Edmonton Fall 2020

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Edmonton Fall & Winter 2021

Real Home Advice


2 Real Home Advice

Home Advice Ltd.

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Real Home Advice




your bed/s of all linen and wash it in hot water. The

suggested temperature is over 130 degrees Fahrenheit or

54 degrees Celsius. Dust mites will die when bedding is

placed in a hot dryer.

Dust mites burrow deep into mattresses particularly if

they have been in humid conditions. Experts recommend

covering all bedding with a micro-porous fabric, and

more beneficial to purchase new pillows for new covers.

Other suggestions include not making the bed first thing

in the morning to avoid moisture from your body being

trapped between the sheets.

The average bed has 100,000 to 10 million mites. Did that

statement grab your attention? Dust mites do not bite,

however, their droppings contain an enzyme that can

cause harm to or kill delicate cells, and in this way enter

the body compromising the immune system.

The response differs between individuals who might

experience any number of sensitivities like allergies,

eczema, dermatitis, conjunctivitis migraines, or digestive

disorders – even pneumonia.

Dust your house regularly. Clean those hard to reach

places and every nook and cranny, vacuum thoroughly.

Wipe down all surfaces in every room of the house and

regularly rinse the cleaning materials under hot water.

Finally, vacuum the floors.

Remember at this time of the year to change your furnace

filter and consider having your ducts cleaned.

Depending upon the severity of the situation you may

wish to replace mattresses, down pillows or duvets if they

are older than two years. Regular and focused, deep

cleaning will support a healthier environment for you and

your family.

4 Real Home Advice

Real Home Advice


What to Do When

Payments Stop: 5 Urgent


Collecting debt has always been one of the most

uncomfortable and delicate tasks in business.

In a time of crisis, it becomes infinitely more challenging.

Previously reliable customers no longer pay on

time—if at all. Even the best ones have stopped

taking your calls and their voicemail is uncharacteristically


When they DO answer, it isn’t good. Apologies, but

they can’t pay for an indeterminate period because

of COVID-19.

It’s not just you. Virtually all business models, both

B2B and consumer-facing, healthcare providers

and landlords, are in a similarly precarious situation.

The customer in many cases has an impeccable

history, making this an entirely new kind of problem.

Good business is hard-won, cost of sales is

premium and customer relationships are precious.

Most importantly, your brand reputation is priceless.

But here you are. Even the best customers are

holding out, and you have growing obligations of

your own.

Here’s the kicker: the worst is yet to come.

The forced shutdown has only just begun to take its

toll on businesses and consumers. Many are sitting

on a shrinking cash stockpile, waiting for a turnaround

that isn’t coming soon enough. If they owe

you money, they are spending it on other

things—until it the last of it runs out.

And despite the rosy flourishes being painted by

some politicians, the crisis is worsening. The subsidies,

stimulus packages and deferrals must soon

end. Buying habits and patterns have been massively

disrupted, in a lot of cases permanently.

If your business is already struggling to collect

money owed to it, it doesn’t take a master economist

to envision what’s in store. And the real economists

concur it will be very bad, for longer than

many businesses can withstand.

So What to do?

There are 5 important steps every business owner

needs to take in order to minimize risk and be as

proactive as possible.

Assess the current situation. Take a look at your

accounts receivable and flag everything past due.

Contact all account-holders and make them aware

that for your business’ continuity you must be firm

about due dates. They should respect this need and

do the same. Alert past-due accounts that collection

action is imminent—give a specific date.

It’s painful and a source of tremendous stress.

6 Real Home Advice

Take immediate action. Send all non-responsive

accounts and any that are more than 60 days past

due to MetCredit (as we remind our clients, 60 is

the new 90 in the critical post-COVID-19 era).

Our professional debt collection agents will treat

your customers with respect, and establish a high

payment priority for future dealings.

Fortify business processes. The way people paid

you in the past is probably not reliable enough

for the new normal. Risk reduction should be top

priority: sales are a dangerous liability when you

can’t collect. Insist on full payment or substantial

deposits—and make your credit application

mandatory whenever you grant credit (which is

anytime you are not paid in full upfront.) Be sure

buyers understand when payment is due and

acknowledge their commitment to you.

Make it easy to pay—safely. We recommend

Interac eTransfer or debit payments because

funds are immediate, fees are low and there is

little risk of chargebacks. If you offer financing

for larger amounts, partner with a leasing or

finance company that is equipped to manage the


I hope the latter group includes yours. Get energized,

call upon your most inventive self, and

take action!

Need more help? Reach out to me or one of my

helpful debt collection experts.

Be safe and healthy—and the same goes for your


Brian Sumerfelt

President and CEO of MetCredit

Canada’s top-performing consumer

and commercial collection agency

Debt Collection

for Scary Times.

Stop Waiting.

Embrace the new normal. If you have been

patiently waiting for old buying habits to resume,

don’t! Some business models, such as airline

travel, retail sales and buffet restaurants will

surely never be the same. Instead of praying for

the good old ways to come back, find ways to

help customers with their new needs. And while

you do it, protect your own business’ future.

This is a hard reset, not a speed bump. It is an

opportunity to become better, more efficient,

and eventually more profitable than ever.

Many, many businesses are going to fail. The

ones that survive to rebuild the new economy

will be the ones whose leaders are smart, bold,

innovative and proactive.

Real Home Advice



Every homeowner wants to grow their home’s

long-term value—that’s one of the main

reasons why you bought your home in the first

place. If you’re looking to invest in your home

and its future value, there are many home

upgrades that can really pay off down the road.

In this article, we’ll review the best of these

renovations and upgrades, and where you

should start.

furnace have to both work harder (and use

more energy) to maintain the temperature in

your home. One of the most effective ways to

curb this energy loss is by installing additional

attic insulation to trap cooled and heated air in

the living areas of your home. This can cut your

cooling and heating costs by up to 20%.

Smart Thermostats

Start saving money with improvements to your

home’s efficiency

An inefficient home that wastes energy is costing

you money every single month. High

summer and winter utility bills don’t have to be

something you just live with. By making proactive

and strategic improvements to your home’s

cooling and heating efficiency, you can lower

these costs for years to come. As seasons come

and go, those savings will really start to add up.

Attic Insulation

A large chunk of the cooled and heated air in

your home is lost through the attic and the roof.

This, in turn, means your air conditioner and

When it comes to home renovations, it doesn’t

get much easier than installing a smart thermostat.

By allowing you to schedule temperature

changes in advance, a smart thermostat can

reduce your energy costs by nearly 10%, while

also providing you with the convenience of

being able to change your home’s temperature

from just about anywhere.

Remodel your master bathroom

If you’re looking to invest in your home, a

master bathroom remodel is a great project to

take on. To make your remodelling dollar

stretch farther, focus on upgrading your bathroom

shower, vanity, sinks, and floors. You

should hire a plumber for any pipe or drain

8 Real Home Advice

repairs, but much of this project—from installing a

new vanity to laying floor tile or installing

vinyl—that can be handled by you, the homeowner.

The key to getting the best-possible ROI out of your

bathroom remodel is limiting the extent of plumbing

and electrical changes. Anytime you move

existing pipes or outlets, your costs will go up.

Avoid major layout changes, and you’ll get more

out of the project.

Rethink your home’s kitchen

Everyone loves the kitchen. It’s arguably the center

of life in the modern American home. This is probably

why kitchen remodels have the best

return-on-investment (ROI) of any major home

renovation project. If your kitchen looks like it

would fit right in to a 80s or 90s sitcom, it might be

time for a design refresh. If you’re focused on

adding value, you’ll need to prioritize installing

new stone countertops (quartz and granite are the

two most popular varieties, and come in a dizzying

array of styles) and cabinets. Invest in high-quality

materials and installation here: how good your

countertops and cabinets look and work will go a

long way to determining how much your new

kitchen adds to your home’s value.

However, not every aspect of your kitchen remodel

needs to be a “big ticket” upgrade. Take the time to

think about the style you’re aiming for and how to

best achieve it through lighting, backsplash, the

sink, and more. Make sure the kitchen you’re envisioning

fits the rest of your home, though: a farmhouse-style

kitchen might look great in a vacuum,

but stick out like a sore thumb in an otherwise

modern-style condo.

Get more out of your home

As any long-time homeowner can (and will) tell

you, owning a home is an adventure. It comes with

the freedom to make your own decisions and

design choices, and decide what you want to do

and focus on. By investing in the high-ROI projects

described above, you can both transform your

home and invest in its future value. For even more

great tips for home renovations and upkeep, check

out this infographic.

We are now booking

for the spring 2020/2021

edition of Real Home











(780) - 406 - 6641


Samantha Johnson - Remodeling Writer

Real Home Advice


10 Real Home Advice

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12 Real Home Advice

Interior Design Services

How would you like to decorate

your home or one specific room,

even just the living room feature

wall from the comfort of your


One option interior designers and

their companies are offering is

taking their profession and professional

services to a whole new

level with affordable online or

e-design services. You have the

choice of the A to Z of home

decorating and planning from

basement to wine cellar; colour

consulting, universal design and

space planning.

Designers put their best skills

forward in creating inspiring

spaces for you that are fresh,

elegant, tasteful, functional

and pertinent to your lifestyle.

Choose your style – modern,

boho-chic or contemporary, and

get connected to the designer

who will best fill your needs and


Customers start by initially filling

out questionnaires and sending

photographs and dimensions of

their rooms or home. Designers

will confirm exactly what you are

looking for, offer concept design,

and provide you with a cost for

the project. They might offer you

various packages to choose from

based on your needs and your


You are then provided with

detailed 3d drawings and renderings,

where inspiration or mood

boards that pull together all the

plans, finish furnishings and

material selections, custom tiles,

cabinetry, accessories, artwork,

colours and styles. The shopping

list is the exciting part, as you can

go out and have fun pulling all the

suggestions together.

The purpose of the online e-design

service is to provide affordable,

convenient, professional

and easy-to-work-with design

options that inspire and support

you to make creative affordable

changes and upgrades to your

home décor and lifestyle.

Interior Design Services

Real Home Advice

Real Home Advice








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such as clothes, jewelry, venues, guest accommodations,

and decorations, all of which are expensive

and unavoidable.

You can pick the ivory shade to add warmth to your

reception area. Black also looks classy but some

people do not prefer this color at wedding receptions.

Based on the wedding venue décor and style,

your linen covers for the chairs make a marked


Add some pizzazz to your wedding venue, especially

the guest sitting area with chair covers having

turquoise, red, champagne, purple, or burgundy

colors. You can even choose pink but opt for lighter

shades and not something gaudy.

2. Try various fabric options

Chair Covers

3 Things to Remember When Looking for Chair

Covers for Your Big Day.

Do you want to make your wedding venue chairs

look special and take center stage? If yes, the best

and affordable option is booking chair covers for

your big day. These days, you will find these linens

in varied materials, colors, designs, and shapes.

Then, you can make your wedding day furniture

covers look more fashionable without creating a

dent in your wallet.

According to an article published on Forbes.com,

the average expenditure of modern weddings is

more than $36,000, based on a Knot survey. Therefore,

couples need to take care of their expenses

and avoid overdoing in their nuptials. Since chair

covers are an integral part of weddings, here are

three things you need to keep in mind:

1. Experiment with different colors

The typical chair linens come in whit

The typical chair linens come in white, though

look elegant, but sans any wow effect on the

guests. To be candid, they look quite bland if not

patterned even if they are white. Then, you can

choose different colors without breaking your

bank because weddings have other expenses such

Real Home Advice

Polyester is not the sole fabric to choose for the

chair covers. We recommend that you avoid it. Your

nuptial is a special and once-in-a-lifetime event.

Therefore, opt for taffeta or satin to add more

elegance to the reception area. It might cost you a

bit, but the money is worth the material. You can

also pick satin sash instead of the basic organza.

Splurge on decors if worth the expense.

3. Use alternative sash ties

The typical tie for any sash is the simple bow.

Though it looks beautiful, you can always make

things from just nice to stunning. Yes, create the

wow factor with alternative sash ties on your special

day. To be candid, bows look pretty, if used in a

birthday bash, but when it comes to your wedding,

a wrap tie or side wrap is your best bet. The décor

will add style and grace to your wedding chairs

covers sans any flamboyance. Keep things simple,

but appealing.


Add a personal style to your wedding décor with

stunning, elegant chair covers. These days, chair

linens have come a long way from gaudy varieties of

the 90s, especially those huge and oversized bows.

Modern covers come in varied sizes, styles, fabrics,

and colors. Therefore, make a choice that exudes

your sense of style and sophistication on your big

day. From cascading scarf-like covers to the romantic

lace varieties, the choices are plenty.

Silvia Watson


hygiene and sanitation. Eat foods recently well cooked and hot

and eat fruit and vegetables that are freshly cooked, washed

and/or recently peeled. Teach and assist children to drink

bottled beverages, avoid tap water, brush teeth and rinse tooth

brush with bottled water. Keep mouth closed when showering

or bathing. Remember dairy products should be pasteurized

and refrigerated.

Travelling with children requires advanced planning and

preparation. This is important to ensure an enjoyable trip for


Before leaving on your trip plan a visit with a Travel Health

Provider to assess the need for pre-travel immunizations or

medications. Children should be up-to-date on all childhood


If only travelling with my parent or only with relatives, make

sure you check https://travel.gc.ca/travelling/children for

any documentation you must prepared before travelling

Travel preparation includes consideration for personal

safety, food and water precautions, sun and insect protection,

diarrhea and dehydration.

Personal Safety:

Children should carry a small card with contact information

and medical-emergency information ina pocket or on a

necklace. It is best to not have the child’s name on this

information. In case of separation a pre-arranged meeting

place is a good plan.

Teach your child not to pet or play with any stray animals. In

many developing countries animal rabies is a risk.

Other safety concerns that require knowledge of is different

traffic regulations, Potential hazards before allowing children

to swim and assessment of living area and play area for safety


Food and Water Precautions:

Food and water precautions are especially important to stay

well during the child’s trip. Many developing countries have


Prepare a special day pack for your child. Include a safe supply

of nutritious snacks and beverages from home for times when

children are hungry and the available food may not be appealing

or safe. In the day pack also include favorite toys, book,

games, blanket, change of clothing, towelettes, plastic bag, and

emergency medication.

Sun and Insect Precaution:

Sun exposure is a serious health issue for children. It is important

to avoid the sun. Personal protective measures include

avoid the midday sun, wear protective clothing, hat, sunglasses

and use SPF 15 or greater.

Insect bites can make children sick. i.e. Biting flies, ticks and

mosquitoes. Travel preparation includes knowing the risk of

diseases that can be spread by insect. Mosquito born diseases

are the most common for example malaria. If your trip

includes staying in malaria risk area, an anti-malarial medication

from your travel health provider may be necessary.

Children are at special risk for malaria since they can become

sick very quickly.

For children insect protection methods are the same as other

travelers. Personal protective methods include sleep in air

conditioned rooms, or screened windows/doors and under

bed nets and cover-up when outdoors. Both DEET and icaridin

containing repellent can be used in children on exposed skin.

Follow the product application instructions on container.

Wash insect repellent off once child is indoors.

Diarrhea and dehydration:

Children are more susceptible to gastrointestinal diseases such

as traveler’s diarrhea. Teach your child the importance of

frequent hand washing with soap and water and the use of

alcohol base hand sanitizer (60%) when soap and H2O are not

available. Prior to your trip speak to your travel health provider

about oral rehydration solutions/ products and an antibiotic to

carry along for your child for severe diarrhea.

16 Real Home Advice

Real Home Advice


18 Real Home Advice

The Smell of Gas

Would you recognize the smell of gas if you

had a leak? Have a discussion with your family

about what gas smells like and how to identify

a leak.

Gas has a sulphur-like smell. Simply put, it

smells like rotten eggs. You might also notice a

hissing sound, which would make a leak a lot

easier to locate. Check your appliances to

make sure the connections to the wall are not

damaged. The vegetation outside may also

give you a clue as to the leak location if it is

dying or in poor condition.

Experts will tell you to:

• Get everyone out of your house as quickly

and calmly as possible.

•Call emergency services to your home right


•Ensure your emergency numbers are easily


•Turn off all appliances and lights.

Do not smoke, use a lighter or matches anywhere near a broken gas line, and remember not to use electronics

or other devices close to your home. If gas is burning do not attempt to put it out yourself. Call 911. Be

informed and be safe.

ᰠ 夀 漀 甀 爀 嘀 愀 挀 甀 甀 洀 䤀 猀

伀 渀 氀 礀 䄀 猀 䜀 漀 漀 搀 䄀 猀

吀 栀 攀 䤀 渀 猀 琀 愀 氀 氀 愀 琀 椀 漀 渀 ᴠ

圀 攀 䤀 渀 猀 琀 愀 氀 氀 愀 氀 氀 戀 爀 愀 渀 搀 猀 漀 昀

䌀 䔀 一 吀 刀 䄀 䰀 嘀 䄀 䌀 唀 唀 䴀 匀

匀 瀀 攀 挀 椀 愀 氀 椀 稀 椀 渀 最 䤀 渀 一 攀 眀 䌀 漀 渀 猀 琀 爀 甀 挀 琀 椀 漀 渀 Ⰰ

刀 攀 琀 爀 漀 ǻ 琀 猀 Ⰰ 嘀 愀 挀 瀀 愀 渀 猀 愀 渀 搀 匀 愀 氀 攀 猀

眀 眀 眀 ⸀ 挀 攀 渀 琀 爀 愀 氀 瘀 愀 挀 椀 渀 猀 琀 愀 氀 氀 攀 爀 ⸀ 挀 漀 洀

䈀 甀 椀 氀 琀 ⴀ 椀 渀

嘀 愀 挀 甀 甀 洀 䤀 渀 猀 琀 愀 氀 氀 攀 爀 䰀 琀 搀

䘀 刀 䔀 䔀 儀 唀 伀 吀 䔀 ⴀ 䌀 䄀 䰀 䰀 吀 伀 䐀 䄀 夀

㜀 㠀 ⸀ 㠀 㠀 㜀 ⸀ アパート 㘀

Real Home Advice


20 Real Home Advice

Home Organizers

Are you moving homes? Have you run out of time

and energy to complete all your packing? The

stress alone can take a toll on your health and

that of your family, causing greater delays and


In addition, moving into a new home also has its

challenges – exciting as it may be. You know from

previous experience, how overwhelming it can

become moving in and going straight back to

workboxes piled up and dotted around hallways

and rooms. Waiting for you to have the energy to

neatly unpack contents in an organized fashion.

Perhaps your time and energy are better well

spent employing a service to come and do this

tedious work for you.

After the initial consultation, these move management

specialists will create a tailored program

and plan of action for you and your move.

Planning a move to a new home requires a lot of

attention to detail. Specialist move management

people have your back. They will facilitate the

process of discarding old and unused clothing

and other items; go through your recycling and

remove it for you; and once they have packed and

labelled all the boxes and containers, they ensure

that nothing is left behind after you have left the

old house. Upon arriving at your new home they

will clear the space, unpack and organize all your


Move management people work in an organized

strategic fashion, and their solution for unpacking

your goods ensures that you stay organized

given the convenient and best placing of your

belongings. Now, what could be more gratifying

than having the time and stress taken out of the

moving process? Take a deep breath, give yourself

a sigh of relief and enjoy your new home.

倀 氀 愀 琀 椀 渀 甀 洀 攀 搀 最 攀 氀 愀 眀 渀 挀 愀 爀 攀

䴀 愀 琀 琀 栀 攀 眀 ⴀ 䰀 愀 眀 渀 䌀 愀 爀 攀 匀 瀀 攀 挀 椀 愀 氀 椀 猀 琀

䴀 愀 琀 琀 栀 攀 眀 搀 攀 瘀 漀 猀 琀 䀀 最 洀 愀 椀 氀 ⸀ 挀 漀 洀

䈀 攀 猀 琀 䰀 愀 眀 渀 匀 攀 爀 瘀 椀 挀 攀 猀 ⸀

䴀 椀 渀 漀 爀 漀 爀 䴀 愀 樀 漀 爀 䌀 氀 攀 愀 渀 ⴀ 甀 瀀

㔀 匀 吀 䄀 刀 刀 䔀 嘀 䤀 䔀 圀 刀 䄀 吀 䤀 一 䜀

䀀 倀 氀 愀 琀 椀 渀 甀 洀 攀 搀 最 攀 氀 愀 眀 渀 挀 愀 爀 攀

⠀ 㜀 㠀 ⤀ 㘀 㘀 ⴀ 㘀 㠀 㐀 ㈀

Real Home Advice


Home Building Professionals

Selecting the right home building or remodeling

professional is likely to be the most important

step to plan, draw, and build your new home or

complete a home remodel. Today, there are

more options than ever when it comes to design

professionals, creating a time-consuming and

often daunting task. Whether you decide to hire

one person to design your home and another to

build it, or if you find one firm to do it all, you

will need home building professionals who

understand the nature of your project and can

best serve your individual needs.

Questions to Ask Remodeling, Home Building


How well does the professional understand your

budget, timing, and availability?

Does their portfolio of past projects complement

your personal taste?

Can the professional provide recent customer


How much involvement do you want in the

building/remodeling process?

Do you feel comfortable with the design professional?


Architects represent one of the most highly

educated and trained categories of home building

professionals. Architects can help you detail

exactly what you want, draw up plans and list

material specifications. They may also provide

oversight for your project while it is in progress.

In addition, an architect can be an excellent

resource for other professionals, as they often

have already established a pool of designers and

general contractors they have worked with in

the past.

Draftspersons primarily prepare technical

drawings of designs created by others, although

some can assist with design. If the architect is

the lawyer for your new home, the draftsperson

is the highly-skilled paralegal. These days, most

drafters work in Computer Aided Drafting and

Design (CADD) programs. If you have a good

idea of the floor plan you want, you may just

need to hire a draftsperson to draw the blueprints

and have them checked by an engineer

before speaking with general contractors about

completing the project.

Structural Engineers need to be consulted if

your project requires any structural changes to

the existing building. A structural engineer will

provide the required stamped drawings that

must be submitted, along with the architectural

drawings, to the building department for

approval. Not all home building professionals

are huge companies. Don’t underestimate the

value of these niche contractors.

22 Real Home Advice


Residential Designers or Interior Designers

specialize in designing residential interiors.

Trained to use space most efficiently, residential

designers tend to focus on floor plan design,

detailed lifestyle evaluation and design functionality.

It is not uncommon to consult with a residential/interior

specialist to critique a floor plan

or a kitchen or bathroom designer to devote

special attention to specific areas of the home.

Although residential designers have a different

educational and training background, their roles

frequently overlap with interior designers.

Kitchen and Bathroom Designers are more

specialized remodeling professionals, although

still very similar to residential or interior designers.

They may lack construction experience or

miss design opportunities associated with additions

or movement of walls, for example. Yet,

bathroom designers and kitchen designers are

often best for high-end interiors where expensive

materials, cabinets, and appliances will be used.

Design/Build Contractors offer both architectural

and construction services, and can carry a job

from inception to move-in. Because one firm is

accountable for the entire project, this approach

can often result in a less expensive design that is

practical to build and causes less confusion

between design and construction specialists who

may not see eye-to-eye. Many design/build

contractors offer, or even focus on, landscaping


Final Tip

When looking for service professionals to help

you build your new home, keep in mind that it’s

not as important to focus on the titles of architect,

designer, builder, contractor or some hybrid

of these. Rather, look for the individuals or companies

whose experience, designs and ideas best

matches the type of home you want. After all, to

them, it’s a job, but to you, it’s a home.

Home Decorators are specialists who offer advice

on furniture, wall coverings, colors, styles, and

overall physical appearance of your project.

Home decorators can save you both time and

money by helping you to narrow down your

choices and utilizing professional discounts for

materials such as furniture, home accessories,

wallpaper or paint. When you meet an interior

decorator, expect to talk about your personal

style and preferences. From that, the decorator

will develop some ideas that would work for you

and help you translate your artistic sensibility

into reality.

General Contractors coordinate and construct

projects that typically involve three or more

subcontractor trades, such as carpentry, plumbing,

painting, roofing, or electrical work. In most

states, general contractors need a license to

operate their business. Most general contractors

focus on major home remodeling projects and

home additions, although you may find some

general contractors who will undertake a new

home construction project or small remodeling


Real Home Advice


24 Real Home Advice

Home Inspections

With the excitement of a home purchase, it is all

too easy for new home buyers to hastily forgo the

importance of Home Inspections in order to ‘firm’

up the purchase, and perhaps in competition of a

multi-offer situation.

Have you heard the expression “buyer beware?”

Know it is the responsibility of the buyer to do their

due diligence, and ensure the property they are

purchasing is all it has been touted to be – there are

no hidden surprises. Some results of the home

inspection report might give buyers an opportunity

to negotiate with sellers if a major issue comes

up that perhaps both parties might not have been

aware of.

Typically the Home Inspector will allay the fears of

buyers by inspecting the structural elements like

the framing, roof and attic, foundation and walls;

and the systems – the electrical, plumbing and

air-conditioning and heating systems. The kitchen

and bathrooms are also inspected for any potential

or hidden issues.

The professional and expert opinion of the Home

Inspector you choose to work with is valuable in

assuring you the home you are purchasing is

sound in construction and maintenance. A thorough

explanation of all the working systems and

elements of the home gives you an opportunity to

ask as many questions as you need. Your questions

could include knowing more about drainage and

the sump pump, sewer systems, compliance of

building codes, age of electrical wiring, age and

capacity of the water heater, central air conditioning,


Other information you will want to glean from

your REALTOR® might be regarding utility expenses,

zoning, property boundaries, non-conforming

legal suites, easements, proposed special assessments

– to name a few. This list is quite lengthy

and involved but well worth the time and effort to

ensure you fully understand that the house of your

dreams is after all exactly what you are purchasing.

Real Home Advice


Basement Renovaaon



Laundry Rooms




Construccon is about

transforming a dream

into reality

L i c e n s e d - W C B I n s u r e d - B o n d e d

W o r k m a n s h i p W a r r a n t y - R e f e r e n c e s

780.487.8707 | Gerry@plaanumltd.ca | Plaanumltd.ca

26 Real Home Advice

Cleaning Your Oven Yourself

Most ovens today have the built-in self-clean

function. Set your oven on to self-clean and you

are free to get on with other errands or chores.

But wait: have you considered that apart from the

convenience of self-cleaning ovens, not only a

tremendous amount of energy is expended but the

by-product gases are toxic? Good ventilation is

important while cleaning so fumes can escape and

not circulate through the house.

Oven cleaners –are also highly caustic and corrosive.

Made from the chemical sodium hydroxide

otherwise known as “lye,” and whilst effective, they

need to be used with caution potentially causing

irritation to delicate membranes of the body and

skin. Good ventilation and protective gloves and

clothing are recommended. Reconsider using

these cleaners, which are not safe in your home

especially with children and pets.

The natural ways were inexpensive and safe. Firstly

to avoid spills use foil or place a large baking sheet

under your roaster. Simple and non-toxic cleaners

are baking soda, lemon juice and vinegar.

Natural dish soap cleaners and an effective scrub

work well with grease. Spray oven walls and floor

with water and sprinkle a good layering of baking

soda and leave it for a couple of hours or overnight.

For harder to get out stains use white vinegar

over the freshly sprinkled baking soda. A lemon

and baking soda paste will clean the oven glass.

Take some time, scrub a little and be assured your

family is much safer for it.





CONTACT: adcopy@realhomeadvice.ca

(780) - 406 - 6641

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Real Home Advice


Do you have your bedroom situated

over the garage in your current home?

There are some specific rules according

to Feng Shui regarding living over

a garage. In the last couple of decades,

construction of homes has placed

master bedrooms over the garage –

even though it might make for greater

square footage, this design could have

its drawbacks.

The initial consideration according to

Feng Shui experts, is regarding the

insulation in the garage.

Building Over Your Garage

Are you planning some renovations this spring, and do they

involve building over your garage?

Most garages are not properly insulated

both for sound, temperature and

other pollution. It doesn’t take much

common sense to realize why having

a bedroom or family room over the

garage is not a practical idea.

28 Real Home Advice

It is an open space typically populated with metal

shelving, racks and outdoor equipment, as well as

chemicals like fertilizers, gas containers for the

lawnmower, or paint. With cars going in an out

and the use of automatic garage doors, the overall

sense of having a bedroom over a garage may

leave homeowners experiencing less than peace-

ful or sound sleeps; nor feeling grounded, or

relaxed in their bedroom.

There are simple actions to take to remediate

some of the issues around sleeping above a


expert in to advise you in this regard is important.

If you are looking to purchase a house, you can

consider your options – especially if you like a

home that places the master bedroom over the

garage. And if you are building, now that you are

informed about the potential issues of having a

bedroom over your garage, you may want to

redesign your plans and explore other options

with your architect or contractor. In the long run,

your peace of mind and physical health will not

be compromised, and you will be much happier

with your informed choices.

Some might include: carpeting your bedroom;

insulating your garage; making sure not to idle

your vehicle while still inside the garage, and

having proper ventilation in your bedroom. Some

experts may suggest placing two cedar trees either

side of the garage walls, as a way to have “living”

energy growing up and connecting the ground to

the second floor over the open space of the

garage. Placement of your bed and the direction

you sleep in is vitally important. Your head must

be against a permanent wall. Calling a Feng Shui

Real Home Advice


Fireplace Cleaning

There is nothing more pleasing than contemplating

a heart-warming fire going in the hearth as the

weather starts to cool. Fall is probably the best time

to make sure all is in good working order ahead of

the cooling weather. Chimneys, fireplaces and vents

should be inspected and cleaned just prior to, and

after the winter to work optimally. This will ensure

regular maintenance clears debris and blockages,

and venting works efficiently. Check with a flashlight

to see whether the creosote is thicker than

1/8th inch and if so, the job needs to get done.

If you are not comfortable getting onto your roof

you can clean your chimney from the bottom up.

Chimney brush sizes and shapes are determined by

whether you have a round or square-shaped flue.

Small brushes make the work of cleaning the flue a

lot harder; the size should be snug enough – just

slightly larger than the flue to move with ease.

Fibreglass rods can be purchased for straight chimneys.

Make sure the brush has the same connection

type as the rod. The rod lengths will be the height

from your chimney to the damper. You or someone

can drop a rope down from the top of the chimney

someone can drop a rope down from the top of the

chimney to determine the length.

Make sure to wear gloves and have the surrounding

floor covered with a protective mat or plastic liner.

To start, attach the brush to your first rod. As you

move it up the flue adds the additional rods for

ease. As you get your brush through the damper,

push further up to attach additional rods. Push

through to get an up and down scraping, sweeping

motion. Once you have completed cleaning the

creosote and debris, pull your broom out and use a

brush and bucket, or an ash vacuum to pick up the

ash from the floor and inner ledge.

Keeping your chimney regularly checked and clean

will ensure you don’t have any issues when colder

weather comes to stay and is good for your health.

With this work done, you can now relax and enjoy

an efficient and warming fireplace.

30 Real Home Advice

Real Home Advice


32 Real Home Advice

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