Fencing Companies: What to Look For

At some point, most homeowners have to address the fencing surrounding their property.  A well constructed fence should last for many years, if not decades.  However, when your fence does need attention, you dont just want to call some run of the mill fencing company to do the work.  Unfortunately there are many fly by night fencing companies out there that are only looking to line their wallets and couldn’t care less about the quality of their work.  So how do you avoid these types of companies?  The solution is easier than you think.  Here are a couple of good ideas.

Your neighbors fence.  Do you like the way your neighbors fence looks?  Or the house down the street?  Well, ask them who did it for them.  Often times, there isn’t a need to go online to scout out a good fencing company.  Word of mouth is usually the best way to find a good company.  I’m sure your neighbor would be happy to make a good recommendation.  After all, they are the ones who have to stare at your dilapidated fence.  Or you can ask any of your friends if they know of or have used a reputable fence company…unless you have crappy friends.

Google.  You’ve heard of Google…right?  Who hasn’t.  Google is one of the greatest sources of information on the planet.  Simply type in the search box, “fence company” and your city name and you will be presented with all the fence companies in your area…well, at least the ones that are smart enough to have a website.  Can a respectable fence company exist without a website?  Sure.  But I would’t use one.  I recommend looking at all the companies that are on the first 3 pages of the google search results.  Just because one company is on page 3 and another is on page 4, doesn’t mean it is an inferior company.  That just means they might have a little more knowledge on how to rank their website highly on Google.  But that’s a whole other conversation.  Each company listed on Google will have its own set of reviews.  I do caution you, however, as many reviews are fake and simply posted by the company owner’s friends and family.  However, most reviews are legit.  If a company has mostly positive reviews, they may be a safe bet.  If a company has more than a few negative reviews, I would pass on that company.  Use your best judgement, as these reviews can be a powerful tool when searching for a reliable fence company.

Lastly, find yourself a fence company that provides free estimates.  You can get several quotes and get a good feel for what you are about to purchase.  Also, you can tell a lot about a company by the individual that comes to your property to do the estimate.  The level of professionalism that this person displays is often a good indication of how the company operates.  Also, if you receive several estimates, you will have some leverage when you find a company you actually want to use.

So take your time and find a company that you feel comfortable with.  Your fence is one of the first things that people see when they drive by your house or stop in for a visit.  You don’t want to make a bad first impression…do you?

Pest Control: Do it Yourself Options

Bugs are pests! Common household pests can be very annoying and sometimes difficult to eradicate from a house. There are common household insects that may be found throughout most of the USA. And then again, there are common household insects that are specific to certain states such as within the southern, southeastern, and southwestern regions of the USA. Within this article, common household insects will pertain to those found within most of the USA. For example, twelve of the most common household insects include flies, ants, moths, beetles, mosquitoes, ticks, bed bugs, cockroaches, centipedes, termites, caterpillars, and fleas.

It is a matter of personal choice how one chooses to dispose of pesky household insects. Some people choose to use a professional service and others choose the DIY method. Most homeowners try to handle the situation by purchasing products found in stores and others will try an organic or natural method to dispose of bugs plaguing their home.

Whatever the DIY method chosen, use caution and protective clothing, eyewear, gloves, and even a mask to avoid harmful fumes. If you choose to hire a professional service, ensure that they are reputable and check for references and certifications.

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Below are some natural, and less harmful, methods to dispose of household insects which are especially useful for repelling mosquitoes and ants.  Peppermint oil and mint plants will naturally repel ants, spiders, mosquitoes, and even mice. Mix a solution of 10 to 15 drops of peppermint oil in 8 ounces of water, shake and spray the mixture in areas around doorways, vents, and windows.

Some people say that household dryer sheets repel mosquitoes.  Flypaper and insect traps are commonly used products.  Lavender has a lot of uses. Lavender plants repel moths, fleas, flies, and mosquitoes. Use sachets of dried lavender in closets and drawers. Use a mixture of five to ten drops of lavender oil mixed with 8 ounces of water.  Spray it around your home to repel bugs. It makes your home smell good, too.  Pure lemon juice (spray it), ground cinnamon (sprinkle it), cinnamon oil (spray it), cloves, are claimed to work well for repelling ants.

Peppermint oil will repel ants. It may be sprayed or spread around window sills and doorways.

Chalk: People claim that drawing a line of chalk around a window sill will repel ants. They claim it really works.  Or, purchase powdered chalk in a squeeze bottle. It can be purchased at hardware and home improvement stores.

Baking soda and powdered sugar: Mix it together. Put it on a plastic lid and place it where the ants enter the home.

Coffee grounds: Some people claim that coffee grounds will repel ants. But, it does not kill them.

Corn Meal: Sprinkle cornmeal on the ant nest.

Bleach, though more harmful, sprayed on ants will kill them. Use caution, poured directly on the ant hill, the bleach will bubble up and kill the ant nest. Or, use a bleach cleaning product and spray it on the ants to kill them.