A Shoppers Guide on Buying the Right Shower Enclosure

Written by Ashraf/QS Shower Quadrants

A shower enclosure is a luxurious way to shower so buying one should be a wise and informed decision because it is an investment that is going to be a part of your bathroom for a long time to come. The right shower enclosure not only changes the aesthetics of your bathroom but also improves it dramatically. Modern day enclosures offer quality, technology, style and facilities that are limitless and cater to even the smallest of spaces with ease.

If you think an enclosure is going to cramp your style then think again. There are various types of shower enclosures available in the market such as Shower Quadrants, D Shape Quadrant, pentagon, rectangle and many more, which gives ample of showering space. A selection of a shower enclosure solely depends on the bathroom space and the fact, that there should be no obstacle in opening and closing of the doors.
Consider the shape of your cubicle. As mentioned above one can find great looking shapes such as square, quadrant and D shape, Pentagon as well as contemporary and trendy shapes that gives a sophisticated feel. Make the most of your floor area as well so that you have more room to move about in the shower.

Everyone wants a shower enclosure that will suit the aesthetics of the bathroom and economize space. Apart from shape, shower enclosures differ by opening and closing nature of it. A well animated gifs of shower enclosures have been presented here, so that one can better understand the opening and closing of shower doors. Sliding shower doors are common types in quadrants or rectangular type cubicle, while as bi-fold doors are ideal for recessed installation. The other type of shower door that is most commonly used is pivot or hinged door.

When it comes to the material and finish, most of shower enclosures or shower doors along with side panels are manufactured from toughened safety glass for an extended life. Choices can vary from clear to beautiful patterned glass. Once a shower door is selected then an appropriate side panel can be selected. Apart from doors and side panels one can customise the look of their shower enclosure by selecting appropriate frames. Shower enclosures are available in frames with dark or light chrome or silver finish and give a modern look and feel. Apart from chrome and silver there is one more option, which is widely accepted by home owner and i.e. white. Frames with white finish accords well with any bathroom, especially with traditional style bathrooms. There are also frameless style shower enclosures available which gives an ultra-modern and urban look in any bathroom.

When you select a shower tray, make sure it is a water-tight with an enclosure and have adequate drainage. Most of the shower trays now come with fast flow shower waste, which helps approx. 10 litres of water drained within seconds. Shower trays are made from different materials. Most of them are made from stone resin or acrylic capped stone, and in a variety of shapes and sizes. Ranging from luxurious design, such as slim line shower tray; they feature compact styles for those with a constraint for space and non-slip surfaces, the choice is limitless.

Along with very stylish shapes, today’s enclosures come to you with features like body massage jets, storage shelves and built-in seats so that you can enjoy steam showers. There are those that also have a therapeutic treat on the floor for your feet with jet sprays.

Last but not the least make sure your enclosure has gone through a ‘Corrosion Test’. Good standard companies do an anti-corrosion salt test on all the metal fittings so as to maintain the untarnished finish of the shower. Once your shower enclosure is installed, you will find yourself looking forward to retreating and relaxing in it day after day.

Author Bio : Ashraf is a blogger and writes for QS Shower Quadrants, the on-line store for designer shower enclosures. You can follow him on twitter @ashrafpistawala

Would Hiring an Architect Improve Your Home Building Experience

Written by Michelle/AQVA Bathrooms

When embarking on a home building project your total budget will determine what you can and can’t realistically expect to have in the finished product. However, when it comes time to deciding what costs you will keep and which ones you will cut it can be very tempting to strike off what appear to be overly expensive professionals such as architects. But would hiring an architect improve your home building experience enough to warrant the hefty service fees?

Extras vs Professional Services

As tempting as it is to allocate a good portion of your home building budget to luxury extras instead of professional services, doing so could see your dream home turn into a living nightmare. Ask just about anyone who has undertaken a substantial building project and they will reveal just how many stops, starts, blunders and headaches they endured! The question really is ’Can you afford not to engage the services of an architect?’.

Highly Skilled

So what benefits are to be gained from employing an architect? The most obvious benefit is that architects are highly trained professionals who are skilled in such a variety of areas that they are valuable across multiple aspects of your home building project. Whether it be the floor plan, interior design elements, the project timeline or getting through the red tape of building permits, architects can help you with all of that and so much more.

Network Benefits

Along with the skills that an individual architect can offer you, they can also introduce you to other trusted professionals that you will require. From engineers through to carpenters, an architect will have extremely good connections that they can recommend to you. Why risk engaging contractors who you know nothing about when you can gain access to individuals who have earned the trust of your architect. Think about it. Just one unreliable or unscrupulous contractor can cause major havoc for your project timeline, costs, quality and finally your sanity.

Your Dream into Reality

Most importantly, an architect has the ability to turn your dream home into reality. They will ensure the vision you have of your new home will come to life just as you expected and indeed, even improved upon. Furthermore, a home that boasts excellent functionality and stunning design will increase in value, making your investment all the more worth it. And remember, if you have to wait a little longer for things such as your landscaped garden to afford the services of an architect, it will be worth it in the long run. No one wants to end up with a delayed project that costs you money and that in the end doesn’t live up to your dream

If you want your home building project to be completed within a reasonable timeframe with the least amount of headaches then hiring an architect is ideal. That way you’ll gain a solid home that is highly functional as well as visually pleasing and enjoy your home building experience all the more. It has to be said that home building is certainly not for the faint hearted but with the right professionals on your team things will indeed run more smoothly and you’ll be more than pleased with the finished product.

Author Bio :

Michelle is a contributing author and writes for AQVA Bathrooms. She is been designing and advising bathroom renovation for over last 10 years. She specialises in installation of modular bathroom furniture and electric showers.

Olympic Games and renting

Written by Mark Stroud

For most, the Olympic Games means a 16-day celebration of sport as the greatest spectacle on the planet comes to Britain. However, London 2012 also brings with it a number of implications for the capital’s property market – for some welcome, but others, very much unwelcome.

It’s no surprise that many landlords are taking advantage of the increased demand for room lets ahead of the Games. For them it’s a golden opportunity to make some quick cash with fans willing to pay a premium for a place to stay near the Games’ sites.

Many landlords have hiked their rental prices by five or six times the normal rate for the period of the Games and some in east London, home of the Olympic Park, by as much as 20 times, according to media reports.

One lettings agent described the increases as a simple case of ”supply and demand”, but a number of property experts suggest it’s a move that could end up costing landlords money, particularly if they’ve evicted an existing tenant to do so. They argue that a potentially lucrative short-term let isn’t worth losing a reliable, corporate tenant for and having to pay the costs associated with re-marketing the property.

And what about the tenants? One day you’re paying £600 per week for a house share in Whitechapel and the next the landlord is threatening to evict you unless you cough up £3,000 per week. Homeless charities have condemned the ”greedy” landlords taking advantage of the high demand for homes to evict tenants. They say rents are simply unaffordable for Londoners living in Olympic boroughs and claim the problems will remain long after the Games have left town.

But has the demand for short-term lets been exaggerated? London tourism chiefs expect the Olympics to attract around a million people to the capital in the form of spectators, journalists, businesspeople and Games officials. That’s on top of the 1.5 million tourists London sees in a typical August and all will require somewhere to stay.

With London hotels fully booked well in advance of the Olympics rooms to rent are expected to be scarce. For some time, there have been stories of an inevitable last-minute scramble to secure short-term rental deals; even of people prepared to pitch tents in gardens.

It’s not just landlords who expect to cash in on the influx of tourists. Large numbers of locals have decided to leave the capital for the duration and rent out their properties. However, as the Games draw closer, it is being claimed that many landlords have jumped the gun by hiking prices and evicting tenants and that the rush for short-term lets won’t materialise.

Some estate agents have warned London’s rental market has become flooded, that many properties will remain un-let and that, contrary to belief, supply is actually outstripping demand. One agent even commented that ”landlords are outnumbering tenants”.

Landlords are faced with another problem. Many are looking to let their properties for at least two weeks but are finding substantial numbers of tourists only want to book three or four nights.

Regardless of the pros and cons, it’s clear the Olympic Games will see a dramatic increase in short-term lets and have a significant impact on London’s property market.


How Changing Your Flooring Can Change Your Whole Home

Written by James Rowland

Whilst it’s not something you might immediately think of when considering how to give your house a facelift, your flooring can really affect the whole look of a room.

Since flooring and floor coverings like carpets are generally a major expense, most people don’t change them unless and until their existing flooring or floor covering gets worn out, spoiled by stains or faded by exposure to light. If your carpet has been spoilt by something like a stain or burn mark that has occurred accidentally, it’s always worth checking your home insurance policy to see if it covers you for accidental damage. Weigh up the cost of the excess and the effect on any no-claims bonus you have built up against the cost of replacing the carpet at your own cost before making any claim.

So what can you do with your floor other than fit a carpet? Well, have a look under your carpet first. There are many homes that have hidden gems of original floorboards or tiles under their carpets that can be restored to bring out their natural beauty with relatively little cost or difficulty. Sanding down floorboards and varnishing them takes perhaps a couple of days if you hire an industrial sander (but make sure you wear a suitable mask to protect your lungs and make sure there are no gaps around your door so that the dust doesn’t make its way round your entire house).

Buffing up and re-grouting original tiles and replacing any cracked ones will take a day or two (if you can’t find a similar enough tile to replace a cracked one, use one of the original ones from around the edge of the room, perhaps where a settee will ultimately sit, to replace it and fit another tile to replace the one that you won’t see).

You can always fit a new wooden floor (avoid vinyl or laminate in high-use areas – they don’t last long and are a false economy) or new tiles. Or you can pour on some concrete or floor-filler to create a flat surface and then paint it however you want: all one shade, or patterns, stripes and so on. You need to be sure of your own artistic skills if you’re going for this option and you need a good eye for colour, too. If you’re opting for a painted floor, you’ll need to add a rug to soften the room and make it warmer if that particular room requires it.

There is one problem with creating a new floor, though – once it’s finished, you’ll look at the rest of your room and realise that the walls need painting and your furniture needs replacing too…