How to Mix Modern & Traditional Design Trends

How to Mix Modern & Traditional Design Trends

Create your own unique decorating look by mixing old architecture and furniture with new, modern pieces. Here’s how to do this the right way!

Photos via: Houzz

You may have heard from some period feature purist that mixing modern and old is sacrilege when it comes to making the most of historical features. However, mixing the new with the old can create a stamp to your home that is uniquely you. Renovating period features and laying down modern flooring and painting styles can really highlight design aspects of a historic home that keeping it in its former condition simply wouldn’t.

Get an Extension

If you’re currently residing in a Victorian terrace, for example, one of its historic features might be its unfortunate lack of space. Sometimes beautiful old terrace houses don’t quite have the square footage we’d hoped for, as they were initially designed for mining and factory communities who could only afford a two-up two-down property. If this is the case for your property, it could be well worth your while getting an extension to open it up and transform the look of the interior. This is particularly great if you’re looking to install patio doors or extra room for a dining room.

However, if the idea of going wide doesn’t appeal to you – then think upwards. You can also add an extension in the form of a loft conversion. Adding an extra level to your house frees up plenty of space, but without having to add an extra block of building that wasn’t previously there. Not only is it discreet, but you can play around with how the staircase is situated, and any wooden beams that could be brought into the design.

Contrast curtains with window frames

If you have beautiful double glazed sash windows, it’s a good idea to make the most of them – after all modern builds don’t come with these charming features. If you’re incorporating modern features into your house, but don’t want to lose focus of your windows, then putting modern curtains up can draw attention to where the light is coming in. Using single block colours, contemporary patters or slate greys will immediately give your home a modern twist in a way that compliments its older features.

Don’t be afraid to go industrial

Industrial styling is perhaps one of the most modern aesthetics you can go for. Steel and metal beams and structures will instantly add a contemporary touch. You will be surprised by just how elegant industrial structures can look: what makes them look part of the house is how they fit into the whole picture. Putting potted plants and ornaments on a metal shelf or putting steel structures amongst wooden ones will create a pleasant and eye-catching contrast, not an obtrusive one.

Mixing modern and old is almost as old as time itself. What constitutes as modern now, might change a few years down the line. This is why you shouldn’t be afraid to experiment – mixing up the two is more about the contrast than making a statement about today’s trends. Keep the features that stand out as being beautiful, and be brave with parts of your property that can be changed.

Glass Shelves or Wood Floating Shelves – Which is better for you?

Glass Shelves or Wood Floating Shelves – Which is better for you?

Got too many collections and special items but do not like to let go of them or where to place them? We have a solution for you!

Photos: Houzz

There are various kinds of bookcases and shelves that are available on the market that is why many customers get a little confused. Having to choose between glass shelves or wood floating shelves which are both not created equal, we will not just identify which one is better than the other. Also, we will identify which one is better for you.

Such floating shelves help you in achieving a smooth and refined look that you will be proud to showcase, especially when home visitors arrive. Read on to help you decide.

Unbreaking glass shelves

Knowing which type of glass the shelves are made from is important. When considering buying shelves made from glass, you should check the glass if it is designed with a low chance of getting shattered or chipped easily. We know that most glasses will break once dropped. Another option is the tempered glass which is scratch-resistant and is less likely to get cracked. Take note that if the glass is strengthened by heat, it is twice as strong as that of a regular glass.

Plus, identify the shelf strength through the thickness. The thicker the glass, the stronger it gets. For example, a thick standard glass shelf is stronger than a thinner tempered glass shelf. The allowable weight to be put on the shelves has a rating provided for it.

Knocking on wood shelves

Did you know that not all wood shelves are actually made of real wood? A solid core of pressed cheaper wood or plywood called ‘engineered’ wood then covered with a finish, veneer or paint is what the wood shelves are made of. Cheaper than real wood and is made from recycled materials, these shelves are often light in weight and stronger in quality than the real wood. Still, having the most beautiful and rich colors from real wood shelves are more expensive.

Which one is better than the other?

When deciding between glass shelves and wood shelves, ask yourself first the following questions:

  1. What am I going to put on these shelves?

For heavy and/or large items to fill up the shelf, wood would be the better choice. Do not risk the strength of glass shelves with this case to make you worry less. For displaying your precious collection, glass shelves are recommended as it helps to highlight what is on display, adding aesthetic to your home.

  1. What specific area at home am I going to place these shelves?

If you are going to have the shelves in your kitchen, choose the glass one to easily clean the grease off. Kitchen cleaning products would not hurt the glass but will chew up wood. While if the shelves are going to be put in the bathroom, glass is also a good option for humidity and residue.

In your living room, wood would be a better choice to feel the warmth and inviting feeling than the cold and modern look of glass.

  1. Will these shelves be out of reach of children?

If the shelves can be accessible by children, beware of accidents to possibly happen. Kids might damage and/or shatter the glass shelf or worse, get cut by it.

  1. What lighting is available for the shelf?

In highlighting the contents of the shelves, lighting is an essential factor. It would be much better to see the spines of the book when placed on the shelves as well as for smaller items, glass shelves will give more visibility even those which are displayed towards the back of the lower shelves. Bookshelves help you to be able to decorate without taking up too much space. Not only this helps you get things in place but it also adds accent to your home. Whether it be glass or wood, take your time in choosing which one suits your preferences. Just a reminder, keep your things organized and make it in style.

Have you already decided if it going to be made of glass or wood material? Head on to the nearest store and shop for bookshelves now!

Looking for a House Loan? Here are some Personal Loan Features and Benefits

Looking for a House Loan? Here are some Personal Loan Features and Benefits

A loan requirement is not restricted to the middle-income group. The high-income bracket also requires frequent loans. People that don’t earn a lot have a higher loan requirement, but find it difficult to obtain a loan due to their credit scores.

Though difficult, it is not impossible for them to get a loan. They can choose other means for a low salary personal loan. Such loans are different from personal loans in terms of their eligibility criteria, the tenure of payment and the rate of interest charged. If you are property planning and looking to invest, loans are a smart move to look into. The features of these loans are discussed below:

No Income Related Criteria

When your income levels are low, you are forced to look at other sources of obtaining a loan. Within a bank, you can get a loan against your fixed deposits and gold. The gold loan can also be availed from NBFCs, which would be willing to accept other valuables as collateral against a loan. These loans do not consider your income as a deciding factor for loan disbursal. In desperate times, when a loan is absolutely necessary turning to low-value loans is the safest option.

Requirement of Collateral

As mentioned in the previous point, collateral is required in order to process these loans. Either in the form of an FD, gold, property papers, or documents for some other assets that you might possess, the presence of collateral becomes vital. The amount you can receive as a loan is in proportion to the value of the collateral. This is required to provide security to the lending agencies from defaulters. If a situation arises that the borrower is unable to pay the money, the agency is secure against a loss and will take over the collateral.

Higher Rates of Interest

The rate of interest varies depending on the collateral selected. If an FD is chosen as the collateral, the rate charged is only a little higher than what a bank would provide you with. In the case of gold, the interest generally ranges between 10-14% depending on the amount of money being borrowed. When a loan is being availed from NBFCs, you should be prepared to pay a hefty interest amount (about 14-20%), but this is completely dependent on the organization.

Choice of Tenure

You can choose to pay the loan quickly or you can decide to opt for a longer tenure depending on your capability. Though there is an upper limit to the length of the tenure, you can close the loan as soon as you wish without being subjected to any penalties. Consider a scenario when an expected payment is delayed and you have a pressing requirement for the day. You can take a loan and close it as soon as that expected payment comes in. This way you have effectively used a loan without over-paying.

It is possible to get a collateral free low salary personal loan from fintech organizations such as MoneyTap, which offer you low-value loans with interest charged only on the amount that you actually withdraw from the fund. The process of application is easy to understand and seamless, making it a pleasurable experience for you.

The Benefits of Active Life Communities and The Features That Make Them Enjoyable

The Benefits of Active Life Communities and The Features That Make Them Enjoyable

Active life communities are becoming more popular as early retirees look for new homes in places where they can remain active!

Rather than going part-time, or down the consultant route and staying home while the neighbours are all at work, these communities tend to be populated by people who still want to be active and engage with life on a daily basis.

Is Moving to an Active Life Community Right for You?

What will shock you if you hit up some tourist spots during the week when there’s no national holiday is that national parks and other venues are virtually empty. While many people have plans to travel after they retire, most find they prefer the comfort of their own home. However, it’s a bad compromise because they still feel a sense of adventure and wish to be physically active and involved but lack an appropriate outlet.

When having more time on your hands, but not being an octogenarian yet (try in thirty years), it presents a real dilemma. Most everyone you know is still working! So, if you want to have people around with free time – not sparingly just on the weekends – an active life community could be appropriate. If a nearby 18-hole golf course, a nearby swimming pool or tennis courts to play a game of doubles appeals, then you’re on the right track.

What Sort of Properties Make Sense?

New single-family homes or condos are very suitable within these types of adult lifestyle communities. They present the fewest problems with repairs and maintenance which would otherwise sap away free time to enjoy yourself. After all, the last thing you want is to be stuck indoors fixing heating issues or repairing leaking pipes.

Another way to go is with a new build in an existing community. Look to see if they can use heat recovery units which redistribute generated heat throughout the home by capturing it before it rises to the roof and is lost forever. These types of ventilation systems like the ones with Nuaire MVHR systems ( are very effective in keeping heating bills down in the colder months. This leaves more of your budget available to have fun.

Free Up Your Time

When getting older, you don’t want to use up your energy with endless chores. Having access to many of the daily requirements virtually on your doorstep makes life easier. This allows you to get more involved in community activities, spend time on shared hobbies or aid local charities by donating your free time.

Organizing trips to see different art galleries, museums of interest or plays at a local theatre is simpler to do when the people living nearby aren’t burdened with working virtually 24-7. Also, people who live in the area because they want to be more involved are more than likely to say yes.

Once you learn about active life communities, it either makes sense to you or it doesn’t. When it does, a new, better life awaits that’s filled with entertaining things to do with new friends.

The 5 Most Common Boiler Problems

The 5 Most Common Boiler Problems

Is your boiler not working as it should? From unusual noises to low pressure, there are several problems that frequently affect residential boilers!

While many of these problems can be fixed by making a few minor adjustments to your boiler’s settings, others can require more complex boiler repairs. Below, we’ve listed five common boiler problems that affect UK homeowners, as well as the most effective ways to fix them.

Unusual noises from your boiler

The hot water inside your boiler can interact with the materials used in the boiler’s construction over the course of months or years, leading to the buildup of limescale. This can result in your boiler making loud, noticeable banging, bubbling and “kettling” noises.

In order to six this problem, you’ll need to have your boiler’s contents flushed out. This helps to remove the built-up limescale, giving your boiler a cleaner interior that’s less likely to produce any unwanted noise.

Cold areas in your radiators

Over time, it’s far from uncommon for cold areas to develop in your radiators. This is usually the result of air and sludge building up inside the radiator, which can prevent hot water from flowing into certain parts of the radiator.

Most of the time, this can be fixed by bleeding your radiator, removing any trapped sludge and air that could be affecting circulation.

Switched off pilot light

Every boiler contains a pilot light — a small, blue flame that stays lit underneath your boiler at all times, even when the boiler isn’t in use. If your home’s gas supply switches off, or a wind blows through the area in which your boiler is installed, it’s possible for this pilot light to switch off.

Luckily, this is a quick and easy repair. If you’re comfortable doing so, you can use your boiler’s instruction manual to relight the pilot light by yourself. If you prefer not to do it yourself, you can also call in a Gas Safe engineer to relight the pilot light and get your boiler working again.

Drips, leaks and water damage

Over time, it’s possible for your boiler to develop one or several leaks, creating the possibility of water damage to your home. Leaks rarely occur in the tank itself — instead, they typically develop in the pipes that run to and from your boiler. Even a small leak can cause significant damage over time as water penetrates into your home’s walls, flooring and other building materials.

The best way to eliminate leaks is to regularly check the area around your boiler for moisture. If you spot any dampness that could indicate a leak, call in the experts as soon as possible to get it checked and, if necessary, repaired.

Low temperatures and lukewarm water

If your home never seems to reach the same temperature as your boiler’s thermostat, or your hot water is lukewarm at best even after running your boiler for hours, it could be an indicator that the thermostat isn’t totally accurate.

Just like the problems listed above, this is usually an easy fix. If your thermostat is adjustable, you can try adjusting it to better record your home’s temperature. If not, try replacing it with a newer, more accurate thermostat for better heating and hot water.