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3 Things Every Homeowner Can Do To Keep Their House Cool

Posted by on Sep 2, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Many homeowners are looking for ways to keep their house cool without overpaying on their utilities. If you are not careful, you can easily spend more money than is necessary on your energy bill. Luckily, there are things that you can do to keep your house cool without breaking the bank in energy bills. Here are some tips. 1. Weatherstrip Your House Many times the house is unable to hold the temperature constant because the weatherstripping is no longer effective. For instance, you might notice that the doors leading into the house don’t close tightly. There could even be some sunshine that comes through the doors around the edges when they are closed. If you can see light from those areas, you can bet the air is escaping through. This is why you should be checking your weatherstripping often and replacing when needed. Weatherstripping is very affordable and could save you a good deal of money over the long run. 2. Circulate Air Many times you don’t need to blow cool air into the house, all you need to do is circulate the air. This can easily be done with a ceiling fan or a portable fan. You can power a fan for pennies on the dollar and can keep the fan on all day, cooling the house without costing you hardly anything. Conversely, if you have the AC blasting throughout the house, it will keep it cool, but it will also cost you a lot of money. So, turn down the AC and keep fans going instead. 3. Close The Windows Letting sunlight into your house can cause the house to heat up more than it needs to. When you allow the sun to enter your home, it will cause the temperature to rise significantly, just as the suns rays heat up outside. This is why it is best to close the blinds or drapes during the hottest parts of the day, especially when you are not home. If you are going out for errands, close the drapes. There is no reason to make the AC work extra hard to keep the house cool when no one is there to enjoy it. So close the drapes whenever you leave the house, or when it is the hottest part of the day. This will save you money in the long run. By doing these simple things, you can keep your house cool without spending a lot of money. For more information, contact local professionals like Shakley Mechanical...

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Protecting Your Company’s Data From Cyber Attacks

Posted by on Jul 27, 2016 in Uncategorized |

The collection and distribution of data play a critical role in today’s technologically-minded society. While the transmission of data might seem commonplace to consumers, pieces of personal information could be used by terrorist groups to wreak havoc on the nation. If your company has access to personal or secure data, keeping this information out of the hands of terrorist organizations should be a priority. Here are three things that you can do to protect your company’s data from cyber attacks in the future. 1. Invest in off-site backup. Backing up information on a regular basis is a simple way to ensure your company doesn’t lose access to important data. If you are worried about the threat of a cyber attack, making the choice to back up your company’s information to an off-site server can be beneficial. An off-site server is not connected to your company’s on-site network. In the event that you detect a cyber threat, you can shut down your network to protect against an attack without losing access to valuable data. Be sure to invest in off-site backup when designing an anti-cyber attack plan for your business. 2. Update your anti-virus software. Cyber terrorists will commonly use viruses to destroy your company’s data storage system or gain access to confidential information. Although you might have anti-virus software installed on your company’s computers already, it’s important that you take the time to update your software programs on a regular basis. Statistics show that nearly 1 million malware threats are released each day. To ensure your company’s data is enjoying the maximum amount of protection, update your software programs each time the manufacturer releases a security patch or update. 3. Make sure you have default-deny firewall settings. Your company likely has firewall management software in place already, but unless you have established the correct settings for this software, it may not be providing the maximum amount of protection for your company’s data. Ensuring that you have default-deny settings for your firewall can be beneficial. When your firewall is set to default-deny, you determine which types of network services you want to allow. Anything else (including activities or services that could be connected to cyber terrorism) will be automatically denied. Protecting your company’s data from cyber attacks is essential when it comes to keeping your confidential and high-security information out of the hands of terrorist groups. Be sure that you are investing in off-site backup, updating your anti-virus software, and have default-deny firewall settings to provide maximum protection against cyber attacks. Contact a company like Security Services Northwest, Inc for more...

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Make Your Homemade Candle Holders Stand Out At The Farmer’s Market

Posted by on Jun 26, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Selling your homemade candle holders at the farmer’s market is an excellent way to make a profit while working as your own boss. But with all of the other homemade goods and unique items for sale at the market, you may find with some competition to contend with. Here are a few things you can do to make your homemade candle holders stand out from the crowd when they’re being featured at the farmer’s market: Create Custom Labels You can give your handmade candle holders a professional, polished look by attaching custom labels to them. You can put labels on the bottoms of your products so they can’t be seen unless turned over, or incorporated them into your overall candle holder’s design by applying it to the sides. Use your labels as an opportunity to promote your company logo and build brand recognition.You can also include special processing information on the labels that your customers may find of interest. It’s possible to create your own custom labels using a commercial label maker, but you’ll likely get better results by working with an experienced service provider who understands how the fonts, colors, and designs you choose will affect the performance of your labels overall. For more information, check out websites like Display Them In Action Instead of just displaying candle holders that are for sale, consider creating a centerpiece that features a few of your holders in action. Place different sized candles in the holders and keep them lit throughout the day to help attract passersby. If your farmer’s market setup isn’t safe enough to allow for candle lighting, use battery-operated candles instead. Putting a few candle holders to use throughout the day will help give life to all of your products and therefore interest more potential buyers. Offer Personalized Embellishments You can ensure that every candle holder you sell is unique by offering your customers personalized embellishments upon making a purchase. If you sell wooden candle holders, use a chisel or engraver to put peoples’ initials on the bottoms of them. If you sell candle holders that can’t be chiseled, consider using paint or customized stickers with heavy-duty adhesive to personalize them. You can even chisel or paint designs on basic candle holders as customers order them—just create a portfolio of stencils you have access to and allow customers to choose their designs from it. These tips and tricks shouldn’t be difficult to incorporate, yet should provide you with impressive results as time goes on....

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3 Workplace Settings That Could Benefits From The Availability Of Bottled Water

Posted by on Apr 27, 2016 in Uncategorized |

You may think that as long as you have running water available at the work site or within the workplace, there is no reason to provide your employees with bottled water because it is just an added expense. While it is true that OSHA only requires that there is potable water available, in some cases it is a good idea to actually go ahead and make bottled water available instead of just the water that comes from the tap. Here are three workplace settings that could benefit from the availability of bottled water for employees. Warehouses or Massively Sized Business Facilities If you are the owner or operator of a larger-than-usual business building, it is always a good idea to have bottled water available for employees. You may have ample water supplies available at several points in the building, but there is a good chance that your employees will have to go out of their way while on the job in order to get to the source. Time spent going for a drink of water could easily add up when this is the case. Even if you don’t want to invest in refrigerators for cooling, it is a good idea to keep bottled water at designated spots throughout the building. Business Buildings Which Do Not Have Climate Control When the building where your employees work is not heated or cooled, you have a responsibility to make sure they can easily stay hydrated in the summer when the temperatures start to rise. Even though you may have water available in break rooms and even water fountains at restrooms, it is a good idea to make bottled water available elsewhere in the building. The water should be close enough within reach that employees will have access to cold water no matter where they are working in the building so they can stay well hydrated. Construction Sites and Outdoor Work Areas Most construction site managers will simply set up an iced cooler filled with water on site and make cups available so employees working outdoors can grab a drink when they need it. While this is all that is really required, it is a better idea to offer bottled water from a company like Absolute Bottled Water Co. Employees can simply keep their bottled water with them throughout the day instead of stopping for a drink every time they feel thirsty, which will just slow down progress on days when it is especially...

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Using Mobile Point Of Sale Systems For Your Business

Posted by on Apr 5, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you attend a lot of trade shows and fairs, taking cash or checks only can be an issue since most consumers today use their credit or debit cards as payment. In order to make more money and sales, it’s vital that you have the capability to take credit card payments on the go. Mobile point of sale systems can give you the flexibility you need to process payments anytime, anywhere. Here are a few of the perks that come with using these types of payment processing tools. Less Paper If you use a mobile point of sale system, you can email the customer their receipt rather than print one off. This will reduce your overhead cost for printers and receipt rolls, and it makes checking out much faster. You’ll also be reducing your carbon footprint by eliminating the need for traditional paper receipts. It’s also a perk for the customer since they can simply check their email for an electronic version of the receipt. Increased Sales Mobile point of sale systems are ideal if you’re working in an environment where a lot of customers are in one place at the same time. Large trade shows can bring in thousands of potential customers per day, and being mobile will help you close the sale. For example, if you approach a customer who’s interested in something you’re selling, you can offer to let them make the purchase right there on the spot with your POS. Mobile systems are usually small card swipe attachments that are connected to your smartphone or tablet, so it’s just a matter of taking the card right then and there to process the payment. Helpful Software Modern mobile POS systems also offer special back-end software that lets you keep track of your inventory in real time. Rather than asking a customer to wait while you check the stock room, you can use this software to see if an item they’re looking for is currently in stock. This is also helpful when you’re running low on inventory since you’ll be alerted of current quantity levels immediately. You can also include product details in the software so you’re quickly able to answer customer’s questions with a swipe of the finger. Mobile point of sale system software can also track your daily revenue and returns to give you an easy snapshot of your business’ success. Perhaps the best benefit to using mobile POS systems is the low cost. Rather than rent a traditional point of sale console that’s used in traditional check-out lines, you’ll typically pay a flat upfront cost for the card swipe unit and software, making it a smart business decision. Contact a business like Schmaus Cash Register Company for more...

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Important Factors To Ask About Before A Long-Term Construction Rental

Posted by on Mar 22, 2016 in Uncategorized |

Renting construction equipment for your upcoming home addition or major yard project will help you get the job done easier than trying to do it by hand. While many people look for short-term equipment to rent, you can also rent your necessary machinery for longer periods — and often get a rate reduction for doing so. If you’re planning to keep the rented equipment for an extended period of time while you complete the job, you’ll need to think about some potential issues related to your extended use of the machine — and ask the rental agent for clarification in these areas. Required Maintenance When you rent construction equipment for a short amount of time, you never need to worry about much in the way of maintenance. However, when the machine is in your possession for a lengthy period, you’ll need to know what maintenance tasks are necessary. Talk to the rental agent about how frequently you have to change the machine’s oil, for example. If an oil change is necessary after a certain number of hours, find out how you need to approach this task — for example, confirm that someone from the rental company can visit to change the oil. Or, perhaps the company will visit with a replacement machine and take away the one that needs its oil changed. Replacement Parts Even when you use the rented construction equipment according to the manufacturer’s instructions, it’s possible for some parts to wear out. If you’re using a trenching machine, for example, the digging blade can get dull over time; generally, any machine that has a blade or cutting bit will require a plan for dealing with its inevitable dulling. Ask the rental agent whether you can get the necessary replacement part when you rent the machine and get a tutorial in how to remove the old one and put the new one in place. Proper Storage Long-term construction equipment rental requires that you have a plan for storing the machine, given that it might sit in your yard for a period of days or even weeks. The rental company will want you to ensure the machinery is secured, so you might be asked to park it in your backyard or, depending on the type of machine, secure it with a lock. You should also clarify whether the equipment needs to be covered in the case of inclement weather — the last thing you need is dealing with something that’s been damaged because it’s been left in the rain. Contact a business, such as LAX Equipment Rental, for more information....

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Are Corrugated Cardboard Boxes Eco-Friendly?

Posted by on Mar 1, 2016 in Uncategorized |

It may be strange to think that any product primarily made of trees could be environmentally friendly, but corrugated boxes are a surprisingly responsible choice. Through recycling, reforestation, and increased shipping efficiency, even the humblest moving box can contribute to reducing your carbon footprint. If you are preparing to pack for a move or use corrugated boxes for your business, these four environmental facts in their favor might help assuage your concerns.  Creating Boxes From Recycled Materials Corrugated cardboard is the most recycled material in the United States, with an estimated 91 percent recovery rate in 2012. Corrugated’s composition of wood pulp and starches make them easy to break down and reconstitute into a new box, all for a fraction of the energy cost needed to create a box from scratch. In 2006, about 43 percent of the corrugated cardboard on the market was derived from recycled materials, and the number has most likely risen over the last decade.  Promoting Efficient Shipping and Preventing Product Waste Besides being made with recycled materials, corrugated boxes help the environment through their sheer usefulness. Their interior fluting, which sets them apart from standard cardboard, provides superior protection from crushing damage and limits waste in shipping, lowering the need to manufacture replacement goods. Although this small influence may not seem important overall, the prevented waste quickly adds up when you consider the scale of global trade relying on corrugated boxes daily.  Utilizing Renewable Resources and Encouraging Reforestation Corrugated boxes are made almost entirely out of wood-based products like pulp and starch. In the interest of conservation and consistent, reliable material sourcing, many corrugated and cardboard manufacturers are now investing in products derived from tree farms instead of cleared forest lands. Some 96 percent of boxes are now made using sustainable practices, and the industry is responsible for about 1.7 million new trees being planted every day. When your product depends on a healthy environment to survive, it’s simply good business sense to protect it and minimize the damage caused by industry.  Recycling or Composting Your Own Boxes After Use The effectiveness of corrugated recycling programs depends, in part, on the participation of average citizens and business owners. Recycling boxes instead of throwing them away will ensure that manufacturers have the materials they need without needing to invest the resources that go into growing, harvesting and processing a single tree.  Another option to dispose of corrugated boxes is to compost them for your garden. If shredded and not exposed to any hazardous chemicals, these boxes can make for an excellent compost additive rich in carbon and other soil amendments. No matter what you choose, reusing and recycling your boxes will help keep the industry sustainable and contribute to a greener, more efficient world.  If you’re a business looking for corrugated boxes, contact a company such as Associated Paper &...

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3 Unusual Types Of Commercial Insurance To Consider

Posted by on Feb 10, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you are a small business owner who has built your business from scratch, chances are good that you don’t want something beyond your control to go wrong and wreck your business. A fire or natural disaster could cause your business to go under, which would be tremendously unfair to you if you have put a lot of time, effort, and money into it. To better protect your business, you are going to need to get commercial insurance. Here are some more unusual commercial insurance policies to consider to make sure that you are fully covered. 1. Business Interruption Insurance Suppose that a fire causes you to not be able to operate your business for a few months. All of the employees that you picked out that helped you keep your business running would have to find jobs elsewhere and not be available when your business reopens. You might not be able to continue paying rent because your business wouldn’t be bringing in the income you rely on, so you might lose your space. Finally, you might not be able to pay your taxes during this period. If you get business interruption insurance, you are essentially reimbursed for the amount of money that you would have earned during a set number of months that you need to get your business running again as well as for the money that you would have paid your employees and the money that you would have paid in taxes. This will help you keep yourself afloat for a set number of months. 2. Ordinance Insurance If your building gets partially destroyed, you are going to need to pay to have it demolished and rebuilt. This is a ton of money that is hopefully covered in your standard commercial insurance policy. However, an unexpected expense that you might not yet be prepared for is the amount of money that you will have to pay the municipality in which you are located for the ordinance to rebuild in the area. This can be very expensive in certain areas. Ordinance insurance can help cover those costs. 3. Fidelity Insurance If a bonded employee takes some of the money or items that you have paid for already, you could be in a bind because you might not have the money to keep your business going. Getting fidelity insurance will help cover you if this should happen and allow you to move on after the disaster of having a disloyal employee. For more information, talk to a company that specializes in commercial insurance such as Western Reserve...

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Furniture Tips For Maximizing Your Small Office Space

Posted by on Jan 21, 2016 in Uncategorized |

If you have an office, you might be feeling very lucky. There are many other workers who have to work in open-office plans where they have little to no privacy or in cubicles. However, you might feel hampered by the small size of your office. Here are some tips for buying the right furniture to maximize your space. 1. Use All of Your Wall Space First, look at your walls. If you have two or more bare walls that don’t have furniture covering them or shelves attached, you will need to make use of this space immediately. Purchase floating shelves for your walls. Floating shelves are essentially just shelves that are attached to the studs in your walls that don’t need any bottom support in order to stay horizontal. By purchasing these studs, you make it much easier for you to transfer some of your books and other materials that are currently on a bookshelf to a floating shelf. This will free up some of your floor space. If your desk is facing a wall, be sure that you utilize some of the space to hang more shelves. Try to leave one wall entirely blank, however, in order to be sure that you don’t create a space that feels like a warehouse or is overwhelming. 2. Purchase a Desk and Chair With Thin Legs If you feel like your office feels very cramped but you can’t get rid of any of the furniture since you’re using it, you might want to reduce the overall bulkiness of your furniture in order to at least give the impression of having more space. You can do this by purchasing furniture that is in lighter colors and that has thinner legs. This will at least free up air space, even if it doesn’t free up usable space and make you feel less cramped by all of your furniture. 3. Purchase a Hutch for Your Desk Finally, if you have a wide desk and you find that there are wide swathes of its top surface that you don’t currently use, add a hutch to the top. A hutch will provide extra storage space without detracting from the amount of floor space that you have available. This can potentially allow you to get rid of a standing bookshelf or some other piece of furniture that you are using for storage space. For more information, talk to a company like D&R Office Works, Inc. that specializes in office...

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Two Tips To Help You Choose The Right Copy Machine For Your Business

Posted by on Jan 3, 2016 in Uncategorized |

The type of office equipment that you select for your business is one of the most important decisions that you will make.  Copy machines stand out because it is critical that you have the ability to print, fax, scan and make duplicates of documents without unnecessary hiccups or delays.  However, because there are so many different copy machines on the market, it may be difficult for you to determine which one will be a worthy investment.  Use this information to learn more about how to select the right copy machine for your business. Determine How Many Pages Per Minute You’ll Need One of the first elements that you’ll want to consider is how many pages per minute (PPM) you’ll need in order to conduct your business efficiently.  Failing to keep this component in mind could leave you in a lurch when you have a large volume of documents to print out in a hurry. For example, if you know that you regularly receive a consistent flow of faxes on an hourly basis, you want a machine that has the capacity to get all of these documents printed out so that the machine won’t clog up. The last thing you want to do is have to contact a client and ask them to resend a fax because the flow of documents overloaded your machine. Take the time to think strategically about how many pages of information you need to get quick access to on a hourly or daily basis, and use this number to guide you as you select your copy machine. Consider Your Graphic Needs Another vital point to remember when choosing a copy machine involves your graphic needs.  If you only print or copy black and white documents, the graphic quality won’t matter as much.  However, if you plan to print and copy documents that should have high resolution colors and images, you’ll want to buy accordingly. Remember that there may come a time when you need to print up brochures or coupons to send out to your customers.  If you already have a high quality copy machine in-house, you can avoid having to pay an outside printing business to do the work for you. Choosing the right copy machine for your business is a key way for you to make an investment that will meet your needs for the long haul.  When you’re ready for your next copy machine, visit a copy machine businessa in your area and keep these tips in mind so you can make the right choice....

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