How to Get Along Perfectly with Flatmates in a Flatshare Birmingham

Living in a flatshare in a vibrant city such as Birmingham is one of the most memorable periods in a lifetime. You get to meet people from all sorts of backgrounds, cultures, beliefs and personalities. It is an eye opener as well as an opportunity to make life long friends. There is so much more  to be had from a flatshare than just an affordable rent. However, not all flatshares get along smoothly. Conflicts arise from issues such as finances, cleaning and sheer nuisance. Follow these tips for a smooth Flatshare Birmingham.

Learn to communicate

Your flatmates will never know that you get irritated at having your favorite pillow moved until you say so. Communication is important to set expectations and guidelines early in the arrangement. Lack of clear communicationonly keeps things under the wraps to blow up later with bitter consequences.

Establish boundaries

Some people never realize how intrusive they are, and will keep popping in and out of your room when all you need is some quiet and alone. Establishing boundaries like ‘NO ENTRY INTO MY ROOM AFTER 10 P.M.’ will do a lot to keep the peace.

Do stuff together

If you are an avid gamer, introduce your flatmates to the wonders of the Playstation and you might be surprised at how much they get fond of it. Doing stuff together establishes new grounds for common interests and bonding. Even simple things such as having  drinks together do a lot to make you a tight group.

Learn to compromise

You can never have perfect flatmates. People have different ways of doing things from how you do them. Getting irritated that the plates were arranged facing up instead of upside down in the dishwasher is just being a jerk. Learn to compromise as long as the compromise does not make you uncomfortable.

Set house rules

Setting house rules ensures that everyone knows what is expected of them, what is appropriate and inappropriate. A set of house rules should be clearly stuck on  a visible point so that everyone is constantly reminded, for example, that no pets are allowed in the house.

Have a duty rota

Everyone should do their fair share of keeping the house habitable. This includes   chores like washing the dishes, and cleaning the bathroom. If this is not possible, establish a common fund for hiring a cleaning service.

Stay hygienic

As much as it is your right to shower only once in a week, your stale smell can be quite offputting at the breakfast table. Clean up and stay clean.

7 Things You Didn’t Know Were Forests Products

The value of forests to human life is incredibly absolute. That’s right; forests provide us with so much – clean water, pure air, beautiful fauna & flora, and tranquil environment. Sure, you know that forests are teeming with a huge variety of trees that offer us household products we can’t live without. From toilet paper to printing paper and everything in-between, products from forests are all around us.

But did you know that forests provide us with the following everyday things?

#1. Cleaning Sponges

Squishy and soft products like sponges are actually manufactured from wood fibres. Oh yeah, the next time you are cleaning your windows with a sponge, take a moment to think about the fabulous forests.

#2. Latex Gloves

I bet you cannot clean your dishes without hand gloves. How about your favourite dentist or doctor – how could they operate without latex surgical gloves? That’s right! Both household and medical hand gloves are made from natural latex, a nifty substance that’s derived from rubber trees.

#3. Car Wax

The beauty of car wax is that it can restore the lustre and “new feel” of your vehicle. But did you know that car wax is derived from a type of palm tree found only in the Amazon forest?

#4. Hair Dye

Natural hair dye has become an attractive alternative to harmful synthetic dyes. This safe, 100% natural hair dye comes from the leaves, barks, and nutshells of henna tree found in East Asian forests.

#5. Chocolate

I am sure the thought of chocolate tickles your taste buds. The next time you munch into these savoury treats, think about the rich tropical forest of the Latin America and West Africa. Chocolate is essentially a product of cacao tree which is native to South and Central American rain forests.

#6. Chewing Gum

Chewing gum has been around since time immemorial partly because they are made out of tree parts from natural forests. While most of the today’s widely used gum brands encompass the use of synthetic alternatives, it all started with chicle sap, a gum base derived from Sapodilla trees.

#7. Wine Corks

We love the riot of flavours and smell of wine thanks to cork stoppers. Interestingly, wine corks are made from the cork oak, a fascinating tree that can survive for up to a quarter of a millennium. Every decade or so, these trees from parts of European forests are stripped for their corks to come up with wine stoppers.

These are just but a few products you didn’t know come from trees that grow in our forests. The more reasons we should take great care of our forests, right?

End of Tenancy Cleaning Prices – What You Need to Know

I won’t lie to you; moving out of a rented house can be quite stressful, if not nerve-wracking. You have to juggle lots of things. Not only do you’ve to ensure all your belongings are packed, pets and children are entertained, and all the goods you’ve amassed over the years are sorted out, you also have the onerous task of making sure that the house is thoroughly cleaned and left in perfect order.

The landlords and letting agencies look for even the slightest flaw in your move-out cleaning, keen to use it as an excuse to hive off a huge chunk from your deposit. Luckily, you can enlist the help of expert cleaners to do a bang-up job on your end of tenancy cleaning.

But what if the so-called “professional” does a shoddy job? You will certainly be forced to roll up your sleeves and go back to square zero. In the process, you’ll suffer from a massive last-minute nightmare with the landlord breathing up your neck, and end up losing oodles of cash.

End of Tenancy Cleaning Prices – You get what you pay for

One tell-tale sign of these fly-by-night cleaners is that they offer what appear to be rock bottom prices. Do not fall for their cheap trick; that is how they prey on you. The result is always the same: you will get what you paid for – a cheap, mediocre job! If the end-of-tenancy cleaning prices are too good to be true, then they probably are. Run as far as possible from these scammers, and save yourself lots of headaches.

Do Your Homework

When it comes to choosing the right cleaner, it pays to do a little research. Ask around – your friends, neighbours or family might know a bespoke cleaner with reasonable end of tenancy cleaning rates. Even better, read online reviews; they’ll help you zero in a perfect candidate.

Look Out for Hidden Fees or Questionable Charges

Flimsy cleaners usually claim to offer the cheapest end of tenancy cleaning prices but include an array of questionable fees. An excellent professional cleaner, on the other hand, should give you a fixed-price quote. This way, you’ll budget without any hassle of hidden charges.

Is your End of Tenancy Cleaner Insured?

The rate isn’t the only factor you should put into consideration when selecting a cleaner. For extra peace of mind, you should also go for one that has a valid insurance coverage. After all, many things can go wrong during the clean-up.

Top Moving Tips with Easi Movers Man with a Van Service

Moving day is hectic and can be a bit overwhelming if not planned well. Easi movers man with a van service say that they see most of their customers underestimating this project. Emotions can run a bit high if the project is not planned well and goes awry. This could lead to misplacing items and other unhappy events. However, Easi movers say that things could be a lot smoother if you followed some basic guidelines.

  1. Start early – preparation is everything. Easi movers say that to move a big house smoothly, you will need at least 2 months of preparation. A small house needs at least 1 month preparation.
  2. Declutter – Throwing away stuff you no longer need is a good idea. It saves you packing space and also signifies a new beginning. Dump the junk and give away useful old stuff to charity.
  3. Packing boxes – Get good quality packing boxes early enough. They are to be found in plenty in supermarkets, bookshops or liquor stores.
  4. Wrapping too – Not all of your stuff will fit perfectly in the packing boxes. You will need wrapping to keep items knocking against each other and breaking for example glassware or fine china.
  5. Pack room to room – Make a checklist of what to carry and move room to room when packing. This ensures you do not misplace any items.
  6. Load sensibly – All heavy items should go to the bottom. They make a good base to place other items.
  7. Use a professional service – Get a good man and van service. This will solve half your problems as an experienced removals crew will not overlook anything and do more to make everything smoothly.
  8. Make an inventory – This will ensure that everything that needs to move is in the packing boxes. Tick off the checklist as you are packing. Have a separate bag with all the items you will need immediately after moving in to the new house e.g. blankets, plates, tissue etc.
  9. Label carefully – Careful labelling ensures that items go into the rooms they are supposed to. You can use different colours for different rooms to help the moving crew unload easier. Breakables and fragile items should be carefully labelled to be handled with care.
  10. Precious stuff – Money, jewellery and personal documents should not be loaded with other stuff. Carry these items on your person to avoid misplacing.
  11. Collaborate – You should plan together with the man with a van service. Agree on the date and route so that there are no misunderstandings on moving day.

What Can You Do to Stop Deforestation?

The United Nation’s Food and Agricultural Organization estimates that an area the size of Panama is cleared in rainforests around the world. That is not accounting for the millions of trees that are cut down on private lands. Trees play a vital role in human lives by supplying timber and fuel. Unfortunately, the demand for these has outstripped the rate at which trees grow making the prospects of mass desertification very real. The disappearance of trees portends ill times for everyone as nasty consequences such as global warming and the accompanying harsh weather start to be felt. How can you play a part in slowing down the rate of disappearance of the backwoods?

Plant a tree or shrub

If you live in the rural areas, you have plenty of space to plant trees.  You can consult with the local forestry office for the best species to plant. If you live in the suburbs or urban areas you can organize a campaign to plant trees in public spaces near you. These could be parks, local or federal grounds, public schools etc. ornamental shrubs that can be grown in small spaces, like Bonsai trees also contribute to vegetative cover.

Use recycled products

Recycled products reduce the need to cut trees.  There are plenty of products that are made of recycled wood products including tissue paper, cardboard boxes, writing paper, and building blocks and so on. Make a point of verifying if a product is 100% recycled or has a high percentage of recycled products before buying.

Improve the recycling process by separating your waste at home and setting apart items that can be recycled for taking to the recycling dump.

Boycott produce from deforested lands

Huge areas of forests are cleared to make way for agriculture. This includes big farm plantations growing soy beans, peanuts and palm oil. Forested lands are also cleared to make way for grazing pasture. By boycotting this produce, you do your bit to discourage those who cut down the forests.

Go paperless

You could reduce the amount of paper you handle by as much as 90%. This begins at work where you could prefer to keep records and documents in softcopy instead of printing. At home, you can read the digital versions of newspapers and paperback novels instead of buying printed copies.

Start an online campaign or join one

There are many organizations working towards promoting sustainable use of environmental resources. You can help by spreading their message by sharing on your social media networks. You can also donate funds to keep the good work going

5 Questions to Ask a Professional End of Tenancy Cleaning Service

As a landlord preparing your vacant units for occupation, you are looking for a professional job that can restore your unit just as new. Some units will prove harder to clean than others as some tenants leave their previous houses in a disastrous state. You will need a professional end of tenancy cleaning service that can do a proper job the first time round. Using a professional cleaning crew will guarantee that potential clients will be impressed with your units. Your units are likely to be occupied faster and you will be in a position to ask for higher rents. But there are some things you will need to know when engaging a professional end of tenancy cleaning london service.

What is off-limits?

There will be a wide scope of work when cleaning a house that has been occupied for long. You should know what tasks the cleaning service will not handle. Some will say hazardous and poisonous waste. Some will be reluctant to handle animal and human waste and fluids. Some will shy off handling heavy items for fear of liability claims. Get a clarification on off-limit tasks so that there are no disputes over uncompleted work.

Do I need to be around?

Do you feel more comfortable being around when the work is going on? Many cleaning crews will not mind you being around unless you are too meddlesome. There are advantages of being around. You can handle any issues about the scope of work as they come up. You will also be able to make it cleaning smoother by opening closed spaces and so on.

What preparations are needed?

Is there anything the cleaning crew needs from you for the job? Do they need any of your equipment or materials? Typically, a cleaning crew will come on the job with all they need in equipment and cleaning materials but they could be missing some petty thing like a rag. It is good to get clarification anyway to get it out of the way.

What if the job is not satisfactory?

Sometimes the job will not be done to the required standards. How do you raise a dispute in such a case, and how fast will the cleaning service take to repeat the job? Are there any charges for a repeat job?  Get clarification to these answers to avoid loss of funds on repeat jobs.

Engaging a professional end of tenancy cleaning services to work on your rental units improves their occupancy rates and your bargaining power with potential tenants.

9 Steps to Greener Shrubs and Brighter Flowers

Flowers and ornamental flowers not only make your backyard look and have a welcoming smell, but they also play a vital role in the collective effort in keeping Mother Earth sustainable. More greenery means more oxygen, more rain and less global warming. If you have been neglecting your garden or would like to make the greens greener and colors brighter, there are several things you need to do:

Choose native species

Plant species will do well in places where their adaptations work best. If a flower is from the highlands, planting it in the hotter lowlands will lead to stunted growth or outright death. Choose species that are local and they are certainly able to cope with the heat or cold better.

Use compost

Composting may be an odious task but the compost will do wonders for your plants. It is easy to compost. Just pile up stuff that you will rot e.g. fruit leftovers, coffee grounds, mown grass and even old newspapers and leave it to rot. The compost is crucial in adding vital nutrients to the soil. It will make the soil hydrated and aerated enough for healthier roots.

Plant perennial

Perennial plants are those that will remain green for more than one season. These plants have deeper roots than short term plants. This helps prevent soil erosion which protects your other pants too. You can have the perennials on the edges of your garden to lock in the soil.

Better watering

Going at your flowers and seedlings every once in a while with a watering can could do more harm than good. The splash made by a watering displaces the soil. Using drip lines delivers water in a more consistent manner and requires less work.

Do companion planting

This is where you grow different species together as some offer protective and reproductive benefits to others. Certain herbs like basil and garlic are known to keep off worms and other pests with their pungent odors. Others like parsley attract insects like the praying mantis which feed on the pests. This leaves your garden pest free with the added advantage of using fewer chemicals.

Mow and prune lightly

Mowing deeply damages the roots of your grass. Pruning your shrubs excessively deprives the shrub its food makers which are the leaves. It is recommended that you keep a thick lawn with grass the height of 3-4.4 inches.

Welcome the small visitors

Bees and other insects that feed on the plants and make their habitat in them help in the vital task of cross-pollination. This keeps your flowers blooming as the reproductive cycle is facilitated.



7 Top Reasons to Save the Backwoods

The backwoods that are the forests and woodlands around us are diminishing at an alarming rate.  The UN body Food and Agriculture Organization estimates that 7.3 million hectares or the size of Panama is getting lost each year. This portends some serious consequences for all inhabitants of the Earth, mankind included. Some of these are loss of species, global warming, famine, soil erosion and other nasty occurrences. It is absolutely important that this loss of forests and woodlands is reversed. Here are some of the top reasons to save our backwoods.

  1. Protect the species

70% of all land species both animal and plant, live in forests and woodlands. Loss of backwoods is posing a grave danger to these species as they no longer have a habitat which forces them to move elsewhere where they are not able to cope. This leads to species die-off.  Protecting the forests keeps these species alive and multiplying.

  1. Medicinal value

Vital medicines like those against Malaria come from plants. The amazing fact is that about only 1% have been studied for medicinal properties. This means there remains a high chance that very powerful medicines are yet to be discovered in the forests.

  1. Regulating rain patterns

Plants play a very useful role in regulating rain patterns. Rainforests hold half of the water in the ecosystem by holding it in their roots and leaves. This water evaporates to form clouds which are then dispersed by the wind. This helps regulate and distribute rain. Without forests desertification occurs which is the drying up of land such that it cannot support life adequately.

  1. Food supply

A big portion of our food comes from the rainforest ecosystem. These include nuts, bananas, fish, meat and numerous other foods. Loss of forests and the species in them increases over-reliance on cultivated foods, and risks of famine when they fail to grow.

  1. Global warming

Global warming is a big contributor to climate change seen in the form of climate change that is increasingly being seen in form of severe storms, harsh droughts and winters. Rainforests reverse global warming by taking in the carbon in the atmosphere.

  1. Posterity

The forests offer great natural beauty. They are great tourist attractions as people go in to see the amazing forms and colors of different species. By preserving forests, this beauty can be seen by generations to come.

  1. Local economies

Forests and woodlands support a wide variety of economic activities like tourism, agriculture and so on. Without forests people lose livelihoods and are forced to move into cities or depend more on the same forests.