Indoor Plants In Decoration; Types, Tips And How To Care For Them At Home

One of the best options for achieving the perfect atmosphere of any room or room in our house is the use of indoor plants as a decoration complement. Its health benefits have been extensively proven: they create relaxed environments and therefore reduce stress levels. But, also, they help to reduce dust by reducing the dryness of the environment.

No matter the style of decoration, there are so many varieties of flowers and plants that they are easily adaptable to any style and environment, whether traditional or completely modern.

The only things to take into account are the light and humidity needs of the same and, above all, consider that in general, few plants support the continuous change from one place to another, it is better to always keep them in the same place in the house.

Types of decorative indoor plants

It is important to know which plants are ideal for interior spaces. These varieties of plants normally require little light and water, and that makes them ideal for being at home.

Below is a shortlist of indoor plants that are ideal to be placed inside the house and decorated:

  • Poles: They need to be hung and in a space near the light. It is recommended to place them near the windows.
  • Aspidistra: A hardy plant that requires shade and little watering.
  • Trunk of Brazil: A plant that does not need much light and is resistant to drought. It can be placed anywhere in the house.
  • Cacti: There are many varieties of cacti, but most of them can be in small pots, they should be watered sparingly, but they need light, so they are ideal to be in the windows.
  • Dracena: A plant that does not require much sun or space. It can measure up to two meters, and the way to water it must be moderate.
  • Sansevieria: Ideal for dark places, does not require much watering, and can live up to fifteen years with little care.
  • Aglaonema: Ideal for indoors, it does not require much light, it should be watered regularly, but it is not cold tolerant.
  • Ferns: Ferns are used to hang; they need enough light, so it is recommended that they be at the entrance or patio of the house; they require abundant irrigation for their growth and beauty.
  • Ficus: It is a very striking and beautiful plant that can be used outdoors to decorate or indoors as a bonsai.

What are the best indoor plants to decorate?

Many plants adapt well to home conditions, but some such as the following can be highlighted:

  • The sansevieras and cactus, in general, their little need for irrigation although the first survive better in dark conditions than the latter.
  • The ficus, the bamboo, the espatifilos, and dracaenas, they need more watering and humidity.
  • The ivy, which is characterized by rapid growth, sometimes difficult to control, and that is a good option to fill hanging baskets.
  • The herbs can be used to decorate any style of cooking, while they can become a natural air freshener and be very useful for future recipes.

For oxygen to flow in the home, there is nothing better than growing plants. If a garden is not available, it is not a cause for concern, as we have seen, some species can adapt to every corner of the interior of the house or dwelling.

10 Tips To Furnish A Terrace Or Patio Successfully

Spring is here, at least officially. It has not been noticed much, but that gives you valuable time to set up your terrace or patio. The “outdoor living” operation begins and with it many headaches. To make it easier for you to set up your private outdoor space, we give you tips that we always apply in our interior design projects when furnishing a terrace or patio. We hope you find them very useful.

  • Be realistic with the space you have. If you have little space, you will not be able to place a large dining table and a chill-out with sofas and a coffee table. We know that both are super tasty, but having a few meters forces you to prioritize and choose. Try to put aside fashions and think objectively about what you are going to use more. When you are clear, jump for it.
  • Adapt to space. Measure the terrace and draw a plan with dimensions. Visit physical stores and websites and take note of the furniture you like the most. Draw them on the plane with their real dimensions and assess the space left to pass. A good trick not to overdo it: do not put more furniture on the terrace than you would put in any other room in the house.
  • Bet on versatile furniture that you can use both inside and outside. Chairs or the stools are ambivalent, and you can usually use them indoors and take them out on the terrace when the good weather arrives. Or vice versa.
  • Don’t forget about storage. You will need space to store cushions, gardening tools (if you incorporate a plant) … If you have space in a closet at home, perfect. If not, think about where you are going to put all those things before launching to buy them.
  • Minimizes the maintenance of the furniture. Furniture exposed to weather conditions can easily deteriorate. If you have a storage room or covered space to store them in winter, perfect. If not, think of materials that can withstand the elements well or are stackable, foldable, or easily removable.
  • You will only use it if it is comfortable. Observe the space at different times of the day, and arrange the furniture according to how you are going to experience the terrace. If you are going to use it as a solarium in the afternoon, look for the west orientation for your hammocks. If you are going to use it for eating, try to protect the table from the sun with an awning or umbrella.
  • Finishes are important, but sometimes they take a lot of the budget. You can start with the furniture and continue with the finishes the following year or opt for inexpensive solutions such as painting the floor or covering it with a vinyl carpet.
  • If you are going to incorporate plants, you should install a few large ones than many small ones. When you go to choose them, discuss in your nursery the conditions to which they will be exposed, and they will help you select the species that best suits them.
  • Do not neglect the accessories. You must have beautiful furniture and take care of the lighting, the textiles and even the dishes you use at the table.
  • And to finish, don’t forget that you will see it all year round. Typically, these outdoor spaces are linked to the living room or bedroom. When you start making decisions, keep in mind that the result will be “your new views” for the rest of the year.

Even the smallest terrace can be used and become your favorite place in the house. Follow these tips, and success is assured.

Issues And Problems When Building A House

The main fears of building a house have to do with money and banks.

Banks estimate a maximum amount for the mortgage, depending on the owner’s payroll and the house to be executed.

Builder, Architect, and Surveyor. Who do I hire?

Yes, it is normal to be terrified by the idea that any of these building agents will come out “frog.”

I would advise me very long before hiring each of them. Of course, what would be clear would be to hire some independent Technicians from the Construction company. When the Technician “offers” it to the Builder, it may not be as objective as it should be. And let’s not put the extreme of being in the pay of the company (what worse things have been seen …!).

For any of the 3, I would ask for many references. And finally, I would value the price in all 3 cases. With a sample of 3 budgets, those that drop more than 30% concerning the arithmetic mean, discarded. And those that rise more than that 30%, surely also.

See if you will ask the Architect for a printed copy of the project, and he will charge you. Or if you ask the Rigger for a Construction Progress Certificate for the bank and it “traces” 80 Dollars. And with the construction company the same, but multiplied by 10.

How do I know that the Builder is not overcharging me?

In most cases, before issuing an invoice, the Builder issues a certification. This certification collects everything that has been carried out on the work (measurement at origin) and multiplies it by its corresponding price. In this way, after adding VAT and subtracting the last invoice, the amount to be invoiced is reached.

To corroborate these measurements, you can go to your Quantity Surveyor, who is in charge of measuring, together with the Builder, the pits carried out. As soon as the Quantity Surveyor approves the certification measurements, it will only be missing that you, as owners, check the prices of the games you have specified in the contract.

If there is a minor error, do not worry because, always measuring at the origin, it would be corrected in the next certification.

I have no spatial vision, and I am afraid that the bathrooms and kitchen will look bad.

In this regard, I propose 3 solutions:

  • Some architects include in their budget the interior design advisory service. This is a plus and is highly valued when the Architect is hired.
  • Hire an interior designer to do an interior design project.
  • Many companies supply materials and equipment for the kitchen and bathrooms that provide advice and infographics of these finished rooms.

When does the bank provide me with the money to pay the Builder?

As the work progresses, the Quantity Surveyor or the Architect draws up what is called a Work Progress Certificate. This certificate records the percentage of the work that has been carried out at that time.

What is the final withholding?

There is another problem. The bank also reserves the last 10% of the executed work as retention. And you will not pay it until you have the First Occupation License. Think that from the end of the work itself, until the City Council issues the First Occupation License, you must make the Final Work Certificate and endorse it in the Professional Colleges of Architects and Quantity Surveyors. These procedures usually take several weeks.

In a $ 150,000 project, with 10% initial withholding and 10% final withholding, there would be $ 30,000 that you will not collect from the bank until a couple of months after finishing the project.

5 Suggestions For Choosing The Best Construction Company

Whether it is masonry, installations, exterior carpentry company… there are certain things that I demand of all of you to be on my Top companies list!

Safety and Health

 

Before entering work on a construction site, any company or self-employed worker must notify the Health and Safety Coordinator (CSS, who is almost always the Quantity Surveyor). The CSS ensures safety on the construction site and demand that companies also do so.

 

Among other things, before entering the work, we require documentation from companies that, by law, must provide us.

 

First of all, is the Health and Safety Plan (PSS). This document includes all the hazards on the site and how workers will avoid/minimize them. This is mandatory since a Royal Decree of 1997 for ALL contracting companies.

 

It is difficult for the workers of a company to comply with the safety regulations on a construction site when not even the company can provide the documentation required by law.

 

Have all the documentation on site

 

The PSS above must also be on site. And if an electrician doesn’t know whether or not to put on the helmet, you can check it out. In the Installations: Electricity section, your company has already exposed a series of risks and how to avoid/minimize them.

 

For example, the helmet minimizes damage in the event of an object hitting the head of an operator.

Programming of the works

 

I have dedicated half of my working life to work as a Construction Manager in different construction companies. If I have been paid to coordinate, organize, and plan works, and still my companies ended up making money from it, it is because this is very important. Also, all workers in this organization must be involved. I explain. If I ask a bricklayer what he is going to do in 3 days when he finishes partitioning, he cannot answer me: “I still don’t know. I don’t even know if I’ll be in this work or another. ”

Quality Control

 

The Quantity Surveyors are in charge of controlling the quality, execution, and materials that become part of the work. These must-have CE Marking, mandatory for all products that are marketed in Europe.

 

To justify the CE marking, construction materials have a Declaration of Performance. This assures us that they are placing “hare” and not “cat” and their characteristics, which must be at least those specified in the Project.

Communication

 

It seems that many companies work “on the sly.” They arrive at the construction site, do their job (better or worse), and leave. And a few days later, they send the invoice.

 

Wrong!

 

Lack of communication. If you know that I, as a Surveyor, am the “Execution Director” and I am paid to “direct the execution,” what less than to notify me when you are going to enter the work.

 

I also like to be notified when they are going to measure the work to invoice. If not, when the owners ask me if there are 400 m2 of brick, I will not know. And if I measure by myself, the quantities will not coincide. So yes, I like to measure together with the construction company. Or count plugs, it doesn’t matter.

Cheap Houses, Low-Cost Houses: Where’s The Trick?

In most cases in which it is spoken of cheap houses (or low cost), it is a question of prefabricated houses in factories (also called preassembled). These have the advantage of being carried out in favorable environmental and labor conditions and with fully specialized labor. Raw materials and their wastes are also optimized. Only works such as foundations, the assembly of the house, and the water, electricity, sanitation, and telecommunications connections are carried out on site.

 

In other cases, these are “common” homes, made on-site, but the companies that market them ensure that by having a high volume of work and doing them very similar to each other (they even have catalogs), costs are optimized in the execution and acquisition of materials, obtaining very cheap houses.

 

Both in one case and the other, the objective is to obtain housing at a low price. To do this, they optimize execution times and offer qualities that, at a minimum, meet the requirements of current regulations.

What are we talking about when we talk about price?

 

Contrary to popular belief, the “final price” is much higher than the price paid to the construction company.

 

The final price of construction is the sum of many costs. Summarizing:

 

– Material Execution Budget (PEM). It is the price that involves the direct execution of the different items of work (bricklayers, installers, materials, carpenters …). It is what the builder is paid. It is used colloquially when talking about the price of the work.

– Conditioning of the plot. Although it could be included in the PEM, it usually is not. Reflects the activities that are carried out on the un-built land once the work is finished.

– Cost of the technicians. The project, Construction Director Architect, Execution Director Rigger, and Safety and Health Coordinator (usually a rigger).

– Works license granted by the corresponding City Council (usually amounts to 4% of the PEM)

– Hooks to general supply networks (water, electricity, sanitation, and telecommunications) are paid to different companies.

– VAT on all of the above (less than the license).

To have a specific reference and for guidance:

 

We can estimate that the PEM of a “common” single-family house of average qualities in Galicia is usually around 950-1000 $ / m2 built. This estimate depends on many factors, and the more area the building has, the lower the cost ratio will be. However, as a guide, we could estimate that a house of average qualities of 150m2 would be around a PEM of $ 145,000.

 

With “basic” qualities, and always complying with existing regulations, we could lower the ratio to around $ 850 / m2. Even with an exhaustive study and a very worked project, we could reach 800 $ / m2. Although many times the opposite is promised, lowering these ratios is very complicated and even reckless.

 

Regarding the cost of the project and the technicians, it could be estimated at $ 100 / m2 built. In this sense, it should be noted that the variation in prices today is abysmal.

Real Estate Agent: 5 Mistakes You Cannot Make. Let It Not Happen To You!

In the day to day, identifying some mistakes that you can make as a real estate agent is not usually easy. Extended hours, multiple calls, messages, and paperwork make your opportunities for improvement a little invisible.

But since everything in this life has a solution, don’t worry. Today we invite you to stop along the way and think clearly to get the most out of your work. Let’s look at those aspects that can be done better!

Avoid contacts, the first of the mistakes of real estate agents

They say out there, “it’s not what you know, but who you know,” and this is really true when it comes to real estate agents. Relationships are everything! The referrals you receive are a crucial part of the game and a primary source of your work.

Clients want to be able to trust the person who manages one of their greatest assets; therefore, they are very likely to listen to someone they know beforehand.

Forget to “visualize” and plan

It is a law of attraction: what you visualize, you materialize. A mistake of real estate agents is not to identify what they want at a professional level with their real estate or construction company, on the contrary, you must define your priorities and the monthly income you want.

Losing contact with clients is the fourth mistake of real estate agents

It is easy to lose contact with the first customers. However, don’t forget that you were part of a fundamental moment in that person and his family. You know intimate details of their financial status and family situation.

All of these communications with their permission, of course. Be careful so that you do not become an undesirable person and fall into another mistake of the real estate agents.

Don’t stand out from the competition

What is your differentiating element? Get to know yourself, establish your added value, or what aspect you could strengthen to stand out amidst the offer of real estate and construction companies that the country and the continent have.

If you want to receive a financial reward for your work, you have to stand out in the middle of the noise and give customers a reason to look for you. Take time to discover the skills that make you special in front of the market and stay away from the real estate agents’ mistakes.