Episode #1954: Creating a DIY Home Theater | Avoiding Christmas Tree Bugs | Wallpaper Renaissance

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TOM: Coast to coast and floorboards to shingles, this is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

TOM: Happy Vacation, everybody. It is the ho-ho-home improvement time of its first year, so you might be thinking about some projects that you still need to get done or ones that you want to plan for the year ahead. Not too early to start thinking about those home progress New Year’s resolvings. If you’ve got one that we can help with, give us a bawl, right now, at 1-888-MONEY-PIT or pole your question to The Money Pit’s Facebook community at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit.

Coming up this hour, festivity entertaining is just getting started, so we’ve got some tips to help you turn a ho-hum space into a residence theater for splendid viewing on a budget.

LESLIE: And are you having a real live Christmas tree this season? Well, you might be surprised to learn that there’s a really good chance that the first host of festivity clients you have might actually be the Christmas-tree bugs that came with it.

Is this a real thing, Tom? This is horrible.

TOM: It is a wholly real thing. There’s over a half-dozen different types of Christmas-tree insects that love to stay on that tree, right through the front entrance of your residence. They’ll still be here.

LESLIE: Oh, my goodness. I feel like I’ve heard really horrible versions of this story before where millions of spiders come slithering out of the tree. And now, when we’re done with our session today of The Money Pit, I’m going to go throw my live tree outside of the house.

But we’ll tell you how to avoid all of those holiday hitchhikers.

TOM: That’s right. And too onward, decorators and residence improvers have re-embraced wallpaper in a brand-new and more modern way, often using it is now time as an accent or a faux finish to quickly and inexpensively change a area. So we’re going to have some tips for preferring modern wallpapers and hiring the right pro to help you get wise done.

LESLIE: And now that it’s cold, are you thinking ahead to when that warm weather returns? We’ve got a great product from QUIKRETE to give away that can help. It’s a rectify of their very popular Walkmaker Forms. And it’s an easy way to build a beautiful cobblestone walkway.

TOM: So, give us a call right now. We are here to help you with your residence improvement projects now or ones you have planned for the year ahead. Give us a call at 1-888-MONEY-PIT, 888 -6 66 -3 974.

Let’s get to it. Leslie, who’s firstly?

LESLIE: Betsy in Delaware, you’ve get The Money Pit. What can we do for you today?

BETSY: In my vault, I have my clean-out thing. And over the years, I’ve noticed that my plumber is around more than anybody else.

TOM: You’ve went him on retainer, huh?

BETSY: Yeah. So, I had a new heating-and-air-conditioning system put in. I queried the guy if he had a plumber. So, “hes had” this guy come over and he said, “You know, that shouldn’t be happening and they – you need somebody with a camera.” So he said, “I don’t do that substance anymore. I’m old, too.” So, he cast individual over and they settled a camera down. And you could see several big chunks of spring chunks in there and they said, “The clay pipe’s in bad shape.”


BETSY: The mansion is 42 years old. I got an estimate on what it’d be to- they were going to bring the clay pipe up to the ground level. And to are going to the tubes, it was going to be- it’s 10 feet down. So, he “ve given me” his estimate. But then, when they came out to do it, they had an excavator who’s from another state, just right over the line, and he had the sonar thing. And he recognized out the tube and it was right next to a beautiful maple tree I have. I want 2 inches- that we planted the same time the house was built.

TOM: Ah, OK. Yeah. OK.

BETSY: So I belief, “OK.” One of my neighbours had told me there’s this substance they spray through. Oh, they likewise articulated the camera all the way through and they were like, “I counted five large-scale buttons of grove- of root.”

TOM: Mm-hmm. Yeah. Yep.

BETSY: So, I understand that when they do the scatter – you know what I’m talking about with the spray and the special material( inaudible )?

TOM: I do. Yep, yep. We’re going to talk about that. OK. Just tell me the rest of the legend. Go ahead.

BETSY: So, I understand that they would have to encountered those things out somehow and then do it. So I’m conceiving I’d like to keep the tree but I’m not so sure that- how long that stuff’s been around, if they really can do that with rid ourselves of those grips and then do it. So I crave your opinion, because I love your show.

TOM: OK. Yep. OK. So here’s the thing. First of all, really to put your mind at ease, any sewer clean that’s worth his or her salt can run a snake down those clay pipes and clean out all of those roots balls. So you do not have to do this whole excavation thing or even pipe-lining time to clear your pipe.

Now, will you have to make love again? Sure. But maybe in a year or two or three. And so, the inexpensive lane to fix this is just to have a sewer-cleaning done. I don’t care how deep the hose is. Their clean-out tools can go 50 feet, 100 hoofs and you’ll be done.

The system that they’re talking to you about doing is called “pipe lining” or “pipe relining.” And mostly, what it is is it’s like- think of it as a long fiberglass sock that’s run through this pipe. And they have a couple of ways of doing it. They pluck it through and then it mostly is- it expands and then cables the inside face of that age-old clay pipe. So, basically, you’re relining the tube with this new fiberglass material.

And this is very helpful in cases where you have sewer pipings that are going into beautiful maple-tree seeds or under porches or around reserves or locates that you don’t want to excavate. It’s not an inexpensive process. So merely restrain that in psyche. It’s going to be more expensive or at least as expensive as tearing all there is to it and changing it. But again, I don’t think you have to do this unless it’s genuinely something you want to do to improve your house, OK?

BETSY: My concern- and this is where I thought you could help me out, extremely. I know it’s not expensive. It’s two different plumbers I talking about here, because the first guy doesn’t do that lining plan. But he did tell me about it.

The tree is higher than my two-story house, so that’s going to be a big expense. But with this fiberglass thing, does the- as the beginnings originate again and again and again, since they were always do, is that going to penetrate that fiberglass?

TOM: No, absolutely not. It comes through the clay pipe because it’s pretty easy to get through a clay hose. It mostly goes right through the seams of the tube, because clay pipes are lay in in parts. And they easily get right through those sections and then they have a fertile space in which to grow.

So , no, if you reline the piping with fiberglass, it’s not going to see – you will no longer get any springs that get in there.

BETSY: Well, that’s good to know. And then, the last question- and you guys are great. Thank you for being patient.

TOM: No worries.

BETSY: The clay pipe is old. It’s like- my house is 42 years old. And so, I didn’t know if that’s deteriorating or- how long they certainly last, because …

TOM: Not at all , not at all. Clay tubes can previous 100 times easy.

BETSY: Alright. Awesome.

TOM: OK? So, here’s what we’ve learned. We’ve learned that you don’t have to tear out the hoses. We’ve learned that they’ve got lots of life left in them. You can exactly snake them. But if you want to preserve that tree and you do want to replace them, I fantasize lining is probably a better alternative, OK?

BETSY: OK. Great. Thank you so much.

TOM: Good luck with that job. Thanks so much for announcing us at 1-888-MONEY-PIT.

LESLIE: You are aria to The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. Give us a call at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

888-MONEY-PIT is presented by HomeAdvisor. You can get instantly matched with top-rated pros for any home project and notebook appointments online for free.

TOM: And still to come , it is not necessary to expend big bucks on your leisure seat. We’re going to tell you how to create your very own home theater on a budget, after this.

Making good homes better, welcome back to The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

TOM: And we want you to pick up the phone and call us, right now, at 1-888-MONEY-PIT presented by HomeAdvisor, the fastest and most easy road to find the liberty pro for any kind of home project, whether it’s a small repair or a major remodel.

LESLIE: That’s right. Pick up the phone and apply us a call anytime. Let us know what you are working on. And we know that the weather outside is frightful but the fervor is so delicious. No , no , no. We know the winter weather is not so great. And maybe a lot of you have already got your mind on springtime and when it starts to get warmer. Well, we like the behavior you guys speculate. So present us a bawl with your residence betterment question.

And we’ve got a great giveaway for those warmer days that we predict are ahead. It’s the QUIKRETE Walkmaker Form. And it really is an easy and economical mode that you can add a beautiful, sturdy concrete walkway or patio to the house. And it’s a do-it-yourself project because it’s a figure that you fill. And there’s a entire cluster of various types of patterns available. And you just determine them over and over and over again until you’ve got the amount that you want to create that walkway or that pathway. So it’s a super-simple do-it-yourself project and it’s a great prize pack that we’ve get up for grabs this hour.

Check them out at QUIKRETE.com.

TOM: Give us a see, right now, with your residence betterment question. That QUIKRETE Walkmaker is going out to one listener proceeded at random. The figure is 1-888-MONEY-PIT. You can also post your question to The Money Pit’s Facebook sheet at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit. Everyone who uprights on our social pages, in the prior week to the show, has only one equal chance at acquire this weekend’s prize.

LESLIE: Alright. Now we’ve get Dan in Louisiana on the line who’s got a question for The Money Pit. What can we help you with?

DAN: On one back of the chamber of representatives, I’m up about a foot-and-a-half. The water pipes had busted. Actually, some raccoons and cats had fallen underneath there, busted the pipeline.

TOM: Oh , no.

DAN: And on that- yeah. And on that side of the house, it had submerge down level with the ground.

Now, I have been gone about four or five days. When I came home, it was like this. What I’m trying to find out is how I can level the home. And I have known …

TOM: You represent get it level again, yeah. I have a question for you, Dan. Did you consider registering specific claims with your homeowners insurance company?

DAN: I haven’t yet. And that’s where I’m- I’ve done construction for a while. I’m 69 now. I’m semi-retired I guess you’d say, so …

TOM: Well, listen, somebody, I think you have a really good claim because this is a plumbing burst. It came as a result of animal infestation like this. This does not constitute like a maintenance edition; this is a single event like this. This kind of single event where you have a burst and it makes damage- in your speciman, potentially severe structural mar- is why you have homeowners insurance. This is nothing that you should have to fix yourself or pay for yourself. So I’m telling you that I think you should contact your homeowners insurance company and/ or contact a public adjuster.

Now, a public adjuster is basically somebody who represents you to your homeowners insurance company. And they work for you to make sure that the claim is properly filed and includes everything. We’re talking about everything from the concrete block to the beds of dye that have to be restored to make this repair.

DAN: Right.

TOM: And when you have as big-hearted a structural …

DAN: Where do I find that public adjuster?

TOM: They’re going to be licensed and they’re going to be – you’re going to have to find them the style we find other professionals. If you have an attorney or somebody that’s in the law business, they may be able to have- give you a recommendation for one or two. You could interview them. But basically, the path they work is on a percentage of the amount claimed. So they might get a few percent of what they collect. But the neat thing about a public adjuster- and one that does a good job- is they’re knows where to find every single thing that has to be restored because of this animal damage.

DAN: Right. OK.

TOM: So I would not at all try to make this on yourself. I surely think you should do it through an adjuster or through your insurance company. You’re going to need their- I mean part of what they’re going to pay for is a structural technologist to review that dimension and figure out how this can be fixed and how this can be leveled so there’s no guesswork here. And it’s also important because eventually, you might want to sell this house. And you want to make sure that anything that miscarried was properly amended. You may end up with a amend that’s in better influence than the house was originally but that’s OK.

DAN: That’s right. Yeah. No, that’s huge. Yeah, I only- I’m just wondering how I would get in touch with a public adjuster. Would that be under government or under …?

TOM: No , no. No, it’s called a “public adjuster” but they’re mostly people that work for the public , not as in- it’s not like a government authority.


TOM: It’s like a private consultant. Yeah, it’s just like hiring an accountant or a solicitor or anybody else. It’s called a “public adjuster.” So, you scour online for public adjusters in your zip code. You could start there. But I would – you know, I would make sure that I take my age and find out what their experience is in your locality and try to find a good one. That’s why it’s kind of helpful if maybe you might know an auditor or an advocate or perhaps someone at the- at your insurance agent’s- not the insurance company but the insurance agent that you bought this from may have some knowledge of that.

DAN: Right.

TOM: I would expend a little time trying to find the freedom professionals.

DAN: OK. Well, that are actually assists. Yeah.


DAN: That really cures big time.

TOM: Yeah. Don’t caused too much time go by, because you want to make sure it’s really clear what happened here, OK? Get right on it.

OK, Dan. Good luck. Let us know what happens.

LESLIE: Well , now that we are in the leisure season, we thought it might be a good time to talk about the ways that you could be able to spruce up your humorou opening. And one project that comes to mind is building a residence theater organisation. Now, that’s one you might think is best left to those with big-hearted funds but not so. All you need is some basic equipment and a sensible motif that works to create a theater environment.

TOM: Right. So, the first step, though, is to kind of assess the space that you have to work with. You need to plan the distances. You need a comfortable length between your screen, your loudspeakers and your room. But remember that a great home theater doesn’t require a monstrous screen and a gazillion loudspeakers. In happening, the ideal viewing distance from the TV is usually about two-and-a-half ages the width of the screen. So , not a great distance.

Now, as far as the paraphernalium croaks, the switch to digital TV signals a few years ago basically has performed flat screens, high-def TVs very affordable. So, watch for the sales. Mass going on right now. Pick up one that works for your cavity. And keep in mind that the built-in talkers on many flat screens today, they may be less satisfying than the Tv you came from. And here’s why: something had to give when they went to those really thin TVs and one of the purposes of what rendered was the speakers. And so that’s why- not to worry but you’re going to have to buy what’s called a “sound bar, ” which is kind of like the speaker bar.

And so on our flat-screen TV, we have a Sony and we have a Sony reverberate forbid. And it time sits right underneath it. It can even- depending on how you can hang it, you can attach it to the bottom of the TV. But that’s where the voice comes out of , not really the Tv speakers itself. Because it obviously sounds very thin when it comes out of the speakers, even though it’s a nice TV. So, you’re going to have to go for some sort of sound system. And I just feel like coming the one that comes from the same manufacturer exactly means everything works together delicately and without any hassles.

LESLIE: Yeah. And that’s always what you want. You demand no besets when you’re sort of setting up your dwelling theater system, because it can be kind of confusing if you’re not key experts at sort of putting that nonsense together. So keep it simple and everything should just sort of work together.

Now, when it comes to furniture, you don’t have to spend a lot on all of those dwelling theater furnishings or even the room layout, because you’ve probably got most of what you already need to be comfortable and you’ve got some good acoustics. So, “ve been thinking about” upholstered couches and upholstery on chairs. That’s kind of ideal because those constituents are sound-absorbing, so you’re not going to bounce around a good deal of that phone if you have super-smooth floor with no domain carpets or leather furnishings. That genuinely doesn’t help you; that only propels that voice all the countries of. So you want to add in draperies, province carpets, comfy furnishings.

In fact, a person that I work with, Sal, he just showed us a image today that was, I guesstimated, 17 paws of 5 theater reclining chairs.

TOM: Oh, my gosh.

LESLIE: Tom, when I say to you, the chamber- the chairs exited from end to end.

TOM: Wow. Oh, man.

LESLIE: And I was like, “Sal, where did you get this? ” And he told me that he bought it somewhere locally in New Jersey.

TOM: Wow.

LESLIE: But he only devoted 2,300 on it. It’s not the real leather.

TOM: Really?

LESLIE: But my goodness, I was like, “This is a place where you take a nap, “youre watching” a movie.”

TOM: Yeah, looks like it.

LESLIE: So you don’t have to spend a lot, even if you’re in the market for something new.

TOM: Now, the last thing you want to think about is lighting or more importantly, the lack of lighting. It’s important for good dwelling theater viewing.

So, two things. First of all, make sure you have dimmable lamps or illuminating. Easy to do. If you have overhead lighting, make sure the dimmers are incorporated into the swaps. Or if you have just lamp illuminate, you can use extension lines that have dimmers built into them or you could just replace the light-colored button with a dimmer. Some of these are even controllable from your smartphone.

And then, make sure you choose drapes or colors that block sunlight. Because when you buy colors today, you can buy the ones that are translucent or light-blocking. In a office like that, where you want to have a nice view knowledge, you want to make sure you have some that have light-blocking because, heck, you might want to watch a movie in the middle of the day. And you don’t want that sun streaming in and ruining the whole experience.

So, there “theres going”: a few good ways for you to set up your dwelling theater, just in time for the holidays and perhaps all the big games that are remaining until we get up to the large-hearted day of the Super Bowl.

LESLIE: And it has to be big.

TOM: A spate of people buy these TVs right before the Super Bowl. There’s the pre-Super Bowl parties and- but then, they get disheartened because they can’t figure out how to set them up and then everybody’s getting mad at them. So, start early.

LESLIE: You can reach us anytime with your residence mend or residence better question 24 hours a day, 7 days a week right here at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

Hey, it’s the anniversary season. Are you experiencing having a real, live Christmas tree? Well, you might be surprised to learn that there’s a really good chance that your first horde of celebration patrons could be some Christmas-tree glitches that came with the tree, right into your house.

Oh, gosh. I’m going to go and check out my tree immediately when I get home from work today, Tom.

We’re going to tell you guys how to recognise and dispossess those celebration hitchhikers, next.

TOM: Seeing good residences better, this is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

Give us a call at 888 -MONEY-PIT presented by HomeAdvisor. Hey, are you looking for some brand-new flooring, maybe in your kitchen or your bathroom? Well, HomeAdvisor can instant parallel you with the freedom pro for the job for free.

TOM: Call us, right now, at 1-888-666-3974.

LESLIE: Laurie in Nevada is on the line with The Money Pit. Has got a question about a cement settle. What can we do for you?

LAURIE: Yeah, are ya. Yeah, we – you know, I’m helping my mothers out with their very old home. Unfortunately, we’re genuinely low-toned on stores, et cetera, et cetera. We have a sink in our old home; it’s in the basement. And the sag has been one of the washer/ dryer setup there. And it’s an old-fashioned plaster sink that has a crack in it. I was hoping that we could do something to repair it really until they’re ready to move on, because we’re trying to do the downsizing and stuff.

TOM: OK. Is the cranny certainly severe where it’s in two sections or is it just like one crack that- where spray comes through?

LAURIE: Well, it’s kind of like a little forked sound that’s in part of the capsize, on the cornerstone of it, so …

TOM: So, what I would recommend is you use an epoxy on this. There’s a produce announced PC-7. It’s sort of like a putty and it comes in a receptacle that has the A part and the B part and you mingle it together. And so it missions up being, when it’s mixed together, kind of like Play-Doh. And you can press it into sit and get it troweled out and pulped into this crack. And leave it alone for about 24 hours and it will never, ever leak again.

So good luck with that activity and thanks so much for calling us at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

LESLIE: Well, if you’re one of the millions of households, like myself, who enjoy having a real, live Christmas tree to gather around, you might be surprised to learn that there’s a really good chance that your first assortment of festivity patrons have already arrived with that tree.

TOM: That’s right. There are over a half-dozen species of Christmas-tree glitches- that’s right, faults- that may have attached themselves to your live Christmas tree.

LESLIE: Ugh, horrible.

TOM: We’re talking about aphids and adelgids and pine-needle scale and bark beetles and even spiders that bite. That’s right. The spiders can stay on the trees and then get into your residence. And some of them can bite.

LESLIE: Oh, my God. This is a ugly thing, Tom. You ever be informed about- “Oh, the tree’s used to the cold. And there’s eggs on it. And it comes inside and your live is nice and warm.”

TOM: Yeah. And it hatches.

LESLIE: And the egg- oh, my gosh. Stop saying this. Alright. I’m going to stop talking about it, so let’s talk about ways to fix it and made to ensure that your tree is creepy-crawly free.

First of all, check it out before you buy it. When you head out for the Christmas tree, be assured to impart a flashlight with you. Yes, it’s daytime but making a flashlight so that you can look at the case. You can look for any faults, any eggs. Then scan a few cases segments of needles for the defects and eggs, as well. They’re going to think you’re crazy but look at everything because, believes me, you don’t miss these imperfections in your house.

TOM: Now, next, shake it out. Even if you’ve inspected your tree for any hitchhikers, it’s a good suggestion to give your tree a good shake. If you shake the tree, you will encourage any imperfections to jump off or fall off so you don’t delivering them dwelling with you.

Christmas-tree defects are so common that some supermarkets or stands actually have a mechanical Christmas-tree shaker that you can make sure to use before you bind off the tree to your car for the journey home.

And by the way, you might be thinking, “Why not just spray the whole thing down with pesticides? ” Really bad mind. Here’s why: because many insecticides are combustible and when combined with hot holiday illuminates and dried-out needles, it could lead to a dire barrage. So do not use pesticides on that tree.

LESLIE: Oh, my goodness.

And lastly, people, you’ve got to vacuum. The longer you keep your tree indoors, the more likely you are to find dead defects under the tree. And many of the glitches that live on the trees are going to run out of food formerly you raising that tree inside or they’re not will be impossible to cope with the change in humidity.

Now, the best solution is to vacuum up any dead bugs, along with the dried-out needles that are ultimately going to collect on a daily basis under the tree.

TOM: And by the way, if you’re vacuuming early in the season, here’s a little tip: you want to remove and replace the vacuum luggage, mostly, as soon as you’re done. It’s fine if it’s not filled. Be disposed of it. Here’s why: because it may very well be filled with a few live glitches who are still grasping to your vacation atmosphere. So you don’t want to have those live flaws. You don’t want to give them any chance to crawl out of that vacuum and get into another gap in your house.

So, convulses the vacuum crate as soon as you are done. It’s worth changing it out to a brand-new one.

LESLIE: Oh, gosh.

TOM: And that endeds the Scrooge portion of the evidence. How about that? We’re going to turn to some more positive topics now than Christmas-tree bugs, which are the things that are bugging you about your residence progress assignment. So call us right now. We’d love to chat at 1-888-MONEY-PIT. Or post your questions to The Money Pit society at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit.

LESLIE: John in Oakhurst, New Jersey- perhaps Tom’s neighbor- has a question about a water heater. How can we help you today?

JOHN: Yeah, we are only literally had a water- a new sea heater installed today. We started to have some revealing coming out of the top where- I suspect where the input and the production routes go in.

So we had a new one throw in; we knew that was disappointing. But the installer indicated and recommended to us that we flush it formerly a year. And although that sounds like it attains impression to me- I know there’s a lot of people who don’t do it- I only want to get you guys’ opinion on whether that’s really important to do that annually. And if you don’t, what’s the downside of that?

TOM: Well, the reason why you flush a liquid heater is because you get sediment in the bottom of it and the sediment acts as an insulator. It doesn’t genuinely stimulate any harm to the water heater and I think in a situation where you have city water, it’s not as important as when you have well water. It’s sort of an old-time wives’ tale; it’s kind of something that beings ever started doing and not really ever stopped doing or “understand what i m saying” they do it.

There’s nothing really wrong with evening it. The only downside is that you may find that the valve that you open up at the bottom of the water heater formerly a year, one of these years it’s not going to want to shut again and you end up with an expensive mend. So I don’t think it’s critical but I don’t think it will hurt you unless the valve get various kinds of gummed up at some moment and starts to leak.

JOHN: That’s a good suggestion, Tom. I appreciate that.

TOM: You’re very welcome. Thanks so much for calling us at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

LESLIE: You can reach us anytime with your dwelling reparation or your dwelling betterment question 24 hours a day, 7 days a week right here at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

Well, wallpaper has been an element of home decor since the 1930 s. And while popularity has been up and down over the years, it’s now picking up steam as a mode to convert a office or more. We’re going to have some tips-off to help you choose the best wallpaper for your home and help you find a pro to get wise set, in today’s Pro Project presented by HomeAdvisor.com, next.

TOM: Fixing good homes better, this is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

TOM: And we are here to help you with your home progress project. So help yourself firstly: label us now at 888 -MONEY-PIT or post your question to The Money Pit’s Facebook page at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit.

Hey, if the brave says winter but your intellect says outpouring, we like the style you think. And if “youre calling” now with your residence progress question, you might just be the one winner of a great prize. We’ve got the QUIKRETE Walkmaker Forms to give away, an easy and affordable action to add a beautiful, durable concrete walkway or patio to your home.

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It’s available in four wordings. We’ve got one to give away today, though. So pick up the phone and render us a call at 888 -MONEY-PIT. That QUIKRETE Walkmaker going out to one listener proceeded at random. Make that you. Call us now at 1-888-666-3974.

LESLIE: Now we’ve came Ames from Colorado on the line who’s got a question about repairing stucco. How can we help you?

AMES: We have a home that’s eight or nine years old. It has a stucco exterior and it has hits- horizontal cracks.

TOM: Is it a masonry-stucco house or is it a synthetic-stucco house?

AMES: I don’t know.

TOM: So, is it like a concrete various kinds of a finish to it? Does it definitely sounds like concrete or does it feel soft? Like could you put your finger and propagandize it and it would be spongy?

AMES: It’s hard.

TOM: It’s hard-handed, OK. And so you’ve went hits in horizontal stucco, eight-year-old house. You’re going to want to get those hits closed because what happens with stucco, if the sea gets behind it, especially in a freezing environment, it will tend to do two things: number one, it will freeze and as it does, it will push and tighten the stucco; and number two, there’s probably a metal mesh that was applied to the home firstly, that holds that stucco in place, and the moisture will rust that away.

So, the one thing to do is to use an exterior caulk. You can get one that competitors the color of the stucco or you could use a clear, silicone-like caulk and seal those fissures to try to minimize the chance for moisture to get through. And that’s going to be pretty much regular upkeep with a stucco surface.

Does it appear like any clumps are coming off or is it merely the crack that is forming?

AMES: Yeah, it’s simply a crack.

TOM: Yeah, so stay on top of it, Ames, and you’ll really understate it. And it’ll last for a long time.

AMES: Alright. And then it also has rust grimes, probably from that metal lath.

TOM: Yeah. And so, after you get all of the hits closed, if you’re getting- next time you repaint the chamber of representatives, I crave you to prime it first. That will seal in the rusty discolours and prevent them from coming through quite so quickly.


TOM: Good luck with that programme. Thanks so much for calling us at 888 -MONEY-PIT.

Well, wallpaper has been a popular element for residence decor since the 1930 s. And back then, it was pretty much a requirement for any interior-decorating plan. But while it became less popular in the back half of the past century, for the last 20 times painters and homeowners have sort of re-embraced wallpaper because it’s a very nice way to quickly …

LESLIE: Because it’s awesome.

TOM: It’s awesome. See , now you’re one of the painters, right?

LESLIE: I cherish it.( inaudible)

TOM: It’s awesome. It’s a neat direction to alter a office without spending a lot of coin. So, we’ve went tips on how to do simply that, in today’s Pro Project presented by HomeAdvisor.com.

Count the ways you love your wallpaper, Leslie.

LESLIE: It’s fairly, it makes a big difference. It doesn’t have to be very expensive. You can do it yourself. I find a great deal of Zen times in hanging wallpaper.

It really is fantastic, guys. I know there are a lot of naysayers out there who simply hate wallpaper. But I will tell you- and I think it’s due to the popularity of a good deal of British programs that are on a lot of these streaming services- there’s so much wallpaper used in set design. And I envisage as a provide designer, I’ve time fallen in love with it my whole life.

So, I want to use it, I was intended to positioned it up everywhere. But you’ve got to find the title newspaper for the one of the purposes of your mansion that you’re going to use it in. And there’s actually four types. There’s vinyl-coated, there’s coated fabric, there’s paper or solid sheet-backed vinyl and fabric-backed vinyl. And each one is going to have its own benefits and disadvantages. And each type is better than others for specific rooms.

Now, for example, a vinyl-coated wallpaper, that’s suitable for almost any room but it’s peculiarly terrific for a kitchen or bath due to the fact that it really has better water-resistance.

Now, a coated-fabric wallpaper is made by printing structures instantly onto a vinyl or acrylic-coated fabric. It’s more breathable. It’s better quality than vinyl-coated but it tends to absorb moisture, so it’s actually not a good choice for a kitchen or a bath.

TOM: Now, there’s likewise solid sheet-vinyl wallpaper and this is a highly durable and very easy-to-clean product. It’s induced when a paper substrate is laminated into an acrylic to create a highly single, solid, embellished face. And they’re also often embossed, which gives that sort of texture to a wall face, which is pretty nice.

And then, lastly, there’s fabric-backed vinyl wallpaper. This is very strong. It’s moisture-resistant on the surface. It has a surface of acrylic or vinyl and it’s highly sturdy and extremely tear-resistant, as well as impervious to moisture and humidity. So if you live in an area- like Florida, for example- or you want to put this in your bathroom, that’s the working papers to use.

LESLIE: Mm-hmm. And you know what? I recollect like any dwelling increase job, thinking the cost of wallpaper in one or more rooms of your home really depends on a combination of everything, from the size of the office, the quality of the paper. But according to HomeAdvisor, the average cost to hire a newspaper hanger is about $507. So it’s certainly a reasonably inexpensive route to perfectly transform the space.

TOM: And that’s today’s Pro Project presented by HomeAdvisor.com. With HomeAdvisor, you can get matched with top-rated residence assistance pros in your range and work appointments online, all for free. No stuff the type of job, HomeAdvisor utters it fast and easy to hire the best regional pros.

LESLIE: You’re chanted to The Money Pit, which is presented by HomeAdvisor.com. Never worry, guys, about overpaying for a chore. You can use the HomeAdvisor True Cost Guide and encounter what others have paid for similar projections. It’s all for free at HomeAdvisor.com.

When we come back, we’re going to help out a caller who’s thinking about some big changes for the brand-new time, like put her house on world markets. We’re going to help her sort out when and if you should bring in a home inspector. And we’ll help her out with that when we come back.

TOM: Obliging good homes better, this is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

TOM: Now to help you with your residence improvement projects. You can announce those questions to The Money Pit’s Community page at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit or to MoneyPit.com. And that is exactly what Carla in Michigan did.

It sounds like Carla has got big-hearted plans for the brand-new year, Leslie.

LESLIE: Yeah, this is exciting. Carla writes: “I’m putting my house on the market in a few months. Is it worth noting to have a home inspection done before I roster it or should I just wait and witness what comes out of an interested buyer’s presale home inspection? ”

TOM: That is a really good question, Carla. So, here’s my two cents on this and remember, I was a home inspector for almost 20 years. I do think it’s a good meaning for you to have an inspection before you placed it on the market. Because having done thousands of inspections, I can tell you that very often what will happen after the home inspection is the vendors will not be real happy, s because the home inspector encountered some issue of significance that now requires them to pay for an expensive repair or to renegotiate the acquisition price.

And it’s exactly slipshod when you have to do that when you’re deep into the transaction like that because, you are well aware, the buyers think you’re just going to take whatever cheap way out you are able to. And you’re already convinced that you sold the house for too little money; they think they’re route overpaying for it. There’s all this angst going on. So it’s very helpful when you know what kinds of issues may be there.

And it could work to your benefit if the buyer’s inspector thinks that something’s a problem and your superintendent didn’t pick it up. Well , now you’ve got somebody to really talk with about that and try to get to the bottom of it. And if you do find a problem, it’s better that you secure it before you applied the house on world markets. Because this road, the buyers are not involved, you can do it at your own leisure and then you can add to the listing as a brand-new whatever: brand-new furnace, brand-new roof.

I can tell you, Leslie, I’ve done inspections where I sauntered into the house at noon and by 2:00 p.m ., there was an HVAC contractor carried forward a risky furnace and putting in a new one. I mean it happens that fast.

LESLIE: It certainly fixes sense.

TOM: So, acquaintance is dominance. I clearly think it’s a great idea for you to get an inspection done before you put your house on the market.

LESLIE: Yeah, that’s a good tip.

Alright. Next up, Robin in Delaware has written: “Does it ever make sense to make a two-story house into a one-story? We like our spot but we don’t need the apartment anymore. And too, the work requires a new roof.”

“Hey, we need a brand-new roof. Let’s lose the second floor.”

TOM: I cannot think of any circumstance where that would make sense.


TOM: None. None whatsoever.

LESLIE: It just seems so strange.

TOM: Yeah. Well, listen, Robin may not be paying attention to the real-estate marketplace. But the more seat “youve had”, the most valuable your mansion is. So why would you cut it down to a one-story house and lose, easily, a third of its evaluate if not more? So, yeah, a really bad idea. I is certainly not do that.

If you like wherever you, find another house there or just think about- even though you’re not exerting those additional areas upstairs, the carrying cost of that empty space is going to be a lot cheaper than the money you’re going to lose by chopping it off. If you’re paying to heat them and cool them and all that, do not do that, Robin. It’ll be a really bad idea.

LESLIE: Oh, my goodness, Robin. Instead, think of some spaces that you can cut costs on your expend up there. Really look at what you can do to enhance the design of the chamber of representatives through the color and sort of selection of roof shingles that you pick out. I is certainly not lose that second floor because where are you going to go and hide when you want to be by yourself?

TOM: Hey, why not turn it into an Airbnb? My daughter has been away at college. She’s working on her medical residencies and she’s been hiring long-term Airbnbs. So it’s not just overnight. She’s living in a- with a very nice lady now in Seattle for four months, who’s renting her a room.

LESLIE: That’s really smart. Yeah, start do that. Come on, Robin.

TOM: This is The Money Pit Home Improvement Show. This time of year, though, it’s the ho-ho-home improvement show. We’re all in the festivity character. We hope that you are in the holiday spirit enjoying this wonderful pre-holiday weekend. If you’ve been thinking about some improvements you’d like to fix to your dwelling for the brand-new time, we are so glad you’ve been listening to us and welcome you to contact us, 24/7, at 1-888-MONEY-PIT with those questions. Or you can always post them to The Money Pit’s community at Facebook.com/ TheMoneyPit.

I’m Tom Kraeutler.

LESLIE: And I’m Leslie Segrete.

TOM: Remember, you can do it yourself …

LESLIE: But you don’t have to make love alone.


( Copyright 2019 Squeaky Door Product, Inc. No segment of this transcript or audio register may be reproduced in any format without the express written permission of Squeaky Door Production, Inc .)

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