Posts Tagged ‘home’

Home survey: Money well spent

Sunday, March 15th, 2015

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Home survey wordle

Despite the fact that real estate in Sydney is a significant long-term investment that could impact a buyer’s finances for decades, many prospective home-owners baulk at shelling out for a professional surveyor to examine the property before the sale is completed. This is an unnecessary risk at best and a disastrous error in judgement at worst, as home damage that may be invisible to the untrained eye can cause unforeseen calamity long after you’re left holding the deed.

An expert eye

Surveyors are trained to spot existing as well as potential issues with an uncommon level of detail. Once the 2-3 hour examination of the interior and exterior of the property is complete, the surveyor will provide a thorough report on the various aspects of the home, including structure, plumbing, electrical equipment, and other amenities.

During a surveyor’s report, minor defects, major defects and safety issues will be categorised and detailed to you. You will also find out which items need repair and replacement as well as those that should be monitored for future wear. Home surveyors can even inform you of routine maintenance that should be performed based on the amenities in the home, which is information not even the seller may possess.

Survey contingency

One of the most useful discretions that having a home surveyed before buying affords you is the ability to back out of an offer if significant issues are discovered during the assessment, even after an otherwise enforceable deal is reached in principle.

The survey contingency is a vital resource after an offer has been accepted. Without this protection you may be legally bound to pay the seller a penalty fee or even the full purchase price of a home once an agreement is reached regardless of what issues may later arise.

Your options

If issues are discovered during a home survey, you can choose to ask the seller to fix them at their expense, to reduce the purchase price, or to provide a cash credit at closing to be applied to the cost of repairs. This is where surveyors truly earn their keep, as without the survey your options would be extremely limited and you would likely be responsible for the cost of any repairs necessary before you can live in the home.

It is advisable for all home-buyers to have a survey conducted prior to exchanging. A survey is an investment of time and money, but one that could pay for itself many times over if significant issues are discovered.


Craft room

Friday, May 24th, 2013

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view of our craft & sewing room

In last week’s Mapping the World post we talked about finally sorting out what had become a storage room after last year’s flood. It didn’t end after hanging a few maps, so here’s a short follow up to show what else we did in there.

view of our craft & sewing room showing a vintage printers tray full of cotton reels

It has evolved into a combined craft room & spare bedroom. We’ve put an old, rustic work bench in the large window area to make use of the natural light. On it sits a vintage Bernina sewing machine that’s just had a full service; also drawers, jugs & baskets full of thread, pins and craft tools.

view of our craft & sewing room showing a vintage hanging industrial lamp

When the sun goes down we have a couple of task lights – both have an industrial look. The first is a pale blue touch-sensitive desk lamp that we reviewed for John Lewis. The second is a vintage hanging work light with metal cage to protect the bulb.

view of our craft & sewing room showing a vintage black painted iron bed with vintage floral quilt cover in shades of orange & yellow

And last but not least a bed – we bought this Victorian folding metal bed at a flea market for £20 which was a bit of a bargain. It looks lovely with its bright floral linen. If you overdo it on the crafting, you can just flop into bed a few feet away!

Bookmarks – Homemade Home

Monday, February 28th, 2011

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Homemade Home book cover

Homemade Home by Sania Pell and published by Cico Books is the third in our new series of Bookmarks book reviews.

Homemade Home book with vintage sewing machine and fabric

We’re often in awe of people who seem to find the time and have the creativity to make something out of nothing. In our case, we either don’t get round to doing it or don’t think we’ve got the skills.

page from Homemade Home book showing various hand-painted bottles

Homemade Home will put paid to both – it will motivate you to make a start and it will give you the instructions in how to do it.

title page in the Homemade Home book showing covered buttons

Recycling household materials was once common in most households.

page from Homemade Home book showing handmade linen napkins

There was a certain decline in during the latter half of the twentieth century, but that trend is now very much reversing again…

page from Homemade Home book showing handmade napkins

…whether in the guise of recycling, up-cycling or remodelling.

page from Homemade Home book showing handmade canvas deckchair seats

This could be for many reasons – a new awareness of conserving the world’s resources, saving money or creating an individual/distinctive look.

page from Homemade Home book showing handmade labels

Whatever the reason, this book’s a perfect companion.

page from Homemade Home book showing fabric covered notebooks

The pages are divided into quick ideas and larger projects.

page from Homemade Home book showing covered buttons

There are easy to follow, step-by-step instructions – and some lovely photographs of the finished items in household settings.

page from Homemade Home book showing handmade origami flowers

There’s plenty of opportunity to adapt the ideas in terms of materials, design or finish.

page from Homemade Home book showing upcycled planters made from food tins

The author’s objective is to inspire you to have a go… and it certainly works!

page from Homemade Home book showing teacups now being used as plant pots

Before you know it you’ll be collecting buttons & scraps of material.

page from Homemade Home book showing sewing paraphernalia

And, if you already have such a collection, it will offer some fun & interesting ways to use it all.

Homemade Home can also be bought from our vintage design bookshops: Amazon UK | Amazon US

[Many thanks to Cico Books for supplying this review copy]