Monthly Archives: August 2015

70% of Stolen Cars Occurred Using The Owners’ Keys

Stolen CarCar owners often hide the keys to their vehicle at home for added protection. If the same is true for you, then it might be a good idea to remove bedside tables and kitchen counters from your list of hiding spots. A study by Edith Cowan University revealed car thefts in Western Australia rose by 50%, with 70% of cars stolen using the owners’ keys.

Contributing Factors

Researchers note that poor choice of hiding place of keys is the main cause of car theft. In a survey of 429 people, researchers found kitchen benches, cupboards or drawers and handbags are the most common ‘hiding spots’, all of which are places thieves can access easily. Companies like AdvancedLockandKey.com.au usually advise car owners to put car keys in uncommon hiding places with a lock and key in such cases.

The study suggests that neglect is another contributing factor, citing that breaking into parked cars accounted for 57% of total cases. About a third of the respondents admitted they don’t lock their cars when they’re at home, adding to the numbers further.

Experts note that some thieves hack cars to access the keys. They use amplifiers to increase the signal coverage of proximity keys. This allows them to open the car from a distance without actually holding the key.

Addressing the problem

Given the prevalence of car theft, researchers emphasise the importance of hiding keys in secure locations. They strongly suggest avoiding kitchen benches and other hiding places of car keys that thieves already know. Some security experts note that keeping car keys in the freezer may help protect cars from digitally inclined thieves.

Researchers also discouraged the practice of keeping keys close since thieves might do more than steal the car. There were some cases where car owners experienced assaults and more loss in property because they held on to their keys.

Stealing cars is always a possibility espite advances in auto security technology. Don’t rely on security devices that can easily be hacked. Follow the old yet tried and proven rule in protection of property – never hide your valuables in the obvious places, and not without a lock and key.

 

Are You Updated? Home Design Trends to Keep in Check

Home Design Trends in QueenslandBuilding your own home from the ground up instead of buying an already furnished one has many benefits. You have full control on how it will look like and how much area a certain room will occupy. It pays to think of your needs, preferences and lifestyle when it comes to your new home design, though. The best way to go about this is to keep up with the latest trends.

Here are some trends that you may want to follow when you start building your home:

Working with Experts

You need experts to build your new home. Choose from trusted building companies in Queensland and hire the one that can manage your home design and construction. The trend today is hiring a company that knows how to focus on your lifestyle needs, while giving you cost-efficient options.

Go for Energy-Efficiency

More and more people are going green and using energy-efficient materials for their homes. This includes green windows, engineered woods, low-flow faucets and dual-flush toilets. The benefits of doing this are improved airflow and lower energy costs.

Make the Kitchen Family-Friendly

Trends these days lean on kitchens that encourage families to dine together. This means providing ample room for everyone to sit and enjoy delicious meals. Double sinks and recessed lighting are trending, while walk-in pantries and hot water dispensers are out.

Go for the Right Texture

Texture is a big thing these days because it adds personality to your rooms. Designers tend to go for textured surfaces rather than smooth and high-gloss ones. Stones and engineered woods that imitate raw materials can be a good option, as well. This raw and natural feel adds true beauty to the property.

Install Multiple Water Features

The bathroom also features new trends when it comes to upgrades. Homeowners and designers are now installing multiple sources of water in every bathroom. There’s even an increase in people who are requesting for touchscreen controls for water temperature and flow.

Who says you have to stick to the norm when it comes to home designs? After all, there is nothing wrong with being different. If anything, this only makes your home stand out more.

Adultery, Domestic Violence, and Divorce: What You Need to Know

DivorceTwo of the strongest grounds to use in a divorce case are adultery and domestic violence. In a fault-based divorce, the courts look into the details of the claim to see if it’s possible to save the harmony in the relationship and the marriage itself.

However, adultery and domestic violence are two of the most telling cases that show irreconcilable differences between the couple.  Hence, it is important to build a solid case to gain a favorable decision. Learn the concepts behind these two grounds to strengthen your case.

Adultery and Bigamy

Adultery is based on the failure of a spouse to comply with his or her marital obligation to be faithful. When a married man or woman engages in illicit relations with another, may it be a member of the opposite or the same sex, he or she is committing adultery.

Bigamy, on the other hand, means a spouse marries a second time, despite the existence of a first marriage. In adultery, cohabitation isn’t necessary. It’s enough that the guilty parties have engaged in extramarital relations.

Domestic Violence and Marital Harmony

Domestic violence removes the harmony that marriages seek to preserve. It is an act of reneging in one’s marital obligation to care for his or her spouse. Medical records and witness accounts can act as sufficient pieces of evidence to help build a case with the help of a divorce lawyer. Orem residents should contact an attorney when they are considering divorce.

Divorce can be a long and tedious process. It will require the exhibition of pieces of evidence that will show where the fault lies. Remember to hire an experienced divorce lawyer to get the needed guidance.

Get to Know the Different Types of Counseling and Psychotherapy

CounselingCounseling is a general term that encompasses many options for addressing different kinds of psychological distress. This is a process which involves the assistance of an expert in an individual situation to a needy person.

Counseling refers to the relationship between two persons, in which one of them attempts to assist the other in fixing themselves to attain a particular form of happiness, adjusting to a life situation, or self-actualization.

There are various types of counseling that help people overcome their problems.

Marriage Counseling

It is just normal in a healthy marriage to experience conflicts. Compass Family Counseling cites that if both parties do not have the means to resolve these conflicts, the marriage will be in danger; this is where marriage counseling comes in. This aims to help individuals express their needs properly, make compromises, and establish boundaries to stay together.

Substance Abuse Counseling

Substance abuse is a serious problem not only in families but also in our society. This destroys lives and families, and takes time to completely heal. People who abuse alcohol or drugs need a special type of counseling.

Substance abuse counseling requires skilled and trained professionals to understand the workings and pathology of addiction and help patients learn how to cope and recover from their addiction.

Individual or Personal Counseling

Individual or personal counseling helps people identify the most effective ways to personally achieve their desired goals for certain stages in life, as well as provide the necessary tools to handle the difficult circumstances that may arise along the way.

This type of counseling uses a direct, personal approach that focuses on increasing the individual’s self-awareness, understanding, and ability to adapt.

It is true that it is difficult to maintain your psychological well-being on your own; people need help when trouble rears its ugly head. This is when the role of counseling professionals becomes essential to help individuals who are struggling in a variety of areas.

“Eye Candy”: The Trick to Picking Out The Perfect Frames

Eye GlassesRemember when you were a kid and wanted to try wearing glasses? If you are like the other kids, you probably even went as far as faking bad vision during the school eye exam. Then, you got a little older and actually needed a pair. Suddenly glasses were not cool anymore, and having them was like wearing some sort of social-life-destroying, crush-repelling accessory.

You needed contacts. It was contacts or nothing.

Contacts, however, reduce the amount of oxygen reaching your eye, and can lead to dry eye syndrome. Glasses are important regardless of your argument against it.

The trick is to simply find the right pair of glasses. Here is a quick guide:

Proportion

Your frames should be in proportion with the rest of your face. Make sure your glasses are not too small, as this can make your face bigger; do not go for a pair that is too big as well, as this can cover everything and drown your best features in the background.

Take note, however, that what looks good as a sunglass will not necessarily look good as an optical one. Fraser Street Optometrists recommend working with eye professionals for the best advice.

Contrast

The shape of the frames should contrast the shape of your face. If you have angular features, soften those edges by choosing round frames. If you have round features, choose more angular glasses. If you have a heart-shaped face, go for an aviator or rimless-styled glasses. Ovals and rounded rectangles, on the other hand, are perfect for those with square-shaped faces.

Colour

Choose eyewear that compliments your best features. For instance, if you have blue eyes, choose a blue frame. Black is also good for outlining and highlighting your eyes. Glasses that contrast your hair colour and skin tone will stand out as well.

It is really up to you on how much of a statement you want your glasses to make.

Now that you are equipped with the know-how, go out there and buy yourself a good pair—you will be surprised at how glasses can actually look cool on you.

Live Strong, Work Strong: Fitness as a Profession

TrainerNot a lot of people pay attention to human kinetics, what with the advent of different sciences and technologies. Nonetheless, physical fitness is a huge concept that you can make a living out of it. If you fancy yourself as an athletic individual, why not make fitness your life?

Here are three career options you can take with human kinetics as your chosen field:

Sports

Almost everyone loves to engage in sports activities. Some might even say this is more than just a pastime. The great thing about this is you can find work in sports. Whether you want to play football, rugby or basketball, sports can provide a career for the gifted athletes. With the right credentials, you can even work as a coach for a team. Either way, this makes work your play.

Fitness Instructor

If you love to stay fit and want to share the same fitness goals, why not live it and make work out of it? With today’s fitness trends, many people flock to the gym. In turn, gyms and fitness centres need more instructors to accommodate their clients. To get started on this career path, sign up for online personal trainer courses from Australia’s fitness education centres. You can get cert III or IV qualifications upon completion of the course.

Physical Therapist

Some people become victims of accidents, which can leave them disabled. While recuperating, these people will need all the help they can get. This is where physical therapists come in. Physical therapists assist in the recovery of injured patients, while helping them maintain a healthy lifestyle. In this fitness career path, you can help people move on and have a second chance at being healthy and strong again.

Fitness is not just a hobby. For the real athletes, it is a way of life. If staying fit is part of your life goals, you might want to give these career options a shot.

Why Your Home Equity Matters When Refinancing your Mortgage

Home EquityThe number of homeowners considering refinancing their home loan in Utah is on the rise. When planning to refinance your existing mortgage, it is important to determine the amount of home equity that you have.

Home Equity

Simply put, your home equity is the difference between the remaining balance of your existing mortgage and your home’s current market value. Say, your home has a market value of $250,000 and the remaining balance on your mortgage is $150,000, your home equity in this case will be $100,000 or 40% of your home’s market value.

To apply for a refinance mortgage, Ogden lenders note that that you should have a significant amount of home equity to be approved for refinancing. The exact amount, however, may depend on your existing mortgage type and the type of mortgage you want for refinancing. Keep in mind that the requirements will be different from one lender to another.

Cash-Out Refinance

You may need more than 10% of your home equity if you want to do a cash-out refinance. This is to ensure your refinance application won’t exceed 90 to 95% of your LTV or loan-to-value ratio (your home’s market value). In addition, you may still have some leftover equity for converting to cash.

For instance, you have 40% home equity — $250,000 / $100,000 — and that your lender will agree to approve your refinance mortgage only if you have an LTV ratio of 80%. The remaining 20% or $50,000 in your home equity can be used for converting to cash with a cash-out refinance.

Rate and Term Refinance

On the other hand, if you’re looking to modify the terms on your existing mortgage balance, such as switching from an ARM to a fixed-rate loan, or lengthening your loan’s term from 30 to 40 years, you will need a minimum of 5% to 10% home equity. While some of these loans offer 100% of your home’s market value, they can be costly and more difficult to qualify for.

All things being equal, remember that your home equity is directly affected by the market conditions in the state or county you live in. And similar to mortgage rates, these can considerably vary. Nonetheless, lenders will usually require a professional home appraisal to determine your home’s market value and your home equity.

Buying a Home? Here’s What You Need to Consider

Buying a HomeOwning a home in Brisbane has always been your dream, and you are finally ready to make that move. With enough savings to make a purchase, all you need is to find that perfect property.

Before locking deals with any real estate agent, consider the following:

Make Sure the House Satisfies Your Needs

A house can be very attractive and modern in design, but make sure it fits your needs. Before going on a house hunt, decide what your needs and requirements are. Do you want a house in a suburban area or near the city? What specific design of the house do you want? What features are you looking for in a house?

If you want a suburban house, there is no point visiting any property located in the city. Do not be too excited to set foot in a new home that you fail to check the features and condition of the house. Find out about the repairs your new home might require.

Ensure the House is Free of Legal Issues

Before starting on any payment transaction, make sure there are no problems involving the property, such as the transfer of ownership and other legal issues. Consult property experts such as Urban Property Agents to learn more about the legal side of property buying.

Always Stay Within Your Budget

Decide on the price range of the house you intend to own and make sure you stay on that budget with reasonable allowance. When buying a home, do not go overboard once you found a property that catches your interest. It would be more prudent to find that ideal house at the price below your budget.

Seek Assistance from Professionals in the Local Area

For a smooth house hunting, seek the assistance of professionals focusing on property management in Brisbane. They can help in locating the best property in your preferred area and processing all requirements related to the purchase.

A successful property purchase needs thorough planning. Keep these tips in mind and find the home you love.

One-Bedroom Apartments: Just Enough Space for Single Living

roomIn the search for the ideal home, having enough space is your top priority. Your home should not only be a comfortable place to live in, it should also be spacious enough for you to move freely about and store your things.

This is something that’s easier said than done, especially in Australia’s congested metropolitan areas and suburbs. One-bedroom apartments may seem small, but they are ideal for single living and are surprisingly spacious and functional.

Maximising space

PointCorp notes that many one-bedroom apartments in Brisbane offer enough storage space for young professionals and students. They provide sufficient storage area where you can conveniently fit anything such as your clothes, gadgets and accessories in one place.

Since the floor space is smaller, cleaning is less tedious and time-consuming. The limited surface area also means there’s less furniture, appliances and other household items to clean, and the most you’ll probably do is just some sweeping or mopping once a week.

Another benefit of small space living is that the furniture you’ll be purchasing tend to be more affordable since they are smaller. You’ll also be less inclined to go shopping, and the things you do spend on will mostly be essentials.

Privacy

Privacy is perhaps the greatest benefit you’ll get if you live in a one-bedroom apartment, which is great if you need to focus on studying or have some work that you still need to do. The dividing barriers between the units are reinforced and usually soundproof, so even if your neighbours throw a party across the hall, you’ll rarely be disturbed.

Although one-bedroom apartments have smaller living spaces, it is more than enough if you’re fresh out of university or prefer the single life. They are also good investments if you’re planning to move to a larger residence as there is no shortage in demand for them in the property market.

Out of Ideas? Simple Strategies To Solve Your Business’s Challenges

corporate hackathon in Silicon valleyImagine that you’re about to expand your business through a merger with another company. Unfortunately, staffing and systems integration problems came up a few weeks before the merger goes into effect. You end up cancelling the merger since you’re out of ideas on how to handle the issues.

There will always be challenges whether you’re starting or expanding your company. You sometimes need fresh ideas from other people to overcome those problems. Here are ways to solve tough business challenges if you run out of ideas:

Innovation Programs

The problem with running a company for too long is that you’ll sometimes be blind to its weaknesses.  You’ll have a hard time solving the problems when they come up. You and your employees won’t always have the answers to your company’s problems.

Inputs from outside sources are sometimes necessary to come up with new ideas to solve your business challenges. Conduct or visit corporate hackathons in Silicon Valley. You’ll not only get creative solutions for your business but also insights from people with the same challenges. Seeing potential recruits is also a bonus.

Management consulting

There are no standard, hard and fast rules to solving business problems. It requires extensive knowledge and experience in business management troubleshooting practices to solve them. Business consultants are specialists when it comes to business management problems.

These people specialize in identifying problems in a specific market, and implementing the solutions. Hiring them will give you peace of mind since they’ll perform the solutions on your behalf.

Employee feedback

Nobody knows a business’s inner workings better than people who handle the job. So if you have problems at work, your employees are the ones you should approach first.

Get your employees’ feedback. Conduct brainstorming sessions at work. Host business process improvement programs to boost their participation and imagination.

More challenges come up as you grow your company. You can’t solve all these challenges alone. A collaboration of ideas with employees, business consultants and other people is essential to overcome the challenges and achieve your business’s ends.