Monthly Archives: July 2014

kitchen

Give Your Home a Modern Look: Using Glass Splashbacks to Update Your Kitchen

kitchenMany homeowners pay a lot of attention to making the interiors of their homes elegant and sophisticated. Among the many parts of a home, the kitchen is one that needs the most attention. This is because this is where the homemaker will be spending most of her time making sumptuous meals for her family. It is also the area where families and friends gather to enjoy and share food.

No More Tiles

There was a time when people refurbishing or getting the interiors for their new houses done tile the kitchen walls to decorate the area. The tiles were once considered a practical option because they were easy to maintain, available in different colors and patterns and quite affordable. Today, more options work better than tiles.

New Glass Splashbacks

As an alternative to kitchen tiles, glass splashbacks are made of toughened glass. According to Perth City Glass, they are a popular option for kitchen décor because they are durable, resistant to acidic substances and use of force, easy to clean and can handle significant amount of weight.

Functionality with Beauty

Perhaps the biggest reason glass splashbacks are a favorite for many kitchen owners today is their range of lively colors that can brighten and bring to life even old kitchens. Some color options include bright blood red, apple green and fluorescent blue. All these colors, when contrasted with the right kind of wood color, are enough to make the kitchen more pleasing to the eye. They can transform it from a mere working space into a pure work of art.

Glass splashbacks are three things rolled into one – beauty, functionality and durability. What’s more, modern glass splashbacks also come with a protective glass coating that ensures the material remains intact for over ten years.

pigeon infestation

How to Get Rid of a Pigeon Infestation

pigeon infestationPigeons are one of the worst creatures a property owner will ever deal with, especially in large populations. If they have chosen your building as their roost, you should be familiar with the mess they make. Pigeon droppings can accumulate rapidly, depreciating your property and causing no small amount of disgust.

Pigeon droppings also carry significant health risks. Sanitation specialists like Cleanair UK say that bird waste can spread serious diseases, and thus should be removed immediately. Of course, you don’t want to clean up pigeon poo every day, so the only long term option is to get rid of them.

You can get help from an extermination service to cull their numbers, but take caution: pigeons reproduce rapidly, and population levels could be back to normal in as little as six weeks. Here are humane methods that are effective at permanently removing them.

1. Making your home inhospitable – First of all, never feed the pigeons, and remove any obvious sources of food. Bowls of dog food or cat food lying around are usually the main culprits. If the infestation is indoors, make sure to also find their entry points and seal them off with screens or netting. This will make it difficult for them to return.

2. Using deterrents – Sticky pest control chemicals, anti-roosting spikes, and even kitchen spices are effective pigeon deterrents. Place them in areas where the birds usually are, and over time they will move elsewhere.

3. Scaring them off – Actively scaring the pigeons away will eventually teach them to avoid your property. Using a garden hose works, but this takes a long time and much effort. Some advise using life size figurines of predator birds, but this won’t work for long. Pigeons will eventually get used to the silent, unmoving figure.

An effective, easy, but pricey option is to use ultrasonic devices. These can scare away pigeons and most other pests.

Why Asbestos Removal Ups the Roof Repair and Replacement Cost

roofHome renovation was never an affordable business, more so if it involves a roof restoration job. But, there could be certain additions to this cost, which will depend largely on the materials used.

For example, if the roof contains asbestos, you can expect to pay at least 10% or more in addition to the usual roof restoration and home renovation costs. If you are wondering what makes asbestos removal so costly, read the following discussion from bowerroofing.com.au:

Asbestos is Toxic

One of the main reasons asbestos removal is a costly affair is that the material is highly toxic. As the asbestos gets worn out, its fibers are released into the atmosphere, which act as potential health hazards.

So, roofing contractors should follow different rules and regulations governing asbestos removal, which in effect, increases the price of the process.

Ask Only a Professional

As you need professional help to have the asbestos removed, this also increases the price of the entire process. You could have done a DIY had it been a roof sans asbestos. But, because the material is toxic, the law says you must have it removed by a professional. As a result, the cost gets multiplied.

Additional Reasons

The following are other reasons asbestos removal is pricey:

  • Specialized equipment is needed
  • State permits are required
  • Special abstraction devices will be required to remove asbestos dust from the site of removal
  • Special vacuum cleaners and HEPA filters are needed to rid the area of asbestos dust
  • Specialized work clothes are required to protect the roofing contractors
  • Contractors will need to dispose the removed asbestos as per laws and prescribed methods
  • The process requires a long time

Asbestos removal is a specialized, time-taking and skilled job. Hence, the high costs.

commercial space

3 Signs You’re Ready to Become an Entrepreneur

commercial spaceEntrepreneurship has always been a part of Filipino culture, and the number of new businesses every year is reaching record numbers. Because of the strong economy and the wealth of knowledge provided by the Internet, many people now dream of quitting their jobs and achieving financial independence; the barrier to entry has never been lower.

You might be one of the many people considering entrepreneurship as a way of life. Perhaps you have a brilliant business idea, and you already found the perfect commercial space to lease from RentInMakati.com or any other listing site. The only thing stopping you now is the thought that you might not be ready.

If these three signs apply to you, then it might be time to take that first step.

1. Your dream is more important than security – There’s nothing wrong with a stable job. It offers a reliable source of income and numerous benefits. Many people love their work and the security it brings. But if you’re ready for entrepreneurship, you know that your dream is worth far more; you’re willing to deal with rough times, countless disappointments, and an uncertain future just to make it a reality.

2. You have a good business plan – Passion alone isn’t enough, you also need a solid business plan. Too many people fail because they try to make things up as they go along. They waste time and capital, make one mistake after another, and have no direction. Eventually, they get frustrated and just give up. A business plan is irreplaceable and it will save you from more problems than you can imagine.

3. You have a support group – Starting a business is one of the most stressful things a person will ever experience, and it’s not something you can accomplish on your own. You will be tempted to quit many times, and that’s when you need the support of your friends and family. Having a group of mentors that you can consult is also important; they can help you avoid mistakes that they made in the past.

Entrepreneurship isn’t easy. Those who are attracted to it because they believe it will free them from the hardships of a regular job will be sorely disappointed. The rewards, however, are well worth it.

Paying the Price: Payroll Fraud

calculatorPayroll fraud, or the act of cheating the payroll system, represents about 14% of the crimes Australian organisations fall victim to. Unscrupulous individuals commit this fraudulent act to access funds they are not entitled to.

Some of the most common types of payroll fraud are “buddy punching” or timecard falsification, paying ghost employees, pay check diversion, and pay rate alteration. While payroll fraud is easy to detect, it’s best to protect your business from becoming a victim.

How to Detect Payroll Fraud

If your employee is living above his means or has unexplained wealth, it could be a sign of payroll fraud. Other employees who commit this fraudulent act also come to work early and stay longer than everyone else. Similarly, if an employee has a gambling problem or has large debts, perhaps you need to look into how he or she pays for them. Experts often cite gambling as a major motivator for employee fraud.

Although these are not necessarily signs, they can be reasons to investigate—especially if you have detected anomalies in your payroll records.

How to Prevent Payroll Fraud

It’s important to conduct regular checks on the payroll records. If you see that an employee has been overpaid, however, it doesn’t always mean someone committed payroll fraud. Maybe you were the one who made the mistake.

Hire reliable and handpicked accountants from companies like Femia and Associates. Some business owners commit payroll fraud without knowing it because they lack understanding of certain payroll laws. Accountants know the ins and out of this, so it might be better to hire one before you become a victim.

Consequences of Payroll Fraud

Clive Peters, a whitegoods retailer, collapsed in 2009 because of a $20 million fraud by an employee. This is how much you can lose financially; even worse is the possibility of losing the good reputation you have been trying to build for so long.

A Fraud Barometer report by KPMG suggests that many organisations remain vulnerable to fraud. The losses have exceeded $1 billion in only 4 years.

Don’t let the people involved get away with it. Remember to conduct regular checks on payroll records and hire the right accountant to prevent your business from becoming a victim.

accountant

Modern Accounting: How an Accountant Protects Your Business and Helps You Succeed

Any Utah accountant who offers their services as an accounting and finance professional will only qualify when they meet certain criteria for employment or consultation as the case may be. The services of any accountant in Utah are usually required by small to medium enterprises to keep track of their financial activities and also to compete and grow in their respective markets.

The superiority of an accountant’s services is measured by how much they allow their client to focus on core business activities instead of the finances and accounting part of it. It is through his expertise, explains Cook Martin Poulson, that they will give the business owner the full freedom of growing the business by increasing sales and manufacturing activities instead of taking care of the other aspects like day to day earnings and cash outflows.

accountant

The accountants provide all financial services to run a business successfully. These may range from basic bookkeeping to filing tax returns and overall financial planning. When your accountant provides these aspects, you will make the right decisions about your business in the future.

As good accountants keep abreast of all the latest developments in their field of work and are capable of using state-of-the-art software, they ensure that your company is complying with all the latest legal statutes and you are assured of avoiding legal trouble for non-compliance.

A small business accountant also may provide you with weekly and even monthly services, which help you cut costs because your accountant comes into the picture only as needed.

They are, moreover, also easily available to answer any queries and will also act as your principal advisor when it comes to making major decisions.

As watchdogs of your principal accounts and finances, they prevent employee fraud in the company by immediately informing you of any irregularity that they notice.

They are also your partner in confidence as a Client Confidentiality Agreement is existent with any contract that is signed with an accountant. So the question of your business secrets getting leaked doesn’t arise.

working man

Job Readiness: Getting the Right Training for a Career

Formal education offers the youth an opportunity to find out what interests them and get the trainings needed. Universities and educational institutions are now working hard to demonstrate how courses offered at their facilities can enhance a student’s prospects for gainful employment. In Australia, for example, it is important for students to get a Certificate IV in training and assessment. It offers validation to employers that prospective employees are qualified for the job and efficient in their area of choice.

working man

Just having a degree and getting certified for competency is not enough. Employers look for a good attitude and job skills. Some soft skills employers require include the following:

  • good communication skills
  • resourcefulness
  • good listening and comprehension skills
  • the ability to seek and handle feedback appropriately

As technology continues to play a vital role in everyday life, digital literacy is highly important as well. In most jobs, prospective employees may have to get a certificate IV in training to qualify for a job. In terms of training and assessment, there are specific issues that have to be dealt, so these courses must prepare the students.

There are fixed criteria for assessment, so students learn to focus more on the process of solving problems and learning how to do their jobs better. Grades are important, but not more than learning different skills needed to do their jobs.

Many institutions are working on tying outcomes into assessment programs, so students become aware of the employability concept. Work related assessment is important, as it brings real world issues into focus for students. With this, they can learn to cope with and do their jobs effectively. Peer review modules are also available, so students can work on their inter-personal skills and dealing effectively with customers and the public. These courses are crucial and necessary, as they help the youth hone their skills and find jobs faster.