Author Archives: LocalReporting

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Beware of These Tiny Villains

Termites are incredibly fascinating creatures. They are a critical part of our ecology, breaking down materials into nutrients for our soil. However, these critters, despite their tiny size, can cause enormous damage to your home. These pests can crawl through all different types of materials, undetected. They can silently chew through walls, flooring, and wood. Not only can they eat surfaces and exteriors of your home, they can also destroy the structure of your home, putting your safety and hygiene at risk. The severe damage caused by their invasion can result in the need to pay for costly repairs.

Selective Focus Photography of Brown Surface

There are different types of termites, each with different patterns and habitats.

Drywood termites form colonies through wood and small holes. Infestation can be prevented by storing firewood and scraps outside and away from the home.

Subterranean termites build “mud tubes” to crawl through. Infestation can be prevented by regularly clearing out water so that it does not gather at the foundation of the house. Be sure to manage humidity levels with properly ventilated attics and basements.

Dampwood termites tend to inhabit stumps, old trees, and fences. To avoid infestation, avoid moisture accumulation. Repair faucets, water pipes, and air conditioning units as soon as you notice any leakage.

You can follow the National Pest Management Association (NPMA) for its bi-annual Bug Barometer®, a seasonal forecast of the pest pressure and activity. They analyze weather and behavioural patterns to determine long-term predictions for each region of the United States. In spring 2019, NPMA found there to be excessive moisture across the country, warning homeowners to expect early pest activity.

Termites can become every homeowner’s greatest nightmare, wet or dry. You can never exclude any environment from the possibility of a home invasion.

Termites cause more than $5 billion annually in property damage. These costs aren’t covered by insurance for homeowners. You can try to look out for termite infestation by keeping an eye out for what appears to be water damage or maze-like patterns. The smell will be similar to mold or mildew. However, without regular inspection, termites are usually not noticeable until the infestation has gotten severe. Termite inspections can proactively save you thousands of dollars in repairing damage.

If you suspect your home has been infested, it is highly recommended that you contact a termite exterminator immediately. A professional exterminator will first conduct an inspection to see how much of your home has been affected.

We discovered Natural Science Exterminating, a termite extermination company based in Anaheim, servicing Orange County, Los Angeles, and Riverside for over 25 years. They offer a 4 step process for termite control, including inspection, treatment, repair, and prevention.

The company will leave tent fumigation as the last resort for severe infestations. They specialize in organic termite control. If your property has been damaged with dry rot, the company can also provide in-house carpentry repair. They are licensed and bonded, and guarantee all of the work they perform.

Natural Science Exterminating specializes in environmentally conscious termite extermination. You can give them a call to receive a free consultation.

Natural Science Exterminating
11642 Knott Ave, Garden Grove, CA 92841, United States


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How To Plan Your Home Renovation

In Improving America’s Housing 2019, Harvard reports the home remodelling market to be worth $450 billion.

Anyone who has ever been through a home remodelling project knows that it always ends up taking longer and costing more than expected. We gathered our top tips for planning your renovation that you can be as prepared as possible.

Person Holding Pencil
  1. Choose a contractor with excellent communication – Communication should be your most important decision factor when choosing a contractor. Imagine you taking a day off work to welcome your new contractor. You agree to that they will arrive at your home at 10:00am that day. It’s 10:30am and they haven’t appeared. They haven’t called or texted you. You have tried calling multiple times, and there is no answer, and now an hour has passed. Yikes!
  2. Focus on value rather than cost – Home remodelling expenditures appear to be increasing more than ever before. This is likely due to the fact that home owners are willing to invest in the best service and experience they can find. You want to find someone who is punctual, skilled, experienced, and hard-working. These qualities will save you from unnecessary headaches and should be more important to you than getting the cheapest quote.
  3. Read reviews on contractors – Not all contractors come equal. Be sure to review their portfolio and reviews so that you can choose someone with a reputation for quality, excellence, and care. Melissa Alesi found herself in a nightmare of a home renovation after the contractor had not only failed to meet her requirements, but also left her with a mess to clean up. Had she chosen someone with a proven track record rather than her first Google Search, she could have found someone who would have delivered a beautiful end result, right from the start.
  4. Expect there to be dust – If you are allergic, be sure to stock up on your medicine and dust masks! It will be virtually impossible to clean up while the renovation is in progress. You will have to bear with a lot of dust, but it will be worth it in the end!
  5. Store everything in sealed boxes and bags – This will protect your belongings from dust and accidental damages. You also want to give your contractor a clean and tidy workspace so that they can work as efficiently and effectively as possible. Contracting requires physical labour and time, which will go directly to your invoice. Clear out the clutter and remove anything that can slow down your renovation.
  6. Communicate with your contractor – This ties back to the first point, as communication must take place in both directions. You cannot expect your contractor to know exactly what you want unless you have explained it to them in detail, and shown photos or examples, if possible. As much detail as possible will give your contractor a better understanding of exactly how you want your home to end up.

If you are looking for a reputable and experienced home contractor, we highly recommend Inspired Remodels.

Inspired Remodels
21098 Bake Pkwy
Ste 100
Lake Forest, CA 92630


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Your New Party Room

La Jolla is a beautiful seaside area in California known for its rugged coastline. The city is home to beautiful beachside boutiques, restaurants, and homes. Residents of the city take pride in their home improvement and exterior landscaping.

Your backyard is a perfect place to create an inviting space that feels like a natural extension of your interior common area. A patio is a great way to give your home more versatility and comfort with an outdoor living room. Taking your party outside elevates the mood and gives your guests a whole new experience.

There are fantastic people with professional landscaping expertise in La Jolla. If you’re thinking about a project, you will find plenty of ideas and inspiration by searching online. Remember that this will be an investment in time and energy, so make sure you know what you want today, as well as in five or ten years from today.

Beautiful and innovative projects are all over town. We wanted to showcase one of them, from the home of local resident Lily Grace. “Our backyard is where the magic happens. We have guests over almost every weekend, so our backyard is more of an outdoor dining room for entertaining and celebrating special moments,” says Grace.

White Plates on Table

“We wanted the style of space to feel modern yet comfortable, so we chose neutral tile tones to contrast the greenery of the rest of it. The tile is easy to clean and gives us a great foundation for a dining table and lots of seating.”

Grace notes that hiring a professional landscaper was the best decision she made when it came to improving her backyard. “We considered doing it ourselves, however we realized that we would rather hire an expert to save us time and money, who would install everything correctly so that we wouldn’t have any hassle down the road. It’s been a few years since we had everything installed and it looks as beautiful as it did when it was first finished!”

With DIY becoming more popular than ever, you may consider taking on home improvement yourself. However, a landscaping project requires a considerable amount of time and energy, and doing it for the first time on your own may not deliver the spectacular results you are hoping for.

“We couldn’t be happier with the end result. We are always getting compliments from our guests about how much they love our backyard. We definitely have not regretted the investment.”

You want to think of the exterior to be an extension of your home’s interior style. Perhaps you have a classic look and feel between the furnishings and colour scheme of your living room. You can take those same elements outdoors to create a more fluid transition between the inside and outside. If you have a vision, be sure to find a landscaper who will take the time to understand it and show you examples of what you are describing. Your backyard might just be the next go-to weekend destination for your friends and family. Your dream backyard can become a reality by having the right landscape architect or designer based La Jolla.

Torrey Pines Landscape Company
5560 Eastgate Mall, San Diego, CA 92121, United States


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Choose Happiness Over Heartbreak

Category : Divorce

The memoir “Eat, Pray, Love” by Elizabeth Gilbert begins as the author realizes that she is unhappy in her seemingly perfect life. She finds that choosing happiness would mean making an extremely difficult decision, which is to leave her husband and the life they have created together. She begins to experience heartbreak and the disillusion of a marriage and a life she no longer wants to lead

“The only thing more unthinkable than leaving was staying; the only thing more impossible than staying was leaving. I didn’t want to destroy anything or anybody. I just wanted to slip quietly out the back door, without causing any fuss or consequences, and then not stop running until I reached Greenland.” 

Elizabeth Gilbert, Eat, Pray, Love

As it becomes clear that the author and her husband want to separately lead very different lives, the story reveals the painful process of walking away from a relationship, despite it being in search of a more fulfilling life. Gilbert chronicles her lengthy difficult divorce and how it causes immense grief, loneliness, and depression. Her ex-husband is angry at what feels like betrayal to him, and expresses his angst through the entire process.

As we learn throughout the book, change is inevitable, and we are not in control of everything that happens in life. Even when we achieve happiness and success at some point in our lives, we may later find that we have changed and that what we’ve always known is no longer what is best for us. Nothing is certain when it comes to our careers, health, and relationships.

Drastic life changes are often regarded as a “leap of faith”; a risk that requires a tremendous amount of courage to act on. However, as Gilbert shows us, taking control of one’s destiny is merely a willingness to experience all parts of life’s journey. It takes willingness to have difficult conversations with your life partner, someone you’ve devoted yourself entirely to. It takes willingness to endure their backlash, shock, and anger. It takes willingness to be patient throughout the process. It takes willingness to accept the imperfections of the journey. The key takeaway of this chapter in Gilbert’s story is to illustrate that real life is not a Disney fairytale or a glamorous Hollywood movie – life has incredibly painful moments that we must all endure and challenges we must all learn to face.

Despite criticisms of her story being sensationalized and somewhat lacking in terms of fully exploring the emotional toll divorce takes on women in our society today, Gilbert has become a modern cultural source of inspiration for people to choose happiness after a difficult life transition. Women around the world have derived meaning from her story as a sign of strength and assurance that it is never too late or too difficult to embark on a self-discovery journey alone. Gilbert’s vulnerability and frankness offers refreshing honesty on the topic of heartbreak, divorce, and life after the fact.

Gilbert proves is that divorce is not merely an ending of a relationship; it is an important choice between two people that allows for beautiful new beginnings.

If you are considering filing for divorce, it is important that you consult with an experienced family attorney who will represent you with genuine care and professionalism. Divorce can be a very difficult moment in time, but the right legal representation will take care of you and make the entire process more efficient.

Shuff Law Firm exclusively practices family law and may be of service to those in need of divorce representation. Find them at:

Shuff Law Firm
2107 N Broadway, Santa Ana, CA 92706, USA
(714) 834-0175