EECA Offers Funding Grant for Home Insulation Among Low-Income Kiwis

Low-income households in New Zealand that need home insulation services should consider applying for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority’s (EECA) funding grant for homes that are built before 2000. EECA plans More »

How to Avoid Stress During House Construction

So, you’re currently in the process of building your new home. You’ve worked out the floor plan, agreed on an interior design and the landscaping, and found a plumber, electrician and an air More »

Multifamily Sales in Salt Lake City Amounted to More Than 1$B in 2017

The Salt Lake Board of Realtors reported that sales of multifamily units in 2017 amounted to more than $1 billion, due to an increase in median sales prices. Despite the increase, there More »

3 Mortgage Mistakes When Buying a Condo

Despite the large number of desirable Corpus Christi, Rockport, and Key Allegro homes, many people prefer to buy condominium units. After all, as Rockport Properties, Inc. explains, condos usually provide a better view, help More »

Three Changes to Do in the Workplace this 2018

There's no better time to roll out changes in the workplace than as when the new year sets in. This is in line with people starting over a new leaf. If you've More »

 

Improving Your Restaurant Performance in 4 Ways

A restaurant owner by the counterOne of the success metrics of restaurants is the rate of table turnover. However, you may be aware by now that it is not as simple and straightforward as that. More than the speed of the kitchen and service crew, so many other factors affect table turnover.

Here are some possible ways to achieve the number of serviced customers that you target.

1. Outsource during high season

As much as you want a consistent overflow of customers, there really are some lean days. However, if you predict a high turnout on specific days, outsource other services like commercial dishwasher services you can get from firms such as BC Industrial Services, LLC to make sure that you are not shorthanded.

2. Hire an experienced manager

Leadership in a restaurant set-up is vital. You need someone with adequate experience to orchestrate your crew especially when the crowd starts pouring in. Some staff may get rattled due to impossible demands here and there, and you want someone who can effectively manage them.

He or she should also be able to analyze patterns and come up with an efficient workforce planning.

3. Monitor the kitchen

Making sure that your inventory, particularly the fast-moving ones, is regularly replenished can impact your table turnover. Also, your kitchen crew should be able to prepare early what they can, especially if there are reservations.

Servers, on the other hand, can suggest items on the menu that are easier to prepare.

4. Use technology to speed up the process

Apart from waiting for the food to be prepared and arrive on the table, the checkout process also involves significant waiting time. One way to cut the waiting time is to make use of available technologies.

According to the National Restaurant Association, a quarter of restaurant customers claim that they consider the convenience of technology when choosing a restaurant. If you can incorporate technologies in the checkout and payment, it would have a positive effect.

Speed and efficiency in service impact table turnover rate of restaurants. Nonetheless, it is still important that the quality of food and service are not compromised. While you want to serve more customers, you also need to make sure that you deliver a memorable experience every time.

Man installs home insulation

EECA Offers Funding Grant for Home Insulation Among Low-Income Kiwis

Man installs home insulationLow-income households in New Zealand that need home insulation services should consider applying for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Authority’s (EECA) funding grant for homes that are built before 2000.

EECA plans to provide financing assistance under its programme called Warm Up New Zealand: Healthy Homes. The project will be available until July 1 for poor households and landlords with low-income tenants.

Funding Qualifications

Interested parties may send an application to ask for help in covering 50 per cent of the price for ceiling and under-floor insulation products and services. Qualified households should present a Community Services Card or a referral from the Healthy Homes project of the Ministry of Health.

If your home is not qualified for the government subsidy, you can still apply for financial assistance if you have a health condition or disability. Several local councils offer loans to help households pay for the installation of insulation systems. Some banks may likewise include the cost of insulation to their mortgage payments.

Home insulation is particularly important for those who plan to rent out their homes since the government will require under-floor and ceiling insulation for all leased properties by July 2019.

New Housing Model

Energy-efficient insulation can help lower your electricity bills. Some architects believe that property developers should focus more on building sustainable houses instead of larger homes.

Home builders usually prefer larger houses because they sell faster, although energy-efficient houses can save owners hundreds or even thousands of dollars in energy bills per year. In addition, an upgrade to a 6 Homestar rating only requires between $5,000 and $6,000 for an average-sized house.

Cash-strapped Kiwis should take advantage of the government subsidy, whilst property developers should consider building smaller yet more energy-efficient homes. It is better to look for contractors that have several years of experience in the insulation supply and installation industry.

Making Your Garage Door Safe

Residential garage doorA garage door is an essential part of any property. This door allows you to gain access to your property and still keeps you safe from the elements and intruders. According to recent statistics, however, garage doors are a primary cause of accidents in most households, especially from crashes.

One of the leading causes of accidents caused by garage doors in Port Douglas is ignoring the need for panel door repair. Experts like Infinite Garage Doors explain that prompt repair of any malfunction is an integral part of making it safe. Here are some additional features you can install to enhance safety when using the garage door.

Auto Reverse

This feature is designed to change your garage door’s moving direction should it meet any obstruction. Most panel garage door openers manufactured after 1991 have this feature. You can place a solid object like a cinder block and try closing your garage door to test your door’s auto-reverse mechanism. If it is in proper condition, it will touch the object and immediately reverse to an open position.

Manual Controls

These features prevent entrapment during power outages, storms and opener malfunctions. A manual control consists of a release handle which opens and closes the garage door when necessary. The handle is placed not more than six feet above ground to keep it within everyone’s reach.

Motion Detectors

This safety feature consists of a sensor located on your door’s track system. The sensor transmits an infrared beam when your door is closing. The door closing automatically stops and reverses should anything break the beam’s line. You can test this feature by placing any inanimate object near your garage door when closing it.

Different safety features work best for different situations. Get a garage door expert to assess your property and advise you on the best one for you. They will also handle any repairs and service works that will go a long way in enhancing safety when using the door.

Swimming Pool Leaks to Watch Out For

Residential swimming poolYour swimming pool naturally loses water because of evaporation, backwash or splash outs. You also gain water through rainfall. As a rule of thumb, if you find that you add water up to three inches every week, it is probable that water out of your pool is lost through leaks that you may want to repair.

Before going into repair solutions, a swimming pool maintenance team in Salt Lake City will first investigate to understand the leaks.

Ideally, the pool is supposed to be watertight. However, sometimes the pool cracks, sealants deteriorate, or the plumbing gets old. These three cause the most common swimming pool leaks, explained below:

1. Structural breaks

Regardless of the material that forms the pool surface, given enough time, it might crack due to heavy foot traffic. For example, vinyl decked pools can break due to exposure to sharp objects.

Structural cracks not only lose water, but they also let dirt into the pool. Note that if not fixed immediately, minor leaks grow in size.

2. Mechanical issues

Sometimes the issue with your pool has something to do with the systems around it, such as the pumping system. This can happen if, for example, the shaft seal becomes defective and so the area around the pump might always be wet, which will spoil the motor.

In such cases, the maintenance professionals may have to replace the faulty parts.

3. Plumbing

In other cases, pipes might be the culprits. PVC piping is especially a problem in extreme temperature areas and can crack in unlikely places. For example, underground pipe cracks can lose a lot of water before they are noticed.

It is essential to watch out for any irregularities around your pool. For instance, if the landscape around your pool is always wet, it might be an indication that you need to call in maintenance.

It pays to take action on seemingly subtle changes in the water levels so that they do not cost you much more than necessary in the end.

Couple looking at house models and plans

How to Avoid Stress During House Construction

Couple looking at house models and plansSo, you’re currently in the process of building your new home. You’ve worked out the floor plan, agreed on an interior design and the landscaping, and found a plumber, electrician and an air conditioning contractor in Sydney. All you need now is to get things in motion. But as well as the excitement of watching your new home develop, the responsibility of staying within budget and staying on-plan can become stressful. These tips will help keep those stress levels lower during the construction of your new home.

Trust Your Contractor

Choosing a contractor you’re comfortable with is important. The builder should be approachable and know how to listen to your suggestions and requests. Spend time asking around beforehand, and consider reputation and quality of work as well as the bottom line. The cheapest quote may end up being expensive if you have to find another contractor to fix shoddy work.

Expect the Unexpected

Bad weather, delayed delivery ‒ these are examples of situations that can mess up your construction timetable. Many unexpected things can happen during the process. Be prepared for delays, and as much as possible, think of a plan ‘B’ in advance to keep the momentum going.

Choose the Right Time to Visit the Site

Just because you own the project, it doesn’t mean you have to be there all the time. Things can get hectic for the workers. Having someone lurking around can get in the way of their work. Let your foreman know when you want to visit the site so the team can prepare for it.

Include Allowances in Your Budget

It’s always wise to have a little extra in your budget when building a home. You’ll never know when prices can change, extra work is needed or a license is required.

Building a home is a big commitment and it’s normal to have anxieties. The key to managing the stress is solid pre-planning. The more you plan, the less unexpected costs are likely to occur and the fewer delays in completing your dream home.

4 Tankless Water Heater Replacement Signs

Plumber checking the heaterNowadays, more homeowners are turning to tankless water heaters. After all, not only does it save space (compared to tank heaters), it can be managed easily. No wonder more households have one installed. However, like other home appliances, there will come a time when your tankless water heater needs replacement. 5 Star Plumbing Inc. noted that calling Denver professionals is a wise thing to do.

Here are some signs to help you know when the right time is to dial that number:

It’s old

A tankless water heater has a lifespan of 10 to 15 years. If you don’t know when was the last time you replaced it, checking the serial number can give you an idea. The date won’t deliberately be written. Instead, an alphanumeric combination will be available.

The first letter represents the number of the alphabet and is equivalent to the number of the month in the calendar (i.e. A= January, B= February, F=June, J=October). The next two digits of the serial number represent the year it was manufactured (i.e. 05= the year 2005; 12= the year 2012). Most manufacturers have a similar date code, but it pays to check and confirm with them to be sure.

Discolored water

Rusty, discolored, or water that tastes different means something is internally wrong with your heater. A repair or replacement should be made as soon as possible.

Fluctuating temperature

If your water is giving out lukewarm temperature when it should be hot, chances are it has reached its peak and needs replacement. However, replacing the circuit breaker or pilot light can do the trick.

Leaks

Leaks are never normal and are a common indication that repair or replacement needs to be done in your tankless water heater.

Be an observant homeowner. Take note of these abnormalities and check whether it’s time for you to replace or repair your tankless water heater at home.

Here’s Why You Should Buy a Pickup Truck

people at a pickup truckHave you been thinking of buying a big vehicle? Something that’s not so much of a cliché? There are a lot of SUVs out there that are big and classy, but if you’re looking for strength and adaptability, it’s a pickup truck you’ll want.

Pickup trucks are versatile vehicles. You can slap on 200-watt siren speakers on it, and you’ll have a good first responder system ready. Add a camper shell, and it can protect whatever it is your transporting.

Here are three good reasons why your next vehicle should be a pickup truck.

1. They’re good for all types of terrain.

Surely, you’ve heard of the extreme sport called off-roading. Pickup trucks are meant to go off the road and on to more difficult terrain, rocky or muddy. Or if you live in an area that gets a good amount of snow, these trucks can drive your right through it without a hitch.

2. They can haul stuff.

Do you have a boat or jet ski that you want to bring with you to your next beach trip? Or do you need to haul some timber in from out of the woods? Pickups are your best friend when it comes to hauling heavy equipment. You can even use them as a tow truck for cars in need.

3. They’re good for emergencies.

You could be the neighborhood hero if you had a pickup truck. You can help tow a friend’s car stuck in the snow. You can quickly run injured people to the hospital by putting them in the back that has enough space for the injured and a companion.

There are many types of pickup trucks in the market, and your choice will depend on your intended purpose. These vehicles are also huge investments so choose wisely and learn everything there is to know about how to handle them. If you take care of your truck, your truck will take care of you, too.

Janitor holding cleaning supplies

Three Benefits of Outsourcing Janitorial Services

Janitor holding cleaning suppliesRunning a business is akin to joggling. Multitasking is part of the deal. Your duties run the gamut, from making sure that your profit goals are being met to making sure that your workplace remains in tiptop shape at all times. While being hands-on when it comes to the former is crucial, the latter is something you are better off outsourcing.

Here are three reasons why subcontracting janitorial services is the wiser option.

Your options abound

Whether your business is located in Provo, Salt Lake City, or wherever else in Utah, you will find a cleaning company that best suits your needs. According to a data from 2015, there are approximately 875,000 businesses in the country offering cleaning services. For you, as a customer, this means a wealth of options that allows you to choose the best and most cost-efficient.

You remain covered

Ideally, cleaning companies should be backed by a cocktail of insurance coverage, such as Bodily Injury Coverage and Property Damage Coverage, among others. If you maintain an in-house janitorial team, you will have to shoulder these expenses. This means that outsourcing janitorial services allows you to cut your business’s operational costs.

You are assured of utmost expertise and reliability

Certifications from different third-party organizations back most cleaning companies. These certifications better position these businesses’ level of legitimacy. One of the most sought-after certifications for the cleaning and janitorial industry is the Cleaning Industry Management Standard (CIMS) given by the International Sanitary Supply Association (ISSA). This stamp of approval means that you can expect no less than an expert and reliable service.

Subcontracting your workplace maintenance needs is an option worth considering. Especially for small businesses, the reality is maintaining an in-house janitorial team is far from practical.

Fitting of prescription glasses

Upcoming Trends for Eyewear in 2018

Fitting of prescription glassesWho does not love to stay updated when it comes to fashion? Staying in the style know-how is not just limited to the clothes you wear. You can consider your eyewear as a piece of your outfit. If you have the right eyewear on, you can have a complete outfit. If you want to stay on trend this year, here are some of the upcoming styles for eyewear that will be a big hit in 2018.

Pastel colours

In 2017, the colour ‘Millennial pink’ was a huge thing for any kind of clothing. This year, the pastel theme is staying strong. Ask any optician who orders wholesale eyewear supplies and you will find that more eyewear brands are offering pastel hues in their frames.

Pastels add a touch of colour to the usual boring eyewear without being too strong. These include rose gold, baby blue, and light lavender. These colours will provide a subtle splash of colour if you were to sport a black outfit, for instance.

Thin is in

If you are tired of the thick square frames that have been popular for the longest time, then this is for you. Thin frames, especially the aviator ones, will be making a big impact this year. They have a great design to them and could make a person look more sleek and sophisticated.

Clear as day

If you have been looking for a pair of glasses that has an elegant design and beautiful look, a clear and white frame is an ideal option for you. It is trendy and versatile and can look great for both men and women. Clear and see through are also easy to match with any outfit and provide a smarter, more unique look.

An outfit is truly not complete or up to date if your frames are not updated as well.

Singapore at night

Getting Around Singapore: When is the Perfect Time to Visit?

Singapore at nightSingapore offers a wide variety of activities for every tourist there is. Whether it is a shopping trip, a holiday getaway or an island escapade you want, you can definitely enjoy all of these in the Garden City.

The only challenge now is finding the ideal time to go and have fun on this island city-state. To map out the perfect vacation at Sentosa – The State of Fun, where the beautiful beaches in Singapore are located, here are the things you might want to consider when planning your trip to the island-city:

Weather

Singapore has two primary seasons –the wet and the dry season. Although the climate in the country is mostly hot and humid, during December to February, the weather is relatively colder, which makes it the best time to tour and explore the city by foot. During this period, you may also join year-end events like the Singapore countdown celebration to welcome the incoming year.

The Great Sale

Singapore is also famous for its shopping district. Shopaholics from all over the world consider it as one of their top destinations because of it houses both brand names and native items one cannot just find anywhere. However, if you want to indulge further in a shopping spree, plan your trip in time for the annual Great Singapore Sale. Here, you will enjoy great discounts of up to 70% across all shopping outlets for eight weeks.

Festivals

Singapore is home to culturally diverse groups of people. Because of this, the island is hailed as a melting pot of culture, where Indian, Malay, and Chinese ethnicities meet. This colourful combination of culture and heritage has created a series of annual festivals in the state. These are some of the most notable of them:

Chinese New Year – This is one of the most anticipated celebrations in Singapore among the Chinese community. It falls between January and February.

Vesak Day or Buddha Day – This is an important event to the Buddhist community, as it commemorates the birth, enlightenment and death of Gautama Buddha. It falls between April and June.

Deepavali or Diwali – Known as the Festival of Lights in Hindu, it is considered as the most important holiday to the said community. This is observed between October and November.

Hari Raya Puasa – This is a major celebration for the Malay community, as it concludes the holy month of fasting. It usually falls on the 10th month of the Hijrah or Islamic calendar.

On your next visit to Singapore, be sure to consider these dates, so you can fully embrace the beauty and culture of the island. For a more worthwhile experience, always bring and pack all your necessities to make your trip a memorable one.