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Ten ways to improve your home and garden

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With summer now in full swing, it’s the ideal time to make a few changes and freshen up your living space for the rest of the year.

You might be planning to renovate, or maybe you’re keen to invest in new furniture or artwork to make life a little more stylish and comfortable. Here is where to begin with upgrading your home and garden.

Build a sustainable home

With self-builds revitalising the construction industry, adding an annexe, pool house or entirely new second home is easier than you may think. Caber House has developed and delivered some of the greenest houses in the UK, all based on flexibility, energy-efficiency and clever design. The houses are modern, robust and elegant, with turnkey costs to suit most budgets.

Your home will be unique, as Caber House doesn’t take a ‘one size fits all’ approach. The design of each building is optimised using site-specific data, and each one is devised specifically for the UK climate by architects who specialise in sustainability. What’s more, Passivhaus detailing ensures the houses meet low-energy standards.caberhouse.co.uk

Add value while increasing security

This year has seen record-breaking temperatures and sunshine, allowing us all to spend much more time outdoors – and with a simple upgrade to your home, the summer atmosphere need never end.

A bespoke sun awning lets you relax outdoors in the heat, while a glass veranda lets you enjoy the outdoor experience all year round.

Crocodile offers a range of options to ensure you can make use of your garden in all seasons, from privacy screens and awnings to glass canopies and winter gardens – with the bonus of adding value to your property.

Alternatively, installing shutters can increase your property value, save energy and add insulation. Shutters also provide weather protection, increased security and, most importantly, provide extra peace of mind.crocodile.co.uk

Make life more comfortable

Perfect posture is rare, so your back will undoubtedly thank you for investing in bespoke furniture that provides support and complements your body’s natural positions. For those with mobility restrictions and conditions such as poor circulation, arthritis or osteoporosis, such products can bring relief.

New Life Mobility specialises in the design and manufacture of rise and recline chairs and adjustable beds, all of which can be upgraded with indulgent heat and massage options to soothe daily aches and pains.

Personal comfort at home is important – particularly when travel and movement are limited. New Life Mobility makes every effort to ensure that each item of furniture is specifically designed to suit individual needs. This extra level of support and relief could well improve your standard of life.newlifemobility.co.uk

Upgrade your garage kit

Rather than making multiple journeys to the nearby garage or petrol station, invest in equipment to keep your car in tip-top condition at home. There’s plenty of DIY that can be easily carried out on your vehicle, whether it’s a family car or a prized motorbike.

Tyres can be swiftly inflated at home with Ring’s award-winning range of tyre inflators (from less than £40), and its tyre sealant is ideal for quickly patching up small punctures.

You could also look into getting an LED inspection light – get under your bonnet, get to know your vehicle and learn a bit more about the basics of mechanics.With it, you can stop exhaust smoke, reduce emissions, flush a radiator, clean out the fuel system and improve engine performance. Everything you need is easy to use and affordable with Ring.speeding.co.uk

Deep clean your garden

It may seem like an odd suggestion, but patios are often overlooked or unnecessarily replaced. It’s only when you deep-clean them that you realise how much a refresh was required – and how simple a task it can be.

A finalist in the RHS Chelsea Garden Product of the Year 2020 competition, the Patio Black Spot Removal System has turned the idea of DIY exterior cleaning on its head. This complete restoration solution gently lifts layers of organic growth without damaging either the stone beneath or surrounding plants. It restores your patio to how it looked when it was first laid and helps to permanently prevent the return of black spot and other organic growth.

To use, remove loose surface dirt, apply the solution suitable for your paving as instructed, and watch the transformation take place before your eyes. It’ll save you the expense of replacing your patio and let you concentrate on making the most of summer in a setting as good as new.patioblackspotremoval.com

Save yourself time and money

Installing a water filtration system, or a boiling tap, can be costly. But instant filtered boiling and chilled water on demand is available at an affordable price with BIBO.

The system’s handsome design means it will sit proudly on any countertop. It simply connects to a cold-water supply and transforms tap water into an unlimited source of filtered water.

You won’t have to wait for the kettle to boil again, and if you’re from a household that buys bottled water (which one in ten of us are), then you’ll save money and reduce your impact on the environment at the same time. Set it to the temperature you want it, with boiling water as high as 98C and cold set as low as 4C.

Use offer code ‘WATERWEEK’ at checkout to receive £50 off your rental or purchase.bibowater.co.uk

Be the host with the most interesting glassware

Whether you’re planning for a garden gathering in keeping with lockdown regulations or looking a little further ahead to the return of dinner parties, luxury glassware will elevate your event. Legacy Antiques specialises in glass and crystal dating all the way back to 1750.

It stocks both stemware and tableware from British makers like Dartington and Royal Doulton, curating a collection of classics from all over the UK as well as Europe, Scandinavia and worldwide — you can tailor your search accordingly, depending on your interest.

You can even choose from pharmaceutical glassware from the 19th and 20th centuries, making for a wonderful conversation starter. Whether you’re looking for an investment or just feeding your nostalgia, antiques are often more affordable and better quality than their modern-day equivalents, with green credentials to boot.legacyantiques.co.uk

Interior pet decor

Beds, toys and other pet accessories can complement your home and fit in with your décor with a little thought and research.

Wolfybeds makes designer dog beds and luxury pet accessories for discerning pets (and their owners). Selling internationally, it offers stylish, comfortable and supportive beds, all available in a wide range of colours to complement your home.

If you’re hoping to get away this year and take your dog with you, there’s even crate and travel beds with waterproof mattresses for multipurpose use.

All bed covers are machine washable at 30C, so they always look and smell as good as new. You can even have them personalised with their own names — or whatever you fancy — in a range of fonts and thread colours.

Get 10% off with the exclusive discount code ‘THEWEEK10’. Offer ends 10 August 2020.wolfybeds.co.uk

Create the restaurant experience at home

If you’ve grown tired of the same old dishes – or your own home cooking – and you are looking for new ideas in the kitchen, a little inspiration will go a long way. We Brits may be partial to Italian cuisine, and while a dab hand in the kitchen will be able to whip up a worthy pasta dish, an authentically Italian pizza isn’t so easy to create at home.

Upgrading your outdoor cooking kit to include a gas- or wood-fired pizza oven won’t just solve the monotony of cooking at home, it’ll also ensure you’re geared up to host garden parties as soon as we get the green light for large gatherings. With an oven from The Pizza Oven Shop, priced from £229 to £10,000, you can cook amazing, restaurant-quality stone-baked pizza in just 60 seconds.thepizzaovenshop.com

Invest in artwork

Add a little ‘je ne sais quoi’ to your home and garden without embarking on a total design overhaul by picking up a sculpture.

Bronze lasts a lifetime and, with more than 500 designs from Avant Garden Bronze Collection to choose from, there’s a style to suit every taste. The range includes life-sized animals, birds and figurines, as well as water features, armillary sphere sundials, abstract modern creations and memorial urns.

The solid bronze sculptures are water- and weather-resistant, meaning they won’t rust, and each is entirely handcrafted.

Display your chosen piece inside or outside on a Chinese Limestone Pedestal, currently half price with every bronze sculpture or statue.avantgardenguernsey.com

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