RE/MAX 440
John F. O'Hara

John F. O'Hara
731 W Skippack Pike  Blue Bell  PA 19422
Phone:  610-277-4060
Office:  215-643-3200
Cell:  267-481-1786
Fax:  267-354-6973

My Blog

This Summer's Top Outdoor Living Trends

June 20, 2016 2:27 am

Summer’s all about the outdoors—and at a home, that means an outdoor space outfitted for the season.

This summer, three design trends are making a statement: aquamarine, concrete and teak, according to Zillow Digs® recently released Home Trend Forecast.

“Clean, simple and contemporary is the vibe for outdoor living in 2016,” says Kerrie Kelly, Zillow Digs home design expert. “Anything high-maintenance, intricate or over-styled will be replaced with materials that can both withstand the elements and transition beautifully between seasons. Natural wood outdoor furniture will take center stage, but will be modernized by concrete or stainless steel accent materials, which will pop up in anything from chair legs to coffee table tops.”

Aquamarine—a blue color in the cerulean family—is unexpectedly warm, pairing well with natural wood and slate, Zillow Digs experts say. The shade can be incorporated into an outdoor space through accents like patio umbrellas and all-weather throw pillows.

Concrete, newly introduced with fiberglass and resin, is making a comeback. Whether it’s a concrete coffee table or a stamped concrete patio, the material has been re-imagined as a contemporary—and practical—element, say Zillow Digs experts.

Teak furniture, such as Adirondack chairs or a dining set, is as popular as ever, this season updated with stainless steel. Zillow Digs experts suggest installing teak platform seating to take the trend from timeless to today.

Trends on their way out, according to the Zillow Digs Forecast, are floral patterns, high-maintenance lawns and wrought iron furniture.

Source: Zillow

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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Stay Safe Online: What Is Ransomware and How Can I Avoid It?

June 17, 2016 12:21 am

Reports of ransomware—an invasive software that demands ransom to access unlawfully locked digital files—have risen in the last year, according to the National Cyber Security Alliance (NCSA) (StaySafeOnline.org).

Ransomware, which can attack any user, “kidnaps” a range of information, from financial records to photographs, in an attempt to gain ransom in exchange for the return of the information. Generally, it strikes through an attachment or link containing a ransomware code.

“As cybercriminals become more cunning and sophisticated, we must become more vigilant about basic digital hygiene and protecting our data and devices—including smartphones and tablets,” said Michael Kaiser, executive director of the NCSA, in a statement. “There are simple things everyone can do, like keeping all software updated, turning on two-factor authentication, backing up data in the cloud or other removable media and making strong passwords.”

To ward off attacks, update all software, including security programs, on every internet-enabled machine or device. Be sure to regularly back up important information to a secure location—ransomware criminals cannot demand payment if you can access your information by other means.

Setting a difficult-to-determine password is also wise. Aim for a password that is at least 12 characters. To further reduce your risk, consider adding two-step authentication, which is a process that requires two steps to log in to any password-protected account. This process, sometimes called “two-step verification” or “multi-factor authentication,” may include second steps like text message codes or fingerprint swipes.

Remember: always err on the side of caution. If an email, online advertisement or social media post appears even the slightest bit suspicious, delete or ignore it.

Source: National Cyber Security Alliance

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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