Muhammad Mukarram Technical Services L.L.C

Tag Painting Contracting

How to Restore a Jet Ski

The restoration of a older model jet ski can be a rewarding experience upon completion. If you’ve lived by the water for the better part of your life, you should be at least remotely familiar with jet skis, maybe even intimately familiar. This read is for those personal watercraft enthusiasts who may wish to restore a jet ski. The phrase “how to restore a jet ski” is not necessarily a how to rebuild carbs or pumps, but how to approach a restoration project from day one. First of all it is important to consider that the people who can best afford to restore a jet ski, usually don’t. Those who can’t afford restoration projects are usually the ones that desire and ultimately attempt them. Many times, these projects usually come undone because the owner failed to anticipate the cost properly. Fixer upper jet skis are rarely good deals. Money is a very important aspect in these projects.

If you haven’t got cash, then it’s likely a mistake to think that you can perform a complete restoration. Looking at it from another point of view however, taking a well designed, well built, older jet ski and restoring it can be the most cost effective way to get yourself onto a good quality jet ski that you would not otherwise be able to afford. Older models tend to have less bells and whistles but when you’re cruising across the water with a breeze in your hair, does that really matter? Regarding your best bang for the buck, it is possible for the economics of such a project to work out because a lot of the investment is going to be old fashion elbow grease. The similarities between jet skis and older homes are astounding. This is evident by watching just about any home improvement show on television. Someone takes an older home, restores and rebuilds the house and reaps heaps of profit and pride. The restoration of vintage model jet ski, or even a late model personal watercraft with an enormous amount of hours, can produce a high resale value in some cases, but the pride of a self restored jet ski is a guarantee.

Here are some basic concepts to guide anyone in the right direction regarding their own jet ski restoration project. First, there is a matter of legalities. Be sure the jet ski comes equipped with a title of ownership or some form of legitimate registration. One could only imagine the horror of a fully restored personal watercraft that was not legal to operate on public waters.Of course, laws vary greatly among the states so check your locality either at the department of motor vehicles or other appropriate governing office. Now on to the fun stuff… The hull of the watercraft should be sound and not require any type of substantial reconstruction. A solid foundation is the best way to start any project. If you plan on investing your hard earned money, be sure it is a desirable model based on the possibility you’ll need to resell at some point. Do your financial homework, an accurate estimation of overall cost is essential to any project. next of course be sure you have the funds allocated to complete the job, maybe even a buffer is even a good idea. Too many projects go uncompleted thanks to a lack of funding. A very liberal consideration needs to be given to total restore time as well. Chances are that it will take about twice as long to complete your project than originally anticipated. Being that personal watercraft are a seasonal vehicle in most cases, off-season work would be best so there is no hurry with critical portions of your work. Patience is key from start to finish.

Another thought to consider is partial sub-contracting. If there is any part of the engine or hull where an expert can achieve better, or longer lasting results, than go for it. There is no shame in hiring out a portion of the restore if you feel you may not do the best job on your own. Some mechanics are not strong electricians and vice versa. It is important to know when assistance is necessary. Painting or refinishing the hull with a custom paint scheme is a great example of something that may need to be handled by a professional.

Nevertheless, these types of restoration projects are not for everyone. But for those that have desire, skill, time, and plenty of money, such projects can be rewarding and ultimately enjoyable. Maybe the trick to your success is to attack the restore with a business-like attitude. Guaranteed you’ll feel like a million dollars on the day you place the jet ski back in the water.

Source by Chet Val

A Power Washing Consultant’s Tips for Tapping Into the Rail Industry

In this tough economy, it may be surprising to hear that pressure washing railcars and locomotives is a lucrative market. In the past, rail companies did the work internally, but today most companies outsource the work to a power washing company. According to Paul Horsley, a professional power washing consultant and President of Scotts Pressure Wash in Calgary, Alberta, Canada, it’s a market that pressure wash companies should seriously consider tapping into:

“The rail industry in North America is much bigger than most people think and, just like other modes of transportation, railway companies need power washing services,” says Horsley. “Statistics from the Association of American Railroads show that there are more than 1.59 million freight cars and 24,143 locomotives in service throughout Canada, Mexico and the United States. You can bet a good number of those railcars travel through your state in any given day!”

From removing graffiti from tankers, to dry sweeping boxcars or degreasing locomotives, the industry offers a wellspring of opportunities for any power washing company willing to put in a little extra effort to build a client base and secure contracts.

Although adding the rail industry to your service list might sound intimidating, most of what you know from pressure washing trucks can be applied to railcars. With a little extra research, and some advice from a pressure wash consultant, working on the railroad is an entirely attainable and profitable goal.

Here’s what you need to know before preparing a bid:

The type of railcar you need to clean. Ask your client if there are industry or company-specific regulations you should know. For example, when washing locomotives, pressure washing the disk brakes may cause corrosion, resulting in brake failure. This is a significant safety hazard, and the American Association of Railroads has written guidelines dictating that waterproof tarps must cover the brakes before starting any power washing.

Location. Where the work will be done? Who owns the land? Is there an available source of water? What are the environmental constraints and where will wastewater be disposed? Wastewater recovery requires careful planning: trucking in water, having access to a lift to work on top of railcars, ensuring that all pressure wash units are in working order and equipped with the appropriate chemicals and, most importantly, supplying proper safety gear to protect workers from chemical overspray and falling hazards.

Timeline. Horsley says to expect tight deadlines in railway industry contracts since they need to get their railcars back in service as soon as possible. It’s not unusual to be asked to clean an entire unit train, consisting of 125 railcars, in three days. Horsley also explains the importance of visiting the site ahead of time:

“Although I did my due diligence and visited the rural site in advance, I never considered how different that site would be after a period of heavy rainfall. We only had a short window of opportunity to complete the work and, because of the rain, we incurred major difficulties getting equipment in and out of the site. To say it was a challenge to complete the job on time and on budget would be an understatement! I’ve since learned that it’s a good idea to build an extra day into the bid, to allow for unforeseen circumstances.”

After you’ve talked to a pressure wash consultant and have a system in place, you’re ready to start cleaning railcars. The most common chemicals used in railcar cleaning are sulfuric acid, ammonium bifluoride and hydrofluoric acid. Cleaning uses a six-step process:

1) Clean the roof: apply chemical wash and rinse

2) Clean the sides and undercarriage

3) At the same time, begin wastewater recovery

4) Remove graffiti, which might require manual scrubbing

5) Apply degreaser, if necessary

6) Rinse entire unit, from the top down, including wheels and undercarriage

7) Repeat. Repeat. Repeat.

Rail-related cleaning opportunities include:

– Boxcars (Pressure wash exteriors. Dry sweep/steam interiors.)

– Tankers (Exterior pressure washing and graffiti removal)

– Grain Hoppers (Manual removal of debris accumulated on ends decks and pressure washing)

– Locomotives (Exterior pressure washing with special attention to engine compartment)

“Once you get a system in place, the work goes relatively quickly,” says Horsley, who is also a longtime member of the Pressure Washers of North America (PWNA). For more information about train cleaning, start by contacting your local power washing consultant, or sign up for a two-day workshop at the PWNA, by visiting

Source by George T. Roberts

Five Companies With Which to Register for REO Trash-Out and Foreclosure Clean Up Jobs

Many smaller foreclosure clean up businesses get work from larger mortgage field services companies. The trash-out and foreclosure clean up industry is on the rise, as is evident in foreclosure industry reporting data from sources like RealtyTrac, an online marketplace for foreclosures. According to RealtyTrac, 3,825,637 foreclosure filings were reported in 2010 on U.S. properties. That’s a double digit increase from the year 2008.

Foreclosure clean up companies handle the clearing out, cleaning up and ongoing interior and exterior maintenance of homes that have been foreclosed upon by banks and mortgage companies. Services offered by foreclosure clean up companies can include a wide spectrum of services, well beyond cleaning. Services offered by these businesses include cleaning, debris removal, painting, minor repairs, lawn maintenance, applying tarps to roofs and full roof repairs, pressure washing, gutter cleaning, one-time and ongoing inspections, vehicle removal, tree cutting, winterization, lock changing, window and door boarding, and more.

Establish Your Foreclosure Cleaning Enterprise First

Many smaller foreclosure clean up companies get work from property preservation companies. While there are a plethora of property preservation companies in existence, it can be a time-consuming process signing up with all of these entities. The best way to start getting work is to establish your business with the proper license, insurance, and equipment.

Your License: Often a business occupational license from your county’s County Clerk Office is what is needed. Each county is unique, so call your government office that handles business licensing in your county to find out what type of license you will need based on the services you choose to offer.

The Business Insurance: Next, contact a local insurance agency and discuss your business so you can best determine the type of coverage your company will need. At minimum, you will need liability insurance coverage. Also plan to discuss securing workmen’s compensation insurance and the appropriate coverage for your vehicle.

Preparing for Equipment: There are a few routes you can take when it comes to getting equipment for your business. You can either a) purchase equipment, b) rent equipment, or c) use the equipment you already have on hand in your garage or basement to start your business. Plan equipment based on the services you plan to offer in your business.

NOTE: If you niche your services, or offer one-stop shop services based on subcontracting or referring out services, you will need limited equipment to start. However, if you choose to become a one-stop shop and do everything yourself, you will need more equipment. Keep this in mind as you plan your business and equipment needs.

After you have properly researched the industry, planned your business and marketing strategies, secured proper license and insurance, and have your equipment needs in order, it will be time to start signing up for work.

The best way to start is to register your business with larger property preservation companies. Below is a list of five large property preservation companies. Contact them for their vendor packets and start signing up your company so you’re part of their databases.

List of Five Top Property Preservation Companies with Which to Register

1. Mortgage Contracting Services, LLC: A national property preservation and inspection company founded in 1986. (Website: mcs360 DOT com)

2. Cyprexx Services: Cyprexx is a national field services business that provides property preservation, inspection, repair and maintenance services to some of the largest financial organizations, government institutions, asset management corporations, and brokers in the U.S. (Internet Address: cyprexx DOT com)

3. Five Brothers: This company has been in business for more than 40 years providing property preservation, inspection, and REO management-related services. (Website: fivebrms DOT com)

4. Field Asset Services, Inc.: Field Asset Services is an REO asset management servicing and property preservation company responsible for more than 7.3 billion dollars in residences on behalf of almost 30 major nationwide clients. They regularly care for 120,000 plus properties. (Site: fieldassets DOT com)

5. Lenders Asset Management Corp. (“LAMCO”): LAMCO has been in existence since 1989 providing residential REO asset management and outsourcing solutions for national lending institutions, banks, servicers, and investment firms. (Web: lendersreo DOT com)

Planning for Property Preservation Tests

When you register your foreclosure clean up business with these large property preservation companies, be prepared to show proof of insurance, business registration, and quite possibly be prepared to take a property preservation quiz. Most of these quizzes are straight-forward tests that simply judge your comprehension of basic industry terms and tasks. Much of the test information is quickly available online — if you don’t already know it.

Foreclosure Clean Up Jobs for Years to Come

Remember, once you get registered with these companies and your credentials check out, these larger entities can provide your company with bulk foreclosure cleaning work for years to come.

Much success registering your REO trash-out business with these companies for foreclosure clean up jobs!

For a larger list of property preservation companies and other key businesses with which to register for foreclosure cleaning and REO trash-out work (with direct vendor job links), see the Property Preservation & Real Estate Industry Contracting and Subcontracting Directory.

Source by Cassandra Black

The Secrets of the Centenarians: How to Live to 100!

When Helen Boardman was still a girlish 99, she fell in love again–with a

younger man.

“I robbed the cradle,” laughs the trim centenarian, who married a man

twenty years her junior for “companionship,” she says slyly. “Bill was

lonesome—I wasn’t!–but I enjoyed his company and we had the same

interests. So we fell in love.”

It didn’t hurt that Bill Boardman had the same last name.

“That was a coincidence,”adds Bill. “She kept getting my checks, I got her

bills, so out of necessity, we had to get married!”

Nowadays, the twosome often perform together in plays at Friendship

Village, an independent living facility outside of Chicago where they share a

one-bedroom apartment. Helen writes, directs, and stars in the productions.

“I don’t get nervous…I’m over all that,” she shrugs nonchalantly.

She’s 107. He’s 86.

Still romance after eight years? “A little,” Helen laughs, “when he’s real nice

to me, which is most of the time. He’s a good guy.”

“To be perfectly frank, ” notes Bill, “Helen doesn’t seem 20 years older at

all. She’s never acted like an old lady. Last New Year’s Eve, we stayed up until

midnight dancing. I think she’s maintained her youth quite well!”

Indeed, decked out in pearls and a smart black-and-white checkerboard

dress, nestled into a couch in her living room, the woman born in June, l896,

says: “I feel young inside…I’d say about 60.” She doesn’t even dye her still-

auburn hair. “My mother and father didn’t go gray either,” she says with pride.

” I guess I’m drinking from the Fountain of Youth.”

“Sometimes,” she adds, miffed by those around her in their 80’s and 90’s

who complain about their health, “I feel like a teenager in an old folk’s home!”

An avid reader, book reviewer, and world traveler, with 12 trips to Europe

under her belt, Helen also recites poetry, gardens, flower arranges, and lifts

weights daily!

“Just one or two or pounds each arm,” she demurs of her bicep curls.

Her secret of longevity? “Strawberry shortcake!” she smiles sweetly. “One

big piece, every day.”

* * * * *

The Centenarian Jackpot

The remarkable Helen Boardman is not alone. In the U.S. today, there are

more than 50,000 centenarians, the nation’s fastest growing age group.

Although the current life expectancy for the average American is 76.9 years, by

the year 2050 there will be an estimated one million people living to 100.

That’s substantial progress. In 1900, the average life span extended to age 47.

In 1800, it was a mere 30 years-old.

“The secret to reaching 100 nowadays is a combination of genetics,

lifestyle choices, mental acuity, and just plain luck!” notes Thomas T. Perls,

M.D., author of Living to 100: Lessons in Living to Your Maximum Potential at

Any Age (Basic Books).

This landmark book, written with Margery Hutter Silver, Ed.D. is based on

the ongoing New England Centenarian Study, begun in l994, which reveals that

old age can be filled with lucidity, mobility, and good health.1

“Of the 1,500 centenarians in our study,” says Perls, “a great majority

were in terrific shape the vast majority of their lives. Rather than accumulating

damage, they’re actually shedding it.”

How so? “Most people believe the older you get, the sicker you get, a very

pessimistic point of view. The centenarians we’ve met demonstrate the

opposite: the older they get, the healthier they’ve been. I call them centenarian

jackpots. From a medical standpoint, they’ve been able to markedly delay or

altogether escape diseases that we normally associate with aging–like heart

disease, cancer, stroke, or Alzheimer’s.

“I haven’t had anything,” notes Helen Boardman. No diseases. No

medications. “I take an aspirin occasionally,” she admits, for hip pain.

“Freed from any major illness,” says Dr. Perls, “many centenarians like

Helen are cooking their own meals, balancing checkbooks, driving their own

cars, lifting weights, playing bridge, and reading novels, and socializing with

family and friends.

Some are even competing in the Senior Olympics. Take, for example,

another remarkable centenarian, Marguerite Kuekelhan, born in August l897.

At age 105, she’s the world record holder (in her age class) for shotput! Last

July, at the Washington State Senior Games in Olympia, the 97-pound athlete

could be seen hurling a 6 1/2 pound metal ball 6 feet into the air

Her secret? “I think it’s the spirit within you,” she says crisply. Being 90 or

100 is no excuse for inactivity? “Heavens no! I try not to let age keep me down

at all.

This year I’m trying to break my record and make it better,” says 4-foot 10

inch dynamo, who hopes to beat her best practice throw at 7’6″.

Is all this fun? “No,” she groans. “The ball is very heavy; I’d rather bounce a

rubber ball.” In fact, she recently played exhibition basketball against the

Seattle Supersonics, warning the crowd: “Before I get started, I haven’t

dribbled in about 100 years!”

That’s for sure. A widow after 55 years of marriage, Marguerite lives alone

in a tidy apartment in an independent living facility in Olympia, does her own

cooking and cleaning, always uses the stairs, and does her leg and ankle

exercises each morning to maintain strength and balance for the shotput.

“And I still drive,” she says with pride, “though I’m giving that up when I

turn 106 this August. I just feel as if my reactions are not as quick as they

used to be. But I still see very very well and I hear well too–though I had to

get one of those things! [a hearing aid].

* * * * *

Genetic Booster Rockets

What in the world is going on here? A woman getting married at 99 and

starring in plays? Another shotputting and dribbling a basketball? What

Fountain are they drinking from?

“These centenarians,” notes Dr. Perls, “are blessed with what I call ‘genetic

booster rockets’, a built-in biological advantage which boosts them above the

norm. Anyone living to extreme old age has this genetic edge. They were

endowed with the ‘Rolls Royces’ of genes, what scientists call ‘super genes,”

which act as longevity insurance. These genes slow down aging and reduce the

risk of contracting diseases. Centenarians in our study who lived to 105 usually

died of pneumonia, or even a household accident–having never developed any

chronic disease of aging. For sure, extreme old age runs in families.”

Both Helen and Marguerite’s parents lived into their 80’s, with close

relatives of both topping 102.

Even with average genes, however, it’s possible to extend longevity more

than ever before, says Dr. Perls: “Not long ago, 85 was considered ancient.

Now it’s relatively easy to achieve that age if you play your cards right. It all

boils down to four simple things: not smoking, maintaining a healthy diet,

strength training, and avoiding excessive sun exposure and alcohol. Those are

the biggies.”

One such example is the nation’s oldest man, 113-year-old Fred Hale, born

in New Sharon, Maine on December 1, l890, when Benjamin Harrison was


Up until age 107, the retired railway clerk lived alone in a three-story

farmhouse in Maine, traipsing up and down stairs, shoveling snow off the roof,

chopping wood, hunting, fishing, mowing grass, gardening, and beekeeping–

producing his own honey and bee pollen, a lifelong passion.

He was still driving his own car, making him the oldest American ever to

hold a driver’s license according to the Guinness Book of Records.

At 113, Hale is in a special class unto himself, considered a “super-

centenarian,” defined as anyone living 110 or longer. There is one super-

centenarian per million in the population, a total of 260 in the U.S. today. “We

don’t yet know what sets these people apart,” says Dr. Perls. “They have no

major illnesses, and even their hearing and vision don’t usually deteriorate

until their late 90’s.”

Hale, both of whose parents lived to 91, has, in recent years, beat

pneumonia and hip replacement and had cataract surgery. “No diseases, no

nothing,” he exclaims, “except for some arthritis,” which is cured, he believes,

with a teaspoon of bee pollen taken with each meal.

Although a few falls eventually forced him into the Syracuse Home, a

retirement community in Syracuse, N.Y., he continued using a walker until age

112, hiking half a mile a day. His mental acuity and lively sense of humor

remain undimmed.

How did he survive so long? “Oh, I don’t know, punishment, I guess!” he


When reflecting on it, he credits his longevity to a good diet, lots of rest (up

at 6 a.m., to bed at 8 p.m.) never smoking, and keeping busy.

“The secret is work,” he declares. “Don’t sit around. Keep a good attitude. I

always loved to work. When I went home, I got five hours sleep, and then went

to work in my garden. I can still stoop down and pick up a handkerchief better

than most of them!”

* * * * *

Use It Or Lose It

Until Fred Hale was 111, he studied the Reader’s Digest ‘Word Power’

vocabulary exercise religiously, testing himself on new words weekly. His work

ethic and mental curiosity point to another key ingredient in the longevity

marathon: exercising the brain.

“It’s definitely use it or lose it,” says Dr. Perls. “The key to mental vigor is

continually learning something new, which builds fresh connections between

brain cells.

“For instance, crossword puzzles (verbal functions), bridge (memory

functions) and intricate jigsaw puzzles (visual-spatial functions) all keep the

mind sharp. Equally beneficial is painting,writing poetry, making sculpture, or

learning a new language. We’ve also found that music is a powerful vaccine

against dementia and the onset of brain disease. I knew a 102-year-old who

was never in her room at the nursing home because she was too busy playing

Mozart and Chopin recitals in the music room! Doing any of these things

allows you to maintain attention and memory, and the ability to plan, organize,

and exercise self-care.

“I think the mind has a lot to do with the way you feel,” says Helen

Boardman, until recently a voracious reader who spent a lifetime writing book

reviews for libraries and turning biographies into plays. Two years ago, she

even completed her memoirs, titled: “105 and Counting,” before her vision

began to fail.

“Staying home and watching TV was never my pleasure at all,” says Helen,

who does tune into C-Span for the book reviews. She believes the secret of

longevity is: “Curiosity. I love to see the world and I love people. Everybody has

some good in them. If you’re curious about things, you’ll search them out.”

She marvels at the technological miracles spread over the three centuries

which her lifetime has spanned, yet she recounts, with equal pleasure, her days

in a horse and buggy: “I drove to high school every day in my buggy. Maudie

was a retired beige race horse and I loved her! When we got our first

automobile, she was put out to pasture. We accepted the car right away, sure–

but isn’t a horse more fun?”

Fun counts in Helen’s world. She even tried white-water rafting at 90: “The

ticket seller said that the only requirement was that you had to be at least eight

years old. I told myself: ‘If an 8-year-old can do it, I can!” * * * * *

“Good Training” and The Centenarian Personality

Although many may wonder if diet has much to do with the remarkable

health of centenarians, “it’s impossible to know because dietary habits have

changed so dramatically over the years,” says Dr. Perls. Most processed foods

did not exist during the centenarians’ formative years; preserving was done by

pickling, smoking, and salting; and fresh fruit was less available. “Some ate

very little red meat, others ate it every day with bacon and eggs!–and both

types lived to 100.” Nowadays, however, there’s little doubt, says Perls, that

“good training,” — exercise and proper diet–contribute mightily to living to


“The secret of living a long life is lifestyle as much as anything,” thinks

Helen Boardman. “I’ve always taken exercise, I don’t go for liquor, and I never


“I’m not fond of red meat at all,” she continues. “I prefer vegetables, fruit,

chicken and fish. And when I’m not feeling too well, I have oatmeal. Growing

up on the family farm, we always had it in the morning, and I still love it!”

Chocolate cake? “Unacceptable but delicious!” she laughs.

Fred Hale, at 113, also eats moderately and drinks no coffee or tea. His

diet? “I eat off my fork just the same as everybody else!” he teases.

“I always eat rolled oats with honey for breakfast,” he explains. “Lunch is

meat and potatoes. And at night, I eat very light–cottage cheese, apple sauce

and toast. That’s it.”

Athletic competitor Marguerite eats “very light, which is easier on the

stomach,” principally vegetables and fruits: “And I don’t use any milk

products. I like soy milk instead. It seems to be easier to digest.” No desserts,

she says. Such virtue! “Well, look what the result is!”

Beyond genetics, lifestyle, and mental acuity, there is another profound, yet

intangible, factor that influences anyone’s ability to live to 100. Dr. Perls refers

to it as the ‘centenarian personality’–a stress-reducing mindset that combines

positive thinking with a fighting spirit.

“Inevitably, most centenarians are upbeat, funny,and gregarious,” he

observes: “It’s very rare I meet a curmudgeon centenarian! They’re not

complainers. In our personality testing, they score very low in ‘neuroticism,’ the

expression of negative emotions like fear, anxiety, guilt, anger, or depression.

They’re positive and optimistic in their attitude and bounce back easily from

life’s crises because they don’t internalize thoughts or emotions that cause


“I believe in positive thinking,” booms the athletic Marguerite, a founding

and lifelong member of Unity Church in Olympia. “Mental attitude,” says

Marguerite, who meditates daily to take herself into “a quiet place” is

exceedingly important. “I was always trying throughout my life to be positive,

but I didn’t get to the peak until now….it was a matter of growth.”

Her close friend and shotput promoter, John Vlastelia, the president of the

Washington State Senior Games, adds this: “When Marguerite reads in the

newspaper that ‘Flu season in full bloom,’ she always says ‘I am not going to

get sick,’ and literally wills herself to good health.”

“We know,” says Dr. Perls, “that stress–internalizing depression, anger,

worry, fear–is an age accelerator. We’ve found that centenarians are able to

shake stress off their backs like a duck shakes off water. Many have

experienced great losses and hardships in their lives, yet they’d been able to

recover quickly and move on.”

* * * * *

A Realistic View of Death

Perhaps some of these centenarians will reach even the grand old age

achieved by Mme.

Jeanne Calment, the oldest living person in recorded history, who died in l997,

at age 122.

“The chances of living to 122,” says Dr. Perls, “is 1 in 6 billion. Although I

think the human life span could be eventually expanded into the 130’s, for

most of us, reaching ages 100-105 is a reasonable number to hope for.”

Centenarians like Helen, Marguerite, and Fred, thriving in the present as

they do, think very little about their limited futures.

“Death is something that is coming,” says Marguerite matter-of-factly,

priming for competition this July at the shotput: “I accept it as part of my

experience in life, but I don’t think about it at all.”

As for Fred Hale, every time his physical therapist says ‘see you tomorrow,’

the 113-year-old answers: “Perhaps! I’m not making long-term plans!”

His attitude toward death? “What took you so long!” he quips merrily.

Then, on a serious note, he adds: “Can’t do anything about it. Why be afraid?”

This attitude is typical, says Dr. Perls: “I haven’t met any centenarian who

feared death. If anything, they’re very thankful for every day they have and they

just hope for more.”

As for Helen, “sometimes,” she smiles, “I get so sleepy. Anytime I sit down, I

just close my eyes. My daughter was talking about death the other day and said

she can’t wait to find out what happens. Well, I feel pretty much the same way.

I have no fear of death. It’s just another phase when we’re finished with our

work. I’m content to stop anytime now.”

But she brightens at the thought of her younger husband, Bill:

“He’s my incentive!” she says merrily. “My children are all

independent…they don’t need me. Bill does. He needs someone to boss him! I

look forward to what is yet to come.”

All in all, is being 107 a blessing or burden?

“Both,” she answers calmly. “It’s a burden because I was a voracious reader

until I became nearly blind. So I’ve lost the thing that I enjoyed the most,

though I can listen to books on tape. But it’s a blessing because of the things I

still can do. Here’s my poem: “My hearing and vision–neither one are very

good; and I sometimes stumble when I walk; but when you ask me any

question about my life, I sure am glad I still can talk!”

“So I’m an OPTIMIST,” she declares in parting, “grateful for everything. Every

day. At dinner, every bite is exciting because I never know what I’m going to

eat. The cup is always full. I have never been in want. Everything is good.

Nothing bad.

“After reading my memoirs,” she smiles, “my nephew asked me if there

was anything bad in my life, and I said: ‘If there was, I forgot it!”

* * * * *

Side-Bar RX

In a culture obsessed by youth, “people have got to realize,” says Dr. Perls,

“that your 70’s and 80’s can be the most fantastic time of your life. I see

people go after second or third careers, or volunteer activities, enhance

relationships with their families, while their experience and wisdom is at their

peaks. Life is their oyster. And it still can be at 100!”

Here are a few health secrets for anyone on the road to 100, a prescription

from Dr. Perls, Assistant Professor of Medicine, Boston School of Medicine, and

geriatrician at Boston Medical Center.

Age accelerators to avoid: smoking, sun exposure, excessive alcohol , high-

fat diet, ionizing radiation, toxic chemicals, excessive risk-taking, and mental

stress. Make fitness, laughter, and relaxing recreation a priority in your life!

Age de-accelerators: Exercise (weight training, aerobics, meditation, yoga); a

diet of fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, with a minimum of meats and

sweets, processed foods, and animal fat or butter.

Supplements: To prevent arteriosclerosis, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s

Parkinson’s, vision problems, cancers, and rheumatoid arthritis, I recommend


*Vitamin E [400-800 IU per day] to prevent and delay cognitive


*Vitamin B complex (with folate)

*Calcium with Vitamin D (to decrease the risk of osteoporosis)

*Omega Fatty Acids #3 and #6 (derived from flax seed oil or fish oil,

availablein capsules, 1,000 mg daily]

*Selenium [100-200 mcg per day].

*Baby aspirin (81 mg) each day which reduces the risk of heart attack by 50%.

*Green tea–noted by the Chinese culture for 3000 years as a health


Author’s note: Since these interviews were conducted, Fred Hale, documented

as the world’s oldest man, died at age 113 on November 20, 2004. He was

physically active and mentally alert right up until the end says his son, an


Source by Glenn Plaskin

The Responsible Builder’s Guide to Surface Protection for Hospital Renovation Projects

Although the construction industry was severely damaged by the Great Recession, there is one particular area where business is growing; hospital construction and renovation. Due to the increase demand for healthcare services by aging baby boomers, hospital construction and renovation projects have increased dramatically in the past ten years and will continue to grow in the future. According to McGraw-Hill Construction Research and Analytics, health care construction has increased six percent during 2011, outperforming the overall non-residential construction market. Although undertaking a hospital renovation project can be highly lucrative, there are many important rules and regulations that require full compliance by the contractor. Failure to meet these regulations could result in lawsuits or even worse, in the deaths of hospital patients. To avoid calamity, there are several extremely important things to know upon beginning renovation.

First and foremost, builders must meticulously contain dust disturbed by renovation activities. Allowing airborne particulates to circulate through the hospital could mean death for sensitive patients. On a hospital renovation jobsite at St. Joseph’s Hospital, Inc. in Tampa, FL, three children battling leukemia, ages two, five, and nine died after contracting fungal infections. The pathogenic fungi was released and circulated through the air conditioning systems from construction activities on the floor below. To avoid tragic scenarios such as this, builders must contain dust particulates as much as possible.

Secondly, while accessing electrical panels and ceiling wiring, subcontractors should use mobile containment units with negative air pressure to fully contain dust. Mobile containment units are small, portable enclosures that allow builders access to ceiling and wall panels without permitting particulates generated from sanding, drilling, etc. to circulate through the air. A few businesses allow contractors to rent mobile containment units but for large scale projects, investing in one or two will save time and money in the long run. For more details about mobile containment contact your local surface protection suppliers.

Another important aspect of dust control for primary contractors on the renovation project is preventing the spread of dust from subcontractors. Large-scale renovations typically require tens or hundreds of workers, and since meticulously preventing the spread of dust is so critical, these workers must all make a great effort to avoid contamination. Employee education is a great place to start, along with the requiring workers to wear personal protection. In order to help you comply with regulation there are several products that may make a huge difference; sticky mats, shoe covers, and coveralls. Require subcontractors to wear shoe covers and use fresh pairs as often as necessary. Install a sticky mat at each door entrance. Many adhesive mats are inexpensive and available in packs of four with thirty pages on each mat, so make sure to replace sticky sheets often.

A third important point is to be aware of fire-resistance requirements for your protection materials. When installing Zipwall™ systems for dust control or protecting a newly-installed concrete floor, use products that are certified as fire-resistant to avoid violating regulations. Large 4′ x 8′ sheets of fire-resistant corrugated plastic are also great for protecting wall panels, floors, doors, and more. Coverguard™ is another great option for a fire-resistant floor protection product that meets hospital renovation requirements.

These are only a few recommendations for preventing dust and protecting valuable fixtures during hospital renovation projects. For more information, contact Pat Mullen at Builders Site Protection and check out the OSHA website for easy-to-follow guidelines to understanding and fully complying with regulations.

Source by Heather Ley

How to Niche Your Services and Grow Your Foreclosure Cleanup Business

A foreclosure cleanup business encompasses primarily the clearing out, cleaning up and maintenance of foreclosed homes. Services can range from interior and exterior cleaning, debris removal, and lawn care, to painting, gutter cleaning, pressure washing, minor repairs, carpet cleaning and removal, the boarding of windows and doors, locksmith services, and more.

Jack of All Trades, Master of None

Many new foreclosure cleanup business owners can quickly feel like they’re “all over the place” in the start-up phase of their new enterprises because they may be trying to offer everything to everybody. It’s typical for new business owners to try to offer as many services as possible because they don’t want to lose out on any business.

However, the business owner will run the risk of being a Jack of all trades and master of none.

How to Successfully Niche Services

An alternative to offering so many services is to simply niche services; provide a few services and become a master of those services offered. Niching will not only guide a business owner in narrowing their business focus, but it will help them strategically define and effectively speak to their target market. Niching will ultimately streamline advertising and marketing efforts and dollars spent on successfully getting the word out about the business.

Niche Specific Foreclosure Cleanup Services

Niche Debris Removal & Cleaning: Interior and exterior debris removal and cleaning can be two services with which to start in a foreclosure cleanup business. Most foreclosures will need debris gathered and removed from the home; and the home will need to be left in broom-swept condition.

To offer these two services at good prices and in fast turnaround times will lead to a niche business with incredible growth potential.

Niche Window/Door Boarding & Lock Changing: Another pair of services that make good niche offerings is the boarding of windows and doors, along with locksmith services. For example, EFG Foreclosure Cleanup Securing could offer to handle property securing, which would encompass those initial services most banks will need: boarding and changing locks.

Niche Winterization: Deciding to offer winterization (preparing pipes, toilets, hot water heaters, etc., in a home for long periods of vacancy), along with property securing, will also fit nicely within the above niche.

Why? Because when a property preservation company is called in, preservation and securing are two of the first things needed after the initial inspections. Boarding, changing locks and winterization services are front-line, evergreen services that can be paired and niched effectively.

Niche Property Inspections: Another hot niche for a foreclosure cleanup business can be foreclosure property inspections. There are various forms of inspections surrounding a property in the pre-foreclosure state as well as during the actual foreclosure process.

A small foreclosure cleanup company that positions itself to handle property inspections will be the first on the scene of the property. This is a bonus in that this niche company can offer to bid on other aspects of the job and outsource those services or refer them out; thereby earning income on aspects of the job, even though they won’t be performed in-house.

Preparing for Successful Growth at Start-up

Though it’s tempting to start out offering a plethora of services in a new foreclosure cleaning business, it may be wiser still to consider offering niche services for successful growth.

Niching Beyond the Start-up Phase

If a foreclosure cleanup business owner is already in operation, but the owner feels the business is spread too thin, niching can still be accomplished with the simple pairing down of services. Entrepreneurs can simply decide which services to eliminate and which services to keep.

The services that are kept should be communicated to the existing client base using a unique selling proposition that will ultimately benefit the client.

Good luck in growing your foreclosure cleanup business by niching your services.

Source by Cassandra Black

Contractor, Handyman Or Construction Broker?

Every Homeowner needs help around the house from small repairs or spruce-ups to renovations. But how can you determine what type of professional to hire? Here are some tips and differences in home improvement professionals that you should consider.

Contractor vs Handyman: Often a contractor’s fees to handle small projects can be cost prohibitive. A handyman typically handles small jobs around the house and yard for both businesses and homeowners alike, and can provide a practical and cost effective solution. Some jobs require a specific license or are beyond the scope of a handyman. General contractors can handle virtually any major home project. One rule of thumb can be how long the job should take. If it’s going to take more than 2 full days to complete, a general contractor is better equipped to handle the project.

Developing a relationship with a reliable and trustworthy handyman over the long term is a good idea for any homeowner. It’s always nice to address those home improvement projects a house needs from time to time easily and quickly. Before going out and hiring a general contractor to repair a hole in drywall or to paint a room, you can hire a handyman. A contractor’s fees to handle small projects can be discouraging.

There are a few good rules of thumb when considering a handyman. With a little investment in time, you can save both money and energy over the long haul. Here is a list of jobs that you can have one good handyman take care of for you:

* Minor plumbing like leaky faucets, a new sink or fixtures

* Minor electrical work like a new ceiling fan, an added plug or switch

* Fixing a leaky roof or correcting drainage problems

* Miscellaneous carpentry around the house

* Painting a room or garage area

* Siding repair

* Building shelves

* Tile repair or installation

This list could go on and on, but you get the idea. If you’re going to re-side or re-roof your home, you probably need to find a reliable contractor who specializes in those areas of home remodeling. Both Handymen and contractors should provide you with a free no obligation estimate before tackling a project. A homeowner should never hire a handyman until knowing the cost of the project, including materials. A good handyman can offer estimates and work either by the hour, or by the job like a major contractor would.

If you want to work with your contractor, you may be able to. Some handymen prefer to work alone, but most will work with you if you just want some help getting something done. You’ll likely get an hourly rate if you go this route. On the other hand, once a major contractor has outlined the scope of the work involved, and you approve his bid, you need to stand back and let him go to work. You are only in the way at that point.

Some thoughts on hiring a handyman:

* Have a list of all your projects handy before you call someone. Once your handyman is on site, have him price each project separately, then together as a whole. Depending on the work involved, you may be able to save money having him tackle at least a few things all at once.

* Ask for references and don’t be afraid to call one or two of them. There are a few good directories that prescreen local handymen and even perform background checks and call their references for you.

* Until you develop a primary handyman relationship that you are very comfortable with, don’t be afraid to get multiple bids. You can sort through a search like “local handyman” in Google and you’ll get lots of great results. Remember, anyone can buy an ad, but someone who gets top ranked naturally very likely a serious businessman. Make a choice from the top 4 or 5 search results and you will find a trusted pro. If you get multiple bids, let your handyman know you are getting other bids. It’s not only polite but remember that trust is built two ways.

* Ask your handyman what he specializes in. Engage him in conversation. Any handyman service should know a lot about many different things, but you can be sure he is an expert at only a few. Spending a little time up front with him can go a long way. He likely knows other handymen who can take up his slack where he needs it.

Contracting brokers are another option for you. They are like salesmen who work for a lot of different companies. When you call a good contracting broker, he will assess your need and find the right company for the job you need done. He gets paid a commission from the contracting company as though he were on their sales force, collecting his fee from the company you hire after the job is complete. Some brokers simply point at the right company for you. Others work more like a consultant and service provider. Those really are the best kind. They know it’s in their best interest to make sure you are happy with both the level of service and the finished project and work with you in every aspect of the job. Using a broker should not cost you any extra money and can alleviate much of the task load. If your projects require more than one or two different types of professionals, you should consider finding a good broker. A broker can also enhance the entire contracting experience.

You can find more useful home improvement tips on my blog at

– Phil Vandermeer

Source by Philip Vandermeer

Micro Entrepreneurs

Micro entrepreneurs are the owners of small businesses that have fewer than five employees and have startup costs of less than $35,000 and annual revenue of less than $100,000. There are nearly 21.5 million micro entrepreneurs in the U.S. Examples of micro entrepreneurs are owners of bakeries, beauty parlors, child care facilities, repair shops, arts and crafts shops, painting businesses, contracting businesses, family-owned shops, auto body shops, small-scale restaurants, and small-inventory trading businesses.

Micro entrepreneurs face many hurdles in getting startup financing, and they sometimes lack the skills necessary to manage the financial aspect of their business. As a result, many micro entrepreneurs cannot grow and develop their business beyond a micro enterprise. Various micro enterprise development programs have helped micro entrepreneurs achieve great success and growth. These micro enterprise development programs have immensely helped micro entrepreneurs who lack collateral needed to secure a loan or those who have low or no credit by providing them with training, support, help in developing a solid business plan, and assistance in building their businesses. Successful micro entrepreneurs have contributed much to society by creating wealth, economic assets, and jobs.

How To Become A Micro Entrepreneur

It is essential to study the market thoroughly and understand that market’s customers before deciding on the type and kind of product or service to be offered.

Here are some suggestions:

Work out a sound business plan by doing extensive research and seeking help from the various micro enterprise development programs.

Make arrangements for the startup capital by using savings, opting for a micro loan program, or applying for a grant.

Do extensive market research, get the necessary training and skills required, and learn how to use technology to help run your business easily.

Study the competition and analyze how you can better them.

Get a good retail space to run your business as well as decide on the price, making sure it is right and has a profit margin; decide how to utilize the profit, whether you want to save it or reinvest and expand your micro business.

Make sure that the quality of the product is never compromised and that your customers are happy, ensuring customer retention.

Assistance for Micro Entrepreneurs

Micro entrepreneurs in the U.S. are in need of training and skill development workshops as well as help in utilizing technology to help run their business. Some micro entrepreneurs need access to easily available funds for startup and growth. In order to encourage more people to become micro entrepreneurs, state, federal, and private sectors should make available ample funding for such enterprises.

With a little effort, you can find firms that sell their services as well as products to help run successful businesses. You can even seek professional help to arrange business credit for micro enterprises.

Source by Alexander Gordon

What Are the Services Provided by a General Contractor?

Are you about to hire a Construction Services Provider?

But you are not sure what offerings they have to make your home or office space more comfortable and luxurious. If so, then you need to have a look at all the key services usually offered by a renowned commercial construction company. We have mentioned them all here just for your benefit.

Core Services

Let’s start by having a look at the core services offered by such organizations. They include but are not limited to:

Design Creation: In this service, every aspect of the pre-construction design stage is taken care of. Apart from creating marvelous designs, tasks like permitting, ensuring competitive pricing and construction delivery are also handled.

Construction Management: As a part of this service, the construction services provider would take care of everything from reviewing plans developed by other companies to budgeting and from value engineering to ensuring competitive pricing. Construction delivery is also ensured.

General Contracting: In this service, the company would provide you with lump-sum prices they charge for the delivery of a defined project on the set of plans that could have been defined by anyone else.

Maintenance & Repairs: Here, you as a client get the option of choosing from contact pricing schedules or lump sum pricing. The time and material could also be chosen by you and the company would follow your instructions.

Other Vital Services

Apart from the aforementioned services, good building contractors also offer some more vital services listed here:

• Drywall or Framing: The walls and ceilings of your building are framed and drywalled by using the right materials and skills.

• Plumbing: Companies involved in commercial construction often have the capability to take on pipe fitting and plumbing jobs of any kind and scope.

• Electrical Services: Whether it’s a small electrical failure or setting up of a new electrical system in a new construction, everything is done flawlessly at as per your expectations.

• HVAC: Everything from new HVAC installation to refurbishing the old system is done by experts so that you never feel suffocated again.

• Concrete for Creations: Concrete is used to create small or large concrete slabs or equipment pads. It all depends on what you expect from a contractor you have chosen.

• Cleanrooms: Office constructions or medical room additions can be done in a clean & safe manner by a skilled contractor so as to avoid halting of your vital business operations.

• Modular Offices and Structures: You can make your office an efficient and productive space by hiring a general contractor with tons of experience in this field. After all, an efficient design lures better employees and clients, don’t you think?

• Painting: From commercial to industrial and from the interior to exterior painting, everything is offered by an expert contractor so that your space looks excellent from the outside and the inside.

• Carpentry: Want to add in a bit of artistic woodwork to your home or office? Your own contractor can provide it at reasonable costs. You should try it once.

• Permit Processing: A contractor with appropriate contacts can also help you get all the needed permits in a time-bound manner without charging a high fee for it. It’s a service worth exploring if you want to have a hassle-free construction or redesigning experience.

Source by Terry Tracy

How to Choose a Painter for Your Offices?

It is not difficult to tell the difference between good and bad painter. You cannot always trust the advertisements and referrals. Since choosing a painter for office is one of the most important investments in your life, you will not let anyone paint the walls of your house. For this reason, it is important to call on a professional painter for office who knows how to treat your office with the desired attention. If you are worried about how to choose a painter for your office, here are some tips for you to choose a painter for the office.

  • Reputation

You will only know if the potential painter is eligible if you demand references. A good painter for office should be able to offer you with some good references. Take the time to contact each of your clients and ask pertinent questions about the quality of execution of a potential painter. You can also view them online to find good and bad reviews about the company.

  • Required skills

Whether you are self-employed or an employee, you will probably spend most of your workday alone or at least outside of your supervisor’s notice. You should be able to work effectively and well without direct supervision. Good painter for office should be able to provide accurate estimates of the time required to complete a task. He has all the skills required by a good painter.

  • Experience

Experience is one of the most important things to consider when choosing a painter for office. Contracting a professional with wide-ranging experience in the type of work you need will ensure that they know what to do and what they need to ensure flawless implementation and flawless painting results. Experienced painter for office is the guarantee to get good results. With years of experience in various types of painting, whether residential, commercial or industrial, a good painter for office has the skills and expertise to meet and exceed the expectations of customers.

  • Professionalism

It is always good to arrange to get an idea of their personality and review their project in detail. This will give you the opportunity to evaluate your professionalism. Let them explain how the employees will complete your project, what their approach is and discuss what you want to achieve for the project. Working with a professional will ensure that your project is completed on time and efficiently.

  • Right equipment

Good painter for office has more equipment than smaller paint companies. If a property requiring painting work is a three-story building or has walls and a high interior ceiling, the task may require the use of an elevator or at least one staircase. Spray coating may be the fastest way to achieve a uniform layer on exterior walls. Therefore, make sure your chosen paint company has the right tools and equipment to do the job properly.

Make sure to consider these qualities when looking for a painting contractor for your office.

Source by Melbin W Chicas