Monthly Archives: July 2017

Beautiful Canadian Winter Brings out the Beast in Plumbing

Canadian winters can be brutal. Cold Canadian air brings problems in drain plumbing Toronto residents dread, including the nightmare of frozen pipes. Those pipes aren’t the only winter plumbing disaster homeowners and renters face though, and there is plenty you can do to guard against them.

After a hard day at work a hot shower sounds inviting, but if the water just won’t get hot, the problem may be with your water heater. Before you panic, check the water temperature on your appliance. It may just be set too low. If your heater is gas, check to see if your pilot light is on. If those things are okay, you might have to call a plumber or service person. A great fall maintenance tip is to have your water heater checked to make certain it is in good order before the temperatures plummet.

Winter can make drains clog more, too. Vent pipes vent sewer gasses to the outside and let in fresh air to your plumbing system. If ice or snow blocks the pipes, your drains could seem clogged. If you think this may be the culprit for your plugged drains, you can try pouring hot water down the pipe openings. Grease and oil should never be poured down drains, but in winter this is especially dangerous to your plumbing. Cold weather can solidify the materials and block the pipe. Other things like hair and food cling to pipe walls more in cold weather as well. You might try keeping a container next to your stove as a receptacle for greases and then dispose of them in the trash.

Water line breaks are more common in winter, and one cause may just be that you haven’t put away summer. Water in garden hoses left attached to the outdoor faucets can freeze, causing pressure to build up in your water pipes. Eventually the pipes may burst. This is easy to prevent by draining all of the hoses when you see the weather changing. You can invest in insulated faucet covers to use once the hoses are drained as well. Another cause of broken pipes could be a blockage around your sump pump drainage, so it’s important to keep that area clear of ice and snow.

Frozen pipes can cause plumbing nightmares as well. Usually this condition happens when there is high water pressure in the water main and the temperature is below freezing. You could suspect a frozen pipe if you have low water pressure coming from a faucet, or no water at all. If the water pressure is low, try running warm water down the drain for a while. If your home has exposed pipes in the basement, you probably won’t have to worry because the heat of your home will keep them from freezing. Pipes located in shut-off areas or in crawl spaces are another matter. To keep pipes from freezing try wrapping them with foam insulation or, in very cold climates, use heated wraps on plumbing in crawl spaces and on outside walls. To keep the problem at bay, you might think about letting water run a bit when temperatures are especially cold. Aim for a flow about the diameter of a pencil, and run both the hot and cold water; hot water freezes too. It also helps to keep cabinet doors under faucets and sinks open during cold weather to circulate the air and keep the pipes warmer.

Other tips for preventing the cold Canadian winter from giving you the shivers are:

Seal any air leaks around outside pipes.

Repair broken windows in areas where there is plumbing.

Close off crawl spaces if you can.

Leave your thermostat set at 55 degrees or higher, even if you are not going to be at home.

If you do have broken pipes, shut off the water to the house immediately. Make certain you, along with everyone else who lives in your home, know where the main water shutoff is. If your pipes are frozen, never leave the faucet open unless someone is at home. If they thaw, they could flood your house. Another tip is to keep the phone number of your plumber posted right beside the main water shutoff.

Winter plumbing problems don’t have to be a worry. With just a little precaution, you can enjoy the beauty of winter in Canada confident you can come home to a warm shower.

5 Reasons to Pursue a Lucrative Career as an Architect

When you’re a kid, the skies are the limits for what you can do, dream, and be when you grow up. However, when those grown up years come, adults think they have to work stressful jobs that make them miserable. Not true. You CAN pursue a lucrative career as an architect, which was your childhood dream in the first place. Read on to discover why you should.

Live Out Your Childhood Dreams

Your inner child will do an appreciative happy dance when you decide to pursue the dreams that you held the dearest throughout your childhood. Did you love making everything out of a couple of build blocks? Did you love sketching your décor ideas onto paper and saving them in a portfolio? Go DIY like that in the real world.

Be Your Own Boss, Ultimately

Architects are, ultimately, their own bosses. Sure, they answer to clients on occasion, and customer service is a must, but their hours, plans, and revenues are their own. You can essentially be your own boss, but you should still retain respect and courteousness to draw in your target audiences.

Decide on Clients Based on Your Preferences

As an architect, you can decide who you want to work for based on your preferences. If you don’t agree with a building plan, you can opt out. Whereas, on the flip side, if you love the ideas that a new client puts forth, you can work twice as hard to collaborate and make those concepts come to life. Some clients have even suffered trauma from natural disasters that decimated their home. You could offer a fire damage restoration service at a reduced fee because compassion does wonders for your business.

Be as Creative as You Can Be

Architecture is a super-creative job that allows you to be imaginative and get paid for it. You can be as creative as you want to be, while showcasing your talents and highlighting your skillsets. It’s the ultimate profession for builders and artsy, crafty folks.

Make the Most of Your Time

When you delve into architecture, very little time is wasted on menial labor. You can make every moment of your time count with creative concepts, sketches, and implementation of your imaginative ideas. How long you spend on any one architect aspect is entirely dependent on you and the timing and schedule that you are most comfortable with. Hence why being your own boss in this profession is such as great perk.

Pursuing a career as an architect is your childhood dream realized. Just because you grow up doesn’t mean you have to give up on what you wanted to do and where you thought you would be as an adult. Make your inner kiddo proud.

Four Ways to Sell Your Home in a High End Market

The amount that you get out of your home depends just as much on market factors as it does the overall value of the home. Value depends on things like the number of buyers vs. sellers, the number of homes currently for sale in that area and how much homes sold for in the recent past. When you live in a high end market, you need to look at unique marketing methods that appeal to buyers with higher budgets to get more out of your property.

Create a Website

Instead of using more traditional methods, you might consider selling your home online. Creating a website for your home is a great way to grab the attention of those who search for homes for sale online. Make sure that you include detailed information about the address/location of the property and any nearby attractions. You’ll want to include details on the amenities found in the house and what sets it apart from other neighboring homes too. The best way to make your home look more appealing is with photos of each room and a video walk through of both the home and the surrounding property.

Use Social Media

When it comes time to sell your luxury home, you might not think about using social media sites but you should. This is especially true of homes located in desirable neighborhoods and up and coming cities. Millions of people now use Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other sites to find new restaurants, fun things to do and even shop for homes. Using hash tags that relate to your city and creating a unique hash tag for your home can help. Include as many photos and videos of your home to show it off to prospective buyers too.

Do Open Houses

An open house is essentially a way for prospective buyers to walk around your home, check out the property and decide if they want to put in an offer. When marketing homes in high end neighborhoods, you really need to highlight the top features of your home. If you have lots of closets and other storage, you can invest in some organizers to put in those closest and encourage visitors to take a look. You’ll want to mow your lawn and do some basic cleaning and landscaping to give buyers a good first impression as soon as they get out of their cars.

Get Expert Advice

Selling in some markets is harder than others, which is why you should give some serious thought to working with high end real estate marketing experts. Not only can they help you get offers on your home, but they often have connections and can help you get higher offers. They know exactly who to call before hosting an open house and what to do to get those with larger budgets to take a look at your home. High end real estate professionals can give you advice on some of the repairs that you need to make and ways that you can make your home look more expensive and valuable before an open house too. With talented experts working by your side, open house events and online marketing, you can sell your house quickly in any high end market.