Inexpensive Landscaping Ideas to Beautify Your Yard in 2020

The yard is one of the most important parts of your property that determines how much your home stands out in the neighborhood. When it comes to caring for the house, the yard is an integral part of the setting that is the first impression that you make on your guests and influences your property value. If you’re on a budget but want to get creative with the space, there are a few inexpensive landscaping ideas to consider to beautify your yard to ensure that you can show it off.  

 

Add Clusters of Planters  

If you want to make a statement that draws attention to a specific area of the yard, consider adding a cluster of planters for increased visual interest. The flowers or plants can be grouped based on their color shade, type, or height to ensure that the arrangements are both beautiful and eye-catching. You can also make the foliage look like it’s spilling out of the planter to ensure that it looks natural with how it’s on display in the yard.  

 

Use Perennials  

When you don’t want to spend a lot of money on beautiful flowers to plant in your yard, opt for purchasing perennials, which are colorful and will add extra drama to exterior of your property. Although the perennials may be considered an investment for some people due to their price tag, they last longer than other types of plants and can become a permanent fixture in your yard or garden throughout the year.  

 

Plant Plenty of Trees  

One of the best ways to beautify your yard is to plant plenty of trees, which will create a lush setting where plenty of shade is present. Consider lining the yard with trees, which will frame the space and keep it enclosed for added privacy. You can also hire a company like Tree Survey to add trees to walkways or areas of high traffic to draw more attention to specific areas that lead up to the house or the backyard.  

Create a Flower Bed Border  

Adding a stone edge to your flower bed will frame the garden and can prevent it from blending in with the rest of the yard. A flower bed border will create a finished look that separates the flower bed from the rest of the garden. Using stones for the border is an easy and affordable way to create the beautiful feature without having to hire professionals to perform the project.  

 

Install a DIY Water Feature  

Water features are common in yards because they add an upscale touch that incorporates added visual appeal to the space. Instead of investing in an expensive water fountain or pond, opt for making your own water feature with the use of an old whiskey barrel and an iron teapot for a fountain waterfall that is tranquil and inviting. You can place the water feature in the middle of the yard or in the flower bed to beautify the setting. 

How to find the perfect Windows for your Home?

Just as you’d take plenty of time when choosing new furniture or décor, selecting the ideal windows for your home is an important decision that requires plenty of consideration. With so many styles, finishes and openings to choose from, it’s essential that you choose glazing that will enhance the exterior of your house whilst ensuring your home remains insulated and secure.

Whilst the cheapest way of fitting windows to a new house is to use white PVCu windows, hardwood, composite and aluminium windows offer a lot for design options and a wealth of stunning finishes. With all this in mind, the team at Martindale Windows Northampton have taken a look through the world of windows to give you a deep insight into what each style of window will provide along with the pro’s, con’s and sots of each.

PVCu Windows

PVCu (plastic) windows have dominated the windows market since their original introduction in the 1990s as a they offer the simplest of all window solutions. Whilst his solution is no longer deemed to be environmentally friendly, at an average cost of between £4000 and £15000 per property, they do offer a relatively cost-effective solution and require little maintenance. However, they can look cheap and reduce the value of period homes and can be difficult to repair if broken.

Composite Windows

Formed around a timber window frame with a weather-proof capping, composite windows are generally used on houses that have harsher climates as they are extremely durable. Available with triple glazing and in range of modern designs, composite windows provide a very low maintenance solution that offers extraordinary insulation. However, at around £10,000 to £25,000 per home, composite windows are one of the most costlier solutions.

Hardwood Windows

As a solution that is extremely durable and more aesthetically pleasing than PVCu windows, hardwood windows are often used for traditional homes and can be tailored to your style with a range of different stains. Whilst slightly more expensive than PVCu windows at between £8000 and £22,000, hardwood windows provide a much more natural look and great longevity.

Metal/Fibreglass Windows

Made from either steel, aluminium or fibreglass, this particular type of window is often used on more contemporary homes to give a sleek and sophisticated style. Whilst metal/fibreglass windows offer a very low maintenance solution and are more stylish than PVCu windows, they’re not as thermally efficient as wooden windows and as slightly more costly than PVCu windows at around £8000 – £20,000 per home.

Window Style: Casement, Tilt or Sash?

Although you may now know the type of windows that you’d like to go for, before fitting your next set of windows it’s also important to consider the style of windows opening that you’d like to go for. With 3 options to consider, there’s a range of benefits from each type.

Open-out Casement system

As a traditionally British option that has been very popular across the UK for a number of years, open-out casements are available in a variety of styles and finishes. Whilst large casements tend to be the cheapest, but you can also select a slightly more expensive small glazed (Georgian style) solution that is often used in country style houses. This particular style is usually made in modular, standard sizes, keeping costs at a minimum.

Tilt and Turn system

This particular design provides a more continental-style window opening that opens inwards and looks best on modern homes. The ‘tilt’ option provides ventilation with security but are typically made to order, meaning that the overall cost can be quite a lot more.

Sash window system

As the mainstay of Georgian and Victorian housing, the sash window is still widely used on traditional-style new builds. Because the sash window is normally made to specification, sizes can typically be non-standard and so can carry quite varying costs depending on the size of your home.

Conclusion

With such a wealth of different options available, finding the right windows for your home is mainly down to the budget you have and the style of property your looking to improve. For a typical town home, we’d opt for either composite or PVCu windows with an open out or tilt and turn finish, whereas if you’re looking to fit-out a traditional rural home we’d recommend either hardwood or composite windows as they offer a much larger selection of stunning colours and glazing finishes.

 

 

 

Giving The Inside Of Your Home A Makeover

If you have not decorated or updated the interior of your home in a while, it can start to look tired and dreary after a while. There are many things that you can go to counter this, and below are some ideas that will help you turn your home into a vibrant and inviting place once more.  

Add Some New Furniture 

One of the easiest ways that you can transform your home is the addition of new furniture. You do not have to do your entire home all in one go and can update the furniture one room at a time, which will also mean you do not have to break the bank. You may wish to choose some Art Deco bedroom furniture for one of the bedrooms or go with something more modern and contemporary. Changing the furniture in your home is one of the least disruptive ways that you can transform it with as little hassle as possible.  

Decorate Your Home 

Another way that you can transform the inside of your home is to decorate either with wallpaper or paint and breathe new life into the rooms. If you are not going to change the furniture, you will need to choose a colour scheme that is going to match the furniture and the flooring. You can do this one room at a time and ensure there is not too much disruption. You can choose to decorate your home yourself, although if you are not very good at decorating and DIY, you can also choose to employ the services of a professional who will be able to do the job very quickly. The price for this can vary, so it will all come down to the budget that you have available. 

Change The Flooring 

You can also change the flooring in your home which is another way to give it a new lease of life and improve the aesthetics of the interior of your house. There are many different options available to you as you can choose from a wide variety of different carpeting, as well as other materials such as vinyl flooring, or you can also decide to install wooden floors. The best choice is going to be determined by your taste, budget, and the state of the floor underneath. If your floors are uneven, then wooden flooring may not be the best option. Again, if you have the skills and time, this is something that you can do yourself. Alternatively, you can employ the services of a professional flooring company and have them transform your home in no time at all. 

You can also get plenty of more advice on transforming your home by searching for related articles online. 

A Combination Of The Above 

If you have the budget and the time, you can also choose all the above which will go a long way in transforming your home and make you feel as if you have a new house entirely. Using a combination of the above methods will have your home transformed into the envy of your neighbours.  

Top 5 Tips for Small Gardens in 2020



We know your pain. You’ve moved into a new home and you’re eagerly anticipating making it feel like your own. You can’t wait to get out into the garden and start making changes and planting new flowers and shrubs. But you get out there and find that your green space is smaller than you remembered it, or it doesn’t quite have the room you expected for all your grand garden plans! Fear not – we are here to give you our top 5 tips for getting the most out of small gardens. From useful lawn care advice to planting tips, we’ve got it covered.

Make the Lawn Beautiful

The lawn is the absolute centrepiece of any garden. It is what you notice first and if it isn’t cared for, it will drag down the look of the whole space. No matter whether you have acres or a few feet, if you make your lawn beautiful it will make your garden more inviting and a more enjoyable place to spend time in. You can achieve a lush lawn in a number of ways, but it boils down to DIY or hiring a professional. Both have their benefits, but if you want to have the most stunning lawn and consistent treatments throughout the year, we would recommend leaving it to an expert. However, if you want to get your green fingers on your lawn, there are plenty of DIY guides out there. Make sure you regularly rake, mow and water your garden for the nicest lawn that will have your neighbours green with envy!

Keep it Simple

Try not to overpower or over-plant your garden if you are struggling on space. Sticking to a few statement plants or trees will not only make your garden look more stylish and chic, but it will give the impression of space and openness. Make a few trees or plants the central focus of your garden and then create symmetry around this. If you have a lot of plants it can quickly appear cramped and make your small space even smaller. Having fewer plants also means you can take a little less time tending to the garden and more time enjoying it.

Use Height to Your Advantage

Climbing plants, multi-layered planters, garages and walls are the friends of small gardens. Anything that you can do to extend your garden upwards is a good thing. This gives you considerably more space to be creative. Having plants growing upwards will also give you more privacy from neighbours if you are living in close quarters with other flats or homes. There are many structures available that allow you to plant fruit, vegetables or flowers in a multi-storey way. Hanging baskets are also an easy option when adding plants to your garden at different height levels. Take advantage of all these options and don’t be restricted to the single level landscape of your small garden.

Furniture with Multiple Uses

If you have room to add some seating to your garden, ensure it has multiple purposes that can be used throughout the year. If you don’t do this, you are missing out on a huge space-saving aspect of your garden. There are benches available which double-up as storage boxes, for you to pack away gardening equipment or other garden accessories. If you are getting chairs for the garden, make sure they are stack-able or fold away to become smaller. It is also better to buy garden furniture which can be left out all year round, as you may not have the storage room to put them away during winter months.

Trick the Eye

One way to make your garden appear bigger than it is, is to use elements which accentuate and enlarge your garden. Think reflective surfaces, shiny plant pots and light colours throughout. If you are having some paving or gravel, make sure it is beige or a similar shade to open up the space and make it feel lighter. Mirrors in the garden not only make it feel more stylish and add an element of interior design, they also make you think there is more space than there really is. As much light and reflection you can bring to your back garden, the better. It’s all about the illusion!

 

The Benefits of Garage Door Servicing and Maintenance

As a cornerstone of security, convenience and beauty of your home, garage doors need a little TLC to keep them performing well and looking great. Regular maintenance and servicing is the key to restoring the quality of your garage door and avoiding any problems down the line. This article was written by Doormatic Garage Doors, experts in both installing new doors and providing garage door maintenance services across London, Surrey, Kent and the South East of England.

Is garage door servicing worth it?

The sure answer is, yes! Looking after a valuable element of your property will always be advantageous for its longevity, quality and performance. The benefits of garage and maintenance include:

Cost-Effective

Ensuring that simple and regular maintenance tasks are carried out on your door a few times a year is much cheaper than needing to replace an entire garage door, should faults be neglected. A bi-annual servicing by a professional is recommended, along with regular visual checks performed by you, the owner, on a regular basis.  

Enhances the Safety of Your Family and Vehicle

Garage doors are heavy machines with lots of mechanical components keeping them operational. Should a door malfunction at the wrong moment, it has the potential to injure nearby people and animals, as well as your vehicle. Regular maintenance and checks can reduce the likelihood of malfunctions occurring.

Protects the Security of Your Property

A main function of garage doors is to act as a strong, reliable barrier between the contents of your garage and potential thieves. That’s why you should try not to allow weak spots and potential entry points to go unnoticed, and make sure you catch problems early to avoid break-in risks.

Avoids DIY and Amateur Mistakes

There is no harm in performing occasional visual checks of your garage door to try and spot issues, but correction of real issues should always be undertaken by a professional – even the most technically-adept DIY enthusiast may worsen the problem, or risk injury to themselves, in an attempt to fix the door.

Warning signs you garage door may need servicing

Is your garage door making a bizarre sound? Perhaps it is a little stiffer, looser or slower than normal? While these signs could see minor, they should never be ignored as they may be signs of garage door deterioration or damage, which could eventually transform into an unsafe situation. Surefire signs that you may need the assistance of a garage door specialist include:

  • Unusual noises
  • Door closes too quickly or too slowly
  • Door will not close completely
  • Door will not stay open
  • The outside has cracks or gaps in door

Contact a reliable local company who can inform you of what’s involved in a garage door service, and how they can help diagnose, maintain and repair your garage door.

How to soundproof your home with creative home decor ideas

When you are decorating your living space, you might tend to forget about soundproofing it. However, there are a lot of creative ways in which you can efficiently use home decor to soundproof your home. Your home is the place you are entitled to feel peaceful and the unnecessary noise does not have to get in the way.

Be it a creeping sound or the disturbing sound from the outdoors, noise certainly makes us feel tenser than we realise. A quiet home is welcoming and you can make it soundproof using some amazing and creative home decor ideas. Here are some cheap ideas for home decor that you can use to soundproof your home.

Add rugs to touch floors

Sound bounces off any hard surface that it can find and this might contribute to noise. Wooden floors, as well as open spaces, are the areas wherein sound can reverberate and echo. To reduce the sound, all that you have to do is to add some good quality rugs to the wooden floor.

You can also go for carpets, but the beauty of installing rugs is that they are less permanent and you can change them with time. Thus, they are also more cost effective and also helps you to get the job done. You can add rugs to your floor for using as sound absorbers. Any type of sound will not be reflected resulting in noise reduction.

Invest in quality curtains

Quality curtains not only help you in adding to the aesthetic appeal of your abode but also act as good sound absorbers. Curtains that are made with a thick material such as velvet, wool or a tightly woven fabric act as a good sound absorber.

They absorb the sound from outside and also reduce the extra sound that comes from outside. To make it even more effective, you can hang the curtains high and let them drop on the floor. Curtains made with thick materials are way more efficient.

Showcase your book collection

Did you know that adding more furniture does wonders when it comes to soundproofing? That’s tight! You can add a book collection in your apartment or house to soundproof your space. Not only does it absorb sound but it also gives your living space a gorgeous look.

You can very well utilise all the extra space that is there between the floor and ceiling using a book collection. You can also choose to put decorative wall art as an alternative and it will work similarly.

Opt for furnishings that are soft

If you are going to buy new furniture, then you can go for furnishings that are soft. You can switch to soft furniture wherever you can. However, you cannot get rid of your old stuff, but you can definitely modify them and augment them with furnishings that are soft.

Since noise reverberates off the hard surfaces, you should consider soft furnishings that will immensely reduce the noise. For instance, if you are going to buy furniture, then you can opt for an upholstered bench instead of going for a hard coffee table.

Buy a rug pad

While thick rugs work just fine, when you add a rug pad underneath it, it works even better. Buy a thick rug pad that you can use under the rug and see the difference for yourself. It will also help when you have to move your furniture around.

If you do not wish to go for rug pads then you can opt for multiple rugs that you can pile up on each other to achieve your desired style. For instance, you can layer a geometric weave rug on a sisal area rug to make it look stunning and act as a soundproof.

Use as many pillows as you can

This is yet another simple tip that will tremendously help you in reducing the noise while increasing the style quotient of your space. You can invest in pillows that can be used in your living room as well as the bedroom. Use as many pillows as you can to absorb the noise.

The material of the pillow is also an important factor to consider and you should opt for pillows that are fluffier and bigger than normal ones. They will be optimum for reducing the noise. Pillows also add a fresh look to your decor and you can add in some decorative covers for them in order to make them look great.

Soundproofing paint

You can effectively reduce the noise by using soundproofing paint in your apartment or house. If you are going to repaint your house soon enough then go for the paint that is specially designed to soundproof your place.

This type of paint might be a little costly but it will be worth investing in the long term. With soundproofing paint in place, you will not have to worry much about the sound reverberating as it will be absorbed by the walls.

Soundproofing wallpapers

You can also opt for soundproofing wallpapers that you can specifically put in the rooms of your apartment which require it the most. The soundproof wallpapers are designed to absorb all the noise and so it is a great way of soundproofing your space.

However, check with your budget before you invest in soundproofing wallpapers as you might want to go for other viable options if you are staying in a rented apartment. But in case you are staying in an apartment that is your own, then you go for long-term solutions like this.

Thus, with the help of the tips mentioned above, you can soundproof your apartment. These creative ideas for home decor can prove really beneficial and you can see the results for yourself. While implementing the options, you should carefully take your budget into consideration.

The decor you choose also depends on whether you own the apartment or are staying in a rented space. This is because you cannot make significant changes to the apartment if it is a rented one. So, you can evaluate your options and then choose the soundproofing decor you want to go for.