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selling_buying_property_privately

7 Questions to test the Loyalty of an Estate Agent

Buying or selling a property or home will be difficult when dealing with an incompetent or disloyal Estate Agent.

Please don’t think that this article is about being negative about estate agents.

I am of the overall opinion that many estate agents are excellent, however, most estate agents fall into one of three categories: good, average or poor.

Then, there is that worrying small percentage of estate agents who are downright incompetent. Every industry is inflicted with this type of person and I suspect the real estate industry has more than its fair share of incompetent agents.

The truth is; a good and a bad Estate Agent have the same one thing in common – their job is to be a “deal-maker.” However, you need to be warned – some estate agents will perform any type of tricks to get a deal. There is certainly nothing wrong with enthusiasm to pull a deal together – it is to be applauded. However, a good Estate Agent always needs to remain professional and ethical throughout the property selling process.

The majority of homeowner’s are inexperienced when it comes to buying or selling a property. They therefore rely on the “perceived” ability of the estate agent they are dealing with in the selling process. Most homeowners are an easy target for a dishonest or incompetent estate agent.

In any negotiation, a WIN – WIN deal is the ideal goal. Unfortunately, sometimes when buying or selling a property, the result happens to benefit just one party…the buyer, the seller or possibly just the estate agent. So therein lies the danger. Who is the estate agent really working for? Where do their true loyalties lie? With the seller, the buyer or themselves?

These 7 questions will help you decide who the estate agent is really working for. Upon viewing any home use these questions to test the estate agent.

The answers will normally reveal something about the estate agent and their ability and true loyalties. If the agent betrays the seller, the chances are that they will betray you as the buyer as well. Conversely, If the agent defends the seller, it’s likely they will defend you too.

Here are the questions to ask:

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: What price will the seller accept?

You could learn the lowest price that the seller will accept.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: How much do you think the home will sell for?

You could find out that the Estate Agent has an opinion less than the asking price.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: When does the seller need to move out?

The Estate Agent may then reveal an urgent deadline. This will be an advantage to you the buyer in negotiating a lower price.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: Why is the homeowner selling?

The Estate Agent could possibly reveal a confidential reason for selling.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: How long has the property been on the market?

The Estate Agent may reveal if the property has been difficult to sell or perhaps why.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: Who priced the property?

The Estate Agent may deny any involvement and could blame the seller for being greedy.

  1. Ask the Estate Agent: What other homes are there in competition to this property?

This is particularly useful information, if the Estate Agent gives you an honest answer. You can then ask the Estate Agent to show you some of these competing properties.

These questions are basic and not difficult to ask. However, if you don’t ask these types of questions you can place a buyer or seller in the hands of a dishonest and incompetent Estate Agent.

Purchasing a property is a significant investment for anyone; so, it is advantageous to choose an Estate Agent you can trust and have confidence in.

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Being Environmentally Smart

Being Environmentally Smart

Every time you switch on a light, drive your car, run a bath or put out your rubbish you’re making a decision that affects the environment. Natural resources – water, coal, oil, land and fresh air – will run out if we use them at a faster rate than they can replenish themselves. There are many indications that this is already happening.

Households have a significant cumulative impact. To make sure that there are enough resources to go around – enough for current and future generations – we need to manage our resources well, using what we have efficiently and fairly. Many of us are aware that we should be doing this, but are often unsure about what to do and how to do it.

The Smart Living Handbook, produced by the City of Cape Town, is a useful resource that provides information and practical actions to implement – to protect the environment, save money, and make your home a safer place to live in. Although it is focused on Cape Town, much of the information and tips can be more widely used and implemented.

‘My Green Home’ is about how one South African family changed their home to help change the world – and shows how you can too. The Ngewana family had a ‘green home makeover’ and improved their daily habits, to save money and reduce their impact on our Earth. They demonstrate the positive impact a family can have by living a more energy efficient and environmentally conscious lifestyle. This website tracks their journey, to inform and inspire you and others to take action in your own homes.

The Better Living Challenge provides a platform for the development of new and existing solutions that address the needs of people living in informal settlements, backyard shacks, RDP homes and subsidised housing. It aims to support the building of a home improvement market that is beneficial to both producers and consumers. Categories include the structural home, comfortable home and connected home, where environmental impact and affordability are taken into account.

WASTE

  • Reduce your amount of waste by buying goods with little or no packaging or packaging that can be recycled.
  • Re-use glass and plastic containers as well as plastic carrier bags.
  • Recycle glass, tin cans, paper, plastic and car oil.
  • Make compost from vegetable matter (e.g. potato peels) and garden waste (e.g. leaves/grass cuttings).

240lt-recycling-bins-lrge

ENERGY

  • Save electricity.
  • Switch off lights.energy-saving-light-bulb
  • Use energy efficient LED lights.
  • Walk, cycle, lift-share or travel by public transport to work to offset your ‘carbon footprint’.
  • If purchasing a motor vehicle, select a model with very economical fuel consumption (5-6 litres/100km) and do not drive with a ‘heavy foot’ on the accelerator.

 

WATER

    • Don’t let a tap run unnecessarily (e.g. when brushing your teeth).water-filtration
    • Take short showers instead of bathing.
    • Re-use bath/washing-up water for the garden (grey water).
    • Fix dripping taps (replace washers) and pipe leaks.
    • Check if your toilet is leaking by adding a few drops of food colouring in the cistern, wait 30 minutes and check the bowl for any signs of coloured water.
    • Fill a 2-litre cool drink bottle with water or sand and place in the toilet cistern to reduce the amount of water per flush.
    • Wash cars with a bucket instead of a hosepipe or use a nozzle on a hosepipe to control water use.
    • Wait for a full load of washing or dishes before switching on the washing machine or dishwasher.

 

BIODIVERSITY

  • Plant indigenous trees and shrubs in your garden.
  • Remove or refrain from planting alien/non-indigenous plants.
  • Do not pick flowers or disturb animals in protected nature areas and always keep on the footpath.
  • Join a ‘Friends’ group and volunteer your services to help with conserving an area compost-pile(e.g. clearing of invasive alien plants).
  • Stick to the legal size and quantity limits for collecting marine animals like crayfish.
  • Use chemical-free products or buy ‘environmentally friendly’ organic-based products such as detergents or pesticides that do not contain toxic or harmful chemicals.

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buying_commercial_property

Professional Advice to consider when buying commercial property

Investors inevitably insist on buying commercial property with a high return and usually present their favourite argument that, if they can’t realise a good return, they may as well leave their money in the bank or invest offshore.

High returns inevitably go hand in hand with high risk and it is worth applying the following principles before jumping head first into a perceived high yield property.

  1. Property must be a long-term investment.
  2. Balance your risk and return when creating a commercial property portfolio.
  3. If you elect to fix the interest rate on your bond, it may be wise to only fix a portion of your bond with the bank. Leaving a portion of the bond amount variable allows you to take advantage of lower interest rate environments while having a relatively flexible repayment profile to pay in lump sums of surplus capital when available, as opposed to being tied into the fixed payment profile.
  4. A good commercial property investment will inevitably appreciate over time while inflation decreases the value of your money. This is why your investment should work if you buy wisely.
  5. Once you have a property asset that has built up equity, you can gear it up and raise equity to use on purchasing another property and growing your portfolio.
  6. If you are asked to sign personal suretyships, make sure you understand them and why you might be signing them. Personal sureties are generally asked for when loan to values exceed the 70% mark, and there is more perceived risk in the transaction, so banks take personal suretyships to de-risk the transaction to some extent. On the other hand, banks can take personal suretyships as a sign of confidence in a transaction, they should have no intention of ever calling up the suretyships but having some personal risk on the line tends to focus individuals on the task at hand to make the property work and pay the bond off. If a bank enters a transaction with an intent or a chance of having to call up a personal suretyship, the bank should not be lending the money in the first place.
  7. Annual expenses, depending on the quality of the premises, should vary between 15% and 30% of the annual rental income depending on the type of property.
  8. Make sure your capital investment is safe by:

Buying in an established commercial node with a supportive municipal infrastructure

Examining the audited financials when buying into a Sectional Title scheme and request a C.V. of the managing agent. Beware of complexes run by inexperienced owners.

Insuring your premises against all possible risks including loss of income in the event of the property being untenable for a period

Implementing an on-going maintenance programme

Investigating current and future electricity and water supply resources

Finding out what telecommunications/internet facilities are available, particularly in new developments.

Being informed on zoning restrictions, building restrictions, parking bay allocations, future commercial planning initiatives by local and national government and any possible servitudes over the property

Monitoring residential growth in the area.

  1. TENANTS

Qualify your tenant against the length of lease as the value of your property is determined by the quality of your tenant and the strength of the lease

Upgrade your premises. This will keep your tenants happy and reduce the risk of tenants moving, and if they do at least the premises will be attractive to new prospective tenants.

  1. BROKERS

Is the broker qualified to give professional advice on the commercial market?

Does your broker have a Fidelity Fund Certificate?

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Tips for home sellers

It’s a buyers market at the moment, so if you’re looking to sell your home for a decent price, you’ll need to put in the effort to make your home stand out from the crowd. How do you do this? Here are a few tips:

First impressions mean everything, and this starts from the moment a potential buyer turns into your street. Take a good look at your home from across the street. What do you notice? If the paint is peeling, the garden is unkempt and the lawn needs moving, a buyer sees a low-value home. Cleaning up the exterior of your home and a little extra time spent landscaping can give a desirable first impression.

Wander around your home as though you were looking to buy it. What would stand out to you as the positives and negatives about your property? Once you identify these areas, you can emphasize the positives and disguise the negatives.

Clean the interior and leave benches and tables free of clutter. Your buyer needs to be able to envisage their furniture in the space.

If something obviously needs repairing, then repair it. Buyers always inflate the cost of repairs in their head, and will want more off the price of the house than you will pay to have the repairs done.

When buyers come around, neither you nor your pets should be present. If you hover, buyers feel awkward, as they’re in your home, so they won’t stay as long. If your pets ran around, you risk turning off buyers who are afraid or allergic to your pets.

If possible, leave the garage empty. This creates an illusion of additional space.

Don’t apologize. Never say “I’m sorry, this space is quite small” or “I’m sorry, we couldn’t fit a double wardrobe in here.” Be positive about your home – it will be perfect for somebody at the right price.

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Kitchen Wall Cabinets

Kitchen Wall Cabinets – Convenient Storage Options

Kitchen cabinets are an important component of any kitchen. In any kitchen renovating budget, cabinetry is the biggest expense. Cabinets perform the function of storage, helping you stay organized. In addition to this, they add character and personality to the kitchen.

There are many options available with kitchen cabinetry and these can be broadly categorized into base, wall and special use. It will cost you less to go for the standard sizes and you will get similar dimensions with different brands to help you compare. While taking size into account, however, it is necessary to ensure that your cabinets match the other standard fixtures and kitchen appliances.

Options with Wall Cabinets:

There are different kinds of kitchen wall cabinets and the ones you choose will depend on how you plan to use them. Recessed wall cabinets are big space savers and make for good storage. You may have a size limitation with these since it depends on the wall. Curio wall cabinets are elegant, stylish and decorative. You can store stuff in them while adding to your kitchen’s good looks. Another space saver is the corner wall cabinets, letting you make the best use of space available, especially in smaller kitchens.

You will mostly come across wood or metal wall cabinets. Wood has a warm and cosy look and is the more traditional choice. On the other hand, metal wall cabinets can be easier to maintain and more durable. If you want your wall cabinets to be multi-purpose, you can go for the mirrored type. It can give the illusion of a larger space and highlight certain design elements in the kitchen, depending on where it is located.

Installing Wall Cabinets

Wall cabinets are usually fixed to the wall with studs. They can also be hung from ceiling joists if you have a peninsula or an island in the kitchen. These units can be single units or double units and come with a variety of features. Most wall cabinets are about a foot deep and with a width range of nine to 48 inches. Their height can range from 14, 18 and 30 inches. Short wall cabinets usually go over the refrigerators, cooking ranges and sinks. The tall ones can also be as high as the ceiling.

In most instances, installing wall cabinets is easy for those who can use basic tools and enjoy do it yourself projects. However, most manufacturers and dealers offer the option of installation, so it might be advisable to go for professional installation. Cabinet contractors help with designing, making and installing your kitchen wall cabinets. Even if it means a little extra expense, it is worth it.

Simple Change Big Result. Kitchen Cabinet Knobs

Kitchen cabinet knobs have a practical purpose. Yet, they can play an important role in giving your kitchen a totally new look with the kind of choice you have. Your selection is literally limited by your creativity in putting together the cabinet knobs that will do their job, as well as turn out to be conversation pieces.

The best thing about kitchen cabinet knobs is that they are a very cost-effective way to transform the way your kitchen looks, without going in for expensive renovations.

For a subtly elegant look, ceramic knobs and glass cabinet knobs are ideal. They give you a good grasp and are easy to pull. If your kitchen is done up in a theme, you can choose the shape of your knobs accordingly. Novelty knobs are quite popular and can enhance your kitchen’s customized look.

Brass knobs are suitable for a classy and decorative look. Antique brass knobs are quite popular and fit in with practically any kind of cabinetry. These are very durable and never go out of fashion. Whether plain or shaped into different designs, brass knobs are a good choice for cabinet knobs. Bronze is another material that is great for kitchen knobs.

Glass knobs can also look at home with a variety of cabinetry finishes and appear quite dressy when you go in for the coloured variety. Both glass and bronze have a polished look that needs little maintenance. The ceramic cabinet knobs look elegant and these come in a large array of designs and colours.

Knobs or handles?

Some people prefer handles to knobs. How do you decide on whether you want knobs or handles? Look at the décor of your kitchen. One way to choose your kitchen cabinet knobs or handles is by matching it to the door hardware. If your doors have knobs, then go in for cabinet knobs.

If the doors have handles, choose cabinet handles. There is no hard or fast rule here. Some kitchens have a mix of both and manage to create a complementary look by using knobs for the cabinetry and pulls or handles for the drawers. The important thing is to ensure that there is a harmonious look.

Kitchen cabinet knobs are considered more stylish than handles because of the unique shape, size, materials and designs that are available. They are easier to use and there is more choice when you want to match them to your specific décor.

There is so much choice available in decorative kitchen cabinet hardware that it is easy to express yourself through your taste.

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Standard mass produced kitchen cabinets

Stock Kitchen Cabinets are Quick and Cost Effective

Kitchen cabinetry comes in different options, giving you the flexibility to match it to the theme of your kitchen décor. Kitchen cabinets are probably the most cost-intensive component of your kitchen, thus, while planning your kitchen layout you need to factor in the style of your cabinets to optimize the space you have. A stock kitchen cabinet is a big cost saving on a customised kitchen cabinet.

The types of kitchen cabinets can be broadly divided into custom, semi-custom and stock kitchen cabinets. Cabinets can also be built at site. The stock kitchen cabinet is produced on a assembly line in a factory to standard specifications and comes pre-assembled or ready to assemble.

You can literally buy them off the shelf at large home centres. With some, you can choose the finish and hardware/accessories but by and large, they are ready to use.

Stock kitchen cabinets are usually sized in three-inch width increments with matching spacers, filler boards etc. so that gaps can be filled where necessary. The regular base cabinets are 34.5 inches high and those with desks or dining surfaces are 28.5 inches high. The wall-cabinet type comes in sizes of 30 inches, 36 inches and 42 inches.

Stock kitchen cabinets are constructed as frameless or with face frame. The face frame type has a frame that runs across the cabinet’s box face and is visible when the cabinet is closed. The cabinet doors might have recessed or raised panels with trims or with framed glass panel. The frameless cabinets have doors covering the entire front of the cabinet box, usually without moulding or trim with hidden hinges. These look quite sleek and trendy.

Here are some tips to remember when you choose stock kitchen cabinets:

* Choose adjustable hinges to allow you adjust the doors fully

* Go for full extension drawer slides so that you can access the entire depth of the drawer. You can get cabinets with drawer closing mechanisms that gradually pull the drawers closed.

The main advantage with stock kitchen cabinets is that it is cost-effective, although your choice with the wood and styles is limited. Since these are mass-produced, you get the price benefit so that compared to a custom or semi-custom kitchen cabinet you only incur a third of the cost when you buy stock kitchen cabinets. Another benefit is quick delivery as these come ready to fit and use.

When in stock, you can usually buy them on a cash and carry basis. The ready to assemble open frame and pre-assembled kitchen cabinets are generally available in stock at the larger stores. Most come with a melamine finish, made of engineered wood with steel sided drawers and are quite economical. If you enjoy doing it yourself, stock kitchen cabinets are easy to buy and install, but most stores also offer you the option of getting it professionally installed for a nominal charge.

Semi-Custom Kitchen Cabinets offer a lot of Flexibility in Design

Semi-custom kitchen cabinets give you the freedom to make modifications in the design of your cabinets so that they suit your needs. While some people prefer to opt for stock cabinets, some go for semi-custom kitchen cabinets.

Semi-custom cabinets can take up to six weeks to set up, depending on what you order. Quite a few home centres carry displays of semi-custom cabinets where the customer can consult with the staff designers and come up with a plan based on their needs.

Semi-custom cabinetry means better craftsmanship and material quality compared with in stock units and the customer can choose from different styles and finishes, add extra features like plate racks, corner cupboards, pantries, sliding shelves.

Most semi-custom cabinets are available with a lot of choice, with sides usually made of engineered wood with solid doors. The material used is oak, maple, hickory and cherry all of which are the common woods used to make cabinets.

You can also choose veneer over plywood to get the specific wood look you want without the high cost. You get open or framed cabinets with the drawers usually made from solid wood.

If you shop around, you will find that different manufacturers offer different sizes with different looks for various needs. Semi-custom kitchen cabinets are also produced on an assembly line at the factory, but you get the option of choosing your style, type of wood, finish etc. You can also go in for different interior options like:

-Cutlery trays

-Towel racks

-Cookie sheet holders

-Trashcan holders

-Drawer dividers etc.

Although semi-custom cabinets are built in standard sizes, some manufacturers let you specify your size. The dimensions of the standard base cabinets are generally 34.5 high and 24 inches deep. The sides are 0.75 inches thick. The wall cabinet style is 30 inches high and 12 inches deep, unless it goes over a range hood or refrigerator.

Depending on the manufacturer you can probably customize your semi-custom kitchen cabinet by decreasing the depth of the base or wall cabinet. In case the cabinet is not a perfect fit, trim work or filler is used to make up the cabinet’s measurements.

You can easily differentiate semi-custom from stock cabinetry based on the construction, flexibility it allows and the design of your kitchen cabinet layout. The experience of the designer who designs your cabinet layout also counts. Attention to detail is usually more with semi-custom cabinets with the designer opting for solid wood rather than plywood with veneer since solid wood centre panels stain better than veneer, to look as good as the door frame and cabinet panels.

Since semi-custom kitchen cabinetry means more flexibility for you as well as the designer, you can get exactly the features you need probably within the budget you have set aside.

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Wood Flooring

Wood Kitchen Flooring Warmth, Beauty, and a lot of Style

Wood kitchen flooring has been around for ages. Wood comes in a variety of finishes and quality, because of which the costs also vary greatly from one to another. In terms of colour and design, there is a lot of flexibility in the types of wood available today.

The difference lies in the colour, grain of wood and the strength. This gives you, the customer, a lot of choices in deciding how you want your kitchen to appear.

Some of the common types of hardwood floors are strip, plank, parquet, and hand scrapped. In addition to this, you also get unfinished and pre-finished hardwood flooring.

Strip hardwood comes in small strips and is suited for small kitchens for a spacious look. Plank hardwood is available in larger widths than the strip type, although the effect is similar. Parquet hardwood flooring is put together from pieces of wood to create unique patterns. The hand-scrapped type has a rustic look and is ribbed, so that any flaws go unnoticed. Unfinished kind of wood flooring carries a natural look since it is not stained or polished. With these, you can choose the look of your kitchen floor easily.

The pre-finished hardwood floor, as the name suggests, comes well sanded for a smooth look and is stained, just ready to install. Since it is considered more reasonably priced than unfinished custom hardwood flooring, pre-finished is quite popular. The final look of your kitchen will depend on the wood’s grade and finish.

Hardwood is usually treated with a fire retardant to make it less susceptible to fire which is something I strongly recommend. As far as maintenance goes, sweeping, vacuum cleaning or dry mopping is all that really needs to be done.

Most floors are treated with finishes that make them moisture resistant; however, stagnant water can permeate into the surface and affect it adversely. It is a good idea to use mats near the washing area, food preparation area and under any furniture to avoid scratching the floor. Installing hardwood kitchen flooring is much easier today than it used to be earlier since you can add it to an existing floor to give your kitchen a quick makeover.

Pros and Cons of Hardwood Kitchen Flooring

Hardwood flooring gives your kitchen warmth and beauty and suits both contemporary and traditional decors. It is easy to install and can last a lifetime with good maintenance. The variety is quite large in terms of finish and quality.

Hardwood is prone to scratching and therefore, needs to be finished very well. It is also susceptible to moisture and some kinds of wood can expand and contract with the changes in weather, so they aren’t meant for every type of climate.

Regardless of its maintenance considerations, hardwood is a great choice of flooring for kitchens. A well-finished floor will prevent the formation of mould. For the environmentally conscious, hardwood is a recyclable material. Hardwood kitchen floors are durable and can practically last a lifetime if well cared for and maintained.

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Travertine Flooring

Travertine Flooring is known for Beauty, Elegance, and Durability

A travertine kitchen floor, also known as onyx marble, Oriental/Egyptian alabaster, or Mexican Onyx is incredibly eye-catching, giving you a variety of choices in finish and style. Travertine is a kind of stone formed from natural sedimentary rock in the limestone category.

This flooring material is easy to install and is available as large slabs or smaller tiles depending on the look you are going for in your kitchen. Properly installed, travertine flooring looks beautiful and is reputed to last a very long time.

Minerals in the ground water disintegrate and flow through to the surface via geysers, springs and rivers to become limestone deposits. The limestone thus formed comes under intense pressure to become travertine. Even more pressure and the travertine will become marble. So, we can consider that while marble is the best, travertine is better than limestone if you think about the logical progression.

The travertine kitchen flooring finishes you can get are of the polished, honed, brushed and tumbled type – after the material is cut into slim tiles. The polished type of travertine tile is shiny and smooth, while honed tiles come with a matte finish.

The brushed and tumbled finish comes with a more textured feel. Adding a sealant to travertine can enhance its strength and prevent it from absorbing food spills so it is a very wise choice but not an absolute most like many other types of flooring. Travertine flooring is just as hard as other stone flooring materials, but it can also crack or chip. So, you must make sure that your shipper is careful with the packing or you will end up with much smaller pieces of travertine then you were looking for. To minimize cracking, you can go for the small sized tiles and go in for a hardness rating of 4.

Pros & Cons of Travertine Kitchen Flooring

Travertine kitchen flooring looks great, lasts long, and is easy to install. You can achieve a variety of looks with its beautiful ivory, beige, gold and walnut like shades. Travertine flooring is easy to clean and is considered environmentally friendly. Travertine is seen as hygienic because it does not absorb smells and gases. If any dirt settles on the surface, you can easily clean it up without the fear of absorption.

Some people are sceptical about travertine because stone, when unsealed can be affected by acidic items. Because it is porous, it can absorb grease and stain. Well-polished travertine can be slippery when wet, but you can go for a non-slippery texture to avoid this. When well-sealed and polished, travertine becomes quite dependable and durable.

It is a fact that travertine has been around for centuries and commonly used in Roman buildings as flooring. Today, it is even more popular as a material for countertops and flooring as also as wall coverings. Travertine is an unusual and sensible kitchen flooring option with its decorative looks.

 

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Slate Flooring

Slate Kitchen Flooring is a Perfect Choice

Very popular among the more stylish homes, slate kitchen flooring is chosen for its looks and performance. It is available in many colours and shapes, giving you the choice of being creative with your floor design. Slate is quite easy to maintain and durable.

Most people like it for its unusual look. The common colours used in slate flooring are black and white. Slate is a type of natural stone that is unique and when used in your flooring material, can enhance the value of your home.

One of the biggest plus points is its ability to match practically any kind of décor, making it very easy to decide upon no matter what other options you have picked out. For a high traffic area such as the kitchen floor, slate is a wonderful choice. The right maintenance and care can make slate last for as long as you want.

Slate kitchen flooring must be sealed to make it stain resistant. The tiles themselves are naturally slip resistant, so you will find them put to maximum use in kitchens and bathrooms where traction is a concern.

For the design conscious, slate tiles can be mixed and matched to create different effects. Shapes like squares, rectangles and other custom shapes can help create a unique kitchen floor. The maximum care required to maintain slate is dry sweeping and mopping and it will stay clean and shiny for years. At least once a year, you must seal the tile flooring. A kitchen slate floor to match your countertop makes you kitchen look stylish and blends everything together well.

Slate tiles are also ideal if you have radiant heating system in your home since the radiating heat will cosily warm the tiles, making them comfortable during the cold months when you need the warmth most. If there are children around, you need not fret about them playing on a cold floor plus it is a lot less slippery then some other types of kitchen flooring choices.

Slate does tend to be on the higher side in terms of cost, but this is offset by the advantages of this beautiful natural material. Today, there are several options for those who do not have the budget for slate yet want the look of slate.

Pros & Cons of Slate Kitchen Flooring

Slate is slip resistant; it can also be made stain resistant and is available in a wide range of colour textures both rough and smooth finish. You can choose from shades of brown, purple, greens and grays. It matches just about any décor and is easy to maintain. It is durable and can last for decades. Slate is very strong and can withstand rough use, which is an important kitchen floor attribute.

To keep up with optimum performance, slate must be sealed to make it slip and stain resistant. Since slate is soft, it can be prone to scratches, but this can be minimized by a yearly application of linseed oil. Some people consider it expensive which is always a downside for anything you are buying.

Although some people feel slate kitchen flooring is costly, it is economical in the long run since it won’t have to be replaced very often. It is an elegant flooring choice worth investing in.

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Rubber Flooring

Rubber Kitchen Flooring Style and Durability?

Rubber kitchen flooring is becoming recognized as a great option for the ability to take heavy foot traffic. Add to this durability, ease of cleaning and great non-skid surfaces. Not surprisingly, rubber floors are the preferred choice in restaurant kitchens, showrooms, day-care centres and even patios and decks.

With the variety of colours, shapes and styles available, rubber is a long-lasting option for floors and can match most decors if we compare this to other types of kitchen floors. Suited to the kind of activity we usually have in a kitchen, the biggest advantage is rubber’s resistance to spills that are greasy, because it is so easy to clean.

Rubber is also comfortable on the knees and feet and is less stressful to stand on than other hard kitchen flooring material. You are less likely to skid or slip. There are rubber kitchen floorings available today that are grease resistant. These sheets can be welded using heat after they are installed with a solvent free sealant.

You can buy rubber kitchen flooring in tile or sheet form and as interlocking tiles. These are available in different shapes, sizes and colours that can be mixed and matched to make your own customized design. Most people find rubber perfect for areas around the kitchen sink, the stove the area where food is prepared since these are areas where one especially wants to be careful about falls, spills and skids. Rubber flooring retains its colour throughout its life, looking bright since the colour is consistent through the material.

Pros and Cons of Rubber Kitchen Flooring

Rubber’s most outstanding features are its flexibility, strength, ability to insulate and above all, its affordability. It can last several years, is easy to clean and can take a lot of rough use. You could stand on it for hours and still feel comfortable.

Rubber flooring is a little more difficult compared to other kitchen flooring material to source. Some people feel that there is not much choice available. However, all that is changing with different variations being introduced in the market.

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