Why Adding a Carriage House to Your Property is a Great Idea

Keep Your Vehicles Safe from the Elements With a Timber Carriage House

Before the modern design of garages being incorporated into the development of modern homes, in earlier times many people used carriage houses. Today within this article we will discuss the advantages of using a carriage house and the different elements you can incorporate within one. They are a great idea for anyone looking to house their vehicles and adding storage space.

Carriage houses were traditionally used for housing animals and carriages before the invention of automobiles. The carriage house was used to feed and maintain the food and cleanliness of the horses that were used to pull carriages. Over time the vehicle took over the carriage house and soon became used as a place to work on the vehicle and house tools and other equipment dedicated to the upkeep of the vehicle. If you have a larger portion of land we recommend you build your home front and centre with your carriage house situated behind your home. Using this method you will maximise your use of your property and increase your options for home design.

A Carriage House Will Need a Suitable Concrete Base Before Erecting. Image credit: Log Cabins South West

The code requirements for energy efficiency will be different than from your actual home since your carriage house is its own separate building. In most chances, the costs will be much lower than the costs associated with your home. Many different government municipalities will tax outbuildings at a lesser rate. If you have concerns related to real-estate taxes, be assured that you will be spending fewer taxes then if you were to have an attached garage to your home rather then employing a carriage house.

If you would like to utilise the concept of building a carriage house you won’t need much more than a concrete base, and a built roof and exterior shell. It does not have to be fancy if you are on a budget. However, if you have the funding available you can incorporate many different design elements and features as far as your budget allows. The carriage house offers a lot of storage space especially if you own more then one vehicle. If you have sports utility vehicles, snowmobiles or dirt bikes, the carriage house will make a perfect home for them. You can also use the carriage house as a shop type area to work on and maintain your vehicles.

Carports & Carriage Houses Come in Various Modern Designs. Image credit: Exterior Living

You can also utilise the upper level of the carriage house with a loft that you can use a man cave or a guest suite or full-time in-law home. You will need to pass the requirements of your local real estate laws before you attempt this. However, it is a great idea as long as you hire proper electrical and plumbing contractors to get the most from your carriage house. Having adequate plumbing and electrical hookups will make any timber carriage houses much more usable. Even if you do not presently intend on adding electricity or plumbing at least have the plumbing and wiring planned out. Later on, you will thank yourself when you choose to add full electrical and plumbing to your carriage house.

Today’s carriage houses are no longer designed in an old-fashioned way. The common element these days is different styles and they are often also elegantly designed to look like a typical modern home you would see anywhere. When you go about planning your carriage house with the design in mind you can add just one floor above or have the house completely levelled. You need to be specific and precise with your upper room floor plan to maximise space. It is best to know what exactly you want to use the loft for before you begin building or even designing.

Carriage houses let homeowners appreciate a very different and unique blend of architecture and modern function. With a small budget and a big imagination, the carriage house can be used for all sorts of purposes including anything from business to pleasure. If you are considering building a new home or making an extra addition to your house, a carriage house is a highly popular building that is worthy of your consideration.

You can always find a good architect to come up with suitable plans based on your ideas or you can always do it on your own. You will need to do some research into carriage houses on your own and check out pictures and read about the different elements and styles that are available for you to build before you completely finalise your plans. Ultimately you can use them to house your vehicles and sporting equipment and you can use the upper loft as an apartment for ageing parents or family members or you can use it as a business office.

Article Credits

The author would like to acknowledge the following external website for use of their content, imagery and reference material:

How to improve your kitchen with replacement fitted doors

Are you fed up with your kitchen’s outdated look. Have you been wanting to replace it but are not looking forward to the hassle and the cost involved? There is one solution that could make things simpler and more affordable, while also giving that much needed facelift to your kitchen. This is to improve your kitchen by means of replacement fitted doors.

Simply put, you would be retaining the inner cabinets, which basically forms the skeleton of your kitchen, but you would be installing new and more modern doors onto the existing cabinets if they are still in a reasonable condition. In many cases the kitchen’s existing carcasses are still perfectly good for continued use. The kitchen doors are what are mainly subjected to extreme wear and tear, not to mention the fact that they are what is actually visible, and thus responsible for your kitchen’s tired and dated look.

Always use a professional to fit your kitchen doors. Image owner: Big Stock

Replacement kitchen doors can make a huge difference to your kitchen. The same applies to new drawer fronts. And the best thing is that they can be easily installed, avoiding a long and tedious process, as well as being so much more affordable.

The new doors will obviously need to be made to measure so that they will fit properly in your kitchen carcasses. So you will need to take exact measurements of your kitchen for each door or drawer. If you will be hiring someone to make the doors for you the measuring process will be seen to by him.

Routing an MDF kitchen door. Image owner: WoodHaven

There are several materials you can choose from, as well as colours, when it comes to kitchen then replacement doors. Most kitchen doors are generally manufactured from MDF whilst some more expensive options are made from solid wood.

You may order your replacement fitted doors or else fit them yourself if you are a DIY lover. Obviously you would need to have certain equipment to cut and give them the desired finish and style.

Modern kitchen doors generally stick to flat panel styles, but there are still many who prefer to opt for other styles. A flat centre panel and raised frame, generally looks very contemporary. Raised panel cabinet doors are also popular as the centre panel will be surrounded by a contour, which appeals to many people.

Another point worth noting is that you will also need to consider staining the doors, so as to have a colour that will complement the cabinet boxes. Once the doors are ready, you will need to take off the old doors and any hardware that was keeping them attached to the kitchen frame. Then, you will just have to install the replacement doors in their place. When it comes to hanging the new kitchen doors, you will need to pre-drill holes in them, insert hinges, and then secure them to the hardware on the cabinet frame. It is worth noting that new hardware is generally recommended.

For less stress and mess, and lower expenses, opt for replacement fitted doors for your kitchen. You will be amazed at the considerable difference they will make as you can greatly improve your kitchen with replacement fitted doors and give your home one of the best kitchen makeovers you can imagine!

Acknowledgements & External Resources

The following websites and external resources were kindly used in collating the information found within this article:

How to choose the best running shoes for men

What To Look For When Buying Your First Pair of Runners

What matters when choosing the ideal running shoes is the shape of your feet and your running style rather than the logo on the side of the shoe. It is important to find the right running shoes so that you are able to run comfortably and also avoid getting injured.

Having the right running shoes makes a difference between a great run and a run that will leave one hurt or with blisters. A pair of running shoes should last between 3 to 4 months, i.e. after 400 to 500 miles of running for the regular runner before they are replaced.

When buying shoes for running, first it is important to know the kind of feet you have, the terrain on which you will be running on and how you run. If you don’t know, visit most local running specialist stores for a shoe fitting and proper gait analysis. As a man who needs running shoes, you should consider the following when choosing the best running shoes:

Get a perfect fit

Buy your shoes late in the evening because this is when the feet are swollen due to the day’s activities. The correct shoe size will go in line with the length and width of the feet and also the weight of the runner.

Some shoes have a narrow width while others are slightly wider so fit the shoe to see that it fits well and doesn’t snag. Don’t choose a shoe that is too wide because the foot will have too much room which will cause it to shift as you run. A runner’s weight affects the amount of force in which the shoe will be subjected to so if you are heavy, choose shoes with thicker soles to save you from too much impact.

Cushioning

Different shoes have different cushioning on them and when choosing a shoe you should consider your frame and preference. If you weigh above 200lbs then you need a shoe with a lot of cushioning and if about 130lbs you would need shoes with less cushioning. The cushioning will also depend on how much padding you would want under your feet and the contact to the ground.

The Different Types of Pronation. Image credit: This Runners Recipes

Ankle support

The shoe should support the ankle, heel and upper foot to avoid a badly sprained ankle. You need to know the shape of your feet and how the ankles and feet move during a run.

There are three types of motion, i.e. pronation, supination and overpronation. For a person with pronation motion, they have reduced stress on the knees, hips and ankles so they wouldn’t need a special type of shoe.

Supination or underpronation motion is where the foot rolls outward rather than inward upon contact which may cause a harsh impact on the knee once they need a shoe with a more flexible upper portion, and extra cushioning in the soles of the shoes.

Overpronation motion means that the foot rolls inward and it may also cause injury to the knees so choose a shoe that adds stability and rigidity to the feet.

Terrain appropriate design

There are two types of mens running shoes i.e. road running shoes are best for paths and paved roads and off-road running shoes which are also known as trail runners for unpaved trails. Road running shoes allow a runner’s foot to be flexible and are lighter than trail runners. The trail shoes provide stability and extra shock absorption on uneven ground and they ensure runners to have optimum traction on slippery rock surfaces or gravel.

High-quality construction – most running shoes are made of synthetic leather because it is flexible, durable, light in weight and dries quickly which is much better than genuine leather. Choose a running shoe that has strong seams and breathable panels that are made of mesh. The upper part should be water proof which prevents water from getting in as you run and the lining should also be water resistant.

The Adidas Ultra Boost is a very popular running shoe. Image credit: Sneaker News

Style

Style preference is different among people because some prefer streamlined shoes that give the foot a narrow appearance while others prefer chunky heavy duty shoes. The standard shoe has a basic color with white splashes and has the manufacturers logo or mascot.

Affordable pricing

A high priced shoe means that it is of high quality with the development of the shoe and aerodynamics of the shoe design making it worth the cost. However, here are affordable shoes that are of good quality if you are on a tight budget.

If you are looking to get the best running shoe, visit a running shoe store and get the best shoe. Don’t be in a hurry while selecting and you may ask for help from the sales person. Carry your running socks so that you get to fit shoes while you are wearing them and they will help you know if the shoe does fit well when wearing socks.

Acknowledgements & External Resources

The following websites and external resources were kindly used in collating the information found within this article:

How to build a fireplace mantel with MDF boards

Why buy a new mantel when you can build one yourself with MDF?

Having a nice, cozy fireplace in your living room or sitting room is surely a great idea, because it serves as a focal point in the room. There is no denying that a fireplace however costs money. You might never have decided to install one simply because of the relatively high cost. However, what if you were to build one yourself? You would be able to save a good amount of money if you were to build the fireplace mantel using MDF boards cut to size, which are really affordable.

MDF boards are bought as sheets and there are different sizes and thicknesses to choose from. Make sure you plan in advance so as to cut the smaller parts in advance. You will not need very large boards for some parts of the mantel, and you can have some cut down into manageable sizes when you go shopping for them.

Beautiful Fireplace Mouldings. Image Credit:
Beautiful Fireplace Mouldings. Image Credit: Inviting Home

Moreover, you can also buy crown moulding and small cove moulding, so as to add additional detail to the plain body of the mantel. These can be used for the edges. You will also be able to find screen moulding for inset panels. These ornate details will make a huge difference in the final look of the mantel. You will be able to choose your favourite special ornate touches from a nice range in most stores.

Obviously, you will need to plan in advance so as to adjust the general dimensions according to their dimensions. For instance, you may need to change the width of the capitals, and that of the pilasters accordingly. These adjustments will depend on their respective sizes and your preferences too. It is a good idea to draw up your fireplace mantel and write down the proposed dimensions. Then, go to the store to take a look at the selection of mouldings, and take into account the sizes of the ones that you like, by taking into account your drawing. Your fireplace mantel will need to be adjusted according to these details, as well as your space.

Other than that you can then move on to the construction phase, which is quite straightforward. First off, this is ultimately a surround, which is composed of two pillars, and an MDF box beam header.

You can start cutting the front and the sides of the pillars out of the MDF boards. You can drill pocket holes on the back of the front piece right away, so as to connect the sides to it later with pocket screws, and some glue too.

Next you will need to cut supports. At least three supports for every pillar are recommended. You can simply use a pocket hole jig so as to drill the pocket holes on the ends of the supports, and then attach to the top, the bottom, and the middle of the pillar. Cut another piece to secure it to the bottom of the front piece. Mitres can be cut so as to be attached around the edges with brad nails and glue. Any part that may be sticking out will later be covered up with cove moulding, so you don’t have to worry about that.

Next, start cutting the trim pieces, which will be used on the front of the pillars. At this point you are quite a good way along. Fill up the brad nail holes with woody putty and sand it. The next step revolves around the MDF box beam. So, cut the bottom, the front and the sides, and attach them to one another as explained before. Later, the back support can be attached, as you will need to fasten this onto the wall.

So, as you can see it was really simple. The pillars are attached to the wall vertically. Then the pillar is placed over and secured with screws. And finally the MDF box beam is screwed down to the pillars and to the wall. Any mouldings that you choose to add can be glued or nailed in place. These will add a unique touch to your fireplace mantel, and you can be as creative as you like. For instance you can make a panelled frieze for a more rustic look. Federal period mouldings are also a popular selection as they have finer and more delicate features, which make your fireplace stand out even more. If you want to make a hood too, make sure to sketch the profile in order to facilitate the decision of the capital hood dimensions according to the other dimensions. Ultimately, the sky is your limit in building your fireplace mantel actually! As you can see it is really quite easy to build your own DIY fireplace mantel with MDF boards and you can make it exactly as you wish! Once done, paint it up and sit there to enjoy the unique cosy ambiance it creates!

Choosing The Best Luxury Refurbishments For Your Bathroom

If pampering yourself and scheduling a trip to the day spa are among your favorite activities, you can bring them into your home – thanks to modern luxury home refurbishment trends. For many people, this is a cost-effective investment and one of the best things they can do as a treat. After all, a little indulgence from time to time can be great for everyone in the family – not only yourself.

Thanks to some of the country’s top luxury refurbishment contractors, you can reinvent your home’s bathroom and make each day a luxurious and fabulous experience!

The Need For Luxury Bathroom Refurbishments

The truth is, life can be so hectic and stressful at times. When we come home, we simply need an area to retire for a while and let go of all the stresses and melt away the strains. That is how a luxury refurbishment can make your bathroom a true retreat for you – and reinvent your outdated bathroom area in a better way.

For example, making the shower bigger and more invigorating is a growing trend. Many people want to get rid of the tub altogether, especially if their bathroom space is limited. Using more glass and hinged doors instead of sliders can be a great improvement. The main point of these premium luxury refurbishments is the feeling of something special and more luxurious when entering the shower.

On the other hand, many people opt to convert the entire bathroom area and make the shower dominate the space by ripping out the shower walls entirely. However, ventilation may be the key issue here – and powerful remote fans can also play a major part in your refurbishment considerations.

Contemporary Bathrooms as a Part of a Luxury Refurbishment

Nowadays, contemporary bathrooms are of utmost importance. Simply put, they resemble an extra room in your house and a wonderful treat for every member of the family. Also, extra rooms in your home can be turned to bathrooms and such retreat areas – including the premium luxury refurbishments that add the modern and sleek design.

The main point of this is that the bathroom as an area needs to get bigger – as our homes get bigger. No one wants to feel stuck inside a bathroom anymore – and thanks to advanced technology, luxury refurbishments are essential for the comfortable feelings inside your own home.

The Benefits of Refurbishing Over Rebuilding

When we look at the benefits of residential refurbishment, we can clearly see that this is a better choice than rebuilding the entire bathroom or any reconstruction in general. That being said, luxury refurbishments come at lower costs – simply because of the demolition costs included in rebuilding which can skyrocket especially if the area needs serious changes.

Aside from that, refurbishing is a process that drastically reduces the time span of a project. Opposed to the lengthy demolition process, refurbishing involves a lot less time and effort – and focuses on the luxury finishes rather than rearranging the space and the walls, floor or furniture inside it.

Overall, refurbishing can be the best choice for you if you want to increase the value of your home. Having a luxury bathroom with spa or a tub can definitely increase the price tag of a property and adds value to a building. Anything from changing the floor layout to adding a skylight or new doors increases the worth of a home – and this can be a great way to add value both in a monetary and non-monetary way.

Why Choose a Refurbishment Company?

In the end, it is clear that although interior refurbishment in London is a huge investment, it is something that is definitely worth persisting with. They directly affect your well being, increase the value of your home and let you relax and enjoy in the comfort of your property. On the other hand, if you are interested to sell or lease the building, they can raise the price tag and improve its ambience.

There are many types of luxury refurbishments nowadays – not only for your bathroom, but every room in detail. Choosing them means improving your life and feeling better in the space you love most – your home.

Reading Glasses: Who Needs Them & Why

The eyes are often one of the most neglected organs of our body, simply because it is easy to move closer or farther to what is being read. Many people think it is okay to simply strain their eye muscles a bit more by frowning to read what is before the eyes. There are also some people that do not even realize they are doing it until they are told by somebody else.

Vision problems such as myopia, astigmatism, and farsightedness are comparatively easy to identify because people experience headaches while trying to read something, or when they have problems in reading highway signs from a distance. But presbyopia is often dismissed as temporary blurring of vision. People get habituated to dismissing the problem because they can hold the document at a distance and still read it.

Ironically, many people in their 40s suffer from presbyopia, but not all of them have other visual problems. Reading glasses are therefore essential for such people. Some, however, may suffer with presbyopia even before turning 40.

In presbyopia the muscles that increase or decrease the shape of the lenses in the eyes are unable to adjust to the shape because of weakness in them due to age. Therefore, the eyes are unable to focus, and as a result of that, the vision is blurred. In contrast, it is the eyeball size that causes myopic blurring, though at times, an abnormality in the shape of the lens or cornea can also result in myopic vision. Farsightedness or hyperopia too is a result of a smaller retina.

If you suffer from headaches and experience difficulty in reading paperwork at the normal distance, these could be indications of presbyopia. Reading small print in particular is a big problem for people who suffer from this condition. The blurring in vision because of presbyopia can be eliminated by using an external lens that has no power, either for short sightedness or for far sightedness. For those who are farsighted or shortsighted, and simultaneously suffer from presbyopia, there are different types of lenses. One can use the lower part of eye glasses as reading glasses, and the upper part of the glasses as normal glasses. Therefore, these types of reading glasses are actually bifocal eyeglasses.

It is better to buy good quality reading glasses and start using them regularly for reading. Some of these reading glasses are made from good quality plastic polymer, so they are almost scratch proof and do not break easily either. Customized reading glasses, however, are likely to save the eyes more than these readymade reading glasses.

Reading glasses are different from computer glasses. Many people do not know the difference and treat computer glasses as reading glasses. Computer screens are at a reasonable distance from the eyes. Reading glasses are for reading documents or other material that is much closer than that. Possible defects in reading glasses could be scratches, waves etc., so it is necessary to check the glasses before paying for them. Even better is consulting any eye specialist, so as to get prescription reading glasses.

Benefits of Whey Protein for Lean Muscle Gain & Weight Loss

You’d love to have a well-toned body but you are not looking forward to the fatigue and exhaustion you would have to endure at the end of the day. If you are looking at a way to get started on a mildly punishing exercise routine, recover fast and show an increased level of energy afterwards, you’d do well to understand the needs of your body before you get started on whey protein shakes.

As an aspirant to a lean and fit body, you’ll have to undertake a demanding, if not strenuous workout routine to strengthen your body and add to the muscle mass. In between, when you are resting, the body recovers and the diet you take should help in strengthening your body and recover in time for the next intense burst of activity. If you feel tired or fatigued, it only means the body is not getting the protein shakes it needs.

The three major sources of nutrition required by your body are ingested in the form of proteins, carbohydrates and fat. It’s up to you to arrive at a diet which supplies all three in the optimum ratio. Proteins help in building muscles and maintaining the bone structure.

Protein powders offer you a tasty and easy way to meet your protein demands. Protein shakes are quickly absorbed and enhance your metabolism. Protein powders dissolved in whey protein shakes are quickly absorbed by the body and help in muscle building, while giving it the necessary energy and strength throughout the day.

The fat loss is accelerated because of your strenuous and demanding workout schedule, and is replaced by muscle build up. Whey protein shakes accelerate metabolism and help burn fat much faster.

Whey is an important by product of the cheese making process. It is a milk extract rich in protein content and available in powder form. Whey protein consists of whey concentrate, whey isolate and whey hydrolysate. The whey isolate is 90% proteins and is devoid of fats, cholesterol, lactose and carbohydrates.

Whey concentrate has lactose and fats in fewer quantities. Whey hydrolysate is that portion of the whey protein shake which is easily absorbed by the body and helps the body in making available the energy to recover fast and get into the workout mode again. It aids in the growth of muscles, as well as the repair of muscle and tissue and rapid recovery from fatigue.