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Chatty teenagers or a fax line are just two of the many reasons homeowners install a second phone line in their home. Fortunately, you can usually install two separate phone lines from your existing wiring if you already have relatively modern telephone wiring.

Safety Precautions

Before we get started, you must know what you’re getting into. While adding phone lines is not as dangerous as many other electrical projects, you could feel a jolt of electricity if the phone rings while holding the wires. Before you do anything, go outside to the phone service box, open the right-hand side and disconnect line one and line two.

How to Add A Second Phone Line

With safety out of the way, we can get down to business. Remove the cover on the phone jack in your house and look at the wires. All telephone cables should contain at least four wires: red, green, black, and yellow. Luckily, only the red and green ones are typically used to connect your primary phone. This leaves the black and yellow wires to power a second line.

The wires in the jack are probably already connected.

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gerCreating your own gutter garden is a great way to re-purpose worn out gutters to create a beautiful garden within a limited amount of space. Gutter gardens have been growing in popularity as city dwellers search for new ways to bring plants into their backyard. The best news is that this DIY project won’t cost you a ton of money and it’s a great way to take advantage of vertical spaces by securing your gutters vertically on a trellis or fence.

Whether you choose to fill your gutters with flowers, or edibles like strawberries and herbs, a gutter garden is sure to be a great addition to your patio, deck or backyard. Let’s get started!

Materials You’ll Need:

  • Gutters cut into equal sections
  • Gutter end caps (both right and left end caps!)
  • PVC glue
  • Mounting brackets and screws
  • Handsaw
  • Electric drill and drill bit, screw
  • Potting soil, flowers, and edibles of your choice.

Steps to Take:

  1. Clean out your gutters and clear them of any grime, dirt and flaking shingles. If you think that your gutters were painted with lead paint, do not use them as a planter for any edibles.
  2. Cut your gutters into equal sections
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12345Besides the kitchen and bathroom, a home’s flooring is frequently chosen as the next home remodeling project. Over the years, new options have come to life, like cork or bamboo flooring, but one preference that remains a top choice across America is tile.

Whether it’s the abundance of tile options available, their durable nature or ease in maintenance, tile floors remain the most popular selection on the market. Despite carpet’s prominence or the sudden rise in hardwood flooring, tile flooring offers unique advantages these other flooring options do not.

Based on installation, repairs, cost, durability and design, I will show you why tile floors are better than carpet or hardwood.


Installing Tile Flooring

Tile floors work great for bathrooms, kitchens and hallways because they can withstand the everyday wear and tear that comes with these highly trafficked rooms. Installing tile may be a DIY task for some ambitious homeowners, but there is a lot of labor involved as well as materials, like a wet saw. To professionally install tile floors, expect to pay around $3,724 for 500 square feet.

Installing Hardwood Flooring

Along with it’s popularity, hardwood flooring costs continue to

The filters in furnaces are meant to keep dust from entering the system. They perform their function very well. Unfortunately, clogged filters are one side effect, and it can be a huge issue when it comes to furnace performance. From higher utility bills to shutoffs caused by overheated heat exchangers and failed safety switches, there can be all kinds of problems.

Most people don't realize how great a problem a dirty furnace filter can be -- it can cause difficulties in summer, too.  If you have central air-conditioning, it's important to know that it uses the same filter to send air through the ducts around your home. With a clogged filter, you're likely to experience iced-up evaporator coils, poor cooling and high energy costs. It's a good reason to call the heater repair crew in in spring, after all the heating needs of winter are done with. It's only one of several reasons, however.

You want to lubricate and tweak

Furnaces don't have many moving parts, but the ones there are cannot wait six or seven months until winter arrives, to see some lubrication and cleaning. From the motor to the belts, thorough

It's easy for homeowners to forget about their gutters. They don't use energy, make noise, or have moving parts. Too often people don't think about their gutters until there is damage to the foundation, rotted fascia or soffit boards, roof leaks where water has overflowed, or ruined landscaping. All of these problems are serious, and repair costs can be in the thousands of dollars when the damage occurs to the roof or foundation. The solution is to be sure your gutters are in good condition and are regularly cleaned.

Importance of Cleaning Gutters

According to Traveler's Insurance, storms, rain, wind, and any harsh weather conditions can deposit dirt, leaves, and other debris in your gutters. As the amount of debris builds up, rainwater is prevented from flowing freely and can back up and overflow contributing to a variety of problems that cause damage. In cold climates, as accumulated snow and ice begin to melt, the runoff creates ice dams in the gutter causing serious damage. Even if you clean out your gutters each fall, it's impossible to keep new debris from getting in and causing clogs. Most gutters are catchalls for everything that floats around

We bought a house last year. It was perfect for us. That is until the drains began to run slow. It had sat empty for a little over a year. The hedges and trees really needed some TLC to get them looking good again. The lawn was let to grow high and then cut down low. It needed reseeded. We took care of all that when we bought the place. The house was otherwise a real gem with hardwood floors and lots of granite and new upgrades. Then we had to get drain cleaning in Hudson County, NJ to come out one day in the fall. The sewer line backed up when, one day, everyone was using water.

I was washing pots and pans in the kitchen sink, my husband was taking a shower in the master bath, our daughter was showering in her bathroom and the washing machine was running. With all the water going down the drain, I noticed the sink was not emptying. ...continue reading

Rattan is a popular material for outdoor furniture due to its unique aesthetic appeal, ease of maintenance and high level of comfort it offers. It is available in a wealth of styles and designs and can be made either from natural or synthetic rattan. They look almost identical, however, there are a few important differences between the two materials.

If you are having difficulties deciding between natural and synthetic rattan garden furniture, the following comparison of both materials may help:

Elegance. It is difficult to distinguish between natural and synthetic stems at a first glance. Both look elegant and aesthetically appealing, and are easily combined with both traditional and contemporary garden style. Many people, however, consider the natural version more elegant and classy than the synthetic one. All natural materials have a unique aesthetic appeal but it is important to be aware that many cannot withstand the harsh outdoor conditions and natural rattan is no exception. It is prone to mould and rot if exposed to moisture, while direct sunlight expose causes colour fading.

Comfort. Garden furniture must not only look beautiful but it also must provide a high level of

Height isn’t everything, but it sure is nice to have it when you're talking about ceilings in your home. Tall interior spaces trigger a sense of grandiose we’re used to seeing in old churches and famous buildings. High ceilings create an open and airy environment to move around and spread out without feeling crammed.

If you’re dealing with small spaces or low ceilings in your house, then you’ve come to the right place. Even if you have high ceilings, maybe you’ve always wished they were just a few inches higher. No matter your situation, I’ll share six techniques and design tricks that’ll allow you to create the illusion of higher ceilings and wide open spaces.


1. Install Transoms

This image is the perfect example of how a transom (window) above a door elongates the doorway and lets in additional light. Transoms can also be installed above other windows to create the same effect.

The extra light you get with transoms will make your room look bigger and brighter. They’re also very pretty additions to any door or window. Pay attention to your doorways and corridors and dress them up where you can. If you're someone who doesn't like the look of transoms, then you

Many people get the deep-cleaning bug each spring, but is spring really the most important time to give your home a complete scrub-down? While you may track plenty of dust into the home in the spring and summer, you spend the most time indoors in the winter months. Trying to keep heat from escaping also means the same stagnate, dirty air recycles through your home all winter long.

Follow these 10 pro deep-cleaning tips to remove dirt from hard-to-reach places, make sure your home is well-maintained and improve indoor air quality this winter.

1. Replace Air Filters & Clean the Furnace

According to the EPA, you should change your HVAC filters at least every three months to ensure your air stays clean. After replacing the filters, soak dusty ventilation covers in a hot water and soap solution. Filters work to pull dust particles out of the air and create cleaner, healthier air for you to breathe. They also keep your floors and furniture from gathering dust, helping keep your home looking its best.

If your gas and electric bills have started to rise, your home is not a consistent temperature in all rooms, or the burner flame on your furnace is yellow instead of

The kitchen is one of the best rooms in the house! It’s a space that’s fun to design, decorate and remodel. The kitchen is one place where you spend a lot of time and money. It’s no wonder most homeowners want it to not only look beautiful, but also decorate with a personalized touch.

Everyone has their own taste in clothes and it’s no different when it comes to kitchen styles. No matter your cup of tea, it’s entertaining to explore and see how people live around the world. Look no further, the following five kitchen styles are sure to inspire!

1. French Country

You may have heard of a French country kitchen design but aren’t quite sure what it exactly means. Well don’t worry, I’ve got you covered. This style encompasses a space that’s warm, comfortable and beautiful. It portrays a traditional and simple way of life.

The key characteristics of a French country kitchen include pale colors and earthy tones that are taken from a rural landscape. They’re typically dressed in crown molding, made of natural materials and more than likely have a large kitchen island. The expert interior designers at HomedIt describe another significant aspect of this style, “Traditionally, the hanging

When you own a house, it’s easy to get comfortable in your space and fail to notice when it’s time to make changes. You get busy working, the kids and pets are running around, and before you know it, there are smells coming from places you didn’t know existed.

Odors in the home don’t have to be a common occurrence. There are ways to prevent and maintain a home that not only looks good, but smells good too. See seven easy DIY solutions for freshening up your home so you’ve got pleasant odors roaming your space.

1. Eliminate Garbage Disposal Odors

Your garbage disposal could be wreaking more havoc in your home than you might realize. Food and grime build up over time and start to seep through to your kitchen and beyond. Start by running some lemon, lime or orange peels through your disposal to eliminate any odors. It’s said that the acid in the fruit kills some of the odor causing bacteria.

Also, if you’re an advocate of baking soda, this cleaning tip is for you. Dump your baking soda into the garbage disposal, add a cup of white vinegar and let your disposal run. Voila! The hardest part of eliminating odors

Popcorn ceilings were the hardwood floors of the 1960s and 70s. They were not only popular and cost-efficient, but also fit in with almost any home design back then. However, as our loyal readers know, home remodeling trends come and go. Sadly, it takes time to adopt and actually make changes to your home. Well, it’s time to put an end to those dated popcorn ceilings.

Rather than hire a pro to remove your ceiling, I am going to show how any homeowner can remove popcorn ceilings no matter how little or how much DIY experience you have. Afterwards, if you still don’t feel confident, ImproveNet can connect you with a drywall/ceiling professional (for free).

Hot to Get Rid of Popcorn Ceilings

Tools & Materials Needed

The project may be easy, but there are a bunch of tools necessary to complete the job as quickly and efficiently as possible.

  • Ceiling Texture Scraper
  • Putty Knife
  • Drop Cloth
  • Utility Knife
  • Ladder
  • Rubber Gloves
  • Safety Glasses
  • Tape Measure
  • Sanding Sponge
  • Rubber Spatula
  • Spray Bottle
  • Plastic Sheeting
  • Paint Stripper
  • Tape
  • Sanding Pole or Sandpaper
  • Drywall Compound
  • Drill
  • Painting Materials

Step 1: Clear the Room & Cover All

Like many home remodeling projects, this one can get messy. To minimize your cleaning time, it’s best to remove all furniture from the room. If something is nailed to the wall

There’s no doubt that the kitchen is one of the most important rooms in your house. We spend a lot of time in our kitchens, especially when eating and drinking are the main focal points of gatherings and celebrations.

Luckily, having a beautiful kitchen doesn’t have to mean shelling out thousands of dollars for a full upgrade. Small changes like refreshing the colors of your cabinets can go a long way in giving your kitchen a fresh, modern look at little cost. These six tips will help make your decision easy when choosing the right kitchen cabinet color and turn an outdated kitchen into your favorite room in the house.

1. Decide On A Style for Your Kitchen

The underlying style of your kitchen is one of the most important steps when deciding on a paint color for your cabinets. If you’re going for a cozy country look, light colors like white, gray and pale green or blue will be a perfect complement to complete a rustic theme. Keep the décor simple, with a few muted accent pieces or vintage-inspired cookware items used as decoration. Modern themes will look great with bold, saturated colors like reds and black, and they’ll pair nicely with

After all of the paperwork, phone calls and endless packing, you finally have the keys to your new home. As a first-time homebuyer, the most exciting part is unlocking the door and taking the first steps inside, realizing that it’s all yours.

But as the dust settles and unpacking begins, there are a few essentials to keep in mind as you make your house a home.

1. Get to Know the Space

Along with your new home, you likely have appliances, fixtures and other service items that were included in the sale. Before running a load of laundry for the first time, take some time to learn about what you will be working with day-to-day. This is not just so you’re aware of their functions, but so you have the certainty that you’re utilizing all items in the safest manner.

Although you have had your home thoroughly inspected by a licensed home inspector, consider having all your utilities checked by a service professional. This can help avoid any further surprises as you begin settling into your new home. Additionally, it’s a smart idea to go through your breaker box and relabel appropriately. Previous owners may have labeled rooms to be family specific, so it

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When the weather is just right for enjoying your outdoor space, you want to be sure that space is perfect for you. In this post you will learn about 5 easy DIY backyard ideas to improve your outdoor space, including

  • Adding outdoor lighting
  • Adding a porch enclosure or sunroom
  • Creating a garden area
  • Adding a seating area
  • How to improve landscaping

Life seems just a bit sweeter when you can hang out in your backyard and enjoy the beauty of your outdoor space. Whether your backyard is large or small, there are multiple ways to improve its general appeal with items and solutions derived from nature, accessory stores and any other place where beauty may be found or created. Any DIY backyard guidebook can give you some insights to outdoor beauty. Here are 5 DIY backyard ideas to get you started:

1. Adding Outdoor Pendants and Votive Candles to Light Up your Patio

Consider adding lighting in your backyard. It will improve the clarity of the outdoor space and enhance its aesthetic appeal. Ordinary bulbs may brighten up the space, but other options offer more. One DIY backyard idea is to use outdoor pendants and votive candles to create the perfect ambience. Choose the types and colors of

Bookshelves often become dumping grounds for the college textbooks we never returned, the trinkets or souvenirs we can’t throw away and every art and design book we HAD to have while browsing at second-hand bookshops. But, before you pull everything off the shelves in despair and build a partition wall or mini-fort from the rubble, here are some tips from Lofty to bring some style and order to your bookshelves with the help from our friends at ImproveNet.

1. Imagine A Bookcase as an Art Installation

The best way to begin any home project is to start with an overall vision of what you want to achieve. For bookshelves, this means giving yourself a good model of organization to follow, so that you have an outline (even if it's flexible) to keep in mind as you add and remove contents. Creative minds may enjoy approaching a bookcase as the shell for an art installation – every object has its place and meaning. The overall look is a conglomeration of color, shape and style that reflects your interior. The living room and the office are most often the best places for bookcases, and ImproveNet has a couple of great articles that show noteworthy

Moving to a new place? Congratulations! Before getting started on making new apartment arrangements, it’s important to make sure all is set with your current place. When moving into a rental, it’s recommended that residents fill out a written checklist with their landlord or building management that details any issues with the dwelling; otherwise, the landlord can hold you responsible for the repairs.

Now that you’re ready to move out, your goal is to return the apartment to the condition as it was when you moved in so you can get your entire security deposit back! Here are some do’s and don’ts that will help.

Do Give Ample Notice

Your lease lists all legal obligations to your landlord. Look closely at the termination clause and know exactly how much notice you’re expected to give when you decide to move out. Your rental agreement should spell out the required notice before vacating the apartment. For most rentals, 30 days’ notice is standard, though 60 days’ notice is gaining ground in some areas. This is true of leases and month-to-month rentals as well. Your notice should be written and dated, including the date you intend to be out of the apartment, and delivered timely to

With the cost of housing increasing each year, buyers are always looking for the most value for their money. Smart homeowners recognize that they can add house value through bathroom and kitchen remodeling, basement waterproofing or increasing square footage with basement underpinning.

Utilitarian basements are no longer sufficient for today's family needs, and older floor plans are typically considered old fashioned and impractical unless improvements have been made. Even with basement remodel costs added in, you'll get top dollar and a great return on investment when selling your home if it includes a trendy entertainment room, office space or kitchenette. Let's explore how basement underpinning can help.

What is Basement Underpinning?

Underpinning refers to the process of reinforcing an existing, unstable foundation or lowering the basement floor to increase the overall ceiling height. In both cases, the basement floor and soil underneath is excavated out and replaced at a lower level.

Today's underpinning methods have remained very similar to those done a hundred years ago. The uses and benefits, however, are very different.

What is Required?

The main purpose for basement underpinning is either to strengthen the existing foundation or to vertically extend it. Either way, you'll need to determine the reason for the work. In

Your home's foundation can fail for any number of reasons, ranging from sudden tectonic shifts to gradual soil erosion. Though one of the most common causes of foundation failure is water damage, both from inside and outside your home.

Although water damage is one of the most popular sources of foundation problems, it is also one of the most preventable. When caught early enough, fixing this issue is quite affordable. In fact, many of the tips below are suggestions you can do entirely by yourself.

Preventing Water Damage Inside Your Home

Leaks are the most obvious telltale sign of water damage. If you notice any hissing pipes, clogged toilets or dripping faucets, you might have to bring in a professional to address these issues (unless you’re an experienced DIY plumber).

Less-obvious warning signs include things like:

  • Rot & mold
  • Crumbling concrete
  • Stains & discoloration
  • Backed up sump pumps & septic tanks

However, some damage remains invisible until it is too late such as busted pipes under the floor or loose valves behind the wall. However, you can assess the damage indirectly by turning off the water main for a few hours and seeing if the meter changes. If it does, you’ve got a leak somewhere and it's time to call a plumber. Rest

Before installing a fence, the first thing all homeowners need to know is the average price. Fence installation costs vary based on the type and size of your chosen fence and therefore, makes research difficult and long. We have simplified the process and gathered the average prices for the most popular fences on the market. If you have ever wondered how much a fence costs, than this article is your answer.

Overview of Fencing Costs

First off, installing a fence can be a DIY project, but I will warn you that it is not the easiest home remodeling job. Hiring a professional is the safer route, but as you probably expect, it is also the costlier one.

You must consider your individual needs before purchasing and choosing a fence. Higher fences will not only take longer to install, but are more expensive. The materials are heavier and more difficult to work with.

Chain link fences are the cheapest to purchase and easiest to install. Made from composed galvanized steel or aluminum wrapped with PVC, these fences not only last a very long time, but are also incredibly easy and quick to install. While a wooden fence offers more privacy and security, the costs of labor

Did you know that garage man caves are therapeutic? I’m just kidding, but in all seriousness, a man cave garage is sure to be the talk of the town and your home within your home.

Man caves give us the freedom to express ourselves. It gives us the personal space we sometimes need in the middle of the weekly grind we go through 52 times a year. The benefits are endless, but converting a garage into a man cave is certainly easier said than done.

That is why I have researched and gathered all the steps one must take to convert and remodel a garage into a dream man cave.


To truly design and create the best man cave possible, you need a blank canvas. Many of us use the garage to store bikes, winter clothes, drinks, cleaning supplies, etc. Well, if you’re going to use this garage to the fullest, you need to get organized.

Rummage through all the junk you have in your garage and make sure each item is something you and family needs. If not, sell it on eBay or throw it out. For the items you do need, you better get smart at organizing. Move it to the basement,