Category: Advice

Essentials I Think You’ll Need for Life Out in the Sticks

Trust me; life out in the sticks can be brutal if you’ve come from city life. The transition from townhouse to country house is one it took me a while to adjust to. There is a lot that you might take for granted when you move out to the countryside. And this can land you in metaphorical hot water at a later date.

So, here is a list of some of the essentials I think you’ll need when you’re living out in the sticks. Many of these will seem obvious, but trust me, they are very important. These are vital to making your life in the country smoother and more enjoyable. Make sure you prioritise these things to ease the transition.

An SUV

Whatever you do, your first task has got to be getting an SUV. I don’t care how much you like your thrifty little city hatchback! You’re in the country now, and you need the right car. The fact of the matter is that little hatchbacks, and even some sedans, are just not cut out for country living. So, you need to make sure you have a car that’s basically a monster on wheels! You’re going to need to negotiate difficult terrain and adverse weather conditions a lot now. And you’ll probably have to do your fair share of pulling. So make sure you have a large, powerful vehicle like a Range Rover to do it with.

Automatic Gates

Being out in the sticks is great for picturesque views, and peace and quiet. But it can be a nightmare for practical things. For instance, you might have a long driveway. It’s going to be a pain running down to open the gate every time you want to get out. So, nip this problem in the bud by going for automated gates instead. This way you won’t even have to leave your vehicle to get out of the property. In the bleak mid-winter when you have to leave the house at 6 am in the pitch black you can just open the gate with the click of a button.

Phone Line

Something that is an absolute essential when you live in rural areas is a phone line. Forget a mobile phone. Sure, you’re going to have one; we all do these days. But, when you’re in the country you’re going to encounter reception issues. There’s no way around it, unfortunately. It’s just one of the absolutes of living in the back of beyond. So, that’s why it’s essential to have a working phone line. Then you can stay connected and keep in touch with people. You needn’t worry about reception problems with a landline phone.

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Your transition to country life will no doubt be a slow one. And you will probably miss a lot of the creature comforts you were used to having at home. But trust me, eventually you’ll grow to love it. Moving out here was the best decision we made. And if you can keep these essentials in mind you’ll grow to love it even quicker!

 

Brilliant Tips That Will Prevent Damage To Your Rural Home

Moving to the countryside is one of the best choices you can make. You get the fresh air, the beautiful scenery and the space that you cannot find in a big city or town. Still, moving to a rural area doesn’t mean that you won’t encounter any problems in the process. From the initial moving period right into the future, there are always annoying snags.

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Not only are they annoying, but they are also incredibly dangerous. Some factors that you encounter in your rural home can cause lots of damages. To make sure they don’t stop you from living the dream, here is how to prevent your property from damage.

Buy The Right One

The first thing you can do is buy a property that negates any damage. On the face of it, that sounds like something that is impossible to quantify. However, a few simple observations will give you a better idea. For example, is the property on a slope? The experts at floodblockbarrier.com will tell you that a property on a slope is less likely to be damaged by a flood. The water simply flows down the slope away from your home. If the property is at the bottom of the slope, however, you are asking for trouble.

Fortify The Exterior

Weather conditions in the countryside are usually more severe than in built-up areas. For one thing, there are no buildings to block any of the weather. As a result, your home gets the short end of the stick and gets a battering, too! There is too much to can do to stop the weather, but you can negate its effects. Galvanising any metal on the outside of your home will prevent it from rusting and eroding. While, painting the brickwork acts as a cover. And, that stops the damp from getting into the foundations.

Cover The Gaps

Take a good look at the outside of your home. Does it look secure? All homes look like they cover all the bases. But, a good inspection often uncovers potential weak areas. Properties tend to have small gaps that allow external elements inside. Not only can the weather get in and cause damage, like mould, so can the wildlife. Mice or rats will wreak havoc, and they are difficult to get rid of once they have nested.

Is Anyone Home?

It is not just the elements that will do damage. Your home might also be a target for burglars and thieves due to its location. Out in the countryside, there are fewer people to catch criminals at work. So, if a burglar comes to your home, and it looks empty, they will more than likely try their luck. By simply making it look as if someone is home all the time, leaving lights on etc., it will reduce the chance of a break in.

Alternatively, you could install anti-theft systems. Alarms are the obvious choice, and every home should have one regardless. More and more homeowners are also going with CCTV camera, too.

 

Check Out These Projects We Have on the Go Right Now

As we’ve recently moved, we still have a lot of projects that need working on. There are some that have been on hold for months and others that we haven’t even thought about yet. Here is a list of the main ones we currently have on the go.

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Unblocking Drains and Gutters

I mean, let’s be honest, these are the kinds of maintenance jobs you should be doing anyway. The drains and gutters need a lot of care and attention. It’s difficult to keep an eye on them all the time, but we try to as often as we can. When the weather is bad, it’s essential to check them regularly. The last thing anyone wants is for their drains and gutters to get blocked. This can lead to all sorts of problems such as flooding and burst pipes. We make sure one of us checks them out each week and gets rid of all the leaves and debris.

Clean the BBQ

Okay, so the summer might be on the way out, but there’s still plenty of barbecuing opportunities. We like to have cook outs quite a bit, and as such the barbecue needs cleaning a lot. But we have one of those huge grill types. So it requires quite a bit of work to sort out and get clean. At the moment, we are in the process of revamping it. We’re going to do a deep clean of every part of the BBQ. Then we’re thinking about repainting it too. The idea is to end up with something that looks almost as good as new in time for the next barbecue we host.

Build Garden Bench

We love our garden, and we enjoy spending time there when the weather is nice. It’s always good to have some extra seating space. So we’re in the process of building a garden bench at the moment. We’re using a combination of industrial adhesives and regular tools to get the best possible construction. We’re having a mini dispute about the colour at the moment, but I’m sure that will work itself out!

Rearrange the Bedroom

Not all of our projects are taking place outside though! We’re also in the process of rearranging the bedroom. This is something we’ve wanted to do ever since moving, but we’ve only just got around to it now. The aim is to try to generate a little bit more space so the room can be even more relaxing and functional. This is a weekend job, and we should be able to get it all done in one sitting.

Store Stuff in the Loft

Because we’ve recently moved, we still have quite a bit of stuff to unpack. I know that we’re not going to have room for everything in the house. So this means we’ll need to store some stuff up in the loft. And this is a project all of its own. We’re going to need to go through everything we still haven’t unpacked and decide what can go up in the loft. This will no doubt be the cause of some bickering! But I’m sure we will come to an arrangement that benefits everybody!

It seems like the list of jobs is never ending when you’re a homeowner. This is just a few of the priority projects we have on the go right now. And it seems whenever we get one thing done something else crops up. For now, we’re going to focus on these elements to try to get the property a little more organised. Wish us luck!

 

Moving Out Of The City? Read This

So, you have finally decided to escape the urban nightmare and retreat to the simpler life, have you? Well then, we have good news because once you get used to it, you’re going to love it. It will take a little while to grow accustomed to living rurally, particularly if you are still working in the city. But once you get the hang of it you will find there is nowhere else you would rather be. However first, you need to find a great country home.

Finding The Place

If you haven’t found your perfect home in the countryside yet, now is the perfect time to start looking. The housing market is healthy and there are plenty of sites you can browse to find the right place for you. Real Hot Property is particularly great because their search system is so easy to use. They also list all the best deals, so you are sure to find a real bargain on a country home.

Once you find the right place for you, don’t waste time. Check it out and if you still love it, put down an offer. In no time at all, you will own your private country haven. Then, you just need to get used to living outside of the city.

Commuting

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If you are still working in the city, you’re in for a real treat, the morning commute. A lot of people hate this part of living in the country but it doesn’t have to be as bad as most people make it. First, the good thing about living outside the city is that there are always country roads tucked away you can use to get their faster. Second, you’ll most likely be travelling past some beautiful scenery on the way to work so why not enjoy it? And finally, there is really nothing you can do about traffic so there is no point getting worked up about it. Relax, put on some tunes and feel assured that you’ll get to work as soon as you can. If you are a little late, just leave earlier the next morning.

Isolation

Another hard part of living outside the city is that you are isolated from the rest of the world. We have all seen the films that portray people living in country towns as crazy and weird. Our personal favourite is Funny Farm with Chevy Chase, but that’s not how life is really. You’ll find there is always a next door neighbour willing to have a chat and people around who will help you in your time of need. Unlike living in the city, you will have become a part of a tight-knit community who will look after you.

Peace And Quiet

Finally, once you move from the city to the country the silence will hit you like a brick wall. There will be no traffic, no shouting and no nothing. All you will hear is the sound of birds chirping and a car pulling up as your partner comes in from work. It can be disconcerting at first, but soon you will love the peace and quiet that only living rurally can give you.

 

Fancy The Rural Life? Here’s How You Can Do It

If living the rural life has always been a dream of yours, now could be the time to make it a reality. After all, life in the country could be just the change in pace you are looking for. Adapting to rural living takes a little while, but you can adopt the lifestyle easily. There are few things you may need to do first.

Finding the cash to move out of the city isn’t always easy. Some people sell everything they have to make their dream come true. Others buy rural-based businesses and work hard to keep their country dream alive. Sometimes, all it takes is a few months of frugal living to be able to afford the move.

Moving to a rural location often requires taking on an old property for your home. Doing it up needs to be factored into the costs of your move. Rural villages are often difficult to reach, especially in bad weather. If you need a substantial amount of work, consider how the lorries for the contractors will access your property.

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Image courtesy of Flickr

Of course, you may be buying land to make your rural dream come true. If you use a custom home builder, you can create the property of your dreams. This can even work out cheaper than buying a cottage or old farm house. You won’t have to worry about the ongoing maintenance costs of an aged property. And new buildings are often very environmentally friendly. This could save you a fortune on your energy bills.

For many people moving to the country it means giving up a job, and a career. If you are financially secure, this might not be a problem. Fortunately, many people can work from home. Commuting back to the city might be too difficult or too unpleasant to contemplate. Instead, take advantage of online working. Many rural areas now have access to high-speed internet connections and good mobile phone reception.

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Image courtesy of Flickr

Adopting the rural lifestyle is another challenge when you first arrive in the country. The area is often pitch black at night. There may be no street lights and only a small community of people in the area. Footpaths off the road may be non-existent too. Instead, walking is done in waterproof boots, with a torch! It will be much quieter than you are used to. This can make you hyper aware of every little sound in the night, but you’ll soon get used to it.

You might choose to live off your land a little too. Growing your own fruit and veg is highly rewarding, but physically demanding. Perhaps you fancy keeping a few chickens for fresh eggs? Animals require regular veterinary care and medication to stay healthy. This can be expensive. Keeping your property clean can also be a lot of hard work when things get muddy outside.

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A life in the country can be very rewarding. It may seem more simple than city living and office jobs. But in reality, there is a lot of work to be done to live well. When you’re ready to take on rural life, live it to the max.

 

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