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

5 Outdoor Projects That Can't Wait until Next Year

October 15, 2015 2:21 am

(BPT) – Summer may be over, but that doesn’t mean you can’t complete a few exterior DIY projects before colder temperatures set in. If you act fast, you may even have time to enjoy your handiwork this year!

Which projects are best suited for fall? Here are five to get you started, courtesy of the experts at ProWood (ProWoodLumber.com).

1. Close the Cracks – Fall is an ideal time to seal cracks in your driveway before temperature fluctuations make damage worse. Start by cleaning the affected area, followed by applying the proper sealer – the sealer you choose depends on the size of the cracks. You can use concrete or vinyl patches, paints, caulk or grout to seal smaller cracks; larger cracks commonly require a combination of cement and grout. Apply the sealing solution to the crack and let dry before smoothing over.

2. Do That Deck – Installing a deck in the fall guarantees a full summer spent outdoors next year. Treated lumber is perfect for any DIY deck project because it's easy to work with, durable, and can be used to construct railings, stairs and more.

3. Liven Up the Landscape – A livened up landscape can work wonders for your home’s curb appeal. Flower boxes or raised planter beds are a great way to introduce new flowers and create spots of color. You can also surround your shrubs with new wood shavings or small rocks.

4. Fortify the Fence – Fencing your yard provides security for your home, your children and pets. Wood fencing is budget-friendly, and produced in several styles of convenient, prebuilt panels, as well as individual fence pickets. For an even more attractive fence, install color-treated wood fencing that retains a natural cedar-tone or redwood-tone color.

5. Fire Up the Fun – A backyard fire pit is a great place to congregate and one you'll enjoy well into the colder months. If you're seeking a quick addition, purchase a fire pit kit at your local home store. More durable, long-lasting options will require you to dig a trench and lay gravel before applying pavers. The option you choose should depend on how often you plan to use the pit, the appearance you're going for and the time and money you have to spend.

Source: ProWood

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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4 Tips when Making Disaster Relief Donations

October 14, 2015 2:15 am

Relief funds are vital to communities impacted by a natural disaster, but an influx of donations in its aftermath can make it difficult to determine how individual contributions will be purposed. According to the Better Business Bureau’s Wise Giving Alliance, donors can avoid questionable solicitations and ensure their contributions are put to good use by:

Exercising caution when giving online;

Following Hurricane Katrina and the earthquake in Haiti, the FBI raised concerns about newly-created organizations and websites that claimed to help victims. Be cautious about spam messages and emails that claim to link to a relief organization. If you want to give to a charity involved in relief efforts, go directly to the charity’s website.

Remaining wary of “100 percent” claims;

If a charity claims that 100 percent of collected funds will be assisting disaster victims, the truth is that the organization is still likely incurring fundraising and administrative expenses. Even a credit card donation will involve, at minimum, a processing fee. It may use some of its other funds to pay these costs, but the expenses will still be incurred.

Giving to the charity directly;

Some charities may be raising money to pass along to other relief organizations. If so, you may want to consider “avoiding the middleman” and giving directly to those that have a presence in the affected region. At minimum, research who the ultimate recipients are to see if they are equipped to provide aid effectively.

Avoiding inexperienced charities;

While well-intentioned, in-kind drives for food and clothing may not necessarily be the best way to help those in need, unless the organization has the staff and infrastructure to distribute donations properly. Ask the charity about its transportation and distribution plans, and be wary of those who are inexperienced in disaster relief.

Source: BBB Wise Giving Alliance

Published with permission from RISMedia.


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