2. Find productivity with music.

You most likely share a common work area, which is why earbuds are no stranger to you. Plenty of research reveals that listening to music promotes creativity and efficiency. These say that deep thinking, such as examining long documents, writing and reading, are best helped by listening to white noise, film scores, sonatas and narrative compositions. For those needing rapid boosts of energy, then look for music that fits that activity, like listening to Chance the Rapper.

3. Allow yourself to move.

Productivity usually involves forming great conversation with colleagues and clients. Develop seating arrangements that need you to move out or stand up from your central work area. This will not only boost your blood flow, but it will also make your clients feel important.

Keep in mind that a productive work area is a sector where you feel confident and comfortable. Develop a workspace that provides you that feeling each day, and your best ideas will surely follow.

Monitoring: Manufacturing Aspects That Determine the Success of Your Operations

Man working on a steel productThe manufacturing industry is among the busiest. This is more so when the product is a fast-selling one, like those in the food industry. The success of such industries relies on certain key aspects that are intertwined in the operations cycle.

One way to know if your operations are successful may depend on whether a certain aspect of your workflow is at its optimum or not. Tackling the factors involved in the food industry, you will see how monitoring these aspects using a good KPI software can do so much in improving business operations.

Count of Products

Count refers to the number of produced products. Each company may have a different system on how they would measure this factor. Some manufacturers would count the products produced per employee per shift. Others would total the number of products produced per shift without individual references. Most companies, however, use the first method to foster a competitive spirit among employees.

Ratio of Rejects

No system is perfect, so even the most technologically advanced manufacturing system will face product rejects. This refers to products that could not be sold. Either the packaging is damaged or the goods somehow did not meet quality standards.

The standards whether to reject a product or not would highly depend on the type of product being manufactured. For instance, if it’s canned goods, bulges on cans need to be rejected. If it is a raw food, molds or signs of discoloration must be rejected as well. Knowing these would now help you determine whether you produce an adequate amount of goods versus the rejects.

Speed of Production

This is also one aspect that KPI software monitors. There should be a consistency between the speed by which a certain number of products is produced per employees and at a certain period. These include the quality of the output against the speed of production. Too much focus on quality reduces speed, which results in reduced profit. Too much focus on speed, on the other hand, can affect the quality.

Downtime

Considered as the most important KPI metrics to track, the goal of each manufacturer is to decrease downtime. This means that you should know how long it takes to repair a machine or replace its parts. This way, management would know how to cope with such a downtime. Instead of waiting for machines to break down, which will lead to longer downtime, it would be best to replace old equipment and to promote regular maintenance.

These are some performance indicators that the food manufacturing industry must be mindful of. Proper monitoring of these indicators can lead to smooth and better operations. As a result, you can expect more profits.

Think Green: Make Your Home Eco-Friendlier

Paper cutout of a family and their home laid on a bed of green grass

There are good reasons why New Zealand maintains a stature as one of the best countries in the world to live in. One of these is because it boasts of having some of the cleanest air.

And much thanks to its implementation of green laws and programs, its residents have less to worry about when it comes to health problems caused by pollution.

This does not mean you do not do anything more to contribute to making Auckland a lot safer and healthier. The best way is to start with your own home, with these tricks that will transform it to an eco-friendlier dwelling.

De-clutter

One of the biggest benefits a green home brings to its occupants is better health, and you can enjoy this when you start eliminating clutter. Set aside a weekend to remove all the items and stuff in your home you no longer need, and at the same time, give your house a good cleaning.

Separate those that you can (and would still want to) use from those that you can put up for recycling or donation.

And to make things easier, contact a skip bin hire Auckland company. Payless Bins recommends a firm that offers bins of all sizes, from small to large ones. This way, you can properly dispose of waste while ensuring that the recyclables head to the proper facilities.

Green and glamour up your garden

In case you have not made full use of all that front or backyard space you have, now is the best time to do it. All the weeds growing there can actually cause health issues, especially if a member of your household has asthma or lung problems. Get rid of the unwanted plants that only ruin the beauty of your home.

And you can further get the best out of it when you opt for fruit-bearing plants, herbs, and spices, as this is a key element to sustainability, which is a major part of having a green home.

There are so many other ways for you to have an eco-friendly house, but these two are great for starters.

FAQs about Investing in a Multifamily Home

Nice home investmentIf you are considering buying a multifamily home, understand that there are two types of multifamily properties: residential and commercial. Residential properties have two, three, or four units, while commercial properties have five or more units representing the investment of the owner.

We look at the second type of multifamily property and explore the most common questions investors ask about it.

What is a multifamily loan?

A multifamily loan works just like a conventional single-family mortgage. It is a type of financing for properties with anywhere from five to 5,000 units, including small and large apartment complexes.

Approval for a multifamily loan largely depends on the value and earning potential of the property, although personal credit and income are a significant consideration.

Who can apply for a multifamily loan?

Multifamily loans are for investors who would like to invest in a property that generates income. Most lenders prefer to approve loans for seasoned real estate investors, although new programs are now available for first-time investors looking into the rental industry.

Keep in mind, as an investor, you cannot live in the property.

Where can I apply for a multifamily mortgage?

Outside of Freddie Mac loans, a Fannie Mae multifamily loan provides the best fixed-rate options for investors. Bonneville Multifamily Capital says this allows lenders to reinvest the money they acquired by lending it to others.

The mortgage can run anywhere from seven to 30 years, and borrowers have the option to avail of a floating rate that can be adjusted every six months after the first seven years.

How can I successfully apply for a multifamily loan?

Lenders prefer borrowers who can prove they can pay back the loan with little risk and operate a financially viable rental property. To do this, you must be able to show a track record of success in real estate investment.

Moreover, for new investors, you need to show appropriate transferable skills, such as employee management, property management, or sales and leasing.

If you are thinking of applying for a multifamily loan with Fannie Mae, get in touch with a loan officer who can help you weigh your options and help you compose a loan application that will guarantee approval.

Use an Online Police Check to Improve Job and Business Opportunities

Man signing up for his business applicationThere are many reasons you need a police clearance certificate. The national police check certificate is as important to individuals as it is to businesses and the government.

Police Clearance Certificate for Individuals

police clearance certificate is vital to individuals, as you will need it for a job application, visa application, adoption application processing, overseas employment processing and state job application, among others. As an individual, you will need a copy of this all-important document to secure yourself a job both in the government and the private sector. Employers need assurance that you are a law-abiding citizen and well disciplined.

Police Clearance Certificate for Businesses

The business community has adopted the national police history check as a requirement when hiring. Businesses and employers are required by law to hire law-abiding individuals of good conduct. The most efficient way to follow this rule is by requesting for police checks, to ensure your adherence to the laws of the land.

The federal government and state governments may also require a police clearance certificate for your business. To ensure the smooth flow of your business operations, get yourself and your business cleared by getting a national police check.

Fast and Easy Application Process

The process of obtaining a clearance certificate has today been made quick and efficient. The application process is now 100% online, where you download the application form and fill in your details. This process is available in all the six states and eight territories of Australia. Online application makes sure that both individuals and employers get this crucial information in time for practical usage.

It is now easy to get police history checks in time. You only need a phone, a tablet or computer with internet connection to access the application form. With an online police history check, you are sure to beat any application deadline.

Reasons for Encouraging Employee Recognition

Motivating employeesMostly everyone likes knowing that they had done something excellently. There is something euphoric about getting praise for giving extra effort. Most workplaces try to reinforce meritocracy but aren't often quite the norm for some reason. The simple yet powerful act of recognizing the good that your people do in your company has the following benefits.

Employees Realize their Value – Employees are important in any organization and showing some love for their good and hard work makes them feel special. Sometimes, a simple note that says “good job” can make an impact. As long as it is genuine and timely, it will be appreciated. This means no matter how much you spend on procuring Employee Recognition Label Pins and how many employee label pins you give away, you can remain out of touch. Employees who feel they are valued in the company are less likely to resign or absent themselves from work.

Improves Relationships in the Workplace – When an employee's work is always given proper recognition, they also feel that they are truly part of a family. This doesn’t just apply to the one being recognized but also with the remainder of your staff who are aware of their co-worker's achievements. They become better team players knowing that each of them has a role to play in the company while everyone does their best.

Creates and Encourages Productivity – Genuine recognition for good work can give a mood boost to any employee. When you show appreciations to every employee, this morale enhancement is passed around and can affect their interdependence. Imagine what your company can do when everyone is doing their best and are happy to do so.

A little appreciation for every staff member can go a long way. If you haven’t been giving recognition to your people yet, now is a good time to start. Make a list of possible awards and activities that will give their achievement credence. Eventually, you will see the profitable and positive effects that it will have on your employees, company and even your customers.