Category Archives: Lifestyle

Renovation Surprises Blowing People’s Budget

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Property renovations can include hidden costs which homeowners do not have the budget allowance for. So, before home or property renovations are started, be ready for these unexpected expenses.

Hidden damage

According to Archicentre, which is The Australian Institute of Architects’ building advisory and its design service, smaller than 40% of the home buyers have their property go through inspections before they purchase.

Archicentre manager Michael Appleby said that it is highly important that these home buyers are aware of a property’s condition prior to buying to prevent risking their bank balance.

Some of the usual problems or defects that are found by Archicentre’s inspectors are termite infestation, the need for a property to be re-stumped, the need for wiring and plumbing to be replaced, and structural issues.

Damp issues and asbestos removal are some that lead to hidden costs, too.

According to Rich Harvey of the Real Estate Buyer’s Agents Association of Australia (REBAA), there are many terraced homes which have problems with increasing damp in Melbourne and Sydney.

He said to be careful with increasing damp particularly in 80- to 100-year old properties. He recommended to check the paint work for any discolouration at the architraves or paint bubbling which is an evidence of extra moisture.

Structural issues

Drew Hamilton, who is PH+ Architects’ director, suggested that clients should consider a contingency of a minimum of 10% of construction costs in order to cover unexpected costs.

Hamilton said that the primary scope for surprise costs in terms of renovations are the unknowns related to dealing with existing buildings.

Permit fees

When homeowners start any addition to homes, they need to check with a local council for approvals needed, according to Jenny Williams, who is an interior designer from Sydney’s Creative Style that specializes in new builds and renovations.

The council has the power to have homeowners remove unapproved works, and it also affects selling when every relevant approval was not obtained from a certifier or the local council.

Summing up

It is really advantageous, as examples, to ask for council approvals before starting home projects or to have Termite Inspections in Sydney prior to purchasing a new home. These are all so headaches, hassles and especially hidden costs are prevented.

To Buy Or To Hire Marquees

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Duncan Moore goes to investigate the best time to invest in a marquee for a venue.

Marquees for any venue

For venues that need to offer covered spaces, marquees are a great choice. Marquees, known also as soft tops or pole tents, and referred as temporary demountable structures (TDS) in the marquee industry, can be erected and taken down quickly. With its modular nature, size is very variable to fit any occasion, too.

The decision to use a marquee for host functions also proves as cost effective in comparison to having a permanent structure. However, at what certain point will it make sense to buy a marquee than continue using services of a hire business, such as a Marquee Hire in Sydney?

A financial decision

This decision is mainly a financial one. So, which option offers the best value? When a marquee is needed only once or twice in a year, then hiring is the best decision. The fees for hiring a marquee for only several events are going to be relatively lesser than costs of purchasing outright.

According to Daniel Hill, who is the founder of catering and event management firm Dine that has a portfolio of private events, as well as marquee sites all over the United Kingdom, for smaller events having six events each year, he recommended collaborating with any local marquee company, since this is more cost effective, and they can offer expert knowledge in terms of what may be done in a land.

However, he said that when a marquee is needed regularly for a similar venue, then it is better to do a purchase. Gill said that for longer term business plans, purchasing a marquee can become more beneficial. For him, the utmost thing to consider is having a planning permission and not buying without this. However, he added, that when a marquee is purchased, it allows lower hire fees to be charged to a client in comparison to a price they are going to pay on hiring one independently.

He advised to research when either renting or buying, since there are many things to consider for these marquee events, such as how a structure is going to be placed while taking advantage of a location, and where the services are going to go, which includes parking, water and waste drainage and more.

Enjoying A Mind-Blowing Holiday Without Spending A Fortune

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Daniel Gillaspia is an American lawyer and travel blogger who was able to secure a unique bargain on a mind-blowing holiday. He travelled all over the world with his partner and visited luxurious destinations that include Tokyo, Singapore, Dubai and New York.

Gillaspia did not travel on a shoestring budget; he lived a life of opulence and enjoyed it for a fraction of the cost. To be more specific, the cost of his travel was less than 1%. If you were to estimate the actual cost of Gillapia’s journey, it amount s to $52,294 (£41,967). He only paid $408 (£327). How so?

Before Gillaspia set off on the journey, he planned and prepared to live the life of a savvy tourist without spending a fortune. He was inspired by stories of other travellers who were able to travel the world cheaply by accruing points and rewards on their credit cards.

Using a detailed spreadsheet, Gillaspia and his partner gradually collected bonuses and point boosts for the past 2 years before embarking on an adventure. They started the holiday in September and the first leg took them to Los Angeles and Tokyo.

Singapore Airlines Business Class tickets normally cost $4,444 (£3,582) but Gillaspia and his partner only paid $68 (£55) because they have accumulated more than 100,000 KrisFlyer miles. The pair of travellers used IHG points to enjoy 2 nights at Intercontinental Tokyo Bay. The hotel upgraded them upon arrival.

The next stop was Singapore where the pair flew first class through Singapore Airlines. The actual cost of the first class air tickets was $11,660 (£9398) but they only paid $108 (£87) by using KrisFlyer miles again. Perks included free-flowing Krug and Dom Perignon champagne including Salvatore Ferragammo amenity bags. Capital One Venture credit allowed them to stay at the prestigious Marina Bay Sands Hotel in Singapore.

It only takes some proper planning and preparation to travel the world without breaking the bank. However, even without rewards and points, you will able to enjoy an affordable holiday through best value hotel in Sukhumvit in the heart of Bangkok. You can avail of more reasonable prices if your book early.

3 Advantages Of Having Bunk Beds

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There are several advantages of having bunk beds at home. If you would take a look at home magazines and the internet, you would realize that bunk beds are the in thing for modern families and young individuals living in rented spaces. Nowadays when there is scarcity of space and renting spacious rooms can be real expensive, bunk beds would be a good solution.

Space savers

Bunk beds are ideal for big families with limited living space. With a bunk bed, you can already put in two kids in one room or two bunk beds to accommodate four children if the space is big. This way you won’t have to worry about having kids in your room or kids not having their own bed space in a room.

More affordable

Because the makers of bunk beds save in materials, bunk beds are offered at a more affordable price compared to single beds with head boards. Depending on the design, the lower bunk can also be converted into a sofa and other pieces of furniture so you get to save money for buying additional furniture in the house. Some bunk beds can be assembled at home so you won’t have to worry about taking home huge furniture when you can get them in a box and have the family help you in assembling the bed.

Multi-functional

One of the reasons why bunk beds are in demand among modern families and individuals is because these types of beds can be utilized for different purposes. With a limited space, bunk beds can be used converted as a reading nook and comfy sofa where friends can get seated while watching movies. If you are taking care of somebody who’s sick, you can sleep on the upper bunk while having the other person underneath your bed. For young individuals who work at home, you can remove the lower bunk and have the space as your work station. The point is, there are just so many things you can do with bunk beds without you spending so much on it. Look for reliable suppliers to get one of those beds now.

Removalist Could Cost $10,800

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Moving to a different city is going to get more expensive in Australia.

Current pay rates for removalists

Unaware Australians may find themselves soon opposing the Fair Work Ombudsman when they are unsuccessful in paying their self-employed removalist the right amount under the contentious current minimum pay rates.

The focus lies mostly on the impact that the order from the Road Safety Remuneration Tribunal is going to have on thousands of the country’s owner-drivers.

Grace Collier, a media commentator and an industrial relations consultant, highlighted one of the more instant effects on the Australian consumers in The Australian.

From this Contractor Driver Minimum Payments Road Safety Remuneration Order 2016, also known as 2016 RSRO, the contractor drivers who are self-employed, as well as the furniture removers and couriers, should be paid based on “safe rates.”

This Order is applicable to those journeys which are longer than 500 kilometres, and those journeys which are longer than 200 kilometres through state borders. This means that for someone who hires a removalist to move stuff from Canberra to Sydney, as an example, they are going to require familiarisation with the 2016 RSRO’s Schedule B.

The FWO already confirmed that someone who fails to pay a proper rate can result to getting subjected to investigation, prosecution, and can be fined to about $10,800.

Collier wrote that for someone that thinks there are breaches of this order happening, they may anonymously have the removalist be subjected to a Fair Work Ombudsman investigation.

She added the even the businesses report their competitors every time, especially if they believe that their competitors are getting market share and should be undercutting the prices.

She further explained that when this happens, this is going to be a huge hassle, as the Fair Work Ombudsman inspectors may go inside the premises without permission or warrant. They may also show up at a workplace, do some interviews, inspect the documents and get copies. Aside from this, they also have legal power to ask for personal information and evidence.

Conclusion

Even if self-employed removalists doing home removals in Sydney or in other parts of Australia are subjected to this new order, there is still no doubt how asking help from removalists to move places is hassle-free, so homeowners will really need to read up regarding this new scheme.

Benefits Of Having Health Insurance

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Some people disregard the importance of health insurance until they are actually confronted with hospitalization bills in the event of medical issues or accidents. For some, health insurance plans mean an added expense especially if you do not have health insurance coverage in the office and you would be paying the plan from your pocket. However, you never know when you are going to get into an accident or when a medical issue would arise. To give you financial freedom and peace of mind during such difficult times, it would be best to get a health insurance plan right before you need it. Here are some of the reasons why:

Affordable health care

In case you or a family member under the coverage gets hospitalized, the health insurance policy shoulders a large amount of the medical and hospitalization bills making it easier for you to pay the remaining costs. The out-of-the-pocket expenses are kept at a low amount relieving you the burden of borrowing money or taking your savings from the bank. Even if you are healthy at the moment, accidents can change all that and in that circumstance, it is always better to have a health insurance that you can financially lean on.

Lower medication costs

If you have a health insurance and prescription drugs are covered, you can get the medicines at a much lower price. Apart from buying generic medication, having an insurance to cover the medication bills for antibiotics and other medicines can be a huge financial relief.

Prevention and Check Ups

Another benefit of ประกันสุขภาพ (health insurance) is that you never have to worry about spending for checkups and doctor’s visits. You can easily schedule a visit to a doctor to determine the exact status of your health and to find out if there are any potential diseases which can be prevented with immediate medical attention. You won’t also have to worry about vaccinations, immunizations and similar preventive health measures because you have a health insurance to cover the expenses. Health insurances also cover wellness exams, laboratory tests and even dental issues.

What To Hire For Your Party

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The supplies that you are going to hire for your party will depend on your actual needs. In order to have a successful event, choose a reliable Party Hire in Perth that will supply all your needed supplies and equipment. Take note that there are party supplies that are suitable to be hired while there are some that are more economical when purchased. If you are not sure what type of supplies you are going to rent, take a look at these ideas.

List down your needed items

In order for you not to miss out important items, list down everything that you will need for the party. This will include tables and chairs, marquee or tents, drink dispensers, bar, crockery, glassware and many more. After listing down all your needs, categorize the list into three; those that you need to hire, supplies that you need to buy and supplies that you already have. For instance, if you already have drink dispensers, you can just crash them out from the list. If you do not have a marquee, that is one item that you need to get from a Party Hire in Perth. Marquees can be quite expensive so it would be best to hire one instead of buying brand new.

Consider the occasion

In order to get the right supplies for your party, consider the occasion. There are tables and chairs suited for a wedding but would look awkward on a kiddie party. The type of equipment that you are going to hire would also depend on the type of occasion. For instance, if you are going to have a birthday party for your 8-year-old child, an ice cream cart or giant trampoline would be a great party equipment to hire.

Look for suppliers

After identifying the items that you will need for your party, the next step is to find where you will get them. Look for a Party Hire in Perth that can deliver high quality supplies at a reasonable price. Ask for cost estimates to get your items at a pocket friendly amount.