The Dangers of Drought: How You Can Protect Your Home

In the past year, we’ve faced a global health crisis that has significantly impacted the world we live in. However, what many don’t realize is that we were already in the middle of another crisis before the pandemic- the environmental crisis.

Climate change has been a decades-long issue, with humanity being the major cause of the global environmental crisis we’re facing to this day. This is due to the numerous human activities like deforestation, the burning of fossil fuels, overpopulation, and overconsumption, which in turn produce greenhouse gases and waste, among other pollutants. The effects of this crisis are seen all across the world, with ice caps melting, sea levels rising, extreme heat, and droughts. And not only are its effects threatening us, our livelihood, and wildlife, but it also threatens the future of our whole planet.

While we make the slow journey towards rehabilitating our planet, it’s also important to know how to protect ourselves whenever a natural disaster caused by climate change occurs.

How Droughts Affect Your Home

Across the world, drought affects more people compared to any other natural disaster, with 55 million people affected by drought every year. This poses a hazard not only to your health, livestock, and crops but also to your home.

With nearly half of the United States currently affected by some level of drought that is also expected to get worse in the near future, it’s important to know how it affects our homes and what we can do to protect our property. For instance, if your area is going through a serious drought and your home is built on reactive clay soil, this could significantly impact your home. This is because reactive clay soil expands and contracts, depending on the weather condition outside. If the weather is cool and the soil is moist, the material expands. If it’s extremely hot, on the other hand, this can cause any moisture in the soil to quickly evaporate and cause it to shrink.

In turn, your house sinks, which can put immense pressure and even damage the foundations of your home. Just like droughts themselves, the signs that it’s affecting your home are gradual, and in most cases, you won’t notice them until it’s too late.

What You Can Do to Protect Your Home in Times of Drought

As they say, prevention is better than cure, and the same goes for protecting your home from droughts. Knowing the preventative measures to keep your house safe during both mild and extreme droughts will not only help you avoid any damages to your home but will also protect you and the rest of your household. The best preventative measure for drought protection is maintaining your property, from inspecting your home for any needed repairs or cleaning to avoiding lighting fires. Use these tips to help you prevent foundation damage to keep you and your household safe during a drought.

Inspect Your Home Regularly

The first step to protecting your home from the effects of drought is by inspecting your home often. If you spot anything that you find worrisome, take a photo that you can use for comparisons later on. If it looks minor, just keep an eye on them and observe if anything else happens. On the other hand, if you notice something more serious, it’s important to contact a professional before it causes serious damage that could end up costing you more later on.

Some of the signs of drought-induced damage in your home include:

  • Sloping or sinking floors
  • Bouncing floors
  • Gaps between walls
  • Cracks around your home

Clean Out Your Gutters

During a drought, gutters are likely one of the last things on your mind. However, they’re more important than you think. You never know when the weather might change, and since gutters are your home’s way of rerouting water, it’s important that you keep them clean in the event that it rains. This way, you won’t end up over saturating your soil with water and end up damaging the foundation.

Keep Foundation Moist

When you think about watering, your mind may immediately think of watering plants. While this is true, what many people don’t know is that your house’s foundation needs watering too. You can help prevent your foundation from sinking by keeping your soil’s moisture at a normal level. You can do this by watering the ground and using a soaker hose around your house to keep your soil nice and moist. If you’re constantly busy, you don’t need to worry, as this only needs to be done every week.

You can also consider adding mulch to the soil near your home’s foundation, allowing moisture to evaporate more slowly, reducing your frequency of having to water your foundation.

Give Your Fire Pit a Break

Since both the air and ground are extremely dry during droughts, lighting a fire can become dangerous fast. Give your fire pit a vacation during this time to avoid any accidental fires.

If you live in areas that experience drought often such as Texas, New Mexico, and California, it’s important to always stay prepared. Remember to conserve water, make sure your home doesn’t have any leaks, and most importantly, take preventative measures to keep your foundation from drying out and damaging your home.

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Seven Signs Your Marriage Will Be Beaten By The 7 Year Itch

Nobody walks down the aisle imagining anything other than love, happiness and a beautiful future. Not one person thinks that this won’t work; they think that marriage is it and the end of dating and any need to find another person to love. And then seven years goes by and things become…itchy. Well, for some people they do. The 7-year itch is a coined term that psychologists deemed the time in a marriage where there is a slump. One or both parties get itchy feet and feel the need to explore outside the marriage. The relationship is likely to decline at this point if it’s going to, and the timing leads one or both people to disconnect.

Of course, not every single married couple gets to year 7 and throws in the towel. Plenty of married couples remain happy and married for even more years. However, if you are nervous about this and you feel the need to seek advice from people like Susie Tuckwell to know what to do next, you should get to know the signs your marriage won’t make it past year 7. With this in mind, here are seven signs to look for!

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  1. You’re no longer curious about each other. One of the things that pulls a couple together is their desire to learn more about each other. Curiosity is so important to the communication between a couple and without it, you’re not going to learn new things anymore. 
  2. You’re keeping secrets and it’s becoming difficult. When you are married, there shouldn’t be any secrets beyond birthday gifts and surprise parties. Transparency is important and you have to stop keeping secrets from each other.
  3. You choose not to spend meaningful time together. Love isn’t enough – and it’s something you’ll quickly learn. You need to spend time together for your relationship to be meaningful and if you’re not, that’s a clear sign you’re growing apart.
  4. You’re starting to take each other for granted. Those little gestures that you had before, when you were enjoying together seem to disappear, and bam – you’re not enjoying each other anymore.
  5. Money hasn’t been a topic of conversation for a while and you have stopped communicating about it. You should be discussing financial goals together, and if you’re not, you could be on the decline.
  6. When you are trapped in a cycle of criticizing each other, you can forget how to be nice to each other. You shouldn’t be drowning in criticism, and instead of criticizing each other, you should be discussing and talking together. If you can’t get out of this cycle you may find you’re on the slippery slope to ending the marriage.
  7. You no longer have any fight. You have to fight together. Marriages are work and they take two people working together to get through each phase of life. Life is full of surprises and you can ensure that you get through them all together when you both agree to fight together for your love to last.

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4 Home Renovation Ideas To Make Your House Feel Brand New

Everyone craves the comforts of a well-designed and cosy home. However, even the most timeless dĂ©cor can start to feel stale after some time. Whether you are looking to sell your home soon or simply improve it to increase your comfort, a home renovation is always a good idea. 

Depending on the circumstances of your renovation and your financial situation, you can either opt to go all-in or do a few DIY projects. Below are some home renovation ideas to make your house feel brand new. 

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Add New Lighting

Proper lighting brings any room to life. A room that is poorly lit looks cramped and dark, while one that is brightly lit looks more spacious, airy, and welcoming. There are numerous ways in which you can use light to brighten up your rooms. A simple method is to add floor and table lamps to your home. Placing a couple of tall floor lamps strategically in dark corners can make any room come to life. You can then layer these with lamps on side tables to make the room feel warm and cosy. 

If you want to get more adventurous, you can replace some of your outdated ceiling fixtures with some of the contemporary masterpieces currently available in the market. If your house isn’t getting enough light even after adjusting your electric lighting, you should consider renovating it to make your rooms more spacious or get bigger windows. Buddy Loans are an excellent financing option for your home renovation project, even if you have bad credit. 

Swap Out Sofa Pillows

One of the easiest ways to refresh your home is by changing your decorative sofa pillows. Consider mixing up pillows with different patterns, colours and textures, to achieve the modern living room look. 

If you are aiming for a cleaner, minimalist look, select the pillows in contemporary neutral tones. Mix in a few striped and graphic pillows in vibrant colours for a bold and eclectic aesthetic. To increase the cosy factor in your living room, consider adding some velvet or fur pillows. 

Update Your Window Treatments

Many homeowners tend to overlook their window treatments. They have a hard time determining the style that would suit their room best, therefore leaving the windows bare or simply installing blinds for privacy. However, this practice could make you miss out on a whole layer of decoration.

You can dress your windows to suit your taste and style perfectly. From gauzy white sheers, geometric curtain panels to minimalist bamboo shades, there are numerous options to choose from. Ensure that the panels you select match well with the colour of your walls and furniture. 

Add Art

Another great way to spruce up the look of your home is by adding paintings to the rooms. Take out any old pictures you put up before you started redecorating and replace them with unique art pieces that fit your current style. 

If you are inclined to modern art, you can invest in a few prints or lithographs from a local artist who paints in that style. 

Your home should be as comfortable and beautiful as possible. Apply the above tips to improve its look.

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