I suggest that you find your painting contractor on your own when living in the Chicago area. Do your own research instead of hoping that contractor referral service will help you. I’ll elaborate why I feel this way soon.

I would advise that you call a friend or relative who has recently had the interior or the exterior of their home painted by a professional painter. You can ask them how they felt about their experience. If they liked their painting contractor, they will let you know. They’ll also let you know if they didn’t. You should ask them how they felt about the painting company’s quality, price and service. Was the contractor attentive to their needs or not? Just keep in mind that you’re needs and wants will not be identical to your friend’s or relative’s. For example; was the painting contractor fully insured? Maybe your friend or relative didn’t care if they were or not. When I say fully insured, I don’t just mean a “liability insurance policy” that anyone can get for sometimes just a few hundred bucks a year. But, do they carry “workers compensation insurance” as well? Well, if they have even one employee, they are required to by law.

Another way to find a painter is to do an online search, open up your local yellow page directory or respond to a flyer that was hung on your door. Call the painters for a free estimate. I usually suggest getting three estimates. If you get too many more than that, then you’ll just drive yourself crazy.

If you decide to try to find a Chicago area painting contractor by using a painting contractor referral service, just remember one thing. Most of the “qualified, fully insured” painting contractors and many customers that I know, who have enrolled in these referral services have been disappointed and disillusioned with the results and have stopped using the contractor referral service altogether. So, what do you end up getting with a lead referral service? You may just get some of the “least qualified” contractors! Yes, you heard that right. And you thought that they were going to be the best, being screened for you and all! Caveat Emptor! Let the buyer beware!

Let me explain something. These contractor referral services claim to “screen” painting contractors. Yet, they seem to be “negligent at best”,when it comes to screening for workers compensation insurance”, one of the most fundamental and basic areas that is of extreme importance to any professional, legitimate painting company and more importantly to you, the customer that is hoping that the contractor referral service is “looking out for you”. Read on, I’m much more cynical than that. I don’t think it is “negligence” on the part of the contractor referral services. I think it’s more like “blatant disregard” for you, the customer. I truly believe, that the contractor referral services are banking on the fact that the average homeowner does not know the law; and then they use this to pull the wool over your eyes while basically implying to you the following. “Don’t worry Mr. and Mrs. Homeowner. We are looking out for you. We “pre-screened” these contractors for you!” I know. That does sound cynical of me doesn’t it? But, why do the contractor referral services fail to screen for such a “basic” thing as workers compensation insurance?

In Illinois, it is law, that when a painting contractor hires employees and has them working on your home, that those employees be covered by workers compensation insurance, just in case a painter gets hurt or dies while painting the interior or exterior of your home. Guess what. Painters do get hurt on jobs and more often than you might think. And serious injury for painters is actually quite common. And did you know that your homeowner’s insurance may NOT cover you if a painter gets hurt while painting your house.

In fairness to some of these contractors, if a painter is working for himself and by himself, he is not required to carry workers compensation insurance on himself, but once he has a worker on the job, it’s a new ball game. Even if the owner of the painting company excludes himself from his policy, he must still provide the workers compensation for his employee. Now, he’ll probably tell you that he’s paying him “as a subcontractor”. Well when somebody gets hurt on the job, somebody is going to still come looking for money from the workers compensation insurer. When they find out that there is no workers compensation insurance, then somebody is still going to pay. The painter that is injured will look to collect from whoever has the most money. I would bet that in most cases that means you, the homeowner.

If you don’t think that anyone could possibly get hurt on just this one little job for you, then I suggest you do a little research online. Just do a Google search for “house painting fatalities” or “house painting injuries”. It might shock you. People get hurt doing construction and home improvements all the time. You can even narrow down your search to the Chicago area. I don’t want to scare you, but you must open your eyes and see the world in which you live. Many times an unethical painter or other tradesman will even “fake” an injury, looking to milk a situation for a long time. Please don’t be naive enough to think that it won’t happen to you because you are nice person. Nice people are the “easiest” for people with no scruples to take advantage of. It happens all the time.

Maybe one contractor referral exists that screens for it, but I have personally NEVER seen a contractor referral service in the Chicago area screen painters for workers compensation insurance. I’ve only seen them screen for liability insurance, lawsuits or judgments and a few other things. They seem to be more concerned with the following: Joe Dokes in Winnetka says…..”Hank and his brother and law were such nice guys, not only did they do a nice job painting my living room, but they also walked my dog?”

I have come to the conclusion and it is just my opinion, that there is a reason why the contractor referral services do NOT screen painters for workers compensation insurance. They leave this “extremely” important screening for workers compensation insurance out of their “screening process” because if they actually did screen for this insurance, then they would lose about 90% of their revenue generating customers, which are the painting contractors that pay for your name. You are a hot lead. And the contractor referral service will sell your name, address and phone number to anywhere from 2 to 4, to maybe even more painters. They’ll collect money from these contractors whether you buy a paint job or not.

The reason the contractor referral service will NOT screen for workers compensation insurance is because over 90% of the painters that you attempt to hire from the referral service will NOT have this workers compensation insurance because it is too expensive, or they do not know that they are “required” to have their employees covered by it. I really don’t blame the painters. These are men and women who are just out there in the world trying to make a buck to support their families. They may in fact be innocent. There are a lot of laws out there. They just need to be educated and if the contractor referral service “really” had the contractor’s interest at heart, as well as you the homeowner, then they would tell the contractor that he should buy workers compensation insurance to make sure he passes the “screening” process and protects himself, his workers and his customers.

Therefore, what the lead referral services “actually” do is guarantee that you do NOT get the most qualified contractors bidding on your painting project. Instead you may even get the “least” qualified. This is not always the case. There are painting contractors in the Chicago area who are members of paint contractor referral services who do follow the law and carry the proper insurance. But, it’s up to YOU to screen them, even if you hire them from a lead referral service who “claims” to have already qualified them. The lead referral service just won’t do it because this would put them out of business because they wouldn’t be able to sell leads to enough contractors. Remember, the painters that are contacting you when you have a contractor referral service give your name out, are “paying for your name and job information”.

Lead referral services typically charge the painting contractor anywhere from $25 to $200 for “leads” (your name and address and what work you need done). You are a “lead”. Some charge much more than that and even take a percentage of the job from the contractor. While in theory, I feel that a contractor referral service is a good idea, in practice, I just haven’t seen it work because the contractor referral services are too greedy and want to charge 3 or 4 contractors for your name whether they are fully insured or not and whether you hire one of those contractors or not.

I was a member of several contractor referral services and had good ratings on most of them, however, after going on hundreds of appointments and spending thousands of dollars, I realized that I was bidding against contractors who were unqualified, yet winning the bids because their prices were dirt cheap. But, the customer thought they were “screened”. If you are looking for “cheap” and don’t really care if your painters are complying with Illinois law, then you might find this with the contractor referral services. So it might not be a bad idea to use them if you need to keep your price way low, since so many contractors will be contacting you that are out to cut each others throat. A lot of them can do beautiful work too. I’m not questioning the quality of the work of any of these contractors.

I suggest that you find your painting contractor, on your own; online, from a friend or relative, yellow pages, mass mailings, whatever. There are a lot of good contractors out there. This way, when you are getting your quotes, you can screen them yourself. You know the old saying, “if you want something done right….then do it yourself”. The thing for me that determines professionalism in this industry is whether the painting contractor is “fully insured”. Yep! I know….they ALL say they are! It’s almost laughable.

For information on painters in Calgary click here.

Truly, bathroom remodeling along with kitchen remodeling are two top major home improvements projects made by most Americans as of today. With many aspects to consider, such as faucets, cabinets and fixtures, flooring, toilets, vanities, showers and bath tubs, remodeling your bathroom can often be very overwhelming. It can cost you as much or as little as you choose to put into it. Its definitely one of the most popular home improvement projects for home owners.

For information on Derby bathrooms click here.

However, if you do not want to spend a huge amount of money on your remodel, rest assured knowing that a small affordable bathroom remodeling project can have a major impact if careful thought is put into the design. Bathroom remodeling ranks with kitchen remodeling as one of Americas most popular major home improvements, perhaps because of the return on investment. It improves the enjoyment and usefulness of your home.

Nevertheless, if you are planning a bathroom remodeling project, you may decide to take on the project yourself or give it out to professionals. One of the most common reasons for bathroom remodeling is for a change in the look of the room. A bathroom remodeling project may include replacing the existing sink, shower, bathtub, and toilet with new appliances.

The most common reasons for the remodeling is for a change in the look of the room because homeowners are not satisfied with it. Besides replacing the fixtures that are no longer functional and other remodeling projects, changing the theme and decor of your bathroom will also have a dramatic impact on the rooms appearance. Another factor in bathroom remodeling is that the fixtures, such as the toilet, shower, bathtub and sink are ugly, no longer functional and need replacing.

Actually, the design of your new bathroom is where you should start your planning followed by selecting a new bathroom sink, faucet, and vanity. Bathroom remodels remain one of the most common home improvement projects and there is no end. The selection of the right faucet can give your bathroom a distinctive touch. Modern vanity designs have transformed a practical element of the bathroom into a true way to give your bathroom an elegant and pleasurable look.

Bathroom decor involves shower curtains, wall hangings, bath mats, window curtains and perhaps paints, which can be found in your local home improvement or any hardware store. If you do plan to design your bathroom yourself, make sure to think about the amount of time you spend in your bathroom each day and use this as a way to rate what needs to be upgraded the most. Keep in mind that an estimated of 65% to 75% of what you put into your bathroom design and remodeling, you get back when you sell.

Now that you have successfully decided on your new bathroom design, the challenging decisions arise. Its now time to start selecting color schemes, vanities, cabinets, counters, single or double bathroom sinks, bath tubs and every other element that helps set the tone of your bathroom. Choosing the bathroom tile may be one of your most difficult decisions because of the vast amount of styles, colors and sizes.

Remodeling your bathroom not only improves the enjoyment and usefulness of the home but it adds instant increased value and equity to both older and newer homes. With a full bathroom remodel in the works, such as cabinet replacement, bathtub, sink, lights as well as other fixtures, you will really be pleased with the results. Quality bathroom remodeling job is made up of quality details. Bathroom remodeling is a wonderful way to add value and comfort to your old home and pleasure to your stressful life.

Water damage repairs are necessary to ensure that the structure of the house is safeguarded and protected from deterioration. As we all know, Water damage is a big concern for many homeowners. It is a form of loss that results from the intrusion of water across specific areas or an entire level of the property. The damage can be minor and progressive and it could also be catastrophic with instant results. The damage is a big contributor to the loss of property value. Flooding, rainfall and stagnant water can result to a number of risks like the weakening of the soil foundation, damage to home interiors, electrical devices, rotting and others. Any homeowner should aim to minimize the risks and prevent future damage. This is critical to keep the home safe and maintain its market value.

Risks levels caused by water damage

Water damage repairs can address a number of risks. There are several kinds of damage caused by water. The first level is due to clear water. It could be broken pipes or water spots. The second level is caused by gray water that could be filled with contaminants. It could be sewage water, or failure of water dependent devices to discharge the water out. Lastly, there is damage caused by black water that could be caused by catastrophic events and could be difficult to fix.

Is it safe to go DIY?

When considering water damage repairs, there are some conditions that can be addressed simply by DIY methods. If the damage has not seeped through various systems across the home and can be mitigated by simple repairs, then it might be relevant to do it yourself. However, most water damage shows symptoms when the condition it is already widespread. Plywood and other wooden structures that have been moistened by leaking pipes, ice dams or broken roofs can lead to build up of mold and mildew, causing illness. Such problems can lead to multiple structural and health concerns. Therefore, fast and immediate action is necessary for any homeowner.

Getting a restoration contractor

A restoration service is most beneficial for homes with massive and instantaneous damage like plumbing issues, sewage problems, flooding, hurricane damage and other events that could last more than 24 hours. These particular damages can make the home uninhabitable. It could also lead to health risks due to the growth of microorganisms. Such damages need to be addressed by experts since it is not just on the surface where the problem can settle. The foundation of the house can experience damage as well. Hence, for most damage cause by water, it would be best to have the help of an expert in dealing with them.

Water-related damage has always been a big concern for many homeowners and to address both mild and severe issues, getting the help from restoration services can be critical to:

– find out the extent of the risk using state of the art equipment
– make the room/home habitable again
– protect your family from microorganisms that are present in stagnant, dirty water
– safeguard the goods such as furniture or electronics from risks
– Keep interiors and exteriors in top shape after the damage.

Damages incurred from water can be devastating. It is important to do something about it fast and effectively. With minor or large scale damage, it would be best to get advice from expert doing water damage repairs to ensure a home that is dry and safe from future risks that could happen. Investing on quality restoration service is then necessary for any homeowner as it will make sure that their homes are secure at all times.

This article is dedicated to a very specific roof repair. This is a split level house with a second story roof over a single story roof. The exterior of the house body is lap siding. The first story roof in question is back-pitched into a second story wall. During a heavy rain water comes off of the second story roof and is dumped onto the first story roof. The water is then routed into a dead valley that leads straight into the second story wall (poor architectural design). Over many years of this water slamming into the second story wall, it eventually started leaking over the flashing and under the shingles onto the family room ceiling below and ultimately ruining the drywall. What we are going to go over is how to minimize the amount of water in this area and repairing the roof. In this case we know where the problem area is. The problem is where the first story roof meets the second story wall, so this is where we will start. In roofing, shingles start at the bottom overhang of the roof and are laid up the roof to the peak. They are then finished off with a roof cap of some sort. We will begin by reversing this process.

  1. Clean the debris from the area of roof you will be working on.
  2. Remove the roof cap, starting at the wall, back to the length of the first shingle at the peak of the roof.
  3. Remove the shingles from the wall. Start at the peak and work your way down to the eve Remove only what is necessary. In our case, we removed no more than one full shingle (mostly partial shingles) all the way down.
  4. Once the shingles and nails are removed, fill the nail holes with roof sealant.
  5. At this point, we could see that the 5×5 flashing, that goes from the roof to the wall, had been installed incorrectly. We could actually see the top of the flashing was cut (big no no!) below the bottom of the siding allowing any heavy rain a direct route into the house. At this point we decided the best method of repair was going to be to fill in the old 5×5 gap with roof sealant and start over with a new design.
  6. Fill the gap, from the bottom of the siding to the roof deck, with roof sealant. You don’t have to be especially clean here as it will be covered with new 5×5 flashing and 1×4 pressure treated trim.
  7. Install new 5×5 flashing per manufacturers recommendations. Make sure it is sealed well.
  8. Cut and install your new shingles. Make sure the edge that lays on the 5×5 metal has a very thick bead of sealant under it.
  9. Once your shingles are installed, install your top cap and you are done with the shingles.
  10. Cut and install the 1×4, approximately 2 inches off the roof deck, on the wall. Before installing the 1×4 make sure you put a very thick bead of silicone or other sealant behind the 1×4.
  11. Paint the 1×4 and flashing.
  12. After the paint has dried, seal the top of the 1×4 to the siding. Here you will have some nice sized gaps, so make sure you fill them well.
  13. Clean up your mess and we can move on to the next step.

Earlier we talked about minimizing the amount of water that flows onto this roof. There was approximately 400 square feet of roof water being dumped onto the roof below. In order to stop this we needed to reroute the second story water into gutters and down spouts leading the water away from this area. This is probably the most important step. I will create another post on gutter installation. After you have installed gutters and downspout your job is complete and you can now enjoy a nice dry house!

For more information about how to repair a roof in Sydney click here.

There are some fresh changes that have swept through building planning commission recently in our district. The council is now considering some new pallets and colors to revive the heritage and roots in area. This new development has given many home owners on our street to start looking for exterior and roof painting services. Here are some key ideas for restoring the roof tiles with some excellent roof paint of your choice.

The roof tile painting is one of the home maintenance rituals that you must do after a few years, especially if you are living in some high rain or wind area like beach front. The roof paint needs to be reliable to stay sturdy in the strong sun and bad weather. Everyone is noticing he arrival of the dead cheap brands in market often given at almost half the rate you might have paid before, are they any good? Well the answer is simple; you get what you pay for. If you buy some non reliable brand the results can be some what compromise too. For a roof restoration alternative click here.

The exact color match after applying and the staying power can only be found in the reliable paint brands. If you have a few weeks you can try the simple paint test on your own to get to same findings too, try the two different brands on two tiles, and put it in the roof for a few weeks. Don’t forget to write the brand names under the tiles, now after the few weeks the results will start to show. The cheap brands often give away after a few rains and often get damaged quite faster.

The search for paint however has some other important areas attached too, including the heat reflection that can not be over looked. You should also match the paint brand with the type of tiles you have on the roof also, find if there are concrete, terra cotta, or ceramic tiles and search the paint accordingly.

The heat reflective paints are great find if you are living in some area where sun exposure is quite a lot. It is estimated that you can almost save 40 percent of energy cost by using the heat reflective tiles and isolation alone, not bad idea to try especially considering the rise in energy costs these days.

The one major benefit of using a reliable brand is that you can be sure of its being environmentally friendly too. The traditional paint pellet used to consider many earthen Ingredients in them hence the reliable results for centuries. If you can find the close replacement in here the results can be just as sturdy too.

A roof has two functions: Insulation and drainage. The insulation protects the house or any establishments not only from the weather, but also from the noise and birds.

The roof serves as the drainage of, for instance, the snow that is accumulated at the top of your roof or maybe the rainfall. Gutters are installed to lead the water caused by rain or melted snow towards the ground so that it will not interrupt with the ventilation of your house. If gutters are not installed, the water may run down the walls of your house or building or may seep inside your property.

The roofing of an establishment varies on different climates and the type of establishment that you have. For commercial establishments, they usually have flat roofs because it is the simplest roof to build; the simpler, the lesser it costs. The hip roof is commonly for residential houses; this roof has four slopes, which could be both square and rectangular in shape. On the other hand, an A-frame roof is commonly used for churches, cottages or other types of homes; this kind of roof serves as the roof and wall for the whole infrastructure. There are so many types of roofs. You can choose any of those for your house, but keep in mind the compatibility of the roof to your house.

Aside from having different types of roofs, the materials used for roofing also varies from the design of the roof and the kind of place that you live in.

Alike other things, the roof of your house or any establishment can also be damaged by certain causes like storms, cyclones, heavy rain and etc. If it is not attended properly, you might as well need to change the materials such as clay tiles, asphalt shingles, concrete tile, metal, slate, wood shingles or any type of roof that you have, and this will need an expensive cost. We want our roofing to last, so here are a few tips on proper installation and maintenance.

Find the Right Materials

When getting the right materials for your roof, you should invest on materials which can: last long, protect the house from natural disasters, not too heavy for the roof framing, should complement the style of the house or building and if it is allowed by local building codes.

Installing the Roof Deck Protection

It is best if you would hire a roof contractor. You cannot do this process by yourself, you’re going to need experienced and trained roof contractors for the proper installation of the roof. The roof deck protection prevents wind-driven rain from getting inside your shelter, another reason why you need it installed is so that your shingles would lay flat and neat.

Installing Leak Barriers

Your roof should have a leak barrier especially in the edges where it is prone to leakage. This should be done to reduce the risks of having your roof damaged.

Installing Shingles

It is important to nail your shingles in the right angle. Installing the first line of your roof shingles should be done with no error because it serves as the base of the other shingles that are to be installed. It should have a strong base to prevent it from being damaged when a storm comes.

Installing Flashing

Flashing is another material to protect the water from seeping into your roof. It is commonly placed on areas where it is prone to leakages like valleys and vent pipe.

When you are busy, you cannot really give time to inspect your roof for damages. When it comes to roof maintenance, you should hire a roof contractor. You can’t just climb up to your roof and do the inspection yourself. These trained roof contractors know how to do the job in a proper way. They are provided with safety gears and right materials to determine if your roof has damages or has a potential to breakdown after a storm. With regular care and maintenance, you can save money than letting your roof take the damage, which may be expensive.

Improper installation of your roof as well as neglectful maintenance of it does not only lowers its market value but most importantly, endangers the whole family from any untoward incidents later on. So don’t think twice, get the help of a roof repair expert in your area.

Choosing the best indoor grill cannot be done by looking at it alone. There have been many fires caused by grilling food inside, this is the reason it was not recommended in the past. Moving cooking equipment outside is hard and time consuming, but now indoor grills have advanced and become safer to use while providing the same quality cooked foods.

Grilling your food is extremely healthy for you, there is no need to use any of the oils that are needed for frying food. Doctors and nutrition experts always talk about the benefits of grilled food over fried. There are numerous companies worldwide that manufacture these products resulting in a vast variety of models, colors, and designs with prices set accordingly. The better models are manufactured to cook quality foods at speed and come with many different functions that enable the user to be in complete control of how the food is cooked.

The heat settings can easily be adjusted using the many functions. This helps the user be in complete control. Models with numerous buttons and different controls do not mean the product is any better than a simpler version. Indoor grills can be used to cook a variety of different foods. This is perfect for people who like many types of grilled food.

Nowadays, these cooking appliances are engineered so that they can clean themselves. This is a great advancement as it reduces mess while cleaning and also helps save time for the user. Check out Dadgum Barbecue You should consider how many people you will be cooking for regularly. These appliances are available in different sizes, from small and simple to very large and complex.

Always decide where you want to position your grill before you choose a model. People often purchase a grill that is simply too large for their home.

While choosing your cooking appliance, have a good look around as you might be able to pick up a discounted model or find a store that offers great bargains. Performing research online is a great idea, this way you get to see all the different models and the manufacturers that produce them without having to walk around many different shops. Different grills have different features and come in many colors, sizes, and prices.

Just because a certain grill costs a lot, it does not mean it is any better than a cheaper model. Big brand names in home grills often put inflated price tags on their products, but this doesn’t mean you are getting quality. A high quality grill will give great value and there will be less need to pay money for expensive repairs later on.

New models may be more complicated to use. People who are just starting out with even the best indoor grill need to be aware of this and choose their model accordingly. The instruction booklet is very important and should be read thoroughly before the appliance is used for any cooking. Sometimes you may need to clean the appliance before use, the instruction book will inform the user of this and anything else that is required before use.