Editorial

This is the best editorial for Oklahomans by Oklahomans.

Three Surefire Ways to Finance Your Kitchen or Bath Remodel

justin brotton - Friday, March 10, 2017

Margo Waldrop

Making improvements to your kitchen or bathroom is a smart move. Not only do you get to enjoy the upgrades, but it increases the value of your home should you choose to sell, at some point. And while any home remodels can add up (depending on your upgrades), there are several financing solutions to help you out.

1. Home Equity Loan

Home equity loans are the most popular way homeowners finance remodels. Because you are borrowing against the value of your home, these types of loans generally have a lower interest rate. Home equity loans are easier to get because it is a secured loan against the equity you have built into your home. They also allow you to get your funds in one lump sum. This enables you to pay your contractor and purchase any additional materials needed for your remodel. Believe it or not, you can also take advantage of tax deductions allowed with home equity loans.

2. Personal Loans

Some homeowners choose to secure personal loans. This option can be excellent for those with good credit and a steady income. However, these loans aren’t secured from your home equity and could present higher interest rates. There are also no tax deductions with personal loans. If you haven’t yet, built home equity, this might be an option worth considering.

3. Energy Improvement Loan

Is your kitchen or bathroom remodel increasing your homes energy efficiency? If so, the federal government may help you out. The requirements include specific energy-efficient standards that must be proved during an inspection. Some states also allow for income tax credits and rebates that can assist with paying off your home addition. Items such as, energy efficient: appliances, windows, doors, roofs and insulation all fall under this umbrella.

Financing your kitchen or bathroom remodel doesn’t have to break the bank. There are many options to help you improve your home as well as reduce your utility bills. And don’t forget, any improvement you make to your home will help increase its value in the long run. Win, win!

Related articles: http://www.okcwindows.net/blog/craftsman-style-homes

Fore more information please go to http://www.okckitchenandbath.com
 

Stunning Lighting Options for Your Home Theater

justin brotton - Friday, March 10, 2017

by Margo Waldrop

Planning your home theater?

Ready to watch The Terminator in super surround sound and maximum Hi-Def?

Homeowners love the privacy and ‘blow your mind’ capabilities of a home theater. And for good reason. Home theaters can be customized to your every whim from star lit ceilings to a Tron inspired theater room that completely glows in the dark. That’s why the lighting you choose for your home theater should be at the top of your priority list.

Theater lights come in pretty much every option you can imagine. The ambiance that well-planned lighting creates, sets the tone for your home movie theater experience. Normal lighting fixtures or lamps can reflect on the screen and diminish your viewing experience. After all, no one wants John Wayne’s face washed out in The Cowboys. Your movie visual, should be vibrant and pop from the screen. That’s what good lighting will contribute to – the actual viewing experience. So, what types of lights are best for your home theater?

Recessed lighting - Provides a subtle glow from behind the screen or on the ceiling

Wall scones – Like old-timey movie theaters, wall sconces can give an old-fashioned feel while also adding down lighting that won’t affect the screen

Ambient lighting – This type of lighting is completely customizable. A good designer will incorporate this into your overall home theater design.

LED or fiber optic lighting – These flexible lighting strips can be installed anywhere and are extremely energy efficient. They also come in several mood-inducing shades.

As with all lighting, the installation should be handled by a professional electrician. Lights should not only be energy efficient, but also safe. ‘Theater drapes’ and other flammable objects should be considered when designing your lighting plan. With all the available lighting options, this is the time for your design imagination to run wild. Maybe a home theater built to look like the inside of the Millennium Falcon? Just a thought.

Five Emergency Reasons to Call an Electrician

justin brotton - Friday, March 10, 2017

by Margo Waldrop

There are many reasons why our home’s wiring can prematurely reach its lifespan. Age, rodents, excessive moisture and incorrect wiring can all contribute to potential hazardous situations in our home. As a homeowner, it is crucial that you understand what constitutes an electrical ‘emergency’ versus just a normal repair.

1. Burning or acrid smells – The odor of burning plastic could mean that your home contains damaged wires. This can be part of the outlet or the attached wiring. Wall insulation and drywall are at risk of catching fire. Try to shut down the breaker to that area and call an electrician asap.

2. Buzzing noise – Outlets and switches are not supposed to buzz, or crackle. Sounds such as these could mean that faulty wiring is present. This can cause the outlet to arc causing heat or discoloration of the outlet face. Immediately shut off the breaker that affects that particular room.

3. Sparks or shocks– If your switches or outlets spark or shock you, it is an obvious red flag that indicates a possible electrical emergency. It could mean that a wire in the circuit is shorting out to the conduit, enclosing the wires. If you observe sparks coming from any electrical source such as an outlet, fuse box or breaker panel, call an electrician immediately.

4. Warm outlets or switches – If an outlet or switch is warm, this means the circuit is overloaded. Outlets and switches that are wired incorrectly or are faulty, can put your home at risk for fire. Switch off the breaker that is designated for that room, immediately.

5. Tripping breakers – Circuit breakers are designed to shut off when overloaded, thus protecting your home from fire. Breakers that frequently ‘trip’, plunging certain parts of your home into darkness, are a possible sign that your circuits are shouldering more current than they can safely support. It can also mean that the wiring has gone bad, and needs urgent repair.

Electricity is a necessary component of our homes, and like homeowners, it needs a periodic health check. If your wires have become faulty, there is the possibility that combustible materials could be ignited from hot wires. This can put your home and your family at risk. Keeping your eye out for any potential risk is essential. Don’t ignore red flags, make a potentially life-saving call to a licensed electrician if you suspect a problem.

For more information please go to http://www.electriciansokc.com/
 

The Rise of the Dreaded Bed Bug!

justin brotton - Friday, March 10, 2017

By Sierra Waldrop

Tired of hearing about the bed bug epidemic plaguing beds everywhere? I know I am, but unfortunately, these news flashes aren’t going away anytime soon. In fact, bedbugs have been around longer than you or I have. Believe it or not, bed bugs were referenced in ancient Egyptian literature, meaning these blood suckers have been around for about 3,500 years.

As the end of World War II hit, bedbugs were almost eliminated from the United States due to an aggressive pesticide crusade. But between the last 10 to 15 years, they have emerged with a vengeance. Their growth has been reported at a rate of 50% per year, worldwide. They have managed to quietly crawl their way into our lives, and now infest our normal ‘safe’ places. Places, such as: hotels, dorms, hospitals, businesses and homes. Even high class hotels aren’t immune to their presence, indicating that bed bugs aren’t particular about where they choose to live.

But why the sudden rise in bed bug numbers?

Scientists believe that as a result of affordable air travel, the unwelcome pests have become world travelers. They attach themselves to unsuspecting tourists through any means available, such as clothing and luggage. And while travel can be seasonal, bed bugs are not. They are present twelve months a year and can attach and infest at anytime.

Urban sprawl is also suspected in spreading the creatures to other homes. If left untreated, these homes are effective breeding grounds for bed bugs to spread. One female bed bug can lay up to 500 eggs in her lifetime, and if undiscovered, they can easily multiply by the thousands.

So, while bed bug numbers are on a steep ascent, our best defense is education. Understanding what to look for, and how to avoid carrying the critters back home, will give humans a big advantage. An effective extermination plan will also keep your home protected from possible long-term infestations.

Learn more at: Bed Bugs






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