Banner

Pick up your pants…
You put your home on the market to sell it, right? You want people to fall in love with your home the moment they walk in? You need them to feel like it could be their own? You want them to feel taken aback with how fantastic it is? Well, surprisingly some people do not understand the DO’s and DON’T’s of what to do when selling their home. There are some simple steps to do when you know you have a viewing coming up.


1- Try and create a blank canvas with your home. You don’t need to take out your furniture or remove your wall paper, but you can reduce the number of family photos to depersonalise the property. You want them to see the property as their potential home, not feel like a visitor. You should put away anything which clutters your space like hoovers, ironing boards, washing or even simple things like books or magazines, this is to make your home look as spacious and decluttered as possible. Storage is an issue for us all, so show that you have enough for all those “odds and ends.”
2- Make sure your home is tidy! Yes, this does mean picking up your pants and socks off the floor… Making sure you have no washing up left on the kitchen counter and giving the rooms a hoover and polish. You never want a potential buyer walking into your home and getting the feeling that one, you can’t be bothered to clean your home, (so you’re probably not that fussed about selling) and two, seeing it in its worse state. You don’t want a buyer to walk away remembering the bad bits about your property…
3- Make it smell nice. There is nothing better than walking into someone’s home and being hit with a delightful smell, trust me this will make a difference! Smell is associated with memory, so if someone remembers your home as smelling lovely, this is a positive response. Not only that, it’s much better for someone to walk into your home and be greeted with a nice smell rather than a bad one. On the subject of smell, let’s talk about smoking… For non-smokers who are going into a home which has a smoke odour, this can be a turn off. So, keep your home fresh and smelling good…
4- Creating a set up. Don’t let your home look “slobby”. There is nothing worse. You want your home to look well presented, and ready to move into. Some ideas for you are putting fresh towels in the bathrooms, clean tea towels in the kitchen, putting a vase of flowers on the dining room table, make sure all beds are made, pillows are plumped and open windows around the house to create a sense of freshness around your home. These simple changes will make a whole load of difference. 
5- Let your agent do the work. It’s best to leave the house when viewings are taking place. This is because your agent can then get a better idea on what the potential buyer thinks of your property. Some viewers may feel awkward saying what they think or asking questions about the property if the owner is there. Not only that, your agent can then talk to the potential buyer about the property’s potential of how they could change the property a bit to best suit their needs. So, it’s honestly best to make yourself disappear during viewings…

Prepping your property…
Deciding to put your home on the market is a big decision. You’re moving your whole life into another place and location. It can have very testing moments and be an emotional process. People sell their homes for hundreds of different reasons, first home, upsizing, downsizing, divorce, ill health, relocation and so on. One of the big questions when moving is what do we do to the house? Do we have to decorate? Do we have to replace the bathroom? Shall we put down new carpet? Well, to be quite honest, it does depend on the property you are selling, the price you want, and its location. Normally there are 3 types of buyers, the renovation buyers who want a good price on a property which they can add value to, so in this case you will most likely not need to do any work to the property before selling. Secondly you have the buy to let buyers. They are looking for an up together property which doesn’t need much work (maybe just some cosmetic work like painting), but something ready to move into so 1, they can get a mortgage and 2, so it’s ready for them to make profit on. Thirdly you have the families and couples, the people who want to buy a home, which most likely doesn’t need loads of work doing to it. Just the normal cosmetic work so they can put their own stamp on the property, but the property is still liveable…
It may not be obvious which type of buyer you are aiming for! But ask your Agent for their advice.
When is the best time to put your property on the market?
To be quite honest, there is never a better time to sell your property. But you can use your intuition to think when you would best prefer to buy or sell. Often people want to move before Christmas or move during school holiday periods. The busiest times seem to be in the New Year, so the months of January and February as people are thinking “New year, new start” and all that, so they decide they want a change. Also, Spring can be a popular time, as people have had the beginning of the year to decide if they want to move, where to and so on. Also, as the weather starts to get better people feel that their property looks at its best.
However, even though these factors can all impact people’s decisions, the best time to move is when you feel ready. You need to be prepared for the change, be excited for a new start and be financially ready. So, the best time to move is down to you and your situation, not the enthusiasm of weather or motives of a new year….

For any advice on moving homes please feel free to call us. We are more than happy to help you with your journey of buying or selling. We want to offer you a professional but also personal service, so you feel at ease and as stress-free as possible…

Tel: 01983 521212
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    

 

Tiny Homes Holidays

Do you fancy a unique holiday experience? Well, Tiny Homes Holidays can offer this... After fourteen successful seasons of running one of the UK’s first glamping businesses Helen & Frazer Cunningham have created Tiny Homes Holidays with the dream of taking the Glamping vibe even further to create an all year round sustainable ‘Tiny Homes’ Boutique Retreat. Expect the quirkiness and ethics of a glamping break in bespoke architect deigned permanent well built cabin-style houses. At Tiny Homes you will get the choice of 3 of the Tiny Homes, each home can sleep up to 4 people, you have your own comfortable bed, kitchen, shower, toilet, and even your own BBQ. What more could you want?


I decided I wanted to visit Tiny Homes and see what they were all about. I went to Tiny Homes because I was really interested in speaking to the creators Helen and Frazer to get an insight into the world of sustainable living and of course go and check out all the fantastic homes.


I was extremely excited about going to visit, and I was not disappointed. The site was fantastic, it offered such a relaxing feel of tranquillity and peace. I was also very keen to hear more about the eco-friendly approach that the homes and site offered. Helen told me that all the homes were run by solar power. They wanted the homes to be sustainable and of course eco-friendly! Not only that, the toilets in each of the homes were composting toilets which are fantastic for the environment and puts our waste to good use! Helen was also telling me that they try to use as little plastic on the site too, this is to encourage the sustainability and environmentally friendly vibe. I really liked this idea because it teaches people who visit the site how easy it is to be environmentally friendly and how much of a positive feel it has on yourself.


Firstly, I went into each home to get some photos and see what each home offered. The first home I went into was called Elidh. This is a Gaelic name meaning “light”, so this home felt very bright and friendly.

It used the pastel colours of white, blues and beiges. I liked this home, it gave off a positive atmosphere and made me feel relaxed. I felt this holiday home would be brilliant for a family. The bright, clean colours made it feel appropriate for families as it offered a calm, reflective feeling. This home also felt slightly larger than the others, most likely because of the openness of the colours, but I believed it would be great for families.

              


The second home I went into was called Hygge. This is a Danish word for “wellbeing”.

This home was all about nesting. It had scandi-styling, warm cuddly textures and the feeling of a hideaway. It was really comforting. There were lots of cosy, fluffy blankets scattered around the home, the colours of grey and pink were also used, which I found worked well to create that snuggled, homely, relaxed feeling. This home would be perfect for anyone, friends, family or even couples; because it offered such a fantastic vibe it can be used by anyone and everyone.

             


The last home I went into was called Silva. This is a Latin word for “forest” or “woodland”.

This home was all about encouraging nature into the home with a hint of a 70’s style. I really liked this home it was a bit different to the others with its layout and of course the shape of the property is triangular. It uses wood textures and colours which made it feel warm inside. Unlike the others, the kitchen was located to the rear of this home rather than at the side like the others. I like how everything felt separate within the home. The upstairs of the home had a swinging chair to the front, so you can look out of the window across the site and to the rear there was a king size bed with a large opening window. I found that this home would be great for couples as it felt more intimate and unique to the rest. To me it felt a bit smaller than the others, but this could be due to the shape of the property as it can still sleep the same amount of people.

              


Once I had looked in the holiday homes, taken my photos and gathered my thoughts on each home I decided to go and speak to Helen to get some more information on the homes and what inspired her and Frazer to create such a unique glamping idea.


Emily- When did Tiny Homes first open?
Helen- Tiny Homes had its first season last year, we opened it August 2017.
Emily- What inspired you to start this business?
Helen- I have been working within the glamping business for 15 years, and I believed this would be the next step on from glamping, creating a unique holiday experience. 
Emily- How long did the homes take to build?
Helen- The idea of the homes started about 4 years ago, but we needed to actually turn the idea into reality, so this meant getting plans together, sorting out planning permission and finding the perfect site. However, the homes took 18 months to build.
Emily- How do you advertise your homes?
Helen- We obviously advertise our homes on our website, but we use other elite portals like Host Unusual, One Off Places and Airbnb.
Emily- How long can people stay in your homes?
Helen- People usually stay in our homes for short breaks, so around 2-3 nights. However, we have had people stay in the homes for 1 week.
Emily- What seems to be the most popular home?
Helen- They are all popular for different reasons as they all have different styles, which appeal to different people. Silva is usually more popular for couples. Elidh is typically more popular for families and Hygge frequently attracts friendship groups, like a group of girlfriends.
Emily- What seems to be your busiest season?
Helen- We are open all year round and we do get booked up. However, the Summer season is usually our busiest, like most places, as it’s when people decide to get away and enjoy the sun and nature.
Emily- What is it that makes your holiday homes different?
Helen- Our Tiny Homes are different for what they offer, firstly there is nothing quite like Tiny Homes, so they are unique. We are also eco-friendly, so we use solar panels for our energy and compost toilets, and we are also plastic free. We want to encourage an environmentally friendly stay and show people how easy this way of life is.
Emily- How do you get bookings?
Helen- Most of our bookings are through direct contact from our website, obviously being on the island we also rely on word of mouth. But we do also use other holiday portals which I mentioned earlier, where we receive bookings from.
Emily - Would you consider building more homes?
Helen- We are in the process now of getting ideas and planning permission for 3 more homes.
Emily- What is included when people rent the homes?
Helen- Everything is included when they rent the homes, a kitchen with cooker, hob, fridge with icebox and plenty of kit. A composting WC, a shower, woodburning stove, white linen and towels, outside deck with table and chairs, BBQ and a welcome pack on arrival.
Emily- What is the maximum time people can stay in the homes?
Helen- Well the maximum time people have stayed in the homes is a week, but I mean people are free to stay in them as long as they would like…
Emily- Do you have a clubhouse area for the guests?
Helen- We have our studio which our guests will all have a key to. This is an area where guests can come to relax or socialise. Due to the tiny homes being run by solar power we only have USB plugs in the homes as using normal plugs will drain the energy, therefore we have normal plugs in the studio where people can come and use things like hair dryers. We also run Workshops in the studio which guests can take part in.
Emily- Do you work with other companies or businesses on the Island?
Helen- Yes, we do, we work with Mrs B Presents. Mrs B comes to our studio and holds workshops for our guests. Our workshops can be anything from fitness, crafts, sewing, wood carving or cooking. We open the workshops to our guests first, but if we do have some available space left we open it to other people too. They are great fun!
Emily- What is your favourite home?
Helen- It changes all the time! But at the moment, I really like Hygge.
Emily- Do you have a pet friendly home? Would guests be able to bring their dogs along with them?
Helen- No, we just felt that it wouldn’t suit our site. Firstly, we wouldn’t like to cause any issues with the residents as dogs may bark and we wouldn’t want to cause disruption for the locals. Not only that, the site is all about peace and tranquillity, so a barking dog may ruin this idea (laughs).
Emily- Are your customers mainly island or mainland residents?
Helen- Most of our guests are from the mainland, however island residents do stay at Tiny Homes, we were surprised at how popular we are with island residents. I suppose we are something different and people who would like a weekend of peace, and not have to travel really like our homes.
Emily- Was it hard to get planning permission to build the site?
Helen- Yes, it was a long journey with plenty of ups and downs. The locals were slightly apprehensive with the building of the site as I suppose they thought we may be disruptive, but our homes are all about peace and enjoying the simplicity of life and what nature has to offer, and from the moment we opened we have never had any complaints, which is brilliant.
Emily- Thank you for taking the time to talk to me and answering all my questions, it’s been great to get know a bit about Tiny Homes!


It was fantastic to talk to Helen and understand everything Helen and Frazer have built together. I think Tiny Homes Holidays is a fantastic idea, and the homes are all unique and spectacular in their own way. I think I may go and book a weekend in one myself…

Tel: 01983 521212
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emily Gibson.

   

All you can dream of is quiet neighbours...

   

The saying is ‘location, location, location’ and that’s great if you’re in a desirable street, close to schools, or have a countryside or sea view, but often we choose a property for what it offers us internally. Layout, room sizes, flow. Sometimes we weigh up the pros and cons and opt for internal specification rather than external aesthetics.
One property I recently visited was in an unusual location– in a graveyard. I found the interior of the property a delight, with its light and bright shabby chic style, at complete odd to the rather ‘gothic’ exterior surroundings of tombstones. However, this is not what defines this quirky property, the house had far fetching sea views, beautiful surrounding walks and close to the town centre, a brilliant family home....

  
A bit of history about the property is that it was built between 1850-1870. The gentleman who lived in the house at the time was the caretaker of the cemetery. When he passed away he was then laid to rest in the cemetery which he cared for. This left a very special and warm feeling with the house, knowing that it was loved and cared for all those years ago. So even with the gothic surroundings there is also a sense of protection and care from previous occupants…

However, interior design is so important for a home, as it presents the owner’s personality, it makes a house a home. Decor is the key! This is how this home in an unusual location became an unexpected surprise due to its décor changing how it makes you feel from the moment you enter…
When you are deciding what interior design you want in your home, you must think about the way in which it will make people feel when they enter, and the way it best portrays you.
You could have an ultra-modern interior which presents youth and style, a cosy feel to present a family orientated home, bohemian style which presents a carefree, youthful feel or a home which has a continuous theme such as nautical.
Interior design is so important for your home, as it presents your personality, and determines what people will think when they come into your home.
When I visited the property, which backed onto the graveyard, I was pleasantly surprised, to say the least... The first thought that runs through your head is "This could be rather spooky living here". However, after looking round the property, and going into the house, my thoughts were soon changed.
The property held so much originality, peace, tranquillity and comfort. The complete opposite to what I expected. Being located on a graveyard added to the properties character and uniqueness.
It was fantastic.

Shabby Chic-
Shabby chic is a design which can speak volumes. It offers comfort, luxury and individuality, which is perfect in this home as its set on one of the most unique settings and locations. It’s very different to any other home which is what makes it so brilliant. The shabby chic decor is perfect for a family home. You want your home to feel comfortable, peaceful and represent a happy place.
The style combines a modern style with the traditional look.

     

The kitchen is a family hub in a home and in this home it’s a great example of how the Shabby Chic interior is all brought together. It comprises of soft cream colours, pastel pinks and blues, twinkling fairy lights faux leaves hanging from the ceiling and dried out flowers surrounding the kitchen. These pale colours and tones work fantastically together and present the idea of ease and bliss and they are easy on the eye.
The kitchen table is a light wood, with cream chairs which have scuffs on the edges. This is the shabby chic edge... It’s known as "distressing" the finish of the furniture.
The warm glow from the twinkling lights portrays the idea of warmth and friendliness. They are so simple and small in the scheme of the room, but they make a large impact. The colour of the lights is important, you want a warm yellow glow. Not a blue tinted light, as this will defeat the objective of the inviting feeling.

Accessories-


Furniture isn’t the only important feature when creating your interior design. The accessories you use play a huge role in presenting your style and personality. Within this home, the theme is shabby chic, so the traditional/vintage styled accessories had to be used. Colours like rose pink, brassy golds and neutral colours are frequently seen, also the exaggeration of period styles such as wooden chests and log burners.


There are flowers scattered around the house in decorative vases, the flowers are in a vintage style with dried out hydrangeas, large roses and peony flowers. They are a mix of pastel pinks, creams, beiges and fuchsia pink. They look fantastic when they are all put together and really excel the shabby chic style.
The use of large mirrors with decorative, chunky edgings can be used as centre pieces on a wall, or even just being placed on the floor. The mirrors used in this house are cream or off gold. These colours express tradition and can also be related to the French- style interior design such as Rococo style, with is a decorative 18th century European style.

     
It’s very traditional to have photographs or even paintings in your home. Going down the staircase in this home, there was loads of photo frames filled with family photos. These were all in their own decorative photo frame, and evenly distributed on the wall as you walked up the stairs. This looked brilliant, and it brings through the idea of family and love to the home.
Not only that, in the conservatory there was a large wooden chest with dark metal locks, on top sat a large grey candle case, with candles and pine cones inside. This was a very interesting feature. It looked very unusual, but it fit in with the decor well. It’s the idea of the traditional look blending in with the modern to create the Shabby Chic vibe.

Traditional Features-
This 18th Century home still contains its traditional brick walls. This brings so much character and uniqueness to the property. I love how the brick contrasts with the modern shabby chic decor. The brick walls work really well with the thick grey carpet, dark grey and white walls. The chandelier links to both the modern and traditional style. That’s why it works so well as it brings the whole design together.
There is another brick wall in the downstairs part of the property. It’s located in the lounge, and due to the contrast with the furniture and colours it doesn’t create a cold effect like stone/brick can do. It creates a warm and comforting feeling. It’s very spectacular.

   
In the lounge there is also a log burner... It looks great as it draws in the tradition of using wood for a fire. It brings the room to life, it makes the lounge cosier and brings character to the room. It’s a really great feature to the property. Due to the properties location, which is in what may be thought of as a "cold" place, excuse the pun! But having a log burner portrays warmth and comfort to the house.

Including comfort-
It's comfort first, its comfort last, its comfort always... It’s very important to remember this when you are decorating your home. You must include your home comforts, or your home won't be personal to you. You can still have a stylish and chic house with your comforts. You can include your comforts while working with your interior design and making it look good. Because home is not a place it’s a feeling, so you must turn your house into your home...
In this snug room the owner has created a window seat which is a warm grey colour, and it’s scattered with cushions and the window has thick grey curtains falling either side. The sofa is a brown colour with snug cushions on it, a fluffy throw and thick long curtains surrounding the windows. This creates a real homely feeling, but also looks very stylish.

         
In the lounge there are fairy lights on a tree in the corner of the room which creates a warm feeling. There is also a thick grey curtain which goes across the entrance of the kitchen and the lounge. This creates a feeling of shutting out a room, it could be used as a metaphor of keeping in the warmth and blocking out the reality. It’s a really nice effect and worked really well in this room.
The sofas have large fluffy pillows and blankets over them; and they had grey wooden shutters across the bottom of the window. I really liked this, as it did represent a traditional look, and it also related to the idea of comfort and shutting out the cold. It worked effectively.

Overall, this home is unusually spectacular it’s located on the grounds of history and beauty and portrays the most fantastic and comforting family home. Using an interior design like Shabby Chic creates a soft interior to overcome the hard exterior. The décor, as you can see is brilliant and works so well. As soon as you enter this home it provides a magical feeling and that’s why I thought it would be a great idea to share the beauty of this home with everyone else…


Tel: 01983 521212
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

Emily Gibson.

    

 

A Day in the life of an Estate Agent.
Charlie Panayi – Business Manager at Red Squirrel Property Shop Ltd.

Charlie has been working for Red Squirrel for over 4 years now and is our Business manager at Red Squirrel Property Shop. He heads up a team of negotiators, managers and apprentices for property sales, lettings and maintenance. All his colleagues have their own specialisms but are flexible enough to deal with most things. Here, Charlie will give you an insight into a typical day for a business manager of an estate agency.

The Early bird gets the worm – “I like to arrive to the office around 8 o’clock every morning (often earlier). I set my computer up, make my morning coffee and ensure I have a head start on my competition!”

First things first...

“To get the day started on a good footing, I clear all my emails received overnight, return any voicemails left and prepare for the day ahead. Normally, preparation would include gathering market research for property valuations I will be carrying out that day, and collating the property particulars for my viewings.”

Out and About:

Let’s start with Valuations-

“Carrying out valuations is an important part of the role. It gives me the chance to portray a positive image of our company. I will often go over various aspects with a client during a valuation such as, how the market in their area is performing, average sale prices, advised marketing prices, things they could do to improve the chance of a quicker sale and much more. I am also experienced in building projects and as a qualified energy assessor I can give clients advice on all aspects of property.”

Viewings-

“It’s not unusual to see me at every point of the island in any one day, out on sales or lettings appointments. Viewings are a great chance to really understand an applicant’s needs and wants, to help them find their dream home. There is nothing better than seeing someone fall in love with a property!”

In the office –

“In the office you will normally find me working on sales progression liaising with solicitors, surveyors, buyers and sellers to ensure agreed sales complete in a timely and efficient manner and minimising any potential issues – Putting out the fire before it happens! Also, a daily job would be communicating with our Vendors/Landlords to ensure they know how their property is performing, booking viewings and making plenty of phone calls and emails.”


What I like best about my job –

“We have a great team here at Red Squirrel and there is never a day where I do not look forward to coming into work – no such thing as that ‘Sunday feeling’ for me. That for me is the best part of working for Red Squirrel. I would say the next best part of my job is the feedback and reviews we get, there is nothing nicer than hearing from happy clients who never knew that estate agents worked the way we do. We strive to give an honest and personable approach, and nothing matches that!”


My least favourite part of my job-

“Occasionally, when applicants like a property they become rather eager to get a “great deal” and make a silly offer. This often isn’t helped by TV programmes and other estate agents, but at Red Squirrel we pride ourselves on valuing a property correctly (no overvaluing to get your business here) therefore when these low offers get forwarded they can really come across to the owners as offensive.”

After work…

“Busy life outside of work. Before anything I go home to my fiancé Zoe, step-daughter Ruby and the little dog Buster. I also play football twice a week and attend the gym as much as possible. My biggest passion outside of work is to see as much of the world as I can!”

 

Tel: 01983 521212
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

    

 

 

How to maintain a healthy and up together home...

Making your home look nice, with trendy furniture and feature walls is not the most important part of looking after your home. You need to ensure that your home is well looked after and maintained under all the fabrication of furniture and wall paint.
Maintenance is key for ensuring your home is well looked after. Even things which you wouldn’t even think of... We are now coming into Spring and it’s time to start that essential Spring Cleaning and we have some good tips on things in your home to keep an eye on.

I spoke to our Maintenance coordinator Karen Jardine to get the top tips for maintenance and what to look out for-

Emily- What would you say is the most important thing to keep on top of during the winter months?

Karen- As you know, we have had a very cold March causing pipes to freeze in the icy conditions, one way to avoid this happening is to keep your heating ticking over constantly this can also be more effective, and less expensive than switching it on and off for short bursts of heat. .

Emily- Is Condensation a big problem within your maintenance enquiries?

Karen- Yes. Condensation can cause a lot of problems. During the winter months when it is cold I understand the reluctance to keep the windows open, however it is very important to keep your property aired and ventilated, especially in bathrooms and kitchen where condensation can cause a problem from stream, for this reason it is important to use your extractor fan when bathing and cooking. We have all been guilty of drying our washing on the radiators this can cause airborne moisture being trapped in the house which condenses on cold surfaces such as windows and cold walls, where it causes paint to blister and wall paper to lift, causing black spot mould. It is important that any sign of mould must be reported to your landlord or agency if you are renting a property, as it can quickly get our of control if not dealt with. Furniture should be moved away from touching walls. Washing the area with a solution of diluted water and bleach or soapy water can help remove black spot mould.

Emily- Do you have any top tips?

Karen- Always check fire alarms and carbon monoxide alarms if you get in the habit of doing this on the same day i.e. the 1st of the month you will be less likely to forget. Also, I would recommend using Energy Saving Lightbulbs, which are cost effective and of course, they are better for the environment.

Emily- Thank you for the advice and top tips!

Karen- Your very welcome.

These are also things to keep an eye on within your home to keep it well maintained.

Guttering-
Guttering is something which most of us would not even think about within our everyday life. But it’s important that we maintain it and look after our guttering.

After the cold and windy weather, we have recently had it would be a good idea to have your guttering checked to make sure it is not blocked up with leaves and moss and is free from any damage.  Gutters help collect rainwater within them, which then gets taken down the down pipes, and away from your home.
It is also a good idea to check the drainage from your downpipes, making sure the drain in also not block with leaves and debris. This will help protect your foundations and stops any flooding  occurring around your property.

It’s very easy for your gutters to become blocked. This can be from debris such as leaves, or moss or in some unfortunate cases, dead animals. This can cause gutters to block. The best way to see if your gutters are blocked is stepping outside when it’s raining and if the rain water is overflowing or dripping over the sides of the guttering indicating that most likely there is a blockage in your guttering.
This can cause some dampness within the property as well as flooding. So, it’s very important to get this blockage fixed. The best thing to do is to get the professionals out. Who will unblock your drains and stop anymore issues from rising.
So, guttering is a very important feature on your home that you need to maintain and look after. How about you go outside now and take a look at those gutters? See if yours look as healthy as they could be... At Red Squirrel Property Shop Ltd we can arrange to come out and inspect your guttering for you.

 

Legionella-
This is most likely something which wouldn't affect you, or something you wouldn't have even thought about. But, we believe it’s better to be safe than sorry.
Legionella is a waterborne bacterium which forms within stagnant water. It can cause three potentially fatal diseases which are collectively known as legionella’s. You can get this from breathing in mist or vapour that has been contaminated with the bacteria.
If you have a shower head above your bath which you hardly ever use but decide to use it one day this could be contaminated as stagnant water could have been trapped within the shower head. Therefore, this could contaminate you.
Likewise, in your boiler room, if your cold and hot pipes run next to one another this could be a way in which legionella could be formed. The cold pipe could cool the hot pipe creating stagnant water within the pipes.
So, to ensure you do not fall victim to this awful disease you need to have checks every 2 years. Red Squirrel Property Shop can do a legionella risk assessment for you, at the price of £75 plus VAT.
There are also some checks you can do yourself at home-
-Good practice in this situation is simply to run the taps (a very unlikely source anyway) with hot water for minimum 60 seconds, and more importantly flush the shower head with warm water for minimum 60 seconds after a period of non-use (to do this , remove from holder before switching on the shower, then hold down over drain to lessen risk of inhaling sprayed droplets).
-Similarly, flush, the toilet twice to circulate fresh water through the system and empty the cistern. Shower spray heads also present a small risk in domestic properties and should be cleaned of scale and debris every 3-6 months.
Doing these simple tests regularly will reduce the risk of legionella within your home.

 

Condensation-
I'm sure everyone has been faced with the issues of condensation. But it’s very important to manage this to reduce any issues within your home. Condensation can cause mould to appear on your walls, water streaks on your walls and patches of damp with no obvious edges.
This can look very distasteful within your property and is extremely annoying so it’s very important to manage this. You can do simple things within your home to reduce or stop the accumulation of condensation.
Firstly, you could ensure that you have an extractor fan in your bathroom / shower room. A good test to ensure yours is working well is putting a piece of paper to the fan and it should stay there (from the air being sucked up). This is a good indication that your fan is working correctly. 
The ventilation of the fan will remove excess moisture from the air reducing your risk of the build-up of condensation.
It’s a good idea to have a regular air flow within your home. For example, after or during your shower/bath, open a window slightly, if you do not have an extractor fan fitted, this will allow all the moisture in the air to escape and fresh air to be able to get into the room.
Likewise, it's good to keep your bedroom window slightly open. Not only does this improve your sleep but it allows fresh air to circulate your room and reduce condensation to occur.
Within your kitchen, it’s good to install a ventilation fan above your hob, or by opening the window slightly whilst cooking on your hob as this will again ventilate the moisture in the air, reducing the likelihood of condensation appearing.
These are simple and easy steps to take, to decrease your risk of mould and dampness within your home.


Gardening-
Some of us love getting our hands dirty and getting out into our garden and making it look beautiful and fantastic. On the other hand, some of us hate doing this. It’s not the therapeutic task it’s made out to be. However, to keep your home well maintained and looking its best it’s a vital part.
The humble garden fence can serve a variety of purposes, either as the boundary between one property and the next, a division from one garden area to another or as a screen to hide away a compost pile or the wheelie bins. No matter what the reason, garden fence panels don’t need to be the plain, boring objects that we tend to think of.
Anything that protects the timber, and ultimately the integrity and life of the fence is going to protect your investment. To ensure that fence panels and posts stay in tip top condition for longer, we recommend using a quality garden fence treatment.

There is nothing worse than an over grown garden, with withering plants and bushes. It’s so much better to have a blooming garden full of colour and order. It’s also very good to keep on top of your gardening. If you were to ever sell your home for example, having a well-maintained garden will mean your garden will be off the "to do list" for getting your property ready to sell.
Not only that, when the summer months arrive it’s nice to invite friends and family round and sit in a beautiful garden. Simple things to remember is to not over crowd your garden, make it look sophisticated and beautiful, not messy. Buy fully composted yard waste for best results, tidy your garden in the winter so the ground stays healthy and fertile. And finally, ensure to monitor the health of your plants in your garden. Make sure they look healthy and full of life.
After a while, these simple changes should become routine and your end up with a hassle free and beautiful garden for all to enjoy.

These are simple, yet important things to remember for maintaining your property. They are important for the foundations of your home, the safety of your home, the cleanliness of your home and the vanity of your home.
If you would like any more information on Legionella’s please feel free to call us at Red Squirrel Property Shop on 0198 521212.

Tel: 01983 521212
Email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

   

Emily Gibson

Archived Blog Posts