Sustainability in Urban Design

It is not enough for a place to be habitable. It also needs to be sustainable.

Urban design is the process, design, and organization of public space, transportation systems, and open space. With half of the Earth’s population crowding in cities, urban design needs to take a hard look at its mechanisms. Each city must commit and choose sustainable development. Philippines, in terms of population and the economy, exponentially grows each year. But, the land areas of its cities remain the same. The same rings true in other cities across the globe. Three (almost four) billion people stay in these urban areas. Therefore, the role of urban design has a significant impact in today’s contemporary way of life.

According to a United Nations’ (UN) report, 60% of the Earth’s population will crowd cities by 2030. This is not good news for various reasons.

Millenials are slow to pick up the traces of needing change concerning their way of living. Thus, it is better for the current millennia to have the collective movement of individuals, industries, and countries to commit to change. The foundation of inhabitation – the Earth, is ruined and its cries are getting louder. The natural structure of planet is sacrificed to have the luxurious comfort of the modern life. The towering skyscrapers, concrete housing units, and asphalt plazas are chosen over the lush greeneries and the natural wonders of the world.

Urban Development

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Urban development is a perennial threat to nature. Fortunately, developers like Ayala Land Inc. (ALI), considers the site’s ecosystem in their planning and design. Bobby Dy coins the term “eco-efficient.” It is a simple yet effective word that summarizes the purpose of their city districts. Natural resources or the natural state of the land area should not be sacrificed because of urban design and development. ALI patterns their design to the area’s original state.

The best example of eco-efficiency is their dynamic suburb in the South, Nuvali. Nuvali has a long stretch of green grass park and open spaces. The structure mixes modern suburban living with green zones and forestry. It also encourages recreation and outdoor activities which are refreshing for the modern dwellers.

Organization and Open Spaces

Although aesthetic plays a major role in urban setting, it is important for a developer to consider general public interest and not be biased towards age and way of living. When the city or structure is open to everyone, the need to have access to additional public infrastructure is removed. The environment becomes inclusive and inclined to only one goal – providing for the years to come.

Ayala Land is best known for their wholesome urban design. The company follows its focus areas as a guide during planning – resilience, pedestrian and transit connectivity, eco-efficiency and local economic development.

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Their latest land developments incorporate wide spaces and parks. Having these spaces encourages time off the digital world and physical activity. It also lessens the dependence on vehicles as these places are conducive to walking. Most importantly, it discourages cul-de-sacs which can be rampant in urban areas. The design also creates low-carbon cities because they become walkable and mass transit-oriented. This is much more sustainable and healthier for the people. It also gives a high quality of life to residents.

Economic Vibrancy

A thing, structure or endeavor that is sustainable is said to solve today’s problems while also providing for the problems of the future. Generations to come should meet their own needs using these structures and environment-friendly solutions. Thus, it should be an enabling environment.

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Rapid urbanization puts pressure on resources. Densely-packed cities can lack sources of fresh water supply and strain the living environment and public health. During planning, local and small-scale businesses are heavily considered. The shops and stores should be strategically placed so they may contribute to poverty reduction. There should also be designated spaces for public utility and health services.

Cloverfield, an ALI development in the North, is an example of a well-planned community that employs living, retail, and health. The development has a residential tower, shopping mall, park and a hospital – all within walking distance.

Well-planned public spaces commune communities and people together. Physical and cultural activities, recreation and play, are also encouraged. The spaces restore a sense of place, identity, and pride in an area, and play a significant part in attracting businesses and jobs. Thus, poverty is reduced.

Technology has picked up speed on constructing mega cities, but it has not made low-carbon cities. Local and international urban development still have a long way to go. Choosing to be sustainable goes back to planning, where all the aspect of the building is considered. When the vision for the future is clear, urban design will manifest through eco-efficient development.

The Big Sell: Experts Share Pitching Advice

Monday.

Another day at UP Ayala Technohub, slaving for 8 hours. You have an idea brewing in your head. You also have a plan to improve your group’s communication system and project management style. But these powerful ideas or well-kept backup plans are just in your head, and won’t matter unless you share it with the group; most importantly, to your superior. Until then, it will just be a plan or idea that won’t be making the changes you envision for the company.

The aim is to have their approval. To hear that sweet sounding yes is a melody to the ears, which makes you fly high in the sky even if it means being buried in paperwork. Before that, you have to face your boss, the management or who ever it is you have to talk with to settle the proposal. Sometimes, it only takes one chance for the person or committees to decide your faith, so it’s better to ace it on the first try.

Few experts had a say on how to successfully present a pitch to a challenging audience. To show off your ideas without a hinge, read on to find what the experts had to say to amp your presentation.

John Rood of Next Step Test Preparation

John Rood suggests to lay out how managements should judge the project’s success quickly. What are the indicators that the project will be a success? Having a specific goal will help you set measures of success or key performance indicators (KPIs) early on. Step-wise goals or buildable goals are easier to digest than having a long-term goal. It also suggests that fewer risks are involved. Thus management is more accepting of the idea.

To reduce the risk of rejection, form alliances with those in the upper levels of the company who will approve the pitch. Test out the waters, talk with them to see what clicks and what doesn’t.  It will also help you improve and expand your idea. There will be instances when they will see the details you may have overlooked. The more feedbacks you get for your pitch, the better you can prepare for the actual and formal meeting.

Phil Chen of Systems Watch

It’s not enough to just have the proposal ready; it’s also important to prove you can handle it. They want to see a work ethic that can sustain the onset of the project throughout its growth. You have to show redeeming qualities – agility, thoughtfulness, and efficiency.

Remember that you still have current task and projects. Phil Chen advises preparing an outline that illustrates the order of your priorities. It will show you still have the time and resources to lead a new project. The outline is especially useful if you haven’t proven your leadership potential.

Brian Honigman of BrianHonigman.com

Brian Honigman shares a piece of advice that isn’t often followed. Composing a polished plan shows the time a thought invested in it. It also shows you’ve reviewed potential problems along the way. It suggests you can take charge and lead the project which will help convince the management of the proposal.

Kenny Nguyen of Big Fish Presentations

As much enthusiasm you show when presenting the project, prepare to defend your idea when objections arise. Being able to justify your proposal is particularly useful when negotiating with investors. You should not be swayed with counter-arguments no matter how logical they may seem. Withstand the onslaught of questions and prepare a counter-attack.

Thus, when answering the management or investors’ queries, pay attention to the current inquiry only. Give a simple and straightforward answer. Avoid getting thrown off your train of thought by overthinking the panel’s questions.

Jyot Singh of RTS Labs

The benefits of the pitch should be clear – how will it add value to the company. Jyot Singh says the presentation should be directed to those benefits and the ways how it will be utilized by the audience of your presentation.

A presentation that states the advantages of the projects creates a positive mindset over the project proposal. With that, keep your winning statement simple.

Adam Stillman of SparkReel

Of course, create visual aids. Adam Stillman knows the importance of visual aids. Visuals are powerful; they help make the plan seem real and relatable. Visual aids also hold power regarding communication as the information comes much faster and lingers in the form of memory.

When creating visuals, concentrate on the essentials. If it allows you to explain the project, return on investment and growth strategy for five minutes, then you’re good to go.

These experts know what they’re talking about, and you should too. When proposing an idea to top level management, remember to account for risks. The less risk involves, the higher the chance to get their approval. A clear-cut and carefully constructed plan will cover the basics. No matter how polished the proposal is, there will be details which aren’t acceptable to the audience. Hence, prepare to defend your ideas during the presentation. It means you can handle it the pressure and sustain the project.

A Guide to Suburban Neighborhood in the South

There’s a sprouting suburb in the South, and you don’t know if moving there is a good move.

Vermosa is a suburban development that features active living. It’s in Cavite, and it perfectly combines residences, retail spots and business hubs in one area, which make it seem like a good place to settle down. But hold your train of thought. Did you consider what you need to know before buying a house? Do you know what kind of neighborhood will be at Vermosa?

Before setting your sights at this new development, read on to find out the standards of what makes a good neighborhood.

There are street walks.

And those streetwalkers are for walking.

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Some residential communities are disorderly, so cyclists pass through pavements instead. A neighborhood with functional road walks prioritizes walking over the use of vehicles. Low-carbon communities have sidewalks wide enough for bicycles and establishments. It gives the cafés liberty to set up tables for outdoor lounging.

A spacious sidewalk also gives room to set up benches – a great feature for relaxation and people watching.

 

There are various transportation modes.

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What a nice feeling to have when travel from work to home is a breeze. Often, an exclusive neighborhood isn’t commute-friendly and is only accessible through private vehicles. An ideal community should be available through different road networks. You can get to Vermosa via Daang Hari Road, SLEX through the MCX exit, and the upcoming Cavite Laguna Expressway (CALAX) Road – which are also the routes of public transportation. The proposed LRT 6 will pass through Daang Hari Road which makes Vermosa accessible to the bulk of passengers. The community is also less than an hour away from Makati, Manila, Muntinlupa and Tagaytay.

 

There is a foundation for education.

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De La Salle Santiago Zobel School (DLSZ), a member of De La Salle Philippines (DLSP), is an established educational institution in the South. It will open its second campus in Vermosa to provide quality basic and secondary education. DLSZ is also an establishment that pronounces spiritual and moral maturity through the teachings of Christ.

The DLSZ-Vermosa Campus will implement the Next Generation Blended Learning Program which will include the latest trend and innovation regarding teaching strategies and educational research.

 

There are high-value residences.

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Property value varies greatly from one development to another. A neighborhood with quality housing options allows people with different financial capability to lead a quiet and comfortable life. When there are lots of people are waitlisted, it is a sign that the particular neighboorhood is hot on the market.

Vermosa will have diverse living options with Ayala Land’s urban residential developers – Alveo, Avida, and Ayala Land Premier. Alveo offers upscale residences while Avida is perfect for compact city living.

Since Vermosa is a new community, most of the people in the neighborhood are homeowners. An area with high rate of homeownership is stable. Renters are mobile and flaky, so they don’t add value to the community. Long-time residents have been there all way. They watch out for their neighbors, which makes the area feel safe and secure.

 

There are communal facilities.

 

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Vermosa has a total of 165 hectares of open space for wellness and recreation, training facilities, and retail shops.

There’s Vermosa Sports and Lifestyle Complex which will have an Olympic-sized pool, a 400-meter track oval, and a Sports Science laboratory that caters to all the training needs of endurance athletes. The MX Track and the Bike Skills Park offer a place to fill the need for speed and thrills for bikers.

There’s Vermosa Midtown, a pedestrian-focused, bike-friendly area with a commercial district. The Ayala Malls Vermosa will be within the limits of Midtown and will complement the active life of Vermosa by housing sports themed retail stores.

A contemporary active living is kept alive in Vermosa with its engaging facilities for its residents. Besides these amenities, a balanced community should have a place of worship. It shows the collective and strength of the community.

There should be a hospital, police and fire station.

Safety first.

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The right neighborhood adds value to the entire community, not just to the houses separately. You can check out if the community is fit for you if it has the qualities on this list besides the things that you want. Your new neighborhood should meet your standards and if you’ve found it in Vermosa, then go ahead. Enjoy the fulfilling life of active lifestyle.

Hassle-free Move: Four Tips and Tricks to Make Moving Day Stress-Free

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It is no doubt that moving day can be one of the stressful days you will ever experience in your life. Of course, collecting, stashing away and moving your entire household is no easy feat, so you are inevitably going to encounter a lot of stressors along the way. After all, in the years that you have lived through your old home, stripping it down of your possessions and packing them away can seem like a herculean task—especially if you have spent a significant number of years accumulating your belongings. However, there are ways of ensuring that your moving day goes on without a snag and without ruffling any of your family members’ feathers. Your moving venture might be a huge endeavor, but with a solid strategy and good planning, you can be assured that it would go smoothly for the most part.

So, whether your change of address is to a condo in Manila or elsewhere, here are some tips that will help you make your moving day easy and stress-free:

1.) Start weeks or even months in advance

If you live in a relatively small home with a meager number of possessions, you can start packing weeks before your moving day. However, if you live in a sprawling home with too many valuables to count, you might as well start as early as you can—even months prior to your moving date. Although your moving date may seem rather far, it is best to make some progress in your packing than be overwhelmed with the sheer number of things you have to do come moving day. True, it might be tempting to leave packing at the last minute—especially if you dislike living among boxes or have to use some things inside them. But you will be glad to have packed earlier than you should have. Just remember to pack the things you are not regularly using first and leave your daily essentials for last.

2.) Be organized

Being organized is key during your move as it aids you in staying on top of things. To make sure you stay organized during the move, have a list of all the tasks that you need to do and divide them in weeks. This would give you ample time to complete whatever is written on a particular week’s list. A typical organized moving day list would consist of eight weeks of their own respective tasks.

3.) Clean out the clutter

Clutter can not only induce headaches, but they are eyesores as well that would do nothing to prove visual aesthetics. If you have a lot of clutter lying around at home, it would be a good idea to start getting rid of them before you even start packing. In this way, you would feel a lot more organized. Additionally, getting rid of the clutter would prevent you from packing things you would not necessarily need in your new home—saving you from all of the frustration in getting rid of them once you unpack and get settled into your new place.

4.) Label your boxes and bags

To know where items to be packed should go and to easily identify which is which, you should label all of your boxes and bags. Apart from categorizing them and knowing what the contents inside are, this would also help you determine which boxes and bags are to be opened and unpacked first. Typically, this is best done if the box is labeled according to where its contents will be placed (labeled per room). However, it would also be ideal if you also wrote and included the contents in its label. Boxes that contain important and sensitive documents such as birth certificates, insurances, passports and the like should be placed in a secure folder and should have a different marking than the rest. Ideally, this folder should be in your person at all times.

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Where to Dine in UP Town Center

There are a number of Ayala Malls, but UP Town Center is something special. The idea is that for the students, workers, and residents around the area to have a place which would respond to their needs and wants. The 7.4 hectare UP Diliman East Campus property will be reconstructed to become a hub of opportunities and businesses. Aside from the stores and restaurants in this establishment, there are a lot of events and activities held in UP Town Center. UPTC, as fondly called by their visitors, is open every day, from 10 in the morning until 9 in the evening every Sunday to Thursday, and until 10 pm during Friday and Saturday. Some stores have their own schedule so check them out as well.

To give you a quick food trip in UP Town Center, here are the ten places where you could (and should) try dining in:

Silantro Fil-Mex

Silantro Fil-Mex, Silantro for short, is known for serving Mexican food infused with Filipino taste. You’d get delicious food and fine service with a good price. Since the place is superb, expect a lot of people dining so if possible, get a reservation before you visit.

What you should try: Beef nachos, Beef Quesadillas, Chicken wings, Seafood Paella (and you can order alcoholic beverages too!)

St. Marc Café

If you’re out for a quick snack and some refreshing drinks or desserts, St. Marc Café is your go-to. This specialty bakery and patisserie is a well-known place from Japan. They envision and work towards satisfying the needs of their customers, as well as making them “need” some more.

What you should try: Little Fuji, Kyoto Delight, Mango Fantasy, Nara, Matcha Latte, Freshly Brewed Coffee, Egg Salsa, Chococro, Salmon Cheese Potato, Carbonara

Cold Stone Creamery

Serving the finest, freshest ice creams, cakes, smoothies and shakes for 25 years, Cold Stone Creamery is really something. This international franchise from Arizona has a signature way of delivering ice creams as it’s created on a frozen granite stone.

What you should try: Berry Berry Berry Good, Birthday Cake Remix, OREO Overload, Midnight Delight (and you can also create your own mix)

Pepper Lunch

ペッパーランチ Peppaa-ranchi is a “fast steak” restaurant in Japan and was established in 1994. The customers can cook their food choice of beef, chicken, pork and salmon over an electromagnetic plate which is heated up to 260 degrees Celsius to make sure that your meat is perfectly cooked. You can also pick your seasoning and sauce – Amakuchi or the honey brown sauce, or Karakuchi or the garlic soy sauce.

What you should try: Beef pepper rice, Shimofuri pepper steak, Salmon pepper rice, Beef BBQ Yakiniku with egg

Rodic’s Diner

Since 1949, Rodic’s Diner serves nothing but the best beef tapa and garlic rice. They are known for being a budget-friendly restaurant for classic Filipino food.

What should you try: Tapsilog, Kare-kare, Sisig with egg and rice

Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen

As what the name suggests, Mama Lou’s offer yummy Italian cuisine along with a relaxing ambiance. Mama Lou’s Italian Kitchen started in 2010 and still delivering good food which they are known for.

What should you try: Spinach and goat cheese pizza, Italian sardine pasta, Gnocchi, Vesuvio, Take the Cannoli

Backyard Kitchen + Brew

If you are looking for a chill place to eat or grab some drinks alone or with friends, Backyard Kitchen + Brew offers good food, drinks, and company. It also has an artsy interior to add on its ambiance and comfort. The servings are enough for you to share, but you might want to eat it alone because the dishes they give are nothing less than perfect.

What should you try: Slow roasted pork and beef belly, Salted egg chicken skin, Buffalo wings, Tinapa and Quinoa Salad (and alcoholic drinks as well)

credits to the owners of the pictures used

Property Reservations 101

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You’ve been seeing this sophisticated and elegant townhouse Manila for sale. Given that it is near your workplace and your favorite Ayala Mall, you can’t help but purchase this property. What can you do? Reserve!

Reservation is your deposit when you rent a house, apartment, or condominium. You haven’t fully owned the property unless you have paid in full or partial, or depending on the terms agreed upon between you and the seller.

You can now have that condo by reserving it under your name. Property reservation is very easy as you only need the following:

  • seller or property specialist

  • Reservation Agreement Form, and

  • reservation fee

Through the seller or property specialist, you will be able to deliberate which property you should buy, depending on different factors and of course, its availability. After considering these details and confirming the property’s availability, you can continue with reserving it online. You may check the developer’s website and look for the “Reserve Now” or similar buttons to proceed. If necessary, you can also contact the developer for clarifications or reserve the property by visiting their office.

photo-1477577314779-8dd53d8e615f.jpgAnother important thing is your Reservation Agreement Form. Carefully fill out the form and check all the details and signatures before passing it. If the Reservation Agreement Form is not available online, the developer or seller will be handing it to you. You can simply mail or fax the form to the developer or seller’s office before you proceed with your reservation. If these options do not appeal to you, you can always visit their office and have this done.

Now you’re finished with choosing the property and submitting the Reservation Agreement Form, you are now to pay the required reservation fee. Reservation fee differs depending on the developer and the type of property you are interested with. It can go as low as ₱5,000 and as high as ₱100,000. Aside from cash payment, you can also pay the reservation fee through the following:

  • bank deposit

  • credit card

  • online bank transferable

  • remittance center

  • and other methods advised to you

You will be asked to send proof of payment so make sure to secure an official receipt. Some only give out acknowledgment receipt so better check with the bank or establishment that you have what you need. Afterward, the developer will confirm your payment by sending welcome letters.

Keep in mind that the validity of your reservation fee for new houses in the Philippines is 30 days. Within this period, you should be able to make a partial or full payment for your property. Better ask your developer with the different payment options that you have.

Lastly, here are some other things that you need to know about property reservations:

1. Is it deductible? Definitely! The reservation fee that you’ve made will be deducted from the total selling price. Others deduct the fee from the downpayment.

2. Is it refundable? Unfortunately, reservation fees are non-refundable. That is why you should be sure with your actions and decisions before you consider reserving a property.

3. Is it transferable? It depends on the policies of the developer or seller. Some won’t let you transfer the fees, and others will charge a transfer fee if it’s permitted.

Be reminded that not all properties in the Philippines require reservation fees so you are to confirm that with your developer or seller. Other developers immediately ask for a downpayment or initial payment. Nevertheless, in whatever reserving and purchasing you will be doing, be sure and secured. Make sure that you will be abiding by the policies you signed for so you can enjoy your property hassle-free!

Philippine Living: 3 Reasons Why Bacolod is the Best Place to Live in The Philippines

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“Namit gid ya!”

“Halong ka meg”

“Maayong Aga”

These are just a few phrases you would commonly hear whenever you find yourself lucky enough to set foot in the City of Smiles or otherwise known as Bacolod City of Negros Occidental. Recently named as the number one place to live in the Philippines, Bacolod City’s charm is not only hinged on the fact that they have the best tasting barbecued chicken also fondly called as the famous chicken inasal. Apart from the delectable food the City of Smiles offers, their friendly locals, affordable coffee and exemplary desserts, there is a lot more to this city which would definitely earn its merit as the Philippines number one city to live in. If you are looking to settle in this charming city of smiles from building a house on and Ayala land lot in Bacolod to opening your very own inasal place, here are some of the reasons why you should consider living in here:

1.) Delectable Food

Without a doubt, Bacolod offers some of the Philippines best dishes. It is no question that the people of Bacolod do love to eat, and it is one of the most thriving businesses in the industry. From the best-tasting chicken inasal to the lechon manok, two of their most scrumptious dishes that made not only Bacolod but Negros famous. Just ask any local from Bacolod, and they would all collectively tell you that nothing compares to their Chicken Bacolod—even the local renditions of Manila and Cebu are no match for Bacolod’s authentic inasal. Apart from the famous inasal, Bacolod is known to serve some of the best-tasting desserts as well. After all, you do not live in the sugar capital of the Philippines without crafting some of the very best sweet treats.

2.) The city is rife with adventures

Whenever you are in the city, you would not need to go far just to have your fair share of adventures. In fact, Bacolod is the ideal place to raise a child as it is the perfect setting for a child to form memories and experience what childhood truly is without the stifling feel of the city. Just a few kilometers away from the city, you can visit Campuestohan Adventure Park—an excellent place for kids and adults alike. Aside from this famous attraction, you can also see the mountains from the city proper itself, and they are within driving distance. So, if you are looking for a quick getaway from the city, a drive just in the outskirts of town will already transport you to a serene and relaxing place.

3.) The city is a unique blend of urban and provincial life

Though much of Bacolod’s landscapes are still filled with lush greeneries (so much so that you can take a lot of Instagram-worthy photos), this is not to say that the city is not progressive in terms of infrastructures and industries as well. Recently, there have been many developments in the city—real estate and economic alike. From this perspective, it would be readily seen that Bacolod would soon see a surge not only in their economy but job offers as well. With the rise of this new industries, an influx of job openings is to be expected.

In a sense, Bacolod City is what many would call and urbanized province. However, the term province is to no merit seeing as there are plenty of hi-rise condominiums and malls being erected. So, what makes living here so great? Despite being a progressive city, Bacolod has retained its quaint and natural charm. The food is always fresh and affordable, the traffic is almost non-existent, and the locals are always warm and welcoming. All these things when considered are just the things one would want to come home to.

 

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A Simple Guide for Finding a Retirement-Friendly Home

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Let’s admit it! Not all of us would have thought about having a retirement-friendly home, right? Obviously, one thing that would first come up into our minds when we talk about home renovations is the modern way of renovating the house. Well, modern design is not that bad at all. However, if you are living with elders, you also have to think about having a retirement-friendly home whether you are residing in South Park District or any other real estate properties in the Philippines.

But if you are one of those homeowners who just doesn’t have any idea at all on what and what not to do when it comes to home renovations, then you might want to consider these home features that would make up a retirement-friendly home.

Accessible kitchen counters

For some homeowners, just because they are tall, that doesn’t mean they are also going to make high countertops. Of course, you also have to ensure that everyone can access to it, especially when it comes to the elders. Make sure that the edges of the counter are also not pointed that would lead to some accidents. Moreover, choose a home design with kitchen countertops that have the right height.

A ground floor master bedroom

When it comes to elders, you have to treat them in a gentle way. That is why having a ground floor master bedroom is one of the things you can do for them. It is expected that some of them already have arthritis, back problems, and other physical health conditions that could affect their mobility as they age. Of course, this matter should not be taken lightly. Make sure that they will not be struggling when it comes to go to and fro from their bedroom.

Lever-style doorknobs and faucets

This is also one of the many things you should consider before deciding some home renovations. Make sure that the doorknobs and faucets are easier to grab and open or close, especially when both hands are busy handling things. This is also one way to prevent them from hassles, especially for someone with shaky hands.

Open floor plans

Having an open floor plan will be much easier for the elders to navigate and walk around the house. They won’t be worried about tripping off due to the things in front of them. Open floor plans will also give them enough space to move around the house. For family members, this is also one way to keep an eye on your elderly relatives easily.

Removing the walls of your home is one thing that can make a retirement-friendly home. With the spaces provided, this will invite more nature light from your windows to come in and make your living space feel comfortable.

Non-slip, no-trip showers

One of the struggles most elders experience is the shower. Of course, the bathroom would be slippery, especially after using it. Even if it is just a minor accident due to a slippery floor, this can lead to displaced joints, slips and other serious injuries. I’m sure you don’t want that something bad might happen to the elders, right? And God forbid!
That is why it is a must for you to install floor-to-ceiling glass doors and level the bathroom floors to prevent accidental falls. Moreover, you can use non-slip mats, rugs and small tools that would help the elders move without any accidents while using the bathroom.

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Awful Living Room Designs Homeowners Should Avoid

“Designing is a matter of concentration. You go deep into what you want to do. It’s about intensive research, really. The concentration is warm and intimate and like the fire inside the earth-intense but not distorted. You can go to a place, really feel it in your heart. It’s actually a beautiful feeling.” – Petter Zumthor

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Let’s admit; the living room is one of the favorite places in our home. Right? One way or another, it is in the living room where we usually gather and have good moments together with our family and friends. Additionally, it is where we spend our free time to entertain ourselves whenever we feel bored. Whether you live in South Park District or any condo units in the Philippines, the living room is one thing you want to chill at home.

But sad to say, not all of us do realize that they have been arranging their furniture in a way where it ruins the style and beauty of their living room. Keep in mind that not all arrangements would look good in your living room. That means you have to think twice whether the design you choose fits your living room. To give you an idea, we list down some awful living room designs you should and must avoid.

Following trends

There is actually no wrong if you follow home décor trends. But there will also be a danger when you tend to follow different trends – it might not look good in your living room. Just because it is a trend, it doesn’t mean it also suitable for the living room. No, not all. As a homeowner, it is your responsibility to know your living room and the kind of ambiance your home has by heart. With that, it is easier for you to determine what design would you like to have for your living room. Give some personal touch to it, not just simply following the trend. This is also one of the many ways to give your home a homey feeling.

The wrong paint color

This is one of the most common mistakes a homeowner can do. They Paint their home with the wrong choice of color. Remember, the color of your home plays a significant role when it comes to beautifications. When you have the wrong color, you will most likely have a hard time finding the right furniture or interior design that would match the color that you choose. Moreover, you might not want that particular color which leads to not having the enthusiast to make some decorations at all in your home.

Uncomfortable furniture

One of the most common misconceptions of most homeowners is that, whenever they see something that looks great, they include it in the arrangements. Just because they look good, it doesn’t mean that it is also fine to add it in your living room. Remember, the things found in your living room are mostly useful. And if you think that that particular thing is not useful at all, then you better find other furniture that can be of use. It is better to find another one than filling your living room with useless things.

The wrong size rug

Whether you realize it or not, there are actually different kinds of a rug, not just the rug we have at our front door. In fact, some rugs are intended for the living room – rugs that are stylish enough for you to include it as one of your furniture. However, if you choose the wrong size of the rug, it might not look good. Before deciding on what rug to buy, you have to think first about the furniture that you have. If the rug that you want to buy would fit or match with the other furniture that you have, then you can definitely have that rug.

 

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Feng Shui 101: 3 Ways to make your Home a haven of good Fortune for the year of the Rooster

rooster-2017

“Feng Shui is the study of the environment and how it affects people. It has nothing to do with luck and everything to do with space that promotes feelings of happiness and well-being”- Cathleen McCandless

“Feng Shui is about reclaiming your life’s energy and directing it towards balance and purpose. The result is greater harmony in your space and life.” -Wahida Young

One of the best ways to usher in the new Chinese New Year is to make certain that your home is auspicious to the designated Chinese Zodiac. According to Chinese Zodiac enthusiasts, 2017 marks the year of the Fire Rooster or alternatively known as the Fire Phoenix. Feng Shui experts have slated this year as an excellent time for transformation. Incidentally, homeowners are known to make some new changes during the start of the year which would make it the perfect opportunity to begin your own home’s transformation. To make it more favorable for this year of the rooster, utilize the tips below so that regardless of whether you are living in Ayala Bacolod or elsewhere, you would invite good fortune in.

1.) Make sure your home is ready

At the start of any year, whether Chinese or Gregorian, it is always best to welcome it by cleaning your home. In fact, a general practice of feng shui is to clear away the clutter in your homes to improve the flow of energy. Without a doubt, a clutter free home makes for less stress and it would be a whole lot easier to arrange and decorate as you wish and make it even more auspicious for the coming new year.
After making your place ready, you can then identify which sectors of your home are considered lucky and unlucky for this year. With a compass, identify which areas of your home are the south, north, east, and west ends.

2.) Ward off bad luck

For this year, Chinese Feng Shui master has identified the south, southwest, west and northwest as the unlucky sectors of the home for 2017. Do not place too much emphasis on these areas lest you invite misfortune such as accidents, financial challenges, accidents and even harrowing experiences. To prevent an “activation” of these unlucky sectors, it is best not to linger or sleep in any of these areas. As an added precaution, you can put five stones in a can and place it on the south side of the home. This will aid the metal element to neutralize the earth element which is the bringer of misfortune. Additionally to counteract illness, place a glass of salt or a salt lamp in the northwest area of your home. Prevention of burglary, theft, and betrayal can be done by placing a glass of water in the southwest sector and when placed in the west, it can ward off misunderstandings and anger.

3.) Inviting good fortune

Of course, there are also ways to invite good fortune and luck in the new year—particularly in the north, center, east, southeast and northeast areas of your home. The more time you spend in these areas, the better your chances are of enhancing your luck. Apart from lingering in these areas, you need to make sure that they are well-lit as this is one of the surefire ways to make them more receptive to positive energy. Additionally, colors would play a pivotal role in bringing good fortune to a home all of which would depend on the direction a home is facing. This is incredibly ideal for those with homes who are in need of a fresh coat. So, if you are planning to repaint your home, consider the color that would best enhance the energy that flows around it.

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