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  • Getting Your Home Ship-Shape For Christmas

    Christmas seems to come around quicker every year.  But, with so much to do and prepare in the run up to the festive date, if you get your home organised in good time, that'll be one less thing you have to worry about.  Here are some tips how. Continue reading

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  • Explaining the Relaxation of the Planning Laws 2012

    In the last few weeks the government has announced a year-long relaxation of current planning laws.  But what does this mean exactly to you and I? And what's the reason behind it all? Continue reading

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  • The Silvery-Grey Weathered Oak Look for External Gates and Garage Doors

    So, you've decided to opt for oak gates or garage doors and you want to get the silvery-grey weathered oak look. It's not to everyone's tastes (personally, I don't like it as it makes me think the gates/doors have been neglected, but each to their own!) and the choice of oak will play an important part of you being happy with the end result.

    Which oak to choose?

    You've got three types of oak to choose from and they are as follows:

  • How To Fit A Mortise Lock

    Some doors come with locks already fitted but most quality doors will not, hence allowing the owner to choose what type of lock and latch they are going to use. Fitting a Mortise Lock into a door requires a slightly above average level of DIY skill.

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  • Buying a Second Home in Spain: A Bargain in the Sunshine or Seriously Risky Business?

    Let’s not be half hearted about this, there are two areas of the Euro zone,  Spain and Greece,  that are in a desperate financial situation. It’s not just the immediate situation faced by these countries that is of such concern but the fact there is so little that can be done to prevent the problems reoccurring. Austerity measures that drastically cut public spending whilst increasing taxes are not acceptable to either populations as they feel they are the scapegoats for all the Euros woes. What the experts say is required is essentially the population and businesses of both Greece and Spain need to pay more in taxes for a lot less in services and unless they come to terms with this then whatever bailouts are handed out now will not cure the problem in the long term. All this has led to a glut of unsold property in Spain as Spanish home owners default on their mortgages and fail to sell their homes to pay off the outstanding loan in a stagnant market. Continue reading

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  • What We Mean By Solid Oak

    Sometimes it’s hard to explain exactly why you love something and cherish it above other similar things you could have chosen instead, anyone that's been to a wedding and heard the groom's speech will know what we mean. Art is another good example where ambivalent appeal defies precise explanation and this only adds to its integrity and cache.

    This may seem like the most romanticised introduction to a blog on doors imaginable, even more so than the tipsy groom mentioned above, but it’s quite common for people to hold a deep fondness for really good wood. In fact our fondness and love for good wood is bordering a medical condition but we are comforted by running UK Oak Doors as this has brought us into contact with other sufferers of the condition, or ‘customers’ as we like to call them. Sometimes however, on receipt of a solid oak door from UK Oak Doors customers may be perturbed to see that it is made up of two or three separate boards not one big lump so we thought we’d explain a bit more about how we make them and why... Continue reading

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  • Woodland Trust Names Sixty Diamond Jubilee Wood Sites

    Queen Gets Wood!

    Jubilee Wood Sites

    The Woodland Trust has revealed the locations of sixty sites for new woods in the UK. In a project to celebrate the Diamond Jubilee landowners have planted millions of trees with each plot averaging around 60 acres, which is about the same as 30 football pitches. The landowners included schools, colleges, race courses, local councils as well as the National Trust. The plan is to plant a total of six million trees in 2012 which includes 250 smaller woods as a lasting commemoration of the 60 years of the Queens reign. Both the Queen and Prince Charles are said to be thrilled. Prince Charles is well known for his love of trees including a well reported penchant for talking to plants. Continue reading

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  • Impranol – The Only External Treatment We Recommend

    Oxbow door treated with Impranol

    We're aware that the most time people spend on considering the look of their front door is spent on choosing the actual style of the door. Should it be a modern looking contemporary door or does the architecture of the house deserve a more classic and traditional entrance? We are also aware that this is probably the fun part too as you are choosing the greeting your house will give you, your family and your guests every time upon arrival.

    But the importance of the treatment your new external door receives, front or back, is not to be underestimated. After years of selling doors we have a substantial amount of research and experience and we choose Impranol every time. Impranol are a German company manufacturing high performance protection for external wood. As stockists of Impranol we have two products available, the Elan Top Coat and the Colour Base Coat, available separately or as a value pack. But please note you must use both coats to ensure correct protection for your doors. Continue reading

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  • Lights, Camera, Action – Could Your Home Star In a Movie?

    OK, so most of us are understandably house proud. We've put a lot of thought, effort and bank holiday barneys into getting our home just how we like it and sometimes getting your mates round for a BBQ isn't enough to show off your new solid oak front door. So what do you do? How about making it the set for a Hollywood blockbuster for the ultimate bragging rights? Well it might be a long shot but homes of all types and sizes are required by location managers for TV and film sets and pride would not be the only reward as it pays well too.

    So what sort of homes are required?

    Sarah Eastel of film-locations.co.uk has over 2,500 properties on the books from all over the UK and now with the popularity of viral videos for the internet that figure is growing too. She explains, "Within the M25, where most production companies are based, we cover the whole range: from deluxe apartments and mansion houses to normal family homes, run-down flats and even derelict properties."

    Obviously film and TV programs cover a huge spectrum of story lines from fantasy to gritty realism and so there’s a need to authentically reflect this as a backdrop for the action. Some families have enjoyed a nice little bonus when a disused barn has been chosen for a new TV program after hearing nothing for years from the location management companies.

    What’s it worth?

    The price paid to the owners of any film location set varies hugely depending on the property but anything from £500 to £3000 is achievable. Don’t forget there will be a huge amount of disruption that accompanies this as it’s not just the film set area that will be occupied by those working on the film.

    There will also need to be changing rooms, make up areas, a canteen and storage facilities. Sometimes these are provided in trailered facilities by the production company but in other circumstances the production crew may request the use of the rest of the house. This is entirely negotiable but it might be the case that the money you earn for renting out your house is immediately spend on a holiday for the family elsewhere, which isn't a bad deal is it? You would also be paid 50% of the fee for the ‘set up’ time it takes the production company to get the place ready for filming and any renovation costs to get it back to how it was before the film crew arrived.

    Interested?

    If you google “Location Managers for TV and Film Sets” you will be furnished with a selection of companies that can help. All you need to do is to send off a few digital photos of the property that you think may be of interest and wait for the reply, good luck!

    Images courtesy of sxc.hu

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  • Restoring A Property to Its Former Glory

    The Art of Restoration...

    For us it can be telly heaven. Watching an over ambitious novice property developer wildly underestimate budgets and timescales whilst forcing his wife and new born to live in the shed for three winters. That’s the melodrama whilst the ‘against all odds’ editing provides the satisfying sense of achievement with the glory of final completion.

    Sure, it’s possible to tell how over budget the build has gone with the sound off by the owners subsequent hair loss but it’s the satisfaction of seeing a previously dilapidated wreck transformed into something wonderful that makes the journey cathartic and not 'docu-schadenfreude'. And stalwart of TV, Grand Designs, is by no means the only option. Beeny’s Restoration Nightmare and Restoration Man have provided a salacious fix of highs and lows amongst others. Continue reading

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