What Does Home Inspection Service Entail

Find An Inspector

When homebuyers choose an Member for their home inspection, they are hiring a professional that is dedicated to serving their client. members know that a home is much more than just a property to the homebuyer; it’s a place to start a new chapter of their life. The inspector’s purpose is to help their clients get a better understanding about their potential homes. No home is perfect, but members will provide the insight homebuyers need to decide if the home is perfect for them.

What is a home inspection?

A home inspection is an objective visual examination of the physical structure and systems of a house, from the roof to the foundation. On average, a single-family home inspection usually takes 2-4 hours to complete, though this is heavily dependent on the of the size and condition of the home. After the inspection process, the inspector will send the client an inspection report (often within 24-48 hours) that covers their findings, complete with pictures, analysis and recommendations.

What does a home inspection include?

The standard home inspector’s report will cover the condition of the home’s heating system; central air conditioning system (temperature permitting); interior plumbing system; electrical system; the roof, attic and visible insulation; walls, ceilings, floors, windows and doors; and the foundation, basement and structural components

It is important to note that there may be some exceptions. If certain areas are inaccessible (locked door, tenant’s belongings in the way) or unsafe conditions (severely steep roofs, poor structural integrity) the inspector will explain the situation and note that they were not able to assess that specific area or system.

Why do homebuyers need a home inspection?

Buying a home could be the largest single investment the homebuyer will ever make. To minimize unpleasant surprises and unexpected difficulties, homebuyers should strive to learn as much as they can about the house before they buy it. A home inspection may identify the need for major repairs or builder oversights, as well as the need for maintenance to keep it in good shape. Through the home inspection process, homebuyers will have a better understanding about their prospective house, which will allow them to make decisions with confidence. If a homeowner is planning to sell their home, a home inspection can give them the opportunity to make repairs that will put the house in better selling condition

Choosing the Right Inspector

Finding a Home Inspector

When the homebuyer has found the right home, they will need to get a professional home inspection. It is critical to find a quality home inspector to understand the condition of the property before making this important investment. It can be confusing and hard to know where to start the search for a professional home inspector.

Find An Inspector Search

Find An Inspector search is a great way to find local inspectors who are members. The homebuyer can enter the address of their prospective home to pull a list of local inspectors and review their qualifications and services. There are different filtering options available so homebuyers quickly can find local inspectors that fit their needs.

Real Agents and Other Referrals

If the homebuyer is using a real estate agent, chances are that they have offered referrals of inspectors they have worked with. Many real estate agents and home inspectors build relationships over the years, and it can be an effective and quick way to get leads on potential inspectors. Another referral source homebuyers can utilize is their friends and family who recently have worked with an inspector.

Choosing the Right Inspector

Getting Started

The best place for a homebuyer to start is by reviewing the property listing to familiarize themselves with their prospective home. Having a good understanding of the home and its specific features will create a useful frame of reference. Similarly, the homebuyers should take note of any special inspection needs that they or their families may have. Understanding these factors can make the home inspector research more effective.

Is the inspector licensed?

Depending on where the homebuyer is located, the practice of home inspection may require a license by the state government. View State Regulations section to find out which states require home inspectors to be licensed. The homebuyer should verify that any potential home inspector holds a valid license, if required by their state

Home Inspection Checklist (Step by Step)

One of the most daunting aspects of buying a new home is running through the home inspection checklist to ensure that everything is up to scratch. After all, you don’t want to miss something that will become a potentially expensive problem for you later.

A home buyer inspection list isn’t just there to ensure everything is ready for you to move in, it’s also to alert you to any significant issues that may mean you shouldn’t be buying the property at all. This is particularly pertinent if you are dealing with a potential investment property as the new tenants will be coming to you with any issues.

What to look for in a new home inspection

It is important to remember that professional inspectors will be looking over the home for significant potential problems such as structural issues, damaged fixtures, or anything that may need to be replaced.

It is also a good idea to have a pest inspection to save hassles later. You don’t want to find out you could have prevented a white ant problem after the fact. This is also an excellent chance to be aware of any potential for pest issues that may pop up in the future based on the location of your home and the materials used in its construction.

For properties with a swimming pool, it is vital to have an inspection of the pool fencing, surrounding area, and the pool itself. For safety, you’ll want to make this a regular activity. It is also a good idea to obtain a surveyor’s report which will identify the boundaries of your property, so you understand what exactly is your land and what is not.

The complete guide to home inspections

Home inspections are one of the most important parts of buying or selling a home. The inspection report directly affects whether or not a deal will go through and the home’s price. Negotiations can be tough, and you need to know what to expect.

What is a home inspection?

A home inspection is an objective exam by a licensed home inspector who examines the condition of the home’s structure and systems. After the inspection, the inspector provides an extensive report that includes summaries, notes, the life of major systems/equipment, and recommended repairs or replacements on red-flagged items.

A standard home inspection takes approximately two to three hours and includes an examination of the following:

Heating system

Central air condition system

Interior plumbing

Electrical systems

Roof

Attic and visible insulation

Floors, walls, and ceilings

Windows and doors

Foundation

Basement and structural components

The goal of the inspection is to provide the home buyer and seller with a clear picture of the condition of the home and identify any current or future problems. This allows the seller to make any necessary repairs before the sale or negotiate the repairs with the buyer.

Typically, a home inspection is ordered after the sales contract is signed, which should include a clause stating the purchase is contingent on the findings of the home inspection. Although you are not required to attend the inspection, it’s highly recommended so you can ask questions along the way

Home Inspection Checklist: What Homebuyers Need To Know

A home inspection is a professional, third-party inspection of a property that you intend to buy. Its goal is to evaluate the home from a structural and safety standpoint, as well as to ensure you’re buying a hazard-free, up-to-code property that’s a good investment of your dollars.

Home inspections aren’t required, but there are few cases where you’d want to forgo one. Use this home inspection checklist to learn more about the process — as well as what to do afterward.

Include A Home Inspection Contingency In Your Contract

Your first step is to make sure there’s a home inspection contingency — also referred to as a “due diligence” contingency — in your sales contract. This gives you a specified time period in which to have a professional inspection performed on the property

Understand How Your Home Inspection Contingency Works

In most cases, the inspection period is anywhere from one to two weeks from the date your sales contract is signed, though it depends on your specific agreement. The contingency period is supposed to give you enough time to:

• Find a good inspector.

• Set up your appointment (and, ideally, attend it).

• Receive your inspection report.

• Get any follow-up or additional inspections (more on that later).

• Decide how you’d like to move forward.

Hire A Good Home Inspector

Hiring a thorough, experienced home inspector is incredibly important. They should be current on all certifications (NACHI, ASHI, etc.) and up to date on all training and educational coursework. They also need a full insurance policy (this protects you if they’re injured on your property) and should have deep experience in the area you’re buying in. This ensures they’re aware of any current problems with soil, pest and even home builders in your region.

The Benefits Of Buying An Accountant Practice Rather Than Starting A New Business

How is accountability defined in the workplace?

Accountability is a crucial element of every high-functioning workplace. Accountability in the workplace has a clear correlation with higher performance, and research by the US Office of Personnel Management has also indicated that it leads to heightened capability, increased dedication to the role, boosted morale, and higher levels of workplace satisfaction. Accountability also fosters innovation as staff members become more invested in the company going forward.

Nevertheless, studies have shown that there is quite a deficiency of accountability in most workplaces. A survey conducted by AMA Enterprise saw that 21% of those interviewed saw their workforce consisting almost half of ‘unaccountable employees’. So, what is workplace accountability, why is it important, and how do you foster it?

What is accountability in the workplace?

Accountability at work is essentially about ownership and initiative. This refers to employees stepping up, and doing what is best for the business. An employee who is accountable will take responsibility of results and outcomes – they won’t presume that this is purely the concern of management.

Accountability at work includes:

  • If you acknowledge that a task, duty or job is crucial to results, you ensure that task comes to the attention of the relevant staff so that it can be completed accordingly.
  • If a task that is crucial to results falls to you and your department, you should ensure that it gets completed to the best possible degree.
  • If you have committed to assisting on a certain task, ensure your contribution is of high quality.
  • If your work has effects on the work of others, let them know how you’re progressing – their results will rely on your work too.
  • If an issue arises with a project completed by yourself, you are honest with management about how you undertook the project and what you could do going forward to rectify the issue.

Benefits of Accountability

Self-accountability comes a wide range of opportunities and benefits which help an employee as a single unit and the team they are working with.

First and foremost, it helps to build trust in the environment. People know they can trust and rely on a self-accountable colleague and, more often than not, they come to them with their problems or requests. Also, if taken on by a leader, he or she emits positive reinforcing vibes throughout the group and, in return, receives unfaltering respect and admiration. Words of these people are steady as a mountain.

Secondarily, employees who radiate accountability in the workplace better understand how to socialize. They take responsibility for their doings, either bad or good, and tend to communicate their feelings more openly to others. As a result, they end up establishing healthier and more encouraging social bridges with their subordinates or friends in the office.

More accurate decision-making folds in harmonically with other benefits of self-accountability. Those who seek detention in themselves and make amends for what they’ve done, not only help themselves, but also save a lot of time, energy, and money for others. They speak up as soon as something goes wrong, and without wasting time, look for solutions to fix the problem.

If someone’s showing high accountability in the workplace, chances are, they get promoted over others. These individuals burn with the light of leadership, which is something every manager looks for in an employee.

What does it mean to accept accountability?

While accepting accountability is a personal choice and requires less direct application of pressure by external forces, it’s still not often an entirely positive experience for either party.

When someone accepts accountability, they’re often doing so not through their own intrinsic desire, but through a combination of internal and external pressure.

At work, accepting accountability might look something like “My team is relying on me to finish this report on time.” That’s enough to push someone forward or to motivate them to complete a task, but not necessarily enough to inspire a great deal of discretionary effort.

Accepting, but not embracing accountability can also lead to a relationship where someone views their relationship with accountability as a burden to be taken on begrudgingly.

Accountability and responsibility at work

Although these terms have some overlap, a number of characteristics separate them. Individuals in the workplace usually share responsibilities, and a specific individual such as a manager is accountable for their actions. The accountable person often has a skill set, job title or educational achievement level that the responsible group lacks.

Accountability at work

Accountability is essential for an effective, influential leader to have. The person or people in charge need to take ownership of their team members’ actions. This allows them to make sure that they complete all responsibilities as expected. Before making a commitment to a managerial role, you should clearly understand what skills and resources your employees will need to finish a task.

Accountability can also help managers build trust at work and increase employee responsibility. For example, an accountable manager can admit if they forget to schedule an essential employee, reorder supplies late or give a trainee inaccurate information. When leaders are accountable for all of their actions and deliver results as expected, companies can benefit from:

  • Less turnover
  • Lower expenses
  • Happier, more productive employees who view their jobs as positive and meaningful
  • Better customer service
  • More employee engagement
  • Workers who require less supervision because they make an effort to learn every detail of their duties and how to fulfill them successfully
  • Employees who are willing to take on additional responsibilities because they feel connected to the organization’s mission and want to help ensure its success
  • A company culture that lets people exchange information freely and discuss their opinions and feelings with each other openly while feeling respected for their contributions
  • Leaders and team members who make their expectations clear to everyone, strive for excellence and can count on each other for support when needed

Responsibility at work

Responsible people are willing to accept the consequences of their actions as well as the rewards of producing exceptional results. For instance, a responsible construction team will complete their duties in accordance with deadlines and budgets while maintaining high safety standards. Responsible employees will likely keep looking for new ways to improve their performance because they know that they will gain satisfaction and commendation for it.

Fixed vs. Relative Accountabilities

Thus, in an organization, the term “accountability” refers to an employee’s obligations, some of which are fixed and some of which are relative. Fixed accountabilities comprise the employee’s obligations to deliver outputs and to use resources and processes precisely as specified by the employer. They are necessary to keep processes in control and can be summarized in two distinct categories:

  • Commitment. Employees must fulfill the output commitments exactly, in terms of quantity, quality, and timeparameters, as defined in their assignments, projects, services, and other deliverables — unless the manager agrees to adjust them. Under no circumstances can the employee surprise her manager at the due date with changes.
  • Adherence. Employees must simultaneously observe and work within defined resource constraints — that is, the rules and limits established by policies, procedures, contracts, and other managerial guidelines, as well as by law.

Relative accountabilities have to do with the employee’s exercise of judgment to maximize value; they include the following four categories:

  • Reach. Employees are expected to add as much value as they can by signing on for ambitious yet achievable targets, rather than hanging back or committing to “low-ball” goals.
  • Fit for purpose. Employees must continually strive to ensure the optimal means of producing appropriate outputs that support the purpose for which the outputs were designed in the first place.
  • Stewardship. Employees must manage company funds and other resources efficiently and seek ways to continually improve and conserve those resources, wherever possible
  • Teamwork. Employees must recognize that it is the concerted effort from and between everyone that generates profit in any organization, rather than isolated efforts to maximize personal output. Therefore, an employee must accommodate other people’s work across the organization to maximize the total organizational value — even if her job becomes more difficult in the process.

Is It Moral And Ethical For Veterinarian To Use Marketing Within Their Veterinary Practice

What is a holistic vet? What is an integrative vet? What is a traditional, conventional vet?

Holistic veterinarians practice medicine differently from integrative and conventional veterinarians. While many principles are shared between conventional vets, holistic vets and integrative vets, methodologies are often quite different.

Holistic veterinary medicine recognizes that a balanced immune system is a vital, healing force in an animal’s body, and when immunity is supported, disease may be prevented or delayed. Holistic veterinarians conduct a comprehensive physical examination, including an animal’s behavior, recent and past medical history, diet and dietary history, environment, emotional stress and other factors. Holistic veterinary medicine also incorporates botanical medicine, nutraceuticals, acupuncture, chiropractic, homeopathy, hydrotherapy, massage therapy and other alternative wellness therapies.

Holistic veterinarians also approach medicine as treating the animal body as a biological whole, addressing all bodily systems and consider how the body systems are interconnected. While two different pets may present similar symptoms, their respective treatments may be markedly different. A holistic veterinarian’s practice is centered on preventative medicine as well as health maintenance.

Holistic veterinary care is focused on finding and treating the root cause of disease instead of treating the symptom.  For example, an animal may develop chronic colitis after being vaccinated. Instead of dispensing antibiotics or steroids to mask the symptom of bloody diarrhea, holistic veterinarians may utilize herbs and supplemental remedies, whole food diets, acupuncture, homeopathy, vitamins and mineral supplementation to restore metabolic and digestive balance.

Integrative medicine combines both conventional and holistic veterinary practices. An integrative veterinarian studies conventional veterinary medicine but also recognizes the value of holistic medicine and realizes that both compliment and support animal wellness. An integrative veterinarian is interested in both conventional and alternative treatments; and will most likely be a member of the American Holistic Veterinary Medical Association.

Traditional, conventional veterinary practice operates similarly as Western medicine is used for humans. The focus is aimed at determining what the problem is and then trying to solve it based on addressing symptoms. While a traditional veterinarian is a professional with your pet’s best interest at heart, he or she is typically confined to using synthetic steroids and antibiotic medicine, which do not always solve a chronic or undetermined condition. Many times a conventional veterinarian will prescribe medication that may silence symptoms but not resolve the underlying problem.

Conventional veterinary medicine has become increasingly advanced and a wide array of techniques and options are now available to the average pet owner. Ultrasound, x-ray, MRI, chemotherapy, blood transfusion, and physical therapy are commonly used. 

Perspective of a Holistic Veterinarian

Treat the whole animal, not merely the current problem.

If there is a current problem, for example diarrhea or itching, a good holistic veterinarian will ask questions about what problems there have been in the past, what has changed in the household or the environment that may have triggered the current complaint and if there is anything that makes the current complaints better or worse.

They will always evaluate the overall energy level of the animal. Their goal is to make the animal healthier for life, not just to get rid of the current symptom.

They will educate you and explain what they see when physically examining your animal.

A good holistic veterinarian will be thrilled at what you are learning at the Holistic Actions Academy – HMDM setting of a goal of deep healing and not merely symptom relief; basic health care of feeding fresh diet, few toxins, etc; 6 P’s, especially the one on Patience; that you are keeping a journal; that you want to be a partner with them rather than merely asking for treatments.

Finding a Holistic Veterinarian

STEP 1: Go to the web sites for each holistic veterinary organization and read about that modality. Go to their referral list to find one near to you.

STEP 2: visit the web site of any practitioners you are interested in.

STEP 3: do an internet search to find more possibilities – “holistic veterinarian Baltimore” or “herbal veterinarian Baltimore”.

STEP 4: Call any local holistic practitioners for people, local health food stores and even pet stores to inquire who they know.

STEP 5: if no one near seems like a good match, look for a homeopathic veterinarian who does phone consults.

STEP 6: personally evaluate the veterinarian

Practitioner health

This is simple: Find a practitioner who maintains her own health – if for no other reason, so she’ll still be around to help you a few years from now! Practicing holistic medicine can be extremely demanding and stressful, and for a practitioner to maintain sustainability she/he will need to recharge on a continuing basis. Rechargers for the professional include: continuing education, alternative medicine meetings, learning new methods and techniques, personal chi exercises (tai chi, chi gong, yoga, aikido, and other martial arts), and living a healthy, holistic lifestyle.

A question you should ask of all your holistic practitioners is: “Doc, what are you doing for yourself?”

In addition to a periodic recharge, all holistic practitioners need to walk their talk, so to speak. Your practitioner should be involved in healthy relationships, must not smoke or have other detrimental lifestyle habits, should be in relatively good physical condition, and should practice what she preaches regarding good nutrition and supplements. In addition, the person who works on your animals should know (and use) several alternative medicine practitioners who work on humans.

Finally, a practitioner who expects to stay around for more than a few years will have developed a fee structure that allows her to live a healthy lifestyle. Again, I could write reams about the importance of charging fees that are adequate to sustain the practitioner, but let this suffice:

Professionals charge fees for services rendered and goods delivered. Since holistic veterinarians actually frown on vaccines, steroids, and antibiotics, they typically generate very little (if any) income from these sources. And, although there are exceptions to this rule, most holistic practitioners don’t have much of an inventory to sell – their true inventory is their cache of information they have stored in their heads, and their overhead lies in the cost of their specialized schooling. Holistic medicine will almost certainly appear at first glance to be more expensive than the typical visit to a western medicine practitioner. However, I like to think (although I’m not absolutely certain) that the overall fees will be less, over the lifetime of the animal. This, I am sure of: Pets that are living a holistic lifestyle will be healthier over their lifetime.

Practitioner passion

To my way of thinking, passion is born from an inner germination of the seeds of love, intention, satisfaction, and creative force. The entry-level guiding light for all practitioners who work on animals is their passionate love for the animals, their intention to make them well and keep them healthy.

People who are led by their passions have an energetic glow – an inner light, often expressed as an expanded and healthy outer aura. While none of these outer and inner signs of passion can be measured by scientific means, they can be easily felt and sensed by anyone open to them. Use your sense of awareness (best accessed with an open heart) to feel how much energy your alternative practitioner has. And remember you are evaluating inner energetics – not personal charisma, bedside manner, nor the practitioner’s apparent love for your dog.

Inspecting Your Home Is The Key To Scorpion Control

Bark Scorpions

What are bark scorpions?

Scorpions are a type of arachnid and belong to the same class as spiders, mites, and ticks. They are venomous, stinging pests that live throughout the United States. The most common species is the bark scorpion. Bark scorpions are nocturnal and range in length from 2.75 to 3 inches. They are light brown to brownish-yellow in color, have segmented bodies and tails, and have dark, lengthwise bands on their bodies. Bark scorpions also have distinctive elongated, thin pincers (pedipalps).  At the end of their abdomen is a bulb-shaped, tail-like structure (telson). It contains venom glands and has a sharp, curved stinger on its end.

Are bark scorpions dangerous?

Bark scorpions are considered dangerous. In fact, they are the most dangerous species of scorpion living in the United States. The venom that is delivered through the stinger found at the end of its “tail” is strong enough to cause serious health concerns. Depending on the amount of venom delivered, a sting from a bark scorpion does have the potential to be lethal, especially for children, the elderly, people with weakened immune systems, and small pets. Care should always be taken around scorpions. The good news, however, is that bark scorpions aren’t aggressive, and they usually try to stay hidden and out of sight of people.

Why do I have a bark scorpion problem?

Bark scorpions are on your property because it is providing them with ample hiding and burrowing spots. They are also thriving on your property because it is providing them with sufficient water sources. Bark scorpions can survive without food for weeks or months, but they require a constant source of water. Scorpions are predators and feed on a variety of insects, spiders, and other scorpions. Properties with large insect populations are attractive to bark scorpions.

Where will I find bark scorpions?

Outside

Bark scorpions prefer to live outside creating burrows in the cool, moist soil underneath rocks, logs, fallen trees, behind tree bark, in wood piles, and in piles of debris. If the weather outside becomes too hot and dry for them to live comfortably, they will move inside homes and other buildings. They are excellent climbers and easily scale rough surfaces like trees and walls.

Inside

Bark scorpions find their way inside through openings in a home’s foundation and exterior walls, through openings found around windows and doors, and through torn screens. Inside, scorpions are usually found living in dark, secluded areas, such as in basements, laundry rooms, bathrooms, behind wall voids, in closets, and in crawlspaces.

How can I prevent bark scorpions in the future?

Put into place the following preventative measures to minimize future issues with dangerous bark scorpions:

Caulk gaps around exterior windows and doors. 

Place door sweeps on exterior doors.

Seal cracks and crevices in your home’s foundation.

Remove piles of debris and fallen trees from your yard.

Keep a barrier between mulch and your home’s foundation.

Inside your home, keep storage areas organized and clutter-free.

SCORPIONS

What are scorpions?

Scorpions are relatives of spiders, mites, and ticks. Scorpions are predators that feed on a variety of insects and spiders. Striped bark scorpions are one of the most common species of scorpion that invade homes in our area.

Striped bark scorpions are the most common and widespread scorpions living. Adults are light brown to brownish-yellow in color. They have two broad, dark, lengthwise bands on the surface of the abdomen. They also have a dark triangular shape on the front portion of their head. Bark scorpions use their pincers to capture and hold onto their prey. At the end of the abdomen, they have a telson – a bulb-shaped, tail-like structure. The telson contains venom glands and a sharp, curved stinger on its end that delivers the venom they use to paralyze their prey. The tail is longer in the males than the females.

Are scorpions dangerous?

Scorpions are venomous and have the potential to be a danger to people. A sting from a scorpion is extremely painful and, like a bee sting, can cause localized swelling and an intense burning sensation. Their venom is strong enough to trigger serious allergic reactions in some. Great care should always be taken around any type of scorpion.

Why do I have a scorpion problem?

If scorpions have become a problem in or around your structure it is likely because living conditions on your property are suitable to their needs. Striped bark scorpions are attracted to trees, walls, and objects with rough surfaces, and they are excellent climbers. Properties with a lot of insect activity are also very attractive to scorpions. Once on your property, they will eventually find their way inside while out foraging for food.

Where will I find scorpions?

Scorpions are found living outside in the cool, moist soil underneath of rocks, logs, fallen trees, and piles of organic debris. However, if the weather outside becomes too hot and dry for them to live comfortably, they will actively move inside of temperature controlled homes.

Peppermint Oil and Spiders: Know the Facts

Does peppermint oil work?

Although mostly harmless, spiders can be a nuisance in the home. Many people find these eight-legged creatures creepy. Some can even be poisonous. If you’re someone who shrieks when you see spiders, you may want to try peppermint oil to get rid of them. Peppermint oil is considered to be a natural insecticide. Spiders, although not technically insects, seem to hate it.

What the research says

There’s not much scientific research proving that peppermint oil repels or kills spiders. Most commercial pest-control companies dispute claims that essential oils work as natural insecticides. Still, there’s plenty of anecdotal evidence for peppermint oil getting rid of arachnids.

It’s unclear why spiders steer clear of peppermint oil and other essential oils. One theory is that they dislike strong odors. Because spiders smell and taste with their legs, they may avoid crawling through fragrant oils. Another theory has to do with the monoterpenoids found in essential oils. Almost all essential oils contain them to some degree.

How to use peppermint oil to repel spiders

To make a spider-repellent spray, place about five drops of peppermint oil in a 16-ounce spray bottle. Fill the bottle with water, add a shot of dish soap, and shake the mixture well. Apply the spray around doors and windows, around the outside perimeter of your home, and in any dark corner where spiders may be hiding.

You’ll have to apply spider-repellent spray more often than conventional insecticides. Try applying once a week at first. If the spiders reappear before the week is up, try spraying every few days. Placing peppermint plants in strategic places inside and outside your home may also help repel spiders. You can also try sprinkling peppermint leaves in places overrun by spiders.

Scorpion Sting

What Facts Should I Know About Scorpion Stings?

What Are Scorpions?

Scorpions are a member of the Arachnida class and are closely related to spiders, ticks, and mites.

What Are the Signs and Symptoms of a Scoripion Sting?

Scorpion stings are painful, and they can be fatal, especially children. Scorpions may sting more than once. The stinger, located at the end of the tail segment is usually not lost or left in the person’s tissue after a sting.

Where Do Scorpions Hide?

Scorpions hunt at night and hide along rocks or trees during the days. Homes built in arid or desert regions commonly have scorpions in them. In 2015, there were reports of airline passenger(s) being stung in flight. The planes were landed before reaching their destinations to rid the aircraft of the scorpion(s).

Are Scorpion Stings Serious? Can You Die from One (Are they Fatal)?

Most scorpions are harmless and accidental. Although about 2000 species exist, only about 25-40 species can deliver enough venom to cause serious or lethal damage to humans. One of the more venomous or potentially dangerous species, especially for infants, young children, and the elderly in the United States is Centruroides exilicauda or bark scorpion.

What Do Scorpions Look Like (Pictures)? How Big and What Color Are They?

Scorpions have two pincers, 8 legs and an elongated body with a tail composed of segments; they range in length from about 9 to 21 cm. Some scorpions are smaller and more translucent and difficult to see. They may appear as a thin string on the ground. The last tail segment contains the stinger (also termed a telson) that transmits a toxin to the person who has been stung.

dangerous desert denizens you don’t want in your home

Remember those perfect Valley weekend afternoons back in April? T-shirt and sandals weather. Everybody up north was getting pelted by hail and doused by torrential rains. You were giggling on the patio.

This was why you moved here.

Over the eons, this was also why all of our many beautiful palo verde trees, yuccas and cactuses made their homes here. Alas, our abundant and diverse plant life naturally led to a spectacular universe of creepy-crawly life

And that’s why scorpions, spiders and other venomous monsters of the Valley are as ornery as you are right now. They’re not fond of 115-degree days, either. They want to cool off. And, unfortunately, they might do that on your patch of lawn in the backyard, in your garage or — God forbid — in the dark corners of your child’s bedroom closet.

Scorpions

Ancient desert peoples looked up to the night sky and were awed by the constellation Scorpius. Scorpio is the astrological sign for those born from Oct. 23 to Nov. 21. It’s safe to say that we’ve been alternately fascinated and terrified by the creature with the nasty venomous tail for a long time.

Yellowish in color, bark scorpions are small, about 2-3 inches in length, and very slender. They are predators who use their highly toxic venom to paralyze insects, and sometimes other scorpions.

Vintage Cars Engine Rebuilding

Things you should know before replacing your engine

The bad news (that you already got) is that you need to replace your engine. The good news is that replacing your engine doesn’t need to break the bank. Quality used engines are an excellent cost saving alternative to often cost prohibitive new and remanufactured choices.  You can save even more if an engine changeover is something you can do yourself. If you’re a DIY about to replace your engine, check out these 8 tips for a smooth, successful job:

  • Find and fix the root problem.  Engines fail for a reason.  Did it overheat? Did the timing belt fail?  Was there water in the oil?  If something caused your engine to fail and you don’t solve that problem, your new engine won’t last long. Don’t forget to check and resolve any codes in the computer.
  • Inspect your new engine.  Pay attention to sensors, brackets, and all the other bolt on parts. Your new engine was inspected and interchanged and is the right part for your car. All those little parts were not.  Compare them to the parts on your old engine and change over anything that may be different.
  • Replace the timing belt, gaskets, and seals.  If your new engine has a timing belt, now is the time to replace it.  Check and replace the gaskets and seals as needed. These are jobs that are quick and easy when the motor is out, and hard and expensive when it’s in. Remember to check the manual on proper timing.
  • Don’t forget to flush. Debris left over in the engine oil cooling system can damage your replacement engine. Don’t forget to replace the engine oil cooler and flush those cooler lines.
  • Replace belts, hoses, clamps spark plugs and thermostat.  They don’t last forever. Take this opportunity to replace them.
  • Be careful not to drop anything inside your new engine.  It sounds stupid I know, but we see a couple returns every year where a bolt or nut found it’s way down an intake.
  • Don’t forget the oil change. Your new engine was drained before sale. Remember to change the filter and replace the oil.
  • Watch that temperature. An engine replacement is a big job.  Mistakes can happen. Watch your engine closely the first time you run it. Monitor for leaks and watch that temperature gauge.  Remember, overheating isn’t covered by your warranty.

Signs That You Need to Replace Your Engine Oil

Engine oil lubricates the moving parts in your engine to keep your car in good working order. But how do you know when your oil needs changing? The best thing you can do is regularly self-service your car to identify whether you need to replace your engine oil.

Look out for these signs that mean that you need to replace your engine oil ASAP.

Symptoms of Dirty Engine Oil

  • Dark or dirty engine oil – the original yellow/amber colour turns dark as the oil becomes contaminated with dirt and debris. Check your engine oil often – monthly is best – to ensure it’s in good condition and replace it when necessary.
  • Noisy engine – car oil creates a protective lining between engine parts to reduce friction, heat and damage. Once the oil breaks down, the engine parts begin to audibly knock against each other.
  • Oil change dashboard light illuminates – this light indicates that the engine oil level is low and that you need a top up. If the dashboard light illuminates often (as your engine oil level keeps dropping), get your car serviced by a professional as soon as possible. This is a sign of serious engine damage.
  • Rough idling – if your car feels shaky while idling, your oil probably isn’t able to effectively lubricate the engine moving parts, making the car vibrate.
  • Ticking sound when you start the engine – if the oil viscosity is too thick or thin, the car oil will struggle to circulate. The ticking noise comes from the valves working to move the oil.
  • Burning smell – this is a sign of contaminated engine oil or an oil leak.
  • Slow acceleration – limited performance is common when engine oil is so old and/or contaminated that it can no longer effectively lubricate the engine parts. You’re especially likely to notice this when driving uphill, towing a trailer or carrying other heavy loads.
  • Poor fuel economy – engine oil gets thicker as it ages, becoming increasingly resistant against moving parts. The more resistant the oil, the more fuel is required for oil circulation.

How Often Should I Change the Oil in My Car?

You may have heard that the oil in your car should be changed every three months or 3,000 miles. With better vehicles being produced, that isn’t necessarily true for most cars anymore. While frequent oil changes won’t hurt your car, it will cost you more money and cause more strain onto the environment. So, what is best for you and your vehicle when it comes to how often to change your oil?

Regular Oil vs Synthetic Oil

The type of oil you use can affect how long your vehicle can go. More and more drivers are using synthetic due to lasting much longer and being much cleaner. Many car owners have found that synthetic oil can last up to two times longer than the standard conventional oil.

If you are using synthetic, it is recommended to change your oil every 7,500 to 10,000 miles, although this can vary based on the brand of your vehicle. If you are still on conventional oil, experts recommend changing out after about 5,000 miles. However, if your car is giving you an alert before you reach this number, you should consider changing it out right away. To find the best time to change oil for your specific year and brand of vehicle, read your owner’s manual as that would give the most accurate time.

What Happens If I Don’t Change My Oil Soon Enough?

Eventually, the engine will start to overheat and damage itself if the oil change is put off for too long. If the oil still isn’t changed, the engine will shut down and will have to be replaced.

Thankfully, getting an oil change is one of the cheapest and least time-consuming maintenance tasks you can do for your vehicle. So, the next time you see your alert come on or you think you’re approaching your limit, don’t forget to change your oil. Your car and your wallet will thank you later.

Strategies For Home Remodeling Projects In A Tough Economy

How Much Does It Cost to Hire an Interior Designer?

Interior designers bring a lot of value to a home renovation or decorating project by helping their clients pinpoint their vision, inspiring them with the possibilities and managing all the details that will bring their dream to life. But how much does it cost to hire one?

The truth is that interior design fees vary — not only by firm but also by the scope of the project and the area where you live. To get a sense of the range, we interviewed 16 interior designers across the country. Here are some basics to know about what interior designers do and the cost of hiring one to work with you.

What Do Interior Designers Do?

Interior designers provide a range of services that take a project from dream to completion. They:

Create design concepts. Designers help their clients by developing a design concept, which includes the style, mood, color and functional goals for the project. They may use a combination of inspiration images and product samples to convey their ideas to you as you settle on a vision.

Create design plans. Next, designers turn that vision into a plan. They may recommend a specific layout for a new kitchen or map out how furniture and accessories will be arranged in a room. Some designers provide detailed 3D drawings of their plans, or they may work with an architect and engineers to produce these drawings. Some states have a certification or licensing process for designers and regulate the scope of structural work that designers may take on. Not all states require certification or licensing for pros working in residential design. However, these credentials can be one way to gauge a pro’s level of experience and knowledge.

Establish a realistic budget and help the client stick with it.

Select and design products, finishes and materials for the project. This can be anything from recommending paint colors to choosing a species of wood for the floor to suggesting specific storage details (lazy Susans or baking sheet storage) for inside your kitchen cabinets. This work is often more involved than selecting ready-made products and materials from retailers. Many designers work with manufacturers to create custom furniture pieces and window treatments for their clients. Often, these manufacturers work only with the trade (not directly with homeowners), so designers are able to select fabrics and custom detailing that make these pieces unique. Similarly, designers may work with cabinetmakers to design customized storage solutions for their clients.

How to Add On to Your Kitchen

A cramped kitchen can make even the most basic cooking and entertaining tasks challenging. If your home’s footprint isn’t quite enough to get the kitchen you crave, it may be time to add on. We caught up with interior designer Summer to get the scoop on time frames, permits and finding the right pro for the (big) job

How to Add More Space to Your Kitchen

The kitchen is often the hub of the home, and having a roomy and thoughtfully designed space is at the top of many homeowners’ wish lists.

Do you need a kitchen addition? If you are tired of living with a cramped kitchen that doesn’t function as it should, you can afford to invest in a new space and you plan to stay in your home long enough to enjoy all the work an addition entails, then a kitchen addition may be a good project for you.

A design pro can work with you to design a new kitchen that blends with your home’s overall architecture and that fits your personal style and your life. “Some of the most dramatic transformations happen when you expand the footprint of a home,”

Whom to hire. An interior designer, kitchen designer, architect or building designer can help see your project through from start to finish, including planning the addition, getting permits, choosing fixtures and finishes, and overseeing installation.

How to Refine Your Renovation Vision to Fit Your Budget

Matching your renovation dreams and dollars can sometimes feel like a challenge. But there’s a lot you can do to get the look you want at the right price. In the first story in this series, we laid out the steps in choosing the pros you will work with and setting an initial budget.

Here we’ll focus on how to work with your professionals to sharpen your renovation vision, understand its realistic cost, and refine the plan to match your budget when necessary.

Create Your Dream Plan

Once you’ve chosen the pro (or pros) who’ll be designing and drafting your renovation plan, you’ll move into a deeper conversation about your vision. To prepare, make a list of the things that are driving you crazy about your house. Collect images of homes that inspire you. Your chosen architect, designer or builder will likely ask you a range of questions about how you use the space and how you live day to day. He or she will also want to get a sense of the materials and styles you prefer.

These initial conversations are invaluable as architects and designers work through the stages of a project, from initial design plans to final drawings and permitted plans. This design-then-revise process is key to creating a plan you love — that also matches your budget. And it’s part of why coming up with a new home or renovation plan takes time

The next step is getting a measured drawing that shows the home’s existing conditions, or an accurate rendering of the house as it stands before renovation. “We measure the whole house and get an electronic copy,”

What to Know About Adding a Porch

When the weather is good it can be nice to get outside, whether dining at an outdoor table or sipping a beverage on a comfy chair as you watch the sun go down. And what better place to enjoy activities like these than from the comfort of your own porch?

Here’s what to know about working with a pro to build a porch on your home — including what to look for in a contractor and how much the project might cost. While it’s probably too late to get your porch built in time to enjoy this summer, now is a great time to get started so your porch will be ready for next spring.

What Is a Porch?

A porch has a floor, a roof and some sort of supports that hold the roof up. The roof is what makes a porch different from a deck — and it’s actually a pretty important distinction because if improperly engineered or installed, a roof could eventually sag or even, under extreme weather circumstances, collapse

Though many people think of a porch as an elevated platform with stairs that lead up to it, a porch doesn’t need to be raised off the ground or have stairs. Porches can have a variety of flooring types. They can be attached to the front, side or back of a home. These days, porches are used for more than just sitting: People equip them with dining tables, fireplaces, ceiling fans and even TVs.

What to Consider Before You Build a Porch

Is a porch allowed on my home? Check with your homeowners association, as not all neighborhood regulations allow porches to be built on existing homes. Associations may forbid adding porches to connected or disconnected townhomes, or other multifamily dwellings. “It’s also a good idea to check with your setbacks and deed restrictions,”

What to Know About Engineered Wood Floors

If you’re on the hunt for a long-lasting floor material with a classic look, you might want to consider engineered wood flooring. This material has the beauty of solid wood and the durability of laminate and can work with most design styles and in many rooms. Here’s what to know to decide whether this flooring choice could be right for your home.

What is engineered wood flooring? Unlike solid wood, engineered wood floors have a top or “wear” layer made of solid wood, which covers a multilayer plywood core. The thickness of the top layer and the core will vary depending on the design and the manufacturer.

In total thickness, engineered wood planks vary from as low-profile as one-quarter inch (6.35 mm) to as thick as three-quarters inch (19 mm, or the traditional thickness of solid-wood flooring). The thickness of the wear layer typically reflects the caliber of the product. The industry norm is 2 to 6 millimeters, with a thicker wear layer generally indicating a more premium product.

How much does engineered wood cost? Engineered wood can be less expensive than solid wood, though premium collections with thick top layers, artistic designs and enhanced durability can have price tags on par with solid wood. Engineered wood flooring materials cost from $3 to $15 per square foot. Installation labor runs $3 to $10 per square foot, depending on the complexity of the layout.

The advantages of engineered wood. Engineered wood flooring is available in a wide range of wood species, including oak, maple, hickory, birch, cherry and walnut, as well as exotic woods like African mahogany and tigerwood. It comes in a variety of widths ranging from slim to wide planks and is offered in specialty looks such as multitone, shown in this photo, or hand-scraped, shown in the previous photo.

Handle The Roof On Your Home Builder Like A Pro With These Tips

What questions should I ask a custom home builder?

The idea of building your own home probably has you dreaming of cabinetry details and window treatments at night. But the stuff of dreams can become a total nightmare when your homebuilder can’t execute on their promises. What’s more, a lack of customization might leave you wanting more.A builder’s prerogative is to woo you with model homes, glowing reviews, and even upgrades. But, before you sign any contract, make sure you ask these crucial questions. Outlining your expectations ahead of time can save you time, money, and frustration in the long run.

How many years have you been building in the area?

Ideally, you’ll want a builder that’s been performing residential construction in your area for at least five years. This familiarity operating in your area is important. They’ll know how to navigate building codes, inspections, and permits. They’ll know the area’s terrain, landscaping, and property lines. They’ll know a neighborhood’s livability, desirability, and property values. The custom home builder you choose should be a valuable resource to you; especially if you’re building in an area you’re not all that familiar with.

How much experience do you have and how is it relevant to my project?

Experience matters. You’ll want a builder that’s been in the game for awhile. Someone that’s built the type or style of home you want. Someone who answered the first question in a way that assures you they know the city or county you’re building in.

Does this builder work with a dependable, trustworthy, and skilled crew?

A builder is only as good as the crew they’ve assembled for your project. While you may trust the person you’re talking to or the people you meet, you must also ask about the crew they’re bringing to the job. What’s their skillset? Are a few tradesmen? Have they undergone background checks or drug screenings? Are they dependable? Do they show up for work? How well does the builder know their laborers, tradesmen, or subcontractors? How often have they worked with them?

How much can I customize?

Understand the materials your builder plans to use to achieve the look you desire. Image: Norris Architecture But some builders keep costs in line by offering a set number of floorplans and finishes, allowing for just a few cosmetic tweaks along the way. If you’re planning on a custom job, ask the builder if customization is limited to cosmetic choices alone. Some builders allow more extensive customization, like changing floorplans, upgrading finishes, or even designing a home from scratch.

Is your model home upgraded (and what comes standard)?

Don’t sign on the dotted line until you get a clear answer of which features in the model home have been upgraded. Builders want to show off their best work, so some model homes might have upgraded cabinetry, appliances, and even lighting packages that aren’t included in the base price of the floorplan.

How many homes do you generally build in a year? How many can you handle?

In addition to knowing how many years the builder has been in business, these questions will help you get a sense about the builder’s skills and capabilities. The numbers will likely vary from year to year, but the builder should be able to give you an average or average range of homes they generally build in a year.

Asking them how many they can handle just gives you some insight into their team’s capabilities. Depending on the answer you get, you’ll be able to get a sense of how transparent the builder is about their work and how well they know their team. A builder who answers too vaguely or indicates that there is no limit is not being transparent or upfront with you and may not have a clear idea of their capabilities and limits.

Do you have client references I can call?

You’ll want to make sure you get a few references from the custom home builder you’re meeting with. It’s expected that anyone you call as a reference will provide positive feedback. Speaking with previous clients will give you a chance to get a client-side, real-life view of what it’s like working with the builder you met with. Asking about things that surprised them, things they didn’t expect, and any challenges that came up during their project will give you valuable insights to what your experience with the builder could be.

Can I show your construction contract to my lawyer before signing it?

Does the builder’s construction contract give a clear guideline for your building process? Is it thorough enough to cover the worst of problems? Does it include insurance, change order procedures, warranties, construction time, disputes, financing, builder’s liabilities, budgets, specifications of construction, and allowances?

Are you licensed & insured?

This should be a quick question with a no hesitation answer, but you may be surprised. If you are using a lender to finance the construction, they’ll require the builder to provide proof of their licensing and insurance, but if you’re not financing, make sure you receive confirmation. On insurance, it’s important to confirm the builder is not only carrying General Liability and Worker’s Compensation coverage but is also providing Builders Risk, which is equivalent to Property Insurance during construction.

What’s your warranty, and how do you handle issues?

Any reputable builder will have a 1-year warranty, and some will even have a 10-year structural warranty. What you want to understand with this question is, how does the builder handle borderline warranty items? What happens if an issue comes up in month 14? Is it’s time up, or will he help you out? This is typically a great question to ask past customers as well.

Can I trust you?

Not a question that you might ask a builder directly, but more of something that you need to observe and make a decision for yourself. The bottom line, you can’t underestimate how important it is to like, trust and respect your builder. Building a custom home is a long term relationship that continues beyond the home’s construction for at least the 1-year warranty period. Regardless of how excellent their reputation is in the area if there is any reason you are uncomfortable, why would you trust that builder with one of your most important investments?

Residential Roofing New Choices For Homeowners

Residential Roofing

ROOF REPAIR EXPERTS

it’s important to have a multi-family roofing company you can trust in your back pocket. Hail damage, harsh sunshine and snowy conditions aren’t great for your roof, but this can be especially important as a landlord or owner of a multi-family property

In multi-family properties like apartment complexes and condominiums, you get an array of individuals of different backgrounds, ages, lifestyles and cultures. But they all have one thing in common — they don’t want a broken roof over their heads. If they have a leaky roof or water damage in their home, they’re not going to be happy, and you’re going to have to deal with their issues.

team of qualified and experienced team of roofers can tackle roof repair for your multi-family property. From hail damage repair to shingle replacements, we’re the team for the job

COMMON SIGNS YOUR MULTI-FAMILY PROPERTY NEEDS ROOF REPAIR

As a landlord or owner of a multi-family property, you might not know if or when you need roof repair for your building. Here are some major signs that are good indicators you’ll need to call our team of roofers for some assistance:

Your tenants are reporting water leaks, mold or indoor allergy symptoms.

You have tenants complaining about abnormally increased energy bills.

You’ve noticed the shingles on your roof are starting to curl, crack or entirely break off.

You think (or know) the roof on your property is 20 years of age or older.

Your shingles are wet or dark.

Parts of a roof

Decking (or sheathing)

Usually made from 1⁄2-inch plywood, the decking closes and reinforces the roof structure and provides a nailbed for the shingles

Roof edge (or eaves edge)

All the boards running along the edge of the roof or eaves. Also known as a fascia.

Attic

The space under the roof. The attic must be ventilated to protect the roofing system against excessive heat in summer and warm moist air generated by the house in winter.

Ridge

Horizontal line at the top of the roof.

Valley

The “V-cut” angle along the junction of two slopes of a roof

Residential and Commercial Roof

Roofing and Construction, use the highest quality products to provide shelter for customers and their belongings.

All Types of Residential and Commercial Roof

New Roofs

Re-Roofs

Low Sloping Roofs

Leak Repairs

Roof Decking Replacement

Roof Consulting

Roof Maintenance Programs

Seamless Gutters

Gutter installation

Gutter Guards

Window Replacement

Vinyl siding

RESIDENTIAL ROOFING

Roofing provides shelter for you, your family and the things you love most. residential roofing systems are built with the highest quality materials to ensure safety and protection for your home.

ROOF MAINTENANCE PROGRAMS

roof maintenance program allows Roofing to continue to provide safety for you and your family after the roofing system is completed. Roofing ensures a shelter built to last with roof maintenance program.

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Is Now the Time for Replacement Windows?

Have you come to the conclusion that your home’s windows are in desperate need of an upgrade? If so, don’t wait to learn more about replacement windows. While it’s a big project, it’s not one that you have to complete on your own. You can hire a window contractor to manage the project from start

Should You Consider Fiber Cement Siding?

Is it time to replace your siding? Are you unsure of which product makes the most sense? While you have options, fiber cement siding may be just what you’re looking for. There are a variety of benefits associated with this product, including but not limited to the following: •    Durable: Fiber cement siding is meant

What Roofing Material is Best for Homes?

Choosing the Perfect Roofing Material for Your, Home Is your roof is leaking, old, or simply just in need of an update? If so, then it is time to invest in a roof renovation. However, a common question that often comes to mind is, what roofing material is best for my home? As

Are Those Trees too Close to Your House?

There are many benefits of planting trees around your home. Not only do they look nice, but they can also provide your dwelling with shade (which saves you money on your energy bill). However, you may come to find that a tree is entirely too close to your home. If you don’t do anything about

Stay Safe When Inspecting Your Roof

There may come a point when you need to inspect your roof. Maybe there was a big storm and you suspect damage. Or maybe you want to see if it’s time for a new roof. Regardless of your reason, there’s something you must remember: your safety is more important than anything else. Here are some

Residential Roofing

Re-roofing your home

When it comes to hiring a roofer, getting a high quality contractor is just as important as choosing high quality shingles and other materials. When it comes to having a contractor that you can trust, Priority Roofing has you covered!

As any homeowner knows, a good roof is one of the most important elements to keeping your home structurally sound. residential roofing services are certain to make sure you don’t have to worry about what’s going on with your roof, so you can focus on the life you’re living beneath it.

Deciding if and when to re-roof your home can be tricky, so hiring a well-informed, honest contractor is of utmost importance. That’s where come in. want to help guide you through your re-roofing process to make it as comfortable and easy as possible. believe your roofing job should be completed with as little disruption to your life as possible.

When should you replace your roof?

This is a question that is often the hardest to answer, simply because of the number of factors that can affect the lifespan of your roof. If you’re thinking about replacing your roof because it’s aging, there are a number of things that can affect your decision. Depending on things like the materials used on your current roof and the weathering it’s seen, roofs can last as little as 15 years all the way to 50 or 60 years.

Many times, when a roof needs to be replaced, it’s because it’s been damaged. If your roof has been significantly damaged (due to a storm, a tree or branch falling on it, typical weathering that has caused it to deteriorate more quickly than expected, etc.), you will need to replace or repair your roof as soon as possible.

Perfect Wedding Photographer And Why They Are So Hard To Find

Wedding Photo Ideas To Spice Up Your Shot List

You’ve got to please the bride and groom with the shots you know they want for their wedding album, but then you can exercise your own creative flair with wedding photos they never could have dreamed up without you.

We searched through hundreds of wedding photography portfolios to put together this collection of unique, interesting, a just slightly out-of-the-box wedding photography shot list that will satisfy the wedding party and your creative spirit. That’s a fine line to walk

Make use of negative space.

Wedding photographs, including of this elegant Star Wars-themed event, have been featured in People, Glamour, Town & Country, and BuzzFeed. In this shot, Santoro goes wide, making use of negative space to let the couple (and their accompanying Stormtroopers) really stand out. Keeping the composition simple here ensures the focus is on the photo subjects.

Pair photos in a diptych.

The diptych pairing of these two bouquet-tossing photos captures motion and breaks away from the traditional and expected photo style.

Set your couple somewhere epic

Their range is comprehensive, but breathtaking photos set in incredible natural environments certainly set this kind of wedding photo above the pack.

Here Is Your Guide for How to Hire a Wedding Photographer

For a lot of people, figuring out how to hire a wedding photographer is usually done fairly early in the planning process. This is probably for a few reasons. It feels like one of the bigger wedding planning tasks (because it is, if you’re hiring a photographer), and if you’re planning to shoot engagement photos or additional portrait sessions, you want to go ahead and plan those out. Plus, some wedding photographers book out well in advance (and there are only so many weekends during wedding season), which means locking in the photographer of your choice is all about timing.

I don’t mean that you need a perfectly curated Pinterest-friendly Instagram feed before you start looking for your wedding photographer, but I do mean that you should have some kind of visual idea of what you want your photos to look like. Are you into darker, moodier photography? Cool, then don’t go with someone who skews toward overexposure. Do you want someone who shoots with film? Great, make sure you include that in your search terms. Are you ultra into an abundance of natural light? Sub-question: Will your venue actually be filled with natural light? Awesome, find those people. If you’re feeling totally lost, ask people you know who have amazing wedding photos who they hired, and go from there.

KNOW YOUR VENUE

Remember what I just said about natural light? Okay, good. I am personally a huge fan of natural light and venues that have tons of it, and a lot of my work reflects that. That’s because I intentionally share photos that I think best showcase what I do—and that’s what a lot of photographers do. So if you’re getting married in a dimly lit room and you hired someone who usually shoots outside in fields, just know that your photographer can’t transport all that light into a room that doesn’t have it. Sure, your photographer can and should be able to work with any venue, but if you’re choosing a photographer because of what that person excels at, it’s helpful if your wedding fits the bill.

SKETCH OUT A BUDGET BEFORE YOU INQUIRE

Maybe you don’t know exactly how much money you have to spend on a photographer, but few things are as hard on everyone as when a couple inquires with a photographer who is out of budget in the hopes that they will magically… not be. Everyone gets invested. You get invested in work you love, and your photographer gets invested in starting the booking process and breathing a sigh of relief because, hey! They still have a job. You don’t need to know your entire budget, but you do need to know if you have $1,000 for a photographer, or $2,500, or more than $4,000, and inquire accordingly.

MEET YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER IN PERSON (SKYPE IS OKAY, IF YOU MUST)

I think few things are as valuable as an in-person meeting, for both the couple and the photographer. Because trust: the best wedding photos happen when the couple and photographer could be friends in real life, outside of the wedding. This doesn’t mean you will be friends, or that you even want to (it is absolutely fine to just want a client-professional relationship with your vendors), but it always helps to know the potential is there. You want someone who is talented, who matches your vibe, and who the two of you (both! Not just one of you) hit it off with. Sitting down with a cup of coffee or over a glass of wine is a great way to find out if someone is that person. And I’ll let you in on a secret: this goes both ways. Your photographer also needs to know if you guys all fit together, because few things are harder than having to meet expectations that were never realistic.

Connection and friendship are what we aim for around here

Wedding Photography

big fans of working with couples who want to do things a little bit differently and we love documenting all the tiny moments that happen throughout the adventure. With a passion for all things wedding can help you with whatever you need from photos and creative ideas, to location suggestions and more. will craft your journey into an authentic, epic story that you will treasure forever.

Wedding Elopements

are advocates of couples who have intrepid hearts and love adventure. care about moments and memories. reckon it’s worth celebrating the good things in life. big believers that happy accidents are often what add colour to lives. are truely amazing places to elope and know all the good locations.

Beautiful Stories

The beautiful stories are why love weddings so much! team of wedding photography experts will document your love story in a genuine, real, laugh-inducing, tear-jerking way. Plus, we’ll have some fun together while do it. We are relaxed and make you feel at ease – are professionals!

Tips On Finding The Right Photographer For Your Actual-Day Wedding

Not every wedding photographer is good at both pre-wedding and actual day shoots. Contributing Editor for Her World Brides and Female Brides, highlights the points to look out for when looking a good actual-day wedding photographer.

I was at a wedding dinner last night and my niece pointed out to me that the photographer covering the event was not really up to scratch. They covered the bridal march-in, the table to table group shots and significant moments like the cake cutting, toasts and speeches, but other than that, they were nowhere to be seen.

The photographers for the dinner event also took the couple’s pre-wedding pictures – which were lovely! But they seemed a bit relaxed or disinterested when it came to covering the dinner celebrations.

There were many fun and happy moments during the dinner and the photographers were not around to cover them. I have met a few pre-wedding photographers who only take on pre-wedding shoots and for a good reason – they are not interested in doing actual day shoots and they find it tiring. And some also admit that their forte is not actual day shoots. Some of the best actual day photographers may not be good pre-wedding photographers too!

Although there are many photographer who offer packages that include the pre-wedding and actual day shoots, it would be wise for couples to actually vet through their portfolios to ensure that these photographers are good at both. Depending on their style, the same photographer may excel in shooting portraits but may not do as well when it comes to spontaneous shots.

How to choose the right wedding photographer

It’s a long read, but it will save you a lot of stress and disappointment.

This comprehensive list of tips and advice will guarantee that you will choose the right wedding photographer for you and that your wedding day photographs will bring you great joy and excitement for years to come

How much would you pay for amazing memories?

There are so many wedding photographers to choose from. They each have a different vision of how to capture your wedding day. They have different styles, editing approaches, quality of delivery and of course different people with different personalities!

How on earth do you pick the most perfect, talented, creative and amazing wedding photographer that understands your needs and can deliver what you want?!

Well, I am here to help you how to choose the right wedding photographer for your perfect wedding day

I have sat down with my family, my friends and most importantly my past brides and grooms to compile the GO TO BRIDE GUIDE to help you to make the right decision.

First Things First!

You’ve just gotten engaged! Congratulations!!! Now that the diamond is glittering happily on your wedding finger and you’ve enjoyed all the celebrations with your friends and family… It’s time to start the wedding planning! Here, I want to share with you my tips and tricks for brides and grooms who feel that their wedding photographs are one of the most important parts of their wedding day

Top Pros And Cons Of Holding A Forensics Accountant Degree

Ways you didn’t know your accountant could help you

While an accountant is often your best bet for pocketing maximum returns at tax time and can offer you peace of mind that you’re fulfilling your statutory obligations, in an ideal scenario, they can also act as a trusted business adviser and use their expertise and foresight to grow your business.

Your accountant can offer much more than just a tax return

If you are only speaking to your accountant at tax time, it’s safe to assume you are not optimally utilising their expertise. “A lot of people just go to the accountant once a year for that end-of-year tax return so the advice that can be given at that point is fairly limited,”

Your accountant can set the direction for your business

To truly leverage your accountant’s expertise, Sweeney suggests you ideally engage them when you’re setting up a business so they can align strategic advice with your specific goals. “Right from the beginning, we’d be looking at why [a client is] looking at starting up a business. What do they want to achieve, and what does that business need to do for them?”

Your accountant can help you implement your business goals

In an ongoing advisory capacity, a good accountant will contact you regularly to monitor how your plan is being implemented, and in turn Sweeney encourages business owners to frequently check in for advice.

Your accountant can keep you answerable to your business plans

Consistent contact with your accountant protects your business as you can both actively monitor whether you are heading in the right direction and steer your business back on course if not. “We all get busy, we all get distracted. There’s no point finding out six months after the end of the year that you could have fixed a problem with your business. And that’s unfortunately where a lot of small businesses are at,”

WHAT CHARACTERISTICS MAKE A GOOD ACCOUNTANT?

Accounting and bookkeeping are pivotal functions in any organization. They measure and check the financial status of the organization and provide invaluable data for business decisions. As a result, these fields demand topnotch accuracy and excellent organizational skills. Better defining and understanding the skills and qualities of an accountant can ensure you hire the right fit.

A STRONG SENSE OF ETHICS

Ethics and integrity are valued characteristics in an accountant. They must know right from wrong and always display integrity in his or her accounting and bookkeeping activities.

CONSTANTLY LEARNING

While accountants need to have a strong grasp of the basics, they must also display interest in keeping up-to-date. With the introduction of new principles, laws and taxes, the field of accounting is ever changing. Accountants must ensure that they have a thorough understanding of the latest news and developments in their fields. Nowadays, technology is playing a greater role in the industry and accountants must be cognizant of these emerging trends. An accountant who does not keep learning will not remain an asset to an organization in the long run.

EMPHASIZING ACCURACY

It is essential for accountants to be accurate in their work. Misplacement of digits or even a comma might result in huge financial risks for an organization. As such, accountants must focus on the details and place a lot of emphasis on the accuracy of the work. Accountants must have developed the skill of double checking their work to the point where it is second nature to them.

ORGANIZATIONAL SKILLS

Accountants need to deal with a lot of paperwork, numbers and data on a daily basis. To remain on top of all these details and access the right information in an efficient manner, they must exhibit excellent organization skills.

Tips for Hiring a CPA That’s Right for Your Business

As a Certified Public Accountant and a business owner, I can see the benefits of hiring a tax and financial expert. But I also know some common mistakes many people can make when deciding what type of CPA to hire.

What’s the Difference?

An accountant is a general term for anyone in the tax or finance profession who follows specific rules and regulations.  I think of CPAs as super accountants because they are accountants who have passed a notoriously difficult licensing examination in a state. So, technically all CPAs are accountants, but not all accountants are CPAs.

Find a CPA or firm that understands your personal needs.

You need to be able to openly communicate with your CPA. If you’re hiring an external CPA firm, it has to understand what you do before you decide to work with them, even if the firm is just doing your taxes. There are too many things that can go wrong if your CPA doesn’t truly understand your business.

Remember to keep other qualifications in mind when hiring a CPA.

There’s a lot more to accounting than just crunching numbers, especially when it comes to hiring a CPA for your business.  With their deep understanding of complex financial concepts and tax code, it can be difficult to have that broken down into layman terms. That’s why I think it’s important to look beyond the lines on their resume that might not be exactly to your standards and focus on other qualifications such as communication.

Figure out what you need before hiring.

Ask yourself this question: What are your business’s specific accounting needs? Are you looking for someone to process your accounts payable and sales invoices, do taxes and payroll or create your budgets and financial statements?

Getting financial advice

You don’t, and shouldn’t, need to be an authority on financial matters to be a contractor, sole trader, in a partnership or to run your own company. A good accountant will free you up to concentrate on your work, while giving you confidence that your numbers are working for you.

Why seek expert help

A good accountant is key to the financial health and success of most businesses and self-employed people.

On a basic level, it’s their job to help make the numbers work for you by:

making sure you’re compliant

advising you on how to reduce your tax

helping you maximise cash flow.

They will also objectively assess how your business is performing, where you’re falling short and how you can work to improve.

The monthly fee for most accountancy services puts off some business owners, contractors and self-employed people — but the old adage “you get what you pay for” rings true. Investing in a good accountant will save you money, and potentially your business, in the long run.

When to seek financial advice

While you should check in with your accountant on a regular basis, it’s particularly important to get financial advice when you are:

starting out

having trouble paying your bills

looking to grow

closing or selling your business

getting ready to seek investment

considering large bank loans

filing your taxes, or dealing with tricky tax issues.

Organization Tips for Accountants and Bookkeepers

As an accountant or bookkeeper, it’s your job to make sense of all the financial transactions in a company. Even small businesses require vigilant oversight of everything going out and coming in. The smallest error can result in hours upon hours of scrutinizing data and looking for misplaced decimal points. Additionally, accountants and bookkeepers typically have more complex responsibilities like managing employee payroll and preparing tax documents. These tasks require focused attention and a systematic process, as a slip up could lead to serious repercussions for the business owner.

Manage Client Relationships

Be honest: have you ever thought to yourself “I could get so much more work done if only these clients wouldn’t take up my all my time?” It’s funny because it’s true…but you also know that without those clients, you wouldn’t have a business. And if your business is growing, you know this means bringing on more clients, which means more meetings and more phone calls.

Integrate Your Software Programs

Using CRM software is a great start for managing client relationships, but these relationships aren’t limited to pre-scheduled meetings and phone calls. When a client shoots you a “quick email” with questions, sometimes it’s easiest to answer them right away. But how are you supposed to track these conversations effectively if you receive an onslaught of messages each day?

Optimize Your Workspace Organization

You knew this one was coming. Digital organization is great, but physical organization still plays a big role in your workplace productivity. Maybe you’re working in a corner office, or maybe you’re running your bookkeeping or accounting practice from your kitchen table. Either way, there are some tried and true methods for creating an organized workspace.

Here are a few ideas to consider implementing:

An L-shaped (or U-shaped) desk puts more essential items and files within reach.

Keep clutter to a minimum. Infrequently used items should go in drawers or on shelves behind or above your main workspace.

Use organizers to separate small items stored in drawers. Don’t be the accountant who’s always hunting around for a pen or a calculator.

Use a combination of vertical and horizontal file folder organizers to maximize your available storage space.

Save your eyesight! Use a combination of overhead and task lighting.

Double or even triple computer monitors save time and minimize confusion caused by switching between programs (like your accounting software and your CRM).