Posts made in October, 2014

The Glories Of Tarp Camping

When it comes to camping, you have two basic schools. For one, you have the minimalists: these are they who believe that the whole point of camping is to get in touch with nature at its most primitive. On the other hand, you have the comfort campers: these are they who believe it is possible to have a good outing in the woods without subjecting yourself to unnecessary discomfort and exposure to the elements.

You clearly see this distinction in a camper’s choice of tent. Comfort campers will opt for the privacy and seam-sealed safety of a four-season tent while the minimalist can make do with nothing more than a tarp. If you want to try tarp camping, it is important to know what you are getting yourself into.

What Type of Tarp Should You Buy

One of the main attractions of tarp camping is that you can cut down on the weight that you have to carry. Because you can eliminate tent poles, carrying a tarp can make your backpack much lighter, but it is important to buy the right tarp. While there are special lightweight camping tarps that you can buy, they can be pricey. Thus, if you are just starting out, you should probably begin with a vinyl tarp. It will be cheap to buy, fully functional, and will help you to decide if you like tarp camping enough to purchase a more expensive camping tarp. 

Using a Tarp for a Tent

When you use a tarp, you are not constrained to find a space to fit the structure of your tarp. Instead, you can configure your tarp to fit the terrain or conditions present on your outing. For example, on a clear night, you can simply throw your tarp out on the ground to protect your sleeping bag from dew and ground moisture and then enjoy the stars unimpeded by the structure of a tent. You can set up an A-frame tent by stringing a rope between two trees, and if you only have one tree available, you can set up a funnel-like structure around the base of the tree. Thus, a tarp allows you to set up camp in a variety of places that would be out of reach if you only had a tent. 

Tarp camping can provide you a connection with nature that you simply would not have with a tent. However, if you like having the walls a tent between yourself and the unknown dangers lurking in the wild, tarp camping might not be right for you. To get started, swing by a retailer like Billboard Tarps and see what they have available for campers.

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Want To Save Money? Consider Changing Energy Suppliers

If you are trying to save money, you may want to consider changing energy suppliers. You can compare electric rates with different companies in your area to find what best fits within your budget.

Your Option to Change

Your current utility company delivers energy to your home, and responds to any emergencies. When it comes to the energy, however, you have a choice to get the energy from your utility company, or an energy supplier. This gives you more control over energy costs.

If you change energy suppliers, you will still get your electricity from your local utility company. This is because energy suppliers do not bring electricity into your home.

Your utility company stays your provider, because they own all the wires and poles. They will also keep handling any customer service problems or any upgrades that you want to make.

Finding Energy Suppliers

If you go online, you will see many websites that state they can do the shopping for you to compare prices. In many cases, however, they do not have a complete list of the energy suppliers in your area.

You should find a state-run list for your particular state that will have a complete list of suppliers. When you find the list, you will have to call each one to find out what they charge so you can compare it to your current prices. This will take some time to do, but it is worth it because it can save you money.

Pricing Terms

When you are looking for a new energy supplier, you should know their pricing terms. In most cases, they will offer three different ones: Hybrid, floating, and fixed.

  • Floating: This type of pricing is known as variable pricing. Your electricity bill will rise or fall each month. Your energy supplier will keep track of natural gas costs. Your bill will be a percentage of this cost, regardless if it goes up or down. If the prices go up, your bill will be higher. If the prices go down, then your bill will be lower.
  • Fixed: With this type of pricing, you will pay the same amount each month that you agree upon when you sign up. This will save you money if the energy costs go up. If the energy bills lower, however, you will not save money.
  • Hybrid: This pricing is a combination of floating and fixed. You will pay a fixed price agreed upon between you and the supplier for part of your contract period. For the rest of the period you will pay a floating price.

​As you can see, changing energy suppliers can save you money on your electricity bill each month. Take time to compare the energy suppliers in your area to make sure you are getting the best price.

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Why Roof Repairs Matter

As a small business owner, you’ve got a responsibility to keep the roof in tip-top shape for your patrons. In fact, the International Building Code dictates that the burden of protecting a commercial building is on the roof, making your job of keeping up with maintenance, repairs and roof replacements that much more important, especially after major storms. When there is severe rain or hail, for instance, roofing materials can show their age or weakness and become compromised, leading to pesky leaks or broken shingles, for instance.

Tending to the roof problems sooner than later can save you money in the end and could be the difference between having to spring for a new roof altogether or just improving upon the one you’ve got. If you’re not convinced, here are some reasons to hasten your commercial roof repair. 

Re-roofing Opportunity

If you wait too long to address roofing failures, such as the brown water mark on your white ceiling that is a sure sign of a leaking roof cover, you might be foregoing the option of re-roofing, which is to cover your current shingles with new materials. Re-roofing is a less extreme and cheaper option than tearing down the roof and its covering altogether, but it must be done before the materials become too weakened.

It might seem risky to place new materials over an old sheathing, but as long as your roof meets certain conditions, re-roofing is acceptable. You might be surprised to learn that as of 2014, more than four-fifths of the money spent on roofing construction in the U.S. went toward re-roofing. Just make sure that the building owners before you didn’t already use this option, because if there is already more than one roof covering on the building, more than likely you’ll have to replace the roof.

Mortgage Balance

While roof repair may seem like a private matter, your bank might have a say in the matter. In the aftermath of a major storm when the damage in town can’t be denied, mortgage issuers can step in. You might thank the bank later, as getting the roof repaired today could prevent you from having to take out a second mortgage to replace the roof down the road. 

Following a particularly severe weather event in your city, don’t be shocked if the bank that issued your small-business mortgage launches a property inspection mandate. If your business’s roof is found to be among those in need of a fix, you may be required to make the repair within a certain time frame, such as a couple of months. Otherwise, if you don’t fix the roof and fail to communicate with your bank, they have the option to call the mortgage loan balance due. 


If you’re unsure whether your roof is in need of repair, contact a local commercial roof-repair professional like Upson Company to inspect it for signs of trouble. 

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How To Keep Your Nylon Flags Looking Great In Front Of Your Business

Nylon flags are a great method of roadside advertising in front of your business. Unfortunately, over the months, the flags could become dingy or moldy. Here, you will learn how to clean your nylon flags and keep them looking great and presenting your business in a positive way.

General Cleaning

If you notice that your nylon flag is becoming dingy looking, take it off of the post and bring it in for cleaning. To clean your flag:

  • Create a mixture of two gallons of very warm water and one cup of liquid laundry detergent.
  • Shake the flag out or brush it off to remove any loose debris from it.
  • Place the flag in the solution and stir it around gently. Let the flag soak for an hour.
  • Remove the flag from the solution and rinse it well with cool water in a utility sink.
  • Gently squeeze the excess water out of the flag and hang it to dry.

Note: If you are putting the flag away in storage, do not do so until it is completely dry. Folding and storing a flag while it is wet will cause mold to grow and could ruin the flag.

Removing Mold

As time goes by and your flag is exposed to moisture regularly, mold can begin to form on it. You may try the general cleaning method and succeed in cleaning the mold from the flag, or you may need additional cleaning measures. To clean mold off of a flag:

  • Try brushing the mold from the flag while it is dry. Sometimes, a soft-bristled brush used to brush away the mold spores is the only action needed. If this does not work, continue to the next step.
  • Soak the flag in a bucket or tub of cold water.
  • Mix oxygen activated cleaner in a bucket of very warm water.
  • Place the flag in the solution and allow it to soak for an hour.
  • Remove the flag and examine it for any signs of the mold. If you notice mold remains, use a soft bristled brush to scrub at it. If it is not coming off, apply a small amount of oxygen activated cleaner directly to the spot and scrub it once more.
  • Rinse the flag with cool water and hang it out to dry.

Keeping the flags you use to promote your business looking great is important. The external appearance of your business will have an impact on the number of customers you serve each day. If your flags are beyond repair, look into buying new ones from a company like Maximum Promotions Inc and disposing of the old.

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Hoping To Sell Your Home Soon? 3 Steps To Getting Rid Of A Mold Problem

Are you hoping to sell your home soon? If you hope to have a speedy real estate transaction, it could be impeded if you have a mold issue in your home. Before you list your home, you need to eliminate any evidence of mold. Here are some steps to take to get the mold out of your home:

Eliminate the Cause of the Moisture

Mold is almost always initially caused by excess moisture in the home. The first thing you need to do when trying to rid your home of mold is to discover where that moisture is coming from. If you do not address the moisture problem, the mold will never go away no matter how often you treat it.

To find the source of moisture, check for leaks in the attic, the basement, or near any windows or skylights. Once you have these areas repaired, you can move forward with mold removal.

Apply a Mold Control Product

Your next step is to remove the mold is to apply a mold-control product. There are a number of mold removers on the market that you can purchase. Alternatively, you can use a mixture of equal parts bleach and water. Spray your product on the moldy areas and allow it to dry.

You probably may think that the mold-removal product is not working since the appearance of mold is still present. The product you use will kill the mold, but it will probably leave a mold stain behind. Removing mold stains is a separate step you will have to take after the mold itself is killed.

Treat Any Stains Left Behind

To get the moldy stains off of your walls or ceilings, you will need to use an oxidizing mold-stain removal product. You can also use bleach; however, you will risk discoloration, especially if you are bleaching out a wooden surface like a deck or a porch.

You will have to follow the instructions on any stain removal products you use. You may have to use a scrub brush along with your product. If you are using bleach, you will need to use a scrub brush to get the stains off of the surface.

If you are going to remove mold yourself, be sure you fully protect yourself. Wear gloves, a ventilating mask, and any other protective clothing that you need. If the problem is too big for you to handle yourself, be sure to call in the professionals to help you with the process. To learn more, contact a company like AAA Cleaning Team with your questions and concerns.

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Hello to everyone lucky enough to fall upon this little site of mine. My name is Shaun Hardy, and I love to talk to people about their businesses. You see, brushing up on the economy and watching business trends has always interested me. I’ve been a business owner myself, so I typically know the ins and outs of what goes into running a business. One of the most difficult—yet invigorating—times in the life of a business is when moving or selling. I hope to share a bit of the experience and wisdom that I’ve collected over the years concerning business, specifically moving or selling a company.

October 2014
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