I don’t have a mortgage and need some cash for new windows and doors
Q I would like to know more about equity release. I am a homeowner with no mortgage on my house. I cleared my mortgage back in 2013 when my endowment policy reached maturity.
I would like to make some changes to my home, including installing PVC windows and external doors, as well as having a bit of landscaping done. I am approaching my 64th birthday and live alone, and hope to release some of the equity in my home. Can you please point me in the right direction? BTContinue reading...
There’s just something about long days and warm weather that calls for refreshing drinks to be sipped and enjoyed on your front porch or back patio. Whether it’s a boozy concoction or a tasty mocktail,Read more
After a long winter, spring cleaning chores go way beyond the day-to-day, as we vacuum away dust bunnies and take down window treatments for their annual washing. And while much of spring cleaning can be sloggy and labor-intensive,Read more
Americans are expected to spend a record $327 billion on home renovations and repairs in 2017—and a big part of that spending is going towards the hidden costs of selling a home.Read more
They’re hearty. Tasty. Portable. Occasionally sloppy. Burgers—they get a lot of play time when patio season rolls around. But before you go back to the same dog-eared burger recipe this summer,Read more
Before Christmas my wife and I ordered double-glazed windows and bifold doors from Everest. This followed a previous order of windows for half of the house fitted last July.
When the new order came in early March, it became clear that the windows did not match the ones supplied nine months ago and the bifold doors did not fit.Continue reading...
Juliet Kinsman had a rodent problem: rats run wild in her north-west London neighbourhood; she once came across one tucking into the cheese and crackers she’d left out for lunch. The only solution, she was told, was to rip up the floorboards and fill the recess below with concrete. “We were quoted £10,000, so we thought we may as well spend a bit more and reconfigure the entire downstairs, which was dark and damp,” says Kinsman, founding editor of boutique hotel specialists Mr & Mrs Smith.
She approached an enthusiastic local studio, Rise Design, which did the lot: created a bright kitchen/dining room overlooking the garden; a book-lined, black-painted TV snug; a downstairs loo and shower room; and a revamped hall and front room. “Once we’d factored in fixtures and fittings, we ended up paying well over £100,000,” Kinsman says. “We’ve remortgaged up to our eyeballs, but it’s been worth it. We essentially have a new house.”Continue reading...
Dream bathrooms turned into nightmares for two customers who say they were forced to sign off on shoddy work
Two women who each paid Bathstore £5,000 to install new bathrooms in their homes have claimed the retailer used cowboy builders who caused leaks and damage to their homes – and then tried to intimidate them into signing off their shoddy work.
Nicola Milburn from Gravesend in Kent said sales staff had promised that it would take five days to install her dream bathroom, but instead it turned into a nightmare of leaking toilets, botched pipework and failed promises. Milburn, who works in property management, said having the work done was “the worst experience of my life”.Continue reading...
I bought a £600 bathroom sink unit from aqva.co.uk. The wrong colour item was delivered so I returned it at my expense.
Aqva emailed to advise that it would not offer a refund as the product was damaged, but I have photos showing that it was in good condition when I returned it and the courier company has confirmed in writing to me that the retailer signed that it had been received in good condition.Continue reading...
Vladimir Chaika has spent years installing ornamental plaster mouldings and art reproductions in a Soviet-era block of flats
From the outside, number 11A is a drab block of flats like any other in Troyeshina, a scruffy Kiev suburb of identikit Soviet-era housing. The entrance door is daubed with graffiti, the ground floor hallway dingy and depressing.
But exit the lift between floors six and eight, however, and the contrast with the grey, snowy winter outside could not be greater. The stairwell has been plastered, gilded and ornamented so it resembles a Tsarist palace more than a Khrushchev-era block of flats. Set in gilded frames, reproductions of the Mona Lisa and other well-known portraits stare out. Cherubs and ornamental flowers adorn the ceiling; set amid the swirling plaster are colourful vistas of desert islands fringed with palm trees.Continue reading...
The replica designer furniture market has become a huge industry, but a rushed change to the law has plunged it into chaos
The website of Voga, Britain’s foremost replica furniture importer, boasts that the firm “was created to make great design accessible to all”, before adding: “The greatest mid-century furniture designs are back where they belong: in your homes.”
Except they’re not. They are in fact in a warehouse in County Kildare where, unless the UK customers who ordered them travel to Ireland to collect them, or pay a third-party delivery firm to do so, they will be resold or destroyed.
We don’t know which orders to stop since there is no list of which designs qualify for copyrightContinue reading...
I agree with Tim Dowling (Can you do these 10 annual jobs in just one day? G2, 1 November) about the naming of the “man drawer”, an essential part of any household with or without a man, and previously known by me as “that drawer in the kitchen”, a name which everyone recognised. However, the contents of mine are now dispersed in a pocketed device hanging on my utility room door, admired by passing tradespeople as a good solution, and making it easy to find anything.
• As 2016 is clearly becoming the year of the unexpected – Leicester City, Brexit, Boris as foreign secretary and in all likelihood, President Trump – I’m sticking a tenner on Ed Balls to dance his way to victory. Stranger things have happened.
Steyning, West Sussex
Corwin Cowart of Corwin’s Personal Chef and Catering Services in Orlando, Florida is living a better life thanks to Thumbtack. He went from working full-time while hustling to start his part-time catering company after hours,Read more
Take a hike—no, really. With summer on the way, now’s the time to experience the world outside. Whether that means packing the perfect picnic basket, getting fit in the great outdoors or crafting your own lawn game,Read more
The Federal Reserve announces today whether or not it will increase the country’s benchmark interest rate. Economists and political pundits have begun to project how the Fed’s decision will affect businesses.Read more
As the country continues to debate the best ways to support small business success, the question of accessing credit has taken on growing importance. Starting a business is an investment,Read more
Rich O’Nyon loves the outdoors. Always has. So seven years ago, after losing his job doing inventory control in a machine shop in San Francisco he started his own landscaping and outdoor maintenance company Blue Collar Landscaping.Read more
You want to have a nice BBQ. Thoughtful. Civilized. A BBQ that doesn’t end with a mustard stained paper plate in your bushes. According to Jennifer Sutton,Read more
Whether you’re new to Thumbtack, you’ve recently moved, or you’re just starting your business, pinpointing what to charge for your services is something of an artform.Read more
There’s no better way to celebrate the amazing mothers in your life than with a beautiful Mother’s Day party. We spoke to two of Thumbtack’s popular party planners,Read more
When it comes to finding the right customers for your business, no one rule applies. There’s a lot to consider when it comes to reading a customer’s request;Read more
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