Category Archives: Home Projects

Champion Energy Services – $50 coupon for new customers

lightbulb-smallNew customers get $50 off with referral ID: MThomson36073
Or you can use this direct referral code link:

The $50 credit is supposed to be valid for any of these states: Illinois, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Texas.

UPDATE: It looks like they have now permanently increased the bonus to $50!

It’s that easy! Continue reading Champion Energy Services – $50 coupon for new customers

How do I choose a flat-fee MLS listing service (FSBO)?

blog_post_houseI recently listed my Massachusetts home on MLS, but I’m not using a real estate agent to sell my property. Since I wanted to list on MLS without a realtor, my biggest question was "What MLS listing service should I use?" Doing a listing For Sale By Owner (FSBO), I want a flat-fee MLS listing service that has a good online presence as well as a history of quality person-to-person customer support. It seems like none of the flat fee MLS listing services have any 3rd party reviews online.

There also seems to be a general divide between key offerings – companies that offer barebones, no feature service for under $200, and other companies that offer a variety of packages and features starting at $300. The sub-$200 packages seem extremely risky and could wind up being useless if you enter your listing information wrong. The $300 and up packages tend to allow you to make updates at no or low extra cost, and include features like including your open house listing along with your for sale listing on MLS. These are important considerations when doing For Sale By Owner. Continue reading How do I choose a flat-fee MLS listing service (FSBO)?

Portable kid’s height chart (Guest post)

Today’s blog post comes from my wife, Angela. She is good at crafts, and this particular project was done in the midst of a kitchen painting project. Her height charts turned out very good and so we thought it would be worth sharing in the "Home Projects" portion of this blog. Enjoy!

When we decided it was time to revamp our kitchen with a good old fashion paint job the hue was the least of our problems.
Our family height chart was marked on our wall. Oops. We were young, it was our first house, and we were new parents, and lacked foresight… and money. Those are our excuses for this brainless act. Forgive us.
Moving on from that experience though, we have amended our family height chart. Continue reading Portable kid’s height chart (Guest post)

Installing attic insulation

How do you install insulation in your attic? It is actually quite easy – and it will keep your home more comfortable all year round and will save you a lot of money. Last year’s winter here in New England was much colder than normal – enough to tack on an additional $1,000 to our heating bill. So I decided it was finally time to bite the bullet and add some more insulation to our attic. For my house, I figure it should pay for itself after two years (or sooner if we have terrible winters or summers ahead). There are a few things to consider when installing your own attic insulation. Continue reading Installing attic insulation

Remove honey bees from house

I recently went on a 1-week business trip followed by a 2-week vacation with my wife and kids. During the three weeks that we were away, some honey bees decided my home would be a good place to set up shop. I knew there was a problem because there were several hundred dead honey bees in my basement directly underneath the only window down there. They were coming in from a hive they had made in the floorboards in an extension from the house. Continue reading Remove honey bees from house

Remove a door knob that has no screws???

My wife and I just bought our first house. It is about 40 years old, but is in surprisingly good shape. One of the first things we did was replace all of the door knobs on the doors that go outside. However, once we got to the front door, we ran into a problem. That’s right, as the title of this post suggests, the front door knob did not have any screws on it for removal…

Old doorknob, outside   Old doorknob, inside - no screws!

I guess technically it does have screws for removing the latch, but those did not affect the rest of the doorknob. It turns out that doorknobs like this are pretty common in older houses, Continue reading Remove a door knob that has no screws???