The Smart Lock Era

If you’re like most people, you open the front door to your home with a key, right? It’s a simple, time tested method that homeowners have relied on for centuries, but like just about everything else, technology is changing things. Enter the smart lock, which got its start as keypad entryways on commercial buildings — you’ve probably seen them at your workplace or bank.

Now wireless locks and digital entry systems are available for residences, and it’s about time. Think about how long people have relied on their smartphones day to day and our society’s fixture on convenient tools, and you’ll realize why switching over to using smart locks makes so much sense sense.

Smart Lock Advantages

There’s one major problem with traditional door locks that the smart lock solves: a pin and tumbler mechanism that can easily be picked. Even the most secure traditional locks can be picked if given enough time and opportunity, but breaking into a door armed with a smart lock is much more difficult.

Smart locks aren’t impenetrable, but it takes a lot more effort for a would-be burglar to get through your digital entry than it would to pick a pin and tumbler lock.

If you’re wondering about aesthetics and fear that your door will end up looking like something out of a sci-fi novel, it’s not a problem. Electronic locks are available in a range of styles and you can easily find one that will blend into your home’s exterior.

Not only do smart locks look nice, they’re super convenient and some come with a range of handy features such as wireless connection, touchscreen pads, and the ability to sync with your home control service. Digital locks also typically come with a power indicator to alert you when the batteries need a change, which usually happens once every year or so.

Imagine being able to simply put your palm to a touchscreen to lock up you house, instead of fumbling with keys. Smart locks are not only hassle free for homeowners, but visitors as well. Say you have in-laws coming into town while you’ll be at work, and you don’t like the idea of leaving a key under the mat.

If you have a smart lock, you can just create a code for them and they can enter your home upon arrival. When they leave town, delete the code — that’s the awesome convenience of having a digital entryway.

Upgrading Your Doors

To make the change and go digital, you don’t need to replace your entire door. Instead, just have the standard lock switched out for a smart lock. To make sure it works flawlessly, it’s best to leave the installation of your new smart lock to a pro.

The door to your home isn’t something you want to take a chance with, and it’s much better to call a locksmith in the first place as opposed to calling one in an emergency because you improperly set up the lock. If you’re on the West Coast and looking to upgrade your home security, I highly recommend going to this locksmith in El Dorado Hills, California. Give smart locks a try, and see how much you love them — you may find yourself wanting one for every room of your house.

House Extensions & How They Can Be Beneficial For Homeowners

What is a house extension?

A house extension is a development procedure to a property that expands the usable space, this can be achieved either through an internal extension (known commonly as a loft conversion or a basement conversion) or through external house extensions.

What Are The Benefits Of Extending Your Home?

  • You will have more usable living space, more rooms in the house are always desirable and can be used for a range of purposes, home cinema, gyms’ additional bedrooms and bathrooms.
  • Home extensions increase the value of a property, adding a loft conversion or a basement conversion to a home can increase the properties’ value by 25%, two storey extensions can add overt 30% to the value of a property, making it easy to see why so many people opt for expanding the home they live in rather than purchasing a new property.
  • Rental options, having additional space opens a homeowner up to the prospect of receiving rental income from the additional space (it’s becoming more and more popular among homeowners to rent out their loft space to tenants).
  • Aesthetics, house extensions can develop the perimeter and surface area space of a property giving the appearance of a large “mighty” property that makes a statement with it’s design.
  • Additional storage space, some people choose to extend their home for the most simple of purposes, additional storage room can be made from additional space in a property.

How Long Does It Take To Build A Home Extension?

This is dependant on several different factors:

  1. The size and complexity of the extension: Some properties are larger than others, and some designs are more complex and require more bespoke elements than other properties.
  2. The availability of the extension builders that you choose to work with, good builders are generally busy people, you could be on a waiting list for some time, so choose carefully.
  3. How common the materials are that are being used, are there bespoke materials to be used according to the plans? If so, this could increase the time taken to source the materials for the project
  4. How long it takes to gain planning permission for the extension, commonly expansions to a property require planning permissions, (planning permissions are permissions for a building project from the local authority).
  5. Are there works being carried out on the property that need to be completed prior to the extension? (self explanatory)

There are other factors but these are the main ones, most of them are workable, and aren’t automatically an issue that means an extension cannot go ahead or the approach cannot be adapted.

How Much Does A House Extension Cost?

Usually a house extension will cost in the ballpark region of £1,000-£1,200 per square metre, but again this will be dependant on the complexity and whether or not there are specific materials to be used on the extension.

The best option in most cases with a question like “What will be the price of my extension?” is to speak with a specialist builder, who will be able to answer these questions for you, in a way that is tailor made for your project.

How To Choose The Best Company For My Extension – Quick Tips

  1. Make sure that the builders are accredited, they will need a CSCS card and they should have SMSTS training, a City and Guilds Certificate is desirable.
  2. Check their pricing, think about comparing the quote you receive from the builder with quotes from other building companies’ to make sure that the quotes are fair and reasonable.
  3. Make sure that the company you choose for your home extension will be available to carry out the work in the time-frames you’re looking for, in the event they can’t you may need to either re-think your plans, or re-think the building company you work with.

Proceed with care when planning your project and choose a company that can meet your needs and expectations, it is advisable to check on a portfolio if there is one available to review, it is always a good policy to check on previous works from a company before proceeding with any build project.

Four tips on finding the perfect contractors for your home improvement project

To obtain best results in your home improvement project, you need to hire a good contractor. There are many factors involved in taking the decision. Here are four tips on finding the right contractor for your project.

1. Ask for recommendations

If you have a friend who has done this kind of work recently, you can ask him or her for the recommendation. If you admire any of your neighbor’s home, then you can ask the neighbor about which contractor was hired. If you like the work of the contractor and get positive reviews about them, then write down the name and contact details of these contractors.

2. Check out the credentials

You should do some research on contractors. You need to visit the contractor’s website and learn about their specialties and the latest projects they have worked on. You should also verify the contractor’s license and other certifications.

3. Interview shortlisted contractors

You should shortlist at least three candidates for interviewing. You should hire someone who communicates well. You should ask questions to understand that they have good knowledge about home renovating works and that they understand your requirements.

4. Check references

You should always check the references the contractor has given you. You can speak to the homeowners the contractor has worked recently with and ask them about the quality of work provided by the contractor.

You should take the time to hire a contractor for your next home remodeling project. The outcome of your project will depend on your selection of contractors.