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Indications and Contraindications for Ultrasound Therapy

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

Ultrasound therapy is a popular method of treatment for chiropractors, physical therapists, and other medical care providers. It involves transferring sound waves with frequencies greater than the human sound spectrum (above 20 kilohertz) into a patient. The energy that is transferred with the sound waves can be used to treat focused, isolated areas of tissue to help with relieving pain in affected areas of the body and to speed the recovery process for injured muscle or other tissues.

When to Use Ultrasound

Therapeutic ultrasound can be used to create a deep heat effect for relief of pain, muscle spasms and in cases where joints have been tightened over a prolonged period of time – joint contracture – as in cases such as spastic cerebral palsy or in work-induced environments.

Some of the most common medical problems that warrant the use of ultrasound therapy are adhesive capsulitis (“frozen shoulder”, or pain and stiffness in the shoulder caused by inflammation), calcific bursitis (the calcification of bursa sacs due to prolonged inflammation, usually in the shoulder), inflammation of the skeletal muscles (myositis), and soft tissue injuries from sports or other causes. Ultrasound therapy is also used to treat tendons that have been shortened from untreated scar tissue or past injuries. Ultrasound can be used to overcome capsular tightness or scarring, which often result from surgeries such as breast augmentation.


There are many situations for which the typical ultrasound therapy treatment using equipment such as the Intelect Legend or TranSport series from Chattanooga is not recommended. Ultrasound should not be used to treat local pain without the patient first receiving a thorough diagnosis, and the cause of the pain has been confidently determined. It should not be used when there are cancerous lesions on or near area to be treated. If a patient shows symptoms of carrying serious infectious diseases or in cases where the patient should be avoiding excess heat or fevers, it is not advised to use therapeutic ultrasound.

Other conditions governing the use of ultrasound therapy include avoiding particular parts of the body that may be susceptible to negative side effects from the treatment. It should not be used in areas where bones are growing. If a patient uses a pacemaker, it is not recommended to use this kind of treatment in the thoracic part of the body, as the pacemaker may be affected in those cases. Ultrasound devices should not be used where a fracture is healing, it should not be applied close to a patient’s eyes, and it should not be used over the uterus region of a pregnant woman. Therapists should be careful not to use ultrasound in patients who suffer from vascular disease and who have ischemic tissue. In this case, cells could die because of the blood supply’s inability to keep pace with the increased metabolic demand from tissues affected by the treatment.

Other situations that prohibit the use of ultrasound therapy include the spine area of patients who have had spinal surgeries such as Laminectomy, anywhere on a patient where anesthetics are being used, or any kind of disposition to bleeding excessively.

Competent medical professionals should be well-informed of when ultrasound therapy should be used, and under what circumstances it should be avoided.

Source by Richard Robbins

Using Solar Power to Prepare For an Emergency

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

Anyone who heads to the Ready America website ( will find an untold number of tips and recommendations for emergency preparedness. The topics covered include the development of a household emergency kit, a reliable plan for any number of incidents or events, and a link for information about a range of emergencies. For example, a visitor to the site will find information about biological threats, blackouts, fires, floods, tornadoes and much more.

One thing that really stands out about all of the emergency preparedness planning is the fact that traditional "everyday" services are likely to be lost during most issues. For example, telephone services, electrical supplies, and even access to fresh water could all be lost during something like rolling blackouts or even wildfires. While a household emergency kit, when properly prepared, would have sufficient water, medicine and food for approximately three days, it would never come with enough access to electricity that could keep a family or household informed of the current situation.

Luckily, there are many types of solar powered options that could easily keep a cell phone battery fully charged, a small radio running for days on end, or even a household supplied with electricity to keep food stores and heat in full operation.

What this means is that in addition to making the necessary preparations where an emergency kit and plans are concerned, a home owner should really scrutinize the ways that they may incorporate solar power into their emergency preparedness too.

Clearly, one of the simplest things to invest in is solar power supplies for small electronics. There are some flat and easily stored options that are used by hikers to keep GPS units and cell phones charged while far from traditional electrical supplies. Adding something like this to the kit could make it much easier to communicate with family and emergency services.

There are also many different types of lighting fixtures that are capable of receiving a full charge from solar panels too. This could be a great way to keep a home illuminated after dark when no power is available.

Of course using solar power panels in the home could also keep the family supplied with hot water (although a water pump might be unavailable without full electrical service) or with some household electricity. A small solar configuration could easily create enough power to keep the refrigerator and freezer operating, a household furniture running, and even some additional electrical devices too.

No one should believe that their emergency preparedness is complete without first examining their options for solar power to see them through a crisis.

Source by Kevin LeCavalier

Why is Reducing Energy Waste So Important?

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

According to Amory Lovins and other energy analysis, reducing energy waste is one of the planet’s best and most important economic and environmental bargains. It…

o Makes nonrenewable fossil fuels last longer.

o Gives us more time to phase in renewable energy resources.

o Decreases dependence on oil imports (55% in 1997).

o Lessen the need for military intervention in the oil-rich but politically unstable Middle East.

o Reduces local and global environmental damage because less of each energy resource would provide the same amount of useful energy.

o Is the cheapest and quickest way to slow projected global warming.

o Saves more money, provides more jobs, improves productivity, and promotes more economic growth per unit of energy that other alternative.

o Improves competitiveness in the international marketplace.

According to Amory Lovins, if the world really got serious about improving energy efficient, we could save $1 trillion per year. A 1993 study by economists estimated that a full-fledged energy -efficiency program could produce 1.3 million jobs in the United States by 2010. If such a program were implemented, a panel of technology experts that global energy efficiency could increase by 50% between 1997 and 2016.

Why isn’t there more emphasis on improving energy efficiency? The primary reason is a glut of low cost, underpriced fossil fuel. As long as such energy is artificially cheap because its harmful environmental costs are not included in its market prices, people are more likely to waste it and not make investment in improving energy efficiency.

Another cause is the use of huge government subsidies and tax breaks to promote the use of energy wasting power plants, motor vehicles, and buildings and few economic incentives for consumers to invest in improving energy efficiency even if it saves them money.

Source by Erick Juanich

The Main Types of Renewable Energy

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

Renewable energy is energy that is obtained from natural sources – such as the sun and wind – and can be replenished or renewed naturally. Since renewable energy can usually be obtained without doing significant harm to the environment, people have been developing many ways to utilize it efficiently. While the use of renewable energy is not a recent phenomenon, investment in these technologies has grown in recent years as a response to the rising prices of fossil fuel and the effects of global climate change. Here are the five primary types of renewable energy sources:

• Wind energy – Strong winds are capable of running wind turbines which are used in some areas to produce electricity. Normally these can be seen along shorelines, especially in areas where the wind is especially strong. Wind energy is a clean energy that can be utilized as long as the wind continues to blow.

• Water energy – Strong currents of water are also capable of producing electric power. Areas where there are big waterfalls are at an advantage since waterfalls currents are extremely strong and can help supply a portion of a city's electrical needs. Water energy is divided into different forms. These are: ocean energy, hydroelectric energy, kinetic energy from damless hydro, and hydroelectric power from micro-hydro systems.

• Solar energy – Solar energy is obtained from sunlight. This technology relates on solar panels that collect sunlight and turn it into voltage which is then stored in a battery for future use. A group of solar panels is called a photovoltaic array and many homeowners are now installing their own arrays at home to supplement or satisfy their energy needs. Solar energy can also be used to power individual items, such as lights and portable generators.

• Biomass energy – This energy is derived from industrial factories that process wood and agricultural products. It is a natural product from the synthesis of trees and other plants. While carbon dioxide emissions are produced through biomass, the amount is lower than that from the burning of fossil fuels. In addition, biomass cuts back on the need to produce new landfills as significant amounts of waste are consumed in the biomass process.

• Geothermal energy – Geothermal is obtained from deep in the Earth's crust. Radioactive particles inside the Earth are constantly decaying, producing an energy that we can exploit for our own usage. While it's not always easy to utilize this form of energy, once a geothermal power station is up and running it provides a source of clean, reliable energy with minimal effects to the environment.

Although not all of these technologies have been utilized to their full potential yet, it is expected that investment in alternative energy sources will continue to increase in the coming years. It is likely a combination of these technologies that will help lead us to a cleaner energy future.

Source by Ted Eckersley

Power Supplies – Antec Signature 850 Watt Power Supply

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

When it comes to building a new PC, be it for a server, media center or gaming machine, the power supply is often overlooked, especially with the multitude of more exotic components to consider (graphics, processor, mainboard etc.). However, as it powers everything in your new machine, a stable and competent powers supply is essential and can determine the stability and life of a system. Many lower range cases come with power supplies included, however although these may be insufficient for low specification PCs, a better power supply should be found for anything else, especially if you are likely to be running high spec graphics cards.

At the top of the range of Antec's power supplies comes the Antec Signature 850. It boasts features that are not generally available in a consumer power supply and are only saved for the best. The Signature 850 features DC to DC voltage regulator modules which ensures greater system Antec Signature 850 2ndability, and an 80mm Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) fan which can run up to 50% quiter than standard fans. The Signature 850 has also passed 80 PLUS® Bronze certification, a rare distinction in energy efficiency attained by very few other power supplies, which provides greater than 82% efficiency and above at all loads.

As the name suggests the Antec Signature 850 is rated to 850W and is also Nvidia SLI-Ready Certified, making it ideal for the lastest power hungry graphics cards. The box is well finished in a black gloss with a simple ANTEC badge fixed to the top surface. Antec has provided a hybrid advanced cable management system, which effectively means that the main cables required are hard wired for better power transfer, including most peripheral cables, and there is the option to add further cables on the additional 12V rails to power Triple and Quad graphic card configurations.

Antec Signature 850 3The main thing that you will notice about the Antec Signature 850 power supply is the weight, it really weighs a lot. Due to the heavy duty components and heat sinks, the power supply weighs in at 2.78 kg. The power supply is designed with high quality Japanese fan and capacitors to ensure long-term reliability and the circuitry controlling the power supply is set on two separate circuit boards orientated to face each other with a large channel through the center for improved airflow, meaning that only one 80mm cooling fan is required. The PSU fan features Pulse Width Modulation (PWM) for whisper-quiet operation. The

In order to ensure rock steady rails the power supply features DC to DC Voltage Regulator Modules ensure supreme system stability and built in circuitry delays damage resulting from short circuits (SCP), over voltages (OVP), over power (OPP), over temperature OTP), and over current (OCP). So that's the safety aspects covered.

We installed the power supply in our test rig (Antec 1200, Abit IP35, Q9450, 4GB OCZ, ATi graphics (PCI-E)) and fired the machine up, which worked as expected. In order to test the PSU, we opted to conduct just a simple 1hr run on OCCT to load the CPU and monitor the 3.3V, 5V and 12V rails. As expected there was almost no variation in the voltages and the maximum ripple we observed was on the 3.3V at 0.02 (0.5%).

The Antec Signature 850W power supply is a top quality and definitley among the best, if not the best in the 800w-900w power range and it even comes with Antec's market leading 5 year guarantee. It is definitely recommended for any top end gaming machine or server where there is the need for the extra power. Since the Antec comes with such a strong power efficiency, it also means that you could ever save money to boot (and save the environment). If you can afford it, buy it, you will not be disappointed.

For images visit the original article here

Source by James Youell

Hardware Basics of a Computer

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

Buying a computer is a tough choice if you want performance for your PC. Now how does hardware actually impact on the performance, and what choices does one have while selecting a proper hardware for a computer.

The first and the most basic part of the computer is the CPU or the processor to be used. The processor is the heart of any computing machine. Modern processors are much advanced and deliver much higher performance, than their prerequors. Modern processors efficiency increases mainly due to the no of cores. We have dual cores, quad core processors available. These cores function simultaneously, thus offering more performance than single core processors.

The speed of any processor depends on the clock frequency and the speed of the Front Side Bus. The clock frequency is measured in Ghz or Mhz for all processors. Now if you have a multi-core processor and a higher clock frequency, then naturally the performance of the processor is very high. Another term is FSB speed or the Front Side Bus speed. In simple terms, this is the speed with which the processor communicates with the Memory.Consider a CPU with a FSB speed of 800 Mhz. For maximum performance it is recommended that the speed of the Memory installed on the motherboard is equal to the FSB Speed. This increases the speed of the processors capabilities.

Now that we have discussed about the processors and RAM, the next thing that is of importance is the motherboard. Motherboard is a circuit that enables communications of the processor with the peripheral devices, such as your sound card, graphics adapter, and hard disks. Motherboard selection depends on the type of processor you are planning to buy. Different motherboards have compatibility with various processors. For getting the list of compatible motherboards for the processors you can go to the manufacturers website.

Modern motherboards have integrated audio and video controllers on them. This has increased complexity in their design but also has reduced the use of external sound cards, network controllers etc. The cost of motherboard varies according to their features that are supplied with the mother boards.

Source by Shanmukh Sista

Braided Hair Styles in 2008

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

The braided hair styles have been introduced and influenced by the African American culture. In 2008 these braided hair styles can be proudly worn as they will not go out of fashion. These styles are available in multiple variants, both for men and women and will give a plus of creativity to your look. Also, if you say braids, it does not necessarily mean that you have to have long or medium sized hair. The braided hair styles are available for short hair also. This style is suitable for all age ranges, so just get them if you like the idea. Getting such a hair style may be a lengthy process, as it involves a lot of work, according to your requirements and the length of your hair. It will also be expensive, but the entire process is a work of art.

Style ideas

The braided hair styles are numerous. So, if you are thinking of getting such a hair style, you will have to think about which type you will pick out for yourself. There are simple braids, suitable for young people and children, micro braids which are more complicated to make, but which may be short or long, there's also the braid style, and short braided styles for men, elegant looking braids, more casual looking braids, there are even braids with beads included in the art work. So, choose a style that you would like to have and wear it in 2008. If you choose to put beads in your braids as well, you can choose the colors you like and will add a plus of color to the appearance of your hair. You will be appreciated and feel good with such an original hair style. Do not worry about the maintenance of such a hair style; it is not so difficult to maintain at all. You will be able to wash and clean your hair on a regular basis and when you think you want to get rid of the braids, this will also be possible without cutting your hair.

Visit your hairdresser for braided hair styles

So, if you have decided on several braided hair styles and you do not know which one to choose, you can upload your picture on a web site that will show you the way you look with diverse braided styles, so that your decision will be easier to take. You will be able to find numerous such web sites on the Internet. The next step is for you to go to your hairdresser's and tell them how you would like your hair to be. Then just sit and wait while one of the lovely braided hair styles will be made to you. Weaving such a hair style you will make you special and original.

Source by Cristi Chira

Tattoo Removal – The Low Cost Way

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

Cost can be a major factor in determining which tattoo removal product to use and TCA tattoo removal is the most cost-effective way of removing an unwanted tattoo. Of the four most common methods of tattoo removal TCA is the least expensive by a significant margin. Below is a list of the four most common forms of tattoo removal from the least expensive to the most expensive.

Tattoo Fading and Removal Methods Ranked from Least to Most Expensive.

1) TCA Tattoo Removal

2) Tattoo Removal Cream

3) Dermabrasion

4) Laser

1).TCA Tattoo Removal

  • TCA is a cosmetic acid commonly used for facial peels, removal or reduction of acne scars, warts, and other facial blemishes.
  • It has been used as a tattoo removal products for the past 30 years.
  • TCA is the only home ink removal product that has has been thoroughly tested in two medical studies and proven to be effective as a tatoo removal product in the vast majority of the test subjects.
  • The first TCA tatoo removal medical study was performed from 1979 to1984 using 670 volunteer patients. At the end of the study, 85% of the test subjects were satisfied with their results.
  • The second TCA tattoo removal medical study was performed using 40 volunteers from May 1988 through February of 1989. At the end of the study, participants reported a 90% satisfactory rate.

2).Tattoo Removal Cream.

  • There is no known tattoo removal cream medical study proving the effectiveness of tattoo removal cream as a way to remove tattoo pigment. If such a study existed every manufacturer would be using it to market their product.
  • Many tattoo removal cream product manufacturers use the lure of a no pain, easy to apply, once or twice daily tattoo removal process that is simple, easy, and more affordable than laser surgery. They, of course, neglect to tell you that a simple tattoo removal cream, by itself, probably will not remove a tattoo.
  • Most tattoo ink removal cream products have one thing in common, most contain a skin pigment fading, or melanin inhibiting, chemical as a main ingredient in their product.
  • This skin pigment fading chemical fades the skin pigment above the tattoo and not the tattoo pigment itself, which is located in the second layer of skin called the dermis.
  • A tattoo removal cream, by itself, does not physically remove a tattoo because it cannot penetrate the skin deep enough to reach the location of the tattoo pigment.
  • There are some tattoo removal cream products on the market that include exfoliates in the form of hand held battery operated sanders or loofah pads that must be used in conjunction with the cream.
  • Some manufacturers also include an exfoliate in the form of dehydrated silica or crushed walnut shells blended into the cream to form a grit which helps with the skin exfoliation process.
  • Many tatoo removal cream manufacturers have no product guarantee, offer no money back or they offer a guarantee which is so restrictive it is virtually impossible to receive a refund if you are not satisfied with their product.
  • When considering buying a tattoo removal cream always check for a product guarantee and carefully read the wording to make sure it is valid.
  • One well known tatoo removal cream manufacturer explains their guarantee and return policy, but in the final sentence state that no retail purchases are refundable. They neglect to tell you where you can buy their product at wholesale prices.
  • The tattoo ink removal cream products that use no form of abrasion generally offer no guarantee. Some contain the chemical hydroquinone, which is known to be carcinogenic, cost approximately $65 a month per kit with no guarantee as to the number of kits it will take to see any difference, if any, in the lightening of the tattoo pigment or removal of the tattoo itself.
  • The tattoo removal cream products that contain an exfoliate grit in their ingredient list and combine that with a sander or recommend the use of a loofah pad generally sell for $50 to $75 for a one-month kit, but offer no timeline as to how fast you may begin to see results. This means you’ll be spending $50-$75 a month for many months before you see a change, if any, in your tattoo.


  • Dermabrasion was first used in 1905 when the process was invented by a German doctor for the removal of post-acne scarring.
  • This procedure is also known as “surgical skin planing” and “non-chemical peel”.
  • Modern dermabrasion used for tat removal involves the use of freezing the skin above the tattoo and using an electric surgical sander to remove the skin containing the tattoo pigment.
  • This method of tattoo ink removal is very effective but, is very bloody, painful and generally leaves a scar.
  • This method is generally done over several sessions in a doctors office on an outpatient basis and is very expensive.

4).Laser Tattoo Removal

  • Laser tattoo ink removal can cost anywhere from $150-$350 per session
  • Modern lasers can be very effective at the removal of dark pigmented tattoos
  • Colors such as black, dark blue and other very dark colors generally are the easiest colors to remove and the number of sessions required depends on the size of the tattoo.
  • Tattoos that contain light colors such as light blue, light green, yellow, pink or white are very difficult to remove and can require many sessions which can escalate the cost of removal into the thousands of dollars.
  • Tattoos that contain the color white, in particular, are the most difficult of all to remove and ethically operated laser tattoo removal clinics will refuse to even attempt to work on them unless they are at least five years old or older and have had some exposure to the UV radiation of the sun.
  • After approximately 5 years of age, a white tattoo will have begun to fade naturally and become a bit easier to remove, although it will still be difficult.

In conclusion there are several things to consider, and look for, when researching which tatoo removal product is best for your situation.

  • When considering tatoo removal cream products always check to make sure they have a guarantee.
  • If they list a guarantee check to make sure that it is possible to meet the requirements listed for the return of the product and the refund of your money.
  • Check to see if a contact phone number is listed on the website so that customer service can be reached during normal business hours.
  • Look for an email address so that you can contact them at your convenience, and check to see if they list the company address on the website.
  • If the only form of communication is an email form with no visible email address or phone, number it may be best to avoid this particular company.
  • Always check the product ingredient list to be sure that the cream does not contain hydroquinone, which is a known carcinogen.
  • Some tatoo removal cream manufacturers will attempt to hide hydroquinone in the middle of a very large list of ingredients to make it difficult to see that the ingredient is present in their product, for this reason it is very important to closely read the ingredient list.
  • If an ingredient list cannot be found on the website avoid the product
  • Any home tatoo removal company that does not operate in a transparent manner and identify who they are should be avoided.

One TCA tattoo removal company provides a generous guarantee because TCA is an easy, effective and very affordable form of tattoo removal when compared to other tattoo removal methods available today.

Source by Glen Wilson

10 Steps on How To Be Aware of How Your Actions Impact Others

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

An often overlooked component of creating a happy lifestyle, is the importance of awareness. Many of us do or say things without being completely aware of how that affects another. We navigate through the world not realizing that our decisions and actions have consequences, both positive and good.

Just this past weekend I was meeting an old friend and he told me a story about how he had purchased some items at a store and received an extra $ 40 back in change. He was tempted to keep the change but realized that the woman might be fired as a result of that decision and decided to hand the change back.

I also remember an instance where a woman was very opinionated about her negativity towards religion. She had said extremely negative things about religion to a mixed crowd of friends, some who were in agreement with her and others who were not. As a result, some people viewed her negatively, and she did not realize that her decision to make a bold statement without being respectful could potentially cause her to be viewed in a more negative light, even by people who were her friends.

My last example is of a father who had realized that the lack of time and attention he had given his son over the past 5 years had been addressed in a distant relationship between them that was devoid of respect and closeness.

The actions you make now are even influential after you die. Attend a funeral and you will see how many attendees will discuss the actions that the Deceased made during his or her lifetime. Due to the actions of the Deceased, many people's lives are forever changed.

Being aware of how your actions impact others will help you make wiser decisions, become more likable to others, increase the positivity in your relationships and will boost your own self-confidence. The awareness of how your actions impact others will create a climate of happiness and guide you to living a more satisfying lifestyle.

Here are 10 questions you need to ask for understanding how to become more aware of how your actions impact the world around you.

  1. How do you see your actions? Before thinking about how your actions impact another, consider how you view the actions you make. What are your true intentions when doing something? Why did you choose to make this decision and are you happy about it?
  2. How do your actions influence others? Think about the people in your life and the relationships that you have. You might be able to see a pattern between the way you choose to treat others, and the relationships that you have. Do you struggle with having a positive relationship with your family? Is it because of negative actions that they have made towards you or have you made some poor decisions when interacting with your family?
  3. Do you realize the power of your actions? You may be in a position where you are underestimating the power of the choices you make. I remember interacting with a friend who had said some exciting things to me. His response to me had really hurt my feelings and made me uncomfortable about being his friend. After speaking with him, I realized that he did not even consider that his actions would have that strong of an influence on me. I later found out that he had done similar things with other people, that directed in other people feeling hurt and reconsidering their friendship with him. You have the power to make someone happy, sad, inspired, or depressed. Realize the true power of your actions and the amount that you can hurt or help another.
  4. W hat are the alternative actions you can make? It's easy for us to make a decision and feel it's the right thing to do, without considering the other options. What first comes to mind often seems like the right action to take, even though it's often not. I went hiking with a friend who had brought along some water bottles. When he had drunk through a few water bottles, his idea was to hide them behind a bush and to keep going. I did not want him to do something that could potentially harm the wildlife and that would contribute to destroying the environment, so I told him to keep holding the bottles until we arrived at the nearest campsite which would have trash cans.
  5. What are the needs of others around me? Understanding what someone's needs are will guide you to make more appropriate decisions. It's easy to do or say something and do not realize that what you are doing is either not addressing the need of another or potentially creating a future problem. You serve as an example to your child. Your child needs you to be involved in his or her life, and making the choice to not meet those needs will likely create permanent boundaries between you and your child. Furthermore, your actions may have negative results on the way your child handles social interactions in the future.
  6. How can I adjust to the needs of another? Okay so now you can identify the needs of a few loved ones in your life. What can you do now to adjust to those needs? Perhaps you realize that your wife needs to spend more quality time with you during the week. Now you can arrange to make additional time by having a couple more date nights during the week. Perhaps you realize that your child needs you to be supportive of his new career change. You can now work on showing him that you are supportive and can be used as a positive resource.
  7. Do I know, how much the actions I make in the present, matter? Find awareness by realizing that your actions, right now, matter. It's easy to say that this action may not make much of a difference now, and does not realize the larger impact that action has. Not taking action to promote a cleaner environment now, will contribute to problems in the future. Not making an effort to work on the relationship now, may result in you losing the person you love. Now is the time for action and it's important to be aware that the actions you make now are worth your awareness.
  8. How can I be a better observer? Understanding how your actions influence the world around you understands you developing your skills as an observer. You have to learn how to listen and to see things from a different perspective. It's very important to pay attention to the way people respond to things you say or do.
  9. How can I be more open-minded? Awareness requires open-mindedness. You will need to learn to not judge every situation based on your own behaviors, attitudes and beliefs. Whenever I visit a different country, I have to be more aware of the actions I am making and how that might influence others. Being opinionated about a different culture's customs could easily offend someone else and place me in potentially dangerous situations. Making a clear attempt to speak the language earned far more respect in Thailand, than trying to force someone else to understand my English. Being more open-minded will help you expand your breadth of knowledge, allow you to explore alternative decisions outside your comfort zone, will make you aware of different perspectives, and will help you withhold unnecessary judgment against another.
  10. Do I realize that awareness is a process? Becoming more aware of how your actions influence others is a process that takes time and patience. Much of this process also requires steps of maturity. Many of us can remember moments as teenagers where understanding the amount of our actions was challenging. As we have matured, this process has become gradually easier. Remember awareness takes time, patience, and development.

Source by Melissa M Bee

Determining a Kitchen Remodeling Budget

Posted on January 23, 2018 By In Uncategorized With no comments

It is very important to determine a budget for any home improvement project, and kitchen remodeling is no exception.

A word of caution: I spent several hours researching kitchen remodeling cost and budgeting on the internet to gather data for this article. I ran into a couple websites that cave square footage pricing for kitchen remodeling. Although I commiserate with their attempt to find a simple method to figure out remodeling pricing, this type of advice is not based in reality. Remodeling jobs in general are so specific to the conditions of the building and tastes of the homeowner that no square footage pricing will ever be realistic. I also ran into many sites that did not give you any real information about establishing a budget but basically interpreted Hanley Wood's Remodeling Cost vs. Value report which is published each year. You are much better off visiting the Cost vs. Value report online and evaluating the results for yourself.

Like anything else in this world a kitchen remodel is going to cost more than you thought it would and the sky is the limit on what it can cost depending on your tastes. There are multiple factors that go into determining a remodeling budget.

There are several places online you can go to help you establish a basic budget number to start with. My personal recommendation is Remodeling Magazine's Cost vs. Value Report which is released by region and major city each year. The really nice thing about this report is that it gives a description of the "average" project so that you can gauge if your kitchen remodel is going to fall above or below the benchmark. I also find their average pricing to be an accurate reflection of the pricing for our company, so by recommending to clients before I even meet with them that they investigate this report that they are more likely to establish a realistic budget we can work within to give them a fantastic kitchen.

Custom Hutch built with Semi-Custom Cabinets

While Remodeling Magazine's report is very helpful, it is still a very one size fits all approach to establishing a budget. Keep reading if you'd like to try to hone your numbers a bit.

Get out a pad and paper and jot down a few notes about each factor as you go through this list:

Factor 1 Home Value- Consider not only what you think your home is worth, but also the value of similar homes in your neighborhood that already have updates. My favorite website to check home values ​​is, simply enter your address and you get an interactive map with home values ​​and other information listed right on the map. Take note of which homes are of similar size to yours, have been purchased more recently, but have a higher value, then peek in their windows to see what the house looks like. Ok, seriously, I was only kidding. If you do not know them sometimes it's time to meet the neighbors and ask for a quick tour.

Factor 2 Wow! – This has everything to do with your goals and motivations. Write down each motivational factor which is important to you in a kitchen remodel. Here are some possible examples: Kitchen is falling apart. You love to cook and the layout does not suit you. You love to entertain and want to open up the kitchen as a place to gather. You want a kitchen that wows your guests. You are getting ready to sell your home and the kitchen is a sticking point with buyers … Now that you have your list, evaluate which motivations are most important and relist them in motivational order. Imagining your budget starting in "the middle" take note of which factors might move the budget up or down … ie wanting to remodel to encourage a sale might move the budget down, remodeling to wow guest max it out … etc .

Factor 3 Did someone say AGA? – List any "must haves" for a kitchen remodel to be worth it to you. Possible examples: granite counters, an island with an extra sink, a second dishwasher, a commercial quality gas range, etc.

Factor 4 Longevity- Determine to the best of your ability the length of time you plan on owning the home.

Factor 5 Size Matters- Determine what percentage of your home your kitchen encompasses. A sampling of over 100 modern home floorplans of 1000 to 3000 square foot homes revealed the average kitchen square footage to be 7% of the home's square footage. If your kitchen is larger or smaller than this average you may need to increase or decrease your budget accordingly.

Factor 6 Layout- if you already know you're going to want the sink moved, an island sink added, an interior wall moved and an exterior door added, then you need to add money to your budget well beyond what a basic facelift would cost .

Tricky layout: the decorative column conceals a sound wrapped drain pipe

Factor 7 Funding- Determine the maximum amount of money you could afford to spend. If you are financing your project you can calculate what a lender will likely lend you. Lenders want to see a debt to income ratio (DTI) of.36 or less. Your DTI is established by taking all your monthly debt obligations (credit card payments, auto loans, mortgage, etc.) and dividing by your monthly income. To determine your maximum safe monthly debt multiplly.36 times your monthly income. Now subtract your existing monthly debt from this number and you have a monthly budget maximum. Here's a link to a calculator that will do the math for you: mortgage calculator

Putting it All Together

The key to determining your budget is finding the percentage of your home's value you should use as a budget guideline. While researching this article I ran across recommendations to use percentages ranging from 10% to 25% of home value. For a kitchen remodel of any substance that includes new flooring, appliances, cabinets, sink / faucet, lighting and bringing electric up to code I find anything less than 15% to be a very dubious number. I suppose on a million dollar house 10% would be a workable budget, but on a 200k house a 20k budget is marginal at best for a full blown kitchen remodel.

If resale value is important to you it is wise to keep the cost of your kitchen renovation project within 20% of the current value of your home. Staying within this range insures that a major of the new kitchen's cost is recouped in increased home value immediately, and the remaining cost should be recouped within 5 years as your home appreciates.

Ok, let's run through an example. Keep in mind, there is no exact formula here. We are simply doing our best to be as informed as possible and make a wise decision about how much to spend on our kitchen remodel.

For our example let's use my house. It's a 50's cape cod with a modest square footage of 1500.

Factor 1 value: Zillow gives me an estimated value of $ 167,500, however, I notice zillow has not yet updated and accounted for the single family homes which were recently built in the field behind us with a starting price of $ 270k. Zillow also has our square footage listed at under 1200. Looks like the previous owner did a little remodeling without a permission. I'm going to base my budget on a price of 180k which is similar to other houses in the neighborhood that are the same size.

Factor 2 Goals: My wife and I love to entertain guests. To make a kitchen remodel worthwhile for us we need to lose an interior wall to open up the kitchen and dining nook to the living room. I'm going to add 1% to budget for this.

Factor 3 Must Haves: As a former chef two must haves for me are a new oven and a really nice propane range (no natural gas service here), preferably a commercial range modified for home use (real commercial ranges do not have insulation around the oven, critical for home safety). I'm going to add another 1% to my budget to make sure there is enough money to get me my range and propane installation.

Factor 4 Longevity: We plan to stay in our house a minimum of 4 years. As a rule of thumb it takes 5 years for most remodeling to appreciate and recoup all of its cost. Since we will likely be here at least 5 years I'm not going to penalize the budget, but since there is a good chance we'll move right around 5 years I'm not going to increase it like I would if we were staying much longer.

Factor 5 Size of Kitchen: Our kitchen is about 140SquareFeet (SF). That's over 9% of the SF of the house, 2% above average. Obviously this kitchen is going to require some extra material and cabinets. I'm going to up the budget 1% for this, I hope it's enough.

Factor 6 Layout: We are going to change the layout of our kitchen pretty extensively. We currently have a cooktop peninsula. The range is going to go on a differnet wall and the dishwasher will move to the peninsula, though we might ditch the peninsula, move the fridge and add an island instead. About the only thing that will not move is the sink. I'm going to add another 1% to my budget, again hoping $ 1800 (1% of our 180k value) is enough to cover the electrical and plumbing changes.

For my base I'm going to use 20%. As I mentioned before, there are going to be people who will argue with me on that, but going lower often does not leave you with workable budget numbers for full blown kitchen remodels. I'm adding 4% based on my factors listed above. I adjusted my estimated home value to 180k based on the comparable square footage and value of other homes around me. This gives me a working budget of 24% x 180k = $ 43,200 When I compare this to the Cost Vs. Value report I see that in the Middle Atlantic Region a Major Kitchen Renovation is $ 59, 098. It looks like my budget could be bit low, especially since I really would like granite countertops and the Cost Vs. Value specs call for laminate tops. On the other hand my kitchen is significantly smaller than their 200SF benchmark, so I think I'll go with my budget number and see what my contractor can do for me in that budget.

Please note that I ignored Factor 7 Available Funds. Obviously Factor 7 either makes or breaks budget numbers and there is no point in discussing it here.

Good luck with your kitchen remodeling project!

Source by Owen Sechrist