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Thursday, April 9, 2015

Guest Post: Get The Most From Your Heater

The heating and cooling system of our home is necessary especially if you live in a place where the climate changes are extreme. This is important so you can feel comfortable in your home whether it is hot or cold in your area. Here is a guest post about energy-efficient heaters for the home.

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Heating the family home is a huge part of ensuring that your family are well cared for during the winter months, and is an integral part of ensuring that they are comfortable in their beds at night. It’s vital for the health and well-being of your family that you choose the right kind of heater for your needs – just as much as it’s vital for your hip pocket every month when your bills come in. A big part of choosing the right heater is ensuring that you have energy efficient heaters throughout your home, as it’s going to mean a better energy bill, and less of an impact on the environment. No one wants to spend more money on their heating than they have to, and while heating your home is a vital component of keeping everyone cosy, you can do it in a cost effective way to heat your home efficiently. 

There are a number of ways to improve the effectiveness of your heater at home, and you can follow some of these easy tips to ensure that you’re getting the most from your winter months.

Improve the effectiveness of your heater
Before you even think about flicking the switch to turn your heater on, make sure that you've taken the right steps to ensure that your home is well insulated and protected against any droughts or issues in the room or rooms you are trying to heat. There’s really nothing worse than flipping the switch to turn on your heater and then waiting as the minutes tick coolly by, while you shiver and hope to god that the heater starts to work soon. A cold room does not a nice place make, and you would be well advised to fix things up on the insulation side of things before winter arrives. 

Make use of the space
When you’re heating a room, think about the space you’re trying to heat. Do you have a full floor to ceiling window that has the sun beating on it – be it a winter sun or not – but you've got the curtains closed? Think about opening up the curtains and letting the sun shine through, as this will heat the room just as well as a heater in the middle of the day. Use the sun as much as you can for heating, and you’ll find yourself utilising a free source of energy which is entirely passive and excellent for your bills. You will even find that if the sun is heating something like a tiled floor, that you’ll see heat stored and released later into your home as the day passes.

Only heat what you need
If you have a large area that you’re trying to heat but don’t use all of the space, then think about dividing the room off from other unused areas with doors or curtains. The smaller the area that you’re trying to heat means that you’ll be able to see more bang for your heating buck. A ducted heating system may already allow you to separate areas up into zones, which means that you only need to heat the areas that are being used. 

Insulate your home
In the winter months, you’ll find that up to 50% of your heating is potentially being lost through un-insulated ceilings and walls. Insulation is made up of any material that works to reduce the amount of heat that is lost or that goes into your home through the ceiling, doors, windows, walls or floor. Great insulation works to keep your home warmer with less effort on the part of your heater, and will also reduce your need for and reliance on heaters and other heating appliances. 

If you don’t have insulation, or the appropriate measures in place to prevent heating loss in your home, then why not consider getting some put in place to improve the efficacy of your heaters and other related devices. Your family will be more than thankful and your heating bill is going to be reduced as well – always a welcome bonus! 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Thing to Consider in Buying a Property

things to consider a buying a property

A house is a necessity for us all for it would be comfortable for the family to be able to have our own homes where we can feel secure from any harm especially from intense heat and rain. In choosing a house there are various considerations that we need to make. It may include the location of the house, number of family members, the needs of the family and of course, the budget. So, if you are planning to buy a new house, here are some things that you need to consider:

1. Budget. How much is your budget for a house? If you have an allocated amount, it would be easier for you to look for a place to stay. You can check homes that are below your budget, just right for the budget and those that a little above the budget. This way, you can get the best home without spending too much. Always assess all the financial burdens before diving into buying a home. Also decide on how you plan to pay for the house.

2. Location. Is the location near the school or your office? Are there convenience stores nearby or pharmacies maybe? Is the neighborhood safe and secure? Make sure to check the place before you buy the house. You can try visiting the area day and night so you can see the goings-on in the place that you intend to stay.

3. House Design. Of course, you want your house to be beautiful and presentable. Look at the design of the house if it suits your taste. Check the interior too. Check how many rooms are there and if the layout is perfect and functional for the family. You may also consider renovations and additions to the home too if you have the budget.

Make sure that you inspect the existing home before you finally purchase it. Check for possible repairs and renovations too because this will also be part of your budget. Consider if this would be a home you'd like to live for a lifetime. Because if that is the case, it has to be open to possible changes in the family too.

When you are looking for a home, there are five possible ways for house hunting. You could either check online listings, consult real estate agents, word of mouth, newspaper listings and real estate fairs. In the US, 90 percent of house hunters find a place through the internet because it is easier and less time consuming with a huge number of choices. But in Asia, there is a lesser percentage of people who use the internet to look for homes.

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Property Market Study in the Philippines

In the Philippines, not a huge percentage of people are into online transactions when we speak of properties for fear of scams and frauds. But we do check available properties online too. Many sellers and developers went online to market and showcase properties. One website that we can check on available properties in the country is Lamudi.


Global property website Lamudi conducted a comprehensive overview of the property sector in 16 emerging countries that included the Philippines. It was based on an online survey conducted with house-hunters and real estate agents. The research aimed to assess the habits of online property seekers.

One of the primary consideration for Filipinos in choosing a property is the price. Some people consider it as their investment while 72% wants the security of owning their own home. It would really be nice to be able to live in our own homes without worrying about rentals and other rental concerns. From the research, they found out that 60 percent of renters leased their homes due to cost constraints. 

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As different natural catastrophes came to the country like the Super Typhoon Haiyan, the number of families who opted to purchase properties increased to 7.2% which could be a manifestation that people want more secured and safe homes. As for agents and brokers, more than 90 percent of them think of there will be a positive response in the market for the next 12 months.

There is a great chance for growth in the real estate industry. It was cited by Jose Romarx Salas, Head of Research and Consulting at Pinnacle Real Estate Consulting Services that the key challenge of the Philippine property market is to find enough land to accommodate the development. There will be lots of development in the country too in terms of real estate and housing. Below is a graphic presentation of the most popular locations for properties in Metro Manila.

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Well, whether you are in the Philippines or in the USA or wherever you are in the world, the three important things to consider in buying a home would be the same. If you look carefully in these three things, you will never go wrong and you will be able to get your dream home.

The above study of the property market could also be of help to you.

Image Credit: World Property Journal

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

How to (Really) Get Your Toddler to Sleep

get kids to sleep

Me: Bella, play time is over. It's time to sleep.

Bella: No, it's not! I will not rest!

If you are a parent, for sure, we share the same sentiments when it comes to putting our toddlers to sleep. They always want to play and play and never take a rest at all. Kids seem to never get tired. Merely looking at Bella playing makes me feel exhausted. I feel like she is already tired but just resists to retire to bed.

I know it isn't just me. You feel the same way too. And like me, you would be asking how to really let your little ones sleep early or at least without the hassle of running after them or without the faces of disapproval from our little ones. Oh, well. This is part of parenthood and this is one challenging part that we need to face.

When Bella was younger, it was easy to let her sleep. I'll just breastfeed her and she'll doze off. Piece of cake. No sweat. As a matter of fact, I can work on the computer while she gets her milk and sleep. Talk about multitasking! But those were the days when I was still breastfeeding and she wasn't as active as she is today.

But today is different. I know how she feels whenever I tell her it is time to take a nap in the afternoon and it's time to rest from her long day of play time in the evening because I felt the same way when I was still a kid. I HATE to nap. I feel like it was a hindrance to my fun and that those who are trying to put me to sleep are total kill joys! So, I just pretend that I was sleeping. And I'll check the time if it is already okay to wake up. Lol. While my younger brother was sleeping, I was merely closing my eyes until wake up time. And guess what? Of course, I always get up ahead of my brother. I'll just put a hotdog pillow beside him before I leave the bedroom so that he will think I was still there. Not that I look like a hotdog pillow, though. It's just that feeling of having someone beside you while you sleep. Still sounds crazy. Lol

As I put myself into Bella's shoes, I realized that it is really hard for her to sleep and nap. Honestly, I have Googled "how to get your toddler sleep" or "easy ways to put a child to sleep". I asked Google not once but many times. I saw articles written by Moms and I was dismayed with one article that claimed it was easy to let the child sleep from A-Z. Imagine that, A-Z means 26 ways. How could that be easy? I saw other moms who shared that post on Facebook and were also not happy about the 26 easy ways. 

Oh forget about that. I'm going to share to you some ways that I found effective in letting Bella sleep. But I'm not sure if it will apply to you because kids are different. If you haven't tried this, give it a try. You won't loose anything from trying.

Before bedtime, inform your toddler that it will be time for sleep in a few minutes. Remind them of the things you will do before going to bed. Make this a routine too. Remember not to feed your kids with large meals when bed time is near. But let them snack a little if they want to.

1. Set the bedroom into resting aura. Do this by keeping her toys and books. You can turn off the lights too if that is okay with your child. Bella doesn't like to sleep when its dark. Once your kid can see that the fun is really over, he might just rest as well.

2. Talk about rewards. Tell your child that if he will sleep, he will give you his favorite snack when he wakes up. Or if it is night time, tell him that you are going to do something exciting the next day. Make sure to keep your promise ALL the time! If not, then you will not be effective. Always remember not to forget to give them whatever things you promised them as a reward for sleeping. This way, they will feel that it is really important to sleep and that whenever they obey you, they reap the good fruit!

3. Freshen up and give them milk. This is a usual thing that we moms give our kids before sleeping time. It does help them to get a good sleep.

4. Tell stories. Bella loves bedtime stories. But sometimes, I get tired reading to her. You know why? She is not contented with just one or two books. It would always be 6 to 10 books! My throat gets fry from reading! But yah, she goes to sleep after she is done listening to her stories.

5. Sing and massage. Don't just sing. Massage his feet or arms while you sing. You can also rub his back or tummy or wherever he wants to. This would be soothing and they will feel relaxed when you do this. Bella would always ask me to this to her. And it is effective.

Be sure also that your bedroom is well ventilated and your kid is comfortable in the bed.  I know some of you have tried doing the above things. If you think it doesn't work. Try to think of other ways too. You know your children. You know what works for them best. Sometimes, you've got to try harder too. Just look at it as a skill that you need to perfect!

So, it's sleeping time for Bella now. Time for a box of books for her bed time stories again. Really, this storytelling time kills my throat! Speaking of box, I made her a box for her books. Once you see it, you will get the idea of how many books she would ask me to read. In truth, I hide the others then I change the books in her books from time to time. Shhhh..don't tell her!Lol.

Sweet dreams. 

If you want to save this post or share it to other parents, feel free to use the infographic below that I have made featuring Lalaloopsy Pillow Featherbed. If you;ll ask why Pillow, it's because she loves sleeping so much. You might even wish your kids are as eager as her when it comes to bedtime!

how to get your toddler to sleep

Moms have different ways of putting toddlers to bed. Can you add some to the tips I have above? Feel free to leave your comments below. I'll be glad to hear from you!

Friday, February 15, 2013

Tips: Don't Be a Dumb Online Shopper

Online shopping is the trend these days. It’s not just easy and convenient but it also offers a wide variety of items one can get. There are online shops in Facebook, Multiply and also websites. There are actually so many online shops with items that every mom will love. I love online shopping. I receive packages many times in a week for different items I buy online and for the orders of my clients (I also have an online shop). Receiving a package is always an exciting moment. Opening it adds another dose of joy especially if there are freebies inside!  I admit it that I am an Online Shopaholic  But then, it’s all worth it especially that the stuffs I buy are for Bella. 

Moms who are fond of shopping online will surely agree with me that it is indeed an exciting activity. But despite this online shopping trend, there are still some people who are ignorant about it or are just pretending to be ignorant. So, I’d be sharing to you some tips for online shoppers. This is to give you a guide on what proper online buying is.  This also serves as a reminder to those who are already into online shopping. Let’s take a look at the 10 things I have listed below:

online shopping

1. Read the shop rules. It is very important to know the shop rules. So when you get into an online shop, check on their rules first. This way, you won’t look stupid by asking questions that are actually in the shop rules and you won’t look dumb by doing things due to ignorance. For instance, the shop only allows three days reservation for the items but then you won’t pay within that three day limit thinking that you can reserve longer. Well, most sellers would remind their buyers but still it would be a shame that you did not read the rules. The funny side is, some buyers get mad at sellers for not letting them reserve the items they want for a longer time. Well, make reading a habit.

2. Check your wallets. Before you decide to buy, check your wallets or your ATMs or your piggy banks if you can really afford such amount. There are many buyers who would comment “mine” or “get” on items even if they cannot pay. It’s actually simple, if you don’t have money, don’t buy. Don’t pretend that you can afford something even if you can’t.

3. Read captions and labels. Aside from reading the shop rules, you should also read the labels and captions of the items. Most sellers would place prices and details. If these are already seen on each item, then do not be asking anymore. Some are fond of asking “how much” and would get a “price posted” or “details posted” response. Save yourself from shame by reading before leaving a comment.

4. Be patient for responses. You are not the only client that every seller has. So, be patient. Some would immediately reply to queries through private message but there are times that sellers are also busy. So, if you are really interested to buy, wait for the response. Don’t get mad at once.

5. Look at the pictures well. What you see is what you get. If you want more details of the item, you can ask the seller. Why is it important to take a good look at the pictures? Because you might mutter abut a certain detail about the item you got. You might tell the seller that she sent the wrong item even it is actually the same. This is also important especially if you are buying preloved because sellers will always post photos to show flaws. So, be sure to check them all well.

6. Give correct personal information.  Honesty is a big thing when it comes to online shopping because you don’t get to see each other to talk about it. Imagine how you would feel if the seller of a shop you want to buy from will lie to you about her products and her identity. So, you have to be honest too for it is where trust will start to build up.

7. Do not haggle unless permitted by seller. Some buyers are fond of haggling. You can actually haggle if the seller allows you to. Check if she answers queries of other buyers asking for the last price. Some sellers also place a note if items are on its “fixed” price. Sellers will let you know if you can haggle. If they’ll not announce that, then you have to get items on a fixed price.

8. Understand shipping matters. Couriers are totally autonomous from online sellers. Sellers do not hire them to work for them. Couriers are doing a separate job which means that their actions cannot be controlled by the sellers. So, if there are delayed shipping, you should not blame the sellers since they aren't the ones who deliver your items. You can politely ask help from sellers to track your parcels but do not put the blame on them. Also, you should know that buyers always shoulder the shipping fee and that your fee depends on the number of items (or weight of the items) that you buy. Sellers won't overprice the shipping fee. Don't worry. They even pay for the excess pounds sometimes.

9. Be nice. It says that the “customer is always right”. That could be true but it doesn't give you the license to act like royalty or to bad mouth online sellers. So, just be nice and friendly and everything will turn out okay. Good buyers not only become friends with the sellers but also receive special gifts from them.

10. Remember your commitments. When you have bought something online and committed to pay on a certain date, you have to pay on time. Do not be giving too many alibis about not being able to do this and that. Also, do not have fake amnesia by pretending to forget about sending payments. And above all,  do not just vanish into thin air because you will waste the seller’s time and effort. 

Being a responsible buyer is important because you may not meet these sellers in person but it is always good to act rightly in everything you do. Shopping online is fast and easy but you also have to make sure that you know how the entire process goes to avoid getting screwed. And for sure, you don’t like to appear stupid in front of other people’s eyes because when you post something stupid online, the entire online world will get a dose of it. So, be careful. Also, just be honest with whatever concerns you have. Sellers are always willing to look into it.

So, that’s it for today. I hope you got good inputs from this post. I’ll be writing more about online shopping and I’ll be featuring some great finds online. Watch out for that mommies!


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