Draught Proofing Your Home Could Save You A Fortune

Draught proofing is among the cheapest methods that can be used in your own home to effectively save energy and cash. It could also be used in any sort of building. Draughts will sap the heat out of your home however, they are not all bad, they ventilate your home and allow fresh air in. Properly installed ventilation will not cause draughts and will contribute to a reduction in dampness and condensation. The problem is that draughts are not easy to control and they let in too much cold air which wastes your heat.


Start by blocking up any obvious gaps with appropriate draught proofing. This will prevent cold air coming in to your home. By preventing the heated air from escaping you will save a lot of energy and keep your home warmer. This can also help you save money on your heating bills whilst still making your home warm and comfortable.



Research that has been done that shows that you could save around $70 per year if you draught-proof your doors and windows. Living in a home that is almost draught free is incredibly comfortable even at low temperatures. Because of this you simply will not have to use your thermostat. This can save you even more money of the heating bills.


There are particular places that you should seek out unwanted gaps in your home. You must also search for openings that are left uncovered. You may also examine the gaps inside the following areas:




2.Loft hatches


3.Joints between ceilings and walls


4. Letterboxes and keyholes


You need to try and block up as many of these holes as you can without interfering with the existing ventilation system. This is particularly the case with rooms that produce a lot of moisture, such as bathrooms.


The cost of draught proofing could differ. For instance the expense of getting a professional to do it could cost you double the amount it could have cost to do it yourself. If you are happy about DIY then there is no problem however, some homes do require professional expertise. Examples of this would be older homes and those that have single glazing. Because of this, draught proofing them is tough.


Additionally, there are cheap strategies to stop draughts in your home. Draughts that come through the external doors come from keyholes, gaps under the door and letterboxes. You can fill the space under your door using a weather bar. This will serve as a seal once the door is closed. You can buy them through your local store and they are generally very easy to fix.


Addititionally you could make use of a draught excluder. These can be very effective in sealing gaps under doors or windows. You can buy them ready made or you could make them yourself. They are relatively easy to make, all you need is a long sausage of fabric which you can fill with beanbag beans, toy stuffing or even by cutting up old clothes.


Windows being installedIf the cold entering your house is coming from around the door, you can purchase a brush door seal. These are generally sold in packs of 5 seals which are not expensive. Also you can put in a letterbox plate that may stop the cold air getting at home. There are keyhole covers that will reduce the level of heated air escaping through them.


Warm air is lighter than cold air. Because it rises it could escape through gaps which might be within the loft hatch. You can fill these gaps with insulating tape, which is readily available in hardware stores. You can also use this for doors and windows, it is a cheap and effective way of reducing draughts coming into your home.


You must also protect your pipe work from draughts by sealing any gaps in the walls where the pipes go through. If the gaps are small, you can use silicon filler however, if there are large gaps, it is more economical to make use of something like expanding insulation foam. Again, this is readily available in hardware and DIY stores.


It does not matter how well insulated your home is, it is impossible to achieve a completely draught proof house. This is because air will still be able to find its way through holes and gaps which exist within the building. Applying draught proofing around your home is probably the best method to decrease your energy costs. This is also a useful way of making a rented home more economical without having to spend a lot of money.

Why Accurate Maps Are Vital For Successful Planning Applications

Planning a new development is a great thing to do, but for some people it is impossible to get the plan they want to use approved. Often, the reason that the plans are not being approved is that the maps they are using Mapsare inaccurate and did not show the details as to what sort of changes they wanted to make. To overcome this issue, developers need to know how important it is for them to use up to date accurate maps, rather than having to rely on maps that are older or outdated.

These maps must show all the proper markings of all the roads and entrances. A development is often going to have roads running through it to reach every single house in the project. The plans also need to show in detail, the drives coming onto these roads from each property. Since these are going to be put in place, they need to be accurately depicted to guarantee that the planning office knows exactly where the roads are going to be. This way the planners can evaluate all of the impact the proposed roadways will have on the environment and the region. If any inaccuracies are found in the map, it is possible for the local authority to disapprove the plans because they do not match the maps the planning department are using.

Utilities are important to note and they must be accurately placed on the map for the developers. If the developer does not have the utilities properly marked on the map, the companies who are responsible for moving or installing the utilities may not be able to service the new buildings or at least, not within the budget put aside for this aspect of the project. The other thing with not showing utilities correctly is, the local authority will not be able to approve the project due to inaccuracies. This not only wastes time but also money because there is a fee to pay each time the plans are submitted.  By using the proper maps the first time though, it is easier for people to get the plans approved and know that the utilities will be installed easily.

Waterways are an important item to protect and if they are not noted on the maps, it is possible for the plans to get sent back for re-evaluation. However, when the waterways are noted, it should be covered as to what is going to happen with the watershed from the development, how it is going to be directed around the waterway or be treated before it reaches the water. To do this properly, the developer is likely to be advised to use an accurate topographic map in addition, which will help them show the lands pitch and how it is going to be impacting the flow of water.

The accuracy of the maps being used will also help developers in getting the land plots marked off correctly. When a developer buys a large tract of land, they tend to subdivide into plots for each individual property. When they are doing the subdividing of the plots, they need to have accurate maps to guarantee that each lot is marked off properly. If the lots are not accurately marked on the maps, then they will not be right when people are buying the properties. This in turn can impact the buyers because it may not be clear where the boundaries are for each property, this could lead to disputes in the future over boundaries and as such, this needs to be avoided at all costs.

Generally when people are using an up to date accurate map, they will notice that it is easier to resell the properties as well. As mentioned earlier, the properties need to be properly divided on the map to get the most out of the sale. With the accurate maps, people tend to get more money because they can note the details that are present with the property and this allows people to know exactly what they are getting on the property. Without this, people may struggle to get the results they want to have in selling the property because no details are noted.

Generally when a developer buys a piece of land, they plan on reselling all the different plots of land within that piece. However, people will find that their planning application is very likely to fail if they do not have an accurate map to bring to the planning office at the local authority. By having the accurate map, though, the developer can take their plans to an authority and get the plans approved. Then the developer can start to work on developing the project so that it becomes what they originally planned.

5 Things To Look At When Buying A Property

Whether you are buying your first home or are looking to up or downsize, it is important to take a good look at your prospective purchase. Long before you even decide to make an offer or have a survey done, do your own Whitewashed country cottagevisual inspection so that you can see exactly what’s what. Here are 5 things I always look at before buying a property.

Drainage. First of all, take a look at the location of the property, is it on level ground, on an incline, near a river or lake? These days, it is vital to consider flood risk before buying a property. So, look carefully around the property to see if you can assess possible flood risk. Whilst you are doing this, look at the external drains that you can see, is there standing water in any of them? Do they look well maintained? Do the drains lead away from the house?

Structure. This is the external structure of the property, so, you should look at the exterior walls, the roof and the foundations. Looking at the roof, are there any signs of visible damage, slates or tiles missing, sagging, uneven sections? Sometimes uneven looking roofs can mean nothing more than natural settling however, it could be a symptom of a major structural problem. Take a note and if you do have a survey done, mention it to the inspectors so that they can determine the cause.
The foundations and external walls can tell you a lot. Look for cracks in the walls and also for any damp patches. Sometimes damp patches can be missed or disguised but generally, they will be a darker colour than the rest of the wall, there might even be a slimy substance on the wall.

Access. This might seem too obvious but if the property is down a lane or track, make sure that it has a proper right of access or you may find that your dream property has no legal access to and from the road. The access needs to be enough for all your vehicular requirements, so it needs to be wide enough so you can get your own vehicles in and out. Look at how much parking there is, is there room for all your vehicles to park off the road? What is on the surface of the driveway? Does it look as if it will drain easily? Are there any potholes that will need repairing? If the drive goes straight out onto a busy road, is there room to turn around so that you don’t have to reverse out? Are there gates and if so, how much space is there between them and the road?

Plumbing and electrics. Whilst you are viewing the outside of the property, look at the wires that lead into the place? Where you can see wires leading into the property, look at whether they are clear of trees or bushes. Branches can cause a lot of damage in high winds and leave you without power. If you don’t see any, it is probably because the house is supplied by underground cabling.
Inside the property, take a look at where the fuse box is, are they modern circuit breakers or old fashioned fuse wires? Take a note of where smoke detectors are located around the home, you might want to add more. If there is gas, find out whether there are carbon monoxide detectors installed.
With plumbing, look at all the taps, are they off or are they dripping? Do the toilets flush? Find out whether there is a water meter attached to the property. Ask about whether the drains run into the sewer system or if there is a septic tank. If it is a tank, find out where it is and when it was last emptied.

Heating system. What does the heating system run on? Is it gas, oil or electric? Is there central heating that runs through the whole house? Find out how old the heating is and whether it is regularly serviced. If there is a Rayburn or Aga in the kitchen, you need to know what this runs on and if it heats the water as well. While you are considering the heating, take a look at the doors and windows, do they look new and well maintained? Are the windows single, double or triple glazing? Single glazing will offer little in the way of heat retention and they could also be draughty.

Obviously, if you are seriously interested in the property, get a proper survey done so that you will be made aware of all aspects of the house. You will also be given an energy rating for the property which will give you an idea of how efficient or inefficient it is. Buying a home is one of the most stressful things to do in life and if you can make it a little easier, hurrah!