25 October 2014
Category:
The Daily News

Cover Me: Choosing the Right House Fence

house fenceSecurity is a major contributor to how comfortable a family feels whenever at home. Aside from the walls of the house itself, house security can also be credited to the gate and fences in the yard.

Selecting the type of gate should not be a complicated matter for any homeowner. According to experts from Boardwalk.com.au, most Perth residents prefer aluminium gates over others because of its strength and aesthetic appeal.

Suitable Material

The material used for a fence usually depends on what the exteriors of a home looks like. For standard houses, you can stick to the wooden plank fences or metal grill ones. Some homeowners also prefer a combination of both, using metal frames to hold wooden planks. Others, meanwhile, use tempered glass for fencing. This adds class to your house and ensures security because of its sturdiness.

Measuring Privacy

As gates make up only a portion of the front area, the fences are responsible for majority of the security around your house. If you want total privacy, choose a fence with little to no gaps between boards. You can also use climbing plants to add sufficient cover and make things look more creative.

Required Height

You should also consider the height of your fence. To measure your desired height, sit on a chair and stand up to make sure you get the right measurements. Privacy around any outdoor seating areas and pools should be your priority. If you have yet to decide on a lower or higher design, then you might want to think about getting stepped fences instead. This presents a viable solution without ruining the look of the fencing system.

Wind Breakers

Strong winds are annoying because you cannot fully enjoy outdoor activities on your roof deck as it keeps on blowing things. Blocking off the breeze, though, can also block significant amounts of light and the view. This is why experts recommend installing glass fences – a good way to shield the wind, but not the view.

Installing fences is not as easy as most people think it is. Knowing about your specific needs, however, helps make choosing so much easier.


24 October 2014
Category:
Ride On

Modern Day Nomads: Simple Towing Tricks for First Time Caravanners

caravan trailerCaravanning is one of Australia’s most popular leisure time activities. It brings people from every walk of life together. They’re like modern day nomads who take along their own accommodation as they travel and explore new things.

If you’re one of those first time caravanners, make sure your caravan and car are compatible before you go on with your trip. For a safe journey, see to it that you use the right towing equipment and know the essential skills when emergency situations arise.

The Tow Vehicle

Choose a towing vehicle that is heavier than the trailer or caravan it tows. Make sure the vehicle has enough power to allow safe and quick passing manoeuvres. For towing larger caravans or trailers, consider automatic transmissions. As you don’t have to think whether the vehicle is in the correct gear, you can focus more on the prevailing road conditions. Reversing is also easier with automatic transmission. You should always bring trailer accessories with you every time you hit the road.

Weight

A lot of vehicle manufacturers give recommendations with regard to the loaded weight of the trailer. Make sure you don’t exceed the allowed maximum load. Weight is not a crucial factor when a van is towed at a constant speed along a level road. But, when travelling through a hilly terrain, even a small yet heavily loaded trailer or caravan can strain the engine power.

Tow Bars and Hitches

Don’t compromise when purchasing towbars. Always buy a recognised product, which has a plate that states the maximum towing load. Before you choose a towbar, know the loaded weight of the caravan first. You can do this by placing the unit on scales or a weighbridge. If your caravan is larger, it’s advisable to go for a heavy duty hitch receiver type.

Weight Distribution

Problems with weight transfer do exist every time a vehicle towing a trailer hits the road with the front up and the back down. It only means that there’s more weight on the rear, but less weight on the front wheels. For safety, both the towing vehicle and the caravan should be levelled.

Reduction in Fuel Consumption

When you move off or pass another car, always move the accelerator smoothly. This is because you’ll waste petrol if you do excessive or rapid movement.

Caravanning is a great way to escape the stresses of life. Make sure to follow the tips above for a more enjoyable ride.


23 October 2014
Category:
The Daily News

The Quest for the Tub

Bath TubOne of the unspoken rules of home architecture and the real estate market is that every home should have at least one bathtub. This is why homeowners currently without a bathtub in their house need to go out and get one right now. But, be warned, some bathtubs hold nightmares instead of treasure.

Selecting the right bathtub will require skill, intelligence, and insight into who you truly are. It takes all these things to be able to buy something as personal as a bathtub and be happy with it. The people at bathroominternational.com.au, renowned spas providers in Perth, have a few tips on getting the perfect bathtub.

The first thing people who are looking for a bathtub need to do is take out the measuring tape, and start taking notes. This is the part of the buying process wherein homeowners need to find the one that’s just right. Bathtubs take up a lot of real estate in the bathroom, so buyers need to get one that fits, or extend their bathroom.

When buyers finally decide on a bathtub that fits perfectly in their bathroom, they then need to test whether they fit in the bathtub. Nothing is more terrible than having to squish into a tiny bathtub with your knees freezing over the top of the water. Astute buyers like to try out bathtubs by lying down in them while they’re in the store. This is a legitimate customer concern that homeowners need to address before they make a purchase.

After finding a tub that’s just right for the bathroom and large enough to accommodate a full stretch, the next item on the priority list is style. Bathtubs are huge centrepieces that will definitely get anyone’s attention, so make sure that people like what they see.

There are different variables that homeowners can consider when looking at the style of the bathtub; there’s colour, material, shape, and even design. The final decision lies with the buyer, but they should consider how the tub will visually complement the rest of the room. When it comes to the bathroom, aesthetics are just as important as functionality.

Buying a bathtub isn’t the hardest thing in the world, but if done wrong would be a costly mistake. Exercise due diligence, and the buyers can reward themselves with a tub they love.


21 October 2014
Category:
Let's Study

Social Involvement: Reasons for Students to Volunteer in Community Service

community serviceWhen people talk about community service, the common notion they see is that it is a punishment for committing petty offences and social misbehaviour. This brings about a negative concept of doing something for your community. In fact, some even regard doing community service as a shameful act.

In contrast, doing community service can give you a sense of pride. There are even institutions that offer courses on community services. More than giving back to the community, there are a few more reasons for an individual to volunteer for work, especially for students.

Benefitting Physically and Mentally

Not only does the community benefit from your services, you can gain physical and mental rewards from volunteering. Studies show that doing community service help reduce the level of stress and make you healthier. When you focus on someone else other than yourself, it disturbs the pattern responsible for producing tension. Filling yourself with positive emotions will help strengthen your overall body.

Saving Significant Amount of Resources

Instead of spending too much on contractors, the authorities can save a lot with volunteers. Some work for free, while others have an estimated work value of $15.39 per hour. The savings that they generate from volunteers can be spent on other local improvements.

Gaining Much Needed Experience

Technically, volunteering for community service is one way to gain professional experience. It is not limited to just sweeping the streets or feeding the poor. If you are planning to be an instructor, you can volunteer to tutor in classes. This helps in your personal growth and development of self-esteem.

Making a Difference in the Community

As a volunteer, you fortify your community, even in the smallest ways. You may not notice it, but you help the authorities in supporting families, improving education, assisting the youth, and enhancing the overall condition of the community, aesthetically and socially. Through volunteerism, you bond people for a common goal, developing camaraderie amongst themselves.

You small step is already a big leap for your community. Even the slightest thing you do matters for your neighbours, counting every drop of sweat and effort exerted. As a person, you can make a difference.


18 October 2014
Category:
The Daily News

Top 3 Common Construction Hazards

construction hazardsWorkers are the most valuable asset of the construction business—the efficiency of the operation depends on them. But due to the heavy duty jobs at construction sites, workers are exposed to potential accidents and hazards. Employers then must be careful when implementing preventive measures in the workplace so that risks are effectively and immediately managed.

Many construction accidents happen primarily because construction workers are not well aware of safety programs; they often ask, “what is take 5 safety?” Employers must take full responsibility in disseminating information about safety measures so that workers can act responsibly when there are potential problems at work.

Know the most common construction hazards so you can educate workers and prevent them from possible harm.

1. Accidents from scaffolds

Scaffold systems usually hold workers and construction materials and if they are not secured firmly, they can cause workers to fall. Part of the Take 5 Safety Program is to stop, look and listen, meaning to observe their work area before performing the task. Make sure that workers practice this safety measure.

2. Hazards from equipment and machines

Employees must wear protective clothing and gear when handling heavy-duty machines to avoid injuries and electric shocks. Safety glasses, eye and face protectors, gloves, earplugs and hard hats are some of the basic equipment workers must have.

3. Hazardous substances

Workers are constantly exposed to asbestos, a tough, heat-resistant mineral essential for constructing buildings. Experts say that this substance can expose them to health hazards, particularly lung disease and respiratory problems. It’s important to inform workers about this; take 5 safety programs remind workers to proactively manage risks and encourage them to report to their supervisor about the risks involved in a specific construction job.

Ensure worker’s welfare in the construction site by implementing safety programs. It may be helpful to give out take 5 assessment wallets, job hazard worksheets, and other print materials to guide them.


18 October 2014
Category:
The Daily News

5 Ways to Leave a Great First Impression On Your Next Job Interview

interviewMost people prepare for a job interview by thinking about all the possible questions an interviewer will ask and how to answer them. They then try to come up with scenarios and come up with answers they think a recruiter would want to hear. A lot of people think that the conversation is all they have to think about.

The truth, however, is that before you even get the chance to answer questions thrown your way, the interviewer already makes an initial evaluation judging by what they see. The pressure is on the moment you walk into the room. You have to be relaxed and confident, but never forget that everything will make an impression.

Here are five secrets for your ways to success:

Start off with a Smile

Don’t forget to smile no matter how nervous you are. MyPerthDentist.com.au says that dentists in Perth often tell patients that a beautiful smile helps boost self-confidence and leaves a good impression. If you notice a stain or discoloration in your teeth, visit your dentist immediately.

Dress to Impress

Wear flattering clothes that you are comfortable in, but make sure to look professional. No matter what position you are applying for, it is never a good idea to dress in casual attire.

Don’t Use Your Phone

It has become a natural tendency to you pull out your phone to entertain yourself while waiting for the interviewer, but you have to refrain from doing so. When the assessor arrives, you still have to exit the application you’re using and stuff your phone back in your bag or pocket. You have to remember that every second is important. Better use your time to review your resume or think calm thoughts.

Be Nice to the Receptionist

The receptionist may not be the hiring manager, but that does not mean they do not matter. Some companies ask the guests receiver about the attitude shown them upon the arrival of the applicant. Many fail because of their negligence in this regard.

Make the First Move

The interviewer usually makes the first move when it comes to introductions, but for a change, you can initiate a handshake. Don’t hesitate to extend your hand. This conveys that you are confident, smart, and ready for the job.

The company invited you because they reviewed you resume and would like to see you personally. Prepare from the smallest details to the most important ones. John Wooden said it best, “Failing to prepare is preparing to fail.”


16 October 2014
Category:
Business Adviser

A Different Kind of Farming: Save More on Buying Used Farm Equipment

farm equipmentMuch like the construction business, the farming industry uses tools and pieces of equipment in their work. From static to live ones, farmers find it more convenient in using these machines. Given the benefits that it provides, a few still think twice about purchasing farm equipment.

Most of these machines do not come low-priced. According to the experts from BerryMachinery.com, used farm equipment for sale could be much more low-cost than buying brand new ones. Serving just about the same purpose, used farm equipment can be a good and cost-effective investment.

Getting Your Money’s worth

Apart from reducing the burden of high expenses in buying brand new, you can get a lot of valuable choices from the local markets. As second-hand items cost lower, you get your money’s worth, especially in equipment that can only be useful in certain seasons.

In buying used machines, though, choose the ones that look less worn. With the extensive work in the fields, most farm equipment succumbs to wear and tear. It is easy to determine if the equipment is nearing the limit of its lifespan. It may initially be priced low, but with the need for a few repairs and restoration, you may just end up spending more than you expected.

Finding a Practical Solution

As a farmer, you would want to save as much money as you can. To be practical, buy used equipment. Some argue that buying brand-new pieces is also for the benefit of the business. This may be true, but investing on used ones provides the same benefits at a lower expense.

You can usually find good used farm equipment in auctions. Most items sold there can be trusted quality-wise. But if you do not want to go through the trouble of bidding, you can find private dealers in newspaper ads. Just make sure to inspect the equipment thoroughly before handing over your money.

Dealing with second-hand items can be tricky. You can protect your money against potential risks by being alert. This helps you get the right farm equipment you need, but on a much lower price.


15 October 2014
Category:
Business Adviser

3 Downsizing Pointers for a Hitch-Free Transition

downsizing storageDownsizing is no longer just for empty nesters or retirees. If you are looking to save on rent or cut down on expenses, moving to a smaller home in Perth is a great idea. Doing so will allow you to have a better grip on your budget so that you can save and use the money for other matters.

Downsizing, however, takes planning and careful preparation. You need to be ready when moving to a smaller residence because it will require huge changes in lifestyle. You can start by planning what to do with the things you have. Take a look at some of the helpful pointers below to get started with downsizing:

Keep All the Things You Still Need

You cannot take everything with you when downsizing, except if you are willing to live in a tight, constricted space. Make a list of things you can still bring to your new home. For instance, if you are moving to a condo unit, you might not want to include the lawn mower or snow shovel on the list.

Look For a Good Place to Store the Extra Stuff

Storage is necessary if you are not keen on selling your extra stuff. Fortunately, there are many secured storage facilities in Perth. Store-All WA recommends consulting with the storage company and learning more about their security and maintenance practices just to be sure.

Sort the Documents and Files Early On

One of the most challenging tasks you may have to face is sorting out various documents and files. You should do this several months before the big move so you have more time to go through all items. Store your stuff in boxes and label them for good measure.

Visualise Your New Home

Look for a room in your current home that is close to your new house’s dimensions, and try to visualise how you would live in it. Move a few furniture pieces around to see if they can fit in a smaller space and work out possible floor plans and how to maximise space.

Downsizing is an exciting opportunity to introduce change. With careful planning, you can make the transition worry-free and easy.


10 October 2014
Category:
The Daily News

3 Ways You’re Killing Your AC

air conditionerThere’s nothing more frustrating than a broken AC in the middle of summer. You don’t even have to experience this event to understand the gravity of a non-functional AC during this season. Now that summer’s just a couple of months away, it’s about time that you evaluate your unit so you can be sure it remains functional even after the hot season.

But the issue of air conditioning unit failures goes beyond the simple neglect of maintenance work. At times, you’re the one who’s at fault for the machine’s breakdown at the most unbearable time. You might not know it, but you might actually be the one killing your A/C little by little. How? Here are a few ways you might be setting up your machine for a midsummer breakdown:

Changing Temperatures

Calm down and stop adjusting the thermostat every hour, because doing so is damaging your unit’s internal components. Technicians at Apex Airconditioning explain that when you regularly adjust the thermostat, you overwork your machine by forcing it to adjust the temperature again and again. Don’t let your machine swing from highs to lows; instead, let the thermostat stay there for a substantial amount of time. Or better yet, condition yourself to adjust to a set temperature inside your home.

Ignoring Energy Audits

An energy audit ensures that you have an AC of the right size for your floor area. This corrects your property’s energy consumption and avoids overworking your machine. Audits are also opportunities for technicians to inspect your AC if it has leaks or other issues. An AC unit of the wrong size in your home consumes more energy – and that’s bad for the environment. Australia’s energy consumption has dropped in the past year; let’s keep it that way.

Giving the Unit Zero Rest

Even though it’s a machine, your AC does need some rest from time to time. Whilst at times, it’s understandable to let it run overnight, you should consider using its timer and turning it off whenever no one’s using it. Not only does this lower your energy bill; it also keeps the machine in top shape.

Avoid these mistakes and you’ll see how it would improve your energy bill and prolong your machine’s service life.


8 October 2014

3 Simple Ways to Encourage Workplace Cleanliness

workplace cleanlinessThey say cleanliness is next to godliness, but it turns out most people don’t aspire to be godly. They’re happy just to be human, disorganised, and messy.
Many employees fail to clean up after themselves at work, and it has become a problem. There are coffee cups, napkins, and papers littering the workspace areas.

Encouraging employees to clean up may seem like a bit of a stretch, especially when it’s not in their job descriptions. With that said, in order to keep things looking clean and organised, there are some simple steps business owners can take to improve the workplace surroundings and would not leave their employees groaning.

Minimize Clutter

When a workplace is full of clutter and other stuff that takes space, it does not only look unkempt. It also becomes more difficult to clean. If you are trying to encourage your staff to maintain the level of cleanliness the office needs, cleaning professionals recommend cutting down on the amount of things taking up space in the work areas, desks, and the office break room or pantry.
The less you need to move and clean around, the neater your workplace will look, and the easier it will be to clean.

Stock Up on Cleaning Products and Equipment

Office cleaning Perth companies recommend stocking up on cleaning tools. If you have everything you need to remove dirt and clean up spills, the more likely your employees will do the simple cleaning tasks.

Stock your cupboard with bathroom supplies, spray-on cleaning products, and any other cleaning equipment you need.

Positive Reinforcement

As much as you want to scold unkempt employees, rewards work better to change people’s behaviour. Develop a rewards program for those who clean up their mess. Employees caught cleaning up after themselves may have a chance for a monthly draw or a free lunch. This will help employees gain an understanding as to why it is better when everyone helps with cleaning.

Some employees may live like slobs at home, but the workplace is a shared space and it needs to be a clean, productive, and professional environment. If you don’t encourage your employees to clean up, productivity may suffer.