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Dealing with United Health Care is like pulling teeth

Apr 22nd 2010 1:10PM The whole basis for our system is private companies who profit from human suffering. Deal with it.

Create the Look: Jennifer Aniston's Platform Bed

Apr 17th 2010 11:59AM Terrific idea!

DIY Diary: Ingredients for a Successful Remodel

Feb 18th 2010 11:35PM Yes, thank you for pointing that out. I should have written that the wine was a reward after the work was done. In fact, I'm going to edit the article now to reflect the reality. Thanks again!

How Much Will That Remodel Add to Your Home's Resale Value?

Feb 4th 2010 10:48AM Thanks for your well-thought-out comments, Jake! You are spot on in terms of safety. Yes, remodeling is dangerous. I stay away from power saws and would never do electrical work.

But, this being that great free country called United States of America, people are going to want to do their own work. It's just how some of us roll. And as we are a DIY site, we naturally want to help do-it-yourselfers do it better and safer. Otherwise, we'd just put one sentence on the home page -- Don't do anything yourself. Hire someone -- and then we'd go home and look for jobs.

I can't buy the notion of DIY-ers hurting small companies. Am I putting a nail salon out of business each time I trim my nails? Are you putting the car wash out of business when you wash your own car? Do I have to start feeling guilty about mowing my lawn?

It's a very personal decision what we do for ourselves and what we hire out. And with all the bad experiences people have with incompetent, overly committed, disorganized and underfunded contracting companies, well, there's going to be a backlash. The homeowners are partly at fault for taking the lowest bids so often, even when a much better company would do the work for a slightly higher cost. There seems to be a demand for bad companies.

So again, thanks for your comments. I hear ya! And I hope you prosper in the coming year by finding a whole bunch of great clients.

P.S. I did check out the 350 project at www.the350project.net and it's very impressive.

How Much Will That Remodel Add to Your Home's Resale Value?

Feb 2nd 2010 3:50PM I agree that the typical homeowner won't do as good a job as the best professional. Not even close. But as you said, even some so-called professionals will not do a good job, thus the beauty of DIY. If someone's going to mess up, I'd rather it be me than someone I've paid tens of thousands of dollars. In my line of work, writing about remodels, I've seen some pretty darn decent DIY additions. And if DIY-ers are getting permits and building inspections along the way (foundation, pre-drywall, etc.), I don't see how they could end up with a condemned house.

How Much Will That Remodel Add to Your Home's Resale Value?

Feb 2nd 2010 3:41PM Thank you for your insights, Helena. I think that's great advice to mainly do remodels for the benefit of your family and not only as a sales tactic.

Making News: New Dimmer Switch Eliminates Flicker in CFLs

Jan 27th 2010 2:51PM That's a good one!

Making News: "Not So Big House" Author Teams with Marvin to Design Sustainable Window

Jan 27th 2010 10:17AM Wes, I spoke with John Kirchner at Marvin and here's what he said about how far the window bumps out:

From the interior sill, the window projects out 2 1/4”. It’s less on the outside depending on the glass used — anywhere from 3/4” to 1 1/4”.

Hope this helps!

8 things that will happen if the Saints make the Super Bowl

Jan 25th 2010 10:46PM This is firggin' hilarious. And yes, it will all happen!

New Orleans' Mardi Gras a family-friendly affair

Jan 25th 2010 10:45PM You're so right. Mardi Gras is a family affair. Catching beads and trinkets thrown from the floats is insanely fun. I usually get so many I wonder what the heck I was thinking. In the moment, though, I WANT those things! What a great February: first the Super Bowl and then the parades. Heaven.

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