My parents just inherited my grandmother's house, a burden they are not happy with. At first they were worried they would have to keep the house for the time being and hire a realtor to get it sold - they are not in a place to take on the cost of a second house, even if it is just temporary. Now suddenly out of the blue, a relative of my grandmother calls and offers the services of her step-son, someone who pays cash for houses and fixes them up. I'm a little suspicious and want to check that this isn't a scam. [more inside]
We have an issue with the hot water supply from a 2004 Peerless oil furnace/boiler with tankless hot water. The shower starts at full temp, but quickly goes tepid (too cool for a comfortable bath/shower, but not ice-cold) and returns to full heat after 5-10 minutes. This is most apparent during the first two showers of the day or bath in the evening - subsequent showers or baths don't seem to have the problem to the same extent. This makes troubleshooting difficult, as we can't tell until an hour or so after running all that hot water to see if the problem returns. It's most pronounced in winter, during the summer the issue seems to go away. (Details inside) [more inside]
I have a backyard that has been troubled ever since we moved in. It was clear at that time that lawn of some sort was not doing very well. We tried adding new good soil and starting grass from seed that supposedly was the right kind for our area and the fact that the back gets little direct sunlight. [more inside]
Can anyone suggest a good book for a first time home buyer in Canada? My wife and I are hoping to purchase our first home in the coming months and we're a bit intimidated at the process. I've seen similar questions before, but the books seemed to be directed at people located in America and I don't know if those would be as applicable or not.
Looking for a intercom and remote gate opener with control via the internet on a iPhone / iPad. [more inside]
Just bought a house with a older Brinks Home security system. Well the previous owners had a Land-line and had the house monitored. When they moved out they disconnected the line and now the alarm is showing "CP Trouble" and beeping once every 45 seconds or so. We dont have a land-line nor plan on getting one. We also do not plan on having the alarm monitored but we like the door chime and being able to set the alarm. Even while set the CP problem is still there and beeps. I called Brinks and they said the only way to fix this was to disconnect the whole alarm system or get it monitored. I dont want to disconnect the alarm and I dont want it monitored. Does anyone know if there is a way to bypass this to stop the beeping?
Our old farmhouse was remodeled in the 50s and as a result, the living room is seriously something like 35 x 20 in some spots, while others are 'only' 15 feet wide. We moved here from a house that could fit IN our current living room. It's freaking me out. I'd really like to make the house, our living room especially, seem more cozy. What are some ideas or hacks to make this happen? I see lots of tips on how to make rooms seem bigger, but not so many to make the walls feel like they're closing in on you.
Should I take this job offer and move home because that's where I want to end up, or spend another year at my current company doing my dream job? Complication: I'm female, 30, single, and want to get married and have a family in my home state. [more inside]
My partner and I have moved around a lot over the last few years. We're in one spot together, for now, but will likely have a few more bumps of not feeling settled for the next couple of years, as we'll likely be doing more cross-country and overseas moves. What gift ideas can you share, so we can take "home" with us wherever, whenever, we land? [more inside]
I have a big white wall next to my stairs. I want to decorate the wall with a 10-sentence quote, like going up alongside the stairs. I am only moderately artsy but not totally hopeless. I'm trying to figure out the best way to do this myself. [more inside]
After a great deal of deliberation, a thorough reading of Fosterhood, and an inconceivable amount of bureaucratic obstacle weaving, we are currently parenting two foster children. They're Chinese. We aren't. They need to eat more soups, more vegetables. I need help figuring out how to make things they'll like. [more inside]
The issue isn't us as borrowers... It's the house. The house is part of a coop/co-housing setting. We'd be buying the house, but the land it sits on would remain owned by the co-op. Mortgage? [more inside]
I never was fond of houses with picture windows, or too many windows at all, but then I fell in love with this home... [more inside]
I have some help coming my way towards down payment. Let's say... for simplicity sake ...that I am receiving $100k as gift towards down. I know the gift amount won't count as "cost" when calculating capital gain at time of sale in the future. But if I receive the "gift" in chunks of $14k from various individuals under the annual gift exclusion clause, could any of those chunked amounts be included in my cost to reduce my capital gain? Thanks. I hope this is a simple yes/no question. [more inside]
I replaced a ceiling light in a 1950's-wired apartment. There are insulated black and neutral wires, but no ground connection (fixture has ground wire but just connected it to mounting bar). If wired backwards, what happens when I flip the switch? When I touch the fixture while power and/or switch are on? [more inside]
Help me figure out a wonderful, fun thing to do with our unfinished attic space. Difficulty level: renters with grad student incomes. [more inside]
So has anyone in northern NJ (Essex/Passaic/Bergen counties or thereabouts) recently used a super-detailed, easy to work with home inspection company they'd recommend? Any and all info welcome. Thanks, hive!
If I wanted to buy a house or condo in a distant state as an investment, and I had an opportunity to buy a place outright, with tenants and leases already in place, should I? How about outright but sans tenants? More info within. [more inside]
Moved recently. The house ADT system already installed. Don't like ADT - what are my options? [more inside]
I moved during the summer and have noticed that my new place seems to attract mold at a higher rate than other places I've lived. I'm wondering if these things should be a cause for concern, or if these are just normal things given the specific situations. [more inside]
Landlord installed a new shower in my rented home. Did all plumbing himself, used second-hand (salvaged?) copper pipes and metal fittings. Now the shower water is gritty, burns my eyes, and has clogged 2 shower heads with disgusting debris (photo inside). What is causing this? [more inside]
What is the best location for a wood stove in a one-story ranch house? The options are: an insert for the fireplace in the living room, a free-standing wood stove in the unfinished basement or no woodstove at all. [more inside]
It's getting to be fall and winter's not far behind. This is our first fall/winter in our first home. What are the practical/DIY/gardening-y things we need to do to be ready for the change in seasons? [more inside]
Autumn is on its way and I'm looking for ways to make my living room as cozy, homey, warm, snuggly and relaxing as possible... while still keeping it tidy and stylish and without too much clutter. [more inside]
What software should I use to lay out a floor plan and fixtures for a bathroom renovation? I've tried a couple of online alternatives, but they don't meet my needs. Requirements within. [more inside]
Does anybody have experience living in a RV (motorhome, trailer, etc) during a home remodel? My brother is planning some construction next month and thought that living in some temporary housing in the driveway may be a viable alternative to a hotel stay for a month or so. I would love some direction on how to look for this type of rental. Bonus points if you know somebody in Seattle that provides this type of service. thank you!
My son recently turned 7, how do I filter my home network (and my phone) to keep him away from hardcore porn and such for a few more years? [more inside]
So my boyfriend and I are moving in together next month. Needless to say, the pitfalls and potential problems make me nervous (neither of us have lived with a long-term partner; he's 31, I'm 26F, been together almost 2 years). What I need now are reminders of why this is a good idea: tips, anecdotes, rituals. What makes living with your partner a positive and special thing? I'm looking for what TO do, rather than what NOT to do.
After months of drawing and re-drawing, we have draft floor plans! Now we need more eyes on the kitchen layout. Looking especially for specific suggestions. [more inside]
In March, I had a stroke the week before Winter Quarter finals and it resulted in right hemi weakness. I have made lots of good progress in recovery and continue going to physical therapy, but after a summer of my savings being eaten by medical bills, I am trying to figure out ways to make some money. My circumstances make that difficult. Details within. [more inside]
My husband and I are traveling to Sweden soon. We both love Scandinavian design and would like to visit some furniture/home decor shops while in Sweden. What are some good, not too expensive furniture shops to visit in Stockholm and Sundsvall? We're interested in both local chains (Ikea not included) and boutique shops. Is it possible to buy furniture there and have the shop ship them to the US for you? Are the shipping costs generally reasonable? Thanks!
I am in need of some pampering. So is my SO! We are just a little stressed from being busy, but we always set aside a few nights a week for just relaxing. What at-home spa activities do you like to do to help you relax? We have tried giving each other massages, clay masks, and baths. I want to know what you do, or want to do! Snowflake details inside. [more inside]
Anyone have recommendations on a house inspector/inspection company in Phoenix? Currently the house we are buying has had a "relocation property inspection" done by a relocation company (seller is moving away and his company is relocating him along with providing this report). I think we probably need to get a full inspection done, but would like some referrals if anyone has any. Or anyone have any opinions on if another inspection should be necessary? My relator says his inspection guy is $375 and said that in this situation, it maybe worth it to just save the $375 but it was up to me. Thanks!
It's been a few months since I bought my house, and I've received a questionnaire from the local assessor asking for details about the property. I plan to answer all the questions truthfully to the best of my knowledge and ability. Beyond that, do you have any advice on responding? [more inside]
A few years ago I decided to pick up making electronic music again after about a 10 year hiatus. Now I'm looking for strategies to keep myself doing the work. [more inside]
I would love some advice on how to approach researching for making our new home super awesome! I'm a design newbie but would love to learn more. Long-winded question below! [more inside]
I need to replace a bunch of two-prong outlets with three-prong outlets and I have a few questions. [more inside]
We live in a house that was built in 1927. One of our bathrooms has a tub with a shower head. If we don't close the shower curtain properly, water somehow gets through the floor into the foyer below. [more inside]
My tiles have fallen off in the bathroom, and it looks like the whole lot will need replacing. Who should pay for this? [more inside]
Mr. TEA and I have just become responsible for furnishing a two-bedroom apartment in the Algarve. The apartment is in good condition but entirely empty. We would be furnishing it for family use and possibly for rental. My go-to furnishings store at home (the US), Ikea, is hours away, although I'm wondering if it would be worth the trip just for dishes, pots, pans, and glasses. I speak very little Portuguese, although Mr. TEA is more fluent.
So, our neighborhood has never been the awesomest in terms of violent crime and drug stuff (in Toronto, btw), and some sudden recent changes are about to make it even less awesome. We have little kids. We bought this house ten years ago as a "starter home we'll sell in two years" and just... never left. Now we'd like to leave. But where do we go? [more inside]
Boyfriend of 1.5 years and I considering joining homes. Some extenuating circumstances... [more inside]
I love this rug but it's either too small or too big. Help me find something similar? [more inside]
I live in a 100 year old Sears kit home (Dutch colonial). I've partially renovated the upstairs bathroom (trying to be respectful of the period). Could use a little assistance with decor/painting/tiling choices! [more inside]
I've always loved sandalwood and would like to make my home smell of it but don't know how. Simmering sandalwood chips in a Little Dipper (aka tiny crockpot) had meh results. An Etsy seller has some nice potpourri that's great for small spaces but isn't strong enough for the whole house. What has worked best, so far, is the sandalwood fragrance oil for my Lampe Berger but, sadly, not even the sketchy seller in Singapore still carries it and the replacement fragrance (Winterwood) just doesn't cut it for me. So, can I make my own Lampe Berger oil, or is there another method I can use to suffuse my house with the lovely smell of sandalwood?
We're in the slow process of stripping back the rooms in our house, and have discovered that the ugly white beam in the middle of our room is actually a wooden beam - great! The only problem is, it's still just one beam in the room, and off-center. I've uploaded a picture here. How can I make this room look less wonky? [more inside]
I have an older house in Chicago. 1890s. Not sure that is relevant to the age of the doors but regardless, there are three doors (bathroom, two bedrooms) where the hinge pins are inserted from the bottom up. Occasionally this means they fall out when the tension fails to keep them in. Surprisingly this if not that often, maybe twice a year. However it is startling, prob bad for the door, hinge and floor. Anyone know a reason why a hinge may be positioned like this? Or should I just get to work flipping/replacing them?
Hi all! We found a color we like and, I'm assuming, we can get a paint color match (right? at least pretty close?) in any paint brand. So... what's the best satin, low-lustre or eggshell paint brand? [more inside]
We're looking to switch providers, and the quotes are based on very different replacement-value amounts. What do we actually need? [more inside]
My partner and I just moved into a new apartment in Queens. There's one small issue, and it's our peephole. It's missing the cover on the inside. Where can I get a replacement? [more inside]