Questions in the Home & Garden category.
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September 19

Tame my hellscape

I have a large (1 acre), steep (30% grade) south-facing back yard, with several very large trees in Zone 6b. Right now it is running amok with weeds and vines because it is just so uncomfortable to be out there. What can I plant that will stop erosion, suppress weeds, and look lovely year-round? [more inside]
posted by apparently at 2:34 PM - 5 answers

How do I get my apartment renovation started?

I’m actually quite comfortable with the late-90s furnishings of my place, but I want to sell or rent it out soon, and I know updating everything would make it more appealing. Everything I’ve seen on the web says “start looking at design ideas” — but I care more about utility than appearances. I’d like to spend as little as possible to make it up-to-date. Where do I start? Can I just go to a contractor and say “give me your cheapest paint-by-numbers package”? [more inside]
posted by Borborygmus at 7:23 AM - 5 answers

Software to measure room layouts.

I'm refitting my home and often need to take measurements to figure out what materials I need and what will fit where. I need a simple tool to draw rooms and shapes and figure out what can fit in. But wait! It's not that simple. My house is a boat and EVERYTHING curves in several directions at once. [more inside]
posted by Just this guy, y'know at 7:18 AM - 5 answers

September 18

Building a small house in Canada

Hi folks! I've been exploring the possibility of buying a piece of vacant land in BC or Ontario to put up a small house in 8-10 years when I'm sick of work. Is it a good idea to find and buy a nice plot of land when it comes up, and just hang on to it till I'm ready to build? I also have a list of questions about living in more rural areas. [more inside]
posted by TrinsicWS at 11:22 PM - 10 answers

Getting new carpet when you have a heart condition

I live alone. I have newly diagnosed hypertrophic cardiomyopathy. I have no friends that live nearby. I can do light cardiovascular exercise but I am still in the phase of treatment where I am supposed to avoid lifting or moving heavy objects. Unfortunately, because I've lived in my apartment for so long (10+ years), my landlord is demanding that I get all my carpets replaced (on their dime) as part of renewing my lease. How do I do? [more inside]
posted by xyzzy at 5:42 PM - 8 answers

What's cool in the refrigerator market?

We are in the market for a new fridge to replace our aging one. What should we look for, and what should we avoid? [more inside]
posted by synecdoche at 4:47 PM - 24 answers

Foot funk on furniture

What's the best way to remove a sour, smelly foot smell from a couch? [more inside]
posted by lovableiago at 1:33 PM - 15 answers

Seeking superior subterranean sleeper sofa

We need to upgrade our guest room amenities, but there is limited space is in basement of our Philadelphia rowhouse. [more inside]
posted by zachxman at 8:36 AM - 7 answers

How to sell a house in France (help for British in-laws edition)

Can any mefites help - my parents in law are British citizens currently living in the area of Lot-de-Garonne (close to Marmande) in a beautiful two-bedroom house which they are struggling to sell and I don't know how else to help them. [more inside]
posted by coffee_monster at 12:55 AM - 10 answers

September 17

ˈɪndɔː plɑːnts: plants that die slowly in buildings

I need to get up to speed on designing (and to some extent maintaining) indoor plants. [more inside]
posted by unearthed at 1:57 PM - 8 answers

September 16

How do I get a dishwasher to fit with pipes in the way?

The installer showed up with the new dishwasher (KitchenAid KDTM404EWH). Once he took the old one out, he found that there are pipes in the way. Any ideas about what I can do? [more inside]
posted by braveterry at 11:39 PM - 16 answers

Thoughts on cordless electric weedeaters?

I'm looking at getting a cordless electric weedeater, but reviews are pretty mixed on all the ones I've looked at. I'm hoping to keep it around or less than $100, since I wouldn't use one very often even if I liked it. Anyone have any recent experiences, good or bad, or recommendations? [more inside]
posted by dilettante at 3:24 PM - 13 answers

September 15

How can I repair this mysterious hole?

The other day, I noticed that a small crater had mysteriously formed in one of the small tiles in my bathroom floor. It's a little bigger than a quarter and almost as large as the tile. You can see the tile at the bottom of this picture. The bath is a very small room designed as a wet room (fully tiled so the floor and walls doubles as the shower floor and walls, with a drain in the middle of the floor). [more inside]
posted by pinochiette at 10:24 AM - 2 answers

Putting up Thai chilies for the duration?

My Thai chili pepper plants have done wonderfully, and I'm ready to harvest. I'd like to end up with a shelf-stable paste/thick sauce. Can I ferment these, and then puree and can them BWB-style? [more inside]
posted by MonkeyToes at 7:46 AM - 7 answers

September 14

How Do I Rent A House?

After many years of home ownership we are scaling back our square footage and will be renting for a couple of years, until we decide what we want to do with the rest of our lives. We haven't been renters since the 90s. What do I need to know about leases, management companies, etc., so that we don't get stuck renting a dump from somebody we hate? If it matters, we'll most likely be renting a single family home or townhouse, in Richmond VA.
posted by COD at 11:58 AM - 4 answers

Long term rental with Airbnb: Should I worry about anything?

I am interested in moving into a flat/apartment owned by a landlord who lives in another country and who wants to manage this arrangement via Airbnb. Is this a bad idea? How bad? [more inside]
posted by ihaveyourfoot at 10:21 AM - 19 answers

How to Handle Hurricane Irma Repairs - HALP

My 72-year-old mother and I are trying to sort out what needs to be done after our home took a direct hit from Irma. My dad always handled this stuff, but he passed away in May, and we don't know what we're doing. We're losing our minds -- help! [more inside]
posted by QuickedWeen at 6:26 AM - 23 answers

grows like a weed

I have some questions *as a gardener* about growing weed. [more inside]
posted by A Terrible Llama at 5:49 AM - 5 answers

September 12

I need swag, just not so swaggy

I need to hang a light about 2 feet from where the ceiling fixture is located. The only word I can think of for this is a swag, but that implies a drape, which is not what I want. I would like a modern, straight pipe-like thing that exits the light box, extends 2 feet parallel to the ceiling, turns at a 90 degree angle, and hangs my light. A ceiling hook that supports the weight near the bend is okay. [more inside]
posted by shornco at 3:37 PM - 3 answers

Want to hide the light - calling designers and decorators!

My new basement bedroom has low ceilings AND five fluorescent light fixtures. I will use lamps for illumination and I want to hide these ugly things. Here is pic with obligatory cat (Syd)inserted. Image Fixtures are 4 feet long and there are electrical outlets in the ceiling at one end. Assume that dismantling the fixtures is not currently an option. Handyperson skills are in the high beginner range. [more inside]
posted by ZenMajek at 10:36 AM - 6 answers

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