Even mundane chores such as keeping your cooker hob sparkling, mowing the lawn or replacing worn rugs and furnishings can instantly improve your home turning it into a pleasant space to live in. But occasionally, it can be very rewarding to spend part of the year undertaking projects that are sure to make an impact and increase the value of your home.
Once you install Smart features you'll wonder how you ever managed without them. An easy installation to begin with is a keyless lock that uses a digital number code to open and secure your front door. For extra security, team it with a video doorbell that lets you have a clear view of who is at your door before you open it. Smart technology about the home can be activated by your spoken commands or by instructions sent through your smartphone enabling you to control a range of features including lighting, household appliances and air-conditioning at any time from wherever you happen to be.
If you're tired of waiting for your turn in the family bathroom, adding an ensuite to at least one bedroom will not only be convenient but a guaranteed way to add value to your home. Installing an independent system that uses a discreetly hidden macerator pump for the removal of grey waste water will avoid the expense of conventional plumbing while enabling you to create your ensuite in any locality. Compatible with a range of shower units, toilets and wash basins, the finished result can be stylish and sophisticated.
Simply replacing cupboard doors and adding new tiles can give your kitchen a fresh new look. A more ambitious project is creating an open plan kitchen and lounge, but always seek professional advice about how to deal with walls that may be load bearing. When redesigning the layout, keep essential units such as the sink, cooker and fridge within easy reach of each other to save wasting energy walking to and fro. While an open plan kitchen can add a warm, sociable atmosphere to your home, if you prefer a little privacy while carrying out some of your household tasks, set aside space for a butler's pantry or utility room with an extra sink and space for the washing machine.
An easy and practical way to improve your home is to treat yourself to a new garden shed for the safe storage of a whole host of items from bicycles to power tools. When choosing one, remember that sliding or roll top doors are more convenient in a limited space. Wooden sheds require regular maintenance to keep the timber in good condition but a stylish alternative is a metal shed. EasyShed sheds are available in a range of sizes and colours to complement any backyard, some versions are guaranteed cyclone proof and come complete with masonry anchors for secure fixing.
An ideal way to avoid the heat of cooking indoors during the hottest weather, is to transform your patio into an outdoor kitchen using one of the sophisticated, mains powered barbecues that are now available. Include comfortable seating placed beneath the welcome shade of a pergola to support climbing plants or opt for a solid, permanent awning.
Swimming Pool Shower
If you have a swimming pool in your backyard, a shower incorporating an independent pump can be installed nearby for rinsing away the irritating effects of chlorine and other pool chemicals without the inconvenience of going back indoors. Always check that the model you opt for complies with safety standards. Make your shower blend into the garden by adding a screen of plants such as ferns or bamboo.
By 2020, Australia is set to achieve a 23.5% output of renewable energy, yet countries as diverse as Iceland, Norway, Ethiopia and Costa Rica are already very near or at 100%. Help to reduce the carbon footprint and your energy bills by fitting solar panels to capture and store the electricity from the Australian sunshine. Some Solar PV systems can reach up to 10kw and estimates suggest that it takes only six or seven years to recoup your original investment.