Shifting Houses During COVID? Take these Safety Measures

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It’s a known fact, shiting houses is no easy task when done on a normal day. This is the new normal and requires more precautions that need to be taken. Here are a few measures that you can take to ensure that you and your family are safe during the big move.

 

Scout the Area Before Shifting Houses

It goes without saying that you need to triple check the region you are shifting to. We’re not talking about reasons related to workplace or marketplace proximity. We’re talking about the ZONE. If you are shifting to a region with a particularly low emergence of cases, then your chances of contracting COVID while shifting is 70% lesser. However, if you are shifting to a region that is near a containment zone then it might be a good idea to postpone your moving plans by a couple of months. During this process you will interact with several individuals that live in these zones and the chances of infection will be extremely high. If time is not a luxury you can afford, then keep reading for our additional precautions you can take while shiting houses 

 

Take the Digital Route 

As is routine, we tend to physically check anything we are placing a high-level investment on. There are no unboxing videos for homes so obviously, you feel the compulsion to physically check out your homes before shifting. PLEASE avoid this as each time you step outdoors you are actively affecting the transmission rate of your city. Virtual tours are slowly being incorporated by major brokerage firms and housing companies. Even apartment societies have started implementing the same. You don’t need to physically meet your potential landlord when you can discuss the payments and other details over the phone. Keep the same in mind for your rental agreements and other documentation. State governments are collectively pushing for e-documents so you can get your paperwork done without leaving your home. 

 

Movers and Packers of The World

Even if you’re a minimalist, you can’t shift all your belongings yourself. The requirement of professional movers and packers is imminent. Keep in mind the word “Professional”. Every single service-based business has had to undertake many precautionary measures so as to provide a safe service. Look for movers that are certified and transparent in their services. Remember, if the movers are not taking the required precautions, they may not even be allowed into the apartment where you are shifting. This is going to be far more complicated and tedious than a usual shifting process so pre-plan your packing and make an inventory of everything that needs to be packed by the movers specifically.  

 

Fumigate, Don’t Wait!

The house you are going to shift into will need a large amount of clean up that most rental agreements do not cover. In other words, the cost of making your ‘safe’ is entirely on you. You might be picturing yourself with multiple sanitizer bottles spraying every inch of the house but there’s a much simpler solution. Fumigation is the process of killing bacteria and viruses, not just in the air but also on surfaces. In homes that have existing furniture and objects, the fumigation would take longer but you have an empty house! Just get it fumigated a couple of days before your shift, and you will have a clean and disinfected home. Remember to disinfect your belongings after the packers have left them. 

 

Stay Social from a Distance

It’s unavoidable. You are shifting your home and you can’t do it alone. There will be a number of people involved in the process and you will have to interact with them all. So the best advice we can give is the same advice given by the government and the medical professionals. Maintain social distancing with the movers and packers. They are trained to do the same. Wear a mask at all times and don’t forget to disinfect your hands every chance you get as you will be touching a lot of belongings and surfaces. Ensure that you ask your landlord, broker, and security guards to adopt the same safety measures while interacting with you. 

Safety measures can be many, however, they will be necessary while shifting houses. The threat is real and the pandemic isn’t over. Although we need to adapt to the new normal there, we can adapt to it, safely. Our packers and movers are well trained in safety protocols and follow WHO-recommended safety measures. We suggest you hold on to the move, but if shifting houses is a must, then speak to our experts.

 

Questions About Construction of a Home?

Building your home is a once in a lifetime experience for most of us. How do ensure the experience remains memorable? These are a few steps that you can take that will help you in your long walk home.

Fix your budget

Very few houses in your city or town look like the clones of one another! Hence, it is easy to understand that every house is built differently and on a different budget. Setting a budget is perhaps the most important aspect of a home-building project. Unless you find a balance between what you want to spend and how much you can afford to spend, you won’t be able to make a correct plan for the rest of the building project.

Start off by analyzing your financial strengths, your income pattern, your requirements, your borrowing options, etc and then you will know what the ideal budget for your home construction project is.

 

The budget must include the basic costs :

  • Cost of the plot/land
  • Cost of registration
  • Cost of construction which can be approximated around Rs 1500-1800 per sq. feet depending on the location, the foundation and the framing, materials used, labour cost, additional fittings and fixtures and the finesse.Other unforeseen expenses of 20% needs to be estimated
  • Interior Design
  • Permits 


Housejoy’s advice: Once you finalize your budget, you need to understand your cash flow accordingly. The total amount that would be the down-payment and the amount of loan that you will be applying for needs to be considered. This would help you get an idea on your EMI and the total spend on constructing your house. Balance it.

 

Choose the location of the plot based on your budget

Once you know how much you can spend, get down to business. Start by looking at plots on which you can build your home. If you already have a plot in your name, consider a quarter of your job done. If not, start researching. Decide the location, the type of land (a plot for a farmhouse, a plot in a gated community). It’s advisable to look for a suitable plot within your budget.

Points to consider while choosing the best plot:

  • Location and other facilities and amenities needed in the vicinity
  • Favorable neighbourhood
  • Soil condition
  • Water table nearby
  • Topography of the location
  • Accessibility and infrastructure
  • Zoning and legal restrictions
  • Availability of water, electricity, and other essential amenities
  • Rainwater system and sewage

 


Housejoy’s Advice: Ensure you do the following checks before buying:

      • Search the property in the municipality to ensure that there are no legal complications in the same
      • Property Taxes have been duly paid and receipts provided
      • The plot has a minimum street frontage so that there would be no hassles on getting building permits and future expansion possibilities. 

Buy the plot


This is an obvious step but one of the most important parts of the process. You need to ensure that the process is well executed and your documents are in place.

The documents that you need to keep handy before buying the plot

    • Property tax receipt from the previous owner
    • A clear deed or land title mentioning that the land is a NA (non-agricultural) land 

The documents that you need to keep handy before construction of your house are:

      • FSI or Floor Space Index with a floor plan
      • Carpet area need
      • Sales deed and agreement
      • Relevant approvals and permission for construction

 

Hire an architect


You may be ambitious but no matter what the reason is, do not make the mistake of trying to plan the layout and design of your house on your own. This is a blunder many people make and they live to regret their decision.

You have to hire an architect at this step as only a trained and qualified architect can make the most useful and cost-effective home plan for you. Tell the architect what your requirements and wishes are and let the expert make the plan for you.

Choose the builder based on the following aspects:

  • Credentials and past work
  • Reviews of ex-clients
  • Style and personality which needs to be in sync with what you are looking for
  • Price

 

Get a proper floor plan –
A generic house can seldom become your beloved, cosy home. Convey your ideas to the architect and tell him or her about the budget, the number of residents, your preferences. You are not obligated to approve the very first floor plan the architect presents you. Sit with your architect and work on drafts till you come up with the most suitable floor plan for your home.

 

  • Apply for permits –
    After you have identified the plot, hired an architect and finalised the floor plan, you need to complete the extremely crucial task of obtaining the permits. Permits are issued by different governing bodies, depending on the geographic location of the plot. If you want to build your home in a city, you need to get permits and licences from the municipality. If you want to carry out the residential home construction in a village, you need to approach the panchayat. You will also need permits for installing water and electric connections in the house. Make sure you have all the permits before you begin.  
  • Identify the builder –
    It will be difficult to construct your home properly and on time unless you have a good builder to work for you. A good builder brings together a skilled and experienced team of workers who work well to get the job done efficiently and on time. Make sure you hire a builder who is reputed and also affordable. Finding the perfect builder is ideal, so choose your builder with care.

 

Factors to consider while opting for the right builder:

  • Experience of the builder and his past work
  • The success rate
  • The duration taken for completion of the project of past assignments
  • Number of ongoing projects
  • The entire team and their average tenure of association with the builder
  • Quality check
  • After sales service

This is not an exhaustive list but only a tentative one which is mandatory for you to check before you entrust the responsibility of your house to the builder!

 

Allot Time
You need to assign a stipulated time period for the construction work. The home construction project cannot go on for years. You need to identify the time period within which the job can be completed. Convey the information to your architect and builders to ensure your home gets constructed on time.

 

  • Plan the electricity and plumbing framework –
    A home cannot be liveable unless it has power and water. These form the two most important components of a house. So make sure the electricity and plumbing framework is planned and executed perfectly. Your architect and builder should also be very mindful about these design aspects and implement them flawlessly when planning and constructing the house for you. 
  • Look for sustainability –
    Always build a house that would be easy to sell. This doesn’t mean that you will sell your dream home soon, but if you ever plan to do so, you should be able to do it effortlessly. If the design plan of the house is too unique and unusual, it would become very challenging for you to find buyers later on. Also, make the house as sustainable as you can. Use materials in home construction that are eco-friendly.

    Housejoy’s advice: Do not invest a lot in furniture and fixtures and expensive interior designing right at the beginning. It can always be improved later. Also, try and install a few solar panels on the roof. Look into cemented furniture options. These measures will allow you to save on expenses in the long run. 

Stay involved

Remember, you are building your dream home and so you need to stay involved at all times. Visit the construction site as frequently as possible. Stay updated. Get involved in the material procurement process. When you stay involved, the job takes place more efficiently and you also get to see your home taking shape slowly yet steadily.

Need expert advice when it comes to construction? We suggest you have a conversation with our experts and understand how our opting for our unique construction packages can save you money and time.

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Build on a Budget: How to Reduce Construction Costs

The primary concern when thinking about residential home construction is the construction cost. These costs cover an entire project that is by no means a small amount. However, it is possible for these costs to be significantly reduced by simply keeping a few things in mind and build on a budget

 

Plan Smart & Stick to it

The first key to cost reduction is to map out the individual costs of each process. This gives you a birds-eye view of what you are looking for and enables you to effectively plan your progress.

 

Use Affordable Alternatives


You don’t always need expensive materials to make your home sophisticated and elegant. So you can cut down your costs by finding affordable and good quality alternative materials that will do the same job. Here you can find How to Make a Luxury Home on a Tight Budget

 

Keep Designs Simple

Customizing is great, but when it comes to intricate designs it might end up increasing your costs by a large margin. So try and keep things simple yet elegant to reduce the construction cost.

Avoid Last-Minute Changes

When planning the layout and design, make sure you are 100% happy with the blueprint. If not, make sure those changes are made immediately on the spot. This will stop you from making last-minute changes and keep the project on track. These small changes could impact your budget heavily.

 

Pick the Right Team

A skilled and trained team goes hand-in-hand with low budget cost construction. This team helps you create a plan that you will not need to change later on. Furthermore, the team makes every decision based on your finalized budget and thus are in a better position to work and help you build on a budget.

So, get started on your dream home construction. And while you’re at it, don’t forget to follow these tips to reduce the construction costs. For expert help, click the button below!

 

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Look Good. Be Safe: Let the Salon Come Home

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Before you opt for our salon-at-home services, we want you to understand that our priority will always be your safety. Rejuvenating you comes next

Everything is sterilized. Everything!

Our experts are mandated to sterilize every single piece of equipment they use. From their tools to the bag they carry them in. Even single-use disposable kits are sterilized as an added precaution.

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We are always careful

Before entering your home, experts will check their own temperature and once again ensure that their equipment is properly packed and intact. No risk of torn gloves or masks.

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What happens with kits, stays with kits.

Our experts use single-use kits which are disposed of immediately post service. Even the Sanex strip and chair cloths are one-time use only.

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No secrets at your salon at home!

You can ask the expert to show all the equipment to you before service. If you wish, the expert will check his temperature and double-check on his equipment.

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Your wish is our command

The service will only start after every check has been made to your satisfaction. If you feel that the precautions aren’t up to your mark then you can refuse the service on the spot. The service is only rendered after your approval.

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Your safety is the priority. We’ll say that again and again.

All experts are equipped with masks, disposable gloves, sanitizers, and thermometers. Our experts will wear a mask throughout the service and will constantly sanitize. We request you to kindly sanitize the space in which you want your service and take all the necessary precautions. 

 We aim to do the render services with utmost precaution so that you can enjoy a well deserved, relaxing beauty treatment that you waited for months for.

We couldn’t be more careful and yet we will go the extra mile when it comes to pampering you! We aim to do render services with utmost precaution so that you can enjoy a well deserved, relaxing beauty treatment that you’ve waited months for. It’s time to get rid of the lockdown look.

The Importance of Fumigation In Present Times

It’s safe to proclaim that most of us are well aware of the dangers of Covid19 and the precautionary steps required to protect ourselves and our loved ones from it.  It’s evident that the coronavirus does not rely purely on human contact for transmission and can be picked up from compromised surfaces or the air in your immediate vicinity.

Spraying disinfectants on groceries, furniture, and workspaces can help, however, dealing with the invisible contaminants in the air can be challenging. According to an article in medRxiv, ”the Covid19 virus can stay afloat in the air for about 3 hours”. A single cough or sneeze deploys this virus and floats around until falling and settling on surfaces. If any human were to stand or pass through this region of viruses, they can contract it simply by inhaling the air around them.

The solution to these unseen problems? One word — Fumigation.

Fumigation is the process of filling a confined area with decontaminants to kill germs and viruses. This process is being heavily followed by China, South Korea, and Italy to disinfect public spaces and offices. However, the problem comes not with the process of fumigation but from one of the components that make fumigation so effective.

The most common disinfectant used in fumigation is Sodium Hypochlorite more commonly known as ‘Bleach’. Bleach has been used for a wide variety of disinfectant purposes but there is a downside to using this solution as a fumigant. Bleach is an irritant for humans and has been linked to COPD (Chronic Pulmonary Obstructive Disease) and Asthma in individuals who suffered from prolonged exposure to these chemicals. Furthermore, Zhang Liubo, a researcher with China’s Center for Disease Control and Prevention, has stressed on avoiding repeated disinfection with these chemicals as they could lead to environmental fallouts as well.

With this information, it would seem that Fumigation is NOT a viable long-term protection against the virus and we are simply at the mercy of our surroundings. But isolating the problem is the first step towards a solution and there is a solution indeed.

There are many formulations of fumigants that do not require Bleach for disinfecting purposes. Formulations such as Virkon, Virex, and Virosil have been found to be highly effective against the Covid19 Virus and do not contain any toxic chemicals. This could be deemed safe for humans. These formulations pose no danger to humans or pets which makes them the go-to solutions for home and office fumigation.

So, the question arises as to why formulations containing Bleach should even be used if safer alternatives exist?

The answer; cost.

Bleach is a cheaper substance to formulate and while it’s effectiveness against the Covid19 Virus is still debatable, there is no denying that it’s long history of use as a cost-effective disinfectant has played a major role in its continued use in fumigation. Fortunately, there are a large number of companies pushing for non-bleach decontaminants that are cost-effective and safe.

This is a time where safety and caution are of utmost importance. One of the rare times where any action of ours could either spell doom for the people around us OR help them get through the pandemic. Fumigation is one of the strongest and simplest methods to disinfect surfaces, spaces and the surrounding air.

Trust the experts when it comes to fumigation of homes and office spaces. Speak to our representatives.

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Easy Fixes for the 5 Most Common Issues with Household Appliances

Deciding whether to repair or replace your defective appliance can be a tough choice. Of course, if the appliance is broken then it’s a no brainer – get a new one and let the old one, sadly, rest in pieces. However, there are times when simple fixes can get your ‘electric’ comrade up and running. Take a look at these quick fixes.

 

Appliance: Refrigerator
Issue: Isn’t cooling as well as it used to.

Solution: First, check the obvious – the temperature settings. Then, clean the gasket, make sure it’s closed properly and isn’t allowing the cool air to escape. Next, check the seal around the refrigerator door. Lastly, unplug the refrigerator and clean the coils with a vacuum cleaner or a brush. This will remove any dust or hair and ensure your refrigerator works more efficiently.

 

 

Appliance: Washing Machine
Issue: Musty Smells

Solution: Oddly enough, one of the reasons for the ‘musty’ smell from your washing machine is using too much detergent. Using as recommended (not more than two tablespoons) and using limited amounts of fabric softener, can prevent the excess product from getting stuck to the machine. Another reason for the smell is trapped moisture. A simple way to solve this is to dry out the door and mop up the excess water in the machine after each wash cycle. You could also leave the door ajar for a while.

 

 

Appliance: Air Conditioner
Issue: Isn’t cooling the room.

When this happens, its usually caused by a blocked or dirty air condenser. First, check the outside unit and make sure the air circulation is proper. Remove anything that’s on it and clean the area around it. Next, check to see if your filter is clean. Getting the filter cleaned at least twice a year is recommended ( maybe more often if you’re living in a humid/hot city and use the AC quite often)

 

 

Appliance: Geyser
Issue: Water dripping from the geyser

Solution:  There could be many reasons for a leaky geyser — a bad plumbing connection, overheating, corroded water tank, leaking valves or high pressure. Nevertheless, the only real solution for this is to call a professional. It’s a safer option.

 

 


Appliance: TV
Issue: Pixelating

Solution: Picture is breaking or pixelating? It’s probably due to a weak signal. Check if all the connections (from the wall to the cable box, from the cable box to the TV) are tight. If it still doesn’t correct the issue, call a technician.

Before deciding the fate of your fave household appliances, consider the costs involved and also the age of the appliance. If you’ve tried everything possible and still unable to fix the issue at hand, it always better to call in the professionals and get it fixed, post the lockdown, of course.

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Don’t be Dripping On Plumbing Issues!

Has ‘Call the Plumber’ been on your to-do list for weeks? Unless a pipe is broken and your home is under the danger of flooding, chances are that you’ll let plumbing problems persist before finally seeking help. Better late than never – so the wise once proclaimed. We bet they had their plumbing sorted and here’s how you can have it all figured out, too.

 

From the tap, folks!

Constant drips can ruin floors, walls or ceilings. It can cause significant damage to the walls, structural damage, distort a paint job and peel away wallpaper.  Fixing it at the right moment,  will not only save you money but ensures your home remains sturdy for years.

Untold Mold

Stagnant water leads to the development of mildew and mold.  Not only does it look displeasing, breathing in mold spores can lead to serious health concerns! If you already notice mold forming in your abode, along with the plumber you’ll have to call someone to get rid of the nasty slippery, mold.

 

Pest Infest

Pests are attracted to wet, moist environments. The moisture also makes surfaces and materials weaker, making it easier for pests to burrow through and nest. Hidden water leaks can be as good as ‘welcome’ signs for pests and insects.

 

Lost in the Wood

Wood can rot and deteriorate if water pipes are installed too close to cabinets, floorboards, or other wooden fixtures. Expensive to fix and hard to detect. It’s advisable to call in the experts and have them fix any evident issues.

 

Shocking  Plumbing Stories

Leaks can cause electrical wires to corrode which in turn could promote mold growth. Electric short circuits caused by water leaks are more common than you think. Those frequent shocks that wake you up while you brush your teeth might not just be caused due to a faulty switch!

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Water Waste!

With leaks, you’re paying for water that you’re not using leading to an inflated water bill. Also, living with water wastage is not an eco-friendly way to run a house!

Plumbing problems can be complicated, stay one step ahead by calling a plumber to gain a better understanding of the situation. If you notice leaks, foul smells, lower pressure from any of the outlets, remember help is just a click away.

 

Why You Shouldn’t Choose Non-Eco Friendly Pest-Control Methods

Regular pest control is an absolute necessity for the health and wellness of people and property. However, these treatments can be quite toxic to non-targets. No matter how thorough you are with your cleaning, if you do face an issue with an infestation, its always better to opt for an eco-friendly or natural pest control method. It’s safer for you, your family and your environment!

 

Collateral Damage

Chemical sprays can kill your plants and also damage soil, making it infertile. If your treatment area is anywhere near the garden, it can kill any flora within the affected vicinity. These chemicals also stay buried in the soil for a long time. With natural pest control treatments, only pesky insects are targeted, keeping your garden and your precious plants safe. 

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Health Complications

Any amount of exposure to these harmful chemicals can be dangerous to human development, reproduction, and the overall health of a human. Children or pets in the house are more at risk if left unsupervised. These chemicals will cause harm if they ever enter their bodies.

 

Lethal Side-Effects

Certain types of chemicals can eat away at wood and further damage your furniture, windows, and doors. Sometimes getting rid of those terrible termites using toxic pest control methods may lead to more nasty complications. Still not convinced?

 

The Pest Resistance

There is a possibility that bugs and rodents develop a resistance to chemicals over time. This resistance gets passed down from generation to generation making the GenX of pests more difficult to deal with. The pest-control treatments may sometimes render themselves useless. 

 

Affects Carbon-Footprint

When pesticides are applied or sprayed (even to a small area), they infuse with the surrounding air, water, and soil and stay there for long periods of time. This damages our ecosystem. Using an eco-friendly method reduces your carbon footprint and avoid further disrupting the natural balance of the ecosystem. 

 

Inconvenient Methods

Unlike non-eco-friendly pest control methods, natural pest control methods are odorless and non-lethal. Taking precautions such as covering food, cleaning out the fridge or evacuating the house will be limited as its an easier way to keep pests out without turning your home upside-down

 

Using natural pest control treatments gets the job done while ensuring that you don’t put our environment or your loved ones in harms way. With Housejoy, every pest control treatment involves the use of eco-friendly products used by experienced and trained professionals. So you can be sure that you and your family are safe. Although, we won’t say the same for those pesky pests.

 

Building Contractor: What He Does Can Be Crucial for Construction

When you’re constructing or building a house, the first thing anyone asks will be about the  contractor. Before you start the process of finding one; it’s helpful to know exactly what a contractor does. Here are some of the main tasks of a contractor:

Contracts

Like the name suggests, a contractor is responsible for finding, soliciting bids from and scheduling all the subcontractors that are required for the entire project. A subcontractor will come and go when their job is done, but the contractor will see the entire project through till the end. This ensures that you have one main point-of-contact and he/she deals with everyone else.

Legal Work

The contractor obtains the necessary permits, is up to date on the latest codes and laws and sees that the entire project (including the design) complies with all the necessary building codes. 

  1. Scheduling

The contractor has to carefully schedule the different work (ordering materials, delivery, preparing the site, framing, start of electrical and plumbing, etc.) so that there’s no delay in one step which causes a delay in everything else.

  1. Overseeing Renovations

Contractors are also required during remodelling and renovations. Again, they get the right team for the job, plan, schedule, coordinate and see that the project is completed on time and within budget. 

4.Coordination and Communication

The contractor coordinates with designers, architects and engineers to develop a plan. He/She is the connection between you and various other stakeholders involved. The contractor will be your eyes and ears throughout the project and will keep you updated on the progress.

 

A good contractor guarantees better quality of work and saves you a lot of time, trouble, and money. Housejoy has an experienced team of skilled contractors whose main focus is customer satisfaction and creating a hassle-free experience when they construct their dream home.

CelebCribs: A Take on Radhika Apte’s Space of Zen

Truly bold and beautiful – Radhika Apte is known for choosing unique roles and portraying strong women. Just like her film choices, her home is also anything but ordinary. Here are some key takeaways from the design and décor of her 2.5BHK apartment in Versova, Mumbai.

Light and Bright

Radhika says she and her husband looked for houses with plenty of natural lighting. Her living room has a huge window overlooking the seating area. Speaking of seating, all the furniture in this room is of low height so nothing obstructs the natural light coming in. Radhika also wanted to incorporate colour around the house so the guest bedroom has a bright yellow wall, her room doors are of different colours and there are colourful walls around the house and a bright blue kitchen! 

 

Make the most of space

Remember the huge window we were talking about earlier, well it used to be a balcony! They decided to take the balcony in to widen the room and also give the room a moor ‘outdoor’ feel. The windows are usually open so there’s plenty of fresh air. The ceilings are high, making the rooms spacious and airy.

Indoor plants

To make the home more calm and relaxing, there are plenty of plants around the house. Radhika considers them therapeutic and also believes they increase positive energy.  She says she grew up around trees so loves being surrounded by greenery. 

Old is Gold

There are pieces of furniture from her grandparents and her parents. She’s also a fan of vintage furniture and has collected pieces from Mumbai and Pune. Her first chair that she bought with her own money has found its forever home here.

Minimalistic Décor

The house isn’t crowded with large, flashy decor. There are mostly essential pieces of furniture, framed paintings, textured rugs, sheer curtains and a few antique accessories. There is a full-length mirror in the bedroom that reflects light and make it seem bigger than it is. 

 Overall, her home is warm and welcoming and looks ordinary with a subtle hint of glamour. With excellent use of space, the home meets their needs perfectly. We hope these points inspired you and if you still need an expert for to polish our idea – book an appointment with a Housejoy expert with ease.